Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Marlin 336 - Special Scope Setup for Different Size Shooters

Today as an added bonus a reader of Stealth Survival will be doing a guest post. Bitmap is a regular reader of Stealth Survival and has graciously furnished us with good information on a scope setup for the Marlin 336. Thanks Bitmap!

Here is a pic of my oldest (8 years old) shooting his deer rifle. It has the Scout Scope setup I mentioned with the Simmons ProHunter 2X 20 Pistol Scope . One advantage of this setup is that in addition to longer eye relief it has a much wider eye relief range - something like 8 inches with this particular scope. Both my son and I and most other people can pick this rifle up and have no problems with eye relief, which is not usually possible with "regular" scopes, but if I was going to use it I would take off the cheek rest because my face is taller than his so I don't need it.

Ease of use by other people is something to consider with your better half possibly needing to use your rifle or vice versa.

You should both try this test with your rifle (or any other rifle that wears optics) to see if it is set up properly for you:

Hold your rifle at low ready or sling your rifle as you would normally carry it. Pick out a fairly large object at a distance. A round bale of hay 50+ yards away will work. That will be your "target". Take a stance as if you are going to mount your rifle. Close your eyes. Without opening your eyes raise your rifle to your shoulder and point at your target. Open your eyes. If you don't have full field of view with everything lined up then you need to adjust the scope, either distance from your eye or height above the barrel. Try it several times to make sure. Try it at the minimum magnification, maximum magnification, and several places in between.

With a conventionally mounted scope it is difficult to get one setup that will work for two people that are of different sizes. With a scout scope the eye relief is seldom a problem, but the height above the bore can be.

The downside is that the XS mount runs about $50 which is a lot more than the least expensive conventional mounts. It is worth it to me.

One recommendation for using forward optics: keep both eyes open. People that have eyes and hands that are cross-dominant may have trouble with this. I don't know the solution.

The price on that setup is roughly:
XS mount $50
Simmons ProHunter $80
Warne Quick Release Weaver type rings $45
Butler Creek flip-up scope covers $15
About $190 total.
Leupold QRW rings will work as well. I actually like them a little better but I think I picked up the Warnes on sale for $40, the Leupolds usually run $48-50. You could save a bit on the rings and get ones that are not quick disconnect. I also added the XS Ghost Ring sights which are about $80-90. If the left side of the receiver on your Marlin is already drilled and tapped you can use Williams or Lyman aperture sights for backup use and they are more like $40. To install the scout mount you have to take off the open rear sight and I don't like to be without a backup system.
BTW he has taken three deer and three turkey with that rifle in the last two seasons, so the setup works in the field, for him at least. My dad and I have also taken game with a similar setup.

Keep your guns oiled and your powder dry.

Note: Pic was edited for privacy. RW


riverwalker said...

I don't thik the additional cost for this setup would be that big a factor. Especially when you consider the ease of use by more than one shooter for the same rifle.


Anonymous said...

+1 on Riverwalker's comment - I had not considered that point, but its so obvious, I feel kinda stupid for thinking of that myself. Thank you
bitmap - nice setup! Dad's got it going on baby!

I'd love to do a similar setup on a Winchester lever .357 Magnum trapper, and already have the scope / mount for it. Unfortunately, finding a gunsmith who is willing to drill & tap barrel for said mount cannot be found locally - grrrr.

That XS mount is da bomb - I'm definitely going to have to consider going this route instead.

Bitmap said...

I think some M94's are already drilled and tapped with holes that the XS mount will fit in. I think the Angle Eject models have the holes in the front of the receiver and the mount uses the rear sight dovetail so D&T isn't needed there. I think if you have a pre-Angle Eject it will need to be drilled and tapped.

I tried the Simmons ProHunter 2x20 on a Marlin M1894 (.357, .44, .45 Colt) and due to the shorter action the minimum eye relief was a little too short for me due to the action being shorter than the 336. I don't know about the Winchester M94 in handgun calibers but the Marlin requires a different forward mounted scope than the ProHunter. The Burris and Leupold Scout Scopes would work fine but they cost more.

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