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Leitz Trinovid 8x32 - Worth keeping? Yes. Repairing? Maybe?

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#1 ShadowBoxer

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Posted 07 July 2020 - 11:23 PM

Hello,

Appologies for what is undoubtably a repeating post & theme here. 

 

PROLOGUE:

I was always in the market for a nice binocular with nostalgic ghosts in my head of my fathers binoculars.

Black metal and black leather. They seemed HUGE and HEAVY to me.

I have no idea what they were or where they are now. I asked mom to look, but who knows.

 

Anyway when I got into photography in the 1990s with a certain task in mind I ended up landing on Leica.

Back then their binoculars were too much for me and I don't know anything about them anyway but I always kind of wanted a pair, if only for the odd use.

 

Somehow now, 25 years later I see a CraigsList add not too far away for an older pair of Leitz for only $225.  

That seemed very cheap to me, but again I don't know anything. I never really used a pair of binoculars so I don't even know why I want a pair except as a callback to days with my father maybe?

This seller never responded to my contacts.

 

While waiting I find the same binoculars elsewhere.

On ebay most of these are around $400-$800. So that makes the CL listing look like a good deal. Except they never respond.

About two weeks later someone starts a auction for Leitz Trinovid 8x32 for $125. By now I've read enough here and there to know what that means and understand these might make a good general purpose pair, I think, but these don't have the original leather case. They come with a soft bag type thing. Otherwise the binoculars themselves look good. Better then the CL offering with fewer paint chips, etc.  

 

Well, somehow that auction did not go overboard and I won. 

 

SO NOW:

Is it worth sending these in to get a cleaning and adjustment since it's probably been ... I don't know, maybe 40-50 years since the last one?

There does seem to be some sort of haze and one annoying paint chip. 

I'll try to include some pictures here.

 

IMG_1766-L.jpg

 

IMG_1769-L.jpg

 

IMG_1772-L.jpg

 

IMG_1774-L.jpg

 

 

 

And here are some pictures I took through them today.

 

Right side pre-clean/repair.                                                                                                                                                          Same position with iPhone X.

IMG_1759-L.jpg    IMG_1760-L.jpg

 

 

Left side pre-clean/repair.                                                                                                                                                            Same position with iPhone X.

IMG_1762-L.jpg    IMG_1763-L.jpg

 

 

I know the pictures through the binoculars are not great but I wanted some sort of reference before sending them out.

Which brings me to the obvious: where should I send them?

 

Also I was curious if it was possible to tell when they were made. I know the first number is mangled, so I guess I could be anything, but I was hoping other clues might guide an experienced person to a year or date.

It would be super cool if you could follow the badge, neck strap lugs and other things to come to the conclusion: 23rd of August 1965.  

Or something like that.

 

Thanks for any good ideas, wise experiences,

and humorous anecdotes.

Cheers.



#2 ArsMachina

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 03:11 AM

I had a Leitz Trinovid 10x40 in the past and I also did buy it because I am a Leitz fan, liked the look of the binos and wanted a nice and good pair of binoculars.

I owned it for some time, had great views of Hale Bopp with it (my only observing instrument at this time) but finally was not too much impressed by the optical quality and performance.

So I sold it again and went on with my Canon 15x50IS which I do own still today.

 

Jochen



#3 Grimnir

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 05:17 AM

>>

 

SO NOW:

Is it worth sending these in to get a cleaning and adjustment since it's probably been ... I don't know, maybe 40-50 years since the last one?

There does seem to be some sort of haze and one annoying paint chip. 

 

 

I know the pictures through the binoculars are not great but I wanted some sort of reference before sending them out.

Which brings me to the obvious: where should I send them?

<<

 

Definitely worth preserving in my opinion. Discuss with Cory at

 

https://suddarthoptical.com/

 

before you send them off.

 

Graham


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#4 ShadowBoxer

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 05:13 PM

Hi,

Thank you for the replies.

I did talk to Cory. I would cost more than the binoculars cost me, but in the end I would have a newly cleaned and adjusted classic for less than $500. I like that he would include some special sounding adjustments and maybe restore the paint and number.

I'll probably do that if no one has a better idea.

 

I was surprised by how small these are. I can actually get them into a back pocket of some jeans.

They came with a soft felt or flannel case which makes them easy to tuck into a backpack and they take up almost no extra room while being somewhat protected.

 

As I was talking to Cory in discussing if they were worth it, he mentioned that these old Trinovids are very good if they are in working order.

