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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 5/27/2005 12:51:56 PM EDT
After 50 years of shooting, I finally decided yesterday while sighting in my new RRA that I need a spotting scope. I sure would appreciate some recs. I don't want to go to the low end and wind up with junk, but nothing over about $500.00. Tell me what you use and I would be grateful.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 12:57:43 PM EDT
What range do you need to be able to see .22 holes? 100, 200, 300 yards? more?
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 1:03:44 PM EDT
I use SIBIR YUKON spotting scope......variable 20-50x, 50mm lens, under a 100 bucks, light weight, very compact.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 4:00:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/27/2005 4:04:09 PM EDT by DevL]
I use an inexpensive Bushnell out to 300 yards for .22 but its difficult to see the holes at that range but I do it. Check the lower end Kowa if you want to actually have superior optics and spend to your $500 limit.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 4:28:16 PM EDT
Kowa 15-35x50mm Straight, Black Body w/ED Lens Gift Set

I have seen this sell for $500... you loose the abilty to have swapable bayonette mounts for different eyepieces over the 60mm versions but you get an ED lens. Without the ED lens you can get the same unit with higher magnification (20-40) and case for around $300.

You could get a 20-40X eyepiece with a 60mm body for about $550-565.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 5:42:28 PM EDT
I was going to post this:

I’m planning to buy a new spotting scope sometime soon.

The scope I have now isn’t all that bad. Just don’t try to look beyond 100 or 200 yards with it. Focusing properly is a nightmare. I’m really better off setting my riflescopes to max power and looking through them at 200 yards distance and beyond.

So I’m going to buy a scope that will actually focus from time to time.
But who should I think of?

As much as I would like to buy a Swarovski, I don’t think I could afford one.
The same with other high ends like Zeiss.
At the moment I’m thinking of Howa, but I’m not certain yet.
And I truly wish that Leupold spotting scopes had magnification up to 60 power.

And suggestions of a decent spotting scope?

Lower level Howa?

I'll continue to think about it. Either way it will be a while before I'll have the money to spare.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 6:30:46 PM EDT
Try to test candidates before buying. There are few things worse than having a spotting scope that doesn't do what you want.

I strongly recommend going no higher than 30X. This will allow you to see .22 holes at 200 yards if the mirage is not too bad. If the mirage is up you will have trouble seeing .30 holes at 100 yards. Yesterday I was barely able to make out .22 holes at 100 yards with my 20X Super Sniper. Terrible mirage. Higher magnification just magnifies mirage.

While I would love to have an 80mm Kowa with a 30X eyepiece my old B&L 60mm with 30X does a good job.

I am always amazed that people recommend spending big bucks on a Leupold rifle scope and then try to get by with a $100 spotter.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 6:30:55 PM EDT
I went through the exact same thing recently. I did a LOT of research before deciding on my spotting scope.

A few questions:

1 - Do you wear glasses? If so, you'll want to get a LER (Long eye-relief) lens.

2 - Any plans on ever using this for anything else, like birding?

3 - Any plans to use this in other than optimum daylight conditions (dusk, night, dawn?)

4 - Any plans on ever using it to spot while hunting (this is important since weight, weatherproofing, etc. comes into play.)

5 - Straight or angled? Each has advantages and disadvantages - I prefer angled since it is easy to use at the range and on hunts.


After considering all factors, I decided to choose a Fujinon 60mm - angled eye-piece, long-eye relief 27x lens. Took it out today and it was flawless. Fujinon makes incredible glass, and the LER helped since I wear glasses. I could see .22 LR holes no problem at 100 yards, and .223 holes at 200 yards were no problem either.

Now, that being said, the KOWA are very VERY nice as well.

Here is a GREAT site for learning all about spotting scopes:

www.optics4birding.com/Scopes.aspx

I would also check out birding sites - these people KNOW their shit when it comes to spotting scopes and binocs.

Alpen also makes some very good spotters for a good price.

Ebay is great for finding some really good deals - you might end up with a $800 spotter for $500 or less.

Link Posted: 5/27/2005 6:33:42 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mobius:
I use SIBIR YUKON spotting scope......variable 20-50x, 50mm lens, under a 100 bucks, light weight, very compact.



No insult intended, but these very inexpensive spotters are VERY poor compared to the higher end Kowa, Fujinon, B&L, Swaro, Zeiss glass. You can REALLY tell a difference when comparing them side-by-side.

