Deer Rifle Sight In Issues: I feel like an absolute dunce

Duckslayer100

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So I rifle hunt so rarely these days (up until last year I hadn't pulled a rifle tag in ND since 2019), that I honestly can't recall the last time I've had to tinker with my rifle scope. Every year I'd go to the range or my parent's back yard, pace out 100 yards, and fire two shots, which would be within a half inch of each other and about an 1.5 inches high and to the right of the bulls eye. My rifle, a Remington 700 in .30-06 that I got 22 years ago, has been this way since the last time I fudged with my scope -- approximately 15 years ago, give or take.

Well, I've never loved where my scope lies. When I originally mounted it, I had it as far back as it could go, as I tended to shoot with my check a bit further back on the butt. While this worked OK, it also meant that when I worked the bolt, my thumb would sometimes get pinched between the bolt handle and scope. Minor inconvenience, but annoying nonetheless.

Sooo, fast forward to a few weeks ago. My buddy is an absolute gun nut and an engineer. Super Type A. He does stuff by the book, and has all the torque wrenches, levels and other various tools to properly set a scope. I told him about my gun, and he said we could work on re-setting the scope at his house.

The only issue was that one of the screws in the bases sheered off. In my gun. Somehow below the base but also below the threading. Because it spins, but we can't advance it or extract it. Me being me, I said, "well, we still have three other screws (two in the front base and one in the rear), and I'm sure that's enough."

He wasn't happy about that, and insisted I bring it to a gunsmith. I told him let's just get it back together as best we could and I'd sight it in and see what happens.

Twenty-five rounds later, my guns is all over the board. I finally quit screwing with the crosshairs and shot three times at 100 yards, and hit bullseye, three inches low and six inches high. Meanwhile we got my dad's rifle out, and hit three bullseyes in three shots -- so I know it's not me (or at least, I'm pretty sure it's not me).

I'm brining the gun to a gunsmith today to take care of the obvious issue. But what's odd is that my left/right is dead on. It's mostly the vertical where there's an issue. I also tried to see if I could get any play in the base, and as far as I can tell it's rock solid. Then again, I'm not hitting it with a sledgehammer like the actual round produces, so not a great example.

Another odd thing is my scope doesn't "click" when I turn the dials for L/R or U/D. Granted, the scope is 20 years old, so it could be an older model before that was a thing. But I swear I recall the incremental clicks before, so it could be an issue with a scope itself.

The good news is the Scope is a Leupold VX-1 and I'm pretty sure it has a lifetime warranty.

I realize there's probably a million things that could cause these variances and it's impossible to tell over the internet without asking more questions, but I figured I'd throw it out there as I know there are some gun nuts on this forum who like flogging dunces like myself for our misguided attempts at mediocre accuracy out of our hunting rifles.
 


SDMF

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The base is vibrating something awful without 2 fasteners. VX-1 has analog rather than digital adjustments. Likely there's nothing wrong with the scope unless you vibrated it to death.

Was it the front or rear base-screw that broke off? If it was the rear, the fastest fix would be to nab a 1-piece base that only uses the front screw hole on the rear-bridge. That'd get you through season and you'd have months to get the problem solved rather than just a few weeks.
 

Duckslayer100

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The base is vibrating something awful without 2 fasteners. VX-1 has analog rather than digital adjustments. Likely there's nothing wrong with the scope unless you vibrated it to death.

Was it the front or rear base-screw that broke off? If it was the rear, the fastest fix would be to nab a 1-piece base that only uses the front screw hole on the rear-bridge. That'd get you through season and you'd have months to get the problem solved rather than just a few weeks.
It's the front screw in the rear base. It's literally stuck on my gun. I can get the back screw out, but the front just spins and you can't get the base off. Damndest thing I've ever seen. Even the two of us prying it up while the other tried backing the screw out couldn't get it to catch so we could at least extract the screw.

But I agree, reading what I wrote makes it seems pretty obvious what the likely culprit could be. I just never thought in a million years that would cause so much variance.
 


SDMF

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It's the front screw in the rear base. It's literally stuck on my gun. I can get the back screw out, but the front just spins and you can't get the base off. Damndest thing I've ever seen. Even the two of us prying it up while the other tried backing the screw out couldn't get it to catch so we could at least extract the screw.

But I agree, reading what I wrote makes it seems pretty obvious what the likely culprit could be. I just never thought in a million years that would cause so much variance.
Pull the bolt out and see if you can feel the end of the screw sticking through the rear bridge.

