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Better scope for a Savage 110 chambered in .308

Discuss Leupold, Bushnell, Swarovski, Weaver & more. Need advice on a scope for your firearm? We can help!

Better scope for a Savage 110 chambered in .308

Postby ButchA on Mon May 07, 2007 1:22 pm

Good afternoon.

I am the proud owner of a new/used Savage 110 bolt action rifle in a .308 caliber. Apparantly it was sold as a "package deal" back in the early 90's and came complete a cheap Simmons 3-9x32 scope (model# 21017).

Numerous people have told me to upgrade the scope with either Bushnell Legend or a Nikon Prostaff or some other flavor of good quality rifle scope.

What works best with a .308 Savage?


Postby Guest on Mon May 07, 2007 5:33 pm

How ya doing butch? There a million different scopes out there with a lot of different features. It all depends on what form of shooting you do. Are you planning on just deer hunting with this rifle, or could there be some serious target/varmint shooting involved? What kind of range would be you be shooting at? Do you know how to use a ballistic or ranging reticle, or would you ever care to have that?

If it's primarily a hunting rifle with normal ranges, you can skip the cool bells and whistles and go with just a normal scope with no crazy bells and whistles. If you hunt varmints, especially if you shoot at longer ranges (over 300-400 meters) you may want a scope with target turrets and a mil dot reticle. Will you be making shots in low light conditions? How much magnification do you want?

My guess is that you are just looking for a good, clear, no bells and whistles, quality scope and you don't want to spend 300 dollars on it. I'm also gonna guess that a 3-9x40 is enough maginification/objective lens for ya. If that is the case, there are several models from many different scope companies that are good quality scopes for you.

I advise looking up the scope selection guide on optics planet and reading their tutorial. They have a pretty darn good explanation of things going on here, and that should give you a better idea of what you want. Once you get that, then you can ask the question a little more specifically and I'll offer what little I know.

Postby ButchA on Mon May 07, 2007 6:03 pm


Yes, I am a deer hunter. I plan on using the Savage .308 for deer out to 150-200 yards with a good clear scope, but within a good price range.

I also have an old Marlin 30-30 that I keep traditional with plain open sights, for close in heavy woods and brush hunting - shots less then/equal to 100 yards at max. One rifle for one style of hunting, the other for another style.

Here's my new/used Savage 110 in .308 with the "packaged" Simmons 3-9x40 scope.
It's a heck of a rifle for the money, but just needs a better quality scope. It's got a two piece Weaver base and unknown rings.

Butch A.

Postby Guest on Mon May 07, 2007 6:05 pm

Oops... The original scope is a 3-9x32. ...not 40.

Butch A.

Scope choice?

Postby Big Squeeze on Mon May 07, 2007 7:18 pm

That is a good looking rifle!.......Based on your application for usage, a 3x9 is all the variable you`ll need for your hunting purposes!.....I would take a good look at the Nikon Prostaff, already mentioned by you and the Nikon Buckmaster, about $150 to $200 respectively. These are great scopes for the money!...... Along with the Bushnell Legend you should also consider the Bushnell Elite 3200 with Rainguard. Better optics!.....If the Elite 3200 is about the same money as the Nikon Buckmaster, I`d go with the Elite!............I personally have the Elite 4200 and love it!!!!......Big Squeeze
Big Squeeze

Postby wheeler on Tue May 08, 2007 12:34 pm

I agree with big squeeze here. For the money I would go with bushnell or Nikon. Now Bushnell does make a full range of optics, from outragiously cheap to very high end. I have a 3200 elite myself and wouldn't take anything for it. I shoot up to 800 meters with this scope and it has served me well.

I don't know how much you're willing to spend on good glass, but it's usually a worthwhile investment. If I had an unlimited budget I would go with schmidt & bender, but I don't so I'll take that you look at things much like I do.

big squeeze mentioned the Nikon prostaff 3-9x40. I think this is a good buy, and good quality optics for the money. I've never heard one bad word about Nikon optics, so you can't much go wrong unless you're not willing to spend that much. Another option, if want to spend less, would be a bushnell trophy. You can have one in 3-9x40 for about 100 bucks, and I think it's worth that. That's about the cheapest scope I recommend.

