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Old Tuesday 14th February 2012, 13:17   #76
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Sorry Dennis. Not only doesn't any manufacturer currently make that model but I don't any manufacturer ever has. The parameters would require an extremely complex, and most likely costly, eyepiece. That Swarovision you owned was probably the closest thing to it. The Swarovision 8x32 set to debut is likely to have a larger field of view than the 8.5x42 so it is probably going to be the closest thing to what you are looking for.

It would not work for me though in terms of an ideal binocular because, again, it is only going to have a 4 mm exit pupil.
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Old Tuesday 14th February 2012, 17:11   #77
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Frank - I was looking at your collection of wide field binos and didn't notice the
Bushnell 7x35 Rangemaster, which arguably is among the best wide field ever produced. Have you not run across this model yet. John
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Old Tuesday 14th February 2012, 18:41   #78
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John,

No, I have seen it and have actually bid on a couple.

One small issue though...everybody that buys this type of binocular knows about the Rangemaster and they don't sell cheaply. I don't remember what the last one sold for but it was significantly more than what I was willing to spend on a vintage porro.

My thing is more of finding a "diamond in the rough" rather than just getting a known performer. I probably would like to compare one to what I have currently on hand just for peace of mind.
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 01:32   #79
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John,

No, I have seen it and have actually bid on a couple.

One small issue though...everybody that buys this type of binocular knows about the Rangemaster and they don't sell cheaply. I don't remember what the last one sold for but it was significantly more than what I was willing to spend on a vintage porro.

My thing is more of finding a "diamond in the rough" rather than just getting a known performer. I probably would like to compare one to what I have currently on hand just for peace of mind.
I am going to try the Vortex Talon 8x32 when it becomes available. A 477 foot FOV might be enough for me and it meets my other requirements of weight and ergonomics and it is waterproof. I will probably buy it and try it and if I don't like it I will send it back. I have a feeling the edges will be too soft for me. I will write a review when I get it.
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 02:11   #80
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John,

No, I have seen it and have actually bid on a couple.

One small issue though...everybody that buys this type of binocular knows about the Rangemaster and they don't sell cheaply. I don't remember what the last one sold for but it was significantly more than what I was willing to spend on a vintage porro.

My thing is more of finding a "diamond in the rough" rather than just getting a known performer. I probably would like to compare one to what I have currently on hand just for peace of mind.
Those Rangemasters usually go for upwards of $200. The deal is "you snooze you loose". Which is just what I did last night. I was looking through new searches and there was what appeared a pristine Rangemaster buy it now. free shipping for $99. I went through the rest of the searches and it was gone when I got back to it. My excuse is it was late and I was tired .
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 04:22   #81
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Those Rangemasters usually go for upwards of $200. The deal is "you snooze you loose". Which is just what I did last night. I was looking through new searches and there was what appeared a pristine Rangemaster buy it now. free shipping for $99. I went through the rest of the searches and it was gone when I got back to it. My excuse is it was late and I was tired .
Those Rangemasters you were looking at are quite different looking aren't they? Different.
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 05:08   #82
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Those Rangemasters you were looking at are quite different looking aren't they? Different.
I think they look like George Jetson's binoculars. Or maybe Mr. Spock's.
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 12:51   #83
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I think they look like George Jetson's binoculars. Or maybe Mr. Spock's.
Exactly. Do all the Rangemasters look like that? I thought I saw some older ones that looked like a regular porro.
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 12:54   #84
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Dunno. I can't remember seeing a Rangemaster that didn't but others more knowledgable about that particular model might have other information.
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Old Wednesday 15th February 2012, 15:39   #85
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Exactly. Do all the Rangemasters look like that? I thought I saw some older ones that looked like a regular porro.
Yes, there is an older traditional porro style Rangemaster.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/260954100837...84.m1423.l2649

It seems obvious the EWA Rangemasters evolved from the Bushnell Custom
http://www.ebay.com/itm/270912328258...84.m1423.l2649
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 03:01   #86
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Dunno. I can't remember seeing a Rangemaster that didn't but others more knowledgable about that particular model might have other information.
OK. Frank. I am going to give your 7x35 SWA vintage porro's a go. I bought this one on E-bay. What do you think of it? Is it a deal or a rip? It looks like it is in pretty good shape. I will review it when I get it.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/180818625988...84.m1439.l2649

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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 04:59   #87
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Dennis,

I actually had that one on my watch list. It should be pretty good. It is a bit on the high end and I was thinking it would not get a bid through the sales cycle. Good luck with it.
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 05:09   #88
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Dennis,

I actually had that one on my watch list. It should be pretty good. It is a bit on the high end and I was thinking it would not get a bid through the sales cycle. Good luck with it.
I will let you know how they are. The Taylor's are supposed to be pretty good and they looked like they were in good condition with all the documentation. It is kind of fun to hunt for these old porro's. I hope I don't get hooked like Frank though or I will have 100 pair pretty soon!

