Long range shooting (1000 yards or more) what scope do you use?
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  1. #1
    Colonel av8r's Avatar
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    Default Long range shooting (1000 yards or more) what scope do you use?

    I'm in the process of buying or building a 1000+ yd rifle. A friend who has more money than I'll ever have keeps telling me that I *need* a scope that is at least 32X on the long end and it should be a NightForce. Anyone shooting 24X for 1000 yds?

    Since Vortex doesn't appear to make a scope with higher than 24X power I wondered if anyone here shoots long distance and what scopes you have actually used/use and like...and why?

    I don't need the lecture of "spend 3X the money on the scope as you did on the gun"....I'm aware of that, but I know there has to be some shining stars out there in scope-land that don't cost as much as a car, but offer good service.

    I await your wisdom.

    Thanks
    "An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject"

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  3. #2
    Colonel RandallOfLegend's Avatar
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    Snipers typically use 10-20x power scopes. I would assume you are not trying to hit a target smaller than a human at 1000 yards.

  4. #3
    Sergeant pmcjuryny's Avatar
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    I am not much of a long range shooter, but the m40 sniper rifle used to have a fixed 10x scope, but now I believe it has a 3-12. The m24 uses a fixed 10x or a 3.5-10x, so I don't think you need 32x to reach to 1000yds.

    It will depend on the type of shooting you are looking to do as well. Do you want to ring a gong at 1000 yds, hit a game sized target, or try for crazy small groups like an f class shooter.

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  6. #4
    General meketrefe's Avatar
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    Well a 32 scope might not be a bad choice if you are shooting paper and fix distance.
    Would you be shooting target froma a bench at always set known distances (ie F-class) or you want something
    that can shoot alternate distances, more compact but can do ranging and fast easy adjustments and holdovers like shooting steel in tactical mode?
    Or maybe for hunting too?

  7. #5
    Colonel av8r's Avatar
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    My eyes aren't what they used to be so my question could be more about that than anything else. I don't know anyone that has scoped guns like these to try so I'm shooting in the dark (pun intended)

    This rifle will likely be used for paper, steel, etc at varying distances up to and possibly beyond 300 M. I could use it for varmint hunting, but beyond that it won't be carried in the woods.

    I may try some competition shooting as I've shot some form of competitive shooting for the last 30 years or so and miss it.

    Thanks for any/all advice
    "An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject"

  8. #6
    Colonel GuyMontag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by av8r View Post
    I'm in the process of buying or building a 1000+ yd rifle. A friend who has more money than I'll ever have keeps telling me that I *need* a scope that is at least 32X on the long end and it should be a NightForce.
    5-25 is more than capable Av8r, you don't "need" 32X for 1000 yards. Nothing wrong with a Nightforce, love my F1. Great scopes and they're built like a battleship. Take a look at the new Kahles and Steiners, they're priced VERY well relative to comparable optics. The new Razor HD just released for 2014 is a scope that's really got my attention, 4.5-27x56 looks like a winner but is a heavy bastard. S&B 5-25 PMII is still the gold standard in the class, buy once cry once has never been so true. The S&B will hold it's value better than other scopes, the same can not be said for most others. What caliber are you considering?
    "I have never let my schooling interfere with my education."

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  9. #7
    Colonel av8r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyMontag View Post
    5-25 is more than capable Av8r, you don't "need" 32X for 1000 yards. Nothing wrong with a Nightforce, love my F1. Great scopes and they're built like a battleship. Take a look at the new Kahles and Steiners, they're priced VERY well relative to comparable optics. The new Razor HD just released for 2014 is a scope that's really got my attention, 4.5-27x56 looks like a winner but is a heavy bastard. S&B 5-25 PMII is still the gold standard in the class, buy once cry once has never been so true. The S&B will hold it's value better than other scopes, the same can not be said for most others. What caliber are you considering?
    The Razor HD is on the radar as are the others.

    Currently 308 is the round of choice as I already have a .338. .206 is also something I may end up with as well.
    "An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject"

  10. #8
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    My limited experience and opinion. Disclosure: I use a Mueller 8-32x44 to shoot 22lr on a 100y range.

    There’s a big difference between shooting varying sized targets, at varying distances, in varying light, under poor conditions, that can shoot back; and shooting simple targets, that stay still, at known distances, in bright light, under good conditions. This is reflected in the engineering, durability, repeatability of clicks, and $ of the scopes.

