by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
MeoPro 80 HD spotting scope from Meopta.
This report covers:
- Sometimes you just have to pay the price
- So what?
- My tale of woe
- The scope
- Not a fair test
- My evaluation
Today’s report is about a piece of equipment that has been central to my entire shooting career, yet one that has troubled and eluded me the entire time — a spotting scope. In fact, I have written about this subject before, through few of you probably remember.
Years ago I told you how I paid more than retail (in a trade) to wrest a Burris spotting scope away from a friend, after seeing how clear and sharp it is. That scope might have been the pick of the litter (it probably was) — performing well beyond the Burris spec for their $250 scope, but what do I care? It’s clear and sharp and lets me see tiny .22-caliber bullet holes in a black bullseye at 100 yards on a sunny day. In short, it does the job — sort of.
But, are there better scopes? Undoubtedly. There must be scopes that let you see .22-caliber bullet holes in the black at 200 yards on an overcast day. If there are, I want one, because seeing bullet holes far away is a large part of my job.
Sometimes you just have to pay the price
Sometimes, the answer is to just buy the best. For years I preached about the stunning qualities of the Air Arms TX200 Mark III air rifle. The TX is at the absolute top of the spring gun performance chart. And, it is expensive.
I had readers ask me which Chinese copy came closest to the TX200 performance. And, there was one that did come very close for a long while — the BAM B40 that Pyramyd Air carried for many years.
Other readers tried to bully me into admitting that the HW97 underlever was every bit as good as the TX — and I know there are more than a few of you who still feel that way today. I had readers ask me what inexpensive breakbarrel could be bought and subsequently tuned to equal the performance of the TX. In fact, there was a lot of interest in everything except just buying a TX and enjoying it.
Then came reader Chris USA. He was new to airgunning and wasn’t ashamed to admit it. He told us if the TX was the best there was, then that was what he wanted. So he just bought one. Then we started hearing from him what a wonderful airgun it was. He enjoyed his purchase, discovering that all the hype wasn’t hype at all — it was true!
That brings me to today’s report. As I said, spotting scopes have been my Achille’s heel for my entire shooting career. For over half a century I have cursed the darkness, instead of lighting one little candle. But after I test today’s subject scope — maybe no longer!
My tale of woe
I won’t bore you with all the sub-par spotting scopes I have owned. Just one example will suffice. About 10 years ago I asked for a Celestron C70 Mini Mak 70mm spotting scope for my birthday. I knew Celestron’s reputation from astronomy (another interest of mine) and I trusted the name.
It seems that Celestron’s marketing department went to China (funny how that works, huh?) and sourced the cheapest Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope they could find, then slapped their name on it. Sure, it magnified all the way up to 45 power — just like your Chinese breakbarrel air rifle shoots the right (light) pellets over 1,400 f.p.s. But, to see anything at that power you had to have the bright sun directly on the subject. And even then, the image was not sharp.
Just like you will probably get rid of that Chinese breakbarrel after you learn the truth about its performance, I sold that spotting scope (for a loss) at a gun show to another unsuspecting hopeful. I did tell him it was dark and not as clear as it could be, but he wanted a Celestron! Good for him, but better for me! That story illustrates what I have been going through for decades — scope after scope. No wonder I gave so much for the Burris, after seeing how sharp and clear it is!
Now let’s look at a different way to go about this.
I told you I saw Meopta products for the first time at the 2016 SHOT Show. The binoculars I saw in their booth were as bright and clear as any I’ve ever looked through. I was stunned that I had not known about this manufacturer before. Perhaps the reason is because their parallax-adjusting riflescopes do not adjust as close as the 10 yards/meters that airgunners demand. That one fact may have kept me apart from them all these years.
Meopta is a huge optics manufacturer with a plant in the Czech Republic, and another on Long Island. They make sporting optics, industrial optics and military optics. But let’s concentrate on the spotting scope.
Several weeks ago I received a press release about Meopta’s MeoPro 80 HD spotting scope, that is a lower-cost version of their flagship MeoStar 82mm spotter. I say lower-cost, but the MSRP for this scope is still $1,724.99, so it is far from inexpensive. In the past that price would have stopped me cold, but after looking through Meopta binoculars that are every bit as clear and sharp as Steiners or even $3,000 Swarovskis (in my opinion), I knew this spotter would be good. I had to at least test it. And, if it can out-perform my current cherry-picked Burris by a large enough margin, who knows?
Before I describe this spotting scope you should know that it is this year’s Outdoor Life Editor’s Choice for spotting scopes. In fact, that was the press release that caught my attention. Now let’s begin our look.