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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 05:47   #89
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Steve

He dropped the price from $99 to $79. He also sold another 7x35 7.3 Taylor for $99, and a 7x35 10 Kowa for $129. When he first listed the Kowa he had it as a Prominar, but no pics, and I bought it for $99 BIN. Then he emailed me and said it wasn't a Prominar and we mutually cancelled the transaction, and he relisted for $129 and it sold quick. Wish I had gone ahead and just tried them now.

Tom
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 06:24   #90
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Dennis,

I actually had that one on my watch list. It should be pretty good. It is a bit on the high end and I was thinking it would not get a bid through the sales cycle. Good luck with it.
What does featherweight mean on those classic porro's? Does it really mean they are made of aluminum or magnesium?
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 14:34   #91
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Dennis,

The link in this thread works while the PM'ed version didn't.

I had my eye on these as well. I do agree with Steve that the price seemed a little high which is why I "watch listed" them instead of actually putting in a bid. I would agree that they do look to be in very good condition. The Bak-4 prisms are a bonus as most of the vintage 7x35s were Bk-7.

For what it is worth it looks like you picked a good "sample" model which will represent what many of the EWA 7x35s can produce. The prism housing and large objectives looks typical of many of the EWA 7x35s that I have on hand. I think what you most likely will find it very good apparent sharpness within the sweet spot. Expect the sweet spot to about 65-70% of the 578 foot field of view. With the Bak-4 prisms you should have a fairly bright image with no vignetting.

A word of caution, don't expect a super bright, high contrast image. These are not the classic/vintage porro strongpoints. Their strongpoints are a very relaxing image because of the huge field of view and excellent depth of field. The excellent apparent sharpness also adds to the experience.

...and don't forget that eye relief is going to be short. You will most likely have to unscrew the metal eyecups in order to see the full field.

Featherweight typically means magnesium construction. Most of mine aren't "light" in the sense of the term that we apply to something like a good, current 8x32 roof. Light means in reference to whatever models came before them.
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 16:21   #92
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Steve

He dropped the price from $99 to $79. He also sold another 7x35 7.3 Taylor for $99, and a 7x35 10 Kowa for $129. When he first listed the Kowa he had it as a Prominar, but no pics, and I bought it for $99 BIN. Then he emailed me and said it wasn't a Prominar and we mutually cancelled the transaction, and he relisted for $129 and it sold quick. Wish I had gone ahead and just tried them now.

Tom
Yeah, I noticed that, but that's still high, unless you are like Dennis and just on the lookout for one decent EWA binocular. Mostly, really good, decent samples of 7x35 EWA binoculars can readily be had for $30 or less. I do see that guy selling stuff, but while good looking, I have never pulled the trigger on a bid. I do want a Bushnell Rangemaster, but realize I'm going to have to have $200 on hand and be paying attention if I want one.

There are names out there I have never heard of too. The Taylor Dennis got was one, and it sounded intriguing enough and what put it on my watch list was the intent to ask him what his reference to Swift and Bushnell was, and the fact it was advertised with Bak-4 prisms. As Frank noted, most of this genre' is Bk-7. I did get what appears a nearly new Ward's 11.8* (620') with free shipping on a buy it now for $30.00. It too has Bak-4 prisms.

There is this guy out in California who seems to know what he's talking about, but thinks stuff is worth more than it might be. This one went unbid through one cycle at $95 and he re-listed it for $97.76. Other than a different name it looks no different from the one Dennis got.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sunscope-7x3...item43ad580443

And Dennis,

Frank is right about the view. These old porros are a more or less re-educational experience. Anybody with an objective eye will realize they are not looking through an alpha binocular. What will be apparent to the same objective eye, is just how good the golden age porros of the JTII years were, considering they are maybe three or four decades old by now. So, unless the freight monkeys did not damage it and it comes out of the box still collimated properly I have a feeling you will enjoy the binocular. Oh, and don't expect that 7x35 to be compact. Those EWA B&L style binoculars are a great big, double handful of prism housing.
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 16:50   #93
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I would pay more attention to the coating description rather than prism glass on these old 7x35's. Remember Bk-7 diminishes the light transmission only for the outer 20% or so of the exit pupil. In daylight use it has no effect at all as long as the eye is closed to about 4mm or less. However, "coated" or "coated optics" are euphemisms for not "fully coated". All the interior surfaces in a "coated" binocular might be uncoated, which for most of these would be 10 surfaces out 12.

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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 16:56   #94
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There is this guy out in California who seems to know what he's talking about, but thinks stuff is worth more than it might be. This one went unbid through one cycle at $95 and he re-listed it for $97.76. Other than a different name it looks no different from the one Dennis got.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sunscope-7x3...item43ad580443
Ouch, you got the right of that. It almost seems like he looked up the prices for those items new, adjusted for inflation, and is now relisting them for that price.

