Scope weight, Just for a topic to discuss


Well-Known Member
Apr 1, 2016
Was wondering considering a large and ever growing number of guys who shoot and hunt at long to VL range and use scopes like NF or similar heavy scopes, is there a weight at which a scope simply becomes to heavy to be usable on a normal hunting rifle for off hand shots? Not talking a purpose built lite weight or ultra lite weight rifle but a standard weight synthetic stocked hunting rifle with at a minimum 22-24" barrel like my vintage late 1990's stainless M700 in 300wm and 338wm I put a HS AM synthetic stocks on because the Remington factory stocks flexed shockingly better than a yoga instructor in her patron videos.
Personally I think anything over the 22-25oz range is too heavy for mountain hunting. Remember to shoot something at long or any range for that matter you have to get up there and find them. I hunting this past fall with my 6.5cm build with a 26" shillen barrel and sig tango 6 scope. I still do love this scope but probably won't ever carry it up to 10,500ft again that was just silly. If all I had on my back was the rifle it would have been fine but with all the water and extra layers and stuff in my pack I spent way too much time being tired and not nearly enough time actually hunting.
I think it depends on what a person likes in their rifles, and doesn't necessarily take a special purpose built gun. Take for instance a standard walmart special rem 700 in 7mm rem mag. The barreled action and all hardware associated of a 26" sporter weight is right about 5.75 lbs, throw on a light carbon stockies for around $500 on sale, probably close to what your HS stock would cost new, or a ag composites for $75-$100 more, and you are at 7.25 lb bare rifle, about .25 lbs heavier than the Tupperware factory stock but much better for consistency. Throw on some 4 oz talleys and even a heavy as all get out 5X25X56 ATACR, and your still just under or right at 10 lbs, or if you put on a super light scope, say 12 oz, your at 8.25 lbs.

But, you put on your 3 lb or more HS stock, B&C stock, boyds laminate (their light weight thumb hole is still 2.7 lbs) and things can change quickly. In this case, your going to have to try to make up weight by going lighter on the scope if you want to stay under say, 10 lbs. Like, a 10 oz scope, which really limits you.

I personally prefer anywhere from 8-10 lbs of well balanced rifle for it to be comfortable off hand. Much over 10 lbs seem to get too much for off hand or packing in, but is more forgiving while shooting from prone or on a bench, and anything under 8 feels too light and whippy in my hands, and is also harder to shoot long range with. With only a light but solid stock on a factory sporter type rifle, you can stay in that weight range with the heaviest of scopes, it just takes a little critical thinking when choosing a stock if you want a heavier scope.
It’s really a personal choice....I love the S&B Exos, but it’s 32oz, and I wouldn’t mount it on a lightweight rifle, unless it was the only choice I had. I def think a heavy scope changes the balance and feel of a really lightweight rifle. I sold the only NF I’ve owned for that reason. The rifle was new and felt heavier than I thought a 9lb build would, then adding a 39-40oz scope really pushed it over the edge for me. Luckily I was able to sell it quickly and didn’t take a bath. I loved the scope and the way it was indestructible.....I never took it outdoors so I can’t say how it compares optically to this or that.
Everyone has their priorities. I drive an ‘03 Land Cruiser w/ 312k miles and see no reason to change. Some folks have a weakness for nice cars....I don’t. Scopes and binocs are another story. I have 4 or 5 glass makers that I’ll use and that’s it. Luckily I can find a weight range within that group that allows for lighter and heavier options. And there are more fine scopes available now that meet different price points and weight ranges.
Try the IOR four power fixed scope. It comes with the German 4a reticle. Aim and hit anything within normal range. Reliable and LETHAL!