Antique Surveying 1875 Young & Sons Brass Transit

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  • Item Category: Tools
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Mar 23, 2008
  • Channel: Auction House
I am offering my 1875 patent all brass Young & Sons (Philadelphia) antique transit for auction. This is an extremely nice looking display item transit from 19th century America. This transit may very well have helped tame the west (or east).
It has a very nice patina from years of toil and is very clean. It has not been polished with brass cleaner or other chemicals in order to preserve the provenance and beauty of the brass. This instrument is very heavy with a lot of brass. It weighs 14 lbs prior to packing.
I have an extensive collection of antique and vintage surveying equipment being a retired licensed surveyor in Minnesota. This is being sold from that collection.
The instrument has clean optics and the focus is clean. Mechanically it is not perfect, but overall is in good condition. The eyepiece does not impact the reticles (cross hairs) and they are probably missing. I have not had the scope opened to verify. The base is very solid but due to wear, the age and weight of the instrument the lower movement does stick and turns with some difficulty. T are a couple of missing very small screws at the base of the instrument but were originally in place only to prevent any loosening of the mechanisms. Their missing does not effect the operation. The focus knob on the scope works pretty well but is a little loose inside the scope mount. It is solid however and does work. The compass face shows signs of some corrosion of the silver face from moisture or sunlight over the years but is dry and adds to the provenance in my estimation. The compass needle works good and does lock down with the locking apparatus. All of these items do not impact the display abilities of the instrument. All in all for close 150 years it is nice.
The instrument was not originally manufactured with a vertical scope bubble for shooting levels or a vertical vernier scale. The evolution of instruments was from the original sighting compasses to this type of transit adding the scope and horizontal verniers for angle perfection. A big jump from eyeballing with compass sighting vanes and compass bearings. I do not have a case for the instrument nor tripod. I will pack it very well for shipping to the winning buyer and will insure it as a part of the final cost.
PayPal preferred. Shipped flat rate in US for $32.00.