View Full Version : Good beginner scope for a 30-30 lever action

December 29, 2009, 02:03 PM
Noob question- I placed a 30-30 lever action on lay-a-way yesterday.
The rifle will be used msotly for wild hog hunting in south central texas.
Our terrain is mostly rolling hills & thick to moderate brush.
As of now , the rifle has a scope on it,but it is a side mount scope for a right handed shooter. [ I'm left handed ]
This is my first scoped rifle & at frist , I'm thinking about trying right handed shooting ,but eventualy would like to purchase another scope for the rifleso that I can shoot it left handed.
With a high respect for the posters on this board & their wealth of info , is there any good recommendation on a good beginner scope setup ?
Last detail , most of my shooting will be about 100 -200 yrds. max.
Thanks in advance for the info. :)

December 29, 2009, 02:53 PM
If you don't have much to sped there are Nikon pro staff 3X9-40 on amazon for $134. Optics planet has some fixed powered leopolds for around $200, I'm actually pretty happy with my prostaff on my M99 savage. The prices for better scopes go way up from there.

December 29, 2009, 03:03 PM
Watch out for inexpensive fakes... usually on eBay or a website that looks a little sketchy with no history. I've seen, or heard of from reputable sources, fake Leupolds, Nikons, Burris, Bausch & Lomb and Hawke.
As stated by Eddie... Optics Planet is a good one for low prices and good customer service.


December 29, 2009, 03:10 PM
2-4X fixed power, not much need for a variable on a 30-30 IMO. Lots of good scopes out there. Nikon, Luepold have always placed high on my list. Weaver fixed power are great as well. I had a Weaver K4 on my 30-30 and was always plesed.

December 29, 2009, 03:12 PM
I run an old Weaver 4x on my win 94 30-30. I kill deer at 120 yards with it. IF you can find that promo luepold rifleman 3-9x that bass pro sells for $160ish that would be the ticket. They sold the riflemans out here at xmas in a day.

December 29, 2009, 03:14 PM
My 30/30 wears a williams reciever sight.IMHO scoped levers are blasphemy.

December 29, 2009, 04:55 PM
I have a stainless marlin 336 30-30. I wanted a stainless scope to go on it. I found a 3-9 Nikon Prostaff on eBay for $80. A little to much power for a 30-30, but the price was right. I've had real good luck finding killer deals on eBay if you look long enough. Just make sure it's a reputable seller.

December 29, 2009, 06:09 PM

December 29, 2009, 06:28 PM
Look at A nikon Prostaff 2x7x32. Nice little scope with all the magnification your 30-30 will need. $129. at Walmart.

December 29, 2009, 06:44 PM
First off, a peep sight is a better idea on a lever 30-30.

Ok, so you want glass on your handy lever action. Since a small scope is closer to no scope, something like a Burris Timberline 4x20 or 2-7x26 might be the way to go.


December 29, 2009, 07:24 PM
hey, well I just installed a scope on my marlin 3030 , 3X9 Leupold and used 55g accelerators , Used a bore site and grouped 3 bullets with in 2" at 100 yards
the first 3 shots just to see how they would group
not bad, wind was 10 mph from my left so I left it there to try a shot at 200 Yards when theres no wind and warmer weather


Deaf Smith
December 29, 2009, 07:46 PM
Wal-mart has Leupold 2x7 'Rifleman' scopes for a bit over 100 bucks. Real good quality for your 30/30.

December 29, 2009, 07:46 PM
hard to top the Pentax 1.75-5X Gameseeker for a perfect scope on a .30-30

December 29, 2009, 10:08 PM
yep, looks like mine


December 29, 2009, 10:17 PM
I would suggest something in a 3-9x40. You dont have to go real expensive, bushnell and tasco make scopes that will do the job for about $100 or so at walmart. The 30-30 is not considered a long range cartridge so extreme glass clarity is not necessary. Just something decent will do. I have an enexpensive 3-9 bushnell on mine and it works well.

December 29, 2009, 10:26 PM
They should pay guys for the knowledge you give out. :)
Thanks so much, I will be checking out Bass Pro & Wal-Mart for something in the $100.00 range.
It has a nice scope on it now, not sure of the brand.

December 29, 2009, 10:39 PM
Well you did not state which model of 30-30 lever gun you where trying to scope, but you did mention that it had a side mount scope on it, leading me to believe that it may be a top eject, not an angle eject, winchester. If that is true you may be forced to shoot right handed as I do not know if there is a left side mount available.:confused:Just a thought.:eek:

December 29, 2009, 10:54 PM
Bigwrench makes a very valid point. If you have a Winchester 30-30 like i'm thinking you will be stuck with the side mount. I have a couple of Marlin 336's. One sports a Bushnell Banner while I am looking for a Pentax for my other gun. They are hog guns so a high dollar scope is not needed for them.

December 29, 2009, 11:13 PM
well Im useing the 55g on my 30 30 , and will site that in 0 at 200 yards.

December 29, 2009, 11:14 PM
I third the motion to go with iron sights.

December 29, 2009, 11:21 PM
Naw! Ill keep my scope, if I want to sling a heavy slug out there at 100 yards, Ill use the SKS

seal hunting with the 55g should be fun

December 29, 2009, 11:52 PM
I have the Cabelas Lever Action scope on my Marlin 336. I'm very pleased with the scope. It's not a $17,000 dollar Leupold, but for the money, it's pretty good glass and they're great overall. They're perfect for .30-30's (hmmmm, maybe the name kinda gave that away, and the fact that they're calibrated for lever action calibers????:D) They're great scopes that you don't have to sell your car to afford:eek:

December 30, 2009, 09:45 AM
Skip the Walmart scope and get a Williams Foolproof receiver sight, what nature intended.

