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Best Rifle Scope Under $300: The Ultimate Shopping Guide

All gun owners want to get a quality optic for their rifle but is it really necessary to go after expensive products? Well, the answer is no. It’s true that the price of an optic and its performance are more or less related to each other. However, you could still find a good rifle scope with a reasonable price tag as long as you are willing to look around.  So if you want to check out some affordable optics on the market, this article should come in handy. Down below are some of the best rifle scopes under $300 and their characteristics for your consideration. You would be provided with a step by step instruction on how to make a wise investment well.

Before we take a look at the examples, do keep in mind that personal tastes and shooting styles vary a lot from people to people. The perfect rifle optic to someone else could have a lackluster performance in your case so consider your options carefully. Buying on a whim could make you waste money for a less than ideal product and that is why you must research beforehand. It’s not a bad idea to read customer reviews and user opinion of market products. While they are not always reliable, reviews and onions are great sources of information which you could use as references.

Top 6 Best Rifle Scopes Under $300 On The Market – 2018

Dont have much time? Here is the short list for you:

1/ Nikon PROSTAFF 5 – Best long range scope under $300

 

  • Reticle: BDC
  • Magnification: 3.5 – 14x
  • Lens diameter: 40mm

Equipped with a BDC reticle and a 4x quick focus eyepiece, Nikon PROSTAFF 5 is able to match a wide range of shooting application. Thanks to the Spot On Ballistic Match Technology, you no longer have to make a guess when it comes to compensating bullet drop. As a multicoated optic, PROSTAFF 5 could maximize light transmission if you are in a low light environment. The wide field of vision provided by the Nikon scope permits you to keep track of the target if you are surrounded by bushes.  In term of operation, the Spring-Loaded Instant Zero-Reset Turrets allow the average shooter to conveniently make adjustments in time of need.

To protect the user eyebrow from heavy recoil, the Nikon scow possesses a generous and consistent eye relief.   

The scope is waterproof and fog proof so it should function normally under adverse condition. To adjust the reticle, the optic utilize a 1/4 MOA click-stop correction mechanism so you could feel and hear the adjustment.  For most of the time, PROSTAFF 5 is capable of maintaining your setting even if subjected to repeated firing and challenging environment. It’s a high power scope that you could depend on in any situation.

Pros

  • Tough lens  
  • Light and easy to use  
  • Hold zero consistently
  • Excellent clarity at long distances

Cons

  • Oversensitive to movement
  • Quality control is barely acceptable
  • The packaging could use some improvements  

2/ Bushnell Throw Down PCL

  • Reticle: BDC
  • Magnification: 1 – 4x
  • Lense diameter: 24mm

Durable and precise, Bushnell Throw Down PCL is a flawless scope that offers its user nothing but satisfaction. It possesses excellent endurance compared to other products due to the presence of aluminum alloy along with an anodized finish. The illuminated BDC style reticle is well calibrated so you could shoot accurately up to 600 yards. Because the Bushnell optic is a multi-coated design, its light transmission level is considered commendable.  Overall, Bushnell Throw Down PCL would not disappoint you if all you need is a short to medium range scope for your rifle.

In case you are wondering about the name, Throw Down PCL is actually a reference of the scope adjusting mechanism. PCL stands for “Power Change Lever” which is attached to the optic magnification ring and Throw Down is its designation. The lever let you make rapid and accurate magnification adjustment even you are wearing gloves. Therefore, the scope is well liked by shooters in cold regions of the world. Because it’s sealed tight, the optic is invulnerable to water, dust and debris. It’s optimized for 5.56 x 45mm Nato, .223 Remington and similar calibers so the Bushnell scope is a good match for assault rifles.

Pros

  • Illuminated reticle
  • Solid construction
  • Pinpoint adjustment
  • Perform well in low light condition

Cons

  • Slightly heavy
  • Inconsistent performance  
  • Mediocre delivery service

3/ Leupold VX-2

  • Reticle: Duplex  
  • Magnification: 3 – 9x
  • Lense diameter: 40mm

Leupold is a well know brand in the optics business and Leupold VX-2 is of their best products. The scope is held in high regard by amateurs and professionals alike, it has everything you ever need. A convenient power indicator is available to help you determine the optic magnification level without having to change your position. Since it’s quite light and compact, you could easily carry the Leupold scope in extended hunting trips. Windage and elevation dials could be manipulated within a blink of an eye which eliminates unnecessary delay in tactical engagements.  

Leupold VX-2 is waterproof, fog proof and shockproof so this quality scope could handle pretty much anything you throw at it. The Quantum Optical System lens enhances overall contrast and provides the shooter with respectable light transmission level. To protect the lens, a DiamondCoat coating is applied to shield the glass surface from abrasion. A fast focus eyepiece is externally threaded to the Leupold scope so you could quickly acquire your target. To cleanse the scope lens, all you need is a couple of cotton swab and some pure alcohol or high-grade glass cleaner.  

Pros

  • High endurance
  • Smooth operation
  • Comfortable eye relief
  • Great scope for the price

Cons

  • May feel a bit stiff
  • The packaging is not really nice
  • Customers complain about receiving damaged products

4/ Muller Side Focus Tactical

  • Reticle: Mil-dot  
  • Magnification: 8 – 32x
  • Lense diameter: 44mm

Designed for long-range shooting, Muller Side Focus Tactical is a good choice for people in need of an exceptionally precise rifle scope. With a maximum magnification power of 32x, the optic is capable of bringing a distant object close to your eye.  The scope is tough and compatible with powerful rounds such as .338 Lapua Magnum or .416 Barrett. If needed, you could turn the scope around so you could use light long range ammunitions like .22-250 Remington. Due to the comfortable 4-inch eye relief, you don’t have to worry about ending up with a nasty scope eye.    

When being turned, the Muller Side Focus Tactical turrets would emit audible clicking noise so you could make accurate adjustments. Because it’s able to deal with heavy recoil from repeated firing in an efficient manner, the Muller product retains your zero setting consistently.  The scope lenses are multi-coat which maximize light transmission and minimize glare at high magnification levels. While the 32x power level is great for long range shooting, it’s unsuitable when you have to engage up close targets.