He said, "I have a pair of 8x32s on the back porch just check out things when I'm out there."

I figured if he has made that choice with all the experience and options he mus have, these are good and deserve some TLC and basic maintenance.

 

By the way, does anyone know how to remove and replace the neck strap? I don't see anything obvious but it seems ridiculous that these can't be removed in case of wear or damage.

 

Thanks again.



#5 brentwood

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 05:45 PM

I have a similar 10x40 and asked the same question about the strap, as mine came with a really nice soft leather case that the strap was fitted through. They came off quite easily when it was explained how. Of course I have no idea now, but I will try & find whatever was sent to me. 

BTW, mine were pristine and cost $14.95, probably because the pawn shop I bought them from had marked them '8x30 coated lenses' ! me thinks there was a little mix up on the pricing table in the back room!  I sort of kept my hands over them and the label when I took them up to pay, and of course, I paid full price! The last thing I wanted was for someone to yell out, "Frank, will we take ten bucks for these  'ere 'Like as'? 



#6 NDfarmer

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 05:59 PM

I own a 10x40 Leitz Trinovid, and these are a very nice binocular.  From what I see, you should carefully learn how and

clean the lenses properly.  I see lots of dust in the photos.

 

I would expect a small amount of haze, but your photos show a very nice image.  So, I would not send them in for a

cleaning, I would just use and enjoy your binoculars as is.  They must have had good care along the way.

 

You can always send it in for service at a later date.  These will never have the quality of view and performance of

a newer binocular.  So, you should know that.

 

Good luck.



#7 SMark

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 06:09 PM

For what it’s worth, I recently had an old Leitz 6 x 24 Trinovid with the very wide angle field of view that I purchased for around $250. It was also quite foggy inside, so I sent it off to Cory. Of course, it came back just beautiful, and my wife and I enjoyed using it for many months thereafter. After purchasing my little Kowa, we stopped using it, so put it out on eBay and ended up getting back more than what I had in it. So I say go for it.
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#8 Yarddog

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 06:11 PM

I believe I once had that same binocular. I needed money and sold it to a Dr, at a gun show. He paid $300 which was about right for an excellent used one.



#9 brentwood

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 10:25 PM

Sorry, , did look but I could not find the message I got on how to release that strap. I was afraid of breaking it off, but there is a way. 



#10 ShadowBoxer

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Posted 10 July 2020 - 04:58 AM

Thanks for looking Brentwood.

Hopefully someone here will comeback with the answer.



#11 brentwood

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Posted 10 July 2020 - 12:53 PM

I just had another go at mine but no luck. I know that you just pull it push it in a certain way. I only took mine off because I notice that my case had slots in it so the strap goes through the case. 



#12 Brent

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Posted 12 July 2020 - 05:16 PM

I'm a little late to the party, but I'll throw in my 2 Pfennig just in case it is of any value.

 

About a decade ago, I bought a used pair of Trinovid 8X32s that was sent in for refurbishment before I picked it up.  The problem with it was cloudy optics.  Leica didn't just clean it, they updated the optics from its original BA status to the newer BN series (closer focusing and harder coatings too, I think).

 

I bought them for $600 and it has been one of the best optical purchases I've ever made.

 

Cheers,

Brent



#13 Roberto_L

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Posted 17 July 2020 - 02:15 PM

For what it’s worth, I recently had an old Leitz 6 x 24 Trinovid with the very wide angle field of view that I purchased for around $250. It was also quite foggy inside, so I sent it off to Cory. Of course, it came back just beautiful, and my wife and I enjoyed using it for many months thereafter. After purchasing my little Kowa, we stopped using it, so put it out on eBay and ended up getting back more than what I had in it. So I say go for it.

Hi Mark,

how good are the Kowa 6.5x32 for stargazing?

I have them since a few days, they are great during the day but until now I haven't had any clear night sky to test them for astronomy.

Cheers



#14 shredder1656

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 06:27 PM

I have a Leitz Portugal 7x42 that I had to send to SOR.  They are great binos.  I use them nearly every day.  I do some digiscoping/phonescoping nowadays, and they are always around my neck.  They are old, but still very sharp. 

 

With the eyecups that NDFarmer gifted me (thanks, again!), they are perfect for use with my spectacles.  I am guessing that modern versions are somehow better, but I like the old "junk" most of the time.  I vote that you keep them.  waytogo.gif

 

Photo pre-repair.

 

20200311_043015.jpg




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