Rem 700 VS w/ 20 moa mount question


Jan 7, 2003
I recently purchased a Remington 700 VS in .308. I added the Badger Ordinance 20 moa 1-piece mount with medium rings, and the Nightforce 8-32 x 56 NXS scope. My problem is that it takes approximately 30 moa elevation change to get my zero at 100 yards, and I run out of elevation before I get to 1000 yards. The rings are lapped with Sinclair's tool.

Do I go to a 40 moa 1-piece mount like Nightforce offers, or has anyone else run into this problem. A friend of mine has the same set-up, but he has the 5.5-22 x 56 scope. He has the same problem. We both think that 28 to 30 moa is a great deal of elevation to have to dial into the scope just to get to zero. Any help would be appreciated.
Ok, maybe it's just me, but this does not compute in my mind.

.308 Winchester, depending on the bullet, velocity, barrel length (i.e. back to the velocity thing), etc. generally uses from ~35-44 MOA to get to 1k from 100yds.

I forget what the exact numbers are for the particular NF scope you are using, but christ, w/ a 20MOA base it should be a god's plenty to get you to 1k. I mean, when you really look at it, about half your required elevation is already taken care of by the 20MOA base, leaving you 15-25MOA to deal w/ in the scope. Realistically, since you have a VS, and not a sawed off LTR, you are probably looking more in the 15-20MOA range. Like I said, I don't remember how much exactly the 8-32x NXS has for adjustment, but it should be *plenty*, assuming a reasonable load...

*groan* you wouldn't by chance be using something like a factory load w/ a 168gr SMK in it, would you?!?

If you are, my advice to you would be to ditch it, and either handload a 175gr SMK to a healthy speed, or find a batch of Fed Gold Medal or Black Hills Match w/ 175gr SMK. Should make a noticeable difference.

If you aren't, I'd say I'm corn-fused as to *** is going on. And would dearly love to know what shakes out on this one.

I had the same scope on my 6.5-284. I would get a set of Burris signiture Z rings with the plastic inserts that shuld give you the elevation you want.
Crow Mag

The 8-32 Nightforce allows about 65 moa total elevation adjustment. I am using 30 of the 65 just to get to zero with the 20 moa 1-piece Badger mount. My buddy's 5.5-22 has 90 moa of elevation, but we both thought that dialing 30 moa into the scope with the 20 moa mounts seemed like a lot of elevation. That is why we were wondering if we should be using the Nightforce 40 moa 1-piece mount instead of Badger's 20 moa.

I hand-loaded Winchester cases with 42.0 grains of RE 15 using 168 grain Sierra Match Kings. I seat the bullets .010" from the rifling which gives me an over-all length .110" longer than the factory-recommended 2.800". I know the Black Hills ammo is seated at 2.8" to fit in the magazines, but I load one round at a time. My groups are tight, but I'm wondering how much I'm giving up in velocity by seating my bullets out near the rifling (lots of extra case volume with the bullet seated so long). I don't have a chronograph to test my loads, but my groups are great. I'm hitting 20" x 40" siloettes in the center of the chest from 400 out to 1000 yards with half-value wind.

My friend with the 5.5-22 Nightforce uses the Black Hills 168's and has to dial in a similar amount of elevation to get out to 1000 yards. He had 50 moa dialed into his scope with 20 moa additional on the scope mount. I had to use the NP-R2 reticle's additional 20 moa to get the total of 52 moa I needed, plus the 20 moa in the mount to get to 1000 yards. My buddies Black Hills ammo is 2.800" over-all length. We both use the Davidson Comparitor to determin our over-all lengths (bullet ogive).

Any thoughts or concerns would be appreciated.
How many moa did you have to use without the 20 moa base to get on at 100 yards? How far back do you have the scope on the base?
I had a 300 win mag shooting 220 mk's at 2800fps and had leupold quick detach bases and rings with the same scope.No 20 moa base and was able to get to 700 yards before i ran out of adjustments. This was with the 8x32x56 NXS and had High rings also. Something doesn't seem right. I am sure you have checked this but could the base be backwards? I know sounds stupid but we all do things sometimes.
30 of the 65MOA, *with* the 20MOA base?!?

Are you dialing 'down' or 'up'?


P.S. Again, the 168gr isn't really an ideal choice for that kind of distance (designed back in 50's-60's for 300m competition); the 175gr SMK is a *much* better choice, as it was designed specifically to address the shortcomings (pun intended) of the 168 at longer ranges. Then again, hell, the .308 Win isn't really an ideal long range caliber either. But it *does* work quite nicely
Heat that load up a bit to something like 42.6gr of RE15 behind a 175gr SMK and watch your drop decrease dramatically.

I'd say it's your action and barrel threads not pointing in the same spot, much like my one Rem 700. I shim in order to zero at 100 and My 8-32 Sig needs 100% of the eleveation just to zero if I don't. Just switch to different bases or the Sig ring as mentioned and live with it.
Matt 27,

I have only tried the scope with the 20 moa Badger mount. It seemed to me that if I went to a Nightforce 40 moa mount, then I would only need to dial the scope 10 moa UP in elevation, leaving me 55 moa to get all the way out to 1000.

Do you guys think I am looking at this wrong to think that 20 moa additional elevation in the mount would result in 20 moa less elevation needed in the scope elevation?

Let me know what you think.


