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Offline TexasRedNeck

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Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« on: June 03, 2020, 08:23:09 PM »
Guys I’ve been wanting to look at thermal weapon sights. Having earmarked some funds for taxes that I won’t have to spend I’m going to get serious about it.  Looking for experienced recommendations and things to look out for.

Intended use: pig hunting
Weapon system: AR platform 5.56/3.08
Requirements: some method of range finding
Don’t care: video recording, pictures, WiFi etc.

I want something rugged and reliable and with good resolution

Thoughts?


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Offline stlaser

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2020, 08:47:47 PM »
I’ll hit Ashley up, he purchased something recently for same thing.....
trying to find new ways to annoy Ken

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2020, 09:05:43 PM »
I covered the unit I have in one of these threads let me see if I can find that again

Offline TexasRedNeck

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2020, 09:57:21 PM »
Thanks guys. Looking at Trijicon at the moment. I’m going to catch crap from the HH6 it might as well be worth the pain


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Kids today don't know how easy they have it. When I was young, I had to walk 9 feet through shag carpet to change the TV channel.

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Offline wyorunner

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2020, 01:43:26 AM »
Thanks guys. Looking at Trijicon at the moment. I’m going to catch crap from the HH6 it might as well be worth the pain


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Can’t you just buy two, so she has her own? Sure they’re spendy, but the buying in pairs thing has always been happily received in our house hold.

I looked into one of the FLIR units when we were up against and endless supply of garden destroying jack rabbits. Never ended up picking one up though.

Offline Armalite

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2020, 09:44:47 AM »
What's up Redneck?  I can give you some personal experience that I have with my thermal and other thermals that I've used.  After that, I will give you the name/number to the man you need to call that will tell you every detail you want to know.  You tell him what you are looking for and he will narrow down the scope that fits your wants. 

I've been running the Pulsar Trail XP50.  I absolutely love it.  Pulsar no longer makes the Pulsar Trail model that I have because they upgraded them to the  Trail LRF which has a built in laser range finder. 

In my experience, I have not needed/desired range finding capabilities.  In the Pulsar Trail models, you are paying an extra $1k for that option.  If you were in the Midwest or out East where you could see 1,000 yards in multiple directions, then yeah, I would see the advantage.  Around East Tx, and especially for pigs, you will find that it will not be an asset for you.  Most of my fields I hunt are not new to me.  They are places I know and have been on for years.  So I know how far the tree line is from any given point, or how far a waypoint is.  I'm able to reference those areas and get a really close estimate to how far the target is away from me. 

Another thing, with pigs, as long as you have the wind in your favor, you can walk right up to them at night.  Obviously check the moon and try to stay in the shadows, but you can literally walk up to within 20-40 yards of them.  Do you really need a range finder when you are shooting from 40 yards??

In my opinion, Pulsar makes the best "bang for your buck" if you will.  They offer great resolution, all the options you listed below, and are in a great price range.  They also have great battery life. 

You mentioned the Trijicon.  Hands down, they have the best viewing capabilities.  But, they have a lot of down sides.  First is the price!!  Enough said...  They use CR123A batteries and have poor battery life.  Constantly buying batteries and replacing them.  They do not have recording options either.  So, if you go Trijicon, you will want to buy an external battery pack to plug in and mount on your gun, and you will want a mini hdvr to be able to record, if you wanted to record.  Again, just my opinion, your paying a lot of money for a thermal that has the best viewing ability, but it's definitely not light years ahead of Pulsar.  Again, if you were in the Midwest where you could sit on a hill top and see a mile in every direction, ok, maybe you could justify the Trijicon.  Around east texas, I would not recommend spending that kind of money.  It will be over kill. 

If you wanted a high end, look at the N-halo scope.  It is about $1k under the trijicon, but has the same core processor I believe, so it has the same viewing capabilities.  But, like trijicon, no battery packs.  So your back to mounting an external battery pack for extended life...

If I were to go buy a brand new thermal right now, I would get a Pulsar Thermion.  Check them out. 

Please keep one thing in mind, the most important thing I believe.  Base magnification!!!  My Trail is like a 1.8 base magnification.  That's at 640 resolution.  For pigs, and east tx, you do not want to go much over a 2.5 base magnification in my opinion.  You lose so much field of view.  All the thermals have the ability to zoom, but every time you zoom, you cut the resolution in half.  So, your base magnification is your highest resolution.  I only zoom mine in when trying to identify something a long ways off.  After that, I leave it on base mag.  The lower the base mag, the wider the field of view you will have.  When you are 40 yards from a large group, like the video I will attach below, you definitely do not want a high base magnification, because you will not be able to see the full view, and when they scatter, it's harder to get the full picture. 

One thing you will notice in the videos that only Pulsar offers is the Picture in Picture option.  You will see a small screen pop up on my large screen that is automatically zoomed in.  I will use it for my first shot, then focus on my big screen for multiple shots.

These are all my opinions of course, and everyone is partial to what works for them.

