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Education / Training Scopes for field target – Part 1

Scopes for field target – Part 1

by B. B. Pelletier

Wayne asked for this report, but I was happy to write it because the season for field target is approaching. In some parts of the country, they shoot all year, but the season really starts to heat up in March and April. And, yes, this has to be a multi-part report, because I need the room to discuss the various points I will address.

I competed in FT for four seasons, and although I was just an average competitor I got to see all the optics and, better still, to appreciate what’s needed and why. This is not a report on how cheap you can buy a scope for field target and get by–it’s about what a scope must have to be competitive in the sport. It’s up to you to find what works for you.

High magnification
High magnification is important for a couple reasons. First, it helps you determine the range to the target. FT shooters need to know the exact range to a target so their pellets don’t touch the top or bottom of the kill zone as they pass through. The trajectory of a pellet that starts out at 900 f.p.s. is enough of a curve for this to be a problem at all ranges.

FT shooters determine range by using the parallax adjustment to focus the scope on the target. When the target comes into sharp focus, they read the range on the scale of the parallax wheel. They will have set up the scale on their scope by sighting at a range of targets at known distances and will want to differentiate distances in one-yard increments from 10 yards all the way out to 55 yards.

To see the targets well enough to see when they come into sharp focus at the farther distances requires a lot of magnification…and 30x will get you out to about 40 yards if your eyes are very sharp. To get out to 55 yards takes over 40x. I try to focus on the hardware that attaches the reset string when I range to the target. Beyond 40 yards, I have to use the target face, because I can’t see the attaching hardware that clearly. Sometimes there are individual blades of grass or weeds next to the target that can be used for rangefinding, but a shooter can’t always count on that.

Seeing the kill-zone
High magnifying power is also needed because the shooter wants to see and be able to clearly define the kill-zone before taking the shot. A freshly painted target usually presents no problem, but after 40 shots have turned the paddle and the area around the kill-zone to a large gray spot with no definition, you’ll be wondering exactly where to shoot. I’ve had this problem at some point in every match in which I competed. A scope with greater magnification helps you pick out the boundary of the actual kill-zone a little better.

At this point a new shooter usually says, “Okay…I have to buy the most powerful scope I can find.”

That would be dead wrong and a costly mistake to make, because powerful scopes are not always clear at their highest power. They may work well at full power on a sunlit target range, but in the gloom of a field target course they may turn dark and cloudy. My $600 Tasco Custom Shop 8-40x scope is like that. Up to 30x, it’s pretty clear; beyond that, it quickly becomes so dark that you can’t see definition–and in some cases can’t even find the target. In fact, whenever I test a possible FT scope, I try to range on a blade of grass out around 50 yards. If I can do that with accuracy, the scope is a good one. I don’t worry if the scale on the adjustment wheel reads exactly the correct range to the grass blade, because I’ll take care of that with a scale of my own.

So, FT competitors look for powerful scopes that remain clear even at the higher powers. And those scopes cost big bucks. This is where names like Bushnell, Nightforce and Leupold come to the forefront. Maybe Hawke scopes belong in this category, too, but I haven’t seen their higher magnifications and can’t comment with certainty.

What about Leapers scopes? Well, the biggest scope Leapers makes is an 8-32x, so they don’t go as high as FT competitors would like them to. You can certainly use them all the way up to 32 power, but as I pointed out, that isn’t enough magnification to resolve a small target at 50 yards. Yes, I personally do use Leapers scopes in FT competition, but I am not even a nationally ranked competitor, and that’s the difference. If you want to go all the way, you need the finest equipment available.

Very sensitive to head placement
Let me tell you something else about a top-quality scope that’s run at high magnification. The exit pupil becomes extremely narrow! That means if your shooting eye isn’t in the exact right position, the scope will be black! And when your eye moves to the right position, the scope is suddenly bright–like a TV program suddenly appearing on screen. This is a good thing, because it helps eliminate parallax from sloppy eye placement. But if you aren’t used to it, a scope like this can be difficult to use–especially if your rifle doesn’t fit as well as it should. So, the fit of the rifle is somewhat dictated by the quality of the scope!