Pros

  • Ultra-fine reticle
  • Generous eye relief and hold its zero well
  • Excellent magnifying options and shooting stability
  • Reasonable cost compared to other high power scopes

Cons

  • Turret tuning is not exactly pleasant
  • Parallax adjustment could use some improvements
  • Several people receive scopes with missing features

5/ Burris Fullfield II

  • Reticle: BDC
  • Magnification: 4.5 – 14x
  • Lense diameter: 42mm

A combination of classic feature and modern technology, Burris Fullfield II is the scope that could be put to good use by everyone. The high-grade glass provides the shooter with excellent contrast and clarity in a variety of condition. Thanks to the no glare multicoat lens, you are able to shoot accurately in a low light environment.  

The scope Ballistic Plex reticle incorporated automatic BDC pattern for shooting between 1000 and 500 yards.      Made from top of the line material, the scope would last for generations without fail.

Pros

  • Nice magnifying levels
  • Great quality for the price
  • Backed by Burris Forever Warranty

Cons

  • Come without lens caps
  • No independent adjustment ring

6/ Barska AO Varmint – Best long range scope under $300

  • Reticle: Mil-dot  
  • Magnification: 6.5 – 20x
  • Lense diameter: 50mm

If you have a tight budget but still want to buy something good, you should definitely take a look at Barska AO Varmint.  When accuracy is one of your top priorities, the Barska scope would let you shoot with precision across long distances. The sizable objective lens and multi-coat design ensure top-notch clarity and light transmission in a wide range of condition. Being shockproof, waterproof and fog proof, the scope could wok in pretty much any type environment you could think of. In term of operation, Varmint features a convenient Adjustable Objective (AO), instant access zoom ring and high adjustment turrets.

However, Barska AO Varmint does have a couple of shortcoming such as slightly blur target image at 16x and above, it’s not very stable as well. But if you take into account its price tag, you would see that the scope is still an efficient investment for basic applications. It’s arguably one of the most affordable scopes you could get in its magnification range. Barska backed their product with a limited lifetime warranty so you are well taken care of in the long run.

Pros

  • Easy to wield
  • Quality and affordable  
  • Commendable reliability
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Get fuzzy at high power settings
  • The adjusting mechanism is not reliable
  • The customer service is less than helpful sometimes

Features and specification of the best rifle scope under $300

Endurance

It’s often recommended to avoid abusing your optic too much since that is a delicate accessory. Constant slamming and rattling could make the scope lose its zero adjustments as well so don’t do anything extreme. Nonetheless, when it comes to hunting in the wilderness, you may have to traverse through dense bushes and rough terrains. This means a quality scope must be able to deal with slightly rough handling without breaking apart. Depend on the caliber of your rifle, repeated firing could throw the scope out of alignment so ensure you pick something that could handle the recoil.

Magnification

The most notable advantage of rifle scopes over traditional iron sights is the ability to magnify the target. Everyone would have different magnification preference due to different shooting style. Low magnification scopes let you shoot faster base on personal experience as well as shooter tuition. In contrast, high magnification optic provides shooters with excellent vision but they are often unwieldy, costly and generally not versatile in certain situations. Variable power scopes let you change the magnification at will but they are pricey and not exactly tough.  For an average shooter, a magnifying power of 10x or below that should be sufficient.

Lens

One of the most critical components of a rifle scope is its objective lens, the bigger the lens, the brighter the target image. However, a sizable objective lens has a couple of issues that could affect the overall performance of the rifle optic. For example, a big lens must be mounted higher than smaller lenses which make it hard for you to keep up a proper cheek weld. Scopes with big objective lens have a negative impact on the rifle balance and your shooting skill too. As a result, you are advised to go after a scope with a small lens.  

Reticle

Choosing a scope with an appropriate reticle pattern would considerably enhance your shooting accuracy so pick one that suits you the most. There are 3 popular types of reticle pattern that a rifle scope could employ nowadays.

BDC (Bullet Drop Compensator)

Scopes that employ this reticle help you shoot precisely over different distances without any need to adjust the scope setting.  A couple of aiming points are included within the reticle pattern that corresponds to different aiming distances.

Duplex:

This is a pretty simple reticle with a thin central crosshair that becomes thicker as it gets close to the scope outer section. The pattern allows you to concentrate your eyes toward the central section while thick bar assists you with aiming in low light condition.  

Mil-dot:

Often considered to be an enhanced version of the Duplex, Mildot reticle excels at long distance shooting. There are several dots integrated into the reticle pattern that you could use to calculate the target range and wind speed. If you are an experienced shooter, a scope with a Mil-dot reticle should come in handy in many applications.

Useful information about rifle scope that you must know

Fixed Magnification Vs Variable Magnification

As the name suggests, fixed magnification mean that the power setting is unchangeable, there is really nothing you can do to increase or decrease it. In exchange, fixed magnification scopes in general contain rather few moveable components so they have excellent reliability and structural strength. On the other hand, variable magnification scopes allow you to choose between a couple of power settings which offer valuable tactical flexibility on the field. As the power setting get higher, the shooter field of view would narrow down accordingly. Moreover, the price of a variable magnification scope is often higher than its fixed counterpart.

In the end, it entirely up to you to decide whether you should go for fixed magnification or variable magnification. In the case your shooting distance rarely changes, a fixed power scope is quite sufficient. Otherwise, grab a variable power scope if you wish to shoot accurately at multiple ranges

What Is Parallax And Why It Affect Your Shooting Precision

To put it plainly, parallax errors are inconsistencies that come into view once you look down the scope of your rifle which hampers sighting accuracy. With the presence of parallax, the scope reticle moves around the target whenever you change the position of your eyes. As a result, the reticle no longer reflects the way your rifle is pointing at.  For most of the time, parallax errors cause troubles in high power scopes and they would get more notice as you reach the maximum setting. In addition to that, parallax varies from case to case depending on the distance between the target and the shooter.

Considering the way parallax influences the scope precision, make sure that that you compensate and adjust for parallax before shooting. Fortunately, the majority of modern-day rifle scopes are parallax free out to 100 yards or so and they also have a handy parallax adjustment knob. Because of that, the average shooter should be able to eliminate parallax if he/she knows how to operate scopes. Here is a short guide to help you detect parallax and get rid of it.

