How To Zero A Rifle Scope At 100 Yards?

How To Zero A Rifle Scope At 100

Zeroing a rifle scope is essential for achieving accuracy and precision in your shooting. When it comes to zeroing at 100 yards, it requires careful adjustments to ensure that your bullets or pellets hit the target exactly where you aim. In this comprehensive guide, I will take you through the step-by-step process of zeroing a rifle scope at 100 yards, providing valuable insights and expert tips along the way.

How To Zero A Rifle Scope At 100 Yards (Expert Guide)

Achieving a proper zero is essential for accurate shooting. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced shooter, this guide will provide you with easy-to-follow steps on how to zero an air rifle or other rifle scopes effectively at 100 yards. By mastering this skill, you’ll enhance your shooting accuracy and confidence. Say goodbye to missed targets and hello to consistent, precise shots. Let’s dive into the process of zeroing your air rifle or other rifle scopes with ease.

Understand the Basics of Zeroing

To begin, let’s familiarize ourselves with the basic concepts of zeroing a rifle scope. Zeroing refers to aligning the point of impact with the point of aim at a specific distance. This process ensures that when you aim at a target, your bullets consistently hit where you intend. Zeroing at 100 yards is a popular choice for many shooting applications.

Gather the Necessary Equipment

Before you start zeroing your rifle scope, gather the following equipment:

  • Your rifle equipped with a scope
  • Ammunition (preferably the same type you will use for shooting)
  • A stable shooting platform (e.g., shooting bench, sandbags)
  • Target paper or reactive target
  • Eye and ear protection
  • Tools for adjusting the scope (typically screwdriver or coin)

Establish a Preliminary Zero

Begin by zeroing your rifle scope at a closer distance, such as 25 yards. This step allows you to establish a preliminary zero before fine-tuning at 100 yards. Ensure you have a stable shooting platform and a suitable target set up at the designated distance.

Aim and Shoot

Align your rifle’s crosshairs on the target’s bullseye and take a shot. Repeat this process to create a grouping pattern on the target.

Evaluate the Grouping

Analyze the grouping on the target. Determine the center of the group and note any deviations from the bullseye. This initial grouping provides a starting point for making adjustments.

Making Adjustments

To zero your rifle scope precisely at 100 yards, you need to make adjustments to the scope’s windage (horizontal) and elevation (vertical) settings. Follow these steps:

Windage Adjustment

If the grouping is left or right of the bullseye, adjust the windage turret in the corresponding direction. Each click on the turret usually represents a specific value (e.g., ¼ MOA or 1/8 MOA), which you can find in the scope’s user manual. Make small, incremental adjustments and recheck your grouping after each adjustment.

Elevation Adjustment

If the grouping is above or below the bullseye, use the elevation turret to make the necessary adjustments. Again, make small incremental adjustments and reassess the grouping after each change.


Continue adjusting both windage and elevation until your grouping is centered on the bullseye at 25 yards.

Move to 100 Yards

Once you have established a preliminary zero at 25 yards, it’s time to move on to the final zeroing distance of 100 yards. At this distance, you can make more accurate adjustments to your rifle scope to ensure precise shots for longer-range shooting. Refer to your scope’s user manual or ballistic charts to determine the necessary adjustments. Make incremental changes to the windage and elevation turrets, firing a series of shots and assessing the grouping after each adjustment. Repeat this process until you consistently hit your desired point of aim at 100 yards.

Calculate Adjustments

Refer to your scope’s user manual or ballistic charts to determine the required adjustments for zeroing at 100 yards. Factors such as bullet drop and ballistics specific to your ammunition should be taken into account.

Apply Adjustments

Use the calculated values to adjust the windage and elevation turrets accordingly. Make precise, small adjustments, and always recheck your grouping after each change.

Confirm and Refine

Fire a series of shots at the 100-yard target and assess the grouping on the target. If necessary, make additional adjustments to fine-tune your zero until your shots consistently hit the intended point of aim.

Expert Tips for Zeroing A Scope at 100 Yards

  • Use a stable shooting platform to eliminate variables and ensure consistent results.
  • Take your time and exercise patience throughout the zeroing process.
  • Keep a record of the adjustments you make, including the number of clicks or turns, for future reference.
  • Consider environmental factors such as wind and lighting conditions while zeroing your scope.
  • Regularly check and maintain your rifle and scope to prevent any loss of zero.


Zeroing a rifle scope at 100 yards is a critical step in achieving accuracy and confidence in your shooting. By following the step-by-step process outlined in this guide and implementing the expert tips provided, you’ll be able to zero your rifle scope effectively. Remember to practice safe shooting habits and enjoy the rewarding experience of hitting your targets with precision.

Note: For further guidance on mounting and zeroing a scope on your air rifle, you can refer to this comprehensive guide: How to Mount and Zero a Scope on Your Air Rifle.


Certainly! Following are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) along with their answers:

What magnification do you zero a scope on?

When zeroing a scope, it is generally recommended to set the magnification to the maximum available. This allows for better visibility of the target and finer adjustments during the zeroing process. However, if the maximum magnification is too high and affects your ability to maintain a steady sight picture, it is acceptable to reduce the magnification to a comfortable level while still ensuring clear visibility.

Can a rifle scope lose zero?

While rifle scopes are designed to maintain their zero, it is possible for them to lose zero under certain circumstances. Factors such as heavy recoil, rough handling, or exposure to extreme conditions can potentially cause a scope to lose its zero. Regular maintenance and proper mounting of the scope can minimize the chances of zero shifting. Additionally, ensuring that all mounting screws are tightened to the recommended torque specifications helps maintain a consistent zero.

What is zeroed at 50 yards?

Zeroing a rifle or scope at 50 yards is a common practice for certain shooting applications. It allows for a convenient initial zero and simplifies trajectory calculations for shorter distances. Zeroing at 50 yards provides a good starting point, but it’s important to remember that the bullet’s trajectory will still need to be considered for longer-range shooting.

What distance is a zero air rifle?

The distance at which an air rifle is zeroed can vary depending on the specific rifle, ammunition, and shooting preferences. The most common zeroing distance for air rifles is typically around 10 meters (or approximately 11 yards). However, some shooters may choose to zero their air rifles at longer distances, such as 20 or 30 yards, depending on their intended shooting range and the characteristics of their rifle and ammunition.

How often should I recheck my zero?

It is generally recommended to periodically recheck your zero, especially if your rifle or scope has been subjected to significant changes or potential impacts. Factors such as transportation, storage conditions, changes in ammunition or barrel condition, and extensive shooting sessions can affect your zero. Additionally, it is advisable to recheck your zero before important shooting events or hunting trips to ensure optimal accuracy. Regular rechecks help maintain confidence in your shooting setup and mitigate potential zero shifts.

Luke Torres

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