Saber Does The Stars (Vol 2: the Index Catalog)

C14 (ngc869/884) in Perseus *courtesy of SDSS*

[stephen saber/2004-2024/all contents within are free use and may be reprinted with author/website acknowledgement]

saber does the stars (vol. 1)
quick and dirty pov astro-sims
observing list: concordiem borealis
stephen saber's concordiem borealis
contact via fb messenger
saber does the stars vol 1&2 free flipbook


lucky ned pepper: steadiest hands in the west

we've all laughed or cringed at inaccurate or impossible telescope/binocular use in movies or tv. the near-omnipresent twin bino fieldstops, ellie watching a meteor shower thru a small mounted scope in contact, costner's first reaction looking thru azeem's makeshift pre-galilean scope in robin hood, ad nauseum. 
for me, the most impressive has been lucky ned's handheld sharpshooting talent in the 2010 remake of true grit. at one point he casually brings a thin 16" spyglass to his eye- with one hand- and from at least a half-mile immediately sights rooster cogburn perfectly centered and focused with a steadiness that would
embarrass the rock of gibraltor. ned later twirls the slim tube like a drumstick as an encore.

p.s., two more similar nok-fails within 8 hours of the above post.
the rifleman, s1e26: mark brings a binocular to his eyes objectives-first. rather than reshoot the scene, an i-dream-of-jeannie-blink-esque edit magically flips the nok 180deg in his hands. pretty impressive adaptive optics for the old west.
madison's first binocular experience in zombieland: double tap is only forgivable cuz she's just so cute.
by the way, let me know if there's a central online vault for portrayed optics fails. i've got plenty more.


c20: north america nebula naked-eye

despite the 4th mag brightness optimism, caldwell 20 (aka n.g.c. #7000)
requires both very transparent and steady dark skies to reveal itself at 1x. 
my first naked-eye view of the fuzzy continent was one of many 'double-take' moments from repeated observing; like the first time seeing obvious red in m42, or noticing your shadow being cast by venus' light alone. 


mercury is the closest planet to earth

roughly 46% of the time. venus 37%. mars 17%.
mercury is actually the overall closest to all other solar system planets.
most people have been indoctrinated by all those tidy inferior-conjunctions-in-a-row school posters. but that's only one aspect of many.
this information will befuddle or bewilder most civilians.


my first saturn-versary

at the time of this post, saturn is back among the stars where i first laid glass on it as a serious observer 29 1/2 years ago- a much more visceral, celebratory milestone for me than the upcoming 30 years in by the calendar. i've felt the same pleasing deja-vu at 12 and 24 years with jupiter back in its 'original' starfield, and with other rare repeated sky events as well.
if you've had similar experiences, let's just say you've come to the right blog.


doublestars: a few laps with porrima (video):


that time i broke an a.l. obs program rule

it's generally frowned upon to log targets for multiple programs at once. but hey, how many chances does a yankee get to visit the amazing skies below the equator?
link: southern sky program mash-up


girls gone wild in taurus

every 8 years orbital resonance allows us to observe venus pass through the fabulous open cluster messier 45 (aka the pleiades), the brightest of these stars commonly known as the seven sisters. but what most astronomy books exclude is what a bad influence the promiscuous vixen venus has on the prim and proper pleiad ladies. april 2020’s slumber party started off innocently enough, with venus tugging ally’s braid but soon devolved into pillow fights, jello shots, and trashing hotel rooms, along with smoking cigars and gambling til sunrise. as usual, poor papa atlas ends up spending the next day bailing his daughters out of jail and nursing hangovers, as venus happily prances along in search of others to partake in another night of hedonism. 

just some fractured mythology to keep in mind as we view m45 until april 4th 2028, when visiting venus again turns the stately cluster into a den of iniquities.


toes fetish

that's transits, occultations, eclipses, and shadows. fans can enjoy some quick and dirty astro simulations of these events viewed from other locations in the solar system at


snl skit: more caldwell! (er, cowbell)

nasa/hubble's 2020 canonization of c-numbers as primary identifiers was certainly cause for celebration among the growing army of gen c-ers.
all that's left is to update the starmap ids in the next printings (or epoch). to this end i've started an email writing campaign to all the publishers, and encourage other caldwell fans to do the same.
to get a head start i've also bought 100 copies of both SA2000 and the Pocket Sky Atlas, whited-out the old ngcs, replaced them with the proper caldwell ids, and am reselling them as used at a discount.
let me know if you run across any saberized collector's editions.


