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Three Nails To Protect Us
So I ordered me a LaRue 18” PredatAR in .223/5.56.
I’d like to be able to stretch her out to 600 yards. Not looking to crush the wallet. Just wanting to hit 12” steel at that distance in nice weather.
This will just be a fun paper punching gun. Might zap some coyotes but that will be few and far between.
Plan to use a LaRue Mount.
I was thinking like a 1-6 maybe???
I used to just buy Nikon stuff but they have quit making rifle scopes and I haven’t found any old stock of their 1-6s.
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If you are not real worried about weight, the Vortex Razor Gen 2 1-6 would be good for 12” steel at 600, and it’s currently on sale:
The newer “E” version is lighter at 21oz but it’s a few hundred $ more.
If you aren’t worried about having a 1x low end then I’d look for a good 2.5-10x scope for the longer distances.
Would you be comfortable/happy with engaging a 12" plate at 100 yards without magnification? That’s what 6× would be like at 600 yards. It would certainly be possible if the reticle isn’t too coarse, but for a time I had a 1-6× scope on a “designated marksman” JP Precision AR, and even at ~500 yards I found myself wishing for more magnification.* I’ve also found that after banging large targets becomes easy and somewhat boring, I enjoy the challenge of going down in size, and then more magnification can become essential. Although it may be more than you’d ever need/want, I settled on a 3.6-18× scope for that rifle and am content with it. I would not want to clear a school with that scope, but not with an 18" barrel plus substantial flash hider either, and I have other guns and sights for such purposes.
* The same was true of a friend with a similar sight and rifle.
To argue with a man who has renounced his reason is like giving medicine to the dead.
— Thomas Paine
My SPR upper has a 2.5-10x Primary Arms GLx for now. I was going to go 1-8x SLx but it's really all about the reticle, while the GLx has turrets to dial in ranges. The 1-8x is on my Gunsite Scout for now, waiting to get tested.
|Non Nobis Solum|
My eyes suck so I did a vortex 1x8 on my 16 inch Larue and I love it. No issues ringing steel at 500yards
DISCLAIMER: These are the author's own personal views and do not represent the views of the author's employer.
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my old friend
I have a Burris 1-6 XTR that works well on my Rockriver 16". It has a BDC that is pretty accurate out to 600 yards.
Paper punching and steel out to 600yds.... 15X or higher.
My first AR15 originally had a 1-6x scope. I could hit IPSC-sized steel at 600 yards. Reliably hitting 12" steel at 600 yards wasn't possible, as I had trouble locating impact locations. Knowing that I hit or missed a target is different than knowing where I hit or missed a target.
I shoot AR15s in various matches, with 12" steel targets out to 600 yards, and sometimes beyond. So far, I have used only 3-15x and 4-16x scopes. With these optics, I am able to see impacts and correct for windage and elevation errors. I would not even consider using a lower powered scope in such matches -- I've seen the poor results of competitors who do so.
There is a two-rifle match in Raton, NM where the carbine targets range from 5 to 440 yards, with the distant targets being 12" round flashers. I've used 3-15x scopes in this match. Shot the match three times with the winner, who uses a 2-10x scope on his AR15. The guy with the 2-10x scope is faster than I on targets out to 100 yards. At 300 yards and beyond, his 2-10x scope is a handicap, as he struggles to see the location of his impacts. When we've had tall, wet grass behind the targets, he really struggles to see his misses and thus sometimes must spray the area to obtain hits. I've considered using one of my uppers with a 2-10x scope, but I keep coming back to the 3-15x optics. I placed second in this match last year.
1-6x or 1-8x is too small for the shooter to see what's going on down range.
2-10x may work for an experienced and talented shooter, but willing to sacrifice long distance capabilities.
A scope with a top magnification of 15x or more is a better solution, especially if the shooter must spot his own shots.
....and with a fixed parallax, most set at 100yds.
|Green grass and |
If you do not need illuminated and "tacticool". And a brick sitting atop of your AR. Look to find a Leupold VX-2 in 2-7x33. A simple duplex reticle will more than do the job with a little practice out to 600yds once you figure holdover. It is a tremendous lightweight scope and looks great as well. Less than $250
If you want more mag. You can go the 3-9x40. Which everything I said above still applies.
"Practice like you want to play in the game"
|Raised Hands Surround Us|
Three Nails To Protect Us
Well that sure did not narrow it down.
