Quantcast

Limit of Scope Magnification for CQB

Discussion in 'Strategies, Tactics and Training' started by Anthony, Jan 17, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Anthony

    Anthony Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    572
    Hello Everyone,

    Since 9/11 the number of optical sights being used on long guns by police, military, and civilians has grown exponentially. Many of these optics have taken the form of a red dot sight like an Aimpoint while others use a low powered scope such as the ACOG 3.5X or the Leupold CQT 1-3X.

    Currently I am having a full size AR-10 (20" barrel) built to my specifications by my gunsmith and have been looking for a general purpose optic to match the general purpose nature of this rifle. As I am not a huge fan of quick detatchable mounts I would prefer a single optic to do everything from CQB to long range work.

    How great do you feel the power of an optic be before it becomes a hindrence in CQB encounters?

    Based on my experiments, I feel that 2x to 2 1/2X is the upper limit based on some work I did with a rare magnified Aimpoint at 2x and a Leupold Scout Scope at 2 1/2X. As a result I am considering a new scope from IOR that runs its power from 2-12X.

    http://www.valdada.com/vn/ior/03r

    Does anyone have any experience with this scope or other IOR products?

    If yes, how did they perform for you compared to Aimpoint and Leupold?

    Are there any additional scopes out there you might suggest I look at?

    Thank you for your input.
     
  2. Thefabulousfink

    Thefabulousfink Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Messages:
    1,506
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    I have used an aimpoint red-dot on my friend's AR carbine. It works very well on area targets out to 50 yard (very quick), farther out it is about the same as open sights, but the size of dot can get in the way of long-range accuracy. My suggestion, get quick release mounts, put on a red-dot for urban CQB, and carry a scope with 3x to 5x for longer range targets.

    you might lose a little accuracy in changing scopes, but with good mounts it will not be enough to matter with most carbines. With the right equipment, changing scopes should be no more difficult than changing magazines.
     
  3. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    14,613
    Location:
    Texas
    The Aimpoint 2x isn't a great reference point IMO. I run a fixed 3.5x ACOG and find it very usable so long as the aiming point contrasts well with the target. As long as contrast is good, I can use it both eyes open very quickly (though still not as quick as a 1x or reflex-style sight).

    If you have the money, the best solution is probably the new scope mounts with a mount for a J-point or Dr. Optic on the outside of them. This gives you both a red dot and a dedicated precision scope on the same mount; but it isn't cheap, streamlined, or lightweight.
     
  4. RyanM

    RyanM Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Messages:
    4,412
    Location:
    PA
    I'd suggest just a 1x scope with an adjustable dot size. Big dot for close up, small dot for long range.

    Though what I'd like to see is a reticle with two small shapes in the middle. Maybe rectangles, or halves of a circle, triangles, kidney bean shapes, whatever. Put the target between the shapes, and fire. Plenty fast for close range, and it doesn't obscure the target like a central dot, at long range.
     
  5. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    8,312
    Location:
    Ohio
    If I were in your shoes, I would definitely go with an ACOG.
    I have taken a carbine class using a TA31F ACOG with shots as close as 7 yards. It was great. I think it is 4x. They have a version for 7.62.
     
  6. odysseus

    odysseus Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2004
    Messages:
    946
    Location:
    US Citizen
    Only problem with ACOGs from my understanding and small experience is eye relief for CQB. It can be done sure, however like all things it's a comprimise. Aimpoint/EOtech's are great for heads-up fast and even moving. I can use them well into 200 yards. However the ACOG is much better for that type of distance. It's a comprimise conversation that I myself am always looking for a better solution.
     
  7. strambo

    strambo Member

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,961
    Location:
    Oregon
  8. agtman

    agtman Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    1,630
    Location:
    midwest
    "Limit of Scope Magnifcation for CQB."

    I've found that 3x magnification is all I need for the 300yds-and-in shooting for which my AR carbine is set-up.

    While the nonmagnified Aimpoint (AP) red dot alone is passable from 300yds (if your eyes are good), here's what works for me. I run my AP in a LaRue mount on the carbine's rail. Just behind it is an AP 3x magnifier in a Samson Quick-Flip mount (w/ ARMS locking lever).

    From, say, 300 to 100yds, I can use the 3x mag with the red dot. Inside 100yds, I'll hit the QF release lever and just go with the red dot alone. Or, if I'm doing drills from 75 or 50yds, or practicing room-clearing inside a "shoot house," I'll just remove the 3x mag & mount from the gun and store it in a dump pouch (takes about 2-seconds).

