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Kowa Overpriced Cleaning? (1 Viewer)

slingworks

Well-known member
I've posted a few times in the Kowa Section over the past months. (I come across Kowa Spotting Scopes fairly often in my work so I tend to trade/use them).

I recently sent one in to Kowa USA for cleaning and the invoice was $134....!!!!!

Does this seem like a reasonable charge?? $39.00 of it this was the "return freight."

Priority Mail to send it in was $20...

Does this seem like a reasonable charge?? No parts, just cleaning.

Does anyone perhaps know of an alternate shop capable of cleaning spotters in the US?
 

paddy7

Well-known member
Depends what 'cleaning' was, i suppose. A big difference between wiping a rag over the body and taking the eye-piece and objective lens apart for an internal clean in the kind of environment that isn't going to let more stuff into it before re-assembly.
In the UK, you can call an emergency plumber out-of-hours and pay Ā£60 before you start as a call-out charge!
 

dogbreath

Well-known member
$95 for the clean. That probably includes taxes. If this was a proper clean in a dust free environment including a refill with nitrogen (if appropriate) doesn't seem unreasonable. If it was simply a wipe of the body and external lens surfaces, that is probably expensive.
 

slingworks

Well-known member
Kowa originally quoted $75 for the cleaning plus return shipping. I was a little surprised to see I was charged $134. (I am tax exempt).

It was an older ts-2. No nitrogen and very simple body design. I probably could have done it myself with a screwdriver and a lens spanner on the kitchen table. Maybe next time I will :)

I have a Balscope SR needing the same cleaning. I might give it a try.
 
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jape

Well-known member
it would be better to call it a 'service' charge, same job plus maybe a multi-point check over they probably gave it anyway. with perhaps a warranty extension if out of warranty. then it would seem more reasonable and would be praised as good service and customer relations. the freight is high but would be insured as fragile high risk.
 
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slingworks

Well-known member
My Ts-2 arrived back from Kowa today.

Crusty you asked how they did? As a grade I would say a C. Maybe C-

The internals are clean, the prisms look clean and the objective looks good. I see 2 pieces of lint stuck to the inside surface of the objective flint element. I also see a light streak on the inside of the same lens.

The focus knob is still stiff, I don't think they made any effort to re-grease it. (I had detailed it in the request).

Unfortunately made a cut/scratch through the finish all the way across the body/prism housing. Looks like they used a razor knife to take it out of the bubble wrap I packed it in and cut through the finish on the scope........:((

A real shame about that because the TS2 was about 99% condition wise w/box.

While this Kowa out I became brave and carefully cleaned my B&L balscope SR. I made a pair of spanner/lens wrenches myself and they worked great. Everything was a breeze to clean with acetone.

It took about 1.5 hours total, and was the first time I cleaned a spotter.

In all I would say I did a better job than Kowa. The elements I cleaned are perfect and I only see one tiny spec of dust/lint in the balscope. The Kowa has 2!

I have other Kowa glass, including a couple of current models.
After the poor performance of both the service and cleaning I feel a little soured and I think I might consider buying a different brand/s in the future.
 

fugl

Well-known member
My Ts-2 arrived back from Kowa today.

Crusty you asked how they did? As a grade I would say a C. Maybe C-

The internals are clean, the prisms look clean and the objective looks good. I see 2 pieces of lint stuck to the inside surface of the objective flint element. I also see a light streak on the inside of the same lens.

The focus knob is still stiff, I don't think they made any effort to re-grease it. (I had detailed it in the request).

Unfortunately made a cut/scratch through the finish all the way across the body/prism housing. Looks like they used a razor knife to take it out of the bubble wrap I packed it in and cut through the finish on the scope........:((

A real shame about that because the TS2 was about 99% condition wise w/box.

C-? From your description, particularly given the high cost, I would have thought a D- or F would be more appropriate. Or is the ā€œCā€ just a another case of grade inflation? ;)
 

Crusty

Well-known member
My Ts-2 arrived back from Kowa today.

Crusty you asked how they did? As a grade I would say a C. Maybe C-

It took about 1.5 hours total, and was the first time I cleaned a spotter.

In all I would say I did a better job than Kowa. The elements I cleaned are perfect and I only see one tiny spec of dust/lint in the balscope. The Kowa has 2!

Slingworks... Looks like you found your local spotting scope cleaning source -- DO IT YOURSELF!

:clap:
 
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