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What scope power do you use

Old 11-22-2015, 10:07 AM
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Default What scope power do you use

I was hunting this weekend with my muzzleloader and took a 70 yard non resting shot with my 1-9 scope set on 7, I felt like I was right on the deer but missed cleanly and am trying to determine what went wrong so I can learn from it, maybe my power was to high for that close of a shot, what zoom level do you guys use in certain situations?

On a side note I took a practice shot afterwards and it was sighted in perfectly.
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:09 AM
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The higher the power the "shakier" it will be. Chances are, offhand, you just missed. Thankfully you didn't wound it. I keep my scopes set low until I need them higher. A 3-9X I'll typically keep on 4X until I need it higher. Do you practice offhand shots, or non resting shots? I encourage people to practice the shots they will take. Lots of people only shoot their rifle off the bench to make sure it's sighted in then wonder why they miss a fairly easy shot offhand. I practice all sorts of things. I'm even comfortable switching hands and shooting left on several of my deer rifles. Practice, more so than scope power, is key.
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Bocajnala
Practice, more so than scope power, is key.

4X - 16X , but always on 4X until I need more.

I have one 6X - 24X , same method (predator gun) used for when I am expecting longer shots at smaller animals.
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:47 AM
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3x9 but it is usually set on 5. One thing people fail to do and that is practice shooting offhand and distances they will be likely to shoot at. There is a big difference in shooting offhand and having a nice bench and shooting rests to work from. Offhand is where breath control and trigger squeeze really matter.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:20 AM
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The more the better. I mainly hunt in Florida and the furthest I shoot is 100 yards. I have a 4-12x50. Use all of it at 100 yards.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:22 AM
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As for scope power I stay on minimum power 3 or 4 depending which scope I am using. I rarely go higher unless I am target shooting. Two of my rifles have peep sights and they are for fast close shots. That said I don't get shots much past 100 yards around here.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:10 PM
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My scope is a 4X12X52, I'm a firm believer in the "aim small miss small theory", I leave it on 12X. I've put enough practice in, to transition from eye to scope or binocular to scope and pick the target up again in the scope quickly, that it is instinct for me now. I don't need field of view. I don't aim at a Deer, I aim for a spot on that Deer.

Some scopes, when you change the power the parallax changes. You have to adjust the parallax ring or change your eye relief. Some scopes the point of aim/impact changes with a power change.

Try rolling our head at different distances from your scope and watch the dark ring around the lighter center circle of your view. When the black ring disappears, this is the sweet spot (distance) for your eye from the scope. Some/many scopes have an adjustment for this, some don't.

Check your eye distance then change your power and see if the ideal eye distance changes.

And lastly after you have gotten good at moving/rolling your head (eye) distance from the scope, until the darker outer ring disappears. Do it again while looking at a fixed target and watch the reticle at the same time. If the reticle moves off the target much, you will have to learn to deal with this. The usual solution is to get exactly the same eye relief distance from the scope every time.

Most manufactures have found ways to mitigate parallax and reticle movement with power changes. May not even be a factor with your scope, but it is worth a look see.

Trigger jerk is the most likely explanation. You had a brain fart and forgot to squeeze. Next most common is breath control.

Check your scope out anyway. Read up some on parallax, I'm sure others have a better explanation than mine. Parallax gets more important at longer ranges. But it is a greater/lesser factor depending on the scope.

I have a (really heavy) three legged vise, I pad to protect the rifle and use to check my scopes out with.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:58 PM
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I keep mine on low power until I need more. Most of my normal distance deer are shot at 3X.
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Old 11-22-2015, 01:37 PM
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I like a 2-7x scope. I rarely crank it up to 7x, I can shoot out to 300 yards on 4x which is about as far as I care to kill big game animals at. Would like to try a 1-4x. IMO high magnification is only good when a solid rest can be taken. For offhand or field position shooting I feel far more steady using less magnification.
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Old 11-22-2015, 02:52 PM
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It wasn't the scope power, 7x is fine for that shot...

I use 3x9 scopes and usually I will set it at 4.5-5x in the woods...Over our soybean fields in eastern NC I typically have it on 7x and then move it to 9x if needed...That being said, I killed a buck this year at 257 yards with the scope on 7x and the evening before I killed another at about 50 yards at 7x as well...

Remember back in Jack O'Connors day a 4x was considered fine for everything...
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