Month: April 2007

Oversize Scopes

Posted by on April 23, 2007

Members of this forum will know that I don’t like what I consider oversize scopes. There is of course difference of opinion as to what constitutes too big and there are some who think that very big is not necessarily a handicap. But making due allowance for opinion some scopes are ridiculous. I recently fitted a Swarovski 4-12×50 to a dainty little Sako sporter in 22-250. Scope was so damn big it dwarfed the rifle and would have been more suitable for an artillery piece.It was so long that with the objective bell almost wedged into the front ring it barely cleared the rear iron sight. The lens cap couldn’t be fitted, not only because of the rear sight but also because the 55mm diameter objective bell was only 1mm above the barrel. Furthermore, the scope was so long and so limited as so fore-aft adjustment because of the aforementioned factors that eye relief was very much on the short side.Why do people buy such unsuitable scopes ? Don’t they give any thought to matching it to the rifle both in terms of it’s bulk and intended use ? The customer paid 10K for it and considered it a bargain. He could have had a more suitable and probably more durable Leupold for a quarter the money.Which brings me to another point that I have also mentioned before. He didn’t buy the scope from us, he bought it from a camera shop that advertises in Magnum. The camera shop doesn’t know how to fit them even if its possession of the rifle was legal, so the guys buy pricy scopes and bring them to us for fitting. I consider it humiliating to earn R300 for doing the serious job of ring lapping and precision fitting when somebody else has cleaned a grand or two profit for just selling it. I reckon we could sell Leupold for the same or less than the camera shop and include the fitting in the price. But my boss won’t go for it, says they are too expensive to stock, and is content to take the crumbs and leave the real profit to camera shops.I guess there’s nobody to blame but me. I’d consider selling Leupold myself but I wouldn’t get the sales without significant advertising costs that would make it not viable, and possession of customers’ rifles in my private capacity would be legally questionable anyway.It is a frustrating situation, as I believe that the nature of the trade is changing rapidly. The days of selling budget priced pistols are over. In future most customers will be those who have hung onto a gun or two, and they will be what I call the serious people who spend some money on their sport. It will be a much higher level trade with demanding customers and only those dealers that provide knowledge, expertise and service at that level will get the business.But that’s just my rant for the month. Need to let off some steam occasionally.[Originally posted to SATalkGuns -- Admin]