When Good Scopes Go Bad!

longrangehunter

Handloader
Jun 19, 2011
1,473
3
So my Kahles K312II went AWOL on me! And why these scopes, or any scope won't just go to hell in a handbasket all the time! Not shoot well for a bit, and/or a while then go wherever they choose!

So my thoughts are when do you know? If only it was so simple to know, you may not really know for sure when we all must wonder why did that bullet just do that? Was it me, the wind, the load, the barrel, the screws in the action, the bi-pod, the rings, a lose suppressor or break?

Most are easy to figure out... just not the internal workings of the scope? They fake you out, go kittywampus whenever they feel like it, maybe only a short string or a single round or two! It'll leave you scratching your head wondering what the heck is going ON.... only Not ON Target!

Hard to know when they take a nap, maybe a power nap, or sit down on the job all day on you!?! lol I now know mine had to be acting up last year, or maybe even longer since I wondered what the heck was that all about? Multiple strings at various stages certainly makes you wonder? But they like to come back to life whenever they feel like it!

So more than a few times I've heard guys cuss, and swear, or even curse various brands of scopes, or models of certain scope manufactures. I've seen more then a few lower priced models go bad during a match.

Even the big name models get the "they suck now" i.e. S&B PMII's and I thought really? Premier Heritage got cursed when Frank AKA Lowlight of the SH said their parallax had issues due to improper ring torque flexing. These were used and chosen for the USMC Scout Sniper Day Scope. Both of mine still work flawlessly so I suppose that's a good thing.

Plus almost every other scope manufacturer at one time or another I've seen go bad over decades in my lifetime...... So only if they'd go bad, and fall off the deepend for good and show serious POI shifts and die! Our lives would be far less frustrated wondering why we can put those rounds down range where we aim, and go where they should?

So this is my first scope to go bad on me, and an expensive scope at that....so sad :roll: and to think of how many matches I've lost points to this is well.... not what I had hoped to figure out so late!

I removed a older, 2013 USO 1.8-10x37 TPAL EREK off my Jarrett to use in place of the Kahles Tactical scope I'm having to have fixed. Which speaks volumes since Jake Vibbert has used US Optics scopes for as long as I've known him, and I've watched him win more scopes then anyone I know and I'd bet those just get sold off to fund his expenses. He walked away with a brand new Kahles off the awards table, and a lot of shooters use Kahles scopes.... way more then Nightforce I noticed this weekend. S&B used to be the top scope at these events, and I still saw lots of them being used. I have either owned them all at one time or another, and/or still do. I just wish they'd have a "check scope" light come on when the go off! lol

Ok, that's all Folks!
 

c. schutte

Handloader
Jan 24, 2012
578
0
Funny you post this........................

I am coming to the realization that I have my first scope to go bad. And it is one that I did not expect. Bought a swarovski Habicht and put it on a 300 wby. No real surprise that a 300 wby is a scope killer but, I have less than 100 rounds on the scope from that wby. It could be something else and I am going to transfer another scope to verify.

Man, I hate that this might be the deal. I can hate it all I want................ :>)
 

mjcmichigan

Handloader
Dec 26, 2016
2,263
31
Yeah. I get you. When my boys want to h
Learn to hunt, my father-in-law was so excited he bought us 3 Savage model 11 with black labels scopes (Simons's in those days). We never got mine working..would go click click shhhhhhhhh click, and POI would move 4". Couldn't get the poi center. 3" corelokt groups...just not where you aimed. Still being learners, bought a Nikon pro staff and wow. Back in business.
About a year later the 243's scope went bad. groups opened to 8" from 0.75".
3 more years, the last black label scope lost its group. Got him a Monarch.

When a scope goes, it helps to have known good ammo and a range...in the field...very hard to figure out short of knowing you fell on your gun and scope.

My next gun is getting a great scope. At 57, I need more light.

So all three of our kit scopes died. 1 was doa, one took a year, the last took maybe three more years....

Once you know you are shooting, buy reliable glass...


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

sask boy

Ammo Smith
Nov 4, 2007
6,000
5
I really believe they can all make a bad one :shock:, but their customer service is what I really look at.
I have had 5 scopes cave on me 2 Leuys,2Bushnells & a Minox. The customer service from Leupold and Minox was superb and Bushnell's was awful :?. However I was advised that Bushnell has really turned around their Customer Service dept but I am not sure I will own another Bushnell product to findout.

Blessings,
Dan
 

gerry

Ammo Smith
Mar 1, 2007
6,113
11
I have had a couple of scopes die on me from Leupold and Burris but they took care of them nicely. Stuff happens unfortunately especially if you hunt in rough country..........
 

longrangehunter

Handloader
Jun 19, 2011
1,473
3
I just got the email that they've received my scope, and upon inspection will let me know if it's covered under warranty. Since it's going to Kahles in Austria it can take 8 to 10 weeks for repair.

