The final step before zeroing your rifle is to boresight it, which will save considerable time on the range.
There are two ways to boresight a rifle, with the first requiring that you literally sight down the rifle's bore. To do this, take out your bolt and firmly sandbag or prop your rifle so it's pointing at a small object about 100 yards away. Remove the scope's turret caps so you can adjust the windage and elevation.
Now, look down the rifle's bore and, through the rifling, pick out that small object, then adjust the sandbag so it won't move. Very delicately, lift your head and look through the scope to see how close the crosshair's pointing at the same spot. Make a bold adjustment on windage and elevation to move the crosshair to die object. Then, again look through the rifle's bore and reconfirm that it's pointing at the tiny spot, and again see if the crosshairs are on it.
You may have to repeat this several iimes> but once you've adjusted the crosshairs for the exact spot where the bore is pointing, crank up 2 1/2 MOAs—10 more clicks—of elevation so you'll mechanically have compensated enough to be "on paper" at 100 and 200 yards. Now you'll be close enough to start zeroing.
A more technical and exact boresight results from a coUimator, an optical device you insert at the muzzle with a stud the same size as your bore. When you look through your scope, you'll also be looking through the collimator's grid at the muzzle, with each square representing a few MOAs, usually four or five. Like a target, the collimator grid contains a bull's-eye at its optical center, to which you adjust the windage and elevation. Laser boresights, too, save range time when zeroing a rifle and operate similar to a collimator, allowing you to make rough adjustments before live-firing.
Should your rear base be adjustable for windage, use this base, not the scope's internal windage, while boresighting. The internal windage is later used for the live-fire zero.
Elevation is adjusted using only the scope's internal adjustments. Once your crosshairs are aimed directly at the collimator's bull's-eye, you'll be shooting accurately enough at least to be on paper.
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