Did you try spinning the actual base? Pull the scope off and give it a counter-clockwise rap with a smallish nylon or brass hammer. The screw is either broken or stripped obviously, not sure what would hold it on with the rear screw removed. The screws are usually quite a bit softer than the action steel so it's unlikely that you can or have ruined the hole. Might have to run a 6-48 tap in to chase the threads a bit. Worst case would be the gunsmith could open up all the holes to 8x40.

Vibration of the scope bases is bad Ju-Ju. More often you see it when someone puts one of the longer screws into the front hole of the front base (or the issued screws are just a bit too long from the manufacturer) and tightens the screw down onto the barrel tenon rather than snugging the head of the screw into it's seat in the base-hole. It'll "feel" tight, but, it's not, causing accuracy to be all over the board.
 
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guywhofishes

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loctite it to hold it still for the drilling and extractor entry phase

then heat it up for the actual extraction phase
 

guywhofishes

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and/or - loctite the extractor while it's being delivered - then you've got something very substantial with which to "lift" during rotation
 

guywhofishes

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Pull the bolt out and see if you can feel the end of the screw sticking through the rear bridge.
That would be fantastic if it was - a place to lever up on the screw to get its threads to catch for removal.
 


1lessdog

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It's the front screw in the rear base. It's literally stuck on my gun. I can get the back screw out, but the front just spins and you can't get the base off. Damndest thing I've ever seen. Even the two of us prying it up while the other tried backing the screw out couldn't get it to catch so we could at least extract the screw.

But I agree, reading what I wrote makes it seems pretty obvious what the likely culprit could be. I just never thought in a million years that would cause so much variance.
If you tried to back the screw out while pulling or prying up on the base while trying to back the screw out. I would rap the base with a good brass punch and hammer to try shear the screw off. Then center punch the sheared off screw and drill it out. Once drilled out you may have to open the hole up to allow for a 8-40 screw. You would also have to open up the base for the larger screw.

To me its a easy fix,
 

Tikka280ai

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It's the front screw in the rear base. It's literally stuck on my gun. I can get the back screw out, but the front just spins and you can't get the base off. Damndest thing I've ever seen. Even the two of us prying it up while the other tried backing the screw out couldn't get it to catch so we could at least extract the screw.

But I agree, reading what I wrote makes it seems pretty obvious what the likely culprit could be. I just never thought in a million years that would cause so much variance.
It's the front screw in the rear base. It's literally stuck on my gun. I can get the back screw out, but the front just spins and you can't get the base off. Damndest thing I've ever seen. Even the two of us prying it up while the other tried backing the screw out couldn't get it to catch so we could at least extract the screw.

But I agree, reading what I wrote makes it seems pretty obvious what the likely culprit could be. I just never thought in a million years that would cause so much variance.
Use a drill and extreme caution to drill the head off of the rest of the screw. Atleast that way you are able to remove the mount and replace with a 1 piece mount using the 3 other undamaged screw holes. If you are feeling adventurous it may even by worth drilling the screw out and trying a small extractor to get it out. Or re-thread the hole
 

Retired Educator

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On the other hand, when you don't get a tag very often, think about all the shooting you will get when you're not exactly sure where the bullet will hit. Hunted with a lady once who was shooting at a buck running along a hill at about 100 yds. 1st shot - 20 feet in front. 2nd shot - 4 feet high, 3rd shot - way behind, 4th shot - dropped it in it's tracks. Was always interesting watching her shoot but she was having fun.
 

svnmag

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A moment of silence for the wasted ammo. With the rifle's history, six shots max should've told you the story. I'm not on a high horse. I once wasted a box 1/2 shells before realizing the crosshairs were rotating from a + to an x. This was in 2000 with a Charles Daly scope bought in '83.

Only tune worth a damn on this album:

 

Maddog

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Won't the sheared off screw just spin when you try to drill it out?

Is it possible to disassemble the gun and allow the bit of screw to fall out from the inside? Or am I seeing this wrong. ?? A picture would help immensely.
 


8andcounting

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Take it to someone who knows what they are doing would be my advice . Still got time before opener . Good luck hope you get it fixed
 

1lessdog

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Won't the sheared off screw just spin when you try to drill it out?

Is it possible to disassemble the gun and allow the bit of screw to fall out from the inside? Or am I seeing this wrong. ?? A picture would help immensely.
I have did it before, I would shear them off. Center punch them and drill them out. Normally when center punched they dont spin. If they dont come out I cut them out with a carbide endmill. A little bit of pressure and out they come.
 

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