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BSA Rifle Scope

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by willmartin, Mar 7, 2009.

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  1. willmartin

    willmartin member

    Dec 6, 2008
    So I bought a BSA 4x32 Rifle Scope. Yes it was the $24 at Wally World scope. Whenever I run a search on it on the web, I keep coming up with BSA Air Rifle 4x32 or BSA 22 Rimfire scope. On the box it just says Rifle Scope. I was looking for something cheap to put on my 336 30-30. Did I just waste $24 or may it actually be serviceable?
  2. Smokey Joe

    Smokey Joe Member

    Jan 2, 2003

    I have had VERY poor results with a BSA 'scope. It changed its POI w/o warning, resulting in a wounded and lost deer. Subsequent checking @ the range confirmed that the 'scope had actually shifted internally somehow. It had been fine for sighting-in before season.

    (And no, I'm not that bad a shot. Distance to the deer was 50 yd.)

    Sent it back to BSA, with a letter indicating my feelings about the 'scope having lost me a wounded deer. In (ahem) due time, they sent a replacement, no comment, no apology, nothing.

    Seems to be especially true with optics: You get what you pay for. There is no free lunch.

    I will never willingly use another piece of BSA optics.
  3. elmerfudd

    elmerfudd Member

    Aug 29, 2007
    I've had pretty good luck with BSA scopes, (I've got three of them and they all hold a zero). The optics aren't great, but they were reasonably priced and as I mentioned earlier, they have held a zero.

    Now my scopes were a little pricier than yours. I bought two of the 2-7x32 airgun scopes and one of them I positively abused, (bump fired a Saiga .308). I also bought one of their 6-24x40 IR mildots. Not so thrilled about that one. It's a pretty decent scope if all you want to use it for is target shooting with a rimfire, but for use in the field I found it to be a poor choice. The main problem with it is the optics get very dim and it is extremely susceptible to glare at higher magnification.

    I also figure that on any new $24 scope that they have cut every corner possible. Generally if you can see through it and it holds a zero you got everything you paid for and then some. I like to fool around modifying and building up cheap airguns sometimes and I often use my $20 Leapers, Tasco and Barska scopes on them.
  4. Clipper

    Clipper Member

    Apr 15, 2006
    Mt. Morris, MI.
    I have 5 BSA scopes, a Sweet .22 on my wife's Mossberg, two 3-9X50 Illuminated dot crosshairs on a .257 AI and a WASR 10, a Sweet .243 on a Handi-Rifle, and a 4-12X44 Illuminated mil-dot on the .300 Savage. All have performed as advertised, and I will buy more BSA scopes.

    I also have two BSA tube red dots and a reflex sight that have been trouble-free as well.
  5. jester_s1

    jester_s1 Member

    Oct 18, 2008
    Fort Worth, TX
    The short answer is yes, you just wasted $24. At least you didn't buy one of their $100 models.

    The scope is the most critical part of your rifle package. You could own a remington 40x target rifle and put cheap glass on it and it woudn't shoot for beans. If you're on a budget, the Nikon Prostaff is a serviceable optic that will hold zero. For a few more dollars, the Nikon Buckmaster has better light transmission. You can trust either to hold zero though and the optics will be clear. If you can't afford either of those, then hopefully your rifle came with open sights, as they will serve you better than low end glass will.
  6. spike 14568

    spike 14568 Member

    Apr 9, 2009
    BSA scope. If you look through a catseye scope you will find better optics then just about any scope on the market. Of course if you paid huge bucks for others as you can see above you will not be happy. Over 4 inches of eye relief camera quality glass nitrogen purged, o ring sealed and mag tested. The truth is with today's technology they can offer you these features. Myself I buy american but also respect the truth.
  7. rangerruck

    rangerruck Member

    Jan 12, 2006
    Texas, baby!
    "If it says BSA, then run away!" ... by me.
    They are terrible, the amount of horror stories on these things are only beaten
    by NC Star. I had a total of three, bought 1, given 2. All three were beyond terrible. Now then, you have a fixed power; if it is clear glass, while looking at outdoor light, and it doesn't move it's zero around , after say 10 rounds of shooting at the range, you may have done allright. but I know many dudes who even had the fixed power ones, that after a while, it began to lose zero with every shot, reticles fell down, adjust knobs came off, etc. So beware.
  8. pbrktrt

    pbrktrt Member

    Jan 15, 2008
    I have one on my Gamo but the real rifles wear Leupolds.
  9. Big_E

    Big_E Member

    Feb 2, 2009
    Boise, ID
    I only use "cheap" scopes on .22lr's. I have a BSA red dot on my 10/22 for close range plinking and I swap it out for a Bushnell 4x 32 .22 scope for distance shooting.