December 30, 2009, 10:35 AM
At the moment, my first thought is to try shooting right handed when I get it out of lay-a-way.
It is not that heavy of a rifle & I have shot .22 riflfes right handed at times for fun.
Either way, I would like it scoped for the evening light advantage.
Like most say, it is a 30-30, while my shots mostly being 100-200 yrds.
Iron sights won't kill me.
Thanks guys, the info on this board sure has been helpful. :)

Art Eatman
December 30, 2009, 10:51 AM
IMO, folks get a bit carried away about high-power variables. Sure, they're nice, but nowhere near necessary.

I have found that 2.5X and 3X is plenty for jackrabbits to 100 yards or so, and coyotes to around 200 is easy with a 4X. Heck, I killed one buck at 350 with my 3x9 set on 3X. DRT, one-shot kill.

Sure, I'll crank a 2x7 to 7X for prairie dogs to 300 yards, but the high end is mostly for load-testing at the benchrest. Field of view is more important when actually hunting.

All that is why I have the casual opinion that for the money, for a hunter, any decent fixed 4X is about as good as it gets.

December 30, 2009, 10:58 AM
How about this Burris?


December 30, 2009, 11:02 AM
Thanks, that is a nice scope for sure.
If I have to buy a new scope setup, I looking to pay around the $100.00 mark if not less.
I have bookmark that scope.
thanks again !

December 30, 2009, 12:37 PM
Check out the Weaver V series in something like a 1-3x20 or a 1-4x20

If we're still talking about the same kind of hunting as in your other thread, it is a near perfect solution, and in my opinion matches up to the far more expensive alternatives. Look at the reviews on midwayusa.com

It will exceed your budget by a little bit, but if I remember correctly, they can be had for under $150.

Just remember, there's no need for a 500 yard scope on a 200 yard rifle.

December 30, 2009, 07:12 PM
I put this scope on my Winchester. Classic lines that don't over power the handling of a fine lever action.



December 30, 2009, 07:21 PM
you'll want a low power variable for quick, close shots. I use a bushnell trophy 1.75-5 for my 336 in 35 rem. it holds up well, and I know I won't take many shots longer than 100 yds. it's my brushgun.

December 30, 2009, 09:10 PM
BUshnell "Dawn to Dusk" series 1.5 to 5X40, for the 336?

Workes nicely on mine, low-powered for heavy brush use and good power for the 150 yds shot. (BUT Practice, not just the week before the opener)

December 31, 2009, 07:34 PM
I second the Burris. Forever Warranty is tough to beat. I've had their little 20mm 4x on a bolt action 308 for several years now.

Dis you ever find out if you have a Winchester made gun or not? The fact that its set up for a righty might mean that its a top-eject model Winchester made 94 model. If its not a top-eject, then it will be an angle-eject model. The casings still pop out of the top, but at an angle so that the casing clears the scope and doesn't sling back in your face when there's no scope. If its an angle-eject, you can lose the righty scope mounts and get a center-aligned scope mount.

January 1, 2010, 01:35 AM
I went with a Leupold VX-I 2-7x33 on my 336A. 2x gives a nice field of view, I like the 7x at the bench, and I prefer the 33mm objective over a 20mm from a light gathering standpoint. I feel that anything more takes away from the field of view while being heavier and bulkier, and gives you little usable benefits to offset that. Given that it is on a .30-30, there isn't anything you can do with it with a 9x that you can't do just as well with a 7x. For that matter, you really don't even need 7x, that just comes along with the rest of the package.

I mounted it on a Weaver mount using Leupold low profile QRW rings. It turns out that the stock irons are still usable with the scope unmounted. It makes for a good "Plan B".

January 1, 2010, 11:44 AM
If you tell us exactly the make and model of the rifle, we can be a lot more helpful. Based on the info you provided, I have to echo the other posters who said that you might have few options.

If the rifle has a side-mount on it, there probably wasn't another choice. That means that it's most likely a top-eject Win. 94. I also don't know of anyone who makes a lefty scope mount for that rifle. You've stated that you want to use scope so one option would be to mount a long eye-relief scope forward in a scout mount. A fixed power in 2-4X would be the ticket for fast shooting and short ranges.

If someone put a side-mount on an angle-eject 94, all you need is a new mount. With very few exceptions, the scopes are the same whether they are mounted left, right or center.

sc outdoorsman
January 1, 2010, 11:57 AM
I just put a Nikon Prostaff 3x9x40 on my son's rifle. I dont think there is a better scope for the cost. The fixed power versions are a great deal from walmart. If I had a 30/30 thats what I would top it off with.

January 1, 2010, 03:07 PM
+1 on the pro staff 3-9x40. i would use high rise mounts so u can still use your iron sights as well as your scope

January 4, 2010, 12:06 PM
LOCKED CJ7, If I remember correctly , it is a Winchester mdoel 54, sears , just looked on the ticket & it says win. model sears 54 :)

January 4, 2010, 06:20 PM
Put a peep sight on it. They cost less than a scope and are very accurate, more so than regular open sights.


Here is another link you may have already found:


Fat White Boy
January 4, 2010, 09:57 PM
It's a .30-30, not a .270. As Tom Horn said, "It's got the trajectory of a rainbow!" I have a bolt action .30-30 that I put a 4X fixed power on it, which is plenty of scope for a .30-30...

January 4, 2010, 11:27 PM
I would say go with the peep as well. If you find an aperature that matches the size of the front sight hood when looking through it, the peep can be verry acurate and also works well when shooting with eathner hand.