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  #1  
Old 04-26-2017, 09:48 AM
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Alignment / scope windage problems


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In the past 3 years I've worked with 4 Winchester Model 70s where the scope almost ran out of windage adjustment before zeroing, all to the left. Two were Classics, from mid-90s, one was a Westerner, and one was a "special edition" much like the "Ultimate Shadow" models - synthetic stock, push-feed, this one made for the RMEF. In the case of the last one, I had to use the adjustable Leupold bases to get zeroed. With the others, I used all but a few clicks on regular bases. I'm partial to Winchesters, especially M70s, so my sample size of that gun is significantly larger than any other brand, but even so this seems excessive.

Is there a way I can "see" the problem? My first guess would be the base mounting screw holes were drilled slightly out of alignment. So, would some kind of long straight edge reveal the "crookedness?" I know there are gunsmithing tools for this, including lasers/lights and similar things, but I don't own any. Anybody know of a good "redneck" DIY method? lol
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  #2  
Old 04-26-2017, 10:34 AM
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Go to the plumbing store with your calipers. Hard copper pipe is usually right at 1.000 but you can use up to about 1.010 diameter and down to .900. Pick out a good straight three foot piece and mount that in your rings with the end even with the muzzle. You should be able to see 'crooked' without any problem.

Assuming a 24 inch barrel and a scope with 40 MOA total adjustments, the copper tube will be offset by about .133" if you're at the edge of windage.
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Old 04-26-2017, 10:36 AM
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I've found that, with most scopes, the issue disappears when the scope is rotated 90-degrees to the left, which makes the old windage adjustment the new elevation adjuster, the old elevation adjustment the new windage adjuster, and co-incidentally clears the loading/ejection area for fingers (loading) or flinging the empties clear.

AFAIK, most scopes have a difference in the range of adjustment/motion between their W&E adjustments.


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  #4  
Old 04-26-2017, 11:26 AM
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The rifles all have something in common. The bases (and rings?) are same/similar. How about the optics?
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  #5  
Old 04-26-2017, 02:57 PM
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It depends

I have run into windage adjustment problems on various rifles, especially with sporterized military rifles where the scope base holes may have been out of alignment. One cure has been to use windage adjustable bases from Leupold or Redfield or windage adjustable scope rings. I have had to change scopes to get greater windage or elevation options. To date, I have not experienced windage adjustment problems with my Winchester Model 70 rifles. All the best...
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Last edited by Gil Martin; 04-26-2017 at 02:59 PM.
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Old 04-26-2017, 03:27 PM
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That's a good idea, Mr. Belk, thank you!
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Old 04-26-2017, 03:31 PM
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Cheezywan, that's a good point for sure, and I've got two of the "problem" rifles in my possession at this time, so I'm going to try at least 2 different bases, rings, and scopes on each and I'll report the results. FWIW, the one I was working with today was using a DNZ integrated base/ring design. I don't have a lot of experience with DNZ, but so far I really like what I've seen. The idea is good, and it seems like a well-made, high quality product. But, I can say it's been the DNZ rings on two of the rifles in question. So tomorrow I'll install some basic Weaver bases and Warne Maxima rings. That will provide a really good comparison.
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Old 04-26-2017, 03:57 PM
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Stop the presses

Ok, nobody give this anymore thought for now, lol. Being OCD, I couldn't wait until tomorrow to look into this, so I removed the DNZ, threw on a Weaver 2-piece base and a set of Burris rings - and the scope aligned perfectly. It's getting dark outside, so I can't do much manual bore sighting right now. I'll continue tomorrow sometime. But for right now, it looks like the culprit may be the DNZs. If so I'm going to call the company and discuss this with them.

thanks!
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Old 04-26-2017, 04:47 PM
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It's not the first time a precision part wasn't. Glad you found it without much time and expense.
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Old 04-26-2017, 10:58 PM
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I do believe you may be right. I recently had problems with elevation running out and just could not fathom the problem. Everything seemed spot on. I then measured the rings and although they looked to the eye absolutely the same, make everything, one ring was a sheet of writing paper taller than the other. I found out because I swapped them around front to back and discovered the problem had reversed. Hope you get it sorted because such can make you tear your hair out in frustration.
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Old 04-27-2017, 05:44 AM
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You may already be doing this, but I'll just mention that it's always a good idea to recenter the crosshairs on a scope being installed on a different rifle. Once I do that, I like to use the rear windage adjustments found on many rings or bases to set the initial windage "center". I have also found that a mechanical bore-sighter (NOT laser) can be put to very good use in aligning the windage (and elevation) prior to going to the range and you can also see the total adjustment available in that scope and set the crosshairs in the center of that adjustment range.
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  #12  
Old 04-27-2017, 06:22 PM
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Easy fix windage problem, get windage adjustable base's!
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  #13  
Old 04-27-2017, 06:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JBelk View Post
Go to the plumbing store with your calipers. Hard copper pipe is usually right at 1.000 but you can use up to about 1.010 diameter and down to .900. Pick out a good straight three foot piece and mount that in your rings with the end even with the muzzle. You should be able to see 'crooked' without any problem.

