LR308 Hunting Optic Magnification

COGuy99

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2022
Messages
15
I'm building a lightweight LR308 Rifle to get into hunting and range shooting. Decided I'd rather just spend the money on the LR308 to make it lightweight than build a heavy one and buy a lightweight hunting rifle. With a Brigand Arms Edge Handguard, Faxon Pencil Barrel (18" or 16"), JP LMOS BCG and SCS Buffer setup, Aero M5 upper/lower, lightweight DD furniture, 5 round magazine, and Aero LW Scope Mount - Rifle is 7 lbs flat with unloaded without a scope.

Trying to decided what magnification range for Elk and Deer hunting. I currently live in NorCal, but will likely be hunting a lot in Colorado (family lives there, and moving back in a few years) - possibly SD and WY as well with family out there. Elk hunting would most likely only be in CO, deer more likely in CA.

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I'm planning on getting a Delta Stryker HD 1-6x DSMR scope (or possibly a Burris RT6) for both my AR-15 and AR-10 (for general paper punching and steel), as well as using for hunting with the 308 (both scopes only weigh 17 oz).

I want to get a dedicated hunting scope for the LR308 though. Pretty much settled on a Leupold with a Firedot Reticle. Options are:

VX-3HD 3.5x-10x40mm Firedot: 14.5 oz ($750)

VX-5HD 2-10x42mm: 18.9 oz ($1100)

VX5-HD 3-15xx44mm Firedot with Side Focus: 19.7 oz ($1100)



Which do you think would be the better choice? I'm leaning towards either the 2-10X or 3.5-10x, since with a 18" or 16" barrel, I'll be limited to ~300 yds regardless. VX5HD is nice for better glass, but I take a 4.4 oz weight penalty.

If I'm doing short range hunting or in timber areas, I'd probably throw on the 1-6x, so not sure if I care about the 3x vs 3.5x bottom end magnification difference. the 2-10x could probably do it all though, and might negate the need for ever putting the 1-6x on.

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In summary:

  1. 16" or 18" .308 Barrel? (3 oz weight penalty for 18"). Doubt I'll ever shoot past 500 yards for any reason, probably no more than 300 yards hunting.
  2. Delta Stryker 1-6X - Is being Daylight bright and Japanese Glass worth $500 more than the Burris RT6 1-6X?
  3. Is the improved magnification range and clearer glass worth the 4.5-5.3oz weight penalty and extra $450 for the VX5HD vs the VX3HD? Should I value getting 2x minimum magnification over 3.5x?
 
OP
C

COGuy99

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2022
Messages
15
Just some Ballistics info for reference:

Using Hornady Precision Hunter 178-grain ELD-X bullets, at various altitudes, I get the following distances with impact energy at ~1500 ft lbs:

16" Barrel: Sea Level: 300 yds -- 3000ft: 350 yds -- 6000ft: 385 yds
18" Barrel: Sea Level: 350 yds -- 3000ft: 400 yds -- 6000ft: 450 yds

So either barrel really seems fine up to 300 yds, particularly at altitude. Difference is around 100 ft-lbs of energy from 16" to 18" at most distances.
 

bruceleroy

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Dec 29, 2015
Messages
241
Velocity is of far greater importance. As for optics... my favorite scope is a Bushnell Engage 2.5-10x44. It weighs 18 ounces, is sfp, and is clear as a bell. I paid 180 for it on a deal.
Ive tried to like other scopes for the hunting role but I have returned about 9 now.
 
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COGuy99

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2022
Messages
15
Thinking I’ll opt for the 18” barrel. Anyone else have thoughts on the scope?
 

2-Stix

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Oct 7, 2020
Messages
120
I have a VX-3HD 3.5x-10x40mm 1" tube on Tally light weights with the CDS elevation dials and I really really like it. On my .308 Tikka...its a very light weight package. I shot 3 bucks with it the last few seasons. I have it zeroed at 200 and I dial out from there after I range the animal. I shoot steel out to 600 with no issues tracking and come back to the zero stop at 200 and head back out to hunt. No issues yet. Didn't like the Vortex's I had in the past.
 
