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After a time away pursuing other hobbies, I'm coming back looking for a good scope to buy (once I get my check to to stimulate the economy). I pulled out my 2004 Natchez catalog, and then went to the site to see current prices. I was surprised to see that Weaver and Sightron are cheaper now then in 2004, while all the others I looked at have increased. I was looking at the 6-24 types. Any ideas why Weaver prices have gone down? The V24 is looking like a really good value. Is there something I don't know about, like quality going down?
 

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The Weavers are great scopes. They are up there right under Leupold on quality. I don't know what the prices were, but they are not low because they are junk. I love Leupolds, but Weaver is also in my safe. Sightron I believe is made by the sdame company that owns Weaver. They also look similar. Similar prices. Can't go wrong with either one.
 

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I feel like there is a concerted effort on the part of all scope manufacturers to coax us into spending 400-1000$ on a scope. It is not that there are not good scopes still available for reasonable money, everyone has their new scopes out there at considerably more money than last year's top line products.

The new Nikon Monarch Gold line and the Bushnell 6500 series and the Leupold vx-7 series are examples. Don't know how much of that cost is features and how much is hype. I may never know.

EJ
 

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After a time away pursuing other hobbies, I'm coming back looking for a good scope to buy (once I get my check to to stimulate the economy). I pulled out my 2004 Natchez catalog, and then went to the site to see current prices. I was surprised to see that Weaver and Sightron are cheaper now then in 2004, while all the others I looked at have increased. I was looking at the 6-24 types. Any ideas why Weaver prices have gone down? The V24 is looking like a really good value. Is there something I don't know about, like quality going down?
I'm not sure of the actual prices you are refering to, however there can be many reasons why prices fall.

1. The biggest reason is competition. As the lower cost, quality CHINESE products enter the market, Weaver/Sightron needs to respond.

2. Weaver also takes a hit in that their products at times appear to be "old". I myself like the "old" tried and true, but many consumers are looking for the latest products with new features. Fortunately the riflescope industry does not make rapid improvements like the computer industry. For example, there are side focus scopes for under $100. Many people think they need side focus scopes, and they ask "Why doesn't Weaver offer such a feature when low cost manufactures are offering such things?". Personally side focus is made to much a big deal IMHO. It has some advantages, smaller scope size, focus control knob can maybe be reached while still looking through scope. The only side focus scopes that I know are rock solid are the Zeiss and Nightforce. I would also guess Nikon, but am not sure. Last I heard, Leupold still suffers from back lash problems (aka feature) in their side focus scopes. I believe all the CHINESE side focus scopes also suffer from this. If anyone knows of a CHINESE sidefocus that doesn't suffer from this, please speak up. BTW, to detect this problem is not easy, and for many folks, it probably isn't an issue. The typical back lash work around is to reset the focus back to infinity, before changing to a new parallax/focus. Again, this is really a variation of number one, COMPETITION.

3. As the cost of setup/design of a new scope gets paid off/recouped, the vendor can and will start to drop price. Many vendors plan for this. Manufactures many times market a new product at a high price, hoping to make big profits due to high demand as well as marketing techniques for new product. Haven't you ever noticed that when a new fancy car is introduced the first year, prices for it are a premium. As years pass, and inflation drives the price up, the actual selling price of car may actually go down. As the "new" cars demand dries up in the following years, the manufacture is forced to drop price, to continue to keep sales strong, and his work force employed. In the car industry it is usually by rebates.
 

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Sightron I believe is made by the sdame company that owns Weaver.
According to Sightron tech, Sightron is owned buy Kenko/Tokina. No where on Kenko, Sightron, or AOJ's web sight is there any mention of ownerships/connections. I suspect they like to keep it that way.

http://www.kenko-tokina.co.jp/e/index.html

Notice working relationship between Kenko and AO in 1985, in link below. That is only link I have found showing a relationship between Kenko and AOJ.
http://www.asia-optical.com.tw/aoci/english/e-profile/e_p_history.html

Weaver was owned by Meade, but in this year are now owned by Ammunition Accessories Inc., a subsidiary of Alliant Techsystems Inc. (ATK).

http://biz.yahoo.com/e/080422/mead8-k.html

Weaver scopes are made in Japan, and have always been rumored to be made by Light Optical Works (LOW) Japan.

As far as I know, there are/were three Japanese optical companies, Light Optical Works, Hakko, and Asia Optical. LOW is listed below.

http://www.city.suwa.nagano.jp/kigyou/suwashi/lightkoki/english.htm

I tried to find Hakko, Japan, but no luck. This link implies that went bankrupt in 2005 and now the name is owned by a CHINESE Company, called Sams? Easy come, easy go.... So I guess I only know of two Japanese scope makers, LOW and AOJ.

http://www.ak47.net/lite/topic.html?b=3&f=18&t=208728&page=20
http://www.ar15.com/lite/topic.html?b=3&f=18&t=208728&page=23
 

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Hakko went out of business years ago and the name was bought by the owner (David Yin) of a CHINESE scope manufacturer (Sams).. He is the same guy that was producing Leupold counterfits.. Thats why you can find new Hakko scopes for less than $100 now...... Hakko is no longer in Japan, hence the reason you cant find anything..

HD
 

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Manufactures many times market a new product at a high price, hoping to make big profits due to high demand as well as marketing techniques for new product. Haven't you ever noticed that when a new fancy car is introduced the first year, prices for it are a premium. As years pass, and inflation drives the price up, the actual selling price of car may actually go down. As the "new" cars demand dries up in the following years, the manufacture is forced to drop price, to continue to keep sales strong, and his work force employed. In the car industry it is usually by rebates.
It is called skim marketing and is standard practice in the computer business. You rip off all the computer geeks that have to have the latest and greatest first, and then you lower the price to sell to the rest who have a little more patience.

Ron
 
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