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Old August 5, 2014, 09:14 AM   #1
Panfisher
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Binoculars for Vehicle

At my work we routinely keep a pair of binoculars in the vehicles, but have had problems getting them to survive more than a couple years. I guess the bouncing around, dirt dust etc., seem to turn them into non-focused paperweights. Anybody have any good experiences with a brand or model that will last? This will be some of your tax dollars at work, so I don't get to buy real high end optics.
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Old August 5, 2014, 10:31 AM   #2
Unlicensed Dremel
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Wow, never heard of that. In my center console is Leupold Yosemite 6x30s, since one of the strap attachment points on it broke and so I cannot carry it around my neck in the field any more. But it's only been in there a year or so, so I cannot say as to longevity. But it works fine now.
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Old August 5, 2014, 10:50 AM   #3
skoro
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I've had a pair of these in the console of my old 4x4 pickup for a few years now. They get bounced around some and they're still good as new.

http://www.amazon.com/Bushnell-19802...ll+legend+8x25
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Old August 5, 2014, 04:29 PM   #4
kilimanjaro
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Used to have the same problem at work, too. Buying expensive glass for people to wreck on the taxpayer's dime is silly. Solved it by lining the center console with thick foam and dedicating it to binocular or camera storage, nothing else.

I stopped buying toys for some folks, they just wouldn't take care of them. Neither of them brought in their own to use, either.

Bushnell is a good, serviceable make, nothing wrong with them. Price is right, and it's not wasting money. The folks that insist on Zeiss and Swarovski are not being good stewards of the public purse.
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Old August 7, 2014, 03:38 PM   #5
Comanche
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Same thing, got a set of bushnells in my Daily driver along with a small Sony digital camera, both lasted years even getting thrown about.
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Old August 7, 2014, 06:49 PM   #6
Unlicensed Dremel
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Quote:
Bushnell is a good, serviceable make, nothing wrong with them. Price is right, and it's not wasting money.
Too broad of a statement. It depends on WHICH Bushnell. Big differences. The "Legend" porros were very good values, as I believe the Excursions are as well, and several others. The basic "Action" line is pretty decent - porros. Easier to make a good porro than a roofie. The high end ones too - Elites. But the low low ends - notsomuch (Sportsman, Sportview, etc - buyer beware).

One brand that I think blows that is way overhyped is Steiner. I had one and expected quality - the image was terrible. Much worse than similarly priced offerings from Bushnell, Leupold Green Ring, Kowa, Brunton, Pentax.
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Old August 7, 2014, 07:20 PM   #7
skoro
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Very true. Bushnell markets a wide range of optics, from junk to real good. In my experience, their Legend and elite lines have all been good.
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Old August 7, 2014, 08:07 PM   #8
Panfisher
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Brunton was one of the brands under consideration. Hadn't even heard of them until the other day. I did however dig out one the pair of "not working" leupold Cascades and a good cleaning and proper adjusting had them working just fine. Maybe more of a user issue than an equipment issue at play here.
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Old August 8, 2014, 09:57 AM   #9
jmr40
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These are be best sub $100 binoculars I've used. I own 2 pair, one stays in the truck, the other in the Jeep. I have several pair that are far more expensive, but these get used most. No problems with durability.

They make 6X and 8X. The 6X versions are the ones you want.

http://swfa.com/Leupold-6x30-BX-1-Yo...ar-P48061.aspx
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Old August 8, 2014, 02:32 PM   #10
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2 votes out of 7 for the Yosemite 6x30s!
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Old August 8, 2014, 02:47 PM   #11
Panfisher
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Thanks fellers for the ideas and suggestions.
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Old August 9, 2014, 10:20 AM   #12
wild willy
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You weren't keeping the binoculars in the door pockets were you?I know keeping a hand level there will ruin them in a couple months

Last edited by wild willy; August 10, 2014 at 11:23 AM.
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Old August 12, 2014, 01:32 AM   #13
bamaranger
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here's what works for me/us

I've got a long history of public service involving vehs and optics, and have observed the very same thing. Any "affordable" bino does not last long fed a daily diet of dirt tracks, boat rides, and everyday use. Management buys a $100 bino, and its trash in a short while. Worthless binos lying about in offices and vehicles aplenty.

Here's what I did, and it worked. I collected every one of those worthless binos, and tallied their cost as best I could. I then carried the total, and the box of junk to the Chief Ranger. Introductory line: (you may use this)
"Boss, this right here is a waste of money."

Produced the junk binos for his inspection....worthless. Second line:
"The Ranger staff cannot monitor, rescue nor apprehend, data,. vistors, and violators we cannot see."

Final line: "For the price of this worthless junk, we could buy
"X" number of good binos that will likely last a career"


Result, we now have 3 pair of Steiner Military models and a 1 pair of Leupolds all 15-20 years old, with no issues and stellar service. One pair of Steiner 10x50's have been passed on from a retired Ranger to his replacement. In the end, the better optic has saved us money. Worked for me.

The Steiner 8x30's are still not a bad price and not overly big. The 7x50 suck light like a shop vac, and have tremendous low light capability for a standard optic, but the low "X" power is a hindrance if your not counting tanks, ICBM's, aircraft, etc. The 10x50's are expensive, but work much better for hull numbers, LPN's, faces, etc. If you don't have to carry them, cause the 10x50's weigh a ton, they are good truck/boat binos.

Good luck. be safe
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Old August 12, 2014, 07:35 AM   #14
Panfisher
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In a different job I had a pair of Steiner 7x50 and they were unbelievable night binos. Often my staff has a tendency to want higher magnification in smaller packages which of course cuts down light transmission. I may give the Leupold 6x a try, or the brutons not sure yet if I will be able to get them or not, still a little "fiscal year" left. I can't try to clean up and make the older leupolds work since a week ago someone with a pair of bolt cutters decided they needed some stuff out of our vehicle compound and 2 of them were among the missing items. Thanks again.
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Old August 12, 2014, 08:45 PM   #15
Captains1911
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I've considered leaving a pair of Nikon binos in my car, but was not sure if the extreme temperatures would be harmful over time.
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Old August 13, 2014, 12:49 AM   #16
RsqVet
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I have noticed that "value line" optics have gone from half decent to abysmal in recent years. We had family K mart brand and other cheap bionos that did really well for years and years even if the optical quality / light transmission was not stellar.

One good friend has had luck with a 2 pair of the cheap leupold units holding up reasonable well, but perhaps not to as much use as your situation will gather.

One thought as well is some good pelican cases or other padded / armored cases to protect them.

I very much like the M22 fujunon 7x50 units, god knows what they cost new but I have often found them used / surplus cheap and they hold up. Perhaps and option?
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