The WWII 80º Zeiss 10 x 80 Binocular
Out of all of the World War II binocular designs we have dealt in, the WWII Carl Zeiss 80º 10 x 80 binoculars are by far one of the most interesting pairs of WWII German military optics.
The prototype for this design was developed around 1938, and were considered a Sonderkonstruktion, or special construction, by Zeiss. It seems that Zeiss oversaw the production of the most complex and top secret optics designs of this period, especially for the Kriegsmarine (German navy) forces.
The stark angle of the eyepieces, the crescendo-like shape of the housing, and the sight on the top of the binoculars create a captivating silhouette. The auxiliary sighting device allowed for quick target acquisition even in low light.
The binoculars were designed almost exclusively for aerial observation. They would have been used by the German Navy to track rocket tests, as well as spot any incoming aircraft. During the daytime, they were used to look out for high-flying bombers. At night, they were used alongside searchlight crews. Since radar was in its infant stages, manual plotting via direct observation was the main defense against air attacks. They feature the revolutionary, top-secret “T” coated lenses, as evidenced by the engraved “T” on the left side of the gimbal.
On the side they feature the “eug” wartime code that represented the Optische Präzisions-Werke in Warsaw, Poland. During World War II, both C.P. Goerz and Optische Präzisions-Werke were under the control of Carl Zeiss directors, thus producing the unrivaled caliber of optical lenses for these anti-aircraft binoculars.
Höhe translates from German to mean “height” or “elevation.” This measuring tool allowed for the observer to quickly calculate the altitude of any incoming aerial enemies.
The fully functional, hand polished WWII Zeiss 80º 10 x 80 binoculars are perfect for any true collector of optics or militaria.