Mounting a Leupold VX-Freedom Rimfire on a Tikka T1X

If you are following along the journey with my new Tikka T1X .22LR rifle you’ve already seen me paint the factory stock in a GAP camo pattern. If not see that article here. In the spirit of keeping the rifle light and handy (the reason for painting the stock vs replacing it with an aftermarket stock) I decided it was time for a lightweight scope.

The scope I chose is a Leupold VX-Freedom Rimfire in 3-9x40mm. The scope weighs in at a trim 12.2 ounces. When accuracy testing with a Athlon Midas Tac I could tell the weight difference. The Midas Tac weighs 26.3 ounces. The VX-Freedom features Leupold’s Rimfire MOA reticle which has hash marks every MOA along the bottom section. This should allow me to zero for 50 yards and use the drop hashes to know my hold overs for longer distances without having to dial the covered turret.

I installed a DIProducts rail adapter. This adapter slips right over the factory dovetail and secures with four screws. What you are left with is a much more US standard Picatinny rail system. It also has the side benefits of extending out further over the receiver and it is slanted to give me 25MOA in the base. This coupled with the drop reticle in the scope should let me get out as far as I need to get without having to touch the dials.

I rounded out the installation with some inexpensive Leupold Rifleman matte black rings in medium height. Butler Creek flip up caps were also installed to keep the install clean and self contained.

The mounting process was pretty simple with a couple proper tools. After installing the DIProducts rail adapter, I set the bubble level from the Wheeler Engineering scope mounting kit onto the rail. I got it close to level with the bipod and it’s locking lever (also from DIProducts).

I then installed the front adjustable bubble level on the barrel and used the adjuster knob to get the front bubble equal to the rear bubble.

Once they are set to each other I installed the ring bottom halves onto the rail. The Rifleman rings don’t come with a torque spec so I just used my Wheeler FAT wrench and torqued the bases to 30 inch pounds.

Once the bases were installed, the scope was laid in the rings. The top ring screws got a dab of blue Loctite and they were hand tightened. The bubble level that was used on the receiver in the first step was then moved to the top turret cap. The scope was rotated to make it level aligned with the bubble level on the barrel.

While everything was level the top cap screws are torqued to 20 inch pounds.

The Butler Creek flip caps are simply slip fit over the ends. Once installed the front has a nice tab to push forward to flip it up. The front cap is a size 26.

The rear cap has a simple red lever you push in to flip the rear cap up. The rear uses a size 11 cap.

And that’s all there is to it. I haven’t shot the gun yet, as the winter is quickly approaching here in WA state. I hope to get it out and sighted in, along with this other rimfire beauty, that’s coincidentally also wearing the same scope and rings!

Sources:

Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9x40mm Scope

Leupold Rifleman Matte Medium Rings

Butler Creek Objective Cap (size 26) 

Butler Creek Eyepiece Cap (size 11)

DI Products 25MOA Picatinny Rail Adapter

Wheeler Engineering FAT Wrench

Wheeler Engineering Scope Mounting Level

Blue Loctite

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