Binoculars.

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Northerner
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Binoculars.

Post by Northerner »

Probably this question has been asked before, but no harm in asking again.
Any opinions on decent binoculars (perhaps the make) to be used for general purposes plus astronomy.
Should I get an 8/40 or a 9/50 or is that purely down to personal preference?
Do the 10/50's tend to be fairly heavy for use in fairly lengthy time periods?
brian livesey
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by brian livesey »

The most comfortable way to hold a standard binocular is on a monopod or small tripod held in the hands. I made a triangular frame from aluminium tubing, with bicycle grips pushed on at the bottom.
A 8X40 binocular is good for astronomy, but a 10X50 is better because it collects more light. Of course, the bigger the binocular and the bigger the weight penalty if it's just held in the hands.
I like to use a homemade binocular mirror-mount too. It's the ultimate in binocular viewing comfort.
Yesterday evening, the Double Cluster in Perseus looked very pretty ( despite considerable neighbours' light pollution ) through 10X50's and 15X70's with the mirror-mount.
brian
Northerner
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by Northerner »

Thanks for the reply.
I'm inclined to buy a 10x50.
Do the 10x50 binoculars tend to have the same weight or can one buy lighter versions with the same magnification.
Note I also want them for general use.
David Frydman
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by David Frydman »

10x50s have different weights, some are heavier because better made, but not always.

The field of view varies. I prefer wide fields, but don't wear glasses with binoculars.

If someone wears glasses then long eye relief eyepieces may mean a smaller field.

They cost from say £70 for a Nikon Aculon to £2,000 for a top waterproof fully multicoated model. The costly ones are usually found among birdwatchers who use them in harsh conditions.

Some cheaper ones are internally vignetted, sometimes as small as 39mm aperture when listed as 50mm.

It is best to try the binocular oneself where several are available to compare and see which one suits you best.
Late afternoon or a dull day means your eye pupils will be larger and nearer night time use.

Regards,
David

P.S.
Weights.
10x50 Nikon Aculon 900g.
10x50 Nikon WX 2,500g.

If anyone wants to buy the WX they had better be quick as only 100 are being made.
A bargain at £6,000. :)

The difference. Well one can buy a Dacia Sandero, Hyundai i10 or Suzuki Swift or a Rolls Royce.
The Nikon WX is more like a Bugatti Veyron.
brian livesey
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by brian livesey »

I wear specs. By unscrewing the eyecups from the 10X50's, I get the full field-of-view. To avoid scratching the specs lenses against the aluminium rims around the eyepieces, I made little "washers" from flocking material and glued them on to each rim.
On the higher powered bins with short eye-relief, I've had to file down spare specs lenses and insert them into the eyecups, secured with Blue Tack.
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David Frydman
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by David Frydman »

Brian,
How are the spectacle lenses filed down to fit the eyecups?
Are they glass or plastic?

Regards,
David
brian livesey
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by brian livesey »

The lenses are plastic David, and very easy to saw down then finish off with a file. I mark the diameter of lens that I want with a compass on self-adhesive paper. Then, I cut out the stickers to size and stick one on each side of the lens, so as to protect the latter's surface from being scratched while reducing it.
Once I've sawed down with a junior hacksaw and filed the lens to the required diameter, I peel off the protective stickers and the job's done :D . It takes about 20 minutes to do, once we've done a few.
As you will appreciate, crown glass specs lenses are superior to plastic, but need a grinding wheel and more care to reduce to size.
brian
David Frydman
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Re: Binoculars.

Post by David Frydman »

Thanks Brian, for the very useful information.

Regards,
David
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