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Hot Topic (More than 30 Replies) best night scope (Read 9467 times)
headcase
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best night scope
Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:05am
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What are your thought on the best scope for shooting bunnies at night using subs, and spot. I’m using a cheapie at the moment with a varmint style reticule,  a 4x12x42.  Its often quite difficult to make out which horizontal line I’m looking at and I reckon I’ve shot over the top of the head sometimes because of this. The optics are sharp but the thin lines can be hard to make out in the semi darkness at the peripheral light of the spot. Just using the outer edges of the light seems to be the only way to effectively hold them.

Does anyone find a lighted crosshair helps?

Sometimes the 4x seems good for quick target acquisition and sometimes winding it up a bit seems better if they are holding well in the spot and giving time to locate them in the scope.

Does anyone use a bigger reticule than a 42mm and does the extra light gathering make a difference with a spot?

I seem to be going a bit light insensitive and find when I get tired it’s difficult to see the bunnies and the eyes, was wondering if a bigger scope is going to help. Any thoughts please.
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #1 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:26am
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If you mean by bigger a higher power I would doubt it would help. With my 4.5/14 Loopie I mostly only use 6 or 8 power 14 is too much at night with the closer distances and glare from the light. Sounds like you need a better quality scope with better optics. Never used an illuminated reticle mostly because I never felt a need for one but other peoples ideas will differ Smiley
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #2 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:38am
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Tikka T3 wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:26am:
If you mean by bigger a higher power I would doubt it would help. With my 4.5/14 Loopie I mostly only use 6 or 8 power 14 is too much at night with the closer distances and glare from the light. Sounds like you need a better quality scope with better optics. Never used an illuminated reticle mostly because I never felt a need for one but other peoples ideas will differ Smiley


I meant more light gathering.. a 50mm or so. I dont need bigger magnification as nothing is beyond 50 m and x8 is heaps.

  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #3 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:04am
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I've got a Nikko Stirling Platinum Nighteater, they're nice for the price and you can get illuminated models down to 4x with a 44 objective.
  
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Re: best night scope
Reply #4 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:07am
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If a 42mm sccope doesn't gather in enogh light then going bigger still won't help. Two suggestions get a brighter light Wink or as I said a better quality scope. Have you tried this scope in the evening to see what it's light gathering capabilities are compared to the scope on your .243. Compare the reticles as well if the one on the .243 is thicker and you can see it better then a scope with thicker 'hairs  an illuminted reticle might be the go. It's really a matter of trying the options and finding the right problem.
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #5 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:15am
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headcase wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:05am:
Does anyone use a bigger reticule than a 42mm and does the extra light gathering make a difference with a spot?


I'm running a Mueller APV 4.5 x 14 x 40 on my HM2



and a Hawke 3.5 x 10 x 50 on my .22

ignore the camera  Grin

to be honest I don't notice much difference in light gathering between the two, but like the advantage of being able to zoom into a rabbit/possum that's lit up.

I use a Fenix TK11 on a nylon mscope mount from Deal Extreme for $4 and this combo works well for me. Best long range night shot I've done was last weekend on a possum at a guess 100m with the Mueller scope. It worked a treat.
  
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Re: best night scope
Reply #6 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:32am
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I have the same problem, can shoot possums from 50+ meters no worries and then miss half of my shots from 5m because i can't see the crosshairs.

I purchased this and will mount tommorrow, i'm hoping the red/green illumination will help, i'll keep you posted. For ~50 bucks it worth a shot. The review is by a guy on the air gun forums, contacted him and he said it was a pretty decent scope for the price.

http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.13016
  
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Re: best night scope
Reply #7 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:04am
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Vulcan wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:04am:
I've got a Nikko Stirling Platinum Nighteater, they're nice for the price and you can get illuminated models down to 4x with a 44 objective.


