Burris Revisited.


Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2002
A few weeks ago I responded to a post on here where a rather disgruntled individual had had some unhappy experiences with Burris Customer Service. Unfortunately, that thread has been deleted (for whatever reason) and this response to it cannot be added to the original posts. As for some background, the original poster whom I don't remember the handle of, had sent a Black Diamond scope back to Burris because the occular ring was loose and when it moved, He claimed the point of impact changed. He had argued viamently with Burris Customer Service and had sent back several scopes over the years with problems I really don't remember. In any case, what he did was place his gun on a shooting table in a rest, then move the occular ring around. Upon doing this the "Point of impact changed" and the gun had troubles with the way it shot.

The Explaination given by Burris was that the occular is mounted on rubber Orings and does move to some extent normally. In addition, if the Parallax is set correctly, there will be a movement of the target image, but no movement of the point of impact. The grouping trouble is being caused by some other problem as this scope is in perfect working order. So I think to myself, hmmm, this sounds interesting. My first thought would be to agree with the shooter that it seems logical to assume that moving a lens will absolutely cause that type of problem. But, the Burris emails are included and they also seem rather miffed that someone is doubting thier knowlege of optics which I think means that this isn't the first time they dealt with this type of problem. Also the fact that they have seen this scope for this problem more than once, tends to make me believe there's more to the story. Next, I also think about what the person is saying about having thier gun on a bench and doing this test and I have a hard time believing that anyone can hold a gun still in a rest and do this experiment with any success. So, I go to work the next day and I take my gun with a Burris Signature 8-32 with me. I've had some suspiction of its operation lately and this is a great time to check it out and see what may be wrong. I may even send it back for a looking over if I can't find any trouble. (My trouble was a non-linear adjustment, ie: move 2 clicks, POI changes an inch at 100yds). So, I mounted a Kurt Vise on a 1-3/4" Steel top table (and it's rather solid). I removed my barreled action and put it in the vise tightly. (I don't like the action anyhow). Then I aimed out the front door at a reference supermarket across the street. (They put that supermarket there just for me to align scopes on). Well, when I pushed on the table and rather hard, there was no movement noticeable on the building so I was convinced that I could push on the lenses and not be moving the entire table/vise/gun. Well, the movement is of the entire image as they say, not the point of impact. This I did with the lock ring on the ocular loose so it resembles the Black diamond series (which I also own but didn't want to disassemble for this). So then, I decided to try the objective. Now here, the point of impact changes. So I grab the tube without touching the objective and with similar pressure, I get a similar change in POI. OK, the tube is bending and showing a change. At no point could I replicate what this individual was claiming to see but I could see how they might have been fooled into thinking they were seeing a POI change. On to my trouble, I centered the adjustments that had, I confess, been off center quite a ways. I then proceeded to adjust one click at a time and back up from time to time to see if the POI repeats. It passed with flying colors.

So, it's time to call Burris myself. I called and asked what methods they use for checking scopes out so I could have a mechanical idea of what they do and the guy explained it to me. I told him what I was doing at the moment and he gave me some things to look for and ways to be more effective at checking. He also told me how being way far off center of my windage would give the error I described as having when shooting my 22. Well, I took my stuff back home. I won't be able to test my newfound info for a while yet but that scope is going on a PPC very soon so I'll check out it's operation in real life. I really don't like to blame things on scopes very often because most of the times I thought something was wrong with one, further investigation usually shows that the scope is not at fault. One way or another. Regardless of the brand, all the scope troubles I've ever seen, and I haven't seen many, allways show up as some catastrophic failure. Never have I seen a scope at fault for a 1.5" group at 100 yards.

I doubt the original poster will see this but if you're out there and read this, check the scope some other way. I think you have a problem that's unrelated to the optics. If you insist, let me know how much you want to sell your scopes for becuase I could be interested in some used, lifetime warranty stuff. They're as good as a gold ring Leupold any day.
I remember back several years when Norm Johnson (gun writer) was doing his scope testing, and he noticed some movement of the entire scope image when it was mounted in a special vice and using slight hand pressure on the scope body. It was very enlightening.
Very interesting Phil, thanks for all the details! I appreciate you checking this out more. I read the original post some weeks ago and wondered if the crosshair and image moved the same amount myself. Thanks again!
I do agree with you that Burris does make a fine scope and such,However I have also had a few problems with their customer servive folks.

Mostly due to charges that had changed even though the problem that had to be fixed had not. Just a personel apinion but I do usually go with Leupold now do to their customer service.

The Leupold factory is located only an hour from were I live so its easier for me to deal with them(this is another reason why I choose them most of the time) They also have a very quick turn around time.

My dealings with Burris could be (and most likely are) rare cases But I do seem to have better luck with the Leupold folks. Rob
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