What magnification for a practice rifle?

Eluder

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This is kind of a goofy question I know. I have a nice shooting 308 that I want to setup for training/practice on my dialing since it’s way cheaper and pleasant to shoot than my 7mm rem mag.

I am gonna put a SWFA fixed on it but am unsure what power makes sense in this application. I have a 20x but that’s way more power than I ever hunt with, does it matter though? I know i am making up problems that don’t exist but am searching for some opinions from others that have a rifle just setup for range work but want it to translate to the field.
 

35WhelenAI

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I have a Leupold fixed 12X, works well for mounting on a new rifle to work up a load. I consider that a good magnification, possibly for what you are wanting to do. SWFA has a fixed 10X and a fixed 12X, however they only have 30MM tubes other than the lightweight variable hunting scope.
 
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keystone112

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It may depend on how you practice. I tend to practice on lower magnification, say 4x.
 

mxgsfmdpx

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3-9 is perfect for practice and hunting. Anything over 6x fixed for me personally is a no go.

Ideally you’ll practice with what you hunt with though. So get the same scope as your 7mm.

4-14x44 is my personal ideal scope for hunting and long range shooting.
 

wildwilderness

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If I’m shooting paper past 100 yds I like more magnification. 9x just seems so small compared to 12x! I don’t even mind 15x when shooting bulls eyes.

Put your 20x on and your targets past 300 and you’ll be fine. I have no idea how people try to shoot 1000yds without higher Mag scopes

Aim small Miss small
 

mxgsfmdpx

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If I’m shooting paper past 100 yds I like more magnification. 9x just seems so small compared to 12x! I don’t even mind 15x when shooting bulls eyes.

Put your 20x on and your targets past 300 and you’ll be fine. I have no idea how people try to shoot 1000yds without higher Mag scopes
It does take practice but I have no issues shooting very long range with 14x.
 

lyle_destroys

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I think how far you want to shoot is a big factor here. I've had guys tell me before that you want 2x for every hundred yards. Makes sense for shooting gongs because it's harder to square you cross hair up on a small circle at 800 compared to an elk. I've found that I like 10x to 500 but beyond that I want more magnification. I'm a swfa fan and shoot the 3-9hd and 3-15. 9x at 500 is doable but I like just a little more.
 

Formidilosus

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I am gonna put a SWFA fixed on it but am unsure what power makes sense in this application.


SWFA fixed mil/mil for reliability, dependability, and solid reticle. The 16x and 20x are garbage for any use away from a bench, the 12x is a play toy, the 10x is fine for dedicated LR, but the magic is in the 6x MQ. For practice it is the one. Enough magnification to shoot 10-12” targets as far away as you please- everyone I’m around shoots past 1100m with them regularly; low enough magnification for close range work- a deer at 20 yards isn’t an issue, excellent field of view to watch the target through the shot and spot impacts, which is going to be difficult anyways with a 308- add more magnification and you probably will not be able to spot without a brake. Clarity is good, low light is good, etc etc.


For a practice field rifle, it’s the choice.
 

35WhelenAI

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You already have a 20X so maybe try it before you buy something different? Otherwise, a 12X or 14X is probably gonna work fine.

Seeing SWFA mentioned a decent amount. How does their glass compare to that of current Leupold VX3HD, which is the best scope I own. Or how would it compare to the previous generation VX-2 that I have had for 20 years on a rifle. I'm going off on a tangent thinking about their light weight 1 inch hunting scope.
 
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Eluder

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I can’t really warrant puting a lrhs on it like my 7mm mag has. Hard to find and getting pricier it seems.

I didn’t really think about it but I do have mil-dot 3-9 hd I could move onto it… maybe that’s the ticket.

My gut was telling me to stay away from 20x on this one, it does work well for bench shooting for me but I need to practice with various shooting positions to build some confidence.

I know the 6x is great scope but I want more than that magnification for a little versatility.
 

AZ_Hunter_2000

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I think how far you want to shoot is a big factor here. I've had guys tell me before that you want 2x for every hundred yards. Makes sense for shooting gongs because it's harder to square you cross hair up on a small circle at 800 compared to an elk. I've found that I like 10x to 500 but beyond that I want more magnification. I'm a swfa fan and shoot the 3-9hd and 3-15. 9x at 500 is doable but I like just a little more.
There are more game species available than just elk. They tend to be a bit smaller as well.
 
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Eluder

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Seeing SWFA mentioned a decent amount. How does their glass compare to that of current Leupold VX3HD, which is the best scope I own. Or how would it compare to the previous generation VX-2 that I have had for 20 years on a rifle.
Glass is better on my non hd vx3 than any swfa I have had but I’m after reliable, affordable and dialable.
 
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Eluder

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There are more game species available than just elk. They tend to be a bit smaller as well.
I get in situations with a want to dial on white tail, mule deer and elk.

My main shooting experience prior to getting into western hunting was mainly 308/223/22lr bench rest and off hand 22lr.

I’ve had to rethink magnification needs for obvious reasons.

Most shots I’ve taken in the field so far are from 6-10x.
 

Formidilosus

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I know the 6x is great scope but I want more than that magnification for a little versatility.


Don’t be in such a hurry to make a poor choice. If it’s a practice gun( or a hunting gun) the 6x is better than all mentioned save the 3-9x swfa- and even then I’d set it to 6x and leave it.


The whole thing about a practice rifle with a 6x is it FORCES you to see what’s happening. All magnification does is hide everything that’s important. All the ones saying they “need” more than 6x at medium distances are saying that because they have never done it. Every single person I have experience with can see and aim, without issue on deer/antelopes and similar sized targets out to 600’ish with 6x. That’s hundredths, upon hundreds of people. From 6 years old to 80. The 6x fixed is an advantage to learning to shoot, not a hindrance
 

lyle_destroys

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Glass is better on my non hd vx3 than any swfa I have had but I’m after reliable, affordable and dialable.
I'm no alpha glass snob but I've always been very happy with my vx3i in low light situations. I will not dial it though unless I change loads. Have you looked through a 3-9hd swfa?
I need to get them both out at dusk some night and compare head to head.
 
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Eluder

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I'm no alpha glass snob but I've always been very happy with my vx3i in low light situations. I will not dial it though unless I change loads. Have you looked through a 3-9hd swfa?
I need to get them both out at dusk some night and compare head to head.
Sorry I meant vx3i. I’d echo your thoughts.

I have an older mildot 3-9hd. I find the glass is a little brighter on the vx3i but like you said the caps stay on that scope. It’s all give and take it seems when on a budget.
 
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Eluder

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Don’t be in such a hurry to make a poor choice. If it’s a practice gun( or a hunting gun) the 6x is better than all mentioned save the 3-9x swfa- and even then I’d set it to 6x and leave it.


The whole thing about a practice rifle with a 6x is it FORCES you to see what’s happening. All magnification does is hide everything that’s important. All the ones saying they “need” more than 6x at medium distances are saying that because they have never done it. Every single person I have experience with can see and aim, without issue on deer/antelopes and similar sized targets out to 600’ish with 6x. That’s hundredths, upon hundreds of people. From 6 years old to 80. The 6x fixed is an advantage to learning to shoot, not a hindrance
Noted… I just sold one because it sat unused… dumb me…
 

35WhelenAI

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Look forward to what you think on the head to head between SWFA and VX3i.
 
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