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Equipment Discussions >> Binoculars

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KennyJ
The British Flash
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Loc: Lancashire UK
What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars?
      #5830764 - 04/29/13 05:33 PM

Not necessarily for ASTRO -related use - just in binoculars in general.

Can you really remember?

I've "lifted" the following personal account from a rather obscure thread on this forum from around 7 years ago, which EdZ started about some "toy" binoculars.

< Believe it or not, an almost completely useless 4 x 30 black plastic toy binocular was probably what got me interested in binoculars in the first place.

I think it was my older brother's originally, from the early 1950s.

I remember being fascinated by the fact that it made things seem even smaller and further away when looking through the " big end ", and I guess I've had a penchant for lower magnification binoculars ever since ! :-)

So, what got YOU first interested?

Kenny


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Mark9473
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5830790 - 04/29/13 05:45 PM

For me it was astronomy, going out with my dad's Zenith 12x50 into a crystal clear winter night and aiming it at what I thought was a bright star, only to discover a huge planet - of course I learned about focusing stars to a point a bit later.

What prompted the interest was a book on astronomy I bought at a school book fair. But I've forgotten what made me interested in the book in the first place.


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mdowns
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5830794 - 04/29/13 05:46 PM

I recall being 5 or 6 (62,1963)and seeing a 4x40 field glass at a drugstore.They just called me.I probably had seen a ton of war movies that showed soldiers with binos.I was sure I needed them and my dad agreed.I started looking at birds and of course playing space explorer,army guy with them and actually kept them till I was 11 or 12.I then replaced them with a 10x50 tasco and gave the 4x40s to another youngster.

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Andresin150
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: mdowns]
      #5830875 - 04/29/13 06:28 PM

I've always been interested in optics and the idea of seeing everything closer.
When I was a kid, my parents had a hardware store and I kept "borrowing" the door viewer peepholes (that we named magic eyes), trying to make me a sort of spyglass. They where not selling many but all where disappearing
I didn't have much money but I managed to save something like 30 dollars when I was 10 and bought with great effort a red Tasco telescope, with plastic optics, that gave me years of entertainment...
When I was 12 or 13, in my school, a Japanese/Colombian friend, the "rich" one, brought his fathers Nikon binoculars, my best guess is that those where an 8x or 10x25.
After begging him for more that an hour to let me use them, my first thought was that those may be the best binoculars in the world!. Amazingly sharp compared to my poor optics, those Nikons woke in me the desire for better optics, specifically binoculars, and I began a quest for perfection.
My first good pair (when I was 17) where a Tasco Offshore 36 7x50; since then I had at least 50 different pairs....


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aa5te
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Andresin150]
      #5830898 - 04/29/13 06:43 PM

Heavenly bodies on the beach...

OK, not really. I got my first 50mm cardboard tube refractor for my 9th Christmas I think. I only used my dad's binoculars to look at things off in the field/woods before, but never the sky. Fast forward to 26 years later, and suddenly (overnight, actually), I was interested in astronomy again. I looked at this website and saw that binoculars were excellent tools for astronomy, so now I have 22 pairs (some are for sale now).


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daniel_h
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: aa5te]
      #5830920 - 04/29/13 06:58 PM

i cant realy recall -it want anything as a kid (i had no real knowledge of astro as a kid)
i think i just bought a pair which i saw on sale in my late twenties, then i started teaching astronomy to high schoolers which kick started me


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Jawaid I. Abbasi
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: daniel_h]
      #5830938 - 04/29/13 07:15 PM

Back home at the age 12 or 13; I experimented in the school lab for refractive index and ray alignment. It start fueling me interest in optics but the real interest came when I saw first time use for celestial object like moon.

Although I used only telescopes but using binocular was my interest all the time until I bought a REAL and better optics and that was PENTAX. you may say the Pentax may be responsible to put me in! or maybe the "Optics and colour" in my physics book was responsible????


