The all-encompassing search engine you're probably looking for is rare to non-existent. It's best to browse through the manufacturers by product line. This means some products won't be what you want, and others may be options. Sport Optics' site is actually reasonable in listing scope models within the given product lines.
But you're going to have to do some clicking.
Agreed. The Sports Optics site is good overall, but slow.
Nikon has good coatings, and I wouldn't get excited about the details. The Nikon scopes near the top end of your budget have clear views.
FFP versus SFP likely won't make much difference for you intended use. I personally have little use for SFP scopes with maximum magnification above 10x, but your preference may be different.
I find zero stops incredibly useful in scopes, even those I use for primarily for short-distance targets. But I shoot targets at a wide variety of distances. Target shooting at only one or two fixed-distance targets doesn't really require a zero stop.
Actually, those are very accurate words, definitely not weasel words. Let me explain.
In optics, light loses about 5% through reflectivity when passing from air to glass, or vise versa. This means that if you look through a two lens optics, you will lose 5% at the first surface (95%), then 5% of the remainder at the back side of that first lens (90.25%). When you get to the second lens, you will lose 5% of the remainder on the front side (85.74%) and another 5% on the back side of the second lens (81.45%).
As you can see, after just going through two lenses, you now only have 81.45% of the light that reached the front of the first lens. In a riflescope, especially a variable, you're going to find a lot more than 2 lenses. We're talking 6, 8 10 or more. At the 5% penalty rate, we are down to near 50% of the original light after 6 lenses. This makes for dark images in the ocular lens.
Lens coating is used to reduce or virtually eliminate the reflection on a lens surface. The coating thickness is so thin, it is measured in layers of molecules. The materials used for the coating are trade secrets and you should know that a specific coating addresses on part of the visible spectrum. A single "coating" has the effect of giving a hue to the image by virtue of the fact there is more of that color going through the optics compared to the other colors. To combat this, multiple coatings are used to address multiple areas of the visible spectrum. Of course, the material used for each coating is different. This is what we call "multicoating."
As I said at the outset, the reflection at the air/glass surface is what causes the loss in light transmission. In order to reduce overall transmission loss, all such surfaces need to be not just coated, but multicoated. This is called "full multicoating."
Some lens elements are glued together forming lens groups and no coating is required between the lenses. So you can have a group of 2 lenses and only the front of the first lens and the back of the second lens are coated.
Air, argon, CO2, whatever, the industry just refers to non-glass as "air," regardless of the actual gas.
In the early days of coatings (back in the late 60s, early 70s,) that's when the terms I just described above, came into play.
Coated optics, just meant that one lens had a single coating probably just on one side in the entire optics.
Multicoated optics, meant that one or more lenses had more than one coating to address the hue problem.
Fully multicoated optics meant that all air-glass surfaces had multicoating applied.
Incidentally (see what I did here?) the coating on lenses has become so good that the loss through reflectivity has gone down from about 5% for an uncoated surface to a fraction of 1%. I doubt it will ever reach 0, but the issue of loss through reflectivity has largely been conquered and that's why massively complicated zoom lenses and variable riflescopes have overall light transmission numbers in the low to mid 90%. I have read somewhere that the actual limit is about 97.5%. And yes, Nikon is a pioneer and leader in lens coating. The coating is usually done by the glass or lensmaker, it requires sophisticated equipment and procedures to apply the coating. Most riflescope makers buy the glass already coated and you would be surprised whose glass is in which scopes.
Finally, there are other coatings that can be applied by riflescope makers, stuff to prevent smudging or rain streaks on the objective lens. There are also coatings to harden the lens and so on.
There, that's probably much more than you ever wanted to know on coating.
Good call fritz and NikonUser. I stumbled across Nikon's 2019 Full Line Catalog at https://www.nikonsportoptics.c...ull-line_Catalog.pdf.
Both the FX1000 and X1000 scope lines have "fully multicoated optics". They both also have "spring-loaded instant zero-reset turrets".
And that Monarch M5 5-20x50SF MK1-MOA discussed earlier... it's listed in the 2019 catalog as NEW. I thought it was a discontinued model since I couldn't find one in stock. Maybe the new version just hasn't hit the street yet.