  • Step 1: Secure your rifle (you could use a stand, a rest or even a table)
  • Step 2: Proceed to adjust the parallax adjustment knob base on the range you often shoot. You don’t have to get it on point, just make a quick, educated guess.
  • Step 3: Take aim and adjust the position of your eyes.
  • Step 4: Focus on the position of the reticle on targets
  • Step 5: Move your head to the left a bit while paying close attention to the scope reticle. If the reticle shifts to the left of the target, increase the distance on the adjustment. In the case the reticle moves to the right, you have to promptly decrease the distance adjustment.

Scope Manufacturers That You Should Keep An Eye Out For

Once you manage to conclude that a particular rifle scope is good for you, you don’t have to care too much about its brand. That being said, it’s always a good idea to prioritize examples that come from reputable brands in the industry. As the scope is highly competitive, manufacturers could only become well known by attracting a lot of customers and keep them more or less satisfied. The following names are some the most famous scope brands in business nowadays, keep an eye out for their products.   

  • Nikon  

Utilizing well-tested designs along with high-quality material, Nikon scopes receive many praises from hunters who need something solid. Bright, precise and rugged, these are the most noticeable attributes of Nikon scope which explain their popularity to the public. The brand releases several series of products from entry level to high end so virtually everyone could get a Nikon scope that matches their taste.

  • Leupold

Similar to Nikon, Leupold is a venerable optic manufacturer that receives critical acclaim from experts as well as experienced shooters. Unsurprisingly, a lot of militaries around the globe have Leupold rifle scopes in their service from the United States Army to the Israel Defense Forces. If build quality is your number one criterion, Leupold got some fine examples for you.

  • Burris

Dependable and affordable, Burris is the brand to go after in the case you have a rather limited shopping wallet.

While Burris scopes lack top-of-the-line features, they are still excellent choices for the average budget minded shooters. People that are searching the market for a basic and straightforward scope would likely get what they need from Burris.    

  • Zeiss

When it comes to optical goods, Zeiss needs little introduction as it’s among the leading brands in the industry. With the innovative use of state-of-the-art technologies, Zeiss has introduced many quality rifle scopes to the markets. Therefore, if you have money to spare and want to acquire an advanced scope, Zeiss could offer you a whole range of top-notch products.

  • Simmons

A familiar name in the low-end market, Simmons offer shooters models that only consist of practical and pragmatic features. However, compared to other budget examples available for purchase, Simmons scopes also have certain features found on high-end scopes. So if you are relatively new to rifle scope and intend to experiment with different optic layouts, Simmons models would definitely be a great start.

Scope FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions/)

  • What are the differences between first focal plane scopes and second focal plane scopes anyway?

Base on the way the reticle react when you adjust the magnification, scopes could be classified into 2 categories: first focal plane and second focal plane. In first focal plane scopes, the reticle would grow bigger and smaller as the power setting is increased and decreased. As a result, the holdover point remains essentially the same. On the other hand, the reticle pattern of second focal plane scopes never changes its size no matter what happens. Because of that, the spacing holdover of the scope is only correct at a single power setting., usually the highest.

  • What is MOA (also referred to as minute of angle)?

MOA is a measurement system utilized by multiple rifle scope on the market when it comes to windage/elevation adjustments. Generally speaking, 1 MOA is roughly equal to 1 inch at 100 yards.

So for instances, you are shooting at a target 100 yards away and notice that the shots miss the bull’s-eye by 2 inches or so. In order to ensure that the next rounds would hit where you want, you must adjust the point of aim by 2 inches which mean 2 MOA. Depending on the increment of the adjustment turrets, you have to turn a couple of clicks to make the change (a 1/2 MOA system require 4 clicks, a 1/4 MOA system require 8 clicks,…)

  • What are fiber optic scopes?

Rifle scopes that are classified as fiber optic model often have brightly colored inserts as well as certain fluorescent materials which keep the sight visible.  Thanks to that, fiber optic scopes come in handy in low light condition as they keep the vision of the shooter more or less bright. The fiber optic could be located at the front and/or the back of the scope, depending on the models. However, you need to stay focus and pay attention while using this type of scope. Rough handlings might crack the inserts or damage the fluorescents which lead to reductions in the performance of the optics.

  • What is AO (Adjustable Objective)?

When you go shopping for scopes, you would likely pass by examples that have the term “AO” in their description. An AO rifle scope permits the shooter to compensate for parallax error through a ring, a knob or a dial. In many cases, the adjustment range of an AO scope is largely decided by the magnification of the scope itself. It’s a good idea to get an AO scope if you intend to shoot at extended ranges and parallax is among your main concerns. That being said, if you only shoot at close range, the practical value of AO scopes probably not worth the money you pay for them.

  • What kind of ring should I use for my scope?

There are many things you must think about when it comes to mounting ring: the scope size, the ring height, … The rule of thumb here is that the bigger the lens, the higher the rings. Virtually every rifle scope with a 40mm objective lens is compatible with low rings as well as standard contour barrels. In the case the lens diameter exceeds 50mm, you need to consider using high rings. With numerous different choices available nowadays, it’s not too hard to get appropriate mounting rings for your rifle scope. For most of the time, it’s widely advised that you get a set of rings that keep the mount low without touching the barrel.

How To Mount Rifle Scope: Tips And Tricks For Beginners

Important Note: Due to safety reason, unload the magazine and clear the chamber of your rifle before mounting the scope. The last thing you want to experience is an accidental discharge while handling your rifle.

  • Step 1: Check Out Every Component

Fortunately, most weapon manufacturers already drill and tap their products so it takes little time and effort to outfit modern-day rifles with a scope. However, some scopes only accept specific of bases and as a result, you need to ensure that you get the right component for the job. In addition to that, mounting screws could vary in length so misplacing them would inevitably lead to foul bolt operation. Take the opportunity to check again whether the height and the diameter of your mounting rings are sufficient or not. Once everything seems to your liking, feel free to jump right to the next step.