Assuming a 24 inch barrel and a scope with 40 MOA total adjustments, the copper tube will be offset by about .133" if you're at the edge of windage.
As JB said you could rotate the pipe to check for pipe straightness with it lightly clamped in the scope rings.
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Old 04-29-2017, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tnhunter View Post
You may already be doing this, but I'll just mention that it's always a good idea to recenter the crosshairs on a scope being installed on a different rifle. Once I do that, I like to use the rear windage adjustments found on many rings or bases to set the initial windage "center". I have also found that a mechanical bore-sighter (NOT laser) can be put to very good use in aligning the windage (and elevation) prior to going to the range and you can also see the total adjustment available in that scope and set the crosshairs in the center of that adjustment range.
Tnhunter, this is what i did, then came to the forum to report my results, and I saw you were thinking this exact same thing! I got two scopes and determined the windage range - for example 5 1/2 full turns on the Bushnell, 5 on the Leupold. Then I set each to the middle of their range.

I'd corresponded with a guy at DNZ (who got back to me within minutes, after hours, btw...awesome), and he said I could send it in for them to look at, but that they intentionally made the screw holes ever so slightly larger than the screws, so a very small amount of "play" would be available when mounting. He said the range equated to "a few inches" at 100 yards. He also suggested tightening the ring screws in "an x pattern" to get a couple more inches of adjustment. I didn't bother with the second suggestion, but I was able to get the scope aligned by nudging the back of the base leftward before tightening.

I then spent an hour installing different bases, rings, and scopes on the rifle, observing various causes and effects, and I've determined that it's not centered, but it's not off centered enough to be a problem. If I center the scopes' crosshairs and mount using any of the three base/rings (the DNZ unit, Weaver two-piece bases and Burris rings, and Leupold adjustable), without attempting any compensation whatsoever - just letting the bases and screws "self center" (for lack of better way of putting it) - the rifle's POA is about 10" right of the crosshairs (40 clicks) at 100 yds. I haven't counted the clicks, but I would guesstimate I'm using a bit more than half of my available leftward windage range. Although I've scoped scores of rifles, scores of times, over the years, this isn't something I've ever paid really close attention to. I don't know what constitutes "normal" range or adjustment.

As Don mentioned, using the adjustable bases works just fine. In fact, on another M70 I mentioned (a 2002 300 win mag) I had to use adjustables because I ran completely out of windage and was still a few inches off center. I guess the only reason I would resist using adjustables is my concern that a rifle being off that much might indicate a problem, such as something being bent or an angle not correct. But my 300 shoots fine, and I've always suspected off-center scope base screw holes. I'm going to use JBelk's suggestion to confirm one way or the other.

thanks everyone.
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  #15  
Old 04-29-2017, 09:13 AM
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jakesnake66--- You're on the right track. Just a few clarifications:

The travel of the windage and elevation adjustment doesn't tell you 'center' due to how the system works. At a 45 degree angle to the two adjustment screws is a spring-loaded plunger pressing against the ring or lens that adjust the crosshair. There is 'play' at the ends.

Set up a set of homemade Vee blocks using four blocks of anything about the same height. Move two each apart enough to 'cradle' the front end and the rear end of the scope leaving the adjustment knobs free to rotate around. Sight the scope on anything at any distance and look through it as you turn it. You'll see the crosshairs circle the center if it's off.

Here's another easy test of two piece scope mounts using two straight-edges. Balance the straight-edges crossways the mounts and simply step back and sight over the straight-edges. Are they = parallel when sighted over?

It's not good to have to 'lean' mounts one way or other. That makes the bottoms of the screws and the counter bore in the mount out of parallel. I'm sure this is where somebody steps in with high recommendations of the Burris adjustable rings but I've never used them.
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