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Petzal: What's Right About Scopes? Not Much.

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February 20, 2009

Petzal: What's Right About Scopes? Not Much.

By David E. Petzal

What follows is a rant from a very famous maker of custom guns. He had sent me a bolt-action chambered for the .404 Jeffrey, which had about 500 rounds through it in 3 years. The rifle printed 4-inch groups, and I immediately suspected the scope, which was in fact the culprit. I e-mailed him about the wretched episode, and this is his reply, somewhat edited because enough people dislike us already.

“In regard to optics I have had a lot of scope problems for a long, long time, regardless of make. When I’m asked what my favorite make of scope is, my reply is ‘I hate them all equally.' I have crippled and destroyed dozens and dozens of them. Between loose erector systems, separated lens elements, parallax adjustments going deep-six and flash dots blinking their last, I’m amazed we haven’t all gone back to Lyman 48s.

“Bum optics come in all shapes, right out of the factory box, usually within 50 rounds or after several hundred rounds, the latter being the worse case as it always happens when the client is standing in the middle of the Moyowosi Plain—or at the bench or a shooting editor.

“The one exception to this is the lowly fixed-power scope. I have a 3X that I’ve used for 30 years to break in rifles, and it’s probably survived 5,000 rounds of .375, .416, and .458 with never a hiccup. But the optics companies are giving the public what they think they need, which is variables. I understand it’s not easy to make a scope; that a lot of crap has to fit inside. But I am the guy who has to wring the whole mess out, and I don’t believe in Santa anymore. When asked to try out the latest optical marvel I feel like sitting in the corner and puking on my shoes.”

Comments (121)

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I'm so glad he didn't single one manufacturer out. I've heard stories of every brand failing no matter high dollar, and I've heard stories of some value scopes grinding on and on. In fact I have one from years ago. It's not supposed to be this good.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Had a Redfield 3x9 Wide-Field, one of the first ones to hit the market. Started to fog up and sent it back to Redfield. They sent it back to me with the rear eye piece locking ring bust, the rear eye piece was reinstalled and was cross threaded and totally out of focus and had the audacity to ask me if I wanted to trade it in and buy a remanufactured scope. GO TO HELL I SAID!

Fact, starting in July 87 in the Fairbanks Alaska area, Redfield’s became almost nonexistent because of this. Don’t mess with the fella that happens to be the Director of High-power Competition for the Largest Sportsmen club in Alaska, President of the Sportsmen Council for the Eielson AFB Base Exchange, Member of the Air Force High Power Team and Range Master for the most active recreational shooting in Central Alaska.

Bottom line: Warranty is everything, Leopold I love along with a couple other cheap scopes and Redfield go figure!

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from chadlove wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

That's why over the past two years I've slowly sold virtually every variable I had and replaced them with a mixture of 4x and 6x fixed-power scopes.

I love the simplicity of fixed scopes, both from a practical and philosophical and aesthetic standpoint.

Taste is, of course, subjective (mine being impeccable and everyone else's being crap) but I can't think of a single hunting situation I'm likely to find myself in that can't be handled spendidly by a Leupold FXIII 6x42. Or an FXII 4x33 or 6x36 or any other fixed-power scope from any other maker.

My lone remaining variable will be coming off the 6.5 it's mounted on this year and either sold to some sucker or mounted on a .22, to be replaced with one of those sweet little Zeiss Conquest fixed fours.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from davidpetzal wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

That should be "...at the bench rest of a shooting editor."

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from davidpetzal wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

That should be "...at the bench rest of a shooting editor."

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from streack wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Dave, are you trying to rack up extra points by double posting?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Good point. I have a slew of 3x9 variables; Leupolds and Sightron currently mounted and a few Bushnell closet queens. During the hunt, they are usually set on 4x or 5x and I can't recall ever changing magnification to shoot at game except one time.

Since not one of them has ever failed me, I doubt I'll trash $400 scopes just to go buy a fixed power, but I will probably buy top quality 4x or 6x fixed's in the future. Maybe none has ever failed me owing to the fact that my .35 Whelen (8.5 lb) and my Weatherby Mk V .30-06 (7.0 lb) are my hardest recoiling rifles. The Leupold 3-9x on the .35 W has survived a couple of hard falls without malfunction. There are hundreds of rounds through each rifle. I doubt a .257 Roberts or .308 Win has sufficient recoil to destroy a good scope. But anything touched by the hand of man can fail. My engineering experience tells me that the fewer moving parts there are, the lower the failure rate compared to a similar aparatus of the same quality and manufacturing tolerances with fewer parts. Increasing the part count seldom increases life or reliability. KISS applies.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Clay C

I had the opposite experience with a Redfield 2-7x Widefield in 1998. I sent one back to them that came on a rifle we bought and they said the tube was bent and they sent me a new/refurb scope free of charge. I used it for years elk hunting and it is still in service on a 7mm Rem Mag with no issues. Proves the point that scopes may fail or last forever depending on how well they were assembled/repaired.

I would assume that most designs are solid enough, but the manufacturing quality control is the deciding factor. Being an Air Force maintence chief, I bet you will agree. On the other hand, a poorly designed scope will fail sooner rather than later.

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from Mark-1 wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Must agree with most written....

It would appear scopes are individual beasts.

--My experiences are just the opposite of Coop's. I've had my best luck with an 30-year old Redfield 2 x 7, and World Class Tasco's. I had very luck with old Weavers over the years. These scopes were mounted on medium bores and heavy mag's. I've had at best indifferent success with Leopold, so much I won't cough out the scratch Leopold demands for an item that's harsh on my mellow. I had very bad experiences with some other expensive brands. It's been this way for me since the late 70's. That's a bunch of time and experiences to draw a conclusion.

BTW I think variables are "convenient" if you own a multi-purpose all-around rifle. However, depending upon what I hunt I set the power and leave it. I don't fiddle adjusting powers while in the field. We'd all be better off with fixed power scopes IMHO.

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Well I always set my scopes all the way down when I'm hunting or at the most 6X, but when you are shooting for fun or at a range it's nice to be able to crank that baby up...

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from Walt Smith wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

If I were you Dave I'd puke on the latest optical wonder rather than my shoes, especially if the're broken in good!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I've tried most brands of scopes on my heavy caliber, heavy recoil rifles, and eventually most have to go back for repairs. Be they Leopold, Leica, Zeiss, or Sawrovski. I feel Leopold is the best value, and have always received prompt service. Did you know if you send a Swarovski in for repairs here in the states it goes to Leopold?

I always take a spare scope with me. My seventy year old eyes don't handle open sights anymore.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I'm with Dr. Ralph. When I'm hunting, if the rifle I'm using is scoped, I dial it down to the lowest setting.

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from Devil_Dog wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

My experience with scopes is admittedly limited, but it's due to the fact that every scope I've grown up with or bought has performed very well.

My father's old scope was a Redfield 3-9x that's got to be pushing 35 years of hard use. It got replaced a few years back by a newer Leupold when my dad's aging eyes required more light. Both of those scopes survived inter-continental ramp ape abuse, along with the Burris Fullfield 3-9x I've had on my .270 for 13 years now.

After I got a real job and had more options I went to Leupold mostly on reputation and the fact that they're American made by an American company. The 2.5-8x on my .35 Whelen had no problems making an overseas voyage , but the newer 4x on my in-line muzzleloader hasn't really been pushed yet.

I know the best hunts push you and your gear hard, horses fall over, British Airways plays gun case shot-put, and at some point you slip and wipe out on hard stone. But to me, if you're baning your rifle and scope around enough to bust things up on a continual basis, there's probably some negligence involved.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

WA Mtnhunter
You had the opposite experience with a Redfield 2-7x Widefield in 1998. Probably the reason you had better luck is what I’ve been told back in 1995 at the NRA Convention in Phoenix Arizona, is some fella in Alaska really put a damper on sales a few years earlier due to poor warranty service and he really put the hurt on them.
I wonder who that wuz??? LOL!!!!

Had a fella at the range in AK that dropped his rifle on a sheep hunt demolishing the stock and scope. He asked if Leupold would cover it, I said doesn’t hurt to try. I tell’ya, they replaced it not because it was bent 20 degrees at the joint of the tube and front bell housing, it shouldn’t been bent at all according to Leupold.

Got a new scope out of it he did!

Got an old Weaver K6 on my 03-A3 thats been on ther since I was 12

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from jjas wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

While I agree that I don't turn up my variable scopes much anymore, a 3-9x40 in a comparable product line is normally cheaper than a fixed scope.

My Zeiss Conquest has sat atop a few slug guns, a .357 magnum lever gun and now sits atop a .44 magnum rifle (for a total of over 500 rounds) and has never missed a beat. Maybe I'm just lucky?

My Nikon prostaff 3-9x40 has sat atop a .50 cal muzzleloader and now sits atop a mossberg 500 turkey/slug gun and has lasted through over 200 rounds and never missed a beat either.

Again, is that just luck?

If it is, I hope it doesn't change.

Jim

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Does anyone know anything about vintage Bushnell Scope Chief IV's? I have one that has an adjustable reticle that switches between a post and fine x-hair with a twist of a ring. Probably 60's or 70's vintage.

I got it in a deal on an older Savage 99. It was mounted somewhat loosely with bases that placed the scope in a very acute up-angle, so no way it was ever zeroed on that gun and every screw was somewhat loose. It appears to be in good condition and fairly bright. It is a 3-9x40.

Thanks in advance,
WMH

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

All my scopes are variables of different levels but I don't recall ever hunting with them beyond 3x. I too have my eye on the Zeiss 4x. It is sleek and would look good on any rifle, especially my next one.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

My guns all have Leupold VX III's and never has there been a problem. Usually keep the dial near the low end and crank it up for a long shot. Also like the higher end for the bench rest. The oldest is a 1.75 X 5X that has been all over Alaska including Afognak Island. It rained there for 8 out of the 10 days hunted. Chuck's Redfield took a ding on a rock and failed and Glen's Weaver fogged up. My old Leupold has lots of nicks and scratches but dispite being on a 350 Rem mag it has never failed. Shot Moose, Griz, Black Bear and many Blacktailed deer with it.

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

So where's the F&S gang this weekend? Not at Opryland with the National Wild Turkey Federation's 33rd annual convention and calling contest... just saw Michael Waddell on the local news and last years champ. Says he drives his whole family crazy practicing all day every day. Guess I'll have to check it out tomorrow.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Charley wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Nowadays I get looked at strangely when i meet another hunter and he sees my iron sights. I don't like all that may go wrong with a scope. If i wait long enough I will get an animal in range for a comfortable shot with the irons.

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I like fixed powered scopes.There are less models on the market, since veriables dominate the market , but I can get by fine with a fixed 4X x 40mm. In fact, I had one of the Redfield wideviews, and like Clay; mine fogged up within a few months of owning it. I returned it to the factory in which they sent me a NEW scope included with a note stating

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from score-your-hunting wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I have a 2-7 Redfield which still shoots where it was sighted in 1965. It has taken a lot of whitetail, and a few other smaller critters. But! It has been set on 4x for most of it's life, and it's on a light kicking M70 .243.

I haven't had any scope troubles even with some inexpensive scopes in almost 50 years of hunting/shooting. But! I haven't owned big hard kicking rounds, and the M70 is the only one I've kept for a long time.
Buck@score-your-hunting.com

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

continued...that mine was beyond repair. The replacement they sent me wasn't any better, so I sold it to another poor soul who I never saw again; he wanted fir his .22.I do hope he had more luck with it then I had?!

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from Edward J. Palumbo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Variables have come a long way since the the first ones I tried - the modest recoil of a .30-'06 was enough to jar them asunder, and I was not impressed.
I agree with those who observe that fixed power scopes are definitely an "endangered species". Anybody remember the Leupold 3X, long out of production? Best piece of glassware I ever owned! I have seven scopes; all but one are fixed power. The exception is a 3x9 mounted on a .22 rimfire.
Is there room in my life for a quality variable? Yes, I believe there is...and I'll have more to say about that after I purchase a Leupold 3x9 for my .250 Savage.

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from vtbluegrass wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I have a 700 in 270Win with a 3-9x40 Redfield that was mounted on the gun by its previous owner a friend of mine around the time I was born. The adjustment caps haven't been taken off since '82 and it still puts 3 150gr corelokts in a spot a little under an inch just north of the bullseye.
I also had a Swift fixed 4x scope on my Ruger Blackhawk 44mag for about 2days. Mounted one day, busted the next. Dropped the top of the reticle out of the thing in under 10 rounds.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Clay for what it's worth I had not one but two Redfield Widefields "go south" simoultaneously exactly like you described when I lived down south back the early seventies. Upon receipt back from the manufacturer I gave one away and actually felt sorry for the fellow who accepted it as I felt it would fail him when he really needed it sometime in the future. I sold the other cheap to a guy I didn't know so I would never see or hear about it again. Leupolds from then on for my rifles as well as those who hunted with me. I have some other high dollar scopes but still favor the Leupolds. Some of these have been used for a long time with lots of rounds being fired under them and packed many miles in trucks and on horses with no problems. I can't say this for the few Europeans I own.
Maybe the guy Dave spoke of just has bad luck, mounts his scopes incorrectly, or does not properly care for them I don't know. I have had a few rotten scopes and lots of good ones, some of which have held up amazingly well.

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from M1jhartman wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

The dude is using a scope on big bore magnum rifles and he is upset that they can't stand up to the abuse. That would be like taking a Civic out of the factory and running it down the drag strip non-stop. Ofcourse it will give up. I shoot a lot, atleast by most people's standards, and I haven't lost my faith in the good scopes yet. The cheaper scopes never gave me a reason to trust them. I guess in the end, that's all that matters. Good shooting everyone.

-Jeff-

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Charley

About iron sights, I got one better than that!
I periodically deer hunt with my Ultra Match M1A and M1 Grande. Other hunters with these new WSSM’s with high priced scopes and fancy gear think I’m nuts until I point out a small rock the next county over. Then I ask, how many shots will it take you until you hit that rock and how many consecutive times can you hit it?

By the way, these are the two rifles I used in 1000 yard High Power Matches!

1000 yards = 32 clicks up and generally 7 clicks into the wind!!!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

ishawooa

They will be eating snow cones in hell before I buy another Redfield!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

By the way I have a
Carl Gustaf Stads Gevarsfaktori 6.5x55 Swedish Carbine and it’s not a cut off barrel that is accurate as any scoped rifle when shooting game.
I’ve won a many turkey shoots with it especially when I was 14. Should have seen the before and after faces of the other shooters when I won!!!
What was that David about 6.5x55’s? LOL!

PS.

Hold my trophy while I kiss your Girl Friend!!

-2 Good Comment? | | Report
from elmer f. wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

so far, my luck with scopes has been pretty good (knock on wood). i have had to send back one simmons scope which had the PLASTIC" zoom" ring break in half while i was dialing it back down to 3x. fortunatly, this happend right after deer season here when i was cleaning the rifle to put it away. i have also had one fog up, after about 8 years of service. it was a cheap scope to begin with so i just replaced it. other than that, i have had good luck with scopes, even cheap ones. i do not expect to be able to read the fine print of a contract @ 400 yards with one, that is not the point of a scope. the point is to give you fast accurate reliable quick target aquisition so you can either remove the "X" ring, or harvest your favorite animal as humanely as possible. anyone who wants to be able to count the eyelashes on the elk they are going to shoot @ 500 yards is wasting both valuable time, and many dollars which should be used much wiser. while i am not advising anyone to put a $80.00 wal-mart special on their good rifle, a decent $400-700 dollar scope will certainly suffice for any "hunt of a lifetime". those who can afford a $3000.00 scope for their custom $5000.00 rifle, that is fine. but the elk will not know the difference. it will be just as dead with the $1300.00 package as the $7000.00 package as long as the HUNTER does his part.

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from TheEasternShore... wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

scopes are helpful but at close range I prefer open sights. clay cooper your posting so many answers you just up your score thing . cheater kidding. haha

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from pearbear wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

the best fair price varable i found was the tasco titan took many mountain and bush plane beatings in alaska and has held zero own 4 of them wish i had two dozen shoot hand loads 1n everything from 284 win custom extended chamber to 375 h&h mag all 4 titans never a change shoot a 1 inch with a 300 win mag ,you can keep your leopolds

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from JCB wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

In my opinion Bausch and Lomb and it right 50 years ago. A fixed power scope with all the adjustments in the mount. Just a solid rugged scope with no little springs and dials all crammed into the little 1" tube. Also less points of entry for moisture or seals to fail.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

We used to say that if your scope costed twice as much as your rifle you had the right combination. That probably does not apply in today's market as much as in bygone days but you get the idea. Regardless of your choice of rifles also select a quality piece of glass.
Ed J: Back when I was a kid I read O'Connor, Keith, etc. and believed ALL the hogwash they spewed out, didn't know enough to sort out the wisdom from the BS. Consequently I normally selected a fixed power and was certainly happy with the decision. Finally I ventured out in about 1970 and installed a Leupold 3x-9x on my Browning '06. I hunted a lot and shot it quite a bit given that, other than a M-94, it was the only center fire that I owned at that time. Now about 39 years later the combo is still intact, never a single reason for concern that either would fail on a trip to the mountains even if I took them this very day. Other than the aforementioned Redfields (yep Clay I never purchased another one new or used and never will, I understand why they went out of business but think they are back with an oriental product) my variables over the years have held up as well as the fixed. I still own a Leupold 3 x that I acquired in the late sixties, its one of my favorites. I put a minature Simmons on the kid's customized 10-22 mainly because we liked the overall appearance. It is a small short 4 x. After two-three years of hard use the reticle started shaking around in it. A friend told me that Simmons will replace it so I suppose I should send it in to verify this statement. Cheap scope for a "play" gun so I didn't really fault Simmons. I just stuck an old El Paso Weaver 2.5 on the Ruger and the kid kept shooting. I think the Weaver was about four times older than the kid when I handed it to him. Both still function splendidly.
I have seen Leupolds roll down mountains on falling horses, get mashed between trees and horses, fall down on cement garage floors, and topple down steep hills through boulders, one was dragged through a creek by accident since the owner dwas not aware that the rear strap had broken on his scabbard since he was foolish enough to position it butt to rear on ner side, all were more or less intact, all were Variables, some killed deer or elk that day or in the few days that followed, and any that were damaged were repaired by that wonderful warranty. That last sentence is long enough to be from one of Willim Faulkner's books (an old guy who lived in my home town).