Sunshades at both ends of the scope
Sunlight falling on the objective lens of a scope renders the image muddy and impossible to see. I kept two sunshades permanently attached to the objective bell of my scope.

The Tasco Custom Shop scope on my Daystate Harrier sports two sunshades all the time.

When I competed, the range where I shot most often was filled with patches of deep shade and bright sunlight that changed as the sun moved across the sky. Sometimes, in the morning, I’d stand to the right of the shooter on line, just to shade him from the strong sunlight falling on him. But that was just a friendly gesture that I would never repeat in a serious match. Competitors don’t help each other when the match is on. You have to run with the equipment you brought to the match, and that should include a long sunshade for the objective lens and a shade for the eyepiece. The eyepiece shade has to also work with the exit pupil of your scope, which takes some adjusting.

Large ocular sunshade was cut to fit the shooter and left on the ocular (eye) bell all the time. It helped locate the shooter’s head and kept stray sunlight out of the image.

Guys, I’ve addressed this stuff possibly many times in the past, but it’s probably harder for you to find it than it is for me to address Wayne’s question directly. Also, when someone asks in the future, we will have this series to refer to.

I’ll talk about big parallax wheels, reticles and the effects of temperature in the next report.

84 thoughts on “Scopes for field target – Part 1”

  1. This is a great topic. I have been very interested in learning about field target equipment. Does anyone know where I can find an ocular sunshade? I haven’t been able to find one anywhere. I want one for a Leapers SWAT 3-12X44. Not for field target, just for plinking off my porch. The sun is brutal there for most of the day.

  2. Leapers sells them with alot of their scopes, I believe PA sells one for a 50mm objective, one that fits yours shouldn’t be too hard to find online.
    I’m really tempted that crosman will be coming out with an economy HPP! Even if there’s just a chance, I suggest you deal with the hand pump until more news is heard.

  3. John form Jersey,

    Leapers scopes come with the sunshade for the objective lens, I want one for the ocular lens. I have the objective shades already installed but the sun stabs me right in the eye when I look through the scope.

  4. BB,
    A few comments:

    1. Good optics beat magnification. I think my Leupold Comp 35X ranges as well as any scope available. That said, range finding is over-rated in FT IMHO.

    2. Range finding is a function of the diameter of the objective (depth of field). For high magnification, you also need a large objective to gather more light. Again, a scope like the Leupold with fixed magnification will usually be brighter and sharper than a zoom.

    3. I find focusing on the wood grain of the mounting plate one of the best places to focus. If one can find a textured area on the target, that will pop into focus far better than most features. I always paint an “eye” on my targets — that is a pretty good focusing point when all else fails.


    Joe McDaniel

  5. B.B.,

    Great topic even for people, like me, that have never had the opportunity to shoot FT. Haven’t found any organized air gun shooting in Colorado.

    Looking forward to this series on how to maximize the potential of a scope.


  6. Joe McDaniel,

    What an honor to have a contribution from you. Quite awhile back I read a lot of your comments on the FT forum. You’ve been around this game a long time and are a wealth of knowledge.

    You made quite an impression on me about the minor importance of range finding. I think there was even talk about giving ranges to some of the competitors with lesser scopes (or guns?) and you still felt that the scores wouldn’t be affected significantly.

    You still have to shoot well was your message that stuck with me. No flinching, dope for the wind, etc.

    Do you click or holdover?


  7. Joe McDaniel,

    Forgive me but I’m thrilled that you’ve checked in here.

    I also remember you saying to some newbies, lay down your graphs and charts, get away from the computer and learn to shoot your gun.

    If you don’t mind one more question from a neophyte. What is the easiest way to determine trajectory of your pellet of choice in the gun you choose to shoot in order to determine where you should zero your scope?


  8. Volvo,

    Congratulations on the Cyclone arriving in one piece. Sounds superb. Smooth.

    You determined that kodiaks are best at high power. What range were you shooting the kodiaks?

