September 29, 2010
Petzal Reviews the Burris Eliminator Laser Scope
By David E. Petzal
The inherent weakness in just about all mil-dot scopes and range-calculating systems is that in the moments before you shoot you have to either remember something or figure something out, and in those moments, the brains of most hunters turn into salt water taffy. When the metal is about to meet the meat, only the most cold-blooded and experienced of us can calculate and then squeeze the trigger.
But not if you have a Burris Eliminator.
*Note: The Eliminator is not as good-looking as Ms. Elisha Cuthbert (above), but then neither are you.
This 4X-12X laser rifle scope gets you the range and, in the same millisecond, figures out how much holdover you need and illuminates one of a series of vertical 1/3-MOA dots. You put the dot where you want the bullet to go and pull the trigger. No brain required. All you have to do is remember to turn the thing on.
The Eliminator is 13 inches long, weighs 26 ounces with its battery installed, and mounts low on Picatinny or Weaver bases. It comes with a remote control switch that straps to either the fore-end or the objective-lens bell. It ranges to 800 yards on a reflective target and to 550 on something with fur. You can program it to work with more than 600 rifle cartridge/load combinations, and Burris is working the software for black powder and handguns.
Since the Eliminator uses two batteries, you may wonder what happens in the rain? Will it short out? Nope. I left the Eliminator outdoors for 48 straight hours in wet weather that ranged from drizzle to toad-strangling downpour, and it did fine.
To get started with the Eliminator, you first need to buy one, for which you will need $850. Then you will encounter the original directions which are, to put it kindly, lacking, so Burris includes a second sheet of simplified instructions that you can actually follow. If this doesn’t help, go to YouTube and type in Burris Eliminator Setup and Programming. Or you can call Burris and speak with a human being who will walk you through the process. The Eliminator, directions notwithstanding, is extremely simple to use. Once you have it on a rifle you sight the scope in to hit dead on at either 100 or 200 yards.
Then you put the Eliminator in Set Up mode and select whether you want it to compute in yards or meters. Next, you tell it whether you sighted in at 100 or 200 yards. Then you feed it a Bullet Drop Number from the table that Burris provides. This figure is the number of inches your bullet drops at 500 yards. I put the Eliminator on my Shaw .30/06, and went with Federal Premium 165-grain Trophy Bonded Tipped bullets because of their sterling accuracy and flawless performance on game.
According to the Burris table, these slugs drop 52.95 inches at 500 yards, and so I entered my Drop Number, which was 53, and that’s all the programming you do.
In use, the Eliminator is simplicity itself. For example, my gun prints 1 inch low at 50 yards, dead on at 100, an inch low at 150, and 2 inches low at 200. For this, you don’t even need to turn the thing on; just put the crosshair center of target mass. Or you can turn the scope on and use the center light. (The little amber dots are easy to see in near dark and bright sunlight, and are small enough to allow very precise aiming.) Beyond 200, I turn the scope to 12X and use the rangefinding feature. Once you turn it on you have 80 seconds to shoot before it turns itself off.
I tested the Eliminator between 50 yards and 485 and I found that it unfailingly gets you within 3 vertical inches of where you are holding. (Usually you’ll be dead on or an inch or two high or low.) At 485 yards I could put five rounds in a group that would nail even a dik-dik.
The Eliminator is, as nearly as I can tell, foolproof. It’s extremely well thought out, very accurate and, whether you approve of this much high-tech in hunting or not, the wave of the future.
To see it in action, click here.