  • Step 2: Get Them In Place

Wipe clean the surface where the base will sit on and apply a moderate amount of oil or rust preventive. After that, mount the scope base, put in the screw and then drive them tight. To be on the safe side, check out the manufacturer manual to decide how much force you should use here. In order to ensure an even fit, you should take your time and tighten the screws of the base alternatively. For rings that utilize rotating socket designs, don’t ever use the scope to get the ring into their spots. Instead, use a wooden dowel that possesses a similar diameter for that kind of task.  

  • Step 3: Align The Scope Reticle  

Place your rifle on solid surfaces, slightly tighten the top halves of the rings and then take aim at straight vertical objects like door frames. As the rifle is more or less level, rotate the scope until you certain that the reticle is aligned properly.  At that point, tighten the ring screws in a gradual manner while keeping a close eye on the reticle alignment. So what would you do if you finish mounting the scope yet the sight picture doesn’t seem right somehow? Well, nothing, the rifle scope is fine as it is. The fault actually lies with the way your eyes work.

  • Step 4: Adjust The Eye Relief

Really hate to end up with a nasty scope eye? Then you must meddle with the eye relief until the recoil could not touch you. Place the scope as far forward as permitted by the mounting hardware and then get into your usual shooting position. Next, steadily move the scope toward your eye and stop if you manage to achieve a full field of view. For most of the time, a position like that would likely provide you with an eye relief of 3 to 5 inches. But just in case, get the scope of your rifle an inch further forward than you think it should be. That might make the difference if you suddenly have to shoot in an awkward position.     

  • Step 5: Tighten The Ring Halves    

Finally, double check the orientation of the rifle scope and proceed to tighten the remaining halves of the mounting rings. Again, drive the screws alternatively in order to keep the spacing between the halves even.    

Zeroing: Step-By-Step Instructions

  • 1/ Get Thing Straight On Paper

Generally speaking, zeroing is best done at shooting ranges but there is something could do at home in order to pre-align the scope: boresighting. The method is applicable to every firearm in circulation nowadays, especially the ones that don’t let you look down the barrel from the breech. Simply get a boresighter, which possesses an optical head, and either load it into the chamber or fix it to the muzzle of the rifle. After that, you could start applying adjustments to align the rifle scope with the laser dot projected by the boresighter. By ensuring that the scope is in good position on “on paper”, subsequent zeroing calibrations would be made much easier.

  • 2/ Think About The Right Ammunition

Once you zeroed a scope to your rifle, you also zeroed it to the type of ammunition you are using. As a result, any change to the ammunition load, bullet weight as well as overall length could variations in accuracy.  So take time to think about what kind of ammunition you should use to get optimal results with the zeroing. If you are unable to make up your mind yet, just shoot a bunch of rounds from different brands and select the most accurate type. Depending on your habits and shooting conditions, it might be necessary to compromise between precision, muzzle velocity and bullet ballistic.

  • 3/ Eliminate All Potential Human Errors

Zeroing pretty much has nothing to do with how well you could shoot, it’s all about the actual rifle. Because of that, it’s of utmost importance that you minimize the effect of human error while zeroing your scope. To achieve such a goal, you have to set up your rifle on a rest, a bench or a table. In a pinch, you could even use sandbags or a couple of bricks but needless to say, they are not exactly ideal for the task. For the distance, 100 yards is a good start but it’s not really a bad idea to get straight to the distance you often shoot. When it comes to shooting at extended arrange, you probably want to your point of impact high at 100 yards ranges.  

  • 4/ Shoot A Couple Of Rounds  

If you judge the setup to be adequate for your demands, start shooting and make necessary changes as you go.  In the best scenario, you should be able to get fairly close after 5 shots or so but on occasion, you must send out multiple rounds. Due to engineering tolerances, few scopes on the market have truly accurate and consistent adjustments. Hence, prepare to back and forth with the adjustment for a period of time in order to get everything right. It worth noting that an overheated barrel would likely impair the precision of the rifle so short breaks are essentials. Moreover, after roughly 20 shots, give the barrel a good cleaning.

  • 5/ Double Check And Triple Check

At long last, the rifle is zeroed, is it high time to hit the field? Well, not yet, there is something else you must do. Remove the rifle from whatever shooting aid you are using, discharge several rounds and see the way things turn out. It goes without saying that in this case, the shots would not be as good due to the fact that you are not perfectly steady. But a significant drop in accuracy might indicate that there are issues with the zeroing. In addition to that, when you reach the hunting area or competition field, check the zero again as a precaution. It’s highly unlikely that a well-mounted scope would lose it zero while traveling but anyway, play it safe.

3 Ways To Tell If Your Scope Is No Longer Usable

Your scope is acting up lately and you wonder if it’s broken or not? There are many things to check before concluding that a particular scope is not in working order aside from noting that aim is off repeatedly. Here are a couple of symptoms of a broken scope, if your optic shows one or more of these sights, you need a new scope.    

  • Rattling

A rifle scope consists of various parts from the lenses to the turrets and they are secured to each other. As a result, if you shake the scope side to side and hear rattling noises, there is a chance that some internal components are loosed. Needless to say, no optic could function as designed if its body parts are roaming freely all over the place.  The only practical solution available is to send in the scope for repair as you lack the skill and knowledge to fix problems like this. In certain case, scopes with loosed components could not be fixed at all and you need to get another one.

  • Unresponsive Controls

While shooting on the field, there are times you have to make quick changes to the windage and elevation settings. That means wobbly and loosed turrets are unacceptable since they would interfere with your adjustment. Considering that each change affects the scope point of aim pact, you want every click to respond audibly and snugly. Fortunately, you could theoretically tighten the controls and increase their responsiveness if you happen to have the right tools around. That being said, as with the rattling symptom, you probably have to search the market for a new optic soon.

  • Reticle Shift

Normally, the reticle stays at the center of the scope in order to guide your shots into their intended targets. Hence, if somehow the reticle shift and is no longer centered, you have a big problem at your hand. Among the troubles that you may experiences while using scopes, off-center reticle is considered by many people to be the most serious mechanical fault. There is nothing to do besides handling the scope over to the professionals and hope that they could salvage it.

Conclusion

And those are some the best rifle scope under $300 on the market nowadays, see anything you like? Unless you have sophisticated requirements, you don’t really need to get an expensive top of the line scope. With the help of this article, you should be able to get a scope that is both quality and affordable.

