There’s no better way to spend a night out under the starry skies and trying to pick out the various stars and constellations. In order to see the stars in all their glory and to get the best view you are going to need an astronomy telescope and various telescope accessories.
If you already have one, then you should find that the telescope can really help to improve your view of the starry night’s sky. To make the most of this great tool, you might also want to buy some accessories to use with it. Here are some of the best astronomy telescope accessories that you should consider.
Telescope Accessories: Finder Scopes
If you are new to telescopes, then you might find them quite difficult to use at first. Aiming at the right start could be difficult, and you might struggle to get it into perfect focus. This is where a finder scope comes in useful. The finder scope makes it easier to spot specific stars and, using its crosshair, you can then successfully aim the telescope correctly so that you know you are looking at the right star or constellation rather than something random by mistake. As long as your telescope is pointing at the same spot that the finder scope’s crosshair is, you will start to spot stars a lot easier indeed.
- Time-proven beginner finder scope with fine optical performance and great price-performance ratio.
Telescope Accessories: Light
One great tip for star gazing is to take an astronomy magazine or a star chart outside with you. As it will be dark outside, it’s going to be quite tricky to read these materials, so it’s worth taking a light out with you. Ideally, it should be a red light so that you don’t ruin your night vision. Don’t worry if you can’t find a red light, though. As long as you can adjust the brightness of your flashlight, you should be OK using that. Just make sure you don’t have it too bright as it will require your eyes to readjust to the darkness.
- Keep your night vision intact by using a red flashlight when observing! The Night Vision Flashlight uses two red LED’s for even illumination
- An easy-to-use thumbwheel adjusts the brightness
- Square shape keeps the Night Vision Flashlight from rolling away
- Powered by an included 9V battery.
Telescope Accessories: Star Diagonals
If you have a refractor telescope, it is highly recommended that you also invest in a star diagonal. This is all because of the unique design of refractor telescopes. The star diagonal will bend the light that comes from the target at 90 degrees. This will help it go through the eyepiece and makes it easier for you to view the sky no matter what position you are in. It will really help you if you want to view a star that is high in the sky and directly above you.
- Fits telescopes with 1.25” focusers or visual backs, 90° viewing angle, best for observing objects overhead.
- Accepts standard 1.25” eyepieces, Barlow lenses, and other accessories with a 1.25” insert barrel.
You are definitely going to need a power supply for your telescope, especially if you are going somewhere very rural with it and might not have access to a permanent supply. One option is to find an adaptor that allows you to connect the telescope to your car’s battery. If you aren’t driving or don’t have a car, then you will need something else, such as a dedicated power supply like the Celestron PowerTank 17. This should provide plenty of power to cover a few nights of star gazing. If you take a look online, you’ll see the other brands that make dedicated telescope power packs.
- Portable power pack for your computerised Celestron telescope using Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) chemistry. Smaller, lighter, safer, and easier to maintain than lithium-ion and sealed lead acid designs
- Up to 2000 charge cycles – four times more than lithium-ion and 7 times more than sealed lead-acid designs
- Un-recharged shelf life of up to 10 years – 3 times better than lithium-ion and 10 times better than sealed lead-acid designs
- Eco-Counscious- Does not use toxic heavy metals
- Portable power pack for your computerized Celestron telescope using Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) chemistry
Binocular Tripod Adapters
Most star gazers will head out with a pair of binoculars as well as their telescope. Most people find that they really benefit from mounting their binoculars onto a tripod while checking out the sky. If this is something that you want to do, it’s worth getting a binocular tripod adapter so that you can then adapt a camera tripod to fit the binoculars. One of the main advantages is that you can then use your binoculars hands-free. Not only that, though, but it’s easier to show others what you are viewing without trying to refocus the binoculars.
- Twin quarter inch thread connections to tripod, hide clamp or car window mount
- Quarter inch screw thread to binoculars fitted with suitable tripod adapter socket
- Thumb wheel bolt for easy tightening to binocular
- Porro prism binoculars 50+ mm OG
Moon filters are also known as neutral density filters. The filter absorbs light to reduce it, but it doesn’t change any of the colours by doing this. You will find that there are different types of moon filters, each of which absorb different amounts of light. Some will only let 1% of light through while others let around 80% through. If you are looking for planets, then you will need to use a lighter filter. When trying to spot the moon, it’s best to use a darker filter as the moon reflects a lot more light.
- Reduce glare and increase contrast of the Moon with the Celestron 1.25” Moon Filter.
- Also useful for extra bright planets as well as terrestrial viewing over sand or snow.
- Threads onto most 1.25” eyepieces in seconds
Light Pollution Reduction Filters
There is a lot of light pollution in the environment these days, and some people find that they can see the night sky a lot better if they can filter it out. These filters block certain light colours, such as the greens and blues from mercury vapour lights as well as the yellow from street lamps. The light pollution reduction filter blocks these lights to allow others to come through, such as the light from stars and planets. However, these filters don’t block out certain lights, such as car headlamps.
- High-end optical glass allows capturing truly stunning and crystal-clear images during , Reduce pollution for crystal clear night skies
- Multi-coated on both sides with 16Layers for additionally sharp night-time photographs
- Lightweight and strong for simultaneous maximum comfort and durability
- Made for professional and amateur photographers alike
It will also be worth getting some general colour filters as well. These can really enhance what you see through your telescope eyepiece, even if it is only of a low quality. These do work better the bigger your telescope is, though, as the eyepiece will let more light through, so the filter will be able to block more colours. Generally speaking, blue filters are the most efficient for smaller telescope eyepieces while darker filters will work better for bigger telescopes.
- PLEASE NOTE: The telescope is not included. Kit includes: (1)Moon and Skyglow Filter; (1)CPL Filter; (5)Color Filters: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue; Designed to reduce glare and light scattering, increase contrast through selective filtration, increase definition and resolution, reduce irradiation and lessen eye fatigue
- MOON AND SKYGLOW FILTER: Cuts down glare and brings out much more surface detail and gives you better contrast; It is a multi-band pass filter transmitting a high percentage of light in the visual spectrum; Effectively filters out selective wavelengths of low-pressure sodium and other man-made sources typically used in street lighting
- CPL FILTER: By utilizing a CPL filter, which filters out scattered light, you are able to cut through those reflections and see the detail behind it; Enhances the contrast of the moon and planets in photographic images
- STANDARD 1,25-inch THREAD SIZE: 1.25 inches/ 3.17 centimeters thread size, fits for most of telescopes; Color filters have the grooves needed to be softly screwed into the eyepieces lens easily
- 5 COLOR FILTERS: Includes Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue; Red: Helps make Mercury and Venus stand out from the blue sky when viewed during the day; Orange: Helps increase contrast between light and dark areas, penetrates clouds; Yellow: Helps greatly in viewing Mars by bringing out the polar ice caps; Green: Enhances frost patches, surface fogs, and polar projections on Mars; Blue: Helps split the binary star Antares when at maximum separation
As you can see then, there are so many useful telescope accessories that you can use with your astronomy telescope. No matter whether you are new to telescopes or have been using one for a while, you will certainly notice a benefit when you start to use some of these accessories. Most of them can be bought online for very reasonable prices. Once you do start to use them, you will find that your star gazing efforts will very quickly improve and you might start to spot more stars than ever before!
Last update on 2020-07-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API