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Posted by Bob Sal on February 15, 2002 15:15:29 UTC

There was a similar question on another forum. Below's the answere I gave. Once you polar align you turn the RA to track and when looking for something you turn both. I wouldn't worry so much about this though, read on.

To tell you the truth, I've never polar aligned my telescope. That's improtant if your taking pictures or you want to be able to turn just one slow motion knob to keep the object in the field. Most setting circles are just for show. They work but not that well. They get you close, but no cigar. You can do better without them. I don't know anyone who uses them to find deep sky objects. Especially something like M42, it's real easy. Everyone usually star hops. Look at the charts, find the object you looking for, then find the stars close by in the sky and "hop" from star to star till you get close enough to find the object. I'm not saying not to polar align the scope, I'm saying it's not necessary for location the objects your looking for. Since I don't take pictures and don't mind adjusting the DEC as well as the RA to keep the object in the field, I just put the scope down and point it where ever I want. I never look at the circles.
That's it;

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