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Focal plain which is best ?

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Unread 01-20-2012, 01:24 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: S.E. Michigan
Posts: 4,120
Re: Focal plain which is best ?

Never having taken one apart (because when I take something apart like a scope or a clock or a computer, I tend to have parts left over upon reassembly.... and it ceases to function......), I've never looked inside but I have to preusume that a FFP optic takes a bit more precision in lens alignment and spacing and in typical retail/commercial thought, a hot seller, especially a 'new technology' hot seller commands a higher price of admission. Besides labor isn't cheap even if the labor is in a grass hut.........

Sort of like cars.

When the PT Cruiser came out, dealers were asking (and getting) more than sticker because it was a 'hot' and in demand item.

Now, they can't give 'em away so they are cheap, not that they weren't cheap in the first place.

It's supply and demand.

I'll stick with a SFP unless I get a FFP for free, which I seriously doubt.
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Unread 01-20-2012, 06:24 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: SW Idaho
Posts: 1,315
Re: Focal plain which is best ?

Originally Posted by Mikecr View Post
Why do FFP scopes holding anywhere near the function of LR SFP scopes cost at least twice as much?
I thought the 'benefit' of FFP scopes is one less lens? LESS..

You know, the claims that FFP scopes of late have small enough reticles to function closer to SFP in the field, doesn't address all the other issues with them. Things like all the Hollywood on their reticle planes, and lower precision MIL adjustments, typically excess weight and size(with one less lens), and ridiculous prices.

I can't help but conclude so far that all any scopemaker needs to do to be hailed as incredible, is REDUCE EFFORTS in scope design, while setting their prices higher than most.
This is exactly what Leupold and NF will do in providing for the tactical mob. NF already did it with their 'BR' scope(what a joke).
Then those who buy them would never concede this as bad judgement on their part. They would instead deny all reasoning and attempt to drag as many into their delusions as possible.
IMO, it's the only reason there are still FFP scopes. And it's the only reason those here would over-push for FFP, while SFP scopes obviously serve hunters and competitors well.

Too bad so much energy and $resources$ have not been pointed toward actual improvements in our scopes. There are so many, so close, that just aren't being asked for..

My take on a couple things.

The last couple years have been really good to FFP fans. There are a number of good priced scopes now in the $5-800 range from companies like SWFA and Weaver. Very good scopes getting excellent ratings. There are actually a number of cheaper FFP scopes on the market that I don’t have experience with that are a couple hundred cheaper than the ones I mentioned above and many guys are using them with good success to get a feel for how they like FFP. Also, there are a lot of manf’s that are making MOA FFP scopes including Vortex (Razor and PST), US Optics, Premier, and NF. Many of the scopes listed are in the 19-24 oz range and 12-14 inches. Very similar to their SFP counterparts. But prior to that there have been very few options. I have been on optic chat forums for years and there have been a ton of guys asking manf’s for FFP scopes for over a decade. It has only been the last 2-3 years that they have started to listen and now they can hardly keep them in stock. FFP scopes are more popular in the rest of the world than SFP scopes so in some ways the US is the exception not the rule to focal plane preference.

FFP scopes are more expensive. I don’t like that any more than the next guy trying to save a buck but there are valid reasons IMO at least to some extent. The reticle is etched on the FFP lens which is a lot more difficult than on the SFP lens. Also, most FFP scopes are 30-34 mm which is more pricey than the traditional 1 inch tubes. Most guys nowadays like more adjustment on their scopes anyway so most LR guys are going to be shooting 30mm or higher I believe. I don’t doubt that some of the price bump on them is due to perception of them being tactical which is a bummer but it is what it is. To me the price is worth it.

I believe you are an ELR shooter so I can understand your concern with MILs being less precise than MOA but I can tell you that out to 800-1000 yards or so the MIL turret is not a hindrance at all. In fact I think for that distance the MIL turret is actually a perfect balance of precision and functionality. MIL clicks are approx. .33 MOA and are plenty fine enough for any modern cartridge and the MIL turrets allow for most modern cartridges to get out to 1000 yards in 1 rev of the turret, 2 at the most. With 10 MILs per rev (about 34 MOA) a guys doesn’t have to worry about revolution error and can get dialed in much faster in my experience. With an MOA turret you are looking at 3-4 revs as a comparison.

Mike, I shot with a SFP MOA or straight duplex reticle for over 25 years and switched completely of my own desire after shooting an FFP scope once. So nobody is twisting my arm or stuffing nonsense down my throat. I just like them better period. If a shooter has any desire to hold for windage or elevation, call hits or misses with no worry of magnification error, or have a backup rangefinder built in to their scope that is easily accurate enough on big game animals out to 500 yards or so, there really isn’t a better option than FFP. It eliminates the chance for error due to the subtensions changing when the power magnification is adjusted. If you have only used duplex style reticles I can see how this may not appeal to you but there really are a lot of good things about FFP and all the “Hollywood” hash marks on the reticle. They are much more easy to ignore than one thinks when it comes to just shooting using the center crosshair.

Is there an FFP scope in particular that has given you this bad taste? Just curious how long it has been since you have used one. The new ones are quite different than the older models from a few years or decades ago.

Scot E.
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