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Hensoldt 10x50 Low (5 Digit) Serial Numbers

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    Hensoldt 10x50 Low (5 Digit) Serial Numbers


    Over the last few months I’ve read as many of the posts regarding this type of binocular as possible. A common theme of discussion I’ve repeatedly come across attempts to explain / discuss / ‘authenticate’ those examples with ‘low’ 1 - 60’000 serial numbered items.

    Some threads argue that these examples originate from a simultaneous / dual production run at another facility for private purchase / export. Other threads argue that they are ‘parts bin’ sets assembled after the war (for px sales). Others argue that those sporting the BMJ code are wartime (irrespective if marked Dienstglas or D.F. 10x50) and those marked Hensoldt Wetzlar are post war.

    Whilst conducting ever widening searches on this type of optic (largely due to much needed repair to a loose focus collar) I’ve come across this :-
    I thought that the capture document provided with this set may contribute somewhat to the debate. The papers say that the set were obtained prior to VE Day. The actual document is dated March ‘46. I do accept that papers don’t quote the serial number and ‘type’, nonetheless thought it interesting enough to post given what I have previously read.

    First, I really appreciate your post and these kind of “finds” are always interesting and help advancing knowledge.

    During recent years and really decades many have put increasing value and importance to the so-capture paper. I never did much collecting in the late 60s through today and the main reason is that they rarely meant anything as to the originality of the item. In more recent times I have seen the documents faked and also have many times found documents or copies of documents associated with items that had nothing to do with that particular document. I have no way of knowing if any of those things are going on in this case but I do know that there is nothing on that document that would exclude these binoculars from being made and obtained well after May 1945.

    These may be the lowest number on a set that I have seen and I would fully expect to see the bmj mark still in use. It is hard to say if the case was with this particular set of glasses when obtained but even if it could be proven the inside date of 44 does not necessarily mean the case was fully assembled that year much less left the factory.


      Thanks Phil, completely accept that unscrupulous individuals could indeed be ‘marring up’ (or indeed faking capture documents) with questionable items to add legitimacy.

      In this case though it would appear to be a little odd to attempt to add ‘extra legitimacy‘ to what are a fairly common set of binos. Particularly so in this case as they already carry (prima fecis) WW2 BMJ markings.


        The '+' symbol was used beginning in late 1942.


          Rhys, I agree and for the moment accept that this document is associated with these binoculars. Now, when and from what source the vet obtained the binoculars would or could lead to a lot of speculation. I would certainly think that Hensoldt probably was assembling binos in the 300 range fairly early, say summer, of 1945. It would also be interesting to know where that Ordnance unit was stationed during mid 45- March 46, I was wonder if it was near Wetzlar. The case is the correct style for the military contract while others for higher numbers in this “low” range differ with different strap attachments, brass snaps inside and unmarked wooden lid blocks. That said, there is nothing to say that this case or even just the marked wood block is leftover unusued stock used with the very low numbered first examples assembled. I’ll have to check some of my wartime bmj glasses with these cases but I thought they had a Eagle inspection stamp inside the lid as well when actually accepted I could be very wrong with that


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