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Reticle alignment

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Unread 10-16-2005, 02:08 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Alaska
Posts: 39
Reticle alignment

I am installing a scope and trying to get the reticle aligned with the rifle. I don't know how close to perfect this has to be but I don't feel I am having much luck getting it any where close to perfect. Thanks for any help.
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Unread 10-16-2005, 04:48 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Michigan
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Re: Reticle alignment *DELETED*

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Unread 10-16-2005, 07:21 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Shoshoni, WY
Posts: 143
Re: Reticle alignment

It is important to have the scope level with the action and it's also very important to avoid canting the rifle when you shoot. There are several devices on the market designed to mount the scope level with the action, but I have never used any of those devices. I use the following procedure.

First I make a target backer that features a vertical line made from a 3/4 inch wide piece of black masking tape. I place the target 100 yards form my bench and make the tape plumb with a 4 foot level. I then place the rifle in a cradle or lead sled. With rings in place and lapped, I place a level on the flat part of the reciever or on a flat portion of the mount. I level the rifle and tighten in place. I then mount the scope loosely and check the rifle once again for level by placing a precision parallel on a flat part of reciever or mount. With rifle level, I aim at the black tape. I then rotate the scope and check it with a small level placed on the top turret. I double check by making sure the vertical crosshair follows the black tape. Rifle level, scope level, vertical crosshair plumb. Tighten the screws in a criss-cross pattern, constantly checking to maintain proper position. Now is a good time to mount a Scoplevel on the tube if so inclined.

Now, sight the rifle in. Then place the target low on the backer with the vertical tape extending a couple of feet above the target. Move the vertical adjustment in the scope up a bunch, like several turns and shoot another group. Use the tape to make sure you don't cant the rifle. The second group should hit a couple of feet high (depending on how many moa of adjustment you have) and the group should be centered on the tape.
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Unread 10-16-2005, 08:11 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Washington State
Posts: 2,726
Re: Reticle alignment

This is what I do, but I don't consider myself an "expert".

I use the "Rifle Bar Level" (4" or 6") from http://www.deadeye2.com/ . Place it on an action such that it will tell you when the action is level and affix with included stout rubber band. Hang a quality plumb bob with brightly colored line appropriate for the job at a distance that you can see it well enough to do the job--it'll have to be inside to keep wind from affecting. Let it hang for a long time undisturbed. Using the rifle barrel level, level the action in your rifle cradle and then lock it in place when it's level. Make sure the scope crosshairs are on the plumb bob line leaving the scope fairly snug in the rings. Adjust the vertical portion of the crosshair to parallel the plumb bob line.

Sound easy? I takes me about awhile to get it just right making sure everything is lined up. But I know that the action in level and I know that the scope is about as close as humanly possibly to level as I can get it. There's probably a better way.

Some folks really like the Segway Reticle Leveler. Sinclair International and many other places have it. Probably simplest thing to do out there. It just seems to easy to me--I need an hour of frustration to feel that the job is done right, you know? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

Good luck,

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Unread 10-16-2005, 09:35 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Spokane, WA
Posts: 521
Re: Reticle alignment

I just bought the Scope Level-Level-Level from Wheeler Engineering. One level is magnetic and lays across the rails in the action. Put the rifle in your rifle holder and lock down when level. Place the other level on the top adjustment turret. Tighten down the scope rings watching the level. Neat thing is if you are twisting the scope as the screws are tightened, you see it immediately in the bubble going off center. If both bubbles are centered, you have the reticle perfectly square to the action. Why didn't I think of this?? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]
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Unread 10-16-2005, 11:20 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 338
Re: Reticle alignment

I got tired of all those convoluted methods and designed my own tool. It's a very simple but very accurate way to install a scope with the cross hairs square to the action. You slide a bar 7/8"x 1/4"x 8"long into the bolt race,press down bolt stop and insert wedge to hold it against the rails. On the end is a 3"x 4" plate with a window cut just big enough to see the occular end of the scope through it.It has lines on both sides of the window so you can line up the crosshairs with the lines.It was all done in a machine shop so everything is true and square.I have a few being tested at Sporting goods stores and they all love them. I don't think Grouper would give up his. It's so simple yet fast. 7mmrhb
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Unread 10-18-2005, 12:54 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 6
Re: Reticle alignment

Here's my method.

I drop a plumb bob consisting of a old rusty 1" x 4" bolt I found along the road from a nail in a rafter with a 10ft length of extra 1/8" clothes line.

I set the rifle on my bench and level it in the horizonal plane using my machinist level.

I sight through the scope set to highest power and adjust the scope in the rings so the reticile's vertical substention lies in the same plane as plumb bob's clothes line.
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