You’re the proud owner of one of the most popular rifle platforms of all time. Ruger has been pumping out new models every year since 1964. All based on the same platform we know and love. Ruger’s 10/22 carbine platform has long been one of the most modified rifles on the market. With enough mods and accessories to rival the AR15 where should you start. Unless you want to stick to close range target shooting you’re going to want a scope for your Ruger 10/22 Carbine.
Traditional Scope Vs Red Dot
People love to pair small plinking rifles with affordable red dots. You no longer have to pay top dollar to find a durable red dot sight. Luckily red dots have dropped in price to where they’re often cheaper than traditional scopes. For under $50 you can get waterproof and shockproof red dots that will handle some serious recoil. With their 1x magnification rating you’ll notice faster target acquisition speed. Red dots are a great choice for any backyard or short range rifle.
If you want to extend out past 50 yards you’ll be better off with a traditional scope. With its short range ballistic properties advanced hunting reticles will help extend your range. You can easily extend your shooting out close to 100 yards with a decent mil-dot reticle. Without premium ammunition you’ll be hard pressed to extend your range farther than 100 yards. With a 22LR rifle my maximum magnification is going to be right around 3-9x.
What’s The Best Ruger 10/22 Scope?
- Premium Vortex Riflescope
- 1-4x24mm Magnification(Other Options Available)
- Durable Waterproof Construction
- Illuminated Reticle
Vortex Optics Crossfire 1-4x24mm scope is perfect for both short and long range shooting. With its variable 1-4x magnification you can quickly switch between close range red dot like precision and long range accuracy. With its durable design and bright sight picture it’s well worth a look.
The Vortex lineup of scopes is a little pricey for a 22lr rifle, but it offers so many features that it’s well worth a look. The Crossfire Lineup of scopes comes in a wide variety of magnification, all of which are affordable. Designed to work much like a red dot with its illuminated reticle and 1x magnification. With multiple brightness settings, the red pinpoint reticle allows you to quickly acquire close range targets. You’ll be able to easily track fast moving small game and quickly transition to longer range magnified shots. The 4x magnification is just about perfect, extending your range out to 100+ yards. Shooting out past 100 yards with a 22 will require more like than any optic can give.
All Vortex scopes are designed with both durability and affordability in mind. Constructed out of a shockproof aluminum body and backed by the Vortex Lifetime Warranty. With a nitrogen purged and O-ring sealed housing you won’t have to worry about water damage. The completely fogproof and waterproof housing is durable enough to last through a lifetime of hunts. Not only durable, the multi-coated glass offers a crystal clear sight picture. With multiple illumination settings you can further dial in your preferred brightness. When you’re looking for the best, look no farther than this Vortex Crossfire scope.
- Affordably Priced Red Dot
- Clear and Bright Sight Picture
- Multiple Illumination Settings
- Micro Size 25mm Objective Lens
Now’s the perfect time to try out a red dot on your new 22. Short range rimfire cartridges work perfectly with a red dot setup. Easily target out to 100 yards with the Bushnell Trophy TRS-25 Red Dot.
You don’t normally picture a red dot on a compact plinking rifle, but times are changing quickly. With red dots dropping considerably in price they’re now affordable enough for a 22. Bushnell’s TRS-25 micro red dot is not only affordable it’s extremely durable. Built to withstand anything you might encounter on a hunt. Durable enough to withstand recoil from 12ga shotgun and small enough to mount on your hunting revolver. This micro red dot really packs a punch.
Not only is this red dot durable it also has a very clear sight picture for the price. Clear and bright, the 25mm lens is perfect for plinking. With multiple illumination settings you can dial in the perfect red reticle for your environment. Easy target acquisition and fast transitions are the main reason people switch to a red dot. Multi-coated amber tinted glass reduces glare while increasing light transmission. For the price it’s going to be hard to beat this micro red dot.
