All posts by Howard

Leupold MK6 with Horus H58

I had the opertunity to play around a bit with a Leupold MK6 3-18 with the Horus H58 reticle.  Horus reticles tend to be a polarizing subject as people seem to either love them or hate them.

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I am a big fan of the Leupold MK6 3-18.  I’d take it over a S&B, Nighforce, or other high end scope as I love its compact size, layout , and features.

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Other than the reticle the H58 MK5 is exactly the same as my MK6 with a TMR reticle.  So to get you some size by size pictures, I mounted both optics to my Optic Test Fixture, as shown below.

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At three power the thick outer bars of the TMR reticle makes it east to quickly pick up.

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The H58 has two horizonal bars which are useful for indexing on a target quick at low power.  They appeared to be thicker than the bars on the TMR, but just having two made me feel slower and less intuitive for lining up on a target quick at low power.

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I took many pictures of the Horus reticle at 18 power and this is the only one that turned out anywhere near acceptable.  It does look a good bit better in person.  The horizontal lines above the center of the reticle start at 1 mil and then lower at .1 increments to aid in measuring the height of an object for ranging.  The set of numbers along with those lines are for finding the movement speed of the target in MPH.  Below the center of the reticle is the famous(or infamous) Horus grid.

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Here is the TMR at 18 power.

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The Leupold MK6 has a nice set of features including zero stops, a capped windage know with +- 5 mils of adjustment before hitting the stop, etc.  I think the main benefits of this 3-18 is its large power range in a small size along with excellent glass.

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So after having the chance to use the Horus 58 for a bit, I’m really not sure if I like it or not.  When I have shot at paper targets at known ranges, the Horus reticle appears to be thicker than the TMR and covers more of the point of aim.  The grid can cover a bullet hole in paper making it harder to spot.

The Horus starts to shine at longer distances.  Shooting steel at 600 yards it was easy to see the splash in the dirt from misses and quickly adjust from it.  You really benefit if you shooting a gun where you can spot your own impact and shooting in an area where you can easily see misses.

I’m not quite sure how to put it, but I wouldn’t recommend the Horus reticle to someone.  If you need it you would know.  If you don’t know if you need it or not, you don’t.  I don’t believe it would aid or be more intuitive for a new shooter, however I don’t believe a good scope with a Horus reticle would hurt a novice either.  It is an interesting option, but not a necessity.

FN M249S

Last weekend I was at the range zeroing an ACOG that I put a LaRue mount on and I learned that one of the regulars bought the new FN M249S.

FN M249S

I was amazed by the trigger on it.  Smooth and light.  I was also surprised to see that the barrels came with KAC NT4 suppressor mounts.

It’s owner really liked it, and it was running great.  While I think the M249S is ridiculously expensive, it is cool that they are available for sale.

LIFE SAVING EQUIPMENT, THAT FAILS.

Article submitted by Mark Hatfield.

Another good reason to always test your equipment, never trust anything until it has proven itself.

Today, while working as a Range Safety Officer, late in the day, a couple arrived to test their guns.  Both had identical guns, a small five shot revolver, double action only, with a laser.  Note that this laser was never used during shooting, only the traditional ‘iron’ sights.  As I watched them to assess if they could safely handle their guns and not doing anything stupid, I noticed that the woman seemed to have a failure to fire but perhaps she had not fully loaded the gun, I didn’t know.  She mentioned that the gun did not seem to shoot to point of aim and asked me to try it, I did.  I fired two shots at twelve yards, one was right on, the other hit far to the left.  I thought that the shot off to the left was perhaps me, my inconsistency.  She then shot at a paper target which was placed at perhaps five yards distant.

Her group, that is, her cluster of shots, was satisfactory but far to the left of where the gun was aimed.  The man seemed to be having problems also, I fired his gun and all my shots hit in the same place, far left, as had happened for the woman.  I then shot the womans gun on the paper target and my hits were right on top of hers.  I asked one of the other Range Officers to test fire both guns, he had exactly the same results.  In addition to that, both guns occasionally failed to fire, that was with new factory ammunition by Winchester.

This model gun has the sleeved two piece barrel.  When this design first came on the market, Massad Ayoob compared several of them to their older versions which used the traditional method of barrel construction.  In his test, all the newer versions fired groups which were three to four times larger than the older gun, in other words, they were really bad.  Supposedly this problem has been corrected, apparently not.

Consider this, one gun might have a ‘fluke’, a manufacturing defect, perhaps an oversight in the making, or someone got careless in construction but…two identical guns, each with the same two identical problems.  One of the problems being that this is a gun designed specifically for last ditch self defense, to keep you alive and it doesn’t always go bang when you need it to.  Add to that, not being able to put its’ shots where they need to go.  Shame on you Smith & Wesson.  Someone there needs to be taken out and beaten, or sued.

The end of the Rifleman?

Colt AR15A4

A couple of weekends ago I was firing my AR15A4 at the range.  During a cease fire I was thinking about all the comments I’ve heard since the USMC switched to the M4 and High Power allowing optics up to 4.5 power.

Invariably there were the assorted comments about marksmanship coming to an end with people just spraying and praying, so it got me thinking. . .
Didn’t marksman ship end when we moved away from real steel and wood rifles to these plastic & aluminum toys?
Or wasn’t supposed to end when we moved to those newfangled repeating rifles allowing people to waste rounds with rapid fire?
I mean, that magazine feed bolt action allowed a lousy shot to quickly waste another round, didn’t that spell the end of marksmanship?
Switching to those small caliber high velocity rounds meant people would shoot more to less effect, pumping all those wimpy .30 cals rounds out. SOURCE
That breach loading rifle let cowards hide behind cover and shoot faster instead of standing tall to fight the enemy with better aim and marksmanship.
Clearly marksmanship has been going downhill ever since conscripts were handed long arm firearms instead of being forced to practice with the bow.

Perhaps it is not the equipment, but the skill, mentality, and tactics of the individual that would make someone a rifleman.

L-3 Eotech Settlement over Fraud.

SoldierSystems.net posted up details on the settlement between L-3 and the US Government over problems with Eotech optics.

Read SoldierSystems article here.

Some of the important notes are that Eotech knew about issues back even in 2006.  Various issues include changing zeros in temperature shifts, parallax error in cold temperatures, moisture entering sights and dimming them.  Also that Eotech knew of these issues and did not disclose them to the government.

A look at the Elcan M145 Machine Gun Optic

M145

M145 MGO

The Canadian company Elcan made a couple of odd scopes in the C79/M145 family of optics.  These are fixed 3.4X scopes with external adjustments.

The C79 scope are mainly for rifles, and are tritium powered like ACOGs.  Usually when you see a used C79 for sale, the tritium is old and dim enough that it is unusable.  C79 scopes are mainly seen in use by the Canadian military.

Continue reading A look at the Elcan M145 Machine Gun Optic