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should scope equal rifle value?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by sansone, Mar 10, 2011.

  1. sansone

    sansone Well-Known Member

    I know this has been discussed before but I would like to hear new opinions with current economics in mind..

    I NEVER owned a scope to be proud of. I have wanted a Nikon Monarch for many years but could not pry the wallet open. Sure there are many other choices but my question is:

    How foolish is it to install a scope on a rifle of equal value ? THANKS fellas :)
  2. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Well-Known Member

    That question reminds me of the line jewelry store clerks lay on guys saying an engagement ring should cost 3 months salary....As long as the scope works and you are happy with it all that really counts, IMO.
  3. NeuseRvrRat

    NeuseRvrRat Well-Known Member

    very subjective question. really depends on what kind of rifle you're dealing with and what you wanna do with it.

    for example, my first deer rifle was a $200 .30-06 from walmart. i put a $750 leupold on it because i knew that where i hunted i was gonna have a lot of "edge of dark" shot opportunities. the combo served me well and in low light, i could see better through the scope than with the naked eye.

    now, my 10/22 cost me about $250 iirc and i put a $50 scope on it. there's no heavy recoil and no need for a $250+ scope on it for my plinking and squirrel hunting uses. that money is better spent on ammo.

    just use some sense and put some forethought into your purchases and you'll be fine.
  4. dzelenka

    dzelenka Well-Known Member

    If you have to choose one, spend your money on the scope, not the rifle. You can only shoot as well as you can see. Good glass makes a difference and unfortunately costs money.
  5. Sky

    Sky Well-Known Member

    Get a scope that works for your intended use. If it is a cheap tasco, a nightforce or whatever in between as long as it works for you then what more do you need?
  6. esheato

    esheato Well-Known Member

    I think Colt Python Elite nailed it, but I've always heard you should spend 1/3rd of the rifle cost on optics. So, a rifle for 1k, you should spend at least 300 on optics.

    Although with optics today you could spend significantly less and still do quite well.
  7. sansone

    sansone Well-Known Member

    So thinking the scope should be half the rifle's value might be flawed you say? For some reason I feel the rifle's value should be much higher than the scope's value. I really want a Monarch but the rifle is an inexpensive Marlin. Kinda like putting jewels on the dog's collar.
  8. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    The idea seems to be an Internet thing. If you really need the max performance of a high-end scope, all well and good. For 90+ percent of all use, however, the $150 to $200 range of scopes seems to work quite well.

    Out to 400 yards on critters bigger than prairie dogs, and not considering first or last light (see Post #3), a Weaver K4 or equivalent will do as good as anything else on the market.

    Example: I paid $150 for a good used Leupold Vari-X II 3x9x40. It's on top of a 700 Ti. Am I "under-scoped"? Me, I don't think so.
  9. DM~

    DM~ Well-Known Member

    My scopes have to do the job i need done, i don't go by what the cost ratio is. I bought a Zeiss for my "go to gun", because it was the best low light level scope i could find that was still affordable, as i need that gun to work for me at low light levels. Yet, i have much cheaper scopes on 22's, because they do just fine for what i use that 22 for.

    I have always been willing to pay for a good scope, as i have spent weeks at a time in the Alaskan bush, many times alone, sometimes in the winter in a tent, "depending on my firearm and scope" for food and safety. I'm just not willing to take cheapo unproven equipment into situations like that.

  10. HOOfan_1

    HOOfan_1 Well-Known Member

    I certainly don't pick out a scope by what my gun cost. I pick out my gun and my scope based on
    1) Intended use
    2) Quality gleaned from reading many many reviews and first hand accounts
    3) Reputation of manufacturer
    4) If it is a rifle, the aesthetics
    5) What I can fit in my budget.
  11. sansone

    sansone Well-Known Member

    sure Art, a used Leupold is still a great scope, I'm getting tired of buying cheap chinese scopes only to waste expensive ammo watching POI wander around the paper. Not bashing the fine people of china, just would like to own a scope made in Japan or USA for around $300
  12. brian923

    brian923 Well-Known Member

    Dzelenka... Not wanting to start anything, but a cheap rifle with excelent glass with still shoot kike a cheap rifle. A $1000.00 scope will not make a $150.00 stevens 200 shoot like an $1000.00 savage palma rifle. Nor vice-versa. I like to spend my money on quality rifles, and if I need glass for them, ill use a cheaper scope untill I can afford a quality scope. So far though, every time I go to get that quality scope, I caome home with a new rifle, so... My way of thought dosent seem to pan out perfectly either ;) With redfield coming back on the scene, and the ecomomy in shambles, higher end scope manufaturers are starting to make good quality "low end" rifle scopes for the average american shooter. This I sgood news.right now, I have a tru-glo, $119.00 scope on my savage 110 308. It shoot tiny groups with factory and handloaded ammo. I think that scope is on par with other $120 scopes from nikon and leupold (if you can find em)
  13. BrocLuno

