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Centering Elevation adjustment Leupold VX3

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by texasjohn, Aug 16, 2010.

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  1. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    I have a question regarding re-centering my elevation knob on a Leupold VX3. I have the rifle zeroed at 200 yards, and when I wanted to move to 300 I started doing some dial adjustment, and found I only had 12 clicks left, which was not enough to get me to 300, close though.

    Anyway, the Scope has 57 MOA of adjustment, so I figured there must be some way to re-center on my 200 yard zero to give me +- ~30MOA from there. (really I would like to have 100 yards be near the bottom, and have 57MOA going up, but once I know how to re-center, I can figure that out)

    I was looking at my manual, and sure enough there is a section on just this topic. I have yet to try it but basically, it says to:

    • Turn the elevation adjustment until it stops.
    • Counting clicks, turn it back the other way.
    • Turn it back the other way half the number of clicks just counted.

    Sounds pretty easy, and I think it is what I want to do. Can A) somebody tell me if this is in fact what I want to do and B) How does this work, I am guessing there must be some internal dial that tracks the position and gets reset when you hit the "ends" of adjustment.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Ditch-Tiger

    Ditch-Tiger Member

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    Those directions are only for returning the scopes reticule to center. Once it's mounted and your out of adjustment, your out of adjustment.
    Sounds like what you need is an adjustable mount(?) or to shim your rings/bases to get the most internal adjustment out of the scope.
    I know this isn't the answer your looking for, but their is no easy solution, sorry.
     
  3. Al Thompson

    Al Thompson Moderator Emeritus

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    Agree with DT. Shim the front ring - I think. :)
     
  4. JDGray

    JDGray Member

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    Either a canted base, or Burris rings with offset inserts, to get more elevation.:)
     
  5. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    Yeah, not the answer I was hoping for, but it was kinda the answer I expected. I have been thinking about a 20MOA base, but it seems a little much since I don't anticipate shooting much over 500 yards and that would only be for fun.

    Do folks sometimes just make their own shim and slide it under the front base? Sounds like that is what is being suggested and I am thinking I could come up with some ways to make that happen pretty easily without forking over large sums of cash for a 20MOA base.
     
  6. HuntAndFish

    HuntAndFish Member

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    Yes, and shim stock is available at midway.

    http://www.midwayusa.com/Search/#shim%20stock____-_1-2-4_8-16-32
     
  7. taliv

    taliv Moderator

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    any chance you've got a 20MOA already and have it installed backwards?

    i'd be REALLY surprised if the gun is off that bad.

    post some pics of the rifle. it may be obvious from looking at it what's wrong. maybe the front/rear bases were switched or something
     
  8. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    Pretty sure they are the same height front and back

    Here are the details:
    • Savage Precision Carbine .308 Caliber
    • Leupold VX3 3.5-10x 50mm
    • Leupold High Rings
    • Warne Bases

    Now, I admit I had some trouble getting happy with mounting a scope of this rifle. I had a post when I first got it when i had a Redfield 50mm that didn't want to go on nice. I returned that and upgraded to the VX3, which has been very good, besides this adjustment thing. Which doesn't seem right to me, given the capability of this scope.

    I have attached a couple of pictures for some better trained eye to look at to see if I have done something incorrect in the setup.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  9. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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  10. Ditch-Tiger

    Ditch-Tiger Member

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    Before you go crazy with shims, may i suggest trying a different set of rings?
    Those look like Leupold rifleman rings and while i am a Leupold fan, I have NOT been impressed with those series of rings as they tend to be of a "lower" quality shall we say.
    I would try a set of Warne or steel cross lock Leupold rings before anything else. Those 2 options may cure your issue as they are less likely to be out of spec.
     
  11. ArtP

    ArtP Member

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    I've never tried it but I have heard using cut out pieces of aluminum drink can as shims. I would lightly lube both sides of the aluminum.

