Optimize Your Observing Skills Using These Accessories

I would like to suggest several observing accessories.  It’s my opinion, the following items are essential to become a better observer: I purchased all of the following items from Orion Telescope and Binoculars, however, a couple of them over twenty years ago.  The folding observing table was custom made by a good friend.  

  1. Astrogoggles:  Red flexible plastic glasses that can be worn at least 30 minutes prior to going outside, to better acclimate your night vision.  I also find them to work great, should it be necessary to come back into the house, as they will allow you to maintain your “ready to observe” night vision.  
  2. Observing cloth:  Placing a cloth over your head, can significantly improve your ability to see the faintest details in deep-sky objects, by blocking ambient light.  I like the one shown in the picture, which I ordered many years ago, again from Orion.  It’s lightweight, has a liner, and allows for good air circulation, which eliminates fogging the eyepiece.  You could use most any piece of black fabric, but this one is designed and engineered just for the amateur astronomer.   
  3. Astro-Chair:  If you want to see the faintest of details, an adjustable observing chair should be  considered essential.  It’s impossible to stand, hold both your head and eye still, make some notes and a sketch, while standing.  It’s very important to be relaxed and comfortable while observing!  

 photo

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