    If you’re just target shooting in good weather, I think you can go with a cheaper, higher power scope as durability isn’t as much of an issue. It is VERY nice to see your hits without needing a spotting scope.

    If you’re not, perhaps you’d want a simpler, more reliable scope with better glass.
    Last edited by Vincine; 02-04-2014 at 04:09 PM.

  11. #9
    General meketrefe's Avatar
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    So this is the thing what are you shooting at? Do you want to be able to read a book at 200 yards or look into a prairy dog's in the eyes
    before you shoot it with the consequent penalty in Field of View.
    Some target shooters like to be able to see their dime size aiming point and tight groups at 300 yards and do not care for the FOV issue.
    Others do not care about some more coarse aiming as soon as you group for what is needed.
    So a 20 to 25 max magnification might provide for most what people need but if you don't want to ever use the spotting scope again
    at even larger distances then you have to get the target setup.
    Again, what is what you like to see and if you are shooting for tight grouping in target aside from the 1000 yard goal that is important.
    Last edited by meketrefe; 02-04-2014 at 12:40 PM.

  12. #10
    Colonel av8r's Avatar
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    I don't mind spending the jing for a HQ scope. I generally keep stuff like this forever and it looks like these lose very little value even 5 years later so the actual cost of use is low if I sell the item later on.

    The scope I had at the top of the list was the Vortex Viper PST 6-24 FFP. Seemed like a very good value, got glowing reviews and has a lifetime no BS warranty.

    I realize it may not be at the same level as SIghtron, Nighforce, S&B, etc, but hard to see the differences when there are none within 2.5 hours of us to look through. I hate to buy more than once for this kind of stuff and realize that price doesn't not always dictate quality.
    "An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject"

  13. #11
    Colonel Jmo371's Avatar
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    I belive this is what you are looking for

    [img]9c96cb790c795d44b2c106096913b50c.jpg[/img]


    jk of course

  14. #12
    Major 99redgtp's Avatar
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    Buy a cheaper, less magnification scope and go out shoot your buddy with it. He'll love it lol.
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  15. #13
    Colonel av8r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99redgtp View Post
    Buy a cheaper, less magnification scope and go out shoot your buddy with it. He'll love it lol.
    He's in CO. I told him last night I was buying something I could shoot him with from here.
    "An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject"

  16. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99redgtp View Post
    Buy a cheaper, less magnification scope and go out shoot your buddy with it. He'll love it lol.
    I wouldn't think anybody would like being shot, buddy or not. . . . Oh, wait, . . never mind.


  17. #15
    Colonel GuyMontag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by av8r View Post
    I hate to buy more than once for this kind of stuff and realize that price doesn't not always dictate quality.
    Pricing is a reflection of an industry getting too full of itself, we're now getting into the high end audio-cable realm of stupidity and cachet.

    $7k for the new S&B? laughable.
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  18. #16
    General thecelt's Avatar
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    Im no expert at long range precision and currently only shoot up to 400 yards, although looking to stretch that out to 600 this year. There is a lot of truth in spending good $ on good optics... I was getting really tired of all the optic snobs on snipershide (while there is merit in buying good glass, you can get the job done with cheaper stuff too). So I decided to try an optic that wasnt well known with hardly any reviews and figured if it was crap I would sell it on ebay and upgrade when I can afford to. So far, this thing has held its zero, and tracks fairly well. If money was no object I would have never looked at it, but I think it offers a lot for the money. Not that I am recommending it to you because it sounds like you can afford a bit more and get something that is tried and tested. But the point is that even something that is sub par can do pretty decent at reaching out.

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  19. #17
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    I agree with the comments in the Virtex Razor HD Gen 2. I have the Razor HD now on my R700 and I freaking love it... I ll wait and see the reviews and comments on the new one when they release it...

  20. #18
    General meketrefe's Avatar
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    And keep in mind there is nothing wrong with a quality target scope with a plex reticle and quality adjustment / turrets.
    I have seen folks who "were told" this scope is the way to go but then knowing them and seeing how they shoot
    and what they like I gave them a nice target scope to try and they were very happy.
    Same the othe way around but most folks at the average rifle ranges shoot from the bench, like to see things
    closing up and do not care bout fast adjustment, ranging and all the other stuff.
    Actually many people who ask for this never end up using it because the cannot find a range with the distance and setup where one can explore the full range of possibilities of tactical shooting.

