We’re going to take a closer look at some of the best scopes on the market that can be used on muzzleloaders and some of their key features.
Before we get into the individual reviews though it’s probably a good idea to identify what you should be looking for on a good muzzleloader scope. That’s why we’ve put together a brief buying guide to start off with.
Today’s scopes are a common piece of equipment that almost all serious hunters use. It enables much more accurate shots at much greater distances.
There’s a lot to think about when you’re purchasing a muzzleloader scope and hopefully this article has clarify things for you just a little bit.
The ideal scope should be made from quality aluminum materials and it should be highly resistant to damage. It’s important to look for a scope that has good eye relief and one with a coated lens that allows for a brighter image and a clear view of your target.
It’s also essential to make sure that the scope works well in lowlight situations as this will often be what you’re faced with when out on a hunting trip. Also, don’t forget to make sure your scope is waterproof and fog proof as well.
- 1 Muzzleloader Scopes Reviews
- 2 Key Features in Muzzleloaders
- 3 Final Thoughts
Muzzleloader Scopes Reviews
Nikon ProStaff 4-12 x 40 Riflescope
The Nikon ProStaff 4-12 x 40 is a perfect scope for your muzzleloader rifle.
This particular scope has a zero reset turret and a spring-loaded adjustment knob that makes it easy to make subtle changes and modifications.
It has a nice 3.7 inch eye relief so you don’t have to worry about the recoil of your rifle doing any damage to your eye which allows you to concentrate on your target.
As any hunter knows you can’t control the weather, but what you can do is control how well your equipment operates in that weather. This scope has a nitrogen filled O-ring seal housing that helps to keep it waterproof and fog proof.
After all, the best shots you will have on a hunt don’t always happen during ideal conditions so it pays to have equipment that will work no matter what you’re faced with.
The ProStaff also has a multicoated optical system that’s capable of transmitting up to 98% of the available light in your surrounding area to your eye.
It’s made from aircraft grade aluminum that makes it very durable as well so you don’t have to treat it with kid gloves. This is a great choice for your muzzleloader rifle.
Nikon ProStaff 4-12 x 40 Summary:
- Zero reset turret
- Spring-loaded adjustment knob
- Nitrogen filled O-ring seal
- Multicoated optical system
Leupold VX-2 3-9x40mm Rifle Scope
One of the best muzzleloader Scopes around is the Leupold VX-2. This capable little scope as 100 yard parallax setting and it’s designed to be used in low light situations.
It’s also equipped with a 40 mm lens that allows for I relief of close to 4 inches keeping your face protected from the recoil of your rifle.
It’s packaged in a nice aluminum frame that makes it ideally suited for rugged conditions and because of the aluminum the manufacturer is able to keep the weight at a minimum – this goal only weighs in at about 11.7 ounces.
The VX-2is also completely waterproof and fog proof so that you can see your target at all times. This allows you to make simple medical adjustments and keep your target in your cross sites at all times well anything blocking her field of vision.
The letters on the scope is also scratch resistant and crack resistant to further assist you in keeping that clear field of vision.
The things we’ve mentioned so far are all fairly common on decent muzzleloader Scopes, but what does set this one apart from the competition little bit is that it’s also equipped with a spring-loaded adjustment knob that makes it easy to make the subtle little adjustments as you go.
This is without a doubt one of the finest scopes on the market, but you should be prepared to pay a little more for it at as it is one of the more expensive ones as well.
Leupold VX-2 Summary:
- Designed for low light conditions
- Aluminum frame construction
- Waterproof and fog proof
- Spring-loaded adjustment knob
Simmons 8-Point Truplex Reticle Riflescope
While scopes can be expensive pieces of equipment for your muzzleloader rifle there are some affordable options out there.
A great example of this is the Simmons 8-Point Truplex. This affordable scope has a lot of the features that you find on more expensive pieces of equipment.
It is fully waterproof and fog proof to ensure that your vision is clear at all times and its aluminum body makes it virtually impervious to damage from shocks as well.
It also has adjustment knobs for windage and elevation which you can easily access with your fingers as you keep your eye on the scope.
The optics are fully coated which helps prevent scratches damaging your view and allow for a brighter image and greater contrast in low light.
This scope weighs in at about 70 ounces which may be a little heavier than some models, but if you’re looking for a great economical choice that can still get the job done there are few that compare to this one.
It’s a great scope at any price and an even better one at under $50.
Simmons 8-Point Truplex Summary:
- Fully waterproof and fog proof
- Aluminium body construction
- 40 mm optical viewer
Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Circle-X Reticle Riflescope
It has a multicoated lens that allows for a clearer view in almost any situation. With this scope you’ll always have your eyes on the target instead of having to worry about unreliable equipment.
