Author Topic: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular  (Read 1113 times)

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Rodolfo Peirano

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14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« on: January 08, 2018, 11:31:05 PM »
Hello everyone,
I do not know if it may interest you, but I found a stabilized binocular that I did not know.

Is the 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular, product by the Fraser Optic.

Does anyone know or have tried it ?  :) The price is certainly not for every budget. From about $ 4,700 to $ 5800 :o

Der cheers.
Rodolfo
everyone can learn from everyone - Rodolfo

Niall McLaren

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2018, 07:50:53 AM »
I'm sure I've seen some of their military stabilised on EbayUS over the years - I wouln't mind trying one... ;)
"A little bit of something beats a whole lot of nothing." - Little Richard

Rodolfo Peirano

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2018, 12:41:44 PM »
Me too Niall,

Tips for shopping  ;D

http://www.anglerscenter.com/fraser-optics/

and demo on the stability of the image.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuKm6vxExXM

Cheers
everyone can learn from everyone - Rodolfo

Niall McLaren

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2018, 01:08:38 PM »
Thanks Rodolfo but I'll stick with my Soviet and British Army gyro monoculars;

http://www.johnsonsofleeds.co.uk/shop/en/binoculars-telescopes/57-military-image-stabilized-binoculars.html
"A little bit of something beats a whole lot of nothing." - Little Richard

Rodolfo Peirano

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2018, 01:16:12 PM »
According to you, those of the link, is it worth buying it ? Is the price reasonable ? Is the seller reliable ?
Thanks - Rodolfo
everyone can learn from everyone - Rodolfo

guest6895

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2018, 05:08:36 PM »
I have not tried the Fraser stabilized binoculars, but they are known here in the U.S. and both the army & navy have purchased them.  Here's some text from my files:
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stabilized binoculars, Model MK, 14x41 mm, Field of vision 4.3 degrees. Operates on a variance of 6 to 30 Volt batteries. Made by Fraser-Volpe Corp., Warminster, Pa.; accessory filters and a BNC cord for electric hook-up.Retail as per the company was $5200.  Model MS-II 12 x 47mm FOV 311 ft. @ 1000 yds.  monocular

  The Army is also proceding with the purchase of the XM25, (now the M25) 14 power Stabilized Binocular by Fraser-Volpe, which is upgradeable to night vision use, and also made for the NAVAIR branch of the Navy.  (April 1998, from  Earl Osborn)
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the M25 stabilized binocular. Manufactured by Fraser-Volpe Corporation, the M25 features 14X optics that allow warfighters to perform tactical reconnaissance at extended ranges with enhanced on-the-move sighting capabilities.

To achieve stabilization, the M25 features a precision miniature gyroscope mounted on a gimbaled platform in the middle of the optical pathway. The platform holds prisms that provide a steady visual image regardless of movement of the objective or eyepiece lenses.

Company literature quantifies the capability by noting that the M25 "removes up to 98 percent of image motion caused by hand tremor and platform vibration, providing exceptional viewing from all types of moving vessels, aircraft and vehicles."

Some PEO-Soldier representatives characterize the M25 extremely high resolution capabilities as being able to see a golf ball a mile away. Others quantify the capabilities, crediting the system with a maximum range of 4,000 meters with an effective range of 2,500 meters.

"You really can't appreciate it while you're sitting down," Muldowney said. "You have to be in a vehicle. In a vehicle, when you try to see something that's moving [with conventional binoculars], you're all over the place, but there's a stabilized gyro inside these that stabilizes the image, so you could be moving but the image stays still."

Not surprisingly, the capabilities of the stabilized M25 come with both size and weight implications. Measuring 8.25 inches ? 9 inches ? 7.5 inches, the system weighs 4.5 pounds. Two AA batteries provide the system with at least eight hours of use.

The M25 entered the inventory in 2006. According to Muldowney, "One of the problems was that [the user community] wanted the stabilized M25 to be near the same weight as the M24. So there was a big trade-off that the user community wasn't willing to make. The [stabilized] technology was ready but it wasn't ready for dismounted soldiers-it just weighed too much. But with a stabilized gyro in it you're just going to have the weight. When the people in Humvees and other vehicles found out what the M25 can do, they wanted it. So fielding to those soldiers went first."

PEO-Soldier representatives also used the 2006 AUSA Annual Meeting to unveil the latest binocular development designed to enhance the capabilities of today's warfighters: an optional 12 night vision attachment for theM25.

"When the M25s were originally designed and fielded, they did not have an 12 device/attachment," MuIdowney said. "Now they do. We have come out with an 12 device that you can attach onto the binoculars."