Luckily, our poster has budgeted $500, which will allow him to get a VERY nice scope.
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 7:10:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Greywolf2112:

Originally Posted By mobius:
I use SIBIR YUKON spotting scope......variable 20-50x, 50mm lens, under a 100 bucks, light weight, very compact.



No insult intended, but these very inexpensive spotters are VERY poor compared to the higher end Kowa, Fujinon, B&L, Swaro, Zeiss glass. You can REALLY tell a difference when comparing them side-by-side.

Luckily, our poster has budgeted $500, which will allow him to get a VERY nice scope.

I agree with what you say, but the difference is that he only paid $100 which allows for the less quality. If it does what he wants, he got a great deal.

I just want to be able to see .223 holes at 220 yards, that is all. I don't want to pay more than I have to until I am ready to find a further range and start shooting at 300-500 yards (which isn't anytime soon).
Link Posted: 5/27/2005 8:54:15 PM EDT
I used to shoot benchrest and used a 36x Leupold on both my heavy and light varmint rifles....that puppy could really pick up the .22 and 6mm holes at 200 yards with no problem..even with mucho mirage. I guess that's what I'm aiming for. Thank you all for your comments. I'll try to take an up close and personal look at some. I would like to hear more input on the angled vs. straight eyepieces if you have a minute.

The eBay suggestion was welcomed..I've done well there with cameras, etc. I'll give it a look!
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 12:45:48 AM EDT
I checked out the site.

I never even heard of Yukon scopes.
I'll be checking back again later.

Fantastic.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 1:49:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/28/2005 3:19:36 AM EDT by CaptSchofield]
I have used several over the past 30 yrs and ordered some for my dept. first rule of thumb you gonna get what you pay for. compact and lightwieght is not always best. the larger the opening on the objective the better. For most ranges 20 to 30 is all the power you'll need, even at very long range. When shooting 600 yards at camp Perry back in the 80's for the Army reserve a 27 power scope was all we needed. Recently I tried a scope from Sportmans guide a 20X60 X90 MM Brunton
for $249 It's great and I am satisfied.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 3:19:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Anarchy:

Originally Posted By Greywolf2112:

Originally Posted By mobius:
I use SIBIR YUKON spotting scope......variable 20-50x, 50mm lens, under a 100 bucks, light weight, very compact.



No insult intended, but these very inexpensive spotters are VERY poor compared to the higher end Kowa, Fujinon, B&L, Swaro, Zeiss glass. You can REALLY tell a difference when comparing them side-by-side.

Luckily, our poster has budgeted $500, which will allow him to get a VERY nice scope.

I agree with what you say, but the difference is that he only paid $100 which allows for the less quality. If it does what he wants, he got a great deal.

I just want to be able to see .223 holes at 220 yards, that is all. I don't want to pay more than I have to until I am ready to find a further range and start shooting at 300-500 yards (which isn't anytime soon).



True - and trust me, I used to be VERY cheap when it came to optics - I figured if I could get sorta what I wanted for $100 then that would work. Problem was, sorta became "Damn, this is really not very good after all" and then I was out $100. If I had just ponied up another $100 or $200 I would have had "exactly" what I wanted for the rest of my life. I had a YUKON myself, and at first I thought it was OK at 100 yards, but then really started to notice that it wasn't very clear, and my eyes were getting tired looking through it all the time.

Seeing .223 bullet holes at 220 yards is possible, but they will be fuzzy, out of focus, etc. Spending $300 on a nice used high-quality spotter will be the best investment you can make - trust me.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 3:20:49 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/28/2005 3:21:32 AM EDT by Greywolf2112]

Originally Posted By oldCop:
I used to shoot benchrest and used a 36x Leupold on both my heavy and light varmint rifles....that puppy could really pick up the .22 and 6mm holes at 200 yards with no problem..even with mucho mirage. I guess that's what I'm aiming for. Thank you all for your comments. I'll try to take an up close and personal look at some. I would like to hear more input on the angled vs. straight eyepieces if you have a minute.

The eBay suggestion was welcomed..I've done well there with cameras, etc. I'll give it a look!



I used to use rifle scopes for my spotting, too - but past 200 or so yards, even the high power ones are tough because of all the time spent searching around for your target. A spotting scope set up and sighted in already makes things so much easier.

