There are Sears-branded lenses for which I wish to identify the manufacturer. I have read that Sears encoded the manufacturer in the serial number, so in principle, I just need to find a list of applicable manufacturer codes.

The lists I have found so far do not contain any lens manufacturers, so are unlikely to apply to lenses, unless it was common for vacuum-cleaner manufacturers to also produce lenses.

What are the manufacturer codes for lenses that have been rebranded Sears?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Why did you make 3 separate topics about this? \$\endgroup\$
    – Orch
    Dec 18, 2018 at 18:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Orch My original Q covering all brands generally was deemed too broad, so I split it into the brands that are of immediate interest to me at the moment. (Vivitar, Sears, Focal, JCPenney) \$\endgroup\$
    – xiota
    Dec 18, 2018 at 18:27

1 Answer 1


This answer is currently incomplete. Will update as I encounter further information.

Sears encodes the manufacturer in the model number, not the serial number, as Vivitar did. If the model number is not printed around the front element, look for it somewhere along the side of the barrel. It will usually have a three-digit prefix, followed by a dot, then another sequence of numbers (xxx.yyyyyyy). Commonly found prefixes on Sears lenses include:

199 - (Made in ???)
202 - (Made in Korea)

As you noted, many manufacturer lists do not apply to lenses because 199 is often missing and 202 is an industrial machinery and farm equipment manufacturer (Gannon Mfg Co).

It has been speculated that Samyang manufactured many lenses for Sears.

The limited number of Sears lenses I've used that were made in Korea were well built, but did not have optics to match.


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