Perfect example? He has an "NCstar" spotting scope up there for close to $200! I don't think the new ones sell for that now! Maybe if he cut his prices by 2/3rds they would be interesting but not at what he has them listed for now.
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 19:06   #95
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I would pay more attention to the coating description rather than prism glass on these old 7x35's. Remember Bk-7 diminishes the light transmission only for the outer 20% or so of the exit pupil. In daylight use it has no effect at all as long as the eye is closed to about 4mm or less. However, "coated" or "coated optics" are euphemisms for not "fully coated". All the interior surfaces in a "coated" binocular might be uncoated, which for most of these would be 10 surfaces out 12.
Good point. However, very few of these old porros can be identified as being multi coated before you decide to bid. Most were only single coated for one thing, and for another, most people selling these older binoculars don't have a clue of what to show with pictures or to include in descriptions. I usually email a few standard sort of questions, but even that doesn't do much good sometimes.

Most of the names are long out of business too. I managed to find a guy at Bushnell who took the time to dig out some old catalogs and come up with the bit that some of the 80's vintage Banner and Explorer porros were multi-coated and Bak-4. He did not know when that happened or if the binocular was always (or even if) labeled with either bit of information.

The bet thing is to try and stick with what has pictures from the get go that show some useful information.
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 19:06   #96
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Ouch, you got the right of that. It almost seems like he looked up the prices for those items new, adjusted for inflation, and is now relisting them for that price.

Perfect example? He has an "NCstar" spotting scope up there for close to $200! I don't think the new ones sell for that now! Maybe if he cut his prices by 2/3rds they would be interesting but not at what he has them listed for now.
Frank, Steve and Henry thanks for your insight on the vintage porros. They are certainly an interesting class of binoculars and I understand your interest because they represent quite a value for the quality of optics they represent.
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Old Thursday 16th February 2012, 19:38   #97
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Steve,

I think you can depend on the markings. It will almost certainly say "multi-coated" on the binocular if there are any multi-coated surfaces at all. Of course, there won't be any multi-coating on any of these made before the mid to late 1980's. What you have to worry about in these old binoculars is no coating at all on the interior surfaces. You can be sure if they are marked "coated" that some, probably most, surfaces are uncoated.

Here's what the "Japanese Export Inspection Standard for Prism Binoculars" required the coating marks on binoculars of this vintage to mean, from J.W. Seyfied "Choosing, Using & Repairing Binoculars", p. 147:

"1) In the case of binoculars marked COATED, at least the inside or outside surface of the objective or the inside or outside surface of the eyepiece shall be subjected to anti-reflective treatment. 2) In the case of binoculars marked FULLY COATED, all air-to-glass surfaces of all lenses or prisms shall be subjected to anti-reflective treatment."

Henry

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Old Friday 17th February 2012, 02:02   #98
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Steve,

I think you can depend on the markings. It will almost certainly say "multi-coated" on the binocular if there are any multi-coated surfaces at all. Of course, there won't be any multi-coating on any of these made before the mid to late 1980's. What you have to worry about in these old binoculars is no coating at all on the interior surfaces. You can be sure if they are marked "coated" that some, probably most, surfaces are uncoated.

Here's what the "Japanese Export Inspection Standard for Prism Binoculars" required the coating marks on binoculars of this vintage to mean, from J.W. Seyfied "Choosing, Using & Repairing Binoculars", p. 147:

"1) In the case of binoculars marked COATED, at least the inside or outside surface of the objective or the inside or outside surface of the eyepiece shall be subjected to anti-reflective treatment. 2) In the case of binoculars marked FULLY COATED, all air-to-glass surfaces of all lenses or prisms shall be subjected to anti-reflective treatment."

Henry
Interesting point. I have followed a few discussions over at Cloudy Nights where guys have taken these vintage porros apart and fully recoated all the optical surfaces. I think one guy owned an optical shop. They said the resulting binocular was remarkable and equal to any alpha available today. So the only thing lacking on these old porro's was the technology of todays improved coatings really. They had great basic simple porro-prism optics with good basic eyepeices and huge prisms. That would be an interesting project but probably expensive unless you had some connections. They recoat big vintage refractor telescopes all the time but I am sure it is expensive but well worth it on a $200K telescope.

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Old Friday 17th February 2012, 02:16   #99
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The obvious interest in these vintage wide-angle binoculars, despite of their shortcomings (poor coating, short eye-relief, mediocre edge-sharpness) is kind of encouraging. Perhaps, once upon a time a manufacturer will take the chance and make such a binocular with state of the art technology. I shall hope so!

Thanks for that interesting discussion,
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Old Friday 17th February 2012, 02:22   #100
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