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from Robert C. Turpin wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

About the Bushnell ScopeChief. I had the same scope that had a lever to make a post come into view. The one I had the reticle cross-wires fadded out to where you could not see them. I sent the scope back for repair. They sent it back saying the scope hadn't been made for many years. I happened to have the reciept and the warranty which stated that there was a 20 year warranty. I had owned the scope for 19 years. I sent the scope back with the reciept of purchace and the warranty. Bushnell sent me a brand new scope! Talk about service. This was many years ago but I've never forgotten it.
Silvertip

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from rrmont wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I've never had a problem with Leupold, so until I do I will stick with them.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Pearbear I intend to keep my Leupolds but interestingly enough I have heard a few other fellows make the same claim as you regarding the Titans. That might be a model that most of us have overlooked based upon what you say and the same statements made from these fellows who don't know you. Maybe that is why the Super Snipers have a good reputation.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

My variables work better than this web site. If you look at my comments you will see two that I submitted here but they don't show up on this blog. Am I doing something wrong? I'll try this as a test.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Well that test went right through along with the previous posts which showed over 13 minutes time had elapsed. May be my server so never mind.

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from jim in nc wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Dumb question, maybe, but if I don't ask I'll just stay dumb: if, like DP, you have a rifle you have reason to believe should shoot better than it's shooting, how do you tell whether it's the rifle or the scope that's at fault?

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from blueridge wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Reluctantly, I have to agree with Clay Cooper about Redfield. I loved their little 2X7 scope, and used it on a low-recoiling .243--until it fogged. Sent it back and they 'dissed' me like a rube, and suggested that I buy their newest widefield. They would not honor their scope-craft. I will not deal with people like that, and now, neither will my shooting family.

I like what JCB said about B&L mounting on an adjustable base...my ancient B&L on my Mannlicher is cruising right along, solid as a rock. I have one Austrian scope and one Zeiss that is top drawer, too. Still, I enjoy iron sights, and would be tempted to stay simple if hunting dangerous game.

One thing about Petzal's blog...seasoned shooters get to share their 'shake-down's' with one another, and what would you pay for that? Thanks, Dave.

Tom 'Bluerdge'

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from Ron wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I suppose I am very lucky since I have had very few problems with variable scopes. I have owned many different brands: Weaver, Bushnell, Redfield, Leupold, and Swarovski. Of the group, I had problems with only two, the Weaver for fogging, and the Fixed 4 x Redfield which I sent back to Redfield who repaired a broken reticle at no charge, and is still in use on my Marlin 336 in 35 Remington after about 40+ years.

Currently most of my rifles have variable scopes with the exception of the Redfield on the Marlin 336 mentioned above, and a Leupold fixed M8 2.5X IER which I have mounted on the barrel of a Marlin 1895 guide gun in 45-70 using an XS Lever Scout Mount. I use this set up for Black Bear & Deer at ranges very seldom over 75 yards. I find this rifle perfect in the eastern US & Canadian woods.
In Addition I have a Leupold 2-7 compact on a Winchester Mod 70 Featherweight in 270 WIN, and a Winchester Mod 70 in .243 WIN with a Bushnell 3-9 Banner.

I have mounted a Leupold LPS 2.5-10 X 45 on my Remington Alaskan Wilderness Rifle chambered in.338 RUM. I have used this rifle in the USA, Canada, and on two African hunts, Zambezi Valley, Zimbabwe and in Namibia. I have found that at times having a variable scope is invaluable, especially when trying to thread a shot through thick jess as I had to do on a few occasions. In Namibia shots ranged from 150 to over 400 yards, believe me that variable option came in mighty handy.

I also have a Swarovski 3-9x36 mounted on a Dakota 76 in 30-06, I have not had the chance to use this set-up much but so far it has performed flawlessly.

For dangerous game I use a Leupold European 30mm 1.25-5x28 mounted on a Dakota model 76 African in 450 Dakota. I have used this rifle for Bison in SD and Cape buffalo in Africa. Having the variable option in very thick jess as I had encountered when I was able to get a shot on a Cape buffalo was essential. This rifle has had over 300 rounds fired through it and I have had no problems with the scope. I am now thinking about trying out the new Leupold VX-7 in 1.5-6X 24mm.

Once again, maybe I am just lucky with variables, but they have worked well for me, and I stick with what works.

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from Carney wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

On account of the fact that I can't see anything past, oh, let's say, the distance of puke filled shoes, I like being able (as others have said) to crank up the power when I sit at the bench. I keep it set at 3X when I'm in the woods. If it is far enough away to need the 9X I probably have plenty of time to set up the shot. My Bushnell has been through some pretty good beatings but has held fast for four years or so!

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from Carney wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Speaking of optics...

Just Thursday a box came in the mail with my name on it. First prize winner: Brunton Echo 8X42 Binoculars! Apparently I entered a contest on a hunting website and poof there they are!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from T.W. Davidson wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

All:

I have experimented with several different brands of scopes over the last few years. My modest collection includes: 1 Nikon Buckmaster 6x18x40 BDC; 1 Shepherd 3x10x40 Range-Compensator, 1 Leupold Vari-X II 4x12; 1 Leupold Vari-X III 6.5x20; 1 Nikon Pro-Staff 3x9; a Bushnell 1x4 or 1x4.5 Firefly or Nightfly (or some other similar term) scope that unexpectedly came with a rifle I bought on GunsAmerica; 1 Bushnell 3x9 scope I bought for about $50 at Gander Mountain for my customized Ruger 10-22; and 1 Simmons 3x9 scope I bought for about $50 at Gander Mountain for my CZ 452 .22 target rifle.

The Buckmaster has fabulous optics and excellent eye relief, but I've come to strongly dislike the BDC setup and I'm not a fan of the overly large, thick horizontal crosshair. My complaint about the BDC is this: the point of impact on the scope changes--A LOT--with each different power setting on the scope. Nikon, at least in the Japanese-poorly- translated-to-English literature provided to me and in anything I found online, doesn't give you ballistics tables for the respective 6x through 18x power settings. Given that the BDC consists of little circles that one is supposed to zero at 200, 300, 400 out to 600 yards (or 100-500), it would be very nice and very sensible if the point of impact remained the same on each circle no matter what the respective power setting of the scope is. As it stands now, you've got to spend (in my experience) days on a 100-600 yard range experimenting with each different handload you use in your rifle, taking detailed notes of each handload with two or three different power settings--as in, this is what this rifle and this specific bullet-velocity load shoots at 6x, 12x, and 18x from 200-600 yards--and then you've got to paste little charts to your rifle stock for the separate bullet weights you use, or use just one power setting and one bullet weight/trajectory at that power setting. In essence, your 6x18 scope that cost you many hundreds of dollars because the advertising led you to believe it was a miracle of shooting technology actually becomes an expensive fixed power scope in 6 or 12 or 18 power (or whatever setting you wish to use). Very frustating. Expensive. Poor design. Shepherd's system is superior.

The Shepherd range-finding scope is generally excellent. Customer service at Shepherd (in WI, I believe)--when I needed some information or needed some replacement adjustment caps I had lost--is so genuinely nice you sometimes feel like calling the company support line just to say "hello, how are you folks doing?" and shoot the breeze. The Shepherd people are folks you'd happily share a meal with at home. They are you and me. On my particular scope, I wish the optics were a dash brighter, and I wish my scope were a 4x12 or 5x15 rather than a 3x10, but the range compensating system works, period. Eye relief could perhaps be a little better. Overall, I give the Shepherd very high marks. The product performs as advertised. And it is American.

The Leupold 4x12 and 6.5x20 are fine scopes, particularly the 6.5x20 VariX III. The latter scope has a 1/8 MOA target dot instead of crosshairs. I currently have it mounted on my heavy 7x57 AI. I use that scope/rifle combination for super-accurate bench shooting/prone shooting out to 500+ yards, and in this arena it performs excellently. The 4x12 provides plenty of light at night, under clear sky and full moon conditions, for shots well over 200 yards. Eye relief could be a bit better on both scopes, but isn't bad. I like Leupold products.

Nikon Pro-Staff: horizontal cross-hair is too big and thick. But clarity, eye-relief, and light-gathering capability is generally very good. Weight is reasonable. Scope seems reasonably tough. Price was very reasonable. I have the scope mounted on my Savage 111 in .270 Win, for an overall weight package that feels under 8 lbs. Sub-MOA is never a problem with this particular rifle-scope combination. The Savage has iron sights which work decently on shots at 100 yards or less. Although this particular rifle-scope would certainly win an outhouse-ugly contest, it is one of two rifle/scope combinations I would take with me anywhere, anytime, under any conditions, particularly the worst ones.

The Bushnell Firefly (or whatever it is called) is a simple scope. There is nothing special about it. It is neither great nor bad in any way. It neither excites or produce yawns. But, within its design intentions, it seems to work as advertised. A decent product.

The Bushnell scope on my 10-22 and the Simmons scope on my CZ 452 .22 target rifle each provide fantastic eye relief, wonderful brightness, and excellent clarity. The best $50 bargains I've gotten in the shooting world. I've toyed with the idea of mounting one of the scopes on a .257 Roberts or 257 AI to see if the scope could take the recoil, and how well the scope would work at distances out to 300 yards. The scopes are cheap, but for my .22s and the short-range shots I take with them, they perform brilliantly.

T.W. Davidson

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

To many sorry scopes out ther now. For 4 yearsI used Weaver's 4x and a 6 x. The 4 x finally got blurry and my eye sight wet south. So looking at dozens of scopes I decided on Nikon Monarch's 3 x9 40. To my eye sight it does a greast job and I love the rear eye adjustable piece as game at different distances require eithr Bincs or adjustable scopes. I prefer my rangefinder if time permis, but some times it does not. When hunting I always leave my scope set on the lowest setting, then adjust upward if necessary.These Wal-mart 29.95 scopes don;t compare to any of the mid-range scopes say $400.00 up and some of the thousands of dollar scopes are no beter than my Nikons.I use Rem 700's for most my hunting, some zeroed for out West @300+ yds and those here at home zeroed at 100. Regardless fo scope you have, if you cannot hit your game, makes little difference in the scope. So pratice and pratice more. Shoot-um-straight and often. My longest shot was in MT 2 yrs ago @345 yds with a 700 CDL using l80 gr Scricco's. I had no time to range the Buck , figured he as about 200 so heald on his bsack line. Bullet went in his last rib 4" low on left and came out his front shoulder. Needles to say he dropped in his tracts.But 90% of all game killed is 100 yds or less. Buy a quality firearm, scope, best ammo you can find, pratice a lot and hold steady on your target pull the trigger very slow and you will get results if you have the gun zeroed in proper. I also have a Custom Built Mauser in 30-06 with open sights, i do well to 200 yds, but beyond is iffy, so I only use this rifle here at home. Never would I trust the airlines with this beaut. Anyone in market for afforable gun, try the MArlin XL7 in either 270 or 30-06, its a fine cheaper gun and shoots 2'' groups all day which ain't bad for a 73 + yr old guy. Its my 4 wheeler and pickup gun.Got many Coyots, Foxes and I take it whenever I'm on the 4 wheeler or the truck to the farm.

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from Jim Blum wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

The best scope I have is a lyman 10x perma center that is on a remington modle 700 in 243 I have taken alot on ground hogs at 200 yds .. I paid more for the scope than for the rifle.. On othe rifles I have not found any scope that compairs,, But I really don't want to spend 1,000"s for a scope.. Iguess back in the late 70's if you paid 200 or 300 for a scope and the rifle was 180.00 it wasn't that big a deal but in today's market You just don't know what you are really getting..
Jim

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from Bernie wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

After reading everyone's posts, I think I may have been very lucky with telescopic sights. I own 17 scopes, mostly Leupold, Redfield, and Burris, but I have a couple B & L Elite Series, and one Weaver. The only scope problem I have had in the last 25 years was after I bought a Swift brand scope, put it on a .22 and had the crosshairs break! (Apparently, from the "heavy" recoil!) I initially paid $100 for the scope. It cost me ten bucks to have it examined, then I got a note that it would cost something like $70 to repair. I wrote back and told them what to do with their cheap, piece-of-crap scope.

I prefer fixed powers over variables too, although I own both. I stay away from the high-powered variables--don't need the magnification and don't want the weight and bulk.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

T.W. Davidson,
I have a Burris Fullfield 3x9 that has the ballistic plex reticle. The lower vertical wire has hash marks for 200-400 yds, 500 is the top of the heavy vertical wire. Burris clearly states in the instructions that when sighting in or when hunting, if the ballistic plex is to be used you must turn power ring up to 9x. It will not function correctly at 5 or 6 or 7x. It makes sense, if you need to use it your game must be far off. Maybe that's the problem you encountered with your Nikon. Try it only at full power.

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from sarg wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

streak, Daves not trying to "double post" to rack up points, he's just got a nervous triger finger on the mouse,, guys, I like a 4 power fixed scope on a deer rifle ,shooting at 75-100yds. but on a varmit rig I like a varable with 50mm objective lense...

Clay, that's quite a resume....

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from sarg wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Good post, Wamtnhunter..."KISS"

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from davidpetzal wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

To Jim in NC: There are no dumb questions. The .404 in question had a long and very good track record as far as accuracy goes. So, when this 1.3-inch (or better) rifle shot a 4-inch group, there were four possible culprits: the shooter (What, me screw up?), the rifle (rifles do not suddenly go weird); the ammo (handloads, put together carefully); or the scope. The last was the only possible guilty part because it was on a hard-kicking rifle and because scopes do go weird suddenly.

Last fall I was shooting my .45/70 Guide gun offhand, using Garrett Cartridges' fire-breathing cast-lead loads, and all my shots hit in a nice tight group about a foot to the right of where I was aiming. Went through the same drill with the same results--an unglued scope.

Any time a rifle of proven accuracy goes strange, or a rifle that should shoot well shoots very badly, it's almost always the scope.

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from sarg wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Eastershore, you're right, we just upped your score two points

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

JCB, B&L made/makes some great stuff. When I was in the service I wore their aviator sunglasses. Never found anything since that could compete with them. None

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from buckhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

A question for you scope experts. I have a Weaver K8 and a Weaver Classic 300 new in the box sitting in my workshop. I'm not sure but I have had them for maybe 25 yrears and don't even know where they came from. Would they be worth using on a nice gun or should I throw them on a .22 and let my kids beat them up.

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from wingshooter54 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dave,
Use all your influence and commanding presence to convince the guys at Zeiss to come out with a 6x42 Conquest. I would put them on all my rifles except the 22 Hornet and 223 which have 10x40 B&L elites.
Gary

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from lost my zero wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

the only scope problem I've had is those damn T15 torx screws, they will shear under load. The T10 size works fine IMHO.

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from 60256 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I only use scopes for distance shots with my rifle. If i can't identify what i'm shooting with my shotgun without a scope, it's too far away.

Nate

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

buckhunter,
Back in the 80's my then wife bought me a Weaver K4w for a present. The w standing for wide view. It served well but I really didn't shoot a thousand thru it to say it was great. It seemed good. I mounted it on a .30 cal. carbine, I wish I could remember if it was a Marlin or what, but it was a lever action. Wish I still had it.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

The 4x fixed Weavers are hard to beat, but as I aged I needed more power at 200 yds than a 4 x, so went to the 3 x 9x 40's or 3.5x10x45 in a Burroughs. I prefer the Nikons now as for my last 9 Western hunts my 700's all carried the Nikon. But, no scope is better than the base. I learned the hard way.Weaver bases are fine for low recoil guns, but to be safe every shot and especially if you fly your guns west, the Leupold Dual Dove Tails are the way to go,. My favorit gun a 700 CDL in 06 was the first leupold DD I ever used, and it has gone west 9 times and never lost its 300 yd Zero. However, I will give credit to Burroughs on their Dusk to Dawn with 6" eye relief, its a fine scope for a B/P or a hard kicker. I especially like the eye focus piece at our eyeball, as does the newer Nikon Monarchs have. This past year I killed 3 Bucks at l70 yds and l50 and ll0 with the CVA B/P carrying the Burroughs Dusk to Dawn. And it also is mounted with the Leupold DD mounts. The Dusk to Dawn is a variable also 3 x 9 40 with adjustable eye piece at your eye. Late or early in the day, that eye focus piece is a must to determine if it's s shooter of not, the adjustment is like a set of Bincs as that late or early no time to check with the Bincs if it's what you want. I'm sold on the adjustable eye piece near your eye and power setting lever. AS for the Swift Scopes , to me they are Wal-mart specials or worse. A local gun shop only carries the Swift and has them marked up there with the Nikons and Leupolds. THe mark-up on Swifs is about 200% He is the only dealer I've ever seen stock the Swift.Again, if need a new gun, by a Marlin XL7, mount a Nikon with Leupold set up and zero for 200 yds and you all set. The New Marlin is by far the best built Cheaper line of guns to come out in past 5 yrs. The stock fits the metal, plus no ridge where was glued together ,it's a molded stock that fits the metal. ALso, the trigger is awsome. Next trip to a Gun Shop look the Marlin over. I bought one as soon as was available, and I would not selll at all, as was made prior to Remington buying Marlin, H&R out. Does anyone know who is mfgering the dble bble rifle that Remington bought from EAA now. They don;t list it in the Remington catalog anymore after they dbled the price from EAA.I've used Remingtons since l951 but they now only have 2 guns worth even considering in my opinion, and thats the BDL and CDL line, both in Walnut. Their Syn stocked guns look like made of Beer Cans.I ordered a Model 770 whencame out and in about 2 minutes it was repackaged and returned, never saw a cheaper built gun other than the China line.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

One last suggestion on firearms. Most of the newer guns all are too light. For some reasom hunters think a light wt guns is better. To me I want a 9-10 lb gun. I want the extra wt added to the stock. All my guns have about 2 lbs of lead in the butt end. It helps me hold the gun more steady and puts the recoil directly against my shoulder and with less recoil. I am right handed and with the extra wt in the butt end, I can now hold the forearm without it moving around like a second hand on a clock.. My Walnut guns, I bored out a 3/4" hole and added 2lb of lead shot. On my Syn stocked guns,I got old wheel wts wraped in foam rubbere and packed them into the stock. You would be suprised how much better i can shot now than prior to the added wt. I'm a small frame guy weigh l28 lbs and recoil is a problem for me, but with a 9-10 lb gun I can handle a l80 gr. bullet fine.( Hey, no gun has recoil when you shooting a ttophy, it's that bench shooting that kills your shoulder)

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from Ed J wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

buckhunter
There are some guys out there who are collecting old scopes, Weavers include. You now the routine, new in the box bring the most value. I have a well used K10, right now it is sitting on a Savage 22mag.