You're going to get a variety of answers because it depends on budget, priorities and to some extent how good your eyesight is.
Personally, as far as magnification, I really wouldn't go less than 10X. However, there is no simple answer when it comes to magnification. With really good glass you can get away with lower power, and personally I would rather have 16X and really good glass than 30X and mediocre glass. The width of the reticle will also have an impact on what magnification works for you. I would however, think twice before getting a Vortex 1x6. It's an awesome scope, but very heavy and not really enough magnification for 5-600 yards.
Does weight matter to you? What do you need on the low end? Do you want 1X or 1.5X? Can you get away with 3-5X on the low end?
What's your budget? FFP or SFP? Do you need an illuminated reticle? Do you have a preference as far as reticle? MOA or Mil?
Answering these questions will help you narrow your choices.
The truth is there are a ton of decent choices. On the budget end Primary Arms and SWFA have options worth looking at. Vortex makes a number of scopes that would be a good fit, at a number of different price points. Nightforce has a great option if you have the budget and want something that's rugged, fairly light and with good glass and tracking. I have a U.S. Optic scope that's 17X on the high end that I've taken out to 900 yards and would feel good about recommending to you, but it's heavy and expensive. Lot's of other options as well.
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in your pants
The range I'm a member of has a 600yard range.
That is probably the longest I will ever shoot at something.
I wanted a scope that would allow my Scar 17 to work close and far with more emphasis at far.
I chose the Swarovski Z8i 2.3-18.
At the range even shooting 100 and 200 yards I seem to have the scope dialed to 18x all the time.
It's all budget in the end. But in terms of magnification I have tried both 1-8x and 3-15x and 4-16x on this type of gun at these ranges. The later two are fine the first is not. I run NF, but that's just my choice. If your original thinking was Nikon unlikely NF will be your choice. But there are some decent Vortex that I would look at if I was on a budget. Europtic has a few on sale that I would consider ok.
“So in war, the way is to avoid what is strong, and strike at what is weak.”
|Raised Hands Surround Us|
Three Nails To Protect Us
This is going to be an ideal weather paper puncher.
The vast majority of shooting will be at 200 yards but do want to be out to 5-600 yards.
Weight is not really an issue as I’ll just be lugging it to and from the truck and shooting from a bench.
As for budget well the cheaper the better but I also understand you need to pay to play $700 is likely my max at least for awhile.
This will be an ideal weather gun so not sure I need an illuminated reticle and as for which reticle whatever is easiest to use when shooting a known distance.
200 yards doesn't require all that much magnification. Higher magnification is better for accurate shooting at 500-600 yards.
Higher magnification is generally preferred for paper targets. Steel targets do not always require as much magnification, as the targeted area is more nebulous.
Shooting at multiple distances favors an exposed turret, in order to more quickly and precisely adjust elevation. A reticle with accurate and easy-to-use markings for mils/MOA also helps. The "click value" of the turrets should match that of the reticle.
Frequent movement between targets at different distances favors first focal plane (FFP) reticles. If one shoots at only one target at a time, for an extended session, a second focal plane (SFP) reticle works for many shooters. An FFP reticle works better if you intend to shoot at different magnification levels, and if you shoot at a range that has significant and variable cross winds. I do not recommend reticles with built in bullet compensation markings (BCD) -- they may, or may not, be accurate for your gun/ammo/conditions.
Given your parameters, I'd at least take a look at SWFA 3-15x, which go for $700 (although I think they're backordered). I don't own this particular model, but I do own several scopes from SWFA and they are rugged, track well and are generally very good values.
Might also take a look at Vortex PST line of scopes (again in 3-15), although these will be slightly over your budget. I do own a Vortex PST and think they are good scopes. Also, Vortex has a very good warranty.
For a little more you can step up to Vortex Razor 3-15, but that will be around $1,000. don't own this scope, but do own a 1x6 Razor and it is an outstanding scope.
Might also take a look at what Nikon, Burris and Bushnell offer in your price range - again focusing on 3-15x, 4-16x powers scopes. Bushnell have recently been offering very big discounts on some of their top of the line scopes - although even with this discount they are likely to be more a little more than $700.
One way to save some money is to look at what SWFA and Eurooptic are offering on demo models. I have gone this route on several occasions and have always been very satisfied with the condition of the scopes I received.
