The Perfect Ground Hog Rifle!

Discussion in 'Varminter & Hunting Forum' started by onelastshot, Jun 10, 2013.

  1. onelastshot

    onelastshot Site $$ Contributor

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    Straightforward, I've spent way too much time on this particular build. I purchased a German Mauser model 98 action, sent it to McGowen in Montana and had a heavy barrel chambered 6mmAI installed. I made a custom stock for it, all that's left is still need to have the bolt turned and mount a scope.

    My intention is to use this as my groundhog gun, 200-400 yard shots. I don't shoot enough to justify shooting beyond 500 yards.

    Taking into the above mentioned information, I would appreciate any suggestions as to type of scope, power and reticle you would choose.
     
  2. CatShooter

    CatShooter

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    200 to 400 yards is not a big challenge for scopes - any decent 4.5x14 or 6.5x20 will do better than you need.. as to reticles, it is personal choice - I prefer fine cross hairs, or fine cross hairs with a 1/4 or 1/2 minute dot.

    Some guys like mildots, but you can't use them on live targets of unknown size.
     
  3. ShootDots

    ShootDots Site $$ Contributor

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    I shoot Prairie Dogs and can tell you that they are MUCH smaller than woodchucks. I use a "normal" "Dual-X" type crosshair. If you go TOO FINE you will NOT be able to see them in early morning or near dark>>unless you have an illuminated crosshair.. My favorite scope for hunting this type of varmint is a Nikon 6.5 - 20 powder with their "Dual-X" crosshair.... I have shot AT, have not yet hit, prairie dogs at 650yrds and beyond. I said that to tell you that I can EASILY see them and have no trouble holding on them with 20 power at those ranges!
     
  4. 357Mag

    357Mag

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    One L S -

    Howdy !

    If you can afford a Leupold, their 6.5 X 20 w/ " CPC " crosshair worked just dandy on my groundhog rifle(s).
    That, after using Leupold 12X, 16X; and 24X fixed-power scopes.... all w/ the CPC crosshair.
    My tendency has been to keep going up on magnification, it seems.

    These days, my combo varmint/target rifle wears a Weaver T-36, outfitted w/ a Gene Davis 2X optical booster.
    This was my way of getting the higher-power magnification that one sees in-use on many LR rifles; without my having to
    $$$ a Nightforce or March. Optical boosters don't work for everybody, but they certainly do work for many shooters.

    The boosted T-36 had the normal 1/8" " Dot ", 'ala benchrest practice. It has not proven any sort of impediment to shooting
    live varmints ( groundhogs, fer sher ).

    I can't give you any input on use of those more complex reticles, such as the bullet drop compensating variety; etc.
    For my type of shooting and given the external ballistics provided by my loads, I never felt any need to go w/ the multi-dot
    set-ups ( and other similar stuff ).

    IMHO - when operating a flat-shooting varmint rifle/cartridge at under 500yd..... I myself don't believe one HAS TO have a laser rangefinder.

    There are other scopes to be had, with 6X24 being a fairly common upper-limit on power... before optics choices become more highly specialized.

    And again, when shooting distances like less than 500yd, you probably won't have-to-have a 20moa scope base.
    If your cartridge shoots fairly " flat ", even a scope w/ a 1" tube should not run out of elevation.


    With regards,
    357Mag
     
  5. WyleWD

    WyleWD

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    I'm guessing that if a fellow sends a Mauser action rifle from Conn. to Montana to have a groundhog rifle made then he's pretty serious about it. So with that assumption..... get a 5.5-22 Night Force with the NP-R2 reticle with zero stop. And a really good Leica range finder then you'll be all set. WD
     
  6. Bobthenailer

    Bobthenailer

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    I have built several Mauser rigs, all very accurate! I would suggest a Leatherwood Hi-Lux 7-30x50 Uni-Dial scope, they can had for under $350.00, I like the no math mil dot with very user friendly and quick ranging reticule. I have one on my 6mm-284, these are the only two places I have found the scope for sale at good prices.

    Have fun with your build!

    http://www.natchezss.com/product.cfm?contentID=productDetail&prodID=LFUD730X50MD&src=tpCtgOp

    http://swfa.com/Leatherwood-7-30x50-Uni-Dial-30mm-Rifle-Scope-P11916.aspx
     

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  7. K22

    K22

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    Three features on a varmint scope that you should consider besides quality is, cross hair type, power, and objective size.

    I do not like fine cross hairs for hunting groundhogs - for me especially in the early evenings, it becomes difficult to see them. I have had the cross hairs on two of my Leupolds replaced with the stardard duplex and found these type of cross hairs to work much better for me.

    I don't believe you need anything more powerful than 20x for the distances you are shooting. I would consider a 16x in the Bushnell 4200 Elite series with the multi-plex recticle. I have one on my 223 and find it excellent.

    The 50 MM objective is the way the go, especially for it superior light gathering capabilities.
     