    Ironically, I just helped a friend site in his .308 Savage rifle that appears identical to yours. I found it needed a pretty healthy downward adjustment just to shoot straight at 100 yards, not leaving much downward adjustment for longer shooting. He used a picatiny style base that I didn't care for.

    If you do shim, you want to add height to the rear base so your scope points more downward. You will need .00138 per MOA of adjustment. Cans very in their thickness so you will have to measure carefully and experiment.
     
  12. Kernel

    Kernel Member

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    + Beer can shims. Fortunately you have a rifle that can be easily bore sighted by pulling the bolt and just looking down the barrel at a distant object. A street light a thousand yards away would be ideal. Since you're already zeroed, establishing a perfect point of reference, so you can return to that zero, should be easy. Mechanically zero your scope (put it in the middle of it‘s adjustment range), and shim away, till you get back to your zero reference.
     
  13. JDGray

    JDGray Member

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    If you shim under the rear base, your rings will be stepped, not in the same plane, not good. The burris rings, with offset ring inserts would be a better choice(IMHO)

    When I mounted the Farrell base to my Savage 10FP, I noticed when I just started to tighten the front screws, the base lifted in the rear ever so slightly(.010). Recievers are seldom perfect, and is why Farrell recommends bedding the base, and come with a groove in the base for bedding material. With a 2 piece base set up, you wouldn't have noticed if the rear was lower, and very well could be your problem. If this is your case, shimming under the rear would bring you back in line with the front, but the only way to be sure is by lapping your rings when done mounting. Savages are famous for twisting durring the heat treating process, after the reciever holes have been perfectly drilled, leaving us to mount bases, giving us fits.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  14. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    1st, I would swap the front and rear rings to see if the problem is with the rings.
    2nd. I would get another MATCHED ring and base set. Warne and Leupold make quality products, but when you cross match, you introduce another set of variables with tolerance stacking.

    Secondly, in similar situations, I find it much more desirable to shim the rear base to get additional elevation range.

    By shimming the rear ring, you may find that when tightening a strong ring set, that you can distort the scope tube and even damage the internal components of the scope. In such case, the Scope Mfg. WILL NOT HONOR THE WARRANTY.

    In an extreame case, Brownell's sells scope bases with designed in tilt to allow greater elevation adjustment. Not sure if they make them for the Savage, but I do know that they have them for the Rem700 actions.
     
  15. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    Would a single piece base help things if that is the problem?

    I am looking at a couple options,
    New Rings, probably Warne or I have just been reading some good things about Talley and I really like the idea.

    or,

    Warne Rings + a Warne Single piece base. (maybe the +20MOA variety)
     
  16. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    What you need to do is follow the directions you found to center the adjustment range of the dial.
    *Turn the elevation adjustment until it stops.
    *Counting clicks, turn it back the other way.
    *Turn it back the other way half the number of clicks just counted.

    Then bore sight it, and shim the base to center the crosshairs with the bore.

    At that point, you will have way plenty of adjustment for going WAY past 300 yards.

    rc
     
  17. Uncle Mike

    Uncle Mike Member

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    Shimming is B A D at best, and was used in the past as a quick fix for adjustment problems.

    The rings themselves should NEVER be shimmed, as this will cause your scopes tube to bend as the rings top straps are tightened.

    If you must shim, shim ONLY one piece bases, NEVER two piece bases, and shim between the base and receiver ONLY, this will save your scopes tube, but will bend the base mounting screws as you tighten the base to the receiver, this can cause screw failure, especially when you leave the warmth of the deer camp and step into frigid temperatures.

    The BEST way to remedy adjustment problems is to use 'angled' bases, you may not need a 20MOA base, so take a look at Ken Ferrall's bases, they can be had in different amounts of taper, 10, 15, 20 MOA. www.kenfarrell.com/

    The Burris Signature rings can be utilized successfully BUT, they are a royal pain to index correctly so no scope tube tension or bending is incurred, so IF you want it right, get a tapered base.
     
