How To Sight In A Red Dot

best ar red dot

Obtaining a Correct Zero

In terms of advanced modern firearms sight development, there is nothing so simple in terms of construction and internal parts as the standard red dot sight. Along with this basic simplicity, the methods of obtaining a correct zero on them is also nothing short of field-dirt simple.

All gun sights retain a system to move the aiming point to a dead-on zero hold point. In other words, hit a target at a given range dead center. In all cases this involves moving the sight point up or down or side-to-side. In this case, the sighting point is a simple single red or green dot that is seemingly fixed to the center of the lens reticle.

Along with all red dots comes a system to make the aiming point move. In most cases, if not all, the sight houses two controls or knobs. One moves the sight up and down (elevation) and the second moves it from right to left (windage).

best red dot sight for ar 15 for the money

Author zeroing a red dot sight from a solid bench rest.

Some systems involve removing a dust cap or cover and using a screwdriver to turn the sight adjustment nut, screw or other related fixing. Just like a rifle scope, the adjustments use simple clicks. A little experimentation will show you how much movement you're going to see down-range by turning the knob a single click.

If all else fails, read the manual.

Because red dot systems are, in general, close-range sights, there is no massive amount of drama associated with sighting these systems in. Advanced military-style sights are generally zeroed to 100 yards, but sights on handguns, shotguns or crossbows can be zeroed to points as close a 25 yards.

best red dot sight for ar-15

Red dots come in all sizes and shapes, but the zero system is always the same. Turn the knob and move the sight dot.

With the red dot sight mounted on the weapon, and in most cases this is with the aid of a Weaver-style rail and matching mount on the red dot system (sent with the sight installed in most cases by the manufacturer), obtain a solid rest position from a bench. Don’t offhand shoot for accuracy as it will not work.

With the solid rest, aim at a close target at, say, 10 to 20 yards. Be sure the target is large enough to give you a good chance at picking up that impact of the bullet, arrow or shot pattern.

Everything comes down to this little red dot, depending on the weapon being used. With a shot fired down-range, locate the impact point and then measure the elevation and windage adjustments required to bring the projectile to the target's dead center point.

best ar 15 red dot

Sight adjustment knob illustrated

Let's say the point of impact is lined-up correctly but 3 inches too high. Simply turn the elevation adjustment down a few clicks. Watch how far that moves the next shot. After that you will know exactly how far to turn the adjustment knob to bring the bullet into the zero point dead center.

I realize this all sounds very simple, but you would not believe the difficulty some folks have when they want to zero a weapon correctly.

If you're at all worried about shooting the weapon a few times to accomplish this task, give that thought a rest. What I have found is, especially when the weapon is brand-new, getting some familiarization trigger time is very beneficial.

If it is an old weapon that you are zeroing, no worries. Practice is always beneficial as well.

ACOG sights are an example of military red dot systems. These are very advanced for long-range shooting. But the zero system is the same as a very simple bow sight, regardless of cost.

In the event you're considering best red dot sights, turning to Amazon is not the worst idea you could come up with. Here you will find many different brand names ranging in price from just a few dollars to several hundred. It all depends on you're individual needs, and the given requirements associated with the red dot sight.

The selection and options are varied and many. Amazon can handle almost all of your requested needs in red dot systems. A strong recommendation is to take a hard look at Vortex sights and also Sig as examples of current production systems that are very workable to hunters, target-shooters and operators alike.

The one thing you will find is that, regardless of how fancy and tricked-up the sight is, in all cases the zeroing system installed is just about exactly the same.

Related Guides:

L.P.Brezny has been writing and reviewing products as well as how to projects for the past 50 years. He has authored four books on shooting with three on long range, and one covering shotgunning.(Amazon) With 26 years in a metro police department as a street officer and the rank of SGT / training L.P. has covered all the bases regarding weapons and street survival.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *