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12,16, or 20x #5616261 02/24/15 12:30 AM
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decided on a swfa ss fixed power scope for my dedicated long range rig. seems like its easily the best scope for the money.

All 3 are avaiable in MRAD, and with the mil-quad reticle. im just not sure what the best magnification will be. im leaning towards 16, so its still functional at 100 yards, but 20x would be nice for being able to see hits at a farther distance. what say ye?


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616278 02/24/15 12:36 AM
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I can only speak of the SWFA 1-6 and 5-20x50mm, so I can't help with the models you are considering. I can say that I am very pleased with the 5-20. It is easily my favorite for optical quality and repeatability of the turrets. The 1-6 had fogged up (had condensation inside) during the latter part of deer season so I need to look into sending it back. Other than that I am happy with it as well.

For shooting if there is not too much mirage I like the 5-20 cranked all the way up, but if there is mirage I turn it down a bit. That said the 16x would probably be your best all round choice. Just one opinion.

Hope this helps.

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616308 02/24/15 12:44 AM
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another quick question, do i need a 20 moa base with these scopes? just want to order once.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616329 02/24/15 12:50 AM
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I have a Vortex 6-24x50, and during the THF rifle match I never turned past 16, way to much mirage. Since it's not adjustable, I wouldn't go higher then 16x. For the match 16 wasn't needed, I think most people were using around 12x or less.

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616350 02/24/15 12:56 AM
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that was the way i was leaning, just wasnt sure if going over 16 on a fixed power would be a hinderance or not, sounds like it could be. sounds like 16x may be the ticket. still open to more opinions. got about 3 weeks til im buying.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616369 02/24/15 01:05 AM
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Yes you do need to mount it on a 20 MOA base, that's the way it was designed to be mounted.

I'd go 16X out of those options.


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Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616370 02/24/15 01:07 AM
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i thought so. no problem switching bases, just want to make sure it was necessary before replacing a perfectly good 0 moa base.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616383 02/24/15 01:14 AM
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SWFA will let you trade it in.


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Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: FiremanJG] #5616404 02/24/15 01:21 AM
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Originally Posted By: FiremanJG
SWFA will let you trade it in.


its just a $25 weaver base, but it works. doubt id get much for it. but, since i dont need it, i guess anything is better than nothing if they will even accept it.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616411 02/24/15 01:22 AM
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6 or 10x

The others are a simple no go for me.

Last edited by 6.5x47Lapua; 02/24/15 01:24 AM.
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616438 02/24/15 01:27 AM
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I ran the 12x at Jason's range with no issues and could watch my impacts at 800 yards


"From my cold dead hands"

"Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain - and most fools do."

Benjamin Franklin

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: 6.5x47Lapua] #5616467 02/24/15 01:37 AM
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Originally Posted By: 6.5x47Lapua
6 or 10x

The others are a simple no go for me.


Would you mind elaborating on why that is? Everybody has different styles, and I'd like your take on it.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616480 02/24/15 01:41 AM
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Field of view, under stress, is paramount.


You only need enough magnification to identify the target, and put a proper wind hold on the reticle. The idea that the target must take up as much space as possible in the scope is silly to me.

I fell for the high magnification trance too. My main target scope is a gen 1 razor 5-20. It rarely gets turned above 15x, and sits below 10x the majority of the time. For me, being able to transition from target to target easily requires a large field of view. At high magnification, it's real easy to get lost in transition.

Last edited by 6.5x47Lapua; 02/24/15 01:46 AM.
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: 6.5x47Lapua] #5616519 02/24/15 01:57 AM
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You make a good point but you are in the minority. For a pure range rifle, 10X and above is better. The higher the magnification, the smaller you can shoot, like 1 MOA out to 800. The reason I turn down on the range is because of mirage. Other than that I use all I can get. Hunting, I turn down to 5X while walking around, in case of the need for a snap shot. Slightly wobbly I still start around 8X or 10X. I've looked down my range to the end with 6X and those targets are tiny. Crank it up above 10X and it's do-able.


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Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616541 02/24/15 02:06 AM
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Thats the beauty of ffp reticles. As soon as you can make out the reticle clearly on the target, that is all the magnification you need. If I can clearly hold 1.5 mils right of the target at 6-8x, then increasing magnification is only decreasing field of view. 1.5 mils will always be 1.5 mils. You don't need any more or any less.

The only time high magnification is helpful is during target identification. Is that a pig? Yes. Or is that the target I am supposed to be shooting? Hold 1.5 mils right for wind, and keep an eye out for other animals that may be walking into the kill zone.

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616549 02/24/15 02:08 AM
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Even on a range rifle, if the targets are spread out over 40-60 degrees. The extra field of view will help you swing between targets efficiently. 10 targets over say 50 degrees under time stress, and I will take as much field of view as possible.

