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It is my understanding that it is not so much which scope (FFP or SFP) you get but what you intend to do with it once you get it. If you're going to shoot in tactical style matches where time is a factor 99% of everyone will tell you to get a FFP. If you're just shooting targets at known distances or at a place where you can use a range finder most people would probably tell you to get a SFP.

The reticle gets a little thick on FFPs at higher mags but it don't matter to tactical shooters because a hit is a hit, doesn't matter (from my limited understanding) where you hit it. All hits score the same. But usually guys shooting at paper targets (usually at known distances) where you have an "X" ring, 10 ring, 9 ring, and so on, prefer a SFP because accuracy is important. A hit is not a hit, it does matter where you hit the target. Typically guys that shoot for groups and that wants the pin point accuracy will shoot SFP. Before I get slammed by the FFP guys I'm not saying you can't shoot just as accurate with a FFP, it is just not typically found on the firing line at these events. Just as SFP scopes are not usually found at tactical shooting events.

The same can be said for Magnification range as well. Again, it is my limited understanding that guys in tactical matches usually don't use high mags when shooting these events, they may have it, but will choose to shoot what they feel is the lowest possible mag. because they want a greater field of view. Where as the KD shooters typically want all the mag they can get.

I'm not the know all end all of these events, and if I have made a mistake in my post I'm sure someone here will break their fingers posting a reply to let you, me and everyone else here know about it. .
 

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You seem set on a SFP... so I'd go ahead and do that, if that is what you'll be happy with.

However, the statements you are making regarding FFP are simply not true. The idea that you can excel in the field in the situations you've presented with a SFP, but not FFP... is not in keeping with what is true with modern rifle scopes. I certainly didn't say they are "always the best solution."

To draw any inference from the fact that SFP still exists, is to completely misunderstand the entire optics industry and shooters as a whole, I would think.
 

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Holy ****. That has to be one of the single most accurate things I've read on forums. Ever. It basically encompasses 90% of all posts on every gun-related forum on the internet.
It basically encompasses 90% of...everything. How many times does a neighbor get the newest and biggest lawn mower? How often do people sink tens of thousands of dollars into a $2k Honda "tuner"?

How many people buy a $3-5k rifle, but can't accurately shoot a target smaller than a car hood?...

Yea I spent $1500 on my starter rifle...but I'm shooting 1/2 MOA on a good day (in a Hogue stock...)
 

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Thanks for the input!

I was never any good at math. I had a tutor in the 9th grade to get thru pre algebra. I tried hard but still couldn't get it, the teacher passed me with a "D". I only needed one more math credit to graduate so I took general math in the 10th and never took another math course. Today I wish I had taken more math. I had to take Statistics in college. Made an "A" in that class. As long as it's whole numbers or fractions I'm OK, but when you start adding X's and Y's i'm lost. I use to say 9X "X" = F because that was usually my grade. Anyhow, not that it matters, but I think it's cool you can do all this stuff on the fly!
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Ok, here is the third pass at the candidate list.



Note that 11/15 of the entries are FFP. A few entries however need to be ruled out.

I did go out last night and verify that the NVD will work with the 50mm objective on the 6.5-20x TMR scope. Not sure why I never tried it before. From an objective size perspective it works, no asymetric black edges. But, from a legnth perspective, this 14.5 inch scope is too long. With the NVD mounted as far forward as possible on the 16 inch barrel Sig716 the scope is hanging far off the rear of the receiver. I'd say in a pinch it is usable, but it is far from optimal. Hecque the 13.6 inch 3.5-10x TMR scope I've been using for all my night shooting is borderline too long. Trying to put NVD clips ons in front of longish day scopes on 16 inch rifles is just tough (same is true for my .22LR though it actually has a slightly longer usable rail due to no gas block). So, where to draw the "line in the sand" in terms of maximum scope length. I've used dark pink to note the scopes I think need to be ruled out due to length. Those are the 14 inch and above. Any scope (all of one) between 13.6 and 14 inches I backgrounded in lighter pink. So the area between 13.6 and 14.0 is debatable but not optimal.
I also ruled out all the scopes (all of one) which had objectives larger than 50mm as there is no way for me to verify whether I can use NVD in front of them and I'd not be happy if I got a $2,000 to $4,000 scope and couldn't use it with the NVD. That is one of the "requirements"

I've also tried to fill in a bit more details in the "notes" and "included" columns. The words "limited lifetime warranty" or "lifetime warranty" or "Full lifetime warranty" are from the manufacturers. I don't know what they mean.