    Now that you’ve got 3 pcp’s in your arsenal is it time for a carbon fiber tank?


  9. Off topic, this is a general question for owners of these particular guns:

    Mendoza RM—600 .22 cal
    Air Venturi—Avenger 1100 .22 cal

    Reviewers say that Mendoza makes both rifles. The specs listed on PA are nearly identical, but the Venturi has a lighter trigger pull: 2.5 lbs VS 5.1 lbs for the RM–600, and the RM—600 doesn’t seem to have forearm and grip checkering as does the Venturi.

    Rounding up the dollars, the RM—600 costs $163, while the Venturi costs $159. This means that you get a lighter trigger and a fancier stock for $4 less.

    BB’s review of the Venturi on September 22, 2008 noted that it tended to diesel/detonate and so the shot groupings weren’t very good because of that. In his test, there were large differences in muzzle velocity.

    None of the reviews on the PA website mentioned problems like that for either rifle. In fact, the reviews were overwhelmingly favorable.

    I’m interested in comments from those of you who OWN either of these rifles, because I want to get one of them; the price difference is insignificant, but the Venturi seems to be the better deal because of the lighter trigger. I have a Mendoza peep sight that I got for my Beeman R7, and it shot 3 inches high with the sight at its lowest elevation, so I took it back off. I can mount it on whichever “Mendoza” that I get.

    Thanks, everyone.

  10. Herb “(I also don’t believe in time travel – If it could occur, why have we not seen “tourists” from the future?)”

    Why haven’t you seen a TT Tourist? If you were a time traveler would you pick this time to travel to? If so, WHY?! Would you spend money to come to this time when there are dinosaurs to bee hunted?

  11. B.B. & Joe (thanks for joining),

    Thanks so much for this one!!

    This is my hurdle right now.. I get hours and hours of practice indoors every night at 20 yards… but taking that outdoors, and adjusting from 10 to 55 yards, is my bug in the soup!!

    Tom, what you said about the fit of the rifle, really rings a bell.. I'm finding that a FT stock is just as important as a accurate rifle barrel and steady air pressure in the tank or a great valve.. You really need to just lay your cheek on the rest and "find the light" quickly.. if you have to move around to find it, your wasting time to settle in on the kill zone..

    I've just bought a used Millet 6-25x 56, with side wheel focus, and haven't put it on a rifle yet… but it seems very bright, but I have not tasted quality in a scope yet!!

    Also, a couple tasco 8-32×44 without side wheel focus.. it sounds like I jumped the gun (sorry for the pun).. Josh and Nate must be good shooters, because they do real well even with those scopes.. (And they just started in this game)… young bucks with good eyes and steady hands..

    What do you you two recommend for a good used competitive FT scope for under $500 used? a couple choices please..

    Wayne Ashland Air Rifle Range

  12. Talk of big-dollar scopes is one reason why Hunter class FT sounds more appealing to me, but I live far enough from anywhere else that competition isn’t likely anyway.

    I do have a scope question, though a little out of the realm of field target.

    Can anyone who’s using the Air Venturi intermount for a Benjamin 392/397 comment on how awkward/convenient/useful it *really* is?

    Is pumping the gun awkward or easy?


  13. John from Jersey,

    Thanks for the tip. I know you mentioned it before. May I inquire as to where you are getting your intel?

    As I said before I would pre-order one in a heartbeat.

  14. B.B,
    Just a thank you for this blog topic. Hoping to see lots of people chime in. Scopes are new to me.

    I’ve noticed the old Tasco 3-7×20 scope on my Disco right now needs time to temperature equalize before it settles down. So I take the gun from my 70-degree house and put it on the 20-degree porch for 30-minutes or so before shooting. Seems to help.


  15. Kevin,

    I can’t say hands down that Kodiaks are the best yet, but so far they are vary promising. My shooting from 9:00 pm to 2:30 am was all indoors yesterday.

