Has anyone bought Night Vision devices?

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Has anyone purchased a night vision device. I have looked at several, and they seem to range from $300.00 to $2000.00. I know nothing about them in general. I have a freeway near buy, and am concerned about defending against night roaming folk. Should tshtf. If I cant see them,I can't defend against them. Yes I already have a fence up, but I live on the outskirts of town, and there are no police that come this way unless called. Sometimes not even then. It gets VERY DARK out here.

-- night eyes (cantsee@inthedark.com), July 28, 1999


(1) The devices have gone through several evolutions (First generation, second generation, and now, third). The later generations are MUCH better than the earlier ones...and considerably more expensive. Some are available for much less than $300.

(2) Although the company that I work for has a division that makes them (and good ones, too), and gives employee discounts, I have opted to go with a large (watch) dog that functions primarily on sound rather than vision. If I have a lot of spare money, I'll consider the night vision...but it uses batteries. I guess it comes down to priorities...and your situation is different than mine...

-- Mad Monk (madmonk@hawaiian.net), July 28, 1999.

Personally, I'd like to find a SOURCE for 3rd gen. Nobody seems to have them.

-- Dennis (djolson@pressenter.com), July 28, 1999.

I've tried using the cheaper variety - they are worse than useless. Don't buy anything without trying it first or you might get stuck with an expensive paperweight.

I've never tried the expensive kind. Plenty of ways to use that kind of money that I expect will be more useful for me.

-- Gus (y2kk@usa.net), July 28, 1999.

I've looked thru U.S. first, second and third generation night vision monoculars, binoculars goggles and rifle scopes. To me, I would ONLY consider a good U.S. second generation (about $1000) or U.S. third generation device. I would stay away from foreign stuff. As to brands, I think ITT makes the best stuff. I also think goggles make the most sense. They allow hands free operation. Looking thru a monocular will give you a headache in short order. For those wanting to mount one on a rifle, I would recommend going with goggles on you and a laser sight on your gun -- this way you have ONE night vision device, and can put a laser sight on each handgun, rifle or shotgun you figure on using to defend yourself at night. The laser beam is plainly visible at night when looking thru a passive night vision device.

I would also make sure I got passive inferred with the night vision device. This would be ESSENTIAL on a low cost U.S. first generation device. You might want to consider just inferred alone if your budget is tight. Varmint hunters use 'em. This way, inside or in a cave where you had no light to "intensify", you can still "see".

There are thermal viewers. These seem nice. You can "see" a warm body behind a colder object like a bush. However, you can't "see" that tree (or any other object including the wall) that's the same temperature as other objects. You will get tired bumping into things. These only show thermal DIFFERENCES.

As for magnification, I would stick to 3x or less. Read the specs on intensifier tubes on ITT's web site. Pay attention to eye relief, expected usefull life, how many times it "intensifies" available light, field of view (in degrees; 360 degrees in a circle), maximum usefull range, and power saving options. Most devices take AA batteries. So include a Solar charger. Remember -- the intensifier tube is the most important part of the device. This determines the quality (and price) of what you buy. Good stuff cost a lot. But if you need to use it, you'll be glad you "invested" the money -- instead of "wasting" it on some cheapo Russian import that you're always cranking up the inferred on because you can't see well without it thru a cheap first generation device. Also, keep in mind that the Russian stuff that's sold as "second generation" is equivelent to U.S. first seneration. Russian third gen equals U.S. second generation.

Best wishes.

-- Louis (StLouisLouis@Yahoo.com), July 28, 1999.

Good info. Now WHAT is ITT's web address please?

-- Dennis (djolson@pressenter.com), July 28, 1999.

Louis --- What do you mean, just get inferred (assume you mean infra-red)? I can't really afford a good night vision scope and have thinking of a Leupold Vari-II. Goggles interest me but others have warned me away from them saying they really aren't as practical as they sound. More thoughts on these issues from you and others?

-- BigDog (BigDog@duffer.com), July 28, 1999.

A few months ago there was a thread about this. I bookmarked it on my machine at the office - but not here at home. I'll try to remember and find it tomorrow and post the previous thread address. I do recall that I went to the site referenced, and the goggles were somewhere around 500-600(I think). Check back tomorrow.

-- jeanne (jeanne@hurry.now), July 28, 1999.

Thanks all, for the info. Mad Monk, I do have a big dog, in fact two. However, more often than not, I find that I can't see (without a flashinght) what they are barking at. Sometimes even then it's hard to tell what I'm looking at. I saw a ad about night vision, and thought it might be worth using a credit card on. I surely dont have the cash after buying all the food and preps. But thanks for all the good advice anyway. night eyes

-- night eyes (cantsee@inthedark.com), July 29, 1999.

I found the address of the night vision goggles: http://www.tiac.net/users/lanint/page3.html The specs are given, a photo, price of 659.00 i think; also at the bottom of the page it shows other items that may be of interest.

-- jeanne (jeanne@hurry.now), July 29, 1999.

Ok, here's the info some of you asked about.

ITT's web address = www.itt.com

Source for U.S. 3rd gen night vision = www.laser-king.com note: just checked the site laser-king.com/hot.html they have a special on goggles now for $2000. usually lots more. I'm not in any way connected to laser-king. I did meet the guy at the Y2K readiness expo held in St. Louis this past May. I took his card, but didn't buy anything from him. He DEFINITLY knows his stuff!

Mr. Big Dog: Yes, sir; I do mean infra-red. Sometimes when I take these internet breaks at work I'm VERY tired. Sorry. Leupold is an excellent name brand. Not qualified to say anything on various models. Ask at a sporting goods store (or large mail order house) about infra-red equip. for varmint hunters who call in cyotes, foxes, ect. Haven't looked for a loooong time. Maybe just a memory now. Any cheapo night vision device having infra-red will, of course provide you with "IR". Best wishes to you, Sir.

To someone who e-mailed me: Yes, someone CAN see the laser beam from your gun at night if they have the right kind of night vision device or "infra-red glasses/goggles". However, you can simply leave it off untill a moment before you shoot. Also, sure, if one can afford it, having a top notch night vision scope AND goggles would be GREAT! But lots of folks can only budget for one or the other. That's the reason for my suggestion.

Summary: One size does not fit all. Do some reasearch, and hope you've made the best choice possible -- then pray to God you never have to use it against another human being. Best wishes. That's it from me. Hope the above helped. Adios.

-- Louis (StLouisLouis@Yahoo.com), July 30, 1999.

Try boating supply foe good night vision (and other) gear. West Marine is reputable, cariies ITT. Decent discounts. (westmarine.com I think)

As for passive infra-red sources: I'm thinking of adapting two solar powered walkway lights to run either their stock LED, OR an IR LED from Radio Shack, Hang 'em in the trees 100 ft out. Might help back-light nocturnal wanderers.

damn, I hate these trains of thought.....

-- Lewis (aslanshow@yahoo.com), August 03, 1999.

I saw night vision device at Costco (formerly Price Club) for $200.

-- Y2K Wallflower (y2kwallflower@busygettingready.com), August 03, 1999.

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