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from YooperJack wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dave, I'm really glad you wrote this after I bought a rifle and scope. If I read this first, I would've stayed with 94 Winchester and open sights. You, Clay and Gunslinger pretty much set me straight on the caliber (30.06). Gunslinger was talking up the Nikon Monarch. I hope He's right. I did like it this past season. Thanks Everyone!
YooperJack

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from sarg wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I believe that reguardless of brand, if one is shooting at or beyond 300yds, it should have an adjustable objective lense.

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from steve182 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Have a 35 year old Leupold 2.5x8 that hasn't lost it's zero on my '06 (formerly my dads). It has served us very well. I was taught to keep it on 2.5x for easier target aquisition. I have on many occassions cranked it up to take longer shots at game and on the bench. I'm sure the weatherproofing (anti-fog) has probably degraded over the years, but i've only experienced fogging on a few occassions in very foul weather. I'd expect that from any scope. I have put cheaper scopes on a shotgun and back-up deer rifle, and expect that may bite me someday. Hope not. In the future i'll opt for bargain rifles with good glass. I also want to shoot a buck with open sites someday. In spite of moderate success the past several years, with a rifle and a bow, i'm hesitant to give anything up. I remember the days when my freezer was void following deer season and don't want to go back there.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

T.W.

For all the information about the ballistic reticles you posted, you left out an important fact: The reticle in most scopes is calibrated in MOA at a given magnification setting. Those change when you change the power setting on your scope. It is easy to mathematically derive the approximate MOA for each power setting if you know the MOA for the low end and the high end.

I agree that the Nikon BDC reticle with the circle aim points is a POS appropriate for a turkey gun only. The scopes are nice with the standard reticle. Those Sheppard scopes are for the rookies who have no idea about how to estimate range or use a rangefinder and execute a proper hold.

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from focusfront wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger makes a good point. What with lighter guns firing today's more powerful rounds, scopes just plain have to put up with more than they used to. Jack O'Connor's eight and a half pound .270 rifles would be child's play in recoil compared to the sub seven pound .300 and .325 WSMs we have today.

That said, I think that most variable scopes are invented not by hunters but salespeople. A straight 2.5x or 4x scope is what it is, but give a salesman a 4.5-14x scope with a 50mm objective and he can talk it up all day. And a gunwriter can write it up all day. My next deer hunt, I'll use a red dot and leave my scopes at home.

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from Zermoid wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Cheap Tasco Silver Antler 3x9x32 and a Simmons 3x9x40 are the only scopes I have, other than a couple .22 scopes.
Amazingly no problems in 18 years with the Simmons and about 15 with the Tasco, but then again I don't have any of the "small cannon" type calibers, heaviest kicking rifle is my 6.5x55 Swede.

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from Quiet Loner wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Anyone having scope trouble or mounting a scope should read an article by John Barsness in The American Rifleman of a couple of months back. That would include a "famous maker of custom rifles" although I don't know if it is the same guy.

It seems many of us (I belonged to the "farmer tight" school until last year) have been squeezing the guts out of our scopes and then blaming the manufacturer. When I first was able to afford a scope, the conventional wisdom taught "tighten those mounting screws as tight as you can. A farm kid used to hand milking cows can tighten the threads offa screw.

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from Armchair Mike wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Mr. Petzal, I fear for your writing career. Don't you know that honesty doesn't pay the bills? Advertisers must hate you. Seriously, thank you for addressing what I have wondered for a long time. I've always attributed my problems with variables to not spending enough on my scopes, but I see from your post and some of the comments that forking over big bucks is no guarantee of quality. You can't fix a problem by throwing money at it? Somebody write to Washington on this.

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from Beekeeper wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Hard to beat a fixed 4 power.

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from steve182 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I have a fixxed 4x on my levergun but i'm not shooting 300 yds with it. I did make a 300 yd shot on a buck with my bolt action w/ a 2.5x8 Leupold, and i remember that deer seeming pretty small in the scope. I like the fixxed 4x on my slug gun too.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dave or Edotors,

There should be 74 comments. Instead I'm seeing only one. what happened to the others? Did I miss something you changed?

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger,
There is much truth in your words. A chain is as good as the weakest link. That is also true about the rifle, scope rings & base and the scope, but you can get by with a low priced (not cheap there is a dif) rifle. Said it before and I'll say it again. I was always amazed at the number of guys that spend the money for a hunting trip in AK and show up with a nice gun and a Piece Of Shiite scope. Heck go to any hunting camp and look at the scopes. People tend to buy crappy cause crappy looks good in the store. Spent most of their money on the gun I expect.

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from Ed J wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Whats the matter Del in KS don't you like to see a $49.00 Tasco sitting on a Weatherby Mark V?

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Will never forget the trip west at aElk camp. A older guy shows up with a old Remington 06, no scope, open sights. The stock was taped with Rlec.tape at the grip several rounds, but could yet see the long crack on both sides of the gun stock. No one said a word to him,as he looked as that was about all he could afford ( which prove incorrect). Opening day arrived, the older guy was up and gone before l/2 the camp had a cup of coffee.In about l hr BAMM, near by and in about 30-45 minutes teh old guy showed up with bloody hands and ask the outfitter if he could take a couple of pack mules and bring in his 6 x 6 Elk. All in camp were pleased that the older guy got his elk with the equiptment he was using, and most of them had guns costing thousands of dollars. So guys, it's not the equiptment or how it looks to be successful.I bet this older guy had done this many times in the past.So leson I learned from him, was that your ability and know how was more important that the fancy gun and scopes.I'm a small guy and a 06 with enough wt in the butt to ease recoil works fine for me.Of the last l2 animals I;ve killed,all were l shot and out to 345 yds, but mostly under 200 yds. If you plan to hunt the Rockies or the rolling plains, invest in a Range finder and zero that rifle to 300 yds as those mtns and valleys will surely fool you. Shoot-um-straight and often. Buy the best ammo available for hunting as that one shot may be all you get. One last thing, when you go on a high dollr hunt, the first legal animal you see that you would love to see on the last hour of your hunt, you better tske him, as he may be the only one you see. Last year in MT I shot the one and only Buck I saw, now what I really wanted, but after 8 days and no Mulies,my mind changed. He's being mounted at pesent. good luck, almost time for Turkey day, left my deer ground blinds up so now ready for the old tom. I do throw out some cracked corn every week to keep the flock on my farm.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Ed J

There should be a law against mounting a Tasco or Simmons (or any other POS) on a Weatherby Mark V! Sort of like putting F-150 hubcaps on an Escalade.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Wa MtnHunter, Putting anything Ford on a GM would be an improvement.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Yooper Jack: Providing you get the Nikon Monarch mounted proper with a good set ups ( such as the Leupold DD) and zero your scope for the distsances you will be hunting you will be well pleased with the results. I have many guns all mounted with Nikons or the new Burroughs DuskDawn 6" eye relief),but for a over-all scope the Nikon is better. As I stated earlier.A new Marlin XL7 in 06, with a Monarch scope setting on Leupold base adn mounts, it will be close to $900.00 . I've owned and used many scopes ovr my 63 ys of hunting, and yes I yet have a 4 X and a 6 X Weaver and the orig boxes they came in. May someday need to add one to a gun i may buy. As for some othere brands of scopes, such as Simmons, they all still wal-mart specialsand may work o a 22, but I lost the best Elk I ever saw due to a Sorry A----d Simmons.The scope was perfect at 200 yds, when I left home, but when crunch time came was off at least 4feet at less than 250 yds.Needless to say, it moved on. Shoot-um-straight and often.

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from YooperJack wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger:
I probably would've liked the Marlin if I was right handed. I'm not so I bought a LH Tikka. In your previous writing, you had mentioned the weight of the rifle. Hence, I looked for a wood stock. You, Clay Cooper and Dave Petzal all seemed really high on the 30.06. Shoots great. Actually, I've got about $900 into that setup also. I've got no regrets. Now my goal is to make one of those western hunts. Its always great to have a goal!
Thanks Again!
YooperJack

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Jim in Mo

Yep, Those boys at Ford make some mighty fine hubcaps. Can't say too much about the rest of the rig. LOL

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

A couple of posts trashed Swift scopes. My son has a fixed 4X Swift compact scope on his Savage 99 .308 Win. It has been on it about 10 years with no malfunction or loss of zero.

Are those bad scopes?

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Yeah I have a Swift on my Knight M/L and it's been on there over ten years and I love it. Plus it gets twice the abuse because the percussion caps burn it every time you pull the trigger. I put one on my son's .270 because I liked mine so much.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dr. Ralph

Thanks. The guy that sold it to me (1997) at a gun dealer is a friend of mine and said the Swift 4X compact was a well made scope and he had sold quite a few of them with no problems, so I got the scope and mounts for under $100 as I recall. I guess if it hasn't fogged or crapped out by now, it likely won't. I'm not sure that I would put it on a .338 Win Mag or a .300 Weatherby though.

However, in today's manufacturing environment that scope may have been made in a quality shop (Japan) and now may be made in a hack shop in Shanghai or wherever.

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from crm3006 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Reflecting on the posts above, I see that almost everyone has had some sort of difficulty with almost every type, sort and brand of scope on the market. I suspect from reading the posts that mounts are at fault most of the time, except in cases of broken cross hairs and fogging. I had to go to the safe and take a census, but most of my scopes are Leupolds, all of which are variables from 2 X 7 - 4 X 14s. Also included are Burris, Weaver fixed power, a couple of Simmons, Redfield, a Tasco and even a BSA.
Most, if not all, have been subjected to rain, changing temperature, and travel in jeeps, four wheelers and pick ups. All, except the Redfield on my Nylon 66, and the Simmons on my .30-'06, have solid bases and steel rings. The Burris has withstood more recoil, being on the .375 H&H, but the Simmons on my Old Ugly '06 has served the longest and had the most abuse. It is mounted on an Ironsighter see through mount and has had to be re-zeroed one time when it was severely dropped. (This is over a period of about 15 years.)
I work on all my scopes, mounts, rifles and loads until they will shoot into a 3" Birchwood Casey Shoot and See at 200 yds. The .22 rimfires 1" at 50 yds. If I can not get this, I will be swappin, trading or selling, but I exhaust all the options first.
One notable case was the 4 X 16 Tasco. Had it mounted on a .22-250 Rem BDL, couldn't get an acceptable group. Changed it out for a 4.5 X 14 Leupold, started getting nickle and sometimes dime sized groups at 200 yds.
Swapped the scope off, and a friend mounted it on a sweet little Remington 700 .243. Long story short, The Bookkeeper later bought the .243 and it will throw 1" or less groups with a 100 gr. load all day!
The moral of this little tale is, check everything, starting with the screws in the bases, then check it again because it ain't always the scope that is to blame. All the components that make the scope work have to be right and tight, too.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Yooperjack: The Tikka is a fine weapon and should give you good service. I also prefer Walnut wood and a weight of 9-10 lbs in 30-06. A 06 hs so many options for ammo, from a 55 grs. Acc. to a 220 gr SP. I feeI I can hunt anything in NA other than the Griz. My reason for a Syn stock is I am a nut about my guns, how the preform and look. When hunting out west you can/will have most any type weather, and I thought a Syn stock would go along on my next trip. i also wantd a Syn stock for my 4 wheeler/truck here at home as the limbs along the trails is death on Beautiful Walnut. My Western guns are all 700's in 25-06 and 30-06 plus this new Marlin in 06. I feel Marlin will make this XL7 in LH soon and other calibers. Also, a 5-6 l/2;b gun is too light for me, as I weigh l28 lbs and skinny as a rail and need the extra wt in the butt end to control the recoil. With a weight of 9-10 lbs i can handle just fine.As i stated above when shooting at live animals you never feel any recoil, it's at the Bench that the recoil hurts. I hope you enjoy your new Tikka and are able to go on a Western hunt ASAP.I've been many times, to C0, MT,WY, Nebraska,Idaho and as soon as the economy pickups up again and my hunt funs increases I want to go to NM for a Hugfe Elk on the Indian Res.And, yes the 700 Rem and the Marlin in 06's will go.Good luck,have a successful year. Try those new Scricco's by Rem in l80 gr polymer tips, it's a great bullet and flys flat and straight, little drop @3-400 yds .I zero all my Western guns in at 300 yds. Now all you need is a Rangefinder, as those mtns and valleys out west will fool you on distance. Shoot-um-straight and often.PS; Try some Johnson floor paste wax on your Tikka, once it dries will leave a rainproff finish and help prevent scratches, dents as well.And, i always add a piece of Elec. tape over the muzzle end, will keep out dirt, grim and water or snow, and not affect the point of aim.

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from tightliner09 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

ill stick with good ole irons!!!

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Just got a flyer in todays mail. Midway has Leupold VX III's on sale $100 off most models.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Del-in KS: Leupold is discontining the VX 111 line. So if you want one, better get from Midway ASAP. The new line is many $$$$ higher than the present line. Nikon did the same with its 3x9x40: Changed to a 2.5X10x42. But I am happy with the 3 x 9 x 40, will give me a great view out to 3-4 yards and i can;t see beyond 400 yds with any scope. Age does affect eyes as well as other parts of our body, but you younger guys don;t know that yet.I love the Nikons , but had a gun was not sure I would keep so saw the Bushnell Dusk to Dawn 3x9x49 advertised with a 6" eye relief at a much cheaper price than the Nikons,so ordered one. Installed with the Leupold set up and was thrilled at the results.3rd shot was l l/2' at l00 yds. So I bought a new N/P CVa and wanted a scope for it as well. Yep, bought the Bushnell Dusk to Dawn with the 6" eye relief and zeroed in for 200 yds using Pyrodex pellets 100 grs total and the Powerbuilt Sabots. Opening day last year of B/P about 2 minutes before too late to see, out stepped a Buck but was over 200 yds away. I waited for hoim to come closer and whe he got to l70 yds, I saw many points. He was looking directly at me in my ground blind. I shot him at l70 yds, l shot and he fell over, a very nice 9 pointer. So, over the next week of B/P I killed 3 other Bucks using the same set up and the scope was yet on the $ when season ended and I cleaned it up. A mediocore scope with a good set up sometimes is all we need. Good Luck. PS; We can kill 6 deer where I live per season and then buy extra doe tags if want them. My Son and I may try Colorado this fall for Elk north of Craig, C0 if all goes well and gas not 10$ a gallon. The 700's will go on that trip with the Nikons.Son uses a 700 in 7 mm mag. A little heavy for me.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Wa Mtnhunter,
Whoa touche!
Dr. R, your right about place of manufacture. If it's made in US or Japan or made one place (Japan,US) and assembled in the other country, its probably and generally ok. Get the ones with the parts made in the pacific rim and watch out!

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from YooperJack wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger:
When I bought, it never occurred to me to get a synthetic stock and weight it with lead. I might have preferred that option. Dave Petzal described an event once where a wood stock cracked from being in the baggage compartment of a high altitude jet airliner. Since I hate air travel, that probably won't be a problem. However, ATV's are used here and if I ever go out west, horses might be used so synthetics were definitely a good option. Hell, wood stocks have been used for somewhere around 300 years. I guess I'll handle it.
Thanks,
YooperJack

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from platte river rat wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

weavers---Leupold---Burris---they've all been good to me, but most of them are fixed power. My largest gun is a 3oo win mag, this probably is the reason of my good luck.Been using scopes for over 55 yrs now.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger

We are going back to Craig, CO again this year. I will be staying at the Elk Run Inn in Craig driving out to the ranch daily if all goes as planned.

WMH

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger, I saw an embroidery in an 80 year old woman's house that said... "My bifocals work great, my false teeth are comfortable, my hearing aid is adequate, now if they just could make my mind work again." Scared the crap out of me....

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

YooperJack: I also love great wood, kills me when i scratch mine up. I;ve used a wet cloth and the Iron many nights after a dent during the day. With the Syn stocked guns I own and use, the stock comes with a piece of styfoam inserted in the back end. I take that out and then get wheel weights and wrap in Foam rubber and insert the amount I need into the butt end, usually about 2 lbs will bet me at 9-10 lbs. On my Walnut stocks I drill a l/2 to 3/4" hole in the stock and fill with lead shot to get it at 9-10 lbs. I being a skinny guy with the extra wt on the butt end, it kinda stabalizes the gun and I can hold more steady and removes some of the wt on the foreend. It really helps when off hand shooting. A 5 l/2 lb 30-06 in syn will bust your shoulder if no meat there like on me. I don;t climb mtns so teh 9-10 lbs don;t bother me. I mostly stand hunt or at least a short walk to a huge tree with my stool and park myself. Let the younger guys run the game my way.At 73, Can;t climb to 12K feet as i once could.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

WA Mtn hunter: Ifmy Son and i go back to Craig this fall, will be hunting near Maybell and then north of Craig ( highway 13 I think) near and on Black Mtn. Willstay in the Holiday Inn at the west end of Craig. Just hope this economy improves so able to go again. I want my Son to kill a nice Elk while I;m around to see. Lots of great Mulies in the Sage near Maybelle. Hopefully we all get to make it West again if not this year, then next. Im a little concerned about the winter Kill-off in the Craig area, what reports have you received?

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dr. RAlph: Her mind would not bother me, it would be what you can;t see that would be of concern to me. Her eyes, ears, and teeth indicates the other parts of her body work fine. So don;t run just yet,see what is offered and the condition left in. Never under estimate the will /desire of a woman, regardless of he age. I know such a person, and you would think she is not a day over 50, also, she acts as such. Good Luck.

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from Brian W. Thair wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I can't believe that I read the whole thing. Thanks for all the shopping advice. I've been pleased with every rifle/(fixed)scope combo I've bought because I knew what I needed before I shut the front door. BTW, the Nikon Prostaff 82mm 20-60X spotting scope is worth every dime.
How about a Rem 700BDL in .243 with a Weaver K6?

