Understanding Thermal Scopes and Night Vision Devices Caliber Ratings and Consequences

Often, hunters question up to which caliber specific Bering Optics devices are rated and what would happen if it is used with a heavier caliber. It's best to approach this situation with open eyes, so let's discuss not only the manufacturer's recommendations but also the consequences of not following them.

All Bering Optics thermal sights, including the Hogster, Super Hogster, and Super Yoter families of thermal scopes and thermal Clip-On units, are rated and warranted by the manufacturer for 4 years for use with .308 and lighter calibers. They will also remain accurate with heavier recoil calibers for a certain period. One of our customers reported using the scope with a 300 Win Mag, while another used it with a 30-06. However, it's important to note that each shot adds microdamage caused by recoil, and these microdamages accumulate over the lifespan of the thermal scope, potentially leading to issues sooner or later. Heavy recoil introduces a higher level of microdamage, which may reduce the scope's lifespan. It also depends on how often you shoot, because one shot with a heavier recoil caliber introduces microdamage equivalent to several shots from a lighter caliber.

A sign that recoil microdamages have accumulated and damaged the scope is when it stops holding zero. With heavier calibers, this may happen much sooner than the warranted 4 years; while if the scope is used as recommended by the manufacturer, the scope can serve you for over 10 years (depending on how often you shoot).

Moreover, regarding the warranty, the manufacturer has a way to determine if the scope was used with a heavy caliber. If you shoot a heavier caliber and then send the scope for warranty service, it may void your warranty.

If you have a real need to use a heavy caliber for night hunting, we recommend Bering Optics Night Vision sights and the Night Probe Mini Night Vision Clip-On. These Bering Optics night vision devices are rated to handle .50 BMG or even heavier recoil.