Please help before my brain explodes!!!!

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by skyhead, Feb 20, 2013.

  1. skyhead

    skyhead Member

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    I have just recently been introduced into the world of long range shooting. For years I have been doing the "hold over" with my 30-30. Well last week I went out and bought a .300 WSM. It sits with a junk tasco scope on it I am unable to use the rifle basically because I have been reading about ballistics and optics for days now and feel like I am more lost now than I was when I began researching about scopes.

    I thought I had the perfect scope picked out. Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50. I kept getting confused because they had the same exact scope marked at $200 higher with the letters "FFP".

    Well now I have researched and understand how Front Focal Plane and Second Focal plane work, I am at a complete loss on what I should get in a scope. I understand to accurately mil a target with a SFP scope it must be at a certain magnification but on the other hand it would be just as quick to whip out a range finder and range it.

    I am not a fan of hold over. I know guys argue that dialing your scope in takes too long but honestly at that long of a range shot the animal has no clue you are even there and is often grazing which gives you plenty of time to figure the MOA and get dialed in.

    I have no preference when it comes to using Mils or using MOA and dialing a scope in as I am brand new to long range shooting. My initial thought of making accurate long range shots were to distance the target, figure trajectory and use a scope with adjustable finger turrets and dial it in to be zeroed in at that yardage.

    However, I now understand that you can just as accurately make long rang shots using Mils and figure hold over to be just as accurate as dialing in a turret.

    I am absolutely boggled at which route to go. If I choose to go with using mils I would prefer a FFP scope. The ones I am looking at a FFP scope is $200 more but would cut the cost of a $300-$400 rangefinder and be one less piece of expensive equipment to pack through the woods.

    By the way most of my shooting will be practicing long range long before I test my luck in the field on a 500+ yard deer.
     
  2. skyhead

    skyhead Member

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    I pulled the tasco off of an old .22 just so I could shoot the rifle with some type of optics. Its basically a waste of ammo because as soon as it is zeroed at 100 yards the next shot throws it out of zero anywhere from 2"-10" in any direction lmao. I didnt expect any better performace out of the $20 scope I just couldnt stand looking at the rifle any longer sitting there without shooting it.
     

  3. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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    I would buy the SFP and take the saved money and put it to a better range finder!!
     
  4. rick523

    rick523 Well-Known Member

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    +1 imo
     
  5. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    Sky- it takes good ammo, scope, and rifle to shoot at longer ranges.
     
  6. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    Another +1
     
  7. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

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    Some good advice already. It,s FFP for me everytime take a look at horus optics a hawk model will take your wsm to 1000m easy
     
  8. etisll40

    etisll40 Well-Known Member

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    There's an awful lot of SFP out there and many people that use them exclusively. Check out some video of people demonstrating SFP and FFP side by side, Vortex has one on youtube or at their sight. Get a feel for what you like when the magnification changes. Everyone is different. No bad choice on planes.
     
  9. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a big fan of the FFP. Save the 200.00 and put it towards a good range finder.

    The Vortex Viper series scopes though are extremely good scopes for the money.

    Another worth considering is the Zeiss Conquest with the rapid Z reticles which work well if you set them up properly.
     
  10. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    SKY- prior to shooting at the longer ranges i had shot some very accurate rifles. My biggset frustration was when i was shooting a rifle that was not capable of the accuracy needed. once i had a rifle that was capapble of less than 1 moa at the longer distances ; my brain and self were much better.
     
  11. ToKeepAndBear

    ToKeepAndBear Well-Known Member

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    You can mil or moa the range with a first or second focal plane scope. The ffp can be used to mil or moa the target at any magnification. The sfp usually needs to be at max mag for ranging targets. I personally prefer ffp because wind or elevation holds are the same at all magnifications.

    You will still want a rangefinder regardless of which focal plane scope you buy. Ranging targets is somewhat time consuming and difficult skill even when you know the exact size of the target you are ranging. A small error in your estimate of the size of the target in inches/mils and you may be MANY yards off on your range estimate. It takes a lot of practice to get good at range estimation with your reticle. And how do you evaluate your estimate, with your laser range finder of course.

    Buy something with reliable turrets and practice. Don't sweat it too much, it's supposed to be part of the fun! Vortex, Nightforce, SWFA SS, Bushnell ffp scopes, S&B, Premier, Hensoldt, Kahles, USO, ETC are all popular long range scopes.

    Good luck!

    TKAB
     
  12. Trever

    Trever Well-Known Member

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    Accurize your rifle, develop load and get a huskemaw.
     
  13. Joe King

    Joe King Well-Known Member

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    Good advice!
    I learned reticle range back when LRF where just showing up on the civilian market, and far to expensive for the average person, so I'm going to tell you to learn reticle ranging well, but get a good LRF also. Reticle ranging can work very well as a backup system to a good LRF. As for which focal plain to go with I usually go with SFP and save the money though I have both, at the end of the day I don't really see enough of a difference between the two to make the extra cost of one justifiable.
     
  14. phorwath

    phorwath Well-Known Member

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    Bingo! If you're going to shoot at 400 yards and farther, you should plan on purchasing a good laser range finder, no matter which scope you settle on. If you don't have the range down pat, it won't matter which version or model scope you purchase. Buy a Leica 1200 range finder if you're content with limiting your shots to ~ 800 yds. Buy a Leica 1600 if you want to range and take shots out to ~ 1250 yds.