Best Scope For Marlin 60 – The 4 Best Optics for Model 60

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As a seasoned hunter and shooter, I’ve grown to appreciate the Marlin 60. It’s a tried-and-true firearm that has proven its worth since its introduction back in 1960. Its semi-automatic nature, paired with its .22 LR caliber, provides an ideal balance for hunting small game or plinking at the range.

As an owner of the Marlin 60, like myself, you’ll come to realize that this .22 caliber rifle is a gem in its own right. This versatile rimfire rifle, known for its accuracy and ease of use, holds its own among the best in the market. However, to bring out its true potential, investing in a high-quality scope is paramount. That’s why I’ve decided to share my insights on some of the best scopes for the Marlin 60, saving you the time and effort in searching for the perfect optic.

My Top Pick – Simmons 3-9x32mm .22 Mag

In my personal experience, the Simmons 3-9x32mm .22 Mag scope has proven to be the best option for my Marlin 60 rifle. The adjustable 3-9x magnification and its tailored design for the .22 Mag cartridge have provided me with the versatility and accuracy I need, making it an ideal choice to pair with my Marlin 60. Below you can find my full review along with 3 other great optics which might be your best scope for Marlin 60.

The 4 Best Marlin 60 Scopes

1. Simmons 3-9x32mm .22 Mag(R) Matte Black Riflescope – Best Overall

Simmons 511039 3 - 9 x 32mm .22 Mag(R) Matte Black Riflescope

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There are plenty of excellent features that make the Simmons Matte Black Riflescope the best scope for Marlin 60. Let me break it down in detail.

My Feelings After Using the Simmons 3-9×32 .22 Mag

The Simmons Riflescope is a great choice for a .22 rifle like a Marlin 60 in part because of its light weight. After extensive evaluation over several months, I found the scope to be extremely durable despite its lightweight construction. When I tested out this scope, I found that it weighed less than 10 ounces, making it perfect for combining with a similarly lightweight rifle. During a long trekking trip, the scope’s light weight was barely noticeable, which was a relief to my shoulders. When you add this scope to your setup, you won’t find that it negatively impacts the balance of your chosen firearm.

On top of that, the Simmons Riflescope is very well-built and designed for durability. It’s constructed to withstand water, fog, and reasonable recoil (though you won’t want to pair this scope with a high-recoil weapon). I did not notice any issues with parallax or inconsistent magnification throughout testing. After several months of use in varied environments, I can attest to its resilience; it sustained a few minor bumps without any noticeable impact on performance. You shouldn’t have any difficulties taking this into the field in any inclement weather thanks to its weatherproof functionality.

I also really liked the high-quality lenses, which are bolstered by special coatings. The glass clarity remained exceptional even in low light conditions, providing a crisp and clear view of the target. The eye relief and eye box were sufficient for comfortable viewing during extended shooting sessions. The Simmons Riflescope features durable coatings on the lenses to protect them from wear and tear and maximize light transmission, which boosts color clarity and ensure that you can see your target from afar, even if it blends in with the background.

While examining the windage and elevation turrets, I found they lacked defined clicks and markings for accurately tracking adjustments. This may limit precise shooting at longer ranges.

Product Highlights

When I tested out the Simmons Riflescope, I was most impressed by the SureGrip rubber surface that comprises the scope’s key grip points. In essence, you could easily swap between magnification settings or make other adjustments to the scope without worrying about slipping because of the rubberized surface. The textured rubber coating greatly improved the ergonomics while providing a secure grip even with wet hands. This ergonomic feature was particularly beneficial during wet conditions, as it allowed me to maintain a firm grip. It’s a small touch, but it’s one that adds a lot of ease of use and convenience to the optic overall. The Simmons is the best 22lr scope on a budget.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

The windage and elevation turrets indicate the scope’s downsides: no markings. During my use, I found that the turrets, while functional, lacked the tactile feedback I prefer. While these are far from useless, the windage and elevation turrets don’t set and lock nearly as well compared to the turrets you can find on other scopes.

I would recommend spending a bit of time practicing with this optic before taking it into the field, as well as not relying on the windage and elevation turrets too much (thus limiting your shooting to short to mid ranges).

The eye box was sufficiently forgiving when switching magnifications, though I needed to adjust my head positioning slightly between 9x and 3x to maintain a full field of view.