The Nikon "BLACK X1000 6-24x50SF Matte Illuminated X-MOA" looks like a good fit for the application. What should I look for with regard to mounting hardware? I'll need a base and rings or mount. Links to rifle and scope:
The scope has a tube diameter of 30mm and max internal adjustment of 60 MOA. Most shooting will be out to 200 yards with potential to go to 300. Do you recommend canting the base?
Nikon sells four mounts for the Black series:
BLACK Precision 1-piece (MSR)
BLACK Precision 1-piece (Medium)
BLACK Cantilever (20 MOA Cant)
Looking for recommendations on height considerations, brands, etc.
I don't have experience with mounting optics on a Savage. It looks like you don't have a rail -- a base and rings appears to be the most simple approach. I suspect you will want rings of relatively low height; I suspect your cheek height on the Savage's stock is relatively low compared to the bore. Browsing Savage forums might be a place to start, or calling Savage's customer service. Understand that you need rings that are tall enough for the front of the scope to be clear of the barrel.
If you go with simple base and rings, you won't use a one-piece mount that works on a rail -- such as the Nikon Black mounts you list above. You don't want a cantilevered mount on a bolt action rifle, as these are designed for an AR-15/10, in order to move the scope forward on the rail. Nikon's 4-ring mounts are goofy looking, and I sure wouldn't go with them. I like Nightforce rings for bolt action rifles, but they might be a budgetary challenge.
I have a canted base or the mount in all of my rifles, however I shoot at distances which require this. You should have 60 MOA total vertical adjustment in the scope. That starts in the middle with a 0-cant base/rings, therefore you start with 30 MOA up capabilities. Zeroing at 100 yards should consume 2-3 MOA, assuming the base/rings/mount is parallel to the bore, leaving you with about 27 MOA up.
Going from 100 to 200 yards will likely require 1.5 MOA of dialing up, which isn't much. Going to 300 yards will require a total dial up of 3.5 to 4 MOA. At 500 yards you will need about 10 MOA of elevation up. In theory, using all the elevation you can dial in the scope, you should be able to shoot out to 800 or 850 yards, with good bullets/loads. I think you can ixnay the canted base/rings and stay with a flat mounting system.
If you do go with a canted base, I think 20 MOA is too much for your use. IMO 10 MOA cant would be about right, but it's really rare to see a 10 MOA system.
I must confess, I'm getting a little envious here; you have the makings of a great rifle.
I am not familiar with Savage rifles and scope mounting, even though there is a bunch of Savages at F-Class competitions. They are that good.
I looked at the Savage web site and it seems that you can get bases from Leupold and B-Square, and other places. I would definitely go for a Weaver type base; it gives you the most flexibility. You can got for a 2-piece or a one piece. The one piece provides the most flexibility but it will obstruct the access to the chamber a little bit.
The two piece style will leave the chamber access wide open but you may not be able to use one piece mounts because of distance between front and back. That decision is entirely up to you.
The 60MOA of adjustment means is entirely normal for a 30MM tube. My March-X has the same with it's 34mm tube but the tube is twice as thick as normal which accounts for the extra 4mm. I use a 20 MOA ramp on my rifle, but I live at 1000 yards. For 0 to 600 yards, there is no need for a 20MOA canted ramp.
In a 60MOA adjustment range, it means that your scope has 30MOA down and 30MOA up starting from mechanical 0. If everything is perfect with receiver, base, rings, etc. once the scope is mounted, you should have 30 up and 30 down with the scope parallel to the bore. In the real world there may be some variation. However, it will take about 2-3 MOA up to get to 100 yards. Add another 2 for 200 yards; you are still barely off the mechanical zero. I would say a 20 MOA ramp is an added complication (not much of one, but it is another thing,) that will bring you zero benefit and will actually force you away from the sweet spot of the lens.
The thing to remember is that you are not married to the 0 canted rail or setup. If in the future, you decide that you want to shoot beyond 700 yards, you can always get a 20MOA canted rail. It's not a big deal
As for rings, I really like the Burris Signature Zee rings.
I see the BLACK precision mount, and they are indeed very nice and they are made to go well with the BLACK scope. You will need to have the one piece Weaver type rail from B-Square for your rifle to use that mount.
I see that I overlapped fritz's answer.
