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Old January 28, 2010, 05:57 PM   #1
cycleguru
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Night Vision Scope

A few years back my wife gave me a hand held night vision scope for my birthday. I can't remember the brand (if I was at home I'd just go look), but it's not some junky toy. It's a well made piece of occular equipment. Anyway, I had some fun sitting out on the deck at night spotting critters and such. But after a while the fun wore off and I put it away and sort of forgot about it until recently when I was cleaning out my junk drawer it reappeared. I got to thinking, based on some of the scenarios I've read on TFL, that this could be a great tool for checking out bumps in the night. Unlike a flashlight which gives away your position you could theoretically visually sweep each room undetected by the BG's. What do you guys think?
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Old January 28, 2010, 06:05 PM   #2
pacerdude
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Sounds like a good idea to me, and you would be able to keep more distance between you and the "bump in the night". Plus like you said they wont have the chance to spot the beam from your flashlight and know where you are.
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Old January 28, 2010, 10:33 PM   #3
Capt Charlie
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I have a monocular made by Night Owl Optics. That and most of the stuff available to the public are 1st generation, Russian made. They're fair, but they have some major drawbacks.

For tactical purposes, I think the biggest drawback is their susceptibility to bright lights. A Surefire aimed at one will put it out of commission, permanently, in a heartbeat. The second in a hand-held unit is that you have one hand tied up holding it up to your eye, along with a very limited field of view (most of these units are either 3X or 4X magnification).

On top of that, these will NOT work in total darkness. They work well inside a building when you use an IR light source (most have them built in), but contrary to what a lot of people think, the IR source is NOT invisible. The dull red glow in a dark room makes a perfect target.

IMO, the only ones worthwhile are 3rd generation binoculars, but they're so pricey that most of us couldn't touch one.

They are fun for checking out critters & such, but I think the tactical application for most of this stuff is seriously limited.
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Old January 29, 2010, 12:57 PM   #4
cycleguru
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Yeah, a Night Owl, that's what mine is. Played around with it last night. Could see into all the dark corners inside my house. Didn't know about the IR being visible though. I didn't notice that when I looked at myself in a mirror. Guess I'll need to check that out again.

You're right, though, about it being a little unhandy in a tactical situation. I'm thinking that if I were to hang it around my neck on a lanyard then I could just drop it when I needed to use both hands to fire my shotgun. I don't know; guess I need to think about this a little more.
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Old January 29, 2010, 01:08 PM   #5
Uncle Ben
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I suppose after you first determine whether it "glows in the dark" to give your position away, you could practice with it at night when it is completely dark and run through your strategy for how you would use it. As you practice (with your NON-chambered gun in hand, not just with the night-vision device), you may discover possible pros and cons to your technique and how comfortable you feel about it.

Do you have a handgun to use instead of a shotgun? Seems that if you are going to have something in each hand it would be preferable to be able to use your weapon quickly and with only one hand, if necessary.
There is also the additional issue (widely debated of course) of you turning corners to clear your house with a long gun, which is much less compact and cannot be held as closely to you. Furthermore, with only one hand on it, it would be even easier for it to be taken from you...but I should probably not be opening up that can of worms and taking us off topic
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Old January 29, 2010, 01:12 PM   #6
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Why don't you just install an emergency switch that turns on all the house lights ? This, I think, would be cheaper than a top quality night vision scope and more effective.
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Old January 29, 2010, 01:34 PM   #7
Uncle Ben
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"Hook": I think it's a really great idea, and it has crossed my mind also to have a "master" light switch in my bedroom that could be flipped and light up the whole house...but wouldn't this require tearing into every wall that has a light switch to run all new wiring?

Perhaps even then it would be worth doing, but definitely a lot of time and work (and money) to do so.
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Old January 29, 2010, 02:21 PM   #8
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I think that the logistics of a master "on" switch would actually be rather difficult. You're talking about controlling more than one circuit or rewiring all of the lights.
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Old January 29, 2010, 02:22 PM   #9
cycleguru
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Yes, Uncle Ben,I do have a handgun I could use. I thought about that earlier and it's probably a better option than the shotgun in this scenario.

And, Hook, the master light switch is a great idea, but I probably can't afford to do it. I'll look into that though.
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Old January 29, 2010, 05:54 PM   #10
kalstrand
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The master light switch sounds good but you will also be blinding yourself when all the lights in the house come on at once.
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Old January 29, 2010, 06:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
The master light switch sounds good but you will also be blinding yourself when all the lights in the house come on at once.
You're also trashing the BG's night vision too.. And by that I mean his darkness adjusted eyes, not necessarily a monocular.
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Old January 29, 2010, 10:43 PM   #12
jrothWA
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Place neon night lites in ...

corners of room thereby silhouettiing the intruder.

Also for outside door, change the nearby lights to motion sensor. Gives you the notice of intruderd.
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Old January 29, 2010, 10:50 PM   #13
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Hmmm....you just reminded me. I have an old 8mm/digital camcorder that has night vision. Works pretty good, and it has the viewscreen, which would make it around corner capable. I don't really use it anymore for a camera, I think I'll dig it out to see how it works in this capacity. Thanks!
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Old January 31, 2010, 10:26 PM   #14
BobCat45
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This is not a commercial - but X-10 sells switches that replace the wall toggle switches, and plugs for e.g. table lamps, so you can turn on all the lights you have X-10 switches on, whatever circuit they are on. Not very costly or involved, and you don't have to rip into the wiring to have control of whatever lights you wish.

Probably there are other companies that sell this kind of stuff, it has been around at least 20 years I know of. I use them, like them, dislike the X-10 web site (it is full of images and loads slowly, and is garish and short on nitty-gritty detail on how the equipment works / is to be employed).

Just my 2ยข - you may find it useful or not.

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Andrew
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Old January 31, 2010, 11:35 PM   #15
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I didn't even think of something like X10 - great idea.
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Old February 1, 2010, 09:27 AM   #16
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In my opinion, night vision has a very limited application for engaging in, or defending against a team of attackers at night where various duties are divide up. In any one man operation checking out your home at night - this is WAY too much gear to be thinking about. All I have is a pistol with night sights and that's enough for me to fumble around with in the middle of the night.

Quote:
but X-10 sells switches that replace the wall toggle switches, and plugs for e.g. table lamps, so you can turn on all the lights you have X-10 switches on, whatever circuit they are on. Not very costly or involved, and you don't have to rip into the wiring to have control of whatever lights you wish.
Now, that's an excelent idea!
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Old February 1, 2010, 10:46 AM   #17
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Mostly they are not very useful, especially inside the house. Light pollution, limited viewing field, fuzzy optics that require adjustment make them more trouble than they are worth.

I have a decent night vision scope mounted to my rifle for exterior use at my place out in the country, it has a quick disconnect and an IR flashlight mounted. There are no close neighbors so the only light pollution is coming from my house or cars from the highway about 100 feet away.

The laws of my state allow me to defend my property at night if necessary and the police response time is an (optimistic) 30 minutes. Still, it is really only useful for a couple of scenarios:

- Observation of potential threats from inside if the power is out
- Home Defense outside if the power goes out completely and the solar lamps are drained (say after 2AM)
- A threat beyond the range of the pools of light around the main buildings (although why I would bother I can't imagine, it would require a really strong motivator to make me confront a threat off in my woods)
- Night varmint hunting (put on the .22 and adjust)

The biggest problem with NOD's is the lack of capability to provide PID. Is the man with the gun the police coming to help or a threat? Most 1-3G viewers don't provide enough detail to ensure that.
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