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Thread: Low Light scope for a varmint yard gun

  1. #1
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    Low Light scope for a varmint yard gun

    Once I move (eventually!) I want a better scope for low light for a .22; For varminting. In city now but planning to get out to the country and last time I had a cheap (TOO cheap) scope and found that, at night when the Raccoons were pestering us, I had a hard time seeing the darn things. I'll have to check laws (unsure where I'll go yet) but would hope Rats, Raccoons, etc. in my yard would be fair game. I may be able to add a good weapon light - I'll have to see. Probably could look at a red dot type sight but I've never used one, always conventional glass.

    I am debating upgrading to a 22 Hornet for the job as it would be a lot harder on large Raccoons, have to look into good rifles for that. CZ or Ruger, lots of good options.

    {Mods - as usual, unsure where to put this - Is there a proper place for sights related posts? Move if needed. TY!}

  2. #2
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    A regular 3x9 at low power or better yet a fixed 4x with the light Foreward of the scope to prevent glare. Dual-X crosshairs work fine. If your not saving hides a .17 HMR is great and less prone to travel far if you miss. .22 hp minimag is what I use most - but a full choke shotgun TELLS on Rocky Raccoon and his kin.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

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    Shotguns work well, but if I end up with a barn cat, I'd like to stay somewhat quiet so as to not terrorize the cat. 22 Hornet would do that; Could use a 223 with a reduced load too I guess. But a 10-22 would work too maybe? Haven't shot a 17 HMR yet, doable in a 10-22 IIRC now? Something will work out. Trying to not spend $$ on a VX2 or 3 for a rimfire LOL Maybe I'll upgrade one rifle to that and use the Weaver K4 off it, that'd do. I was going to put any light under the stock with a tube to prevent glare, so it's recessed and not visible from the scope.

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    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    My dogs and cats don't even wake up unless I shoot something with a muzzle brake on it. But they are used to it by now

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    A Holosun red dot or a different type depending on your budget would work for what you are thinking of doing but if you are intent on a scope, a Nikon Prostaff rimfire is very clear and transmits a great deal of light. 98% I think is what they quote and they are not joking on this. You can get one for about $100 new or less on Ebay for used. I'm a big fan of Nikon glass on the value vs money scale of things.

    I have a couple of cheaper scopes I bought on a whim to try out, Barska etc. 4x with a lighted crosshair. They work surprisingly well. Good way to see if you like a lighted crosshair before dropping serious money on one. Word of warning: stay away from Osprey products. Pure junk.
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    I set the bait under a mercury vapor light and could see the raccoons perfectly. The 513 with its long barrel makes very little noise with sub sonic ammo.
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    What’s your budget? I imagine any fully multicoated scope from a reputable company would be sufficient however.

  8. #8
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    If it is like pig hunting at night, you could try using a red or amber (yellow) flashlight to illuminate them with. The pigs seem to ignore the red or yellow light. I really like using my ATN day/night digital scope for pig hunting. I think I would figure out a way to mount it on a 22LR rifle for small varmint hunting at night. They do make a picatinny rail adapter for .22's with the scope mount grooves. I was also thinking that the animals usually freeze for a few seconds when you light them up in a spotlight. So you might have time to shoot them if you aren't too slow.
    Last edited by Earlwb; 09-22-2018 at 07:17 PM. Reason: typo

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    Boolit Master tazman's Avatar
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    I got tired of not being able to see well though my 22 scopes and switched to 1 inch high power rifle scopes. I have an old Weaver 4 power on my first 22lr rifle(Winchester 72A purchased used in 1963). I sighted it in over 30 years ago ago and haven't needed to adjust it since.
    My newer rifles all get nice 1 inch scopes in various powers depending on what I plan to do with it.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master Jack Stanley's Avatar
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    I'm a fan of Leupold rim fire scopes , but if a budget is in the way of that . I'd agree on the Nikon Rim fire scopes , I have a couple of them and like them .

    Jack
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  11. #11
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    The Nikon web site, so far, seems to suck a bit (I cannot get it to work right, it insists on always showing me NO RESULTS if I try the needed tags.) I can look elsewhere though. I can see a Nikon or a Leupold, or other decent scope, $100-$200 maybe? Not sure on that Weaver K4, I think it has very thin crosshairs, fine on the sporter it was on but NOT too good for low light! Fixed 4x will definitely do for this job, even if I upgrade to a 22 Hornet it'll be quite enough scope. Indoor pets will have a wall between the rifle and their ears, outdoor one wouldn't. Planning to get probably 2 dogs, once I can have them, so they could help let me know when varmints are about. (One cat here growls if anyone comes by the bedroom window, she's channeling Clint Eastwood maybe - "Get off my lawn!" LOL)

  12. #12
    Boolit Buddy
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    I am very pleased with the Weaver rimfire scopes. They have the proper paralax, 1 inch tubes, and better optics than a bunch of the budget centerfire scopes do. There not budget busters, there sized and balanced for rimfire rifles, and I can assure you they let in plenty of light for night time varmint control. I personally own 3 4x28, 4 2-7x28, and a 3-9x30 paralax adjustable. I also own several Leupold scopes for big guns and the only thing I can tell they have on the Weavers is $100 larger price tag! If you want to really get cheep, but OK, see if you can find an old Tasco shotgun scope with the circle X reticle. Beware of red dots if you have astigmatism! I have it, and in all red dot sights the dot looks like I'm using a cutting torch, I get a hot spot with a flare to one side, and it's useless for any precision shooting for me.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master



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    I was just on the Nikon site and it worked fine for me
    Government is the great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else.

    Bastiat

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    sed nomini tuo da gloriam

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  14. #14
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    On the Nikon Site, maybe it just doesn't like FireFox?

  15. #15
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    I use Firefox. Im not sure why your having a problem. Try Optics Planet and look at them there

  16. #16
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    Optics Planet was fine back then. Odd. I'll get to putting it all together eventually

  17. #17
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    Currently, I just set out a racoon paw trap and just shoot them in the daylight. Previously, used a inexpensive 4X Simmons 44 Mag rimfire scope on my Ruger 10-22 in conjunction with a LED green weapon light............mounted directly above the scope.

    Winelover

  18. #18
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    A raccoon paw trap wouldn't be wise with barn cats; Cats and Dogs have a way of finding me when I am out and about, so I expect they'll occasionally show up looking for a good home. I'll at least foster them, then find them a home.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master pietro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Sheesh View Post

    at night when the Raccoons were pestering us, I had a hard time seeing the darn things.

    I'll have to check laws (unsure where I'll go yet) but would hope Rats, Raccoons, etc. in my yard would be fair game.


    AFAIK, most states regard Racoons as game animals, with attendant seasons, and not pests/varmints.


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    Experience is a wonderful thing - It lets you recognize a mistake, when you make it again.

  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    Nikon pro staff rimfire 3x9x42 has served me well on my 10/22's. It stays pretty bright until no see time. Just make sure you dont get one of the model with those stupid target turrets that nikon loves so much,due to the fact there is no way to lock them. The scope should be in the $100 range,a good deal for good glass IMHO.

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