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Interesting observation on fixed power scopes

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 11:51
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There is a really cool article/pictorial in the July/August edition of Sports Afield on the rifles of Jack O'Connor. It looks as though all of Jacks' rifles were wearing some sort of fixed power scope, Weavers, Leupolds, Stith Kollmorgan in either 3X or 4X. I'm not sure if this was by choice or maybe there weren't alot, if any, variable power scopes back in the day. Either way I thought it was interesting in contrast to todays trend of ultra-high magnification and "giant" 50+ mm objective lenses.  Jack certainly was no amateur when it came to hunting, shooting, and just general "gun-looniness" It was refreshing to see some basic, simple, effective killing hardware from days gone by - no 4-16X magnifications, adjustable side focus, tritium illumination, custom paint jobs, just the basics. It sure makes me love my 4X Conquests even more!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 12:16
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I agree, I have a couple 4x scopes and for many hunting situations they work super well.  They are just tough, consistent and always the same.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 12:50
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Technology is great isn't it, while I think 4x or 6x is just fine for most hunting situations, it sure is nice to be able to go from 2x-10x if required.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 13:27
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Every time I think going to a fixed power scope would be a good idea I wake up and realize it was just a bad dream.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 14:03
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I agree and have always found 2.5x and 4x scopes to be plenty for all of my hunting needs. Now I will admit most of my hunting is for deer east of the Miss. and frankly my longest shot has been about 225 yds and I've had three at approx. that range. The rest have been from 125 yds to bayonet range. So I might feel differently if I lived out west.   But even there 6x is probably plenty .
I imagine that the reason that O Conner used fixed power scopes was in the 50's and 60's when he was at his prime the variables avaliable tended to be rather large and unreliable. That's not the case today. I do find it surprising that the fixed power scopes in say the leupold FX line are as expensive or more so than many of their variables. It's not like they have to come up with a lot of new technology. I would like to see them offer a good solid 4x33 and 6x40 in their redfield line in the sub $150 price range. I bet they would sell more than a few. Having said all of that and still having a couple of 4x scopes still in the lineup, the last couple of scopes I have bought have been variables. The reason is that is what 's readily avaliabe and it is sort of nice when at the range to be able to crank up the power for my old eyes. Funny though my variables really only need two settings 3x and 9x as I rarely stop in between.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 14:16
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I have a 1956 Shooter's Bible which lists only two variable power scopes, a 2-7x and a 3-10x, both from Kahles. No price is listed for those two scopes so it looked like they were special order items. The remaining 52 hunting scopes listed are fixed power as are all of the target scopes. My older relatives tell me that during Jack O'Connor's time most rifles weren't scoped at all. In many areas, it was rare to see a scope on a hunting rifle until the 70's(?).

Statistics confirm that 90% of deer, give or take, are killed at less than 200 yards. A fixed 4x scope will take all of these deer. I shot my first buck 21 years ago using a borrowed rifle with a Lyman Alaskan 2 1/2x and a post reticle at 240 yards. One shot. My cousin's father who owned that rifle killed a buck at a measured 410 yards with that same rifle and scope. Some may call that luck but he practiced a lot and that rifle and scope were state-of-the-art for the 60's. That scope was no handicap whatsoever.

I hunt mostly on foot in the northern forests of New York. Many of my opportunities happen pretty quickly. If you only have a couple of seconds to make a lethal shot, you really will benefit from a reticle that is simple. Often there is no time to adjust magnification and the shots are not long enough to require allowing for holdover. I would bet this is still the case for many hunters. How many times have you heard the story of not being able to find a deer in the scope because the deer was very close and the scope was set at maximum magnification?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 14:21
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My dad killed a yote at 380 yards with his muzzleloader with a T/C 1x scope. 

All my variable hunting scopes are at 3x all the time while hunting.  And most of my shots are taken at 3x because they are usually quick.


Edited by supertool73 - July/06/2010 at 14:22
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 14:28
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 "If you only have a couple of seconds to make a lethal shot, you really will benefit from a reticle that is simple."
 
  bb,have you seen the C3 reticle offered by Vortex?  I got the scope recently so of course haven't hunted with it but myself and others have messed with it enough to realize that the design of the reticle makes for very quick target aquisition. 
 
  
 


Edited by 300S&W - July/06/2010 at 14:29
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 14:46
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Nope, haven't seen the C3 other than on the net. Sounds interesting though. I'm still planning on buying the Zeiss 4x, but the money I was expecting to have by now has been delayed one month. Have you guys looked through the old time gun ads on Field and Stream's homepage? Several people have commented, myself included, on there not being any scopes in any of the rifle ads from the 40's to the 60's.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 15:36
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 ALOT of receiver mounted peep sights used back then.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 15:54
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I've hunted with iron sights (once...and successfully) and have used a 2.5X scout scope and 4X scopes. Any decent 4X is more than adequate out to 200, even 300 yards in the right conditions. They are relatively cheap, compact and lightweight as well as durable. And there's no need to remember to dial down!

