Scoping a 22?


January 20, 2008, 08:38 AM
I have a Ruger 10/22 with an olive Hogue overmolded stock and Tactical Solutions fluted bull barrel with compensator. I had an extra scope, Leupold Var-X II 3x9 that I put on it. It is not a 22 scope. Do face any problems with this scope not being a 22 scope?

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January 20, 2008, 08:56 AM
You'll need one-inch scope rings and have to make sure they and the base(s) will allow the scope to be clear of the barrel.

I've put such scopes on my .22s forever because they are so much better than the rinky-dink ".22 scopes" one usually finds.


January 20, 2008, 09:18 AM
There are two issues that come up when using a "centerfire" scope on a .22:

(1) Parallax setting -- most "centerfire" scopes are set for no parallax at 100-150 yards, whereas most "rimfire" scopes are set for 50 yards or so. Of course, adjustable objective scopes can ... be adjusted for parallax.

(2) For adjustable objective scopes, the minimum focus distance for a "centerfire" scope may be a little long for a .22, e.g., they may only focus down to about 50 yards, when 10 or 15 yards minimum distance might be more appropriate.

Of course, those are both just different manifestations of the same thing.

January 20, 2008, 09:33 AM
Hi "Infidel"...

Interesting stuff about the "parallax".

My reason for going with centerfure scopes has been that they provide a brighter, quicker-to-obtain view and that, IMHO, is a very tangible and important improvement over the smaller "rimfire" scopes.

Since I have used "centerfire" scopes on .22s for decades and have had no problem hitting things at any viable .22 distance, short or long, I am sorta scratching my head here. I know from experience that even moderate parallax can wreck shooting at quite long distances but I've never seen it ruin anything at 50yds. or less.

I suppose it could ruin one's day if one were trying to place all their shots into one .22" diameter hole though. Is that what your experience has been ?


January 20, 2008, 09:53 AM
Well, one 0.224" hole would be nice.... I seldom achieve that.

I have only one fixed focus scope, and that's a 3-9x on an old .22; I removed the guard ring on the objective bell and refocused it for about 50 yards. My other .22s and all centerfires have side focus (parallax) adjustments. When I change the parallax settings, I can see reticle movements that are considerably larger than the groups that the rifles shoot. That is, I see reticle movements on the order of a couple of inches at 100 yards with parallax set for 50 yards, and vice-versa. I usually have the scopes dialed to 10x or more.

There is also the focus of the target. The condition of no parallax is the condition of the target image being in focus exactly at the plane of the reticle, then the ocular magnifies and focuses both the target image and the reticle. At ranges other than what the scope is adjusted for, the target image will be out of focus. This is especially noticeable and definitely a problem when the parallax/focus is set for 100(+) yards and one is shooting at 25 yards with the power setting near 10x. The misalignment due to parallax is not as noticeable at lower magnifications, but it's there.

January 20, 2008, 10:04 AM
Hmmm. Interesting stuff !

Maybe the reason I haven't had troubles at short range is connected to the fact that my most powerful scopes have been 6x-fixed or 2x7 Variables.:scrutiny:

January 20, 2008, 10:14 AM
The main problem that I have had is the badly out-of-focus picture at short ranges. I have two fixed-focus scopes now that I think about it,-- both are inexpensive 3-9x, one regular "centerfire" that I refocused to 50 yards or so to put on an old .22 and one "rimfire" that is knocking about somewhere in the closet or attic. :)

Back to the original question, I entirely agree with you about using regular "centerfire" scopes on .22s. I was just pointing out that the focus/parallax issue is the only issue that I know of that might arise.

January 20, 2008, 10:20 AM
How does one "refocus" the objective lens without allowing all the magic gas escape from the tube ? :uhoh::confused:

January 20, 2008, 10:36 AM
First, took a deep breath and unscrewed the guard ring on the objective bell. Inside, the objective lens is mounted in a carrier ring, which is screwed into the scope tube and which has little notches so that an appropriate spanner wrench can be used to screw the lens in and out. The seal is maintained by the threads(?) o-ring(?) I dunno.

I just used a plastic spudger (stick) and carefully turned the carrier ring to move the objective lens in and out while checking the focus by looking through the scope. I think that this is the same way that it is adjusted at the factory, except that they have the proper wrench(es). It only took a single turn or less.

There is a more complete discussion and step-by-step on Rimfire Central ( but I can't locate it right now. That's where I first heard about how to do it.

Ah! Here's the thread ( about it. Beware, in the instructions, he refers at least once to the "ocular", but that's a mistake. All of this activity is at the objective end,-- you adjust the objective lens inside the objective bell, at the front of the scope.

January 20, 2008, 11:28 AM
Thanks Infidel - Good to have for reference fersure ! :)

January 20, 2008, 11:48 AM
If it is a Leupold without parallax adjustments, you can sent it back to the factory and have it adjusted to an appropriate parallax. They used to do this for free, now I think they charge a modest fee. Their service is prompt and effective. I sent back a Leupold 2.5 - 8 vari-3 to have the parallax adjusted for 50 yards. It has been my perfect rimfire scope, having been mounted on a number of .22s since. Right now it rests on a Kimber Classic. On my 'heavy .22 sporter,' I have a Leupold 6.5 - 20 with an adjustable parallax.

January 20, 2008, 11:49 AM
Double post - sorry.

January 20, 2008, 12:15 PM
another prob with centerfire scopes , is scope walking. if you have a rather large, centerfire scope, and you mount your rings onto a dovetail rail, instead of weaver mounts, or tap and drill holes, most mounts cannot hold the heavy scope in place, so it 'walk's on your dovetail rail.
So if you ever in the future mount to a dovetail rail, try to get steel rings, and try to get them so they have at least two screws across the base, where it clamps down on the rail. Bases with just one screw clamping down on the base, don't provide enough strength or friction, and usually eventually start to walk.

January 20, 2008, 12:18 PM
By the way, if you cannot get a centerfire scope to prrlax down to say 25 yards, go get you a nice air rifle rated scope, or a fixed power scope, such as a new or old weaver. most airrifle rated scopes prllax down to about 7 yards, and some have AO's with 3x9 power, and can be quite reasonably priced.
A 3x9 scope, with an AO, with prrlax adjust down to 7 yards, is really perfect for a rimfire 22.

January 20, 2008, 06:45 PM
I have a Marlin 60 with a 3X9 scope. I have the scope mounted on tall, see-through rings. For anything close up, I can still use the iron sights.

January 20, 2008, 07:00 PM
If you find the scope you are wanting to use is not working for you i can recommend the Nikon Pro Staff series of scopes.

I just bought my third one and think they are the unsung heros for 22 rifles. The 4x is set for 50 yards and the 2x7 is set for 75 yards. I have 2 of the 4 powers and 1 2x7 and hope to pick up another 2x7 soon.

These beat the socks off of the cheap busnells and tasco for 22s. They have good eye relief also.

January 20, 2008, 07:33 PM
Hey there:
I use a Weaver 4X16 on my Ruger 77-22 and it has worked extremely well .
Has a good parralax adjuster and always repeats it's settings. I have had this for some time now but seems like I paid around $300.00 for it maybe 10 years ago.

January 20, 2008, 10:54 PM
I shoot standard rifle scopes on all my 22s will not even consider using a regular 22 scope. If parallax is a consideration then try a shotgun scope the are set at 50-75 yards.

January 21, 2008, 02:33 AM
i just put a Leupold Var-X II 3-9x32mm on my Anschutz. it was the Ultralight EER model and it will adjust down to about 15 yards

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