Do I need the power?

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by summitsitter, Jun 5, 2008.

  1. summitsitter

    summitsitter Well-Known Member

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    I finally am ready to get a scope for my 270wsm. 700 yds is the furtherest I'll probly ever shoot in my lifetime at the little being a coyote up to a whitetail deer. I was dead set on getting a leupold 6.5-20x50 lrt scope with m1 knobs and mil recticle.. after watching a show on the history channel the other night I got to thinking. Army snipers where shooting 1000yds with a 3-10x50.. So it got me to thinking maybe I don't need all that maginification... Please give your input.. droping down to a 4-14x50 would save me a couple hundred bucks and allow me to do some of stuff to the gun that I would like to do also. Thank all of yall for what I have already learn from this sight.
     
  2. Buffalobob

    Buffalobob Writers Guild

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    A sniper needs to stay alive. It is a lot healthier than getting dead. Most of their work is really fairly close range stuff. Myths spring up about them, but the reality is considerably different.

    Pappy Leach shot a man at about 3 feet one day. Of course Pappy wasn't the most cautious guy you would ever meet. Most shots are in the 200-300 yard range. At the longer ranges they are just trying to get a hole punched in the guy and then will finish him with another shot or leave him lay to be bait for his buddies to try to retrieve him and shoot them. A low power to medium power scope with big field of view is perfect for that type of shooting.

    A hunter on the other hand is try to get good shoot placement and is not satisfied with just a hole somewhere in the animal. If a wounded man runs off, the sniper might be irritated that he didn't get a confirmed kill but he is still happy that he wounded the guy. A hunter should be unhappy with just wounding an animal and letting it run off.

    Just for reference, there are people who shoot iron sights to 1K.

    Just my opinion, a 10X scope is fine to about 500 yards for deer, and then I want some more magnification. If you are sure 700 yards is the maximum then perhaps something with a high end of 14X would be just perfect.
     

  3. summitsitter

    summitsitter Well-Known Member

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    Here;s the thing buffoalo will I be satisfied with it you thing or will I regret not geting the higher power
     
  4. shooterpunk2

    shooterpunk2 Well-Known Member

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    I say get a 4-14 or something close to that. i woulnt think you need that much power going out to 700 yards
     
  5. James Jones

    James Jones Well-Known Member

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    well the way i look at it is get all that you can afford , the higher power won't hurt you at longer range thats for sure but if you get a 10-12x scope and have to chance to shoot some smaller targets at say 1000yds then you will wish you had more power.

    Get what you want and only cry about it once
     
  6. ss7mm

    ss7mm Writers Guild

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    Theoretically, and under good conditions with high quality glass, you can shoot at some serious ranges with not too much power.

    But, is game all you will shoot with the gun and can you say that you absolutely will never shoot past 700 yards? The reason I ask is that I may not shoot big game at super long ranges but I shoot a lot at paper, steel and rocks out to 2000 yards and more just playing around and practicing. Sure makes the 500-1000 yards shots a lot easier.;) I'd bet you'll find that you will start stretching it and find that a little more power might come in handy. What about if you can only see part of a yote at 700 yards and have to shoot through a small opening, something that would be easier if you had just a little more power.

    At a spot where we shoot there is steel at up to 800 yards and paper up to 500. I've shot the 800 yard stuff on 5.5x with my NF but that is with glass that is just about as good as it gets.

    I've always felt that I can always turn it down but I can't turn it up where there is no more "up".:):) Just a personal opinion. You'll also find that with power comes size and weight so that could be a determining factor also.

    Jud don't go out and buy an 'el cheapo scope and then complain because you got what you paid for. Quality cost money but that scope is what you will look through for every shot you take with that rifle no matter what the size of the target is. I've always preferred to be able to shoot at a small dot on a target as opposed to just centering the crosshairs on the whole target.;)

    GOOD GLASS in the max range of 14-15 power will serve you fine out to the ranges you mentioned. You just need to determine if there would ever be a time when more would be nice. If there isn't that time, then go with the lower power and be happy.

    If you can, look through some different scopes and compare them to see what gives you the best resolution and clarity at different powers.
     
  7. johnnyk

    johnnyk Well-Known Member

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    summit,
    You can turn a 6.5-20x down to 14x but you can't turn a 4-14 up to 20. I agree with ss7mm; I'd rather be able to pick a small dot/spot on the animal than just center the crosshairs and shoot. You can't hit what you can't see. JohnnyK.
     
  8. summitsitter

    summitsitter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys I'm going with the 6.5-20x50 now
     
  9. Capt Academy

    Capt Academy Well-Known Member

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    Good choice, as I think you would out grow the 4.5-14x in a year or two as I did.
     
  10. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

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    It depends on the resolution of the scope. I have gotten rid of 6.5X20 power scopes and replaced them with 3.5X15 power NXS scopes and I am happier with what I have now. I have 3 3.5XS15 NXS scopes, I have 1 5.5X22 NXS and 1 5X25 S&B. I use the 3.5X15 the most and have taken game out to 777 yards and I have never felt under powered. The 5X25 S&B I am going to mount on my 338 Lapua and this rig is going to shoot out to 1800 yards or so.
    I would rather have a high quality 10 power than a so so 20 power.
     
  11. Desert Fox

    Desert Fox Well-Known Member

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    Well, here's what 1800 yards look like at 18X magnification. The scope is IOR 3X18X42.

    [​IMG]

    Here's what it looks like at 7X from my Swaro Range Finder.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. ol mike

    ol mike Well-Known Member

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    Big magnification -quality resolution is the ticket.

    Look at it this way -" IT'S A LONGRANGE GUN !!!

    6.5x isn't going to be too much power -so now you're only decision is 14x or 20x -->>20X<<--.........

    Some longrange group shooting and you'll be glad you got the 20x for sure...
    I've got a 4.5x14 and a 6.5x20 -both zeiss conquest -for longrange work -6.5x 20 all the way.---------ME
     
  13. Flybuster

    Flybuster Well-Known Member

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    Another good thing about high magnification is you can see how steady your hold is. Its easier to detect slight movements while in your shooting position on a high power scope. Little movements seem big, turn the power down you don't notice it as much.

    You seem to have more confidence when your target appears closer.

    You can use the high power scope to view mirage easier, target shooters use mirage to detect wind movements. A hunter could do the same.

    You can use the extra magnification to see antlers better, as long as you have the resolution.

    I prefer a higher powered hunting scope, because it makes bench testing loads easier.

    You can actually learn to shoot animals at close range with high power, practice on jackrabbits.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2008
  14. summitsitter

    summitsitter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys I got a VX-III 6.5x20LR on the way..