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.308 Load, and Optics for Long Range M1A (M21)

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Unread 03-14-2010, 12:43 PM
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.308 Load, and Optics for Long Range M1A (M21)

My Springfield M1A (M21) can group well under an inch with 168 SMKs, Lapua brass, CCI 34 primers, and 40.5 grs. of H4895.
I haven't tried past 100 yards yet, but, since I've been looking at buying a Zeiss Conquest Rapid Z 800 or Z 1000 scope, the dope on their website has caused me to recently write the following:

'Been doing some hunting for the best scope for my Springfield M1A (M21).

Springfield Armory Rifles

Both are around $925
And both are 4.5-14x50

Note: Please enter your information into our Rapid-Z Calculator to ensure that you make the best possible reticle selection
based on your caliber, bullet, hunting conditions and location.

According to their calculator for the Rapid Z 1000 (designed for the .308 Match ammo):
This IS the value for .308, Sierra 168-gr. MK (BC =.462),
Velocity: 2,550 fps,
Elevation: 4,500 ft. ASL
Temp: 80 degrees F

The Rapid Z 1000:
With their calculator, and the scope power ring set to 11.87 (12 power):
They say to zero dead-on at 500 yards with the Bar 5. (Bar 5 is the center crosshair.)
At Bar 1, the bullet will impact at 154 yards (and you can zero at 154 yards with Bar 1, on 12 power).
(Bars 1 - 4 are above the center crosshair Bar 5.)
Bar 2 = 224 yards
Bar 3 = 316
Bar 4 = 406
Bar 5 = 500
Bar 6 = 595
Bar 7 = 692
Bar 8 = 791
Bar 9 = 892
Bar 10 = 993 yards
This is seemingly unbeatable.

Now, with the Rapid Z 800:
With the M1A, same load, they say to put the power ring at 14 power.
Sight in at 1.77" high @ 100 yards for a 200 yard zero (Center Crosshairs - call it Bar 1).
(All other Bars are below the center crosshairs - Bar 1.)
At Bar 2 (an unmarked bar), bullet will impact at 295 yards.
Bar 4 = 395 yards
Bar 5 = 495
Bar 6 = 596
Bar 7 = 698
Bar 8 = 800 yards

I know it's not a 1,000 yard reticle - but 'tis rather versatile anyway...

So, I'm deciding on which to choose.
More field of view at 12 power with the Z 1000, than at 14x on the Z 800.
And the Z 800 is intended for other calibers; but, look what it does for the .308!

But, if you definitely need it backed-off at the lowest 4.5 power also, then the Z 800 will work for both close-quarter, and long-range work.
At 4.5 power, just use the center crosshairs for 0-300 yards - then for precision: Zoom to 14x for 200-800+yards.

Q. What would the Z 1000 do at 4.5 power? - when it is set up for all ranges (100-1000) at 12 power?
A. Dead-on at 500-yards ONLY - Center Crosshairs - Bar 5.

Maybe we can't have our cake, and eat it too.

So, for me, THE DECISION IS: Z 800 !

The Z 800 is more traditional and more useful under stress. Your short-range field of view (FOV) and accuracy (at 4.5 power) could mean everything.
I'd stress more over the up-close and personal - than sweat the remaining 200 yards down range to the magic 1,000 marker.

But, for a dedicated LR benchrest set-up - or if you don't mind having it at 12 power all of the time, the Z 1000 scratches the 1,000-yard itch.


You can check-out their reticles here:
Zeiss Rapid Z 1000
Zeiss | 4.5-14x50 AO MC Conquest Riflescope | 52 14 90 9973

Zeiss Rapid Z 800
Zeiss 4.5-14x50 800

LRB 7x50 laser rangefinder binoculars




Last edited by G-gear; 03-14-2010 at 12:48 PM.
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