We’ve all been there, in The Sticks or at the range with a new rifle and/or a new scope, wondering how many rounds you’re going to have to burn through just to get this scope ready for your next hunt. Well, next time you’re sighting in your scope, why not only use one round to sight it in, then use the rest to have some fun or work on improving your shot?! That’s right, you’ll be able to sight in a brand new scope in as little as one shot.
The common misconception is that we have to move the barrel of the gun to where the reticle is aimed. Aim the scope at the bullseye of your target, take a shot, measure how far off you are, guess as to how many inches up/down and left/right you have to adjust the turrets, then take another shot and see how far off you still are, and repeat. What if I told you instead of going through this process countless times, we’ll instead move the reticle to where the barrel of the gun is already aimed, saving you a ton of time, money, and very often, a bit of frustration? Check it out-
The first step in this process is key. If, for example, you have a bolt action rifle, take the bolt out of your rifle to allow you to see down the barrel of your gun. After placing your gun on your rifle stand or sand bags (which is essential to have for this process, see the image above for an example) look down your scope and the barrel of your gun and line them both up to be aimed at the bullseye of your target as best as possible.
Once your barrel and scope are lined up as best as possible, both aimed at the bullseye of your target, you’re ready to get going. Place the bolt back into your rifle, load your rifle with a couple of rounds in your magazine, and get your scope aimed right in the middle of the bullseye. Once you’re ready, and your scope is locked in on the middle of your bullseye just as if you’re about to take a shot while hunting, go ahead and take a shot.
Now that you have a bullet hole somewhere on your target, this is the important part. Aim your scope back at the middle of the bullseye just as it was before you took the shot. In this view in your scope, you should also be able to see the bullet hole you just made somewhere on your target. With the reticle still locked in on the middle of your bullseye, hold your gun as still as possible, use the turrets on your scope to adjust your scope to move the reticle from the middle of your bullseye to where your bullet hole is that you just made. It is ESSENTIAL to keep your rifle completely still while you adjust your scope to move the reticle from the bullseye to your bullet hole.
Once you’ve moved the reticle from the bullseye to your bullet hole, it’s that easy, you’re rifle is sighted in. You have just successfully adjusted your scope to align with the barrel of your gun, a much easier process than the inverse. Go ahead and take another shot or two if you want to confirm this worked, but as long as you held that gun still as you adjusted the scope’s turrets, you should be ready to hunt!