Here is the best information I can give you below:

Check out the podcast called "The Late Night Vision Show".  It's two guys, one of them is Jason, the owner of Outdoor Legacy Gear, in Nacogdoches, Tx.  He has been in this thermal game since they came out.  He is a country guy, Texas through and through, and he uses and reviews every single thermal on the market.  Him and his hunting partner have about 109 episodes out right now on just thermals.  I learned a ton of information by just listening to them.  Check it out. 

The best move you can make is to just call Jason direct.  877-350-1818.  You will get his office admin, and she will take a message or transfer you over to Jason.  He runs this business from his home, and farms during the day.  But he will call you back and you can tell him where you hunt, what you are hunting, and what options you want, and he will give you about 1-2 thermals to pick from that will do everything you have requested.

Offline Armalite

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2020, 09:48:44 AM »
This video is of a pair of coyotes I called in.  I prefer to search with white hot, then swap over to black hot when ready to shoot...

Offline Armalite

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2020, 09:55:14 AM »
This video is a group of pigs in my neighbors pasture.  They were about 35-40 yards from my wife and myself.  One thing about Pulsar, you can wifi, yes it's wifi, not Bluetooth, a cell phone to the thermal.  So, she was watching my phone and seeing everything I was seeing through my thermal.  The skunk was about 10 yards, which is the reason I decided not to get any closer.  I had 4 confirmed kills laying in pasture after shooting.  There were multiple hits on the others, but I didn't care to go look...

Offline Armalite

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2020, 09:59:24 AM »
This is just a cool video off my backporch.  Literally, I walked 5 steps off my porch and this was the deer in the pasture across my pond.  For reference, the closest group is about 120 yards away, and the furthest group was about 250 yards away.

Offline Armalite

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2020, 10:06:25 AM »
Now you are going to wonder what weapon to mount this thermal on...  Again, I'm only giving you my opinion from experience...

I run a 6.5 Grendel.  I feel that is the perfect round/combo for East Texas.  This gun/thermal gets heavy when you are doing a lot of walking.  Trust me.  So save weight everywhere you can.  The 6.5 is plenty big enough to drop a hog in it's tracks, and it will reach out and touch a coyote at long distance.  We hunted a 4 day tournament this past spring.  We won the largest coyote category.  My partner killed him, using his 6.5 Grendel, at 350 yards, on a dead run.  The coyote was running away from us, but he finally got one in him.  Out to 200 yards, hold the crosshairs on what you want to hit, and odds are you will hit.  We shot a few hogs, on the run, in Oklahoma, that were between 270-320 yards away.  Had to have a little hold over and lead because they were running, but we dropped 2 out of 3.  All running 6.5 Grendel.

I tried with my .223, and it just isn't a large enough round to drop a large hog.

.300blk, works, out to 100-125 yards.  Once you get past that, it's a dang toss up.  One of my other partners runs a .300blk, and he can definitely hurt something out to 125 yards.  If it's out at 200, he wont even try it.

Again though, if you are after pigs only, and most of the shots are 100 yards and less, the 6.5 Grendel or .300blk will be sufficient.  I just want the insurance on the 200 yard plus shots, and the 6.5 Grendel will make that happen...


Attached are a picture of my Grendel, and my black Armalite with suppressor...
« Last Edit: June 04, 2020, 10:09:04 AM by Armalite »

Offline Armalite

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2020, 10:09:55 AM »
I know I'm skipping over several things, but feel free to ask away and I'll give you my opinions...

Offline TexasRedNeck

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Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2020, 11:41:45 AM »
Wow Ash. Thank you. Good stuff. I’m processing.  Glad there is a guy locally.

Initially I’ll probably run my noveske AR-10 with the THunderbeast 30P1.  I don’t do a lot of walking here but I’m used to humping a 15lb precision bolt gun for longer range work.

I’ve resisted adding calibers to the repertoire but I’m doing some cogitating on the 300blk for a pistol and now you have me thinking about the 6.5grendel


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Offline Bear9350

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2020, 12:11:55 PM »
I'm surprised 6.5 Grendal isn't more prevalent.  It seems like it would be a great hunting round for most anything up to and including deer beyond a distance most people are taking shots at. 

Offline JR

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2020, 09:58:07 PM »
When I was looking (no first hand exp) the Pulsar kept coming up with all the features and price.

Now to watch the videos!
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Offline TexasRedNeck

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2020, 09:17:11 PM »
Still researching, but after listening to a few podcasts and reviews on youtube, I’m leaning towards the Nvision Halo LR.  Will reach out to Jason and chat


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Kids today don't know how easy they have it. When I was young, I had to walk 9 feet through shag carpet to change the TV channel.

Joshua 6:20-24

Offline JR

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Re: Thermal Weapon Sight Recommendation
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2020, 04:06:00 PM »
Never heard of em. Nice looking scope, lots of cool features and you pay for em.
Retired LEO  Lifetime NRA+  Outcast in Calif

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants"

Thomas Jefferson