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616559 02/24/15 02:11 AM
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this is a 100% dedicated range rifle. i have 2 very capable hunting rifles, in in 250 savage for smaller stuff, and one in 7mm for deer, pigs, and whatnot. i have the space at my place to shoot up to 600-700 yards if i can situate the targets correctly. and thats the ranges i want to practice at.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616572 02/24/15 02:17 AM
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I realize I'm in the minority. That's ok.

Even for a range rifle, give me the 6 or 10x.

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: 6.5x47Lapua] #5616599 02/24/15 02:25 AM
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Originally Posted By: 6.5x47Lapua
Thats the beauty of ffp reticles. As soon as you can make out the reticle clearly on the target, that is all the magnification you need. If I can clearly hold 1.5 mils right of the target at 6-8x, then increasing magnification is only decreasing field of view. 1.5 mils will always be 1.5 mils. You don't need any more or any less.

The only time high magnification is helpful is during target identification. Is that a pig? Yes. Or is that the target I am supposed to be shooting? Hold 1.5 mils right for wind, and keep an eye out for other animals that may be walking into the kill zone.


I'm an FFP user myself. I know well what you mean, and we're on the same page. Tff caribou is limited to a fixed power right now. So if limited to fixed, I'd rather have 16X for a dedicated range rifle.


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Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: FiremanJG] #5616611 02/24/15 02:30 AM
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Originally Posted By: FiremanJG
Originally Posted By: 6.5x47Lapua
Thats the beauty of ffp reticles. As soon as you can make out the reticle clearly on the target, that is all the magnification you need. If I can clearly hold 1.5 mils right of the target at 6-8x, then increasing magnification is only decreasing field of view. 1.5 mils will always be 1.5 mils. You don't need any more or any less.

The only time high magnification is helpful is during target identification. Is that a pig? Yes. Or is that the target I am supposed to be shooting? Hold 1.5 mils right for wind, and keep an eye out for other animals that may be walking into the kill zone.


I'm an FFP user myself. I know well what you mean, and we're on the same page. Tff caribou is limited to a fixed power right now. So if limited to fixed, I'd rather have 16X for a dedicated range rifle.


yep, im building on a budget, and the swfa fixed powers seem by far to give me all the features i need for the least amount of money. turrets, mrad, mil reticle, fixed means i dont have to spring for a FFP scope. i would prefer to get a viper pst ffp, but its simply not even close to being in the same budget range. i can get the swfa ss in a couple weeks, and get started on learning to shoot at distance with a fully capable scope, and i can afford reloading equipment sooner than later.


The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington
Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616624 02/24/15 02:34 AM
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It would be an interesting test. Take your ffp 6-24 or 5-20 scope. Keep magnification on 6 or 8 power. Run through 10 targets over a 50-60 degree area. Say the targets are from 310-900ish. Keep the time at 1 minute. Repeat that same series of targets at 16x just to see if the same number of hits could be had.

After all, hits are all that count. I may run through this test as well. If more hits can be had at 16x, then I will report as such. No loss, just trying to stay sharp.

Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616626 02/24/15 02:34 AM
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Good plan. Later when you can afford it, sell the fixed power and get an SS 5-20 FFP. The fixed SS will still be worth close to what you paid for it.


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Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: 6.5x47Lapua] #5616633 02/24/15 02:37 AM
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Originally Posted By: 6.5x47Lapua
It would be an interesting test. Take your ffp 6-24 or 5-20 scope. Keep magnification on 6 or 8 power. Run through 10 targets over a 50-60 degree area. Say the targets are from 310-900ish. Keep the time at 1 minute. Repeat that same series of targets at 16x just to see if the same number of hits could be had.

After all, hits are all that count. I may run through this test as well. If more hits can be had at 16x, then I will report as such. No loss, just trying to stay sharp.


Good call I've done it with the low end on 12X and targets over 90-120 degrees. Both eyes open while searching is the key, I'm sure you know that.

I want no part of 900 yards on 6X


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Re: 12,16, or 20x [Re: Tff caribou] #5616640 02/24/15 02:41 AM
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Originally Posted By: Tff caribou


yep, im building on a budget, and the swfa fixed powers seem by far to give me all the features i need for the least amount of money. turrets, mrad, mil reticle, fixed means i dont have to spring for a FFP scope. i would prefer to get a viper pst ffp, but its simply not even close to being in the same budget range. i can get the swfa ss in a couple weeks, and get started on learning to shoot at distance with a fully capable scope, and i can afford reloading equipment sooner than later.



I was only using the ffp scope as an example. Because with a ffp scope you can truly see the difference in what a fixed 6 looks like compared to a fixed 16 or 20x.

I am a huge fan of simple fixed power scopes. I wish there were more on the market to choose from. I am only giving you examples of how I shoot long range rifles, and how field of view can really be a hindrance on high magnification scopes.

Having said that, if you are on a square range where the targets are basically lined up. Field of view doesn't really help.

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Originally Posted By: FiremanJG

I want no part of 900 yards on 6X



Service rifle and palma shooters sure do have it tough using only the mark1 eyeball, at 600 and 1k respectively.
From a sling, no less.

Now that is impressive. My hats off to those guys.

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