Carbon Fiber Scope Mount

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A new company called Zero-G is crowdfunding the development and manufacturing of a Carbon Fiber scope mount. Normally we don’t blog about crowdfunding projects, but this caught my attention.

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The basic Advanced Carbon Fiber Scope Mount, which will cost $399, does not include a base. It is compatible with any ACOG-compatible bases. The Advanced Carbon Fiber Scope Mount with an American Defense Quick Release Base costs $449. The first 45 backers of the project who buy the mount with base, get $400 off the retail price of a range of high-end scopes if they choose to buy one at a later date.

Do you think Carbon Fiber mounts are a good idea?


Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • Samuel Suggs

    Time will tell whether or not this is a good idea my concern
    lies in the fact that repeated shock could slowly deform, break and loosen
    fibers and cause it to lose zero with increasing frequency. I imagine it all
    comes down to the forces imparted on the scope mount which of course varies
    from rifle to rifle.

    • flyingburgers

      Properly designed carbon fiber will have a much longer fatigue life than metal will and is not affected by corrosion. (As an example, they can pressurize the Dreamliner to a higher pressure and make it a more humid cabin than metal airplanes)

      • Samuel Suggs

        thats interesting I understand that their are many variations of carbon fiber how do you design it properly for this application? or similar

        • http://www.thefirearmblog.com/ Phil W “Senior Writer TFB”

          I can find out for you or possibly have the designer comment.

          I do like the look of them. No sharp edges just a smooth curving surface

          • Samuel Suggs

            I like the look also but yeah the manufature would be awsome

        • http://www.thefirearmblog.com/ Phil W “Senior Writer TFB”

          I talked with the person behind the project and he will be on later to answer questions.

          • Samuel Suggs

            great thanks

        • Mfoster

          Greetings Samuel.
          Thanks for all of your questions and comments. The composite company is definitely helping Zero G with the design. We started with an available product made from aluminum and then moved forward from there with the goal of creating something that is lighter and stronger and frankly, something a bit more attractive that what is readily accomplished through extruded and/or machined aluminum parts
          The composite material and technology will allow different materials to be used (Kevlar, etc) to control shock and other forces exerted on the scope mount. It remains to be seen if that will be necessary, but it is an option.
          Anyway, I hop this answers some of your questions.
          Thanks!

          • Samuel Suggs

            Interesting, so shock absorption is your focus rather than weight reduction, that makes significantly more sense. If I could posit a recommendation relating to product acceptance I would say that images, articles and videos demonstrating and explaining the manufacturing process and why that manufacturing process is the similar or the same as another well-known application of carbon fiber ala corvetes, airbusses and fighter jets I know that its not the same process excatly but find a comparison that people accept then draw that comparison

          • Mfoster

            Thanks Samuel. More good input. We probably could have highlighted the actual compression process a bit more in our video and website. You know how it is though, you work on something for so long it’s easy to take a lot of the knowledge and information for granted.

          • Samuel Suggs

            Yeah getting customers in this industry to accept a new material
            for new applications is difficult, literally every real or perceived issue will get brought up and lauded as fact at some point and then certain people will latch onto those perceived problems even going as far as to generate their own proof.

          • Mfoster

            No doubt you are right about that. We absolutely know this won’t be for everyone. That’s the great thing about this market, there are many choices and people get to vote with their dollar.

      • Samuel Suggs

        also these little puppys work great for air guns but they do have exspration date same as metal tanks.

      • Samuel Suggs

        I am thinking from the perspective of exstream examples like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s5pVya7eask the fact that they made the base from metal is both encourging from an engineering stand point and reavealing from a customer staind point

  • Samuel Suggs

    I just dont see the Ouncessaved adding up to worth it.

  • Hasan

    Ingenious solution to that age old problem :-

    Now where can I spend my money next ?

    • Samuel Suggs

      the age old problem of shock getting trasfered to optics right?

  • Timothy G. Yan

    My LaRue SPR mount is $210 and my ADM Scout mount is $190. Both are proven scope mount with dual QD levers and replaceable rings. A good quality ACOG base w/ QD levers would cost $100-$150.

    • Samuel Suggs

      ok so how dose that relate

      • Cymond

        He’s saying that you can pay a lot less for a product that is well-known for quality. Why pay double for something of unknown quality, just to save an ounce or two of weight?

        • Samuel Suggs

          ok yeah but he should have done and actual comparrion thanks for pointing it out thoguh

  • Blake

    It depends a whole lot on the type of carbon fiber used and the specific layout of the material used in the design. Certain types of carbon fiber have really amazing elastic properties that translate to handling shock really well (e.g. in a bicycle fork), so that makes sense in terms of protecting a scope from recoil. Part of the trick to getting carbon right is protecting the fibres with a hard enough polymer coating, as the tensile strength of a part can be ruined with a few scratches to the raw fibres.