You will find some very cheap scopes from BSA, Barska, Swift, Tasco, and a couple of others. That is exactly what they are... CHEAP! I have heard some that swear by them, but I have heard of some that have had horrer stories with them. I'm not saying there isn't one horror story out there for a quality bushnell or Nikon, but they're few and far between. You don't have to look hard for someone that has demolished a Barska with a rifle that doesn't even recoil heavy. Believe it or not, but if you have to go with a cheap scope, the high end tasco is probably the one I've heard the fewest bad remarks about.

Just FYI, and again I'm not the expert nor have I tested every scope, but I've been into shooting for awhile and just got out of the Marine Corps so I've had some experiance on the matter.

Happy shooting

Scope quality

Postby Big Squeeze on Wed May 09, 2007 3:24 pm

Mr. Wheeler (Joey) is right.............What you don`t want to do is to mount a cheaper scope on your rifle, then go into the field or on the range and THEN be disappointed with inferior optics, dealing with issues of clarity, resolution, brightness and so forth............You will hear from many that their $50 or $100 scopes do the job well for them, either on the range or in the hunting fields. I certainly cannot disagree. However, my attitude is,,, "that`s ok,,,FOR THEM."..........I can understand budget restrictions, in that many people simply cannot go purchase and mount a high end Zeiss, Leupold, Swarovski, Nikon, Bushnell or others on their guns........But, some people just have lower standards in optic quality that they are happy with, which of course, is the absolute bottom line,,,,,meaning that they are happy and satisfied with what they have...........I personally prefer the middle ground. I want the best quality scope available for the price I`m willing to pay, WITHOUT sacrificing clarity, resolution, brightness, durability, etc.......Yes! I own the Bushnell Elite 4200 and am a little partial in my favoritism. But the Elite 3200, the Nikon Buckmaster, Monarch, the Burris`s, Zeiss, the Leupold VX1`s, the VX11`s, the VX111`s and just about all good quality scopes in the price range of $200 to $500,,,, WILL DO,,, the same job as the $1000 and higher scopes on the range or in the field..........I WILL STILL FILL MY TAGS under any hunting conditions in the field AND shoot the same tight groups at the range!!!!!..........Those TWO points are the real "bottom line."..................................Big Squeeze!
Big Squeeze

Postby ButchA on Wed May 09, 2007 7:11 pm

Thanks, Big Squeeze...

I hear ya. There is NO WAY I would put a BSA or Tasco (Trash-co :P ) scope on my rifle. I mean, it's cool... Some people like them. I had a 4x32 Tasco (K-Mart blue light special) on an old Marlin .22 rifle and hated it from the day I mounted it on there. I pulled it off and sold it a long time ago. Lesson learned.

The two scopes that really interest me are:

Bushnell Legend 3-9x40
Nikon Prostaff 3-9x40

I have seen Zeiss, Leupold, Swarovski, etc... and even though they are fantastic scopes, I just can't see my self dropping that much $$$$ on a scope. But then, I'm not going to spend no $29.95 on a cheesy scope made out of plexiglass and tin foil! ha ha ha... :lol:

final choice is?????

Postby Big squeeze on Thu May 10, 2007 12:55 am

Look through both scopes, preferably at the same time and do your comparison. Hopefully your local dealer will have the Legend and the Prostaff in stock. That Prostaff though, has had excellent reviews. Go to Midway`s website and other sites to compare the submitted reviews between these two scopes.............Have fun,,,,,,,,,,,,Big Squeeze!
Big squeeze

What type of rings?

Postby savage3006 on Mon May 21, 2007 7:56 am

I have myself a package Savage (30-06) and I am going to change the scope. I have similar use (big game hunting) and I will likely go with Nikon 3-9x40 buckmaster.

Have you decided which ring to use and are you keeping the 2 piece base?

Postby savage3006 on Mon May 21, 2007 8:07 am

One more thing, I would recommend a Nikoplex over the BDC reticule for this type of usage.
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon May 21, 2007 7:57 am

Re: What type of rings?

Postby Guest on Sat May 26, 2007 7:20 pm

savage3006 wrote:I have myself a package Savage (30-06) and I am going to change the scope. I have similar use (big game hunting) and I will likely go with Nikon 3-9x40 buckmaster.

Have you decided which ring to use and are you keeping the 2 piece base?

I'm not sure... I still like the tried and true, classic, Weaver rings and mounts.

Here's a scope that has caught my eye (namely for its' ballistics plex reticle). I have never seen a Pentax Gameseeker 3-9x40 scope before, but would like to check one out. Anyone ever seen a Pentax scope?


Butch A.