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DonsDob
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Jawaid I. Abbasi]
      #5830969 - 04/29/13 07:42 PM

Although I first got interested in the night sky as a kid, I bought my first binoculars - Jason/Empire 7x50 - in my 20's and found about 40 M objects with them. I've since given them to my daughter and now use Celeston and Pentax (and scopes).

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edwincjones
Close Enough
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: DonsDob]
      #5830975 - 04/29/13 07:47 PM

I had a 6" scope but was not happy
went to a meeting in Denver,
came home with 4 books about binocular astronomy
and a fujinon 10x70
and never looked back

that is what happened,
why-I do not know*

edj

*maybe I do know why now-two eyed viewing is easier, more confortable,
more natural feeling than closing one eye

Edited by edwincjones (04/30/13 06:19 AM)


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richsvt
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5831086 - 04/29/13 08:48 PM

I have lived near the ocean for all my life. I remember as a kid trying to see details on the closest island off-shore and having a heck of a time. One of my friends sneaked out his dad's Nikons for the day (which got ruined with sand and he was beaten soundly-a different story) but that got me to think that I could get my own and never had to share with my friends (who were terrible sharers). What clear views of boats, wildlife and all the people across the bay. I think I got a cheap plastic pair for Christmas or birthday and that set me off on my wonderful optics journey. That was maybe 40 years ago or so.

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SMark
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: richsvt]
      #5831154 - 04/29/13 09:34 PM

I was probably 10 or 11 and my dad had an Atco 7x50 which he would let me use whenever I wanted to. I became fascinated watching cumulus clouds "grow" on those hot & humid summer days. And in the binoculars it just seemed to happen so much faster. I still enjoy doing that even today, but I use my 7x35 Super Wides instead.

The Astronomy bug bit me when I was 15, and that's when I bought my very own binocular, which was a Selsi 30x70.


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: SMark]
      #5831207 - 04/29/13 10:07 PM

I have a very clear recollection of the view through a telescope that sparked my interest in astronomy but I have no such recollection for binoculars.

This was probably because as a child, there were always binoculars around the house to use, they were just always there. At some point in the early 1960's, my father purchased a pair of Sears Tower 7x50s, pretty nice but I believe they had magnesium frame and over the years of being near the ocean, the metal has corroded. The last time I looked through them was probably 4 years ago. My brother has them now.

Jon


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John F
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5831309 - 04/29/13 11:06 PM

I first got interested in Astronomy during the 1980's and as a result of watching Carl Sagan's COSMOS series on PBS.

After finding out that I was interested in astronomy and thinking about getting a telescope he gave me a his copy of an Orion catalog that he had received in the mail. When I read it and saw that they touting binoculars as a good way to get started in astronomy I decided to give it a try because of their low cost, large field and relative ease of use. After using them for about 8 months and having enjoyed going out to dark sky sites to observe the night sky, I was then ready for a telescope.

That first pair of binoculars I got (i.e., a pair of 9x63 Orion "Little Giants" were awful compared to what I've been using since the early 1990s but they were good enough to get me started and to keep me hooked.

After I got my first Zeiss binocular in 1992 (a Carl Zeiss Jena 8x50) that was a real eye opener with respect to finding out how much you could see with a high quality pair of astronomical binoculars and what it a pleasure it was to star gaze with them. Another thing that helped to get me really hooked on observing with binoculars was the appearance of some quality mounts that were made especially for binoculars. Those first became commercially available back in the early 1990s.

Even since then I do most of my terrestrial observing with binoculars and about 25% of my astronomical observing with them. Although, over the past year or so I've been using my 3.5-inch Questar telescope a lot more for terrestrial observing because of: (1) Its size, weight & portability, (2) Superb Optics, and (3) It's 8-foot close focus capability.

John Finnan


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panhard
It's All Good
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: John F]
      #5831324 - 04/29/13 11:17 PM

Observing planes coming and departing from the airport.

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Ira
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: panhard]
      #5831353 - 04/29/13 11:34 PM

I've always loved optics and the idea that a piece of glass can make something far away look close. There was no looking back after that.