pass them a napkin

sir patrick was obviously a humble deepsky expert as well as a moon guy. consider that he created the caldwell catalogue on a napkin at dinner one night- from memory. 109 objects, constellations, mags, radecs, etc. ask one of the wannabe forum fuzzy 'experts' to attempt the same and all you'll get are sour grapes and tears.
sir patrick wasn't just a dso enthusiast, he was a freaking ninja.


messier marathons are about to get a lot easier

well, eventually anyway. we're currently near the farthest northern point of earth's circle of precession.
in about 14,000 years vega will be our brightest 'north star'. for an observer at 45° n, polaris will scrape the horizon and all of the southern sky will be available- like observing from the equator now.
the nights that a marathon is not possible will be the minority, and our lucky descendants will also enjoy access to the entire caldwell catalogue treasures.


skytimes astro-interview (part one)

st: so how does a deepsky guy end up with a lunar outreach term? i thought you guys hated the moon.

saber: not the skinny ones (moons not guys). and that's when dso hunters hit their stride- during the nights surrounding new moon. i got into the habit of searching for the very young crescents after sunset while waiting for the sky to darken. before long i'd also be staying on the field til dawn just to chase the oldest slivers up from the horizon.

st: posts to the contrary, you're actually just a passive caldwell fan, and only became an advocate to keep the controversy/outreach going, and to avenge the enthusiastic noobs using c-numbers that were shamed out of forums by trolls not worthy of cleaning the british icon's monocle.

saber: all true.

st: rumor has it you got into observing because a girlfriend didn't want you going to stripclubs after band gigs.

saber: pretty selfish of her wasn't it?

st: so you bought her a $39 novelty star after visiting the adler planetarium and ended up spending $1000 to hunt it down and see it for yourself.

saber: yup. the kicker is she was so clueless that when we left the adler she was very suprised, having thought we were going to a 'plantarium'. she was expecting to see rows of vegetation.
but then, 30 years ago i never planned on becoming an infamous outreach promoter, either. still, everything i've tried to contribute has been done out of passion- to pay it forward- hopefully making the night sky that much more interesting, accessible, and even fun.    


beetlejuice behaving badly

as of mid-feb 2020, i give bellatrix at least a couple tenths of magnitude over betelgeuse. 
in the same binocular field bella is slightly more obvious at dusk, and defocusing the pair in a dark sky reveals the difference as well.
also, having recovered from my initial shock at the red-orange giant’s dramatic dimming, 
i now just want it to finally stop teasing us and explode in a historic blaze of glory.
and poor rigel. the jan brady of orion. betelgeuse gets uglied-up by a football to the face- but steals even more attention. (marsha, marsha, marsha!)
enjoying the show,

[betelgeuse supernova simulation: ]


messier-caldwell (mescal) marathon

for several years i've been adding all the available caldwells in the constellations i'm passing through to my standard messier sequence. there's just too many great treasures within a stone's throw to pass up. many can be hunted during the halftime break or while gambling on m30 as well: 


23238 ocasio-cortez

i had a crush on aoc already, but finding out that she also has an asteroid named for her somehow has me even more smitten. i'm not sure why. i don't agree with her views. the rock's name was probably just a diversity gift (she got it for placing 2nd in a high school science fair). still, i feel an increased bond with her because of it. weird, huh? anyway, occasional cortex's rock is 1.5 miles in diameter and orbits in the main asteroid belt between mars and jupiter.

* * * * *

public forgiveness (cont.)

my friend cozi explains floaters:


galaxy-class drums

now and then the stars align, and my drumming life crosses paths with my passion for the night sky. saber's beads was particularly apt, as the tips of drumsticks are also called beads. another epiphany led me to start adapting cymbal stands as additional binocular mounts when needed. and recently i stumbled upon a variety of kick drum heads featuring galaxies, planets, nebulae, et al. check out for my latest kit accoutrements.

