February 3rd, 2013

Leupold Factory Tour Video — Plus Counterfeit Scope Warning

Leupold & Stevens, producer of riflescopes, spotting scopes, and laser rangefinders, offer an interesting two-part video showing the production process at Leupold’s Beaverton, Oregon manufacturing facility. Leupold is one of the world’s largest scope-makers. Each year, the Leupold factory machines over two million pounds of aluminum. Laid end to end, as extruded, this aluminum would stretch over 400 miles. That’s a lot of scopes. To see how Leupold produces its riflescopes, using high-tech machinery (as well as old-fashioned human craftsmen), watch the videos below.

Leupold Tour Part One
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Leupold Tour Part Two
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Leupold Issues Warning About Counterfeit MK4 Scopes
In related news, Leupold has issued a “customer alert” regarding counterfeit Leupold scopes illegally imported from the People’s Republic of China. These products bear many of the marks and trade dress of current Leupold riflescopes making them very hard to distinguish from authentic Leupold products.

Leupold MKIV Fake

Counterfeited Leupold Mark 4® riflescopes have begun to arrive with increasing regularity at Leupold’s 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 you have a suspect scope, call 1-800-LEUPOLD with the SN, and Leupold can immediately confirm whether the optic is genuine or not.

Most of the counterfeit scopes appear to originate from the 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 (Click for photos): Turrets | Objective | Bottom Label

This story was originally posted in late 2010.
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March 31st, 2011

U.S. Customs Discovers Counterfeit Scopes Coming from China

counterfeit EotechWhen you purchase expensive optics, you need to be careful about who you deal with, and what you buy. There are an increasing number of forgeries coming in from various parts of Asia. Just recently, three executives of Field Sport Inc. were charged with ‘selling a counterfeit mark’, in connection with Field Sport’s importation of fake EoTech riflescopes. Earlier this month, 900 counterfeit EoTech sights/magnifiers were discovered by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers inspecting a shipment from China. The Field Sports execs were charged with multiple felonies.

BusinessWeek.com reported:

Now a fugitive believed to be in China, Yongming “Steven” Sui, 53, chief executive officer of Field Sport Inc., was charged by state prosecutors with two felony counts — manufacturing and selling a counterfeit mark (a form of trademark infringement) and possession of an assault weapon. Also charged in the state criminal complaint were Sui’s colleagues — co-owner Isaac Cheuk Hang Tse, 65, of Rowland Heights, and Pao Sheng Yang, 34, of Corona, the firm’s business manager. Both are alleged to have engaged in manufacturing and selling a counterfeit mark and possessing an assault weapon.

Many Counterfeit Optics for Sale on Internet
In addition to this EoTech situation, there appear to be many other examples of counterfeit optics entering the United States. The Firearm Blog did a quick web search, and found numerous imitation EoTech and Leupold scopes advertised on Alibaba.com, a wholesale site part-owned by web giant Yahoo.com. We suspect the fakes found by the Firearm Blog on Alibaba.com are just the tip of the iceberg. Below is just one of many fakes AccurateShooter.com found on Alibaba.com today (3/30/2011). A 3.5-10x40mm Leupold MK4 M3 Scope is advertised for sale for $750.00:

counterfeit Eotech

There’s no way you’re going to get a genuine illuminated Leupold MK4 for $750.00 and we can tell you that the real things don’t come from Indonesia, where this seller is located. We confirmed today with Leupold that ALL MK4 scopes are still made in the USA. The genuine Leupold 3.5-10x40mm MK4 LR/T M3 sells for about $1350.00 in the USA:

counterfeit Eotech

If you have any concerns about the authenticity of a Leupold scope you plan to purchase, ask the seller for the SERIAL NUMBER. Then call Leupold support at 1-800-Leupold. Leupold will trace the serial number and determine positively whether the scope is genuine or conterfeit.

Credit to The Firearm Blog for flagging this story.
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