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Magnification Needed - 200 Yard Bench

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2009 at 16:59
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I will be shooting an AR15 at 100 and 200 yards, looking to achieve 1/2 MOA or less groups.  If using top quality glass (i.e., Zeiss, etc.), would be the minimal magnication needed for this kind of bench rest shooting?  I shoot at 100 yards with a cheap 9x and find the magnification hardly excessive.  But, maybe better glass would make me rethink that. 
 
- Phil
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2009 at 18:30
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I would go for a fixed power maybe 10X. That would be more than enough power for the range you have described. The SS 10X42 might be an option that you might want investigate.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2009 at 19:05
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I like the 10x Super Sniper submitted.
I might even consider the 16x SS too, but no more magnification than that.

Honestly, there's a bunch of scopes that will fill that roll.

Did you have a budget?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2009 at 19:58
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How serious are you?... get a March 40x.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2009 at 20:04
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Originally posted by Voodoo6 Voodoo6 wrote:

I like the 10x Super Sniper submitted.
I might even consider the 16x SS too, but no more magnification than that.

Honestly, there's a bunch of scopes that will fill that roll.

Did you have a budget?


Would like to stay at $500 max, but will consider $750.  From what I understand, I will need the reticle to focus in the 2nd plane, since if I zoom in on a small target, I can't have a large reticle.  The reticle itself needs to be fine, again for fine target work.  Don't mind tactical types, as long as the center part has fine crosshairs. 

- Phil
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/22/2009 at 20:09
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Originally posted by Phil3 Phil3 wrote:

Originally posted by Voodoo6 Voodoo6 wrote:

I like the 10x Super Sniper submitted.
I might even consider the 16x SS too, but no more magnification than that.

Honestly, there's a bunch of scopes that will fill that roll.

Did you have a budget?


Would like to stay at $500 max, but will consider $750.  From what I understand, I will need the reticle to focus in the 2nd plane, since if I zoom in on a small target, I can't have a large reticle.  The reticle itself needs to be fine, again for fine target work.  Don't mind tactical types, as long as the center part has fine crosshairs. 

- Phil
Guess that leaves the March out...

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/23/2009 at 17:44
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getting 1.5 moa out of even the best ar targets is not going to be limited by the scope. with a lock time longer than a flintlock , almost damage on every cartridge loaded, (and bullet nose). better glass will certainly make all the attempts to get below .5 moa a lot easier on the eyes.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/23/2009 at 20:43
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Originally posted by Phil3 Phil3 wrote:

I will be shooting an AR15 at 100 and 200 yards, looking to achieve 1/2 MOA or less groups.  If using top quality glass (i.e., Zeiss, etc.), would be the minimal magnication needed for this kind of bench rest shooting?  I shoot at 100 yards with a cheap 9x and find the magnification hardly excessive.  But, maybe better glass would make me rethink that. 
 
- Phil
 
I feel the SS is too heavy for an AR.  I suggest the Bushnell Elite 3200 fixed 10x scope for your rifle.
 
I feel 10x excesive for for 100 yards but if your purpose is only target shooting it should be good.  More than 10x would be too much magnificaton imo.
 
Smitty
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/23/2009 at 20:56
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Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

How serious are you?... get a March 40x.  



Seriously?  40X for 200 yards?  Damn, I;m doing it wrong!  or something.

A fixed 10X wouldn't be bad, and at your price range, the SS is going to offer allot.

For a variable, you might want to look at Vortex Viper or maybe Falcon Menace.

The options expand dramatically at about the $750 price point, that is when Bushnell 4200 tactical, Trijicon, Conquest and a boat-load of others enter the fray.

