Another Leupold Failure


November 6, 2009, 04:33 PM
So I'm sure most of you know that I've not had good luck with Leupold products and honestly probably wouldn't buy them again. I've been told on here I must have gotten a lemon as the majority of them are good. Well, I only know two people other than myself who have Leupold scopes. One of them got one last year on a muzzle loader he bought used. The other I think purchased it new like me. As I've said in the past 2 of us have both had issues with the scope not holding zero. The other one sold his after he got it bck from Leupold before seeing if it was fixed. I remounted mine. Luckily this failure wasn't of my scope this time. The third friend that got his last year liked the scope last year but said he hadn't used it enough to give a valid opinion. I takked to him at the begenning of this year and he said he really liked it. This was a week ago from today. We shot our guns to make sure they were lined up and all was well. So today he decided to shoot a target and show us how well his gun shot. Not only was it no longer shooting in the right spot he completely nissed the target. Not knowing what was going on he shot it a few more times. Turns out his scope is now bad doing the exact same thing mine did as well as my buddies. It's adjusting itself and the poi is jumping around. I don't see how anyone can recoomend these scopes. A 3 for 3 failure rate is 100% failure rate. I find it highly unlikely that all 3 of us just happened to get a lemon if it's normally a good brand. They seem like overpriced crap to me. There customer servce is good but for that price I want a quality product that works not just good customer service. Even with cheap 30_40 dollar scopes not everyone I know has had problems.

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November 6, 2009, 04:46 PM
I have had three Leupold scopes for many years and did have one fail a few years ago. Actually while it is the oldest of the three, it's the one I'd least expect to fail, a M8-3X fixed power scope. Luckily they do have the best warranty and service in the business and it was returned to me in about a week. I was also lucky in that it failed at the range and not on a hunt.

November 6, 2009, 04:55 PM
I have 3 Leupold's and a friend has another 3. That's 6 in all between the two of us and we have never had a problem.

So.... my sample doubles the size of yours and therefore using your logic must prove that Leupold scopes are 100% perfect.


November 6, 2009, 04:58 PM
Yea the bad thing about it for my buddy is we only have one more week of muzzleloader season. So it's no way he will have it back in time to hunt with. We only get two weeks of muzzle loading season. He doesn't get to hunt except on the weekends usually either so his time he gets to hunt is limited. I ended up letting him borrow my Remington Genesis to use this afternoon and in the morning. It's the first time I've ever loaned out a gun but I've been friends with him for a long time and wanted him to be able to get some hunting in too since I had great luck yesterday.

November 6, 2009, 04:58 PM
It is possible to break any scope by improper mounting.

Rings not in alignment, or over-torqued when tightening the screws can warp or pinch the scope tube and break things.

Any chance of that?


November 6, 2009, 05:09 PM
i have owned and used just about every scope brand in the last 50 yds. and i have settled on leupold and burris(veri x 111 and us made burris) on all my rifles. if you talk to 100 owner of leupold or burris scopes, i think you will find most are pleased with them. the stars just aliened aganist you and your friends or you are menbers of the very small group of the leupold loses club. eastbank.

November 6, 2009, 05:18 PM
rcmodel I know that wasn't the issue with mine however I can't comment on either of the other two but I have my doubts as they haven't had problems with other scopes.

As for the Burris I've only really heard of one person having an issue and the rest I've talked to love them. I have one that replaced my Leupold and I can say it's my favorite scope I've used. I've only had it a year but so far it's held up great and is super clear. Way clearer than the Leupold in the day and in low light situations. I've also used Simmons with great success. They have taken a beating and still hold zero. My Simmons is also 5 years old or so. However, they haven't been as clear as the Burris but they are clear enough. They probably would be my second favorites. My buddy that had tis Leupold fail is a Simmons fan as well. We along with a few others I hunt with have had the experience that they are just as good as Leupolds and a lot cheaper. They really don't compare to the Burris though.

November 6, 2009, 06:05 PM
Every big animal i've shot, and a lot of small ones too, I've been looking through Leupold glass. I think they are the best scopes out there....and I've wasted a fair amount of good money on other manufacturers' crap.

Are you using Leupold or Weaver-type bases? If the former, rcmodel's speculation FTW?

November 6, 2009, 06:33 PM
Which Leupold line, just for curiosity? I have a Mk4, VXIII, VXII, a custom M8 from Premier Reticles and have never had one issue with any of them. I've also have/had several Burris scopes and never had any issues with them either. As far as clarity Leupold has it over Burris for equal price. The Leupold Mk4 is the issue optic on the M24 weapon for the US Army. If it was not durable, I doubt it would have been accepted, not that the Army always takes quality over cost, but I like to think they wouldn't cut too many corners there. My VXIII is a 1.5-5x20 and it is mounted on a Ruger MKII RSM 375 H&H and it hasn't shifted zero, even after detaching/reattaching it with the Warne rings. I've only had zero shifts with "bargin" scopes, and one texas Weaver K4.

