View Full Version : Air Rifle Sights
A really simple query here. I bought myself a new air rifle for lamping. However I am being driven to distraction as I cannot seem to correct the sight. I have set up a target with a large back board and have been altering the vertical and horizontal crosshairs depending on where my shots groups are landing but it seems to always aim to the same area on the left and stay above the target or go extremely far to the right.
Does anyone have any sure fire ways of sighting? Help much appreciated!
At this moment my throwing axe is far more accurate!!
Hi - if you haven't already done this it may be worth a try.
you have to make sure the scope is in the correct verticle and horizontal plane, if not you will never be able to zero it.
The best way to aligne the scope ( the cheapest anyhow ) is to use the pointing on a brick wall or house. Put the scope on the rifle and look through it, then rotate the scope until the cross hairs aligne with the pointing on the wall. It's then just a matter of tightening the scope in the mounts and zeroing in.
Give it a try - it's free
Firstly, what Air Rifle do you have, and is it .22 or .177?
(Also what scope type)?
As for Zeroing in the rifle/scope, the average distance for .177 is 35y and upto 30y with .22. Any closer and you will find the hold over/under becomes harder to work out for different distances.
On average 1 click on the adjustment turret equels upto 1 inch at 100y, but remember, with an Air Rifle (unless it is a FAC one) is only good out to 50y tops for a good clean kill...if used for hunting.
What I tend to do when Zeroing a rifle is - Start out at 20y and get the zero, then move to 30y, doing the same setup, then onto 40y (I have a .177 therefore a longer Zero is possible due to the flatter trajectory). Sometimes it takes a good few turns of the turret adjusters to get close so keep at it!
What yuou might also want to do is set up the rifle on a work bench (using something soft like a towel when clamping so you don't scratch the stock), and try Zeroing from there. This eliminates any falso movement on the shot.
Hope this helps!?
is it possible the scope may be suffering from scope creep?especially if its a spring rifle
It is a while since I messed with sighting in a rifle, but these have been my experiences.
If the shots are grouping, like, all under an inch or so (fliers caused by flinches excepted) then you should be able to adjust the sights, at that one distance, to line up with the group.
If the shots are all going wild and not grouping it could be that you are not holding the rifle stably enough, or in the case of a piston powered rifle, that it is touching something solid. The other possibility is that pellets could be clipping the inside of a poorly fitting silencer, I have seen this twice, out of a pretty small sample.
If the sights won't move so that they line up with were the rifle shoots, scope creep is a possibility, as are loose screws somewhere, loose scope internals, and rings that are very badly aligned.
Even if your scope is not fitted so that the cross hairs are dead level, you should be able to adjust, at that one range, so that it appears that you are on target. the problem will come when you change range and shots track off diagonally to one side or the other.
Some more info on the type of rifle, scope, pellets, rest and so on would probably help. There are some really experienced folks around who should be able to sort you out.
Firstly, as has been said, make certain that the scope is aligned correctly in the mounts so that the vetical and horizontal elements of the reticule are exactly right. (i.e. perfectly aligned with the rifle) Make absolutely sure that the scope is mounted firmly in its mounts and that it does not move AT ALL between shots.
Then, choose any suitable, large back ground stop such as a wall or old board. Put an aim point on the board with a marker pen or something. Do not make the "target" too big, a bold spot of about 1/2" diameter should be ample big enough to see clearly through the scope from 25 or 30 yards (depending on what distance you want your sights set at.)
From whatever distance you intend shooting from aim a shot at the target mark. Put the crosshairs directly on the mark and fire. DO NOT aim off target to compensate for the sights still being out, you need to know exactly how far out the sights are in order to adjust them correctly! 3 shots like this (probably best done from a soft rest to ensure consistency) should result in 3 very closely grouped holes somewhere on the board. If the holes are off to the left of the target spot adjust your sights to bring them closer next time.
Sorry to correct Rocket on this matter, but most scope adjustments are in fact 1/4" at 100 yds per click of the adjuster knob. If you are shooting at 25 yds this will mean that one click of adjustment = 1/16" on the target, so you will have to turn the adjuster 16 clicks for every inch that your shots are out by.
Once your shots are falling correctly on the left to right (windage) side of things, adjust in the same way to get the vertical plane (elevation) right.
Your shots should now all be tightly grouped on and around the target mark (which you may have had to use several of in order to avoid confusion about which shot was which)
If you find that shots are scattering all over the place even when shooting from a soft rest (NEVER rest a rifle on a hard surface as it will jump off it due to the recoil as the shot is fired. Cushion it in your hand or on a sandbag or similar for consistent shooting) you might need to look at the rifle itself to find the cause. I have known brand new air-rifles fitted with sound moderators to have slight flaws in either the alignment of the mod to the barrel or in the manufacture of the mod which leads to the pellet clipping the mod as it leaves the gun, tumbling it in flight and throwing up wild shots known as "flyers". If there is no moderator fitted check that the crowning at the muzzle end of the barrel has not been damaged as any flaw here will have the same effect.
If you find that you run out of adjustment on your scope before the shots are on target you may need to re-fit the scope in the mounts using shims between scope and mount to get things better aligned before starting.
This is a long winded way of explaining what should be a pretty simple process, but I hope it helps you with your problem. Keep safe and please, please make sure that you have had enough practice with the rifle to consitently hit 1 1/2" targets at your chosen range whilst shooting from whatever position you will be using when hunting to ensure that you make a clean job of despatching your quarry. Learn about holdover and how much you need to aim above or below targets at various ranges too. (Sorry if I'm teaching you to suck eggs with this bit, but it's a mantra that was drilled into me hard and fast as a kid when I was taught to shoot) Remember, there are only 3 things in the world you ever point a gun at... the sky, the ground and the thing you want to kill. Treat every gun as loaded and dangerous even if you know it's not.
Keep safe and Good hunting!
What gun / calibre ?
Is there a silencer fitted ?
The rifle is a full power spring model from Italy with a silencer just a cheapie .22 meant for rabbits and the scope is an 8 x 38 hawke. Sadly I sold my BSA Lightning a few years back.
Today I made a vice, stuck the rifle in it and tested the sight as per suggestion Marshall. Somehow or other the scope has revolved in the mounts and the up and down dial was acting as left and right and vice versa. So I have reset the scope in the mounts and got it set correctly. I never thought to check for that.
Now it aims as it should, so no more wells fargo.
Thanks again for your ideas and comments. Some of the things you mentioned I did not know, so very useful to me. Much appreciated.