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Looking for advice, $2100 to spend on first scope.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/14/2011 at 22:54
jmyner99er View Drop Down
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Hey guys, I bought my first rifle, a Sako A7 in 7mm rm. Im kind of overwhelmed on what scope I should buy. I have $2100 to spend, and to me it’s a huge purchase. (I don’t plan on buying another scope of this caliber for a very long time) I have been researching scopes for a few months now, endlessly! Im to the point where I need to get one and start finding a sweet load.

 

I plan on using this scope for mule deer hunting in Wyoming this year, but Im thinking, I will get more use from it at the range shooting 300yd (possibly more) I would like to be confident in possibly shooting accurately out to about 600yd.

 

I almost bought on impulse the other day a z5 3.5-18x44 with the ballistic turret. Im not sure if a z6 would be better? I figured the z6 3-18x50 would be a well rounded scope, but Im not sure if the 2.5-15x56 is better (compared to the other z6 3-18) or how the z6 2.5-15x44 compares to the z5 3.5-18.

 

I know any of the above scopes are nice, but I really like the Zeiss Victory Diavari FL 4-16. It’s more $$$ then I want to spend. And of course, you have Schmidt & Bender, which I know nothing about except they are up there too.

 

Im seriously thinking about getting a Swarovski, and Im thinking about getting a Swarovski ballistic turret, but not sure. I do like the simplicity of predetermined settings, but I only count 4. (guess it would be ok if it were zeroed in at 300) What are your thoughts on the BT. (remember Im no expert when it comes to doping, or optics)

 

What is preferred, a front focal plane or a secondary focal plane?

 

Another important question is given the above scopes and objectives, what scope mounts and/or rings should I get? I would be willing to pay around $125.  I think the A7 came with weaver type mount.

 

How would you guys set up this rifle?

Thanks for being patient and taking the time to read this.

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/14/2011 at 23:50
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What is going to be the typical use for this rifle?

My recommendations are going to depend on that.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/14/2011 at 23:58
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First of all, sounds like a nice rifle. Secondly, your goals are ambitious but not overly so. In other words, you didn't come on here asking what's the best $300 scope for shooting out to 1000 yards. You've got more than enough budget to get a really good scope that will meet your aims. I'd suggest allocating a bit more for the base and rings. A good thing about the A7 is you have a magazine so a one-piece base won't make it hard to load/unload. That doesn't mean you have to go with a one-piece. If the A7 comes with those Picatinny/Weaver style two-pieces that I've seen that will work. However, a one-piece will be stiffer (and will help stiffen the action) and some scope manufacturers (e.g. NF) recommend a one-piece.

I'd put $100 or more into rings alone and something like that for the base. So what scopes will meet your needs for $1900 or less? IOR is one brand I'd look at. You've mentioned some other good choices. The soon-to-be-available Premier Hunter and Light Tactical 3-15s would be something to consider. The glass will be really good. Personally, I'd prefer the LT because it will have some form of target turrets. Honestly, you could get something like the Vortex 4-16 PST and probably be quite happy with it. I'd make sure I had some other things first, like a first-rate bipod (Atlas or at least a Harris). The optics are important, but so are other things. I'd rather have a Vortex scope and a Swaro rangefinder than a Swaro scope.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 00:14
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Im not a big deer hunter, but I went with my dad to Wyoming last year,  Im going this year, and possibly next. I know I will get more use at the shooting range, thats why I was thinking z6 3-18x50 or why not the 2.5-15x56 From what I have been reading the downside with the 50mm objective is high scope rings. If I decided on the 50mm then I should consider the 56mm. My dad has a older Swarovski in 50mm, I asked him earlier what size his rings were and he said high (mod.700 300wm) It seem to fit me ok, as far as cheek weld, but then again, I do not have alot of shooting expirence to know a difference. The The same goes with a ffp vs. sfp scope.
 
 
(Will someone just buy the Zeiss Victory Diavari FL for me so I can end the confusion) Smile 
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 00:38
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jonoMT, you made alot of great points, and your suggestions are the reason I joined this forum.  I am more confused on rings and bases more then anything. I am willing to spend more, and I agree they are important. Most of the problems I have read about accuracy have been the mounting system. I have read talley and warne are good, but they make quite a few, not to mention manufacturers I dont know.

