My dad got his swarovski 1500 rangefinder out the other day and much to his surprise and mine, the dam thing wont turn on or range. The 1 and only button on the thing and its broke. It feels like its pressed down all the way and wont come back up. Its just really stuck from what I gather.
To top it off, it couldn't have happened at a worse time. Hunting season is around the corner and I finally drew my big bull tag after 11 years and now the rangefinder to help aid the 338 EDGE into possibly making a shot on a big bull at over 800 yards is not working. I do still have a nikon buckmasters 800 but its just that, a nikon 800. I can say that it has fallen off my truck doing 45 mph and its still working without a hiccup, go figure... My luck though, I will have me a big bull around 1K standing broadside sticking his tongue out at me.
So I call swarovski this morning to get the skinny on the warranty. Come to find out there warranty is a 2 year warranty. Great, its only 1.5 years old so no problem there. 2 year warranty for a $1000 optic is bogus anyways if you ask me... We didn't drop it or anything, so clearly not our fault as to why the dam things broke. The lady said to ship it back to them which is in Rhode Island I believe, and she said they then will ship it to Austria where it will be repaired. She also said it takes 10-12 weeks for the whole process which clearly puts me in a bind for having the rangefinder for my big bull hunt. She then goes on to inform me that swarovski has a "loaner" program. They will send you out the same replacement unit so you dont miss out on your hunt. The lady asked if I was a hunter and I said yes and so she told me about that program. I thought that was kinda cool. However there is a little catch which does make sense but, they need a credit card number, not to charge you, just to have incase you dont return it, then you will be paying for it. Anyways, dont really know my parents situation, but hoping they'll be able to do that.
Anybody else seen or heard of this happening?? My dad sure is not very happy about it, and neither am I really since that rangefinder is a key piece of our equipment. Its only a little over a year old and has barely been out in the field. Its been more out to the range and riding in the truck then anything. Never been dropped or left outside or in the dirt, etc.
Just think you pay $1000 for a rangefinder to last a while, not be in the next dam continent getting repaired during your biggest hunt of your life!!!
I'm not aware of any electronic laser range finder that has lifetime warranty on the electronics and rangefinder portion of the devices. Comparing Swarovski, Zeiss and Leica: Zeiss appears to have the longest warranty. Lifetime for the optics, but 5 years for the laser & electronics. Leica has a 2-year limited warranty on their CRFs. As you've found, Swaro has a two year warranty. So limited warrantys are the norm with laser range finders due to the laser and electronics, not due to the glass. I'd take Swaro up on their loaner program and go hunting.
I know Broz had to send one of his back to Swaro for service. I've had my Swaro for about two years now and no problems so far - knock on wood.
Are you sure the button is not working? The reason I ask is mine would fail and if I removed and replaced the battery it would work then for a while. Guess it doesn't matter as you need to send it in anyway. I sent mine and they did everything they said and more at no charge. It is the customs problem getting it back from Austia thet slows down the process. I will add, I have never had better service from anyone on repairs. I have sent (2 lrf's 1 bino), 3 items in over the last 3 years and 2 of those items were 12 to 15 years old, and I was not the origional buyer. Swaro repaired them all at no charge to me. They all came back looking new and updated. I would not have any worries, just get them sent off. Swaro is a top notch company when it comes to customer service in my book.
If you get in a bind, more of a bind that is, I have a Leica 1200 LRF that I may not have use for this season.
I'll gladly loan it if ya need it. Its good for 1400 yds at both ends of the day. 1217 seems to be its limit when ranging the shady side of the mountain. Bright day light is it pretty much typical, pretty reliable out to 900 yds under the bright conditions.
Same thing just happened to mine yesterday. Button is stuck in the "On" position. Warranty is over. Fortunately, I can make it work by putting the battery in and then taking it back out. Seond peice of fortune is my elk and antelope hunt is over so its only the local whitetails that I have left to hunt. I also have a back up Bushnell 1500 which is pretty good.
Real problem is I cannot find any method of dissassembling the thing to get at the button. I guess I will send it in after hunting season and see if I have to pay anything other than shipping.
I own two of the swaro's, and bought another for a friend of mine. All the buttons feel different. One of mine you need to push a bit harder and hold it longer. The other has a destinctive click and works fine. The one I bought my friend, has no click or movement but if you put pressure on it the reticle appears and it works ok. I think they have two definate problems with the Swaro Laser gides. One the buttons are failing. Two: many of them will freeze up and wont come on. You remove and replace the battery and they will re-boot and come back on. I sent my first one in for this. Back to Austria it went.Got it back and six months later it was doing it again. Called and they sent me a BRAND NEW unit. First weekend I was ranging a 360" bull.. pushed the buttom... nothing.. Pulled the battery out , put it back in and it worked again... It has done this one more time since then. I called them on it and requested a call back from the superviser.... That was two weeks ago, still no call back. I need to call again, they have always been very good to me on warranty.
I am considering putting in a battery switch. A small normally closed button. That way when it freezes I can just push the button like a reset.
Oh, and that 360" bull. I grabbed my Leica CRF from my bag and ranged him on the first try. 342 yards. But by now he was surrounded by cows and I would have needed a bull and a couple cow tags at that range if would have pulled the trigger on the lapua. How do I know he was 360" another hunter killed him the next day.. Oh well, thats two good trophies I missed now cuz my Swaro failed. You guys that are in love with the swaro , if you ever get the chance to range an animal on flat ground with a swaro and a Leica side by side you will see what I mean. I just came in. Was ranging a muley at 447 yards , flat ground. Swaro was giving me everything from 435 to 485. The huge reticle and Beam devergence was grabbing ground before and after the deer. The Leica.... 447 447 448 447. all deer baby. Yep, the swaro will range farther... but what are you ranging ??? who knows with a huge beam.
Sorry for the rant..... I'm going to eat my antelope chilly now.