At $500, SS is a great bet (I wouldn't do 16X, it will limit shooting options on hot days and is just too much for anything but dedicated long-range under ideal conditions.)  I've seen the Falcon 4-12x40 and was pleasantly surprised, given the price tag.

http://www.swfa.com/pc-12762-2123-new-vortex-4-12x40-viper-rifle-scope.aspx


I hope to play with a March soon but have not yet had the pleasure.  I have seen the price tags, I better be really impressed when I do see them.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/23/2009 at 20:59
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Originally posted by smitty smitty wrote:

Originally posted by Phil3 Phil3 wrote:

I will be shooting an AR15 at 100 and 200 yards, looking to achieve 1/2 MOA or less groups.  If using top quality glass (i.e., Zeiss, etc.), would be the minimal magnication needed for this kind of bench rest shooting?  I shoot at 100 yards with a cheap 9x and find the magnification hardly excessive.  But, maybe better glass would make me rethink that. 
 
- Phil
 
I feel the SS is too heavy for an AR.  I suggest the Bushnell Elite 3200 fixed 10x scope for your rifle.
 
I feel 10x excesive for for 100 yards but if your purpose is only target shooting it should be good.  More than 10x would be too much magnificaton imo.
 
Smitty


Smitty, you might have a point on the weight; however, if it is a gun capable of anything near 1/2MOA, it is NOT a lightweight M4gery, it will be a long, bull barrel, free-floated, with a match chamber, and a match trigger.  if that is true, a SS will be fine.  If the gun is smaller and not a 1/2MOA gun, a SS is too much.

Details about the specific setup would be helpful.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 01:04
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[/QUOTE]

Smitty, you might have a point on the weight; however, if it is a gun capable of anything near 1/2MOA, it is NOT a lightweight M4gery, it will be a long, bull barrel, free-floated, with a match chamber, and a match trigger.  if that is true, a SS will be fine.  If the gun is smaller and not a 1/2MOA gun, a SS is too much.

Details about the specific setup would be helpful.
[/QUOTE]

Rifle setup is as follows:

SunDevil lower receiver.
Rock River Arms lower parts kit.
JP Rifles single stage trigger (3 - 3.5 lbs.), with speed hammer, and oversize trigger pins. 
SunDevil upper receiver with tensioning screw between upper and lower receiver.
Young Chrome National Match bolt and carrier assembly.
A2 or Magpul PRS, or Magpul UBR, or ACE Skeleton stock (undecided).
Krieger 20" -  22" barrel, .925" muzzle diameter. 1:9 twist, cut rifled.
Chambered for .223, not 5.56.  Carefully headspaced.
JP Rifles adjustable gas block.
JP Rifles free floating handguard.
Hogue pistol grip.
CProducts magazine.
JP Rifles one piece scope mount.
Harris bi-pod when benchrest bag not in use.
Handloaded ammo using quality brass (Lapua or similar), and components.  Forster press and Forster or Redding dies. 

I expect this setup to be about as accurate as the AR-15 can be, assuming I do my part, and hope it will shoot to 1/2 MOA or better.  If I need to up the ante on the scope beyond $500 - $750 to achieve my goal, at 100 - 200 yards, then I will have to do that.  I don't want this admittedly pricey rifle's performance to be let down because I skimped on the scope. 

I am not too concerned about weight.  This gun is not being carried into the field, only from my car in the range parking lot to the range bench. 

- Phil

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 07:38
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For a situation like that I'd want more than 10x.  10x is fine for practical shooting but trying to see bullet holes or small bullseyes at 200 would be better done with more magnification IMO.  Shooting 300yd benchrest we sometimes come in to 200 if it's too wet at the 300yd burms.  At 200 yards it's amazing how much easier it is to shoot my 24x in Factory Varmint class compared to the 14x on the factory hunter class guns.  I'm not saying you can't shoot small groups with 10x scopes at 200 yards but it's less than ideal IMO.
 
