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Best value scope for hunting/varmint shooting

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by dolphins84te, Mar 17, 2010.

  1. dolphins84te

    dolphins84te Redmond, OR Member

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    What are your thoughts on the "best value" scope for hunting and/or varmint applications. I would be looking at variable scopes in the 2-12 power range for hunting and 4-30 ish power range for varmint.

    Nikon? Leupold? Fujinon? Simmons?

    I'm mostly looking for answers under $200 retail, but give me your $.02
     
  2. landcbeitner

    landcbeitner Everett, WA Member

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    Of those I'd look at Nikon if you can find what you're looking for in the price range. I have nothing against Leupold (I use a Mark IV) but I've seen allot of failures in their low end scopes.
     
  3. Intoodeep

    Intoodeep Beaverton, OR Member

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    I would recommend a used Nikon, very good glass and the price is right...:thumbup:
     
  4. bmw2

    bmw2 Mount Vernon, Wa Active Member

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    Don't overlook the Barska scopes. I know they have a rep as being a low end scope and they are, but they are quite durable and mine had very repeatable adjustments.
     
  5. dolphins84te

    dolphins84te Redmond, OR Member

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    Cool. That's what I was really looking for. A new BARGAIN name. Anyone have anything bad to say about Barska?
     
  6. Intoodeep

    Intoodeep Beaverton, OR Member

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    The best hunting scope for $200 will hands down be a Nikon 3x9 used...can be had for $200 all the time. Cool part is it will hold its value, now buy one of the off name brands and you likely will have a scope with little to no value on resale.
    One other scope you may want to look at would be a Super Sniper but it only comes in fixed power and clear glass.....good for rats not so good for general hunting.

    With your goal of needing a hunting scope and varmint scope get the clearest glass possible. When using any scope at higher magnification cheap glass will be dark and bad on the eyes. Waterproof is a must in the NW...:thumbup:
     
  7. cbzdel

    cbzdel Tacoma, WA Member

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    Nikon scopes have been my favorite to date when comparing price to product :)

    Amazon.com has the best deal on the Nikon Pro Staff 3x9 if I recall correctly. (I purchased a few months ago)
     
  8. HahnsXD

    HahnsXD Battle Ground WA Active Member

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    I've heard nothing but good things about Mueller scopes, I plan to get a 8-32x44 and a 4-14x40 pretty soon for a couple rifles.
     
  9. mortre

    mortre Yelm, WA Active Member

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    Personally, I own Leupold's and a Nikon. I generally prefer Leupold for two reasons. They have an excellent reputation for their customer service. Nikon's is far from bad, but I have seen a lot more negative reviews of their CS than Leupold's. Also, having a current Military I.D. can get you some substantial savings. But you have to e-mail them a copy of your I.D. and they will then E-mail you a price list and you have to order directly from them. I think this also extends to LEO's and the like, you would have to check.

    But for what it's worth, I do think Nikon's have better glass when you compare similar price point scopes.
     
  10. bugeye

    bugeye Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I'm a cheap guy, who both likes and needs (still have two in college) to get the best cheapest sorts of things.

    I like the 6-24x44 TruGlow scope I got from Natchez for $60 plus shipping. Optics are very clear, the AO feature works, the quick focus eyepiece is good the reticle is very clear and the open adjustable turret 1/8 moa adjustments work fine, and it comes with practical screwed in lens covers. I have a Barska 6-20x50 AO that works pretty well on a 17hmr too but it is not even close to the optical quality of the truGlow. I got the mil dot with the illumination, though I've never used that feature except for playing with it.

    Yeah, I've never owned, but have looked through $2000 scopes and they are really great even through my plastic eyeglass lenses, but this TruGlow is a really good deal for $70. I've only had it for 6 months shooting bench once a week, so I don't know long term reliability. This scope has exposed turrets so it isn't for the woods!

    Looking at this TruGlow tasco may have something to do with the manufacture but it is of higher optical quality than any similar tasco I've ever seen, and much better than the varmint tasco 6-24x42 AO I have on a savage 22, as that scope refuses to focus all colors for a single AO setting, I make it a point to only shoot monochrome targets with it.
     
  11. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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  12. onearmedswordsman

    onearmedswordsman Hillsboro, OR Member

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    Selecting a scope is one of the toughest things for me. After I narrow down my needs and wants, I go here swfa.com, and look for something the meets. If I don't like their price, I shop around.
     
  13. Phillyfan

    Phillyfan Oregon City, Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Pentax actually makes some very good scopes in that range.
     
  14. litesong

    litesong Everett, Washington New Member

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    If you're really pinched for money, you might consider a 'fixed' power scope. Possibly, the nth degree of accuracy may be missing, but an extremely sharp, narrow reticle AND glare resistant 'fixed' wide-angle 6-power scope should give fine long distance & varmint results without being completely unmanageable at close ranges. My 2.5 power phantom pistol scope on my Thompson Contender consistently printed half inch groups at 50 yards. With a 6 power scope, half inch to 3 quarter inch (or smaller) rifle groups at 100 yards with an accurate rifle, should be easy.
     
  15. joken

    joken Corvallis Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    You can get a NIKON TEAM PRIMOS 3-9x40 BDC for $199. It is a Monarch scope and they are high quality for not much money. I have 3 of them. Ken
     
  16. DoktorT

    DoktorT Chewelah, WA Member

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    This is from a surveyor with 40 years experience in long distance observations with optical instruments, along with refined skills in analysis of instrument and observation errors. In all cases, the brighter the optics the more accurate the observations. The best glass in the world is Zeiss. The difference side to side with anything else is stunning. For hunting, anything done near dawn or dusk or overcast requires the extra collection of light only the best glass can provide.

    I don't know where Leupold gets their glass. Like many of the best names in optics, I suspect they buy glass billits from Zeiss, then grind them and coat them in-house.

    Looking at the camera lens industry there are two manufactures who stand out. Again, Zeiss and then Nikon. In camera lens parlance, a 'fast' lens means better light collection. A higher percentage of the light hitting the lens gets through to the focal plane. Faster shutter speed at any particular f stop opening.

    As far as a rifle scope, best value for the buck for me would be a Leupold, showing light use only, at something like 70% or less of new cost. It will insure quality glass, durability, and stability just a magnitude or more better than the Bushnells of the world.

    As a side note, in the early 70's I did design work with Stevens, Thompson and Runyan Engineers. The Stevens who founded that company also was the principal who founded Leupold and Stevens of optics fame.
     
  17. longcolt

    longcolt Zephyrhills, FL Active Member

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    In your price range I would check out the following.

    Sightron SII
    Bushnell - Elite 3200
    Nikon Prostaff or Buckmaster

    Maybe the new Redfield by Leupold, I hear its a good value.

    I too have one the TurGlos and like it a lot for playing around and target shooting. Not for wet conditions with the open adjustments.

    Maybe Muller?