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Pros/Cons of Nikon's BDC Reticle

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Pros/Cons of Nikon's BDC Reticle

Old 09-12-2008, 07:33 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: MA
Posts: 290
Default RE: Pros/Cons of Nikon's BDC Reticle

The BDC is OK if you spend enough time at the range. If you are going to shoot deers at 150 yards, you do not need it.
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Old 09-12-2008, 07:44 PM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Rivesville, WV
Posts: 3,192
Default RE: Pros/Cons of Nikon's BDC Reticle

I have scopes that have the Leupold VH, Leupold B&C, Burris Ballistic-Plex, and the Nikon BDC reticle. I rate the Nikon BDC at the bottom of the list, and at the bottom by a good bit. The circles are not the way to go, and the circles give no help with the windage.

All the nay sayers about the particular load you shoot not matching the detents are wrong. All you need to do is adjust the power ring at the range to your particular load. The mfr. suggests a certain power that matches a certain load-yes, that is true. But when you change the power selector ring you can easily adjust the scope to your particular load. So that is not why i do not like the BDC.

I just do not like the circles. I have no idea why they went that way. Go somewhere a look through the Leupold Varmint Hunter, or the Leupold Boone & Crocket reticle. And then you will understand why I like them. The Leupold's will work on any cartridge, and they work exceptionally well on a MZ.

I have a Monarch with the BDC, and I would not spend 10 cents extra for it. If you want that type reticle then look at the Leupold or Burris. Tom.
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Old 02-06-2012, 09:48 AM
Giant Nontypical
Sheridan's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,130

Don't like circles; not accurate enough for precision shooting.

I like very few smaller lines below the crosshairs.

Here is what I use on all my scoped guns;


Last edited by Sheridan; 11-23-2013 at 07:17 PM.
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Old 11-16-2013, 11:22 AM
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 1

I've written about Why You Need The Nikon BDC Reticle previously. I'm a big fan of it. It came on my Nikon 3x32 P223.

Simply put, it just makes taking shots at distances beyond what you're sighted in for easier. All you need to do is zero in your rifle on a target, then take that info to the SpotOn web app. With that you'll be able to print out a custom reference sheet telling which aimpoint to use at which shooting distance.

Really it is a very low effort procedure for something with such high rewards.

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Old 11-22-2013, 08:38 AM
ms6852's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Texas
Posts: 34

The Nikon 25-10X42 with BDC which I have mounted on my RRA predator pursuit is quite accurate. I have my RRA zeroed at 200 yds which easily lets me use all circles to 600 yds. I have tested only to 500 yds and have adequately tested it on coyotes and very aggressive jack rabbits at 300+ yds without a problem. The fact that I can hit steel rams and 10" plates at 500 yds is good enough for me.

Nikon also has an app called Spot on that allows you to use it with different bullet weights. I have not used it. I still prefer to zero rifle with the bullet weight I use, just old fashion I guess.

The one con that I did find with the Nikon Scope with BDC is that it does not have parallax correction. For me since sometimes I like to shoot for group size when reloading it does not allow me to perform the ladder test which is done at longer distance than 200 yds. The parallex on the scope is god awful beyond one hundred yds.

I highly recommend for fast acquisition targets on the move it works good for me.

Last edited by ms6852; 11-22-2013 at 08:42 AM.
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Old 11-22-2013, 11:20 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 666

I have two with BDC and I don't care for the circles, lines or dots would be better.
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Old 01-25-2015, 02:08 PM
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 1
Default How I use the nikon predator bdc...

I find the nikon bdc reticle to be very useful, but I must say that I am an engineer, so I created my own way to use it which differs from the recommended usage from nikon.

First I hate carrying a range finder. I am already carrying binoculars and a gun and it think that less is more when you're hiking into the woods to hunt, so to get out of carrying the range finder, I use the bdc reticle and some simple math to help me judge distance. I have the coyote special (3-9x) on my 243 and 308 which has the predator reticle. After doing some testing, I found that the big center ring at 3x magnification is about 10 MOA. From this finding, if a deers kill zone fits inside it, it's about 100 yards away. Since it's a second focal plane scope, it's the same proportion at 200 yards for 6x, and then the same again with 9x at 300 yards. Although I know it's not exact, but I have built in about 50 yards of error in case I under estimate.

When I zero my rifle, I zero at the max point blank range (225 yds) just as I would a duplex reticle. Out in the field I set my scope to 3x and adjust to 6x as needed. Now if it is beyond 200 yards, I don't take the shot. If it's within 200, it depends on a lot of factors. So basically, the big advantage of it for me is that it allows me to quickly hunt places I haven't ranged out and this is particularly important when hunting public land where you're not going to be in the same place twice.
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Old 01-25-2015, 04:02 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Saskatchewan Canada
Posts: 188

it seems like i'm reading a lot of responses with hunters that a) probably have just looked through a scope at the store and said "meh" and/or b) hunters that are a little too confident and never go to the range to learn their equipment.
my monarch scope is just another tool that helps me guage holdover in the case of an animal between distances. its an awesome tool and i have never found it to obscure the target lies beyond it in any circumstance, be it the range or the field.
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Old 01-26-2015, 12:16 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Posts: 516

I think the BDC is garbage.
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Old 01-26-2015, 07:46 AM
Nontypical Buck
Nomercy448's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Kansas
Posts: 3,901

While I'm not usually one to take interest in a 7yr old thread, I'll bite...

I agree with Sheridan, that the large subtension of the circles makes them a rather bad choice, especially at longer ranges where precision POA placement becomes more and more critical.

My major problem with BDC reticles, even with the SpotOn programming, is that they're only valid under one singular set of conditions. Changing ONE variable for environmental conditions will throw the SpotOn estimates for range/circle reference out the window.

For example, WITHIN A MATTER OF WEEKS, I hunted coyotes in these conditions last season:

I did some test shooting to rezero my rifles and test trajectory when I changed conditions. Luckily for me, I was using Varget and didn't get a lot of velocity spread, but my 400yrd drop changed pretty significantly - enough to have caused the difference in a well placed shot and a dead coyote, and a bad shot, or even a miss!!

Central KS 0 degrees, 1200ft 400yrd drop = 36.5" (This is my normal zero)
Eagle colorado, 0deg, 6700 ft 400yrd drop = 30.5"
Maricopa AZ 65degrees, 1200ft 400yrd drop = 32.25" (Same conditions I might hunt in at home during spring/fall, but drier air)

So if I simply relied upon my BDC reticle and SpotOn's estimation for my cold day zero at home, I might have missed by 4-6". Equally, if I zero in the winter then hunt in the spring here at home, I'll see the same type of variability for drop at range.

Now add to that temperature sensitivity for powders. I run IMR 4064 in my .30-06, which has kicked me in the teeth before when we had a heat wave during rifle season, as a -10 degree day runs the same load about 130fps slower than a 65degree day, hitting about 7" higher at 450yrds.

DOPE books and ACCURATE range cards are worth a lot. BDC reticles aren't worth jack.
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