How should I sight in my rifle? - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-21-2010, 11:10 PM Thread Starter
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How should I sight in my rifle?

I recently bought a rifle and got a scope mounted on it and I want to know how to sight it in. The guy who mounted the sights said he bore sighted it too. The rifle is a 30-06 bolt action and the scope is a 3.5-10x40.

How far should I put my target? 100 yards?

What ammo should I use? I have Remington Core-Lokt and Winchester Silvertips right now. Should I start with the Rems. and then once my group starts getting tight switch to the Wins. because they are the ones I plan to hunt with?
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-21-2010, 11:24 PM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

If its a brand new rifle, follow the break in procedure the manufacturer recommends. If it isn't new, I'd set up a target at 25 yards to get things close and make sure you're on the paper, then do the final sight in at 100 yards.

Shoot both brands of ammo, and see which one the gun likes better and go with it, provided of course that both bullet weights are appropriate for deer.

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-21-2010, 11:24 PM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

see witch ammo shoots the best at 100.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 01:59 AM Thread Starter
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

They are both 150gr.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 02:14 AM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

Just another piece of advice just make sure you have a good solid rest,I just learned that lesson on friday. I had bought on of those shooting rests @ a yard sale over the summer for like $4 my groups were 3 times the size as with my sand bags lesson learned from now on I'll stick with my sand bags.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 02:24 AM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

Start at 25yds
adjust scope so your hitting about 1" high at 25yds
move target to 50yds - make same adjustment
move target to 100yds - adjust scope so your dead on

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 02:52 AM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

have you ever used a rifle before?

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 03:06 AM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

If you have a rest, I would set the gun on the rest with the bolt removed. You can look straight through the barrel(bore) and aim it a point. Then adjust your scope to match the point you saw through the barrel. It should get you close to start.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 03:10 AM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

How should you site in your rifle?

If you have a rifle range at your disposal, I would go to the rifle range on a day with little to no wind.

Set up a target at the 100 yard mark.
Read the owners manual for the scope, not all scopes has 1/4 inch clicks.

Shoot 3 shots at the 100 yard target.
Disregard the first shot. Make sure to use a spotter or spotting scope and if you use a spotting scope - use a 2nd target and a marker to mark where you hit the target after each shot.

So lets say the gunsmith that set up your rifle did a really good job and your scope and rifle are on the target at 100 yards. That is good.

You then need to take the average of the 3 shots and figure out how far away from dead center you are. You then need to remove the caps from the adjustment knobs and move the adjustments slowly in the direction that your scope needs to go to get closer to dead center.

So lets say your scope has 1/4 inch adjustments at 100 yards. You are 3 inches low and 4 inches to the right.

Our first adjustment would be to move the scope 12 clicks up and move the scope 16 clicks to the left.
Replace caps and shoot 3 more times.

Now lets say your scope is 1 inch high and 2 inches to the left. We now want to move the scope down 4 clicks.

Shoot 3 more shots. Take the average of the 3 shots and measure the center of the pattern to the center of the bulls eye. Lets say it is 1/4 inch high and 2 inches to the left.

We would now want to move the scope 3 clicks to the right.

Hopefully at some point, we will find a happy medium.

As you could see, for the third adjustment, we only moved the scope in one axis - the same as we did for the second adjustment.

Now lets say you shot 3 shots and did not hit the paper.

We would then move up to the 25 yard line and take 3 shots at the target. Lets say the scope is 6 inches high and 6 inches to the right.

Because we know that your scope adjusments is 1 MOA at 100 yards and one MOA equals 4 clicks at 100 yards.
1 inch at 25 yards = 16 clicks.
1 inch at 50 yards = 8 clicks.

The goal here is to get the scope as close to center as possible, but not waste a bunch of time at the 25 yard target - because it is not going to mean as much to us - once we get to the 100 yard target.

If your scope is more then 12 inches in any one direction from the center of the target, your scope mounts - not your scope will either need to be shimmed or adjusted, depending on the manufacture of the scope mounts and the quality.

Not all scope mounts are created equal.

You never want to move a scope more then 40 clicks beyond the factory setting. The factory assembles the scope so that it is set on center. Lets say the scope has 120 clicks from stop to stop. The scope will be on 60 clicks.

The reason why I am telling you this is because many people who thinks that they know how to site in a rifle and has sighted in rifles all their lives doesn't always know this.

When you go beyond the center of the scope adjustments - it is bad, because the scope is not designed to be used with the mirrors and parts inside adjusted all in one direction.

This is what causes most problems with new scopes.

If you get your rifle sighted in for 25 yards, you can then try to shoot at a new target at 100 yards.
When sighting in a new rifle, never worry about wasting targets or ammo.

Also - never mix ammo.
I know your idea is to start out with a cheap load and then work up to the more expensive load, once you get the gun on target with the cheap load.

My advice is - not to waste your time.
All factory ammo will shoot a little different then the next. There is no way for us to predict how your rifle will react to either round or which round will work best in your rifle. Your best bet is to sight in your rifle with which ever ammo patterns best and not worry about which brand of bullet or which bullet design is used in the factory ammo. Any game load offered for a 30-06 will kill a deer as long as the load is designed for shooting whitetail deer.

So if you follow the manufactures reccomendation for break in for the rifle barrel and you follow my advice as per how to sight in your rifle, your rifle should be as close to the center of the target as you wish to get - as long as the rifle is of a quality that allows it to be accurate.

Not all rifles are accurate, some new rifles won't hit the broad side of a barn. Believe me - I have seen it.
My advice is to use a 150 gr bullet and practice often.

Once you feel confident shooting at 100 yards, you can move a new target out to 200 yards and check your zero.

If your rifle has a acceptable amount of accuracy, you could sight it in for 200 yards if you so desire.
Just remember that 1 inch at 200 yards equals 2 clicks on your scopes adjustment - if your scope is calibrated at 4 clicks / 1 MOA at 100 yards.

If your scope has a friction type adjustment such as the Leupold Rifleman, my advice is to take it back, because you will waste good ammo after bad trying to adjust the scopes adjustments to get the rifle zero'd in. Those scopes are junk and should be avoided at all costs.

Good luck and come back and ask more questions - if this advice does not work out for you!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-22-2010, 07:42 AM
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Re: How should I sight in my rifle?

I am not sure if you are asking "how to actually do it"?? Or if you are asking at what distance to zero your rifle.

The above post does a perfect job telling you how to do it. So I wil assume you are asking at what range to zero.

Personally for me that is easy. It depends on where you hunt. If you hunt only in the woods then I sight my rifle dead on at 75 or 100 yards. I want to be able to thread the needle through brush, so my bullet needs to hit exactly where I am looking. And I want the scope to be mounted as close to the bore as possible. I wil even use a smaller objective lense to accomplish this. That is how inmprtant I think it is in the woods.

If it is a field rifle then it depends on how far I may shoot, and which rifle it is. However for general field shooting I would want my bullet to hit right at 2" high at 100 yards. This will pretty much give you point blank shooting out close to 300 yards. Which is farther than most can shoot. Tom.
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