How To Sight In A Crossbow Scope – Read This First

How To Sight In A Crossbow Scope
Alfred Mendoza

Sighting a crossbow is easy. However, if you’re a beginner, you’re going to think otherwise. The process of crossbow sighting differs from one scope to the other, but they are closely similar. Here’s how to sight in a crossbow scope in just 7 steps. 

1. Learn the Parts

Before you get started, you have to be familiar with the crossbow scopes, the type, and parts. This will make it easier for you to proceed with the next step.

What’s more, as a shooter, you’ll be able to understand the terms. We recommend that you through the manual that is part of your crossbow and scope. It’s important to read the manual thoroughly, as not all crossbows and scopes are alike. The one that your friend is using might be different from yours. You’ll find night vision crossbow scopes, low light crossbow scopes, and crossbow scopes for hunting, to name a few.  

2. Prepare Your Tools & Equipment

You have to get yourself equipped with the necessary tools before starting. 

You’re going to need a screwdriver to help you piece the parts together, such as placing the scope on your crossbow. 

Another thing that you’re going to need is a pair of binoculars. This will help you see how your target performs and if you were successful in hitting the spot consistently. An instruction manual and a crossbow rest are essential, too.


3. Prepare the Arrows

Have the arrows with you. One thing to keep in mind is to ensure that these have the same brand, kind, and weight. It allows you to train on the same level, and you do not have to take too much external noise. 

You will have to start shooting one arrow to the next at a 20 yards distance so that you can focus on the arrow point of impact, for that matter.

4. Mount the Scope

The next step is to have you on crossbow level. To do this, you simply have to mount the bow in a vise. We recommend a paddled vise. Scope rings should also be compatible with the device. We also recommend learning how to lap scope rings for a more precise and smoother surface. 

If your scope has a pair of iron sights, which is usually the case, you have removed it from the scope. You do this by loosening their screws and sliding them off the rail. 

Look through the scope, and see whether the crosshairs are lining up with where you are aiming the bow. If yes, then you are good to go.

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5. Calibrate Your Scope

The next step is calibrating the scope when handling your crossbow. You should have fully understood that part of the scope. 

Identify where the scope’s reticle or dot is located. It usually comes with crosshairs. Make it the center of your focus. You can also use the topmost circle. 

You begin with the center dot or reticle, and you have to fix your target at 20 yards.

calibrate scope

After that, you have to shoot bows up until you have gained confidence that you can hit your desired point of impact and hit the bull’s eye. Disregard the other dots as they’re helpful for long distances.

In the future, you may invest in range compensation reticles (1). There are different types of reticles for accuracy.

6. Make Some Adjustments

You will find the adjustment knobs situated at the side of the scope. It enables you to adjust where the arrow points. You’ll hear a click for every tweak.

The windage adjustment knob is usually found at the top side of the scopes. The elevation adjustment knob allows you to adjust the arrow from up to down. 

You have to be on the lookout, though, as these are usually hard to spot. Get rid of the plastic cover, so you can see the numbers that are inside the knobs. 

If you could hit the exact spot with a slight variation of 3 inches or less, you have to make the necessary windage and elevation knob adjustments. The goal is to hit the bullseye with the use of the dot. You can go for longer distances in the future.

7. Repeat the Steps Until You Get It Right

If something feels off and keeps missing the target, you have to repeat these steps and try again with the same method. You have to make necessary windage and elevation adjustments. Make sure to use the dot of your scope to verify the settings.

If you have no prior experience, it might help to have a bigger target, then use the scope adjustment knobs to hit the bull’s eye. What’s more, realign the flight rail to match the target.

Some Tips to Follow:

  • For scopes with 1 red dot reticle, you can sight it at any distance.
  • Practice shooting tight arrows in an arrow group first for better accuracy.
  • The arrows should land close to each other even if it does not hit the bullseye.
  • Start with the distance of 20 yards and practice hitting the bull’s eye.
  • If you hit high, change the speed dial to a much higher speed to hit the target.
  • Use the additional dots or markings on reticles to guide you in your shot.
  • Upward crosshair is for longer distances.
  • Downward crosshair for shorter distances.

Final Thoughts On Sighting Scopes on a Crossbow

Sighting is easy as long as you have the patience for the process. By following these steps above, you’ll be able to master it eventually and hit the bull’s eye at the ideal yard distance. Usually, 20 yards away. You can go for 40 yards with more experience. 

It takes 10 to 30 minutes to sight. However, it may take longer for amateur shooters. 

Remember to keep the plastic knob covers and keep your crossbow scopes in a safe place that does not have many impacts, so you do not have to recalibrate each time for that reason.


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