    When I have a gun where shots count like my 700 SPS .30-06 I have a Leupold VX-I. A Nikon or better Bushnell would be a good choice, but for my Target F-classish rifle in the future I will probably throw a Nightforce or really high end Nikon on there.

    Only use cheapy scopes for plinking. They will fog up, lose zero (some of them), possibly break and lose clarity in failing light. So stay away from BSA, Simmons, Tasco and a few others for anyhting but plinking/range work.
  10. Tinpig

    Tinpig Member

    Feb 26, 2009
    SE Massachusetts
    I got a cheap BSA ".22 Special" 4x-9x scope for my old Marlin squirrel rifle a few years ago when I started having trouble picking up the front sight.

    Tapping the reciever for the mounts was a bit of a hassle (I'm a carpenter, not a machinist) but it all came out fine.

    I've had no problems at all with the scope. Very cheap, very accurate, and so far very dependable. Didn't really need the variable power, but you take what you get for under $30.


  11. hometheaterman

    hometheaterman Member

    Feb 28, 2009
    If you want a cheap scope I'd take it back and get the Tasco 3x9x40mm that's $31. I've used two of them with good luck.

    The first one I bought for a muzzle loader. I wanted something cheap to use as I didn't have a ton of money for a scope and wasn't sure if I'd even like using a muzzle loader so wanted to try it out. I went into it expecting the scope to be crap and looking for something wrong with it. When you go into something looking for problems I find you usually find them. However, this was the exception. This thing has impressed me over and over again so far. I used it for about a year with 0 issues. It shot great and was pretty clear. I can't complain and while I wanted to find something wrong with it I never did.

    The second one I used for 1 month or so give or take. The Leupold I had on my rifle broke during hunting season so I bought one of these to use for the rest of hunting season while my Leupold was sent in for repair. This was on my 30-06. It worked fine and shot great the whole time. When the Leupold came back after the season was over I ended up putting it back on the rifle and taking this off. I kept it as a spare for a bit and then ended up selling it to a buddy for $20.

    I've got a buddy that tried BSA scopes. He has a lot of guns and a lot of experience with them and he said they were horrible. They kept breaking on anything more than a .22. He said he wouldn't buy one again and didn't recommend them at all on anything bigger than a .22. From everything I've read that's the case for most of their scopes. I hardly ever hear anything good about them.

    As for Leupold. I had a VX-I which is what was on my 30-06 that I said I had to send in for repair. I do not like this scope at all or recommend it at all. I had it for about 6 months and then it started acting like when you shot it the insides would shake. That's when I sent it in for repair. I got it back and put it on the rifle and sighted it in. I then didn't use the rifle for several months until deer season was coming up the next year. I brought it out to make sure it was still sighted in. Well, now it seemed like it was self adjusting itself. It would shoot one spot a few times then move several inches off and shoot their a few times. Then move to another spot. This was after it was about a year and a half old however, since the last repair it hadn't been shot much and had just sat in the house most of the time as it was a deer rifle. I took it off and to send back again. This time I had a Burris Fullfield II I had bought that I put on. This thing is such a better scope it's not funny. It also was on clearance for $199 with a free Garmin eTrex GPS vs the $225 I paid for the Leupold. The Leupold is more than that now at most gun shops.

    My buddy picked it up and goes wow this thing is clear. So of course I had to take a look. This was right after we got done shooting the gun with the Leupold. I pick it up and am simply amazed. It's probably the clearest scope I've used. I never had a problem with the clarity of the Leupold to be honest but comparing the two the Burris blows it away. It also seems pretty decent in low light situations. I personally like the cross hairs much better but that's a personal preference. Anyway, we mounted the Burris up and sighted it in.

