When selecting the best air rifle scope for your air gun, there are a few important things to keep in mind. Factoring these into the equation while picking out your scope will ensure that it is one that works well with your particular air rifle and your shooting style as well as your experience level.
If your air rifle is a pre-charged pneumatic (PCP), single-cock pneumatic, or CO2 powered, then you can use just about any air rifle scope with it. However, those that shoot with a spring air rifle will need a specific scope that matches the recoil rating of the particular gun.
The objective of an air rifle relates to the size of the opening on the scope. A larger opening lets in more light. An increased amount of light entering the scope allows you to magnify your target more. This means that scopes with a larger objective have greater magnification capabilities.
However, most air rifle owners would be better suited investing in an adjustable objective scope rather than throwing down money for one with a fixed objective. Because air rifles don’t have the firepower of firearms, air rifle specific scopes generally need to be set for short distance. This means that adjusting the objective for varying distance is even more important. If you want to achieve maximum accuracy, then you need an air rifle scope with adjustable objective.
The type of reticle your air rifle scope has will play a big role in the overall shooting experience. Simply put, there are dozens upon dozens of different types of scope reticles around. It would take an entire book to cover them all. However, most of these are highly specialized. The majority of air rifle shooters will be just fine choosing from a few main types.
- Crosshair – The crosshair is the oldest and most classic type of reticle, consisting of two straight lines. One is vertical and one is horizontal. Center the target where the two lines cross and you are good to go.
- Dotted Crosshair – Thinner crosshairs provide more aiming accuracy. However, they can sometimes be difficult to see against certain backgrounds. A dotted crosshair has a small dot where they cross. This helps them stand out and makes precision aiming even easier.
- Duplex Reticle – The duplex reticle is like a plain crosshair but the lines are thicker near the edges of the field of view before becoming thinner in the center. This kind of reticle is easier to see in the woods and offers four additional aim points.
- Mil-Dot Reticle – A more recent invention, a mil-dot reticle features dots of a controlled size spaced along the crosshairs. This provides even greater accuracy during aiming and is prized among hunters.
Another important factor to take into consideration before buying an air rifle scope is anchored optics. The term refers to the way a scope is anchored to the actual gun.
Because air rifles recoil much different than a firearm (air guns recoil both forwards and backwards while firearms recoil only backwards), it is essential to select a scope that takes this movement into consideration.
Selecting a scope that suits your air gun’s recoil level is necessary for optimum accuracy and length of life. It will also make firing your gun much more enjoyable. As mentioned above, it is especially important to take recoil into consideration when selecting a scope for a spring powered air gun.
The Best Air Rifle Scope for You
Choosing an air rifle scope should not be a split second decision. Do your homework beforehand to ensure that you buy the best air rifle scope for you. You want a scope that works well with the type of shooting you are doing, is easy to use, and doesn’t break the bank. Check out the options that we discuss here to make up your mind.