Need advice for scope ffp vs sfp. Read everything i could. Simple question

nksmfamjp

nksmfamjp

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Jan 5, 2004
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I did purchase a swfa 5x20 ffp on a great deal i couldnt pass up.
That is a really good place to start learning if you want an ffp. Usually SWFA does a good job with reticles.


So if i am in my blind and a nice buck shows up and i range him a 560 yards and i dial for distance do i really need FFP scope?
Well, no. FFP is not required to dial for elevation, but what are you doing for wind?

Now i am not sure but when people say (HOLD FOR WIND) WHAT does that mean in basic terms?
To me, it means estimate the wind value to hold…like 23 mph gusting to 30 mph….308 win…hold to the 3 mil mark at 23 mph to just under 4 mils. I put that reticle mark on the desired poi.

I have in my mind that hold for wind means old Kentucky windage if its a left to right wind at 10 mph i will hold off the deer so the bullet drifts into the deers vitals. Not using any reticles to assist. Zero use of hash marks just a guess.
This too can work, if you know the size of that deer. I usually cannot reasonably guess how to hold looking at a deer without a scaling reticle.

I am kinda thinking that sfp is petty much perfect for what i want but dont want to not be missing anything where a ffp will be just as good.
A SFP with little to no wind can be pretty effective if the scope can be dialed and wind/wind guessing are strong. I know I’m reasonably good to 400 like this, but with my long range rifle and ffp scope, I’m very deadly to 600yds. It is purely due to being able to hold wind at a variety of magnifications. The wind varies, so dialing is not very feasible.

I broke out my 28N with a VX6 3-18 with TMOA and lined all up on the bench. All the other scopes were on lowest power I think 5x.
Can you explain this better? Was putting the ffp’s on 5x to handicap them or what. What did you do different on the vx6 that made it so much faster?



I don’t have a fancy camera, but I think you need to see a good ffp reticle at min magnification on a deer at 50 yds and max magnification at 500yds. I think you will see the value. Turn the illumination on. Does that change things in a tough environment? Do this with your SWFA. I think you will find the FFP cannot be seen are rare case situations ignoring illumination and turning up magnification.
 
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O

Okanogan

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I've got probably 80% of my rifles set up with FFP high power scopes, mostly NF and Vortex. I do most of my hunting shots sitting on my butt using a tripod. A close shot is typically 200 yds and I have plenty of time to crank the power up high. The FFP work great for this even at first light, though if it is really marginal light, I might use illuminated reticle. For wide open eastern WA habitat, it has been good set up.

Where I find a problem with FFP is on the lower power settings in poor light. I'm over 60 and have a hard time quickly picking out the fine reticle in these conditions. I'm in the process of moving to MT and the area I will live is heavy timber. I wish I had more SFP high end scopes for use in those conditions.

I suspect you can make a high quality scope work with either SFP or FFP if you practice with them. If I were making the choice on the type for a new scope, I would be making it based on what type of hunting experiences I expected. Your comments about ranging, holding using the reticle, etc sound similar to my own practices.
 
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Shooter J

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A lot of great suggestions here. For me I like FFP scopes for where I hunt. I never need to use the reticle for finding a distance, I use a range finder. However if you find yourself in a situation that you need to use your reticle for the wind FFP is a big help. Yes you can dial the wind, spot your impact/miss and make an adjustment, but with a SFP scope those subtensions are only accuate if you do not change your magnification.

If you are in an area that never experiences much wind it may not be that big of a deal. But what if you get invited on a hunt in a different state that you cannot pass up. You might not be taking farther shots generally, but if that ever changes having that option can be a bonus.

If you use a ballistic calculator and it provides you with a solution for elevation and windage, the FFP will allow for a hold without even needing to adjust the elevation or windage know. This of course also depends on what reticle you have.

The ultimate bottom line for me is really understand and practice with the gear you have. I just have way too much experience with folks who bought a SFP and wished later they had a FFP scope. Again in Colorado we can have some longer shots. There is no perfect solution to every situation. But definitely having a lot of practice and understanding of whatever gear you end up with is always a good thing.
 
F

floyd kittrell

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Yes he does a great job . I have shot this course with James Eagleman and would recommend it to anyone . It is both informative and fun , no pressure , he is a good , knowledgeable guy . Also cheap .
 
