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Scope for .308 Tactical Rifle

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 14:45
DarrellM5 View Drop Down
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I’d like some advice on a scope for my Savage 10FLP (left handed) in .308.  The rifle currently has a SS 10x42 (non HD version) mounted on a Ken Farrel 20moa base with Burris XTR rings but I’d like a little more magnification.  I’m taking the Precision Rifle 1 class at Front Sight in March which will involve quite a bit of 1000 yard shooting and even a little further.  I live in rural Nevada so I have the opportunity to do as much long range shooting as I want and we have an outdoor range with targets out to 1200 yards.  I’m also thinking about trying some sniper type competitions in the future.

My budget is around $1000.  So far I’m looking at the Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50 and the SS 3-15x42 but I’m open to other suggestions.  I’m also undecided on Milrad vs. MOA.

I’ve made some excellent decisions in the past based on the advice of OpticsTalk members and I’m looking forward to your replies.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 15:12
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you can get the SS 5-20 non illuminated for around 1000 if you pay attention to the samplelist, sign up for updates and you'll get a notice everytime they list an item on there.   I love my SS 3-15 and also really love my SS 5-20 Each has a place. If your going to use it mainly as a tactical rifle and limited close shots, the 5-20 would be my choice. But if you'll every use for closer engagements then the 315 would be my choice.

I'm not a big PST fan, had several, non lasted in my collection
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 15:55
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I've not had one, but have experience with people, like SVT, who have just not been happy with the PSTs.  The 3-15 is a very nice scope, but lacks illumination.  If it had IR, I would own one… still have not ruled it out.  I've not "spoken" to anyone with a 5-20 SS who is unhappy with it.  Quite the contrary, everything I've heard about it has been high praise.  The one I've looked over was very nice.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 16:57
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Depending on how close in you're shooting, the 5-20 will either be great or might feel like a little too much magnification on the low end, making the 3-15 a better option. (If you can live without illum).

Milrad vs. MOA: Either is good as long as the turrets match the reticle, as with the scopes you're considering. I went mil/mil because the first reticle I ranged with was mil. Maybe some others can chime in here, but I do think it's important to get used to the angular (unitless) concept of correcting aim. If using a MOA reticle tends to lead towards thinking in inches rather than using your reticle to correct, then I'd lean towards mils. But if not, you do get a little finer adjustment with 1/4 MOA clicks. I just don't have the experience with those reticles to say yay or nay...just throwing out a question here.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 18:23
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Having taken the front sight precision rifle classes several times the 10x is more than adequate for that class. I have taken it with a ss 10x and had no problems. So if u wanna save up a bit longer dont let the front sight class make u buy early.

I would save p your bucks and buy the ss 5-20x hd. Its worth it
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 18:27
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Yuu may be thinking magnification is your friend.
In mirage situations, you cannot dial up enough magnification to blast through the mirage, but you can stay under it.
A 10x scope will do that , and as previously stated, 10x at 1k is more than adequate.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 19:24
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Also 85 to 90% of PR1 at front sight is 600 and less.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 20:06
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SS 5-20 non illuminated.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/19/2014 at 20:31
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Why non-illuminated… the IR on this scope is just amazing and the cost, compared to other scopes of equal quality, is negligible… 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/20/2014 at 00:40
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Also look at your Bushnell Tactical Elite series scopes, you can get one for under $1,000 on here I believe. You can shoot 1,000 yds with a 10X but it is a little harder. Bushnell makes a really good 6-21 or 24 I believe. I would definitly recommend going MIL/MIL, everyone is slowly pushing away from the MOA scopes except for a few companies who offer MOA adjustments and MOA reticles in the scopes which is basically the same deal. It is just simplicity which is really nice after having to convert measurments for years. Good luck and have fun.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/20/2014 at 13:07
DarrellM5 View Drop Down
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Definitely not sensing a lot of love for the Vortex products in the replies.

Although I'll keep researching, I think I've got a game plan.

I'll subscribe to the sample list and watch for a SS 5-20.  If I can pick up a non-illuminated for $1000 or maybe an IR for $1200 I'll jump on it.  If not, I may go for the 3-15.

If I can get a new scope in time for Front Sight, great.  If not, I'll plan on using my current SS 10x42 in the class.  I'll be getting some range time between now and then to see how it will work for me.

I'm leaning toward Milrad instead of MOA.  All 3 of my other SS scopes are Milrad and so are my Steiner Military binoculars.

Dustin19308:  I have a Bushnell Elite 3200 on my hunting rifle but haven't tried their tactical series.  I don't know if they are comparable to the Super Snipers or not.

Further comments and suggestions are definitely welcome and thanks for the help so far.


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/20/2014 at 13:31
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The Vortex Razors are quality scopes, but are out of your price range.
For shooting 1,000+ I'd go with the SS5-20x50 too. I have the SS3-15x42 and love it, but I think a 50mm objective would have been better.
I also would go Mil/Mil, that way the Mil dot master is easy to use. JMHO
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/21/2014 at 09:27
Dale Clifford View Drop Down
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agree with lower mag ranges level basically, but I use the higher mag ranges differently, from a target shooters view. while high mag is terrible in mirage, I use it to measure mirage, especially past 600 yds. The higher mag range also helps read cross winds, eg. how fast the "heat bubbles" get from the cross hair to the 4 moa reading in the NF 8x32 as an example. the higher mag also helps read smaller lighter grass, and dust swirls in the target area, then dial back to make the shot using the increased field of view for spotting the strike.
The mag range of your choice will also affect the over size of the scope, which to me is a greater determiner of the mag range than the actual mag range itself, rather than making one tool cover every job. All swfa products are top notch and if you can't make the 5x20 do the job another brand costing 2x as much isn't going to get you there either. I believe there is no scope brand in the $1000 range for this type of shooting comparable.
I have a Razor and love it, but that was before swfa's 5x20. Also get their bubble level, errors due to gun off level due to canting are more pronounced pastww 600 yds, than shooter give credit. this level gets rid of the "wheres the markers" and reflects swfa's philosophy of making a better product period.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/21/2014 at 12:32
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Chief Sackscratch

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Originally posted by DarrellM5 DarrellM5 wrote:

Definitely not sensing a lot of love for the Vortex products in the replies.
I am a fan of vortex products but simply didn't have care for the PSTs I've had.  Its not they aren't adequate scopes its just they didn't live up to what I expected of it for the cost and there were better products that fit my need. 