Bare minimum I'd try a 4.5-14 Zeiss Conquest.  Ideally I'd want a 6.5-20 VX3 Long Range with a target dot or similar.  Nikon Monarch 6-24x50 with fine crosshair or target dot is in your price range and they work well.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 07:41
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with $1500+ in the gun you should get a scope up to the gun, look at the NF BR models or the target turret leos in 4.5x14. Personally I like the 6.5x20s for this type of setup on a sub 1 moa gun, but its only got sub 1/2 moa on a rare occasion.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 07:46
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Originally posted by Rancid Coolaid Rancid Coolaid wrote:

Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

How serious are you?... get a March 40x.  



Seriously?  40X for 200 yards?  Damn, I;m doing it wrong!  or something.


I hope to play with a March soon but have not yet had the pleasure.  I have seen the price tags, I better be really impressed when I do see them.

No, you are not "doing it wrong", just what works for you. 
A high powered optic gives the capability to move out to the longer ranges while providing excellent, instantaneous shot placement determination at shorter range.  You have plenty of power to move to 300, 400, 500, and even 600 yards and still be able to see where your rounds are hitting with ease.  Yes, it is a BIG bite on the cost end.  Perhaps overkill, but, while I have used "lesser" equipment, my justifications for doing so have always been based upon impatience and other priorities, settling for bare minimums.  While I will probably continue in that mode, it does not mean I cannot suggest others not follow that model... it is not optimum.  Take a little more time, save up, get the BEST you can.  Impatience, while a feature of personality, is not a virtue.  March may not be the level one is striving for, but Bushnell 3200 would not be on my list either.  As stated, depends on how serious one is.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 11:03
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Understood.


Also, I agree with Dale: dropping that kinda $$ on the rifle is all but meaningless if the scope is not up to the task.

Though a SS will do what is needed, you might shift focus more to the benchrest scopes, something with the finest crosshairs you can get. And I agree, with the limited use of the rifle, a large, higher-power scope is not going to hurt; however, be advised: good glass at moderate power will always trump not-good glass at high power.

A Bushnell 4200 6-24x50  would be workable, it has pretty good glass and, at 24X is usable but not pristine.  I owned the scope and have some experience with it.  It would be a good choice if you want more magnification.

There are many other options at a higher price (the Bushnell is $650) but this is a good all-around.  I hear great things about the Sightron S3, for $150 more maybe you get allot more scope.  Anyone run a 6-24 S3?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 14:52
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Well, I can see that to do justice to the rifle, the scope is going to have to be pretty high quality.  It is hard to accept that it will be single most expensive piece on the gun by far. 

I checked out the Sightron S3, but it is getting up there in price, and the Nightforce, as superb as they may be, may be overkill for a 100 - 200 yard gun.  I thought this model Leupold may be a good bet.  I would appreciate input.  It is the Leupold VX-3 6.5 - 20 x 40 with target turrets.  Since I will be shooting during daylight hours (some overcast days), I figured the 40mm tube objective is sufficient.  The 50mm is a 30mm tube and jumps the price from $750 to $890.  If this makes sense to do, I will consider it, but this really is the upper end. 

http://www.swfa.com/pc-14365-2736-leupold-65-20x40-vx-3-efr-riflescope.aspx

Was does E.F.R mean on the Leupold model? 
 
I appreciate input, as this is an $$$ decision.
 
- Phil
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 16:15
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E.F.R.  Extended Focal Range.  The A.O. can focus down to 10meters for indoor silhouette and alike.  It still focuses out to infinity just like every other scope though.  I think it'd be a good choice.  I have the 8.5-25x50 and the glass is pretty good.  Noticeably better optics than the Nikon Monarch 6-24x50 which I consider sufficient for BR work.

Edited by Horsemany - April/24/2009 at 16:15
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 16:30
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That looks like a pretty good option HM.  I don't consider Leupold much, but that looks like a really nice scope and considerably less expensive than some others.  Since there was no mention of shooting out to the longer ranges, that could be a very good choice.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 17:55
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I am concerned a bit that the exit pupil with a 40mm objective and a 20x magnification is just 2mm.  50mm would be better, but that is another $140.  If I drive two hours, I can get to longer ranges.  How would 20x for what I want to do fare at longer ranges, such as 300, and 500 yards?  I don't think 600 is what the .223 is really cut out for, especially since the twist I will be using is for 55 - 69 grain bullets. 
 