Ill have another look at them. Gave up on Nikko Stirling about 5 years back when I bought a dud. Thought they were terrible but they have upped their game since then Id think..
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #8 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:06am
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Tikka T3 wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:07am:
If a 42mm sccope doesn't gather in enogh light then going bigger still won't help. Two suggestions get a brighter light Wink or as I said a better quality scope. Have you tried this scope in the evening to see what it's light gathering capabilities are compared to the scope on your .243. Compare the reticles as well if the one on the .243 is thicker and you can see it better then a scope with thicker 'hairs  an illuminted reticle might be the go. It's really a matter of trying the options and finding the right problem.


I cant go a brighter light, alrady about as bright as it comes. Im using a red filter over it and notice the red eyes are much easier to see in teh long tussock now that IM getting used to it. At first I thought Id gone blind. but now can pick up the eyes, red reflection more easily..
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #9 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:06am
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What you need for the "ideal" scope is a big IOR (40mm tube) with a lit reticle.  40mm tube will let in lots of light.........

http://www.valdada.com/product/7799bd3d-2c65-48aa-add0-7e3fce3894af.aspx

Don't say I don't help you out.......
  
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Re: best night scope
Reply #10 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:08am
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KScott_NZ wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:15am:
headcase wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:05am:
Does anyone use a bigger reticule than a 42mm and does the extra light gathering make a difference with a spot?


I'm running a Mueller APV 4.5 x 14 x 40 on my HM2



and a Hawke 3.5 x 10 x 50 on my .22

ignore the camera  Grin

to be honest I don't notice much difference in light gathering between the two, but like the advantage of being able to zoom into a rabbit/possum that's lit up.

I use a Fenix TK11 on a nylon mscope mount from Deal Extreme for $4 and this combo works well for me. Best long range night shot I've done was last weekend on a possum at a guess 100m with the Mueller scope. It worked a treat.


Which has the sharper optics?

Any preference in thecross hair type.
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #11 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:14am
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Quote:
What you need for the "ideal" scope is a big IOR (40mm tube) with a lit reticle.  40mm tube will let in lots of light.........

http://www.valdada.com/product/7799bd3d-2c65-48aa-add0-7e3fce3894af.aspx

Don't say I don't help you out.......


Youve always been most generous..  Wink

On second thoughts , just had a look at the price Grin
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #12 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:15am
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I used to have a cheapie 4x on my .22 which was fine in the day but gloomy and hard to see at night.  I upgraded to a leupold 4x and the difference is remarkable.  The leupold is still nothing particularly special as it's an older one which I think is single coated or at least only multi coated on the exterior lens surfaces.

I have pondered this a few times and here are my thoughts:
Low magnification is better at night.  4 or 6 is all you need.

A better quality scope with better coatings is better than a large objective cheap scope.

On the overseas forums they talk about using a german no 4 reticle.

This has big thick bold crosshairs on the outside and reasonably thin ones in the inside.  That lets you shoot targets in the day and bracket the animal with the bold outer posts in the gloom.

The eurpoeans know more about hunting at night than the yanks as it's legal in europe but not in the states.  American scope design reflects this.  It's apparently quite common to hunt by moonlight in europe.  They use things like 50mm zeiss scopes.

Illuminated reticle is all good but the fact that the illumination module is only covered by a years warranty has always put me off.  Also the illumination kills your night vision.  Probably doesn't matter if you are using a spotlight.

Fixed power scopes are always brighter than vari power and the vari power adds two more lenses.  Same with AO and glass etched reticles.
I have seen it stated that the leupold 6x42 is the brightest scope they make because of this.

I brought a second hand leupold 6x42 M8 because of this, managed to break it and had it replaced with a leupold 6x42 FX3.  The FX3 is noticeable brighter due to the better coatings.

Ballistic reticles are a bit of a gimmick.  Particularly on vari powers where the holdover points change when you change magnification.  You are better off with a standard reticle.  This still allows you to holdover e.g. half way between the cross hairs and the bottom post, the bottom post, a small distance under the bottom post etc.