First, this scope is heavy, when compared to my 1 lb. 13.5 oz. bantamweight Burris Landmark that magnifies from 15X to 45X and has a 60mm objective lens. The 4 lb. 6.38 oz. Meopta is a light-heavyweight that magnifies from 20X to 60X — and I plan on testing it right up to the limit. The objective lens is 80 mm and the weight alone makes me believe the optics are better. They are certainly bigger!
If this scope can give a bright clear image at 60X it will be better than any spotting scope I have ever used. Sure, I’ve looked through the Zeiss scopes at IWA (the German equivalent of the SHOT Show) but you can’t really tell much by watching a fly crawl on a ceiling girder at 50 yards inside an exhibit hall. I want to see bullet holes at 200 yards.
To keep the cost comparatively low, the MeoPro 80 HD eyepiece is fixed. Many users of high-end spotting scopes have different eyepieces for different tasks — each one optimized for its magnification. Having just one that doesn’t detach obviously forces some compromises, and I will be looking for them in the test. However, it also has a huge advantage.
Each optical package in a spotting scope has to be filled with nitrogen and sealed. If the eyepiece removes from the scope body, both the scope body and the eyepiece have to have a window on one side (where they connect) to keep the nitrogen inside. That window is just another piece of glass and does absolutely nothing for the performance of the spotting scope. By having an intergrated eyepiece, there are two less pieces of glass in the optical path, and that means greater light transmission. So it’s not just cheaper — it’s also better. I learned that from a conversation with Reinhard Seipp, the general manager and chief operations officer of Meopta USA.
The mount base is a ring around the equator of the scope tube that rotates 360 degrees. So you can rotate the scope tube to position the eyepiece anywhere you want, but your tripod or mount needs to be strong. Mine will support a heavy medium-format camera whose weight is similar to this scope, so this should be no problem. I will show you how this flexible positioning works when I get to the range.
A sunscreen is built in and extends quietly from the objective end of the tube. You need it with that 80mm objective! And both lens caps are on positively — something my other spotting scopes have never had.
The focus ring is also wrapped around the scope tube. No matter what orientation the scope is in, the focus is always placed convienently. But again I stress the need for a solid tripod or mount.
They also include a mount for your smart phone that lets you attach it to the scope. You can watch the target on the screen of your phone instead of looking through the optics! The mount is for conventional phones — not the gargantuan iPhone 6 I have, so I may have to borrow a phone to test this feature.
I intend taking this Meopta scope to the range and looking at .22 caliber bullet holes in a black bullseye at 200 yards — hopefully on an overcast day. Thanks to the current Texas weather, that shouldn’t be too hard to achieve. I’m loading some .223 Remington for my AR-15 that thinks it’s a benchrest rifle.
Not a fair test
I realize this is not a fair test. Besides being top-of-the-line product, the Meopta scope is much larger than the Burris. But, as they say, “All’s fair…” I’m not trying to be fair — I’m trying to see tiny bullet holes a long way away.
A spotting scope of this quality will probably not appeal to many shooters, because until you need one this good, you really don’t care. I suspect hunters like our Kevin, who guided in the Rockies, probably already own equivalent scopes. Varmint hunters certainly have them — at least those varmint hunters who are serious. And, every benchrester alive has a good spotting scope, unless they are only out on the range to pull bullets.
Years ago I learned that to be a good gun writer, I need good equipment. Even airgun writers put their equipment to the test all the time. Over the years I have upgraded my stable of equipment until I have everything I need — except for a good spotting scope. Will that change?
To be perfectly honest, I’m out of my element, testing this product. I’m a user — not a tester. Like Joe Sixpack, I know what I like, but I don’t know all the tests that determine one optic over another. I am red-green colorblind, so the degree of color-correction that I’m certain this scope has will be lost on me. My right eye that I normally use for spotting has recently had the retina detached and surgically repaired, so it’s not 100 percent, either. The doctor says I see 20/20 through that eye now, but the image it sees still doesn’t line up with the left eye’s image. Will that matter with a monocular spotting scope? I think not.
In the most literal way, we shall see. Best of all, maybe I shall see!
92 thoughts on “MeoPro 80 the MeoPro 80 HD Spotting Scope: Part 1”
What got my attention was that you could attach a phone and look through the phone and see the target.
So does that mean you can take pictures or videos of whatever your sighting? That would be worth the price alone of the spotting scope.
Oh and I had a HW97 along with my Tx 200. All I’ll say is I still have the Tx. You know me. If it ain’t what I want it doesn’t stay. And alot of springers and nitro pistons sure have come and gone.
I would think you should be able to do that.
Maybe if you get your .25 Marauder that your modding back out to the 100 yard range. You could get a short video or some pictures of some 5 shot groups with a phone attached.
Would love to see a short video the most.
Hi BB and All.