Postby ButchA on Sat May 26, 2007 7:22 pm

Oops... sorry... That link didn't come out right....


Butch A.

Postby ButchA on Sat May 26, 2007 7:24 pm

Darn it... The link still didn't work.

Cut 'n paste this into your browser.... :oops:

http://www.banned/pc-7353-887-pentax- ... scope.aspx

Butch A.

Postby savage3006 on Sun May 27, 2007 6:24 am

ButchA wrote:Darn it... The link still didn't work.

Cut 'n paste this into your browser.... :oops:

http://www.banned/pc-7353-887-pentax- ... scope.aspx

Butch A.

If you really like the scope then go for it. But you really do not need a ballistic reticle for big game hunting with a 308 or a 30-06. If you zero your scope at 200 yards, you will be less than 2" high at 100 yards and that is well within the 5" kill zone for any shots in the 100 - 200+ yards
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon May 21, 2007 7:57 am

Postby ButchA on Sun May 27, 2007 10:54 am


I was just curious about it, that's all. I don't know just how far the terminal velocity/accuracy is of the .308 caliber.

My old Marlin 30-30 (plain open sights): Close in work, brush busting, man drives, 10 yards to maybe 75-100 yards, but I mostly keep it at 50 yards at best.

New/used Savage .308 w/ scope: Farther range, able to reach out and do what the ol' .30-30 can't do. Use from treestand or up on a ridge, overlooking the abandon pasture. Maximum 200-250 yards.

Butch A.

how about a real upgrade

Postby MrGman on Sun May 27, 2007 7:36 pm ... icle1.html

Here is a serious all around hunting scope to upgrade onto your rifle. ... icle1.html

Second choice. ... icle1.html

Third choice.

All in my favorite color, Matte Black. 8)

Are you serious or????????

Postby ButchA on Tue May 29, 2007 5:24 am


I'm serious about upgrading the present, cheap, Simmons scope on my Savage .308 but don't want to break the bank. Zeiss scopes are real nice but a tad on the high side, like top end Leupold's, Swarovski, etc...

Bushnell Legend
Nikon Pro Staff
<insert another scope here>

These seem to be excellent scopes for around $150 bucks. I'm looking for a 3-9x40 scope that is rugged for deer hunting. I'm not a competetive target shooter and won't be trying to reach out to 400 yards or anything like that.

Postby Raff on Tue May 29, 2007 4:10 pm

Butch A,

Get the doggone Nikon Prostaff 3-9X40! The warranty is awesome, not that you'll need it. It's bright, clear and accurate and will handle it's business on your Savage out to 300 yards. I've got one on my Savage 110 in .30-06. In fact, I own all three including the 2-7X32 Shotgun Hunter and 4X rimfire. It's as dependable and will kill as cleanly as those scopes costing four times as much. Depends on your application, though.

Here's another thought if you're interested.....Cabelas has a Simmons Whitetail Classic 3.5-10X40 on sale right now for $89.99, delivered to your doorstep for $101. It's an awesome scope for the money! I've got on one my other Savage 110 in .243 Winchester. It's an older Simmons (but don't let this fool you) made in the Philippines instead of China. It's as bright, clear and accurate as the Nikon. They evidently have a surplus and are attempting to clear them out. Read the reviews that other folks have submitted. I love it and woodchucks despise it!

Just a thought.....but you should lean towards the Nikon. Good luck

New scope for Savage

Postby Wvladimire on Thu May 31, 2007 8:22 pm

Hi, and glad you have a Savage. I own a Savage 12 Varminter in .223 and a custom .308 built on a Mauser 98 action. If I may make a sugestion, if you are going to upgrade your Simmons scope for a better one, then get a BETTER scope. The ones you mentioned are ALL on the same line as the Simmons you already own. So if you purchased one of those, you would be throwing money away.

I used to own several Burris, Nikons, Leupold, and Leapers scopes. Then one day I purchased an IOR 10x56 tactical. I was amazed at the clarity and quality of the glass. So impressed was I, that I have since sold all my other scopes and replaced them with IOR's. Except for the fixed 4 power Nikon Monarch on my Ruger 10/22. The rest have IOR's hunting 4x32 and 6x42 models, as well as IOR's tactical 10x42, 10x56, & 6x42 models. If you can afford to get a better scope then I would suggest an IOR, it will put the best Leupold, Burris, Nikon, and Zeiss to shame. And an FYI IOR gets their glass from the same place as Swarvoski and Schmidt & Bender.