Help with Scope Selection
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Old 04-11-2012, 03:21 AM   #1
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So, before hunting season begins this year, I'm planning on having my new hunting rifle ready to rock. I've got the rifle picked out, which took little research due to already having decided a year or so ago that when I got a new rifle it WOULD be a CZ.

Ended up deciding on the 550 American in 30-06. The rifle will be used mainly for hunting whitetail within 250 yards or so. I don't feel comfortable at this point in shooting much past that and being able to make a clean kill. Someday, but not now.

This brings me to my question. Scopes, and long range/accuracy shooting aren't really my thing, or haven't been until this point. I've never hunted much, been a few times though. However, an old man at work has offered to take me to his place in South Carolina a few times this year and show me the ropes. Needless to say I'm excited.

I've had rifles in the past that had terrible glass on them, and don't want to go that road again, but I'm not in a place where I can spend $800-$1000 for a scope either. I figure something in the $400-$550 range is kinda what I'm wanting to spend, but could go a little in either direction. I've been looking around and there are a few different scopes from different manufacturers that I've been reading a bit about, but wanted to get some opinions from those in the know.

I'm looking for something with a magnification of 2-3 on the low side and 9-10 on the high. 30mm tube and a larger than 40mm objective would be nice, but I know that having glass of higher quality will get me a better and clearer image through the scope than having the larger tube and objective lens.

Here's what I've got so far. Prices are all from MidwayUSA. I know I can get it cheaper elsewhere, but this gives us a baseline to see cost comparisons.

Vortex Viper HS 2.5-10x44mm $389.99

Leupold VX-3 3.5-10x40mm $479.99

Nikon Monarch 2.5-10x42mm $389.95

Sightron SII Big Sky 3-9x42mm $401.99

Sightron SII Big Sky 3.5-10x42mm $466.11

Weaver Super Slam Either a 2-10x42mm $419.99 or 2-10x50mm $459.99

As you'll notice, most of these are in the $400-$470 range. I'm not opposed to spending up to ~$550, but it seems like from here, it jumps up to the $700 range, which I'm not willing to spend.

If you were in my situation, which of these would you choose, or would you choose something else entirely? I see that some scopes have a side focus (mostly the more expensive ones), so I'm sure it's better, but not sure why.

Just wanted to get some opinions before I spent my hard earned dollars. Thanks for any and all info.

-Fred

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Old 04-11-2012, 03:56 AM   #2
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The larger the magnification, the smaller the field of view. I DO use some very high powered scopes- but for very long range target shooting- and I am not trying to find a moving target (unlike a deer).

The more internal pieces parts, the less light that gets thru the scope. For 250 yards, you MIGHT want to think about a 4 power fixed magnification scope. Remember that US Army Snipers thru WW2 used a 2.5 power scope.

A 50mm will be brighter than a smaller objective (all other things being equal) but a large scope has to sit higher just to clear the barrel. Not always good for a hunting scope.

While there are some big brand name scopes with big $$$ attached, for hunting I have been partial to Redfield for some time. made in Oregon, good scope for the money-

http://www.cabelas.com/product/Redfield174-Revolution8482-Riflescopes/720960.uts?WT.srch=1&WT.tsrc=PPC&WT.mc_id=bing|opt _Riflescopes_Redfield|USA&WT.z_mc_id1=beGNqidcZ&ri d=20&pcrid=378817339&sadid=44000000015053980#produ ctChart

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Old 04-11-2012, 03:48 PM   #3
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Given your price range I would look at Vortex and Minox with Minox being the better glass in my opinion.

Cameraland New York has good "Open Box Specials" on a wide selection of scopes. I've bought my last three scopes from them and been happy with each purchase, customer service, and price.

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Old 04-11-2012, 06:11 PM   #4
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Really, you don't need to look no further than a Nikon Buckmaster 3-9x40 or a Burris FullfieldII 3-9x40 or 3-9x50. Both scopes have great glass and nothing else to give you excuses of why you missed your shot. I have both of these type scopes on my hunting rifles and they have proven themselves under all weather and hunting conditions without fail.
Forgot about Redfield Revolution. Also great little scope.
Del

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Old 04-11-2012, 06:36 PM   #5
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Just based on magnification, I would go with the Weaver. The 2X would give you a better chance at closer range. I used 3-9x and kept it set at 3x. There were times I wished for less power and never felt under scoped.

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Old 04-12-2012, 12:37 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c3shooter View Post
The more internal pieces parts, the less light that gets thru the scope. For 250 yards, you MIGHT want to think about a 4 power fixed magnification scope. Remember that US Army Snipers thru WW2 used a 2.5 power scope.
I thought about getting a fixed power, but in the off season I would like to be able to practice some longer range shooting, so the increased magnification would be helpful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BikerRN View Post
Given your price range I would look at Vortex and Minox with Minox being the better glass in my opinion.
I've never even heard of Minox until you posted about it, but looking at their scopes and reading some reviews, it's definitely in the mix, namely the ZA 5 2-10x40mm. Unless someone points out something that I haven't seen, or has some good reason not to, it looks like this may be the scope that I end up getting.

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Originally Posted by JTJ View Post
Just based on magnification, I would go with the Weaver. The 2X would give you a better chance at closer range. I used 3-9x and kept it set at 3x. There were times I wished for less power and never felt under scoped.
No doubt. I really don't ever see myself setting the scope to more than 4x or 5x. In fact it will probably be kept on the lowest setting at most times when hunting. The only times it will be cranked up is when target shooting in the off-season.

-Fred
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FCross7 View Post
I thought about getting a fixed power, but in the off season I would like to be able to practice some longer range shooting, so the increased magnification would be helpful.



I've never even heard of Minox until you posted about it, but looking at their scopes and reading some reviews, it's definitely in the mix, namely the ZA 5 2-10x40mm. Unless someone points out something that I haven't seen, or has some good reason not to, it looks like this may be the scope that I end up getting.



No doubt. I really don't ever see myself setting the scope to more than 4x or 5x. In fact it will probably be kept on the lowest setting at most times when hunting. The only times it will be cranked up is when target shooting in the off-season.

-Fred
I've been happy with my two Minox scopes. One on a 25-06 and the other on a .300 Win Mag.
They aren't known for scopes, but they also make great spy cameras.
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