|Scope Mounting Procedure
Along with an extensive line of purpose-built airgun scopes, RWS also offers its own all-steel custom designed mount system. Available in both one and two piece versions, the RWS "C Mount" series features an unique elevation and windage compensation system that can greatly extend your own scope's usable adjustment range. How do you correctly mount a scope on a precision airgun? As with all heavy recoiling spring-piston models, the key here is to maintain adequate tension on holding screws and gripping points. Following the procedure outlined in our Basic Airgun Maintenance section, it's advised that you first do a thorough cleaning of all mounting screw threads and gripping surfaces. An alcohol-based degreaser is recommended to remove any oil or dirt present on male/female screw threads. Likewise for all gripping surfaces, including both the scope rail and corresponding points on the mount system. For cleaning tight spots (such as the inner edge of scope rails and female threads), a common "Q-tip" dipped in degreaser does the job easily and effectively. In conclusion thoroughly clean all scope and mount contact points, which includes both the scope tube and the underside of the mounting ring clamps. A cotton ball treated with degreaser will clean the areas in question in a matter of seconds.
After completing the degreasing operation, refer to the manufacturer's instructions for precise details on the initial positioning and adjustment of your particular mount system. In most such cases, it is again recommended that you apply thread locking compound to your mount's various fixing screws. Before doing so, shoulder the gun to make certain that the scope's position suits your individual shooting style. On recoiling models it's also advised that you allow at least 2 ½ - 3 inches of eye relief (as measured from your viewing eye to the rear of the scope) to prevent being struck by the scope as the gun recoils rearward.
Once satisfied with the position of your scope, the mount screws can be fully tightened. Tighten the screws to equal tension levels or until screw movement is indiscernible. At this point STOP! While the average adult may still be able to tighten the mount screws a little further, you can actually damage your gun (if it has an alloy dovetailed receiver) or the scope itself. Usually, you'll hear the characteristic "creak" of the mount screw as it reaches its upper tension level. That's the time to quit.
Having now gotten your scope secured, it's time to establish an initial zero setting. To make it easier for a beginner to "sight in" his gun, we'll start at close range. You'll need about ten yards of well-lit, unobstructed room with a safe backstop. Your zeroing target can be a large, light-colored sheet of paper with a contrasting dark aiming point, or a commercial target, such as a 100-yard centerfire rifle type. Before beginning, if you're using an elevation and windage compensation mount system, center your scope's own adjustment system by turning each turret all the way in, then out to find the mid point. If your scope has an objective focusing ring (usually located at the front of most models), set it to the prescribed distance. Also adjust the reticle focus (usually located at the rear of most scopes) to as sharp an image as your normal eyesight zeroing shots. Choose a shooting position that is both stable and comfortable. Fire five shots at the same aim point and carefully examine the results. For those with compensating mounts, follow the adjustment instructions per the manufacturer. After you've gotten the point of impact as close as possible to the point of aim, use your scope's own adjustment system to "fine tune" your zero setting. (Windage is most important at this time.)
For zero settings beyond ten yards, it's best that you shoot outdoors on a calm day. Small game hunters should check their zero setting every day. Small game hunters should check their settings every five yards. Also remember that many things can affect accuracy, such as loose scope mount screws, loose action and stock mount screws, radical changes in weather, variations in pellet tolerances, and barrel cleanliness. Even the way the gun is held will have some degree of influence over precision airgun accuracy. As a consequence, it's always a good idea to recheck your zero settings on a regular basis, and don't forget to stay on top of your airgun's usual maintenance program.