* * * * *

caldwells 109- haters 0

it's gotta be tough being an anti-u.k., anti-nasa caldwell hater these days. for the catalogues 25th anniversary, nasa and hubble not only did a major photoshoot of sir patrick's 109 deepsky gems, but have also endorsed the caldwell numbers as their primary ids.
would this finally silence the few remaining never-moore-ers and their sad hubris of the defeated?
i sure hope not. the controversy and free publicity has been so instrumental in the catalogue's success that there's no telling how popular it can still become...

the seenines

(in the not too distant future...)
hyperlight communication has given us contact with the people from an exo-planet near c9, the cave nebula. turns out they'd been evesdropping on us and become so enamored with the controversy and that sir patrick had picked their hometown out of billions that the species unanimously voted to rename themselves the 'seenines'.
upon further contact, interstellar war was narrowly averted when a small generationally indoctrinated cult of caldwell deniers- refusing to acknowledge the seenines identity- were instead captured and sentenced to dress as monks and alternate chanting c-numbers with smacking stone tablets against their foreheads.
(yes, the seenines also became big monty python fans.)


ever play guess the radec?

with 2 midsized airports to my north and south, and o'hare a couple hours west, it’s rare to see a sky without a contrail. multiple crossing contrails involuntarily remind me of the radec grid, and i’m compelled to start assigning their estimated hours and declinations.
please tell me i’m not the only one.


earth/space porn on chromecast

the beautiful, updating astro-backdrop/slideshow is another nice benefit to blowing-up your mobile’s display onto a big screen. (firestick, too.)
highly recommended.


waning interest: hunting the oldest crescent moon

if you're into chasing thin crescents and not taking advantage of the waning slivers, you're missing half of the challenge and rewards. dawn crescents don't get nearly the attention of their dusk counterparts. there is no cultural significance and most of the world is still asleep. this is unfortunate as oldest crescents usually enjoy cleaner, steadier air, and observers already have a jump on dark adaptation. catching the thin horn of luna's limb emerging from the horizon can also be an addictive twist to the dusk event. the still of the night also lends itself to creating a more peaceful and contemplative experience. 
double your pleasure, practice, and conquests- support your oldest crescents.


"what does it take to see saturn's rings? i've got 4k to spend."

4k will certainly buy some jaw-dropping views of the rings. fortunately, run-of-the-mill amazing rings are available for alot less. near opposition, even a 25x binocular will show a tiny but crisp disc/ring system. it takes about 30x when saturn's out roving around the quadratures. there are even very sporadic reports of naked eye detections of the disc 'bulges'. as for myself, there were several nights surrounding the last ring plane crossing that i was able to detect the ring orientation unaided, as the rings appeared more like hands of a clock than just big ears. but if i had that much to spend on a scope right now i'd get a 9.25hd edge and load it for bear. by the way, it also does a wonderful job on thousands of other night sky treasures. (but mostly on saturn's rings.)


those 5th galilean moons

jupiter occasionally tolerates a paparazzi fieldstar posing as a galilean to snap some pics (after all, many have light that has traveled hundreds of years for the encounter).
but mars is welcomed as family, with ganymede even timing a special shadow transit for the red planet's visit:

or, those 5th galilean moons

many are ecliptic gladiators, chomping at the bit to challenge the jovian gauntlet of head bouncers in an attempt to cross the system unscathed. 5.5 mag sigma aries pulled it off in august 2023. others are not so lucky:


beyond starhopping: sharpshooting

our scopes are shaped like grenade launchers and cannons. finders give us crosshairs and bull’s-eyes.
those of us who still enjoy the theme and thrill of the hunt take pride in possessing a quick and accurate target acquisition. so i view starhopping as an initial reconnoiter, not a continuous requirement.
sharpshooters practice what has also been referred to as ‘spatial acuity’. basically, this is memorizing simple asterisms formed by nearby visible stars and a finder’s red dot (or other) reticle pattern.
many of us reflexively form invisible asterisms on a regular basis. in light-polluted skies we fill in the dimmer stars of the little dipper or corona borealis. sharpshooting is the dso equivalent.
an excellent exercise is to see the red dot as the target itself. after completing an observation take another look thru the finder with both eyes open and imagine the red dot completing a simple local star pattern (a triangle, an ‘L’, etc.). return the scope or binoculars to a neutral start position and aim again to recenter the target solely as the completion of a stellar pattern.
using ones lowest power/widest field ep is recommended, as this allows a larger margin for error.
it won’t happen overnight, and some are tougher than others, but with repetition this logistic reinforcement will allow the observer to eventually memorize hundreds of otherwise invisible dso positions and skip the celestial pinball routine altogether.
building this personal go-to database of ‘lock and load’ targets is both a goal and reward of proficient starhopping.
the 110 messier objects are popular sharpshooting targets. becoming intimate with their positions is also essential for those wishing to test their prowess while running the m-cubed (messier marathon from memory).


