November 05, 2018
If you are a serious shooter, handloader, or gunsmith and you haven’t considered using a borescope yet, then you really should. Sure, borescopes can be expensive, but you can do a lot with one, and once you have used one, I bet you’ll be hooked.
I’m currently using the Shooting Edition Hawkeye Borescope from Gradient Lens, and it helps me monitor how the barrels of my firearms are wearing. It’s also useful when I’m checking out used guns to see what they look like on the inside.
My borescope has come in handy to look at the inner surfaces of my reloading dies and to inspect the consistency of flash holes in the cartridge cases I use for handloading. I’ve used it to identify irregularities and erosion in the forcing cones of my revolvers and to examine the locking lug recesses inside my auto pistols’ slides.
I have the 17-inch tube for my Hawkeye Borescope (item number HS17-SHOT-AFB), and it’s been great for inspecting a lot of bore sizes. When a gun’s barrel is longer than that, I view it from each end. Gradient Lens offers a 22-inch tube as well as a 7-inch tube, but I prefer the 17-incher. The standard tube easily fits in .20-caliber bores and larger, but for .17-caliber fans, Gradient Lens offers a Pro SuperSlim tube that has a mirror tube outside diameter of 0.15 inch.
The AFB (Adjustable Focus Box) version of the Shooting Edition Hawkeye contains an adjustable-focus Hawkeye Borescope with enhanced optics; a mirror tube for inspecting chambers, lands and grooves, gas ports, and crowns; a cleaning kit; and a light source. All that comes in a laminated box with die-cut foam. You can also get the Hawkeye Borescope in a lockable metal carrying case, but the price goes up $150 for that. I have the laminated box, and it has proven to be all that I need.
MSRP: $745 (17 in.)gradientlens.com