Speaking of the TX200, you might recall I was on the fence between it and the Walther LGU. Well, a few weeks ago, Pyramyd had the sale to end all sales. The problem was the TX200 wasn’t included. The solution was that the LGU Was included–and I bought one.
I want to thank everyone who talked up the LGU. It is a magnificent shooter. Probably, if I had ended up with the TX I’d be saying the same of it. I’m sure I would be, but I ended up with the LGU and I couldn’t be happier. It’s a beautiful rifle that will easily put ten shots under a dime at 20 yards.
If someone out there is wondering about getting a great rifle, my advice is to get it if you can afford it. I spent a great deal of money working my way up to the rifle I should have bought on day one.
Glad you got the LGU. And both the LGU and Tx are fine guns.
What caliber did you get?
I got the .22. It is so smooth. And at 20 yards, ten pellets in a hole slightly larger than the diameter of a pencil. I had begun to think this type of rifle was myth until I got one. Sweet.
Just wait and see what it’s really about if you can get it out to some longer distances. And I’m talking 35-50 yards just. It will surprise you.
What pellets you shooting and do you have it scoped?
Yeah. 20 yards is what I have room for in my house. The area I live in is NOT pellet friendly…SO I doubt I will be able to shoot a greater distance any time soon. Maybe. I don’t know. Kind of hoping to bump into someone with some private land but that is iffy.
Funny story on my pellets. I bought 4 more tins in addition to the the ones I already had. Got the best. All the ones I had read shoot well thru this rifle, and I was very happy with the results. But you know, I just thought I would try a tin of Benjamin’s for kicks. Honestly they have never shoot The Best in any other gun but in the LGU, they are definitely The Best. Funny how things work out that way.
I can believe that about the pellets. And here is something to add to that. Some guns will shoot alot of different pellets good. And I think the LGU is one of them.
You didn’t mention what kind of sight you have on it yet. I’m guessing a scope. If I remember right the one I had did not come with open sights.
Your last sentence is “Pure Gold” and was what prompted me to get the TX. Having the LGU too, I can say they are both great air rifles. I did not work my up in air rifles, but I have worked my up in other things in life and had learned my lesson. Yes, it is cheaper in the end. Congratulations and enjoy!
Meant to say “worked my (way) up”,…. x2. More coffee,… must,…. have,…. more,…. coffee. 😉
I have both the TX and the LGV (not the LGU) and I like them boih.
Yeah, Celestron was bought out and now brands Chinese made scopes for the most part – some of them are actually quite good for the price but I would still prefer to have the choice of buying a U.S. made one (or the Japanese Vixen manufactured scopes they used to re-brand up until the move to China). You can’t go wrong with TeleVue but they will cost you a hefty sum even for a small 60mm or 76mm scope and it won’t have built in zoom and would also need an erecting prism for spotting scope use. The view can be incredible though. A friend of mine let me take a look at the Pleiadesn through his TeleVue Ranger/TeleVue eyepiece combo and it blew me away despite my standard of reference being my old 3″ f16 Unitron which is a classic noted for having sharp optics.
Hey! I’m supposed to be the official enabler here! Now I have to start researching TeleVue astronomical telescopes!
Nice, very nice. I do not see one in my future though. Speaking of dark, my 100 yd. lane has the last 70 yards buried in deep, dark woods. For starters, use something other than black targets, (for us shooters on a budget). I did use a LED stick light 18″ from the white paper target and I could see .25 holes at 100 yards with a UTG scope set at 10 mag., clearly.
Looking forward to see how this does for you. It should work quite well.
I do not quite get it! You spend BIG bucks on a spotting scope, yet use poorer quality UTG and Leapers scopes on the air guns that you test? I must be a fool, but I have a $300 scope on a $200 gun! I recommend to always get good glass! Perhaps you could do a report on micro-sights used on peep sights.
Get good glass, don’t eat it!
I find Leapers scopes to be way more value than their price.
Meopta didn’t start their consumer sporting division until 2006, so they aren’t well-known yet. However, they do make the top optics for some other companies whose names you probably know.
I owned a Nightforce scope that gave nothing but trouble. I have a Hawke that’s excellent, and another Hawke that’s garbage. I owned a Leupold Vari-X II that was marginal and a Burris compact that was downright fuzzy.
What I’m saying is it isn’t the name on the scope that matters — it’s the performance. Leapers/UTG I can trust. If Meopta ever makes an airgun scope, I bet it will be a good one, too.
With Leapers I always know where the quality is. And Meopta scopes are supposed to be the brightest on the market. So, if they start making one with the right parallax adjustments, I will look into it.
