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  1. #1
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    Default Mil-Dot Reticule with Target measurements?

    I've recently purchased a highly recommended program that teaches how to use the mil-dot reticule for ranging your target and using elevation/windage turrets. I'm only 17 and would like to get into long range shooting and I've got the ranging and windage equations memorized and the math comes extremely easy to me. The hard part for me is when you have to judge the height of the target in mils. When using a computer program, the math is easy to learn, but it's harder to train my eye to learn to judge the questionable mil height, such as the difference between 1.2 or 1.3 mils.
    So I was just curious if anywhere makes mil-dot scopes with slight markings, or maybe some kind of tiny mark, that indicates mil measurements (such as 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, etc.) for long distance shooting?
    I'm sorry if there's an obvious solution to this, I've only covered the standard mil-dot scope in the program and I'm afraid that's all they offer :/

    Thanks for any help guys!

    -Lasuras

  2. #2
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    Horusvision.com

    Horus scopes have a reticle they designed specifically to solve this problem. I have several and use them to good effect out to 2000 yards (.338 Lapua). The Houus reticle has been licensed by several of the big names in highend long range scopes.

    Also, mechanical ranging with the scope is sort of a lost art, and not nearly as important today as it once was due to laser range finders. Sort of like learning Morse Code...

  3. #3
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    Thanks Brazos. I'm in school at the moment, when I get home I will check them out.
    That is true about the range finders, but I feel it's necessary to know the basics lol

  4. #4
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    Break the reticle down into 10s. The average person is 1.7 meters tall. I do alot of deer hunting, the average deer is 36-40 inches at the shouders. Using that I put together a cheat sheet. I took the middle and used 38 inches as a constant. So if the deer is so many mils all I have to do is look at the sheet and the distance is already there. Its the same if using a pair of M24 binos. Stick with the scope, there are several methods like the finger method but using the scope is the best! If you do the cheat sheet(dope) its a lot of math now but will save you the pain in the field!

    Learning to read the mils correctly is the hardest part. Make a couple (4) of targets and put them out at different ranges. Then try to get the mils and see how far out they are. Then to be sure after youve done the math right, pace count(walk) out to each target and see how far off you are. Keep it up till ya get it! Hope this helped.

    Now another way that is easier if you have a scope with the TMR(Tactical Milling Reticle), but dont run out to get one. Keep that in mind for your next purchase.
    Last edited by SargeE7101st; 03-18-2011 at 02:59 PM.


    Gun Lover by Birth, Soldier by Choice!

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  5. #5
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    Also if you hunt from any stands pace off certain objects in your field of fire. Doing this will help when the deer is near or at one you have a good sense on how for out it is so you can range it properly. Its kinda like doing a range card for a fighting position.


    Gun Lover by Birth, Soldier by Choice!

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  6. #6
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    Yeah, I've been running the idea through my head of making range cards for my standard shooting positions. I just need to get me a scope that marks maybe halfway between each mil in ordertotrain my eye. Then maybe in time I can measure it with the naked eye

  7. #7
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    First off, I would suggest going to snipershide and doing some reading. There's tons of great info there and you will learn a lot. You'll also find great scope reviews, photos, etc.

    As for scopes with finer increments in the reticle, I believe Nightforce and possibly Vortex (New Viper PST and Razor HD scopes) may have these options, as well.

    I would also offer this advice, if it hasn't been given already. I strongly recommend getting a scope with a first focal plane reticle and where the reticle and turret adjustments match (moa/moa, or mil/mil). This will make things a lot easier and takes a lot of the math out of the picture. I recently bought a FFP scope in mil/mil and I can honestly say that I would never put anything else on a precision rifle, again. Just my opinion, though.

    John

    **ETA** I forgot to mention, the mil dot, itself, it usually something like .2 mil, but it depends on the scope/reticle/power setting. It's very useful for measuring with. Basically, just about everything on a quality scope reticle should be usable as a measuring device. The dots, the crosshairs and the stadia, or whatever their equivalents are in the reticle you choose.

