At the risk of being repetitive...

Discussion in 'Long Gun Accessories and Optics' started by hdwhit, May 2, 2017.

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  1. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    I had a post up on Rifle Country asking whether I should get a Savage Axis (gun brand not up for discussion for reasons stated in the thread) in 270, 30-06, 308 or 7-08. After considering the sage wisdom of many posters, I was convinced that in my circumstance, the 308 was probably the best choice.

    Now I know Jo Jo has recently had a thread up asking about an optic for a 308 rifle, but he's looking to operate between 100 and 500 yards. In my case, I have no open space longer than about 200 yards, so that's as far as I will be shooting.

    My entire life I have shot iron sights exclusively so I know essentially nothing about optical sights. At the distances I'm looking at, is a red dot type sight practical or should I be looking at a scope?

    What I need are some suggestions for a sight for a Savage Axis in 308 Winchester that will be used to hunt deer and the occasional nuisence animal at ranges between point blank and 200 yards. I'm only going to be paying about $300 for the rifle, so I don't want to put more than that into the optic and I would like to put less but still have something servicable.

    Any help you can provide would be welcome.

    Thank you.
     
  2. Haxby

    Haxby Member

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    3-9x40. There are reasons they're so popular.
    Good prices lately on Bushnell 3500 Elites. Still made in Japan, AFAIK.
     
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  3. readyeddy

    readyeddy Member

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    Also, a 2-7x33 will give you enough magnification at 200 yards in a slightly smaller and lighter package.
     
  4. v35

    v35 Member

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    There is no logical reason for limiting your scope budget to less than what you paid for the rifle. At the distances you're taking about the difference between a scope that is merely serviceable and a high quality one will become apparent.

    At 50 to 100 yards, probably not.

    Just a thought.
     
  5. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    Yes there is; the size of my bank balance and how insistent competing demands are.
     
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  6. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    Any particular brands to look at? Or look out for?
     
  7. v35

    v35 Member

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    Understood. Scopes are one of those things where there really is no upper limit to what you can spend. I've spent less on a car than what some scopes go for.

    Nikon is a good serviceable brand. Bushnell is another. I think either one will do fine. A red dot will just be a waste of money.
     
  8. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    I hope I didn't sound flippant in my previous post. I have no doubt you are correct.

    If you did not read the thread where I was getting advice about the rifle, I am 262 days from retirement. Shortly after that, my wife and I will move to the town I graduated from high school. The local service fraternity will extend an offer to join. Each year they go hunting during deer season. I need to show up with something more than my .223 Savage Axis. The local dealer pushes Savage since that's what his distributor pushes. So, I will buy Savage. The prior thread convinced me it should be in 308 since I load my own and it gives me a great number of choices for powder and bullet.

    My focus on the cost of the scope has to do with the fact more six packs than deer are killed each year. So, I figure the rifle will only be fired when it is sighed in and maybe a dozen times per year afterwards - maybe 300 rounds for the rest of my life. The quality of the optics didn't seem to matter much - so long as the scope isn't just total garbage.

    I have a state-licensed dam on my property that impounds a state-licensed reservoir. I have a state license to harvest beaver and muskrat when they pose a threat to the dam. I use traps for this but then must euthanize the trapped animal and 308 will do this more effectively than a 223 which sometimes takes a second shot. These shots will be a point blank range so I don't figure optics matter.

    Hopefully this will help explain the "logic" - such as it is - behind my request.

    Thank you.
     
  9. Haxby

    Haxby Member

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    There is no reason to think the price of the scope should have anything to do with the price of the rifle.
    You get the rifle you need, or want, and the scope you need, or want. Walnut and blue might cost twice as much as matte and synthetic, for the same rifle. The same scope will work equally well on either one.
    A Bushnell Elite that costs less than $200 is a better scope than anything that was available for $400 20 years ago.
    Considering your short-range requirements, a 2-7 might be the way to go. Stick with something like the Elite, or a Burris, Leupold VX-1, Nikon, or a Vortex Diamondback, and you won't go wrong. None of them is garbage.
     
  10. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    The practial effect is that I have, in rough numbers, $300 for a Savage Axis in 308. Based on my household budget as a retiree, I have $299 OR LESS available to spend on a scope. The price of the scope is tied to the rifle by the most realistic of considerations; I am not willing to spend more than $299 (less than the nominal price of the rifle) for a scope. And I look to spend LESS.
     
  11. RPRNY

    RPRNY Member

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  12. lonegunman

    lonegunman Member

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    There are plenty of decent 3-9x by 40mm scopes out there for cheap. For an occasional use 200yd gun they are perfectly adequate. My first hunting rifle back in the day was a $239.00 Remington 700ADL (.270 Winchester) from Kmart with a $29 Bushnell 4x scope. I used it on deer, elk, coyotes and marmots out to 300yds with zero problems over the years.

    Use proper torque and Lock-tite on your rings and bases.
     
  13. v35

    v35 Member

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    Your reply certainly didn't seem flippant to me at all. I've just heard people express an unwillingness to pay more for a scope than the rifle it's on, which simply never made any sense to me. All equipment has its limitations, but I would never want to limit a rifle's accuracy with inferior optics. If anything, it probably should be the other way around.