I did a bit more research and I think that using a one piece Weaver type rail and then the boxy BLACK mount is overkill and will detract from the nice clean lines of the rifle. It will give it too much of a "tacticool" look.
If it were my rifle, I would get a 2 piece Weaver setup and a nice pair of Burris Signature Zee rings, maybe even the XTR Signature rings. I recently bought a set of their Xtreme Tactical Rings for my AR-10. I have several sets of Signature Zees on various other rifles. I like the plastic insert which prevents marring of the scope. My Match F-TR rifle has March rings, but I almost bought a pair of XTR Signatures for it.
My Tikka came with no 'rail' to mount rings on.
I don't recall the brand of the rail I bought, but I did get the Burris Signature Zee rings on NikonUser's recommendation.
With the 4-20x50, I got medium height rings to be safe. Looks like low would maybe have worked, but likely would've been pretty tight between the objective & barrel, after adding on the flip up (down in my case, rotated 180*) cover.
The Enemy's gate is down.
P250UA5, fritz, and NikonUser, thanks for the help. That input really clears up a lot of confusion. A two-piece Weaver base and the Burris Signature Zee rings is the direction I'm going, assuming the correct height and eye relief can be achieved.
30mm SIGNATURE ZEE RINGS (WEAVER STYLE) come in Medium (.81"), High (.93"), and Extra High (1.18"). I'll let the local shop figure out the correct fit. By the way, they called today to say the rifle is in, so I should be able to pick it up tomorrow (Saturday).
I picked up the rifle today. The shop where I bought it couldn't source the scope, but had access to the mounting hardware I'm looking for. The two guys there were a little skeptical about using a two-piece base (NikonUser's point about flexibility). Their concern was limited adjustments to get the correct eye relief. Wouldn't be a big deal to try a two-piece base and then fall back to a one-piece, except they didn't stock either for that rifle. Both would have to be ordered. They did have a Leupold one-piece base with 20 MOA cant. Placing it on the rifle proved NikonUser's concern about obstructing access to the chamber.
I went to another shop in search of the scope. They too didn't carry Nikon and explained that Nikon had changed their distribution model. I think the guy said Nikon now sells direct to the retailer, and requires ordering in large-ish quantities. He said a small shop just can't afford to carry that much inventory. However, the second shop will order the scope through https://www.eurooptic.com/. The price will be the same as if I order from the website myself. Is there any concern about the warranty being voided in this scenario? I really prefer to walk into a local shop and plop down cash rather than order online.
I just checked Amazon and they have that exact scope in stock, ready to ship and with Prime. With Amazon, I believe you haave 30 days to return it if you don't like it and it would only cost shipping.
I also read the reviews ond they are very laudatory.
Search for Nikon Black and it pops up.
Just giving my personal experience based on the suggestions of the others.
The Enemy's gate is down.
Warranty concerns made me pass on the local shop purchase through eurooptic.com. Bass Pro had the scope in stock, so I picked one up today. Next up is a call to Burris to see whether they can help select a two-piece base and Signature Zee rings of the correct height.
My wife and I gave the rifle to my son Memorial Day weekend. He was both surprised and excited. Unfortunately I screwed up ordering the scope rings. They were too short. A new set had to be ordered and it took another week to get them in hand. We also picked up a Harris bipod. 6"-9" model with leg notches and swivel attachment (HBRMS)
This past Saturday the local shop mounted, leveled, and bore sited the scope, then we headed off to the range. It was the perfect day for fiddling with the new setup. 80 degrees, low humidity, light wind, plus we had the entire range to ourselves for about 3 hours. We had a great time.
Our groups were horrible, so we didn't venture out past 100 yards. We expected grouping to be bad on the first outing, but it was still humbling. Adding a bag for rear stock support should help a lot. We also need to experiment with bipod height or maybe try a bag for front support.
Obviously I can't comment on the rifle's or scope's accuracy at this point. However, I can make a couple of comments on the rifle's quality... Three of the 4 mounting holes for the scope's base plate required chasing the threads. The local shop said that was not uncommon, but to me it's something that one should not expect to deal with in a new rifle. Also, there's an issue in extracting spent cartridges. They pull free of the chamber, but do not consistently eject from the receiver. It's not a big issue, but I'll be calling Savage technical support about it.