    For me anyway, the 3x magnification is sufficient for the distances I'm likely to shoot a 16" 5.56 AR-pattern carbine.

    Beyond 300yds I'll break out my 7.62 M1A, topped with a Leupold 3x-9x scope. :)

    Again, this set-up works for me. YMMV.
     
  9. LAK

    LAK Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,487
  10. bogie

    bogie Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2003
    Messages:
    9,568
    Location:
    St. Louis, in the Don't Show Me state
    What I'd put on a "mobile" rifle would be a 1x, or a 1x-something zoom. I want small and fast acquisition.

    On a "take a long shot" rifle, I'd want 12x+, probably fixed power for reliability.
     
  11. 0007

    0007 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Messages:
    909
    Location:
    Back in the USA
    What would be nice would be a scope in say a 1X-5X with a large(40mm) bell and a 30mm tube. The 1X gives you a close-in optic and the 5X should be fine for most of us out to 250-300yards. Reticle would be similar to the IOR CQB maybe
     
  12. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    10,363
    Location:
    Forestburg, Texas
    All depends on what you consider CQB. I love my ACOGs, but at just 3.5x, things inside 20 yards are blurry. So for home and yard defense where my longest shot would be 60 yards, I don't see a need for magnification.

    It is a shame that Trijicon does not make a 1x full size ACOG with both tritium and fiber optic illumination. Actually, I would be happy with a compact ACOG if it had both tritiumand fiber optic illumination. The scope tube provides the needed shading to help the reticle stand out and the combo of fiber optic and tritium makes sure that the reticle isn't washed out due to bright light. For whatever reason, their reflex and tri-power optics just don't seem to perform very well in bright light, but the full-size ACOGs do.

    Between the tritium and the fiber optic on the full-size ACOGs, you don't have to worry about batteries, switches, etc. That is a huge advantage in my book. I have now seen 3 or 4 folks show up to shoot with optics using battery powered reticles where the batteries managed to run down. Three were on EoTechs and two of the guys claimed that they were supposed to auto shutdown. I don't know if they do or not, but the fact remained that they were handicapped.
     
  13. Mute

    Mute Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2003
    Messages:
    962
    Location:
    Behind occupied territories. CA.
    If you have the money you can always get a Schmidt and Bender Short Dot, however, that is a SIGNIFICANT chunk of change. Plus, in the typical indoor settings, I still prefer the dot type optics with no magnification for the quickest target acquisition.
     
  14. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    14,613
    Location:
    Texas
    The compact ACOG does use both tritium and fiber illumination.

    I think it is the etched reticle. On an ACOG, if it gets to bright you end up with the black etched reticle. Because the Reflex and Tripower are trying to be parallax-free similar to the EOtech and Aimpoint, they cannot etch a reticle - so when the background gets too bright the reticle disappears instead of turning black.

    Of course the downside of that is if you take sloppy cheek weld with an ACOG, you've got a new point of aim - where the Reflex or Tripower would still let you hit whatever the reticle is on.

    As for people showing up with dead batteries or sights turned off, I think that is more of an operator issue than an equipment issue.
     
  15. John Hicks

    John Hicks Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Messages:
    143
    A friend has the Leupold CQT and it is great. Very crisp reticle. Visible day or night, off or on. Variable magnification.

    No eye relief problems at 1x, seemed very managable at 3x on his varminter AR-15. I was very impressed by this scope.

    Also, not to disparage the ACOG, but you have to replace the tritium elements every few years, which is not a trivial cost. That's one of the reasons my friend went with the Leupold.

    jh
     
  16. Ian

    Ian Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    3,857
    Which of the scopes mentioned so far can operate with long eye relief? It's tempting to put a good "tactical" optic on my Garand, but it would have to be mounted forward to allow loading.
     
  17. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    14,613
    Location:
    Texas
    It is a little longer than "every few years". The half-life of tritium is 12.5 years. This means on ACOGs powered only by tritium, the reticle will be roughly half as bright 12 years from now. On ACOGs powered by tritium and fiber optics; the reticle will be the same brightness it is now, except when you are in total darkness - then it will be half as bright as it is in total darkness now.

    Tritium is expensive though... I believe the going cost for an ACOG tritium lamp is around $300. On the other hand, the chance an optic will run 12 years of use on any of my rifles is pretty slim. It will either get sold as obsolete or die from punishment long before then. I bet the ACOG could survive the punishment; but I don't think it will beat obsolescence.
     