OK, Optics Guide for Choosing Spotting Scopes:

Choosing Scopes

Page Jump links:
Design Magnification Objective Lenses Eyepieces Focusing Photography

Next to binoculars and field guides, birders use scopes more than any other tool. The main reason is that scopes give much more magnification than binoculars. This allows birders to see detail on birds that are too distant to be safely identified through binoculars. They are designed to be mounted on tripods so they can be kept steady under normal conditions

Scope design and terminology is discussed in our All About Optics - Scopes section. If you are not well versed in this topic, we suggest you read it before continuing.

Design
There are three basic scope designs: refractive, Newtonian, and catadioptric. Nearly all scopes sold for birding are refractive. A few are catadioptric, and the only Newtonian scope is difficult to find, both in stores and in the field.

The two main factors responsible for the low use of catadioptric scopes are the cost (3 to 5 times the cost of top end refractive scopes) and the body construction does not stand up to the rigors of birding. Even though catadioptric scopes produce cleaner images at higher magnification, few birders are willing to pay the higher costs. Therefore, in the rest of this discussion we will stick to refractive scopes.

There are two body designs used in refractor scopes: angled and straight. Even here at Optics4Birding.com, both have their proponents.

Angled scopes are preferred because:

*

Easier to share with a group
*

Higher eye point means you can use a shorter tripod
*

Better for birds soaring or in tall trees

Straight scopes are preferred because:

*

Less strain on your neck for level viewing
*

Less chance of eyepiece collecting rain or dust
*

Easier for viewing birds on the ground or water or below a cliff
*

Easier to aim when inexperienced

To decide between angled and straight scopes, you will have to consider how you will be using yours.

Magnification
Birders use scopes because there are many instances where binoculars are not powerful enough. Scope magnifications go from a low of 15x to a high of 75x. While higher magnification is theoretically possible, the resultant exit pupil would limit successful use to only the brightest lighting situations. When the exit pupil falls below 1.33mm, image quality begins to suffer. Also, very high magnification increases the likelihood of distortion from heat waves and scope movement, as these effects are magnified along with the image.

Objective Lenses

Size
Objective lens diameters fall into four size ranges. 50mm, 60-65mm, 77-85mm, and above 85mm. In the latter range, only the 100mm Pentax ED scope is currently available. Objective lens size is the main indicator of scope brightness, as that is dependent upon the area of the objective. There have been some new advances in scope quality in the 65-66mm objective range, but these scopes are still not up to the challenge of the 80mm+ scopes in the most adverse conditions. As with binoculars, larger objectives mean more weight, but they also allow for larger magnification. When deciding on the objective size for your scope, get the largest objective you're willing to carry. Unless you really need to save weight, you will be rewarded with a superior image, other parameters being equal.

Glass
The best scopes have objective lenses with special glass that corrects certain optical problems. Labeled Extra-low Dispersion (ED), Fluorite (FL), or High Density (HD), this glass makes it possible for all the wavelengths of light to focus at (APO = apochromatic) or very near (achromatic) the same point. This has an immense affect on sharpness, shows better detail on the bird, and reduces eye strain. Many scopes come in both ED/FL/HD and non ED/FL/HD versions, with the better glass adding 50% or more to the cost, but few active birders would say the price isn't worth the improvement in view.

Eyepieces
The part of the scope that determines the magnification is the eyepiece. For a given focal length objective, shorter focal length eyepieces give greater magnification. You don't have to worry about the math, however, as most eyepieces are labeled with the magnification they provide rather than their focal length.

Advances in zoom lens technology over the last decade have taken the zoom eyepiece from the lens to be avoided to the one most favored by birders. Zoom eyepieces allow birders to scan at low power, then crank up the magnification to get the most detail. There is nothing like a 60x image that is so sharp you worry about cutting your fingers on it. Other eyepieces have their place, however. 30x and 50x (give or take a few x) wide angle eyepieces are often favored by sea watchers and hawk watchers. A 27x eyepiece with long eye relief can be a boon to eyeglass wearers and digiscopers. If you're getting a scope that can handle its full range of zoom, go with the zoom eyepiece. If you plan to spend most of your scope time at Hawk Mountain or Pigeon Point, you might want a fixed wide angle, or you might want to consider getting both.

Some manufacturers use the same eyepiece mount for both their 60-66mm scopes and their 77-85mm scopes. Because of variations in body design, some scope brands will have the same magnification for a given eyepiece with both scopes while others will have different magnifications. In the latter case, you may see a designation that says:
Zoom eyepiece 15x-45x/20x-60x for 65mm/80mm scope

This will mean that with the 65mm scope this eyepiece has a zoom range from 15x to 45x, but with the 80mm scope the range is 20x to 60x.