November 6, 2009, 06:48 PM
I have 3 VX-II, 2 are 3-9 one is 6-18 and I have had zero problems with any of them. Are you sure they are 'Leupold' and not 'Leopoled' of some off brand from your local 'Relox' dealer?

November 6, 2009, 07:10 PM
Sounds to me like maybe the rings or bases are loose on your friends mount system. Or, like wyohome suggested, maybe you've got some "Leopold" Chinese forgeries mounted on your rifles. Me, I've got eight Leupold scopes and couldn't be happier with them. And if I ever do have a problem, I know It'll be taken care of by Leupold.

November 6, 2009, 07:47 PM
Leupold products have a lifetime warranty, so if I were you I would try complaining to the people who can actually do something about your problem.

Form their site (
Leupold Green Ring non-electronic products are warranted for as long as the original owner owns them. We warrant them to be free of defects in materials and workmanship, and to function satisfactorily under normal use conditions. If at any time a Leupold Green Ring non-electronic product is found to have a defect in materials or workmanship, Leupold will, at our discretion, repair or replace it free of charge, when requested by the original owner.

By the way I have had numerous Leupold scopes, one has fogged a little but it is 30-35 years old, the rest are fine and some of them are older than that one.

November 6, 2009, 08:16 PM
Leupold Green Ring non-electronic products are warranted for as long as the original owner owns them. We warrant them to be free of defects in materials and workmanship, and to function satisfactorily under normal use conditions. If at any time a Leupold Green Ring non-electronic product is found to have a defect in materials or workmanship, Leupold will, at our discretion, repair or replace it free of charge, when requested by the original owner.

This is the warranty for "Green ring" foreign made binoculars/spotting scopes. The warranty on all their other products is much better. You do not need to be original owner with those products. You could buy a 30yr old Leupold at a garage sale and if it doesn't work send it in. They'll fix or replace it for free and treat you politely on the phone. And you can understand what they're saying on the phone.

November 6, 2009, 08:25 PM
sounds to me like the o.p. should probably just stay away from leupold... i would point out, however, that if 1 person has a 100% failure rate, and nobody else reports a rate even close to that, then perhaps it is the person and not the product. apparently he's a lot tougher on scopes than what leupold can build to.

if i had repeated failures from any brand, pretty good bet i'd stop using that brand as well...

November 6, 2009, 08:44 PM
Ive been quite happy with my two - beauty of America is, if you dont like them, dont buy them.

November 6, 2009, 09:25 PM
I got on to Leupold in the 80s while living in Alaska. Saw a number of scope failures, but the guys with Leupold were always good. Own 5 Lupys now. They hold zero. The adjustments are repeatable. The customer service is the best in the biz I've experienced. Made in USA. What's not to like?

November 7, 2009, 12:36 AM
I was using Leupold bases and rings when I had both failures with my scope. Not sure why my friends are using for bases or rings.

To be fair it's not that I've had this many failures with Leupolds it's that I've had a failure twice on the only scope I've had from them and the only two other people I personally know that have Leupolds have also had them fail and do the exact same thing.

They were all VX-I scopes. While not their top of the line scope there is no reason at all a $225 scope should ever fail.

I agree there customer service seems decent and they have taken care of me when mine has messed up and I'm sure they will for my buddy whose just broke. They did for my other buddy also. My scope from them currently works great. However, it's a pita to send a scope in for repair much less do it several times.

As for the Burris not being as clear as Leupold for the money I totally disagree and if you look at the numbers of each scope to compare you will see the Burris is better. My Burris Fullfield II is quite a bit and I mean it's very obvious that it's quite a bit clearer both in broad day light as well as low light situations. My Leupold was $225 and my Burris was $199 with a free Garmin eTrex GPS.

Uncle Mike
November 7, 2009, 01:31 AM
Made in USA. What's not to like?

Only certain models now...the majority of them are assembled in the U.S. of Japanese, Philippine and other foreign parts.

November 7, 2009, 08:01 AM
I've owned 5 Leupold scopes, and can't say anything bad about them. Two of them are 30 years old with no failure of any kind. I prefer Leupold to most other makes of scope.

I have heard there are Chinese knockoffs out there. Send it in and see what happens.

November 7, 2009, 08:53 AM
I've had dozens of Leupolds over the years, most of them bought used, some of them well used. I know that they offer a lifetime warranty, but I've never had to use it because I've never had a single problem.

