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Re: red dot finder scope
Simple-- you can also do this during the day on an object at least 100 yards away-- but at night; get the moon centered in the eyepiece and without moving the telescope center the red dot on the moon. This will get you almost aligned-- then put a bright star in the eyepiece and readjust the red dot to center the star.
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1. During the day, use the 17mm eyepiece on a object outside (telephone pole, water tower, etc) then align the finder to what you see in the scope. 2. Put in the 7.5mm eyepiece and fine align the red dot finder. 3. At night, point the finder at the moon (less than half moon or the image is too bright without a moon filter) Use the 17mm eyepiece. 4. Once you see the moon, switch to the 7.5mm lens and enjoy. 5. Download Stellarium or any free astronomy software and see what is in your sky tonight. Your scope should be able to see Jupiter and its moons easily.(Saturn, Mars and Venus when the time is right) Open clusters like Pleiades will be nice is this fast scope. 5. If stars are not sharp, you may need to collimate the scope. Look online for general instructions.
It's NOT really a problem. ALL reflector style telescopes show upside down images. This will not affect your star gazing since there is no UP OR DOWN in outer space. Read my tips on my profile page.
You can buy an "erecting diagonal" for terrestrial viewing- BUT this is not what an astronomical telescope is actually used for.
So align the small finder scope on a distant object like the top of a telescope pole during the day time. Point the main tube at the pole and get the tip top in the main tube's eyepiece. Without moving the telescope adjust the crosshairs on the finder scope on the exact same spot. The moon should be your first target at night and you can check and refine the finder scope on the moon.
Astronomical telescopes usually show an upside down image. There is a good reason for this- erecting the image needs more bits of glass in the light path, which reduces the amount of light and increases aberrations. Even if this is only slight, astronomers prefer to avoid it, and they don't really care which way up the Moon or Jupiter appear. It is possible to fit an erecting prism or eyepiece to most astronomical telescopes, and some of them come with one, but one wouldn't bother to do this with the small finder scope.
Telescope manuals recommend that you align the finder scope in daylight, by pointing the main scope at an object on the horizon and adjusting the finder to match (never point a telescope toward the Sun!). Once you have a tree or mountain peak in the center of the main scope's image, you can then adjust the screws around the finder scope to get the crosshairs (or red dot) centered on the same object. It is very difficult to do this job in the dark, especially as objects in the sky are constantly on the move.
Align the small finder scope with the main tube. During the day time point the scope at at the top of a telephone pole and get the top centered in the eyepiece on the main tube. Then without moving the tube adjust the crosshairs or the red dot to point at the exact same spot.
point the telescope at some thing during the day and adjust the finder scope and at night point at a star look through the eye piece and center the object in the eye piece then adjust the finder scope.