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Brian: No way to go wrong with a BDL or CDL, and the Caliber depends on what you plan to hunt. Me I'd rather be over gunned than under. I Think the 270 is small enough for average Deer, but many taken with 243 and i know a few taken with 223 and even a 22 mag. I Just want that animal to hit the ground when I fire. i can;t track a wounded animal due to my health. As for Scopes, if you read the above, you can see that i really prefer the Nikon's. The new Bushnell Dusk/Dawn is ok, but not the same quality as a Nikon. I got a 4 x and 6 x Weaver had since early 50's, but the 4 x is getting a tad fuzzy, could be my eyes/ I do prefer the Variables and the eye focus piece near your eye, works great in low light. If you ever need to know anything about hunting or guns,. read this Blog, as some body will have your answer, not that you need it. Good Luck, Shoot-um-straight and often . Back to scopes. If anyone is on a tight budget, and who is not these days, the Bushnell Dusk/Dawn with 6" eye relief( a must on a B/P gun) is a good scope and will take the recoil of a l50 grs of Pyrodex in my B/P gun. Again, this is a great Blog and will learn a lot as we fron all over the lower 48 and WE KNOW IT ALL?????????

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger,

I have not heard much about winter kill this year in the Craig area. Last year, the winter kill was mostly south of there. 2008 season was spotty for some hunters since there was not much October snow to move the elk out of the high country and there was still lots of forage up high that kept the animals dispersed in areas that hunters usually don't find them during the hunting season. We had 7 out of 8 hunters get an elk. Deer were not very active due to warmer temps and this year was a little early for pre-rut activity in 2nd rifle season. We found little evidence of winter kill on the ranch.

We usually stay at the Elk Run Inn or Black Nugget up the hill from the Holiday Inn on US 40.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

WA Hunter: Thats good news about the winter kill. I love teh Crai area west and north. Kinda hard to get permission to hunt north, but was able to a few years back. Just hope my Son and I get to go back again this year, all depends on his work. He works for the Dept of Labot for state of N.C. We finally got some snow last night and lots of wind around 20-30 MPH. Today has been really cold and to be in low teens tonight. Back to Craig, do;t forget the western Museum in Craig you will love the western mdse.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger

I meant to go to the western museum this past year on your recommendation, but spent every day up until departure trying to help the last guy in our party get his elk. I gave him a package of targets for Christmas and told him when he can put 3 in the center at 200 yards no more than 6 inches apart, then he can call me for another trip to Colorado. LOL

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

WA Hunter: It has always been a mystery to me that a guy would spend the thousands to go west and not be able to hit a Elk/Deer at 200-300 yds. Me, I have my own shooting range out to 300 yds and I pratice for 2 months prior to going each year. I not only use the guns I will take west but also use my Bolt 22 mag for the pratice and save a few $$$ on Ammo, but I yet get the pratice from it. As you know, in the Rockies, the distance will fool you and a range finder is very helpful. I learned my first trip out 30 yrs ago, that i had better learn to shoot long distance or stay home. At home a 100 yd shot is a long shot, and we never had deer till about mid 80's so shotgunning was our hunting weapon and accuracy was not a must. But on a Elk hunt you need to be able to put 3 rounds in a 3-4" circle at 200 yds or pratice till you can. I do think many guys going West the first time, get trigger happy or either recoil shy. To me ,when I decide to shot a animal, I never know when I pull the trigger, it just comes natural somehow. And, as a rule, when I pull the trigger I know if was a good shot or not. But I stress don;t take a MAYBE shot, be sure you can put that animal down and not leave a wounded animal to die a slow death. My next trip west, legal or not, if I see a Wolf, Cougar, I will gut shoot that sucker and let him get away from me and die.Last year in MT my wife saw a huge Cougar not 20 yds away from her sneeking after 2 small does. I told the land owner about it and he said kill all you see and don;t worry about legal or not. We found last year that the game was scarcer than in the past. The Game Dept of MT called me to get some imput on the area I hunted and I informed him of the Cougar and the Wolf tracks.He said they planned to monitor that area this spring when fawning time came. Hell, I told him not to wait till then, that that ate year round , especially in deep snows. So will see if anything happens. But really, there are many Cougars and Wolf's in the Rockies and they better open a season on them soon or the Mulies and Elk will suffer. Take care and try to get to that Museum if possible, you will enjoy I know. I;ve been there 3 times and will go again the next trip to Craig. Hey, on the hill above the Holiday Inn use to be the best Prime Rib Steakhouse I ever ate, if there yet, give it a try.We always go a couple days extra or sometims 3 days to settle in and look around as when season opens, we hunt till dark or till fill tags. Chat again i hope.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

This Blog is not taking my comments tonight???? Don;t know what the problem is? Will need to check it out. If d come thru. Gunslinger

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger

Good points all.

There used to be a steakhouse just west of the junction of Hwy 13 and US 40 on the west end of town, but that has been closed for years. You must be talking about the place on the left on Hwy 13 south of the Holiday Inn headed towards Hamilton and Meeker. If so, we drive right by it on the way out to the hunt daily but have never tried it. Bad To The Bone on Breeze St. was the best eats in Craig, but the fella and his wife who ran it closed it and moved back your way to North Carolina. The Tin Cup at the golf course out by the Craig airport has excellent food. The Baysinger family that runs Mountain Meat Processing on Lincoln St. owns that restaurant. The VFW on the east end of town on Victory Way is worth a try, too. Not fancy, but lots of food. The Village Inn restaurant on Victory Way in the middle of town has the worst food and even worse service. have tried most of the Mexican restaurants in town, all mediocre at best.

WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

I got my directions wrong, you correct its south of Holiday Inn. I love the small town of Craig, reminds of the old western towns of yester-year. My Son bought a painting of Craig when the streets were dirt and sidewalks plank. I mounted the print using old barn rough wood and he has it hanging in his Den. Looks real nice and reminds us of the wonderful times we've had in Craig and Colorado. Not sure as what this year holds for us. My health is not well and neither is my Son's job at present. He will not know the status till July lst if his dept goes or not. So kinda hard for us to decide where or if we can go West this year. A lot depends on the economy as well,, as we plan to drive out this time. A neighbor, who is a great hunter wants to go with us and he has a nearly new 4 door pickup which will work fine for the 3 of us. l sleep while one drives and the other keeps him awake. With his cover, we can store our gear and hopefully bring some meat home. I usually fly, but with the price of airlines and now charging for luggage ( cost me $355.00 last year for luggage for me and the wife) so can buy a lot of gas for that $$$. Anyway, hopefully we can go to Colorado again, as my Son loves the western end of Craig near Maybelle and also north on l3 near WY.Or we may decide to go to MT again, as neither of the other 2 has seen Yellowstone, me I've been there 3 times and thats enough. When our Stimulas Checks arrive, may be enough to buy the licenses and the gas????????.Have you been on the other Blog about the 06 and 270? repeats of last year. Kinda beating a good horse to death. I just want to hunt, even if it's a 22 or whatever. When you get 73 yrs old, any outing hunting is great and I love the Rockies and just being out doors.I understand we here in NC will have 3 exta weeks of Deer season this year. From 2 weeks prior to Thanksgiving till Jan. lst.We did well last year, My Son and I got 8 between us, 2 culls and 5 nice deer and l spotted one my Son been watching for 2-3 yrs. Ok, I;ve blabbed enough for now. TAke care and get ready. Hey, one last question, do you apply for licenses thru the draw or over the counter in C0?i know Deer is draw, but the Elk in some areas are yet over the Counter, been a few years since I hunted C0, been going to Wy, Nebraska (for mules) and MT for Mulies and Elk.Do you know about the 20 mile Coal mining Co in C0?, I;ve hunted it, got my first Elk there. Its's South of Steamboat Springs and Hayden, C0 about 50 miles South of highway 40. O Well, any place is great if you see game and get a opportunity to shot a nice animal.Chat again later.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger,

I know that Unit 13 south of Craig is over the counter Bull tags as is most of NW Colorado. I also think there are usually leftover deer licenses in many of the NW units. if not, mostly 100% success in the draw for 2nd and 3rd seasons. 4th Rifle harder to draw. I usually put in for an Either sex Private Land Only Deer tag or the Buck tag that is good for multiple units in that area. Alway leftovers in Unit 13 private land. I usually buy a leftover either sex private land only for Elk since I only hunt the ranch and will take a cow if I don't locate a nice bull. The rest of my posse drives out from Alabama in a 4 dr pickup, so that works for them. I usually leave Washington state on a Wednesday afternoon, spend the night in Pendleton, Oregon, then drive to Rock Springs, WY, spend the night then go into Craig on Friday morning for the Saturday opener. I may just hunt elk in CO this year. I guess I need to make up my mind before the April 7th drawing deadline.
WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

WAHunter:Thanks for teh update of the licenses in unit 13. I like the NW section better than any area in Co. So will just have to wait till weknow what the situation brings in July and decide what we can or will do. At age 73+, few hunt remaining for me, especially so far from my Dr's and Hospital.I would love to go to Craig again,a great little town. I also would love to try out this new MArlin XL7 on a huge Mulie or even a Elk, but with the 700 CDL, it's a better long range gun for me withe the ammo I use and so far it has preformed flawless. Will stay in touch by the Blog and let you know how things agre going. I'm getting over Pheumonia( not well yet) for teh 2nd time in 2 yrs.My immume system is zero. If we do go to C0 will be for the 2nd or 3rd season, depends on licenses available and the weather out there. I got snow bound in Steamboat once for 4 days( cared less as had my 6 x 6 at the processors) and know that weather is changeable in a matter of minutes.Shoot-um-straight and often. Hey, what is the driving distance from Washington to Craig for you? It's about 2000 miles for me. Two yrs ago, flew to Denver, Drove to Douglas, Wy.Killed my Lope, then took a week and drove to Missoula, MT got my huge Deer , about l000 miles, hunted 2 weeks, then flew from Missoula, MT to Charlotte, N.C.A total of 5 weeks away from home. Was a costly trip, living in a Motel for (wife and I), rental cas, food, gas,guide etc. Kinda put a dent in my hunt account, and this sorry economy is not helping replace those funds, in fact has taken a huge portion of it so far. Ok gone.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Gunslinger

I just mailed out my Colorado Big Game pamphlet to some new guys joining our group this year. I have not decided whether to get a Deer tag or not this year. I have passed on deer 3 out of the last four years, so that is a thousand bucks shot. I did get a nice 5x5 in 2007, not a B&C trophy by any means, but a nice wallhanger for me. I passed on a scraggly 3x3 and a nice 4x4 this past year. I may just get an Elk tag and take a shotgun for birds in case I tag out early or whack a few coyotes with my .257 Roberts. That 100 gr. Ballistic Tip train wrecks a coyote.

It is about 1,300 miles from my house to Craig. Usually take 2 overnights/3 days going down and 2 days with an overnight in Boise, Idaho coming back with meat in coolers. We have been lucky with driving weather the last few years. Couple of years ago we drove in snow from Pendleton, Oregon to almost the Idaho state line on the way down. We just watch the weather forecasts and plan accordingly. The one good thing about hunting in late October is that there is seldom prolonged snow and ice on the highways. Must be Global Warming!

Best regards,
WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

That is not a short distance either. About 350 miles a day is about I can drive, but 2 other drivs, csn drive straight tru,.might stop ovr l night, etc. We learned today here in N.C. that ourr B/P season has been extended to 2 weeks.So now we can hunt with B/P and rifle we can hunt deer and Bear from November till Jan l, 2010. With the economy in trh condition it's now end adn my health Rx's about dble from last year, not sure what we will do about a Western hunt. I would love to go to Craig sgain with my Son. If he and out Neighbor an I can work it out, it wan't completely break the bank, asi think things gonna get a lot worse before improved.Wish the economy would do about face prior, but afraid will take a ong time. Can you believe, that in NOv.2007, the DOW was almost l4K, now is near 6K. Wish i had gotten out in 2007 and buried my hunt fund and retirement. But we never know. Even if things stablize will take years to improve. Son may know by end of month about his Job. We (they) elected a dumb Assed woman as Gov. and she hates my Son's boss, who is an elected official,but the Gov.controls the $$$ allocated to that Dept. and if cut off, then no jobs.???My son is a very versital person, and can do a lot of different things, so after a period of adjustment he can make it I fell sure. Just loosing the benefits, Ins. Life, Health and l/2 retirement that hurts. Health Ins.a Miust now. Ok, will just play the cards delt and see what happens. Glad we have about 150 acres to hunt her at home. Some nice deer left from last year. I killed the Boss BUCK last year, but appears,2 have taken his place. As we saw l9 other night in l field. With 2 months almost to hunt, surely we can get a nice buck or two. I want that other spotted deer we see now and then,.Wall in Den is now full, with 2 at Taxi now, don;t know wher they going, but may resort to ceiling hangers. Take care. Chat again.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

WAMtn Hunter: Know how you feel about the deer tag. But, I decided spending all the $$$$ to go West for 10-14 days, kind Dumb not to have a Deer/Elk tagCombo. In Mt. if you by the Combo, the Deer tag cost less than l50.00. And I would hate to be hunting Elk and a B/C monster deer step out and me no tag. So I figure if going to spend all that money, if I can;t afford teh Deer tag Combo, I need to stay at home. And, I should this year, but got that feeling, and its gets worse come last of Sept. I should have gone west when was younger and working and making a fair salary, but had other things I thought more interesting here so nevre went till was mid 40-'s If I had gone to Co when I was say 30 yrs old, I would have bought a ranch and been a Cowboy, which I always wanted to be. Now to old and feeble to do a lot, plus Dr will not allow me toride a horse due to both hips replaced. Take care.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Gunslinger,

You are probably right. I think I will put in for the buck deer tag that covers most of the units around Craig, including 12 and 13. It would be a shame to see a B&C mulie with no tag! I have taken a nice 5x5 and seen a few nicer bucks come off the property, but no B&C. However, I did see a MONSTER drop tine buck on CO HWY 13 about a half mile from the ranch, so they are around.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

WAMTN HUNTER:
Did not intend to say you were dumb not to have the Deer tag along with the ELK> But as I stated, would feel like a Idiot ( and I did this) for a 5 x 5 Mulie come within l00 yds and stop and me holding a Cow Elk tag only. So from that day till now, I figure if I can afford to go, surely I can afford another couple hundred if that much for a opportunity for a nice Mule Deer. I rather eat the tag, than see what i want and no tag. LAst couple years to MT, had I not had the Combo, would not have gotten the deer. Combo tags for Elk/ either deer/upland birds and fishing for NR for 5 weeks cost 563.00. Elk only is about 400.00, so see where i;m coming from.Plus if was able, they have some great upland bird hunting in MT If lucked out on Elk/Deer, and time left, then eat some good birds or Trout. o to be young again and live out there, so much game to hunt and can hunt about all year, plus the Geese in the winter.in l993 had opportunity to buy 25 acres and a cabin for 49K beside a stream with a Compose toilet, porch on 2 sides, fireplace and wood stove,with loft to sleep 4-6?? cabin was 20 x 24. I have kicked my A-- every day since. Lost more than that in past 3 months on the DOW.If had invested in the Cabin, would at least have that left.So much for age and suppose good judgement????? Chat later

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Yooper JAck: I too many years ago planned to go to JAckson Hole, WY and take a Horse pack in hunt for 7-10 days and camp out under the Mtns. But, with a family to support,Job with little time off and lack of the funds to go, I continued to put off, much to my Sorrow. I wanted to take my 30-30 and ride back in say l0-15 miles and enjoy myself,. Then in l990, my health went sour and I was in Hospital for 6 l/2 months in 90 and 5 months in 91. Plus since have both hips replaced. So now can ride a horse and do the hunt I always planned. So Don't delay, do it, as you got the remaindr of your life to pay for the trip of a lifetime. I've been west 12 times since, but it's not the same as i planned when was much younger. But, at 73+ can't complain, s few guys get to go as often as i have been. I do want to make one more hunt and take my Son. I want to be here when he kills his Elk. If this economy will improve, hopefully we can go this fall or next, time and the economy will determine.Get your licenses and go West young Man, have a great time.And yes, a scabbard with a 30-30 will make you feel like a Cowboy that I wanted to be. But now I'd take my 06 instead. Be nice to take both a bolt gun and a 30-30 on a horse pack in, but kinda doubt you could.Seem many Elk killed with 30-30's on my trips out. Know one guy who did just that, had his 30-30 and was on his horse, a Elk crossed his path and he killed a 6 x 6 before they got to base camp. Again, when you go, kill the first Elk/Mulie you see that you would give your eye tooth for if was the last hour of your high $$$ hunt.It's great to have plans, but unless you do it,you will always regret it. So Shoot-um-straight- and often.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

ooper Jack: Should have been (I cannot ride a horse now,) Dr.afraid will pull these replacement hi[s apart out in the wild Blue Younder. Can ride my 4 wheeler some,but mostly I drive near my blinds and sit in those here at home. Out west I walk a few yards from my drop off and find huge tree and unfold my stool and wait for a animal to come my way. I killed my first Elk in Colorado standing beside my rented Blazer, using the luggage rack for a rest and killed him at near 200 yds >I was down low beside a road, and the herd of Elk can in to my left up a mountain . One Herd bull and 2-3 fork horns and about 40 Cows. I shot the Elk with him standing in between the cows in his neck as that was the only shot I had. Thats when you need to know how your gun will shoot and you have praticed enough to know it's a makeable shot.I shot was all it took down he went. Over 50% of my large game kills have been neck shots, even with Black Powder. Good hunting.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Ed J: You might research this if you feel energetic but it sticks in my mind that the older Weatherby brand scopes were in fact manufactured by Tasco. Can anyone verify or disqualify this remark for certain?

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from jmeerpohl wrote 5 years 4 weeks ago

I have had success with fixed scopes. i like the Weaver 4.75 power they made in their Grand Slam series a few years ago. I own a couple and have them on seveal hunters sincei use leupold's QR mounts and rings. I aleays have a back up scope and most of my rifles have working iron sights as well. I have also had success with Leupold's and B&L elites, mostly in sizes of 1.5-5 , or 2-7, and a couple 3-9. The 2-7 European Leupold scope is a favorite for being light, low mounting and lets a lot of light through the 30 MM tube. Same can be said for the 3-9 x 40.

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from Hotshot222 wrote 17 weeks 4 days ago

Re failing scopes: While hunting ground squirrels ten years ago, I tried to sight in the rifle prior to the actual shoot and found that I couldn't dial in a decent sight picture with the .222 scope. I then tried the .22-250 scope and fell over when the same blurry picture occurred. Wonderful! I then picked up the .223 and....again.....blurring.