I wouldn't be able to shell out the cash until June anyway, so any availability by June would not be an issue.

It looks like the biggest variable for me is whether I'm willing to spend more for FFP and if so, how much more. I read Greg's article on SFP versus FFP from a few years back and I'll go read it again. People on both sides of the fence seemed to think it was pretty good, so I'll give it another read.

I have looked at the ADM and Larue lever mounts. There are a number of variables and it is clear that the scope needs to be nailed down before purchasing the mount. But I think the ADM mount can get to or above 1.5 inch from center of mount to top of rail in some scenarios. Larue seems to think 1.535 inchs in the "sweet spot" and ADM solutions can straddle this line, depending on the scope. The main variable being tube size, 30mm versus 34mm. So that's why the scope needs to be determined first.

Thanks for all the input!!
 

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Discussion Starter #26
...Anyhow, not that it matters, but I think it's cool you can do all this stuff on the fly!
When I first started taking calculus in college, my GF was making 100s on every test and I was making 98s and 99s because I was making arithmetic errors. So I went out and played a lot of 301 (darts) and believe it or not, my arithmetic got detectably better. Get your kids dart boards and play darts with them!
Like 17x3 = 51 ... most people don't know that .. but 301 players do !!!
:)
 

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Look at the Vortex Razor series as well. Excellent scopes. The original Razor 5-20x50 can be had now down to $1549 and comes with excellent reticle options and features. Also has The Vortex VIP Warranty Vortex Tactical - VIP Warranty

Here is info on the Razor. Excellent scope. I would put it up with the NF F1 and well above the Leupold Mark 4. Don't look at the MSRP. It's not street price
Vortex Tactical - Razor HD Riflescopes

If you can wait a few months the new Razor IIs come out and the 4.5-27x56 is going to be a real sleeper in the scope market. $2499 street price.

Vortex Tactical - Razor HD Gen II 4.5-27x56 EBR-1C<br />(MRAD)
 

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Discussion Starter #28
As to Vortex, I must rule them out if for no other reason than length. I need to put the scope I get behind clip on NVD on 16 inch barreled rifles (with full top rails) and that is a challenge. Anything over 13.5 inches is border line. Anything 14 inches or above is a show stopper.

This applies to IOR suggestion as well.

The newer 11-13 inch scopes, especially the 34mm tubers are the prime candidates.
 

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Isn't the new GenII razor 3-18 model pretty short Rob? It looked damn short to me, but I didn't measure it.
 

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As to Vortex, I must rule them out if for no other reason than length. I need to put the scope I get behind clip on NVD on 16 inch barreled rifles (with full top rails) and that is a challenge. Anything over 13.5 inches is border line. Anything 14 inches or above is a show stopper.

This applies to IOR suggestion as well.

The newer 11-13 inch scopes, especially the 34mm tubers are the prime candidates.
Understood, I'm out'a suggestions but I swung at it. I have no doubt you'll find what you're looking for. Keep us informed on your final decision.
 

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Discussion Starter #31

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My suggestion is to get a rail extension. Shorting yourself on scope selection because of unavailable rail space isn't what I'd be doing.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Trying to find one that will fit on Sig716 with 16 inch barrel that is not a riser is a challenge. If you know of one I'd be happy to hear about it!
 

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Trying to find one that will fit on Sig716 with 16 inch barrel that is not a riser is a challenge. If you know of one I'd be happy to hear about it!
I did a bit of searching for you and found this handguard from Lancer.

SIG 516/716 Owners--New Handguard Options Coming from Lancer

I've handled Lancer's kit before, and it seems to be some good stuff. Never ran any of it hard for myself though. Looks like that hardguard will push you out into your gas block, which would give you those precious few more rail sections you'd need to get the clip on in the correct spot using longer optics. I love the extra handguard in front of the gas block/piston block too. You'd really be able to generate some leverage out there if a guy needed to rock and roll, and it won't get in the way of the clip on.
 

