Monday, September 25, 2017

Not All Scope Bases are the Same!

A few months ago, I was able to acquire a Weatherby Mark V in .308 for an upcoming elk hunt. THe Weatherby Mark V has long been THE one rifle I always wanted to own. Granted the specific configeration I have is not quite what I had in mind, but still, it's a great gun.

Like all good gun writers, I also try and put good optics on good guns. I have never had the budget for high end German glass, regardless of how much I coveted them. So a compromise was issued and I opted for a light weight Leupold scope. Specifically the VX2-3x9x40. (You can read here how I came to choosing the Leupold) To go along with the VX2 I also selected the Leupold Bases and Rings for the Weatherby Mark V. The packaging said; "For Weatherby Mark V". That was all it said, nothing else. Which is what leads me to this story.

After mounting the bases, rings and scope - as I have done dozens of times before, I headed to the range to break in the barrel and sight in the gun. (More about barrel break in later). After bore sighting the gun, I noticed the target was about four feet above the crosshair of the scope. A simple adjustment would fix this, I thought. WRONG. After several adjustments I could not ever get the gun to shoot onto the plywood target holder. We were still shooting several feet too high. A dilemma arose. Some investigation determined that something must be wrong with the scope and it was not allowing proper adjustments. Or the scope was not level.

I took the scope off, checked the bases, rings and remounted the scope - all total I did this over twenty times! and still count not get the situation corrected. Several gun smiths, expert shooters and still no resolution. Now I am three weeks away from my trip and still do not have a scope on my rifle.

Four phone calls to Leupold and two to Weatherby and we Think we have the solution. It seems that Weatherby makes two different Mark V guns therefore Leupold makes two different bases for each specific version. NOTE: There is nothing on the gun, or in the owners manual that indicated that I have the six lug version rather than the nine lug version. (I never got an answer to what that actually meant). The bases for the nine lug gun are shorter in the front because the action is taller. Therefore nothing I could have done would have fixed the problem short of discovering the proper mounts.

New bases and rings were ordered and should be in today just in time to head back to the range this afternoon to see if we can finally get the gun sighted in properly.

Point of the story. Check and recheck to make sure your bases match your gun EXACTLY or you will find yourself in the same situation I was in, shooting hundreds of dollars of ammunition to sight in your gun and still not be even remotely close to getting the situation resolved.

Stay Tuned - perhaps I will be able to report a beautiful target with holes blowing out the center at 200 yards.

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