I believe the difference between the tikkas and sako finnlights use a proprietary optic mount, and with the A7 they use standard weaver type.
 
My A7 is in stainless and it has the "ST" stock which is really similar to Brownings duratouch. Im really liking it! (but it need a nice scope) Im using my tax return, and from what I read, people say get the best scope you can get. Im looking at this as an investment, and Im sure I will have this rifle/scope for 30yrs. 
 
jonoMT, who makes Premier Hunter and Light Tactical?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 10:16
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Don't forget about the samplelist....  I found these - if you decide you like them

SPL12139Swarovski 2-12x50 Z6 Riflescope DEMO-A
Click to view59316, Matte, Ballistic Reticle, 30mm
$1,549.95
SPL12117Swarovski 2-12x50 Z6 Riflescope DEMO-B
Click to view59311, Matte, plex, 30mm
$1,499.95
SPL10678Swarovski 2-12x50 Z6 Riflescope DEMO-B
Click to view59311, Matte, plex, 30mm
$1,449.95
SPL10348Swarovski 2-12x50 Z6 Riflescope DEMO-B
Click to view59314, Matte, 7A, 30mm
$1,599.95
SPL12610Swarovski 3.5-18x44 Z5 Rifle Scope DEMO-A
Click to view59767, Matte, BRX, 1"
$1,229.95
SPL11798Swarovski 3.5-18x44 Z5 Riflescope DEMO-A
 59767, Matte, BRX, 1"
$1,299.95
SPL10651Swarovski 4-16x50 Professional Hunter Riflescope DEMO-A
Click to view57221, Matte, plex, 30mm
$1,199.95

SPL11047SWFA 10x42 SS HD Riflescope DEMO-B
Click to viewSS10X42HD, Matte, Mil-Dot reticle, 30mm, 0.1 MIL
$699.95
SPL11525SWFA 3-9x42 SS Rifle Scope DEMO-B
Click to viewSS39X42, Matte, FFP Mil Dot, 30mm
$499.99







Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 10:36
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The 50mm bell does not automatically mean high rings.  I have a Kahles with a 50mm bell and it mounts fine with med height Warne QR rings.
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 13:05
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Welcome to the OT James!
 
I have both of the scopes you are looking at,Swaro 3.5-18 & Zeiss FL in 800Zplex.Both are fantastic as far as the glass goes.Out to 300 yds edge to Swaro after that the Zeiss seems to have more detail in a some what softer manner,which I seem to like.I'ts almost like comparring a Sony vs a Mitusbishi tv's,the sony is more pleasing on the eyes as the colors are softer.
 
One thing to take into account,with the Swaro is that you will have to take their plex reticle when going to the balistic turret system.As far as the Zeiss make sure you get the correct Z plex for your caliber,which will push the price up.
 
My solution was to get a Kenton  industries turret made for .308 caliber for the Zeiss[$115 cost]still cheaper then the $200 you will pay for the ballistic turret for the Swaro.
 
As far as rings ,don't skimp.I use Badger,Night Force with titanium bolt & Talley tactical[skull & cross bones]I use these on all my rail systems,all are very good.
 
On my Rem 700 5r I prefer the Tally one piece.
 
Hoped this helped & good luck with which ever you end up with,can't go wrong with either one.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 13:16
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Originally posted by brodeur272 brodeur272 wrote:

The 50mm bell does not automatically mean high rings.  I have a Kahles with a 50mm bell and it mounts fine with med height Warne QR rings.
 
 


+1

Depending on the rifle and ring/base manufacturer it differs.

My Swaro 50mm scope on a m700 used Leupold "highs".

The same scope and rifle using Talley are "mediums".

The scope actually sat lower with the Leupold configuration but I'm extremely happy with Talley.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 15:59
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Premier Reticles is the manufacturer of the Hunter and Light Tactical. As I mentioned, these aren't out yet, but should be some promising scopes. They are similar to the Premier Heritage 3-15, but weigh less, have a 30mm tube and along with that less elevation than the whopping 117 MOA of the Heritage. The glass should still be really good. If it's like the Heritage, that means phenomenal.

