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swift trilyte 7x50 roof prism

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Old Friday 5th September 2014, 14:27   #1
canonman77
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swift trilyte 7x50 roof prism

Hi guys, my dad was at a friends & was looking through some binos which turned out to be Swift trilyte roof prism 7x50 & he said they were the best hes ever looked through & they were spot on with the clarity & focusing. His mate wont part with them, so my dad is wanting to buy a pair of his own, but is struggling to find any. Can anyone help??

Thanks
Sean
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Old Monday 8th September 2014, 13:29   #2
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Hi guys, my dad was at a friends & was looking through some binos which turned out to be Swift trilyte roof prism 7x50 & he said they were the best hes ever looked through & they were spot on with the clarity & focusing. His mate wont part with them, so my dad is wanting to buy a pair of his own, but is struggling to find any. Can anyone help??

Thanks
Sean
Hi Sean, That well know auction site would be the place to look, but I have never seen a Swift Trilyte 7x50 before, sometimes 7x35 comes up, more often 10x40 and 8x40 Trilytes, but never seen 7x50 anywhere. I have 10x40 and 8x40, and the 8x is miles better than the 10x.
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Old Friday 3rd October 2014, 11:59   #3
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Hi Bencw, thanks for replying to me, ill just keep checking about i suppose. Thanks again

Sean
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Old Sunday 5th October 2014, 23:20   #4
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[quote=canonman77;3084705]Hi Bencw, thanks for replying to me, ill just keep checking about i suppose. Thanks again

Sean: I have LONG been a fan of Swift--at least before Humphrey died. However, the only Swift Trilytes I knew in 7x50 were just chum for a plastic-eating shark. In addition, the plastic was soft, and the product was at the lowest end of their product line.

The 7x35 roof--which I THOUGHT carried the Trilyte model name--was a VERY good instrument, optically and mechanically.

Apparently, I was wrong. I couldn't find the model under the photo sections of Google--only the stuff that wore the trilyte name after the company sold.

Help me out, Ed.

Bill
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 00:53   #5
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I have an old Swift pamphlet; the one with the Acorn Woodpecker on it. It shows two Roof Prism Trilytes: #816 TRILYTE 10X, 42 HCF and #817 TRILYTE 8X,42 HCF. Armored and Waterproof.

No 7x50 Trilyte is shown in it.

It shows 2 addresses for Swift Optics. 952 Dorchester Ave., Boston, MA and 1190 No. 4th St., San Jose, CA. Date shown on it is 4/99.

Bob
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 01:44   #6
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[quote=WJC;3086284]
Quote:
Originally Posted by canonman77 View Post
Hi Bencw, thanks for replying to me, ill just keep checking about i suppose. Thanks again

Sean: I have LONG been a fan of Swift--at least before Humphrey died. However, the only Swift Trilytes I knew in 7x50 were just chum for a plastic-eating shark. In addition, the plastic was soft, and the product was at the lowest end of their product line.

The 7x35 roof--which I THOUGHT carried the Trilyte model name--was a VERY good instrument, optically and mechanically.

Apparently, I was wrong. I couldn't find the model under the photo sections of Google--only the stuff that wore the trilyte name after the company sold.

Help me out, Ed.

Bill
Hi Bill,

It's very confusing. Swift Instruments, Inc. sold Mk I, II, and III Trilytes starting about 1969 in 7x35 and 9x35 configuration. By 1974 there was an 8x40 and 7x25 (CF). By 1975 there was an 8x20. By 1981 there was an 8x22, 10x25, and armored 9x35. There was also a 7x42, 8x56, and 12x30 (of all things) and several variants of the above at unknown dates. In 2000 (the last catalog year) there were 10x42, 8x42, 8x21, 10x25, 8x42, and 10x42...

BUT — no 7x50 !!.

So, we need proof of the roof, ... preferably with a model number. Otherwise, the OP's Dad is going to be disappointed.

Ed
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 03:21   #7
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[quote=elkcub;3086349]
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Hi Bill,

It's very confusing. Swift Instruments, Inc. sold Mk I, II, and III Trilytes starting about 1969 in 7x35 and 9x35 configuration. By 1974 there was an 8x40 and 7x25 (CF). By 1975 there was an 8x20. By 1981 there was an 8x22, 10x25, and armored 9x35. There was also a 7x42, 8x56, and 12x30 (of all things) and several variants of the above at unknown dates. In 2000 (the last catalog year) there were 10x42, 8x42, 8x21, 10x25, 8x42, and 10x42...

BUT — no 7x50 !!.

So, we need proof of the roof, ... preferably with a model number. Otherwise, the OP's Dad is going to be disappointed.

Ed
No; this time I was mistaken. The 7x50 that was so cheaply made was the AEROlyte.

Bill
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 03:35   #8
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Yes, you're right again. There were two Aerolites in 7x50 configuration: models 737 and 781.

Ed
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 03:46   #9
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Yes, you're right again. There were two Aerolites in 7x50 configuration: models 737 and 781.

