Significance of Eye Relief of Scope and How to Adjust it

Do you often get confused with tons of adjustment options in your riflescope? Are you struggling to aim at different targets due to a lack of proper knowledge of your scope? Well, here is the one-stop solution for all your problems.

A scope is the best and probably most crucial gear for your rifle. But, you should have complete knowledge of adjustment options to use your rifle and scope to their full potential. You may require a lot of time to go through all the available options or have experience with the scope Adjustments.  

Wondering how to have experience or whether to give all your valuable time on your scope? After going through this article, you will not need to put your efforts into those aspects. Here is the complete guide to adjust the eye relief of a rifle scope. So, let’s begin with what is eye relief!

Eye relief and its significance in a rifle scope

Theoretically, Eye relief can be described as the distance from the user’s eye to the eyepiece lens. Every scope model possesses optimal eye relief, so all you have to do is adjust the position and calibrate its specs. Similarly, every human has different proportions and thus everyone needs to set the eye relief based on their body. Eye relief is measured in inches.

Eye relief plays a key role in deciding how close the shooter’s face should be to the scope. In case eyes are closer than normal i.e. 2” to 3” inch range, recoil drive can be fatal to the eyes or face. Thus, you can be prone to accidents after delivering every single shot without proper eye relief adjustment.

Types of Eye Relief

One of the key factors that impact eye relief is the scope’s magnification. The eye relief is inversely proportional to that of magnification. Thus, you will have shorter eye relief with a shortened range due to zooming. Consequently, you can have shorter eye relief with the high-powered scope. 

However, based on the type of scope and its position on your rifle, eye relief can be classified into mainly 3 categories, namely

1. Short Eye relief:

It can be referred to as the scope clearance ranging less than 13 millimeters. Short eye relief may often seem fine to you but you are indeed missing the fact that you are pressed into the scope. If you need glasses to see clearly, the eye relief should be larger as anything lower shorter than 16 mm is problematic.

2. Standard Eye relief:

Standard eye relief has an average length of around 4 inches and ranges around 13 mm. You can have a decent magnification to take long-range shots with it. However, the scope with this adjustment is often mounted on the rear side for proper weight balance.

3. Long Eye relief:

Anything greater than 4.5 inches is considered as long eye relief and is best for people who wear eyeglasses. You can have enough room for movement with this scope even with your glasses. It is probably the best option if you have a heavy recoil rifle.

Steps to Adjust eye relief on a riflescope

  • While mounting the scope on the rifle, make sure that the dial is loose enough to make adjustments easily.
  • If you are shooting long-range targets, it is best to place the rifle on a platform. A stable platform gives you a comfortable position to focus and shoot the target effectively.
  • Make your body and head comfortably while holding the rifle
  • Keep the scope as far as possible from your eyes but showing clear details
  • Adjust the scope’s magnification based on the target without going closer to the scope
  • It’s not good to hurry in the adjustment process as you need to avoid the feedback after firing
  • Once you attain the perfect field of view with a clear focus on your targeted area, lock the position. Now, you can proceed for making an alignment of the rifle’s axis and vertical reticule.
  • Now that your rifle is locked to the target, you can tighten the loose ring screws and go for the shot

Getting a rifle scope with unlimited eye relief is not possible as every rifle is optimized for certain eye relief. But, you can go for a scope having maximum eye relief adjustment options and set it based on your requirements. Experts recommend the scopes having long eye relief as they provide more flexibility. But, it has smaller magnification when compared to others.

Is it possible to set a proper eye relief forever?

Eye relief allows you to get a flawless image of the full field of view. The images can get blurry if you get closer to the lens and become small if you are far away from the lens. Thus, eye relief adjustment should be one of your top priorities always. But, you should calibrate your scope properly every time for a favorable eye relief. So, it is not possible to set a perfect eye relief forever.

However, it is not so difficult to calibrate the eye relief options as most of the riflescopes in the market are easy to adjust. Moreover, manufacturers provide optimal eye relief which is suitable for most shooters. Installation of base and ring is quite easy if you follow the manual of the respective manufacturers.

If you want to take a perfect shot in a hassle-free way, you shouldn’t probably overlook the eye relief of the scope. It can not only protect your eyes and face but also give a clear and comfortable field of view in any range.

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