How To Calculate Minute Of Angle [For Scope Zeroing]

This guide walks through how to calculate minute of angle adjustment for red dot sight and scopes, so the shooter knows exactly how many clicks to dial the turret to zero the scope without ammo waste!

Minute Of Angle (MOA) Defined


vortex razor HD scope turrets

The minute corresponds to inches and your angle to yards. 

If you are 100 yards away from your target, 1”=1 MOA.

If you’re 200 yards away from your target, then 2”=1 MOA.

If you’re 300 yards away, then 3”=1 MOA.

To be exact 1 MOA = 1.047" at 100 yards. 1 minute of an angle equals 1/60th of 1 degree. 

60 Minutes equals 1 degree, that means 1 minute is 1/60th of a degree. 

Minute Of Angle Clock Illustration

Remember! the minute equals inches, and angle equals yards, and the further you are, the greater the angle.

If you use mils and want to learn to convert from MOA, please read here.


Follow These 3 Steps

Step 1 - Divide Target Distance By 100 (Yard)

If you’re 600 yards away from your target, divide 600 yards by 100.

You should get 6. This means 1 MOA is 6” at 600 yards.

Here are other examples. Find the MOA value for 500 yards and 25 yards.

500 yards/100=5

1 MOA at 500 yards = 5”

25 yards / 100 = 0.25

1 MOA at 25 yards = 0.25"

Step 2 - Measure Distance Between Point Of Impact To Point Of Aim

adjust MOA

Measure the distance missed. 

Follow the example above, the shot group is missed 7" to the left and 3" up. The goal is to move the shot group 7" to the right and 3" down.

Step 3 - Calculate Number Of Turret Clicks

We have to calculate elevation and windage separately.

Take missed shot distance between point of impact and point of aim for windage first.

Assume the target is 25 yards and 100 yards away, 7" missed to the left and 3" missed high.

Turret value: 0.5 MOA / click

25 yards

The number of turret clicks = [7" / 0.25 ] / 0.5 = 56 clicks

100 yards

The number of turret clicks = [7" / 1] / 0.5 = 14 clicks

Hope this is making more sense as you practice more.

A Helpful Visual Illustrations

If you’re looking at a target—your goal is to hit the bullseye. When you’re aiming at a standard target, your aim would be 1” from the bullseye with rings for a minute.

Minute of angle

If you hit two inches away from your bullseye and you’re 100 yards away, that’s 2 MOA. If you’re 200 yards away and hit 4” below the target, you are still at 2 MOA, since 1MOA=2″ at 200 yards. But if you don’t want to hit the bullseye at 2 MOA, which means you have to adjust your sights.

Know Your Scope Adjustment Increment Value

Always know your scope's turret adjustment value.

Many scopes and red dot sights feature 0.5 MOA/click increment, and more expensive long-range riflescopes have finer 0.25 MOA/click.

A riflescope that has 1/4 MOA click equals 1/4” per click at 100 yards.

This means, to move 2”, you’ll need to adjust the click 8 times. If you wanted to move 4”, that’s 16 times.

Rifle Scope Turrets Explained

The turrets on the rifle scope control the erector tube's position inside the scope body, which adjusts the reticle to zero the scope.

0.25 MOA / Click and 0.5 MOA / Click are common click value on most rifle scopes. The finer the adjustment the better you can adjust for long-range precision, and more expensive they are.

Elevation Turret Adjustment

Elevation adjustment controls the vertical plane of the reticle.

When dialing the turret, the turret direction actually references the point of impact instead of the reticle's point of aim.

Read more about scope adjustment which way to turn

Tyler Brown

Tyler grew up in a firearm family, and now he runs his own firearm business in the Midwest. 4 years of experience managing an FN dealership with tons of firearm business & product knowledge