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Trying to find one that will fit on Sig716 with 16 inch barrel that is not a riser is a challenge. If you know of one I'd be happy to hear about it!
Heres a scope that fits what you're looking for. It's 12" long.

Our new 2-12x36 SPARTAN .308 BDC tactical scope was developed in response to numerous requests for a designated battle optic for .308 & 5.56 platforms. We offer 2 versions of this model. 1. The MP-8 Dot illuminted reticle model features an elevation knob with a true BDC .308 cam for 168 gr. bullet from 100 to 800 yds with 50 yd. fine adjustment clicks. 2. The CQB illuminated reticle model features the 5.56, 62gr bullet BDC reticule and the .308 BDC elevation knob. Both are set from 100 to 800 yds. The scope features a 35mm tube and a set of premium tactical rings of your choice, included. Order Low rings for bolt action rifles, Med rings for AR-10 and FN-FAL rifles and High rings for AR-15 flat top rifles.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Very interesting! And thanks much for the idea!

As is often the case, the devil is in the details. I'm sure it would be easier if I just got all new rifles !!! :)

In reading through that thread, it seems that the Lancer forearm for the Sigs does not actually extend the length of the top rail. But, in my application that isn't what matters. What matters in my case is ability to extend the USABLE length of the top rail.
On my Sig at least (hopefully mine is unique :) ) the top rail is in three sections. The receiver, the quad rail and the gas block. The joints between these sections have "longer" rail elements which cannot be used. Worse still, the joint between the quad rail section and the gas block section is not horizontally aligned, so I have been unable to place the NVD weaver mount across this joint. Another idea, which might be cheaper and easier, is to get someone to machine down this irregularity to the point where I could "bridge the gap" between the quad rail top and the gas block rail top. BTW the only use I've been able to get out of the gas block section of the rail is to mount the front sight post, which is how I see it being used in the Lancer photos as well. I need to be able to use that section to mount the front end of the NVD, while mounting the backend of the NVD on the quad rail, or forearm section. I need to be able to "bridge" across those two sections to extend the usable length of the top rail and thus lengthen the eligible scopes I can use.

The two rifles I currently put the NVD on are my .22LR (Mossberg 715T .. a.k.a. 702 plinkster with plastic shell with rails ... i.e. my "training rifle") and the Sig716. Later this year there will also probably be a 5.56 rifle upon which I'll want to mount the NVD. The .22LR usable top rail is 16 5/8 inch (from center of rear most usable rail depression to center of forward most rail depression. On the Sig, from the rear most to the forward most on the quad rail is 14 1/8 inches versus 16 3/8 to the foremost rail depression on the gas block. Having wrestled with the Sig top rail limitations I've made getting a solid fully usable top rail on the 5.56 rail a priority requirement. Was too dumb to think of that when I got the Sig.
But if the top rail of the Sig could be fully used then I would add 2.25 inches to the rail. The Lancer might make this happen. It might also be possible to make it happen with some "machining". So if nothing else, you've given me the idea to try to improve the situation with machining.
One of my buddies has a Sig716 just like mine and he works in a lower manufacturing facility where they do some machining :) so I will ask him if this issue can be addressed. If so, the machining solution might be cheaper. I will also further investigate the Lancer solution to see if that forerail remove the "horizontal alignment" issue I describe above and hence makes it possible to "bridge" across from the foreguard to the gas block with for instance, an NVD clipon.
So thanks again, and I do see some possibility here! Though lesson learned is, get longer rifles in your next lifetime Joe !!! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #37
Ok, here is fourth iteration of candidate list:



Per the above discussion entries were removed primarily due to length being greater than I can support on two of my 16 inch barreled rifles when rail mounting the NVD. The "line in the sand" was nominally drawn at 14 inches. Testing indicated 14.5 was too long and even 13.6 is borderline too long.

Also one entry was removed due to large objective and inability to verify whether this will work with NVD. I was able to verify that 50mm (56mm outside) will work.

