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 as 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. If the scope is out of focus, the spider vanes will be visible. 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 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 don’t have an eyepiece mounted.


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

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

Reason 2: Focus

If your telescope simply 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 distant 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 like 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 will be able to 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. Which is at the periphery of your eyesight. When observing faint objects with your telescope, you may take advantage of this.

When you have averted vision, you’re looking at something on the periphery of your field of vision. For doing 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.

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These telescopes are 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. If 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 the act of aligning all components of a telescope 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: Because of its specific optic design, buying a refractor is a better alternative. 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 crosshairs.

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

That’s all!

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