In your day 2 report for the 2016 Shot Show, you reported on a new UTG compact scope. I copied the and pasted the info from that blog below for reference. . I have yet not seen that this scope is available. Do you know when it will come out? Thanks, Jim
Next I saw a dot sight with 4 power magnification. Then optics are folded prism, like binoculars, and they are sharp and clear. Each sight has a range of different reticles, so you can choose, based on what you’re shooting. The beauty of this scope is its size. It’s half the length of a tiny Bugbuster scope! I think they are going to sell a lot of these!
I’ll ask Leapers tomorrow.
Leapers tells me that scope is almost completed its testing and is going into pre-production this month. They expect it to be ready for the market by the end of August.
Thank you for checking. I hope you get #1 off the assembly line to test.
UTG/Leapers has my vote as well. I have 2. Very good out to 100 yds., which,.. less face it,…. is about all any air gunner is going to be doing anyways. If someone is going hard core and getting up into the 25-30 mag. level, then other brands might be considered.
So you’re also into astronomy? Me too! For years I have had the same Monday-Friday morning routine:
Brew a pot of coffee
Look at NASA’s APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day)
Read your daily blog
I own a Celestron 8″ Schmidt Cassegrain that I purchased in 1990 during my first semester of planetary astronomy at Tarrant County Junior College. I belonged to the Fort Worth Astronomical Society for several years and attended the Texas Star Party at the Prude Ranch during the early 90’s. I now reside in Pittsburgh PA and while this old steel town is a wonderful place to live, it’s not friendly for amateur astronomers. Runner-up to Seattle, Pittsburgh is the second cloudiest city in the nation. You can almost guarantee if there’s a significant astronomical event happening, chances are it will be overcast in Pittsburgh!
Dan Wesson Fan,
Your Celestron is a real scope! That is why I was drawn to the name.
For many years I have pined for a Meade LZ200 with a 10-inch mirror, but even Texas is getting light-polluted these days.
If you’ve never been to the Texas Star Party (down yonder on the Prude Ranch in the Davis Mountains of West Texas), you should put it on your bucket list. It is the largest gathering of amateur astronomers in the world. The best viewing conditions in North America. The closest light pollution is Midland/Odessa which is about 180 miles distant. You don’t even need to bring a telescope. A tent and camping gear is all that is needed. The last time I was there (1992) approximately 600 astronomers in attendance who brought about twice as many telescopes. I always brought my little 8″, but I would often wander the ranch, talk with other astronomers and look through their much larger, much more expensive telescopes. There was one guy from Boulder, Colorado, who built/builds huge binoculars with 25″ mirrors. One had to climb a step ladder to view deep space objects because the reflecting mirrors were at the ground level. I recall looking at star clusters and nebulae through those binoculars and seeing depth of field thousands of light years distant!
The phone feature is neat, but that it can’t even take an iPhone 6 is a serious oversight. A great many android phones are even bigger than the 6s Plus. A non Plus iphone 6 is smaller than a Moto X.
I plan to look into this more. There might be a solution.
I’m very interested in what you find out about the types of phones that can be used.
I don’t have a i phone 6. I just got a Motarola Droid. So when your saying “regular phone” do you mean like the Droid I have?
Yes, I meant regular-sized smart phone. They will all work, I believe.
My iPhone 6 is enormous and doesn’t fit the holder.
The iPhone 6 is regular size these days. Very few smartphones released in the last year or two are smaller than an iPhone 6.
However I think you meant to reply to GunFun1.
Odds are his droid won’t fit either.
I was replying to you — while assembling the Daisy 853.
My iPhone 6 is a 6S Plus — the larger phone. I thought everyone knew about them, so I didn’t go into the specifics.
It is MUCH larger than a standard smart phone.
I was thinking that was what you meant. However in 2016 that is not an usually large phone. Basically all top range phones are that size.
My Moto X pure is about the same size, a Note 5 is bigger, the S7 is not much smaller, the S7 edge, LG G5 is about the same, the Nexus 6p is bigger.
The iPhone 6s plus is pretty much middle of the road size these days.
Well, if that is the case, the electronics manufacturers haven’t caught up yet. I just bought a 3-axis stabilizer camera mount that has a mount for the smaller phones and it can only be adjusted to fit the new larger ones. So Meopta is not that far out of step with the times.
Yeah, the issue is probably that they move on a very slow timescale compared to smartphones. Smartphones are changing just about every 8-12 months.
The google cardboard devices, which are very neat and well worth $15 to try out have the same issue. I can happily report the viewmaster fits your phone, but it would be a tight squeeze.
The below compares the phone you have, the Moto X Pure/Style and the Nexus 6p.
Link removed due to inability to post it.
You can compare on GSM arena yourself, since we can’t post links.
They range from 154mm to 159mm at the longest side. So very close in size.
