By putting the SLR camera on the telescope and pointing the scope in the right area I then take several 30 second shots and look at them carefully. Most times the Galaxys show up as gray blobs with faint traces of the spiral arms but its a lot faster finding them this way.
After hours with M101 a lot of my shots were suffering from star trailing and blur due to not being guided. I do have an auto guider and this has confensed me to get it set up once and for all.
Any way after all that I turned my telescope on to the Leo Triplets in DUH Leo. The first time I had seen them and only got a few quick shots but they are amazing.
Cant wait to have another go at them .