  8. #8
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    Does your reticle have dots or bars for measuring. Either way it should be set with ten mils from one to another. The hard part is judging exactly where the tartget is, like you said earlier 1.2 or 1.3. The TMR is much easier to use, however most of the scopes that have them are pricey.


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  9. #9
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    Joop is correct there's a thread on the snipershide forum that explains it in detail. They also had a thread that showed a picture through a scope and asked what the range was. There were a lot of different answers to that one, check it out and you'll be surprised at some of the answers!


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  10. #10
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    +1 for sniperhide.com, theres alot of good info there

    checkout mildotmaster.com, its a slide rule type of range estimating device, we use these in long range sniper competitions me and my son compete in, and also gives range adjustments for shooting up and down inclines
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  11. #11
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    Vortex is now making an 8X monocular that has a reticle in mil-radians. I handled one a few days ago and it was pretty impressive.

    http://www.vortexoptics.com/product/...ocus-monocular

    As mentioned above first focal plane scopes are the only way to fly.

  12. #12
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    Take your time and get to where you completely understand the mil-dot principle. It's not difficult once you understand the basic math. I like to use the following "typical" man measurements:

    Head(top to bottom) 9"
    Shoulder width 18"
    Top of head to groin 36"
    Head to toe heighth 72"

    As you can see the measurements are an even subpart or multiple of 36" which should be your reticle subtension at 100yds considering a 3.6" per mil calculation. All you need to determine is which magnification on your adjustable scopes is 36" at 100yds subtension. (With my normal non-mil-dot scopes with standard duplex reticles I got the 36" approx subtension at 100yds with the lowest setting. I verified this by comparing the retical subtensions of the non-mil-dot scopes at 100yds with that of my mil-dot scope at 100yds. They were very close to the mil-dot 36" subtension when set to 3x) Of course I could chart various subtension changes at different magnification settings. But be carefull as the change in magnification setting and actual change in subtension size may not be exactly linear and you will want to verify with a known sized item at various distances/magnification settings.

    Now all you have to determine is which measurement you can use easily on your target and calculate how many times it fits in a normal mil-dot or non-mil dot reticle.(assuming both give you the 36" subtension with their current magnification setting)

    Ex. a man's 36" head to groin measurement fits the full reticle subtension once at 100yds. If the head to groin heighth fits twice then the distance is 200yds, 3 times it's 300yds, 4 times it's 400yds, 5 times it's 500yds, etc. Once you get to where you understand how to read the mils accurately to 1/10th mil you will be able to make much finer range estimations at longer distances using that method vs. the previously described simpler method.

    You will find that with smaller targets/measurements under 36", say a 9" head heighth or an 18" shoulder width, you can only range them extremey accurately at somewhat shorter distances. For longer distances you will need to use a larger target, say a minimum of head to groin or head to toe measurement and the number of times it fits the subtension. For really precise ranging at longer ranges the mil-dot method wil need to be employed.

    Here's another example of the simple method. A man's heighth will fit the full reticle subtension 4 times. At 100yds a full reticle subtension is 36". Since a 72" tall target would be at 200yds when filling the reticle once, if it now will fit 4 times the 4*200yds=800yds. Once again your magnification setting, if adjustable, needs to be where full reticle subtension equals 36" at 100yds when ranging.

    Now let's check the simple method just used with a more complex and accurate mil-dot calculation: 1/4th of a full mil-dot subtension would equal 2.5 mils on a 10 mil reticle, as 1/4 is the number of times the head to toe measurement fits the reticle. We then multiply the man's heighth in inches times a constant of 27.8. 72*27.8=2001.8. We then divide the 2001.8 by the number of mils tall the target is in the reticle, and for this example 2.5 mils. 2001.8/2.5=800.7yds range estimation. The constant multiplyer of 27.8 is always the same when using a target heighth in inches and range in yards. All you need to learn how to do is determine the actual mil heighth of the target in mils, as close as possible, to be accurate.