  8. onelastshot

    onelastshot Site $$ Contributor

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    Thanks for the replies, I greatly appreciate it. Based upon the information given, I'm going to back off the Idea of a 36X or 40X power which was my original intent. 24X power sounds to be about the middle of suggestions and I'll look at those, or something close.

    Fine cross hairs don't sound to be the route for morning or evening shooting so I will look at the Dual-X cross hairs as well as the duplex and mildots.

    I've considered the Nightforce if I can find a good used one, but I recently heard that they are being built in China. Regardless of quality, I'm not going to pay $$$$ for China goods. I will check out the Leupold with the CPC reticle as 357Mag mentioned and keep in mind to go with the larger objective size. I didn't think of that either.

    Thanks again to everyone for taking the time for providing your input.
     
  9. 2506

    2506

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    Even with a variable scope don't get one that starts out with too much power like the 8.5-25.
    In the hot summer the heat waves that you pick up even with a 8.5 powder are murder. That groundhog looks like he is break dancing out there. ;D A 4.5-14 or 6.5-20 will fill your needs.
     
  10. CatShooter

    CatShooter

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    David... It's true.

    Don'cha know that you can't put something on the internet unless it's true???

    :) :) :) :) :)

    Meow.
     
  11. onelastshot

    onelastshot Site $$ Contributor

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    Update. Just did some research. It seems that Nightforce scopes are a multinational manufacturing product. The components of each scope vary in origin. Scoped are designated as "made in XYZ" based upon the origin of the majority of parts. Some will say made in USA, while others will say made in Japan, etc.

    From what I've found in researching this morning, parts are manufactured in Japan, Australia as well as the US. If I find additional info, I'll update again. I am trying to find out where assembly takes place. Their "headquarters" are in Idaho, but that means nothing.
     
  12. WyleWD

    WyleWD

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    Just curious here, but did you vet the true origin of your "German Mauser 98" as thoroughly as you are the Night Force scopes? There were some of those things made that are in fact dangerous to put a modern rifle barrel onto.

    And there is a good reason that you won't find a Night Force scope "cheap". They ARE that good. ;) WD
     
  13. onelastshot

    onelastshot Site $$ Contributor

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    Actually, I did. The model 98 I have was a production run built in Berlin in 1935 for Brazil. These Mausers are considered to be one of the best ever made.

    While I know Nightforce produces an excellent product and almost anything you buy today comes from China or, oversees, my preference is to buy American. If I were buying a new receiver, I'd go through the same process. There are too many dying cities like Detroit or cities crippled from the loss of manufacturing jobs. One of the reasons I refuse to shop at Walmart.
     
  14. remo101

    remo101 Site $$ Contributor

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    For the money you can`t beat the Weaver Grand Slam 6X to 20X I have 4 and I wouldn`t trade or sell any of them .In fact soon there will be # 5. I Get them from Natchez Shooter Supply .Great Prairie dog scope .Also Groundhog .I live in Ohio close to Pa so Groundhogs get the most attention.BOB
     
  15. jonbearman

    jonbearman I live in new york state,how unfortunate ! Site $$ Contributor

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    Who cares that it is a german mauser type reciever,we are really talking about what scope to buy versus damning someone for buying a mauser.There are no 100 percent american scopes anymore and most have japenese glass anyways.Good luck on your search,I would buy a 6.5x20x40mmor 50mm leupold if you can afford it.I have one on my 22-250 remmy and it works great for woodchucking.
     
  16. WyleWD

    WyleWD

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    Jon, in my post about the Mausers I was only concerned about the safety factor. We have a local 'smith who specializes in Mauser conversions that absolutely will NOT build a modern caliber on some of the Mauser actions. He cites that some of them were built under far less than ideal conditions in regards to available additives to make the steel hard enough to be safe under modern higher pressure conditions, and a questionable amount of quality control. In addition to some having been through various armories for rebuild, thence a possible mixture of good and poor quality parts.

    A few years back I got what I thought was a good deal on a Mauser that I wanted to build into a 6.5-06, he tested it and thought it was too soft, sent it to a local metalurgist for confirmation who vigorously confirmed his suspicions. :eek: One lesson learned is worth a thousand told... :-[ WD
     
  17. onelastshot

    onelastshot Site $$ Contributor

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    Thanks for your input.
     
  18. onelastshot

    onelastshot Site $$ Contributor

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    You are correct, I could have used a Remington or other American made. If I were to purchase new, I would have. In this case I just wanted to try the classic Mauser. The only issue I've tried to make is I'm tired of all the China crap. That's the only non-American product I have issue with; we owe them trillions and China is a critical issue in our loss of manufacturing.

    Nightforce is an excellent product and I'm certain it's only a matter of time before I own one. You are correct, virtually all scopes are an international mix of products. I am simply going to purchase the best non-Chinese value I can find. At present, I looking at a Schmidt & Bender that's new-used. Purchased by someone who never mounted it. If I can save $1,000 and own one of the very best......
     

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