My optometrist found that I had a cataract developing in my right eye. Surgery ultimately fixed the problem and (thank God) I didn't have to purchase new scopes. Moral: it's not always a scope problem.

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from Hotshot222 wrote 17 weeks 4 days ago

Re failing scopes: While hunting ground squirrels ten years ago, I tried to sight in the rifle prior to the actual shoot and found that I couldn't dial in a decent sight picture with the .222 scope. I then tried the .22-250 scope and fell over when the same blurry picture occurred. Wonderful! I then picked up the .223 and....again.....blurring.

My optometrist found that I had a cataract developing in my right eye. Surgery ultimately fixed the problem and (thank God) I didn't have to purchase new scopes. Moral: it's not always a scope problem.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Good point. I have a slew of 3x9 variables; Leupolds and Sightron currently mounted and a few Bushnell closet queens. During the hunt, they are usually set on 4x or 5x and I can't recall ever changing magnification to shoot at game except one time.

Since not one of them has ever failed me, I doubt I'll trash $400 scopes just to go buy a fixed power, but I will probably buy top quality 4x or 6x fixed's in the future. Maybe none has ever failed me owing to the fact that my .35 Whelen (8.5 lb) and my Weatherby Mk V .30-06 (7.0 lb) are my hardest recoiling rifles. The Leupold 3-9x on the .35 W has survived a couple of hard falls without malfunction. There are hundreds of rounds through each rifle. I doubt a .257 Roberts or .308 Win has sufficient recoil to destroy a good scope. But anything touched by the hand of man can fail. My engineering experience tells me that the fewer moving parts there are, the lower the failure rate compared to a similar aparatus of the same quality and manufacturing tolerances with fewer parts. Increasing the part count seldom increases life or reliability. KISS applies.

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from davidpetzal wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

To Jim in NC: There are no dumb questions. The .404 in question had a long and very good track record as far as accuracy goes. So, when this 1.3-inch (or better) rifle shot a 4-inch group, there were four possible culprits: the shooter (What, me screw up?), the rifle (rifles do not suddenly go weird); the ammo (handloads, put together carefully); or the scope. The last was the only possible guilty part because it was on a hard-kicking rifle and because scopes do go weird suddenly.

Last fall I was shooting my .45/70 Guide gun offhand, using Garrett Cartridges' fire-breathing cast-lead loads, and all my shots hit in a nice tight group about a foot to the right of where I was aiming. Went through the same drill with the same results--an unglued scope.

Any time a rifle of proven accuracy goes strange, or a rifle that should shoot well shoots very badly, it's almost always the scope.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I'm so glad he didn't single one manufacturer out. I've heard stories of every brand failing no matter high dollar, and I've heard stories of some value scopes grinding on and on. In fact I have one from years ago. It's not supposed to be this good.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

To many sorry scopes out ther now. For 4 yearsI used Weaver's 4x and a 6 x. The 4 x finally got blurry and my eye sight wet south. So looking at dozens of scopes I decided on Nikon Monarch's 3 x9 40. To my eye sight it does a greast job and I love the rear eye adjustable piece as game at different distances require eithr Bincs or adjustable scopes. I prefer my rangefinder if time permis, but some times it does not. When hunting I always leave my scope set on the lowest setting, then adjust upward if necessary.These Wal-mart 29.95 scopes don;t compare to any of the mid-range scopes say $400.00 up and some of the thousands of dollar scopes are no beter than my Nikons.I use Rem 700's for most my hunting, some zeroed for out West @300+ yds and those here at home zeroed at 100. Regardless fo scope you have, if you cannot hit your game, makes little difference in the scope. So pratice and pratice more. Shoot-um-straight and often. My longest shot was in MT 2 yrs ago @345 yds with a 700 CDL using l80 gr Scricco's. I had no time to range the Buck , figured he as about 200 so heald on his bsack line. Bullet went in his last rib 4" low on left and came out his front shoulder. Needles to say he dropped in his tracts.But 90% of all game killed is 100 yds or less. Buy a quality firearm, scope, best ammo you can find, pratice a lot and hold steady on your target pull the trigger very slow and you will get results if you have the gun zeroed in proper. I also have a Custom Built Mauser in 30-06 with open sights, i do well to 200 yds, but beyond is iffy, so I only use this rifle here at home. Never would I trust the airlines with this beaut. Anyone in market for afforable gun, try the MArlin XL7 in either 270 or 30-06, its a fine cheaper gun and shoots 2'' groups all day which ain't bad for a 73 + yr old guy. Its my 4 wheeler and pickup gun.Got many Coyots, Foxes and I take it whenever I'm on the 4 wheeler or the truck to the farm.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

The 4x fixed Weavers are hard to beat, but as I aged I needed more power at 200 yds than a 4 x, so went to the 3 x 9x 40's or 3.5x10x45 in a Burroughs. I prefer the Nikons now as for my last 9 Western hunts my 700's all carried the Nikon. But, no scope is better than the base. I learned the hard way.Weaver bases are fine for low recoil guns, but to be safe every shot and especially if you fly your guns west, the Leupold Dual Dove Tails are the way to go,. My favorit gun a 700 CDL in 06 was the first leupold DD I ever used, and it has gone west 9 times and never lost its 300 yd Zero. However, I will give credit to Burroughs on their Dusk to Dawn with 6" eye relief, its a fine scope for a B/P or a hard kicker. I especially like the eye focus piece at our eyeball, as does the newer Nikon Monarchs have. This past year I killed 3 Bucks at l70 yds and l50 and ll0 with the CVA B/P carrying the Burroughs Dusk to Dawn. And it also is mounted with the Leupold DD mounts. The Dusk to Dawn is a variable also 3 x 9 40 with adjustable eye piece at your eye. Late or early in the day, that eye focus piece is a must to determine if it's s shooter of not, the adjustment is like a set of Bincs as that late or early no time to check with the Bincs if it's what you want. I'm sold on the adjustable eye piece near your eye and power setting lever. AS for the Swift Scopes , to me they are Wal-mart specials or worse. A local gun shop only carries the Swift and has them marked up there with the Nikons and Leupolds. THe mark-up on Swifs is about 200% He is the only dealer I've ever seen stock the Swift.Again, if need a new gun, by a Marlin XL7, mount a Nikon with Leupold set up and zero for 200 yds and you all set. The New Marlin is by far the best built Cheaper line of guns to come out in past 5 yrs. The stock fits the metal, plus no ridge where was glued together ,it's a molded stock that fits the metal. ALso, the trigger is awsome. Next trip to a Gun Shop look the Marlin over. I bought one as soon as was available, and I would not selll at all, as was made prior to Remington buying Marlin, H&R out. Does anyone know who is mfgering the dble bble rifle that Remington bought from EAA now. They don;t list it in the Remington catalog anymore after they dbled the price from EAA.I've used Remingtons since l951 but they now only have 2 guns worth even considering in my opinion, and thats the BDL and CDL line, both in Walnut. Their Syn stocked guns look like made of Beer Cans.I ordered a Model 770 whencame out and in about 2 minutes it was repackaged and returned, never saw a cheaper built gun other than the China line.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Wa MtnHunter, Putting anything Ford on a GM would be an improvement.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Clay C

I had the opposite experience with a Redfield 2-7x Widefield in 1998. I sent one back to them that came on a rifle we bought and they said the tube was bent and they sent me a new/refurb scope free of charge. I used it for years elk hunting and it is still in service on a 7mm Rem Mag with no issues. Proves the point that scopes may fail or last forever depending on how well they were assembled/repaired.

I would assume that most designs are solid enough, but the manufacturing quality control is the deciding factor. Being an Air Force maintence chief, I bet you will agree. On the other hand, a poorly designed scope will fail sooner rather than later.

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Well I always set my scopes all the way down when I'm hunting or at the most 6X, but when you are shooting for fun or at a range it's nice to be able to crank that baby up...

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from Devil_Dog wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

My experience with scopes is admittedly limited, but it's due to the fact that every scope I've grown up with or bought has performed very well.

My father's old scope was a Redfield 3-9x that's got to be pushing 35 years of hard use. It got replaced a few years back by a newer Leupold when my dad's aging eyes required more light. Both of those scopes survived inter-continental ramp ape abuse, along with the Burris Fullfield 3-9x I've had on my .270 for 13 years now.

After I got a real job and had more options I went to Leupold mostly on reputation and the fact that they're American made by an American company. The 2.5-8x on my .35 Whelen had no problems making an overseas voyage , but the newer 4x on my in-line muzzleloader hasn't really been pushed yet.

I know the best hunts push you and your gear hard, horses fall over, British Airways plays gun case shot-put, and at some point you slip and wipe out on hard stone. But to me, if you're baning your rifle and scope around enough to bust things up on a continual basis, there's probably some negligence involved.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

My guns all have Leupold VX III's and never has there been a problem. Usually keep the dial near the low end and crank it up for a long shot. Also like the higher end for the bench rest. The oldest is a 1.75 X 5X that has been all over Alaska including Afognak Island. It rained there for 8 out of the 10 days hunted. Chuck's Redfield took a ding on a rock and failed and Glen's Weaver fogged up. My old Leupold has lots of nicks and scratches but dispite being on a 350 Rem mag it has never failed. Shot Moose, Griz, Black Bear and many Blacktailed deer with it.

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from elmer f. wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

so far, my luck with scopes has been pretty good (knock on wood). i have had to send back one simmons scope which had the PLASTIC" zoom" ring break in half while i was dialing it back down to 3x. fortunatly, this happend right after deer season here when i was cleaning the rifle to put it away. i have also had one fog up, after about 8 years of service. it was a cheap scope to begin with so i just replaced it. other than that, i have had good luck with scopes, even cheap ones. i do not expect to be able to read the fine print of a contract @ 400 yards with one, that is not the point of a scope. the point is to give you fast accurate reliable quick target aquisition so you can either remove the "X" ring, or harvest your favorite animal as humanely as possible. anyone who wants to be able to count the eyelashes on the elk they are going to shoot @ 500 yards is wasting both valuable time, and many dollars which should be used much wiser. while i am not advising anyone to put a $80.00 wal-mart special on their good rifle, a decent $400-700 dollar scope will certainly suffice for any "hunt of a lifetime". those who can afford a $3000.00 scope for their custom $5000.00 rifle, that is fine. but the elk will not know the difference. it will be just as dead with the $1300.00 package as the $7000.00 package as long as the HUNTER does his part.

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from TheEasternShore... wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

scopes are helpful but at close range I prefer open sights. clay cooper your posting so many answers you just up your score thing . cheater kidding. haha

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

We used to say that if your scope costed twice as much as your rifle you had the right combination. That probably does not apply in today's market as much as in bygone days but you get the idea. Regardless of your choice of rifles also select a quality piece of glass.
Ed J: Back when I was a kid I read O'Connor, Keith, etc. and believed ALL the hogwash they spewed out, didn't know enough to sort out the wisdom from the BS. Consequently I normally selected a fixed power and was certainly happy with the decision. Finally I ventured out in about 1970 and installed a Leupold 3x-9x on my Browning '06. I hunted a lot and shot it quite a bit given that, other than a M-94, it was the only center fire that I owned at that time. Now about 39 years later the combo is still intact, never a single reason for concern that either would fail on a trip to the mountains even if I took them this very day. Other than the aforementioned Redfields (yep Clay I never purchased another one new or used and never will, I understand why they went out of business but think they are back with an oriental product) my variables over the years have held up as well as the fixed. I still own a Leupold 3 x that I acquired in the late sixties, its one of my favorites. I put a minature Simmons on the kid's customized 10-22 mainly because we liked the overall appearance. It is a small short 4 x. After two-three years of hard use the reticle started shaking around in it. A friend told me that Simmons will replace it so I suppose I should send it in to verify this statement. Cheap scope for a "play" gun so I didn't really fault Simmons. I just stuck an old El Paso Weaver 2.5 on the Ruger and the kid kept shooting. I think the Weaver was about four times older than the kid when I handed it to him. Both still function splendidly.
I have seen Leupolds roll down mountains on falling horses, get mashed between trees and horses, fall down on cement garage floors, and topple down steep hills through boulders, one was dragged through a creek by accident since the owner dwas not aware that the rear strap had broken on his scabbard since he was foolish enough to position it butt to rear on ner side, all were more or less intact, all were Variables, some killed deer or elk that day or in the few days that followed, and any that were damaged were repaired by that wonderful warranty. That last sentence is long enough to be from one of Willim Faulkner's books (an old guy who lived in my home town).

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from T.W. Davidson wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

All:

I have experimented with several different brands of scopes over the last few years. My modest collection includes: 1 Nikon Buckmaster 6x18x40 BDC; 1 Shepherd 3x10x40 Range-Compensator, 1 Leupold Vari-X II 4x12; 1 Leupold Vari-X III 6.5x20; 1 Nikon Pro-Staff 3x9; a Bushnell 1x4 or 1x4.5 Firefly or Nightfly (or some other similar term) scope that unexpectedly came with a rifle I bought on GunsAmerica; 1 Bushnell 3x9 scope I bought for about $50 at Gander Mountain for my customized Ruger 10-22; and 1 Simmons 3x9 scope I bought for about $50 at Gander Mountain for my CZ 452 .22 target rifle.

The Buckmaster has fabulous optics and excellent eye relief, but I've come to strongly dislike the BDC setup and I'm not a fan of the overly large, thick horizontal crosshair. My complaint about the BDC is this: the point of impact on the scope changes--A LOT--with each different power setting on the scope. Nikon, at least in the Japanese-poorly- translated-to-English literature provided to me and in anything I found online, doesn't give you ballistics tables for the respective 6x through 18x power settings. Given that the BDC consists of little circles that one is supposed to zero at 200, 300, 400 out to 600 yards (or 100-500), it would be very nice and very sensible if the point of impact remained the same on each circle no matter what the respective power setting of the scope is. As it stands now, you've got to spend (in my experience) days on a 100-600 yard range experimenting with each different handload you use in your rifle, taking detailed notes of each handload with two or three different power settings--as in, this is what this rifle and this specific bullet-velocity load shoots at 6x, 12x, and 18x from 200-600 yards--and then you've got to paste little charts to your rifle stock for the separate bullet weights you use, or use just one power setting and one bullet weight/trajectory at that power setting. In essence, your 6x18 scope that cost you many hundreds of dollars because the advertising led you to believe it was a miracle of shooting technology actually becomes an expensive fixed power scope in 6 or 12 or 18 power (or whatever setting you wish to use). Very frustating. Expensive. Poor design. Shepherd's system is superior.

The Shepherd range-finding scope is generally excellent. Customer service at Shepherd (in WI, I believe)--when I needed some information or needed some replacement adjustment caps I had lost--is so genuinely nice you sometimes feel like calling the company support line just to say "hello, how are you folks doing?" and shoot the breeze. The Shepherd people are folks you'd happily share a meal with at home. They are you and me. On my particular scope, I wish the optics were a dash brighter, and I wish my scope were a 4x12 or 5x15 rather than a 3x10, but the range compensating system works, period. Eye relief could perhaps be a little better. Overall, I give the Shepherd very high marks. The product performs as advertised. And it is American.

The Leupold 4x12 and 6.5x20 are fine scopes, particularly the 6.5x20 VariX III. The latter scope has a 1/8 MOA target dot instead of crosshairs. I currently have it mounted on my heavy 7x57 AI. I use that scope/rifle combination for super-accurate bench shooting/prone shooting out to 500+ yards, and in this arena it performs excellently. The 4x12 provides plenty of light at night, under clear sky and full moon conditions, for shots well over 200 yards. Eye relief could be a bit better on both scopes, but isn't bad. I like Leupold products.

Nikon Pro-Staff: horizontal cross-hair is too big and thick. But clarity, eye-relief, and light-gathering capability is generally very good. Weight is reasonable. Scope seems reasonably tough. Price was very reasonable. I have the scope mounted on my Savage 111 in .270 Win, for an overall weight package that feels under 8 lbs. Sub-MOA is never a problem with this particular rifle-scope combination. The Savage has iron sights which work decently on shots at 100 yards or less. Although this particular rifle-scope would certainly win an outhouse-ugly contest, it is one of two rifle/scope combinations I would take with me anywhere, anytime, under any conditions, particularly the worst ones.

The Bushnell Firefly (or whatever it is called) is a simple scope. There is nothing special about it. It is neither great nor bad in any way. It neither excites or produce yawns. But, within its design intentions, it seems to work as advertised. A decent product.

The Bushnell scope on my 10-22 and the Simmons scope on my CZ 452 .22 target rifle each provide fantastic eye relief, wonderful brightness, and excellent clarity. The best $50 bargains I've gotten in the shooting world. I've toyed with the idea of mounting one of the scopes on a .257 Roberts or 257 AI to see if the scope could take the recoil, and how well the scope would work at distances out to 300 yards. The scopes are cheap, but for my .22s and the short-range shots I take with them, they perform brilliantly.

T.W. Davidson

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from Quiet Loner wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Anyone having scope trouble or mounting a scope should read an article by John Barsness in The American Rifleman of a couple of months back. That would include a "famous maker of custom rifles" although I don't know if it is the same guy.

It seems many of us (I belonged to the "farmer tight" school until last year) have been squeezing the guts out of our scopes and then blaming the manufacturer. When I first was able to afford a scope, the conventional wisdom taught "tighten those mounting screws as tight as you can. A farm kid used to hand milking cows can tighten the threads offa screw.

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from Beekeeper wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Hard to beat a fixed 4 power.