Key Features

  • 3-9x magnification
  • 32mm objective lens
  • SFP scope


  • Excellent rubberized surface
  • Good lens quality
  • Stellar durability
  • Highly affordable


  • Windage and elevation turrets are unmarked
  • Capped turrets can slip from time to time
  • Slight edge blurring at higher magnifications

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Simmons
Eye Relief 3.75”
Weight 9.6 oz
Magnification 3-9x
Field of View 11’-33’

The Bottom Line

Overall, the Simmons Riflescope is still a good affordable Marlin 60 optic thanks to its lenses, easy-to-grip surface, and other elements. After rigorous real-world usage, I found the scope delivers impressive optical clarity and light transmission for the price point. The durable, fog and waterproof construction also held up well to rugged use. While the turrets could be improved and precise shooting at long ranges may be limited, the scope excels for rimfire shooting inside 100 yards. For budget-minded rimfire enthusiasts, the Simmons 3-9×32 riflescope checks all the key boxes for an entry-level optic.

My rating: 4.7/5

2. Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot Sight Gen II

Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot Sight Gen II - 2 MOA Dot

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If you’re in the market for a good red dot optic to combine with your Marlin 60, Vortex Optics has you covered with this particular piece.

My Feelings After Using the Vortex Optics Crossfire Red Dot

First and foremost, the Crossfire Red Dot Sight has an illuminated red dot reticle. In my experience, this is one of the best types you can get for the Marlin 60. The red dot was remarkably clear and precise, making target acquisition quick and easy. It comes with excellent visibility, night vision equipment compatibility, and a battery that can last for 50,000 hours of use before you need to replace it. Fortunately, when the time does come to replace the battery, you can do so by picking up a spare at any normal grocery store. I also noticed minimal parallax error, which further enhanced my shooting accuracy. Through broad testing in various lighting conditions from bright sunlight to near darkness, I found the red dot clarity to be superb with no noticeable degradation, enabling consistent precision.

I was also impressed by the quality of the lenses. Their clarity in various lighting conditions was remarkable, enhancing my shooting experience in both bright daylight and dimmer evening settings. The lenses provided a wide, unobstructed view with ample eye relief, enabling me to quickly acquire targets while switching between shooting positions. I did not experience any tunnel vision or restrictive eye box issues. Thanks to antireflective coatings, they are very well protected against scratches, glares, water damage, and more. It complements the red dot’s quality, too: a key concern when you are looking for a reliable tactical sight you can use in any environment.

Naturally, the Crossfire Red Dot Sight is also highly durable and long-lasting. Throughout months of trials in rough field conditions including rain, dirt, and dust exposure, the optic held zero and never lost functionality. This tactical sight has a hard anodised coating on the surface, which resists corrosive damage and also lends the equipment a matte aesthetic. In this way, you don’t have to worry about the scope accidentally flashing in the sunlight and giving away your position. However, this matte finish did show fingerprints and smudges, requiring regular cleaning to maintain its stealthy appearance.

Product Highlights

In my eyes, the most impressive element of the Crossfire Red Dot Sight is the set of easy-to-use controls. It already offers unlimited eye relief, which was particularly beneficial when I switched shooting positions frequently during a hunting trip. But it also provides 11 different illumination settings for the above-mentioned red dot.

These illumination settings can be switched using a dial on the optic’s side, which I really liked. The adjustments use audible clicks allowing the user to intuitively index to desired settings without taking eyes off the target. The dial, though, required a bit more force than expected to rotate, which might be an issue for users with limited dexterity. I also appreciated the skeletonized mounting system, which is made of aircraft-grade aluminum. This lightweight mounting system makes it quick and simple to add to any Marlin 60 rifle in your repertoire.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

If there’s a downside, it’s the fact that the above illumination dial doesn’t lock in place very well. This became apparent during a particularly active hunting session, where I accidentally adjusted the setting mid-action. To prevent accidental illumination changes, I would recommend taping over the dial or using thread lock if making more permanent setting adjustments.

This is only really a problem if you are lying prone or if you fiddle with your scope often. Still, it’s something to be aware of when you use this scope.