I forgot to mention Kahles as another possibility. For rings and mounts, I prefer Seekins, but the others mentioned, as well as Badger are all worth considering.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 16:23
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I usually use eithe Talley or Badger Ordnance or La Rue if I need quick detachable.
I dont think there is a wrong choice in your list of possible scopes.  I would probably go with a 50 mm or smaller and I would prefer the balistic turret rather than the balistic reticle because you can actually set the zero on the range for each known distance with the balistic turret and with the reticle it is never quite exact as every different bullet and brand of bullet will fly a bit different.  I would suggest you use either a Barnes TSX bullet or Nosler partition bullet  (best penetration with good expansion)  but you may want to test several brands to see what shoots best in your rifle and I was quite impressed this year by Winchester Power Max bullets in a .243 so you might want to try that one also.  Also since you probably need to practice a little on the range to keep from developing a flinch with your Mag I would suggest you pick up a little 17 HMR rifle like a Savage and put something like a 3-9 Super Sniper on that just to play with on the range and develope your skill level.    It can be a good idea to go from a high recoil gun to a no recoil gun just to learn to eliminate the flinch of anticipating the recoil.
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/15/2011 at 16:24
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A Swaro Z6 1.7-10x or 2-12x would be my choice.  I recently got the 1.7-10x for my Browning mountain TI 300 WSM.  It has the duratouch stock, I really like that as well.   It is a fantastic scope, and optics are flat out amazing.  I just went with Talley lightweight aluminum's for my mounts.  I was trying to keep the package as light as possible.  They are plenty strong, I have been using them on my 45-70 for a while now with no issues.  My setup is right under 7lbs. 

 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/16/2011 at 10:26
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$hit the Bed.... that set-up is down right B-E-A-UTIFUL! WOW.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/16/2011 at 22:03
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Thanks stickbow46 for the welcome, from the replies I have received so far, I can see I came to the right forum for some help.

 

Tips69 I didn’t realize what the samplelist was, thanks for posting links.

 

Brodeur, Mike, and Stickbow Im definitely confused with rings/bases but I found this thread. http://www.opticstalk.com/how-to-determine-proper-ring-height_topic5946.html After I have a scope ordered, I will start a new topic on this.

 

Urimaginaryfrnd that is a good point about turret compared to the reticles. Will the ballistic turret function throughout different magnification ranges? What is more desirable FFP or SFP, Im not understanding the differences? I have read its personal preference, but Im pretty new, so I don’t really have a preference.

 

Urimaginaryfrnd, without getting to off topic, I plan on getting a good assortment of bullets between 150gr and 168. (TSX, Nosler, Berger, Sierra MK) My barrel is a 1:9.5 twist, Im curious if there is a correct bullet or formula. i.e Berger’s  VLD  site has recommended twist for 7mm with 168gr to be 10, and for their 180gr to be 9. (also another topic) J

Back to the scope topic:

 

Supertool73 your hunting set up is bad azz!

 

Im kind of stuck on one of the four Swaro model I mentioned in my first post. (I just don’t know enough about S&B or Khales, and I don’t know where I could go fondle them) The Zeiss model I want would be the straw that broke the camels back, or in my case broke the piggy bank. J

 

Any differences between the one z5 and the three z6’s besides the obvious tube size, mag range, and objective size?

How does the two 44mm obj scopes compared to each other? I would think, bbl and mounting system a constant, that if I were to compare the 2.5-15x56 to the 3-18x50, that the rings would be same and the 56mm would be more desirable? From the info I read, 18x is a lot of zoom, possibly to much?

 
Z5 3.5-18x44 compared to z6 3-18x50  are pretty much the same? Difference being light gathering of 50mm at max mag and elev/windage adjustments of the 30mm tube?
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/17/2011 at 12:45
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I believe the optics are the same in the z5 and z6 series.  Differences are just what you stated. 

