Help with night vision not working

nzgunnie

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Nov 19, 2005
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886
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New Zealand
A few years ago I purchased a russian made Gen 1 night vision device called a Moonlight NV-100.

I played with it a few times, then put it away. That was probably four or five years ago.

Now I pulled it from it's box tonight to test it, since I figured I may as well sell it. It doesn't work anymore! I tried fresh batteries and I can hear it whining away, the IR illuminator is working as I can see it's dull red glow.

Do these things die over time if not used? Is there any way of fixing it? I had always been pretty careful with it, not exposing it to bright lights etc, and I'm a little dissapointed in no longer works.
 

OpticsHQ

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Oct 5, 2005
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San Francisco, CA
nzgunnie said:
A few years ago I purchased a russian made Gen 1 night vision device called a Moonlight NV-100.

I played with it a few times, then put it away. That was probably four or five years ago.

Now I pulled it from it's box tonight to test it, since I figured I may as well sell it. It doesn't work anymore! I tried fresh batteries and I can hear it whining away, the IR illuminator is working as I can see it's dull red glow.

Do these things die over time if not used? Is there any way of fixing it? I had always been pretty careful with it, not exposing it to bright lights etc, and I'm a little dissapointed in no longer works.
What you have is a failed tube (its power supply specifically). It is a very common occurence with Gen 1 equipment if it is not used on regular bases (once or twice a month). Moonlight went out of business a couple of years back, but a bigger problem is that the tube is the most expensive part of a night vision device (~60-70%), so even if you could get it repaired, it really would not be cost effective.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news :(
 

nzgunnie

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Nov 19, 2005
Messages
886
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New Zealand
Hi Mike, I guess that answers that question then! Perhaps I'll still sell it 'as is' for spares. Someone might give me a few dollars for it.

Cheers

Phil
 

nzgunnie

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Nov 19, 2005
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New Zealand
I'm in Palmerston North. I've already put it on Trademe with a reserve of $35! It's already got a bid which is nice. I've made it very clear in the add that it's not working, so hopefully the bidder understands that!

I only wanted to get it working to flog it off, I'm not interested in spending any money on it. I'd be lucky to get $250 for it working, so anything I get for a broken one is better than I'd get by throwing it away. I figured someone might want it to fiddle with and try and fix up.

Feel free to bid on it if you fancy getting it going!

http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=46604668
 

Fixer1967

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May 23, 2015
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Tubes tend to have a 2 to 5 year life excpancy depending on what generation tube is inside the housing.

Boy did I just get burned. I mean like re-entry type burn. I just today bought a NV-100 and was told (I know I messed up) that all it needed was batteries. I paid $45 for the thing and I now know it does not work. Not only that I now know it is at least 10 years old and that is twice the life expectancy of the things. I did not even know they have a "life expectancy" as such. SO now I am out $45 with nothing to show for it. That ruined my week end.
 

JTurner

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Jan 5, 2017
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It's news to me that the device has only a few years life expectancy. I bought a Moonlight Russian night vision binocular (MPN-30K) years ago, maybe 20, purely as a toy and use this only occasionally but I put batteries in it today and it worked about the same as always. One thing I have found on these units is that battery terminals and power switch tend to get a film of tarnish or corrosion, especially if rarely used. Before declaring it dead, be sure to put a thorough cleaning on the power switch and battery contact points with a solvent intended for electrical connections or alcohol in a pinch. Even though they look clean there may be a film of corrosion. These need to have perfectly clean battery contacts to work properly.
 
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