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One scope for multiple rifles, or multiple scopes?

Discussion in 'Optics' started by rmantoo, May 17, 2019.

  1. rmantoo

    rmantoo Cranky old fart: Pull my finger

    Jan 9, 2013
    San Angelo
    For the first time in my life, I've been shooting longer ranges. 400-600 yards w/a 6.5 Grendel, 700-1000 yards with a Tika 308, and starting monday at least the same distance with a 6.5 creedmoor ar10.

    I've never owned high dollar scopes before. I'm shooting the Tika with $170 Burris fullfield 4-14x... I was kind of ok with it, until I got behind a few other nice scopes, A viper PST, a NightForce 5-25 (iirc), a Kahles something, a Burris Xtr ii 4-20? I think... they were all simply amazing. Going back to my burris absolutely sucks.

    So, for the first time ever I'm going to spend some real $$ on a scope. Or scopes.

    I'm budgeting something under $2k for this.

    Should I buy 1 badass, amazing optic, like a Nightforce or a Kahles, or should I buy 2 or even 3 really nice scopes, like a Xtr II, or Viper, etc.

    I will ONLY buy used, unless I find AMAZING deals. I've bought lots of stuff off of snipershide, and trust the long-time members there who sell stuff, and there are alowasy good deals on used scopes there - and all of them have life time warranties... so no worries.

    Thanks in advance for the input.... i'm off to bed. Have a GREAT WEEKEND!

  2. Charlie

    Charlie TGT Addict TGT Supporter

    Mar 19, 2008
    Kerr County
    Although Burris makes some very nice scopes, I'm not sure how they stand up to the extremely expensive scopes. I've had very good luck with Burris over the last few years.
  3. toddnjoyce

    toddnjoyce TGT Addict

    Sep 27, 2017
    The optic should support the mission. An optic can be interchangeable, but you need to make some decisions first and need to realize it’s not as easy as pull and place.

    You’ll need detailed dope books and zero gouge. It can be cheaper and easier to set up the same scope on each rifle than it is to spring for one and transition across multiple rifles in different calibers, especially if the ballistic profile differs significantly between calibers and configurations you’re shooting.

    Feel free to m me to have a conversation.
    rmantoo likes this.
  4. EZ-E

    EZ-E Freedom vs Tyranny 2020 TGT Supporter

    May 4, 2017
    I've never owned an optic over $300. Personally I would never spend 2k for a scope. If it was me I'd try to find a nice adjustable 34-50 power, first focal plane, moa scope in the $400-$600 range & out fit each of the rifles.
    I own several vortex so I'm kind of partial but have been looking at Athlons in that price range along with the Vortex.

    ..just my .02
    robertc1024 likes this.
  5. robertc1024

    robertc1024 Moderator Staff Member Moderator TGT Supporter

    Jan 22, 2013
    San Marcos
    I've been your shoes. Long range needs a decent scope. Here's what I've got in ascending price:
    Best one for the money, a SWFA 10x. Bulletproof and great glass.
    Athlon Argos. Has very good tracking, decent glass. Cheap.
    SWFA SS HD 5x20. Fantastic glass. Reticle is a bit thick.

    I've been behind a lot of Vortex scopes. If you can find a used Razor, snag it. The vipers are pretty good too.

    I ended up buying separate scopes for my LD rifles. Too much hassle to move them.
    rmantoo likes this.
  6. Younggun

    Younggun Ginger Avenger TGT Supporter Admin

    Jul 31, 2011
    hill co.
    I couldn’t imagine the nightmare of constantly swapping and zeroing the same scope every time I wanted to shoot a different rifle.

    Some will say “buy once, cry once” and if you follow that then my advice would be to get one nicer scope and a couple others to keep you going or run what you have on the other rifles for now. Perfectly valid advice.

    I tend to go a different direction. I upgrade as I can and move scopes to other rifles they would work well on.

    My favorite bands are Vortex and SWFA. I have a 1st gen Viper PST that I’ve run on a .308, .50 BMG, and currently sits on a 6.5 CM. I also have an SWFA 10X that has been on just about every rifle I own. It is by far the most versatile scope I’ve ever owned. It’s gone to 1600 yards with the BMG and currently lives in a .17HMR where it really shines. I now have and SWFA 16X on the BMG which is a good scope but the magnification is pushing the limits of the glass and objective.

    I like Vortex for what you get for the money. “Good enough” Glass, lots of options, no questions asked warranty, and solid tracking.

    I like SWFA fixes power scopes because the glass is “good enough”, they are damn near bullet proof, solid tracking, and a TON of elevation adjustment. For $300-400 depending on parallax location they are really hard to beat.

    IF you go with less expensive scopes the things you need to be sure of are that the glass is “good enough” to do what you want to do and the tracking MUST be solid. There are scopes with amazing glass that won’t track for shit.

    If you are shooting targets that blend in with the background you will need really good glass. If you are shooting white silhouettes or plates you can get away with “ok” or “good” glass. High magnification with lesser glass is a waste, it will just get blurry. On a Texas summer day it’s tough to get over about 16X anyways for me. The mirage tends to become a problem.

    If money were no issue I would buy IOR Valdada. I’m not there so I try to plan my scope for future use and it’s worked out well. That SWFA 10X is one I would never let go. The 16X is about to go through a trial by mirage as we get in to summer but it has the adjustment and tracking to reach about 2000 yards without holding over. That left me with about $1500 that could be spent on load development and practice in order to make use of all that adjustment.

    The answer to your question really depends on you and how you’d like to structure your future purchase. But I would say playing musical chairs with a single scope will get old the first time you have to remount it and sight in the scope only to put it back on the first rifle a few days or a week later.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Byrd666, oldag, Southpaw and 3 others like this.
  7. Younggun

    Younggun Ginger Avenger TGT Supporter Admin

    Jul 31, 2011
    hill co.
    Oh, and decide on MOA or MIL and stick with it. I thought I’d like MOA because I grew up with it but have come to appreciate MIL after getting used to it.

    Whichever you choose, it’s much easier if all the scopes match so you only have to keep up with one type of data.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Byrd666 and rmantoo like this.
  8. robertc1024

    robertc1024 Moderator Staff Member Moderator TGT Supporter

    Jan 22, 2013
    San Marcos
    Yes! Great advice in both posts. I was also an MOA guy. I've moved to MIL. Practically, it doesn't matter much, but as you said, having them all the same is nice.
  9. Big Green

    Big Green Pew Pew TGT Supporter

    Mar 5, 2018
    College Station
    Any chance you’re a veteran? Vortex has a great vet/mil program. I bought a Razor the other year that way, still pricey but a heck of a deal.

    Any small, home based FFLs near you? They may be able to get you a great deal. My FFL treats me very well as a repeat customer. I bought an ACOG the other month for a smoking deal.
    rmantoo likes this.
  10. avvidclif

    avvidclif Sturgis '95, RFTW 2010

    Aug 30, 2017
    Van Zandt County
    If you have a $1000 rifle spend the same on a scope. I prefer Vortex because of their warranty. Followed by Leupold. Above that don't put a $1000 scope on a $5000 rifle or a $300 scope on a $1000 rifle. Realize that a world class shooter with a junk rifle and scope is going to out shoot the avg shooter. Match the rifle's capability with the scope. Remembering the scope can move from rifle to rifle as your abilities improve. Buy the most scope and then upgrade the rifle. When the 2 match then maybe you didn't buy enough scope to begin with.

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