Vortex has stuff that is excellent, and stuff that misses the mark.  I love Vortex's strikefire and sparc red dot.  Their diamond back line of scopes is an excellent budget friendly hunting scope.  The razor line is a tank.   I've not tried the PST HS scopes but hear they are decent but again, a little off mark.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/21/2014 at 13:39
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I like PST scopes, although some are better than others.

My favourites in the PST line are definitely the 6-24x50 and 2.5-10x32.  4-16x50 is pretty good as well, although not as good as the two I mentioned.

Also, keep in mind that like anything else, PST scopes have gone through a few minor changes since their introduction and current production scopes are better than the ones from early production runs.

All that having been said, the SS 3-15x42 is an excellent design and I really like the Mil-Quad reticle.

For general purpose use on a precision rifle, it is hard to do better than a 3-15x42 or 3-15x50 configuration.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/21/2014 at 14:04
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First post. Longtime lurker.   +1 SS 3-15x42
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/21/2014 at 15:59
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Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

Why non-illuminated… the IR on this scope is just amazing and the cost, compared to other scopes of equal quality, is negligible… 
 
I know but the original budget was $1000.
SWFA SS HD 5-20x50 Tactical 30mm Riflescope Illuminated Mil Quad SWFA SS HD 5-20x50 Tactical 30mm Riflescope
Stock # - SSHD520X50MQI
  • Patented First Focal Plane Illuminated Mil-Quad Reticle
  • 30mm
  • HD Model
  • Locking Ocular Adjustment
  • 0.1 Mrad Elevation & Windage
  • 10 Mils Per Revolution
  • 30 Mils Of Total Travel
  • Side Focus
$1,499.95 
 
SWFA SS HD 5-20x50 Tactical 30mm Riflescope SWFA SS HD 5-20x50 Tactical 30mm Riflescope
Stock # - SSHD520X50MQ
  • Patented First Focal Plane Mil-Quad Reticle
  • 30mm
  • HD Model
  • Locking Ocular Adjustment
  • 0.1 Mrad Elevation & Windage
  • 10 Mils Per Revolution
  • 30 Mils Of Total Travel
  • Side Focus
$1,299.95 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/26/2014 at 14:19
DarrellM5 View Drop Down
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A friend of mine mentioned that I should check out the Zeiss Conquest.  How does it compare to the scopes we've already discussed?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/26/2014 at 16:13
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I'll chime in on the Zeiss.

Conquest is a really, really good hunting scope. In fact, in their price range, I think they are sitting in the cat's bird seat. 
But the tactical or long range scopes are just so-so, IMHO. The SS variables blows the Conquest away.
Again...in my opinion. I'm a pretty big Conquest fan, as most here can attest, but not for a tactical application.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/26/2014 at 17:55
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agree. I use a 2x8, 4x14, 6x20 conquest and they are fun.
Zeiss's real tactical scopes, cost 2-3x as much as the SS and the conquest but that's not the question.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/26/2014 at 18:11
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The Conquest is really going to limit your elevation travel on the knob. And its BDC reticle is SFP, which is not good in my opinion. It will have marginally better glass than 3-15, but they are damn close in that regard.

 The 5-20 will beat both in all aspects of glass, but especially color rendition, and being able to find a difficult target in the shadows. The 5-20 is just a smidge below the really expensive Alpha's, and about even with the Vortex Razor 5-20.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/01/2014 at 13:45
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Is there any way to pick up these scopes for a bit less (sales, discounts, group buys, etc...)?  I'm watching the sample list but I doubt one will pop up or that I would have a very good chance of getting it before it's gone.

I'd really like the 5-20 but it amazes me that it' double the price of the 3-15.  Is it that much better?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/01/2014 at 14:31
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different glass, different design… the price difference is no surprise.  YOU would have to determine if it is "that much better" based upon your requirements.  Having had "hands on with both" I can tell you that for the price, the 3-15 is an honest to goodness, really for real VALUE.  The 5-20 can compete with all but the ELITE of the ELITE scopes and for the price differential there, you REALLY have to want the name or have some feature that is your "pet rock" that the SS does not have.  Value and toughness have LONG been the trademarks of the SWFA SS scopes and it is almost impossible to get the same "bang for the buck" elsewhere.  

The 3-15 and 5-20 serve two completely different "missions", have to meet different requirements for full utility.  It is very difficult, VERY difficult to try to compare them…   In the 3-15 game, no, the 5-20 is not twice as good… but in the 5-20 game, the 3-15 cannot really compete.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/04/2014 at 22:55
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no one has mentioned the bushnell elite tactical 2.5-16x42.  It's one i've thought about for it's wide range in magnification.  Thoughts?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/20/2014 at 23:08
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I finally scored big time and picked up the non-illuminated SS 5-20x50 off the Sample List.  I saved a couple hundred bucks so I'm very pleased.  I think I'll have a great time at Front Sight with this scope.

Here's a big Thank You to all of you who responded to my post with advice.  ExcellentYippeeBandito 

You guys ROCK!
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