This is just my opinion, but get the scope that will be best for the things you use the rifle for the most.  Meaning if 95% of your shooting is going to be 300 yards or less then the tradeoffs of the larger scopes may just not be worth it.  Swaro scope are quite heavy as is, getting one with a 56mm objective could really change the balance of a rifle.

In my case I shoot out to 400 yards at elk occasionally.  But I spend a lot more time shooting at them within 200 yards and I also spend a lot of time hunting in thick oak and mahogany trees.  So the 1.7x bottom end makes a lot of sense.  And 10x is plenty for my occasional long shots. 

But if you are going to be shooting at 600 a lot, then it makes more sense.  


Edited by supertool73 - March/17/2011 at 13:32
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/17/2011 at 19:03
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+1 with super,I called Swaro last year when I purchased my Z5 and was told in fact that even the Z3,Z5&Z6 are all the same glass.The inner workings of the Z5&Z6 are almost  identical as said before only the tube is the basic difference.If it's only the glass you are interested in go with the Z3 & get a top notch ring & rail set like Badger,that would set you back $350 but they would add to the stability of the scope system!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/17/2011 at 23:37
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$350, holy moly, I think I would only want to spend $200. I look at them briefly saw some at $165 just to give me an idea. (but Im not againt the $350 price if I can justify)


Two questions:
 
A) how does one figure out the maximum distance a scope will give you for elevation? (i.e. one of the Swaro models im looking at)

B) No one has told me the difference between Front Focal Plane and Second Focal plane. What are the trade-offs on that? Whats would a sniper prefer, what would hunter prefer, or even a benchrest shooter?
 
Thanks guys
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/17/2011 at 23:43
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BULLET WEIGHT / CALIBER / TWIST RATE CHART

Grain/Cal .172 .204 .224 .243 .257 .264 .277 .284 .308 .338 .358
17-20 9-10                    
25 10                    
30 9 12                  
33   12                  
35   12                  
37 VLD 6                    
40   12                  
50-52   9 14                
55     12                
60     12                
68-69     9,10 13,14              
75     9   14            
80     8                
85     7 12 12 12          
90     7 10              
100       10 10   12 14      
105-107       8              
120         10 10   12 15,16    
130             10   14    
140           9 10 10      
150                 14    
140-160           8 10 10 12,13    
150-168               9 11,12,13    
150-180                 10,11,12    
160               9      
175               9      
180                 10,11,12    
200                 10,11 10,12 12,16
220                 10    
225                   10,12 12,16
240-250                 10 10 12
300                   10 12
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/18/2011 at 00:06
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With second focal plane reticles the reticle appears the same size throughtout the power range benchrest guys like this but they are usually at the max power.  Tactical scopes are made both ways and for years most were second focal plane now everyone is realizing the advantage of a first focal plane scope which is this:  FFP  with a mil dot reticle means that as you zoom from low power to high power the reticle increases in size in direct porportion to the power range.  FFP your mil dots are always one mil apart and can always be used both for a device to measure a known size target. The FFP reticle also can be used for hold over just like any balistic reticle however most balistic reticles work only at the maximum power of the scope. With FFP the hold over points are mil based and the mil dots remain the same so you can use them at any power.  If you zero at say 100 yds and you know that 350 yds is a drop of 1.5 mil  and you know that you elk has a 24 inch brisket to backbone body which at 350 yds covers 1 3/4 mil you can either hold over 1.5 mil or dial in 1.5 mil  or hold one mil and dial .5   five clicks on a 1/10 per click mil based knob.
Using the balistics calculator I made up a chart today for a 300 WSM I took to the range  after zero was set at 100 yds on a Bushnell 4200 4-16x40 scope I had 19 MOA above zero and 28 MOA below. In a perfect world it would have had the same amount above as below but it is what it is.
750 yds  souel be -18.3 MOA   or -5.3 Mil  both are measuring systems that measure what looks like a piece of pie starting from the center point of the pie as you get further away the lines grow farther apart same with MOA or with MIL    1 moa at 100 yds is 1 inch  1 moa at 200 yds is 2 inches so with a quarter moa per click scope one click is a quarter inch at 100 but at 200 moves it half an inch and at three hundred it is a fourth of three inches or .75 inch per click.  With Milradian at 100 yds one mil is 3.6 inches and at 1000 yds one mil is 36 inches.  One mil is one yard at a thousand yards and is also one meter at a thousand meters.  Having knobs on the scope that are in the same type of increment as the reticle is very helpful.
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http://www.kentonindustries.com/pics/ttctypes/
And then there are Kenton knobs engraved to match your balistics.
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Kenton's are great I have one on my Zeiss FL & really like it alot.Remember you only basically need the elevation turret[approx $115 includes s/h].As far as the rings the $350 I quoted was both rings & rail,you are correct if you only need the rings $160 is correct. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/18/2011 at 13:17
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The Z3 scopes only have 43 moa of elevation.  Z5s have 58, and Z6 2-12x have 54 and the 2.5-15x has 65. 

