Step by step

Sky at Night Magazine - - HOW TO…COLLIMATE BINOCULARS -

Step 1

The first step is to de­ter­mine whether your binoc­u­lars are re­ally out of col­li­ma­tion. Ob­serve a bright star and de­fo­cus the right-hand eye­piece. Any dis­place­ment of the fo­cused star from the cen­tre of the de­fo­cused one is the er­ror you need to cor­rect.

Step 2

It’s a good idea to lo­cate the col­li­ma­tion screws in good light­ing. They will be small and may be cov­ered by cas­ing and ad­he­sive. Re­move ma­te­rial that’s cov­er­ing them. Then choose the cor­rect size of flat-head screw­driver to turn the screw and break any lock­ing ad­he­sive.

Step 3

Even if you don’t nor­mally mount your binoc­u­lars, you should do so now. Po­laris, if you can see it, is a good tar­get for col­li­ma­tion as it doesn’t move ap­pre­cia­bly. If you choose a ter­res­trial ob­ject, pick one that’s at least a kilo­me­tre dis­tant.

Step 4

The col­li­ma­tion screw tilts the prism against the ten­sion of the spring clip. Look through both eye­pieces, and ro­tate each screw by no more than one eighth of a turn at a time to see what ef­fect it has on the im­age, then re­turn the screw to its orig­i­nal po­si­tion.

Step 5

Make sure that you have set your binoc­u­lars to your in­ter­pupil­lary dis­tance ( IPD) then, us­ing what you’ve learned about the ac­tion of each col­li­ma­tion screw, merge the im­ages into one, again us­ing no more than one eighth of a turn of the screw each time.

Step 6

When you think you have the im­ages merged, check the IPD again and use the Bahti­nov masks or anaglyph glasses to make sure that they’re as closely merged as you can get them. Lastly, use them nor­mally and en­joy the new and im­proved view!


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