HOW TO SIGHT YOUR BINOCULARS TO YOUR OWN EYES
WATCH OUR NEW VIDEO ON "You Tube" ABOUT SIGHTING YOUR BINOCULARS!
You can get much more enjoyment out of your outdoor adventure by getting to know your binoculars. Watch our video or run a copy of this information and put it in your pack, next time you're out, if you've already sighted your own binos, you can teach your companions too. If you are getting new binos you may get directions like this but if you have hand-me-downs or used binos you will come to appreciate this info.
First notice that the two viewing cylinders pull apart from each other, and in turn can be pulled closer together; this is the interpupillary distance. Next notice the markings on the right eyepiece, usually to the inside (which would be closest to your nose when held to your face), there will be + and - signs on either side of a dot or an 0 or just tick marks and another single dot on the body to align with; the eyepiece itself may twist or there will be a ring that will twist. This eyepiece, once set, should always remain in this spot for you. If sharing your binos put a mark on your spot with fingernail polish and mark your partners with another color, then each time you pick them up or notice you're having trouble viewing, just check to make sure this mark is correct for you. Also notice that the eyepieces have cups, either rubber cups (which roll back) or twist up cups; if you wear eyeglasses roll or twist them down, if you don't wear glasses roll or twist them all the way up (this puts your eyes the correct distance from the lens, also known as eye relief). Finally, notice the top center focus wheel, you will always be using this one to focus both near and far.
Choose a tree, sign or other object 75 to 100 feet away. Pull the eyepieces all the way apart, sight on the object (don't worry about focusing just yet) and pull the eyepieces together until you see only one circle. Men may not have to pull them together, women and children should check this to make sure the binos will fit their face (check interpupillary distance on the terms page). Once you have one viewing circle cover the right outter lens with your right hand and, while keeping both eyes open, focus the top center focus on your object till it is crisp and sharp. Next, cover the left outter lens with your left hand and, again with both eyes open, focus the right eye piece until your object is crisp and sharp. Now notice where that mark is for you on the right eye piece. Again, remember this mark is for you only, it won't change unless your eyes change. At this point you should have perfect viewing on your object, check something in the distance and focus with the top center focus and it should be clear also.
Now for the hard part, let your binos hang to your chest, get used to where they hang. When you see an object you'd like to view, keep your eye on that object and reach for you binos without looking at them. If you have kept your eyes on the object, when you raise your binos you should be on that object or very close to it and quickly focus the top center focus. It takes practice; trying to follow birds in flight will help hone your skills also. If you still have trouble, start again at step one. Once your binoculars are sighted to your own eyes you won't believe what you've been missing. So get out there!
As an added note: if you are having trouble sighting your binos no matter what you do, they could be out of alignment. To check this, focus on a power line or other horizontal line (such as a roof line), as you slowly pull the binos away from you face you will notice a break in the horizontal line. If this is so you will need to have your binoculars repaired. Check with the manufacturer first though, sometimes it is costly and could be just as easy to replace your binos. And it could be just the excuse you need for a new pair!
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