A lot of people ask us what happened to Redfield and how such a popular company like this went out of business. Nowadays, it is so hard to get a new Redfield scope. So, what in the world happened to these guys? Let us find out in this article.
History of the Redfield Brand
Redfield, as a brand, has a really old history. The brand first started as the Redfield Gun Sight Company. This was before the times when rifle scopes even became famous.
Redfield scopes are actually a part of American history. The scope company was founded by John Hill Redfield. John was born in 1859 in Oregon.
He loved going outdoors and during his days he was really interested in hunting as well as fishing. Redfield set up a gun shop in Oregon in the year 1893.
He first started the Western Gun sight company in Denver in the first decade of the 20th century. After the success of the company, even his son joined the family business.
Mr. Redfield also made a series of rifle mounts that were used in the first world war. This made the reputation of the company even better.
In the year 1932, Redfield finally renamed the company Redfield Gunsight and it was a good decision. He died in 1944 and his son took over the business.
What happened to the original Redfield brand?
The original Redfield, founded by Mr. Redfield, went bankrupt in 1998. It sold all the company assets and stopped production that year.
But Why? Well, business wasn’t great in the late 90s for the riflescope industry, and let’s just say Redfield had a bit of bad luck and everything went sour.
When they went under, All the Redfield assets such as equipment, patents, trademarks were bought by a company called Blount International.
At that time, Blount also owned their own Optics Company called the Weaver and Simmons. Naturally, they used Redfield’s patents and made scopes under the Weaver and Simmons banner.
These were not the same models as produced by the original Redfield at their Denver plant.
These models were built in some areas of Asia and the quality wasn’t that great. Because of this, the idea did not work and the rights to the Redfield brand were finally sold to Leupold.
Are Redfield scopes Discontinued?
We all know Leupold is a really impressive scope company with affordable riflescopes. In 2009, this giant bought the rights to Redfield and reintroduced the Redfield line of scopes.
The models were manufactured in America. It was actually produced at their Oregon facility, the same state where Mr. Redfield was born.
Leupold later expanded their Redfield line up and today, it has many Redfield named scopes that they sell.
So, while the original Redfield is already discontinued, Leupold still produces their version of the Redfield scopes and you can buy them in stores right now.
The three generations of Redfield
Gen 1, The Original Redfield scopes – These scopes were manufactured in the Denver Colorado facility and these were pretty much discontinued when the Redfield scope went out of business in the year 1998.
Gen 2, Weaver and Simmons – Blount International bought all the assets of Redfield and made the Redfield scopes under Weaver and Simmons till they were discontinued in 2002 after poor business.
Gen 3, Leupold – Our favorite scope manufacturer Leupold bought the rights to Redfield and started producing scopes that were pretty good, the scopes are good and they are still selling the Redfield scopes. But do keep in mind, Leupold has also discontinued all the previous models of the scopes. The revolution series is the only thing that is left.
Warranty Situation of Redfield Scopes
The first generation of Redfield scopes had a limited warranty. Redfield serviced the scopes till they filed for bankruptcy.
So, the warranty on these scopes has also died. None of the companies that bought the right after 1998 provide servicing and warranty for the first generation scopes.
The second-generation scopes that Blount Produced also had a limited warranty and they used to provide the warranty until their time with Redfield ended.
After 2002, they stopped providing any warranty services as the Redfield scopes were under in that year.
The third generation of scopes has a warranty. Leupold did offer a limited warranty on their own Redfield scopes so, any Redfield scopes manufactured after 2008 can get a warranty if you are eligible for it.
It is definitely a cool thing. So, if you are in the market for a Redfield scope, we urge you to get the third generation one!