7

73driver

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No need for a FFP scope. The FFP scopes with higher powers are the pits for hunting if you have to dial low power because the cross hairs get so skinny. Skinny cross hairs in low light conditions, bad combination for a hunting rifle. There are many workarounds for hold over or hold off for wind with a SFP scope.
 
skipglo

skipglo

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Thx. This stuff when you are not into this and experienced in it is so foreign. I know its easy for you but from me who's longest shot on a deer is about 97 yards its alien for sure. Just trying to make the most educated decision i can.

Thx all.
I am asking this question simply for your reflection.....the shooting you do and the interests you have in shooting at the distance you describe do not require much of a scope. Why not save a bundle and go on a dream hunt? An Athlon, Arken, Hawke, Or even Cabelas 4 x 16 would serve your needs completely or any 6 x 24 Above.....as long as it's FFP... Just me ( note how I slipped in the FFP....LOL)
 
B

blvette75

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First i have read sooooo many old posts on ffp vs sfp and i am getting dizzy.

I am looking to purchase a top end scope for a possible new rifle. I have only used in the field sfp scopes. I did purchase a swfa 5x20 ffp on a great deal i couldnt pass up.
I have ZERO desire to range anything at distance. Zero. Actually less than zero!! I want to dial after i range anything. I am pretty much disabled do to arthritis so my hunting will be in ground blinds or towers. I will not be walking anywhere in the mountains, only walking will be to my blinds. Deer are mostly my primary target maybe some black bear.

So if i am in my blind and a nice buck shows up and i range him a 560 yards and i dial for distance do i really need FFP scope? Now i am not sure but when people say (HOLD FOR WIND) WHAT does that mean in basic terms? I apologize for my ignorance in this but this is going to get expensive but i want the best. Explain that process. I have in my mind that hold for wind means old Kentucky windage if its a left to right wind at 10 mph i will hold off the deer so the bullet drifts into the deers vitals. Not using any reticles to assist. Zero use of hash marks just a guess.

I do kind of like the use of using the hash marks for wind if its known MPH and i can adjust accordingly. But as i said before i have zero desire to use reticle for range.

I am kinda thinking that sfp is petty much perfect for what i want but dont want to not be missing anything where a ffp will be just as good.

I know this has been talked to death but even reading everything i still come out confused on this topic.

Thx for any assistance on this topic

Brian
Hi Brian, I have moved all my rifles to FFP scopes, it is just simpler for me to work with regardless of the magnification you are on. For example if the reticle is you have is a Christmas tree, holdovers remain the same regardless of the magnification. Like you my first FFP was a deal so I bought it when I learned how to use it I was sold on them, and have not bought another SFP since. As others have said if you are using your reticle to adjust for wind or your bullet drops and change your magnification as you are preparing for your shot that is where the FFP is an advantage. My favorite reticles have enough drop that I do not have to dial up and down very often anymore. The thing on a FFP you do not have to revert to the single magnification that your SFP is dialed in at typically your highest power. I am migrating away from mils to MOA now as I am just getting older and MOA is just easier for me now although I will probably always have both.
 
Aussie Hunter Steve

Aussie Hunter Steve

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Hi Brian, I’m a hunter not a target shooter. I started with SFP but after a few mistakes in the field, have changed over to FFP and would never go back. You couldn’t give me a SPF! I’ve never had a situation where I couldn’t see my reticle, even on the lowest powers. My favourite scopes are S&B 3-20x with illuminated Mildot reticles.
 
SteveBurton

SteveBurton

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Lots of good info so far.
You said most of your hunting will be from a blind. Will you be doing any stalking?
How fast will you need to take a shot?
What is the closest shot you expect to have?
If you will have quick shots, or they are under 200 yards, go with a SFP. My reasoning is because you will probably have the magnification cranked down to the lowest setting and only turn it up once you see a deer farther out. At the lowest magnification, the reticle on a FFP is darn near impossible to see, even during the day, unless you have illumination turned on. Just another thing to fumble with and drains your battery.
All of my hunting rifles wear SFP. IMHO, they are just easier and faster. I hunt both wide open deserts in Arizona and dense woods in Pennsylvania so the scope has to handle both areas. Know your rifle, your dope and the anatomy of the animal you are hunting. Most shots under 300 yards I'm using good ole Kentucky windage because I know the drops. I might have less than 6 seconds to shoot. If I have the time, I will dial my elevation.
If you expect far shots or have time to dial everything in, use a FFP. You will be able to use the reticle to judge elevation and windage more accurately. This is where a FFP scope shines. My competition guns wear FFP scopes and they are invaluable in that situation.
Neither scope is a clear winner, or better than the other, but each has its strong points in different scenarios. Pick the one that will fit your hunting the best.
 
motrapper

motrapper

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Sandy Utah
FFP Now on all hunting rigs again learn your scope and you can use your Reticle for instant adjustments at any power Just simpler.
But learn your Scope.
I would Not take a SFP if you paid me Now.
 