And sorry I meant mount a phone to a air gun rifle scope. Not a spotting scope.
Thanks. I probably will never be able to afford to by that spotting scope anyway.
But just incase I could I would like to know what phones would work.
Sounds like you know about the phones pretty good. So I figured I would bring this up now. Have you ever tryed mounting a phone to a scope. And do you know of anybody that makes mounts to attach phones to scopes.
I would love to take some pictures and videos with my phone of my target shooting. I wonder if anybody here on the blog has tryed. Never thought to ask before.
So does anybody know of mounts or brackets to mount a phone to a air gun rifle scope?
If anybody is interested here is something I found that is a universal type phone attachment. And you can get different back plates to accept your type of phone that you have. And price is not bad.
I need to figure out what my phone is exactly so I can get one with the correct back plate. I will be getting one for sure to try on my air guns.
You can always put a video cam on a tripod down near the target .
With some close editing, you can make it look and sound like you machine gunned the target .
That’s true. But I got a experiment in mind.
Right now on my Talon SS with the laser on it. I can look through the scope and sight a object at different distances and use the pressure switch and turn the laser on. I want to take pictures with the reticle center (+) right on the target and show where the laser points in relation to hold over if needed.
This is the important thing I want to show. The laser points on the target in the opposite direction of the hold over you need. When you see it through the scope then it’s easier to show what I’m talking about.
So what I’m after is I can have my gun setting on a bench with the bi-pod and the back of the gun supported I can stand any where behind the gun and see what it looks like as if I was looking through the scope.
So say I had the phone mounted to my .25 Marauder scope and my daughter was benchresting it out at 100 yards I could stand behind or to the side of her and see how she is placing the reticle hold over on the target. If I tell her to put a half mildot of hold in the gun and the wind is comming from the left I could look at the phone and see if she held to the correct side of the reticle for windage.
So to me that would be a very valuable addition to shooting and teaching somebody to shoot. It would allow you to see what the shooter sees. I could have 10 people standing behind me watching me shoot the Marauder out at a 100 yards with the phone attached to the scope and they would see what I see. And that is a cool thing.
A really cool idea, assuming you can shoot at home, would be to connect to a chromecast while shooting. Then folks could watch it on the big screen.
A chromecast is $35, if your TV does miracast that would be free. Many newer TVs do that.
Awesome idea. A question though, if someone was watching the beam with naked eye and if the laser beam happens to hit a shiny surface while you’re looking at it through a powerful scope could this cause eye damage? Using the camera is a great idea.
So many great innovations on this blog!
That’s a good question about the laser. I don’t know if this is the correct answer.
But first I would say if you pointed a laser at something reflective and the beam does bounce back and hit your eye that would not be good. Then add magnification from a scope would really be not good. I try not to point at reflective surfaces just for that reason.
And maybe even another thing to think about. My laser is pretty bright. Even in the daylight. So if the target was close enough it will look bright. But here is something colors like white or yellow will make the lazer look brighter. I guess cause they are brighter light colors. And targets that are black or darker diminish the brightness of the laser.
I do know if I look through the scope and put the reticle on the white of the paper at 35 and turn my laser on to check to make sure the laser is sighted right to the reticle center. The green dot from the laser looks fuzzy and not a sharp dot like it looks without looking through the scope. So the magnification doesn’t transfer the light back the same. Now if I looked at something reflective like I just explained that could be bad biusness.
And then comes the phone idea and the laser. If I take a picture. It may not show the laser correct. I had my daughter hold the laser on the white paper that I had different color stickers placed on it for targets. She was back about 50 yards and it was daylight. The gun was in loaded of course. Well I went out to the target and took a picture of the laser. And mind you my phones camera takes pictures in color. But when I took the picture of the target while I was standing by it the whole picture looked like a old black and white picture. Including the laser dot and my colored stickers. I was surprised when I looked at the picture.
But anyway I do think placing the phone on the scope will be a excellent tool to aid teaching shooting.
And suppose to say if I put the laser on the white of the paper at 35 (yards).
I forgot to say yards.
And was suppose to say (unloaded). Not in loaded.
If you can find the right back that might work.
I would suggest asking on the GTA.
This one looks like it should fit pretty much all phones
If you scroll down a little ways it has a section that shows available back plates.
I remembered my phone is a Droid Maxx. They do list a back plate for my phone. So yes I’m for sure ordering the scope adapter and correct back plate.
And yes I got way alot of room to shoot. Just moved out to this house in the country about a year ago. Got one neighbor which is the farmer and he’s about a little over a 1/4 mile away to the right of my back yard. Then no neighbor’s for at least 2 miles away. All feilds and sections of woods thrown in. So yep good on the shoot’n at home stuff.
