I need a scope rec that would be good for practice, and also would be good for some training classes I'm looking to take. Here's the background...
Last year I decided to build a long range rig that would be used for hunting, and I dropped a decent amount of cash taking a Rem700 action, blueprinting it, and adding a bunch of custom components (barrel, stock, trigger, etc.) to make a really nice 300 win mag. The rifle is great and I love it, but I don't know how to really use it to its potential. I didn't spend super amounts on the scope- I bought a Monarch 5-20x44SF with a Nikoplex reticle. At the time, since I'd use it for hunting, I figured that reticle would serve me well and I'd add a custom turret for the loads I worked up.
Fast forward to now- I need practice to shoot at longer ranges and figured a training class or 3 would be a good idea. The problems I have are 1- classes suggest a Mil-dot reticle on an "easily adjustable" scope, and 2- putting 400 rounds of 300 win mag down range over a 3-5 day period of time sounds painful on both my shoulder and my wallet. To solve problem 2, I just bought a Rem700 ADL with a Varmit heavy barrel chambered in .308, tuned the trigger, have a 20moa base on order and plan to eventually swap the stock. I still have problem 1, though, of finding a scope that is affordable and will meet the needs for my practice both on my own and in a training class envioronmnet. I'm not sure what is meant by "easily adjustable"- are they talking about a variable power scope or are they referring to adjustment of the turrets? For a fixed power, I've heard great things about the affordable Bushnell Elite Tactical 3200 10x40 and the SWFA SS 10x42, but I'm not sure if I should go with fixed or variable.
Anyone take these classes? Any recs on a scope for my .308? I only bought the .308 to be a practice rifle to help me learn long range shooting (reading wind, estimating range, etc.). I'd prefer not to drop a ton of money on a scope for this rifle...I would like to upgrade the scope on my 300win mag eventually, but not until after I've taken a course or two and am confident in my abilities beyond 600 and out to 1k.
Sorry for the long post, but thank you in advance for your help!
You don't have to have a mildot scope to make good hits at long range. I administrate a long range shooting school here in southwest Virginia, and we've trained folks to use regular old duplex reticles to make good hits--all the way out to 1040 yards.
The last fellow that won our long range practical rifle match was using a duplex Leupold reticle... I use both mildot and MOA reticles in the training course, to familiarize students with every type of reticle. A fellow who only knows MOA, or who only knows mils, is limited in his ability to use what may come his way in a difficult situation (so to speak)... so we train on all scopes... including a fixed 4 power cheap China made scope--believe it or not!
The schools who place too much emphasis on specialized equipment train shooters to be entirely dependent on such equipment, and then generally leave 19 out of 20 would-be long range riflemen sitting at home trying to save enough money to "someday" get the "good stuff." Meanwhile... we'll have you shooting with what you have, and make a better rifleman out of you in the process... and when you finally do get the "good stuff," you'll be all the better with it. ;)
So the Bushnell 10X Elite will work great... and if you really want a variable, Weaver makes a tactical Grand Slam, or even the standard Grand Slam is a great scope, with easily adjustable, repeatable turrets (albeit under screw on caps).
Your rifle sounds like just the ticket for what you're wanting to do... get a good scope on it (that won't break the bank) and a good handload... and put the money you save into some training that'll have you outshooting most folks with very expensive equipment who lack the knowledge to really (really) hit what they're shooting at "way out yonder... "
You should be able to use your Monarch for the classes to 1000 yards, but would probably need to install a 30 or 40 MOA rail to give you enough adjustment for that distance, since the scope only has 32 MOA of elevation travel. Lots of good information on LR shooting on Snipers Hide forum with section on optics, which covers scope, rings and rails. May find good used scope on For Sale section here.Good Luck !!!!
Thank you, Green and Sib, for the helpful replies. I do plan to keep my current Monarch and get a set of turrets for it just to make the dialing up "faster" in a hunting situation and make it (doing math and trusting my calculations) one less thing I need to worry about that could cause me to miss a shot and wound an animal. I'll leave it on the 300 win mag too, so I may order a better base to give me some more elevation to play with.
For practice and the training classes, I bit the bullet and ordered a scope with a Mil-dot reticle...didn't leave a bad taste in my mouth either, as I picked up the Bushnell 3200 with Mil/Mil setup from Midway. At that price, and with the current promotion they're running (basically, 10% off your order and free shipping on the scopes), I felt I couldn't go wrong. I ended up also getting an EGW 20moa picatinny base and a set of Burris XTR 1" rings also. Net for this practice rifle comes to about $715, and I figure I'll shoot it as-is for a bit before I upgrade the stock (although I may go ahead and bed the factory stock just to give me some more tinkering to do...if I mess it up, I'm out a cheap factory stock and some bedding compound and have a good reason to get a better stock). Now to order some dies and components...I was planning to wait to do all of this until after deer season, but once you buy the rifle, you might as well get everything else, right?
You did well... and while you're selecting bullets, the best value on some steady, accurate bullets is the Hornady 178 AMAX... put them in Winchester brass in front of 42.0 grains of IMR 4895 and it'll shoot very well... load to mag lenth at 2.800".... Federal 210 primers do very well, as do WLR's.
This load is a standard match load for our facility, and I've yet to see a .308 worth its salt that would not do stuff like this with this recipe...
I was wondering about bullet selection- I can't seem to find any information on the factory varmint barrel on my 700 ADL...I know the standard barrel is a 1:10" twist, but the varmint on the SPS is listed as 1:12" twist. I'm assuming that the only difference (since I can't find an ADL Varmint on Remington's website) between my 26" ADL Varmint and a 26" SPS Varmint is in the stock, as the SPS has a hinged floorplate. It may also have the externally adjustable Xmark Pro trigger, but as far as the barrel goes, I'm assuming mine is the same 1:12" twist as comes on the SPS?
If so, that changes my thoughts on bullet selection, as I can go heavier. I was planning on getting the 168gr. Nosler Ballistic tips-- I use the 180gr. Accubond on my 300win mag and love it, and I believe the in-flight performance on the BT and AB are the same so I was thinking of getting the BT since they're cheaper (and on sale at Cabela's for about $18 and change for a box of 50 in 168).
I've also read many a great thing on the A-max, so now I have another decision to make I guess...go with the heavier A-max or go with the very affordable, albeit lighter 168gr. Ballistic Tip? I guess affordability is out on this one though, as Midway has the Amax for about $15/50...hmmm.
Last edited by jpfrog; 11-02-2012 at 12:09 AM.
Reason: Amax pricing added
The 168 Nosler BT's are normally sold in boxes of 50... so they're actually a lot pricier than the Hornady 178 AMAX, which are sold in boxes of 100.
For long range, the 168 grain bullets don't tend to do nearly as well as 175 grain and heavier. I would not go lighter than Sierra's 175 grain Matchking.
Your 12 twist will handle up to 180 grain bullets... and maybe 190's in some cases.
155 grain bullets can be had that are good long range bullets, but they'll give up a bit of accuracy to the heavier bullets in a faster twist barrel. (155's are best suited for 14 twist barrels, though they will shoot fine in faster twists)... still, the heavier bullets tend to do better at 1000 yards, and arrive with more power also.