    BrocLuno Well-Known Member

    Well, in part it just comes down to the individual scope. It's like eye glasses. It needs to fit you and the work environment. If either is not right, you will have problems. Cost is not really relevant.

    I use old steel tube Weaver scopes on a number of my rifles. A stronger scope is hard to find. But, they were built before some of the modern lens coatings, so they will not transmit that last 2% of light as dusk falls. I also have some Bushnell Elites because rain and fog are issues on the north coast in Cali and Rainguard does work, they are aluminum tubes and the Weavers would rust :(

    I also have some Nikon scopes and they are great - but so is an older Kassnar made in Japan. I don't own a US Optical or a Swarovski, Zeiss or Schmidt & Bender - but if there was a job that needed one I'm sure I would.

    Would I put a Schmidt & Bender on a Marlin XS7S - sure if that what was needed to do the job. That's like a scope that costs 7X the rifle. So what - if you have to see into the dark on the edge of night you have to see. The cost of the rifle vs the sights is sort of a bogus argument?

    Gen III night vision costs many thousands of dollars and it will work on a $100 Mosin. What job are you thinking this "nice" scope will have to do?
  14. sansone

    sansone Well-Known Member

    In my case the rifle is a good shooter so I want a good scope for it. I have seen cheap scopes that can do well provided you don't adjust the power or turn the elevation knob. Since reading these responses, I'm leaning towards a good scope in the $300 range. This is double what I normally spend on a scope. When I change rifles later, I can keep the scope. My tired old eyes can't see the irons anymore
  15. BullfrogKen

    BullfrogKen Moderator Emeritus

    The quality of the glass isn't the only factor that makes a good scope cost money.

    Reliable and repeatable adjustments don't come cheaply.

    If you just zero your scope and use some "hold-over" method, that consideration might not matter as much. But it does cost money to set up a scope that has turrents a shooter can use easily and rely upon.

    Equal the value of a rifle? Not necessarily. Sometimes it will. It just depends on how much things like that matter to you.
  16. HOOfan_1

    HOOfan_1 Well-Known Member

    Are there any scopes made in the US? Assembled maybe, but as far as I know the lenses are coming from Japan or the Philippines
  17. Haxby

    Haxby Well-Known Member

    IMO there is no reason the cost a rifle and the cost of the scope should have anything to do with each other. Doesn't make sense to me.
    If you want a nice scope, get one.

    Nikon Monarch 2-8 costs less than $300. Monarchs are made in the Philippines.
    Bushnell 4200 is a direct competitor to the Monarch. Made in Japan. You can get one for less than $300.
    Leupold VXII is $300.
    Natchezss has a USA made Burris Signature Select for $300.
    Natchezss also has the Nitrex TR-1, made in Japan, for $100.
  18. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    I've had and seen very bad luck with the cheapest brands of scope. Such as people paying thousands for an Alaska hunt and sticking a Tasco or Bushnell or whatever on their rifle and having the seals blow out when transported in a bush plane due to the drop in air pressure. End of hunt, money wasted.

    With that said, most people would be perfectly well served by a $200 fixed 4 power scope from Leupold or Burris or some other reputable maker.

    You don't need $800 worth of 4x12 with mil-dots and illuminated whoozits and built in wind vanes and all that. Just get within 300 yards, put the fixed power scope crosshairs on the critter and pull the trigger.
  19. BullfrogKen

    BullfrogKen Moderator Emeritus

    KD, that method might work for larger game, but not so much for varmint hunting. Or for a competitive shooter in rifle matches.
  20. Mr_Pale_Horse

    Mr_Pale_Horse Well-Known Member

    Define your requirements:

    1. What is is going on? (IE, Air rifle, .22 bolt action, magnum centerfire, . . . . very different scopes needed in each case)

    2. How will I use it? (Punching paper in the sun, picking up a charging lion inside 20 yards, popping prairie dogs at extreme range)

    The standard 3-9X price point scopes that flood the market are often far less (or more) than what you need for a specific application.

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