saturn's teasing tilt

it’s a pleasant fiction to imagine saturn’s beautiful rings coyly and seductively tilting toward and away from us, slightly by the month and dramatically over a decade. but earth is actually doing the unsung grunt work, carefully pacing itself to fall slightly farther behind saturn in its orbit over the course of each revolution. this allows us the amazing perspective of cycling ring aspects. sorry to dampen anyones fantasy. just something to contemplate at the eyepiece, and while watching the linked vidclip below.

in motion: saturn’s northern ring crossing (jan 2009-sep 2010) at


stoking the embers

outer atmospheres of suns containing a majority of carbon rather than oxygen only allow the red spectrum of their light to reach our eyes.
the beauty of these aptly colored carbon stars has also stopped most of us in our tracks while panning thru the eyepiece. 
specifically hunting and comparing these scattered blood diamonds is one of the more forgiving amateur pursuits, as less-than-perfect seeing and altitude often only accentuate their fiery presence. 
the astronomical league offers a great program for those ready to start chasing these stellar gems. check it out at
happy hunting!


outreach: think accessibility

i'm not a recruiter. just offering to share the view. 
unless they want to be recruited. then i feel like a drug dealer, as there's possible addiction and withdrawal involved.
in any case, the easier we make it look, the more people feel they can try it themselves.
i try to speak in layman's terms as much as possible, as if there's no new 'language' to learn. not all at once, anyway.
relate that any cloud-free sky will do, and that a modest scope, or even those binoculars in the closet are all they need. i have a couple of 8x40s that i pass around to supervised groups while they wait in line.
i usually do public outreach under some waxing moon phase and stick with whatever other naked-eye showpieces are available (except by request).
quality/wow factor over quantity. three or four bright targets per group or person is all you really need (i.e., always leave the crowd wanting more).
also, everyone is welcome, whether they want to become an astronomer or astrologer or join the x-files. (those who pathologically correct visitors on every scientific nuance cross the line into 'outpreach', and become the stereotype droll know-it-alls.) i'm not there to criticize how anyone enjoys the stars. in fact, i'm intrigued by the different attractions and curiosities the night sky evokes. the cream will rise to the top without any bias from the host.
beyond that, it's just about making the experience more interesting than academic and enjoying the reactions when that tiny spot of light hits their pupil.
i offer cellphone snaps at the ep for souveniers, and of course have plenty of old astromags/catalogs, dark sky brochures, and local club info available.
most importantly- and this cannot be overstated- use a 5mw laser pointer to point stuff out. people (kids especially) are entranced by it. many would stay for the light show alone. 
it is, however, at your discretion whether or not to make the light saber sound while using it.


butch and sundance

i remember only two of us from the club showing up to handle 250 scouts on a sugar-high stampeding in the dark 
toward the observing field at once. the ground and scopes were shaking. 
quite a daunting experience until the dust settled and the panting troop leaders caught up to them. 


caldwell 76: under-appreciated?

At -42° dec, C76 (I call it the 'less-southern jewel box') is just being shy.
If the beautiful bright cluster was circumpolar it would probably die of embarrassment from all the attention.


30x80 barska x-trail revisited

i watched mare crisium spit out aldeberan after an occultation a few nights ago using the barska 30s. very enjoyable. amazing lunar terminator detail, as always. 
everything about it from my initial review years ago still holds true. still aligned, still mechanically sound, eye relief still useable but wanting.

what i did want to ammend is that the fully-coated barska's color correction may not necessarily be better than that of the fmc 30x orion megaview- but perhaps the brighter image/decreased contrast may simply render it less noticible. this also implies that, in some cases, vivid CA may be a result of better AR coatings- and that those highly offended by false color might be better appeased by fully-coated or multi-coated models. 
just an intuitive thought, but i'll let you be the judge. 
the 30s were not my first experience with vivid vs 'bleached' CA. while comparing four 8x40s, the fully-coated model also outperformed the other 3 fmc noks on (noticible) CA.

i also still employ and recommend my hi-mag training routine for steadier handheld views thru lower-power binos, whether it's a 30x warm-up before dropping to 15x, or 15x prior to 8-10x sessions.

