As has already been pointed out by some eagle eyed optics afficionados, Armament just went public with their new optics venture, called SAI.
Armament technologies is best know for distributing Elcan and Tangent Theta products. They do not make Elcan scopes, but Tangent Theta is effectively a part of Armament. Tangent Theta scopes are made entirely in Canada, in-house, so to speak, but they have been looking at a way to bring something not quite as expensive to the market for a little while now. They already market a small red dot sight under their XOPTEK brand and now they are adding another brand, called SAI, to have a range of good quality mid-range magnified riflescopes.
It has been in the works for a little while, but the official announcement was only yesterday:
I've known that they are doing this and the kind of scope it is going to be for a little while, but I did not have any specs. I also have not seen one in person, but I plan to test a production unit shortly.
There are several things that stand out so far given a rather cursory look I have taken.
For a FFP Japanese-made LPVO, it is pretty light at 18 ounces. Most of the competition is in the 20 to 25 ounce range, so that's pretty good.
The scope will come with Tenebraex caps and ready for other Tenebraex accessories: filters, killflashes, etc. That's a nice thing. I have an intense dislike for most cheap scope caps, so if you add them, use nice ones. Otherwise, a neoprene cover is all I need.
The packaging is generally well thought out: there is a lanyard that makes the turret caps captive. Illumination dial has alternating ON/OFF position
One of the more interesting features is the reticle.
It has their RAF (Rapid Aiming Feature) that looks to be an evolution of a design they used in a now discontinued Elcan ATOS 3x. I used that scope for a while and then gave it to my brother who still uses it. Once I get the SAI 6 here, I will do some through the scope features with both.
The main idea here is that instead of a horseshoe/circle, the reticle has four prominent bullet-shaped structures pointing at the center of the reticle in a roughly X configuration except the X is on its side.
They are not illuminated, so in low light they are not distracting. Some of the thin lines are illuminated in the center, primarily to aid in low light.
The idea behind this configuration is to provide very visible reticle features on 1x that are out of the way as you soon as you zoom in (common complaint with thick horseshoe type designs).
The way RAF features are spaced out, they give you quick rangefinding on a man size target" horizontal spacing is roughly a man's torso at 100 meters. At 25 meters, it is the spacing between horizontal bars that gives you the same quick range.
Below the primary aiming point (a small cross) there is a BDC tree that takes you out to 800 meters and accounts for wind as well as drop for 5.56x45, presumably NATO load.
On the bottom left is a fairly standard choke-style rangefinder.
Generally, the way the reticle and the scope are configured, I would not be surprised if they are going for some military tender in Canada or elsewhere.
In the US, it will go against Sig Tango6t and a few other similar designs.
I am really curious how it will do once I get my hands on it.
I gave it a couple of days and figured it is time to do a live show on intermediate magnifications in LPVOs and a couple of other updates.
I am budgeting 30-45 minutes for this, but it might go to a full hour depending on how it goes.
I'd like to do a quick overview of how the hog hunt went, the gear I was looking at and why I love doing this stuff.
Let's aim for tomorrow (Tuesday, October 12th) at noon Mountain Time.
Here is the wrap up of the Steiner M1050r LRF bincoulars that I have been playing with for a quite a while now.
Observation optics is a pretty involved subject as is, further complicated by the fact that most observation optics are not made for shooters. Here is a live show I did on observation optics that touches on this:
This binocular is decidedly not intended for birders. As the name implies, it is squarely aimed at military and law enforcement applications. It is a very competent overall design, but there is a feature that is sorely missing.
Let me know what you think once you watch the video. The binocular in question is the Steiner Military 10x50r LRF: https://bit.ly/2WA88hY
It is a solid design overall with excellent optics and good LRF performance. There is, however, one critical feature missing.
The registration for SHOT 2022 is finally open and I am in the process of making something resembling a schedule for it. The way it usually works, I make a detailed schedule and it goes to hell in a handbasket eight minutes after the show starts. Still, I have to make plans.
Interestingly, the Safari International event is in Las Vegas this year and overlapping with SHOT.
SHOT is Tuesday through Friday and SCI is Wednesday through Saturday.
I normally do not go to SCI given that it is more of a hunting oriented event. However, given that I am gearing up for my4th hunt this year (aoudad sheep in April, spring black bear in Alaska in June, hogs in Texas two weeks ago and New Mexico elk coming up in December), I can no longer say that I am not really a hunter with any sort of honesty.
I may not be a good hunter, but I am a hunter. Apparently.
With all that, I may be able to sneak over to the SCI show on Saturday. I always run out of time at SHOT, so I doubt I will be able to give up...
Folks, I am going to do another livecast tomorrow focusing on LPVOs and FIxed Power scopes when both are equipped with an offset RDS.
Matt of Everyday Marksman and Jacob of Pro-gun Millenial will join me tomorrow.
Yesterday's livecast, once we got done with the original topic of discussion veered a little bit toward other aspects of shooting quickly with conventional riflescopes and the topic of OEGs (Occluded Eye Gunsights) came up. I figured that I should probably write a short article on how they work when I realized that I already have and that Guns and Ammo makes this one available online.
It went into the 2019 Retro issue when they asked to write a little bit about OEGs since they were famously used in the Son-Tay raid.
It did make me want to re-visit the subject, so I pinged the good folks at Armson USA to see if I can borrow a modern OEG form them and go over the subject in more detail.