How To Torque Your Riflescope Rings

Over-torqued rings aren’t just bad for the outside of your scope. The performance of both the mechanical components and the optical components inside can be significantly diminished.

Why are over-torqued rings so bad?

Let’s start with what over-torquing can do to your scope tube. Excessive torque can permanently damage the tube, “crimping” the metal and even crushing the tube in extreme cases. The cosmetic damage this causes is only the beginning.

Inside your optic, the mechanical and optical components responsible for providing a sharp image and dialing your point of aim can be restricted. Not only does this limit your dialing range, it can diminish your riflescope’s ability to hold a zero. In short, your optic will not perform consistently.

The best way to torque riflescope rings

First, no matter what brand of riflescope you’re shooting, always follow the manufacturer’s recommended specs. At Vortex®, we recommend 15 to 18 in-lbs. We also recommend that you DO NOT use a thread locking compound. These compounds can act as a lubricant, causing you to over-torque your rings.

We also recommend – especially if you are someone with multiple rifles, or switch riflescopes between rifles frequently – that you purchase a quality torque wrench. This takes the guesswork out of torquing your rings. (Still have questions? Check out this video on proper ring torquing.)

Easy ways to avoid over-torqued rings

It’s worth saying again: DO NOT USE thread locking compound when torquing your riflescope rings. It can cause you to over torque the rings and damage your optic.

Another thing you can do is buy the best rings you can afford. Riflescope rings have a dramatic effect on your ability to place shots. Better rings come with better components and ensure uniform contact between your rings and your scope tube. Very poor rings frequently have sharp edges where they contact your scope tube, amplifying the damage caused by over-torqued rings.

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