Focusing
There are three focusing mechanisms used in refractor scopes: single knob, double knob, and helical. Single knob is the most common. It tends to be a bit slow, but very precise. Double knob, available on Leica, consists of two knobs with different drive ratios for the same internal focusing gear. The fast knob allows for quick focusing travel while the slow knob gives precision once you're close to the proper focus. Helical focus, available on Swarovski and some Nikon scopes, consists of a collar around the scope body to drive the focusing gear. They are good for rapid focus changes. Now that variable speed focus is available on Brunton binoculars, expect to see this type of focusing on future scopes.

Photography using scopes
There are two ways to take photos through a scope. You can get a camera adapter that allows you to attach a 35mm SLR to the scope. This system will have a fixed focal length and you will need to use the camera's viewfinder as your eyepiece, and there will be no way to change the aperture. Or, you can put a digital camera up to the back of your scope. This is covered extensively in our Digiscoping section. In either case, you will get the best results by using a scope with the largest possible objective lens, as it will gather the most light.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 3:32:48 AM EDT
You don't have to have "THE BEST" - we aren't going birding here, and we aren't like the experts who can really tell a difference between a $500 and a $2000 spotting scope (I can't really).

$500 is a great budget - don't worry about the tripod - they are very inexpensive if you know where to look - and I do

Here is a great deal - probably go for under $500 when all bidding is done:

cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=31715&item=7159646815&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

NOTE - many of the less expensive spotters have PERMANENT eye pieces, which means you are stuck with that magnification. So if you ever decide to get a higher mag, or need a long eye-relief eye piece, you are screwed if you can't swap them out like you can in the nicer ones.

Now THIS is an amazing deal - this scope costs over $1000 new, and is just about the ultimate - true, it is about $160 more than you budgeted, but if you got this one you would NEVER be able to stand the view through anything but a Zeiss or Swaro ever againg. If I had the money, I would be all over this deal:

cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=31715&item=7159281183&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 5:15:20 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/28/2005 5:15:38 AM EDT by Anarchy]

Originally Posted By Greywolf2112:
You don't have to have "THE BEST" - we aren't going birding here, and we aren't like the experts who can really tell a difference between a $500 and a $2000 spotting scope (I can't really).

$500 is a great budget - don't worry about the tripod - they are very inexpensive if you know where to look - and I do Here
cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=31715&item=7159646815&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

NOTE - many of the less expensive spotters have PERMANENT eye pieces, which means you are stuck with that magnification. So if you ever decide to get a higher mag, or need a long eye-relief eye piece, you are screwed if you can't swap them out like you can in the nicer ones.

Now THIS is an amazing deal - this scope costs over $1000 new, and is just about the ultimate - true, it is about $160 more than you budgeted, but if you got this one you would NEVER be able to stand the view through anything but a Zeiss or Swaro ever againg. If I had the money, I would be all over this deal:

cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=31715&item=7159281183&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

On the first one, do you think 40X is too much?? Also, is it alright having a plastic body?

I wish it came with a tripod
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 5:41:06 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/28/2005 5:42:00 AM EDT by Greywolf2112]
40x is just fine, I think - though you can always get swap-out eyepieces for under $200 - I'd get a LER (long eye relief) if you wear glasses. Or a 20-60x variable.

Tripods are a non-issue. Here are some GREAT tripods for very little money:

www.amvona.com/v7/shop/?page=shop/flypage&product_id=1924

Less than $50, has quick-detach capabilities (very nice) and can be used tabletop or standing. Damn nice.


Nothing wrong with plastic at all - I prefer it, actually.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 9:31:18 AM EDT
Wow, Graywolf, what a supreme effort on your part....thank you! I have listed the scopes you found in My eBay...we'll see what happens.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 9:32:50 AM EDT
oops...Greywolf...sorry!
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 9:39:47 AM EDT
By the way, does anyone have experience with the Nikon 20-60x 80mm Sky and Earth? I know it is an import from China, but it seems to get pretty good reviews at Midway's site, and it has the 25 year Nikon Warrenty.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 10:45:23 AM EDT

Originally Posted By oldCop:
By the way, does anyone have experience with the Nikon 20-60x 80mm Sky and Earth? I know it is an import from China, but it seems to get pretty good reviews at Midway's site, and it has the 25 year Nikon Warrenty.



