View Full Version : Spotting Scope
December 18, 2004, 12:35 AM
What would be a good spotting scope for NRA Hi-power? I want to be able to see holes at 300 yards, and it needs to be powerful enough for scoring at 600 yards, so what would be the suggested power and minimum objective diameter? When I'm prone, I like the straight eyepiece, but I know in competition, the spotter usually sits, so would the 45-degree be better? Does anyone have any experience with Alpen, Zhumell, or Barska? I'd like to find something under $300, would love some suggestions on what to get, where to purchase, and where to find a good tripod for it. Thanks!
December 18, 2004, 07:50 PM
I want to be able to see holes at 300 yards, and it needs to be powerful enough for scoring at 600 yards, so what would be the suggested power and minimum objective diameter? When I'm prone, I like the straight eyepiece, but I know in competition, the spotter usually sits, so would the 45-degree be better? Does anyone have any experience with Alpen, Zhumell, or Barska? I'd like to find something under $300,
I think those might be mutally exclusive. Jim Owens at Jarheadtop.com (http://www.jarheadtop.com/products.html) has a Guardforce 45 degree scope with a 20x40 eyepiece and tripod for $220, I think those will take the Kowa eyepieces, so you could sell the 20x40 and buy a 25x LER eyepiece from Kowa and start off pretty good. If you have pit service, it's not the holes you'll need to see, you'll have spotter discs to see way out there. Maybe it's just me, but I've had troubles seeing .22 caliber holes at 300 with a Kowa 821 on a hot day. I just bought myself a Kowa 661 from Jim, I can't recommend him enough, but he's moving from WA to AL, so you might have to wait a few weeks to get a hold of him again. I'd say somewhere around a 60mm objective bell would be good; don't bother with variable power eyepieces, a fixed 25x or 27x, somewhere around there, will do you good. Do get a long eye relief eyepiece if a scope you're looking at offers it. Kowa, Leica, and Swarvoski(sp) seem to be common on the line, I don't have any experience with the brands you mentioned. Matter of fact, Jim's got a used Kowa TSN-1 with an Ewing stand on his site for $575. I'd jump on that if you could, I doubt that will last long.
December 18, 2004, 08:29 PM
I have a Kowa 60mm, my coach has an 82mm. Neither can be counted on to show bullet holes in the black at 300 yards. Some days yes, some days no. As L. says, shoot matches with pit crews and the spotting markers are readily visible with most scopes.
December 19, 2004, 12:21 AM
On nice days without a lot of mirage, I can pick up .22 caliber bulletholes at 300. I've shot only reduced course matches without pit service. A white garbage bag rigged up behind the black of your target makes holes look like they have white golf tees in them. With pit service, you'll be seeing 2-1/2" spotter discs instead of .22 or .30 caliber bullet holes.
Oh yeah, on stands, when you say tripod, you might have difficulty fooling around with the tripod that comes packaged with most mass market scopes. A dedicated, high quality scope stand is a better choice, albeit more costly than the tripod. Something from someone like First Strike (http://www.first-strike-products.com) , Giraud (http://www.giraud-tool.com) , or Ray-Vin (http://www.ray-vin.com) amongst others will do you better than the tripod.
edited cause I said stand instead of scope
January 3, 2005, 06:09 AM
For High Power the spotting scope is almost as important as your rifle IMHO. There are no scopes out there that will always pick up .22 holes at 300 yards, .30 cal Maybe once in awhile. Var. power scopes sound nice but don't work well in real life. I used a straight angle lens for years then went to an angled lens. I found I prefer the angles lens. A fair lower end scope is a CC645 found at Champion's Choice:
Next is the scope stand. I have the CC500 also found at Champion's Choice but if I was doing it over I would look at a EWING or the CC700SJ.
Another new web site for those interested in High Power is:
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