It wasn't long ago that red dot sights were rare and expensive pieces of equipment, which were all but unattainable for most shooting enthusiasts. But, over the past decade or so, they've gained tremendous popularity, as the number of options on the market have increased and prices have decreased. It's now possible to purchase a functional red dot sight for less money than a used copy of Call of Duty. This is fantastic news for the frugal gun owner, but the options can be overwhelming. With all of the inexpensive options on the market, how do you know what's worth buying? I found myself in just such a dilemma when I decided I wanted a red dot sight for my newly purchased Ruger 10/22 Carbine. If you spend any time on the internet, you'll quickly realize that most of the commonly recommended red dot sights are more expensive than the 10/22 itself (often they're many times more expensive). Most owners of .22lr rifles are just looking to do some cheap plinking, and would rather buy a few thousand rounds of quality ammunition than a red dot sight designed for military use.
That's where the Tasco BKRD3022 comes in: it's an inexpensive red dot sight designed for use on rimfire rifles. It doesn't offer any frills or a plethora of features - it's just a basic red dot sight meant for plinking. There are only three controls on the entire unit: elevation adjustment, windage adjustment, and power/brightness adjustment.
Elevation and windage can be adjusted in .5 MOA (1/2" at 100 yards) increments. The adjustment knobs are concealed underneath threaded dust caps, and a screw driver or coin is needed to turn them. Each click of the adjustment knob is satisfying, crisp, and light. Make sure you don't lose those dust caps, otherwise you'll likely end up accidentally turning the knobs all the time.
Power and dot brightness are controlled via a large knob located on top of the unit, which gives you 11 different brightness settings. On the lowest settings, battery life is claimed to be 6,000+ hours (250 days) of continuous use. However, the brightness knob ended up being the only thing I didn't like about the Tasco BKRD3022, as I felt it was too difficult to turn. Sure, this will keep you from unintentionally turning it, but it becomes difficult to turn if it's wet from rain or sweat.
So, how does it actually perform? For a red dot sight that can usually be found for about $30, the Tasco BKRD3022 feels and performs very well! The construction is surprisingly solid and durable, and it manages to feel hefty without being heavy (it weighs just 6 ounces). The 1x30mm glass is nice and clear, and the lens coating works well without being too obtrusive.
With it's 5 MOA dot, it's obvious that this wasn't intended to be used for any kind of serious target shooting (but then again, what red dot sight is?). But, I found it to be more than adequate for my uses. Once zeroed, it was easy to keep 3" groups at 50 yards from my completely stock 10/22 Carbine (and I'm no crack shot). I found the maximum brightness to be suitable for broad daylight, and the lower settings were useful indoors. And, other than one minor mishap, it had no problem staying zeroed.
"What was the mishap?" I'm sure you're asking. A pretty silly mistake on my part: I forgot to put Loctite on the screws for my 10/22 Weaver mount. So, after ~500 rounds or so it started to come lose. The BKRD3022 itself stayed securely fastened to the weaver mount though (because I did remember to use Loctite on that). Obviously, this is not the fault of Tasco, I'm just bringing it up to remind you to always use Loctite! Make sure to use the Blue 242 variety of Loctite, as if you use the green, it will require heat and heavy force to remove and you would risk damaging your gun, sight, or both.
All in all, I've been very satisfied with the Tasco BKRD3022. For the price (which really is "bargain basement"), I think you'd be hard pressed to find a better red dot sight. In fact, I think you could spend 2 or 3 times as much and still not find anything better.
Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points
Claim to Fame: The price
Target Market: .22lr rifle plinkers
FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):
- Low cost
- Brightness Adjustability
- Battery life
- Easy mounting
What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?: The Tasco 22 Rimfire Red Dot Riflescope is only available in black.
What are others saying?:
- "The Tasco Red Dot sight is the company’s basic entrant in the red dot sight competition, and is a pretty good choice for desert- and snow-dwelling target shooters, or anyone operating under heavy glare" - RedDotSights
- "The Tasco Red Dot feels nice and sturdy, I dont expect it to break on me anytime soon. I've bumped it into a few things over the months that I've owned it and haven't seen a loss in accuracy, nor have I had to re-zero it." The XtremeConditioning Blog
I need it now! Availability: Amazon
- Very low price
- Solid construction
- Good performance
- Brightness knob is hard to adjust
- Need coin/screwdriver for elevation and windage adjustment
- Loctite is basically a necessity
Score: 7.5 Good