/Ira


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Man in a Tub
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Ira]
      #5831448 - 04/30/13 01:03 AM Attachment (17 downloads)

Amazing ... I was thinking of a similar post two days ago.

My interest in space, stars and planets precedes this story by about two years.

Shortly after Sputnik went into orbit on 4 October 1957, my father and I went out with my mother's gray plastic opera glasses. We didn't see Sputnik, but I must have been very fascinated looking through the opera glasses. Soon afterward I saw a New York Times Magazine advertisement for 7x35 field glasses. I asked my parents to order one. They did.

The field glasses came with a tan, leather-like case. It probably wasn't real leather, but the smell was wonderful. I remember little of how I used the field glasses, and I have repressed all memory of how the field glasses were broken. I have one objective lens from the field glasses, and for more than fifty years that objective lens has always been on my desk wherever I have been.


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brentwood
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Man in a Tub]
      #5831515 - 04/30/13 02:41 AM

I think it was aircraft spotting at around the age of twelve. I was only interested in military aircraft, but luckily at the time we lived beneath a high altitude training route for the RAF's 'V Bomber' force, that at the time comprised about one third of the West's nuclear deterrent.
My parents bought me a new Dolland 8x25, as they couldn't quite afford the 'Big ones' the 8x30. I can only remember seeing solitary Vulcans, until one day when the sky seemed to be full of 'hundreds' of Vulcans, Victors and a few Valiants. We thought it was WW3 !! That night they announced that a large exercise had taken place and THIRTY THREE planes had taken part!
I do not remember using the binoculars on the sky, though I did take them down to the nearby beach to look at the ships.
Around this time, I became really interested in Astronomy from the monthly star chart in my 'Book of Knowledge' encyclopedia set. I bought a brass & leather 'Enbeeco' 25x30 drawtube telescope from a friend who had just bought a 40x70 binocular from a 'News of the World' advert!


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Erik Bakker
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5831588 - 04/30/13 05:17 AM

When I was around 9 years old, I looked at the moon with my fathers 7x35 binos. That got me hooked on astronomy and started the pursuit for my first scope to see more.

Currently I own 3 binoculars (10x32, 7x42 and 18x70) and use them a lot. Each of them has a unique and different character, all of them bring a smile on my face. For different objects and different reasons.

The smallest is so light, small and sharp. The medium shows a view so bright and wide. And the biggest has views that just floor me every time I point it at the heavens.
I even ended up transforming my 4" and 16" mono's into bino-instruments

So for me binos are the alpha and omega of observing.


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Tony Flanders
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5831645 - 04/30/13 06:47 AM

I can't remember not being interested in binoculars. But I do remember when my father bought me a really nice pair -- Nikon 7x35s -- when I was in my early teens. He researched them really carefully, and they continue to be one of my favorites to this day.

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StarStuff1
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Tony Flanders]
      #5833149 - 04/30/13 08:21 PM

When I was a young dude, about 24 years old, the only optic I had was a Sears wide angle 7x35. Years earlier I had a 75mm refractor that my mother lent out to some scouts. It dissapeared as it was "loaned" to another scout. Anyway, the 7x35 was a nice pair of binos and I still have them. But the astronomy "breakthrough" with binos was when I "discovered" M6 and M7 back in 1980. Now there are at least two dozen binos in my collection. Today I rarely observe without taking along binos.

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Jarrod
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5833343 - 04/30/13 10:28 PM

Sports. We used to go to Major League Baseball games when I was a kid. We couldn't afford good seats, but were lucky to be able to go, and bring along a Bushnell 7x35 so that I could recognize the players from watching them on television. So at 8 years old I was asking Dad to please pass the binoculars.

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OpalescentNebula
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Jarrod]
      #5833553 - 05/01/13 01:30 AM

My dad had 12x50 Bushnell’s so we could watch the Big Laker (freighters) come in on Lake Huron to the St Claire River. Reading the Boats names.
When I got them they were no longer able to focus properly. I bought a pair of 8x26 Pentax, I used until my wife dropped them into the Ocean in Costa Rica by mistake.


