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Typical bullet trajectory

Rifle bullets don’t travel in a straight line. They travel in an arc, formed by the pull of gravity.

“Sighting-in” is a process of adjusting the sights or scope to hit a target at a specific range. All scoped rifles should be bore-sighted at your local gun shop and then sighted in at a rifle range for the expected shooting distance you will shoot the most. Many people sight in their rifles to hit the bull’s-eye at 100 yards and then learn the bullet or ballistic capabilities from there. Do not hesitate to ask for assistance from knowledgeable shooters and hunters or professionals at your local range for assistance. Always be careful when moving your rifle to make sure that you do not bump or hit the sights or scope as occasionally a bump to the sights or scope can knock the sights out of alignment.

  • If you are planning to hunt, all rifles should be sighted-in before every hunt using the ammunition you plan to use, especially rifles with peep or telescopic sights. Guns you sighted-in prior to your last outing could have been knocked out of alignment by a single jolt. That misalignment could mean the difference between a successful hunt and a disappointing experience.
  • Other than ensuring accurate shots, sighting-in a rifle has other advantages:
    • Forces you to practice
    • Makes accurate shooting possible
    • Helps identify problems with your firing technique
    • Improves safety by helping you know where your rifle will fire
    • Builds confidence in your shooting ability
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