May 13th, 2023

Saturday Movies — Six Videos Covering Key Optics Topics

Optics rifle scope sight-in video parallax scope mounting

Rifle accuracy is pointless unless you can see your target and aim precisely. That’s why good optics are so important for precision shooting — from 50 yards out to a mile and beyond. Top quality scopes can be very expensive — you’ll see optics costing $3000 or more on many competition F-Class and PRS rifles. Today’s video showcase covers important “Riflescope Knowledge”, including how to adjust for parallax, and how to properly sight-in your scoped rifle. In addition there’s a helpful video defining Minute of Angle (MOA) plus videos showing how to mount optics correctly (and avoid common scope-mounting mistakes).

Rifle Sight-In Process — Start to Finish

Here Ryan Cleckner shares his process for sighting in a scoped rifle. This helpful video covers the full process: bore-sighting, 25-yard shot confirmation, shooting groups, making adjustments at 100 yards, and finding mechanical zero. Looking for more valuable rifle instruction? Then check out Ryan Cleckner’s book, Long Range Shooting Handbook.

How to Adjust for Parallax

Most precision rifle scopes have parallax adjustment, but what is it and why do you need to adjust it? In this Shooting USA video, John Paul of JP Rifles defines parallax and explains why you need to set parallax correctly for the distance to your target. The video then show how to adjust parallax correctly, a process which should start with the scope’s ocular focus.

Understanding Minute of Angle (MOA)

MOA scope milradian minutes angle ryan cleckner

In this video, Ryan Cleckner explains the measurement term “minute of angle” (MOA) and how to use MOA adjustments on your scope to compensate for bullet drop at varying distances. MOA is an angular measurement, used often in long range shooting, that is 1/60th of one degree of a circle. One MOA represents 1.047″ at 100 yards and 10.47″ at 1000 yards. Want to learn more? Read Ryan Cleckner’s article Understand and Using Minute of Angle.

Scope Mounting: Common Scope-Mounting Mistakes To Avoid

Mounting a scope isn’t a super-complex or highly technical job, but there are ways you can mess it up. This Brownells video explains common pitfalls to avoid when you’re mounting a rifle scope.

1. Make sure the rings don’t touch any part of the turret housing, objective bell, or eyepiece. Any one or combination of those will throw off your shot groups big time. Make sure those rings are clamping ONLY the scope’s main tube.

2. Ensure that the scope rings are properly clamped to the scope base. If you can grasp the scope with one hand and the rifle with the other and there’s play between them, your groups are going to be all over the place! Scope rings come with torque specs for a reason.

3. Make sure there’s clearance between the objective bell and the rifle. No part of the scope should touch the rifle itself. The only nexus between the scope and the rifle should be the scope rings — and they’re not actually part of the rifle. This also applies to a removable lens cover. When it’s on the scope, it should not touch any part of the gun.

4. Don’t mount the scope too low on an AR-15. On most rifles, you do want the centerline of the optic as close to the bore as you can get it. But the AR-15’s stock is on almost the same plane as the top of the receiver, so you need some height on the scope. Otherwise, it’ll be too low for you to look through it.

5. Overtightening the scope rings is VERY BAD. You can actually crush the scope tube and damage the optic beyond repair. Stick to those torque specs! If the rings come with a little wrench, that wrench is all you need to tighten them.

How to Sight In a Riflescope — Vortex Tech Talk

This popular video from Vortex Optics explains how to sight-in a rifle so that the reticle is aligned correctly and the scope is zeroed properly for your intended application/discipline. People need to remember that the sight height established by the rings will affect their zero, as the centerline of the scope is above the centerline of the barrel.

Scope Mounting — Proper Alignment and Torque Values

An improperly installed scope can cost you points at a match. In this video, MDT Pro Shooter Keith Baker explains the simple steps required to ensure your scope is secured properly with the reticle aligned correctly. The video centers on a typical Precision Rifle optics installation, but the techniques will also work for hunting, varmint, and benchrest rifles.

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