Howa 1500 optics advice..?


March 22, 2013, 10:16 AM
Hi all. Recently acquired a very nice used HOWA 1500 in .308.
Never purchased a scope before, so new to this whole optics thing. The finish on my rifle is not dull, there is a kind of glossy sheen to it, question is what kind of scope finish am I going to want so that they match up OK?

Also will try and post a pic of the mounts that came with the rifle, I believe they are weavers, are these OK to use? And what type of rings will I want?

Thanks in advance. Optics Newb!

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March 22, 2013, 11:47 AM
Howa's are good, solid rifles.

How much are you wanting to spend on a scope and har far are you planning to shoot with your gun? Using it to hunt or chase paper with?

March 22, 2013, 12:32 PM
most scope are matte finish these days but you pretty much have four choices. Matte, glossy, camo and silver. Matte is the most popular because it is not reflective for hunting applications. I would choose a scope on budget and features first and worry about fashion show last. For budget scopes I would look hard at Vortex. I have run three Vortex scopes and I am extremely impressed. I have use Leupold and Nikon as well but Vortex is in same league for less $$.

March 22, 2013, 01:09 PM
Sorry. From reading here i have narrowed it down to either vortex diamondback or the burris fullfield 2. Either one should be right around what i was looking to spend $150. I will mostly be punching paper.

The thing that i was again wondering about was if i get the matte finish on the scope will it look OK if the finish on the rifle is semi glossy! Probably shouldnt be worried about how it looks as long as its decent glass. Just dont want to put the matte finish scope on the rifle and have it look goofy!

March 22, 2013, 01:14 PM
If the rifle is glossy, then I prefer to put a scope with a gloss finish on it. However, finding a decent scope for $150 with a gloss finish is not exactly easy. For the $150 price point, I like Nikon Pro-Staff scopes but either that you mentioned should work just fine as well.

March 22, 2013, 03:15 PM
$150 is right at the bottom range of acceptable. In that price range a Nikon Prostaff is about the only thing I'd suggest unless you can find something used. Bump your budget up just a little to around $200-$225 and you can do MUCH better. The Burris FF-II, Nikon Buckmaster, Vortex Diamondback as well as some of the low end Weavers are decent scopes. Those are regular prices, you can sometimes find one of these on sale for a bit under $200. In the same price range I'd buy either the Redfield Revolution or Leupold VX-1.

You don't have to spend a fortune to get a good scope. Move up to the $300 level and you are hard pressed to tell the difference between a $300-$400 scope and a $1,000 scope. But once you get much below $200 there is a noticeable difference.

March 22, 2013, 03:59 PM
Gloss wild probably match better, but matte would also be fine.

What power of scope are you looking at?

March 22, 2013, 06:21 PM
I own two Nitrex Scopes. The gloss 3-9x42 TR1 in this link ( a re-badged Weaver Super Slam for $100. You will be VERY hard pressed to find 94% light transmission glass in any other $100 scope.

March 22, 2013, 06:54 PM
Warne maxima medium rings, leupold vx3 3-10x40 end of story.

March 22, 2013, 10:02 PM
You asked, I'll opine. Toss those bases and get into Burris, Redfield or Luepold with the lowest mount your scope will allow.

March 22, 2013, 11:56 PM
When you say "toss those bases" be specific, should I be using some other bases?

March 23, 2013, 01:02 AM
Yake a look at primary arms, they have a nice first focal place mil/mil 4x14 for about 150. I'll second warne rings. Also, find a copy of Magpul's precision rifle DVD's they're a great resource.

March 23, 2013, 08:13 AM
The bases that you have are perfectly functional Weaver bases. I recommend taking them off and sealing the screw threads with the blue medium strength loctite and I would pick up a set of Weaver quad lock medium height rings. A new Redfield Revolution 3-9x40mm is a very nice scope that seems to be in your price range, and they come with the same warranty as a Leupold since that's who makes them.

March 23, 2013, 08:41 AM
If you are going to ditch your bases, you might want to look for a one piece mount like DNZ. I have a high DNZ mount on my Howa 1500 and it clears a scope with a 56mm occular bell. The mount has kept that big old scope rock solid for ~5 years. If you go with the scope I linked to in post #8, you should be able to get away with the low height mount.

March 23, 2013, 08:50 AM
Since you already have the bases, pick up a set of rings and try them first with what scope you buy and see if you like them. If not, you can change them later. Nothing wrong with the bases you already have. There are fancier, prettier and more expensive stuff out there, but yours will work fine.

Any ideas on a scope yet? 3-9, 4-12 or other? If mostly paper punching, you will enjoy something in the higher magnification range if possible. But, that also usually means a little more money.

March 23, 2013, 08:04 PM
The bases are fine. My preference is either Talley Lightweight mounts or DNZ with a slight preference for Talley. But there is nothing at all wrong with Warne, Weaver or any other quality rings made for those bases. There are some cheap knockoff's I'd avoid.

Just stay away from ANYTHING that uses dovetails or with windage adjustable rings.

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