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thinhorn_AK

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Jul 2, 2016
Messages
8,419
Location
Alaska
Get an shv 3-10, I probably wouldn’t spend money on a vx5 even though I have a few vx3i scopes that I like (don’t dial them). If I was looking for a 30mm tuned scope I wouldn’t look at leupold.
 
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COGuy99

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2022
Messages
15
SHV 3-10x42 is 22.2 Oz. $300 more and 8 oz more than a VX-3HD sounds like a lose lose to me.

At least the VX5-HD 3-15x has more magnification on the top and, and is 2.5 Oz lighter than the SHV too for about the same price. Or get the 2-10x VX5HD and it’s 3.3 Oz lighter and has a considerably wider field of view on low magnification.
 

ljalberta

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Dec 7, 2015
Messages
1,055
SHV 3-10x42 is 22.2 Oz. $300 more and 8 oz more than a VX-3HD sounds like a lose lose to me.

At least the VX5-HD 3-15x has more magnification on the top and, and is 2.5 Oz lighter than the SHV too for about the same price. Or get the 2-10x VX5HD and it’s 3.3 Oz lighter and has a considerably wider field of view on low magnification.
Another key difference is that an SHV can generally be expected to hold zero and reliably track and return to zero. That’s a win win.

I personally wouldn’t mount any of those scopes on a hunting rifle.

Leupolds are great on paper, and of course when you’re re-zeroing half a dozen times per year, you sure enjoy that great glass quality.

I have two Leupolds left to sell and then I’ll be unlikely to touch another again unless they make a big change in their design.

I used many unreliable, but great on paper scopes prior. Since getting more intentional about my shooting ive been moving to SWFA and the Bushnell LRHS. No regrets. And I’ll likely add a NF and Trijicon at some point in the future.
 

Tim Box

Junior Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
27
I'm building a lightweight LR308 Rifle to get into hunting and range shooting. Decided I'd rather just spend the money on the LR308 to make it lightweight than build a heavy one and buy a lightweight hunting rifle. With a Brigand Arms Edge Handguard, Faxon Pencil Barrel (18" or 16"), JP LMOS BCG and SCS Buffer setup, Aero M5 upper/lower, lightweight DD furniture, 5 round magazine, and Aero LW Scope Mount - Rifle is 7 lbs flat with unloaded without a scope.

Trying to decided what magnification range for Elk and Deer hunting. I currently live in NorCal, but will likely be hunting a lot in Colorado (family lives there, and moving back in a few years) - possibly SD and WY as well with family out there. Elk hunting would most likely only be in CO, deer more likely in CA.

--------

I'm planning on getting a Delta Stryker HD 1-6x DSMR scope (or possibly a Burris RT6) for both my AR-15 and AR-10 (for general paper punching and steel), as well as using for hunting with the 308 (both scopes only weigh 17 oz).

I want to get a dedicated hunting scope for the LR308 though. Pretty much settled on a Leupold with a Firedot Reticle. Options are:

VX-3HD 3.5x-10x40mm Firedot: 14.5 oz ($750)

VX-5HD 2-10x42mm: 18.9 oz ($1100)

VX5-HD 3-15xx44mm Firedot with Side Focus: 19.7 oz ($1100)



Which do you think would be the better choice? I'm leaning towards either the 2-10X or 3.5-10x, since with a 18" or 16" barrel, I'll be limited to ~300 yds regardless. VX5HD is nice for better glass, but I take a 4.4 oz weight penalty.

If I'm doing short range hunting or in timber areas, I'd probably throw on the 1-6x, so not sure if I care about the 3x vs 3.5x bottom end magnification difference. the 2-10x could probably do it all though, and might negate the need for ever putting the 1-6x on.

---------

In summary:

  1. 16" or 18" .308 Barrel? (3 oz weight penalty for 18"). Doubt I'll ever shoot past 500 yards for any reason, probably no more than 300 yards hunting.
  2. Delta Stryker 1-6X - Is being Daylight bright and Japanese Glass worth $500 more than the Burris RT6 1-6X?
  3. Is the improved magnification range and clearer glass worth the 4.5-5.3oz weight penalty and extra $450 for the VX5HD vs the VX3HD? Should I value getting 2x minimum magnification over 3.5x?
Sounds like you've got a good plan
 
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