Rimfire Central Firearm Forum banner

Need help in trying to scope a new Winchester 52 B repro

3297 Views 74 Replies 17 Participants Last post by  budrichard
I have this model 52 for close to 20 years and have never shot it. I now wish to turn it into a 95% target gun, 5%hunting. Looking to shoot everywhere between 25-30 yards and long range & silhouette. Mostly 50 & 100 bench to see how far she will go. Bought a Hawke 6-24x56 30 SF thinking she would go on it but after looking it over it looks like it may not work, but if it does will need a serious cheek rest pad. I know the bolt handle issue is a problem on these but once I started the process I had no idea of just how frustrating
it was going to be. If..... if the scope doesn't work out on this gun it's really no big deal as I wish to get another high end .22 for strictly target and most of them come with the 60% handle. I am looking to mount a tactical variable scope with as much magnification as I can get (26-36) with focus & parallax down to the 25-30 yard range if possible and all the other bells and whistles (return to zero, locking, (lite reticle if option) if possible, great glass) I would say $1000 would be my limit.

The Hawke in the picture has a 30mm tube and front 56mm objective which clears the barrel by about a 1/4" with the burris bases and 8 glued pennies atop... but the bolt handle is VERY close and tough to see if she'll actually clear the bolt to use. SK was going to make the split bases and rings for this gun but when I sent him the pic she stated "won't work, get a different scope". Actually this setup "might" clear as is and I would just have to use a cheek rest pad as she is high but not sure if having like this is a realistic look/approach. (opinions pls) Just for reference the 8 glued pennies are .450 in hight. Owner at SK told me to do the penny trick and let him know as he can determine height by # of pennies. If I did go with SK then I would have to remove the burris bases. If things work out would SK be a good option for bases & rings or just stick with burris and ??
So, I'm not really sure what to do. Since this Hawke has a 30mm tube does that mean I must switch back to a 1" tube as I would assume it would have a smaller ocular lense which is really where the problem arises. Do they make other high magnification scopes with 30mm tubes like above that have a smaller ocular lense ? Granted the 56mm objective on current scope is big but she clears by 1/4 but if I had to downsize that end of the scope to get things to fit I would.

I just don't know who how much of a scope I can put on her to get her to clear the bolt handle and barrel.

If setting this scope up this high (like in pic) works should I go with it or does it look out of place ? It's really just the rubber ring on the ocular end of the scope that is close, not the tube. If it weren't for those rubber turning knobs the scope tube would clear easily and could be dropped down somewhat.

(lastest picture) I JUST MOVED THE SCOPE AS FAR FORWARD AS I THOUGHT THE RINGS WOULD ALLOW AND MAYBE THE BOLT HANDLE WILL CLEAR THE RUBBER KNOBS AND POSSIBLY ALLOW THE SCOPE TO DROP A SMALL BIT. Would anyone happen to know what rings (heigh) might work for the burris bases I have. I would like to get and assemble to see if my problem is not longer a problem.

Does anyone have any specific scopes they feel might better help the above problem. Would love to put a scope on her with the specs like the one I have ..... I just don't know
if it's possible.

I sure hope someone can help me.
Hand Air gun Gesture Trigger Shotgun


See less See more
1 - 15 of 75 Posts
Keep in mind you can move the scope back just to the point where the ocular or power ring does not interfere with the bolt retracting (it appears that scope would not present a problem mounted back a bit). You would likely have to remove the scope to remove the bolt for cleaning, but that's why they make bore snakes. I think I would rather do that than have the scope perched up there like it's on stilts...but that's me. I did just that on a full stock repro build awhile back.

P.S. Upon further examination, your front scope base will not allow you to move the scope back, unless you use an offset rotary dovetail ring. Not impossible
The problem will be finding front and rear 30mm rings for a rotary dovetail that are offset enough and high enough. But there are more ways to skin a cat. You can also jettison those bases and use some nice steel Weaver-style Warne bases for more ring options, or you can use the Talley bases, which will open up more fore and aft options. I ended up making bases to get the scope down as much as possible and using Talley rings.
S&K is an excellent option, and they will make just what you need. They're just a bit spendy, but not really much in the overall scheme of things.
Okay, so, that front scope base, with the rotary dovetail hole hanging out in front of the receiver ring, you can see how a ring installed there will require the scope to be moved forward for the bell to clear, and by so doing, that fat ocular is right over where the bolt handle needs to move, just the opposite of what I was suggesting. When those bases were made, having the front ring forward of the receiver was a desirable thing, because scopes were longer then. This presents a problem with the shorter, fatter scopes of today. The Weaver bases do not extend forward and can usually be flipped to give a bit more mounting latitude fore and aft. Additionally, there are myriad 30mm rings available in myriad heights to allow you to fine tune the fit of the scope. A picatinny rail would have even more fore and aft latitude, but most of the rings that fit the Weaver and picatinny rail are butt ugly and very massive looking, as is a picatinny rail itself. Still, mounting that scope rather defeats any hope of aesthetics anyway...understanding beauty is in the eye of the beholder :D.

The Talleys will have far fewer options, but they will look better and provide a bit of fore and aft latitude.