    You’ll do well to try them in any medium to high power rifle. Some heavy pellets are not forgiving of lower velocities, like Crow Magnums that in my experience need very high velocity. (Not a pellet I recommend)

    Here is one for Bg-farmer and Herb – on low power the Crow Magnums shot about an inch and half to the left of POI of the Kodiaks, CP’s, JSB’s, and Beeman FTS. On high power they were dead on and just about a quarter inch high. I have a long standing theory on this.

    As far as a scuba tank, I really want an electric compressor instead. That would have to be the ultimate in convenience. What hand pump did you go with (on the plus side of hand pumping, I feel like I could take on a whole crew today- : ) )

  16. I was was wondering about something like this:


    I’m sure the mounts will be a little spendy, but I think she’s worth it.

    Then again, I suppose it wouldn’t be very practicle to hitch a ride on the space shuttle, mount the hubble telescope onto your air rifle just to only be able to shoot a rabbit from space.

    Not too sure on the numbers, but I bet the velocity would would be pretty fast if the pellet didn’t vaporise as it hit earths atmoshphere.

    I would call it code name: Puff the magic bunny slayer, Deep space rabbit roaster, The diabolo rain maker or The BSA Super Ultimate Maximum Extreme Lighting XXXXXXXXXXXXL.

  17. Fred,

    No rangefinders are permitted in field target. However, I agree completely with Joe McDamiels on the lack of importance knowing the range really has on the outcome. In fact, when I was the match director of DIFTA, I was sorely tempted to publish the exact distances to all the targets in the match. I always felt it would make absolutely no difference in the outcome.

    The reason I never did it is because getting and publishing that information took too much time.


  18. B.B.,
    Very good post. (I finally got caught up enough to actually read the new blog) Very useful to me.
    I noticed in that last picture that the scope appears to have double scope rings. Is that what it is or is that a special ring? If it’s double, is that a common practice for FT shooters?

  19. ok ok ok

    on a serious note,

    Does anyone know what size Nikko Stirling Diamond Sportsman Riflescope(s) that Paul Cray uses to win all those nice awards with?

    If so, then a Nikko Stirling Diamond Sportsman Riflescope in that size would be my choice. Well having the air rifles Paul uses would hurt either.

  20. BB,thanks for a topic that we all will learn lots from!!two questions;a scope thats been “doubled”i’m assuming a custom doubling of stock magnification?second question,any experience with Sheppard scopes?I have one from 1981 made in Hakko Seki,Japan. thanks,FrankB

  21. Who: Paul Cray

    Where: Washington

    When: 2005

    Air Rifle: AA TX200

    Pellet: JSB Exact 8.4gr

    Scope: Nikko Sterling 10-50X

    It was all in aafta.

    (antarctic free trade agreement)


    Lot of AR I recognize, Steyr, Anschuz, Whiscombe, Mac1(USFT), Theoben.

    So what is a sport match and who is Larry Durham? Didn’t Larry make the simple simon?

  22. Wayne,

    Here’s another good article B.B. did on FT. It’s an 8 part series and the last 2 parts are about FT scopes. Must read for you.



  23. Volvo,

    Hope you can get your hands on some of the new 18 gr jsb’s. Every powerful pcp owner raves about them at longer distances especially.

    I bought an ultraglide pump because I got a deal on it and because it’s easier to replace “O” rings in it.

    I’d be a buyer for a compressor if it was reasonable.


  24. Volvo & Kevin,

    Don't jump too early on the compressor… that is a lot of pressure for something small to make.. they break a lot ..

    Remember B.B. buying one from an old tank?

    There will be a lot of small compressors out to fill this need.. but I bet few will be worth their salt when 2 years are gone..

    Make friends with a fire station or scuba shop.

    Ashland Air Rifle Range

  25. Matt 61,

    The last couple of miles in travel to the 400 yard range is 4 wheel drive road and the range is on blm land. ATV’s make it an easy ride at about 20 mph vs. 3-5 mph in a four wheel drive vehicle but an atv is limited in cargo space. Don’t have room for all the FT stuff.