And I do have a big screen TV. Not up on electronics that much. But I can plug a laptop or desktop up to it. So is that what you mean?
I mean that newer TVs can display what is on the phone by themselves. Otherwise you can buy a google chromecast for $35 and install the app on your phone, this would then put the phones display onto the TV. The chromecast plugs into one of the HDMI ports on the TV. So long as you are on the same wifi, it works great!
Ok gotcha. So I could veiw it on my TV. It does have the HDMI port. Thanks.
And I meant if you scroll down a little on that link I provided for the phone adapter is were there is additional info about the back plates.
I have had this site bookmarked for some time. I have an iphone 4s and was considering one their mounts. Also, If I understand correctly, when you change phones you can order the correct replacement adapter without having to order a completely new set up.
I should have followed your link above before posting. I believe the link that I posted is the same as your amazon link.
That’s ok. It is the same adapter but your link has some videos about it. So that is a real good link.
Matter of fact I’m going to bookmark it now so don’t loose it. Thanks.
I am totally guilty of spending way more money on cheap air rifles than they merit. I could have bought a TX200 easily by now with how much I have spent buying and then ‘fixing’ air rifles. The thing is, tinkering with them and learning in the process is so much fun!
I can honestly say that buying something inexpensive and (perhaps) used, then diving in and learning as much as possible has fueled my interest in the hobby. If I actually make it better in the process, then the feeling of accomplishment only adds to the enjoyment.
My latest project is a 1995 397P Nickel found at a pawn shop, still haven’t solved the puzzle completely but am enjoying learning about the history, technical aspects and recent after market innovations of the 39X gun series. I could have bought a new 392, but where is the fun in that? I would have missed out on learning about when Crosman bought Benjamin, the Benjamin “Franklin” confusion, soldered valves vs cartridge valves, direct sear triggers (and how nice they can actually become,) ACP innovations, wood refinishing and much more!
BTW, I have been absent from the forum for quite some time now. Just now catching up on news. I am saddened by the loss of your Edith, my sympathies to you and your family.
Sounds like you like modding air guns like some of us do here on the blog.
Have you always used the name “Fused”? I think I remember the name but not for sure. But the brain don’t think as well as it use to it seems.
Yes, modding and restoring/repairing are both great fun. I got addicted after finding my childhood 766 in my parents basement. It had been unused for 20 years and as a kid I didn’t even understand the concept of gun maintenance. I had great fun restoring it and even now it’s accurate and gets 9fpe, which is pretty good! From there I moved on to the cheapest airgun I could find on the yellow, a bedliner finished (bedlinered METAL, not stock!) Chinese breakbarrel just so that I could dig in and see how good I could get it. Tore it completely down, cleaned and re-blued all the metal, refinished the stock dark to hide the cheap wood species. It came out nicely and was a pretty good performer within 20 yards. I had also bought a cheap scope at the same time which was the limiting factor. I was bored with it afterwards, so sold. That is my system, buy, learn, mod/restore, sell, move to the next, but I still have my 766.
Yep that’s what I’m talking about. Love modding them too.
You got any other air guns now?
1377 modded to 1322 with 18″ barrel, new trigger sear, flat top valve and piston, icemaker transfer port and ldc. $250 spent on a $60 gun, but I learned so much! It now equals the performance of the 766. Depending how you look at it, a waste of money, but also money well spent for entertainment plain and simple.
I also have a b26 tuned by mike melick which continues to be the most interesting airgun I own.
Was going to say it my first reply to you that your air gun thoughts and story sounds alot like mine.
Now I hear about your 1377 and the gun from Mike M. and it sounds like conversations me and Buldawg have had through time.
But ain’t them 1377’s cool guns when you mod them up. Did you catch when I posted about putting a Discovery barrel, breech and trigger on one. Also cut the Discovery stock and modifeid the front half to fit as a pump handle. Si got a 1377 that looks like a Discovery but is a pumper. It’s one of my most favorite accurate gun I have. But yep mod’n is fun.
What sort of velocity do u get at how many pumps?
I’m big fan of 1377/2240 platform!
I chronyed it a while back when I first put it together.
Can’t remember right now. I probably got it wrote down at home somewhere but I should probably chrony it again. So I will do that this weekend.
Thanks, please don’t put yourself out I was just curious. I’ve been working on accuracy at low pumps for quiet backyard. Wondered about power possibilities. . Thanks.
You know I’m glad you mentioned that.
I actually shoot that Disco converted 1377 at just 5 pumps all the time. The only time I pump to 10 is if I’m after a black bird.
I have it sighted at 35 yards with the JSB 10.34’s with 10 pumps and 6 magnification on the scope. When I shoot with the same magnification and pellets at 5 pumps it needs about a 1-1/2 mildot to 2 mildot hold over from about 20 yards out to 50 yards. And it is very accurate. It just lobs one pellet ontop of the other almost. All holes are touching always if I group the gun.
