Leveling scope off the bottom

S96743

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Apr 20, 2019
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34
Location
Hawaii
Hi gang.

I can’t find it now but I remember a while back there was a discussion on scope leveling and someone linked or suggested a product to help level the scope from the pic rail to bottom of turrets. Ive used the wheeler aluminum barrel and scope levels and an Allen wrench but my reticle looks way off on an SHV. I’ve used it on other scopes with no noticeable cant. I haven’t tried a tracking test yet to verify but will soon after load work. Can someone point me in the right direction?

s
 
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Dog Rocket

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Mar 17, 2018
Messages
537
Location
Washington State
Hi gang.

I can’t find it now but I remember a while back there was a discussion on scope leveling and someone linked or suggested a product to help level the scope from the pic rail to bottom of turrets. Ive used the wheeler aluminum barrel and scope levels and an Allen wrench but my reticle looks way off on an SHV. I’ve used it on other scopes with no noticeable cant. I haven’t tried a tracking test yet to verify but will soon after load work. Can someone point me in the right direction?

s
A stack of business cards works just as well.
 

Buster Hemlock

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Feb 26, 2019
Messages
245
Location
NC
Dog Rocket nailed it. I prefer a new set of playing cards but same idea. Place the cards on the rail under your scope as long as it has a flat bottom and insert or remove cards until it's snug and tighten everything down. I've done this when I didn't have access to my levels or a plumb bob and checked it later and it worked great.
 

J E Custom

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Joined
Jul 29, 2004
Messages
10,674
Location
Texas
I like to level the rifle using the action rails and then clamp the rifle in place (Level) and optically level the scope using the reticle while viewing a plumb line through the scope.

You can also shine a flashlight through the scope backwards with the rifle level, and project the reticle image on the wall with a line or something vertical (Plumb Bob) In a dark room.

J E CUSTOM
 

338 dude

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Joined
Mar 1, 2016
Messages
1,853
Location
Tn
Hi gang.

I can’t find it now but I remember a while back there was a discussion on scope leveling and someone linked or suggested a product to help level the scope from the pic rail to bottom of turrets. Ive used the wheeler aluminum barrel and scope levels and an Allen wrench but my reticle looks way off on an SHV. I’ve used it on other scopes with no noticeable cant. I haven’t tried a tracking test yet to verify but will soon after load work. Can someone point me in the right direction?

s
Look up on the Internet arisaka tool
Hi gang.

I can’t find it now but I remember a while back there was a discussion on scope leveling and someone linked or suggested a product to help level the scope from the pic rail to bottom of turrets. Ive used the wheeler aluminum barrel and scope levels and an Allen wrench but my reticle looks way off on an SHV. I’ve used it on other scopes with no noticeable cant. I haven’t tried a tracking test yet to verify but will soon after load work. Can someone point me in the right direction?

s
F8A84A31-4AC1-48FA-A9E8-F5F044F2615D.png
 

Hand Skills

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Joined
Nov 1, 2017
Messages
913
Location
Canada
I like to level the rifle using the action rails and then clamp the rifle in place (Level) and optically level the scope using the reticle while viewing a plumb line through the scope.

You can also shine a flashlight through the scope backwards with the rifle level, and project the reticle image on the wall with a line or something vertical (Plumb Bob) In a dark room.

J E CUSTOM

Gotta agree, optical is the way to go. I have a slightly different method. I remove the bolt (when possible). Then I shine a flashlight through the OBJECTIVE, projecting the reticle on the wall.

Then I sight through the bore with my eye, and adjust the scope so the reticle perfectly bisects the bore - when this occurs, I KNOW my scope and reticle are coincident with the bore. Not saying it's the best way for everybody, but I have tried a lot of methods and this one is the best for me!
 
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ntsqd

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Nov 16, 2015
Messages
848
Location
Upper SoKA
That was likely me that linked that Arisaka tool. I've used it once so far and it left no doubt that the scope was level to the rail.

I'd be more inclined to use a stack of long feeler gauges than a stack of business cards.
 

Dog Rocket

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Joined
Mar 17, 2018
Messages
537
Location
Washington State
That was likely me that linked that Arisaka tool. I've used it once so far and it left no doubt that the scope was level to the rail.

I'd be more inclined to use a stack of long feeler gauges than a stack of business cards.
The fact that the business cards compress ever so slightly, allows that you can tighten down the scope under pressure and it will remain level as you do... and you can still get the cards out afterward.

With some scopes and rail combos you may need 1/2" or more of something to fill the gap. That is a lot of feeler gauge to manage while you are tightening stuff down.

An even better idea is using Post-it notes. You take the little squares an cut the stack in half, then peel it down to the exact thickness you need. The papers are already glued together so you don't have to keep them in place while you tighten.
 

parshal

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Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Messages
662
Location
Colorado
I’ve always used the feeler gauge and started using the leveler with the spuhr mounts. All of my scopes are now ATACRs. The most recent was clearly not level and I rotated it using a plumb line. I went back to all the others and a couple were slightly off plumb. I’ll use the base to get it close and a plumb line to get it exact.
 

DSheetz

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Joined
Aug 22, 2015
Messages
1,081
It all depends on how true the scope was assembled unless you do it as JECustom does it . If I came in on Monday after the super bowl game you might not get the best assembly job out of me or I might be thinking of my up coming weekend or vacation . It's not a bad thing to double check things no matter how you originally do it .
 

ntsqd

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Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
848
Location
Upper SoKA
For larger gaps I usually just surface grind a spacer of whatever thickness seems appropriate, and then fine tune with feeler gauges. Probably more easily obtained for most would be some low end gauge blocks. I also do not take the gauges out of their holder, so managing them isn't a deal at all.
That said, the Arisaka tool is faster and simpler to use.

Unless the scope can rotate in the rings nearly friction free I don't see tightening the rings with a stack of compressible anything underneath being a guarantee that the scope is level. When the cards are more compressible than the amount of friction in the rotation, the scope won't be level. Using paper card stock makes this a pretty sure thing.
 

adam

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Joined
Nov 5, 2007
Messages
161
Location
Washington State
The wedge shaped tool from amazon referenced above works really well. There are several variations for $20 or less. Shims, cards, feeler gauges , post it notes, whatever makes you hum also work. Level to the rail is important, but the scope level plumb to both the recticle and the mechanical tracking is so much more important. I use either a good plumb bob or a level arranged vertically at some range, I like 100 yds, but have done it as short as 30 yds.
Follow the mechanical tracking up and down the vertical reference then lock down the scope level. Shoot as far as you can.
 

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