Parts of a Rifle Scope: Learn About Rifle Scope Parts 2021

Affiliate Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

If you’re new to rifles and shooting, it might seem hard to understand how things need detailed attention here. The scope being the guide from your position to the target, it’s important to know it inside out. It’s not just zooming in, fixing the crosshair, and pulling the trigger, there are plenty more to it.

Sounds complex? No worries, I’ll get you through the complex tube scope and help you understand the parts of a rifle scope. You’ll know how a rifle scope works and how you can get the most out of your scope as well. Stick to the article, there is a chronological and interesting journey ahead, waiting for you.

Parts of a Rifle Scope: Learn About Rifle Scope Parts

As the scope is a combination of different things, understanding the parts of a rifle scope needs an organized approach. I’ll get you through them step by step so that multiple items don’t make a mess in your mind. So, here we go:

Parts of a Rifle Scope Learn About Rifle Scope Parts

Objective Lens:

The objective lens is the thickest part of the scope and it performs the first and foremost important job. It’s the part of a rifle scope where your target appears for the first time. You see the picture of it from the close end to yourself, which is the ocular lens. The adjustable objective scope catches the picture of your target and sends that to the eyepiece through the objective bell.

Objective Bell:

It’s the part of a scope that bridges the tube with the objective lens itself. The end part of the bell is the objective lens holder where the joining part is parallel to the tube. As a result, the thickness will increase gradually from a narrow portion to a thick one. This design is crucial because it processes the picture you see on the ocular lens. Once you point the objective lens to the target, the image gets to your eyes diagonally using the objective bell.

Ocular Lens:

The ocular lens in a rifle scope is the very first thing you see while looking through any rifle scope. It’s the glass or lense you look at, and which portrays the final picture of your target onto your eyes. It’s relatively smaller than the objective lens on the far end of your scope where the picture starts objecting through. Some high-end ocular lenses come with different coatings to help it with better light transmission or water repellency.


Simply put, the eyepiece is the part of a scope with which it holds onto the ocular lens in place. It’s the part where the other mechanisms start to attach and makes a lens more functional. Some lenses come with a dial onto the eyepiece to adjust the lens and make the picture clearer and vivid. Whether it has a dial or not, its importance is nowhere avoidable. You see what the eyepiece helps you see. It connects to the power ring aka the magnification ring that helps you adjust the depth of your lens.

Magnification Ring:

The magnification ring is the first dial you’ll get if you don’t have any dial on the eyepiece of the scope. It helps you zoom in or out to your target and get the picture clearer and have a closer look. Besides, controlling the ring is pretty simple; you turn the dial clockwise to zoom in and anti-clockwise to zoom out. It’s that simple. Plus, the ring controls how much the distance between the internal lenses will be. Although dialing it is fairly easy, knowing when to tune in is not that simple. You must learn to control the ring according to the distance of your target from you.

Scope Tube:

Now for the main or center part of a scope that contains the internal parts of a rifle scope. The middle part or the scope tube doesn’t only connect the lenses, but also contain the most important controller knobs. It’s a solid piece of metal with which the objective bell and the eyepiece connect and stay firm. The length of the scope tube is usually either 30mm or 25.4 mm (1 inch). You must keep the scope and ring sizes parallel if you want to customize your scope; 1-inch tube for 1-inch ring only.

Elevation Turret:

When I said the tube contains the rifle scope adjustment knobs, the first controller is the elevation turret. It’s the uppermost dial that controls the elevation of the crosshair of your lens pointed to a target. When you have to make fine adjustments to the target and make it more accurate, you’ll use the elevation turret. Furthermore, it will have a simultaneous adjustment control with the controller next to it which is the windage turret. Getting a perfect shot depends on a perfect elevation or the bullet will surely go up or down.

Windage Turret:

Now you have the full vertical control on the crosshair, it’s time to gain the horizontal control over it. For the horizontal adjustment, you’re getting the windage turret that usually comes on the right side of the turret housing. While the elevation turret adjusts the crosshair up or down, the windage turret takes care of the right and left. Once you have a perfect match of them both, you’re likely to get a bullet right through the bullseye.

Other Parts Of A Scope

Well, the parts we’ve discussed above are usually all you need to know and that’s really is all. However, you might find some peripheral parts of a scope worth mentioning. The most common things on the scope are scope caps, external reticles, parallax (AO), night vision, and some others.

Other Parts Of A Scope

Everything mentioned here is self explanatory except for the parallax which might get complex at a point. However, every shooter has to confront the parallax effect at a point while adjusting the magnifier and the turrets simultaneously. Make sure you do experimental adjustments, note the results down, and consult an experienced shooter if possible.


Operating a rifle scope isn’t a piece of cake unless you know it from the inside and understand the outside. Getting to know the parts of a rifle scope helps you make fine adjustments and understand what’s affecting what. When the power ring is making a parallax effect, you know there is something to adjust on the elevation turret.

It works that simple. You know the anatomy of the scope, you know where to touch and how to improve. I hope the explanations of the parts of a rifle scope helped you to know your tool better than before.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top