Better days dark-wise..

Discuss the greatest threat to amateur astronomy today

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brian livesey
Posts: 5390
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:05 am
Location: Lancashire

Better days dark-wise..

Post by brian livesey »

I remember in the "back-to-the-future" years of the 1950s when light pollution was nothing like it is now.
I was an engineering apprentice at PHILIPS (the electronics giant) and I had a friend who was doing art at the local F.E. college.
I managed to get Michael interested in astronomy,even though I didn't have a telescope at the time,so I couldn't give him an introductory tour of the sky.
Michael was set on building his own eight-inch reflector. As I had access to a fully-equipped engineering workshop,I was able to make a few of the 'scope's parts for him,especially the bits and pieces requiring a lathe.
First light came on a warm late summer's evening from a backyard in the centre of town.,itwas easy to see the band of the Milky Way overhead and for a fair way towards the horizon; we stayed out all night,until "rosey-fingered Dawn" (Homer) lit the eastern horizon.
All we had was NORTON's STAR ATLAS,as we swung from one Messier object to another: M13, M6, M52 and NGC 7789,etc looked superb. In dark conditions,I learned that an eight-inch aperture can give splendid views of many objects. It was easy that night to see Uranus in the South with the unaided eye.

Posts: 836
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:33 am
Location: Newcastle-under-Lyme, UK

Post by GordonCopestake »

When i were a lad, all this were (dark) fields!

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