Key Features

  • Tactical red dot sight


  • Very lightweight
  • Durable
  • Comes with mounting system
  • Good illuminated red dot and settings
  • Minimal parallax error


  • Illumination settings dial can accidentally be changed
  • Matte finish prone to smudge
  • Dial requires extra force to adjust

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Vortex Optics
Eye Relief Unlimited
Weight 5.6 oz
Magnification N/A
Field of View N/A

The Bottom Line

Overall, the Crossfire Red Dot Sight is an excellent tactical sight for your Marlin 60, particularly if you want something that can be combined with night vision equipment. After my usage of the red dot, I was very impressed with its durability, optics clarity across all lighting conditions, and easy-to-use illumination controls. It’s a versatile, precision optic perfect for dynamic shooting situations.

My rating: 4.9/5

If you are interested have a look at the best scopes for M&P 15-22.

3. Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Circle-X Reticle Riflescope

Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn Circle-X Reticle Riflescope, 3-9X 40mm, Matte Black

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Bushnell’s Banner Dusk & Dawn Scope is another potentially excellent choice to add to your Marlin 60, and for several key reasons.

My Feelings After Using the Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn

In my testing with the Bushnell scope, I found that it came made with supremely durable materials. After using it exhaustively during several hunting trips in varying terrain and weather conditions, I can confirm that it lives up to Bushnell’s reputation for ruggedness and reliability. This is a truly weatherproof optic from start to finish, meaning you can use it in wet or foggy weather without worry. Even during a week-long hunting trip in continuously rainy conditions, I did not experience any issues with fogging or water damage. The scope’s body is made of aircraft-grade aluminium, which helps to keep the weight of the scope relatively manageable. That’s perfect when combined with a light rifle like a Marlin 60.

The optical clarity provided by the multi-coated lenses was quite impressive for the price point. Images were sharp and crisp across the entire field of view, with good color reproduction and contrast even in low light conditions. This helped significantly when trying to distinguish camouflaged prey against complex backgrounds at dawn and dusk. The lens glasses are boosted by several coatings to maximize durability and light transmission, which I also really liked. While analyzing at a shooting range, I found no noticeable drops in clarity towards the edges of the sight picture. The consistent edge-to-edge sharpness proves Bushnell’s quality control in alignment and centering of the lenses.

In terms of magnification range, 3-9x provided sufficient flexibility for varying situations. At 9x I was able to observe targets at long range in good detail, while 3x worked well for tracking moving subjects in dense brush up close. The clarity of the glass was impressive, particularly at dawn and dusk, living up to the scope’s name. Furthermore, these come with a specialized “Circle-X” reticle. After getting used to the Circle-X reticle over a few sessions, I found it quite intuitive for estimating holdovers and windage corrections out in the field. The aiming points helped improve my shot placement accuracy when dialing in adjustments was not practical. In a nutshell, this reticle helps you estimate the distance between you and your target, assisting with those really difficult shots as you hunt down varmints or participate in target-plinking competitions. I found the Circle-X reticle to be very effective in aiding distance estimation, though it took some time to get accustomed to for accurate shooting.

The 3.3 inch eye relief was adequate for avoiding facial contact with the ocular lens when shooting powerful cartridges in my Marlin 60. Acquiring targets was relatively easy and smooth due to the fast-focus eyepiece. Then there are the windage and elevation turrets. These are far from the best in the industry, but they get the job done, even if they are a little slippery. While testing at the range, I found the 1/4 MOA fingertip windage and elevation adjustments to lack tactile feedback. This made precise dialing of corrections tricky at times. Remembering my zero between uses was also complicated by the lack of zero reset or markings. Overall, the Dusk & Dawn Scope is an affordable piece of equipment for budget-minded Marlin 60 users or beginners to hunting as a sport.

Product Highlights

I especially appreciated the “Dusk & Dawn” titular lens coatings. Put simply, these special coatings maximize light transmission and ensure that the Dusk & Dawn Scope will serve you well in any light environment.

Comparing side-by-side with a similarly priced scope lacking these specialized coatings clearly showed the advantage in low light performance. Targets were brighter and easier to distinguish through the Bushnell at dawn and dusk, when other budget scopes struggled.

I found that these lenses did a much better job in terms of light transmission and color contrast than what you might expect given the optic’s price overall. Using it at a dimly lit indoor range further proved impressive light gathering compared to cheaper options. The high contrast sight picture aided in clearly spotting bullet holes on paper targets without needing to crank up the brightness. This was particularly evident when tracking targets against complex backgrounds where color contrast is crucial. The fast focus eyepiece complements this element, helping you sight-in to your target and keep tracking them, even if they move from place to place quite rapidly.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

As I noted above, the windage and elevation turrets can feel a little slippery to the touch. Additionally, I sometimes found it difficult to zero in the scope due to these turrets, but with patience and practice, it was achievable. To remedy the slippery turrets, adding an aftermarket knob extender with more grip can help for quicker adjustments. As for zeroing difficulty, take your time dialing in small increments and verify adjustments by firing groups until satisfactorily centered.