Although the original night vision binocular requirement reportedly dates back to a 1993 operational requirements document, Muldowney attributed the fielding delay to the same sorts of size and weight tradeoffs facing warfighters over the M25 stabilized system.

"Before this, warfighters had some 12 devices but nothing to go with their stabilized binoculars," she said. "But this is a brand new capability. There is no modification required to the basic binoculars. You just put the 12 attachment on the front."

Although plans call for the eventual retrofit of large numbers of M25s with the 12 add-on, Muldowney emphasized that warfighters who want the capability early should request it.

"The plan is to eventually retrofit large numbers of M25s, but with the budgets the way they are we can't do it in a timely fashion. If warfighters want the 12 upgrade attachments they can request them and receive them through the Rapid Fielding Initiative."
-----------------
Subject: U.S. Army M25 binocular.
From: Peter Abrahams
   14 power x 41 mm objectives, 4.3 degree field, gyroscope stabilized.  Made by Fraser-Volpe Co.
   The M25 binocular has user removable day eyepieces that can be replaced with optional eyepieces containing GEN III Image Intensifier Tubes, to provide for night vision capability.  The binocular can operate from internal batteries (2 "AA" cell).
   Stabilization Freedom ±8 Degrees ±8 Degrees.   Focus Adjust ±5 Diopters.   Interpupillary Adj 60-72mm.   2.1kg;  4.6 pounds.   Waterproof to 1m.
   The prisms inside the M25 Stabilized Binocular are mounted on a platform that can swivel independently of the rest of the binocular. A tiny motor driven gyroscope also sits on the platform.
   One binocular eyepiece has a horizontal and vertical scale reticle graduated in 10-mil major (5-mil minor) increment unit markings (1 major unit = 10 mils, 2 major units = 20 mils, etc.).  Fire corrections can be made by viewing the impact area and determining angular corrections by use of the left or right horizontal reticle scale.  In determining range, if an object fills one 10-mil unit marking on the horizontal reticle scale and is known to be 10 meters wide, the object is 1000 meters away. If the same size object fills two unit markings (20 mils), it would be 500 meters away. When this formula is used, the distance will be given in the same units of measurement (feet, meters, etc.) as is used in estimating the known size of the object.  The same formula can be used to determine range with the vertical reticle scale when the height of an object is known. Use of the vertical scale is preferred (especially on level terrain), since objects are often viewed obliquely along the horizontal axis.
   The erecting prisms are mounted on a gimbal, which allows them to move freely in two axes – up and down and left to right – as you look through it.  When the stabilized binocular is moved, the prisms stay where they were and then slowly come around to the new alignment.
(Above text from Army manual.  These binoculars were also to be purchased by the Navy for the NAVAIR branch.)
---------------
from 2004:
From: Michael Zhou
The Fraser-Volpe M25 Gyro Stabilized Binoculars
A while back I bought a non-functioning pair of Fraser-Volpe Corp. 14x41mm M25 binoculars from an online pawnshop. The unit looked relatively new, I couldn’t find any evidence of abuse or an accidental drop. When I gave it a light shook, I could see and hear the prisms rocking back and forth and perhaps a loose screw rolling around. The only vital sign was the sound of the motor when I turned it on.

I went to the web to pull up a list of binoculars repair shops, made some calls, but had a difficult time finding someone who can work on the FVC M25. I even thought about breaking out my screwdrivers and have a go at it out of desperation, luckily I didn’t.  Time went by and one day I managed to get the search to come back with a small paragraph of the XM25 dated April 1998 by Earl Osborn. Then I searched for “Earl Obsorn” and came up with a list of three phone numbers. On making the third call, bingo - I found the OM I was looking for.

After a long wait I finally got it back and immediately gave it a try. The stabilization is amazing, I can make out 2” characters blocks away and the resolution is excellent. I whipped out my 10 year old Fujinon 14x40 Stabiscope for a quick comparison. The Fujinon has a flatter view and perfect edge-to-edge sharpness. The FVC looks cooler, more comfortable to hold, better contrast, and quicker stabilization response time. Both are rather heavy handheld instruments.

From the factory, the unit comes with a hard pelican case tagged with the FVC logo, model number, NSN number, a soft case, straps, lens caps, and a two page instruction, and some connectors perhaps to draw power from for a helicopter, humvee, or tank. The somewhat bulky unit looks like an armored handheld camcorder running a Beta tape, except it has two sets of lenses. It has 41mm objectives and inside are prisms are fitted with two nickel sized green laser filters. The M25 is said to be able to run continuously for 12 hours on two AA batteries, but I have not confirmed this. In addition to powering the gyro motor, the AA batteries also illuminate the internal ranging reticle on the right eyepiece.

