Gear, Parts and Accessories

Optics Checklist: Is your optic ready?

Tactical officer leaning against vehicle and shooting Burris Burris XTR II 1-8x24mm scope

With big game seasons right around the corner, you want to make sure your gear is good to go. Before heading out, here are a few top recommendations to ensure your optics are game ready:

Tactical officer leaning against vehicle and shooting Burris Burris XTR II 1-8x24mm scope
Burris XTR II 1-8x24mm

Our friends at Burris sent the following, so we thought we would share…

Check Fasteners: Make sure all the screws on your rifle, rings and bases are secure. A dab of blue Loctite on the treads of the screws will keep them from slipping.

If you have access to a torque wrench, make the screws uniformly tight to the following specs:

  • Action Screws: 65 in.-lb.
  • Bases: 25 in.-lb.
  • Scope Rings: 25 in.-lb.

Clean Your Rifle: Give the bore and action on your rifle a good scrubbing to remove fouling and accumulated debris. One-piece cleaning rods used with bore guides will protect the rifling in the barrel. Wipe out the action with solvent soaked cleaning patches or, if you’re feeling ambitious, remove the stock from the action and blast it out with brake cleaner. Apply a thin layer of gun oil to the metal and place some grease on the rear face of the bolt lugs and on the cocking ramp at the back of the bolt.

Confirm Zero: Invest in a box or two of quality hunting ammo and spend some time at the range to foul your barrel and making sure your rifle is sighted in. Practice a bit running the rifle from kneeling and offhand positions and spend time dry firing with an empty gun to master your rifle’s trigger. All this will lead to better marksmanship in the field.

Weatherproof Your Rig: Cover your muzzle with electrical tape before going hunting to keep debris and moisture from entering your barrel. Fill the fastener heads on your scope and rifle with lip balm to keep them from rusting. Bring along scope caps and a microfiber cloth to make sure your optics will stay clear in the rain and snow.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (7)

  1. For an ideal seal on ALL your gun barrels while out hunting. Go to any drug store and purchase a few pairs of surgical gloves, cut off the fingers and thumbs. And Walla,…….. a water and debris barrier that’s easy to install, better to shoot through and the fingers and thumbs offer various sizes to cover different barrels. along with being a cheap form of protection.

  2. My Grandfather on my Mother’s Side was a Forced Conscript in the German Army at Stalingrad. The German Army issue Him “Ballistol”, a Water-Based Mineral Oil that Froze Solid at Minus 32F. He Started using A Soviet Dry lubrication rated at Minus 70F called Russian Standard TY38.1011315-90, Which Works Great, EVEN by Today’s (2016) Standards…

  3. @ Dave,

    This is an optics checklist for big game season while featuring a picture depicting a tactically rigged personnel taking cover in a crouched position. Just what kind of big game are we really hunting here Dave? All kidding aside; great tip using lip balm. When one considers its viscosity, I suppose it is quite similar to other rust inhibitors already in use such as cosmoline. Thanks for passing along the tips.

    1. G-Man,

      It is more big game oriented I’ll agree, but has some application to other pursuits as well. Unfortunately, BUrris did not send a big game image, and all of my trophy images have been used ad nauseam, so I grabbed what I had on hand. Do you have any good photos you could lend me? -LOL
      Thanks for the ribbing and you continued readership. ~Dave Dolbee

  4. I prefer Thread Tape over a Glue Sealant, less Likely to make a Mess if the Cape Comes Off. Also a Condom over Electrical Tape as a Barrel Muzzle Covering, Especially if there’s a Muzzle Break on the Barrel. And Possibly a Tampon in the Barrel to keep the Barrel Dry of ANY Lingering Moister…

    1. Secundius – not sure what I’d think if I saw another hunter in the woods with a condom on the end of his rifle – most likely I’d run away. Maybe a brightly colored balloon would do instead? At least you can’t see the tampon inside the barrel. Can you tell me what use you could find for K-Y Jelly? 😉

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