Glad I have the scope that came on the gun!
 

c. schutte

Handloader
Jan 24, 2012
578
0
Confirmed;

Did a bedding job after checking all the screws, bases/rings. All tighter than Dick's hat band. After the bedding job the same exact 4" horizontal string. Tried some old ammo that was my "go-to" that always gave me .75 or under @ 100 yards. After several trips to the range it was the same horizontal string.

Took a scope off a different rifle that I know to be good and mounted it on the rifle. Took a few shots to get the different scope centered on the target and a few extra to see what was happening with a hot barrel. Typical group from a hot barrel that has not been stress relieved. Not horizontal.

Allowed the barrel to cool down to ambient temps and then put two right where they were suppose to be and at 5/8" @ 132 yards. It ain't the rifle, bedding or bases.

Now I get to send my first scope back. A swaro no less.
 

SJB358

Ballistician
Dec 24, 2006
31,398
757
c. schutte":1rscxal5 said:
Confirmed;

Did a bedding job after checking all the screws, bases/rings. All tighter than Dick's hat band. After the bedding job the same exact 4" horizontal string. Tried some old ammo that was my "go-to" that always gave me .75 or under @ 100 yards. After several trips to the range it was the same horizontal string.

Took a scope off a different rifle that I know to be good and mounted it on the rifle. Took a few shots to get the different scope centered on the target and a few extra to see what was happening with a hot barrel. Typical group from a hot barrel that has not been stress relieved. Not horizontal.

Allowed the barrel to cool down to ambient temps and then put two right where they were suppose to be and at 5/8" @ 132 yards. It ain't the rifle, bedding or bases.

Now I get to send my first scope back. A swaro no less.

Happens to all of us Chuck. Swaros are awesome glass but they haven't been the toughest for me.
 

c. schutte

Handloader
Jan 24, 2012
578
0
SJB358":1p2qoxrb said:
c. schutte":1p2qoxrb said:
Confirmed;

Did a bedding job after checking all the screws, bases/rings. All tighter than Dick's hat band. After the bedding job the same exact 4" horizontal string. Tried some old ammo that was my "go-to" that always gave me .75 or under @ 100 yards. After several trips to the range it was the same horizontal string.

Took a scope off a different rifle that I know to be good and mounted it on the rifle. Took a few shots to get the different scope centered on the target and a few extra to see what was happening with a hot barrel. Typical group from a hot barrel that has not been stress relieved. Not horizontal.

Allowed the barrel to cool down to ambient temps and then put two right where they were suppose to be and at 5/8" @ 132 yards. It ain't the rifle, bedding or bases.

Now I get to send my first scope back. A swaro no less.



Happens to all of us Chuck. Swaros are awesome glass but they haven't been the toughest for me.

I don't want to turn this into a 'bash swaro' thread, I really don't. I've been a huge swaro fan over the years and anyone who knows me knows that to be true. With that said you have heard me talk about my friend the sako nut. To my knowledge he has owned 3 swaro's. Well, two swarovski scopes and one Kahles, (same basic thing). Of his three two went bad and were sent back.

Here I am with my one and only swaro bad after about 100 rounds from a 300 wby, maybe less? In the beginning I had a nikon on it which by the way is still ticking!

Your point about swarovski's not being the toughest for you is a nice way of putting it I think? Of the 4 scopes between my friend and I, 3 have gone bad. That's a hell of a percentage.

Who knows, maybe the Habicht was never meant for a real recoiler? Wish I had known that before I shelled out that kind of money. :shock:

From my friends experience I am to ready myself for the "game" from swarovski. Where they wait a month then send the scope back to me with a note saying..... "nothing wrong with it".

Yeah, that will go over like a turd in the punch bowl with me.


Time to send it in with a letter explaining what it is doing and my methodology.
 

c. schutte

Handloader
Jan 24, 2012
578
0
One test I've yet to do and that is check to see how far from center the windage adjustment is. I guess that if the scope is cranked close to the extreme then it is possible to be out of sync? It sure won't hurt to check that before sending it in.
 

longrangehunter

Handloader
Jun 19, 2011
1,473
3
FWIW...... Here's the most up to date data on what the pros use, shooters involved in the PRS.

Link to the article: http://precisionrifleblog.com/2017/03/0 ... -pros-use/

What you'll see is Kahles now holds the #2 spot in 2017, and back in 2014 held the most precise mechanical performance of any of the top 5 scopes tested. I've heard all of the top scopes can, or have gone bad so I guess you just have to take it with a grain of salt? Maybe that's why I have so many different brands of scopes, they all have there pros & cons, but more importantly were purchased for a specific intended purpose. i.e. 1.8-10; 3.5-10; 3-12; 3-15; and a 5-25.

