Some friends and I killed a bunch of mule deer for CWD samples this hunting season and I have taken the opportunity to use several bullets and also a variety of scopes. I recently killed several deer with the R2 reticle and a bunch by clicking the elevation onto the turret. Got some very long kills shooting both systems, four over 700 yards, quite a few from 500-650. My buddies always crank their turrets for their long range shooting and they have been making kills all the way out to 700 yards with their .308 Winchester rifles. These guys are getting to be very proficient killers since we employ shooter/spotter techniques and always have a backup shooter on the critter if possible. Probably the main reason we can kill out that far is because we shoot together as much as possible in the summer - usually about a 75-100 rounds per person per session.
In my opinion my shot placement when I crank the proper elevation and wind into the turret is significantly better - the bullet hits closer to my point of aim particularly past 500 yards. The R2 is a wonderful reticle and it enables the shooter to hold-off quickly with a degree of accuracy that should hit the vital area of a deer out to very long distances - but I believe that the hits are simply not as precise - I was hitting deer in the chest but had more windage error, also some shots hit higher than I wanted. Also find a natural reluctance to hold center with the little crossbars if I could only see the upper 2/3's of the body because of vegetation. I used the R2 rather than a TDS or B&C because I have excellent drop tables for the .300 WSM rifle and can refer to the drop card very quickly, count down the MOA's to the appropriate bar, holdoff for wind using the horizontal bars for reference and break the shot.
Having said the above I admit that I have not shot the R2 nearly as much as I have shot with the turrets cranked - but I killed with the holdoff method so that I could learn and compare. I have been impressed with the info some of the guys on this forum have shared re holdoff shooting with the R2 and figured I better get some field experience for my own info.
The B&C is not as accurate as the R2 for holdoffs. Nice even 2 MOA spaces are easy to work with - the spaces on the B&C and TDS are not uniform or simple numbers. Like its possible inspiration, the TDS reticle designed by Tom Smith, the B&C will allow fairly accurate shot placement IF the shooter does a bunch of shooting to determine where his poi's are relative to each hold-off bar. This takes time and demands that decent notes be kept - if you get detailed info it is too easily forgotten when you need it so a drop chart or card should be made up.
Although I just started shooting the B&C on a nice little Lilja-barreled 7-08, I believe I can discuss what it will do in the field since I have killed a lot of deer with the TDS back when Swarovski and Kahles introduced it. Plus I was fortunate to have an opportunity to hunt with Col. Smith and will never forget the time spent with this incredible gentleman. The B&C is based on the TDS but someone came up with the clever idea to integrate changing the magnification setting into the operatiing principal of the system. The TDS has somewhat complicated charts for determining your initial zero (factors), the B&C is simpler to work with - neither can predict where your particular rifle/cartridge combo will shoot. The range cards that I made for the TDS told me that at 400 my center of the group was perhaps four inches below the third bar, or seven inches above fourth bar at 450 or whatever - can't remember such details anymore. I have them in an Avery label making program and print out a label, then tape it to the side of the stock with a piece of wide transparent packing tape.
I believe that the wind hold-off bars are hockum, perhaps better than nothing but they cannot be expected to provide real accuracy given the varied time of flight of all the different cartridges, wind speed and angles.
Those reticles can be an aid but accurate shot placement still has to be figured out according to other factors than just distance. That takes shooting practice, and I do not believe that many guys who buy such scopes will get out and really determine what the reticles can do. On the other hand, maybe buying such a scope will be incentive for the owner to get out and shoot a bunch so that he can get some longer shot capability and confidence.
Since most hunters consider 250-300 to be the beginning of "LONG", these reticles have the potential to about double their confident shooting range if they practice a bunch and keep notes on poi. If such practice results in vital-area accuracy then the reticle will be important to successful shooting.
I wonder some times if the B&C (you can replace B&C with TDS, Ballistic Mildot, Horrus, ?8 or whatever the marketing guys come up with) might promote sloppy long shots since Bubba buys a scope with the magic bars in it, sights in at 200 or whatever the little book says and goes out and starts tossing lead at deer he would not ordinarily shoot at - "Was that the fourth bar for five hundred or the fifth bar for four hundred? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img]" Guess I am saying that buying a scope equipped with the B&C or TDS or whatever little combination of circles, bars, squares, triangles, dots etc. will never make the owner a long range hunter - even tho the salesman will probably tell you that it will so that he can get a sale.
I am done holding-off on the real long shots - going back to crankin'.
(Len and Dave - these are non-cranky reflections on this topic [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]) <font color="blue"> </font>
I always look forward to your reviews of optics and gadgets.
You have an uncanny ability to put the most technical lingo into laymans terms. "Hockum" for example..LOL [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]..sakofan...
It's only rock and roll....But I like it!
So basically a gimick. Without the expertise I just read, I kind of put two and two together.
So basically anybody who wants to take 500yds or more should invest in a good rangefinder to take a distance reading, and a scope that can then be dialed in to that distance, and then the hard part estimating the crosswind.
What is the technical name for the type of scope that has the adjustment knobs on the side?
I know my Leupold has 1\4 MOA adjustments, do these scopes adjust in biger increments so that you are not adjusting around and around? Can you zero these scopes in, and then have the knobs marked with distances instead of up & down MOA adjustments.
Not sure "gimmick" is a fair term, sure beats the hell out of a plain old crosshair or duplex reticle for shots past 300 yards. Bottom line for me is that the multiple aiming point reticles can offer hunting accuracy and speed of target acquisition that works, but... As I mentioned I believe that cranking is more accurate for long range field accuracy. My scopes give me a 1/4 moa when I crank on click, I cannot holdoff nearly that fine at 500 yards with a TDS or B&C. Tried it, don't work for me and I doubt that anyone else could make consistent, repeatable holdoffs with those reticles that would be as good as clicking.
There ain't no free lunch and the user has to learn about the system and how it works on his rifle. This takes shooting time in the field and notes so that a drop chart can be determined if you best accuracy. Some rifles will have their point of aim and point of impact coinciding with the range bars, dots, diamonds etc. some will be close but close is not good enough for LR hunting.
The folks who developed these reticles have accuracy, ease of use, simplicity etc. as objectives, but also hope to make a buck so some of the marketing stuff is hype. Leupold is not going to market something that is not reasonably accurate, nor would Swarovski, Kahles, Burris or others but there is only one way to determine if the thing works for you. Unfortunately that costs $ and what happens if you decide you do not like it [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]
Do a search on turrets or scope turrets, lots of info here. Turrets are not as simple as one might believe.
You should be able to zero your Leupold and also might be able to attach Stoney Point turret type handles onto it to make adjusting easier and hopefully more precise.
I'm giving the Varmint Hunters' Reticle a try this year. It just works out that with my favorite load (200 AccuBond @ 3175), with the rifle zeroed at 300 (just under 3" high at 100, the zero I've been using for years) the first line will be on at 400, the second will be on at 500 and the 10 MPH wind drift marks work out to be roughly 20 MPH marks--all at the max magnification of the scope based on my prior drop data.
I haven't tried it yet, but I think it should be quick and easy to use and pretty accurate out to 500 at least. For farther, clicking the scope will naturally be more accurate. But I think it'll be nice not to have to click in the 3-500 range (most likely for me). I'll just have to see how I like it....