Martin Brenner's, Pilot Balloon Resources
Chinese Pilot Balloon Theodolite
This theodolite model was purchased from a dealer in China in 2007. It is similar to the CFJ-IIB theodolite which appears to be made later for export. This unit is military surplus.
Like the Russian and other Chinese models on this site it has complex optics that allow the viewing of the circles in the main eyepiece focused at infinity like the balloon. This model also has a compass under the mirrored cover as shown below.
This theodolite is one of the modern designs (for a non digital) theodolite. It uses friction driven glass circles which are read through the eyepiece. Its optical path is similar to the ATK-2 The verniers read directly to .1 degree and they are set up so they can be read very rapidly.
A unique (shared with the AWT instrument and the later CFJ/weathermeasure) aspect of this theodolite is that the reticule assembly is mechanically connected to the body of the theodolite not to the eyepiece tube. This allows the cross to maintain its vertical orientation regardless of the elevation of the telescope. This instrument was represented by the seller as military surplus and not intended as a commercial product for export.