Scope Tracking Test

Discussion in 'Scopes, Optics, LRFs, Spotters, BoreScopes' started by chkunz, Feb 10, 2018.

  1. chkunz

    chkunz Gold $$ Contributor

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    I would like to test a scope to see how well the elevation and windage adjustments track. I would like to know how others do this.
     
  2. kneedtospeed

    kneedtospeed Silver $$ Contributor

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    Put it in a box, carefully wrapped in twentys, and send it to @tom ! :D
     
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  3. chkunz

    chkunz Gold $$ Contributor

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    I would probably save money doing that!
     
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  4. Zero333

    Zero333 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Search "tall target test" on youtube. It's a good start
     
  5. Barlow

    Barlow

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    I don't know if I'm right, but here's the way I do it. Use your most accurate load and always shoot the same point of aim. Fire one shot on target, turn elevation up 8 clicks, fire a shot, turn windage to the right 8 clicks, fire a shot, turn elevation down 8 clicks, fire a shot, turn windage 8 clicks left and fire a shot. If the stars and planets all line up the last shot should be on top of the first one. Measure the distance between them, if it lines up with your adjustments you have a good scope. All done at 100 yards. I had a Weaver T30 on my 6 Dasher that was amazingly good. Barlow
     
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  6. Fred Bohl

    Fred Bohl Gold $$ Contributor

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    Barlow,

    I like your method but I would suggest that you shoot groups before and after your test without scope changes to establish the effects of wind and "shooter". Most shooters are not good enough to shoot better than their scopes.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
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  7. dkhunt14

    dkhunt14

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    I prefer to go to at 1000 yards of elevation to check tracking. That means you need at least a 30 inch tall plumb target at 1000. You could even use a yardstick. If you can mount the gun without it moving, all you have to do is click up and check elevation changes per click or MOA. All your doing is checking to see how much it moves when the crosshair moves per MOA. Matt
     
  8. chkunz

    chkunz Gold $$ Contributor

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    Barlow, Thanks for the reply. I did a test almost exactly as you describe. I set up my 223 bolt action match rifle in the bench rest configuration with my bench rest equipment just like I was shooting groups for accuracy at 100 yards with scope on the gun. I use this gun and load to shoot MidRange (600 yard) matches and it is very accurate. I put my 600 yard zero on the scope. I shot a “box” two minutes (eight clicks) on each side. I shot three shot groups at each comer of the "box". Vertical was within +/- 0.1 inches and the windage was within +/- 0.2 inches. The last point of the box was a repeat of the starting point, ideally the box should close like a survey but the last point was low and right by ½ inch from the first point.

    I shot a second “box” test with identical procedure as the first “box” test and it was amazingly close to the first "box" test including the strange last point that did not close the "box". The two box tests overlay almost perfectly which is amazing since I was shooting three shot groups and my ability to determine the center of my point of impact is probably no better than +/- 0.1 to +/- 0.2 inches.

    So my conclusion is that vertical tracks very well both up and down but windage not as well and moving right tracks better than moving left.

    More important is that I think this is not the best way to test scope tracking. A better way would be to build a mount for the scope that would allow me to make clicks without disturbing the scope alignment and make adjustments while looking at a grid (a piece of graph paper).

    Thanks again for your reply.
     
  9. BoydAllen

    BoydAllen

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    A long time back there was a very well written article in Precision Shooting Magazine that discussed tracking in detail. The author used a collimator with a grid to look at tracking. While I would never put one of those spuds in any barrel of mine his results were interesting. Probably the most important thing that he discovered was that by repeatedly (not just a couple of times but many) turning the turrets back and forth to their limits that tracking was improved, very much as if the mating surfaces were smoothed by rubbing against one another.

    Many years ago I was at a match at Visalia and one of the competitors was having what was thought to be a scope problem. I asked him if he had tried "exercising" his scopes turrets. He said that he had not heard of that and with little to lose he tried the procedure. Later in the same event he went on to win an aggregate with that same scope. I believe that the scope was a 36X Weaver.
     
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  10. brians356

    brians356 Gold $$ Contributor

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    An electric screwdriver with a very sensitive adjustable clutch would speed up that exercise regimen.
    -
     

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