Adding a scope to a rifle or upgrading to a new scope doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Most gun owners will have no difficulties in changing out or adding a scope on their own, but there are a few considerations that will be important before you ever start the project.
While many gun enthusiasts assume the scope itself is the key to greater accuracy, the scope mounts are just as important. Choosing the wrong combination of scope and mounts or choosing the wrong mounts will result in incorrect positioning of the scope. This, in turn, will lead to problems with accuracy.
Getting the Right Mounts
With almost all types of rifles, you will find the gun barrel is designed for a specific type of mount. This includes a grooved area for the base or the gun is pre-drilled for the scope base.
The base, of course, also has to match the scope base. If you are currently using a scope, check the configuration of the current mount on the weapon. This will give you a starting point as well as the type of mount that is required.
The scope rings will also have a different height. The height of the scope mounts and the scope rings will determine how high of the barrel the scope will sit. There needs to be clearance, but when the scope is positioned too high it will cause unnatural positioning of the head, resulting in decreased accuracy and increased shooter discomfort.
Think of top quality scope mounts as an investment in accuracy as well as in your weapon. Choosing poorly constructed mounts will result in the scope not being firmly attached. This allows the scope to shift positions, even just a fraction of an inch, resulting in loss of accuracy.
This can be very frustrating for a shooter and, with just a very slight movement, it can difficult to see that the simple mount is the cause of the accuracy problem. Additionally, if the scope mount isn’t right, it can cause damage to the surface of the weapon, which may cause corrosion issues over time with significant scratching or rubbing.
You should also consider the different options in bases for mounting a scope. The most common tends to be Picatinny, but here are also what is known as non-Weaver (non Picatinny) style that is also readily available. Personal preference and specific requirements for each gun owner will often be the deciding factor in the mount style selected.