why do i see crosshairs in my telescope

Why Do I See Crosshairs in My Telescope? [3 Reasons]


In most situations, telescopes do not have crosshairs. Certain eyepieces and finder scopes, on the other hand, are made with them in mind. 

You may find it an issue. Because of this problem, you will be unable to see well.

So, why do I see crosshairs in my telescope? 

The spider vanes are almost certainly the crosshairs you view through your telescope. Spider vanes are metal or plastic pieces that support the secondary mirror in reflector telescopes. The spider vanes will be visible if the scope is out of focus. And if you’re not using an eyepiece, it’s not collimated.

This is only the start. I’ve explored the reasons and remedies below. Check them out!

3 Reasons You See Crosshairs in My Telescope? 

The crosshairs you see through your telescope are very certainly spider vanes. You could notice crosshair-like formations in your views if your telescope is out of focus. It’s also possible that not collimating your telescope will result in a picture that isn’t properly reflected.

Let’s get started without any further ado: 

Reason 1: Eyepiece 

When you look through your telescope, you should be able to view the entire mirror. As well as the spider vanes. You most likely won’t have an eyepiece mounted.


Eyepieces are placed in the focuser, a hole in the side of the telescope. They enlarge the image you’re looking at. You’ll merely see the sky mirrored if you don’t have one. At the secondary mirror without any magnification. 

To operate a telescope, you’ll need an eyepiece.

Reason 2: Focus

If your telescope shows crosshairs and you can’t see much far of the night sky. It’s possible that you’re not paying attention. Optimally you should see far using telescopes. 


Locate the focusing knob, which is normally near the eyepiece. Turn the focusing knob until you get a clear image. During the day, you may accomplish this by simply focusing on any distant object as if it were a remote structure or a streetlight down the street.

Reason 3: Collimation

You’re using your telescope for the first time, and all you can see are the spider vanes. 

After that, you may also need to collimate your telescope.


Collimation is the act of aligning your main and secondary mirrors. So, light from the eyepiece is precisely reflected. With the aid of tools, this can be done.

Collimation is a technique that takes practice to master, and it may take a few attempts to do it correctly.

Accessories with Crosshairs for Telescopes

Crosshairs are purposefully included in some telescope attachments. It is not simple as pelican 1535 or 1510. These are used in your telescope to center an item. Let’s see-


The crosshairs on your finderscope are there on purpose. A red dot finder, on the other hand, is a good option if you don’t want crosshairs. It’s a piece of cake with these zero-magnification instruments so that your telescope may be aligned with things in the night sky.

Illuminated Reticle 

Many scopes have an illuminated reticle eyepiece. These are battery-powered eyepieces with a red light that can be adjusted. When you begin a night of observation, you can align your telescope.

These tiny eyepieces contain crosshairs to aid with accurate alignment. As a result, your GoTo’s tracking and position will be more dependable.

Why Do Telescopes Lack Crosshairs?

The greatest approach to seeing items in the dark sky is not usually to center yourself. Cone and rod cells are arranged in your eyes. The most concentrated things in the middle of your eyes are cones. Cones are less light-sensitive than rods.

With your rods, you can see dull objects more clearly, at the periphery of your eyesight. You may take advantage of this when observing faint objects with your telescope.

When you have averted vision, you’re looking at something on the periphery of your field of vision. To do it, place the item you’re willing to visualize in the middle of your eyepiece. Then aim the telescope at a brilliant star on the edge of the field of view. Move your eyes instead of the scope.

These telescopes lack crosshairs. You can use them for your convenience.


Question: Why do I see the secondary mirror in my telescope?

Answer: The telescope is not focused. Suppose the shadow of the secondary mirror or spider vanes may be seen through the eyepiece. Reduce the size of the black shadow by turning the focusing knob. 

Question: How hard is it to collimate a telescope?

Answer: Collimation is aligning all of a telescope’s components so that light may be focused to its highest possible focus. At some point, all telescopes must be collimated. However, for some people, this duty is simple, while for others, it is a little more difficult.

Question: Which is better, a refractor or a reflector telescope?

Answer: A refractor is a better alternative because of its specific optical design. This photograph captures deep-space objects like galaxies and nebulae. The better thing will be if you got some interest in brighter astronomical objects.

Final Verdict

This is all I have to say about your question: why do I see crosshairs in my telescope? Now, you know the reason behind the crosshairs.

Also, the secondary mirror is held by the spider vanes. They resemble crosshairs.

That’s all!

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