As tikka T3 said get a brighter light.  I have a RQ led torch and a lightforce 170 and while the RQ is usable and a great light the difference is literally like night and day.  Having a gun mounted light helps as well as it means the light is always perfectly aligned.

With subs your maximum range on a good day is going to be 120m.  With a 4x thats the same as iron sites at 30m.  With a 6x it's the same as iron sites at 20m.  Thats enough magnification in my book.

If it was me, I would trade features for quality, buy either a fixed 6 or a fixed 4.  Get a decent brand like leupold, zeiss conquest, vortex, weaver, bushnell or burris and get a reticle like the german no 4 or a german no 1 with bold outer posts.  PM gr8fulldoug and see what he has to say as hes the man for this sort of thing.
  

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Re: best night scope
Reply #13 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:16am
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KScott_NZ wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 1:15am:
headcase wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 12:05am:
Does anyone use a bigger reticule than a 42mm and does the extra light gathering make a difference with a spot?


to be honest I don't notice much difference in light gathering between the two, but like the advantage of being able to zoom into a rabbit/possum that's lit up.



you don't see the difference because they are both shit scopes.  Crap + Crap = Crap Wink
  
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Re: best night scope
Reply #14 - Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:23am
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MassiveAttack wrote on Feb 18th, 2010 at 2:15am:
I used to have a cheapie 4x on my .22 which was fine in the day but gloomy and hard to see at night.  I upgraded to a leupold 4x and the difference is remarkable.  The leupold is still nothing particularly special as it's an older one which I think is single coated or at least only multi coated on the exterior lens surfaces.

I have pondered this a few times and here are my thoughts:
Low magnification is better at night.  4 or 6 is all you need.

A better quality scope with better coatings is better than a large objective cheap scope.

On the overseas forums they talk about using a german no 4 reticle.

This has big thick bold crosshairs on the outside and reasonably thin ones in the inside.  That lets you shoot targets in the day and bracket the animal with the bold outer posts in the gloom.

The eurpoeans know more about hunting at night than the yanks as it's legal in europe but not in the states.  American scope design reflects this.  It's apparently quite common to hunt by moonlight in europe.  They use things like 50mm zeiss scopes.

Illuminated reticle is all good but the fact that the illumination module is only covered by a years warranty has always put me off.  Also the illumination kills your night vision.  Probably doesn't matter if you are using a spotlight.

Fixed power scopes are always brighter than vari power and the vari power adds two more lenses.  Same with AO and glass etched reticles.
I have seen it stated that the leupold 6x42 is the brightest scope they make because of this.


I brought a second hand leupold 6x42 M8 because of this, managed to break it and had it replaced with a leupold 6x42 FX3.  The FX3 is noticeable brighter due to the better coatings.

Ballistic reticles are a bit of a gimmick.  Particularly on vari powers where the holdover points change when you change magnification.  You are better off with a standard reticle.  This still allows you to holdover e.g. half way between the cross hairs and the bottom post, the bottom post, a small distance under the bottom post etc.

As tikka T3 said get a brighter light.  I have a RQ led torch and a lightforce 170 and while the RQ is usable and a great light the difference is literally like night and day.  Having a gun mounted light helps as well as it means the light is always perfectly aligned.

With subs your maximum range on a good day is going to be 120m.  With a 4x thats the same as iron sites at 30m.  With a 6x it's the same as iron sites at 20m.  Thats enough magnification in my book.

If it was me, I would trade features for quality, buy either a fixed 6 or a fixed 4.  Get a decent brand like leupold, zeiss conquest, vortex, weaver, bushnell or burris and get a reticle like the german no 4 or a german no 1 with bold outer posts.  PM gr8fulldoug and see what he has to say as hes the man for this sort of thing.


Theres a lot of info there, thanks for that. Ill heed teh fixed power option as being brighter, thats food for thought. As to the spot. Im using a 170 lightforce with a 100w bulb. Its bright, but Im still abit worried about my nightvision. I dont see the milky way as I remember, which is a bit of a worry.  Lips Sealed Thats why Ive got to optimize everything else.
  

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