Hard to say, but the data does show Kahles has gained a lot of ground since coming out with their tactical line in 2013 when S&B was at the top for the most used by the pros.

Here's the data from that report:

http://precisionrifleblog.com/2014/09/0 ... e-summary/
 

DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
35,490
2,284
Fascinating reading. Well worth the time invested for anyone considering a new scope.
 

longrangehunter

Handloader
Jun 19, 2011
1,473
3
DrMike":2ibmfb7g said:
Fascinating reading. Well worth the time invested for anyone considering a new scope.
The devil is in the details..... only now you guys will know where I get my info! :mrgreen:
 

Bbear

Beginner
Jan 13, 2015
215
0
My first scope to go bad was an old Leupold Vari-X III. If I could get the crosshairs to move, they wouldn't stay put. So, off it went to the factory. They replaced it and I sold it when I sold the rifle it was on some 10 years later. Gradually, over time, I moved away from Leupolds to other brands. I have a few of the older Leica's from the late 90's/early 2000's and a couple of Kahles and Zeiss' mixed in now.
Had one of my Minox scopes have a problem with the focus on the ocular ring. Sent it in, and it was repaired and returned and works fine now. My last 'bad' scope didn't go back because it something inside didn't function but, the rubber ring used to change the magnification wore out. This on a Swarovski Habicht scope my Dad got in the early 80's. I sent that one in back in January at their request and got it back, fully updated and repaired after a trip to Austria in early April.
In short, I think all makers scopes will go bad at some time or another. It's a matter of how soon and what they're put through that makes the difference.
 

c. schutte

Handloader
Jan 24, 2012
578
0
My scope was returned from Swarovski, according to them it had been adjusted too far in elevation and that over time it the spring had weakened. I did not remember it being adjusted that far so after mounting it back on the 300 wby yesterday I took a few shots without any adjustments to the scope. Back to shooting 5/8" @ 100 yards but, 12" high. They said that it had been returned to factory center so it sounds like they were correct, the elevation had been cranked too much and left that way.

That scope was first mounted on another rifle prior to being on the 300 wby and I did not return it to center prior to transferring it. My bad..............

It just proves that it is important to make sure a scope is close to center by making adjustments to the base prior to making any adjustments to the scope itself.
 

RaySendero

Beginner
Jul 27, 2015
233
1
Ok, I, too, got a scope gone bad story:

Was on a 9Lb 308 M700. So recoil wasn't much, BUT
Out of blue started to shoot 2 pretty good groups - 3" apart!
Would alternate each shot from one group to the other!
 

JD338

Range Officer
Staff member
Nov 4, 2004
22,145
1,847
A couple years ago my VX-6 3-18x44mm went astray and had to send it back to Leupold.
During my phone discussion with the technician, he asked me about the mounts I had on the 338 RUM, which were the standard front dovetail rear windage screws and he said that the scope was too big for this set up on a heavy recoiling rifle. I switched to the Leupold Mark 4 Picatinny rail mount with the PRW steel rings and haven't have a problem since. This is a very solid robust mounting set up! A few weeks back I dialed for 700 yards and hit the water filled chem jug.
Make sure you consider a solid mounting system when you are looking at the glass.

JD338
 

longrangehunter

Handloader
Jun 19, 2011
1,473
3
JD338":27m7pikw said:
A couple years ago my VX-6 3-18x44mm went astray and had to send it back to Leupold.
During my phone discussion with the technician, he asked me about the mounts I had on the 338 RUM, which were the standard front dovetail rear windage screws and he said that the scope was too big for this set up on a heavy recoiling rifle. I switched to the Leupold Mark 4 Picatinny rail mount with the PRW steel rings and haven't have a problem since. This is a very solid robust mounting set up! A few weeks back I dialed for 700 yards and hit the water filled chem jug.
Make sure you consider a solid mounting system when you are looking at the glass.

JD338
Hey Guys, and Gals! I know it's been a while since I've been on here, the summer's are a busy time for me. That said I did receive my Kahles scope back last week and mounted it, found a 100 yard zero, and tall target tested it. Long story short I had to rotate the scope in the rings about 1/64" to match the bore of the barrel. At 10.5 mils I was off by 5/8" from the plum line at 100 yards, and after two attempts was able to get it plumb.

JD- My Surgeon action has the picatinny base milled into the action so that can't come loose, and I used Mark 4 Steel 34mm ring before this ever happened, wasn't the rings fault.

Kahles rebuilt the turrets, and paralux and set it, they didn't say what went wrong with the scope or the issue. At this point doesn't matter, and long as it never happens again......

I did do a box text and been testing the turrets for repeatability, but still haven't set a zero only because I want to make sure it stays put day in day out over a period of time. I was getting bugholes while testing on the tall target test, so hopefully the scope is fixed!
 
Top