  18. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    24,602
    Location:
    Alma Illinois
    Current price from Trijicon to replace the tritium element in an ACOG is $250.00 including return shipping. I got this in an email from Trijicon today.

    I have a very early TAO-1, purchased new directly from Trijicon in 1989. The red illumination in the reticle is still usable almost 17 years later.

    Jeff
     
  19. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    8,312
    Location:
    Ohio
    And, if the tritium is half as bright, that is still something more than you get with a conventional scope which doesn't have any illuminated reticle at all.
    And, this only comes into play for total darkness (if you have fiber optic, which I do). It is real hard to shoot in total darkness because you can't see the target. If you can see the target, the fiber optic is gathering some of that light.
     
  20. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    24,602
    Location:
    Alma Illinois
    Good glass with gather in a lot of light. In the old 47th ID sniper school, we shot pop up targets under illumination from parachute flares. The targets were visible through those old M84 telescopes when the flares weren't burning. But we couldn't see the reticles. Add in the flare light and everything was almost bright as day. If you have a scope with an illuminated reticle, you'll give yourself nearly a 24 hour capability.

    Jeff
     
  21. Archie

    Archie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    2,272
    Location:
    Hastings, Nebraska - the Heartland!
    Just as a outside question...

    What is wrong with the iron sights on the rifle?

    I have to wear my reading glasses to use them, but the iron sights on all my rifles (Garand, 1917 Eddystone and Spanish FR8) all deliver pretty good accuracy out to three hundred yards or so.

    Okay, I haven't shot at three hundred in a while, but the last HighPower match I was in I shot the Garand out to 600.

    I really think iron sights are terribly under-rated and under utilized.
     
  22. RomanKnight

    RomanKnight Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2005
    Messages:
    90
    Location:
    Close to Austin, Texas
    As a result I am considering a new scope from IOR that runs its power from 2-12X.
    http://www.valdada.com/vn/ior/03r
    Does anyone have any experience with this scope or other IOR products?

    If I remember correctly, in one of the latest issues of Shotgun News, Kokalis gave this particular scope great praise and compliments. Something like "best battle scope" or something like that. OTOH, Boston's Gun Bible is disapointed with Valdada's customer service&support -or lack thereof. Personally, I'm surprised that my countrymen put out such quality products!:confused:
     
  23. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    14,613
    Location:
    Texas
    Nothing. If you'll talk me on to the target, I'll nail the snot out of it with iron sights; but past 200yds I find my accuracy is greatly improved by being able to see what I am shooting.
     
  24. shooten

    shooten Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    Messages:
    214
    Location:
    California
    I just got an IOR Valdada for my birthday. It's an 4x24 M1 for .308 and it went on my M1A. It's a heavy scope that looks great with nice glass. The magnification is 4. It's not really a CQB rifle. The magnification helps my suddenly growing old eyes. I've heard good and bad about the customer service. This one replaced an EOTech that went on another rifle more suited for the CQB role.

    The answer to the question in my mind is no magnification at close quarters but I need it at longer distances (>100 yds).
     
  25. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    10,363
    Location:
    Forestburg, Texas
    Wow. Sure enough, the compact ACOGs have the fiber illumination like most of the regular ACOGs. Apparently, I had confused that TA01 as a compact ACOG because like the compact ACOGs, it is shorter than the regular size ACOGs.

    So cool! And thank you.

    As for the equipment v. operator error on the Eotechs, I am guessing you are saying that the operator error part of the deal was for not checking to see if the sight still had power before going to the range. Then again, the auto shutoff should have worked and turned off the sight to save the batteries. As one of the guys noted, he had run the sight for about three hours is all during his first outing with it. Shooting with me was his second outing with the site. So, he should have had another 97 hours before the batteries would run down.

    So, while the shooter did not check before going to the range is one facet, the shooter had no reason to believe the batteries would be down. That is an equipment problem.

    He had the sight on his home defense AR15. He would have been in quite a problem situation had he needed to use his AR15 in some sort of emergency only to find the fast target acquisition sight would not power on.

    I would guess they are under-rated and under-utilized because they can be slower than dot sights, harder for far sighted folks who can't see the iron sights properly or clearly without corrective lenses, and because iron sights are often very hard to see in low light shooting, in part because most are dark colored.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice