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first focal plane or second focal plane scopes

Discussion in 'Anything Airgun Related' started by Panther, Jun 8, 2014.

  1. Panther

    Panther Donator

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    Hi Folks,
    currently using Bushnell 4.5-14x44 legend for HFT, just about to order new rifle, thinking about trying lightstream 4.5-14x44 FFP.
    Would be interested to hear from anyone who has experience of comparing first focal plane with second focal plane scopes, is there any advantage of one over the other.
    What would you choose for HFT and for hunting?
     
  2. jesim1

    jesim1 Kit bitch to the Stars

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    I tried the scope you are looking for and just could not get on with it. The quality was obviously good, best I've used, but I could not get on with the whole reticule changing size as I adjusted the magnification, it just did not feel right, but I know these scopes are very desirable. I was using it on an air rifle, I think it may come into a league of it's own on a rim/centre fire?

    James
     
  3. rkr

    rkr Keyboard Hero

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    I just did a session with FFP scope at 14x mag on my Ruger 10/22 and it works fine up to 75 yards or so. Past that you need more magnification.
     
  4. walker

    walker Busy Member

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    Ive got a lightstream and a falcon both ffp. The quality of the lightstream is unreal. Supberb glass and suberbly made. Bit pricey but i picked mine up second hand. You wont go wrong with a lightstream mate.
     
  5. muzzy76

    muzzy76 Busy Member

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    Really? Before they started putting PM11's on top of it, the standard scope on the 7.62mm L96 sniper rifle was a fixed 6x. We used to do OK out to 800 yards with that. Can't see how you'd need more than 14x for 75 yards plus unless you're blind.
     
  6. 177

    177 Donator

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    The Lightstream is a superb scope in its own right. Optically it's brilliant - incredibly bright, amazing clarity, lots of ticks in lots of boxes.

    Not everyone gets along with FFP scopes for various reasons. There isn't enough space here to go off on one describing the differences. The main reason I got rid of mine was weight and size.

    I try to get my rigs down to low bulk and relatively low weight with a usable combination of features appropriate to hunting. The Lightsream is a superb scope but I saw no reason to cart it around for a day on the hills (lazy hack).

    Having said all that HFT isn't hunting so your needs are different.

    Have a peep here: http://www.airgunforum.co.uk/forums/showthread.php/86452-HFT-Scope?p=208415&viewfull=1#post208415

    It's one of the best summaries of HFT scope requirements I have seen :)

    I have an Edgar Brothers 10x42 that I bought recently on a .223 rifle. My first thoughts were to change it but, being the lazy hack I am, I figured it was on there so I'd use it and see how I got along with it. I have to say it surprised the heck out of me and if I was going to set up a dedicated HFT rig I'd probably buy another or rob this one off the .223 and drop it onto a suitable air rifle.

    On a loosely related note, a lot of long range 'varmint' shooters in America use fixed 8x and 10x scopes for all but the very longest range shots.

    We're talking fast and flat rounds like the .22-250 and .220 Swift, maybe the .223 as well, on targets not much larger than a rabbit out to 300 and even 400 yards.

    Where zoom scopes are used I mostly see a lot of 3-9x and, over the last few years, 3-12x and 4-16x have made significant inroads in the long range varmint hunting scene. A few long range hunters use smaller x32 scopes to great effect.

    On a precision shooting course I attended in America one of the instructors (who used to teach snipers for a living) said he'd take clarity over magnification every time.

    I'd try to arrange a session or two with one before taking the plunge, or you could end up buying twice if you don't get on with it.

    It really doesn't matter what anyone else says because our eyes and requirements are all different so what one person raves about, someone else just won't be able to get along with.

    Funny old world...
     
  7. rkr

    rkr Keyboard Hero

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    The cross in the reticle starts to get too thick for bench rest shooting past 75M. For tactical work it's just fine, probably good enough for 500-600M. I was trying to get sub MOA grouping but the reticle caused too much error at 100M and I had to settle for 30mm groups :(

    Edit, at 14x mag the FFP reticle is a bit thicker than normal fine reticle. If I had 24x mag FFP scope I could have used it at 14x mag and the reticle would have been fine.

    Edit 2, this is a Vector optics 4.5-14 FFP scope. Very nice optics but a bit on the heavy side. Very good hunting scope for normal rimfire/centerfire ranges if the weight doesn't bother you.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2014
  8. 177

    177 Donator

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    If you had a thinner ret regardless of whether it was FFP or SFP you wouldn't have needed more mag - you could have done it with less.

    I found the Flacon Menace (for the sake of an example) scope ret a little on the thick side for really precise results.

    Magnification isn't the only solution - a fine ret that is also crisp, sharp and crystal clear would be much higher on my list than magnification :)
     
  9. rkr

    rkr Keyboard Hero

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    Exactly right. However, the FFP reticle gets bigger and thicker when you magnify more and there's a limit how thin it can be to still work at low mag. That's why I prefer non FFP for target shooting. This scope however was on my hunting gun and for that purpose the FFP is great as the drop in relation to reticle stays the same for all magnifications.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2014
  10. 177

    177 Donator

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    Vortex Razor HD 5-20x50 is gorgeous from the lowest to the highest mag with a lovely fine ret.

    It's FFP too, if a shade more spendy than certain others.

    There are plenty of FFP and SPF scopes out there with highly usable rets although some, as you found out, are a little thicker than they could be.
     
  11. Darren Petts

    Darren Petts Temporarily Alive

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    The lightstream is so good optically that it has issues at HFT IMO. This is nothing to do with it being FFP. It's quite possible to get a perfect picture with your head well out of central alignment thus getting lots of parallax error. You need to work very hard to overcome this with this scope so it'd not be my first choice for that discipline. I'd want a scope that tells you very quickly if your head is out of position.
     
  12. Andy_J

    Andy_J Replica Airgun Enthusiast

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    Get a Bushnell elite 3200 10x40 mildot. Fantastic HFT scopes and great value. ;)
     

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