Overall I am very pleased with the components. Thanks to all who contributed to the selection process.
What ammunition were you using?
I would say that a rear bag is a must when shooting with a bipod or other rest from a bench.
And although I am nowhere near the class of precision shooter as a few of the people who post here, the reason I use a bipod when shooting from field positions is because a good solid and heavy rest intended for use on a bench isn’t practicable in such situations. If I were shooting from a bench, however, I would consider a bipod to be a marginally-satisfactory substitute. That’s not to say some shooters can’t get good results when using a bipod, but I know I would be handicapping myself to use a bipod if it was possible to use something better.
With that opinion I’ve opened myself up to criticism from the good shooters, so please tell me how I’m wrong.
Regarding the ejection issue, I don’t have any experience with Savage rifles, and it’s a good idea to contact the company, but my Tikka rifles have the same problem if I retract the bolt as fast as I can. It seems counterintuitive, but if I pull the bolt back at a moderate speed the cases eject just fine. You might try changing how quickly (faster or slower) you pull the bolt back.
“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
Sigfreund, thanks for the input.
We were using 55 gr bulk ammo. I knew it was a factor, but didn't mention it because there were clearly technique issues. Holding steady on target was impossible for both of us. Plus the few shots I fired it was obvious I wasn't managing recoil very well. Lot's to learn, no doubt.
Case extraction was better when retracting quickly, but still not close to 100%. Pulling the bolt back at a slower speed rarely succeeded at tossing the brass out of the receiver. This isn't a big issue because I would rather have to pluck brass from the receiver than have it tossed off the bench onto the concrete. Still, I'll call Savage to see what their tech support has to say.
Are you using 223 ammo or 5.56??? My dad was having al sorts of issues with a how’s
223 saying shells weren’t ejecting, turns out the 5.56 Ammo he was using was the culprit, 223 Ammo works perfectly. He was pretty embarrassed when I pointed that out.
That’s something I would have never expected; thanks for that insight.
It’s not as easy to get precise results (small groups) when shooting from a bench as we might expect. A couple of things I’ve learned for myself:
With a light-recoiling cartridge like 223, holding consistent elevation isn’t too difficult, but regardless of what I’m shooting, keeping the gun from rotating left/right is a challenge. In my quest, I’ve tried several different types of rear bags. I hoped that a heavy (and expensive) Protektor (see below) would do the trick, but nope. A friend does well with a larger soft bag, but I prefer a small Triad Tactical tapered “wedgie” bag along with an Accu-Shot monopod that I can grasp on top of the bag to help prevent lateral movement. The same technique could be used by grasping a sling at the rear along with the bag. The video I linked below describes how to use the monopod that way (although that guy uses only the monopod and not a small bag along with it as I do).
Second, I use a padded “filler” between my chest and the bench top. That allows me to lean strongly into the bench to help minimize movement while also helping insulate body movement caused by my heartbeat from the gun. I have a couple of Wiebad pillows that I use, but to experiment you could use anything from a small sofa cushion to a rolled up coat to see if that helps.
And yes, you should definitely move to better ammunition once you’ve improved your benchrest techniques. Two to three MOA ammunition can make for very frustrating sessions when shooting for precision.
“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
Just as an FYI. When you are stuck shooting at a bench with a bipod, a rear bag, while desirable, is not critical. The easiest way to handle that is as follows: If you are a left-handed shooter, just switch the left and right.
Set up the rifle on the bench and then cuddle up to the it. Take you left hand and bring it around under your right armpit and make a fist. Cradle the toe of the stock on top of your fist, and you can easily adjust elevation and keep it steady. Use your right hand to load the rifle and press the trigger; steer the rifle with your left hand.
I have seen far too many people at a bench shooting a rifle on a bipod with their left hand under the fore end; holding and steering the rifle with their right hand, the shooting hand.
After a while you will find the way to hold the rifle with your left hand, that suits you, just make sure that it's a positive hold, not just a limp wrist affair. No need to put pressure on the stock, but it must not sink when you fire the rifle or you groups will look like shotgun patterns.
As for having an issue ejecting 5.56 but not .223; that's a new one on me. I have never heard of that one and can't figure out how it could make a difference.
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