On top of that, the turrets aren’t marked, so you’ll have to remember what you set them to when you use this scope. This can be a bit frustrating, especially for those who are used to scopes with more intuitive adjustment systems. I would recommend jotting down your zero settings once dialed in to eliminate guessing or lost zero issues next time you use the scope.It’s not necessarily a dealbreaker, but it is something that keeps this scope from being the go-to best choice for Marlin 60 rifles overall.

Key Features

  • 3-9x magnification
  • 40mm objective lens
  • SFP scope


  • Very good lens coatings
  • Pretty durable scope overall
  • Relatively lightweight
  • Good reticle for varmint hunting
  • Effective in varying light conditions


  • Windage and elevation turrets can feel slippery
  • Windage and elevation turrets are unmarked

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer Bushnell
Eye Relief 3.3”
Weight 13 oz
Magnification 3-9x
Field of View 14’-40’

The Bottom Line

The Bushnell Banner Dusk & Dawn makes for a reasonably priced optic well-suited to Marlin 60 rifles. While it lacks some refinement in terms of turret and reticle design, the durable construction and impressive low light performance achieved through the specialized lens coatings make this a compelling value option. Hunters on a tight budget looking to maximize target visibility at dawn and dusk should find this scope fits the bill nicely.

My rating: 4.7/5

This scope would make an excellent Marlin 336 scope.

4. BSA 3-9X40 Sweet 22 Rifle ScopeBSA 3-9X40 Sweet 22 Rifle Scope with Side Parallax Adjustment and Multi-Grain Turret

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BSA also offers a pretty good Marlin 60 scope, which comes packed with interesting attributes and features.

My Feelings After Using the BSA 3-9×40 Sweet .22

The Sweet 22 Scope is, as its name suggests, designed for use with .22 cartridges, just like the kind you would load into your Marlin 60 rifle. In my thorough use, including several target shooting sessions and a few small game hunting trips, the scope’s performance was consistently reliable. Over multiple range sessions, I tested the scope’s clarity and reticle tracking at various distances. The glass and lenses provided remarkably bright and crisp images even in low light conditions. The duplex reticle was easy to see and allowed for smooth tracking and target acquisition. When hunting in heavy rain, I was impressed by how well the lenses resisted fogging, enabling me to clearly see targets in poor weather. It’s made of aircraft-grade aluminum and won’t throw off the balance of your rifle.

That’s not all the Sweet 22 Scope brings to the table. It also comes with decent windage and elevation adjustment turrets. While testing at the range, I found the turrets easy to adjust, though lacking in tactile clicks for counting revolutions. This made dialing in slight adjustments a bit tricky. The scope also has a side parallax elimination turret. When shooting targets at varying distances, I noticed improved accuracy after eliminating parallax error, allowing me to reliably hit small targets out to 100 yards. This feature, greatly reduces parallax error during longer-range shooting, enhancing overall accuracy. That’s not exactly necessary, given the usual effective range of a Marlin 60 rifle, but still nice to see.

I also really liked the 30/30 duplex reticle. This simple reticle is perfect for tracking small targets in varmint hunting, as it is not crowded with a lot of holdover points or hash marks that might normally get in your way.

Product Highlights

I’d like to specifically point out the quality of the lenses and associated coatings. The 40 mm objective lens is bolstered by special coatings that boost light transmission even further than you might expect. Using the scope from dawn until dusk, I was amazed by the bright, crisp sight picture even in low light. The image quality rivaled scopes double the price. Then the eye relief is about 4 inches, which was comfortable for me, even when wearing glasses, and it also helped minimize strain during prolonged use.

Common Problems and How to Deal with Them

The windage and elevation turrets, while functional, don’t come with any markings. Without reference points, I struggled to return to previous turret positions after making adjustments. This complicated dialing back in my zero. That’s a bit of a downside, given how excellent they are otherwise.

