• Welcome to BirdForum, the internet's largest birding community with thousands of members from all over the world. The forums are dedicated to wild birds, birding, binoculars and equipment and all that goes with it.

    Please register for an account to take part in the discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.
Feel the intensity, not your equipment. Maximum image quality. Minimum weight. The new ZEISS SFL, up to 30% less weight than comparable competitors.

Repair or New? B&L Elite (30 years old) (1 Viewer)

HootiB

New member
United States
Hello,

i am new to the forum, and hope that this message is in keeping with proper etiquette.

I have a pair of Bausch and Lomb Elite 10x from the early 1990s. They need some work - at the least, an eye cup is torn, the lenses are filthy. However,i also worry that they are out of alignment. (They were once, after i took a header on some rocks, and i took them to Redlich when still in Virginia). If they are just dirty, great, that's easy to fix for a pair i really like. But if they need more, i wonder about the benefits of repair vs. buying new. I haven't shopped for optics since buying these, so i don't know what's happend with the market. Did binoculars of this level get cheaper, so i can get something better for a reasonable price, as has happened with TVs, for instance? Or has the price just gone up, and i'm better off getting these fixed if necessary and reasonable? THanks for any advice.
 

KC Foggin

Super Moderator
Supporter
United States
Let's see what others say but I think it's time to treat yourself to a new pair of Bins ;)

Hi there and a warm welcome to you from those of us on staff here at BirdForum (y)
We're glad you found us and please join in wherever you like ;)
 

PYRTLE

Old Berkshire Boy
They can be recollimated and serviced if there are....
1. Any specialist repairers left out there in our modern throwaway society.
2. Spares available, eg the rubber eyecups.
It's a shame because , for me, I thought they were as good as the Leica Trinovid BA at the time and easily fell into the "alpha" category, especially your side of The Pond.

The world of sports optics has changed somewhat since then, $2,500 US plus for a modern equivalent and improvement in some ways - mainly a wider field of view, and better ergonomics.
It is the middle tier where there is the most change (imo) with some good models coming out in the $700 US plus range, moreso if manufactured in Japan. ... not that many to be frank.

Really, a question of your budget - bearing in mind you've had use of your binoculars for 30 years and splashed out then. You may though consider something used, such as a Swarovski EL, Zeiss FL or Leica Ultravid HD.

Hope this helps. Cheers
 

jring

Well-known member
Hi,

first of all, welcome to birdforum!

Regarding the bins, the first order of business would be to identify the version of Elites... there were quite a few. Some very old ones might not be phase coated which is a no-no since the 1990s... If yours are pre phase coating, an upgrade will probably bring a benefit. This old thread has a lot of good information or just post images of your bins...


Joachim
 

Foss

Well-known member
United States
Another thought:
A basic service might run $150-200 including postage. (It might cost more, or less, but probably not half or double).
So one exercise I'd engage in before deciding would be to see what I could buy if I instead applied the repair dollars to a new set, and matched that figure.
Is there a new set of binoculars in the $300 to $400 price range that would outperform a freshened up pair of Elites?
 

HootiB

New member
United States
Hi,

first of all, welcome to birdforum!

Regarding the bins, the first order of business would be to identify the version of Elites... there were quite a few. Some very old ones might not be phase coated which is a no-no since the 1990s... If yours are pre phase coating, an upgrade will probably bring a benefit. This old thread has a lot of good information or just post images of your bins...


Joachim
thanks - mine are model number 61-1042P, so if i follow correctly, they are phase coated.
 

PanamaRic

New member
Panama
I got the same dilemma, I got a pair of compact B&L Elites, the compact reverse porros 10X 28s. Y used them for spotting birds before training my Nikon Scope on them. The are fine looking and built like tanks, only one eyecup has cracked in 20 years. Colimation is OK. They look almost new on the outside. But the exit lenses had become dull and dirty, (they never had bright images, but they used to have crisp ones,, now they have a slight mist).
My dilemma is, Shall I sell them as they are? Shall I send them to Bushnell for cleaning them up? Since they are Porros they might nof have Nitrogen )gas behind the prism to a local techinician can clean that up?
 

Rg548

Retired Somewhere
United Kingdom
Opticron do some awesome stuff, and in my view, are probably one of the best 'bang for your buck' optical companies.
Their new top of the range Aurora may be a bit too much for you, but the DBA VHD+, which used to be their top model have been discounted recently.
They are unbelievably good at the price..... easily the best I looked at in that price band.
Great bins, well worth a look.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top