    When I got the Leupold back I stuck it on my new muzzle loader however, I've not sighted it in yet even though I've had it a few months so I can't comment on how it is now.

    Comparing the Leupold to the $30 at the time now $31 Tasco I can honestly say I think the Tasco is a better scope. It lasted 2 times as long with 0 issues. It also was just as clear to me. I couldn't tell a difference between the two clarity wise but a few buddies looked and they said the Tasco looked clearer than the Leupold to them. The other problem with the Leupold is when it did work it seemed like if you bumped the scope wrong it would lose zero. It was about the worst I've seen as far as losing zero.

    I only know 4 people that have Leupold scopes. I had a issue as did one of the others. The 3rd one just got one so he will tell you he hasn't had it long enough to see if he likes it or not. The 4th one I don't know if they have ever had any issues. Leupold does have good customer service but I'm not fond of their scopes.

    The other scope I've used is a 3x9x32 Simmons Deerfield scope. This scope is not the clearest I've used but it's clear enough. It's pretty clear just not like the Burris. However, I've had it for 4 or 5 years and it's taking a major beating. It's been dropped, bounced around in the truck, etc and just never lost zero. The one time I had it lose zero was I turned the scope after a few years as the crosshairs were not perfectly straight. When I sighted it in it shot fine. I came back a few weeks later. This time I had a different ammo. Instead of the Federal 550 round bulk packs I had the Winchester Xpert 500 round High Velocity bulk packs. I had another gun hit the scope pretty hard when taking it into the house. Anyway when I went to shoot it it shot about 5-8" high probably. I adjusted it back down and it shot great for the rest of the time. I'm not sure if it was from the scope getting bumped or if it was that the HV ammo shot that far off. Either way it's taken a ton of abuse and never given me problems.

    Most of the guys I know have either Tasco or Simmons scopes and very few of them have had issues. Yet I only know a few people with Leupolds and more than one have had issues.

    I'd easily pick the Tasco over the Leupold any day and take my $200 and spend it on something else.

    That being said my favorite scope I've used is probably the Burris. It's just super clear and seems to hold zero well although I only used it for 6 months or so so can't comment on how it will last long term.

    The second being the Simmons. It's not quite as clear but takes a beating and still asks for more. This imo is a great scope although it is on a .22 with little to no recoil.

    The third would be the Tasco as I can't find a thing wrong with it other than it's a Tasco which has a horrible reputation. I've talked to a few others using these and none of them have had issues. It's usually the ones online that have higher end scopes bashing the Tasco's saying they are crap. That being said I really don't think it's comparable to the Burris but it still seems decent.

    The Leupold would be last. I can't tell a difference clarity wise from the Tasco and it seems to want to have issues way more than the Tasco and cost $200+ more.

    I've also used a Daisy air gun scope but it doesn't count since it's not for a real rifle.

    Sorry for the long post I just wanted to post about my experiences.
  12. benzy2

    benzy2 Member

    Apr 24, 2008
    Scopes are just like everything else. You get what you pay for. The occasional lemon slips out of ever factory but for the most part you get exactly what you spend. The question comes down to how much scope you need. For some people a $24 scope works well enough. For others even a $1500 scope isn't up to par. It all depends on the budget, the shooting needs, and the personal needs. I wouldn't spend another dime on the bargain basement China made scopes. I just don't want to deal with the poor image quality, lack of repeatability, and the fear the next shot will be the last. That is a personal issue and one only I can make for myself. You have to determine what is good enough for your shooting.
  13. Runningman

    Runningman Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    I bought one of those cheap BSA scopes once. Figured it would work OK for a bolt action 22...... I was wrong it was junk and it was a waste of money.
  14. Iansstud

    Iansstud Member

    Jul 11, 2008
    the nice thing about walmart... they will almost let you return anything
  15. benzy2

    benzy2 Member

    Apr 24, 2008
    I asked walmart the other day about their scope return policy and you have 30 days. It should be enough time to figure out if you like the scope or not.
  16. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

    Nov 11, 2008
    Northern Virginia
    BSA = Better Stay Away. Enough said.
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