By Michael Deming
Every year, the industry trade shows open their doors to share all the latest and greatest products available for the upcoming season. Usually there are some that have a cool factor and some of them are products a lot of us would like to have. However, there is seldom something that comes along that has the ability to revolutionize the way we have done something for most of our life. An example of this would be the invention of the internet. I can’t imagine life without the internet and when I tell my children that we used to actually look stuff up at the library, they reaffirm just how old I am. Changes like these are talked about for lifetimes and Sig Sauer’s launch of the BDX system has the ability to be this powerful to the hunting market.
Nearly all of us carry a rangefinder as well as have a riflescope. Some of us are well trained, long- range shooters and some of us still utilize good old-fashioned Arkansas windage/holdover in hope we hit that target that is out past our zero. Most people have a decent idea of the ballistics of their rifle out to about 400 yards. In other words, “hold just over the top of that bucks back and let ‘er rip”, is something I’ve heard way too much of over the last 20 years. The definition of just over the back leaves a lot to translation.
Sig Sauer’s Electro-Optics division has developed a family of products which can eliminate this problem for all hunters without breaking the bank. Imagine you are sizing up the buck of a lifetime with your riflescope, with your good buddy by your side, ready to give you the range. You are nice and settled in behind the rifle and this buck is big. He is 30” plus and has points coming from everywhere. However, your good buddy gathers the range data on three different times and each time, it is hitting 520 yards. The wind is dead calm and the buck has no idea that you are anywhere in the country. Unfortunately, there is a big canyon between you and him and there is no way to get closer. You don’t shoot enough to have gotten a custom turret for your scope and you just don’t like messing with the dials. You know the exact yardage, but the holdover is a guess and you have about a 12” kill zone on the buck of a lifetime.
Now just think, if you could just hit that range button and the crosshairs were right where you needed them to be, you could take the guesswork out of this stressful situation. That exact product is what we are talking about here and ready for you to use.
I had the opportunity to field test a prototype of this product on a west Texas Aoudad hunt this spring. We were hunting with the President of the Electro-Optics Division, Andy York. He had brought down a completely setup Sig Sauer rifle, in 6.5 Creedmoor, with this setup ready to go. He also brought a scope and rangefinder which had been paired and ready. All we needed to do was plug in my ballistic data; muzzle velocity, bullet b.c., length of bullet, etc. and we would be good to go.
We set up 24” steel targets from 300 yards out to 800 yards at varying distances. With one person behind the rifle and another person gathering ranges, we were able to run the whole course in less than a minute for five different targets. Once we hit the range button on the rangefinder, it transmitted the appropriate holdover and lit up one of 76 different hold marks within the riflescope. The results were quick, accurate and unbelievable. Every shot was right on target, which meant that the ballistic data as well as the exchange of this corrected data to the riflescope was complete. It totally took the guesswork out of where to hold and better yet, it eliminated the need to adjust the turret. This reduction in time and steps could be the difference between filling a tag or going home empty handed.
Andy held an Aoudad tag in his pocket for this hunt and since the range work was perfect, we couldn’t wait to get into the field where we could put this setup to the test. It didn’t take long to find a shooter ram and we closed the gap to right at 300 yards. We were shooting cross-canyon at a fairly steep angle and the wind was very gusty. When Andy squeezed the trigger, the shot hit very forward on the broadside sheep, as we had misread the wind. The big ram whirled and started heading downhill and was getting further away with every step. The guide was continually ranging and once the ram slowed, Andy’s scope had gotten corrected data for the longer yardage and now compensated for more wind than the first shot. He made a fatal shot. The entire setup had proven itself once again. Had we been required to adjust the turret, this added time would have put the ram out of sight and our job of tracking would have begun.
Nearly everyone that spends a lot of time in the field knows that they need a rangefinder as well as a riflescope and why not make it a Sig Sauer Electro-Optics BDX. The rangefinders look identical to the previous versions of these Sig rangefinders and process data just as quick. You would think this added technology would increase the price, but this isn’t the case. The rangefinders will be available in the KILO1400BDX, KILO1800BDX, KILO2200BDX, KILO2400BDX and KILO3000BDX. The SIERRA3BDX riflescopes will be available in 3.5-10X42, 4.5-14X44 and 6.5-20X52. Rangefinders will start at $299.99 MSRP and riflescopes will be $599.99 MSRP.