anyway, the barska 30x is still providing bang long after the buck. versus my 25x100, the barska not only has the adler index (and easily observed) edge in power, but often gets more use due to its smaller grab-n-go size and light weight. 
and the 30x stereo views of saturn and luna alone will always be worth the bargain price.

peace, stephen.

saber does the stars at:


forced statutory outreach:
the night i crashed the science fair

my brother's kid had brought home a flyer from school announcing an upcoming science fair and the evening's program; simple demonstrations of basic physics, geology, chemistry, etc. but conspicuous by its absence was any mention of space, astronomy, or even a lousy solar system diorama. 
the final rub was that this was taking place at, not just any grade school, but my own hometown childhood almamater- so now it was personal. 
politely, but thru gritted teeth, i called the school ready to verbally pound some sense into this blasphemous principal's head...

okay, that's enough dramatics.
just wanted to convey my initial reaction. i was even suprised at how betrayed i felt.
anyway, a semblence of sanity prevailed allowing me to see this as a sad but excellent outreach opportunity.
sure it was december and cold for public outdoor observing, but not even an indoor table display or a few hubble pics?
in the end they were thrilled to have me bring a scope, some noks, and a variety of outreach material. 
my 18" round laminated moon pic was hung at the far end of the gym above the bleachers for observing practice.
but my glp easily stole the show, giving me a big audience of parents and children on which to also impress the dangers and legal ramifications of improper laser use.
it was a fun evening and i was invited back in the spring for a full-blown outdoor event.

being back at my old grade school was an experience in itself. in 6th grade our class held the annual folk festival in the same gym. my group's exhibit- brazil- had also been the most popular, especially with the adults.
ours was the only country serving coffee.

peace, stephen

p.s., speaking of glps, it's extremely difficult to preach responsible laser use when you have the overpowering urge to
make the light saber sound while demonstrating them.


do u observe alone at remote locations?

from a preference standpoint: sure. whenever i'm not sharing views with the public and have time for the drive. 
alone with the stars it's a much more intense bonding experience. like it's all on display just for me.

from a danger/life-threatening standpoint: doesn't bother me a bit. there are worse ways to go than with saturn or a favorite dso in the eyepiece. 
in fact, it would be my third preferred 'found dead while' scenario. the second would be while behind the drums.


i was a teenage exit pupil abuser

9x63, 10x70, 11x80. there was a time i couldn't get enough wasted light. spraying it like a firehose from the eyepieces of my binoculars during nights on end of gluttony and laughter. after all, i had convinced myself, there was a free and neverending supply. i crashed numerous star parties- aiming the back of my noks at nearby dso observers, and giggling as they flinched from my venomous stray light intruding on their precious night vision. i scoffed criticisms from my elders that there were children starving for light in cloud-covered cambodia. cursing disapproval, several others would often swarm behind me to catch and splash the spewing overflow of photons in their eyes that would otherwise bounce without purpose off the grass and onlooking sheep behind me.
but exit pupil laws were becoming increasingly strict, and my freewheeling cowboy lifestyle finally caught up with me. at one event i was hauled off the field by the national ExP guard and brought before a judge. sentenced to 5 years of hard labor, poor transparency, and a harshly restricted 30x50, i spent many tearful nights repenting the tomfoolery of my youth.

[epilogue: bino exit pupil is often overrated. like aperture, more is always preferable to not having enough. eye placement is less critical with large ExPs as well. iow, don't let an oversized ExP override your enjoyment of the night sky.]


zerbatory blues

after making the 45 minute drive to our blue zone observatory, confining myself to its rectangular slit of heaven would be torture. i spend a good deal of time set up in the surrounding field and rolling around in the grass like a kid in a candy store, too.


Not Another Moon Illusion

Depending on your level of intimacy, most people have experienced up to 3 moon illusions; the size illusion (moon appears larger near the horizon), the depth illusion (moon craters appear as domes aka the 'convex/concave con'), and the terminator illusion (illuminated portion of moon appears offset to direct sun rays).
Another that's followed me thru the years of lunar observing is not so much an illusion as a temporal inconvenience.
The 1.3 seconds it takes for the moon's reflected light to reach us translates to a
time-delayed terminator. Whether by inches or yards (cms or meters), the terminator has always advanced farther than what we're seeing from earth. So, while we're slightly ripped-off when the moon is waxing, the waning phases constantly allow us to see features that are actually already in darkness. 
Ashen light (earthshine) takes an additional bounce to reach us, so we're actually seeing that area as it appeared 2.6 seconds ago.
The time machine increases dramatically when we view the more distant planets and stars. Saturn's illuminated image, for example, is always roughly 90 minutes old as viewed from earth.
Good stuff to consider next time you see our closest neighbors.


