How to Lap Scope Rings

Shooting, one of the finest arts, contains excellent delicacy. Most people enjoy shooting as a side hobby; others might need the understanding for professional purposes. Shooting is more than just putting bullets in your rifle and pressing the trigger. It requires knowledge of its features and proper practice. 

When beginning with shooting, the most crucial thing is mounting the scope, i.e., attaching the scope with the rifle. One of the standard practices that people find difficult is lapping. Lapping is a process in which you alter the rings that are used to mount a scope. It is one of the essential steps of mounting the scope. 

For lapping scope rings, you need a few things. Here is the list of some things you might need. 

Things Needed to Lap Scope Rings

  • Scope ring lapping kit
  • Screwdrivers
  • Paper towels 
  • Marker
  • Polish 

After you have gathered all the things mentioned above, you are ready to lap the scope rings. Here is the step-by-step guide that will aid you throughout the process. 

Step#1. Mount the Scope Rings

It would be best if you start with mounting the scope rings. You can either do this by attaching the bottom scope rings or directly screwing them.

Make sure they are straight and a little loose, providing space for alignment. Now, take out the lapping tool from the lapping kit. 

Place the lapping tool on the scope rings. With the help of this tool, make sure you are holding rings straight.

Once you are sure that the rings are erect and in the correct position, start tightening them. Once you are done with mounting the scope rings, you can advance on to the next step. 

Step#2. Position the Rifle Properly

Before you begin with the next step, make sure your rifle is in a stable position. Look out for stabilizing it if it keeps on moving. There are several ways you can take hold of it. The best way to do so is using vise grips. Vise grips are small pliers used to stabilize things.

Another thing you can do is using sandbags and stop your rifle from moving by providing your body support. Additional to this, there are some special grips specially designed for rifles. These grips will help you provide a stay to your rifle while you are working on lapping bars. 

Step#3. Apply Lapping Cream

Once your rifle is stable, remove the lapping bars. Pick up the lapping cream from your lapping kit and apply it onto the inside of the lower part of the scope rings and the upper part as well. Avoid using cream in abundance. All you have to do is to apply cream adequate to cover the interior. 

Step#4. Insert the Lapping Bar

Place the lapping bar in the scope rings and cover it with the upper part of both the scope rings. Tighten the upper parts of the scope rings until they make a connection with the lapping bar. While doing this, make sure you do not do this so tightly that you can not move the lapping bar. A lot of tightening can damage your rifle. 

To remove any burs or imperfections from the surface of rings, push the lapping bars forward and back in rings. Doing so will loosen the lapping bars in scope rings. Tighten the scope rings. Repeat the process four to five times; this will, later on, help you in the motion of lapping bars inside rings. 

Step#5. Remove the Lapping Bars

This step might take you by surprise, but it is an essential one. Once you have gone through all the steps above, remove the top rings and lapping bar altogether. Feel along the surface of the rings. Check if they are adequately smooth or not.

With high-quality scoping rings, you might only need to carry the process mentioned above three to four times. For roughly manufactured scope rings, you might spend more time with lapping bars. If you feel like your scoping rings haven’t gained sufficient smoothness, you might repeat the process until you achieve the required smoothness. 

Step#6. Mount the Scope

Once you have achieved enough smoothness, it’s time to mount the scope. Place the scope in scope rings, and tighten the upper rings. Ensure you do not damage anything by long or hard pressing.  Another important thing you need to do is to check if the scope is properly leveled.  Once you do the proper checking, you are all set. 


The process of lapping scope rings is quite simple and easy. It does not require hours of struggle. The only thing you need to be keen on is the tightness and smoothness of scope rings. You have to do work with steady hands. While tightening the scope rings on lapping bars, you need to reconsider the amount of pressure you apply on scope rings. Your rifle might get damaged from a bit of stroke of high stress. 

The other thing you need to check sharply is the smoothness of scoping rings. You have to make sure the scope rings are smooth and straight enough to mount the scope. Once you have checked these key points, you can finally test your shooting skills and make them even better and professional.

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