Check out this link for a pretty good price on the Vortex PST's. https://www.eurooptic.com/Vort...r-PST-Closeouts.aspx
Oh, and congrats on the LaRue. I own a couple of their uppers and have been very satisfied with them. The rifle is good enough that it deserves a decent scope.
Here's an example of my range practice today, with some background info:
- I just mounted a new scope on a relatively new precision bolt action 223 rifle.
- I previously obtained 100 yard accuracy levels for a few types of factory ammo, using a temporary scope.
- Today's job was to get a close enough zero at 100 yards for one representative ammo type. Then measure muzzle velocity while obtaining relative accuracy levels at 410 yards on steel.
- Winds were relatively light for my range. However, they varied in speed and direction. I often felt a breeze on the left side of my face, but winds were definitely from the right down range.
Note that a bolt action 223 will almost always shoot with greater accuracy than an AR15. My rifle was built for surgical precision, even with my sheep-dip shooting. I try to use the best possible factory match ammo. Not all AR15 shooters are willing to pay for such ammo. Your LaRue is capable of quite good accuracy with good ammo.
It was late in the afternoon, the temperature dropped noticeably, winds increased, and approaching low clouds spelled a possible snow squall. I tested ammo in groups of 5, on 12" steel plates at 410 yards. I had already tested 7 types of ammo, and wanted to compare my general favorite -- Hornady 75 HPBT Black -- to the previous types. I wanted two pieces of clean steel to evaluate the 10 rounds, but I only had one left. I didn't have time to trot down to the other plates and repaint them.
I had just shot 10 rounds of Federal GMM 73. Transitioning from this load often results in wonky results for the next ammo type, for the next 5-10 rounds. I'm using a FFP scope with the magnification set at maybe 18x. I saw every impact with great clarity.
I aimed at the right edge of the target, one MOA down from the top edge. Wind drifted the first 5 shots left, to the upper left corner of the target. Not a stellar group, which I suspected was the result of transitioning from Federal ammo. Vertical variation was 2.75", with horizontal around 3". Under 1 MOA, but not what this rifle is capable of.
The next five impacted at the lower right of the plate. I held one MOA above the bottom edge and two MOA right of the right edge. The wind increased on the last two shots, pushing them left. Vertical variation of only 1.5" (woohoo) and wind-caused lateral variation of about 3".
I use this to illustrate how higher magnification and a functional, calibrated reticle can be used to precisely evaluate rifle/ammo/shooter performance via the scope. With a lower-powered scope which lacked precise elevation/windage controls, I could not place shots at will on a relatively small portion of the target. I might be doing my best to just guess where the bullets landed. I would need a spotting scope to evaluate my shooting performance from the shooting position. Or I would need to inspect the target up close.
Determining how you wish to use your scope will help narrow your options.
if you are not opposed to buying used, post a WTB on the SH or watch for sales/demo's from Eurooptics.
Few scope to consider. Vortex PST 3-15 or 5-25 and the Burris XTR2 4-20. Often in a line of scopes by a manufacturer one model stands out. In the Burris XTR line it's the 4-20. I don't own these scopes, but have looked through, shot them, turn the knobs, friends own them, compare to several others... Look at the reticles for a decision if these scopes work for you.
What rear stock do you plan on using? Highly suggest one with and adjustable cheek piece such as the excellent Magpul PRS. If cheek height/LOP is not quite right, it'll be a challenge to maintain POA/POI to say the least!
Black92LX -- I agree with offgrid's suggestions.
The Vortex are Burris models he lists are good scopes. I have the Vortex PST2 in 2-10x on a 16" AR15 upper, and it works well. As offgrid notes, a lightly used model might fit your budget. In case you do look at new scopes, consider Sportoptics, as they often discount scopes 10-15% from list. You need to call Sportoptics' customer service department, and ask what kind of price deal they are willing to do.
I find it easier to shoot an AR accurately with Magpul's PRS stock. It's on my rifles with barrels that are 18" and longer. I have Magpul STR stocks on my 16" and shorter ARs. I'm willing to sacrifice a bit of accuracy on the shorter barrel rifles to have a collapsible stock. I could not obtain a consistent cheek weld with Magpul's UBR stock, and thus I pulled it. FWIW, I like the Gen 1 PRS stock a little better than the current model. The new PRS stock has a little longer length of pull than I prefer.
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