- Phil
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 18:34
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I think a Bushnell 4200 in the 4-16x40 would do the job and be within the budget. A bushnell 6500 would be nice but more money. The Leu VX3  6.5-20x scopes also would do nicely.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 20:10
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Originally posted by Phil3 Phil3 wrote:

I am concerned a bit that the exit pupil with a 40mm objective and a 20x magnification is just 2mm.  50mm would be better, but that is another $140.  If I drive two hours, I can get to longer ranges.  How would 20x for what I want to do fare at longer ranges, such as 300, and 500 yards?  I don't think 600 is what the .223 is really cut out for, especially since the twist I will be using is for 55 - 69 grain bullets. 
 
- Phil


You mentioned that you are only target shooting during the day so your exit pupil should not be a problem.

And as far as 20x being enough at 500 or even 600yds. Think of it this way. What does your target look like at 30yds with out magnification? That is what your target will look like at 600yds if you are using quality glass. If you are not using quality glass then all bets are off. Also if you are comfortable with looking at your target at 60yds with out magnification then 10x would work well for you. 

Glass makes a huge difference. I had always heard this but it really was apparent when I looked through a Nikon 50mmED spotting scope VS other brands with twice the magnification. I was amazed at how much more detail I could see with less magnification using an optics resolution chart. Made me a believer.

Also you need to keep in mind how much elevation adjustment is available on the scope your are looking at. If it has 50MOA then it really only has 25MOA left since it is centered.

I have a NF BR on a 50BMG, but I am looking at changing it to a IOR 10x56. I was looking at the SS but I like the IOR MP8 reticule better.

http://www.swfa.com/pc-10117-292-ior-10x56-tactical-30mm-rifle-scope.aspx

The Vortex Razor is rated very high on the SWFA scope rating scale and so maybe worth looking into.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 20:45
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don't think 600 is what the .223 is really cut out for, especially since the twist I will be using is for 55 - 69 grain bullets.
I do not understand this statement-- 600 yds and pop cans, golf balls, and clay targets is just starting.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/24/2009 at 21:38
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Dale, you have some real nice rigs!!!  Thunbs Up
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/25/2009 at 01:03
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Originally posted by Dale Clifford Dale Clifford wrote:

don't think 600 is what the .223 is really cut out for, especially since the twist I will be using is for 55 - 69 grain bullets.
I do not understand this statement-- 600 yds and pop cans, golf balls, and clay targets is just starting.


True, the .223 can do 600 yards, and is sufficient for things as you mention.  Around here, unless I drive so far I need to spend the night, the only thing I will be shooting at is paper targets.  - Phil
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/25/2009 at 09:25
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Originally posted by Phil3 Phil3 wrote:

I am concerned a bit that the exit pupil with a 40mm objective and a 20x magnification is just 2mm.  50mm would be better, but that is another $140.  If I drive two hours, I can get to longer ranges.  How would 20x for what I want to do fare at longer ranges, such as 300, and 500 yards?  I don't think 600 is what the .223 is really cut out for, especially since the twist I will be using is for 55 - 69 grain bullets. 
 
- Phil
 
Looks like your loading your own ammo amd with the heavy barrel you mentioned you should be able to reach 600 without concern. But as UMF mentioned, you need to look at moa and the Leu 30mm tube you listed earler would offer more adjustment if you decide to go for distance. One thing I practice and encourage friends to do is learn you rifles max and become profecient at it. Then the closer distances are a no issue. Like the navy snipers on the pirates. They could have made those shots much further out than they did. 100ft or less was a couldn't miss situation. Even with the motion of the boats, I'm sure the targets never left the view. Let us know what you finish with, Good Luck!
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