World War II German binoculars - manufacturer codes 1939-45

Dienstglas 6x30 BMJ by Hensoldt & Sohne, M. Optische Werk A G Wetzlar
Dienstglas 6x30 BMJ by Hensoldt & Sohne, M. Optische Werk A G Wetzlar Image by Simon Spiers.

World War II German binoculars were marked 'Dienstglas' meaning service glass. Pre-war glasses used by the German military had the maker's name. Often it was Zeiss.

From 1939/1940 onwards they used a code to identify the maker. The code usually appeared on the back of one of the prisms.

There were a huge number of manufacturers that made glasses for the German military. Some were in occupied countries. Look down the list to see Paris and Warsaw-based businesses.

There were also well known German manufaturers, Zeiss and Leitz, which had several different factories.

behErnst Leitz GmbH, Wetzlar
bekHensoldt Werk fur Optic u. Michanik, Herborn
blcCarl Zeiss, Jena
bmjHensoldt & Sohne, M. Optische Werk A G Wetzlar
bmtSteinheill & Sohne, Munich
bpdOptische Anstalt CP Goerz, Vienna
bygJ OH. Wyksen, Optische & Feinmaschin, Katowitz
ccxOptisch u. Feinmechanishe Werke Hugo Meyer & Co, Gorlitz
croR Fuess Optische Industrie, Steglitz, Berlin
ctnHanseatische Werkstatten fur Feinmechanik u. Optick Freidricks & Co
cxnEmil Busch AG Optische Industrie Rathenow
cznEmil Busch AG Optische Industrie Rathenow
dklJoseph Schneider, Kreutznach
ddx.Voighlander & Sons, Brunswick
dowZeiss Ikon, Goerzwerke, Zellendorf, Berlin
dpwZeiss Ikon AG, Stuttgart
dynRunge & Kaulfuss, Rathenow
dzlOptische Anstalt Oigee, Berlin
eafMechanoptick Gesellschaft fur Prazasions - tecknik, Aude and Reipe Optische Industrie, Babelsberg
eawR Winkel, Gottingen
esuSteinheill & Sohne, Munich
esoOptische Werke G Rodenstock, Munich
eugOptische Prisions Werke GmbH, Warsaw
fcoSendlinger Optische Glaswerke GmbH Zehlendorf, Berlin
fwrOptische Anstalt Saalfeld GmbH, Saafeld
fzpH Kollmorgan GmbH, Berlin
ghpRufs Co, Kassell
gugUngarische Optische Werke AG Budapest
gujWerner D Huehn Optical Industrie, Steglitz, Berlin
hdvOptische Werk Osterode GmbH, Osterode, Harz
hkmCarl Braun AG Optische Industrie Nunberg
jfpDr Carl Leiss, Optische Mechanische Instrumente, Steglitz Berlin
jveOptisches Werk Ernst Ludwig, Weixdorf
krgEmil Busch AG Optische Industrie, Rathenow
kweGamma Feinmaschin u. Optische Werke, Budapest
lmgCarl Zeiss, Jena
lwgOptische Werke Osterode GmbH, Freiheit bei Osterode (Harz)
lwwHuet et Cei (Het & Co), Paris
lwxOPL (Optique et Precision de Levallois), Levallois, Paris
lwySociete Optique et Mechanique de Haute Precision, Paris
pvfOptische Werk C Reichert, Vienna
cagSwarovski, Tyrol
emqKarl Zeiss, Jena
laeHeinrich Zeiss, Gastingen
rlnCarl Zeiss, Jena
juxNedinsco (Zeiss affiliate), Venlo

The table was compiled mainly from a J A Davis catalogue from 1959, together with some information from Binoculars, opera glasses and field glasses by Fred Watson.

Add your comments

"Have binoculars with the markings ... DF7x50H..
Why is there no info. Re. these?" Ken c 04/12/2020

"Hi Ken,
These are the codes that were put on German military binoculars from around 1940. They were intended to disguise the manufacturer.

Are your binoculars Zeiss? Zeiss made DF 7x50 from the First World War onwards. It was used as a Naval binocular.

DF stands for Doppelfernrohr, or double telescope." Steven 05/12/2020

"I have a "green" original 7x50 German sub mounted? Binocular model T? and stamped Nc418375. What can you tell me about this. Is this worth anything?" Larry 27/12/2020

"Hi Larry,
I think the 'T' means it has coated optics. The number looks like a serial number. Is there a three letter code, as shown above, or a maker's name?
Yes, they are valuable. Probably £800 to £1000.
best regards" Steven 27/12/2020

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Retrowow - vintage, retro and social history

20th Century History ★ Antiques & Collectables

Retrowow - vintage, retro and social history

★ 20th Century History ★ Antiques & Collectables ★