How To Sharpen Machete: A Short Guide For Novice User

Due to their ability to go through bushes and branches with relative ease, machetes are some of the most commonly used blades around the globe. Compared to before, people could purchase quality machetes much easier nowadays, they are sold by both physical and online retailers. Nonetheless, to ensure consistent performance, machete users have to take good care of their blades because there is no such thing as an invincible tool. If you wish to keep the edge of your blade in optimal condition, you must learn how to sharpen machete.

Of course, you could always send your machete to the sharpeners and let the professionals take care of the rest. However, why you have to waste money on a sharpening service when you could sharpen your machete edge by yourself? In the case you are completely clueless about machete sharpening and associated issues, this article should come in really handy. Read through the entire guide and you would be able to master the technique in a blink of an eye. Sharpening the machete is not a complicated task, it simply requires proper preparation and concentration.

The Principle Of Machete Sharpening

Generally speaking, it’s possible for your blade to attain a razor-sharp edge but in reality, you should pay attention to the reliability aspect. What your machete needs in order to go through dense vegetation is a robust chopping edge that could take care of vines, branches and bushes. To do that, a couple of sharpening methods are available for you to choose from, each comes with unique characteristics.  They would be listed in detail down below so all you have to do here is to select the sharpen method that matches your situation the most.

Several Popular Machete Sharpening Methods

Whetstone: A Traditional Sharpen Method

Sharpening with a whetstone is the classic way to restore the edge of a dulled blade and it doesn’t need expensive or complicated tools. Usually, the method requires a whetstone and some water though you may also have to grab a beaker in case you use an artificial whetstone. To sharpen the machete edge, simply run it from base to tip against the stone. For the duration of the sharpening project, the contact angle between the blade and the stone must be kept perpendicular.  

  • File: Labor Intensive But Effective

In the case you don’t have specialized tools and also unable to afford them, the file method shall be the most suitable sharpening option. The method involves pushing a file over the blade of your machete repeatedly, flip the blade to the other side and then repeat the process. For most of the time, the ideal sharpening file to use should be the one that possesses bastard grade teeth. About the technique, you have to push the file, not pull it because the teeth of the file are pointed away from the machete blade.

  • Grinding Wheel: Quite Efficient But The Sharpener Must Be Experienced  

To eliminate sizable nicks and initial dullness, aggressive sharpening is needed and the grinding wheel could provide you with that. About the tool, the method only requires a conventional grinding wheel and a spacious workspace so you could run the machete across the wheel uninterrupted. Similar to the belt sander method, you need to make sure that the machete blade doesn’t get overheat or the steel quality would be degraded. In most of the case, you should only use the grinding wheel method if you have a lot of experience.

  • Dremel: Good At Removing Minor Imperfection On The Blade

The dremel is an excellent handheld tool that you can use to take care of small dulled spots and alike. Because you would not sharpen the entire blade in one go, the dremel method could lead to an uneven edge.  However, you should be able to use the dremel to good effect as long as you stay concentrated. Beside the dremel, this sharpen method also requires a stable vice to secure the machete while you gently run the dremel against the blade edge. It’s recommended that after you done with the dremel, you should go over the spots again with a file.

  • Belt Sander: Simple And Straightforward  

Well-liked by professional sharpeners, the belt sander method is considered to be the easiest way to sharpen your machete.  You only need a generic belt sander, a honing steel rod and some fine belt grits to begin the sharpening. The method requires little effort but you have to stay concentrated and it’s advised that you apply light pressure. Applying too much pressure could cause the blade to heat up and damage its carbon-steel composition in the process.     

Tips And Tricks

  • Leave A Few Inches Unsharpened: It may sound weird but in some cases, you don’t have to sharpen the machete blade top to bottom. By leaving a few inches of the blade edge (starting from the base) unsharpened, you could use the machete in a “choke up” manner for fine works. Sharpening in this fashion also let you avoid knee/thigh cuts caused by over swings.
  • Artificial vs. Natural Water Stones: Artificial water stones come in a variety of grit sizes so it’s very easy to pick the one that matches your needs and requirements. High grit sizes are excellent in the case you need fine and precise sharpening. In contrast, low grit sizes are mostly suitable for rough and inaccurate sharpening. However, artificial water stones are not as robust as their natural counterparts, in fact, most of them often disintegrate as time goes by.
  • Beware Of Burr (Wire Edge): If you don’t pay attention, there is a good chance that your blade may end up with a metal deformity caused by over sharpening. It’s called a burr (wired edge) and its presence means that you need to start sharpening from the other side. You could detect a burr by running your fingers across the blade edge but be careful in order to avoid getting a nasty cut.

How to judge wind speed: Professional tips and tricks

For long-range shooters, it’s important to apply precise compensation when it comes to shooting in a windy environment. To do that, you must be able to determine the wind speed along with its direction which is not easy. In the case you know nothing about wind compensation and could really use some help, this article is for you. Down below, you would find a comprehensive guide on how to judge wind speed along with a couple of helpful tips and tricks. Take a look at them and you should master the skill in a blink of an eye.

The principle of wind compensation

As mentioned above, there are 2 things you need to know in order to make accurate assessments: Direction and Speed. For most of the time, to obtain the necessary information, all you have to do is to check your surroundings. Just observe how the trees, the leaves or the grasses are moving and you could easily determine the wind direction. Many shooting ranges are even equipped with a couple of wind flag to help the shooters to interpret the direction of the wind as well. After you figure out the direction of the wind, you could either adjust your scope setting or move your aim accordingly.

About the wind speed, you could also use the nature to your advantage though you may want to consider using specialized accessories. If you feel a light breeze on your face, the wind speed is about 3 – 5 mph. A wind speed of 5 – 8 mph should be able to blow the leaves on nearby trees. When the speed of the wind reaches 8 – 12 mph, the surrounding dust would kick up. In the case several small trees are being bent and swayed by the wind, you probably are dealing with a wind speed of 12 – 15 mph.

You could also estimate the speed of the wind by “reading” the mirage which requires a conversion chart and good judgment. The idea is to get a crisp target image with your scope first and rotate the parallax knob back a quarter turn. By comparing the mirage you receive with a conversion chart, you should be able to figure out the wind speed.  One major benefit of this technique is that you don’t have to worry about wind angle because you always a see a full value mirage. Do remember not to focus the parallax knob beyond the target though since that will flip the mirage and lead to false reading.