    I’m planning on adding more knock down targets next to the house in the mountains when the snow melts. I had multiple targets at multiple ranges set up last summer but had a heck of a time with range. I had to clear about 8 big trees and 5-6 big willow bushes to create a safe shooting lane out to about 150 yards. Between 20 yards and about 60 yards on this shooting lane is a swamp. Stretching a tape across this swamp requires hip waders. Last summer I didn’t know about creating a range tape on your scope and ignoring the ranges engraved on your scope. I read about a clever way to establish ranges. You put a wagon (I’m going to use a sled because of the swamp) at your furthest distance (55 yards for FT?), place something that can easily be focused on for adjusting the scope in the wagon, tie a rope and tape measure to the wagon and pull it towards you. You can mark increments of five yards, one yard etc. without getting up. Brilliant.

    Now the problem is how many times do I have to do this because of the radical temperature changes that frequently happen while I’m shooting. Not unusual to have 30 degree temperature swings in less than an hour in the mountains since storm cells pass through regularly.

    Another fun airgun project in my future.


  26. BB,

    I’ve probably spent more on scopes than most people, but those are for astronomy! To need a scope like that to be competitive in a shooting sport puts FT in the “benchrest” and other equipment-junkie class of hobbies for me:). Most people love that sort of thing, though, so I suppose it may work out well. Interesting to read about.

  27. Wayne,

    I mostly agree on keeping things simple since it means less can go wrong. I’m just hoping that a compressor would be sturdy enough to last a single shooter for a good while. From what I’ve read it’s filling scuba tanks or club use that is very hard on them. Hopeful a group of engineer types are perfecting this as we speak.


    I haven’t tried the new JSB’s yet but I’m sure they would be excellent. Usually the only issue with JSB’s is the supply. I think for that reason it’s always good to find 2-3 favorites if possible.

    More updates. As Wayne has said before adjustable power has many benefits. With the Cyclone on the low setting I’m seeing velocities equal or above the stock RSW 850 or tuned HW50S I had. On medium it is about dead equal with the Raider or tuned R-1 in .22, and on high power gives it more energy then any pellet rifle I have ever owned, even the .25 cal Patriot. The most amazing part is that all this in a 6.2 lb package that goes just over 7 lbs with scope and mounts.

    On the low setting I’m getting about 60 good shots. High yields just fewer than 30. However this is subjective because you can keep shooting much longer. My advice would be not to with a hand pump. It is harder on both the pump and the person.

    I’m sure these attributes are not exclusive to my rifle, and that the new Marauder will offer similar benefits. If there is a down side, it’s that the need for multiple rifles is greatly diminished. I’m guessing we should see a Marauder review from BB in the next couple weeks?

  28. Im going to add a 52mm adapter ring to my scope that way I can just use all my camera lenses and filters.

    A wide angle lense for for chasing fast moving prey. 2 to 4x multipliers for FT. Filtered lenses for bright sunny days.

    Of course it won’t work, but a neat concept.

  29. Then again if mo can mount a airgun on a tripod, why not mount a camera on an air rifle and zero it it. Then I could use all my lenses and shoot game any way I choose.

  30. BG_Farmer,
    Here’s a challenge for you and your scopes.

    I just got this from my Amateur Astro brother:

    The lost ISS tool bag is visible from the ground!

    Astronaut Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper inadvertently let go of her tool bag
    during a recent spacewalk. The heavens-above website has begun tracking the
    lost toolbag with the rest of the space junk up there and it is actually
    visible in the sky, varying from around 5th to 10th magnitude as it varies
    with distance and tumbles thru space. According to the info page, it can get
    as bright as 3.3 mag at perigee. You will need binoculars to see this object.
    Predictions are at:


    You should register on this site so you can get accurate predictions for your
    personal GPS coordinates.

  31. TM – does great work.

    Heidemarie – 6 years older and born in the next town I was born, MPLS. Just like my wife, will do anything to get a new handbag.

    Mr. Backyard FT – wow, I have a few targets and have to run around to get different yardages, anglesand elevations.

  32. Chuck,

    Thanks. I’ll try to give that a try, although the weather isn’t great right now. My favorite challenge is Nu Scorpii (a difficult cousin of the double-double), but I did that when I lived under California’s perfect skies.