Ed
Ed:

What was that heavy, 7x35 roof prism bino that had the focus wheel fore and aft on the axle?

Bill
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 04:35   #10
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The armored, waterproof Model 825 Audubon 7x35 (c. 1991) comes to mind. But it only weighed 21 oz.

Is that what you're thinking of?

Ed
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Old Monday 6th October 2014, 04:54   #11
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The armored, waterproof Model 825 Audubon 7x35 (c. 1991) comes to mind. But it only weighed 21 oz.

Is that what you're thinking of?

Ed
Give the man a C-gar! That's the one I took to show off in Tucson. I went down in August that year to introduce Dr. B to Zemax. It must have been a new model at the time.

Bill
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Old Wednesday 13th July 2016, 19:49   #12
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The armored, waterproof Model 825 Audubon 7x35 (c. 1991) comes to mind. But it only weighed 21 oz.

Is that what you're thinking of?

Ed
I have a Swift Trilyte Model 815 8x24. I don't have the manual or receipt so I don't know how old it is. Any ideas? Thank you!
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Old Wednesday 13th July 2016, 23:48   #13
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I have a Swift Trilyte Model 815 8x24. I don't have the manual or receipt so I don't know how old it is. Any ideas? Thank you!
Hi,

I wouldn't have thought so, but it appears that you have a rare binocular. The 1993 Swift price list shown below includes an 8x24 Model 815 Trilyte that retailed for an amazing $375. Note that the other Trilytes are less than a third that price. The distinguishing feature seems to be that it's armored and waterproof. Is that correct?

Strangely, there is no picture of the Model 815 in the catalog, and it is also omitted from the specifications chart. It's all very mysterious to me.

Please post some pictures of the binocular so that we can all see what it looks like.

Thanks,
Ed
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Old Thursday 14th July 2016, 13:31   #14
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Hi,

I wouldn't have thought so, but it appears that you have a rare binocular. The 1993 Swift price list shown below includes an 8x24 Model 815 Trilyte that retailed for an amazing $375. Note that the other Trilytes are less than a third that price. The distinguishing feature seems to be that it's armored and waterproof. Is that correct?

Strangely, there is no picture of the Model 815 in the catalog, and it is also omitted from the specifications chart. It's all very mysterious to me.

Please post some pictures of the binocular so that we can all see what it looks like.

Thanks,
Ed
Thanks, Ed! I will post some pics once I get home from work. I hope you are right!!! Debbie
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Old Thursday 14th July 2016, 19:02   #15
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Pics of Swift Trilyte Model 815

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Ed: Here are the pics of my Swift Trilyte model 815.
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Old Thursday 14th July 2016, 19:05   #16
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Swift Trilyte Model 815

Here's a pic of the original box.
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Old Thursday 14th July 2016, 19:45   #17
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Hi Debbie,

Thanks for the pics. Somewhat surprised to see red objective coatings. But it's clearly armored, and says "TESTED" on the front. That probably means tested for water resistance. Take a look on the "How to enjoy ..." booklet and see if there is a publication date somewhere. Next, on the picture of the Audubon binocular on the front of the booklet, does it say Model 804 or 804R? In the former case that would place it in the early 1990s. Otherwise it could have been as early as 1985. Use a flashlight to see if there are any embossed Japanese maker's marks on the inside of the red objectives. They would look like JB-56 or some other number. Finally see if there are any marks on the hinge.

So far it does look like you have a rare and mysterious model.

Ed
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Old Thursday 14th July 2016, 20:56   #18
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Hi Debbie,

Thanks for the pics. Somewhat surprised to see red objective coatings. But it's clearly armored, and says "TESTED" on the front. That probably means tested for water resistance. Take a look on the "How to enjoy ..." booklet and see if there is a publication date somewhere. Next, on the picture of the Audubon binocular on the front of the booklet, does it say Model 804 or 804R? In the former case that would place it in the early 1990s. Otherwise it could have been as early as 1985. Use a flashlight to see if there are any embossed Japanese maker's marks on the inside of the red objectives. They would look like JB-56 or some other number. Finally see if there are any marks on the hinge.

So far it does look like you have a rare and mysterious model.

Ed
The booklet's camera on front says No. 804. It says IMMERSION TESTED. There are some etched numbers over and under this writing: over looks like 10534. Under looks like B191, Japan. I don't have magnifiers with me so it's hard to tell for sure. The little yellow slip that was included has what looks like a date on it: 9/94/10M? The booklet has similar (possible) dating on the back: 11/93/15M. I don't have access to a flashlight to look through the red objectives right now. I will try from home. Thanks for your help with this! I appreciate it!!!
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Old Friday 15th July 2016, 04:09   #19
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The booklet's camera on front says No. 804. It says IMMERSION TESTED. There are some etched numbers over and under this writing: over looks like 10534. Under looks like B191, Japan. I don't have magnifiers with me so it's hard to tell for sure. The little yellow slip that was included has what looks like a date on it: 9/94/10M? The booklet has similar (possible) dating on the back: 11/93/15M. I don't have access to a flashlight to look through the red objectives right now. I will try from home. Thanks for your help with this! I appreciate it!!!
Okay, this is informative. Because the Audubon on the cover says No. 804, the booklet was issued after 1990 or so. Immersion testing would only be done to assure waterproofness, which is what makes the model so expensive. The designation B191 indicates the Japanese company that put the final product together, Seiwa Optical Co., Ltd., Wako-Shi. That company also made other models, such as the Nighthawk series in the 1970s and 80s.