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smart
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: OpalescentNebula]
      #5833567 - 05/01/13 01:50 AM

Though I had telescopes growing up in Minnesota in the 1950s, it never occurred to me to use binoculars on the night sky. In 1962 I was on a US Navy destroyer in the Pacific Ocean and stood the night watch many times with a pair of B&L 7x50s-what a revelation on those dark skies!

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RichD
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: smart]
      #5833834 - 05/01/13 08:37 AM

I don't remember a time when I wasn't interested in binoculars. There isn't one particular pair that ignited my interest but I continue to be amazed by what a small handheld pair can reveal in the night sky. I love the idea that simple polished and shaped pieces of glass held within a moulded chassis can literally bring the universe closer. That will never get old for me.

I don't know why I have never got attached to scopes in quite the same way, despite having some wonderful views through them over the years. It is the notion of being able to hold them, as a unit, with no accessories needed and feeling like they are almost an extension of your body that makes me love handheld binos. It's a bit of an obsession.


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ronharper
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: RichD]
      #5834097 - 05/01/13 11:04 AM

At about age 12 I perchanced to sample a Boy Scout Binocular which was on display along with the usual assortment of pocket knives, snakebite kits, and other manly stuff. My parents kindly bought it for me. A genuine glass singlet Galilean! I noticed even then that I could see more stars with optical aid. Taking the objectives off gave a gut level optics lesson, and the terrific color fringing was amazing. I get a headache now, just thinking about it.
Ron


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Pinewood
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5834601 - 05/01/13 03:01 PM

Hello Kenny et al,

My first binocular, acquired in about 1976, was a U.S. Army Signal Corps, Model EE, 6x30, circa 1918. I spent more on its collimation than I did for the glass. I used it for terrestrial views and occasionally at my less than starry sky. About three years later, I bought a Leitz 7x50 Marseptit, which did require a good cleaning. Once, I lifted the glass to look at Jupiter, at twilight, and saw all four Gallilean moons, a sight that perked my interest in astronomy.
As I live in Manhattan, about 3.5 km. from Times Square, my use of binoculars for astronomy is limited. However, I have taken an almost daily bird watching walks in Central Park for the last eight weeks, using a modern 8x32.

Clear skies,
Arthur


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star drop
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Pinewood]
      #5835131 - 05/01/13 08:05 PM

When I was in my early twenties a chimney fire at my place of employment caused me to wonder what the bright star nearly overhead was. Having no nearby telescope store I went to a catalog store and purchased a pair of 10x50 binoculars. It was out of collimation so I just used it as a monocular.

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faackanders2
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5835152 - 05/01/13 08:21 PM

Wanting to see a wider TFOV (than my 10" f4.5 dob).

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Doug D.
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: faackanders2]
      #5836085 - 05/02/13 11:28 AM

Simple: birds

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Cabrillas
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Loc: Madrid. Spain.
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Doug D.]
      #5836178 - 05/02/13 12:22 PM

For me they were the birds too. After a lot of saving, when I was 11 or 12, in the late 70's, my father travelled to the Canary Islands (they have a special taxation, cheaper than the rest of Spain)and bought a pair of Pentax 7X50. But he liked them so much, that he keep them . Well, actually, he allowed me to use them everytime I asked, so I got the binos and kept the money. Thanks, Dad.

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Mr. Bill
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Cabrillas]
      #5836352 - 05/02/13 01:49 PM

Floaters in my eyes....two-eyed viewing tends to cancel out defects in each eye used separately.



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hallelujah
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Mr. Bill]
      #5836406 - 05/02/13 02:11 PM

03-19-1994 I purchased a new brand 93' Nissan Maxima SE.

I chose a free gift of a Tasco? 7x35 binocular. (Very humble beginnings.)

Years later it was passed along to a young boy from our church.

