Short Story

Phill Price looks through an­other new model from Dis­cov­ery Op­tics

Airgun World - - Contents -

Phill Price tries out a shorter, more com­pact scope from Dis­cov­ery

Dis­cov­ery Op­tics seems to be a grow­ing brand here in the UK, with an ev­er­ex­pand­ing cat­a­logue. I think it’s fair to say that it’s de­fined by what you might call long-range, tac­ti­cal-style scopes, crammed with fea­tures de­signed to help hit dis­tant tar­gets. Big mag­ni­fi­ca­tion and big lenses are all well and good on the range, but what about the hunter on foot who doesn’t want to be bur­dened by ex­cess weight? With this in mind, I no­ticed the new VT-3 model on the Dis­cov­ery web­site which stood out sharply in con­trast to the other mod­els in the range. It’s very short at just 10” and weighs just over a pound, mas­sively less than its sta­ble­mates. Dis­cov­ery UK told me that they felt it was the ideal op­tic for the cur­rent taste in bullpups that seems to have swept the air­gun scene.

Al­though it’s quite small, it still has a 30mm body tube, and tall ex­posed windage and el­e­va­tion ad­justers, so it has a bulky feel and on a light­weight car­bine like the Weihrauch HW110K pic­tured it looked chunky. It seems Dis­cov­ery China team en­joys its milling ma­chines and they love to add a slot here and there, or in this case, some holes to add some vis­ual ap­peal to their prod­ucts. If you look at the windage and el­e­va­tion drums you’ll see they’ve been drilled pep­per-pot style and a bright red ‘O’ ring fit­ted in­side each hole. I don’t think they do any­thing: they’re just there for fun.

The chunky drums lift to un­lock the mech­a­nism and move with dis­tinct and au­di­ble clicks, just as they should in this ap­pli­ca­tion. If you like to ‘dial’ your windage and range cor­rec­tions you’ll en­joy th­ese. A quick press down locks them se­curely again so that your zero can­not be ac­ci­den­tally af­fected.


On the left of the cen­tral sad­dle you find the side-wheel par­al­lax ad­juster which is marked from 10-yards to in­fin­ity, show­ing it air­gun use cre­den­tials. This moved with a smooth and well-weighted ac­tion that was very pleas­ing. In front of the 44mm ob­jec­tive lens is a hon­ey­comb-style re­flec­tion hider, as used by mil­i­tary snipers to avoid giv­ing away their lo­ca­tion. Again, I’m sure this is just there for fun and it can be sim­ply un­screwed if you pre­fer to use the scope with­out it.

The VT-3 em­ploys a ret­i­cle that’s typ­i­cal of the Dis­cov­ery range in that it’s ex­tremely fine and loaded with ad­di­tional aim points to as­sist you with hold cor­rec­tions. I’ll let the pic­ture ex­plain just how de­tailed it is rather than try­ing to ex­plain it here. In keep­ing with the lat­est trend, it in the first fo­cal plane, mean­ing that the rel­a­tive dis­tances be­tween the aim points re­main the same no mat­ter the mag­ni­fi­ca­tion you se­lect. It also means that the ret­i­cle ap­pears to change size as you zoom, which is odd if you’re not used to it. At my cho­sen hunt­ing mag­ni­fi­ca­tion, 7x, I found it rather hard to find in low light, and as this is not an il­lu­mi­nated model, some­thing of a chal­lenge. In­creas­ing the mag’ to 10x made it bolder at the ex­pense of a nar­rowed field of view.

Dis­cov­ery fully multi-coats all the lens

sur­faces for max­i­mum light trans­mis­sion and I found the im­age bright and clear dur­ing my time with the scope. They’re also proud that their prod­ucts are shock re­sis­tant and fully wa­ter­proof, so there should be no wor­ries about fail­ures in hard con­di­tions. Flip-up lens cov­ers are sup­plied and whilst the front one worked well, the rear one was a poor fit and re­fused to stay in place.


I found the im­age qual­ity good and low light per­for­mance also quite ac­cept­able. This proves the point that you don’t al­ways need a 50 or 56mm ob­jec­tive lens, even if they are be­com­ing the norm th­ese days. The Weihrauch HW110 is a sen­si­ble weight for a hunt­ing ri­fle and de­serves a scope to com­ple­ment it, and I felt that the VT-3 was a good fit. Too much weight up high on a sporter spoils the han­dling, so choos­ing care­fully is im­por­tant.

Such short body scopes can present a chal­lenge be­cause there’s less room to ad­just the mounts back­wards and for­wards to get ex­actly the fit you need. This can be­come crit­i­cal on pre-charged guns with mag­a­zines that pro­trude above the scope rail. In the past, I’ve found this quite a dif­fi­cult to over­come on some guns, so some care­ful re­search will need to be done be­fore com­mit­ting to such scopes.

It’s al­ways good to see man­u­fac­tur­ers of­fer some­thing in­ter­est­ing and dif­fer­ent in their range, and the VT-3 is cer­tainly that. It still of­fers all the per­for­mance we’ve come to as­so­ciate with the brand, in a very com­pact pack­age, so if you do own a light­weight sporter or in­deed, a bullpup, this ap­peal­ing lit­tle scope is well worth a look. I

“If you like to ‘dial’ your windage and range cor­rec­tions you’ll en­joy th­ese”

Flip-up cov­ers and an anti-relec­tion guard are in­cluded.

Be­ing so much lighter than the rest of the range made the VT-3 sit on this sporter well.

Par­al­lax cor­rec­tion down to 10-yards shows proper air­gun use­ful­ness.

Lots of holes with red ‘O’ rings in­side make for strik­ing looks.

Ret­i­cle fo­cus is fast, but does not lock.

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