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Anyone actually using this style set up as their primary hunting rig. What possible advantage over a LPVO on a bolt gun mounted the traditional way.



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Personally, I see no advantage to the "scout" setup for optics. In theory, you're more situationally aware, however I've not found it to be the case. Additionally, I've found more versatility in LPVOs for hunting. Many LPVOs have reticles that can be used in low light as well as hold-overs. Every LPVO I've had has had some form of lit reticle.


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I purchased a Springfield M1A Scout which had the scout scope mount. I had a standard M1A scope mount for it but I wanted to try the rifle with the scout mount to try the concept. I mounted a pistol scope and hit the range. It was much better than I thought it would be. It was quick and accurate and I do not remember any downsides.

I never hunted with it but I think it would have worked out fine.

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I've found them useful when hunting from a ladder or climber in thick cover. They seem to be a little more flexible when shooting from awkward positions.

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I've owned and hunted two such rigs. One was a Remington m 7, with a special mount that extended out on the barrel. The other is my M1A Squad Scout. The Scout Rifle is a design that was to include the qualities of a battle rifle with those of a hunting rifle. On top of that, it was to be light and short. Something that a lone rifleman in hostile country would carry for both hunting and limited engagements.
Do they work ? Yes. With a good scope, like Leupold's 2X Scout Scope, they even work in bad light. But you can't see as far as say a scope with a 40mm objective set between 6 and 8X in bad light. Are they fast ? Yes. You would need a timer to really see any difference between a fast handling peep sighted rifle, or a rifle with a conventional scope mounted for fastest targeting. But it is there. Are they handy to carry ? With a fush, five round magazine, my Squad Scout is. It is a little on the heavy side, say 8 1/4 lbs. empty, but I like it.
Does it do anything better than a more traditional hunting or sniper rifle ? No. E

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One of the reasons for the forward mounted scope was to have it out of the way for quick reloading of the rifle with the use of stripper clips.

IMO, the quick change mag systems available now eliminate that need. And few or no actions are cut with a clip guide these days anyway. Stick with a low power, or variable with a low power bottom end & a conventional mounted scope is plenty fast.

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I’ve a bunch of experience with the forward mounted scope setup on hunting rifles. Other than solving issues like stripper clip clearance, hammer access on lever rifles, or getting the scope down low where it wouldn’t be possible ie M1As it doesn’t offer any advantage over a LPVO. In fact I find a 1.25-4 in a conventional mount to be faster, more precise, and better in low light.

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Originally Posted by jackmountain
Anyone actually using this style set up as their primary hunting rig. What possible advantage over a LPVO on a bolt gun mounted the traditional way.

In the early 90s, I exchanged letters with Jeff Cooper and Finn Aagaard about the Scout. I also had a pseudo-Scout built in 30-06 and hunted with nothing else for several years.

At the time, good LPVOs were uncommon and the red-dot sight was largely experimental. I found that the Scout does what Cooper claimed it will do, but it has drawbacks that he didn’t mention—one being that it’s difficult to use when the sun is at a very low angle either in front of or behind the shooter. It’s also problematic on partly obscured targets beyond about 250 yards, especially if lighting conditions are not ideal.

When Cooper first described the Scout over half a century ago, the Scout scope was not his first choice. He often wrote that the ideal optic would have a colored, semi-transparent triangular reticle with 1x magnification. Lots of manufacturers sell that today, either as a red dot weighing a few ounces or in a heavier LPVO that’s repeatable enough that you can dial to get hits beyond 600 yards.

Cooper founded Gunsite because he wanted to make better shooters. He despised hand-held fully automatic fire—especially if it came from an M-16—and he hated that the US military justified adopting the 5.56 NATO and the 9x19 NATO because soldiers could carry more ammunition than for weapons chambered in 7.62 NATO and 45 ACP.

Also, in the 80s, rifles and scopes were getting very long and heavy because the gun press valued bench accuracy over practicality. A Scout is light, so it’s hard to shoot well, especially in a hurry. That forces people to become better shots who need less ammunition. He also wanted to shift the emphasis from very long shots to shots that were much closer and faster.

Per his articles, a rifle with a peep sight can be considered a Scout IF it’s short and light, with a three-point sling and a crisp trigger. But a rifle like that demands a superb shooter, and that’s what he really wanted to see.

Time moves on. Most modern LPVOs are kinda heavy, but they’re so versatile that the extra weight is worth it.


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I had an EoTech mounted on my Springfield M1A Scout for many years. It was a handy close quarters hunting rifle, but it was very heavy. The Scout sits in the back of the safe now.


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Not in the originally intended bolt action, but I used a 336 with a scout scope (leupold 2.5x28) for a while. It was not my main hunting rig. It was usable, but I didn't care much for it. I use that rifle with a ghost ring only now.

LPVO and AICS mags really make the scout concept obsolete. I like to use ghost ring/peep sights, and have thought often about setting a bolt action up with a weaver/pic ghost ring to use if the scope is removed, but haven't done it.

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I used a 2.75x scout scope on a ML one year. Found it slow and awkward on that one. Big fan of LPVOs mounted conventionally, especially with a true 1x. The Trijicon Credo HX 1-6 on my Howa Mini is just excellent.


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I agree on this point wholeheartedly. My scope has kissed my forehead in the tree stand several times.🤨


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