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The 36 Yard Zero

The 36 Yard Zero Target

In the recent carbine courses we have discussed various yard lines to zero your rifles along with the pros and cons of each yard line.  For those that have attended the courses now know that when it comes to your go-to 5.56 caliber carbine rifle that you would pick because it is best suited for all possible scenarios, the 36 yard zero seems to be the perfect fit.  Of course, this is a matter of opinion, but when it comes to making accurate shots from point blank distance all the way out to 300 yards you really can’t argue that the 36 yard zero makes thinking about your hold overs and unders a breeze, which is especially the case when you’re under extreme stress.  There’s a problem though, the majority of shooters do not have regular access to a gun range where they can get much distance outside of 25 yards.  So how do we get the 36 yard zero with only 25 yards to work with?

I created a 25 yard adjusted zero target for the 36 yard zero based off of a specific set of specs.  The majority of our clients use some type of red dot holographic sight whether it be EoTech, Aimpoint, Trijicon, or Vortex optics.  All of these sights sit approximately 2.5 inches above the bore of an AR-15 rifle.  Most of our shooters are also using basic 5.56/.223 55 grain FMJ for their range ammo, which is also what they zero their rifle with.  I figured somewhere there would be a 36 yard zero target for the 25 yard line but there was nothing.  They have 25, 50, and 100yds but no 36.  So I put the time in, gathered as much info as I could as far as what shooters are using when it comes to optics and ammo, and I calculated where the bullet would impact at the 25 yard line with a 36 yard zero and made a target out of it.

How To Use It?

If you take a look at the target you will see thick gray vertical and horizontal lines that intersect at a black circle.  This is going to be where your point of aim is.  Center your red dot here.  If you look below that you will see thick black vertical and horizontal lines that intersect at another small yellow dot on the 0:0 axis point surrounded by a yellow faded dot.  This is going to be where you want your bullet impacts to be.  With this being said, your impacts will not hit where you are aiming.  The bottom dot on the 0:0 axis is where the bullet would hit if you were aiming at a target 25 yards away with a 36yd zero which is approximately -.72″ below your point of aim.  The bullet is still rising to meet your point of aim at 36 yards, this is why the impact point is low on the target.  The faded yellow circle around the black circle is there for variables such as sight to bore distance and bullet weight.  I use .77 grain for a truer flight, more accuracy, and more knockdown power. The hold under for that round is -.70″, and if your sight sits only 1.5″ above bore then you are at a -.41″ with 55 grain and -.40 with 77 grain.  If your round is inside the gray faded circle you are good.  The dashed circle is for acceptable human error and it’s generous.  All of your rounds should really be at least touching the faded circle.  The numbers on the side are adjustments for a .5 MOA sight.  For example, if my round hits at vertical line marked 16 above the 0 then I need to adjust my Eotech 16 clicks down.

See Image Below

To Print the Target:

  1. Right click on the image at the bottom of the page
  2. Save image to desktop
  3. Go to print set-up
  4. You MUST scale image to 100% for accurate results
  5. Click print

Stay Vigilant,

Shawn Ryan

Printable 36yd Zero Target

Comments on this post (148)

  • Sep 08, 2020

    Does this target work for zeroing iron sights?

    — Ben

  • Sep 05, 2020

    Great video and well explained. All zeroed in at 36 yards! 👍🏼

    — Sal

  • Sep 05, 2020

    Will this also work for the 62 grain ammo?

    — Mark Mills

  • Sep 03, 2020

    Can I use A 36 yard zero for my 300 blackout as well ? And get same CD size from 36 to 300 yards as a 556?

    — Branden

  • Aug 07, 2020

    Can I use this target for my back up irons also?

    — Brendan

  • Aug 07, 2020

    Thanks Shawn, you da man!

    — Josh Riley

  • Aug 06, 2020

    Nvm I get it. All based off line of sight height above bore of the barrel. Got it.
    In that case I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a zeroing target for some flip ups today

    — Dave

  • Aug 06, 2020

    What’s the math big dog? I’m using a 13.7, I assume this is for either a 14.5” or 16” barrel.

    — Robert Bull

  • Aug 06, 2020

    This def works with flip ups, right? Like intuitively

    — Dave

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Outstanding Shawn, thanks a heap for going the extra mile regarding the target. Been looking for a 25 yard conversion for quite some time. Keep up the great work. I had no issues with downloading and printing by the way. Take care and be safe.

    — Glen

  • Aug 05, 2020

    This is awesome thanks for passing along valuable information for free. How would this zero carry over into other calibers such as .308WIN?

    — Andrew Brauda

  • Aug 05, 2020

    I like the 36 yd zero, printed out you targets,,seems to be a question on how the target is printed,,,,on where to hold,,,,,reading you explanation,,,,if your point of aim is at 25 yds,,point of impact should be .72 inches low.👍

    — Ronald J

  • Aug 05, 2020

    What a great resource. Thank you for this. I was curious how much the higher mounted sights like the unity tactical fast mount would change this zeroing process? I only ask because I actually haven’t found much zero data on high over bore mounts for the AR.

    — Ryan

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Can’t print target for 36 yd. what is measurement in inches from point of aim to point of impact at 25yds for a 36 yd zero

    — Ray Michon

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Thank you for sharing this 36-yard zero target. Very clear instructions and easy to print.

    — Brian Petula

  • Aug 05, 2020


    Thank you so much for the info and target. I’ve never heard of a 36 yrd zero until now, but it makes sense. I’ve always zeroed at 50 or 100 yds. This works great!
    Thank you sir!

    — R. Moreno, Jr.

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Will this zero work for the 6.5 grendel

    — Omar Nichols

  • Aug 05, 2020

    hey got a Valken red dot will it work for the 36 yard zero

    — mary pittman

  • Aug 05, 2020

    I just used your table to zero my VTX X-fire II on my 10.5” AR. (55gr FMJ). I love it. It really is true that this method has the smallest spread between 25-300m. I’ve been having issues with my zero, especially when I tried to ring steel at 200m with this gun, I always thought I was at my max eff range with this SBR. With this zero I’m sure I’ll be just fine. Love it. Thank you!

    — Gabor Laskai

  • Aug 05, 2020

    36 yard zero will put me on at 100 ?

    — Joeu

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Can you use this to zero your backup sights. Or just stick to the 25m/300m zero for those?

    — Zachary Foege

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Would you recommend the same zero for back-up irons?

    — Hunter Siex

  • Aug 05, 2020

    If I threw a roast beef sandwich at this target, what size should the target be printed at?
    Also, does it matter if I use Rye bread or wheat? I might have a few gluten free follow up questions as well.
    Thanks for the help in advance.

    — B. Rip

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Can this target be used to achieve a 36 yd zero for my 308 rifle using m80 ball? 16 inch barrel.

    — Philip Strother jr

  • Aug 05, 2020

    Can this target be used to achieve a 36 yd zero for my 308 rifle using m80 ball?

    — Philip Strother jr

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