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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 (168)

  • Jan 07, 2021

    Will this work with a low variable power optic? I have a 1-6 power and a 1-8 power. Thanks.

    — Seth Barlage

  • Jan 05, 2021

    I cant seem to print this target in a normal 8.5 × 11 size. Im only getting the option to save as a webpage or an image, however the image wont print to the correct size.

    — Mike Poole

  • Jan 03, 2021

    Save image as a document (not a desktop). Find document and click on the “smaller” target image and it will appear full size. Then print. Worked for me. Thanks Vigilance!!

    — Steve Williams

  • Dec 23, 2020

    Thanks Shawn, love your content and am absolutely dying to try this method, my warrant officer buddy sent me your link. When I download this, what are the dimensions of each square to ensure that I have the correct size? Maybe add a scale in a legend or something so people can check their own work and you won’t have dummies like me asking you questions we should already know the answer to. I’m using firefox and its slowly becoming the bane of my existence as I’ve got 3 different sizes so far. Thank you for your service! -Jason

    — Jason Zacchetti

  • Dec 23, 2020

    what size paper is this scaled for? 8.5×11?

    — Chuck

  • Dec 18, 2020

    For the people that can’t get their aspect ratios correct, exactly how far below POA is the POI supposed to fall? I keep getting conflicting lengths from all the long winded threads in and snipershide guys that like to talk about things that have nothing to do with the zero. Thanks!

    — Robert

  • Dec 15, 2020

    I printed off one of your 36 yard targets. I did maximize to 100% but squares seem small. I measured them at .400. Is this the correct measurement for squares ? Thanks for doing these videos !!

    — Ellsworth Shaw

  • Dec 03, 2020

    i am so english is poor, sorry :). thx for approving my user greetings wally

    — wallyNit

  • Nov 24, 2020

    How would this work if you were using a bullet heaver than a 55gr?

    — Herb

  • Nov 24, 2020

    Just click on it and save it or pull it to your Home Screen and print . Easy peasy homes !

    — Jasonlangley

  • Nov 18, 2020

    Can’t seem to get the scaling right. When scaled to 100% the target is much larger than an 8.5×11″ piece of paper. Can you clarify the sizing, scaling and printer set up a little better? I’ve saved off as a .jpeg, .png, .pdf, .bitmap and none seem to scale work appropriately.

    — Jared

  • Nov 18, 2020

    Thanks Shawn. Works great on my 5.56. Was wondering how this works with .308 I just picked up a Vortex Strike Eagle for my AR10.

    Thanks again

    — Paul

  • Nov 04, 2020

    Not sure if my print out is the correct scale. I scaled to 100% and got it to print but it seems to not fill up most of the regular size house printer paper. While looking at your video and comparing my printed copy your seems slightly more larger on the actual paper. Is there a true measurement for poa vs poi in order to do this so I can just measure and make my own sharpie dot to compensate for the drop while trying to do a 36 yard zero at 25 yards. Thank you

    — Jeremy Peters

  • Oct 22, 2020

    Just saw this video and have been looking for something like this… will love the 36 yd zero… removes having to do a lot of thinking under stress!!

    — Wayne Spencer

  • Oct 22, 2020

    Good Evening. When zeroing at 36yd how then do I zero a DBAL A2 using a constant offset target method. The targets I have used for this in the past have been telluric which is 25m target? Thank you. I appreciate your assistance.

    — Jon Gildea

  • Oct 22, 2020

    Thank you! Very helpful.

    — Joshua

  • Oct 03, 2020

    How adverse are the effects of using 308 or 6.5CM on this 36 yard zero?

    — Todd Jenest

  • Oct 03, 2020

    The 36 Yard Zero Target

    ref: my request for help saving target as desktop file,
    please disregard request; used IE browser instead of Firefox, and image saved as a .PNG file. i was able to print using paint and other apps,

    note: firefox only saves in webp format which it seems my pc doesnt have an app to open webp files

    — bob d

  • Oct 03, 2020

    The 36 Yard Zero
    Hi, is there another save method to print the target? it saves as a webP file and for some reason the file does not open using many different viewers on my pc like PDF, photo viewer, paint etc…
    I tried saving it in a few different formats but no luck. pc is windows 7 using firefox browser. Any help appreciated, thanks

    — bob d

  • Oct 03, 2020

    When I “right click” there is no option to save to desktop. Any suggestions?

    Thanks in advance,


    — William (Bill) Wells

  • 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

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