Stan


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Patrik Iver
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: hallelujah]
      #5836470 - 05/02/13 02:31 PM

I grew up on the coast (in the archipelago, really), with most of the family, friends and relatives involved in boats and everything nautical. Binoculars (without exception 7x 50's of various cheapish brands, as far as binoculars ever could be considered inexpensive in those days) were "always" around, and got used a lot.

My paternal grandmother was quite interested in astronomy (actually she was rather interested in most things, I guess), so she gave me "the spark" so to say. My grandfather was a merchant marine captain turned teacher of navigation turned pilot (not the flying kind, but the kind that guides ships), so of course he knew the navigational stars, but I can't recall him being interested in astronomy the way his wife was. They are both gone since almost a quarter of a century, but my contribution to this thread brings back lots of happy memories - thank you Kenny for giving me a reason to think of my childhood...


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Binojunky
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Patrik Iver]
      #5836648 - 05/02/13 04:05 PM

When I was a fair youth (a b####y long time ago I may add) I was madly in love with a fair maiden down the road, I purchased my first pair to spy on her while she worked in the garden,never did get enough backbone to ask her out,DA

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Jawaid I. Abbasi
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Binojunky]
      #5837129 - 05/02/13 07:59 PM

Quote:

When I was a fair youth (a b####y long time ago I may add) I was madly in love with a fair maiden down the road, I purchased my first pair to spy on her while she worked in the garden,never did get enough backbone to ask her out,DA


That is something to spark the astronomy or anatomy

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RobertED
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Jawaid I. Abbasi]
      #5837345 - 05/02/13 10:06 PM

My Dad used them to study the Moon....particularly The Full Moon!! When I took my first look, I found it a little eerie, and mostly fascinating! He told me I was looking at a whole 'nother world....and they're could be people looking back at us!!! I was 9, I didn't know any better!!...lol...
It was still a beautiful sight....the Full Moon through 7x35 Tasco binoculars. I'm still hooked at studying the lunar surface today, at 53 yrs old....


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rdandrea
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5837990 - 05/03/13 10:18 AM

When I was a field geologist in western Wyoming, out in the sagebrush, there was always something to see. Sage grouse, antelope, elk, you name it. So I always had binos with me. Once I turned my 7x50s onto a summer Wyoming dark sky, I was hooked forever.

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swsantos
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5838587 - 05/03/13 03:14 PM

For me it was EDZ personally at scouting and local events.

So I win

Steve


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Cliff C
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Loc: Long Island, NY
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5838670 - 05/03/13 04:09 PM

Boating. In 1969 when we got our first boat I believe that my Grandfather bought us a pair of binoculars (Tasco 7x50s) to help navigate the high seas. Between the waves and my weak 5 year old arms absolutely nothing was staedy.
A few years later I began to use them to observe the Moon, airplanes going in and out of our local airport and U.F.O. hunting.
Some 20 years later the combination of a friend buying a telescope, an article in Astronomy featuring Chesley Bonestell and viewing a very young crescent Moon with that 3D effect convinced me that it was time to take the plunge and purchase a telescope!
I still have those 7x50, along with many other 7x35s and 10x50s. Nothing high end though... perhaps one day.


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mudnreo
member


Reged: 01/11/13

Loc: Delmar, Delaware USA
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Cliff C]
      #5840399 - 05/04/13 04:36 PM

Boating for me too. We always had binoculars on the boats. In 1964 (I was 11) my Dad bought a "big" boat, it was every bit of 26' lol, but we did do some offshore fishing with it. Well, 40 miles out off of Cape May NJ for us was offshore so we always had them on the boat. Don't remember what got me to looking at the sky with them but I have been for a long time on and off.

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Kevin Barker
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Reged: 04/22/09

Loc: Auckland, NZ
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: StarStuff1]
      #5840493 - 05/04/13 05:40 PM

As a child of about 10 I discovered that a neighbour had a pair of old(ex-military?) 6X30 field glasses.
They had great optics and he never used them. His son was a good friend and I loaned them for a while. Boy the moon was marvelous as were the stars. That got me hooked.

