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How to Zero a Rifle Scope [Step by Step Guide]

Zeroing a rifle scope is every hunter’s wish. We hunters could like to appropriately mount, sight, and adjust the rifle scope in a way that we will accurately shoot. How to zero a rifle scope is an act that can be learned by any hunter.

It refers to the process of lining up the scope or optic with the barrel to the crosshairs ties where the bullet is required to fall.

By accurately shooting it will help them save ammunition used and time. The article explains the steps that you need to follow for successful zeroing.

Step by Step Of How To Zero Your Rifle Scope Perfectly

Identify the safe shooting area

Many hunters rarely factor in this step as the first but it is critical. Since zeroing requires one to shoot, you need to identify a safe environment that can be used.

A range where you could like to hut could be a perfect place. Many hunters learning how to zero a rifle scope are advised to do it at the standardized range.

Install your Rifle Scope

A scope installed correctly as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Ensure that you have a quality base mount and mounting rings which will last for many years. In a situation where the scope is not installed correctly, zeroing may be almost impossible.

Get the right ammunition

Zeroing is attached to a specific type of ammunition. Many factors matter with the type of load which is length, the weight of the bullet, the bullet velocity, and distance. Buy the ammunition from a supplier whom you trust to give you the best quality. We do a deep dive into 177 pellets ammo in our article on how to be useful for better hunting and target practice.

Your Rifle Scope

Getting the correct eyepiece position

Assuming in your shooting position ensure that the position is correct. You should ensure that the target image is seen and sharp when viewed through the eye position. Better to use spotting scope for hunting to keep shots on the target.

Leveling the cross-hair

It involves holding the rifle at a steady position mounted with the square level being in level with the ground.

Select the right target

Start with the targets that are designed for the bullseye which are divided into a square inch. They are helpful to a hunter who is not sure on how to zero with different targets.

With the square inch, the shooters will easily adjust the scope based on the inches it is from the bullseye. It could be 100 yards for a start.

Mount the gun at rest 

All this is done at the range or a controlled area. A range is preferred because it will enable you to shoot from different ranges. If you are not in the range you can use books, your shoes, or tree logs to mount the gun.

How to Zero a Rifle Scope Video

Bolting actions

The shooter will be required for the bolt actions to remove the bolt, separate the action and look down the barrel as he adjusts the weapon. There are no limits in terms of adjustments until it is within the relative target. This process is best for bolt actions, single shots, and AIR-style rifles.

Gazing process 

Gazing helps to fine-tune the view. The barrel and the scope can be used for gazing. It should first start with the barrel and next through the scope. When the scope is not in target, automatically, there will be a big difference of view between the barrel and scope.

Loading the gun

Load and fire three to four rounds before making any adjustments or changing the target or riffle and fire. After firing you can unload the rifle and ensure action is opened then downrange to the target.

Grouping shots

After firing the first round, inspect the target and the shots now will be your group. There should be some similarities between the shots fired on every group.

Sorting out discrepancies in group shooting

Generally, it is observed that at every grouping but sometimes it could be random. In some cases, there could be issues with the shots places in a particular group not being systematic.

That can be caused by either different ammunition used, the weapon unstable, scoping method, or skills used. It can be sorted by addressing these issues.

Get zero from multiple distances

It is important to sight using different positions while focusing on distances that you could likely to fire. Adjustments and the process can be made on each position but it is not a must.

Rifle Scope

Examining the adjustment knobs

The dials on the scopes which are on the top side and the sides can be used to adjust the scope. It will allow you to zero it. The adjustment helps to put in line what is seen and where the riffle is being aimed at.

Normally the top knob adjusts the up and down of the cross-hairs. The other is used to adjust the scope left to right.

Adjusting the misses

Adjusting the misses is easy. If you missed up, then you need to adjust up, and if you missed low adjust the knob low. The same can be applied to either side. Such adjustments need to be made until the sight is clear.

Rotate the elevation turret

Rotating the elevation turret while the riffle it still helps to put the crosshair on the same level as the bullseye. If the rifle moves during the rotation, re-center it and check the scope again. A helper can come in handy that will help you adjust while you are looking through the cope.

Verify your zero

After the adjustments, you will need to take three other shots just to be sure. If the adjustments were done right then the center of the group will be in line with the bullseye. However, you may need to make fine adjustments on the same.

Final thoughts

Learned something about how to zero a rifle scope? The more you do this, the accurate your shooting will be. The most important thing to remember is ensuring that you fire from a stable position and that the riffle is mounted correctly. Steps that are overlooked may frustrate you thereby giving you poor results.

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