I am dialing the scope UP in elevation to get the bullet to zero at 100 yards. I have to use almost half of my available scope elevation adjustability just to get to zero. It seemed to me that I needed to go to the 40 moa mount, but I thought I'd see if any of you had run into this problem.

I will definitely try the 175 grain Sierra MK and see where I go, but the guys I shoot with load their 175's with the same load as their 168's. I'm also going to try varying seating depths to see what affect it has on required elevation to get to 1000.

I was hoping that someone else had run into this before. My assumption is that the receiver is off just enough to require more cant in the scope mount to be able make full use of the scope's total available elevation.

Any additional comments are certainly welcomed. Thanks.

Check your base and make "SURE" it in fact has a .020" taper. My guess is, it don't.

If your using half of the available clicks in the scope to get to 100 yards with a supposed .020" tapered base, it can't be tapered or it's somehow on backward, which would be hard to do.

I would have started with a .040" tapered one to begin with.

The NXS 8X to 32X has 65 MOA Total
The precision Benchrest 8X to 32X has only 50MOA.

Solution---Check the tapor or get a .040" Nightforce base.

Well, like some of the others have said... I'd suspect something is mechanically a bit off. If it's a barrel/receiver thing, then short of replacing stuff, not much you can do but live w/ it. If everything was centered, you *should* have more than enough elevation as is. My .308 has a tendency to want to go to the side, I think, which really eats up the windage on some scopes w/ smaller adjustment ranges. Try either a 40MOA base, or as a cheaper option to see if it works first, get some Signature rings w/ appropriate inserts for 40MOA. IIRC, they are about 1/3 the price of the Badger Ord. bases.

As far as the 168 vs 175gr loads... I'd say they are either underloading their 168's or overloading the 175's if they are using the same load for each, but that's just me.

BTW, pardon my ignorance, but exactly what do you think seating depth has to do w/ elevation at LR (besides increasing case volume if you seat them out a *long* ways)? I'm not familiar w/ this (seating depth) as a way of affecting bullet drop.


In response to your question about bullet drop and seating the bullets long, I expected to need a total of about 43 additional moa to get from 100 yard zero to 1000 yards. Since my sight adjustment required 52 additional moa, I suspected that the bullet velocity was slow causing the exessive drop. My speculation was that the increased case volume, as a result of seating the bullet .110" longer than the suggested 2.800" over-all length that ammo manufactures such as Black Hills use, was a contributor to decreased velocity (less initial pressure). Since I don't presently own a chronograph, I had no way of telling what the velocity of my hand loads were, and if seating the bullets long (within .010" of the rifle lands) was having an adverse affect on my long distance shots. That is why I asked if seating the bullets closer to the rifling might be a cause of my problem, and if I needed to compensate with a slightly higher powder charge. I've been holding until I could afford the Ohler 35P chronograph. Another $120 for the Nightforce mount keeps me just that much further from my goal. I didn't want to spend the $ for the 40 moa mount without asking for advise from more experienced shooters.

I spoke with Jeff at Nightforce this morning and his suggestion was to replace the 20 moa mount with the 40 moa mount and see if that corrects the condition. I ordered the mount this morning.

I'll reply back after I have installed the new mount and checked my zeros.

Any comments on reduced velocity as a result of increased case volume (seating bullets longer)from anyone? Any other advice is appreciated.
You MUST ditch the 168 bullet loads. They cannot successfully perform at 1,000y in a .308 unless you drive them at unsafe (for yourself/your rifle) velocities. Use them for 600y or less.

Use the 175 MK, it is clearly superior at long range.

Optics. Did you make sure your scope was optically centered before you zeroed at 100y?

If not, then you should, before proceeding further. With 65 total moa, then the scope should have 4 or 8 times that many clicks, depending on 1/4 or 1/8 adjustments.

Crank (gently) the elevation to the top (or bottom, doesn't matter), and then count back to the middle (meaning 32.5 moa from your top or bottom, in clicks). That's the optical center.

My guess is that you were sent a non-tapered base. I have a Badger Ordnance 20moa taper one-piece base that I will sell you for $105.00 shipped. Like new, in the original package. I know it has the taper, because it exactly matches the other one I use.

With that scope and a 20 moa taper base, you *should* absolutely be able to get a 1,000y zero, unless your rifle's receiver is way out of whack.

DON'T use 168 bullets in .308 Win for shooting 1,000y. They'll be going, at best, transonic to subsonic, and you won't be able to gauge accuracy from one shot to the next. Your groups will be barn door size.

[ 04-24-2003: Message edited by: Nate Haler ]
Have to back up what most everybody said.
1. You have to have 175s for 1000. 168s are subsonic by then.
2. It's possible that you have a flat base but highly unlikely as Marty made a VERY small amount of flat bases.
3. You have another problem and putting a 40 MOA base is simply a band-aid. I mount about 10 rifles a week with Badger bases and rings and test them at 1000 every weekend with Leupold's, Nightforce, S&B and B&L tacticals and have no trouble getting to 1000.

My suggestion would be forget the band-aid and send your rig to a good smith to be checked out.
Wait a min..

I think the base is on backwards... 30 MOA to zero at 100 easy.. 20 MOA for the base and 10 MOA for error or just to line everything up.... I amnot sure how you could do this unless you drilled new hole but it sounds like it is on backwards.. even if it is flat or non tapered.. 30 MOA to zero at 100 ... WOW!!!!

I'd tear everything apart..rings, bases, etc.... set the turrets back to optical center .. remount everything and try it again..
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