Burris 2-7x32mm Handgun Scopes: Tough and Field Ready

Recently I reviewed Burris’ Scout Scope on the new Marlin 1895 SBL in 45-70 Government. Next up are their 2-7x32mm handgun scopes with the Plex and Ballistic Plex reticles. These scopes are compact, lightweight, and appear to be equally tough and field ready.

Burris Handgun Scopes are available with Plex or Ballistic Plex Reticles with
Burris Handgun Scopes are available with Plex or Ballistic Plex Reticles.

The Scopes

Each Burris handgun scope I used is 2-7x32mm with one-inch tubes. One scope contains the Plex reticle, which is basically a duplex-style reticle and the other utilizes the Ballistic Plex reticle that has the added hash marks on the vertical cross wire. These hash marks can be tested out on the appropriate shooting range to aid the shooter with making shots at longer ranges by providing some aiming points for elevation. Burris has charts available on their website and with the User Guide that is provided with the scope. It’s one of those things you will need to prove-out on your own as cartridge and load variables will come into play, along with climate and elevation for a given area as well.

Uses for 2-7X Handgun Scopes

Some might argue that you can get all your handgun hunting done with a, (insert number here, 1X, 4X, etc.) power scope. I think when speaking in very general terms that can be true, but there are always exceptions. What we are hunting is a big factor. One can get away with a lower-powered scope for say, elk and deer, while the prairie dog sniper might feel disadvantaged by the same optic. Most likely I could rig my hunting rifles with straight 6X scopes for the majority of the hunting I do.

Recalling many previous hunts, I think I would be safe to say most animals taken have probably averaged a distance of 200 yards or less. I prefer “less” and always try to get as close as possible before making a shot to ensure a certain, humane kill on the game I am hunting. However, the low-powered scope settings are invaluable for close, low light, or shots at running game. The running game part is limited in much of our hunting situations, but possible and could be necessary in instances of tracking up a wounded animal. I admit, a shot at running game with a scoped handgun would be a bit ambitious on my part!

Burris Handgun Scope mounted on a Remington XP-100
The 2-7 Burris is light and compact, a great fit on a hunting handgun.

The variable scope lends itself to more versatility on the hunting field. Case in point, late last spring I set out to handgun an aoudad ram with my Remington XP-100 in 308 Winchester. The day I planned for my solo hunt could not have been more perfectly scripted. A herd of aoudad was spotted on a hillside to the west from several hundred yards distant as the morning sun rose, painting the desert mountains in its warming glow. I patiently watched the feeding pattern of the herd, carefully planned my stalk, and intercepted the browsing sheep as they went about their daily rituals, totally unaware of my presence. I rested the scoped handgun on my pack on top of a huge boulder as the biggest ram in the herd walked out broadside and momentarily stopped at a bit over 200 yards.

It was at that moment I realized the straight 2X scope didn’t have quite enough magnification for me to guarantee a perfect shot on the ram and I had to let him go. I am quite certain my story would have been different had I had the 2-7 Burris mounted on my gun that day! A simple increase in magnification would have given me the enhanced sight picture I needed to confidently make the shot from my steady hillside rest.

Range Time

The best way I figured to test these handgun scopes was to mount them on a gun with a bit of recoil to make sure they would hold up. I planned to mount one on my T/C Contender in 375 Winchester and the other on my Remington XP-100 in 35 Remington. Well, you know how plans go. A broken ring screw on the 375 knocked it out of the race for the time being, so I used the 35 Remington as the test gun and simply swapped the scopes out.

The XP-100 chambered in 35 Remington in recoil
The 35 Remington generates moderate recoil, and the Burris Handgun Scope is up to the challenge.

As you can see from the photo, the 35 Remington generates some recoil in a handgun platform. Less than some, more than others. The “Fifth Edition of Ammo & Ballistics” rates the 35 Remington at a Relative Recoil Factor of 1.87. By comparison, the 270 Winchester rates 1.82. These Burris scopes have shown no issues in maintaining their zero. During sight-in they have tracked well. They have given every indication that they are quite up to the task of providing hand-gunners with fine, quality optics to meet whatever needs they have.

Burris backs their scopes with a lifetime guarantee. I find great comfort in using gear that is company-backed like that.  

Shane Jahn is a freelance writer whose firearms interests encompass revolvers, lever actions, Ruger No. 1s, and traditional rifles. He is an avid outdoorsman and hunter and enjoys taking these types of guns to the field. He is a former firearms instructor and has been a lawman on the U.S./Mexico border for over twenty years.

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