Letter Re: Yukon Gen 1 Night Vision Rifle Scope – A Product Review

I had delayed writing a review of the Yukon night vision rifle scope because I have to wonder who else is reading your site. I don’t want to do a disservice to all the good folks that visit your [blog] site. I surely don’t want the bad guys knowing the following. Unless they stumble on it themselves. If they are going to use one I would rather they use one of these gems. I may buy a few
other night vision scopes just to see if the problem is in the design or I got a bad one. Here’s what I
The scope is a Yukon Gen 1 with a illuminated circle/dot reticle, 1.5x42mm NVRS. It has an IR illuminator that supposedly gives it a 350 yd. range. I found that when the scope is first turned on with the illuminator off the operation is normal. The resolution is poor…it was a challenge seeing a 4×6 foot target board 100 yards down range. I had an equally difficult time
finding my (black) horse in the pasture 50-60 yards out with fresh batteries. With the illuminator on targets were easier to spot and maintain.
Now the fun part: After the illuminator was switched off the IR source continued to produce an output albeit at a LOWER INTENSITY but VERY visible.
So, not sure what I was dealing with, I ran a test. While in a very dark closet the NVRS was switched on nv only and I donned a NVG to “see” what I
would find. Nothing. Okay. I then switched on the illuminator which functioned fine. I then switched off the illuminator and sure enough there was a healthy glow emanating from the IR diode. I waited quite a while and re-checked the IR just to be certain I was not seeing some persistence in the diode and/or circuit that drives the diode and it was still producing an
output. I shut off the NVRS and the IR glow was still present. If the batteries were removed from the NVRS and after the IR circuit discharged the NVRS and illuminator would function normally until the IR switch was again out in the “on” position.
I can assume that either the IR driver has a component leaking current to the diode, a very long time constant on a capacitor or the “problem” is in the design. Either way this is one accessory I would not want to have on me in a TEOTWAWKI situation. The green “power on” indicator LED is bad enough. It lights up the operator’s face as a beacon in the night!
So, as you can see – if the problem is in the design and not confined to the one that I had – I would rather the bad guys have the scope. I do tell those I trust, respect and would like to see remain at 98.6 degrees F. – Joe