 

Target shooting in windy condition

The compensation doubles as the speed of the wind doubles, for example, 10 mph compensation is half that of 20 mph compensation.  For a wind with 10 mph speed, the necessary compensation is twice that of a 5 mph. Shooting distance would not follow this formula though: The wind compensation at 600 yards is going to be more than twice the compensation needed at 300 yards. This is due to the fact that as the bullet travels, it will slow down and start to plunge downward. Therefore, the effect of the wind on the bullet will only get worse as the bullet travels further and further.        

So how could you apply necessary compensation base on the information about the wind speed and direction you just obtain? Well, there are many formulas in circulation but here is a popular one, you could use it to good effect in most of the case.

Range (Yard) / 100 x Speed (mph) /X = Windage adjustment (MOA)

X will change depending on the shooting range

  • X = 15 (Range < 500 Yards)
  • X = 14 (500 Yards < Range < 600 Yards)
  • X = 13 (600 Yards < Range < 800 Yards)
  • X = 12 (800 Yards < Range < 900 Yards)
  • X = 11 (900 Yards < Range < 1000 Yards)

For an example, if the distance between you and your target is 300 yards and there is a 10 mph wind, the windage adjustment will be: 300/100 x 10/15 = 2 MOA.  

The effects of the terrain

In general, it’s rare for the crosswind to be constant and linear where the terrain is a mix of different features. Winds tend to flow parallel to the ground which means hills, rocks and trees would have a considerable influence on their behaviors. For most of the time, winds in mountainous regions are highly likely to have upwellings, backwashes, swirls and plunges. As a result, it’s helpful for you to have a good understanding of the geographic of the shooting area.

Several situations also require more complicated compensation compared to normal such as shooting between areas that have different wind speed. For example, your target may be located in a place that is shielded from the wind but you are in a completely open area or vice versa.  In some cases, both you and your target are shielded from the wind but there may be a lot of wind between you and your target. Al it takes is one unexpected gust of wind and your bullet will go astray so think carefully before you squeeze the trigger.

Aiding accessories and similar items

It’s not like everyone could remember all the numbers involved so many shooters turn to specialized accessories to take care of the wind compensation. Some people fabricate their own range card so they could deduce the wind drift at different distance precisely and effortlessly. Because personal range card usually incorporates the bullet drop of the shooter preferred ammunition into account, their effectiveness is higher than commercial tools. Of course, you have to go through quite a bit of round and invest in order to make a usable range card and that will require a lot of time and effort.

In the case you don’t exactly have the patient to produce your own range card, there are always other options for you to choose. A combination of a wind speed indicator (such as Skymate) and a wind compensation disc (such as Windy Disc from Open Season) should be sufficient in most the case. These items are available at a reasonable price and they are quite easy to use. Generally speaking, aiding accessories and similar items are the most accurate way to obtain information about the wind characteristics  

Best Scope For Remington 700 Review To Get Deadly Shot!

The Remington 700 is a classic American bolt action rifle well-liked for its accuracy, reliability and toughness.  It’s produced in a variety of configurations and performed with distinction in the hand of the police and the military. With that in mind, it could be hard to find a good scope for your own Remington rifle. There are many models around and you may get a bit overwhelmed by the number of available products. Well, in the case you need a couple of recommendations, this article should be of use. Down below, you would find the features and specifications of some of the best scopes for Remington 700 on the market.

As mentioned above, the Remington 700 is manufactured in many variants with unique purposes so you cannot simply choose a random rifle scope. For example, the scope of a 700 hunting rifle chambered in .243 Winchester would not work well on a 700 competing rifle chambered in 6.5mm Creedmoor. Different caliber and shooting environment would lead to different choices of scope so you should not buy on a whim. Include your personal taste and shooting style into the selection process in order to make a wise decision without wasting too much money in the process.

Top 7 Best Scopes For Remington 700 On The Market – 2018

Dont have much time? Here is the short list for you:

1/ Nikon Prostaff

2/ Viper HST

3/ Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X

4/ Leupold VX-1

5/ Schmidt & Bender PM II/LP

6/Nikon Buck Master

7/ Simmons 8-Point

1/ Nikon Prostaff

  • Magnification levels: 3 – 9x
  • Lens diameter: 40 Millimeters

A well-balanced design, Nikon Prostaff is one of the best scopes for Remington 700 in term of all-around performance. The scope price tag is reasonable and you have access to a wide range of convenient of features. Featuring high endurance and excellent magnification power, the Nikon optic would let you have a successful hunting trip. After proper zeroing, the scope is able to hold its setting reliably so you probably never need to readjust it again. Secure all the screws with threadlocker like Loctite and you could shoot without any worry.

The hand turn turret of Nikon Prostaff is easy to use and precise, each click is equal to 1/4 MOA. You may feel that the turning mechanism is a bit stiff to operate but that keep the turrets from moving on their own. For the reticle, the cope employs a BDC pattern which works very well with .308 Winchester and .30-06 Springfield. In the case your Remington rifle is chambered in .270 Winchester, the round could run a little flat but you should get used to it. In general, Nikon Prostaff would be a nice accessory for the average Remington 700.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Comfortable eye relief
  • Waterproof and fog proof
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Stiff turrets
  • Too short for several setups
  • Quality control is mediocre

2/ Viper HST

  • Magnification levels: 6 – 24x
  • Lens diameter: 50 Millimeters

Durable and high power, Viper HST would not disappoint you when it comes to shooting at extended ranges. HST stands for Hunting, Shooting, Tactical which mean you could use this scope or a variety of purpose. The scope generous eye box along with its enhanced eye relief permits a comfortable shooting experience. To provide consistent performance, the scope one-piece tube is sealed by o ring and purged by argon. This arrangement ensures that the Viper optic is invulnerable to things like fog, dust and water.  A fast focus eyepiece is available to help the shooter with the reticle focusing.

Made of high-grade aluminum, Viper HST is capable of dealing with less than ideal shooting condition.