  33. B.B.
    EXCELLENT report B.B… Great info!! But does the Leaper’s Sunshade will fit the AirForce 4-16×50 scope??? Or any other 50mm objective scope??? And let me tell you, I was surprised to see that you use a Tasco scope… I had the stereotype of seeing them as weak and unreliable scopes… (by searching on other sites)… Guess I was wrong..!! Thanks again!!! Take care…

  34. Volvo:
    I’ve been doing a lot of surfing lately and don’t remember exactly where I first saw it (it was a forum I believe and a representative from crosman was answering questions). When a question about a HPP was asked, an ambiguous response. I was on the phone with crosman about a different subject and I brought this up. The female customer service rep. could “confirm nor deny” (same answer in forum) BUT, she stated that she is aware that crosman is expanding their pcp product line and to keep my eyes open for the future. Definately not proof but I have a good feeling about this one.
    I have a 3-9×40 scope that came with a Remington genesis. It’s labeled Crosman, but has little info in the manual. Online it states that the genesis comes with a Benjamin scope. Do you know if it carries the centerpoint warranty?

  35. B.B.

    I try not to pester you but I have a question on a Crosman pellet. I found a full tin of .22 cal ACCU PELL that did very well in my new rifle. When I went on the PA web site to order more I saw they were no longer listed. I don’t think they are that old. They look like Premiers, but don’t make my fingers dirty at all. Any ideas? No date or ID markings on the tin. On the Beeman Pellets I know they are old when I see Santa Rosa, but I’m confused on these.

  36. Nick,
    Where did you see different aperture discs for the Beeman sight? I did a google search but didn’t see any except for a guy who machined his own out of bar stock. PA doesn’t show any listed with the sight.

  37. CJr,
    I tried to reply earlier but my post didn’t show up. Any gunsmith supply place should have them. The Beeman sight is a Williams sight, so look for those.

  38. BB, I was mainly asking if you ever came across a SHEPPARD scope.they boast rangefinding reticle,one-shot zero,4.3 seconds of resolution,etc…just curious of your experience with it [if any] FrankB

  39. Volvo,

    Accu Pell was the name Crosman gave to the same pellets they sold to the UK (same as the lines they sell yere). The are Premiers/Crosman domes by another name.

    I have seen American airgunners swear that Accu Pells are more accurate than their equivalent U.S, brands, but that’s odd, since they come from the same machines and dies.


  40. Sheppard,

    Of course I have HEARD of Sheperd scopes. Being a writer for Shotgun News, I see their ads all the time. By the way, that’s the way the company spells the name. If there is also a Sheppard, then I have never heard of it.

    But I have never tested one or even held one.


  41. Jony,

    I tested a Leapers sunshade in the AirForce 4-16 scope and it doesn’t fit. Contact AirForce to see what sunshades fit their scopes. I see they don’t sell them as options, but that doesn’t mean they don’t know what fits.


  42. B.B.,

    I’m not sure the ACCU PELL’s are more accurate than Premier’s but the nice part is no dirty stains on the fingers. They look exactly the same, but maybe it was a different recipe for the alloy?

  43. BB,sorry about the spelling,my sheperd scope is in New Orleans,and I’m in huntsville,Al.when the weather warms,I wan’t to see if the rings used to range from 100 to 1000 yards might somehow be useful on FT killzones at closer ranges.I actually inherited this scope on an old airgun,if you can believe it…a thousand yard scope on an airgun!…FrankB

  44. Bg-farmer,

    No, when I was low on .177 I ended up getting some CP heavies at Gander Mountain and then my order from PA came in. I really needed something heavy in .177 for my FX Whisper as it shoots the std or light stuff too fast to be accurate. I have forced myself to use some of the funky pellets I’ve acquired in the QB-78. Just finished a tin of Ramjets that nothing but my R-1 liked. The Santa Rosa markings meant they were maybe 15 years old?

