What scope to put on M1A supermatch ???


August 9, 2007, 02:17 AM
Got a new (vintage) supermatch coming in soon. Needs a scope to go on it. Need a recommendation as to what to put on it. Figure about $500 or more worth of optics. Please only recommend as to what you have knowledge on, and have used. Not solely what you wished you had. Since I never had something this good, and never bought a scope this expensive some good advice will help. Fixed power or variable? Stay with Springfield or go Leuopold, or Nikon or Zeiss, WHAT about ATN, or IOR Valdada ? Totally forgot about ATN.

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August 9, 2007, 02:24 AM
I spent $485 on a Bushnell 4200 Series 6-24x40 for my M1A loaded. Figure more for a couple of the scopes you have listed.
Check out:

August 9, 2007, 02:25 AM
Nikon, I switched after I looked through them in low light.
Close, but enough for me to want to switch.

August 9, 2007, 02:32 AM
Voted Leupold as that's what I used on my Supermatch.

FWIW don't forget to factor in the mount+rings costs.... just for those, costs can run $200-300 if you buy quality.

August 9, 2007, 03:14 AM
I have seen Military use of fixed power scopes alot. I assume that this is to keep the varying of the reticle sizes from changing things. I read a large article or single vs dual plane reticles. Need to read that again. But anyway, please, on with the suggestions. As you can now see, pic added, it has a mount on it.

August 9, 2007, 09:08 AM
Avoid the Springfield scopes. They are not worth the money. Given what you spend on a supermatch, get a scope to match.

Nikon tactical or Leupold MkIV would be my minimum. Take a look at NightForce, US Optics or Schmitt and Bender. A fixed 10x USO ST-10S can be had for $895, but it's worth it to upgrade to an EREK elevation knob.

IMO, the M1A needs a variable, as it can serve as both a LR DMR, or for close in work. I find the Nikon 2.5-10x ideal

August 9, 2007, 09:40 AM
I can strongly recommend the Zeiss Conquest 3 x 9 x 50 mil dot on a Smith mount. Razor sharp optics, crisp adjustments and holds zero. I bought one for $460 last year and have been extremely pleased.

It takes a very high grade scope and mount to tolerate the pounding of an M1A.

August 9, 2007, 09:51 AM
Right now I have a Smith mount and a Leupold 4.5-14x50mm LR scope on my M-21. I took the scope off of one of my deer rifles and was only going to use it as a temporary scope until I decide what I want but I like it so well on there I just might keep it, still debating. The scope I bought for $600 and the Smith Mount was $180.

August 9, 2007, 10:42 AM
Another vote for the Leupold MkIV. I'd also think about a laser range finder, but learn to use the mil dots!

Bwana John
August 9, 2007, 11:18 AM
I would suggest just enjoy shooting the open sights, and spend the money you save on ammo.

August 9, 2007, 11:24 AM
another vote for leupold MK4 mil-dot. i might sell my rifle......but that scope stays with me !!

August 9, 2007, 04:41 PM
+1 to what Bwana John said...

Buy yourself a quality model 1907 leather sling and shoot that rifle using iron sights like a rifleman should. With a little practice you can EASILY hit targets out to 600 yards.


Quintin Likely
August 9, 2007, 08:39 PM
I too say use the iron sights provided. Unless your eyes have problems picking up the front sight.

August 9, 2007, 08:48 PM
Avoid the Springfield scopes. They are not worth the money.


I cringed when I saw them in your list along with Leupold, Nikon, and Zeiss.

You should also take a look at Burris, they make excellent scopes.


As for mounts, think ARMS, Smith, or Sadlak.

August 9, 2007, 08:50 PM
Well my eyes aren't what they used to be be. Hmmm. They never were. I still practice with iron sights. Need em if the scope goes south. Actually do most of my shooting with iron sights. Found out though that I am not as accurate as I would like at 300 yds with the AR with a 4x scope. A man would be dead, or at least hurting. But a target, not so dead.

August 10, 2007, 01:05 AM
Me thinks that I will settle with the Leupold Var ??? Something in the 4 to 10 x range.

August 10, 2007, 01:18 AM
I like irons, and the M1A has some of the best. But I'm wearing bifocals now, and even my distance vision is getting worse, so I've got opics on pretty much every long gun.

Even for someone with perfect eyesight, optics give the advantage of putting the aiming point and the target on the same focal plane, meaning you can focus on both.

Considering what you paid for the supermatch, and what it can do, I advise not to scrimp on the optics.

August 10, 2007, 02:35 AM
For under $500 i would go with the Nikon Monarch series. We have one mounted on a Browning A-bolt in 300 winmag and it takes the pounding with no problem. The optical qualities are excellent and it looks good. One more advantage, they do go on sale sometimes, keep an eye out on Natchez or Cabelas etc...

September 1, 2007, 12:50 AM
Was well inside the price range and replicates the military configuration without going to the Leupold VX3 LR which costs almost twice what this one does. Scope is tight and tracks well with the large knobs and mil dots. Fixed 10x, less to fiddle with.

September 2, 2007, 12:11 AM
I have and would never consider getting rid of a couple of Nightforce's. On my little gun .243 I have a 3.5-15 and love it. I think that would work perfect on anything up to 600 yd. On the 300 wsm I have the bigger version I can't remember exactly but I think it is 6-24. Excuse the memory but it is 9000 miles away and have not shot it in about 9 months. They both have the illuminated reticles but they are not needed if it is a target gun. Everyone I have talked to that actually owns a Nightforce loves them. But Leupold is a good substitute. I just bought a 4-16 mildot for my flat top AR and it works well.

September 2, 2007, 12:26 AM
I'd rate something like this, from good to better

US Optics
Schmitt and Bender

Leupold and Nikon is a tossup. Nikon has better glass, Leupold has better customer service.

I put USO over Nightforce, but just barely. USO will build exactly what you want. Don't know of any scope maker that will do the same. Customer service is second to none.

S&B has glass that is simply ubelievable. They also have a price that is simply ubelievable.

September 2, 2007, 01:47 AM
I also have a vintage M1A Supermatch... It had a scope in the previous life, but brings it with irons at 600yds for me now.

The IOR, S&B, and Nightforce are worthy of consideration. I Personally like my Leupold MkIV LR/T 3.5-10x40.... the 30mm tube has great light transmission, and the Leupold Warranty beats all comers! If you're building your baby, don't settle, you will only regret it later.

Get a good steel base, solid rings, and don't forget a cheek pad for your stock.


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