The scope shockproof construction allows it to withstand repeated recoil and sudden impact force without losing its zero setting. Thanks to the dependable erector-spring system, the scope adjustment mechanism is easy to work with. There is also a helpful feature called CRS, or Customizable Rotational Stop, which permit the scope to rerun to its zero setting after temporary adjustments.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Compact and light
  • Respectable durability
  • Reliable and dependable

Cons

  • Quite expensive
  • Several customers complain about missing parts
  • Take a good amount of force to change the magnification level

3/ Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X

  • Magnification levels: 4 – 12x
  • Lens diameter: 40 Millimeters

Ideal for low light conditions, Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X allow you to shoot with precision when natural light is barely adequate. The scope multicoated lenses provide the shooter with commendable clarity and brightness in a consistent manner. As a result, you could keep track of your target in early mornings and late evenings relatively easy. Due to the adjustable objective, the Bushnell optic is not a bad choice for long range shooting. The scope is waterproof and fog proof so it could handle challenging environment without fail.  

For the scope turrets, the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Multi-X employ a convenient fingertip design. Therefore, you could make windage and elevation adjustments within seconds, there is no need to change your position.  The fast focus eyepiece is 12 inch – long which considerably reduces the time it takes to acquire targets.

About the reticle, the scope chooses a simple and efficient duplex pattern that ensures top-notch accuracy in the usual case. To sum it up, this is the scope to use when you to add more time and game to your hunting trips.

Pros

  • Inexpensive
  • Smooth adjustment
  • Tough and accurate
  • Excellent light transmission

Cons

  • Long and unwieldy
  • The reticle is slightly thin to some people
  • The objective ring is tricky to manipulate

4/ Leupold VX-1

  • Magnification levels: 3 – 9x
  • Lens diameter: 40 Millimeters

A quality scope at an affordable price, the Leupold VX-1 is able to perform admirably in almost all situations. As a fog proof and waterproof design, the scope could last a lifetime on the field without any issue. The convenient hand turn turrets provide 1/ 4 MOA adjustment per click which should allow you to shoot accurately at different distances. To provide the shooter with sufficient brightness and clear vision, the Leupold optic utilizes a multi-coat lens system that ensures extreme clarity at all times.

Similar to other products in the brand, the VX-1 scope also has a classic Leupold fast focus eyepiece along with a low profile lock ring. Because of their presence, you would have an easy time focusing and maintaining the scope reticle. At high magnification levels, the ergonomic eye relief and generous eye box offer a comfortable aiming position for your head. A tactile power indicator let you determine the current magnification level with a single touch. The scope 3:1 zoom ratio erector system is capable of matching any shooting purpose imaginable.

Pros

  • Tough
  • Nice price
  • Bright and light
  • Simple to operate

Cons

  • Inconsistent performance
  • Barely acceptable customer service
  • Some people received defective scopes

5/ Schmidt & Bender PM II/LP

  • Magnification levels: 5 – 25x
  • Lens diameter: 56 Millimeters

For people that want to have a quality scope for long range shooting, Schmidt & Bender PM II/LP would be a great option. The scope magnification power and reticle adjustment system allow the average shooter to successfully engage targets more than 2,000 meters away.  There are many options for each feature of the scope with up to 58 different combinations available. However, you may have to wait for quite some time if you opt to get an unpopular scope setup. But as long as you are patient and have money to spare, this Schmidt & Bender optic should serve you well.

In term of parallax compensation, Schmidt & Bender PM II/LP possesses a Side Focus knob that enables adjusting at 10 meters up to infinity.  Because of the nitrogen filled housing, you are able to use the scope without having to worry about fog. Furthermore, the scope is well sealed so it’s waterproof even when being submerged.

Pros

  • High power
  • Easy to use and adjust
  • Many configurations available

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • Long delivery time

6/ Nikon Buck Master

  • Magnification levels: 4 – 12x
  • Lens diameter: 40 Millimeters

Designed to emit up to 98% of available light, Nikon Buck Master delivers excellent brightness and clarity in a variety of environments. The scope is reliable and affordable which make it a good choice for a classic rifle like the Remington 700. With the presence of the zero-reset turrets, you could make quick field adjustments without much effort. The nitrogen filled and O ring sealed body of the Nikon scope ensure that it would perform well in challenging conditions.

Equipped with the versatile BDC reticle pattern, the scope permits you to achieve high accuracy in both long and short range shooting.

Pros

  • Very rugged
  • Reasonable price tag
  • Simple and efficent operation

Cons

  • Some products come with defective turrets
  • No sunshade accessories

 

7/ Simmons 8-Point

  • Magnification levels: 4 – 12x
  • Lens diameter: 40 Millimeters

When it comes to the aspect of cost-effectiveness, Simmons 8-Point stand out as a well-balanced design with lots of useful features. The scope has a handy QTA fast focus eyepiece that makes it easy for you to acquire targets.  For windage and elevation compensation, the 1/4-MOA SureGrip system let the shooter apply precise adjustments. Being a waterproof, fog proof and shockproof, the Simmons optic works great for its price. It’s tough enough to withstand heavy use and hostile environment for years without letting you down. Overall, the scope performs very well compared to other product in its price range.

Pros

  • Sturdy
  • Quality and cheap
  • Provide admirable clarity and brightness for its cost

Cons

  • The adjustment mechanism is slightly difficult to manipulate
  • The post-purchase support is less than ideal

Characteristics of the best scope for Remington 700

Here are a couple of important criterions you should pay attention to when it comes to selecting a quality rifle scope. You could adjust the listed criterions if you truly think that would improve your shooting experience, it’s your rifle after all.

  • Turrets

The scope turrets could be tool or fingertip adjustable, pick the style that matches your taste. In term of adjustment per turret turn, it could be as small as 1/8 MOA but never exceed 1/4 MOA. Since elevation and windage adjustment have a considerable impact on your shooting accuracy, a quality scope must have reliable and durable turrets.

  • Reticle

You could choose whatever reticle pattern that suits your shooting style the most but it’s often advised to stick with something simple. For hunting application, a standard duplex should be sufficient at distances under 300 yards. BDC (Bullet Drop Compensator) and Mil-dot reticles are suitable to engage targets at diffident ranges in competition shooting. You could go after illuminated designs if you intend to shoot in low light conditions but do make sure that the scope glass is etched.  