    I don't think you can go wrong with any of the scopes mentioned in this thread. None of them are garbage at all. I understand budgetary limitations and it's certainly wise to decide what that should be, otherwise the sky's the limit.
     
  14. dmoserwy

    dmoserwy Member

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    Most of the Savage Axis I have looked at come with either a Nikon or Bushnell scope. Not a top line scope but serviceable. You might want to check on that.
     
  15. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    The LGS (in this case that should be "little gun store") deals mostly in used guns. The new gun selection is limited and mostly consists of ARs for the Doomsday Preparation people. They don't carry a line of optics or else my choice would have been forced on me in the same way that the make of the gun was.

    Thank you all for the suggestions. You have saved me a lot of time chasing my tail as I learned about optics.
     
  16. Bartojc

    Bartojc Member

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    Leupold VX1 3-9x40. Its what I have on my Ruger American in .243 and I've never regretted it. Great glass for around $200. I'd also recommend similar priced Nikons, or a Redfield Revolution.

    -Jeff
     
  17. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    The Burris FF-II in 3-9X40 is my go to recommendation for a good quality scope at the best price. The Redfield Revolution is another good choice, both are right at $200. I wouldn't touch anything cheaper. The Leupold VX-1 is there too, but it costs just a bit more and isn't really any better. If you want to move up to a $300-$350 scope the Leupold VX-2 is the value leader at that price point.
     
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  18. Ramone

    Ramone Member

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    I love the Nikon scopes, and you should be able to get one right in your price range.

    as a matter of fact, that's a Nikon (Prostaff 3-9x50), on a .308 Savage (12BVSS), in my avatar pic.
     
  19. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    Second the Leupold. Great glass, and a forever no-questions-asked warranty.
     
  20. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    Thank you, all for giving me some choices.
     
  21. cdb1

    cdb1 Member

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    Go to the Cabela's near you and look through some scopes. The Burris Fullfield II along with the Minox ZV are my favorite scopes by far for under $200.00. Cabela's carries the 3-9x40 Fullfield in store, the 2-7x35 model is only sold online by them. The Minox is sold through Camera Land and is $99.99 to your door. I believe the glass to be on par with a VX-2. You can call Camera Land and ask about their return policy. There's a good chance they will let you return it if you don't like it and haven't mounted it. Ask for Doug- the owner and if he isn't available ask for Neil, Doug's assistant. While you are at Cabela's look at a Diamondback, Prostaff, Buckmaster, Redfield, Elite 3500 and VX-1, one of them will speak to you. If Camera Land will allow you to return it I'd try the Minox, they are unbelievable.

    If you are willing to drive to the Fort Worth store I'll meet you and look at scopes with you. It's twice the size of the Dallas store anyway.
     
  22. benEzra

    benEzra Moderator Emeritus

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    The Nikons with the BDC reticle are pretty decent and not very expensive. Or check your local pawn shop for a used Leupold, which might fit into your price range.
     
  23. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    Kind of a non-sequitur there, as one could counter - in a case where someone can't pay as much on the optic as they did on the rifle - if the size of your bank account is the issue, then you paid too much for the rifle, and you might remain to be paying too little for appropriate glass.

    The optic is for the shooter, not the rifle, and the demands for the optic are determined by the application in which the shooter is employing the rifle rig. If your application isn't important and as such, dictates the appropriate budget for both is "as cheap as it gets," then a $50 scope on a $200 rifle makes sense. Alternatively, if the application dictates moderate precision at extreme long range, a guy might find it appropriate to put a $2,000 optic on top of a $1,000 rifle. A small game plinker wanting to kill bunnies out to 100yrds will be well served with a $200 22LR rifle, but would likely be well served by a $300 optic, to match in terms of quality. A big game hunter wanting to kill deer at 100yrds or less is well served by a $400 rifle, but could live happily with a $200 optic - the target is much, much larger for the big game hunter than it is for the bunny hunter, so his demand for optic quality is lower.

    The pricing scales for rifles and optics are not linear for quality, nor are they similar in dimension. The rule to spend as much on the optic as the rifle is completely arbitrary.

    Be willing to spend what it costs to purchase the appropriate optic AND appropriate rifle for your application. Don't waste time comparing the bill for the two.
     
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  24. hdwhit

    hdwhit Member

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    $289 for a new rifle is too much?

    What would you suggest to economize on the rifle so as to have more for the scope?

    Please read the thread in its entirely and note that the rifle being talked about is a Savage Axis; at or near the bottom of the price range for the manufacturer as well as the posts explaining why the choice of the Savage is being made.

    I know, I know, you could say to economize on the rifle by getting a used gun. But that means shopping at a different store in another town which defeats the entire purpose of buying locally. Buying a used gun from the LGS means I get "Joe's old rifle" and in a small town that comes with emotional baggage and expectations that I'm just not prepared to deal with.
     
  25. cdb1

    cdb1 Member

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    Many people have good luck with used guns. I own a few simply because they aren't made anymore such as my Detective Special. I try to buy new if I can though since there is a safety net if the firearm has issues - i.e. a warranty.

    .

    Good point.
     
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