Canting

Spec Ops Shooting

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Canting is the slight misalignment of a scope's crosshairs, when the vertical line is not exactly vertical and the horizontal line is not exactly horizontal. The scope is turned slightly right or left and must be rotated back to the center.

if your scope is canted, you'll tip your rifle while firing and dump bullets right or left, with the effect increasing with distance. For example, you could find that for each six clicks in elevation, the canted crosshair pulls you one click to the left, a situation that hardly lends itself to precision shooting. Even a tiny 1-degree canr will shift your bullet one-half inch per hundred yards.

We've shown a simple way to check canting in the accompanying illustration. Extend your bipod and place the rifle on the ground while holding its butt up at arm's length. If you look carefully, you can actually see the magnified crosshair through the eyepiece.

Now, imagine there's a line running from the heel (bottom) of your buttstock right through the scope to the exact center of its top. The vertical crosshair should coincide with this imaginary line. Rotate the scope until it does, and recheck it at arm's length. (Be careful not to disrupt the eye relief you've just finished setting.)

So, having set the eye relief and checked for canting, you may finish tightening the hex screws, again rapping them to torque them good and tight.

Should you later have problems with the scope slipping inside the rings due to recoil—a real possibility on heavy magnums and .50-caliber sniper rifles—you can anchor the tube to the rings with 3M Scotchkote Electrical Coating, a technique developed by Ross Seyfried, a gun writer and fancier of especially powerful rifles.

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