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from YooperJack wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger:
I probably would've liked the Marlin if I was right handed. I'm not so I bought a LH Tikka. In your previous writing, you had mentioned the weight of the rifle. Hence, I looked for a wood stock. You, Clay Cooper and Dave Petzal all seemed really high on the 30.06. Shoots great. Actually, I've got about $900 into that setup also. I've got no regrets. Now my goal is to make one of those western hunts. Its always great to have a goal!
Thanks Again!
YooperJack

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Jim in Mo

Yep, Those boys at Ford make some mighty fine hubcaps. Can't say too much about the rest of the rig. LOL

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from crm3006 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Reflecting on the posts above, I see that almost everyone has had some sort of difficulty with almost every type, sort and brand of scope on the market. I suspect from reading the posts that mounts are at fault most of the time, except in cases of broken cross hairs and fogging. I had to go to the safe and take a census, but most of my scopes are Leupolds, all of which are variables from 2 X 7 - 4 X 14s. Also included are Burris, Weaver fixed power, a couple of Simmons, Redfield, a Tasco and even a BSA.
Most, if not all, have been subjected to rain, changing temperature, and travel in jeeps, four wheelers and pick ups. All, except the Redfield on my Nylon 66, and the Simmons on my .30-'06, have solid bases and steel rings. The Burris has withstood more recoil, being on the .375 H&H, but the Simmons on my Old Ugly '06 has served the longest and had the most abuse. It is mounted on an Ironsighter see through mount and has had to be re-zeroed one time when it was severely dropped. (This is over a period of about 15 years.)
I work on all my scopes, mounts, rifles and loads until they will shoot into a 3" Birchwood Casey Shoot and See at 200 yds. The .22 rimfires 1" at 50 yds. If I can not get this, I will be swappin, trading or selling, but I exhaust all the options first.
One notable case was the 4 X 16 Tasco. Had it mounted on a .22-250 Rem BDL, couldn't get an acceptable group. Changed it out for a 4.5 X 14 Leupold, started getting nickle and sometimes dime sized groups at 200 yds.
Swapped the scope off, and a friend mounted it on a sweet little Remington 700 .243. Long story short, The Bookkeeper later bought the .243 and it will throw 1" or less groups with a 100 gr. load all day!
The moral of this little tale is, check everything, starting with the screws in the bases, then check it again because it ain't always the scope that is to blame. All the components that make the scope work have to be right and tight, too.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Had a Redfield 3x9 Wide-Field, one of the first ones to hit the market. Started to fog up and sent it back to Redfield. They sent it back to me with the rear eye piece locking ring bust, the rear eye piece was reinstalled and was cross threaded and totally out of focus and had the audacity to ask me if I wanted to trade it in and buy a remanufactured scope. GO TO HELL I SAID!

Fact, starting in July 87 in the Fairbanks Alaska area, Redfield’s became almost nonexistent because of this. Don’t mess with the fella that happens to be the Director of High-power Competition for the Largest Sportsmen club in Alaska, President of the Sportsmen Council for the Eielson AFB Base Exchange, Member of the Air Force High Power Team and Range Master for the most active recreational shooting in Central Alaska.

Bottom line: Warranty is everything, Leopold I love along with a couple other cheap scopes and Redfield go figure!

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from chadlove wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

That's why over the past two years I've slowly sold virtually every variable I had and replaced them with a mixture of 4x and 6x fixed-power scopes.

I love the simplicity of fixed scopes, both from a practical and philosophical and aesthetic standpoint.

Taste is, of course, subjective (mine being impeccable and everyone else's being crap) but I can't think of a single hunting situation I'm likely to find myself in that can't be handled spendidly by a Leupold FXIII 6x42. Or an FXII 4x33 or 6x36 or any other fixed-power scope from any other maker.

My lone remaining variable will be coming off the 6.5 it's mounted on this year and either sold to some sucker or mounted on a .22, to be replaced with one of those sweet little Zeiss Conquest fixed fours.

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from streack wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Dave, are you trying to rack up extra points by double posting?

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I've tried most brands of scopes on my heavy caliber, heavy recoil rifles, and eventually most have to go back for repairs. Be they Leopold, Leica, Zeiss, or Sawrovski. I feel Leopold is the best value, and have always received prompt service. Did you know if you send a Swarovski in for repairs here in the states it goes to Leopold?

I always take a spare scope with me. My seventy year old eyes don't handle open sights anymore.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I'm with Dr. Ralph. When I'm hunting, if the rifle I'm using is scoped, I dial it down to the lowest setting.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

WA Mtnhunter
You had the opposite experience with a Redfield 2-7x Widefield in 1998. Probably the reason you had better luck is what I’ve been told back in 1995 at the NRA Convention in Phoenix Arizona, is some fella in Alaska really put a damper on sales a few years earlier due to poor warranty service and he really put the hurt on them.
I wonder who that wuz??? LOL!!!!

Had a fella at the range in AK that dropped his rifle on a sheep hunt demolishing the stock and scope. He asked if Leupold would cover it, I said doesn’t hurt to try. I tell’ya, they replaced it not because it was bent 20 degrees at the joint of the tube and front bell housing, it shouldn’t been bent at all according to Leupold.

Got a new scope out of it he did!

Got an old Weaver K6 on my 03-A3 thats been on ther since I was 12

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

All my scopes are variables of different levels but I don't recall ever hunting with them beyond 3x. I too have my eye on the Zeiss 4x. It is sleek and would look good on any rifle, especially my next one.

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from Charley wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Nowadays I get looked at strangely when i meet another hunter and he sees my iron sights. I don't like all that may go wrong with a scope. If i wait long enough I will get an animal in range for a comfortable shot with the irons.

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I like fixed powered scopes.There are less models on the market, since veriables dominate the market , but I can get by fine with a fixed 4X x 40mm. In fact, I had one of the Redfield wideviews, and like Clay; mine fogged up within a few months of owning it. I returned it to the factory in which they sent me a NEW scope included with a note stating

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from JCB wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

In my opinion Bausch and Lomb and it right 50 years ago. A fixed power scope with all the adjustments in the mount. Just a solid rugged scope with no little springs and dials all crammed into the little 1" tube. Also less points of entry for moisture or seals to fail.

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from rrmont wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I've never had a problem with Leupold, so until I do I will stick with them.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Pearbear I intend to keep my Leupolds but interestingly enough I have heard a few other fellows make the same claim as you regarding the Titans. That might be a model that most of us have overlooked based upon what you say and the same statements made from these fellows who don't know you. Maybe that is why the Super Snipers have a good reputation.

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from Carney wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

On account of the fact that I can't see anything past, oh, let's say, the distance of puke filled shoes, I like being able (as others have said) to crank up the power when I sit at the bench. I keep it set at 3X when I'm in the woods. If it is far enough away to need the 9X I probably have plenty of time to set up the shot. My Bushnell has been through some pretty good beatings but has held fast for four years or so!

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from sarg wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Eastershore, you're right, we just upped your score two points

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from 60256 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I only use scopes for distance shots with my rifle. If i can't identify what i'm shooting with my shotgun without a scope, it's too far away.

Nate

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

buckhunter,
Back in the 80's my then wife bought me a Weaver K4w for a present. The w standing for wide view. It served well but I really didn't shoot a thousand thru it to say it was great. It seemed good. I mounted it on a .30 cal. carbine, I wish I could remember if it was a Marlin or what, but it was a lever action. Wish I still had it.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

One last suggestion on firearms. Most of the newer guns all are too light. For some reasom hunters think a light wt guns is better. To me I want a 9-10 lb gun. I want the extra wt added to the stock. All my guns have about 2 lbs of lead in the butt end. It helps me hold the gun more steady and puts the recoil directly against my shoulder and with less recoil. I am right handed and with the extra wt in the butt end, I can now hold the forearm without it moving around like a second hand on a clock.. My Walnut guns, I bored out a 3/4" hole and added 2lb of lead shot. On my Syn stocked guns,I got old wheel wts wraped in foam rubbere and packed them into the stock. You would be suprised how much better i can shot now than prior to the added wt. I'm a small frame guy weigh l28 lbs and recoil is a problem for me, but with a 9-10 lb gun I can handle a l80 gr. bullet fine.( Hey, no gun has recoil when you shooting a ttophy, it's that bench shooting that kills your shoulder)

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from focusfront wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger makes a good point. What with lighter guns firing today's more powerful rounds, scopes just plain have to put up with more than they used to. Jack O'Connor's eight and a half pound .270 rifles would be child's play in recoil compared to the sub seven pound .300 and .325 WSMs we have today.

That said, I think that most variable scopes are invented not by hunters but salespeople. A straight 2.5x or 4x scope is what it is, but give a salesman a 4.5-14x scope with a 50mm objective and he can talk it up all day. And a gunwriter can write it up all day. My next deer hunt, I'll use a red dot and leave my scopes at home.

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from Armchair Mike wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Mr. Petzal, I fear for your writing career. Don't you know that honesty doesn't pay the bills? Advertisers must hate you. Seriously, thank you for addressing what I have wondered for a long time. I've always attributed my problems with variables to not spending enough on my scopes, but I see from your post and some of the comments that forking over big bucks is no guarantee of quality. You can't fix a problem by throwing money at it? Somebody write to Washington on this.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger,
There is much truth in your words. A chain is as good as the weakest link. That is also true about the rifle, scope rings & base and the scope, but you can get by with a low priced (not cheap there is a dif) rifle. Said it before and I'll say it again. I was always amazed at the number of guys that spend the money for a hunting trip in AK and show up with a nice gun and a Piece Of Shiite scope. Heck go to any hunting camp and look at the scopes. People tend to buy crappy cause crappy looks good in the store. Spent most of their money on the gun I expect.

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from Ed J wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Whats the matter Del in KS don't you like to see a $49.00 Tasco sitting on a Weatherby Mark V?

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Will never forget the trip west at aElk camp. A older guy shows up with a old Remington 06, no scope, open sights. The stock was taped with Rlec.tape at the grip several rounds, but could yet see the long crack on both sides of the gun stock. No one said a word to him,as he looked as that was about all he could afford ( which prove incorrect). Opening day arrived, the older guy was up and gone before l/2 the camp had a cup of coffee.In about l hr BAMM, near by and in about 30-45 minutes teh old guy showed up with bloody hands and ask the outfitter if he could take a couple of pack mules and bring in his 6 x 6 Elk. All in camp were pleased that the older guy got his elk with the equiptment he was using, and most of them had guns costing thousands of dollars. So guys, it's not the equiptment or how it looks to be successful.I bet this older guy had done this many times in the past.So leson I learned from him, was that your ability and know how was more important that the fancy gun and scopes.I'm a small guy and a 06 with enough wt in the butt to ease recoil works fine for me.Of the last l2 animals I;ve killed,all were l shot and out to 345 yds, but mostly under 200 yds. If you plan to hunt the Rockies or the rolling plains, invest in a Range finder and zero that rifle to 300 yds as those mtns and valleys will surely fool you. Shoot-um-straight and often. Buy the best ammo available for hunting as that one shot may be all you get. One last thing, when you go on a high dollr hunt, the first legal animal you see that you would love to see on the last hour of your hunt, you better tske him, as he may be the only one you see. Last year in MT I shot the one and only Buck I saw, now what I really wanted, but after 8 days and no Mulies,my mind changed. He's being mounted at pesent. good luck, almost time for Turkey day, left my deer ground blinds up so now ready for the old tom. I do throw out some cracked corn every week to keep the flock on my farm.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Yooper Jack: Providing you get the Nikon Monarch mounted proper with a good set ups ( such as the Leupold DD) and zero your scope for the distsances you will be hunting you will be well pleased with the results. I have many guns all mounted with Nikons or the new Burroughs DuskDawn 6" eye relief),but for a over-all scope the Nikon is better. As I stated earlier.A new Marlin XL7 in 06, with a Monarch scope setting on Leupold base adn mounts, it will be close to $900.00 . I've owned and used many scopes ovr my 63 ys of hunting, and yes I yet have a 4 X and a 6 X Weaver and the orig boxes they came in. May someday need to add one to a gun i may buy. As for some othere brands of scopes, such as Simmons, they all still wal-mart specialsand may work o a 22, but I lost the best Elk I ever saw due to a Sorry A----d Simmons.The scope was perfect at 200 yds, when I left home, but when crunch time came was off at least 4feet at less than 250 yds.Needless to say, it moved on. Shoot-um-straight and often.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dr. Ralph

Thanks. The guy that sold it to me (1997) at a gun dealer is a friend of mine and said the Swift 4X compact was a well made scope and he had sold quite a few of them with no problems, so I got the scope and mounts for under $100 as I recall. I guess if it hasn't fogged or crapped out by now, it likely won't. I'm not sure that I would put it on a .338 Win Mag or a .300 Weatherby though.

However, in today's manufacturing environment that scope may have been made in a quality shop (Japan) and now may be made in a hack shop in Shanghai or wherever.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Yooperjack: The Tikka is a fine weapon and should give you good service. I also prefer Walnut wood and a weight of 9-10 lbs in 30-06. A 06 hs so many options for ammo, from a 55 grs. Acc. to a 220 gr SP. I feeI I can hunt anything in NA other than the Griz. My reason for a Syn stock is I am a nut about my guns, how the preform and look. When hunting out west you can/will have most any type weather, and I thought a Syn stock would go along on my next trip. i also wantd a Syn stock for my 4 wheeler/truck here at home as the limbs along the trails is death on Beautiful Walnut. My Western guns are all 700's in 25-06 and 30-06 plus this new Marlin in 06. I feel Marlin will make this XL7 in LH soon and other calibers. Also, a 5-6 l/2;b gun is too light for me, as I weigh l28 lbs and skinny as a rail and need the extra wt in the butt end to control the recoil. With a weight of 9-10 lbs i can handle just fine.As i stated above when shooting at live animals you never feel any recoil, it's at the Bench that the recoil hurts. I hope you enjoy your new Tikka and are able to go on a Western hunt ASAP.I've been many times, to C0, MT,WY, Nebraska,Idaho and as soon as the economy pickups up again and my hunt funs increases I want to go to NM for a Hugfe Elk on the Indian Res.And, yes the 700 Rem and the Marlin in 06's will go.Good luck,have a successful year. Try those new Scricco's by Rem in l80 gr polymer tips, it's a great bullet and flys flat and straight, little drop @3-400 yds .I zero all my Western guns in at 300 yds. Now all you need is a Rangefinder, as those mtns and valleys out west will fool you on distance. Shoot-um-straight and often.PS; Try some Johnson floor paste wax on your Tikka, once it dries will leave a rainproff finish and help prevent scratches, dents as well.And, i always add a piece of Elec. tape over the muzzle end, will keep out dirt, grim and water or snow, and not affect the point of aim.

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger, I saw an embroidery in an 80 year old woman's house that said... "My bifocals work great, my false teeth are comfortable, my hearing aid is adequate, now if they just could make my mind work again." Scared the crap out of me....

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from davidpetzal wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

That should be "...at the bench rest of a shooting editor."

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from davidpetzal wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

That should be "...at the bench rest of a shooting editor."

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from Mark-1 wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Must agree with most written....

It would appear scopes are individual beasts.

--My experiences are just the opposite of Coop's. I've had my best luck with an 30-year old Redfield 2 x 7, and World Class Tasco's. I had very luck with old Weavers over the years. These scopes were mounted on medium bores and heavy mag's. I've had at best indifferent success with Leopold, so much I won't cough out the scratch Leopold demands for an item that's harsh on my mellow. I had very bad experiences with some other expensive brands. It's been this way for me since the late 70's. That's a bunch of time and experiences to draw a conclusion.

BTW I think variables are "convenient" if you own a multi-purpose all-around rifle. However, depending upon what I hunt I set the power and leave it. I don't fiddle adjusting powers while in the field. We'd all be better off with fixed power scopes IMHO.

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from Walt Smith wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

If I were you Dave I'd puke on the latest optical wonder rather than my shoes, especially if the're broken in good!

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from jjas wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

While I agree that I don't turn up my variable scopes much anymore, a 3-9x40 in a comparable product line is normally cheaper than a fixed scope.

My Zeiss Conquest has sat atop a few slug guns, a .357 magnum lever gun and now sits atop a .44 magnum rifle (for a total of over 500 rounds) and has never missed a beat. Maybe I'm just lucky?

My Nikon prostaff 3-9x40 has sat atop a .50 cal muzzleloader and now sits atop a mossberg 500 turkey/slug gun and has lasted through over 200 rounds and never missed a beat either.

Again, is that just luck?

If it is, I hope it doesn't change.

Jim

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Does anyone know anything about vintage Bushnell Scope Chief IV's? I have one that has an adjustable reticle that switches between a post and fine x-hair with a twist of a ring. Probably 60's or 70's vintage.

I got it in a deal on an older Savage 99. It was mounted somewhat loosely with bases that placed the scope in a very acute up-angle, so no way it was ever zeroed on that gun and every screw was somewhat loose. It appears to be in good condition and fairly bright. It is a 3-9x40.

Thanks in advance,
WMH

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

So where's the F&S gang this weekend? Not at Opryland with the National Wild Turkey Federation's 33rd annual convention and calling contest... just saw Michael Waddell on the local news and last years champ. Says he drives his whole family crazy practicing all day every day. Guess I'll have to check it out tomorrow.

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from score-your-hunting wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I have a 2-7 Redfield which still shoots where it was sighted in 1965. It has taken a lot of whitetail, and a few other smaller critters. But! It has been set on 4x for most of it's life, and it's on a light kicking M70 .243.

I haven't had any scope troubles even with some inexpensive scopes in almost 50 years of hunting/shooting. But! I haven't owned big hard kicking rounds, and the M70 is the only one I've kept for a long time.
Buck@score-your-hunting.com

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

continued...that mine was beyond repair. The replacement they sent me wasn't any better, so I sold it to another poor soul who I never saw again; he wanted fir his .22.I do hope he had more luck with it then I had?!

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from Edward J. Palumbo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Variables have come a long way since the the first ones I tried - the modest recoil of a .30-'06 was enough to jar them asunder, and I was not impressed.
I agree with those who observe that fixed power scopes are definitely an "endangered species". Anybody remember the Leupold 3X, long out of production? Best piece of glassware I ever owned! I have seven scopes; all but one are fixed power. The exception is a 3x9 mounted on a .22 rimfire.
Is there room in my life for a quality variable? Yes, I believe there is...and I'll have more to say about that after I purchase a Leupold 3x9 for my .250 Savage.

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from vtbluegrass wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I have a 700 in 270Win with a 3-9x40 Redfield that was mounted on the gun by its previous owner a friend of mine around the time I was born. The adjustment caps haven't been taken off since '82 and it still puts 3 150gr corelokts in a spot a little under an inch just north of the bullseye.
I also had a Swift fixed 4x scope on my Ruger Blackhawk 44mag for about 2days. Mounted one day, busted the next. Dropped the top of the reticle out of the thing in under 10 rounds.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Clay for what it's worth I had not one but two Redfield Widefields "go south" simoultaneously exactly like you described when I lived down south back the early seventies. Upon receipt back from the manufacturer I gave one away and actually felt sorry for the fellow who accepted it as I felt it would fail him when he really needed it sometime in the future. I sold the other cheap to a guy I didn't know so I would never see or hear about it again. Leupolds from then on for my rifles as well as those who hunted with me. I have some other high dollar scopes but still favor the Leupolds. Some of these have been used for a long time with lots of rounds being fired under them and packed many miles in trucks and on horses with no problems. I can't say this for the few Europeans I own.
Maybe the guy Dave spoke of just has bad luck, mounts his scopes incorrectly, or does not properly care for them I don't know. I have had a few rotten scopes and lots of good ones, some of which have held up amazingly well.

