When we talk about lase bore sighters, we need to start a bit with the basics.
Boresighting is in fact a method to adjust an optical firearm’s sight (or iron sights) which aligns the firearm barrel and sights. The boresight is used to pre-align the sights and makes zeroing in (zero drop at a certain distance) much faster.
A bore sighter (or collimator) is needed to complete the action. The boresighter features an optical head and a bore-diameter arbor, places into the muzzle of the rifle. The optical head is afterwards attached to the protruding end of the rod. The grid pattern from the optical head helps aligns the sights with the barrel.
Traditional bore sighting implies that the bolt is removed and sighting down the bore of a gun to a specific point. The scope or irons get adjusted to aim at the distant object once the rifle is held in place.
Modern bore sighting uses a laser and not a visual inspection to illuminate the distant point. The new method allows more movement in the gun and the laser dot doesn’t move relative to the barrel. On a plus side, the laser bore sighting doesn’t request the removal of the bolt.
Bore sighting gives you a reference point from which you start sighting in your gun, but also saves you time, ammunition and protects your shoulder from unnecessary recoil.
Bore sighting- the variety that comes along
The traditional and oldest way is to remove the bolt on a bolt action rifle and position it so it’s pointing at the bullseye of the target about fifty yards away. Of course, you need to secure the gun and to adjust the elevation and windage turrets until the reticle is placed in the center on the bullseye. For the obvious reasons, you can’t do all this with a semi-auto, lever gun, pump or…most handguns.
Another efficient, but also old, way to bore sight is by using a collimator and arbors. The collimator is a device with a graph-paper-like grid in it and you may see it through your scope. It’s held in place by arbors inside your barrel from the muzzle end. A spring or an expanding plus hold them in place and they are sized for your caliber. You adjust the windage and elevation turrets as you look through the scope. You must size the spuds (arbors) precisely. Many collimating boresights feature more arbors.
The most convenient method is the magnetic boresight. You simply attach it to your muzzle with strong magnets. Magnetic bore sighters fit all calibers and gauges and you don’t need other parts. You may also need magnetic bore sighters to check zero after moving your guns, dropping or heavy using them. Sight in your gun and see where your crosshairs end up on your boresighter’s grid. Write down the placement the check zero.
Laser bore sighters project a laser beam from an arbor or spud inserted into your muzzle. Some laser bore sighters are sized for a specific cartridge case and you simply insert into your gun’s chamber, closing the action.
You do need a reflective target when using the laser bore sighter in order to reflect your laser beam. This target must be placed at some distance and you have to hold your gun steady in order to center the scope’s crosshairs onto the laser’s dot.
Things to keep in mind
You need to shoot the gun with a certain type of ammo, at a specific distance as no boresighter is able to sight in a gun. Every type of ammo has a specific point of impact.
In case you go for an arbor boresight, you always need to remove the boresight arbor before shooting. Last thing you want is to have a good barrel blown apart…
Another great thing about boresighting is that it informs you right away about any problem with mounting or scope adjustments. This means less money, less ammunition spent and less physical effort from recoil.
Once you define yourself as a shooter, there’s no way you can shoot without a boresighter. Period.
The Top 5 Laser Boresighter Reviews
When we have to describe this laser bore sighter, versatility is the first thing that comes to mind. The Aimshot KT-MASTER Green Laser Bore Sight Master Rifle Kit comes with many good features and here are our pros:
- The Aimshot includes 223 green laser bore sight
- The kit comes with an external battery pack
- The kit consists all 16 rifle caliber arbors
- The kit includes the BSB223G green laser and the following arbors: AR243, AR264, AR3006, AR3030, AR762, AR20GA, AR12GA, AR22-250, AR270WEA, AR270WSM, AR300WEA, AR300RSUM, AR375HH, AR7MWSM, AR8MM and AR50.
- The bore sight has a modular design
- The Aimshot kit comes with replaceable wire/battery pack in case or cut wire
- The bore sighter is made of tough brass so less chances for scratching chamber
- The kit has two zippered pouches to hold bore sight, arbors and removal tool
- You may bore sight most standard SAAMI calibers with the Aimshot kit
- The bore sighter is made very well
- There is amazing craftsmanship on the bore sighter
- There are high quality materials used on the bore sighter
- The price is great for the high quality you get
When it comes to the parts we like less, we can only think at the fact that you need to wait up to 2 months until you get it. But it’s totally worth waiting for it.
