Spoting scope unicorn

Discussion in 'Gear Talk: What to Buy? and Gear Evaluations' started by Ksmirk, Jul 25, 2017.

  1. Ksmirk

    Ksmirk

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    Well I've been reading and checking reviews and to be totally truthful I think I could have been using my time better doing something else as I'm more confused now than when I started searching! so now I'm wondering if what I'm looking for even exists so I thought I would just ask a few folks and see if I can get some real world replies to help me narrow down my search. Here's what I'm looking for,

    I have gotten into the ELR shooting and am mainly looking for something I can spot hits or misses out to 2500, I've not gotten there yet but hey a guys gotta have goals :) I have gotten out to 1350 so I'm getting there. I was looking at a compact as some of the places we shoot it takes a little effort to get too and I've been looking in the $500 range.

    If I'm wasting my time just tell me I'm good with that as I think I am and thinking I need to save some more pennies and find a place I can drive too and just get a larger scope so how far off am I in my thinking? thanks for any info you can pass my direction. Later,

    Kirk
     
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  2. scubohuntr

    scubohuntr

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    If you want to even see targets at 2500, you'll have to add a zero to your price range. As far as seeing hits or misses at that range, even with the best scopes you won't get that kind of detail 90% of the time. Any dust, mirage, humidity, or smoke and you won't be seeing much, no matter what scope you have.

    That said, if I had an urge to get into ELR and the money to do it, first I'd go get a CAT scan to check for brain damage. If that came back negative and the exorcism didn't take, I'd start with a Kowa 883 or high-end Swarovski and move up from there. You definitely don't want a zoom eyepiece, except maybe to decide how much magnification you need.
     
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  3. Fred Bohl

    Fred Bohl Gold $$ Contributor

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    Kirk,

    I think your wasting your time and dollars. Assuming 50 cal. at 2500 yards you would need 105 mm objective, 60x magnification and perfect seeing (clear air, no mirage) and then it would still be a faint hole on the white.
     
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  4. Daveinjax

    Daveinjax Silver $$ Contributor

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    At $500 you're wasting your time and at $5000 you're mostly going to be frustrated. Conditions will have to be close to perfect to see bullet holes at 2500 yards. The ATX 95 I have is as good a spotting scope as is made and I can rarely use the 70x magnification due to atmospherics. Like someone already said , dust , mirage , veiling haze , etc all work against you. There's a good reason they make remote viewing camera systems. If you're shooting rocks you will be able to see hits on fresh rocks but once you've hit it some the hits blend together.
     
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  5. Ksmirk

    Ksmirk

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    I know there is nothing shy of the Hubble that would show me bullet holes at 2500! I wouldn't even expect or believe anyone who told me they had something that would but it would be nice to be able to spot impacts. I've done some more reading today and think it best to just stash pennies back until I can get more spotter and until then I'll just stay behind the scope and spot. I can see impacts at 1760 with the riflescope now at 20X granted none of them have been mine yet :( but hey getting there.

    scubohuntr, this has been a long while in the making! started probably 30 years ago.... just kept getting bored at 100 yards so went to 200 then 300 etc. etc. I'm lucky as I have a rather good friend who helps me build my rifles so I just get a little here and there until I get a pile of stuff to put together I go over and fire up the lathe so it's not as bad as it sounds and yes I've had CAT scans and they found nothing abnormal which surprised me lol and I'm Catholic so I've got an "in" on the exorcisms ;) and believe it or not a 24" plate that far out isn't really that difficult to see! it is rather small at 20X but doable just not by me yet.

    Fella's thanks for the replies! pretty much what I already knew but hey thought I would ask just in case there was some mystical unicorn spotter out there. Later,

    Kirk
     
  6. IdahoSharpshooter

    IdahoSharpshooter Gold $$ Contributor

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    A March 8-80 is probably your best bet. A little over $3000, though.
     
  7. R.Morehouse

    R.Morehouse Gold $$ Contributor

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    If you want to see your shots a long distance i suggest a long range camera system.............;)
     
  8. Rtheurer

    Rtheurer

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    Kirk

    Here is an idea I stole from someone, ( cant remember who it was) I take a set of two way radio's. Put one behind the target and set on VOX. so when you hit the target, it keys the mike and you can hear the impact as if it was right beside you... because... well it is.
    As far as Spotting scopes, Well the real problem is that even with the best of glass, you will only be able to see as well as the quality of air will allow you. I have an 80mm Swaro that I use for long range spotting shooting steel. The air and light conditions have to be JUST Right to see beyond a Mile. The slightest bit of mirage and its no good. Same for the sounding area the target is set at. In a dry area with loose soil you can see dust on impact around the target, any high vegetation or damp soil and you don't get that bullet splash you need to correct and actually learn what your doing. That is the intent... to learn.
    Just last month I set out my 36" round at the Farm. Backed up to the hill top and shot at 1516yds. Problem was that the Sun as it was coming up directly behind the target. Its amazing that a huge 36"Bright White target with the shadow on its face can disappear into the background is hard to believe. Sun angle was a large part of this issue.
    Things that matter for seeing impacts in and around.
    -Soil
    -Vegetation
    -Light and angle
    - mirage or air quality
    - Size of projectile
    - quality of glass or optics
    - angle of back stop... hill side works best.