It has 3-9X magnification and a 40 mm objective lens that allows for significant eye relief.
Some of the worst and most avoidable hunting accidents I’ve ever witnessed were the result of one of our party getting there I just a bit too close to the scope.
The recoil of a rifle can cause a lot of damage and could potentially even break your orbital bone so it’s something you definitely want to avoid.
This scope has quick adjustment knobs for both the windage and elevation that allow you to make very fine adjustments.
A rather unique feature of the scope that also bears mentioning is it’s camouflage design which makes it perfect for helping your rifle went into the background. This is a great midpriced muzzleloader scope that won’t disappoint.
Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Circle-X Summary:
- Multicoated lens
- 3-9X magnification
- 40 mm objective lens
- Camouflage design
Vortex Crossfire II 2-7×32 Rifle Scope
The Vortex Crossfire II is an above average muzzleloader scope with a 42 x 12.6 feet field of vision at about 100 yards.
The optical lens is 37 mm which gives the scope and eye relief of approximately 3.9 inches – perhaps not the best around, but it still more than capable targeting mechanism.
It’s made from high-grade aluminum that makes it impervious to damage from shock and it also waterproof and fog proof.
One thing that is a little disappointing about this scope is the weight of the two – it weighs in at about a pound which is more than average for a muzzleloader scope and will make your rifle a little more unwieldy.
This may not be a major issue for a lot of hunters, but is something to consider as it’s always best to keep your rifle and equipment as lite as possible.
It does feature adjustment knobs for both windage and elevation and there comfortably located about halfway down scope.
The lens is coated to allow for a brighter image in lowlight situations and it’s scratch resistant as well. On another positive not it also comes with a full warranty on any manufacturer defects.
Vortex Crossfire II Summary:
- 37mm optical lens
- Approx. 3.9" eye relief
- High-grade aluminium body
- Full warranty
Key Features in Muzzleloaders
Rangethe range of your scope may not be as important on a muzzleloader rifle because you’ll typically be closer to the target, but it’s still something to consider. You’ll want to seek out a scope that has a least a 200 yard range and most decent ones on the market today do.
Field of Vision and MagnificationThe ideal lens will be somewhere between 37 and 50mm as this will provide you with an optimum field of vision and allow you to keep your target in your peripheral vision at all times. Typically you’ll want one that allows for up to 10x magnification as well. On top of that it’s important to make sure the lens is coated to prevent scratches and to create a brighter image that works well in low light situations.
Eye ReliefOne of the biggest risks for injury for any hunter is from the recoil created by their rifle. There’s a lot of power and momentum when that trigger is pressed and the resulting kick back can be quite powerful. That’s why a good muzzleloader scope will be equipped with a certain amount of eye relief that allows you to keep your eye between 3 and 5 inches from the scope and still have a clear view of the target. This is about the optimum distance to prevent injury from recoil.
WeightA rifle scope should be relatively light as a heavy scope would significantly affect your judgement and ability to concentrate on the target. The lighter the scope is the better. These days scopes are typically made from aluminum which allows manufacturers to keep the weight down. If your scope weighs any more than a few ounces there are better options available to you and you don’t have to break the bank either. There are some that weigh as much as a pound, but this is relatively rare.
DurabilityIf you’re purchasing a scope for your muzzleloader rifle you should be looking for one that’s designed to handle a little bit of abuse and one that will continue to work even in adverse conditions. As we’ve already mentioned most are made from aluminum and typically manufacturers use aircraft grade aluminum which is highly durable. Your scope should also be waterproof, fog proof, shock proof, the lens should be shockproof, and most are also coated with a substance that will actually make your target image appear brighter.
It’s always fun trying to imagine what life was like for our ancestors and something that I’ve always had a lot of nostalgia for was how weapons were used in the past.
Think about what it was like to be on the battlefield in the war of 1812 or during the American Civil War and how different the weaponry was then.
Sure, there were rifles and they did bare a primitive resemblance to what we use now, but they were very different in their design and use. These were single shot rifles that had to be muzzle loaded and unless you were extremely well trained it wasn’t a quick process.
In the days of the Civil War scope technology did exist, but it was almost unheard of. In fact, it was more of a novelty that wasn’t used in everyday situations.
The soldiers on the field still continued to use the naked eye to cite their targets and while some of them were quite good at it they can achieve the accuracy that we can today with modern scope technology.
The muzzleloaders of today are obviously much more advanced than the ones they would’ve used in the Civil War or the War of 1812, but they’re still loaded in much the same way.
The Hunter loads his rifle one shot at a time muzzle of the gun. This way requires a great deal of accuracy as you generally only have one shot to get it right. For many hunters that challenge of having to find that perfect shot is what they love so much about muzzleloaders.