I still shoot a 4X Leupy FX-II on my .22 target rifle and have an old Bushnell 4X on another .22. But ever since I got into ranges beyond max. PBR the relatively low magnification, lack of ranging reticles and target turrets made me move to tactical scopes. But I say you should really have a good reason to need more than a good 4X. I'm sure you Zeiss owners out there really love the clarity of the optics too.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 17:12
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 Yep.  My ol'eyes are really appreciating it. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 19:21
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Like you Earl I've got those old eyes[Dec11,1946] Can you tell me what the main difference is between 4A German,which I have on both my hunting riffles & the new C3.Does one have an advantage over the other.....Thanks
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/06/2010 at 20:09
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  Never used a #4 but have used a post and crosshair in an El Paso Weaver K4-1 and Leupold's Hvy Duplex.  Both I like for the type of terrain I hunt but this C3 has got my interest peaked.  The way it's designed your view is drawn immediately to that center ring and then to the point of aim on your target. To me target aquisition is faster than the other two reticles I mentioned. So far that is the main diff I've found over the other two. I can't tell you the size at 100yds of that ring,although I do plan on measuring it soon,but it is not small like a turkey hunting reticle. Everyone who has looked through the scope says the same thing about it's GOOD target aquisition qualities.  So far,unless there is something negative I find out during hunting season,it looks to be a top choice for hunting thick stuff,shooting moving targets,and it's not"too busy"of a reticle to be used at longer shots.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 09:27
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Many, many of my customers are outfitters and guides. A common thread of complaints from them is, that after all the work a guide does to get shot opportunities for the hunting client, the clients then devote often very critical time to fussing with all the adjustments on their high-end, high-mag, tall-turret-covered bulky scopes instead of just shooting the animal in a timely  fashion.
 
This is a result of some things obvious, including the fact that many have more money than sense, and fussing with scopes and rifles is admittedly a year-round activity, while taking the big game shot is but a few seconds out of our year.
 
The consensus among them is that a rapidly increasing percentage of hunters are confused between scope advantages at the bench versus in the field, and show up with great 1000-yd paper scopes which are likely to be a mighty handicap out in the elk woods.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 09:46
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 "The consensus among them is that a rapidly increasing percentage of hunters are confused between scope advantages at the bench versus in the field, and show up with great 1000-yd paper scopes which are likely to be a mighty handicap out in the elk woods."
 
  I've read about that in mag articles for awhile now but from what you say it happens more often than I thought.  D*mn shame.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 12:04
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Thanks for the info.I used to use a fix  4x but as I've gotten older I switched over to a Conquest 3.5-10x50 with a #4 ret.I find myself still not exceeding 5x.I will try to find a store that might have a scope with the C3.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 12:43
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Fixed-power scopes are great.  The only real improvement that could be made to them, is if there could just be a way to adjust (say by turning a ring on the ocular, perhaps?) to other power settings.   THEN a guy would have something! 
 
Or, a guy could carry pre-sighted 3x, 4x, 6x and 9x fixed power scopes with quick-release rings and swap scopes as the situation dictates.   He could carry them in a bandolier around the chest so that swapping them would be really fast.
 
Tongue firmly in cheek.... :)
 
When direct observation showed me that I preferred the view of a Leupold 2.5-8x36mm, set at 4x, over the Leupold 4x that I'd come into the gunshop to BUY that day... I knew then that variables were by and large the scope for me. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 18:40
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There is nothing particularly wrong with a fixed power scope if that is what you like.  In some situations they offer certain advantages: compactness of the ACOG or ruggedness and long eye relief of the FX-2 2.5x20 for example.

However, for most uses, if you really want a fixed power scope, get a variable and duct tape the power adjustment ring at the setting you like.

ILya


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 19:57
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            Say What!!!!!!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/07/2010 at 20:48
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Originally posted by Roy Finn Roy Finn wrote:

Every time I think going to a fixed power scope would be a good idea I wake up and realize it was just a bad dream.
 
Good one I like it.....
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/08/2010 at 08:17
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Ilya must have watched the same Mythbusters double feature on Duct tape I watched last night.
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/08/2010 at 16:12
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Well, let's look at it this way: You've got two brothers -  Joe and Loe Blow. Each has $500 to spend, has little time and not enough knowledge or interest to become a true long-range shooter. Loe goes out and buys a $450 4-16 and two boxes of cartridges. Meanwhile Joe puts $270 into a Leupold FX-II 4X and the rest into ammo and goes out and shoots four times as much as Loe. I will bet my money on Joe, who has a far simpler setup and knows his scope, his rifle and himself.

IMO, until you know how why it's important to know which variables to change when using standard vs. corrected pressure in a ballistics calculator, a scope that goes beyond 4X is a waste.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/08/2010 at 16:18
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Originally posted by jonoMT jonoMT wrote:

Well, let's look at it this way: You've got two brothers -  Joe and Loe Blow. Each has $500 to spend, has little time and not enough knowledge or interest to become a true long-range shooter. Loe goes out and buys a $450 4-16 and two boxes of cartridges. Meanwhile Joe puts $270 into a Leupold FX-II 4X and the rest into ammo and goes out and shoots four times as much as Loe. I will bet my money on Joe, who has a far simpler setup and knows his scope, his rifle and himself.

IMO, until you know how why it's important to know which variables to change when using standard vs. corrected pressure in a ballistics calculator, a scope that goes beyond 4X is a waste.

A good example, but kinda apples-to-oranges.  

What if instead of buying a $450 4-16x scope, Loe goes out and buys a 3-9x40 Vortex Viper for about $300 or 2-7x32 Viper for about $270 and ends up with an optically superior and more versatile scope than Joe, accompanied by the same amount of practice ammo.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/08/2010 at 16:21
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Originally posted by jonoMT jonoMT wrote:



IMO, until you know how why it's important to know which variables to change when using standard vs. corrected pressure in a ballistics calculator, a scope that goes beyond 4X is a waste.


Being able to zoom up to 9X has allowed me to make shots that I have passed on before with a fixed 4X. I have the resolution that I need to see that the deer is moving in and out of saplings that just can't be seen with the lower power.
I didn't need a calculator for that.

Doug
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