Best Stargazing Locations (U.S.)

Many people are only a 15-20 minute drive away from the most stars they have
ever seen. Center your location on the linked map. Green areas are very good.
Blue is even better. Gray/Black is as good as it gets.
Plan a short road trip to these areas on a clear, moonless night and soak in the stars.


Show Me My Star

If you'd like a free photo of that honorary star named for a friend or loved one just follow 
these simple instructions.

Best Colorful Double Stars

New Moon: Extreme Crescent Visibility 

(great site. email them to include last crescents before new moon, too!)

LROC Interactive Lunar Map


Total Solar Eclipse Seen From The Moon 
Herschel 400 by Declination

Mostly for kicks, but a good reference for target availability and prioritization.

NGC Asterisms/Going Deep For Doubles: The NGC 140

Quick And Dirty Binocular Mag Comparisons


Lightspeed Distance to the Planets 
(from Earth, closest approach):

Mercury 5m10s
Venus 2m15s
Mars 4m20s
Jupiter 35m
Saturn 1h10m
Uranus 2h30m
Neptune 4h10m
(The current distance to Pluto is 4h39m)


First Scope and Eyepieces

Buy the most aperture that is both affordable and portable. Portability should be easy enough that it never becomes an issue or reason not to setup or travel. Some don't think twice about regularly moving 100 lbs of equipment around while some think anything over 25 lbs is a chore. Vehicle accomodation is a consideration if one plans to travel. Which type of scope is more intuitive to use? Some people naturally take to the operation of a Dob over a Cat and vice-versa. The remaining design pros and cons tend to cancel each other out, and are usually not of crucial importance as both provide amazing views. Goto scopes also provide fine images, but a solid familiarity with the brightest stars and constellations is required to avoid alot of operational frustration.
For eyepiece needs, a 32mm Plossl, 24-8mm premium zoom, and shorty barlow will be more than enough to cover most useable powers in most scopes. At the same time I recommend collecting and enjoying as many Naglers as possible.


A Mount By Any Other Name

For not being a binocular tripod fan, I sure have enough of them.
When I'm not beating on my drumkit the cymbal stands are all available for duty as sturdy
mounts for my noks. They've occasionally been used at outreach events for multiple viewers as well.
With the cymbal stand boom arms adjusted to the vertical many can extend up to 84". Most are compatible with bino adapters, and the more robust models can easily handle my 100mm guns.
An alternate mounting choice that often gets overlooked, some music stores carry used boom stands for less than $50.


In Praise Of Shallow Ecliptics

Flat ecliptics are no fun for planet viewing or young crescent moon sightings, and often means it's pretty cold outside. But it does give me a better sense of orientation with the Solar system.
In a world where 'north' is usually associated with 'up', it just feels more natural to be looking directly across the planets' orbits with my head and feet more aligned to Sol's north and south poles.
Near the other extreme, viewing a perpendicular ecliptic means I'm standing on the Earth's side and should be falling off the limb and into space.
It's a very Earth-centric bias and one I've been reluctant to share out of shame.
For those who have not experienced this I should have warned you ahead of time not to read this as it may trigger unwarranted vertigo and uneasiness during future obs sessions. My bad.


Caldwell Fever
Stephen Saber
C76 (ngc6231) in Scorpius
courtesy of SDSS

I bagged the Caldwells as an elective project en route to the A.L. Master Observer's award and found them to be a worthy and, in a few cases, challenging DSO refresher course. By request, the following is a  jump-start for those in pursuit of Sir Patrick's favorite 109 non-Messier treasures. His concept was a forefather of modern post-Messier collections which has also inspired, often by its notoriety, a slew of the individual lists we see today. For the intermediate observer, this is a very nice warm-up for the Herschel 400 as most of the northern Caldwells also appear in that list. Only 70 targets are required to receive this award, making the program available to observers in either hemisphere (but don't let that stop you from traveling to enjoy the rest). The targets being numbered by declination also gives a much more intuitive idea as to their local altitude and availability. Prefacing the Caldwell catalogue designations below are the host constellation, its mid-point midnight culmination date, and respective Pocket Sky Atlas chart(s). Multiple targets within a constellation are ordered in suggested search sequences. Along with the object type, magnitude, and radec, an additional identifier is included for those using maps not updated with this iconic deepsky database's id.