And just trying to remember right now I think it’s around 450 or so at 5 pumps.
Yep definitely makes for some quiet fun shooting.
Sounds interesting! I’ll start looking into the conversion.
I’ve taken the steel breech and optics off of some of my Cr pistols and have been using the plastic breech with the factory peep. It’s a
lot lighter and the peep works surprisingly well. Thanks for another idea to explore.
My 1377/Disco has been really good. I biult probably at least 4 of these guns in the past but using the 1399 stock on the factory pistol grip. They were accurate. But this one with the wood Disco stock shoots. I didn’t want to mention this before. But the wood Disco stock really seemed to make the gun more solid feeling and easier to hold. So maybe the wood stock is better than the plastic 1399 stock.
I do know that this gun I have now has made more pest bird kills than my other 3 guns I got. That being the .25 Mrod, .22 Talon SS and the Tx. And I have even had the other 3 guns longer. So yep the 1377 /Disco is a shooter.
The real concern with quiet backyard shooting is the amount of lead dust expended from the barrel. What you need is something to collect the dust, say like a lead dust collector. I believe they are available specially sized for the crosman barrels. I have one on my 1322, and all of the lead dust is collected with every shot no matter how many pumps I have in the gun.
A lead dust collector! Awesome! Terrific idea!
Could u describe or post a link? If not, that’s ok.
In my kneck of the woods they refer a LDC to a silencer. Silencers are illegal where I live. So that’s out for me unless it was so mething from the factory.
Plus what does you do with the lead dust after you collect it in the LDC?
Speaking of optics from strange places, I ended up buying a set of 10x and 20x loupe magnifiers for looking at fountain pen nibs as I polish them. Apparently, Belomo is an optics company in Belarus. The 10x is pretty handy but the 20x needs perfect light and a super steady hand to use. The price is pretty decent if you look around.
I bet that 20× is hard to hold steady. I have a 10× loupe I use at work all the time. Used it for years so I’m pretty good with holding it. And spotting scopes do need to be mounted to something that is very stable.
Hope u see this cause some responses don’t haVe reply links. I’ll look into that wood stock. Sounds like a plan!
Ok good deal. Let me know if you do it.
I would probably have just picked up a bargain-basement spotting scope were it not for an extremely lucky garage sale find from several years before I became interested in air-gunning. At a garage sale I saw a dusty leather case that I thought contained an oboe or cornet. I opened it and immediately saw the brass badge: “Carl Zeiss Made in G.D.R.” A pristine vintage spotting scope! I saw that it had no price tag, so I asked, “How much for the old telescope?” “Oh, five bucks and it’s yours.” Perfect optics and function. I don’t think it had been used more than once or twice. It has been my treasure ever since.
Wow! That is about all I can say. I pass by them all of the time,. too busy, too in a hurry to get home and shoot. Too many, a complete waist of a few minutes.
You were very lucky indeed.
I’ll be very interested to hear what your verdict is on this scope.
Though I haven’t seen one as yet, where I work (a photo retailer in Canada) just picked up the Meopta line, and as I was looking for a scope I was anxious to see one, though as things turned out I no longer need to purchase a new one.
A bit of very good fortune on my part…the gods were smiling.
The scope I had was an inexpensive Bushnell that, though good for pellet and rimfire out to 100m, just wasn’t clear enough at the centerfire distances we are now shooting (200+m).
Like you, about a year ago I figured Celestron had a pretty good name so I sprung for the $300 ED 60mm version…which wasn’t as clear as the plastic bodied $125 Bushnell 🙁 🙁
So I was on the lookout again, when the gods smiled.
We have a used dept and a customer brought in a spotting scope to trade in on a new camera.
I didn’t see it till a couple of days after the transaction…just happened to be walking past the used showcase and there, buried amongst all the used digital cameras was this green spotting scope.
Well, turns out we gave him our standard used price (1/3 of new street value), and as staff I was able to purchase for $650.
I’ve had it out a couple of times (this all happened less than a month ago). It is clear, sharp with no discernible color fringing at all.
Couldn’t be happier.
That’s the thing with spotting scopes. They do need to be mounted to a steady fixture. I had a cheapy Winchester 16×45 with a 60 mm lens. It surved it’s purpose for what I was using it for at the time. 100 yard air gun shooting and coyotes out to about 200 yards at my brothers it had a fast focus thumbwheel focus. So for what I was doing it worked great. I sold it about a year before we moved out here. Now I wish I didn’t. It would of been great for out here where I’m at now. Wasn’t exspensive but it did work good for what I needed.