Later I bought telescopes(along with my twin brother)an Astroscan(around 1980) after buying possibly the worst 40X40 refractor ever made.
Next binocular purchase was a pair of run of the mill 7X50's which were optically great but had tunnel vision.
Today I own and use Zeiss 10X25, 7X42B/GA T P*, 10X40 B/GA T P*, 8X30B T P* Dialyt.
Fujinon 10X70 FMT-SX( a firm favourite), Garrett 20X110.

My firm favourite is the 10X40's for birding and also astronomy as a finder. The Fuji's for astronomy are fab when mounted.

Possibly the nicest binoculars I have used are the Fuji 25X150, Nikon 12X50 SE and the Zeiss 15X60 B/GA T* .

Edited by Kevin Barker (05/04/13 05:42 PM)


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KennyJ
The British Flash
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Kevin Barker]
      #5840553 - 05/04/13 06:25 PM

Well, as hoped, already my simple question has attracted a very interesting and varied set of replies.

It's especially nice to see a few of them from members who rarely post to this forum, not least the previous poster, Kevin, whom I remember from my time over on the Binoculars forum at Astromart around 11 years ago.

Hello, Kevin!

Kenny


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panhard
It's All Good
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5840647 - 05/04/13 07:50 PM

This is a great thread Kenny.

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Kevin Barker
super member


Reged: 04/22/09

Loc: Auckland, NZ
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: panhard]
      #5841129 - 05/05/13 04:01 AM

Gidday Kenny
Yes I used to post a lot on astromart. It has gone a bit quiet of late. I know of several other NZ er's who no longer use it now as well. Cloudy nights is really big now.

I reckon binoculars have changed my whole perspective on nature and the world around me, well made user friendly binoculars really enhance ones connection with the world around us.

I use them to watch sport, observe birds, planes and stars etc

I always have binoculars handy when cruising around the Southern skies with a telescope.

A good pair is well worth the investment....

I have a young nephew who is 11 who might just get a pair for X mas....or his next birthday.


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KennyJ
The British Flash
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Kevin Barker]
      #5841142 - 05/05/13 04:25 AM

Thanks for that, Kevin.

We visited Auckland in October/ November 1993 and what a wonderful experience it was in every way imaginable.

I particularly remember the great views looking out from the harbour at Devonport, an exceptionally wide tree with exposed roots, not far from the city centre, friendly hospitality and the best breakfasts I've ever been served in my life!

I'd forgotten about that subtle difference between "Gidday" in Auckland and "G'Day" in Adelaide! :-)

Best Regards,
Kenny


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PJ Anway
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5841255 - 05/05/13 08:22 AM

I first used binoculars as a boy, to search for the sputnik and explorer satellites. Of course, those scans of the skies, began my interest in non-artificial lights too. However, I soon moved on to telescopes and my binocular use all but died. Then, a star-party view of M31 through some 125mm binoculars several years ago stirred my interest in binocular astronomy again. I use them on a regularly basis now.

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Philip Levine
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5841531 - 05/05/13 12:02 PM

Hi Kenny,
Great Thread Kenny. Birding. Then casual astronomy. Then BIG TIME ADDICTION: - CLOUDY NIGHTS Binocular Forum . Special thanks to BILL COOK, Professor EdZ, and Phil Harrington.

Phil


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Simon S
Carpal Tunnel
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Loc: Crawley West Sussex UK
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Philip Levine]
      #5843049 - 05/06/13 07:52 AM

I was bought as a child a cheap draw scope by my father as a 6th birthday present to look at the moon. But the magnification was far to high to hand hold so he bought me a pair of 7x50 Japanese porros. So moon and stars were the reason for me.

