Thursday, March 20, 2014
"Watching with the binocs, it seemed as though time stood still in the quiet valley. I wondered as he stood there “Was he hit...and why did he stay out in the open?” After about 5 seconds, he staggered sideways and fell down dead. I wondered, “Could it really be?” The feeling was unbelievable. After 30 minutes of seeing no movement, I pursued the animal and thought about how until 2 years ago I was afraid to ethically black powder shoot past 125 yards. The information on the NAMLHUNT.COM website and the multi-range reticle of the Hi-Lux Optics TB-ML scope have been game changers for me."
New Virginia, Iowa
To Read Mike's Article On This Great Hunt, Go To -
Monday, March 17, 2014
Most days...I just love my job...especially the part that keeps me on the shooting range a lot. Unfortunately, like most of the country, where I live...work...and play in Western Montana has had more than its share of cold...windy...and snowy weather this winter. Even when the weather began to break the first of March, getting to the range was pretty much out of the question as FEET of snow began to melt...turning my range and the dirt road leading to it into a muddy mess.
After a week of warm sunny weather and dry conditions, yesterday morning (3-16-14) I decided to go for it...and see if I could four-wheel myself into the old hay barn where my somewhat portable shooting bench is stored. I was more than a month behind in the testing of the new Hi-Lux Optics black matte finished 3-9x40mm M40 Tactical Hunter scope, which features the same ranging system as the company's recreation of the green anodized scope used by Marine Corps snipers in Vietnam, and which was mounted on the .308 Winchester bolt-action M40 sniper rifle.
Both versions of the scope feature a simple and easy to use ranging system. All the shooter has to do is
zoom in on a known target of 18 inches, until it fits in a bracket incorporated in the reticle, then read the range on a scale that's inside the scope. What sets the M40 USMC version of this scope apart from the new M40 Tactical Hunter model is that with the military version, the shooter still must know the drop of the bullet at 200 to 600 yard, and manually apply the correct amount of hold over. On the other hand, the M40 Tactical Hunter model incorporates a bullet drop compensating reticle (shown above). Once the shooter ranges the target, and knows the distance, it's just a matter of using the proper BDC aiming mark to consistently place the shot in "The Zone" - insuring a game taking hit.
While the BDC reticle of the M40 Tactical Hunter has been calibrated for the trajectory of the .308 Winchester or .223 Remington, to 600 yards, those same BDC hold-over aiming marks work extremely well with rifles chambered for many other popular cartridges. It's now my job to determine which rifle calibers are most compatible with the longer range aiming point of this scope - and I figured I would begin with the .30 caliber cartridges.
The rifle on which the scope is shown mounted at the top of this post is one of my favorite rifles - it is a stainless steel Winchester Model 70 chambered for the .300 Winchester Short Magnum. Using Accurate Arms 4350 powder, I have worked up loads for the rifle, shooting the same 168-grain Hornady .308" diameter boat-tailed polymer-tipped spire-point A-MAX bullet, that will keep groups inside of an inch at 100 yards, at velocities the same as that achieved with the .308 Winchester (at 2,700 f.p.s.)...the .30/06 Government (at 2,850 f.p.s.)...and at the typical velocity of the .300 Winchester Short Magnum (at 3,050 f.p.s.).
The rifle, being a .300 WSM, had been sighted to print about 1 1/2 inches high at a hundred yards with the bullet at 3,050 f.p.s.. At the upper end velocity, the 168-grain A-MAX has been a stellar performer on deer and similar sized game. For my testing, I began at the .30/06 velocity (2,850 f.p.s.). Several shots were sent down range to see how much the 200 f.p.s. slower velocity affected point of impact - and I was surprised to see that it tended to print about an inch higher...probably due to the slight rise of the muzzle during recoil before the bullet gets out of the barrel.
The target board had two heavy magic marker drawn lines across it, the inside edges of which were exactly 18-inches apart. I had a friend move the board back a little at a time, and each time I checked to see how the 18 inch bracket of the reticle fit to match that 18-inch grid on the target. It took several moves of the board...and finally a minor move of the portable shooting bench before the lines on the target board fit perfectly between the brackets in the scope...with the scope zoomed until the range on the scale indicated 200 yards.
I was impressed with how closely the range could be determined using the ranging system of the scope. Knowing that laser rangefinders aren't always exactly right on the money either, I feel comfortable saying that there's a very good chance, that a hunter zooming in on the chest cavity of a mature whitetail buck (appx. 18 inches from the top of the back to the bottom of the chest cavity) can fairly accurately determine the distance of the deer, using the M40 Tactical Hunter ranging system, to within +/- of 5 yards.
Some preliminary shooting has already told me that the M40 Tactical Hunter scope...the standard hunting rifle being shot...the Hornady 168-grain .308" diameter A-MAX bullet...and charge of Accurate Arms 4350 powder used to get that bullet out of the muzzle at 2,850 f.p.s. will definitely keep hits inside the 8 to 10 inch diameter kill zone of a whitetail deer out to 600 yards. In April we will cover more shooting with the rifle, scope and cartridge at this velocity at the longer ranges, plus take a look at shooting the same rifle and M40 Tactical Hunter scope with the same A-MAX bullet at 2,700 f.p.s. and at 3,050 f.p.s. to see if the combination can "Keep 'Em In The Zone!"
My guess is that I won't be disappointed. - Toby Bridges, Hi-Lux Optics
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Bought a second scope because I liked the first scope so much.
First scope is mounted on a Kimber Model 82 .22 target rifle obtained from CMP. Perfect for this application - good magnification (especially @ normal 50 yard range distance); excellent optics, as I have had several Unertl and Lyman scopes to compare with; mounting was only a minor challenge, as I had a collection of Unertl and Lyman mount bases, two of which worked well (bull barrel on rifle drilled & tapped for scope blocks - just needed right height, and length to get the 7.2").
The second scope is mounted on a Springfield 1903, as you guys actually intended. Mounting, of course, was more of a challenge, but I found a video instruction on the Web that helped a lot. Mounted the rear mount first, using a Wheeler scope mounting mandrel, which assured proper spacing and, more importantly, alignment with the fore-aft receiver axis. Next, I built an aluminium jig (clamped the two mounts between two rails) that allowed me to exactly align the front mount with the rear mount, and included precise markings for the 7.2" spacing. Just some drilling and tapping, and the job was well and easily done.
Have not yet fired the Springfield, but laser bore sighting looks very good, with zero very near to the mechanical center of the rear mount. Anticipate excellent performance, as was experienced with the first scope & mount. Recovering form heart attack, quadruple bypass, triple hernia repair, and am afraid to shoot any rifle with any recoil with a sewed-up sternum. Can't seem to get a straight answer from the doctors, as they don't shoot, thus don't understand the recoil forces involved, and the transfer of those forces to the sternum. Frustrating, to say the least! Looking for another shooter with same experience, but haven't found one yet.
Only comment I would make is that the threads on the lens covers are extremely fine, and thus always a challenge to replace on the lenses. Thanks for an excellent product at a very reasonable price!