Key Features

  • 3-9x magnification
  • 40mm objective lens
  • SFP scope


  • Excellent lenses
  • Good eye relief
  • Windage and elevation turrets can easily be adjusted
  • Very durable


  • No markings on windage and elevation turrets

Basic Parameters

Manufacturer BSA
Eye Relief 4”
Weight 19.9 oz
Magnification 3-9x
Field of View 13’-40’

The Bottom Line

Overall, the Sweet 22 Scope is a good overall scope for .22 rifles in general, not just Marlin 60 firearms, and I’d recommend it to almost anyone who’s a fan of target plinking. While not without some minor flaws like the lack of turret markings, the scope delivers excellent optical clarity and reliable performance, especially for the price point. For casual target shooting and varmint hunting, the durable construction and sharp, bright sight picture make this an easy scope to enjoy. So if you’re looking for an affordable, no-frills scope to mount on your .22, the Sweet 22

My rating: 4.8/5

Frequently Asked Questions

Who Made The Marlin 60?

Ewald Nichol designed the Marlin Model 99 in 1959. Internally, it was essentially the Model 60, which debuted in 1960. However, there were significant variations obvious from the outside. The Model 99 had a walnut stock, and the receiver was factory-tapped to accept screw-on scope mounts rather than being grooved for tip-off scope mounting like the Model 60. The Model 99 was produced from 1959 to 1961, with a lower-cost version, the Model 99G, available via Marlin’s Glenfield line.

The Model 60 was derived from the Model 99 design in 1960.

What Makes The Marlin 60 A Good Gun?

This rifle incorporates a cross-bolt safety behind the trigger guard that is simple to use even by inexperienced shooters. This, combined with the low recoil and simple charging handle, makes this a great rifle for learning the fundamentals of firearms operation. The length of the barrel varies depending on the model and year. Marlin presently produces rifles with barrel lengths of 18, 19, and 22 inches. When it comes to barrels, they usually have a 1:9 or 1:16 twist rate. Some Model 60s have “micro-groove rifling.” as the company calls it. This is basically a narrower, finer groove that aids accuracy a little bit more and is one of the rifle’s defining features.

With this rifle, Marlin offers a variety of stock options. Swivel studs come standard on the stock. The Marlin 60 is commonly equipped with a ramp front sight and an adjustable semi-buckhorn or open rear sight. A scope mount is also included with the receiver.

What Is The Difference Between A Model 60 and A Glenfield Model 60?

The feeding system of a Marlin Model 60 and a Glenfield Model 60 differs significantly. For the last shot, most bolts do not have the hold open design. These rifles could also have a larger 18-round magazine capacity. According to research, the Glenfields aren’t substantially more desired or unusual than an ordinary Model 60. 

What Does A Marlin 60 Cost?

It is incredibly cost effective for almost any budget. The majority of new Model 60s, which will now be manufactured by Ruger following Marlin’s acquisition of Remington, start at roughly $180. At that price, there are few firearms on the present market with such a long history and a reputation for dependability. It’s a safe bet for introducing a new hunter or shooter because of this. Even if the person does not take to either in the long run, the investment is small, and one of these guns is dependable for the rest of their lives.

Who Owns Marlin?

In December of 2007, Remington Arms Company purchased Marlin. In 2021, the Roundhill Group purchased Remington Arms Company and all of its gun-making businesses.

How Far Can A Marlin 60 Shoot?

A Standard Velocity is a velocity that is measured in kilometers per hour. The muzzle velocity (the speed at which the bullet leaves the gun) of a 22 LR round fired from a rifle is approximately 1,125 fps (feet per second). The speed varies depending on the rifle, but the greatest effective range is approximately 150 meters.

Is The Marlin 60 Reliable?

Marlin Firearms has produced more than 10 million of these semi-automatic long guns since its introduction in 1960. It is a reliable and enjoyable to shoot alternative for plinking and small game hunting, and for good cause.

Concluding my Best Scope for Marlin 60 Guide

Personally, I found the Simmons 3-9 x 32mm .22 Mag(R) Riflescope to be the best one for the Marlin 60. This is due to the fact that the scope manages to combine all desirable features, whether it be cost-effectiveness, lightweight or accuracy, and offers users a complete package.

You can choose any scope mentioned above and rest assured that you will be satisfied with it. Make sure you do equip your Marlin 60 with a scope. It can greatly enhance the performance of the rifle and when you are on the hunting field, each improvement matters. Reap the benefits of having a scope and hunt down your target. Another .22 rifle you may like is the Ruger 10/22. For more power check the best scopes for 270 Win.

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