    These are some thing we have learned over the years. Sure is fun to launch a 7mm 180gr hybrid, get back on target to watch the plate move and hear that... CLANG!!!.... at a mile! Goodtimes.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2017
  9. wwbrown

    wwbrown Silver $$ Contributor

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    A lot of people want to see their shots are long range, put whatever number you want for long range. If you are talking seeing the holes made by the bullets on the paper the problem is the air not the optics after around 600 yards. Yes, at times and unique locations target holes can be seen farther than that, but rarely.

    Maybe we are looking at the problem all wrong!
    Maybe we need to look at different rifles (or weapons), launch a mortar with a HE round and you can easily see the impact at 600 yards with the bare eye. I may be taking the OP's idea a little different but apparently we are supposed to think outside the box.

    Alternatively, we could change the target to something that would go bang or emit light and/or smoke when hit by a round. Imagine a car full of tannerite, I bet you could see that puppy get hit at better than a mile, watch out for flying engine blocks and axles.

    Kind of the corollary to Many Ways to Skin a Cat.
     
  10. Ksmirk

    Ksmirk

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    wwbrown I sorta like your thinking BUT I've got to feed this rifle and well I've got a decent job but not good enough to feed mortars lol thought about a 20mm but have you tried to find a reamer hehe. Well I finally got the ol' turd rifle completed enough I'm going to find out if I'll get going or have to rethink things..... this is my first belted magnum I've ever chambered and well it has been a bit of a learning curve being I'm a short action kinda fella and the 308 and 243 I'm confident with but something about 80 something grains of powder has me concerned a little.

    So far I've found that out to 1400 isn't too bad to spot but the backstops are pretty good except the other day after a rain shower came thru and I stopped at 1200 or I would have just wasted ammo so I still have some room to grow and I'd rather purchase the right tool other than just get something that isn't going to work so I'll stash my pennies and try to figure it out as I go for the spotter but I have had some time behind one and the time of day, sun, mirage, all sorts of things seem to really make quality glass not seem to great so I understand the effects of atmosphere with spotting and I'd have never even thought the atmosphere would effect my ability to spot shots and hell I'd have never thought I'd be shooting as far either! now I just hope I get to where I am hitting and not just shooting :)

    Fella's thanks for the advice! I normally always get solid info from the guys on this site. Later,

    Kirk
     
  11. ebb

    ebb

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    Some of the guys that shoot elk out that far use what they call "big eyes". I don't know the power they use but they put 2 spotting scopes in a bracket and make a giant set of binoculars. Set these up on a tripod. Ask at Long Range Hunting.
     
  12. MislMan

    MislMan

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    I still believe air quality is the big factor. However, you might try asking around on a website dedicated to folks using telescopes and see if they have any ideas or tricks/equipment that may work. Otherwise the remote camera idea might be a solution.
     
  13. Sled2live

    Sled2live

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    I think the gentleman's reply suggesting looking into remote camera might be the only practical way to accomplish your objective. I recently was at a 1000 yrd range where the fellow next to me was using a camera system...worked great.
     
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  14. XTR

    XTR

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  15. Mulligan

    Mulligan Silver $$ Contributor

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    ^^^^^^yep^^^^^^^^
    CW
     
  16. carlsbad

    carlsbad Details matter. Silver $$ Contributor

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    Not a unicorn. You are looking for an exemption to the laws of physics. --Jerry
     
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  17. Ksmirk

    Ksmirk

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    My club has a little match with AR's this weekend more of a fun get together for bragging rights but I'll have the chance to look thru several different spotters, while the weather is supposed to be decent I'm hoping to get some sort of an idea.... we only shoot to 500 meters but hoping it will give me some sort of idea on a direction.

    I have a reaal good feeling that when I get into this shots will have to take place rather early in the AM or wait until the weather gets a bit more high power scope friendly! I was shooting my 20X this weekend and the weather was 95 deg and humidity of close to 60% and while I could still see the targets were dancing around! kicked the magnification back to around 12X and cleared things up but yea I know where you guys are coming from that the weather conditions will handicap even the best of spotters. I appreciate the replies and advice on this subject! it's always good to hear from folks that have and use the equipment in the real world so a big thanks guys. Later,

    Kirk
     
  18. dickn52

    dickn52 Silver $$ Contributor

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    White targets will show a whole lot more than a black target...of course.
     

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