So we have seven remaining entries (unless some new entries pop up). I don't actually plan to get another LP 3.5-10x TMR scope, so this entry is only in the list because I am using as the baseline, which I want to "beat" with the new scope. Hopefully that won't be hard as that scope design is about 10 years old!

So there are really only six entries. The LP Mk6 with the Ill Ret is $1,050 and while having an Ill Ret with an FFP sounds like a great idea, paying over $1,000 just for the Ill Ret feature to be added, does not seem reasonable to me. So that leaves 5 entries. The price range runs from $1600 up to almost $3700 so a pretty significant spread! The prices are all from Midway except for the TT scope which is from Primal Rights website.

So now it is kind of a dollars versus features decision. I think I'd be happy with any of these. Two of them have 34mm tube size two of them have no Ill Ret and only one is an SFP. All the knobs are 1/10 mil and all the reticles are mil, two of the reticles are a bit "fancy" (nothing wrong with that).

==

In the event I went with the LP Mk6 3-18x, no Ill Ret and H58 reticle. That combination resulted from being able to get a price for an "almost new" scope that made the H-58 virtually free. I think the key to the final decision though was length. On my Sig716 16 inch barrel with carbine length gas system, the usable rail space is 14.25 inches. And putting rail mounting NVD in front of a decent day scope and getting a decent eye relief situation is tough. But with this 11.9 inche scope, it is easy and I have one rail to spare.
Now that I have that scope, I will say I don't like the "new" M5 knobs, I prefer the old M5 knobs.
The elevation knob has to be "squeezed" in order to move it. I'm not sure what was wrong with the old knob, but apparently a few people must have complained. Maybe this is better, but it will take some getting used to.
The windage knob now has a cover, so you have to remove it and you have something else you can loose in the field.
On the other hand, the paralax knob is actually an improvement. It has distances marked on it and as near as I can tell they are pretty accurate.
As to the reticle, well it is pretty hard to see (for me) at 3x ... though it is ok at about 4x. This is an FFP so most of them either have the "reticle too hard to see on low power" problem or the "reticle so large it obscures the target" on high power problem and this reticle has the former of the two. I don't think it is useable, for me (I'm old a fuzzy eyed) at 3x, night or day. But I think about 4x is useable night or day. Well I know it is usable, because I've used it both night and day.
The Larue cantilever mount seems perfect and I can pop the scope off and on with no tools.
I've never seen a case where I needed Ill Ret with NV. I have seen two cases with tac light shooting at night where Ill Ret helped and one case in twilight shooting where Ill Ret would have helped with my other FFP scope (that isn't Ill Ret). So 3 cases out of the past 17 months with about 1000 rounds of night shooting. My hope with the FFP is that if I can't see the reticle, in a given case, I can crank up the magnification and then be able to see the reticle.

As to the H58 itself, well be careful what you wish for. I said I wanted to try a "fancy" reticle and so now I can. First impression is like "what do I do with all this!!?? :D :D But I took it out and fired with it and the first time zeroing with DM18A1B1 ammo (10gr 4000fps) I was low 2 mils and left 1 mil. I cranked the knobs and hit the bull, this was 60yds. So that's not shabby!

So anyway, thanks to all who gave suggestions, advice, comments. I learned a lot through this exercise, including some things about my own priorities.
 

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I'm sure most people know a lot more than I about SFP versus FFP, everyone I've asked has said "get FFP" but my brain must be in a different place because I still see some benefit for SFP. Not that I'm opposed to FFP, I'm fine with either. But IIRC, in looking at the prices of the NF 3.5-15 MLR scopes, they have both an SFP and an FFP flavor and the FFP flavor was $1,000 more !!! And I would struggle to pay $1,000 extra when I'm not sure the FFP is worth that much more than the SFP, if it is worth more.
Over the past few years, I've had SFP Mil/MOA scopes, SFP Mil/Mil scopes, FFP Mil/Mil scopes, and a SFP MOA/MOA scope. I've found advantages and disadvantages for each one. But what I've mainly found is that how you use a scope is extremely important. I don't believe that there is any one correct answer that works for everyone.

