In other words, at some distance, which is usually 100 yards, the bullet begins to drop below the straight path. So if your chart reads 5 MOA at 300 yards, no matter what adjustment one "click" is equal to on your scope you know you have to dial enough to equal 5 MOA. Then, when you range a target, it calculates elevation, pressure, temperature, angle and your ballistics in a millisecond and gives you the range and a dial-to solution. When you draw a line from either point to the center of the circle, the length of the line gives you the radius. However, it’s common for arms users to dial the turret to account for drops and hold the barrel using the reticle to account for wind drifts. Since both groups impacted 0.5 MOA low, your actual come-ups should have been 7 MOA and 23.5 MOA. E-mail your comments/questions about this site to:, For questions/comments about American Hunter magazine, please, You can contact the NRA via phone at: NRA Member Programs1-800-672-3888, To advertise on American Hunter, visit for more information. These types of scopes are sometimes used by hunters who use Aimpoint for hunting, while others are used for distance shooting.

In the following I'll explain what MOA means, without drilling down too deep into the math behind the unit of measurement. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. In contrast, some scopes will be calibrated four clicks per MOA for hunting, and others one click per MOA for long-range applications. This angle is too narrow to measure using a protractor, though, but we can imagine. When hunting the wide-open spaces of the West, being able to dial the turret on your scope so you can hold the crosshairs directly on vitals for a shot is a huge advantage. If you decrease your velocity input until the 500-yard come-up is 7 MOA, and the 1,000-yard come-up is around 23.5 MOA, the rest of the data will be correct as well.

A short shot won’t require as much angle as a long shot because there’s less distance for the bullet to drop. So let’s fill in the equation to determine our clicks. This is the same concept with minutes of angle.

Here’s an example of the two concepts we just discussed, i.e. For instance, your 500-yard group may impact 0.5 MOA low, and the 1,000-yard group 0.75 MOA low.

If 1 MOA at 100 yards is 1″, then at half the distance, 1 MOA is half as big and is 1/2″. In a vacuum, the bullet would fly straight to the target affected only by gravity. The shot opportunity was small, but it was all I had, and all I was likely to get. To reiterate, the scope in this example would be described as shooting 1/4 MOA or 1/4 minutes. ​The constant depends on range, and reduces with range. Make a habit of cranking that thing back to zero. Bullets will print on target in increasingly wide groups, as target distance increases from short range (100 to 300 yards), to mid-range (300 to 600 yards) and long range (out to 1000 yards and beyond). This is like the Hemi in the muscle car—it’s what makes everything else work.

Note your group’s position.

Let’s say you have a scope that compensates for MOA in 1/4 MOA per click, and we already have our scope zeroed at 100 yards.

They’re not all available in every caliber, so just get as many that are available in your caliber. Check out this NSSF video with more information about MOA math: MOA reticles are suitable for tactical or precision shooting.

But how do you gauge the strength and speed of a crosswind?

Choose the ammo your rifle likes best. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website.

…so when we say ‘one click left and two clicks up,’ we’re actually referring to adjusting the dial on the scope to make those adjustments. We put the crosshairs on the target, fire and notice that our shot is, “Wait wait wait!!! Ideally, your 3-shot groups will average well under one MOA (one inch at 100 yards), and have low ES (extreme spread) and SD (standard deviation numbers). One degree can be further subdivided into minutes. So, a 3 MOA adjustment at 600 yards will move the bullet 18″.

Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. Let’s think about deer lungs as a target. During the first revolution the button protrudes from the dial. Shine it on the wall in the next room, and the cone of light will have spread out. You need to move the point of impact of the bullet 2” above and 6” right to be dead-on at 300 yards.

Simple as that. Here’s what your order should look like: Please send me a custom turret for my (plug in your make and model scope). 6 inch spread / 3 MOA = 200 Yard Effective Range, In this case, the rifle would only be effective for deer at 200 yards (because that would be a 6-inch group.).

(As a note, your 500- and 1,000-yard groups may not be exactly the same amount off of center. That means “at 100 yards, ¼ MOA is equal to ¼ inches”. Yes, that's a bit complicated, but estimating wind speed isn't that difficult, and you can always build your own range chart based on experience (that's using DOPE, or doping the wind using Data On Previous Engagement). Hunters and shooters who have experience choose to hold. We now have all the ingredients we need to do our equation. Imagine the throwing path of a 5-yard pass and a 50-yard pass with a football. The spread is referring to the spread that we used in our flashlight analogy above. bullseye, at a chosen distance, say, 25 yards, ​Fire a three-shot groupingat a bullseyeas accurately as possible, ​Note the spacing between the point of impacts of the three shots, ​Measure the average deviation (in inches) from target – it could be above, below, left or right of the bullseye, ​Make corrections for windage and elevation based on the correction, ​Repeat the procedure if there’s deviation, ​Determine as usual distance to your target, ​Determine the angle between the horizontal distance to the target and the hypotenuse, ​Resolve that distance by multiplying it with cosine of the angle. Let’s say this group is also 0.5 MOA low of center. After zeroing, you go outdoors to shoot targets or hunt.

