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Rifle Scope Zero


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Poll: Rifle Scope Zero (65 member(s) have cast votes)

Select the option for your primary predator hunting rifle.

  1. 25 yards (2 votes [3.08%])

    Percentage of vote: 3.08%

  2. 50 yards (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  3. 100 yards (37 votes [56.92%])

    Percentage of vote: 56.92%

  4. 150 yards (3 votes [4.62%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.62%

  5. 200 yards (23 votes [35.38%])

    Percentage of vote: 35.38%

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#1 D-Man

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 06:29 AM

The past several shots I have had at coyotes have been from 20-50 yards with none of 75 yards (the last 4 coyotes I called in have been like this). Part of it is hunting new areas and it is thicker brush. However, my standard has been 100 yard zero. Been rethinking of dropping it to 50 yards because of what has happened. Been holding lower and lower on the dog, but a lot of shots right over the back of the dog. Very aggravating to call them in that close and not drop the dog! Curious to hear what the others on here have their rifle set at. Darren
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#2 PredatorMaster

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 06:48 AM

Usually at a 100 yards. But it depends on what I am shooting and where I am hunting.

#3 Yodel Dog

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 06:49 AM

.220 Swift ~ 1" high @ 100yds.

#4 Camoghost

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 07:43 AM

I shoot a .223 or a 22.250, being they both shoot very flat I zero @ 100 yards. I try to stop dogs at the 75 yard mark but those young dumb ones just don't listen! :flag: I have missed a few that have come in on a dead run, but most the time I pick them up as they are heading out of Dodge!

#5 tawnoper

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 08:42 AM

The past several shots I have had at coyotes have been from 20-50 yards with none of 75 yards (the last 4 coyotes I called in have been like this). Part of it is hunting new areas and it is thicker brush. However, my standard has been 100 yard zero. Been rethinking of dropping it to 50 yards because of what has happened. Been holding lower and lower on the dog, but a lot of shots right over the back of the dog. Very aggravating to call them in that close and not drop the dog! Curious to hear what the others on here have their rifle set at. Darren

If you are shooting a bolt action with the scope 1.5" above the bore and zero'd a .223 at 100 you would be .250" low at 50yards. If you zero'd 1" high at 100 you would be .250" high at 50yd. Not enough difference to cause any kind of problem. Why someone would shoot a flat shooting rifle and not want to take advantage of the trajectory is baffling. It's tough to beat the old standard 1" high at a 100. In a bolt action with standard height rings close up shots are not a problem. Maybe in an AR type platform where the scope sits up way above the bore.
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#6 Old timer

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 11:12 AM

I agree Im' sighted in 1 inch high at 100 yards with my .243
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#7 Jeff

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 12:45 PM

1" high at 100 yards.
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#8 Fjold

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:26 PM

Short range (223) - 2" high at 100 yards.Medium range (22.250) Maximum height over line of sight at 3" which puts me dead on at 275 yards and 3" low at 325 yardsLong range (6.5x284) Zero at 400 yards, which puts me 3 MOA low at 500 yards, 6 MOA low at 600 yards, 9.5 MOA at 700 yards, etc.
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#9 Cranky Farmer

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:32 PM

Tawnoper beat me to it. With my 200 (190) yard zero I aim center mass and pull the trigger out to 300 yards and can hit my target. My longest shot on a coyote ever was just a hair over 200 yards.Darren, are you sure you haven't bumped your scope and knocked it off? Are you shooting the mini when you're having these problems?

#10 Desert Fox

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:39 PM

If your rifle is sighted-in 1" at 100 yards and your not dropping that coyote at 50 yards, then something else is the culprit. I call it nerve. You're only less than a half an inch high at 50 yards. The best way to zero your rifle is to do a point blank range analysis of the cartridge. Using the coyote as an example, you're presented with a target that has about 6" killing zone. Using my exbal ballistic program for my 223, shooting the 50 grain V- Max, I could see that my zero should be at 259 yards, my mid trajectory is at 148 and my MPBR is at 300 yards. What these all means is that, as long as the target is within the confine of my cartridge MPBR, all I have to do is aim dead -on and I'll have good chance of hitting the target. You can use this procedure on any game and it is effective.
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#11 D-Man

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:55 PM

Tawnoper beat me to it. With my 200 (190) yard zero I aim center mass and pull the trigger out to 300 yards and can hit my target. My longest shot on a coyote ever was just a hair over 200 yards.Darren, are you sure you haven't bumped your scope and knocked it off? Are you shooting the mini when you're having these problems?