I've put far more rounds downrange with an AR than a bolt gun and much more of that has been under 500yd than over.

When it comes to ranging, I use a rangefinder more often than not. And most of the time I already knew the target distances so I din't even need that.

I've only been one place where someone was calling corrections for me. When it comes to corrections for shots that are a bit high/low/left/right, I have really never had a need for math regardless of scope - I just changed my point of aim a bit. I think that comes from shooting pistols a lot.

Between SFP and FFP, the only big issue I have had is that if I try and dial the power down too far with a FFP scope, I have lost the reticle a few times. The only big issue I have had with SFP is that I somehow feel like I'm missing something by not having an FFP.

I suspect that I am fairly representative of the average shooter. I rather suspect that many people spend more than they need to on scopes buying features they don't need and probably never will. I think that people want what the pros use even if the pros have completely different needs.

I've got a nice little Bushnell 2.5-16x42mm SFP Mil/MOA scope on an AR that I'm upgrading to a 6.5 Grendel and have been shopping for new scope and I really can't tell you why. Outside of not having an illuminated reticle this scope has worked just fine for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #39
For what I've kept track of, I've spent about 72% of my "capital" budget on sensors (i.e. optics) and about 28% on firearms. I do not include consumables in this total, consumables includes mostly ammo, but also cleaning materials and target materials. So, I've placed a heavy emphasis on optics. Within the optics space about 1/3 of the spending as been for day optics and about 2/3s for night optics.

In addition to the 4 scopes shown in my sig line, I also have an eotech exps3 this is a dot site with both day and night reticles. If I was going to get another day optic right now it would be a second eotech. But otherwise, I don't have the "itch" to get different day scopes. My main "itch" right now is for a helmet mounted thermal. This would allow detection while moving, whereas using thermal as a handheld monocular requires the "move, stop, look" process ... and helmet mounted device would permit continuous "move/see".

I have two sfp and two ffp and I agree that on low power the ffp reticles are hard to see. But I can crank them up to make the reticle larger and not throw off the holds, so that is compensating. I don't have the worry about missing much with the ffp, but that is probably just due to my enhanced ignorance! :)

The whole "cold bore" thing is still out in front of me in terms of my practice. But it is on the list. And since most of my shooting is at night and I get less feedback for a follow up shot at night (can't see dirt fly) it is important to think about first shot and not necessarily being able to adjust. Either you hit or you miss with the first shot. That whole mind set is still mostly in front of me. But I want to go there.

==
Recently I've found I can range more quickly and more accurately at night than in the day for two reasons:

01 - I can actually see the dot with my helmet mounted 14 at night, so I can place the dot more accurately at night.

02 - I can hold the LRF up against my helmet mount when ranging at night, thus providing more stabilization for the LRF.

My technique is to move the dot onto the item I which to range and then press and hold through three pulses and then read the result with unaided eye. I do this 2-3 times until I get +/- 1 yd result. Depending on conditions, this becomes more difficult over about 300yds and even more so over 500yds. At that point I am usually ranging off trees near the target and not the actual target itself, which I probably cannot see through the un-magnified 14. To extend range of accurate measurement I can add 3x slipon magnifier to the 14, this will get me up to 500yds on the object. The farthest I've ranging at night is in to the 800yd area. IN the day, I have ranged out to 1827 consistently for trees at the top of the ridge to my west. But I see need to learn the reticle ranging technique as backup. I know the distances around here as our land in this county is divided into 640 acre sections ... 1 mile squares ... but that is not accurate enough for first shot hit. At longer distances the accuracy of the distance measure gets more and more sensitive. But at some point ... 800yds? The wind factor itself will defeat idea of consistent first round hit. Depending on definition of hit (i.e. target size). Hitting an 8x8 foot target at one mile does not have much meaning for me and I don't see many shots like that coming up. Not too many elephants around here! :)
 

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Just curious, but note in the discussion here, nobody seemed to have concerns about eye relief. Several scopes mentioned could be an issue with a rifle with more recoil than a .308 Winchester has. This seems to also be the case in reading reviews on scopes where people talk about obviously high recoil rifles but seem to ignore the scope to eyebrow potential.
 
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