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This year at the first Northwest Shooting Sports Expo, Leupold was in the house with its custom shop products in tow. That’s right, Leupold has a custom shop and they had a booth all to themselves. What you can expect from these guys are customizations to Leupold’s off-the-shelf products with quick delivery and agile capabilities.

Three custom features are shown in these photos:

• Leupold ITL — integrated throw lever — system, offering scope throw levers in various styles and length options. These give the user a much greater purchase on the zoom adjustment dial allowing for faster, more positive adjustment plus the ability to more easily find the dial without breaking cheek weld.

• Zero Lock-2R, which is a new zero-step technology in the elevation turret. The turret is locked at your zero, and pressing the button will release the turret for adjustment. Within the first rotation the button protrudes, but upon entering the second rotation it sits flush.

• An illumination dial has been substituted in place of a button, and the scope illumination is in green rather than the normal red.


Leupold’s Custom Shop also provides custom finishes, ballistically matched turrets (CDS — custom dial system) and reticles, laser engraving, custom scope builds, and more.

Hat tip to my friend, “CASES4CASES,” for attending NWSSE and snagging photos and info for us.

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    • People complaining of expense must want the stuff made by Hong Lee at the PLA owned optics plant who is paid 200 yuan a day. Up until the early 2000’s, you could get a free tour of the Leupold factory by showing up bright and early once a week. I remember my free tour guided by an optics engineer well. My favorite memory was of the reticle station manned by 4 women: one aligned the crosshairs, one secured the crosshairs to a mounting ring, and the other two checked the first two womens’ work. A hearty argument was ensuing and our optics engineer explained that each of the four rotated their station daily to ensure quality. Speaking of reticles, the original Leupold scopes’ reticles were black widow spider web rolled in a tungsten or carbon dust. When they lost a spider the old plant had to be fumigated according to Leupold employee legend. If you’ve ever had a headache from looking through binoculars for a long time it wasn’t from a Leupold. They’ve had a patent on a collimating technology since the late 90’s that aligns the optics of binoculars. The end of a Leupold tour used to end in their basement where they had a narrow long shooting range for testing.

    • On the flip side, if you’re ready to spend the money for a premium optic the price difference to do a little customization to make it exactly what you’re looking for isn’t much of a bump. I suppose this is the reason most of the higher-end brands have custom shops and the entry-level stuff does not. Nobody is going to spend $200 to customize a $200 Taurus, but $200 to make a $1,600 gun truly yours — something closer to your vision of “perfect” — feels like a more appropriate investment.

    • For what they produce, I think Leupold’s products are priced pretty fairly. Unlike some of the Germany/Austrian scope manufactures, for example…

  1. Will someone make a classic fixed power scope? They seem to be as rare as rocking horse droppings.

    I need a fixed 4x scope (objective lens 36-40mm will be fine) for a class limit in a telescopic rife competition.

    The classes are:

    Classic: original service rifle in service caliber with original style stock with appropriate period optics (4x maximum).

    Classic Modified: As for Classic but modern optics are allowed (4x maximum) (This is the class I want to compete in).

    Modified: Service rifle receiver but barrels, stock, and optics are unrestricted. Some modern rifles with light profile barrels are placed in this class.

    State-Of-The-Art: Any modern precision or target rifle in any caliber up to 8mm. Optics are unlimited.

  2. Good to see companies offering “more” ieven for more $. It doesn’t help anyone to chase each other to the company boneyard of “low-dough bros.” Leupold’s objects of desire are worth the $.

    I bought a low-end model very recently, and difference between it and other name brands I’ve owned (especially Chinese ones) is stark.

    If you’re using one to put groceries on the table, good optics only hurt at purchase.


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