The Nikon is OK, and would probably serve you well. I just think that the Kowa, Fujinon, and Pentax are MUCH better and will be better optically and be less problematic in the long run.

PS - you are very welcome - glad to help, and let us know if you have any other questions and what you eventually get.

Link Posted: 5/28/2005 12:15:11 PM EDT
You will find this an interesting read as well.

Spotting Scope Shoot Out
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 12:20:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DevL:
You will find this an interesting read as well.

Spotting Scope Shoot Out

I read that a while ago, the Leupold Wind River seemed to do well, especially when considering it's price.

Anyone have any experience with it??
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 1:14:10 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/28/2005 1:15:07 PM EDT by DevL]
I have tried the Leupold and Busnell and the Bushnell was significantly better all around IMO. I have owned a buch of Leupold scopes and the Wind River just did not seem near the quality I expected.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 1:35:11 PM EDT
Thanks, DevL! I was gonna bid on a Nikon Spotter XL that is at $300.00 on eBay ending tonight, but the Bushnell sure looks like a primo deal!
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 3:08:54 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/28/2005 3:10:45 PM EDT by CaptSchofield]
I agree with nearly every thing that gray wolf says about scopes Except about straight scopes. For the rifle shooter an angled scope can be set up and positioned so the shooter does not have to re-aquire his shooting postion or grip on the weapon. With a good scope stand, all the shooter has to do is turn his head and look into the scope. With straight scopes you will have to re-position your self for each look!!! If you settle on a straight then see how easy it us to use a angled you will be sorry. Angled scopes are designed for Rifle shooters, just look at any high power match.
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 3:15:04 PM EDT
tag for further reading
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 6:14:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CaptSchofield:
I agree with nearly every thing that gray wolf says about scopes Except about straight scopes. For the rifle shooter an angled scope can be set up and positioned so the shooter does not have to re-aquire his shooting postion or grip on the weapon. With a good scope stand, all the shooter has to do is turn his head and look into the scope. With straight scopes you will have to re-position your self for each look!!! If you settle on a straight then see how easy it us to use a angled you will be sorry. Angled scopes are designed for Rifle shooters, just look at any high power match.



Well, actually the thread where I posted all the info about pros and conds was cut and pasted from a site. I actually prefer and recommend angled scopes (that's what I've got).

So, wow, you actually DID agree with everything I said (or at least meant to say) - woo hoo!
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 6:31:03 PM EDT
WOO HOO!!
Link Posted: 5/28/2005 7:35:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DevL:
I have tried the Leupold and Busnell and the Bushnell was significantly better all around IMO. I have owned a buch of Leupold scopes and the Wind River just did not seem near the quality I expected.

Which Bushnell, the exact one mentioned in that review?
Link Posted: 5/29/2005 3:24:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/29/2005 5:49:23 AM EDT by Greywolf2112]
Make sure that if you are getting the Bushnell, that you get the older model Spacemaster:

www.riflescopes.com/products/781821/bushnell_20-45x60_spacemaster_spotting_scope_kit.htm

and NOT the cheap one by the same name:

www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?A=details&kw=BUSM2060X60&is=REG&Q=&O=productlist&sku=250245


The good Spacemaster is pretty nice - not perfect, and I think you could do better with a Kowa or Fujinon, but as lon as you don't mind the straight vs. the angled eyepiece, then the Bushnell might be a good buy.
Link Posted: 5/29/2005 3:53:58 AM EDT
Great information. I have the Leupold Wind River and am looking for somethng better. Enough said? Anyone have any recommendations for a Kowa for someone who wears glasses who wants to see .223 holes at 300 yards? Best place to buy? Many thanks.
Link Posted: 5/29/2005 5:51:00 AM EDT

Originally Posted By anon:
Great information. I have the Leupold Wind River and am looking for somethng better. Enough said? Anyone have any recommendations for a Kowa for someone who wears glasses who wants to see .223 holes at 300 yards? Best place to buy? Many thanks.



Anon - check out my responses and the www.optics4birding.com website.