cma / jan02 / psa27
C64 oc 4.1 0719-2457 (ngc2362)
C58 oc 7.2 0718-1537 (ngc2360)

gem / jan05 / psa25
C39 pn 9.9 0729+2055 (ngc2392)

mon / jan05 / psa25, 26
C50 oc 4.8 0632+0452 (ngc2244)
C49 bn -- 0632+0503 (ngc2237-9)
C46 bn 10.0 0639+0844 (ngc2261)
C54 oc 7.6 0800-1047 (ngc2506)

pup / jan08 / psa28
C71 oc 5.8 0752-3833 (ngc2477)

lyn / jan19 / psa23
C25 gc 10.4 0738+3853 (ngc2419)

cnc / jan30 / psa24
C48 gx 10.3 0910+0702 (ngc2775)  

car / jan31 / psa39, 38
C96 oc 3.8 0758-6052 (ngc2516)
C90 pn 9.7 0921-5819 (ngc2867)
C92 bn 6.2 1044-5952 (ngc3372)
C102 oc 1.9 1043-6424 (ic2602)
C91 oc 3.0 1106-5840 (ngc3532)

vel / feb13 / psa39
C85 oc 2.5 0840-5304 (ic2391)
C79 gc 6.7 1018-4625 (ngc3201) 
C74 pn 8.2 1008-4026 (ngc3132)

sex / feb22 / psa37
C53 gx 9.1 1005-0743 (ngc3115)

cha / mar01 / psa30
C109 pn -- 1010-8052 (ngc3195)

leo / mar01 / psa34
C40 gx 10.9 1120+1821 (ngc3626) 

hya / mar15 / psa36, 46
C59 pn 8.6 1025-1838 (ngc3242)
C66 gc 10.2 1440-2632 (ngc5694) 

cru / mar28 / psa49
C99 dn -- 1253-6300 (coalsack)
C98 oc 6.9 1242-6258 (ngc4609)
C94 oc 4.2 1254-6020 (ngc4755)

cen / mar30 / psa49, 48
C100 oc 4.5 1137-6302 (ic2944)
C97 oc 5.3 1136-6137 (ngc3766)
C80 gc 3.6 1327-4729 (ngc5139)
C83 gx 9.5 1306-4928 (ngc4945) 
C77 gx 7.0 1326-4301 (ngc5128)
C84 gc 7.6 1346-5122 (ngc5286)

mus / mar30 / psa50
C108 gc 7.8 1226-7240 (ngc4372)
C105 gc 7.3 1300-7053 (ngc4833)

com / apr02 / psa45
C36 gx 9.8 1236+2758 (ngc4559)
C38 gx 9.6 1236+2559 (ngc4565)
C35 gx 11.4 1300+2759 (ngc4889)

cvn / apr07 / psa43
C26 gx 10.6 1218+3749 (ngc4244)
C32 gx 9.3 1242+3232 (ngc4631)
C29 gx 9.8 1311+3703 (ngc5005)
C21 gx 9.4 1228+4406 (ngc4449)

vir / apr11 / psa45
C52 gx 9.3 1249-0548 (ngc4697)

cir / apr30 / psa48
C88 oc 7.9 1506-5536 (ngc5823)

boo / may02 / psa44
C45 gx 10.2 1338+0853 (ngc5248)

nor / may19 / psa58
C89 oc 5.4 1619-5754 (ngc6087)

aps / may21 / psa60
C107 gc 9.3 1626-7212 (ngc6101)

tra / may23 / psa60
C95 oc 5.1 1604-6030 (ngc6025)

dra / may24 / psa31, 51
C3 gx 9.7 1217+6928 (ngc4236)
C6 pn 8.8 1759+6638 (ngc6543)

crv / may28 / psa36
C60 gx 11.3 1202-1852 (ngc4038)
C61 gx 13.0 1202-1853 (ngc4039)

sco / jun03 / psa58
C76 oc 2.6 1654-4148 (ngc6231)
C75 oc 5.8 1626-4040 (ngc6124)
C69 pn 12.8 1714-3706 (ngc6302)

