How to Focus a Rifle Scope – Quick Guide

It is very common for a shooter to not have his rifle focused according to his eyesight. With a little help, the reticle could be a lot better. 

The scope works like a magnifying glass and helps you focus on a crystal clear picture. However, it should be noted that the eyepiece of the scope can not be moved. 

The following article will help you on how to focus a rifle properly and the best out of your rifle when shooting. 

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Quick Summary

The following information will be covered in the article: 

  • How to Focus a Rifle Scope? 
  • Why is a Rifle Scope Blurry?

Let’s get into it.

How to Focus a Rifle Scope in Steps?

To begin with, you must unlock the compact locking ring on a fine thread. To do the process simply just use one hand and undo the locking ring while turning the eyepiece anti-clockwise with your other hand. 

Note: If you want to know a complete guide and tutorials about scopes click HERE.

Step 1

For the first step, shoulder the unloaded rifle and point the muzzle towards the blue sky. Make sure that while doing it both of your eyes are closed. 

Remember to not point it at the sun as it can damage your eyes. 

By looking at the light blue sky you make sure that your dominant shooting eye has no distractions in front of it. 

Step 2

In very little time, focus on the reticle and see it is clear and in focus. You must do it in less than a second as your eye automatically tries to improve the focus of the reticle is out of focus. 

Note: If you want to gain information on How to Dial in a Scope click HERE.

Step 3

If you find out that the reticle is out of focus, you must turn eyebox or the ocular ring left or right to adjust it. 

For a standard reticle, the focus model turns the eyebox while a fast focus eyebox turns the ocular ring. 

Then again repeat the first process by shouldering the unloaded rifle and pointing it towards the light blue sky. 

Step 4

Continue with the same process as mentioned above until the reticle is as in focus as possible when you open your dominating shooting eye. 

Once the reticle is fully in focus the rifle is focused on your eye. 

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Why is a Rifle Scope Blurry?

The scope on a rifle can be blurry for various reasons. The solutions to these problems can be very simple and go all the way to sending the scope for a repair. The following are the most common problems: 

The Exterior Lens of the Scope Might be Dirty 

Like any other glass, the lens of a rifle scope gets dirty. The most common reason for it getting dirty is fingerprints. Other dust particles too build up on the lens and with time decrease the clarity of the lens. 

The simple solution is to clean the outside of both of the lenses. You can easily do it with glass wipes or use a special lens pen also known as a scope brush. Turn the scope upside down and gently using the brush remove any dust particles you see. 

Make sure you clean the edges. 

What is a lens pen and how does it work? 

A lens pen or a scope pen is a special tool that has a fine brush on one end and the other end has a felt-tipped flatter brush. Use the fine brush to gently remove any dust or foreign particles from the ocular end of the eyepiece. 

Then using the felt-tipped brush on the other end remove any fingerprints or watermarks on both of the lenses. This will clean almost any fingerprints or streaks present on either of the lens. 

Do not use any type of wet cleaner

The Parallax is not Set Properly 

Some of the modern rifle scopes have a parallax that is non-adjustable. The parallax is not exactly the same as a focus but the two still have a similar role which is to make the target in front of you clear. 

A fixed parallax means that the focus is already set which is present at a specific distance. Most of the modern rifles have a parallax fixed at either 50 or 100 yards. 

Note: If you want to know How to Paint a Rifle Scope click HERE.

How is this a problem? 

This can cause problems if you are looking at an object that is present at a distance under the fixed parallax. For example, if your rifle scope has a fixed parallax set at 50 yards and the object you are looking at is at a distance of 30 yards, then the image will not be clear. 

The Scope Might Need a Service 

If the above-mentioned solutions still do not solve a blurry scope then it is advisable to send the scope for a proper inspection and service. 

The ideal way for doing that is to send the scope to the manufacturer who made it. Even if the warranty is no longer available, it is still possible that the manufacturer will inspect the scope and do the repairs if required. 

How does it work? 

Most rifle scope brands have a return policy where they take back scopes with faults to inspect them and do the required repairs. After this, these scopes are properly tested and then are shipped back to the customers. 

However, it should be noted that if the warranty is no longer available you might have to pay for the additional expenses from your own pockets. 

What to do if the manufacturer is no longer doing the repairs? 

In such cases where the manufacturer has gone out of business, it is preferred that you look for an independent scope repair company that is familiar with the scope you need to make repairs for. 

In addition to this, you must know that they might cost you a little extra compared to the manufacturers. 

Wrapping Things Up

You now have learned the proper way of how to focus a rifle scope for perfect clarity. 

In addition to this, you have also learned multiple other factors that can cause your rifle scope to be blurred. 

We hope the information we provided will help you in your shooting experience. 

Let us know any queries that you still have.

If you want to know more information about scopes click Here.


  • John Moses

    John is the Editor in Chief here at The Outdoor Stores. His area of expertise ensures that there is no one better to suggest which rifles are most suitable for your hunting experience. He is also available for you to contact him personally to discuss the types of animals you want to hunt and the terrain you will be hunting on. Feel free to read his posts for expert opinion on Rifles, Scopes, Rangefinders, Bonoculars and Monoculars.

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