To operate the M25, turn the unit on and wait about 15 seconds for the motor to reach its optimum speed. Hold the unit with two hands so your fingertips are on the top panel. Sight and acquire the target, and exert some pressure on the top via your fingers ­ you will hear a click and WOW! I tried it sitting down with my elbows resting on knees and without the stabilization, the image vibrates from my heartbeats and hand tremors, but with the stabilization on, the image is an absolute still. Before taking it down from you eyes, relax your fingers to lock the gimbals.
 
The placement of the solid-state caging switch is clearly ahead of the Fujinon’s thumb operated switch.  In the case of the Fujinon S1440, it is very easy to forget to lock the cage before you put the binoculars down which is a bad thing for the delicate gimbals/bearings. The M25 caging design minimizes this from occurring and just a little pressure will turn the stabilization on. I found the M25’s handling of panning is as good if not better than the Fujinon - and the M25 is only powered by two AA batteries, while the Fujinon requires six. Also, during panning, the image is sharper with the M25. Like the 7x50 M22 series binoculars, the M25’s laser filter tints the image with a shade of violet. I like this because it enhances the contrast and give the overall view a cool feeling.

According to Earl, gyro stabilized binoculars by nature are delicate instruments. While the M25 can take minor bumps, it is unlikely to be able to withstand a hard drop onto concrete. When in transport, the M25 should be sleeved into the soft case and then put into the pelican hard shell case for best protection.

Although the M25 does not have all the best optical properties (perfect edge sharpness, true flat view, or ultra rugged built), its stabilization ability is amazing. The design is ergonomic and the optics is more than enough for a military grade binoculars.  Fraser-Volpe Corporation boasts that the STEDI-EYE M25 removes up to 98% of image motion caused by hand tremor and platform vibration, providing exceptional viewing from all types of moving boats, aircraft and automobiles. I don’t think they are exaggerating.

Special thanks to Earl of Osborn Optical Systems; if it weren’t for his expertise, my broken M25 would still be sitting in the closet. 

Regards,
Michael Zhou

P.S.:  I think they are current and the company now makes a series of commercial version of it.  I don't have any information on how many were produced or sold and how much is per unit.



Rodolfo Peirano

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2018, 07:44:56 PM »
Thank you very much for the many information  :)
Cheers.
Rodolfo
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Uli Zeun

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2018, 08:26:05 PM »
Is the 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular, product by the Fraser Optic.
Does anyone know or have tried it ?  :) The price is certainly not for every budget. From about $ 4,700 to $ 5800 :o

It is the binocular version of the Fraser "Monolite 14x" monocular that I would like to have, but still is too expensive. Can't tell whether the binocular model is worth its $$$$.
As Niall said, there are good old stabilized monoculars like the British BAE and identical Soviet Peleng (or the other way round, whoever stole the design or made it in licence).
I have collected the Peleng, and some Fraser Volpe models as well as other US models made for the military and surveillance. Today, I just received a modern Bresser 6-12x30 stabilized monocular which I must still check (batteries missing).

Fraser Volpe (now Fraser Optics) is THE American company that developed and produced Image stabilized optics. so, at least they have a long-time experience with it, and one may assume that they are at top Level.

You can find some (still more to come) of these models at:
www.monocular.info/fraser-v.htm
www.monocular.info/soc10x20x50mark1610.htm


Robert Forslund

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2018, 03:29:28 PM »
Dear Rodolfo,
I have a Fraser & Volpe 14x40 stab. binocular as you show it.
I have used it a lot. It is the only binocular you can use going fast in a speedboat.
There are cheaper and smaller stab. binoculars from Fujinon and Canon. I also have a 14x40 from Fujinon. The Fujinon is quite handy to use for example when observing wildlife. However on a boat you can forget the Fujinon, it is useless. An expert explained to me this was due to how many degrees of movement the binocular can handle. The Fraser & Volpe is suprem, it makes thee other binonoculars mentioned feel like toys. The only disadvantage is of cause the size and the weight.
It is not a binocular you use taking a walk but in the cockpit of a speedboat it's the best you can have.
It so happens I know a guy in Germany who has a F&V he wants to sell for a decent price. He told me that when we met in Munich for the BHS. Don't know if he still has it though.

Robert Forslund

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2018, 03:30:40 PM »
And the Fraser & Volpe

Rodolfo Peirano

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Re: 14x40mm Gyro-Stabilized Binocular
« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2018, 05:30:17 PM »
Thanks Robert,
I knew the Fraser & Fox, and I know it's very functional, but the price! ! ! a little less tempting.  ;)
everyone can learn from everyone - Rodolfo