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from M1jhartman wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

The dude is using a scope on big bore magnum rifles and he is upset that they can't stand up to the abuse. That would be like taking a Civic out of the factory and running it down the drag strip non-stop. Ofcourse it will give up. I shoot a lot, atleast by most people's standards, and I haven't lost my faith in the good scopes yet. The cheaper scopes never gave me a reason to trust them. I guess in the end, that's all that matters. Good shooting everyone.

-Jeff-

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from pearbear wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

the best fair price varable i found was the tasco titan took many mountain and bush plane beatings in alaska and has held zero own 4 of them wish i had two dozen shoot hand loads 1n everything from 284 win custom extended chamber to 375 h&h mag all 4 titans never a change shoot a 1 inch with a 300 win mag ,you can keep your leopolds

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from Robert C. Turpin wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

About the Bushnell ScopeChief. I had the same scope that had a lever to make a post come into view. The one I had the reticle cross-wires fadded out to where you could not see them. I sent the scope back for repair. They sent it back saying the scope hadn't been made for many years. I happened to have the reciept and the warranty which stated that there was a 20 year warranty. I had owned the scope for 19 years. I sent the scope back with the reciept of purchace and the warranty. Bushnell sent me a brand new scope! Talk about service. This was many years ago but I've never forgotten it.
Silvertip

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

My variables work better than this web site. If you look at my comments you will see two that I submitted here but they don't show up on this blog. Am I doing something wrong? I'll try this as a test.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Well that test went right through along with the previous posts which showed over 13 minutes time had elapsed. May be my server so never mind.

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from jim in nc wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Dumb question, maybe, but if I don't ask I'll just stay dumb: if, like DP, you have a rifle you have reason to believe should shoot better than it's shooting, how do you tell whether it's the rifle or the scope that's at fault?

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from blueridge wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Reluctantly, I have to agree with Clay Cooper about Redfield. I loved their little 2X7 scope, and used it on a low-recoiling .243--until it fogged. Sent it back and they 'dissed' me like a rube, and suggested that I buy their newest widefield. They would not honor their scope-craft. I will not deal with people like that, and now, neither will my shooting family.

I like what JCB said about B&L mounting on an adjustable base...my ancient B&L on my Mannlicher is cruising right along, solid as a rock. I have one Austrian scope and one Zeiss that is top drawer, too. Still, I enjoy iron sights, and would be tempted to stay simple if hunting dangerous game.

One thing about Petzal's blog...seasoned shooters get to share their 'shake-down's' with one another, and what would you pay for that? Thanks, Dave.

Tom 'Bluerdge'

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from Ron wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

I suppose I am very lucky since I have had very few problems with variable scopes. I have owned many different brands: Weaver, Bushnell, Redfield, Leupold, and Swarovski. Of the group, I had problems with only two, the Weaver for fogging, and the Fixed 4 x Redfield which I sent back to Redfield who repaired a broken reticle at no charge, and is still in use on my Marlin 336 in 35 Remington after about 40+ years.

Currently most of my rifles have variable scopes with the exception of the Redfield on the Marlin 336 mentioned above, and a Leupold fixed M8 2.5X IER which I have mounted on the barrel of a Marlin 1895 guide gun in 45-70 using an XS Lever Scout Mount. I use this set up for Black Bear & Deer at ranges very seldom over 75 yards. I find this rifle perfect in the eastern US & Canadian woods.
In Addition I have a Leupold 2-7 compact on a Winchester Mod 70 Featherweight in 270 WIN, and a Winchester Mod 70 in .243 WIN with a Bushnell 3-9 Banner.

I have mounted a Leupold LPS 2.5-10 X 45 on my Remington Alaskan Wilderness Rifle chambered in.338 RUM. I have used this rifle in the USA, Canada, and on two African hunts, Zambezi Valley, Zimbabwe and in Namibia. I have found that at times having a variable scope is invaluable, especially when trying to thread a shot through thick jess as I had to do on a few occasions. In Namibia shots ranged from 150 to over 400 yards, believe me that variable option came in mighty handy.

I also have a Swarovski 3-9x36 mounted on a Dakota 76 in 30-06, I have not had the chance to use this set-up much but so far it has performed flawlessly.

For dangerous game I use a Leupold European 30mm 1.25-5x28 mounted on a Dakota model 76 African in 450 Dakota. I have used this rifle for Bison in SD and Cape buffalo in Africa. Having the variable option in very thick jess as I had encountered when I was able to get a shot on a Cape buffalo was essential. This rifle has had over 300 rounds fired through it and I have had no problems with the scope. I am now thinking about trying out the new Leupold VX-7 in 1.5-6X 24mm.

Once again, maybe I am just lucky with variables, but they have worked well for me, and I stick with what works.

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from Carney wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Speaking of optics...

Just Thursday a box came in the mail with my name on it. First prize winner: Brunton Echo 8X42 Binoculars! Apparently I entered a contest on a hunting website and poof there they are!

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from Jim Blum wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

The best scope I have is a lyman 10x perma center that is on a remington modle 700 in 243 I have taken alot on ground hogs at 200 yds .. I paid more for the scope than for the rifle.. On othe rifles I have not found any scope that compairs,, But I really don't want to spend 1,000"s for a scope.. Iguess back in the late 70's if you paid 200 or 300 for a scope and the rifle was 180.00 it wasn't that big a deal but in today's market You just don't know what you are really getting..
Jim

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from Bernie wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

After reading everyone's posts, I think I may have been very lucky with telescopic sights. I own 17 scopes, mostly Leupold, Redfield, and Burris, but I have a couple B & L Elite Series, and one Weaver. The only scope problem I have had in the last 25 years was after I bought a Swift brand scope, put it on a .22 and had the crosshairs break! (Apparently, from the "heavy" recoil!) I initially paid $100 for the scope. It cost me ten bucks to have it examined, then I got a note that it would cost something like $70 to repair. I wrote back and told them what to do with their cheap, piece-of-crap scope.

I prefer fixed powers over variables too, although I own both. I stay away from the high-powered variables--don't need the magnification and don't want the weight and bulk.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

T.W. Davidson,
I have a Burris Fullfield 3x9 that has the ballistic plex reticle. The lower vertical wire has hash marks for 200-400 yds, 500 is the top of the heavy vertical wire. Burris clearly states in the instructions that when sighting in or when hunting, if the ballistic plex is to be used you must turn power ring up to 9x. It will not function correctly at 5 or 6 or 7x. It makes sense, if you need to use it your game must be far off. Maybe that's the problem you encountered with your Nikon. Try it only at full power.

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from sarg wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

streak, Daves not trying to "double post" to rack up points, he's just got a nervous triger finger on the mouse,, guys, I like a 4 power fixed scope on a deer rifle ,shooting at 75-100yds. but on a varmit rig I like a varable with 50mm objective lense...

Clay, that's quite a resume....

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from sarg wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Good post, Wamtnhunter..."KISS"

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

JCB, B&L made/makes some great stuff. When I was in the service I wore their aviator sunglasses. Never found anything since that could compete with them. None

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from buckhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

A question for you scope experts. I have a Weaver K8 and a Weaver Classic 300 new in the box sitting in my workshop. I'm not sure but I have had them for maybe 25 yrears and don't even know where they came from. Would they be worth using on a nice gun or should I throw them on a .22 and let my kids beat them up.

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from wingshooter54 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dave,
Use all your influence and commanding presence to convince the guys at Zeiss to come out with a 6x42 Conquest. I would put them on all my rifles except the 22 Hornet and 223 which have 10x40 B&L elites.
Gary

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from lost my zero wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

the only scope problem I've had is those damn T15 torx screws, they will shear under load. The T10 size works fine IMHO.

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from Ed J wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

buckhunter
There are some guys out there who are collecting old scopes, Weavers include. You now the routine, new in the box bring the most value. I have a well used K10, right now it is sitting on a Savage 22mag.

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from YooperJack wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dave, I'm really glad you wrote this after I bought a rifle and scope. If I read this first, I would've stayed with 94 Winchester and open sights. You, Clay and Gunslinger pretty much set me straight on the caliber (30.06). Gunslinger was talking up the Nikon Monarch. I hope He's right. I did like it this past season. Thanks Everyone!
YooperJack

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from sarg wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I believe that reguardless of brand, if one is shooting at or beyond 300yds, it should have an adjustable objective lense.

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from steve182 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Have a 35 year old Leupold 2.5x8 that hasn't lost it's zero on my '06 (formerly my dads). It has served us very well. I was taught to keep it on 2.5x for easier target aquisition. I have on many occassions cranked it up to take longer shots at game and on the bench. I'm sure the weatherproofing (anti-fog) has probably degraded over the years, but i've only experienced fogging on a few occassions in very foul weather. I'd expect that from any scope. I have put cheaper scopes on a shotgun and back-up deer rifle, and expect that may bite me someday. Hope not. In the future i'll opt for bargain rifles with good glass. I also want to shoot a buck with open sites someday. In spite of moderate success the past several years, with a rifle and a bow, i'm hesitant to give anything up. I remember the days when my freezer was void following deer season and don't want to go back there.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

T.W.

For all the information about the ballistic reticles you posted, you left out an important fact: The reticle in most scopes is calibrated in MOA at a given magnification setting. Those change when you change the power setting on your scope. It is easy to mathematically derive the approximate MOA for each power setting if you know the MOA for the low end and the high end.

I agree that the Nikon BDC reticle with the circle aim points is a POS appropriate for a turkey gun only. The scopes are nice with the standard reticle. Those Sheppard scopes are for the rookies who have no idea about how to estimate range or use a rangefinder and execute a proper hold.

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from Zermoid wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Cheap Tasco Silver Antler 3x9x32 and a Simmons 3x9x40 are the only scopes I have, other than a couple .22 scopes.
Amazingly no problems in 18 years with the Simmons and about 15 with the Tasco, but then again I don't have any of the "small cannon" type calibers, heaviest kicking rifle is my 6.5x55 Swede.

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from steve182 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I have a fixxed 4x on my levergun but i'm not shooting 300 yds with it. I did make a 300 yd shot on a buck with my bolt action w/ a 2.5x8 Leupold, and i remember that deer seeming pretty small in the scope. I like the fixxed 4x on my slug gun too.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dave or Edotors,

There should be 74 comments. Instead I'm seeing only one. what happened to the others? Did I miss something you changed?

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Ed J

There should be a law against mounting a Tasco or Simmons (or any other POS) on a Weatherby Mark V! Sort of like putting F-150 hubcaps on an Escalade.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

A couple of posts trashed Swift scopes. My son has a fixed 4X Swift compact scope on his Savage 99 .308 Win. It has been on it about 10 years with no malfunction or loss of zero.

Are those bad scopes?

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from Tim Platt wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Yeah I have a Swift on my Knight M/L and it's been on there over ten years and I love it. Plus it gets twice the abuse because the percussion caps burn it every time you pull the trigger. I put one on my son's .270 because I liked mine so much.

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from tightliner09 wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

ill stick with good ole irons!!!

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Just got a flyer in todays mail. Midway has Leupold VX III's on sale $100 off most models.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Del-in KS: Leupold is discontining the VX 111 line. So if you want one, better get from Midway ASAP. The new line is many $$$$ higher than the present line. Nikon did the same with its 3x9x40: Changed to a 2.5X10x42. But I am happy with the 3 x 9 x 40, will give me a great view out to 3-4 yards and i can;t see beyond 400 yds with any scope. Age does affect eyes as well as other parts of our body, but you younger guys don;t know that yet.I love the Nikons , but had a gun was not sure I would keep so saw the Bushnell Dusk to Dawn 3x9x49 advertised with a 6" eye relief at a much cheaper price than the Nikons,so ordered one. Installed with the Leupold set up and was thrilled at the results.3rd shot was l l/2' at l00 yds. So I bought a new N/P CVa and wanted a scope for it as well. Yep, bought the Bushnell Dusk to Dawn with the 6" eye relief and zeroed in for 200 yds using Pyrodex pellets 100 grs total and the Powerbuilt Sabots. Opening day last year of B/P about 2 minutes before too late to see, out stepped a Buck but was over 200 yds away. I waited for hoim to come closer and whe he got to l70 yds, I saw many points. He was looking directly at me in my ground blind. I shot him at l70 yds, l shot and he fell over, a very nice 9 pointer. So, over the next week of B/P I killed 3 other Bucks using the same set up and the scope was yet on the $ when season ended and I cleaned it up. A mediocore scope with a good set up sometimes is all we need. Good Luck. PS; We can kill 6 deer where I live per season and then buy extra doe tags if want them. My Son and I may try Colorado this fall for Elk north of Craig, C0 if all goes well and gas not 10$ a gallon. The 700's will go on that trip with the Nikons.Son uses a 700 in 7 mm mag. A little heavy for me.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Wa Mtnhunter,
Whoa touche!
Dr. R, your right about place of manufacture. If it's made in US or Japan or made one place (Japan,US) and assembled in the other country, its probably and generally ok. Get the ones with the parts made in the pacific rim and watch out!

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from YooperJack wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger:
When I bought, it never occurred to me to get a synthetic stock and weight it with lead. I might have preferred that option. Dave Petzal described an event once where a wood stock cracked from being in the baggage compartment of a high altitude jet airliner. Since I hate air travel, that probably won't be a problem. However, ATV's are used here and if I ever go out west, horses might be used so synthetics were definitely a good option. Hell, wood stocks have been used for somewhere around 300 years. I guess I'll handle it.
Thanks,
YooperJack

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from platte river rat wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

weavers---Leupold---Burris---they've all been good to me, but most of them are fixed power. My largest gun is a 3oo win mag, this probably is the reason of my good luck.Been using scopes for over 55 yrs now.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Gunslinger

We are going back to Craig, CO again this year. I will be staying at the Elk Run Inn in Craig driving out to the ranch daily if all goes as planned.

WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

YooperJack: I also love great wood, kills me when i scratch mine up. I;ve used a wet cloth and the Iron many nights after a dent during the day. With the Syn stocked guns I own and use, the stock comes with a piece of styfoam inserted in the back end. I take that out and then get wheel weights and wrap in Foam rubber and insert the amount I need into the butt end, usually about 2 lbs will bet me at 9-10 lbs. On my Walnut stocks I drill a l/2 to 3/4" hole in the stock and fill with lead shot to get it at 9-10 lbs. I being a skinny guy with the extra wt on the butt end, it kinda stabalizes the gun and I can hold more steady and removes some of the wt on the foreend. It really helps when off hand shooting. A 5 l/2 lb 30-06 in syn will bust your shoulder if no meat there like on me. I don;t climb mtns so teh 9-10 lbs don;t bother me. I mostly stand hunt or at least a short walk to a huge tree with my stool and park myself. Let the younger guys run the game my way.At 73, Can;t climb to 12K feet as i once could.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

WA Mtn hunter: Ifmy Son and i go back to Craig this fall, will be hunting near Maybell and then north of Craig ( highway 13 I think) near and on Black Mtn. Willstay in the Holiday Inn at the west end of Craig. Just hope this economy improves so able to go again. I want my Son to kill a nice Elk while I;m around to see. Lots of great Mulies in the Sage near Maybelle. Hopefully we all get to make it West again if not this year, then next. Im a little concerned about the winter Kill-off in the Craig area, what reports have you received?

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Dr. RAlph: Her mind would not bother me, it would be what you can;t see that would be of concern to me. Her eyes, ears, and teeth indicates the other parts of her body work fine. So don;t run just yet,see what is offered and the condition left in. Never under estimate the will /desire of a woman, regardless of he age. I know such a person, and you would think she is not a day over 50, also, she acts as such. Good Luck.

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from Brian W. Thair wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

I can't believe that I read the whole thing. Thanks for all the shopping advice. I've been pleased with every rifle/(fixed)scope combo I've bought because I knew what I needed before I shut the front door. BTW, the Nikon Prostaff 82mm 20-60X spotting scope is worth every dime.
How about a Rem 700BDL in .243 with a Weaver K6?

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 7 weeks ago

Brian: No way to go wrong with a BDL or CDL, and the Caliber depends on what you plan to hunt. Me I'd rather be over gunned than under. I Think the 270 is small enough for average Deer, but many taken with 243 and i know a few taken with 223 and even a 22 mag. I Just want that animal to hit the ground when I fire. i can;t track a wounded animal due to my health. As for Scopes, if you read the above, you can see that i really prefer the Nikon's. The new Bushnell Dusk/Dawn is ok, but not the same quality as a Nikon. I got a 4 x and 6 x Weaver had since early 50's, but the 4 x is getting a tad fuzzy, could be my eyes/ I do prefer the Variables and the eye focus piece near your eye, works great in low light. If you ever need to know anything about hunting or guns,. read this Blog, as some body will have your answer, not that you need it. Good Luck, Shoot-um-straight and often . Back to scopes. If anyone is on a tight budget, and who is not these days, the Bushnell Dusk/Dawn with 6" eye relief( a must on a B/P gun) is a good scope and will take the recoil of a l50 grs of Pyrodex in my B/P gun. Again, this is a great Blog and will learn a lot as we fron all over the lower 48 and WE KNOW IT ALL?????????

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger,

I have not heard much about winter kill this year in the Craig area. Last year, the winter kill was mostly south of there. 2008 season was spotty for some hunters since there was not much October snow to move the elk out of the high country and there was still lots of forage up high that kept the animals dispersed in areas that hunters usually don't find them during the hunting season. We had 7 out of 8 hunters get an elk. Deer were not very active due to warmer temps and this year was a little early for pre-rut activity in 2nd rifle season. We found little evidence of winter kill on the ranch.

