...is a rifle scope that I ordered a day or two ago. As you may remember, I have written about wanting a somewhat inexpensive bolt action rifle in a caliber like .308 or .30-06 but one that promises to shoot well. When it boiled down to it, that meant either a Remington 700 series rifle, a Savage 111 or a Marlin XS7 or XL7. I have been dreaming of getting one, and putting it off for one reason or another, for quite a while. When I look back, I see I wrote up the Marlin XS7 back on September 11, 2009. A day after that post, I wrote about looking for one at a gun show - here. Several months later, in February 2010, I mentioned it again, in another blogpost. While still wanting to buy one, I was considering picking up an AK instead. Was I wavering? Not really, I just had some priorities to work out and did wind up purchasing an AK. Then, yet once more and several more months down the road, back in October 2010, I heard the Siren's Song of either a Marlin XL7 or a Marlin XS7 calling me.
Then - a dry spell. I did not write about the Marlin XS-7 for two years. I did not think about it all that much either. I bought other guns, in that time period, that either caught my fancy or that filled a niche that needed filling in my firearms inventory. Maybe, just every now and then, I thought of one for a moment. I know I saw them at guns shows but always at inflated prices. So I bought other things like a Remington 1911 R1, a Browning Citori Lightning Shotgun and some others. How pleasantly surprised was I when I saw that there was one available at the Hessney Rod & Gun auction earlier this month in no way can even compare to how happy I was to have had the high bid on it. So yes, I finally bought one of them, a Marlin XS7 in .308 caliber! Yes, the hankering to own one has been with me awhile, over three years; I am the great procrastinator but usually accomplish my goals, often later than sooner, as I did this time.
I accomplished my goal of getting myself a Marlin XS7 but I surely have not completed the job of doing it properly. This rifle does not come with sights, instead it comes with a mounted scope mount rail. That left me with the need for some optics. Being this is a less than $400 rifle, I was not about to spend a lot on a scope for it. I did want something that would stand up to regular use, a variable power scope in about the 3 to 12 power range, that I could get at a decent price. I started to look online, for such a deal, last week. What I came up with was a choice between about a half dozen manufacturers' products. I looked at some from: Burris, Bushnell, Hawke Optics, Nikon, Pentax, Redfield, Tasco, and Vortex. I decided on going with Hawke Optics. The particular scope, that I chose, from them is the Hawke Varmint Side Focus (SF) 2.5-10x44. I ordered it from Optics Planet, they had one left in stock and had a price $20 lower than the one offered by the manufacturer. That $20 can go to buy the scope rings, which in the midst of a brain fart, I forgot to order at the time I placed the order for the scope.
I picked this scope primarily because I liked the power range and the price. It was only $169.99 with free shipping. As for that power range, the 2.5 magnification will be optimal for close in deer hunting here in the woods of New York State, or for longer distance shots on deer, or across a field at a Woodchuck, or down range at a target. The 44mm optics will let in plenty of light. In addition, the scope has finger adjustable turrets for windage and elevation. Not needing a tool to adjust the scope is a big plus for me. Speaking of adjustment, the windage and elevation can be adjusted in 1/4 M.O.A. clicks. The scope also has a fast focus eyepiece and has a parallax adjustment dial on the side of the scope. The eye relief is only 3.2 inches but I can live with that without giving myself a black eye. The scope body is a 1" mono tube. The lenses are fully multi-coated. Of course, the scope is waterproof, shockproof and fogproof. The box contains the scope, see through flip-up lens caps, a cleaning cloth and a instruction manual. Sadly there is no sunshade, that is an option that need be purchased separately. As for the brand, I had never before heard of Hawke Optics as far as I can recall but they got some good marks from people whom I asked about them.
Another major selling point, besides the power range, was that it has a mil dot reticle - well, an improved version or so I think. Hawke Optics calls it the 1/2 mil dot reticle. It has the regularly placed dots on the crosshairs as does a mil dot but also has an additional hash mark between each dot for more precise aiming adjustment. It sounds like a good idea. Hopefully, the image will not look too crowded. I think it will give a good sight picture after seeing the accompanying image of one, looks to be very nice.
The scope should arrive this coming week since it has already shipped. In the mean time I had best get out there to a local establishment and buy some scope rings. I have read that the bolt handle on the Marlin XS7 can be a bit problematic in that it hits scopes mounted too low. So, I would guess, a pair medium or high rings, as opposed to low rings, should do the trick of allowing the bolt enough room to be operated without it hitting the scope body.
I will do a review sometime after I have used it for awhile. More info, on this scope, can be seen at: http://www.hawkeoptics.com/hawke-varmint-side-focus-riflescopes/hawke-varmint-sf-25-10x44.html
All the best,
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