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Simmons 44 mag on a .338 Win Mag?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Ross Man, Jan 4, 2005.

  1. Ross Man

    Ross Man Member

    This summer I bought a used (excellent condition) Browning Medallion .338 Win Mag w/ the BOSS system. It came w/ engraved matching rings, leather sling, hard case, 1.5 boxes of shells and a Simmons 3 x 10 x 44 Mag scope for $700. I thought it was a fairly good deal so I bought it. I only put six rounds through it this summer w/o a problem. The former owner shot a few boxes through it w/ the Simmons scope and said the scope should hold up just fine. I'm thinking about swapping some scopes around and the .338 would end up with a Simmons 6.5 x 20 x 44 Mag scope. Will the Simmons 44 Mag scopes hold up to the recoil of the .338 Magnum?
  2. theCZ

    theCZ Well-Known Member

    Hmm, seems like you've got a pretty nice rifle. Why would you keep a Simmons on it? The only SImmons I had had good clarity, but I'd have to sight it back in every trip to the range. That experience, combined with a cheap scope on a good rifle made me vow to never buy lower quality optics.
  3. Ross Man

    Ross Man Member

    Thanks. Yes, it is a real nice rifle. The bluing is perfect but the wood has a few dings and scratches here and there. A friend of mine also suggested that I put a higher quality scope on it. However, I don't see myself shooting it much at over $1.00 per round. I have a Bushnell 3200 5 x 15 x 40 but I intend to put it on my Browning Bar II Safari 30-06. I use the Bar II to hunt whitetail and at this time I doubt I would use the .338 for hunting. Possibly later on I will put a better scope on it.
  4. ojibweindian

    ojibweindian Well-Known Member

    Maybe, maybe not. You won't know for sure until you try it.

    A more interestng question is why you would want to put a 6.5-20 power scope on a .338 WinMag? It's not exactly a varminter's cartridge...
  5. CB900F

    CB900F Well-Known Member

    Ross Man;

    I have a number of rifles, including a .338 Winmag. I have a number of scopes, including a Simmons.

    If the Simmons isn't giving you problems, why change? However, I think it's likely that it will become a problem scope if the .338 should become your favorite rifle to shoot. My Simmons happens to be on a .22 rimfire, a pickup gun that gets both knocked around and shot a lot. It's been there for years & continues to do an excellent job. Having said that, I'm about as likely to put in on the .338 as I am to take up dropping bowling balls on my foot for fun & profit.

    The old saying, "Horses for courses" comes to mind. If the Simmons on my .22lr goes away, well I maybe lost a day of gopher shooting. I might get irked, but that's about it. If you spend major money to come to Montana to hunt elk & the Simmons on your .338 fails, I suspect you'd be a touch more irritated over your scope failure than I'd be over mine.

  6. Ross Man

    Ross Man Member

    Good point! If I ever do any serious hunting with it I'll put a better quality scope on it. I just want to slap the 6.5 x 20 power scope on it to see what I can do with it at 200 or 300 yards. The current 10x scope it is wearing wouldn't be enough for me at 300 yards. I imagine I won't shoot over 20 rounds through it per year. I just can't see putting a $300 scope on a rifle I may only shoot once a year or less.
  7. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Well-Known Member

    I've currently got a 3-10x-44 Simmons Mag-44 on my .338/06. Not by choice, but I won the scope in a match and I took the Leupold 2.5-8 Vari-X III off of it and put it on a Rem Mod-7 in 7-08 I traded for. (The Leupold is nice and light as well as rugged). I shot the last six deer I killed this year with the 7mm. A 7lb rifle is much more pleasant to carry and hunt with than a 10lb rifle. Besides, you really don't need a .338 to kill 75-100lb deer. Heck, I didn't even need the 7mm, as I killed the first 3 just as dead with a .223. They died just as quick too.

    The Simmons is not a bad scope, but is a bit heavy and really excessive for this rifle. I would prefer a lower power, but the 3x with the 44mm objective, gathers a lot of light and has a decent field of view. The scope has held zero quite well, and even seems to give me a little tighter groups than the Leupold at 8x.

    I plan in the off-season to replace the Leupold on the Remington M-7 with a 3-9x Leupold compact, and will put the 2.5-8x back on the MkX Mauser in .338.

    I don't think the recoil will be a real problem with the Mag-44 as it's a better scope than some of the lower line Simmons.

    Saying a Simmons is bad in a blanket statement is inaccurate as they offer several lines and levels of quality. The inexpensive lines are what you hear bad things about, just like their counterparts in Bushnell, Tasco, BSA, ect.

    The Mag-44 is a decent piece of glass, just not up to the higher level of scopes in the Burris, Leupold, Nikon, ect.

    Your Simmons will suffice until you can invest in a better piece of glass. Mine has survived approx 250rds, so from my experience, it will last, as scopes usually fail fairly early in their life, if they are going to fail.

    If you try reloading your .338, I think you will find it to be quite flexible, especially in down loading it with 180-200gr bullets. You will also find that it can be amazingly accurate, also.
  8. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    My only experience with the Simmons 44Mag is on my pet '06. I just got curious, back some seven or eight years ago, and bought a 3x10 because of the $99 price. It has withstood maybe 200 or so rounds of mostly 150-grain max loads, plus maybe a box of 180s and some Federal "hot" 165s.

    The only drawback I can see is poor repeatability of the internal adjustments. However, since all I ever do for any hunting rifle is "set it and forget it", that flaw is irrelevant to my needs. I wouldn't even know about the problem except I was messing around one day to sight in for 500 yards instead of my usual zero at 200.

    'Bout all I could offer is to just use it until something bad happens. I sorta doubt a .338 is gonna get shot all that much...

  9. Delmar

    Delmar Well-Known Member

    I'd agree with Art. I have a Simmons WTC in 6.5 x 20 with the 50MM lens which has held up for 8 years on top of a Rem Varmint Synthetic in 308. Granted, the recoil is less, what with the smaller caliber and the heft of the rifle itself.

    I have found the internal adjustments to be less than stellar. I suspect plastic gears, or cheap pot metal at best. The other problem is with the coatings-they do not do very well when you are aiming in the same direction as the sun in late afternoon. An ARD setup will help you there.

    This particular scope has suffered a couple of thousand firings with pretty warm handloads, and it seems as if it holds zero from day to day, but month to month, I have to make some minor adjustments.

    It's a big scope, but the price is right. You can go to SWFA and get them for $99.

    As my oldest boy now has the rifle, I bought another and put a Leupold on it. It holds zero with boring regularity :D
  10. Mannlicher

    Mannlicher Well-Known Member

    Simmons scopes are cheap for a reason. Cheap materials, cheap manufacturing, old technology. Do they work? yeah. Would I want one? no.

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