Best Rifle Scopes
for a Ruger 10/22
By: Patrick Long |
The Ruger 10/22 is one of the most popular rifles on the market. It’s a great rifle for beginning shooters, fun on the range, or for small game hunting. The rifle is light, has the light recoil of the 22 LR, and it’s easy to use and to customize. This affordable rifle has been around for a long time, and isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. So you picked right if you were looking for a quality 22 LR.
When you’re customizing your 10/22, it’s important to find the scope that makes the most sense for you and your shooting needs. The 10/22 is best at close range, so you can honestly get by with iron sights if you are just plinking on the range. Although if you want to do some real shooting, or hunting, you will need a bit of magnification.
Common Uses For The Ruger 10/22
A Ruger 10/22 is named for its patented 10 round rotary magazine in 22 long rifle(LR). If you don’t know, the 22 LR is a fairly small and weak rimfire cartridge. Although it is still powerful enough to hunt small game at close ranges. Due to its near lack of recoil all together and affordability, the 22 LR is frequently used on gun ranges as a go-to round for having a good time.
The ballistics of the 22 LR are not terribly impressive, so it is best to use it at short ranges. Out to 100 yards, you can between 2 and 5 inches with supersonic ammunition. When you stretch that to 150 yards, it grows to between 10 and 20 inches of drop depending on your specific load.
22 LR is great for hunting small game, but as you can see, you probably do not want to be shooting much over 100 yards. Personally, 50 yards is a long shot for the 22 LR while I’m hunting. I can usually get much closer than that to small game anyway, and I’m sure you can too. A magnification of around 3x is usually recommended for 100 yards.
If you are shooting on the range, you have the freedom to shoot as far as your range allows with your 10/22. So you probably want something that can help you see a little past 100 yards. A go-to variable scope for a 22 LR is a 3-9x scope. This is your standard hunting scope, and it is more than enough for a 22 LR in any situation.
Is A Red Dot, Variable, Or Fixed Scope Best?
Red dot scopes are a great choice for short range shooting. So a red dot sight is perfect for the 10/22, especially on the range. I did plenty of hunting with a red dot when I was younger, but that was only with my deer rifle. If you use a red dot for hunting on a 22 LR, your dot might be bigger than your target at range, which makes an accurate shot tough.
If you want to go with a scope, a fixed scope is a good choice if you regularly shoot at the same distance with your Ruger 10/22. Since the 22 LR can’t shoot too far anyway, a low power fixed scope is a valid option because it doesn't have too much magnification to make close shots impossible, and it still has enough magnification to reach the end of the 22 LR’s effective range.
While fixed scopes are simple and easy to use, variable scopes add a lot of versatility to your set up. A 3-9x scope can be treated like a 3x fixed scope until you really need to zoom in on a target, like a rabbit sitting out at 50 yards that you don’t want to jump by creeping getting closer. My 22 LR has a variable scope on it, but the fun thing about a gun set up is that there are no wrong answers.
Best Hunting Scope: Burris Fullfield II 3-9x 40mmCheck Price
The Burris Fullfield II is a perfect scope for hunting anything under 300 yards. At its lowest power, 3x, the Fullfield II is still viable for making shots under 50 yards, and its 9x maximum magnification is enough to shoot much farther than the 22 LR can reliably hit.
The best part about this scope is that it isn’t going to cost more than your rifle. You can get it for around $160. This particular scope is a go-to for hunters and it has plenty of excellent reviews from happy Sportsmans Warehouse customers.
Other than the 3-9x magnification, this scope has a 40mm objective lens, which is plenty big enough for the 10/22. Its lenses are fully multi-coated to protect against debris and give you excellent glass clarity. You also get the standard second focal plane MOA reticle that you are likely familiar with. To wrap it up, you even get the Burris Forever Warranty, which is a no questions asked and no charge kind of warranty, my favorite.
- 3-9x Magnification
- 40mm Objective Lens
- Fully Multi-Coated Lenses
- MOA System
- Second Focal Plane
Best Fixed Magnification Rifle Scope: Leupold FX-I Rimfire 4x 28mmCheck Price
If you want the simplicity of a fixed magnification scope, the Leupold FX-I Rimfire is quite literally made for the rimfire 22 LR. A 4x magnification is enough to see real well at 100 yards, but it is still small enough to see well at 50 yards without having too narrow of a field of view. Although for shots under 25 yards, there might be a learning curve to finding your target in the scope.
This American made 4x scope also features a smaller 28mm objective lens that is multi-coated. Although that smaller lens also cuts down on the weight of this scope. It weighs just 7.5 ounces, which will make your overall setup fairly light weight. You also get the standard second focal plane MOA reticle in the FX-I Rimfire.
This is a high quality scope, which means it comes waterproof and fogproof as expected. The Leupold FX-I Rimfire is a great scope for hunting, and plinking at the range. The simplicity of the scope pairs well with the simplicity of a Ruger 10/22 and the pair is sure to be a fun time.
- 4x Magnification
- 28mm Objective Lens
- Multi-Coated Lens
- MOA System
- Second Focal Plane
Most Versatile for The 22 LR: Sig Sauer Tango-MSR LPVO 1-6x24mmCheck Price
If you want the versatility of being able to shoot clearly at 10 yards, but still having the magnification you need for shooting past 100 yards with your 22 LR, you want a Low Power Variable Optic (LPVO). The Sig Sauer Tango-MSR LPVO is one of our best sellers. While this scope is usually marketed towards AR’s, it fits on any rifle with a picatinny rail, including the Ruger 10/22 Tactical.
This scope goes from 1 to 6x magnification, so it can be recommended for shooting between 0 and 200 yards according to the age-old standard of 3x magnification per 100 yards. This is a super nice scope that is built to be durable enough to go on any workhorse AR, and it can certainly put up with a few bumps and drops. It has an 24mm objective lens, with an Ultra Low Dispersion Glass Coating so it is as clear as possible at all ranges.
All and all, you will not find a more versatile or durable scope for the Ruger 10/22. Just know that you will need a picatinny rail to mount it to. You can make that conversion fairly easily if your rifle doesn't have a picatinny scope base, there are plenty of tutorials around the web. Plus, that could be a good intro to working with firearms for someone new to guns, or your child who just got their first rifle.
- 1-6x Magnification
- 24mm Objective Lens
- Ultra Low Dispersion (ULD) Glass Coating
- MOA System
- Second Focal Plane