Angles are measured in degrees, but they may also be measured in radians–more on that in an upcoming post.

Now I was just seconds into the third encounter, but the buck was 350 yards away, and just a bit of his body showed above the sage as he browsed toward a small coulee. Which introduces my closing statement: Now that you’re set up to dial for distance, don’t be fooled into believing that you’re Billy Dixon or Annie Oakley. If you, or someone you know, enjoy being difficult, by all means, use the exact inches of spread, but we’d recommend using the estimated inches of spread. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. A 1/8 moa at 600 yards is just a little over 3/4 of a inch.

By clicking “Accept”, you consent to the use of ALL the cookies. The effects of bullet drop and wind drifts become more apparent with distance. Now: before we dive into what minutes of angle are all about, let’s first discuss why we use them in the first place. I zero the rifle to shoot dead-center in a calm condition, and then hold for windage. Now enter your environmental data, including temperature and elevation where you zeroed your rifle. Or, a rifle may claim to shoot “sub MOA”. By doing so, you can easily see that 2 MOA is just 2 of those 3″ increments, or 6″ total. When looking at a scope, you may read that it has, “Well WTF does that mean and can’t I just put the crosshairs on a target and pull the trigger!?”.

Last year alone, I ranged and dialed for my shot on three of the four big-game animals I harvested, and each was a first-shot kill. Note your group’s position in relation to center.

Some don’t dial repeatably. For a rifle that has a 2 MOA, the conversions are very simple: 100 yards * 2 MOA → 2-inch spread of each other, 500 yards * 2 MOA → 10-inch spread of each other, 1000 yards * 2 MOA → 20-inch spread of each other. In another post we'll do a deep dive into wind reading skills. With the 5 yard pass, you can basically gun it to the receiver and the ball will travel in a straight line.

Your max range will be limited no doubt about it, because the sub tensions will change poi at range with magnification change. Go back to the ballistic data inputs on your app and adjust the velocity up or down until the suggested come-up on the chart matches your Dope. Ensure the origin (center) of the reticle is in contact with your target. Order Your TurretNow that you have your Dope, ordering a yardage-marked turret customized to your rifle, scope, ammo and atmospherics is as simple as calling or writing the manufacture, giving them the info, and waiting for your package to arrive.

Unless you’ve practiced until you are morally certain you can make that hit, do not take the shot. Every scope has a dial on top that twists and makes clicking noises. When you’re done you’ll know which kind of ammo is most accurate from your rifle, and boasts the most consistent velocity.

Double-check your rifle’s zero with the new turret.

Beyond that, other factors like spindrift, aerodynamic jump and Coriolis effect exert powerful influence on your shot.


I'm retired military personnel who is now into shooting and hunting.

Set your barometric pressure to 29.92 (Standard). So don’t scrimp on research or funding when you’re scope shopping.

The marks are scales you find on your ruler, caliper or screw gauge, but, instead of being in cm or mm, they are in MOAs. In the real world, sometimes targets are closer than100 yards…. We have been asked by California retailers, distributors and ammunition magazine manufacturers across the industry…, The NSSF looks forward to hosting the 2021 SHOT Show in Las Vegas this coming…. You might be wondering: “Wait wait wait!!! Hit save.

Develop your DopeOkay, you’ve got your your scope mounted and your rifle’s favorite diet figured out. Some don’t have a zero-stop type mechanism (which in my opinion is essential).

consistently hit your target each and every time. OK, one MOA is actually 10.47 inches at 1000 yards, and that difference may or may not be important depending on your shooting application.

The rest of what we’re talking about is getting into the nuts and bolts of how to calculate minutes of angle. © 2018 - All Rights Reserved. The method works and I’ve used it a lot, but it’s slow and deflects your focus from your quarry.

Most first shots at a new distance will have a new inches of adjustment because the bullet will tend not to hit the target on the first shot. …we need to think about the scope itself and how it plays its part. Good long-distance shooting, even on steel targets, takes hard work and extensive practice. The shot opportunity was small, but it was all I had, and all I was likely to get. 5 inches.

Keep in mind that this setup is good—very good—for average to medium-long range; say up to 600 or 700 yards.

MOA/Mil Turret and Ballistic App or Drop Chart: This method is good for target shooting, and you’ll use it while working up your DOPE card (I’ll explain that later). Your barrel doesn’t have to be in line with your scope (making turret adjustments tilts the barrel). NSSF Members: Login to see your special pricing. To compensate for bullet drop, you must tilt the barrel upwards when you fire rounds. Keep in mind that this setup is good—very good—for average to medium-long range; say up to 600 or 700 yards. Determine how many 1 MOA increments will fit into the adjustment you are trying to make. Note, if you insist on using 1.047″ per 100 yards instead of 1″ per 100 yards, you must multiply the (inches per MOA at that distance) by 1.047. Divide the number of inches you want to adjust by number of inches in 1 MOA at that distance. I’d seen him twice since dawn broke on opening day, but had no shot either time.