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Leupold Factory Tour

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 10:39
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Take a look at the inner workings of Leupold.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 10:53
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Nice Field trip. Thanks for posting Chris.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 11:44
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Pretty interesting stuff. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 11:46
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Get Your Popcorn Ready
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 16:33
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That was an interesting micro-tour of the shop floor.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 17:28
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So much for Leupolds being made in Asia and assembled here....
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 21:30
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Good American company.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 23:39
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I agree Horsemany, it makes me feel really good That I just ordered a VX-3 from there "CUSTOM SHOP" and I for one like all the extra additions to Reticles and Custom Dials and Special  Accessories they have to offer.  And yes I love Swarovski Scopes as well as many other brands.
Im glad this stuff is made in the Good Old USAMarines
Thanks for the Tour Guys!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/29/2009 at 23:42
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/01/2009 at 10:56
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I'd like to see a tour of the other factories where products are made who some think are far superior to Leupold.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/01/2009 at 11:45
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Originally posted by Horsemany Horsemany wrote:

I'd like to see a tour of the other factories where products are made who some think are far superior to Leupold.


I don't think they would be all that different in the manufacturing process. Mostly the differences are in component choice, design and specifications. My two complaints with the Leupolds I've owned is that 1) They're somewhat more expensive than similar products and 2) Adjusting elevation and windage has resulted in over-correction or under-correction.

Regarding the first, I can live with that since I'm trying to buy American-made products as much as possible. As for the knobs, it was never much - just that while zeroing I'd need to move an inch and 4 clicks would move me 1.5" and then the scope would settle and be fine for future shooting. Since once it settled I had no problems, it's a minor complaint. However, my Nightforce just behaved as expected. Maybe its because they polish the titanium springs in their turrets in a tumbler for two weeks.


Edited by jonoMT - July/01/2009 at 11:46
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/01/2009 at 12:22
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I would guess the plants in China, Phillipines etc. are not as sterilized looking.  Less labcoats.  This is purely speculation of course.  The only plant I've ever been to was Burris' in Colorado.  It was not nearly as sanitary looking as the Leupold factory.  I guess that's why my suspicion about offshore factories not being as tidy.
 
I would bet there's at least one very highly regarded scope being assembled by less than ideal workers in less than ideal conditions.  The big question......which ones?!!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/01/2009 at 12:26
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Rumania?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/01/2009 at 12:30
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Originally posted by Black Squirrel Black Squirrel wrote:

So much for Leupolds being made in Asia and assembled here....
 
Their lenses do come from Asia.  If you notice during the interview with their optical engineer, he made mention of their lenses being sourced from some of the same optical suppliers used by other manufacturers.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/01/2009 at 13:28
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 It says a lot about a company to have a MODERN production facility.
 Leupold is obviously state of the art in that regard. It is also a very neat, clean, tidy and well-organized factory.
 The fact that some of the floor workers have been there thirty or forty years also speaks volumes.
 Great (mostly) American company. 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/02/2009 at 08:56
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I have physically toured the Leupold factory twice--and 15 years apart. The last time was two years ago and except for entering the same doors I almost didn;t recognize the place.

Fifteen years before they proudly showed off their very first CNC lathes for turning scope tubes. In 2007 they showed off CNC machines much bigger than the average living-room, capable of taking a raw billet of aluminum and spitting out a 1-piece scope tube every few seconds.

I have visited some "overseas" optics plants that were just as clean, however. They were in Germany and belonged to Zeiss!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/02/2009 at 22:15
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Originally posted by John Barsnes 
<DIV>I have visited some overseas optics plants that were just as clean, however. They were in Germany and belonged to Zeiss![/QUOTE John Barsnes
I have visited some overseas optics plants that were just as clean, however. They were in Germany and belonged to Zeiss![/QUOTE wrote:

 
I can believe that.  The real question is which plants have you been in that were NOT surgically c
 
I can believe that.  The real question is which plants have you been in that were NOT surgically clean.  Any horror stories you'd like to share?  Who's gotta blow the cockroaches out before they can install lenses?


Edited by Horsemany - July/02/2009 at 22:15
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/02/2009 at 22:17
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/02/2009 at 23:44
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My question about Asian plants still remains where in what country, when built and designed and implemented by whom?  Everything that I saw in the P.R. of China, built before 1995 was third world, third rate, dirty and lacking controls.  However, there are some State-of-the-art plants run with modern Quality Engineering controls in China now.  These are plants mostly as a result of joint ventures with companies from countries such as: Singapore, USA, GB, Japan or the EU.  Korea is in some ways still a mixed bag, depending on which ChiBo you are dealing with.  The Phillipines have come a long way since the Marco's days (early 1980's).  Singapore is mostly high technology manufacturing now.
 
We already know that Leupold has started using chinese sourced lenses and other parts in some products.  We just are not sure which products they may be.  It is a pretty good bet that the products shown being made in the video are US produced scopes (i.e. VX-II and above scopes and Gold Ring binoculars).  The Leupold videos that I have looked at showed lens inspection systems and QA but no lens grinding and polishing.  But in fairness to Leupold, I would not show "core technologies" automation to oursiders either when I was the Plant Manager of an automated, state-of-the-art plant.


Edited by Oldtrader3 - July/03/2009 at 00:06
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