Kowa makes great spotting scopes - you can often find very gently used ones or factory refurbs on Ebay. Fujinon makes great ones as well - mine is a 60mm obj, and has the 27x Long Eye Relief lens (I wear glasses) - I recommend an angled body design.
Link Posted: 5/29/2005 11:15:10 AM EDT
Yes the exact one in that comarison.
Link Posted: 5/31/2005 12:43:02 AM EDT
Thanks, GW...your opinion means a lot. Actually, I shoot very little prone anymore..only when I gotta...old, as my handle indicates. Most of my competition these days is muzzle-loader off-hand matches, so the scope would be mainly for that...not sure if an angled body would be a help or a hinderance in that case..whacha think?
Link Posted: 5/31/2005 3:13:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By oldCop:
Thanks, GW...your opinion means a lot. Actually, I shoot very little prone anymore..only when I gotta...old, as my handle indicates. Most of my competition these days is muzzle-loader off-hand matches, so the scope would be mainly for that...not sure if an angled body would be a help or a hinderance in that case..whacha think?



Hmm, it really depends. Here is a description of how I shoot at my range:

I set up my tripod so that it is about six inches below my eye level looking straight out towards the target while I am seated. I shoot, then turn to the spotting scope and tilt my head down and lean over and look into the scope. Easy, simple, I don't have to get up or twist me neck in an odd position. I've seen others with straight scopes have to get up, or turn a lot or twist their heads and necks to look through their scopes.

I think what convinced me the most about getting an angled one is noticing almost ALL serious, professional shooters have angled spotters.

By the way - if you would like to see what mine looks like, check out this thread where I review a new scope - my picture and that of my spotting scope are towards the bottom of the review:

www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=1&f=5&t=356524
Link Posted: 6/16/2005 8:03:51 PM EDT
Well,

After agonizingly perusing a number of reviews of scopes (fortified by some really stout Martini's, and some really good Scotch..not at all bad things), I decided on the older Bushnell Spacemaster 20-45x60 reviewed in the article kindly provided by DevL. I agree with Greywolf that the angled body is probably the optimum, but the Spacemaster was $300.00 less than I would have paid for an angled body that would have satisfied me in visual acuity. I have not had time to take the scope to the range, but in fritzing about with it looking at various distances in the neighborhood, I am more than pleased with the scope. It does an excellent job staying in focus throughout the zoom range, and the rubberized body appears to be pretty durable. Also, I believe a 60x eypiece (if ever such is needed) is available. I found the best price on Midway's website (they currently show to have 4 in stock) if anyone is interested. The kit which includes a marginally useful table-top tripod (I put mine on my Bogen photographic tripod to test drive it), and a pretty nice cutout foam nylon backpack is $309.99 from them.

Again, my thanks to all of you for your input on a subject that I probably over-researched, but I tend to obsess on my toys!
Link Posted: 6/17/2005 8:59:39 AM EDT
+1 on the older Bushnell Spacemaster. It's good to know that I wasn't the only one that went this direction. I got my reviews off of

http://www.snipercountry.com/InReviews/SpottingScopes.asp
Link Posted: 6/17/2005 9:50:54 AM EDT
I have an even older Bushnell but if I were to buy RIGHT NOW I would get that space master as its even better than the one I currently own. Next year I will get an angled Kowa but my Bushnell works for the moment. I think most people underestimate how good the Bushnells really are, especially the Spacemaster which blows mine away.
Link Posted: 9/12/2005 3:02:56 PM EDT
BTT for a few ???'s when I have time .....
Link Posted: 9/12/2005 5:36:52 PM EDT
If you are close to a Cabelas or Shiels you can usually convince them to let you fondle their display models. I would try a few of their scopes midway in your price range and look accross the store at DETAIL like writing on a box or price tags. The spotting scope I use I inherited from my grandfather and is surely double my age. I've got no problems seeing holes as 100 yards but I've never needed to see anything further than that.

Something I haven't seen anyone mention is a good pack of Shoot-N-Sees. I shoot 10/22 at 50 yards all day long and without shoot-n-sees I would have to bring my damn scope to the range every time I go. For $10 a pack you can't go wrong.
Link Posted: 9/12/2005 5:39:19 PM EDT
I just checked the web and you can get a pack of 5 shoot-n-sees 12"x18" for only 5 bucks. That is way bigger than MOA at 200 yards.

Just my 2c.
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 12:12:10 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Dangasaur:
I just checked the web and you can get a pack of 5 shoot-n-sees 12"x18" for only 5 bucks. That is way bigger than MOA at 200 yards.

Just my 2c.

I shoot at shoot-n-sees at 600 yards. With my rifle scope I can sometimes see if I hit the target. More often than not I can see a yellow stain, but not where the stain is.
My current scope is not up to the task.

My 3¢ plus a tag to keep this topic current.
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