November 7, 2009, 04:49 PM
Burris has the dubious distinction of being the only scope that I've ever bought new that was broken in the box. It was an XTR-14 1-4x24mm and the box it shipped in was pristine so the scope was defective when it left the factory. Since the design was/is a total POS I won't ever consider Burris again. My dog could design scopes better then Burris.

Leupold scopes that I currently own

Mark 4 1.5-5x20mm, SPR
Mark 4 1.5-5x20mm, SPR
Mark 4 1.5-5x20mm, Ill. SPR, M2
Mark 4 3.5-10x40mm, Ill. TMR, M3
Mark 4 3.5-10x40mm, FFP, TMR, M1
Mark 4 6.5-20x50mm, Ill. TMR, M1
Mark 4 8.5-25x50mm, Ill, TMR, M1
Vari-X IIc 6-18x40mm, AO

Failures = ZERO.
Problems = 3.5-10x40mm with M3 ajdustments went back to Leupold twice due to dust on the reticle. It's been perfect since then.

Leupold scopes that I've owned and sold

Vari-X III 8.5-25x40mm
Vari-X 2.5-8x32mm EER

Failures = ZERO.
Problems = Vari-X III went back once for dust on the reticle.

Other scopes that I currently own

Zeiss Conquest 3-9x40mm, RZ-600
Premier Reticles Heritage 3-15x50mm, Gen.2 XR

Failures = ZERO.
Problems = ZERO.

All of my Leupolds hold zero, are reliable, repeatable (25 yard to 800 yard adjustment on a regular basis), have good enough glass for 600 yard F-Class and beyond, and have a lifetime warranty. I think Leupold makes excellent scopes and I look forward to buying more as needed.


November 7, 2009, 06:14 PM
I own 4 Leupold scopes, one is a 4x handgun scope that has been pounded with heavy
magum loads. No probelems with any of them.


November 7, 2009, 06:16 PM
I have a failed leupold I need to send back right now as a matter of fact...

November 7, 2009, 06:47 PM
Leupold has a counterfeit scope advisory on their website:

I bet you got one.


Counterfeit Leupold Riflescope Warning

Leupold® is issuing a customer alert to purchasers of products, particularly via Internet sales, in regards to bogus Leupold products that are apparently being illegally imported from the People’s Republic of China. These products bear many of the marks and trade dress of current Leupold & Stevens riflescopes making them very hard to distinguish externally from authentic Leupold products.

In recent months, counterfeited Leupold Mark 4® riflescopes have begun to arrive with increasing regularity at the firm’s Beaverton, Oregon, headquarters for service. These products are not manufactured by Leupold and are not covered by the Leupold Full Lifetime Guarantee.

Leupold employs serial number tracking for all its riflescopes, so if a customer finds a scope that is suspect, he or she can simply write down the serial number and call 1-800-LEUPOLD to confirm if it is indeed authentic.

In general, most of the scopes appear to originate from Hong Kong (People’s Republic of China), and have “Leupold Mark 4” laser engraved on the bottom of the turret in a silver etch, while the black ring on the objective is etched in white and does not include the name “Leupold.” The scopes also do not bear the Leupold medallion, a mark all Leupold scopes will always possess. An authentic Mark 4 riflescope will always be engraved black on black and have the name “Leupold” engraved on the black ring.

Identifying Marks
Bottom of Turret

November 7, 2009, 07:19 PM
The scope HomeTheaterman is referring to isn't a forgery, otherwise Leupold would not have repaired it under warranty. I've owned a few Leupold variables and at least one fixed power bought used. None have given me a lick of trouble.

I can't speak for the clarity of a Burris as I've only owned one and didn't use it much. I bought it used. It was a compact variable and went into the spares drawer when I replaced it with a fixed power Leupold when I gave that rifle to my son. I installed the fixed power to simplify teaching my son to shoot it.

Years later a friend needed a scope, so I offered to sell him the Burris. I dug it out of the spares drawer and lo and behold, the crosshairs were missing!

I gave it to him and told him to see if Burris would replace it. The scope being a couple decades old at this point, was no longer made. Burris sent my friend a coupon allowing him to take up to 80% off the purchase price off a current model. He was able to buy a much nicer scope than he would have been able to afford otherwise.

I'm very impressed with that kind of customer service!

November 8, 2009, 10:55 AM
Blaming the scope manufacturer for poorly executed mounting and ill fitting stocks on bargain basement weapons is always the thing to do.

The OPs post contains no useful details to help members diagnose the potential problems associated with wandering zero.

Uncle Mike
November 8, 2009, 11:11 AM
Burris...We send more Burris in for repair due to material or manufacturer failure than ANY other scope we sell.

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