Blaine's response to you regarding what point I was trying to make is correct. Go back and reread my posts - I never once compared NF to Tasco regarding quality, and said that high-end mass production makers like NF, Zeiss, S&B, make great scopes that fill most user's needs. I don't think those comments are arrogant at all, however, after reviewing all of your posts on this thread, it appears that you are so strongly wed to your NF scope, that my comments might have come across as me saying something inappropriate about your wife, girlfriend, or significant other. My apologies. I am happy that you love your NF scope - like I said before -if a mass production scope meets your needs, then buy it and save your hard earned cash for extra ammo.
The answer is indeed customization - particularly for ultra-long range applications. I never said that a USO will make your rifle more accurate. Speaking of that, what are you shooting and at what ranges?
A proper USO scope set up lor long range work will give you more range for your caliber because of more MOA's and better optical resolution. Basically, you will see things farther away more clearly, and have the elevation to dial in for that longer range. At ultra long range, MOA's between 100 yard increments increases greatly, so the additional elevation adjustment is needed to avoid going the "Tenessee Elevation" route, which doesn't work to well (at least for me).
Look at ballistic charts for your given load and see how quickly things fall off between 2000 meters and 2200 meters. The difference between those 200 meters is enough MOA's to cover most rounds from 0 to 800 meters (or more). I realize the above statement is a generalization, and results will vary based upon MET and ENV conditions, bullet and powder selection, etc. Just crunch the numbers and see how quickly things decay when you are way out there. If you are not shooting at these ranges, then it makes no difference. Just about any decent quality scope will cover you and a .308/.300WM, etc out to 600 - 800 meters. Triple those ranges and its a whole new ballgame mi amigo.
In closing, I wish you nothing but good luck and good shooting - with whatever rifle/scope combo you are using.
Reread my post and noticed an error -please disregard:
"... I never said that a USO will make your rifle more accurate. "
I meant to say that it "...USO will not make your gun shoot farther." That's a given due to ballistics - you are limited by gravity, .BC of bullet selected, etc. However, USO will allow you to shoot more accurately out to a greater distance given the fixed parameters of the ballistic curve for your given rifle load.
I have been reading this thread with some interest and it has clearly become a choice of preference...
I have some thoughts/questions though.. and maybe I can get some answers.
SCL.. you say that the USO offers the ability to shoot out to 2500 meters.. WOW.. now thats a poke..
First question. Are you using tapered bases?
Second question. What caliber are you doing that with?
Third question. What are you hunting in Columbia at 2500 meters?
Now in my experience of LR and Ultra LR shooting...you need a BIG gun to get that far accuratly.. not even sure a 30 cal. can do that consistently and accuratly...
so now we move to 338 wildcats.. maybe .408 CT and the 50 BMG.
Now we are talking some BIG bucks for the rifle too... not to mention custom dies.. expensive brass and alot of $ in bullets and a TON of powder, obvioulsy not for every LR shooter or hunter...Now throw in a acope at $2000+ only the "welloff" can do that...
Also, the mirage will kill you at that distance and I don't care what scope you have...
I agree that custom things come with custom prices. But if the miltary both US and Canada can use the NF and be satisfied in it's performance.. that says to me that it is worth the $ you pay for it...
I still have yet to see any coments that justify $2000+ for a scope... Almost the same reason that I never went with S&B.. I don't see where their quality is better than the NF... however, at a deal I might be pusuaded to buy one so I can get first hand knowledge...
I had the oportunity to buy a USO...I held it look through it.. placed it on a dummy rifle right next to a NF both were set on 22X... I can't say the USO was that much better.. especially for shooting to 1500 yards...
I have seen these arguments on other boards.. and no one really pusuades the other.. you will always have opinions...
In my readings most people sell the NF because they weigh alot not because of poor quality or unhappyness...
I own 2 NXS,s, have owned many Leupolds and Tasco SS...NXS is a great scope.
With regard to USO. I personally will not support any company that "SUES" the people who stood behind them and tried to get the products off the ground.
My military background taught me that I would be better off with people who act with Honor. I WILL NOT BUY ANY PRODUCT FROM A COMPANY THAT HAS ACTED DISHONORABLE.
USO Customer Service was an absolute joke a couple of years ago...Mike Miller and Pablito lost a friendship over that issue. They treated there customers bad and accused customers for ordering the incorrect options. The scopes did not track properly etc...
JBW3 Is trying to correct this negative image. He is doing a great job. But until JBW is gone, or publically acknowledge his mistakes. I will not support them.
A Lifetime warranty doesnt mean anything to a company that is no longer in business. Think about it, you spend $2500 plus for a scopes, it breaks. USO is no long in business, Thats one hell of a paper weight.
Nightforce-I have heard of a few that have broken, but have all been fixed. I HAVENT HEARD OR READ ANY NEGATIVE PRESS ON THEM.
Leupold-Lifetime Warranty, Great Scopes-Enough Said.
Here are my main LR rigs that I have tinkered with over the years. In order to save typing time, this is a cut and paste from a recent e-mail I sent to one of the forum members here regarding my LR rifles:
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR> EDM Windrunner M96 .50BMG repeater - running 750gr AMAX through it, HSM commercial loads if I don't have time to reload, which is pretty much most of the time. :-( Have stretched her out to 2200 meters before Uncle Sam sent me down to Bogota. Topped off with a USO SN9 variable, 30mm tube, hi-res glass, ERGO objective, standard knobs, etc.