    I have worked up tables using 9", 18", 36" and 72" targets that gives me somewhat precise range estimation using a plain duplex reticle, as well as mil-dot reticle tables that gives me precise mil and range measurements. You will find that at extreme longer distances it is critical to get your measurements and calculations to say 25yd accuracy or so as to not miss a target by a number of inches due to excessive bullet drop at the longer distances. Once you have actual data for true come-ups with your rifle/load combination at multiple distances you can also add inches of drop and come-up moa click data to your range charts.

    I know it sounds complicated but it isn't. Once you understand the concept of the duplex and mil-dot reticles, as well as their subtension measurements, you will find there are a number of different ways to formulate range estimation using them. Get comfortable with the math, practice obtaining mil heights at various distances and converting to range.

    There are a number of other variables you will encounter, say estimating meters instead of yards, USMC oblong .25 mil-dots vs. Army .20 round mil-dots, slight different reticle subtension measurements at 100yds, etc.

    Just a few more simple formulas for range estimation would be:

    For Meters: Size of the target in inches multiplied times a constant of 25.4 for meters, then divided by the mils measurement. An example formula for a 72" tall man at 2.5 mils would be: 72* 25.4=1828.8 1828.8/2.5mils=731.52 meters.

    To verify this is correct we could compare the 731.52 meters range estimate to the previous 800 yard range estimate:
    731.52 meters times 39.37(number of inches in a meter)=28799.94 inches. If we divide this by 36(number of inches in a yard) we get 799.9984yds. I'd say it works!

    Another very simple calculation that works for meters would be:
    Target heighth in meters*1000(constant)/mils measurement. Lets try the same 72" man at 2.5 mils. 72"=1.83 meters approx.
    1.83 meters tall*1000=1830
    1830/2.5mils=732meters.
    732meters=800.5yds.

    This same simple formula also works for yards if you convert the targets's heighth into yds. Lets use the same 72" man at 2.5 mils:
    72" man=2 yards tall. 2yards*1000(constant)=2000.
    2000/2.5mils=800yds.

    No matter what formula you decide to use everything hinges upon an accurate target size value and mils reading. My one example of a mil-dot scope is a fixed 20x that gives the 36" subtension at 1000yds all the time, as I cannot adjust the magnification. If you buy a scope where the magnification changes also changes the reticle size, as long as it's a 36" subtension at 100yds you should be fine. If your variable scope keeps the reticle size the same as magnification increases you need to determine at what magnification is 36" subtension at 100yds. I guess you could also work up various charts for various target measurements at different magnification settings. I have a sneaking suspicion that the military tends to use fixed-power mil-dot scopes partially as a KISS process, unless theu are using variable scopes that magnify the reticle with the FOV to keep the mils estimate the same at different magnification settings.

    I have found the following webites very usefull for learning range estimation using mil-dot and non-mil-dot reticles:

    http://www.mil-dot.com/articles/how-...il-dot-reticle

    http://www.boomershoot.org/general/TruthMilDots.htm

    http://www.chuckhawks.com/mil_dot_table.htm

    http://www.swfa.com/Mil-Dot-Master-P91.aspx

    HTH,
    Dale
    Last edited by tenntex32; 03-22-2011 at 02:09 PM.

  13. #13
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    My god, tenntex32, you are brilliant and gave me some excellent advise on the subject. Is it ok if I save your helpful input to my notes?

  14. #14
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    Heck, I don't care as I had to get it all/learn it all from someone else's info myself. It's quite simple once you understand the math, know the measurements of the target and learn to mil correctly.