The mini-14 is finally back on. It did have issues! On Sunday I had my .270 as my daughter was carrying the mini-14. Will have to take them both out to the range here in a week or so and make sure my scopes are not off their zero. The odd thing is that windage is dead on, just the elevation seems to be the issue. Will also have to check and make sure that I am not getting tunnel vision and make sure that my eye is centered in the scope. All valid points that everyone has been making.Darren♠
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#12 Frank

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 02:28 PM

Hey Darren, like Heath, my first suspect is your scope. Even the best go bad (or knocked out of zero as Heath pointed out). Friends & I were at the range yesterday & one had a high $$ Leupold & was all over the paper & completely off the entire cardboard at 100 yds. I've seen this happen with a couple of my own scopes.Also, having a mini myself and knowing most have horrible(understatement) triggers, jerking the gun off target even at close range is easy to do. Whatever it is, a trip to the range is definitely needed. Anyway, I am really amazed at this pole results which shows being dead on at 100 yards in first place IF I understand it correctly. The best answer is 200 yards of the choices given, which would be approx 1" high at 100 yards depending on velocity etc. Some (slower) caliber & loads would need 1 1/4 - 1 1/2" for predator work. Fox nails it as usual & I have not heard the Point Blank Range (PBR) example in years. I still have my (old) charts for various calibers etc. PBR is absolutely a great guideline & one I used to go by but have semi forgotten about it in recent yrs. tawnoper is also dead on! A quick & easy look at most any ballistic chart, some in reloading manuals will show what is needed for best results. Frankp.s. shot a really hot (HIGH velocity & accurate) 223, 40gr Nosler b.t. handload & another new great load for my 22-250. I hate it when Shooter John is right. :flag:

#13 Bozsik

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 05:51 PM

1-100 .223db
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#14 Cranky Farmer

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 06:35 PM

Ok, who voted 25?

#15 ShooterJohn

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 06:38 PM

Ok, who voted 25?

Yeah, who hunts them with a Daisey Red Ryder BB Gun? :two-cents:

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#16 ehd

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 07:35 PM

1 in 100 for me. At 25 yards you would actually be shooting a tad low.. I check all mine at close range too for around the dogs. just in case..

#17 Thumper Dunker

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 10:21 PM

1-100 for me also.
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#18 tawnoper

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 07:26 AM

Just as an FYI...You can go to thehuntingnut.com and download pointblank ballistic program for free.hunting nutIt's easy to use, as long as you know velocity, bullet bc and height of line of sight it will tell you whats going on. It even has a PBR calculator. For 90% of the shots you get predator calling these programs really are not necessary, but it is kinda fun to mess with and may help you understand a bit more about trajectory.
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#19 Cranky Farmer

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 10:32 AM

So has anyone decided to change the zero for their rifle after reading all this info?

#20 Chris M

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 10:59 AM

I've got a quick question - when you're talking about "1 inch high at 100yd", please clarify and explain to me why it is you do that. Is it that you're crosshairs are on the bullseye and you're bullet hits 1" high, or that you're holding 1" higher than the bullseye and the bullet hits the bullseye?

#21 Rimrock

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 01:00 PM

Chris,It means that you hold the cross hairs on the bulls eye and the bullet strikes one inch above.Example, from Hornady's Handbook: Using a 50 gr. spire point, at 3600 fps. with scope 1 1/2" above the line of sight. With the rifle dead on at 200 yards the bullet will be 1.1" high at 100 yards and 6.0" low at 300 yards. This means that I can hold dead on to about 250 yards and expect to hit a target the size of a coyote.As expected, different velocities will change this.I hope this helps.

#22 woodog

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 01:55 PM

. . .Is it that you're crosshairs are on the bullseye and you're bullet hits 1" high. . . ?

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#23 Desert Fox

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 09:28 PM

For 90% of the shots you get predator calling these programs really are not necessary, but it is kinda fun to mess with and may help you understand a bit more about trajectory.

I respectfully disagree! I believe by zeroing your rifle using the MPBR methods is much more effective, and the odds is in your favor of hitting your target. We all agree that, not all predator shooting are at close range. You and I knows that sometimes, we have no other choice but to take that long shot. I don't know about you guys but, I'd rather keep the crosshair at the target than raising it above an imaginary one. Lots of hunter used this method with great result. When I'm not still hunting, I set my rifle scope to it's MPBR in case I need to shoot in a hurry. It works for me. DF
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#24 Yodel Dog

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 10:04 PM

...using the MPBR methods is much more effective, and the odds is in your favor of hitting your target....

+1 here. I feel that most hunters do not understand the Maximum Point Blank Range(MPBR) of their cartridge. When matching the cartridge with the game animal AND using MPBR, a miss is very seldom, taking into account other factors such as wind and shooter error etc..I talk with hunters frequently and most have no knowledge of MPBR. Most shooters get locked into "1 inch high at 100 yds" etc., and do not understand or comprehend how easy MPBR is for hunting.

#25 dabob

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Posted 11 September 2008 - 04:46 AM

So has anyone decided to change the zero for their rifle after reading all this info?

Nope!
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#26 tawnoper

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Posted 11 September 2008 - 09:16 AM

I respectfully disagree! I believe by zeroing your rifle using the MPBR methods is much more effective, and the odds is in your favor of hitting your target.