  18. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    So, one more option (that I might have local to me) would be a Leupold 1 Piece Base and their Rings. I am not very familiar with that dovetail lock in on the front and the windage adjustment screw in the rear. What is the general consensus on these things?

    I am looking very closely at getting a 1 piece base with some amount of taper (20 may be fine) mostly because it would allow me to mount the scope a little bit closer to my eye(s). I find that my normal check weld is a little far back for the eye relief I am getting on 10x power; only an inch or two, but it bothers me to have to move forward from my natural position.
     
  19. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Can’t be too much, lets do the math.
    I don’t know your load so we will use, Federal 150 grain factory ammo going 2820 fps zeroed at 200 yards drops 8.8” that is just under 3 MOA at 300 yards or just under 12 “clicks” with a ¼” adjustment scope. Your load must be similar to this because your 12 clicks “gets you close”.

    So your 57 MOA scope is “topped out” very near 300 yards. Half of 57 MOA is 28.5 MOA, to have the crosshairs centered in the scope at 300 yards this (28.5 MOA) would be the base that you would need. So a 20 MOA base won’t even have the crosshairs centered much less too high.

    You said out to 500 yards above, the drop of our example round from 300-500 yards is 46.4” or 9.28 MOA so a 20 MOA base should do it.

    Edit: math was wrong
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  20. JDGray

    JDGray Member

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    The windage adjustable base is a good thing if you need it, but not as tactical as a steel pic rail, with super high doller rings:D I target shoot with my rifles, and get along with the Leupold windage base just fine, if I were a LE sniper, I wouldn't have it. EGW makes an affordable 20MOA rail made of aluminum,
    http://egw-guns.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=39_128&products_id=179
    that would work just fine for 99% of us. If you do get a one piece base, do watch as you tighten the front screws, to see if the rear lifts up at all. If it lifts at all, bed it.
     
  21. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    So, do I just have a case of un-real expectations for my VX3 3.3 to 10x scope with just 57MOA of adjustment? It is sounding like it.
     
  22. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    No, just a case of not having what you need to do what you want. A 20moa taper base will get you what you want or you could always go with one of these http://vgmount.com/ and shoot even further.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  23. JDGray

    JDGray Member

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    That scope should be able to get you out to 650yrds easy, with 20moa of available elevation from a 100yrd zero. Most scopes when mechanically zeroed, should give you half of its elevation range when zeroed on the rifle. I zeroed my last scope by spinning it on a v-block set up I made out of a cardboard box. I adjusted the turrets untill the X hairs stayed on a single aim point as I slowly spun the scope 360 degrees. The box was secured in my B&D Workmate:D After mounting the scope on my Leupold 2 piece base with windage adjustable rear, I adjusted the rear until my bore sight was good, and let er rip at 100yrds. The windage was easily corrected by adjusting the screws on each side, and my elevation was 1" low.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
  24. texasjohn

    texasjohn Member

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    I took a trip to academy a little while ago, to see what they had. The had a two piece Leupold mount and dovetail rings. I figured I would give it a shot (so to speak).

    Anyway, I get them home, and mounting them what I assume is the correct way, the scope can't/won't got on the rifle. That is putting the lock in piece up front and the longer part with the windage screws in the rear. The tube length just wouldn't make it. Anyway, so I decided to see if it was possible to swap the front and rear, as they look and measure to have the same height from where they meet the receiver to the bottom of the scope.

    Long story short, it works well with my rifle, or at least lets me mount the scope with the benefit that I was able to move the eye piece back about 1.5 inches or so where my natural cheekweld/eye position will be a bit better.


    It this a totally WRONG thing to do? It does look a bit odd I must say and the windage adjustment wouldn't work like normal.

    Comments??
     

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  25. JDGray

    JDGray Member

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    I think thats right, not sure if I changed mine around or not.

    This is the way the previous owner mounted them.
    IMG_2751.jpg
    And in its current state
    001-1.jpg
    My LTR with the same bases you have
    003-2.gif
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2010
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