    Even without a mil-dot scope you can get some pretty good estimates using a standard duplex reticle once you determine the scope's actual subtension size, and for each magnification setting assuming you have a variable power scope as well. I like to keep everything estimated at a 36 inch subtension unless I need more magnification to get a better estimate of target's heighth in the reticle. Then I would need to know how much the subtension size actually decreased due to the FOV being less at the higher magnification.

    Only testing with your non-mil-dot duplex reticle will tell you actual various subtension sizes at different magnifications. One easy way to do this is once you determine what your actual subtension is at the lowest magnification make a test pattern that is 1/3 the actual subtension and set it at 100yds while at the range. If subtension is actually 36" at 100yds then you'll need a 12" test target. Now using the test target crank up the magnification and get a rough estimate of how much bigger the 12" test target looks in the reticle now.

    Using standard 3x9 scope's duplex reticle for example, with a true 36" subtension at 100yds on a 3x scope setting, a 12" target should take up about 1/3 the reticle's subtension . At a 6x setting it should take up 2/3 of the reticle's subtension. At 9x the 12" target should take up the full subtension of the duplex reticle. So what did you learn? A 12" target that fits the full subtension on 9x is the same as a 12" target filling 1/3rd the subtension on 3x and probably easier to judge, size wise, correctly. Knowing how certain sized targets fill the subtension on the higher magnification settings will help you use the regular duplex reticle to range even further than possible on 3x. But a word of caution........not all scopes will be exactly linear in this respect thus it would be a wise idea to actually test various known sized objects at various known distances and note at which magnifications they actually fill the reticle's subtension, or 1/2 subtension, etc. Then you could use fractions or multiples of that data to get decent range estimates at some fairly longer ranges using just a duplex reticled scope.

    It will make using a mil-dot scope seem almost as easy as using a laser rangefinder as far as range estimation goes! You could also do something similar if you have a variable power mil-dot, as far as testing different known sized items at various magnifications. With my 20x Super Sniper(fixed power) it really brings things in enough for me to range/mil without much concern for needing something bigger in the reticle to get a better range estimate! I have read where some/most variable power mil-dot scopes you may find that the 36" subtension is actually on the highest magnification setting, as the mil-dot reticle subtension actually is larger in comparison in the scope than the subtension of a duplex reticle is. If you have both types of reticles/scopes look at them. The subtension(center portion) on the duplex 3x9 is a fairly small part of the complete reticle. With a mil-dot scope and it's 10 mils/36" subtension the subtension is actually a much larger portion of the total reticle. Some really nice, take that expensive, mil-dot scopes will magnify the reticle with the FOV so that no conversion is necessary when changing scope power settings.

    Look at it this way...............With a standard duplex reticle 3x9 scope you probably start out at a 36" subtension on 3x and the subtension actually gets much smaller than 36" as the magnification increases. With a variable power mil-dot scope, that does not magnify the reticle with the FOV, you start out with a subtension much larger than 36" on the lowest magnification setting and will eventually decrease the subtension down to a true 36" at the highest magnification setting. If I ever do buy a variable power mil-dot scope I would do everything possible to purchase one that does magnify the reticle with the FOV.(FFP) The moa/moa mil/mil matching reticles and turrets, as Joop has stated, would also be nice! Might have to figure out how to finance that one though................Heck I'm just happy to have a 20x Super Sniper!!!! Hell, what am I saying, I remember when I didn't even have a decent quality 3x9 many years ago..................

    I'm no scope snob by any stretch but one thing I do believe in is staying away from the new $30 scopes on anything I want to repeat, group nice and not wander. I've owned way too many cheap scopes when I was fairly young/poor to know that they probably cost me probably more in ammo trying to get a rifle to sight-in or group well than if I had just bought a better scope. Now I have been known to haggle pawn shops down to some pretty cheap prices on the occasional higher end scope..............One thing I did learn from/when using cheap new scopes, if you ever did get one to zero where you want it and group well, don't jack with it unless absolutely need be!

    Dale
    Last edited by tenntex32; 03-22-2011 at 09:32 PM.

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