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external adjustments. And maybe we don't need it. But for a really tough system I think a simple scope with adjustable mounts is the way to go.

In the early-mid '70s Redfield introduced its Accu-Range reticle. Two crosswires near the top of the field could be adjusted (by varying the scope power) to bracket an 18" object (e.g. the chest span of a "typical" deer).

The system worked, provided you had a patient 18" target and a support to keep the scope steady. I have one in a 6-18X Redfield. I don't recall it ever helped me make a shot, but one time it did keep me from fooling myself into thinking a pronghorn was in range.

Reticles can still be used to estimate range provided you are familiar with the reticle and know what you're doing. Current laser rangefinders are so much superior there's no comparison.

"TV" Eyepieces

This is one I don't miss. TV-shaped eyepieces were promoted as being superior to round eyepieces for running shots. The concept was mildly popular for a few years before fading away.

With conventional (i.e. 90-degree bolt lift) bolt action rifles the scopes had to be mounted fairly high so the wider eyepiece wouldn't interfere with bolt operation. I've never owned one of these scopes. Those I've seen in use and at gun shows were often mounted on lever, pump or semiautomatic rifles.

For running shots, the key elements I've found are a scope with non-critical eye relief, a rifle stocked to fit the shooter, and plenty of practice to get familiar with both.


A few years ago, compact scopes were being promoted as ideal for light, compact rifles. These scopes had the usual 1" scope tube but smaller objectives and oculars, shorter overall length and lighter weight.

With scopes everything is a tradeoff. You can have most anything you want in a scope provided you are willing to pay the price. The tradeoff I found with compact scopes was more critical eye relief and an image less bright and sharp. With the short main tube there were sometimes problems in mounting the scope, sometimes requiring extension

Winchester Steyr
A selection of handy carbines includes (left to right), Winchester 94.30-30, Mannlicher-Schoenauer 6.5x54, Remington 600.308, Steyr Scout .308, Ruger Frontier .308. Steyr and Ruger give shooter the option of using a forward-mounted Scout scope (Leupolds in this case).


Nonetheless I rather like compact scopes and have several on rimfire rifles, where they look right and perform satisfactorily. For most big game hunting standard size scopes suit me better.

Long eye-relief scopes, designed to be mounted ahead of the receiver, are not new ideas. Redfield offered the M-294 scope intended for Winchester 94 rifles in the early 1960s. (It's interesting how many innovative ideas came from Redfield in the '60s and '70s.)

The Scout

The late Jeff Cooper promoted such scopes for all-around use on his "scout rifle" project and forward-mounted scopes got dubbed "scout scopes". Without Cooper's enthusiastic and articulate support, what interest there was in scout scopes seems to have dropped off.

I regret this as I rather like the concept for some purposes. For a time I had two Steyr Scout rifles, one with conventionally mounted scope and the other with a Leupold scout scope. Comparing them side by side with the use of a shot timer, the scout scope had a definite speed advantage at short to moderate ranges.

For ranges past 200 yards I like more power. I see scout scopes as more special purpose than all around scopes. For hunting in heavy cover at modest ranges there is nothing better, and the scout scope is certainly adequate at longer ranges. I'm glad to see Burris and Leupold still have scout scopes in their line. FfllTO

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