EDM .408 CT repeater - started out with an NXS variable, will be wearing USO SN9 glass someday - have been swapping the USO glass between the 50 and the .408, but she deserves her own set of glass. Basically a little brother to the .50BMG above. Will be getting most of my attention to work out load development - have had good results out to 1,750 meters really wish sierra would make a matchking in this caliber...the cost and parts shortage in the caliber make it hard to get into, but this would change overnight if the .408CT were no longer a "proprietary" loading. Definitely need more than one or two sources of brass and bullets.
HS Precision pro series 2000 HTR .338 LM; will be wearing one of the Sniper Hide SN-3's 35mm tube when they are delivered after SHOT 2004. Prefers 250gr scenars over 300gr matchkings at higher pressure, want to back off a touch and work up a 300 gr load - I generally like to shoot the heaviest bullet configuration I can, unless the rifle doesn't like it or I can get a lot more yardage in the transonic range from a lighter bullet - like all things in ballistics its a trade off and we spend a lot of time looking for the magical combination. :-)
That's it for my real long range stuff...got a SR25 in .308, AR10 in .300WSM on the way, some Robar SR90's in .308 and .300WM, a HS Precision VTD in .308 w/ 20" barrel and brake, and a HSP .223 LTR and HTR in 300WM. I am getting two more sniper's hide SN-3 w/ EREK, BDC's, and the posi-lock slide and mount to swap glass around these guns. I am really impressed by the quality of the SR25 -its every bit as accuarate as the Robar SR90, just not as comfortable to shoot due to the ergonomic differences in the stocks, but IMHO, the SR25 has made bolt action sniper rifles obsolete - it holds its own for reliability and accuracy, faster follow-up shots, and 19 more rounds in the magazine if you need them...10 dot drills are a lot easier and quicker with this rifle. My SR25 routinely outshoots my buddies' HK PSG-1, and its a hell of a lot cheaper. :-)
Need to find good homes for my smaller guns since I just don't have the time to devote to them that I should...600 - 1000 yard shooting just doesn't interest me as much anymore, although its a lot easier to find a highpower range around the U.S. than a 1500+ meter plus piece of grass. :-( <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
For the EDM's I have been swapping around an SN-9 with the external adjsutment in the second position (I think this is position B in their catalog - I don't have it handy) but it gives you circa 260 MOA of elevation. Add a tapered base and you get more elevation, use a mil-dot reticle for more elevation (in theory those dots will help with holdovers- I haven't had much luck in using a mil-dot reticle really well for ultra-long range stuff).
I don't hunt anything anymore other than Larues at short to mid-range and paper targets at long or ultra long range. Actual game is too small unless you are going after something big like an elephant, and I would not want to hump the guns involved around all day over rough terrain in search of anything. :-)
I agree with you regarding the .30's - I really like the .338 Lapua, but it lacks the oomph to get way out there. You are right on regarding mirage as well - it plays hell with you regardless of what optics you are using.
I also agree with you wholeheartedly that this type of shooting isn't for everyone - the guns and glass are expensive, components are expensive, support gear (rangefinders, binos, spotting scopes, etc.) and finding a suitable range in the U.S. (or anywhere in the developed world) is a pain in the ass for most folks. Things are still nice in some parts of the Western U.S. and southeast, and hopefully it will stay that way until I can buy my retirement land. In the interim - I want to go shooting with WyoWhisper if you have your own range set-up in Wyoming. :-)
Ultra long range shooting is an expensive hobby, and when you look at the overall economies of scale, an extra $1K for a custom USO scope instead of a high-quality factory offering (like NF, S&B, etc.) isn't that big a deal when your rifle costs $7K, you go though powder like crazy, bullets are $2.00 or more a piece, etc.
That extra money for the scope makes a huge difference if you are shooting a $2K (or cheaper) rifle, mid-range non-wildcat, etc... then that extra money would be better spent elsewhere.
What I have found most comical about this thread is that it supposedly was started as a "Is it worth it" question, yet guys who love their NXS's refuse to admit that any other product could be as useful as their beloved NF scope. John tried to lamely rebut my point that NSX scopes are often found in the second-hand market - by saying he hasn't seen them, then when he is confronted with the fact that there are four readily available at one website, he refuses to open his mind and maybe admit that his first judgment was mistaken.
The question was raised "when are the prices of the USO scopes justified?" When you guys were given legitimate answers, they were quickly dismissed...I am still waiting to hear what John is shooting and at what ranges. If you guys are so close-minded to not even admit that maybe having a few MOA for long range work might be useful, then its obvious that you really didn't want to hear the educated opinions that you originally solicited for.
In closing, I have absolutely nothing bad to say against NF scopes - you guys love 'em and that's great - they make a very good product, and I am a very satisfied customer of theirs. Re-read my posts and you will see that I haven't said anything bad about them -I actually recommended that most folks would be better served with high-quality mass production items (like NXS) than with a USO custom. I still stand by that statement, and you will see from the above paste that I do own NXS optics - it was the first glass on my .408, now its on my SR25.
That said, I am objective enough to know the limitations of the product and know that other solutions are available in the marketplace (and these prodcuts (USO scopes in this instance) come with their very own set of pros and cons. In the end, let your operational application and budget decide what's best for you.