- Value Priced Scope
- Shockproof and Waterproof Housing
- 3-9x40mm Magnification
- Multi-X Reticle
- Excellent in Low Light
Another great product from Bushnell, the Banner Dusk and Dawn rifle scope is both durable and affordable. Bushnell wanted to design a scope that increased brightness without an increase in price. As the name implies the Dusk & Dawn riflescope works best in low ambient light.
Affordably priced, Bushnell designed its Banner scope with the average hunter in mind. Featuring a completely shockproof and waterproof housing and backed by a lifetime warranty. Using quality multi-coated glass optimized for low light environments. When the light is low you’ll always have a bright sight picture. There are a few different magnification options available, but the 3-9x magnification offers the best bang for your buck. You’ll have enough magnification to extend to the outer limits of the 22LR Cartridge. It uses a standard multi-x reticle designed for hunting.
- Extremely Affordable Price
- 3-9x32mm Magnification
- 100% waterproof and shockproof
- Lifetime Warranty
Tailor made for .22 rimfire rifles this Tasco scope is sure to impress. Tasco scopes will bring out your rifles best performance and accuracy. This affordably priced scope is perfect for hunting, plinking or just punching paper targets.
With extremely affordable prices Tasco has long been one of the most popular scope manufacturers around. Backed by lifetime warranties, these little scopes are perfect for your 22. Featuring magenta multi-layered lens coating that provide bright clear images. Backed by a lifetime warranty and built to withstand shock and resist water damage. The 100% waterproof and fogproof housing is almost unheard of in this price range. Multiple magnification levels are available, but the 3-9x magnification offers the most scope for your dollar. You don’t normally see a 32mm lens on a 3-9x magnification scope. The reduction in lens size will cause a noticeable loss of clarity in low light conditions. Even with a slight reduction in brightness, for the price its going to be hard to find many complaints about this neat little scope.
Choosing Ruger 10/22 Optics
One of those guns that everybody seems to have a different idea on how it needs to look. With so many customization options, custom stocks, trigger upgrades, threaded barrels and everything in between. People love to pimp out these little plinking rifles. While its hard to know your exact preferences the following list should set you in the right direction.
- Price: With any optic you are going to have to match the scope to the gun. Ruger’s low price point makes matching scopes a little more difficult. I picked up my first 10/22 for close to $50 bucks at a garage sale and matched it with a $200 scope. Some people would consider that a bit overkill, but I shoot that rifle more than any other gun in the safe. If I had mounted a cheap scope the rifle would probably be sitting in a rifle sock at the back of my safe. Instead its sitting next to my back door waiting for an unlucky possum to enter the chicken coop.
- Magnification: Recommended magnification will depend entirely on your application. With the 22LR bullets short range you won’t need a lot of power to get the job done. Most people prefer a 3-9x magnification on any rifle meant primarily for the range. I like to have a little less magnification on any small game predator rifle. When shooting under 50 yards you can use either a 1x red dot or low magnification scope.
- Objective Lens: As a general rule as you increase the objective lens size the brightness will also increase. Even the best multi-coating in the world can’t make up for a smaller objective lens. It’s simple physics larger openings are going to let in more light. Calculations start to get a little more complicated once you start to factor in magnification levels. As you increase the magnification level you also need to increase the objective lens size. Compact scopes are great in concept, but they often lack brightness necessary to comfortably shoot on overcast days.
- Illuminated Reticles: Illuminated reticles are one way to increase the perceived brightness on dim scopes. Most frequently found on premium scopes to further increase contrast in low light. Recently budget manufacturers have been including illuminated optics to make up for their subpar multi-coated glass.
- Durability: You’d be surprised how important durability is on a plinking rifle. With the low cost of 22LR ammunition you’ll be surprised how often you bring out your 10/22. I make more excuses to go shooting with this little rifle than I’d care to admit. You’ll definitely get your moneys worth with any moderately priced scope. When looking for durability make sure that the scope is shockproof and waterproof. You might not think that your scope will ever get wet, but water has a way of finding its way in. Budget scopes left in basement safes are notorious for getting condensation under the glass.