There really isn't too much more to discover except how the instrument performs.

Ed
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Old Tuesday 19th July 2016, 16:21   #20
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Debbie,
That is the neatest looking trylite I have seen, I have had the 10x40, and 8x40, reasonable performers. Yours looks great condition and all with original box. Hard to see from the photo, but the objectives look to be more dark amber in colour than red to me?, similar to the Zeiss Jenna coatings but maybe a tad darker? Very nice collectable to have. Best wishes. Ben
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Old Wednesday 20th July 2016, 15:26   #21
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Okay, this is informative. Because the Audubon on the cover says No. 804, the booklet was issued after 1990 or so. Immersion testing would only be done to assure waterproofness, which is what makes the model so expensive. The designation B191 indicates the Japanese company that put the final product together, Seiwa Optical Co., Ltd., Wako-Shi. That company also made other models, such as the Nighthawk series in the 1970s and 80s.

There really isn't too much more to discover except how the instrument performs.

Ed
Yes, Ed, Thanks! It performs well for what I use it for, which is mainly front yard bird watching! I would like to have a more high powered set to really see some detail, but for now, these do!
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Old Wednesday 20th July 2016, 15:28   #22
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Debbie,
That is the neatest looking trylite I have seen, I have had the 10x40, and 8x40, reasonable performers. Yours looks great condition and all with original box. Hard to see from the photo, but the objectives look to be more dark amber in colour than red to me?, similar to the Zeiss Jenna coatings but maybe a tad darker? Very nice collectable to have. Best wishes. Ben
Thanks, Ben! I was able to buy them secondhand from a former dealer for $40. I thought I was getting a good bargain, but had no idea for sure until Ed helped me out with some additional information! They perform well enough for front yard bird watching. I think I'd need more powerful set for seeing detail though!
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Old Wednesday 20th July 2016, 15:30   #23
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Thanks, Ben! I was able to buy them secondhand from a former dealer for $40. I thought I was getting a good bargain, but had no idea for sure until Ed helped me out with some additional information! They perform well enough for front yard bird watching. I think I'd need more powerful set for seeing detail though!
Almost forgot, YES, the objectives are more of an amber red, almost like burnt sugar on top of creme' brulee!
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Old Friday 22nd July 2016, 19:26   #24
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OK folks, you will have to take this with a grain of salt, as this is done from memory from an eBay sale I did not win, and the sale was some time ago. The auction item was a clearly marked Swift Trilyte 7x50. On the 7x50 my memory is crystal clear, as that configuration is the ONLY reason I was in the bidding in the first place.

There were good photos with the auction and for whatever reason (and whatever it was it was not a good reason) I did not save the photos. The binocular was clearly and very visibly marked Swift Trilyte, clearly not Aerolyte. It was not the early leather pebble grain coverings like the original series Trylite I bought back in 1969 as a complement to my Swift Nighthawk.

It had ribbed rubber armor and it looked a lot like the 7x35 Audubon whose picture Ed posted. I had the feeling at the time it was one of the later non phase corrected Trylite models. I was not at all aware Swift had ever produced a 7x50 in the Trylite line up, which is what prompted my interest. When I saw it it had just been posted and had a buy it now option for a reasonable price. However I'd just changed my password and by the time I dug the new one out and went to buy it now, somebody had bid. I was pretty busy at that time and missed the end of the auction. At this point that is with some retrospective regret.

Now I have a hunch that Bill is probably right in that it was eventually put out as an Aerolyte and likely only a few were ever branded as Trylite. I have zero idea of what the optics of the Trilyte marked binocular I lost out on would have possibly compared to a 7x50 Aerolyte. But Trilyte wad definitely the label shown in the photo on the binocular.

I realize this clears nothing up and may cast doubt on my recollections.

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Old Thursday 3rd November 2016, 17:22   #25
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Okay, this is informative. Because the Audubon on the cover says No. 804, the booklet was issued after 1990 or so. Immersion testing would only be done to assure waterproofness, which is what makes the model so expensive. The designation B191 indicates the Japanese company that put the final product together, Seiwa Optical Co., Ltd., Wako-Shi. That company also made other models, such as the Nighthawk series in the 1970s and 80s.

There really isn't too much more to discover except how the instrument performs.

Ed
Hi Ed! I am thinking of selling these bins so I can get a more high powered set. Can I sell then on this site? Do you have a recommendation if not? Thanks!
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