We usually stay at the Elk Run Inn or Black Nugget up the hill from the Holiday Inn on US 40.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

WA Hunter: Thats good news about the winter kill. I love teh Crai area west and north. Kinda hard to get permission to hunt north, but was able to a few years back. Just hope my Son and I get to go back again this year, all depends on his work. He works for the Dept of Labot for state of N.C. We finally got some snow last night and lots of wind around 20-30 MPH. Today has been really cold and to be in low teens tonight. Back to Craig, do;t forget the western Museum in Craig you will love the western mdse.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger

I meant to go to the western museum this past year on your recommendation, but spent every day up until departure trying to help the last guy in our party get his elk. I gave him a package of targets for Christmas and told him when he can put 3 in the center at 200 yards no more than 6 inches apart, then he can call me for another trip to Colorado. LOL

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

WA Hunter: It has always been a mystery to me that a guy would spend the thousands to go west and not be able to hit a Elk/Deer at 200-300 yds. Me, I have my own shooting range out to 300 yds and I pratice for 2 months prior to going each year. I not only use the guns I will take west but also use my Bolt 22 mag for the pratice and save a few $$$ on Ammo, but I yet get the pratice from it. As you know, in the Rockies, the distance will fool you and a range finder is very helpful. I learned my first trip out 30 yrs ago, that i had better learn to shoot long distance or stay home. At home a 100 yd shot is a long shot, and we never had deer till about mid 80's so shotgunning was our hunting weapon and accuracy was not a must. But on a Elk hunt you need to be able to put 3 rounds in a 3-4" circle at 200 yds or pratice till you can. I do think many guys going West the first time, get trigger happy or either recoil shy. To me ,when I decide to shot a animal, I never know when I pull the trigger, it just comes natural somehow. And, as a rule, when I pull the trigger I know if was a good shot or not. But I stress don;t take a MAYBE shot, be sure you can put that animal down and not leave a wounded animal to die a slow death. My next trip west, legal or not, if I see a Wolf, Cougar, I will gut shoot that sucker and let him get away from me and die.Last year in MT my wife saw a huge Cougar not 20 yds away from her sneeking after 2 small does. I told the land owner about it and he said kill all you see and don;t worry about legal or not. We found last year that the game was scarcer than in the past. The Game Dept of MT called me to get some imput on the area I hunted and I informed him of the Cougar and the Wolf tracks.He said they planned to monitor that area this spring when fawning time came. Hell, I told him not to wait till then, that that ate year round , especially in deep snows. So will see if anything happens. But really, there are many Cougars and Wolf's in the Rockies and they better open a season on them soon or the Mulies and Elk will suffer. Take care and try to get to that Museum if possible, you will enjoy I know. I;ve been there 3 times and will go again the next trip to Craig. Hey, on the hill above the Holiday Inn use to be the best Prime Rib Steakhouse I ever ate, if there yet, give it a try.We always go a couple days extra or sometims 3 days to settle in and look around as when season opens, we hunt till dark or till fill tags. Chat again i hope.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

This Blog is not taking my comments tonight???? Don;t know what the problem is? Will need to check it out. If d come thru. Gunslinger

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger

Good points all.

There used to be a steakhouse just west of the junction of Hwy 13 and US 40 on the west end of town, but that has been closed for years. You must be talking about the place on the left on Hwy 13 south of the Holiday Inn headed towards Hamilton and Meeker. If so, we drive right by it on the way out to the hunt daily but have never tried it. Bad To The Bone on Breeze St. was the best eats in Craig, but the fella and his wife who ran it closed it and moved back your way to North Carolina. The Tin Cup at the golf course out by the Craig airport has excellent food. The Baysinger family that runs Mountain Meat Processing on Lincoln St. owns that restaurant. The VFW on the east end of town on Victory Way is worth a try, too. Not fancy, but lots of food. The Village Inn restaurant on Victory Way in the middle of town has the worst food and even worse service. have tried most of the Mexican restaurants in town, all mediocre at best.

WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

I got my directions wrong, you correct its south of Holiday Inn. I love the small town of Craig, reminds of the old western towns of yester-year. My Son bought a painting of Craig when the streets were dirt and sidewalks plank. I mounted the print using old barn rough wood and he has it hanging in his Den. Looks real nice and reminds us of the wonderful times we've had in Craig and Colorado. Not sure as what this year holds for us. My health is not well and neither is my Son's job at present. He will not know the status till July lst if his dept goes or not. So kinda hard for us to decide where or if we can go West this year. A lot depends on the economy as well,, as we plan to drive out this time. A neighbor, who is a great hunter wants to go with us and he has a nearly new 4 door pickup which will work fine for the 3 of us. l sleep while one drives and the other keeps him awake. With his cover, we can store our gear and hopefully bring some meat home. I usually fly, but with the price of airlines and now charging for luggage ( cost me $355.00 last year for luggage for me and the wife) so can buy a lot of gas for that $$$. Anyway, hopefully we can go to Colorado again, as my Son loves the western end of Craig near Maybelle and also north on l3 near WY.Or we may decide to go to MT again, as neither of the other 2 has seen Yellowstone, me I've been there 3 times and thats enough. When our Stimulas Checks arrive, may be enough to buy the licenses and the gas????????.Have you been on the other Blog about the 06 and 270? repeats of last year. Kinda beating a good horse to death. I just want to hunt, even if it's a 22 or whatever. When you get 73 yrs old, any outing hunting is great and I love the Rockies and just being out doors.I understand we here in NC will have 3 exta weeks of Deer season this year. From 2 weeks prior to Thanksgiving till Jan. lst.We did well last year, My Son and I got 8 between us, 2 culls and 5 nice deer and l spotted one my Son been watching for 2-3 yrs. Ok, I;ve blabbed enough for now. TAke care and get ready. Hey, one last question, do you apply for licenses thru the draw or over the counter in C0?i know Deer is draw, but the Elk in some areas are yet over the Counter, been a few years since I hunted C0, been going to Wy, Nebraska (for mules) and MT for Mulies and Elk.Do you know about the 20 mile Coal mining Co in C0?, I;ve hunted it, got my first Elk there. Its's South of Steamboat Springs and Hayden, C0 about 50 miles South of highway 40. O Well, any place is great if you see game and get a opportunity to shot a nice animal.Chat again later.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

Gunslinger,

I know that Unit 13 south of Craig is over the counter Bull tags as is most of NW Colorado. I also think there are usually leftover deer licenses in many of the NW units. if not, mostly 100% success in the draw for 2nd and 3rd seasons. 4th Rifle harder to draw. I usually put in for an Either sex Private Land Only Deer tag or the Buck tag that is good for multiple units in that area. Alway leftovers in Unit 13 private land. I usually buy a leftover either sex private land only for Elk since I only hunt the ranch and will take a cow if I don't locate a nice bull. The rest of my posse drives out from Alabama in a 4 dr pickup, so that works for them. I usually leave Washington state on a Wednesday afternoon, spend the night in Pendleton, Oregon, then drive to Rock Springs, WY, spend the night then go into Craig on Friday morning for the Saturday opener. I may just hunt elk in CO this year. I guess I need to make up my mind before the April 7th drawing deadline.
WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 6 weeks ago

WAHunter:Thanks for teh update of the licenses in unit 13. I like the NW section better than any area in Co. So will just have to wait till weknow what the situation brings in July and decide what we can or will do. At age 73+, few hunt remaining for me, especially so far from my Dr's and Hospital.I would love to go to Craig again,a great little town. I also would love to try out this new MArlin XL7 on a huge Mulie or even a Elk, but with the 700 CDL, it's a better long range gun for me withe the ammo I use and so far it has preformed flawless. Will stay in touch by the Blog and let you know how things agre going. I'm getting over Pheumonia( not well yet) for teh 2nd time in 2 yrs.My immume system is zero. If we do go to C0 will be for the 2nd or 3rd season, depends on licenses available and the weather out there. I got snow bound in Steamboat once for 4 days( cared less as had my 6 x 6 at the processors) and know that weather is changeable in a matter of minutes.Shoot-um-straight and often. Hey, what is the driving distance from Washington to Craig for you? It's about 2000 miles for me. Two yrs ago, flew to Denver, Drove to Douglas, Wy.Killed my Lope, then took a week and drove to Missoula, MT got my huge Deer , about l000 miles, hunted 2 weeks, then flew from Missoula, MT to Charlotte, N.C.A total of 5 weeks away from home. Was a costly trip, living in a Motel for (wife and I), rental cas, food, gas,guide etc. Kinda put a dent in my hunt account, and this sorry economy is not helping replace those funds, in fact has taken a huge portion of it so far. Ok gone.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Gunslinger

I just mailed out my Colorado Big Game pamphlet to some new guys joining our group this year. I have not decided whether to get a Deer tag or not this year. I have passed on deer 3 out of the last four years, so that is a thousand bucks shot. I did get a nice 5x5 in 2007, not a B&C trophy by any means, but a nice wallhanger for me. I passed on a scraggly 3x3 and a nice 4x4 this past year. I may just get an Elk tag and take a shotgun for birds in case I tag out early or whack a few coyotes with my .257 Roberts. That 100 gr. Ballistic Tip train wrecks a coyote.

It is about 1,300 miles from my house to Craig. Usually take 2 overnights/3 days going down and 2 days with an overnight in Boise, Idaho coming back with meat in coolers. We have been lucky with driving weather the last few years. Couple of years ago we drove in snow from Pendleton, Oregon to almost the Idaho state line on the way down. We just watch the weather forecasts and plan accordingly. The one good thing about hunting in late October is that there is seldom prolonged snow and ice on the highways. Must be Global Warming!

Best regards,
WMH

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

That is not a short distance either. About 350 miles a day is about I can drive, but 2 other drivs, csn drive straight tru,.might stop ovr l night, etc. We learned today here in N.C. that ourr B/P season has been extended to 2 weeks.So now we can hunt with B/P and rifle we can hunt deer and Bear from November till Jan l, 2010. With the economy in trh condition it's now end adn my health Rx's about dble from last year, not sure what we will do about a Western hunt. I would love to go to Craig sgain with my Son. If he and out Neighbor an I can work it out, it wan't completely break the bank, asi think things gonna get a lot worse before improved.Wish the economy would do about face prior, but afraid will take a ong time. Can you believe, that in NOv.2007, the DOW was almost l4K, now is near 6K. Wish i had gotten out in 2007 and buried my hunt fund and retirement. But we never know. Even if things stablize will take years to improve. Son may know by end of month about his Job. We (they) elected a dumb Assed woman as Gov. and she hates my Son's boss, who is an elected official,but the Gov.controls the $$$ allocated to that Dept. and if cut off, then no jobs.???My son is a very versital person, and can do a lot of different things, so after a period of adjustment he can make it I fell sure. Just loosing the benefits, Ins. Life, Health and l/2 retirement that hurts. Health Ins.a Miust now. Ok, will just play the cards delt and see what happens. Glad we have about 150 acres to hunt her at home. Some nice deer left from last year. I killed the Boss BUCK last year, but appears,2 have taken his place. As we saw l9 other night in l field. With 2 months almost to hunt, surely we can get a nice buck or two. I want that other spotted deer we see now and then,.Wall in Den is now full, with 2 at Taxi now, don;t know wher they going, but may resort to ceiling hangers. Take care. Chat again.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

WAMtn Hunter: Know how you feel about the deer tag. But, I decided spending all the $$$$ to go West for 10-14 days, kind Dumb not to have a Deer/Elk tagCombo. In Mt. if you by the Combo, the Deer tag cost less than l50.00. And I would hate to be hunting Elk and a B/C monster deer step out and me no tag. So I figure if going to spend all that money, if I can;t afford teh Deer tag Combo, I need to stay at home. And, I should this year, but got that feeling, and its gets worse come last of Sept. I should have gone west when was younger and working and making a fair salary, but had other things I thought more interesting here so nevre went till was mid 40-'s If I had gone to Co when I was say 30 yrs old, I would have bought a ranch and been a Cowboy, which I always wanted to be. Now to old and feeble to do a lot, plus Dr will not allow me toride a horse due to both hips replaced. Take care.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Gunslinger,

You are probably right. I think I will put in for the buck deer tag that covers most of the units around Craig, including 12 and 13. It would be a shame to see a B&C mulie with no tag! I have taken a nice 5x5 and seen a few nicer bucks come off the property, but no B&C. However, I did see a MONSTER drop tine buck on CO HWY 13 about a half mile from the ranch, so they are around.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

WAMTN HUNTER:
Did not intend to say you were dumb not to have the Deer tag along with the ELK> But as I stated, would feel like a Idiot ( and I did this) for a 5 x 5 Mulie come within l00 yds and stop and me holding a Cow Elk tag only. So from that day till now, I figure if I can afford to go, surely I can afford another couple hundred if that much for a opportunity for a nice Mule Deer. I rather eat the tag, than see what i want and no tag. LAst couple years to MT, had I not had the Combo, would not have gotten the deer. Combo tags for Elk/ either deer/upland birds and fishing for NR for 5 weeks cost 563.00. Elk only is about 400.00, so see where i;m coming from.Plus if was able, they have some great upland bird hunting in MT If lucked out on Elk/Deer, and time left, then eat some good birds or Trout. o to be young again and live out there, so much game to hunt and can hunt about all year, plus the Geese in the winter.in l993 had opportunity to buy 25 acres and a cabin for 49K beside a stream with a Compose toilet, porch on 2 sides, fireplace and wood stove,with loft to sleep 4-6?? cabin was 20 x 24. I have kicked my A-- every day since. Lost more than that in past 3 months on the DOW.If had invested in the Cabin, would at least have that left.So much for age and suppose good judgement????? Chat later

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Yooper JAck: I too many years ago planned to go to JAckson Hole, WY and take a Horse pack in hunt for 7-10 days and camp out under the Mtns. But, with a family to support,Job with little time off and lack of the funds to go, I continued to put off, much to my Sorrow. I wanted to take my 30-30 and ride back in say l0-15 miles and enjoy myself,. Then in l990, my health went sour and I was in Hospital for 6 l/2 months in 90 and 5 months in 91. Plus since have both hips replaced. So now can ride a horse and do the hunt I always planned. So Don't delay, do it, as you got the remaindr of your life to pay for the trip of a lifetime. I've been west 12 times since, but it's not the same as i planned when was much younger. But, at 73+ can't complain, s few guys get to go as often as i have been. I do want to make one more hunt and take my Son. I want to be here when he kills his Elk. If this economy will improve, hopefully we can go this fall or next, time and the economy will determine.Get your licenses and go West young Man, have a great time.And yes, a scabbard with a 30-30 will make you feel like a Cowboy that I wanted to be. But now I'd take my 06 instead. Be nice to take both a bolt gun and a 30-30 on a horse pack in, but kinda doubt you could.Seem many Elk killed with 30-30's on my trips out. Know one guy who did just that, had his 30-30 and was on his horse, a Elk crossed his path and he killed a 6 x 6 before they got to base camp. Again, when you go, kill the first Elk/Mulie you see that you would give your eye tooth for if was the last hour of your high $$$ hunt.It's great to have plans, but unless you do it,you will always regret it. So Shoot-um-straight- and often.

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from Gunslinger wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

ooper Jack: Should have been (I cannot ride a horse now,) Dr.afraid will pull these replacement hi[s apart out in the wild Blue Younder. Can ride my 4 wheeler some,but mostly I drive near my blinds and sit in those here at home. Out west I walk a few yards from my drop off and find huge tree and unfold my stool and wait for a animal to come my way. I killed my first Elk in Colorado standing beside my rented Blazer, using the luggage rack for a rest and killed him at near 200 yds >I was down low beside a road, and the herd of Elk can in to my left up a mountain . One Herd bull and 2-3 fork horns and about 40 Cows. I shot the Elk with him standing in between the cows in his neck as that was the only shot I had. Thats when you need to know how your gun will shoot and you have praticed enough to know it's a makeable shot.I shot was all it took down he went. Over 50% of my large game kills have been neck shots, even with Black Powder. Good hunting.

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from ishawooa wrote 5 years 5 weeks ago

Ed J: You might research this if you feel energetic but it sticks in my mind that the older Weatherby brand scopes were in fact manufactured by Tasco. Can anyone verify or disqualify this remark for certain?

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from jmeerpohl wrote 5 years 4 weeks ago

I have had success with fixed scopes. i like the Weaver 4.75 power they made in their Grand Slam series a few years ago. I own a couple and have them on seveal hunters sincei use leupold's QR mounts and rings. I aleays have a back up scope and most of my rifles have working iron sights as well. I have also had success with Leupold's and B&L elites, mostly in sizes of 1.5-5 , or 2-7, and a couple 3-9. The 2-7 European Leupold scope is a favorite for being light, low mounting and lets a lot of light through the 30 MM tube. Same can be said for the 3-9 x 40.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

Charley

About iron sights, I got one better than that!
I periodically deer hunt with my Ultra Match M1A and M1 Grande. Other hunters with these new WSSM’s with high priced scopes and fancy gear think I’m nuts until I point out a small rock the next county over. Then I ask, how many shots will it take you until you hit that rock and how many consecutive times can you hit it?

By the way, these are the two rifles I used in 1000 yard High Power Matches!

1000 yards = 32 clicks up and generally 7 clicks into the wind!!!

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from Hotshot222 wrote 17 weeks 4 days ago

Re failing scopes: While hunting ground squirrels ten years ago, I tried to sight in the rifle prior to the actual shoot and found that I couldn't dial in a decent sight picture with the .222 scope. I then tried the .22-250 scope and fell over when the same blurry picture occurred. Wonderful! I then picked up the .223 and....again.....blurring.

My optometrist found that I had a cataract developing in my right eye. Surgery ultimately fixed the problem and (thank God) I didn't have to purchase new scopes. Moral: it's not always a scope problem.

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from Hotshot222 wrote 17 weeks 4 days ago

Re failing scopes: While hunting ground squirrels ten years ago, I tried to sight in the rifle prior to the actual shoot and found that I couldn't dial in a decent sight picture with the .222 scope. I then tried the .22-250 scope and fell over when the same blurry picture occurred. Wonderful! I then picked up the .223 and....again.....blurring.

My optometrist found that I had a cataract developing in my right eye. Surgery ultimately fixed the problem and (thank God) I didn't have to purchase new scopes. Moral: it's not always a scope problem.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

ishawooa

They will be eating snow cones in hell before I buy another Redfield!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 8 weeks ago

By the way I have a
Carl Gustaf Stads Gevarsfaktori 6.5x55 Swedish Carbine and it’s not a cut off barrel that is accurate as any scoped rifle when shooting game.
I’ve won a many turkey shoots with it especially when I was 14. Should have seen the before and after faces of the other shooters when I won!!!
What was that David about 6.5x55’s? LOL!

PS.

Hold my trophy while I kiss your Girl Friend!!

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