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Mistake buying Mil-Dot?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 15:23
bigdawgwill44 View Drop Down
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I recently bought a 22-250 Varmint rifle and put a Nikon Buckmaster 4.5-14x40 Mil-Dot scope on it. I fear i may have made a mistake by purchasing a Mil-Dot scope but hope to hear your opinions. The reason i bought the mil-dot was to use the dots as a reference point for holdover shots, essentially use it as a BDC. After reading many articles online about mil-dots i see this reticle is very complicated. However, i feel i can use my laser rangefinder for range and then use the elevation dots on the scope as a balistic drop reference for shot placement. Example: the coyote is 300 yards away, i know dot number 3 is 300 yards dead on, hold dot 3 on coyote and pull trigger.

Will this work? Also, suggestions on how to sight in this scope would be appreciated. Thanks!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 15:41
trigger29 View Drop Down
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If you are willing to spend the time with the scope, and learn where the dots hit, then yes, you can use it that way. I think it's much simpler to use a dedicated BDC reticle myself, but if you learn to use what you have, you can make it work. Now that you have it, you could learn to use the mil-dots the way they were designed. Just remember that on that scope the dots will move with magnification. If your 3rd dot is on at 300 yards on 14x, it will not be on at 10x. As far as how to sight it, It will depend on your shooting conditions. How far are the shots, ect.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 17:49
bigdawgwill44 View Drop Down
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Ok, will the BDC change when increasing or decreasing magnification?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 17:54
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Yes the tension will change as the mag changes.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 18:14
bigdawgwill44 View Drop Down
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Originally posted by trigger29 trigger29 wrote:

If you are willing to spend the time with the scope, and learn where the dots hit, then yes, you can use it that way. I think it's much simpler to use a dedicated BDC reticle myself, but if you learn to use what you have, you can make it work. Now that you have it, you could learn to use the mil-dots the way they were designed. Just remember that on that scope the dots will move with magnification. If your 3rd dot is on at 300 yards on 14x, it will not be on at 10x. As far as how to sight it, It will depend on your shooting conditions. How far are the shots, ect.


So the dots change when you increase or decrease magnification? So in order to use as a holdover scope, id have to keep it at the same power and same distant scale?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 18:18
trigger29 View Drop Down
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Originally posted by bigdawgwill44 bigdawgwill44 wrote:

Ok, will the BDC change when increasing or decreasing magnification?
 
What's happening here is that the reticle is in the second focal plane. What this means it that the reticle doesn't magnify with the image. As you  turn up the magnification in the scope, the image gets bigger, and the reticle stays the same size, making the markings appear closer together. The new Zeiss Rapid-Z reticles work on this very principal. They have a calculator on their site that you put in your load info, and it will tell you what power to set the scope on. By doing this instead of magnifying the reticle, they can make the bdc work for many calibers, and it's not harder to see in low light conditions. I hope this makes sense, I'm not the best guy to explain it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 23:28
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I don't think you made a mistake.  Experiment with it at different distances and use it like you described. 

I had a 10x super sniper and what you described is how I used it.  It worked well after I experimented with it.  The reason I sold it was because 10x was too much magnification for hunting.  I switched to a simple fixed 4x and some day I plan on spending some cash on a good fixed 4x that has a mil-dot reticle. 
 
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/07/2009 at 23:53
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A second focal plane mildot should have come with instructions telling you at what power the mildot may be used for ranging. Frequently that power setting is a different color than the others on the power change ring. The solution to that issue is a fixed power scope or a first focal plane scope. Sadly the latter are generally big dollar European scopes since Americans have a thing about apparent reticle size change. (In an FFP scope the reticle appears larger at higher powers but it covers the same area on the target, hence you can range at any magnification)
What you have will work as long as you are aware of how far apart the dots are at various powers and ranges. Good hunting!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/08/2009 at 11:54
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The mil-dot scope requires some work to use effectively, bigdawg, and your original assessment of how you will use it is in error. 
Go to www.shooterready.com   for a good tutorial/refresher.  Get yourself a Mil-Dot Master from SWFA and you will find that the mil-dot is one of the most robust and useful reticle systems ever created.  Add a laser rangefinder and build a tape on (tape on to your rifle stock) trajectory table and you can pretty quickly and efficiently get on target at multiple ranges. 
As I said, proper usage requires some time and effort, USAGE in other words, and understanding of the advantages and limitations.  However, mil-dot is one of the best reticles ever designed. You will have to learn all you can about your rifle, your ammunition, your optics, AND yourself.  It will be a wonderful and rewarding journey. 
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