If you decide to pay the extra buck for a very good and efficient boresighter, the SiteLite Ultra Mag Laser Professional Boresighter is one that you can’t go wrong with. Here are our pros:
- The SiteLite gives great accuracy
- The SiteLite Ultra Mag fits all calibers from .22 to .50 cal plus 20 & 12 ga shotguns
- The SiteLite Ultra Mag comes with the SiteLite BTS program so that you may printout a laser boresighting target for a specific rifle and ammo
- The bore sight comes with the SRL Scope Leveler so that you may level your crosshairs before boresighting
- You also get a free Muley Crazy DVD featuring a 255” Muley taken by SiteLite President
- The SiteLite Ultra Mag uses red laser
- You may use the SiteLite inside, early morning or late afternoon
- The bore sighter is great for the small inside areas
- It’s easy to setup the SiteLite
- The SiteLite Ultra Mag is very easy to use
- The craftsmanship on the bore sighter is great
- The SiteLite is perfectly centered
- The scope leveling wall target is amazing
- The SiteLite comes with lifetime warranty
There are some downsides to the SiteLite Ultra Mag so here are the cons:
- As the laser is red, you can’t use it in the direct sun light as it’s too bright to see it
- The O-rings are not oil resistant
- Some experienced some laser movement as it was difficult to maintain the laser centered
All in all, you get a good, efficient laser bore sighter that has its limitations. The next level model from SiteLite is the SiteLite Ultra Mag Green Laser Professional Boresighter.
As it gives a high power green laser visible in daylight, the Wheeler Laser Bore Sighter gets to be a reliable bore sighter. There are several things to consider when buying the Wheeler so here are our pros:
- The Wheeler Laser Bore uses a high power daylight visible green laser
- The high-strength magnetic connection to the barrel gives fast and precise bore sighting
- The Wheeler system addresses to most all firearms, shotguns, rifles and handguns
- The magnetic connection at the end of the muzzle gives accurate alignment with the bore
- There is no risk of damaging the bore when using the Wheeler Laser Bore
- The Wheeler laser bore uses a single Lithium 123A battery included
- The laser bore is easy to setup
- It’s easy to use the Wheeler laser bore
- The laser bore comes with a molded plastic storage case
- The body is made of machined aluminum
- Each unit is hand tuned during the manufacturing with a new calibration mechanism
- There is maximum accuracy for the best bore/optic alignment possible
- When you complete the calibration the laser module is permanently secured in place, giving durability and confidence
- The magnet is great and powerful
- The intensity of the laser is good and easy to see
Some things need to be improved on the Wheeler Laser boresighter so here are the cons:
- The power button doesn’t work all the time and you need to press it several times
- The metal surface of the magnet may scratch your crown if not paying attention. A uniform piece of Teflon coated plastic over the magnet could prevent the scratching
These cons are not deal breakers though and the Wheeler laser bore is one good investment for your shooting experience.
For the shooter who wants efficiency without spending every single dime, the Bushnell Professional Boresighter Kit with Case and .17-.45 Caliber Expandable Arbors is a bore sighter that you can’t go wrong with. Here are the pros:
- The bore sighter uses high quality optics
- The HD clarity is amazing
- There are high quality materials used on the Bushnell Boresighter
- The bore has a great design
- The Bushnell is long lasting
- The kit has a compact design
- The kit contains a graduated grid sighting reticle, three expandable arbors and a carry case
- Each graduation is equivalent to 4 inches at 100 yards
- Arbors cover all calibers from 0.22 to 0.45
- The bore is easy to use
- The price is great for the quality you get
- There is great construction for the optics
- The kit comes with a lifetime warranty
Apart from the good things, there are some issues to mention so here are our cons:
- The bore sight could improve its accuracy
- The bore sight works only with standard scope mounts
All in all, the Bushnell Boresighter is an efficient bore sight, with limited performance, but reliable for the means it was designed for.
Using red laser and being compatible with all 16 Aimshot rifle arbors, the Aimshot KT-RIFLE Laser Bore Sight Kit for Major Calibers finds the balance between good price and good quality. Our pros are as follows:
- The kit comes with 223 laser bore sight with external batter pack
- You also get top 6 selling arbors AR243, AR264, AR3006, AR3030, AR762 and ar12ga
- The laser bore is compatible with all 16 aim shot rifle arbors for more caliber bore sighting
- The laser bore is made of tough brass so less chances for scratching the chamber and maintaining close tolerances
- The kit comes with zippered pouch to hold bore sight, arbors and removal tool
- The bore uses bright red laser
- It’s easy to use the laser bore
- The laser bore gets the job done fast and well
- There is great craftsmanship on cartridge arbors
- There is good precision dot every time
- The external battery pack is efficient as it gives longer run times (10-20 hours)
- It’s also easier and cheaper to use less expensive AAA replacement batteries
- The maximum sighting range is 100 yards
- The kit comes with a 5-year limited warranty
As for the cons, there aren’t many to mention, but we still feel like pointing them out:
- The AimShot is not for range sighting
- The laser bore is not as versatile as other models
But, for the money you pay, the AimShot laser bore is a reliable device for your sighting. You may want to check out the sighting kit for pistols as well.