I’m still 20/20 20/25 according to the doctor. But how long will THAT last. Within 10 years, the smart money is on me needing reading glasses. But that happens to near everyone. Especially in my family. Dunno how long the distance vision will last. 10 years ago it was worse than 20/200 but I had some quack shoot a laser into my eyes and fixed that. The first few years after that I was 20/15. That was nice.
Why all this concern over vision? Well I read bloggers a few years beyond my 40 some winters and they occasionally drop the long slide into visual crapulence. The iron sights aren’t as clear as they used to be. They figure it’d curtail their hunting if it weren’t for 9x Leupold glass optic on their favorite rifle “Bambischplatterspitzen”.
Well, I don’t have no glass. Well just the one. The long eye-relief 2.5x scout-style scope on my Garand.
But other than that, nuthin.
(Trollop is nearsighted and realized she NEEDS her glasses to see the front sight allllll the way out on the end of that 8 inch barrel on the Fohty-Fo. She’s ok with the XD. It’s short.)
I guess, when the day comes and that front sight is just too far away, I’ll get some 5x-ish optics for the Marlin 1894C. It’s about the only rifle really ready for easy mounting of a traditional scope.
The Garand is ok. Even with the scope so far from the face, nearsighted people report good clarity.
The M1A is another story. I didn’t even consider mounting a traditional scope on the Garand, but there are considerations on the M1A to make that a more distinct possibility. They were put there to tempt me. I’ll resist that temptation.
Why? Well the way the action works any scope on the rear of the receiver is in the way of ejection brass. Plus, the action of firing with the full powered semi-auto is very hard on scopes. Sure, I know that scoped M1A’s are/have-been used by military forces as a sniping rifle, but military folks can afford to requisition $2500 optics and get the stock glass-bedded in house. I’ll probably never glass-bed a rifle. It’d be fun to shoot 800+ yard ranges, but how would I be able to arrange to get good enough to enjoy that? Perhaps if I was living next to Quantico and was a personal friend to the Commandant such antic could be possible…
So a 10x conventional scope is probably out. A 5x Acog scope might be nice and perfect for aging eyes, but that is still a necessarily rear-mounted optic (he eye relief on Acogs are about an inch), with the mounting compromised an M1A presents. And have you noticed that all scopes are variable magnification these days? Something else to break. What’s wrong with a quality fixed power scope at 9x? It worked for Sergeant Hathcock. Seems, to me, that variable power scopes are lipstick on a pig. The only time you’d need it is when the deer pop up 15 yards away, and all you can see in your lens is fur, and you’d not know if you were aiming at the neck, boiler room, or hind quarters. So you dial back from 16x to 8x? You have time for that, and want to move around that much? The fur would still fill glass at 8x at that range. The scope makers might be better off making a 2x and 12x scope, with no variability in between. A simple switch to go from 12 to 2, and back, if you needed to. At 2x you can shoot anything an iron sight shot could do (good enough for grandpa), and at 12x you can shoot your trophy Ram at 350 yards.
So that leaves a similar operation with the M1A, and just like I have on the Garand. A Weaver or Picatinny fore-rail. I can then swap the out Leupold scout scope or an EOTech. Even get a second scout scope so both rifles are prepped for aging eyes. The commonality of equipment appeals to me.