  • Ron Fox

    I’ll throw in my $0.02. First off carbon fiber looks awesome and is incredibly strong when laid up correctly. It is also extremely lightweight. But, and these are big buts, it is expensive to manufacture and the resin used in it is not typically UV resistant, meaning over time it becomes cloudy in appearance.. The final product can be sprayed with a clear coat that GM developed for the roof of their ZR1 corvette but that stuff costs something like – get ready for it – $60,000 a gallon!

    So carbon Fiber is lightweight but how much weight is being saved here? Probably less weight than a bullet – and if you only load 7 rounds in your 10 round magazine you already reduced the total weight of your firearm. This means the only true benefit is bragging rights. So it looks really awesome, there’s no denying that, but you better have a really awesome rifle and scope combo to justify what is essentially a purely aesthetic piece of hardware.. I’d personally feel like a dolt putting carbon fiber scope rings on my Mosin and would be embarrassed using them to hold my CenterPoint scope on my .22lr.

    • Mfoster

      Greetings.

      Just to clarify, the mount is it is being made with a compression type molding process, not wet lay up. This process with compression and heat produces a part much stronger than the lay up method.

      The weight savings will certainly not be a deal maker or breaker by itself. The intent is to produce other parts out of carbon fiber and other strong, lightweight materials in an effort to chip away at the overall weight so that in totality the savings adds up to something noticeable. Hopefully this will be one of more than a few products to follow.

      No doubt aesthetics were a consideration or the design could have been a lot more square.

      Anyway, hope this helps some. Thanks for taking a look at it.

      • Samuel Suggs

        ok so then it should be great as long as you dont get any breakages with early adopters due to manufatureing problems, that would be the death of you. I would focus on the competative market for the time being its not hard to get a foothold once succesful shooters start useing a product its a good place to start. Cops will probobly stick to what they have for qutie awhile which is largely inexspecive leupold’s and eotech’s with the mounting system built ino the base.

        • Mfoster

          Samuel. Thanks for the input and suggestions. We plan to do significant testing and of course hope to avoid manufacturing issues, particularly any breaking.

  • Rootshot

    Capitalism is awesome. You can debate the technical merits of the idea, but if there is a supplier and there are buyers then something is working. Let the early adopters give us feedback on whether it was worth it.

  • ColtT

    I agree with Ron Fox on this issue. The cost out weighs the small benefit. it did make me think however, what about a carbon fiber scope tube? have a thin aluminum liner and carbon fiber outer layer just like the pressure vessels used in paintball are constructed. That might amount to a more substantial weight savings.

  • Cornelius Carroll

    CF is a remarkable material but it’s not particularly easy to work with. There can be significant variation in strength based on small variations in the layup and/or cure.

    Frankly, I find Aero Precision’s lightweight scope mounts more appealing (and AP is staffed by actual aerospace engineers… they know what they’re doing):

    http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_2_592/237371_Aero_Precision_ultra_lightweight_scope_mounts.html

    • Mfoster

      Thanks Cornelius.
      Please forgive any redundancy, I’m not sure if my replies get sent to the author of the original comment or not, and I wanted to get back to you about the lay up process. As I replied above, the scope mount will be made through a compression mold process that more precisely controls the cure rate, amount of epoxy and other variables when making a composite part.
      Those mounts by Aero Precision do look like great products.

      Thanks!

  • Another engineer.

    Carbon fiber? Awesome. $400? Sure, go for it! I wish them luck. My only concern, however, is reliability. Carbon fiber is notoriously unforgiving of impulse. Large shocks, especially as found in high powered rifles, are critical design elements, and must be handled accordingly. Failures, when they do happen, will be catastrophic and without warning. This is part of the reason that paintball tanks, as noted below, are hydrotested every few years. They need a few engineers that have experience laying fiber, and from what I can see on their website, their management team does not. Perhaps they are contracting a designer who does?

    • Mfoster

      Zero G is working with a well known company that produces composite parts for aerospace, military, SATCOM and motorsports. They have helped with the design and manufacturing engineering.

  • Evajasmine01

    thanks for reviewing the product!!! i don’t think i would spend money on Carbon Fiber mounts

    http://www.syencetechnology.com

  • Julia Allan

    I came accross this website to read more info on this great product: http://www.medicalexpo.com/medical-manufacturer/fiberscope-1588.html