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Cliff C
member


Reged: 02/11/09

Loc: Long Island, NY
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: mudnreo]
      #5845213 - 05/07/13 09:58 AM Attachment (12 downloads)

Mudnreo,
Our boat was only 21 foot and the way it ran we would never have dared to take it out into the ocean. A 26 footer is pretty big by my standards and going 40 miles offshore with it is very daring. I prefer to keep land in sight.
As for those 7x50 Tascos, they are actually 7x35s labeled "featherlight", lightweight brick that is. No wonder that I thought they were larger. I am going to try attaching a photo of myself using them in 1972.
Cliff


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Paul G
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: KennyJ]
      #5846105 - 05/07/13 05:11 PM

In 1958, when I was 5, my father bought binoculars and we would throw a blanket out in the back yard and use the National Geographic star map to explore the sky. Perfect instrument for the very transparent but often turbulent skies in Colorado Springs.

The neighbor kid, Lenny, borrowed the star map and never returned it. If I ever find you Lenny...


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Pinewood
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Reged: 12/07/04

Loc: 40.77638º N 73.982652 W
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Paul G]
      #5846674 - 05/07/13 09:30 PM

Gus,

You bring back a memory. I had a July 1943 National Geographic, that had star charts printed in an article, entitled, "The Heavens, above. I ripped out the star charts, around 1968 and studied them for years, until they fell apart.
I am sure that you were writing of a formal star chart.
Clear skies,
Arthur


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Man in a Tub
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Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Paul G]
      #5846936 - 05/08/13 12:11 AM

Quote:

In 1958, when I was 5, my father bought binoculars and we would throw a blanket out in the back yard and use the National Geographic star map to explore the sky. Perfect instrument for the very transparent but often turbulent skies in Colorado Springs.

The neighbor kid, Lenny, borrowed the star map and never returned it. If I ever find you Lenny...




After my father and I failed to see Sputnik, that star map arrival in early 1958 inspired even greater interest in astronomy. You can buy a contemporary version of the National Geographic Heavens Map. If you want a 1958 version, I bet that can be found too.

Edited by Man in a Tub (05/08/13 12:14 AM)


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RichD
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 11/08/07

Loc: Derbyshire, UK
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Man in a Tub]
      #5847176 - 05/08/13 05:54 AM

Interesting to see so many of us got into this hobby as youngsters and have continued it well into adulthood. Nothing like a lifetime hobby.

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Jay_Bird
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Reged: 01/04/06

Loc: USA
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: RichD]
      #5848188 - 05/08/13 04:48 PM

As early as I can remember it was equal parts (usually shared with dad) binocular use at sporting events; scanning air traffic, or the ocean horizon when too cold to go in; and birds/wildlife; then finally the night sky by age 11.

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Jon Isaacs
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Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: RichD]
      #5849119 - 05/09/13 12:04 AM

Quote:

Interesting to see so many of us got into this hobby as youngsters and have continued it well into adulthood. Nothing like a lifetime hobby.




Dear old dad was quite knowledgeable when it came to matters scientific and that included the night sky.

During my high school years and college years, my family vacationed by traveling down Baja California. Those were days before paved roads so often we traveled 3 full days on roads that required 4WD to our camping spots. Often there was not a house or even a fish camp within 50 miles...

Needless to say, the skies were amazingly dark and very clear. Needless to say, my father's dear son was at that age when when sons are not interested in dear old dad's wisdom, those wonderful nights were wasted and the dear son only became enamored with the night sky in his later years.

What could have been.

Jon


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Gordon Rayner
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 03/24/07

Re: What FIRST got you interested in Binoculars? new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5849175 - 05/09/13 01:24 AM

I made a 6 inch f/8 Newtonian, ff. the Thompson and Texereau route, at about 12-13.

But after using it for the usual Saturn rings, etc., I found that a family WW II Busch 10 x 50 , with erect images, was more fun, particularly to learn the sky ,

Somewhat later, I read the classic Henry Paul article " Big Viewing with Giant Binoculars", in a 1962 Review of Popular Astronomy periodical issue. That whetted my appetite for larger, mounted, binoculars.


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