Aimpoint makes the M68 CCO, a red dot sight that is rugged and tough enough for military use, and their others models, like the PRO are just as tough, as homeowner Paul Riddell found out in February. Recoil Web tells the story:
Paul Riddell had a shitty winter. He lost his Minnesota home to a fire one night this past February.
Thankfully, no one was hurt in the fire. The house was a total loss, though.
“I lost pretty much everything,” he says.
Aside from all his family’s other possessions, he lost three firearms in the blaze. But, he reports his Aimpoint PRO mounted on a Spikes/BCM frankenrifle somehow survived the fire. That’s it in the inset photo of his rifle above, red dot glowing defiantly. Aimpoint found out about it and have already swapped it for a brand new optic and plan to display the survivor in their museum.
“Here’s a picture of my AR after it was recovered from my house fire after being exposed to the elements for over a month in late February to mid March,” said Riddell. “The rifle was at the core of the fire.”
He said the rifle sat there in the water and ice leftover from the firefighters, exposed to the outside in sub zero Wisconsin winter. Weeks later, Riddell was allowed to look through the wreckage after the fire investigation was complete. He found his melted pile of a rifle covered in ice, rust, ash and mud in the debris. The polymer rifle case it was stored in had fused to sections of the rifle, as well. He pried open the eyepiece cover on the PRO and turned the knob. And, it lit up.
“Had I been willing to trust firing the gun,” said Riddell, ” I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if it held zero.”
Riddell learned a few things from this terrible experience. One thing he shared with us is the importance of a quality gun safe. “Buy quality gear,” he said. “I lost both my rifles and my shotgun because I had all this money invested in the guns and was storing them in a sheetmetal locking StackOn cabinet.”
He says his new gear is now stored in a real firesafe from Liberty Safe.
Riddell had homeowner’s insurance and will recover the value of many of his lost possessions, but things like family heirlooms and photos are gone forever. He and his family are staying with relatives while they work through the process of rebuilding their home.
Firesafes big enough for a gun collection can be as expensive as a new gun itself, but the extra protection they offer against house fires is more than worth the price, especially if you have a large collection.