Canted reticle?


New Member
Mar 9, 2015
I know there are plenty of threads on this already. So do beat me up too much please. I have a remington 700 5R with a 24 inch barrel. I am using seekins 20 moa base rail and rings. Today I finally had the time to mount the scope, a Vortex viper PST 6-24-50. Using the wheeler engineering scope level system, I got the gun level, secured it and then leveled the scope. Secured it to spec and rechecked it throughout the process and after. All is good!!! Now, when I look through the scope the reticle seems to be canted to the left. What to do now? Do I level the scope to what my eye likes? Or do I just go with it and trust the level? Thank you all in advance.



Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2007
Reticle Perpendicularity
By Darrell Holland , look for this in the article archives on the home page


Well-Known Member
Jul 10, 2012
North Central Valley California
First let's eliminate the human factor.
Put your rifle on a shooting bench, level it up and (being careful not to touch it) look through the scope. Is the reticle still canted? If so, you've got some scope leveling or repair work to do. If not, you've got some shooting form work to do.

Have you read this:

That article, IMO, assumes you've got a good rest and some decent shooting skills but it's a very good test for scope perpendicularity.

I'm assuming this is the tool you used:

Brand New Wheeler Professional Reticle Leveling System | eBay

One of the things I don't like about that one is that, unless the rifle is tightly secured in a vise and the action is carefully leveled it is very easy for the rifle to roll just a little bit and throw the alignments off. Trying to maintain a level attitude using a rifle servicing rest or similar foundation adds to the frustration. The instructions are well written however and, with care, the job can be done well.
Realizing that you've already gone through this drill, I might suggest you go back to square one and find some OCD among your character traits to make absolutely certain that the mounts are bedded and all mount screws are properly torqued. Make absolutely certain that everything is perfectly leveled. Keep close watch on the level when tightening scope rings and when their properly torqued recheck all level indicators. If you still have a cant in the reticle you may have a scope that needs some work.


Well-Known Member
Apr 11, 2009
The above instruction is good. My opinion is my opinion so take it for what you will....

Leveling to the gun is a good starting point and not the be all end all. What you care about for long range shooting, especially if you are dialing your elevation corrections, is that your reticle is true when you shoot. Whether your gun is level when you pull the trigger is pretty irrelevant, the bullet always falls straight to the earth. Doesn't matter if the gun is upside down, sideways, or perfectly level.

What type of shooting do you do? Field or bench?

If bench, leveling to the gun is probably good. If you're in the field most of the time my recommendation is the following...

I'm mainly a field shooter. Other bench shooters could probably advise you better.

Find a level you like that can be used without breaking cheek weld. My recommendation is the Darrel Holland level. It works kinda like picture in picture use to on the old TV's. Your non-dominant eye keeps track on it while your aiming. The NF top-half system is garbage from my experience.

Believe it or not your body memory is pretty good. I took a digital angle meter and did some testing one day with a shooting buddy. My body could repeat the same comfortable shooting position and cheek weld without an indicator to within 0.2 of a degree. The NF had a tolerance on their bubble of only 0.8. I can't remember what the Holland was but it didn't matter because I can see if its perfect without breaking cheek weld.

So my advice is this. If you can afford and don't mind a level hanging on the side of your scope get one. It is the most bullet proof way to go. And get a Holland. Then mount the scope so that the reticle is level when the gun is shouldered to your most repeatable and comfortable position.

If you don't want a level, mount the scope so that the reticle is level when you and the gun are in your most comfortable/repeatable position and rock on. From my experience, you body memory is pretty good.

Using a plumb bob hanging from a tree limb is the best way to go for all of this in checking level of the reticle. Get a shooting buddy to help, it'll get the job done better.

Good luck.


Well-Known Member
Aug 10, 2003
NC, oceanfront
Now, when I look through the scope the reticle seems to be canted to the left. What to do now? Do I level the scope to what my eye likes? Or do I just go with it and trust the level?
Couple things;
Do you need a level reticle for hold-off, or level elevation adjustment for dialing?
The Wheeler method you're using sets neither. It's just leveling the turret top to your gun.
Honestly, it's weak..

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