We have had some issues with our Ruger 10/22 Build. The accuracy we were seeing was not consistent with what we should have been getting from our modifications. When this occurs, we usually look to the weakest part first. In this case, it was our scope and mounting system. The old Tasco Golden Antler scope did not inspire confidence. It worked fine on one of our older .22 bolt guns, but we think it may have chosen this project to give up the ghost. So to resolve this situation and get back on track, we installed a SS 3-15×42 FFP rifle scope from SWFA Outdoors. To make sure the scope wasn’t going anywhere, we used a set of SWFA rings and a 20 MOA base from Evolution Gun Works. Granted, six screw caps are a little overkill for a .22LR, we can be sure that the system will hold tight after some chance encounters with the barricade.
If you would like to read a full review of the SWFA SS 3-15x42mm scope, we have it posted here. This scope has worked very well for us on an AR-15. While some question the logic behind installing a $700 optic on a 10/22, the reality is that it is still a mid-level optic. With a scope like the SS 3-15×42 you can be sure that when you go to the range, you can spend time training instead of diagnosing equipment issues. There are many cheaper scope options out there, but the SS 3-15×42 gives us a good magnification range and the ability to focus to under 10 yards.
Shortly after posting our 10/22 Scope Installation video (linked below), we received questions on why we chose to use a 20 MOA base to mount our scope. When selecting a canted scope base, you have to take a couple of factors into consideration. In our case, we wanted to be able to use the 10/22 at extreme ranges (for a .22LR). To get our match 40gr. bullets to 300 yards, we need approximately 40 MOA of elevation. The SS 3-15×42 has a maximum total elevation travel of 36 mils (more than 122 MOA). So in our case, the extra 20 MOA was not strictly necessary. However if you are using a more limited scope, the 20 MOA may be the difference between dialing and having to hold for that long shot.
If you are one of those guys who never sees yourself shooting beyond 100 yards with your .22LR, then a 20 MOA base is not necessary and going with a 0 MOA base, may prevent running out of adjustment when you attempt to zero a limited travel scope.
Unfortunately for our build series to have any real meaning, we needed to strip the rifle and go back to factory-fresh. Now that we have a good scope mounted up, we can get back to the range and get a good baseline accuracy reading. Once that is sorted out, we will take a look at the horribly heavy factory trigger.