How to Mount a Scope?

Mounting a riflescope properly on a gun or rifle is one of the most important but difficult aspects of sharp shooting. You may have a superior quality rifle scope but improper fitting with the firearm will make the entire shooting system useless. No matter which brand/variant you use, be it the magnanimous Nightforce NXS, Nightforce BEAST or Nightforce Competition; the brilliant yet cost-effective Vortex Razor rifle scope; or Trijicon Accupoint 5-20×50 and Trijicon ACOG scopes from the revered Trijicon scope family, it is practically impossible to know whether the installation has been done in the right manner until and unless you are hunting in the field or shooting from bench. Therefore, choosing the right bases and rings along with mounting the scopes correctly are very important.

Mounts have rings as well as bases that work as a single entity. Most common mounts available in the market are See Through variants and Saddle Mounts. The latter ones are particularly used with shotguns.

how to mount a riflescope

Let us check the steps involved in mounting a scope:

Step 1: Base and ring matching

The first thing a shooter needs to know whether the mounting system he/ she is choosing is the right one for the scope. Correct height and diameter of rings matter. If you are using a modern rifle, it should be either properly pre-drilled or grooved for proper mounting attachments. You need to check whether the rings have the correct height and diameter for correct positioning.

While choosing a ring, you must keep in mind that some bases require particular rings only. Therefore, choose the appropriate ones accordingly. Rings also have different heights and therefore the choice must be made prudently.

Step 2: Mounting Base

While mounting a riflescope, which might be anything like Nightforce Benchrest, Nightforce ATACR 5-25×56, Vortex Viper PST, Vortex Razor HD Scope, Trijicon TARS scopes and so on, you must keep in mind that the device is mount as low as possible and the objective is not touching the barrel. For the bolt’s free operation, clearance at eyepiece is essential. If you have any difficulty in understanding this, don’t shy away from asking the operator of a gun shop. You can also send your inquiry to and we will be more than happy to help.

Torx wrenches or socket heads are used to attach scope bases and rings with screws. First clean and dry the surface on which you are attaching bases. After this, rust preventive or thin coat of oil must be applied. Proper alignment of bases must be done. Please check them carefully. Also check whether you are attaching them properly. One of the most common mistakes prevalent while attaching a scope is backward attachment. You should not attach bases backwards.

Step 3: Locking Them Down

Locking them properly is very important. Loctite or any other thread-freezing compound must be applied to achieve maximum security. Through alternative tightening of screws even fitting can be ensured. In case, you are using rings that are attached by rotating socket system to front base, you should never use the optical device as a lever for pivoting ring into position. In that case, you can use something that comes with a similar diameter or even a wooden dowel.

Step 4: Proper Alignment of Reticle

Rings’ bottom halves are now properly placed. Now, you simply have to position the riflescope properly and tighten rings’ top halves up to that extent where the optical device is capable of moving and rotating back and forth. Hold the rifle at proper level and keep rotating the riflescope till the reticle reaches perfect horizontal and vertical levels.

Step 5: Eye Relief Adjustment

The scope should be attached in such a manner that your eye doesn’t get hurt at the time of recoil, just after taking a shot. That’s why selection of proper eye relief is extremely important. The most common and at the same time effective way of selecting the correct eye relief is moving the riflescope one inch forward from the place where you think it should be. It can be used as a thumb rule.

Step 6: Ring Screw Tightening

Once the position of the scope on the rifle base has been chosen, it is time for you to tighten the ring screw. Check whether the ring halves are located at even spacing and now tighten the screws.

Step 7: The Final Step of Bore Sighting

Bore sighting of scope is to sight-in your rifle for 100 yards range on paper. However, in practical field this sighting is only an approximation. Once inserted, adjustment of horizontal and vertical axis to desired aim point is needed. To get appropriate sighting, you have to test fire at 100 yards range. Use proper insertion pin for inserting bore sight in the caliber used.

To draw the conclusion, whether you are using scopes from Nightforce Optics, Vortex Optics, Trijicon or any other brand, follow these 7 essential steps for mounting your scope in the best possible way!

by Scopelist

One thought on “How to Mount a Scope?

  1. Pingback: Riflescope Rings – Everything you wanted to know! - Scopelist Blog

Comments are closed.