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Handgun Scopes

General properties

Handgun scopes are similar to rifle scopes in their design, with the main difference being much longer eye relief.

Standard riflescopes usually require the shooter’s eye to be at around 80–90 mm from the ocular, whereas pistol scopes have 30, 40, or even 50 centimeters of eye relief.

Other notable features of handgun scope are a 1-inch tube and small size/mass. 

A handgun scope mounted on a revolver - black matte optics

A handgun scope mounted on a revolver (source: sightmark.com) 

Magnification and eye box

Handgun scope feature either:

  • fixed or

  • variable magnification, though fixed magnification is more common.

The parallax on a handgun scope is fixed at somewhere from 25 to 50 m.

Handgun scopes are known for their generous eye-box (standard riflescopes usually require the shooter’s eye to be at around 80–90 mm from the ocular, whereas pistol scopes come with an extended eye relief of somewhere between 400 and 600 mm). 

As pistol scopes are often mounted on revolvers which are known for their substantial recoil, it is important that they are shockproof and durable.

 

Differences between handgun scope and scout scope

The main difference between handgun scope and scout scope is in the parallax setting:

  • Handgun scopes usually have parallax set to around 25–50 m,

  • whereas scout scopes have it fixed at around 100 m.

Mounting of a scope

The rings for mounting scopes on handguns are handgun specific.

Handgun scopes are most often mounted on revolvers. Sometimes, they are mounted on a pistol with an installed Picatinny rail.

They can be mounted on a special kind of rifle called a scout rifle. 

The scope is mounted on the barrel, right in front of the action. Even though this is possible, scout rifle owners usually opt for a scout scope.

Why are many pistol scopes silver?

These scopes are commonly mounted on revolvers. Most revolvers on the market are silver – a silver handgun scope and a silver revolver are a perfect match. 

Handgun scope - A revolver with a silver Burris optics

 (source: burrisoptics.com)

Video presentation

 

 Slideshare presentation

Short Presentation | Handgun Scope | Optics Trade from Optics-Trade

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