    So be true to your likes and dislikes and expectations and one can find some tings that work still on a reasonable budget but not to win compettions. And yes the vortex viper and specially the razor are
    amazing glass. For target NF BR, leupold BR /varmint are very good scopes. Also and Zeiss has some
    nice ones with amazing glass but I would not sacrifice on a 1" tube and budget goes up quickly.
    Some folks love the Burris XTRII 8-40x50 FFP that offers good features but I have never tried one.

    Anything with the words counter or sniper or something similar is OEM garbage.
    Last edited by meketrefe; 02-04-2014 at 08:28 PM.

  21. #19
    General meketrefe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyMontag View Post
    Pricing is a reflection of an industry getting too full of itself, we're now getting into the high end audio-cable realm of stupidity and cachet.

    $7k for the new S&B? laughable.
    One thing that I learned shooting overseas is that sometimes people have problems with the popular S&Bs and Steiner too. wot!? This is rare but it can happen with some models. The PMII has amazing quality but you have to pay. I think well worth to certain level of shooting and client but many folks might not be able to reach those budgets.
    But also many people over there love to have Mcmillan Remington rifles with M4 Leopold scopes vs maybe a sako with a zeiss or steiner scope for example because is the more "exclusive foreign imported stuff". ...You know how people are sometimes!. The imported stuff got to be good stuff!! LOL
    Bottomline a well manufactured rifle with a decent scope, even if it is not the top of the line can do many great things. I would be more worried with the "building" a 1000 yard rifle objective unless one is an experienced machinist and gunsmith and has a very nice lathe and tools.
    Last edited by meketrefe; 02-04-2014 at 08:39 PM.

  22. #20
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    Av8r, I think your choice of a vortex optic is excellent. I own two vortex vipers and they are fantastic Scopes for the money. I have a vortex viper hs 4-16x50 on my 308 savage 10fcp-hs. I regularly shoot at 300 and don't need to dial the scope past 10x. You should be fine with a 24x scope until your 308 runs outta gas at ~800 meters.

  23. #21
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    Simmons Whitetail Classic Rifle Scope 6.5-20x 50mm Adjustable

    $125 shipped. Got one on a 50bmg and haven't broken it yet. Clear as a bell too.

  24. #22
    Colonel pseudonymity's Avatar
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    All you really *need* is a scope that does not lose zero and allows you see your target clearly without obscuring it behind the reticle. The more important question is what you *want* in terms of features? Better quality glass is always good for clarity, but even with low magnifications the target will never be clear in some conditions even at shorter distances.

    It may be better to determine what features you are most interested in - first or second focal plane, reticle type, return to zero functions, etc.

    If you shoot at varying distances, especially if you are going with the .308, the total elevation adjustment might be something to look closely at. Unlike the .338, keeping .308 supersonic at 1k is going to take some careful planning on loads.

  25. #23
    General meketrefe's Avatar
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    I would think most people like to hit targets, most likely consistently. So you *need* some equipment that can be consistent.
    If you do not *care* about consistency and do not mind one hit out of each 50 then you do not *need* some decent equipment
    nor training investments. Training is the most overlooked factor and why even with quality equipment people cannot hit anything
    at those distances. Assuming the quality equipment is well installed and people know how to use it that is also a frequent problem.
    It doesn't mean one has to have the top of the top but some decent setup and then lots of hours behind the wheel to get a deep
    understanding and confidence about what is happening.

    One can dedicate thousands of hours working with ranging equipment and simply looking at the environment and measuring wind with
    a kestrel and doing adjustments and still be learning every day like shooting across canyon with multiple winds including downdrafts
    and how to read those winds. After one actually masters this to a degree then it comes mastering the true applicability of one's methods.
    Only experience, lots of training and good bullets and quality equipment. W/o confidence and repeatability, otherwise is just smoke and mirrors.

    Simmons white tail really? come on now. Lets be a bit serious.

  26. #24
    Colonel av8r's Avatar
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    It's likely I'm going to end up with another TRG so I'll want a scope that is of mid-high quality. Vortex would be at the low end. I'm not about to pay for a S&B, but a used Nightforce or Sightron would also work.

    Time to start selling stuff and doing some more consulting work.
    "An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject"

  27. #25
    Major NLYE's Avatar
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    If you haven't before, check out John from 8541 Tactical on YouTube.

    He has a good set of videos that can be of good assistance. He reviews gear as well - and focuses on precision shooting. His rifles are easy on the eyes as well.
    "A Gentleman would not want to appear armed, but would not be so foolish as to go unarmed. Always be a Gentleman. Alway be courteous. Always be ready to kill everyone in the room."
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