Best scope for moonlight coyotes?

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by 95huskers, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. 95huskers

    95huskers Well-Known Member

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    I am looking for a good scope to put on my 243wssm AR for coyote hunting under the moonlight. What would be my best options for under $500?
     
  2. Sami

    Sami Well-Known Member

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    If you can find a used Meopta Meostar R1 3-12x56 within your budget, or a Kahles Helia. Otherwise a Zeiss Conquest or Minox ZA5.
     

  3. LouBoyd

    LouBoyd Well-Known Member

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    Can you legally use a spotlight? You'll get better resolution than with an image intensifier or a large objective low power scope. I'd suggest an led or HID focused illuminator depending on the range you need.

    When there is not enough light to see in color the human eye's resolution drops by about a factor of ten. A full moon overhead is at the edge of providing any color vision. No optical scope can make the image brighter like an image intensifier does. It takes a 10x70 scope to restore "naked eye" resolution under moonlight less than a full moon. That's with the eye dark adapted.
     
  4. bullfrog

    bullfrog Well-Known Member

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    I would say the Nikon Monarch with 50mm objective would be your best bet for under $500. I has the best optical performance in this price range. If you wanted to spend a little more money the Zeiss Conquest is probably the best in the $500-$1000 range. I did try the Vortex Viper HS 4-16x50mm on my coyote gun and found the reticle too thin for moonlight hunts and the light transmission was not nearly as good as the Nikon 4-16x50mm I replaced it with.
     
  5. lightwind

    lightwind Well-Known Member

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    Make sure you get a lighted reticle or you will have more trouble finding the reticle than the varmint.
     
  6. Sami

    Sami Well-Known Member

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    With a good FFP reticle (#1, #4, #8) it isn't necessarily needed but if you want to get one, make sure it is:

    a) simple dot
    b) adjustable to be very dim

    Otherwise the light will overpower the view and you will see nothing but the lighted reticle. Many lighted reticles out there are not suited for moonlight hunting.
     
  7. halfinkle

    halfinkle Member

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    I use a leupold vxr-patrol with red dot, works great.
     
  8. midwesthunter

    midwesthunter Well-Known Member

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    If just using moonlight as I do. You dint want a lighted reticle. Nikons have a 95% light transmission. I would pick a cheap non coated lens scope like BSA cats eye or a bushel banner. I have had better luck with these over higher dollar scopes. Keep the power low and you should be fine.