  • Magnification

For most of the time, in hunting settings, the distance to your target is often around 300 yards and below. However, in long range competition shooting, you may have to strike at a target up to 900 yards away. As a result, there is a significant difference in the magnification requirement between the two. If all you need is a scope to hunt with, the recommended magnification level is 3 – 9x or 4 – 12x, you don’t need over magnification here. In contrast, for competition shooting, you should consider using a high power scope with a maximum magnification level of 20x and above.

  • Durability

It goes without saying that you should not strain your rifle scope too much but you also need something that could handle slightly rough handlings. In the case you only use the scope for indoor competition shooting, you don’t really have to worry too much about its endurance. However, if you intend to expose the scope to the outside weather and environment, there are many things to consider:

  • Shock:

Shockproof scopes are excellent choices if you intend to go on an extended hunting trip. These scopes are capable of retaining their zero if you drop the rifle by mistake which is useful when you navigate rough terrain.

  • Water:

If you don’t want your vision to be impaired by rain and alike, you should look for a scope that possesses rain guard lenses. It would allow you to aim and shoot with precision no matter how wet the lenses are.

  • Fog:

When the weather gets cold, the temperature difference between your car/house and the outside could make your scope foggy. This is when scopes with an internal fog purging capability would show their worth. The ideal purging agents are nitrogen and argon, they should keep the scope from getting foggy all of a sudden. Don’t bother using fog proof lenses though because their performance is not exactly consistent

Conclusion

You cannot have a satisfying shooting experience with your Remington rifle if you don’t have a good scope. Fortunately, with the help of this article, you should be able to obtain the best scope for Remington 700. Read through everything carefully and you would own a quality scope in no time.

   

How to port a barrel: The Complete Explanation

Nowadays, many well-known manufacturers in the firearm industry offer ported barrels and slides as optional features on their products. You could also find a lot of places that provide you with porting service which clearly show the rising popularity of ported weapons. So what is porting anyway and why people seem to get absorbed into it? Is it possible for an amateur to learn how to port a barrel? The answers to these questions could be found right in this article. Take a look at the information below and you should be able to have a clear understanding of porting technique along with its associated effects.

General Principle

In order to decrease the gun recoil and muzzle rise while firing, one of the most common methods is to port its barrel. To do that, you have to drill a series of holes across the barrel body which would be referred to as ports.

The next time you squeeze the trigger, a portion of the gas generated from burning gunpowder would be redirected through the barrel ports. As a result, the direction of the recoil force is offset somewhat due to the downward force caused by the redirecting gas. In conclusion, the barrel ports reduce the felt recoil and the muzzle rise.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Barrel Ports

Advantages

Due to the reduced recoil and decreased muzzle rise, ported barrels let you re-engage your target in a shorter period time compare to unported ones. Therefore, the most obvious benefit of barrel ports is that they let you come up with faster follow up shots. Depend on the round you use, barrel ports are capable of reducing the muzzle rise by 15 – 30%. By using ported barrels, compact firearms could be chambered in powerful calibers without any significant drop in performance. At first, ported barrels are mainly prevalent in revolvers but now you could see them on semi-automatic weapons too.    

Disadvantages

While they are quite useful in certain aspects, barrel ports also have several drawbacks that you should not overlook. Your vision and the gun sight may be negatively affected because of the gas that escapes from the barrel ports. It’s highly likely that you need to slightly change your shooting position to accommodate the change in the barrel. Since the ports vent out hot expanding gases each time you shoot, you have to pay attention to the orientation of the gun. Velocity loss is another effect that you should keep in mind before deciding to port the barrel of your gun.

How To Port A Barrel Properly and Efficiently

Important note: Poring is a delicate task, do it carelessly and you will destroy the barrel for good. In the case you don’t have a lot of confidence in your skill, it’s wise to let the professionals take over. Send the barrel to a gunsmith or a reputable company like Magnaport and have them do the porting for you. Only perform the porting on your own if you know exactly what you are doing.

Shotgun

  • Preparation

It’s advised that you purchase a U Port It Barrel Porting Jig from Brownells. There are 2 jigs in total: One with 23 holes and use #31 drill bits, One with 35 holes and use #40 drill bits. Choose the one that suits your situation the most. Beside the jig, you have to grab a stable set of clamps along with lots of cutting lubricant. Remember to stock up on drill bits as well since you may dull or break a good number of bits in the process. To protect the barrel integrity, you could use a dowel and a steel insert to ensure that the drill bit would not damage the bore. And of course, do remember to protect yourself by wearing appropriate accessories for the duration of the project.

  • Process

First, you have to secure the barrel to the drill fixture with the clamps and proceed to mark the length of the ports on them. Next, put the dowel into the barrel and place the steel insert into the desired holes on the porting fixture. After that, dip the drill bit in cutting lubricant then carefully drill the ports using the steel insert and porting fixture as guides. There is no need to rush here, just move at your own pace until you finish drilling all the ports. Finally, use abrasive cloths and flex hones to deal with the burrs until everything seems ideal.

Handgun

  • Preparation

Currently, there is no dependable handgun porting fixture available on the market so you have to do things in a slightly different way. You are going to need a drill press vise, a regular drill, an end mill and a prick punch. Once again you need to ensure that you have enough cutting lubricants and drill bits for the projects. This project requires high machining skill so once again, you could always send your barrel to the experts and let them handle the porting. All it takes is one mistake and your handgun barrel would become a nice paperweight so be careful.

  • Process

Secure the barrel with the drill press vise and then use the prick punch to mark the position and dimension of the ports. After that, use the regular drill to drill the ports until you almost breakthrough and then stop. Now you have to use the end mill with the exact drill bit size to finish the ports for good. As usual, do everything slow and steady, you are not in hurry. Apply a suitable amount of lubricant as you go and that should be it. Eliminate the burrs using flex hones and flex hones then your ported barrel is ready.

Conclusion

And that is most of what you should know about ports and how to port a barrel, not too hard to take in, right? Porting is a wonderful solution for shooters that want to reduce the recoil and muzzle rise of their weapon. If you are sufficiently skilled, you could port the barrel of your firearm with the help of this article.