Do rifle scope mounts matter, or are they all the same? That’s a pretty good question and one that’s often overlooked. Let’s take a look at it today and see if we can shed some light on this very important topic.
Are Scope Mounts Really Important
The short answer is an unequivocal yes. When you scope your airgun, you are connecting two critical components. This is accomplished via the mounts. If the mounts are not straight and level, or if they are not strong enough, you’ll spend more time chasing your POI than taking accurate shots. Therefore, picking the right air rifle scope mounts is extremely important.
Two-piece vs. One-piece Mounts
Back in the day, when the ultra magnum spring guns first started to hit the scene, heavy-duty one-piece mounts were the norm. But, they proved to present an additional challenge. With a magnum springer, you have a significant forward recoil that tends to push the scope off the back of the receiver. Manufacturers helped overcome this by adding stop pins to lock the scope and mount down and prevent slipping. But, unfortunately, when you have a heavy scope AND a heavy one-piece mount, it’s almost impossible to hold everything tight and not either sheer off the stop pin or bend the heck out of the receiver.
The solution was to go the other direction and use lighter two-piece mounts. Of course, they still need to be heavy-duty match mounts like the Hawke two-piece match mounts, but the reduced mass helps keep everything secure through the shooting cycle.
One-piece mounts have a great advantage when practical. Anytime you are machining two parts that need to act like one, you run the risk of minute variances that can yield imperfect alignment. While you may not be able to tell by looking at them, if there’s even a slight difference, it can affect your overall accuracy, especially as you shoot at further distances.
Because a one-piece mount is made from a single piece of material, it may provide a better overall connection to your airgun. Many magazine-fed airguns require two-piece mounts, but there are some with a flat rail above the mag, where you could use a one-piece mount, which may be worth considering provided the added weight does not create any other issues.
What Mounts Are Right For Your Application
You need to consider a few basic parameters when picking either a one-piece mount or a two-piece mount solution. The first is, what type of rail is on your airgun? You’ll either have an 11mm dovetail or slotted rail. The slotted rail may be weaver or Picatinny. If you are running two-piece mounts, it may not matter, but if you go with a one-piece mount, it may.
The next critical point is the size of your scope tube. Most scopes come with a 1″ or 30mm scope tube. Lesser expensive scope options generally have a 1″ tube, whereas higher-end scopes have a 30mm tube. It’s no fun getting ready to mount your scope only to find you have the wrong size rings.
The two final points are similar, and they relate to how high to mount your scope. It’s always the best practice to have your optic as close to the bore as possible. This minimizes the angle and helps you have a flatter trajectory. But going with the lowest mounts is not always possible. Next, you need to consider the objective of your scope. That’s the front glass, and a large objective, say 50mm, will almost always require high-scope mounts. Lastly, and this takes us back to the beginning, is the need to straddle a magazine. Guns like the Marauder, Avenger, Gauntlet, and many others, have the magazine standing above the rail. You’ll need to find two-piece mounts that provide enough clearance for the mag.
Best Scope Mount Brands
The phrase you get what you pay for certainly applies to air rifle scope mounts, as it does with so many other products. You will want to budget your activity to your need. If you are just plinking in the backyard, you may not need expensive scope mounts. On the other hand, if you are a competitive bench rest shooter, you may want to spend whatever it takes to give you a competitive edge. Brands such as UTG and CenterPoint offer a lot of value. Moving up to Hawke can give you a more secure and accurate melding of your scope to your action. And brands like FX and BKL are more precision mounts for competitive shooters.
Regardless of your need, we are here to help make sure you get the best scope mounts to suit your particular need. Just reach out, and we’ll be more than happy to make sure you get what you need to have the best shooting experience in your budget!