Using the coyote as an example, you're presented with a target that has about 6" killing zone. Using my exbal ballistic program for my 223, shooting the 50 grain V- Max, I could see that my zero should be at 259 yards, my mid trajectory is at 148 and my MPBR is at 300 yards. What these all means is that, as long as the target is within the confine of my cartridge MPBR, all I have to do is aim dead -on and I'll have good chance of hitting the target. You can use this procedure on any game and it is effective.

While I respect your opinion; I hate to say it, but....1" high at a hundred IS MPBR with a smaller margin(MPBR is about 2.5" @200yds) . It's only a term for trajectory. Personally, I don't care for any of my calling rifles to shoot higher then 1.5" above the line of sight. With my Swift set at 1.25" high it never goes above 1.5" and at 300 is about 3" low. Obviously, this is a high velocity round shooting a bullet with a pretty good bc. The problem I find with most MPBR calculators is if you pick a kill zone of say 6" on say a .223 shooting a 50gr bullet at 3300fps it will place the highest point of the trajectory right about in the area you should start looking for a shot on a called critter. For a calling rifle I don't want my rifle shooting 3" high at 150 yards, I'd rather aim a little high on those very, very rare 300 yard shots. Actually on called critters, range estimation and wind become more of an issue on those 300yd + shots then trajectory. Just my opinion.
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#27 ehd

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Posted 11 September 2008 - 04:19 PM

Ditto what tawnoper said. All of my shooting errors on coyotes have been in that 150 yard area,and over-shooting . Both my .243 and 22-250 are sighted in at 1" @ 100 high. If they are 3/4" that fine with me. I have only shot a couple of times in the last few years past 200 yards. i prefer to call them in closer or wait for another day, rather than missing the coyote and explaining to the land-owner how much smarter i just made there coyotes.. JMHO

#28 jephs422

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Posted 11 September 2008 - 10:01 PM

Well I guess I'm the odd man out, LOL. My calling rifles are all set to zero at 100 yards. For years I set mine at 1" high at 100. I switched a while back since I do 90% of my calling at night and at a typical 100 yard shot, there are times when the only shot I have is a headshot....and an inch high is too much. At night I usually have a little bit of time to guesstimate range, so if I need to holdover (rarely if ever) I'll have time to do it. Aside from an extremely rare long shot, I hold point blank.
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#29 Desert Fox

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Posted 11 September 2008 - 11:16 PM

I'd rather aim a little high on those very, very rare 300 yard shots. Actually on called critters, range estimation and wind become more of an issue on those 300yd + shots then trajectory. Just my opinion.

Again! a differing in opinion here. I guess whatever works for you. My problem is, I look at everything in technical perspective. I trust my instrument first before I trust myself. If you look at every reloading manual, ballistic programs, or even your chronograph, you will find that MPBR is always there. It's there for one simple reason. It gave shooters info as to how to maximized the performance of their chosen cartridge. Not all of us were blessed with the ability to judge distance, guesstimate height or has the ability to discern inches at different distances. MPBR is an excellent aid in solving some of these inadequacy. I agree with the wind being an issue, but here again MPBR can address those also. Once again! using my 223 as an example, shooting the 50 grain V-Max, that has a pathetic B.C of .242 and an anemic speed of 3300 fps; A 10 MPH wind, which is very significant, will only pushed this bullet 3.25" at my MPBR of 300 yards. As you can see, it's still within the 6" killing zone of a coyote. No guessing, no raising of crosshair on that imaginary target.
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#30 tawnoper

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Posted 12 September 2008 - 06:00 AM

My problem is, I look at everything in technical perspective. I trust my instrument first before I trust myself. I agree with the wind being an issue, but here again MPBR can address those also. Once again! using my 223 as an example, shooting the 50 grain V-Max, that has a pathetic B.C of .242 and an anemic speed of 3300 fps; A 10 MPH wind, which is very significant, will only pushed this bullet 3.25" at my MPBR of 300 yards. As you can see, it's still within the 6" killing zone of a coyote. No guessing, no raising of crosshair on that imaginary target.

I wouldn't necessarily call it a problem, nothing wrong with knowing the technical end of things...as long as it's really understood and not just regurgitating something that was read. Again MPBR is a term for trajectory...the term might be relatively new but the concept aint. If you are sitting on a solid bench, shooting at known ranges, using wind flags etc...the techincal end of things rules. But this question was "how to zero a calling rifle" which obviously there are differences of opinion. I guess someone should set their rifle where they are comfortable. You might want to look at that wind drift again. I'd guess with a 10mph crosswind you'd be closer to 10-12" off at 300yds with the load mentioned. Also, even though this is insignificant...while MPBR really doesn't apply to variables such as wind, if that 3.25" drift was correct, it would be slightly out of your MPBR of 6" since the measurement would be +/-3"...not 6" total.
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