Spend more on the rifle or the glass?

Discussion in 'Equipment Discussions' started by Bling581, May 3, 2013.

  1. Bling581

    Bling581 New Member

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    I'm looking to get a rifle that can get out to 800-1,000 yards and my budget is around $2,000. I've been looking at the Remington 700 series but I can't decide if I should spend more on the rifle or the scope. I want the .308 milspec 5-R which runs about $1,200 which leaves me with $400-500 for the glass. Or do I get a cheaper gun like the SPS or VTR for around $800 and spend $800-1,000 on a nice scope?
     
  2. Ethan21

    Ethan21 Well-Known Member

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    Try a search on here I am sure there are alot of discussions on this but in my opinion you should spend more on the glass 2x if you have the ability but there are good scopes out there if you can't.
     

  3. T3-OleMan

    T3-OleMan Well-Known Member

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    Agree 10 X.

    However, if the COST of failure to identify the # of legal points on a CO ELK in the first and last 15 min of shooting time is a loss of $3,000 or more you might want to learn from my mistake (all my hunts are DIY). I traded the final ELK hunt of my life, some day soon($$$ wise), for a ZEISS-VICTORY-DIAVARI-4-16X50-T-FL. In 2010 it and the Swk. Z6 cost $2,200. I tested them both at dark against my $710 2008 version_ VX III LR 4.5-14x50 BC. The Bull I had to let walk at 100yd, with 3-5 min left in shooting hours, would have rode home with me that night had I purchased either originally.

    My stuff: DEC. 2008
    New TIKKA T3 SS lite 338WM =$575
    New 2008 VX III LR 4.5-14x50 BC=$710


    My stuff: DEC. 2010:
    New ZEISS-VICTORY-DIAVARI-4-16X50-T-FL. / Rapid Z 800=$2,200
    (Traded piggy bank $$ for that last ELK hunt to prevent ID failure again.)

    lightbulbIf the above could not happen in your life in the future....by all means get an $800< $1,000 Zeiss Conquest or comp. that you like.:cool:
    There are some fair scopes in the $200 < $400 range also. If you want to kill stuff at 1,000yds I would go 300WM or up.
    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2013
  4. dgarrett

    dgarrett Well-Known Member

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    If you buy the rem 5r milspec another thing to look at is that it will cost $300-350 to mount your scope with quality 20 moa base and rings. That puts your scope budget down to around $500. In that price range I don't think you would be happy with any scope when shooting 8-1000 yards. I would save another $500 and at least put a middle of the road $1000 scope on it.. Jmo Dave Garrett
     
  5. Wile E Coyote

    Wile E Coyote Well-Known Member

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    Saw this thread earlier and wasn't going to reply but...

    Talked to a shooting buddy a few minutes ago and we discussed this very scenario. He made a good point and that is get the best glass you can afford because one can always make incremental improvements on the rifle.

    There are few, if any, improvements that could be made to a scope. A good scope, with some care will remian a good scope whereas a cheap scope will always be a cheap scope. Generally speaking, good scopes are durable and will take the bumps and bruses of everyday use and will most likely continue to function as intended. A cheap scope will run into 'issues' sooner and more readily. Buy good once and cry once vs buy cheap often and cry more often.

    Since the rifle will be a factory gun and not a complete custom build, make improvements to the gun as time and resources allow. A trigger, stock, bedding, then rebarrel. When the barrel is done, have the smith square and true the action. and so on.

    The scenario we discussed is a 7RM in my safe that was built this way. 4 years ago it started out life as a SPS SS on sale from Gander mountain. It has had a trip to the smith for a Hart barrel and all the other goodies have been added over time. Last week I took it out to the farm with someone who shoots LR benchrest with a 6 BRX. He rang the steel at 620 yards with that 6mm a bunch of times. Then I fired one round. The 180 berger knocked the target stand over and center punched a hole in his steel plate. That was enough exercise for the day. :D


    Pete
     
  6. 429421Cowboy

    429421Cowboy Well-Known Member

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    IMHO, in this day and age, it is easy to get an excelent starting point for a LR rig in the $400-500 especially if you are willing to shop around and/or look at used guns. Then as was said, incremental steps towards your dream rifle are possible as you save up the money.
    By the same hand, (again, just my opinion) it is hard to spend TOO much on a scope, you can dang near start from scratch with your rifle if you so much as don't like the way it looked at you, but for a scope you have to live with what you got. I'd say spend the sheckel on the best scope you can afford, and worry less about the rifle.
    My 7mm is a SPS that still has the stock tube on it right now, and it is a 700 yard hunting rifle. I make improvements as i have the time and money, but as a stock rifle it still shot well before i started working with it. A Savage is also a GREAT place to start for a LR gun, I have setup two in the last year, and been very impressed. A $499 M111, and a $250 Nikon Buckmaster makes an instant poor mans 500 yard elk rifle right off the bat, which to me is very respectable for the money involved.
     
  7. Bling581

    Bling581 New Member

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    Right now I have my sights set on a Nikon Monarch 6-24x50SF, but I've also heard some good things about Vortex and Leupold. Your comments about upgrading your rifle make sense so I think I'll spend more on a scope. Now I just have to decide on which one!
     
  8. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

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    Scope all day long it should cost twice what the rifle does when your first starting out
     
  9. MTBULLET

    MTBULLET Well-Known Member

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    Just my opinion, but if you couldn't make out an elk rack at 100yds. with a 14 power scope, then I would suggest a new watch, as it was to dark to shoot anyway.
     
  10. 429421Cowboy

    429421Cowboy Well-Known Member

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    My long range rigs wear Leupolds, but if i need a scope that is worth more than they cost, it is the Nikons, i have been very impressed.

    After getting my best friend's .338 WM ready for elk season, we started using MOA dialing up for out to 600 with his Nikon 3-9 Buckmaster, and it tracked perfectly for us everytime and held up to many hundreds of elk loads until we upgraded (to another Nikon). That scope now sits on my coyote rig. I would expect those results with my $700 Leupold, but to have it in a $190 scope was amazing to me. I think the Nikons punch out of their weight class for quality.
     
  11. Ethan21

    Ethan21 Well-Known Member

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    Bling, Maybe I'm bias but Nightforce is the way to go next in line would be Leoupold for me then Vortex.
     
  12. HARPERC

    HARPERC Well-Known Member

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    I've owned inexpensive rifles that shot great (not all), but I've never had inexpensive scopes meet even lowered expectations.
     
  13. Bling581

    Bling581 New Member

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    I'm sure Nightforce are great scopes but their cheapest one is still $1,300 on optics planet.com. I don't have any experience with scopes so until I can try some out at the range I'm just going off of what I read online.
     
  14. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    I agree with the notion that the scope will generally cost more than the rifle for precision long range shooting. With the exception of one of my customs which was a gift, my other five LR rigs have scopes that range from 1-2 times the cost of the rifle and added accessories. What gives me pause is that this can be carried to the extreme. If you start with a cheap rifle you may be lucky and have a great shooter, but there is a likelyhood that even though the process can be stretched over time, this can be a false economy, and a great waste of time with high frustration. I would opt for a balanced approach myself. The OP's initial instinct to get the Rem Milspec 5R was a good one. I have owned three since their initial availability. I have put several thousands of round through these rifles that are used for tactical, hunting,etc. The most recent was a few months ago. All were nicely finished, produced superb accuracy out of the box, and exhibit the characteristics of a custom barrel/action, and a very good stock. For $1100 they are a bargain. It would be a tough decision, that would make me lean in the direction of trying to get some additional bucks together to find a good scope. I would feel that I was ahead of the game in the end. iMO.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013