Nikon BDC Reticule with .308
I've just purchased a Remington 700VTR in .308 and outfitted it with a Nikon Monarch 4-16x50 scope with the BDC reticule.
The BDC reticule consists of a cross hair with four circles on the lower leg. With a 2800fps muzzle velocity, you should have a 100yd zero and the circles automatically subtend out to 200, 300, 400, and 500 yards.
With a 3000fps muzzle velocity, you set a 200yd zero with subtends out to 300, 400, 500, and 600 yards.
In the BDC reticule video on Nikon's website, they state that they are using a 150 grain .308 with 2800fps mv for the 100yd zero demonstration. Later in the video for the 200yd zero demo, they say they are using a 300 Win Mag with 3000fps mv, but they don't say what weight they're using.
I bought Hornady SST Interlock Superformance cartridges in 150 grain with 3000fps mv. With a 200yd zero, they are supposed to be +1.5" @ 100yds. I only have a 100yd range available to me so I plan on zeroing the rifle at +1.5" at 100yds for a theoretical 200yd zero.
Finally my questions.
1. Can I expect to see the proper accuracy with the BDC reticule with my aforementioned plan?
2. Is there anyone else out there who can tell me which factory loads and set-ups have delivered the best accuracy with the BDC reticule?
It's important to note that my VTR is the Cabela's edition with the 24" un-ported barrel...NOT the 22" ported version with 20.5" of barrel behind the break. Hornady's ballistic testing is based on a 24" barrel...so I should achieve proper MV.
I don't hand load YET, so I'm only interested in posters who have experience with multiple factory .308's with the BDC reticule.
Help would be greatly appreciated.
For the 300 Win Mag they are probably using a 180gr bullet as the benchmark. Do not take those distances from the manufacturer as absolute. Once you settle on a load you like you'll have to test it with the scope to see where those circles are lining up for you and your load. They are there as a guideline but it is impossible to make that system exact with so many load variations possible.
Another thing to consider is that for long distance shooting the circles are not a very precise way of aiming because the area inside a circle is 1.5" at 100 yards, so at 500 yards that circle has about 7.5" of real estate inside it.
fine for hunting but not so much for target work. If you are looking for small groups at long distances you are better off compensating for drop with clicks on your turret.
This is a hunting rifle for me. So if I can hit a paper plate at 500 yards, then I'm totally cool with that. That's what the BDC reticule was designed for...keeping you in the kill zone out to 500 or 600 yards.
I've changed up my plan a little (at Wambli's advice) and decided not to trust the drop ratings on the box. I went and bought the Hornady 150 grain Interbond. It has a claimed muzzle velocity of 2820fps. I'm going to zero at 100 yards with that which should put me pretty spot on with the circles...as designed...hopefully. The 100 yard zero on the BDC was designed around a .308 150gr w/2800 fpsmv load.
Why am I sticking with Hornady you might ask? I have heard that you should have at least 1,000 ft-lbs of energy at point of impact to humanely take deer-sized game and Hornady has the best selection that meet all of my criteria:
150gr, 2800fpsmv +/- 20 fps, and 1,000+ ft-lbs @ 500 yards (my max range)
Plus, I like the Polymer tips.
Remington has the Scirocco ammo that meet that criteria, but that's the only one....though several are in the 900's as far as energy at 500yds so they would probably work just fine.
Damn! I'm so picky...I should be re-loading already! Lol.
The only way to get a correct yardage for the BDC is to shoot at different ranges with the ammo you are using. And then practice,practice,practice.
Good ammo selection specially for the longer ranges. The tip will help expansion as the bullet bleeds velocity. This rifle/scope/ammo combo should work great for your purposes.
Well, it took me about 8 rounds to get everything sighted in pretty good. I ended the sight in with a MOA group. I'll dial it in better when I get to an actual range...I was shooting at a target stapled to a log in the prone...and walking 100 yards out and back every time to stand the log back up. On the bright side, that probably helped the barrel to cool a bit between shots. I also ran a brush and patch after every shot for the first five.
After sighting in, we went to one of the other fields and slayed Armadillos for about 3 hours. 100 yards, no problem...one shot one kill every time. We killed about a dozen and a half at that range. I was able to kill a couple at 200 yards using the BDC's first circle, but when I was only 1 for 2 out between 250 and 300 on the second circle.
Still not bad, but I think it will be much better when I get it to an actual range on a bench and really dial it in. Also, we were kind of guessing on the range as we were in an open field with no significant targets for the range finder out that far. These "Stealth Armadillos" were too small for the range finder. :D
I sighted in using the Hornady 150gr SST Interlocks. I switched to the Hornady 150gr Superformance just to see how much different they would be and there was almost no difference at 100yds. They were grouping about 1" lower...that's probably because I adjusted my scope to the higher arc trajectory of the slower Interlocks, where the Superformance are a bit flatter. I'm probably going to stay with the Interlocks.
All said and done, I put 32 rounds through the pipe and couldn't be happier with this combination. I've heard with the 700 VTR, the groups really start to tighten up after 50 rounds. I can't wait to get it to a real range.
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