WON Landing Page OCT 2022

Sighting in My Crimson Trace Laser Sight

Over the past few months, I showed how simple it is to install Crimson Trace’s Laserguard Hellcat and CMR-301 Rail Master Pro Laser/Light Combo on my firearms. Now, I’m moving on to the next step, sighting in my lasers. It’s actually easier than you may think ,especially after viewing Crimson Trace’s how-to video.

Crimson Trace is a manufacturer dedicated to producing the highest quality laser sights, tactical lights, electronic sights, and riflescopes for your pistols, rifles, and shotguns.

Sponsored by Crimson Trace

At the factory, Crimson Trace pre-sights the lasers at 50-feet. At home, adjustments for elevation and windage are made using a two-screw system and an Allen wrench (which arrives in the packaging). Note: the adjustment screws, located just behind the laser source, rarely require more than half a turn.

CT laser on Hellcat

Sight Alignment, Sight Picture

Before sighting in a laser, it’s important to have an understanding of what proper sight alignment and sight picture look like. 

Sight picture

Sight alignment — The top of the front sight is even with the top of the rear sight, centered with an equal amount of space on both sides. 

Sight picture — Aligned sights are at held at the proper area on the target. 


Trying to determine what distance to sight in a laser on a pistol, by searching the Internet, sends you right down a rabbit hole. Trust me … I’ve already been there. The first question usually asked is this one: “At what distance do you think your shooting will occur?” If I knew the answer to that, I would head to Vegas and start playing roulette since I obviously can predict the future. So, let’s just go with what I do know, and what research tells me. I keep a few firearms with lasers in my house for home protection. For those firearms, I might want to measure the distance of different open areas in my house and find an average. Now, research states that most shootings occur around seven yards. So that makes sense for the laser on a pistol I am going to carry. Most of the articles I read mentioned zeroing a laser at a distance between seven and 15 yards. 

Before attempting to sight in a laser sight, make sure your firearm is empty and remove all ammunition from the room. 

Crimson Trace Laserguard Hellcat

Steps for Sighting in Your Laser

1. Decide on the distance you want to sight in your laser and set up a target. 

2. Aim in at the target using the correct sight alignment and sight picture. Check to see where your laser hits in comparison. 

3. Use an Allen wrench to adjust the laser. Determine, using your owners handbook, if you need to turn the screw clockwise or counter-clockwise. Make tiny adjustments, about a one-quarter turn, to begin. 

4. Repeat steps two and three until the laser dot appears to rest centered on top of your front sight when aiming at your target. 

Now that your laser is sighted in at the distance you choose, see where it lands at other distances, both closer and farther. Is this acceptable? Next, head out to the range and shoot three-round groups at a few different distances. Make sure to always have the proper sight picture and sight alignment when shooting. You may even want to use a rest. Review your target and make note of any variations in the point of impact. Keep those in mind should you ever need to use your pistol for self-defense. 

  • About Michelle Cerino

    Michelle Cerino, aka Princess Gunslinger, entered the firearms industry in 2011 when Cerino Training Group was established. She immediately began competing in both 3-Gun and NRA Action Pistol, becoming a sponsored shooter. Michelle is currently a columnist and Managing Editor of Women’s Outdoor News, as well as owner of Pervenio LLC. She also manages social media for Vera Koo and GTM Original. Michelle encourages others to step out of the comforts of home and explore.


The Conversation

  • Glypto Dropem says: April 25, 2022 at 11:20 am

    I only have one pistol set up with a laser. It is a Colt Government Model Series 70 wearing a Recover Tactical rail (and the matching holster) with a Streamlight Laser/Light combo mounted under the barrel. I came up with a saying to remember how to adjust for shooting at distances other than what my laser sight is set for. “Fairy go slow” which stands for “Fairy” (Far=High) and “go slow” (close=low). I have mine aimed for 7 yards, so beyond that I need to aim the laser higher (like the base of the neck) for a center mass hit. If I am closer than 7 yards, then I place the laser on the belly and the bullets land in the chest of a full-size silhouette target.

    Of course, your results may vary.


    • Michelle Cerino says: April 25, 2022 at 1:27 pm

      Thank you so much for sharing! Obviously you’ve spent time on the range and have an understanding of where your bullets hit.