445 supermag

445 supermag

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Thx guys i am now confident to say i will end up getting a FFP scope when it comes time. Just went out with my SWFA 5X20 FFP and ranged something at 50 yards and with illumination on its perfect. Then i looked at something at just under 100 yards and started to zoom in to see where i liked the image in my reticle and found i liked it to be 10 to 14 power. Yes even at that short of a range. I do like to use the power and the reticle was very usable in that 10 to 14 range. Very usable. So i am finding that FFP has really no ill effects to deter me at all.

Thx all. I think I've seen that video 100 times along with others.

We can end this now before it gets out of control. Never my intentions so thank you to all for their inputs.
 
J

jarnold37

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Dec 21, 2010
Messages
228
First i have read sooooo many old posts on ffp vs sfp and i am getting dizzy.

I am looking to purchase a top end scope for a possible new rifle. I have only used in the field sfp scopes. I did purchase a swfa 5x20 ffp on a great deal i couldnt pass up.
I have ZERO desire to range anything at distance. Zero. Actually less than zero!! I want to dial after i range anything. I am pretty much disabled do to arthritis so my hunting will be in ground blinds or towers. I will not be walking anywhere in the mountains, only walking will be to my blinds. Deer are mostly my primary target maybe some black bear.

So if i am in my blind and a nice buck shows up and i range him a 560 yards and i dial for distance do i really need FFP scope? Now i am not sure but when people say (HOLD FOR WIND) WHAT does that mean in basic terms? I apologize for my ignorance in this but this is going to get expensive but i want the best. Explain that process. I have in my mind that hold for wind means old Kentucky windage if its a left to right wind at 10 mph i will hold off the deer so the bullet drifts into the deers vitals. Not using any reticles to assist. Zero use of hash marks just a guess.

I do kind of like the use of using the hash marks for wind if its known MPH and i can adjust accordingly. But as i said before i have zero desire to use reticle for range.

I am kinda thinking that sfp is petty much perfect for what i want but dont want to not be missing anything where a ffp will be just as good.

I know this has been talked to death but even reading everything i still come out confused on this topic.

Thx for any assistance on this topic

Brian
I have both but I prefer 2FP. And I prefer only a cross hair that leaves a very clear sight picture. I hunt from a bench and can range and dial very quickly. Normally hunt with a partner and one will range while the other loads and dials. For long range on an animal it seems being more humane to be a little more precise and click and hold right on. I have let big deer walk because would not shoot at animal long range while moving. I don't really want marks for windage. as even at 700 yards I can judge 2" left or right as my scope is 42 power. The fine crosshair makes that easier to do. Even with real sniper, they use marks because of quick aim, and a hit anywhere and the intended target is out of commision. But when there is time, they dial. Everyone has their own method, just sharing mine.
 
nksmfamjp

nksmfamjp

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Jan 5, 2004
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2,145
I'm in the process of moving to MT and the area I will live is heavy timber. I wish I had more SFP high end scopes for use in those conditions.
That sounds exciting. Timber is a common hunting condition in MT! Ive always had the less than perfect scope. My old man doesn’t subscribe too much to the notion of good glass. What do I know, he has a garage full of decent antlers! He hunts meat!

I know FFP 3x is ok in timber with my illumination on, but those shots are usually offhand and like 25-75 yds. I do pick and FFP that has heavy crosshairs on the outside for this reason.

If in timber a lot, I’d probably pick something simpler like a SFP 1-8x…if I’m shooting over 100yds, its gonna be on 8x! That is my OH setup, but I don’t hunt enough here to say it is “tested.”


Just went out with my SWFA 5X20 FFP and ranged something at 50 yards and with illumination on its perfect. Then i looked at something at just under 100 yards and started to zoom in to see where i liked the image in my reticle and found i liked it to be 10 to 14 power. Yes even at that short of a range. I do like to use the power and the reticle was very usable in that 10 to 14 range. Very usable. So i am finding that FFP has really no ill effects to deter me at all.
I’m really glad you had that scope to work through this. It’s a good scope. You can spend a lot and not do much better from what I read. I’ve always wanted that one after getting the 3-15x.
 

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