    In .22 cal I still have an ample supply. I’m trying to use up all the odds and ends before I buy more, unless I really need something. For example the ACCU – PELLS I was asking BB about are probably 4 years old. I think I remember being disappointed that they looked like CP, since I usually have those in the box. So they went to pellet purgatory.
    I wish I would of tried them, as I would of stocked up since they are accurate without the mess.

    I could of used you a little while ago; my youngest need help with her 7th grade Algebra.
    The second have of the year is when I start just making up answers to get it done. : )

  45. ajvenom,

    RE: “I”m going to add a 52mm adapter ring to my scope that way I can just use all my camera lenses and filters.”

    Well the lenses wouldn’t work, but why not the filters? 35mm cameras use objective lens filters all the time.

    A macro add-on filter lenses would get the scope to focus closer.

    I can see where a polarizing filter might help too. (To remove the glitter off the water as you’re shooting the fish in the barrel.)


  46. Kevin,

    That’s pretty intense. Maybe you should stick the targets wherever you want and laser them with a rangefinder.

    BG_Farmer, man after my own heart. The springers you mentioned are the sort of rifles I shoot. I take it you’re off the PCP bandwagon after the news about the Challenger fixed velocity.


  47. FrankB
    if youre gonna be in huntsville for a while,you might want to look up
    Brad Troyer from american airguns site.he’s into airguns in a big way too.

    glad you made it thru the storm o.k
    waiting for the warmer weather this weekend to get back outside to play
    sposed ta be 18 here tonight brrr.

    been tryin to introduce everyone i can to this great hobby,little hard to convince folks these aren’t just toys.this blog really helps when they find out our “toys”
    are as good or better quality than most firearms.superior accuracy is a bonus too:)


  48. Thanks Kevin,
    I tried the link an hour later and it was still down. I’ll keep trying. I like the mechanics of the sight so I really want to make it work for me. I don’t understand why replacement disks are not readily available for it.

    Word verification “trathmen”. I think Word Verification has developed a lisp.

  49. B.B.

    Wait a second here..

    by B. B. Pelletier

    “Wayne asked for this report, but I was happy to write it because the season for field target is approaching.”

    Even though I asked for it, your happy to do it anyway… HHHMMM… I’m not sure what to think:):)

    Wacky Wayne… and I resemble that remark!!!

  50. So Dick Thomas passed away in 2005?

    Was tryng to do a little research on scopes.

    From Websitetoolbox.com:

    Dick Thomas, who owned Premier Reticles, did custom reticles repairs and modifications on Leupold scopes from the beginning.

    It was Dick Thomas that put Leupold scopes on the map.

    In the beginning, Premier Reticles made reticles for the military and optical industry… and Leupold made very high quality hunting and varmint scopes – Weaver was the king of the benchrest crowd (hard to believe now, Huh?).

    So Premier started putting Mildot reticles in the Leupold military scopes – the MK4-M3 and the MK4-M1.

    Then he started boosting the power of the varmint scopes with really good lenses, and Leupold/boosted scopes started pushing out Weaver.

    Premier became a dealer and the only repair station for Leupold.

    Then Premier started making all kinds of custom reticles for the Leupold. Since they would only work on Leupolds, people that wanted custom reticles started buying Leupolds instead of other scopes because they could get the reticle of their dreams… the relationship benefited both companies.

    About ten~ish years ago, Leupold brought in some Harvard/Yale type MBAs.
    These grubby assholes thought, “Hell, we could be making money on these custom reticles instead of those guys – and one of the first things they did was start shutting out Premier Reticles.

    At the time, Leupold made a nifty little spotting scope called the 25×50. IIRC, it listed for around $250~ish. It was the size of a beer can, with really good optics.

    Premier put mildot reticles in these and sold them to the military and tactical shooters for a whoppin $800. Plus, Premier had a ton of special military Cordura cases made for them with A.L.I.C.E. clips, so they could be attached to web belts or Alice packs.

    It wasn’t a ripoff, there was a ton of work in it and a lot of special machinery involved.

    Well… the Harvard/Yale type MBAs decided to discontinue the little scope and bring in some Asian junk (the Wind River line).

