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Thread: where do you zero?

  1. #1

    where do you zero?

    Not a geography question, but more a POA thing...

    In the Shooting & Conservation mag from BASC which I received this week, there is an article on zeroing in which the author states that he zero's all his rifles at 1.5inches high of POA at 100yds, in order to give the best 'kill' area over a range of distances.

    Just taking his example of a .308 as that's the best for our purposes (his others are for a .17hmr and .22-250), his graph indicates that zeroing 1.5inches high at 100yds would mean that the shooter would be on zero at approx 35yds and 185yds; and would be within 3" (1.5" low through 1.5" high) between muzzle and about 210yds.

    (This was using .308 win 150grn SP at 2820fps)

    What are people's thoughts on this method of zeroing?

    I had always thought to zero on the POA at 100yds, which would mean (according to matey's graph) that I'd be about 1/2 an inch low between about 65yds and 150yds - maybe I'd be better off zeroing 1/2inch high?


  2. #2
    I generally zero my rifles at 1" high at 100yds, That seems to suit my own preference but you really need to get to know your rifle and cal and zero it to whatever suits you. get used to your calibre and how the round behaves over different distances and set zero to where you feel suits your needs

  3. #3
    zero for the average distance you will be taking your shots at game at... if you are going to take very few shots at more than 100m then zero for 100
    and know how much you need to hold over for a shot of 200m
    If you want to take much longer shots then you really need a range finder if you want to get exact with shot placement.
    Swaro has plenty of info on there website on this if you are interested

  4. #4
    The advice to zero at +1.5" gets my vote every time.

    At 25 yds you will be hitting .25" low. Go on, hold your fingers that far apart and you will see that to all intents and purposes it is dead on.

    At 50 yds you are +.75", do the finger thing once more and ponder whether you would ever miss a deer by aiming dead on at that range.

    Out at 100, and the +1.5" makes no difference to the lethality of a chest shot, indeed if neck shooting is your business, then you are able to compensate.

    Beyond this range, I personally stick to chest shooting - with the secondary zero arriving at 180 odd yds, you will find your bullet will not be hitting three inches low until somewhere about 240yds.

    To all intents, this means that for a stalker at NORMAL UK ranges, no compensation for range is required until your deer is quite some way out there. This knowledge translates into speed, and as the old traffic adverts used to suggest - Speed Kills!

    Get your shots on target quickly, without having the worry of ranging at normal distances, without error built in by compensation - and you will put more venison in the larder.

    Just my experience here, your mileage may vary!



  5. #5

    Where do you zero?

    Hi Pippa. My .243 is zeroed at 1" high at 100 yards (2978fps) that is spot on at 170 yards and drops in 1" low at 200.
    My 6.5x55s I set at a tad under 1.5" high at 100 and this drops in 1" low at 200.
    Take any of the rifles out and you don't need to make allowances.

  6. #6
    Depends on the shooting distances, type of stalking and shooting skill, IMO a lot of people are very poor judges of distance.

  7. #7
    I zero all of my centrefire rifles spot on at 100m. I am fortunate in having a range pretty much outside my back door but what I like to do, especially with ocaisional use rifles, is, using a A3 (or A4, depending on how good you think you are!)piece of paper, place an orange disc about a third of the way down from the top then, keeping the same point of aim, shoot 3 rounds at 100, 3 at 50, 3 at 150 and 3 at 200m (making sure I know which holes are which). With most modern calibres you will end up with one 2'' ish 9 shot group which is obviously the 50,100 and 150m rounds and anothe 3 shot group a couple of inches low which is the 200m ones. I probably haven't explained that very well but believe me, it gives you a good confidence boost to see all those holes close together on one sheet of paper. I know the theory of zeroing 1" or 1 1/2" high at 100m then aiming centre of chest out to 250m (often called Point blank Zeroing) and it is not a bad idea but I just prefer to be spot on at 100m. Realistically, very few lowland deer are shot at more than 150m and the vast majoriy are shot at less than 100m. JC

  8. #8


    If you are using a plain cross hair reticle, then zero has to suit your preferences & load, as you may wish fall of shot to be in the kill zone out to 300, if you have a chronographed load matched to a ballistic plex, or Mil-dot reticle the work is pretty well all done for you.

  9. #9
    I'd quite often shoot further out, especially at fox with the 243. I set up my deer rifle (308) as follows. Zero at 100yds and then click the precision hunter turrets of my schmidt up by 3 clicks which is a bit over an inch. This setting is ok for a quick shot out to 200yds. Anything further and I'll use the rangefinder and check and dial in the range and windage into the scope. We test every now and then on targets at 300m in the field to see if the theorie is correct. Often one is within an inch of the center at that distance with the first shot.
    A few years ago I used a schmidt varmint reticule with hold over points. For some reason I didn't get on well with that.


  10. #10
    .223 zero 185y with 50gn btip
    .243 zero 200y with 55gn btip
    .308 zero 185y with 125gn btip

    all of them are 1" high or less at 100

    .308 is 7" low at 300
    .243 is 3" low at 300
    .223 is 6" low at 300

    tip of the week - dont set your sights 1" high at 100 and expect them to be anywhere/somewhere+ at 200, check what its doing at 200 and be sure

    and remember

    speed kills

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