Your penny spacers are perfect for determining the minimum height of ring and base you can use with that scope. They will also give you the dimensions you need to provide S&K, if you go that route. S&K can make different height bases and rings, so you'll have to mix and match to determine what looks best to you: more base height or more height in the rings. Keep in mind that the S&K uses one-piece, projection-less rings that are very sexy, but that look might not really match that scope. Here are some on a petite 1885:
Trigger Air gun Shotgun Optical instrument Wood

I also built a 52 Sporter with an original 52C action and stock with a Lilja barrel and faced a similar problem trying to mount a scope as low as possible but still clearing the 48F rear sight. If I removed the sight, I knew it would become lost when I'm gone. I went with steel Warne Weaver-style bases, and experimented with various ring heights, finally settling on these gloss Burris rings. I even used the offset inserts feature in these rings to gain that very last bit of lowering. You can see the ocular clears by mere thousandths of an inch:
Wood Trigger Shotgun Bottle Machine gun

Street light Wood Tree Snow Trunk

I went with the 4-12x50mm Leupold to try to avoid the scope looking so highly perched over the rifle. If that were a 40mm objective, it would look even sillier. As it stands, I'm very pleased with this.

FWIW, the nicest looking Weaver style rings I was able to find were some made by Vortex. Most Vortex rings are chunky, faceted beasts completely out of place on a sporter, but these look rather sleek (not sure they are available in 30mm):

These look pretty nice also:
See less See more
For a quick and dirty, I would say that cheap Weaver bases and extra high 30mm Weaver-style rings will get you there. That will get you shooting, and you can tweak from there. "Extra high" varies from maker to maker, so measure the height from the receiver top to the scope bottom, with your pennies there, and you should be able to determine the ring dimension you need with standard Weaver bases. There are literally hundreds of 30mm Weaver-style rings out there, and they are usually pretty cheap, so trial and error shouldn't cost much.

I would think S&K would be able to fix you up, if you tell them you are committed to use that scope.
No confusion. I think most of us agree with matching scope to rifle. I don’t even use 30mm scopes; they just look wrong. But even my not-so subtle digs have not dissuaded the OP :D., so I’ve just tried to offer solutions.
  • Like
Reactions: 2
They are the same. "R" stands for "repro" or some call them "reissue", but they are the Miroku-made 52 sporters from Japan. The earlier Browning marked versions had the "C" -style of stock, but the barreled actions are about the same, with minor differences in barrel contour and with or without the barrel screw. Identical actions except markings.
  • Like
Reactions: 1
Or, make some shims to place under the bases to gain that last bit of needed height. Don't worry about how the shims will look at first; just make some out of aluminum can material and stack them until you get a feel for how thick the shims need to be with the ring tops clamped down tight. Then you can make some permanent ones. Did you try two offset inserts, front and back, to raise the scope? Might be enough, since you're close. And, I agree, they don't look freakishly tall to me.
I would say the only strike against that scope might be the minimum parallax-free distance. I'm guessing it is only 50 yards. Now, if you really are going to be always shooting beyond that distance, it's not an issue. Also, even if the minimum is 50 yards, it will no doubt focus closer up on the lower power settings and probably show little or no parallax. Still, if you're going to buy a scope, you should get exactly what you want. Finally, I assume you have taken this into account, but the centerline on a 1" scope will sit lower on the rifle, all else equal, though the rings may compensate for that.
It’s a long shot, but the hole spacing on the repros is the same as the original 52E. Increasing the search parameters may produce an old set of bases. Also, as mentioned, some Talley bases with extra high Talley rings might be your ticket.
There's no doubt you can get there with Weaver-style bases and rings. Take the opportunity now to get precise measurements (top of receiver to bottom of scope) while it's mounted on there. That should allow you to size the Weaver-style bits.

FWIW, all of the Talley rings use a 3/8" dovetail, not just those denoted as rimfire rings. The rings used for "cwenterfire" applications have a flared, wider base, fore and aft, some with levers, but they will work.

P.S. One advantage of the S&Ks is they will be a truly gloss finish and match the repro. The Talley "gloss" option isn't a very good gloss, frankly.
That's based upon the fact bases are every where, and rings are available in freakishly tall figurations, some much taller than what you are now using. Keep in mind I never said they would look good...in fact, I think I warned they would not.
For Weaver bases, it looks like you need two 48085 bases:

These are just a few tall rings from Amazon. You'll need to look at specs to fine tune which will be the closest fit.:
Automotive tire Tire Light Product Automotive lighting
Automotive tire Automotive design Mammal Automotive exterior Font
Material property Font Circle Auto part Automotive wheel system
Output device Camera accessory Font Electronic device Gadget

Some are even adjustable:
Tire Automotive tire Automotive lighting Product Rim


See less See more
I would just get two of these. The Browning is the same as the Winchester, both Miroku rifles:
Given the height of these, they will no doubt get you shooting:
On the other hand, the adjustable ones would allow tuning, and they are just as ugly:
Tire Automotive tire Automotive lighting Product Rim
See less See more
Another less ugly option, if you decide to go with a 1" Leupold scope, is using the standard Weaver 48085 bases and these Weaver rings. They are pretty massive, all-steel rings, but there is no doubt they will clear your bolt handle with a Leupold in place. I'll give them to you if you send me a few bucks for postage:
Camera accessory Camera lens Cameras & optics Reflex camera Film camera
Reflex camera Camera accessory Camera lens Digital camera Cameras & optics

Air gun Machine gun Trigger Wood Gun barrel
See less See more
  • Like
Reactions: 2
Okay, here's your magic number. IF you go with a 1" Leupold with the standard 1.56" diameter ocular, the bases and rings must place the bottom of the scope tube (the 1" portion) at least .655" above the top of the receiver for the bolt handle to clear the ocular. Just a few thousandths less, and it will touch.
1 - 15 of 75 Posts