    Instead of telling Premier, and giving them the opportunity to purchase all of the remaining 25×50 scopes, Leupold said “Nothing”!

    So, when Premier runs low on the 25×50, and orders more, they get a terse form letter saying “No longer available”.

    So Dick calls Leupold, and asks why they didn’t get advance warning (cuz they had a ton of orders pending), and why they didn’t get a chance to buy all of the remaining inventory when the decision was made to disco the scopes… Dick was told, “You are not part of our business decisions!”.
    Dick Thomas was miffed, but thought he still had a working relationship with Leupold.

    That was part one…

    Part two:

    Dick designs a new type of Mildot reticle called the “Gen-II”, and applies for a patent. he starts to sell them under the “Patent pending” protection of patent law.

    Leupold rips him off, and starts selling Gen-II reticle’d scopes to the military.

    Then Nikon follows.

    Leupold was claiming that the Gen-II reticle was a copy of the “Smith reticle”, (which no body used cuz it was junk), but under that, Leupold was claiming that since the Gen-II reticle was a copy of the Smith reticle, and since the Smith reticle’s patent had run out, then the Gen-II reticle was “Public art” (meaning no patent protection!!!).

    That was Leupold’s position to the Patent Office. So the Patent Office denied Premier Reticle’s patent application.

    So Dick calls them and says “What the hell is going on here?”, and is politely told by the Harvard/Yale type MBAs…

    … “That’s business!, Oh and by the way, while we have you on the phone, you are getting no more scopes, no more parts, and we will not honor the Warranties any of your work or repairs after (XXX DATE)”.

    Out of the bleu, with no warning, Premier was shut off and shut down – since they had limited their work to only Leupold, Leupold had effectively put them out of business.

    So I got a call from Dick, and he asked if I could help him on the Gen-II problem.

    So I spent a few weeks looking up the Smith Reticle, and wrote the challenge to the Patent Office’s decision, and we won!!

    Dick got a patent for the Gen-II, and then promptly sued Leupold (and now Nikon) for patent infringement, and was awarded triple damages (A LOT OF MONEY).

    Then Premier went off in different directions.

    That’s how it happened.

  51. Hello B.B.
    This is a great topic. Please tell us about custom turrets(elevation knob. How you make them? Is there anyone selling them ready to fit my scope?

    My scope is a Nikko Stirling Platinum Nighteater 8-32 x 44MD. I know it’s not big enough for FT but I am not a professional, either! This scope doesn’t have good elevation knob. It is divised in 100 lines but my scope has 60 cliks per circle! That’s why I need to make a custom elevation knob.

  52. George,

    I’ve already promised Wayne to do a part 3 to this report (with part 2 being what I promised at the end of this report, above). Part 3 will be about holdover vs click adjustment in FT. I will add custom elevation knobs to that part of the report.


  53. I live in California, and own an old 1970s .177″ Beeman air rifle. I have geese problem in my back and front yards. Is it legal to take them out? Anyone has this problem? Thanks in advance for your comments.

  54. gun racks,

    Geese are covered under the Federal Migratory Bird Laws and what you are proposing is against that law and it could get you a very healthy fine and possibly jail time.

    However, at two pounds of poop per bird per day, it can pile up very rapidly.

    Some folks use noise makers to scare them away. Good luck.

    You posted your question on a blog that was writtten last Feb. B.B. writes a daily blog where alot of knowledgable folks trade info about the current air gun related topic, help each other out and share ideas. Please join us at /blog/ We’re looking fwd to seeeing you there. Let me know how the geese go (Hopefully go that is.)

    Mr B.

  55. gun racks,

    I’ll second what Mr B. has already said. Killing a goose out of season, within city limits, with an improper gun and/or without proper license and/or waterfowl stamp can result in confiscation of gun, suspension or revokation of hunting priveledges and a fine and jail time.

    I keep the geese out of my yard with a dog and lawn sprinklers with a motion activation. These sprinklers that are motion activated are available at most garden centers.

    Good luck.


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