how to torque scope rings without torque screwdriver

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If you’re like me, you’ve probably wondered how to torque scope rings without a torque screwdriver. Well, wonder no more! Here are a few tips to help you get the job done.


In this guide we will show you how to torque your scope rings without using a torque screwdriver. We will also provide some tips on how to choose the best rings for your application.

What is a torque screwdriver?

A torque screwdriver is a type of screwdriver that is used to apply a specific amount of torque to a screw or nut. This is usually done in order to prevent overtightening, which can damage the screws or nuts. Torque screwdrivers typically have adjustable settings that allow you to select the desired level of torque.

How to use a torque screwdriver

Tightening your scope rings without a torque screwdriver is not recommended, as you may overtighten the rings and damage your scope. If you don’t have a torque screwdriver, you can use a regular screwdriver, but be very careful not to overtighten the screws.

To use a regular screwdriver, start by tightening the screws until they are snug. Then, turn each screw a quarter turn. Check that the rings are still parallel to each other, and then turn each screw another quarter turn. Repeat this process until the rings are tight enough that they won’t move when you touch them, but don’t overtighten the screws.

What is the correct torque for scope rings?

While there is some debate on the Internet, a general consensus seems to be that 30 in/lbs is a good starting point for most scope rings. For reference, that is roughly the amount of force it takes to turn a #2 Phillips screwdriver blade in a 1/4″ screw.

It is important not to over-tighten scope rings. Not only can this damage the scope or rings, it can also cause the point of impact (POI) to shift when the rifle is fired. This is because over-tightening can distort the shape of the rings slightly, causing them to grip the scope tube in an inconsistent manner.

If you do not have a torque wrench that goes down to in/lbs measurements, there are a few other ways to ensure that you do not over-tighten your rings. A good rule of thumb is to hand-tighten the screws until they are snug, and then only turn each one an additional 1/8 to 1/4 turn with your screwdriver. Another method is to use a piece of tape as a “stopper”. Put a small piece of tape on your screwdriver blade at the 30 in/lbs mark (or whatever amount you are shooting for), and then when you reach that mark while tightening, stop and move on to the next screw.

How to torque scope rings without a torque screwdriver

While a torque screwdriver is the ideal tool for torquing scope rings, it’s not always possible to have one on hand. If you find yourself in this situation, there are a few other methods you can use to get the job done.

One method is to use a length of dowel that fits snugly into the holes in the ring bases. By applying pressure to the dowel while turning the rings on the scope, you can achieve the correct amount of torque. Another method is to use a nutsert tool or an impact driver. These tools can be used to apply the correct amount of torque without damaging the ring bases.

Whichever method you choose, be sure to check the torque regularly during installation. This will ensure that your scope rings are properly mounted and will stay secure during use.

How to test if scope rings are properly torqued

There are a few ways that you can test if your scope rings are properly torqued. The most common way is to use a torque screwdriver. To do this, first make sure that the screws are tight by hand. Next, use the torque screwdriver to tighten the screws until they click. The amount of torque that is required will depend on the manufacturer of the rings. Once the rings are torqued to the correct specifications, they should be able to hold the weight of the scope without coming loose.

Another way to test if your rings are properly torqued is to use a dial indicator. This method is more accurate than using a torque screwdriver, but it requires more tooling and knowledge to set up and use correctly. First, you will need to attach the dial indicator to the base of the scope ring. Next, zero out the dial indicator and then slowly tighten each screw until it contacts the indicator. The reading on the dial indicator will tell you how much force is being applied to each screw. Once all of the screws have been tightened, compare the readings from each screw to make sure they are all within specification.

If you don’t have access to a torque screwdriver or dial indicator, you can still test if your scope rings are torqued correctly by making sure that they can hold the weight of the scope without coming loose. First, hand-tighten all of the screws until they are snug. Next, place the scope in the rings and apply pressure evenly around all four sides. The pressure should be firm but not excessive. If any of the screws start to loosen, then they were not torqued correctly and will need to be retightened before mounting your scope.


If you don’t have a torque screwdriver, you can still properly mount your scope by using a inch/lb. torque wrench and following the same basic process as above. Just be sure to take note of the initial reading on the torque wrench when it is set to zero so that you can accurately measure the amount of pressure being applied. Apply too much pressure and you risk damaging your scope or causing it to become dislodged; not enough pressure and your scope might not hold its zero. As always, if you have any doubts or concerns, it is always best to consult with a professional gunsmith or scope mounting specialist.


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