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New old stock Mountaineer II's available on ebay (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
B-lilja, since you are so keen on this model:

1. In case you have forgotten: I find that you started a thread on the Mountaineer 3 years ago. In it member 'Rodney on the Storm' wrote this. It might be useful for you to contact him for sources to get the model.
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...I do think the Mountaineer I and II binoculars are real gems. Very robust construction, while being precise. Excellent optics. Comfortable to use. I currently have seven of them covering the I and II , x8 and x10 models. I actively search for them on a regular basis...
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2. The following link gave a brief history of the Mountaineer but is inactive now. Maybe you could get 'epinions' to retrieve it from their archives--if both exist today! [Link]

Here is how I remember the story. It was "over-engineered" for its price. Nikon developed this fine instrument, then found that competitors were not improving their comparable models, those were still sold at about the old prices, Nikon decided to compete in that price range, initially with no profit, then found it did not sell enough for future plans to be viable.

3. The Diplomat had a different optical system, with less eye relief, and was not waterproof. The Mountaineer was much heavier, with its metal body and thick armoring.

4. Here is a letter I wrote to Nikon Corp. in 2005. It turned out that the hinge problem could not be fixed without sending it to Japan.
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...In November 1998 I purchased a Nikon [Mountaineer II /] CF WP RA II [8x25] binocular, serial no. 001049 AH. Since then I have been using it continuously for bird watching.
Its optical performance is incredible...Its close focus is nearer than 2.75 m or 9 ft although the company [states] a much longer distance...
...I completely stripped away the thick protective rubber [armor] some months after purchase. The handling of the instrument is improved, though it looks very odd!
In this condition it has been subjected to continuous rough use, after gentle treatment in the first few months. At least four times it has suffered terrifying hard falls on to solid granite or cement. (I do not use a strap, and although I am careful with the instrument this has happened when I had to move suddenly.)
It has also been carried in drenching rain several times.
Despite this treatment its optical performance has not lessened as far as we can detect! In the climate [here] fungus forms very easily on lenses inside a binocular, but this shows none, indicating that the waterproofing also has survived.
The only problem to have developed is that the [hinge between barrels] has lost its tightness (see below).
At least four other bird watchers have bought this model after trying out my instrument. [2 more after this letter!]
In the six years I have used this instrument it has given me near-perfect satisfaction.
Please feel free to quote from the above if you wish to use any of it in an advertisment, but I very much dislike my name being stated and request you not to do so.
I clean the objective and eyepiece lenses very carefully, first removing dust, then wiping with with wet, then dry, soft, smooth paper tissues, and I also gently remove dust and grit from other parts.
I write for two reasons, one being to compliment your esteemed company as above. The other is to request advice on how to correct the [hinge problem] mentioned above. A friend who is an expert on binocular repair is reluctant to take this instrument apart because he fears it may cause the nitrogen to leak out. If your technical department can please explain how the repair is to be carried out he will do so very carefully...
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I do not think they used that celebrity endorsement either!

5. A few years later I found that there was a problem with the coatings inside peeling away, due to fungus or otherwise, and that the coatings on the outside of the eyepieces had not withstood my cleaning too well! The image quality was impaired. I gave it to a young bird-watching friend.

6. With age the folding eyecups of this model if flipped up and down crease and crack, but it is said that regular applying of ArmorAll prevents this. [Thread linked here, post #36 and after].
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Silicon Valley, California
United States
Here is a brief comparison of the Diplomats & Customs from Stephen Ingraham's Better View Desired newsletter:


It's somewhat light compared to the repeated scouring of optical minutiae that we are often blessed with here at BF, but it was all that was available 20 years ago.

Thanks, Bill. I was a BVD aficionado back then too. Think I'll stick with my Customs.


Alexis Powell

Natural history enthusiast
United States
I tried the B&L Custom Compact versus the Nikon Diplomat reverse-porro compact when the latter was first released, and I was not impressed with the Diplomat. Its FOV was narrow and its off-axis performance very poor, yielding a small sweet spot. Furthermore, I found the eye relief not as good for use with eyeglasses. I never looked back.



Well-known member
Thanks Alexis and adhoc

Interesting info.

I have 7x26 Custom Correct v.4's as well as the later body style. The Mountaineer II's are better. And I say that very much loving my v.4s.

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