When you do part 2 can you show what your going to mount this spotting scope to and hopefully with a phone mounted to it also. Very interested to see how it looks all ready for action.
Why do you insist that it must be mounted and very steady? I admit, I have never looked through one, but it would seem that once it is dialed in for the yardage that you are shooting at,… it would be just a matter of looking through it, without even touching it.
You already know the answer from using your scopes on your rifles.
The bigger the magnification the more shake you see.
If you do mount a phone or camera on a scope and use high magnification you want that scope very stable. If not the picture or video will be blurred in a sense if it is disturbed the littlest amount.
I saw somewhere above BB mentioning he had some kind of mount with gyro stabilization. Or I’m having one of my pesky visions again and there ain’t no such thing.
Matter of fact, I do not know. The scope at the top, has a base,… that base appears to have tilt adjustment. Once set for yardage and elevation, I see no reason that it could not sit on my bench, look through it, without ever touching it, or the bench. What am I missing?
I do remember some gyro stuff from a ways back. I am pretty sure it had to do with military copters though.
I think you mentioned you have a scope that goes upto 16 magnification. If so look at 1″ target out at a hundred yards. Bet you will be moving around.
Now double that magnification or more than double at that. Say 45 magnification. If you bump the table it will show vibration or shake when your looking through the scope at higher magnification.
Get you a spotting scope and see.
MORE money???? You cost me enough already! 😉 Somehow,.. I think that you,… or me for that matter,… is not done yet! Yes, a spotter would be nice. But, like I said, do away with the black targets and shoot at around 10 mag.,… and it is all pretty good anyways.
Yes, 16 is it for now. I will try it. The pistol grip rest is ideal for giving it a try. Nothing like up close,… if one can handle it.
Oh just wait there is more fun to come. I gaurentee it. 😉
And ok you can try your 16 magnification out this weekend when you shoot the 2×4’s at 50 and a 100 yards for the penatration test. 🙂
Optics absolutely must be stable. And for one optic to look through another one, you need an order of magnitude more stability.
A little tip I figured out the other day:
When shooting some new pellets,.. or a new gun,… or trying to figure out your holdover,…. a set of cans,.. (besides) your target,.. allows you to get “dialed in” (without) shooting up your target. Hit the cans, several times,… and you are good to go on getting some group data. At least, it will get you on paper.
Something else I learned (a good) while back,….. keep those eyes open during the shot! You will see the dirt, grass, sticks, leaves, etc. fly,.. and will let you know if you are hitting high or low.
My old house was alot like how your house is set as your shooting range.
But yes that’s a very good way to tell. And I love in the winter time when it snows and then go out and shoot. You can see every hit in the snow. Matter of fact I use to pick a spot on the hill to shoot into the snow. I would try to shoot at that same hole the first pellet made. And when I shot I could see exactly where each shot fell. Then I would pick another spot at a different distance and do the same. It’s a very good way to determine hold overs.
So did you ever think when you got your Tx and LGU that you would be killing cans at a 100 yards.
Oh and I think I gave you some group sizes out at a 100 yards of about 2-1/2 to 3″ groups. Well I just realized today that was wrong info. That was out at a 125 yards. Forgot that was at a different location that I was shooting a 100 at. I laser ranged both places. The old was a 100 the groups were at 125. And I shot down hill out at those targets with about a 15° slope. So a laser will give a closer range than your really at if it is a up hill or down hill angle. So I was probably at a 105 yards before and now I’m really at 130 yards.
So I will have to try some 100 yard shots this weekend and see what my group sizes really are. And hopefully no wind.
Ohh Geesh!!! Just when I think I am catching up to you,…… there you go “raising the bar”,.. again. 😉
Hold it to 100,… a measured 100,…. and on paper. A little contest if you will. Today looks good, Sat. and Sun. look iffy on weather. Plus, I need to fit shopping in there somewhere.
Oh yea, looking at seeing a machine shop Monday after work. Going with steel, unless they have some brass or bronze laying around.
Cool about the weight. One on the outside? I don’t know if you read my reply the other day about your idea of the angle cut at the top of the weight if you put it in the shroud to help hold the barrel down. My response was I think that would make a unequal blast of air in the shroud that could affect the pellet. It could make the pellet clip the hole in the weight or if you still have baffles in place.
And ok hopefully I got a calm day this weekend and I can get some hundred yard groups shot. Will see what happens.
Not a spotting scope, but some years ago i acquired a 7×50 ZOMZ binoculars from the early 70s. When its very bright out everything has a yellow tint when looking through it but when its overcast or dusky the image appears to be brighter than with naked eye. Sadly 7× isn’t nearly enough to see long distance .177 holes from round nose pellets. But newer isn’t always better apparently.