ara / jun10 / psa58
C82 oc 5.2 1641-4846 (ngc6193)
C86 gc 5.6 1741-5340 (ngc6397)
C81 gc 8.1 1726-4825 (ngc6352)

cra / jun30 / psa69
C78 gc 6.6 1808-4342 (ngc6541)
C68 bn 9.7 1902-3657 (ngc6729)

sgr / jul07 / psa66
C57 gx 9.3 1945-1448 (ngc6822)

pav / jul15 / psa70
C93 gc 5.4 1911-5959 (ngc6752)
C101 gx 9.0 1910-6351 (ngc6744)

vul / jul25 / psa62
C37 oc 5.7 2012+2629 (ngc6885)

cyg / jul30 / psa62
C15 pn 9.8 1945+5031 (ngc6826)
C27 bn 7.5 2012+3821 (ngc6888)
C20 bn 6.0 2059+4420 (ngc7000)
C33 sn -- 2056+3143 (ngc6992/5)
C34 sn -- 2046+3043 (ngc6960)
C19 bn 10.0 2154+4716 (ic5146)

del / jul31 / psa64
C47 gc 8.9 2034+0724 (ngc6934) 
C42 gc 10.6 2102+1611 (ngc7006)

aqr / aug25 / psa77, 76
C55 pn 8.3 2104-1122 (ngc7009)
C63 pn 6.5 2230-2048 (ngc7293)

lac / aug28 / psa73
C16 oc 6.4 2215+4953 (ngc7243)

peg / sep01 / psa74
C30 gx 9.5 2237+3425 (ngc7331)
C44 gx 11.0 2305+1219 (ngc7479)
C43 gx 10.5 0003+1609 (ngc7814)

tuc / sep17 / psa80
C106 gc 4.0 0024-7205 (ngc104)
C104 gc 6.6 0103-7051 (ngc362)

scl / sep26 / psa09
C72 gx 8.2 0015-3911 (ngc55) 
C70 gx 8.1 0055-3741 (ngc300)
C65 gx 7.1 0048-2517 (ngc253)

cep / sep29 / psa73, 71
C12 gx 9.7 2035+6009 (ngc6946)
C4 bn 6.8 2102+6812 (ngc7023)
C9 bn 7.7 2259+6237 (sh2-155)
C2 pn 11.6 0013+7232 (ngc40)
C1 oc 8.1 0044+8520 (ngc188)

cas / oct09 / psa03, 01
C11 bn 7.0 2321+6112 (ngc7635)
C18 gx 9.2 0039+4820 (ngc185)
C17 gx 9.3 0033+4830 (ngc147)
C13 oc 6.4 0119+5820 (ngc457)
C10 oc 7.1 0146+6115 (ngc663)
C8 oc 9.5 0130+6318 (ngc559)

and / oct09 / psa03, 02
C22 pn 9.2 2326+4233 (ngc7662)
C28 oc 5.7 0158+3741 (ngc752)
C23 gx 9.9 0223+4221 (ngc891)

cet / oct15 / psa07
C62 gx 8.9 0047-2046 (ngc247)
C56 pn 8.0 0047-1153 (ngc246)
C51 gx 9.0 0105+0207 (ic1613)

for / nov02 / psa06
C67 gx 9.2 0246-3017 (ngc1097)

per / nov07 / psa02
C14 doc 4.3 0220+5708 (ngc869/884)
C24 gx 11.6 0320+4131 (ngc1275)

hor / nov10 / psa08
C87 gc 8.4 0312-5513 (ngc1261)

tau / nov30 / psa15
C41 oc 1.0 0427+1600 (mel25)

dor / dec17 / psa20, D
C103 bn 1.0 0539-6906 (ngc2070)

col / dec18 / psa18
C73 gc 7.3 0514-4003 (ngc1851) 

aur / dec21 / psa12
C31 bn 6.0 0516+3416 (ic405)

cam / dec23 / psa11, 21
C5 gx 9.2 0347+6806 (ic342)
C7 gx 8.9 0737+6536 (ngc2403)

A.L. Caldwell Program Homepage
Caldwell Telrad Finder Charts


*blog under construction*
[all contents within are free use and may be reprinted with author/website acknowledgement]

Glass At A Glance: Orion 25x100 GiantView Binocular
The Mess-Cal Marathon
The Last GoTo Convert
Lucky Ned Pepper (And The Steadiest Hands In The West)

Also see:
Saber Does The Stars 
pdf (unformatted)

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