If you are going to be shooting to 600 yards with a 7mm you will need 10 to 11 moa to reach that distance.  So most likely any of those scope would work for dialing that distance with a 7mm.  But the one with the most would be the best.

Also Swaro scopes are not really set up to use as target scopes.  If you are going to be doing a lot of target shooting and really want to be precise with your elevation and wind calls the Swaro is not the way to go.  Look into Nightforce or IOR if that is the way you want to go.  They are designed for that kind of shooting and will perform better in that role.  Swaros are really just hunting scopes.
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I just bought a Swaro Z3 4-12 x 50 with the BRH reticle.

I was going to buy a Z5 3.5-18 x 44 that was on the samplelist but the BRX reticle was too thin for my liking for a hunting scope.

But, if the Z5 would have had the BRH reticle, I would have bought it instead.

I normally prefer exposed turrets so this will be my first venture into ballistic compensated reticules so we'll see how it goes.
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Ok, Urimaginaryfrnd, so on a ffp as you go up in power, your reticle gets larger? The further back something is visually appears smaller, so a larger reticle would cover up more target?  (which seems undesirable) (but the tradeoff is accurate ranging through variable magnification?) The sfp makes sense, its only calibrated to one magnification only for an accurate shot. Is this fact the same for Swaro Ballistic Turret too?

 

What Im getting is these system (ffp/sfp) are meant to be used with recticle that compensate for hold over. What would be the choice on a simple plain crosshair or dot type scope?

 

I did use the jbm last year to make a drop chart for my dads Swaro, (laminated and placed in shirt pocket) he has used (guessing) hold over for almost 40 years on a simple reticle. It was neat, to be able to “dope” the scope, confidence level went way up!

 

You bring up a question I was wondering about with 19 MOA above zero and 28 MOA below”. (not sure how to word it, to make sense)

 

It has to do with maximum travel of your reticle. When we mounted his scope and bore sighted it. We tried to even space the clicks. (i.e 36 up and 36ish down) (just throwing a number out) When I took a 600yr shot, I think I ran out of clicks. (remember im a noob) Now, if I tried sighting the scope on the at the top of the range to allow for maximum degree of clicks to raise the muzzle, would that of worked? I really cant think of why you would need to lower your muzzle except to zero? If this paragraph is FUBAR, just say so, and I will figure it out later. LOL

 

 

I kind of understand the ratio for moa and inch clicks on a scope, how did you derive “750 yds should be -18.3 MOA”

 

Is this like tree rings? “measuring systems that measure what looks like a piece of pie starting from the center point of the pie as you get further away the lines grow farther apart same with MOA or with MIL”   

 

Ah supertool thanks! So if the scope adjust in ¼ moa per click and I need 10 I would dial 40 clicks? Again, would that z5 you mention be a total of 58 clicks above and below zero?

ok my brain hurts! lol

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Originally posted by stickbow46 stickbow46 wrote:

+1 with super,I called Swaro last year when I purchased my Z5 and was told in fact that even the Z3,Z5&Z6 are all the same glass.


The word I got from Swarovski was the glass is the same throughout the lines except the high magnification Z6 models have HD (flourite) objective lenses. 
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