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  • Ranging targets exercise

    When I am teaching a student to range an unknown distance target using their ranging reticle (mil or MOA based), by far the hardest part for the student is to acccurately measure the target and get the proper mil/MOA measurement.

    One of the most difficult parts is that most students have a hard time getting a 1/10 or finer measurement. For instance, I will oftentimes be able to get a 1/1000 measurement, i.e., 4.255 instead of 4.2 or 4.25. I did not used to be able to do this, but after ranging with a reticle for over 20 years, I can oftentimes see that fine a measurement when measuring wtih a reticle. I can only say that it comes from all the practice I've had over the years.

    I've tried to come up with a way for the students to practice ranging and try to see these finer measurements for themselves. Here's what I have come up with, and it has worked for many students.

    1. Place 1 or more ranging targets out at known distances. An LRF is handy for this. Home Depot sells for sales signs and the like (some are plain, solid white), which make excellent ranging targets. Mark them each with a large number to tell them apart; I use spray paint for this.

    2. Once you have your target(s) in place and you know the exact distance, as well as the exact measurements of the ranging targets, figure out the ranging math for each target "backwards". Like this:

    You are ranging an 18"x24" target, using the 18" measurement. Our formula for ranging a target measured in inches, with a desired results in yards, using a mil reticle is:

    Size of target" x 27.778
    mil measurement

    or

    Size of target " x 27.778 = X. X divided by (mil measurement) = range to target in yards

    So, we already know the answer for our targets, because we put them out and ranged them with an LRF already. What we don't know is the mil reading.

    Let's say that we put the target out at 345 yards. The target is 18"x24", and we decided to range using the 18" side.

    18" x 27.778 = 666.672.

    The range is 345 yards. To figure out what the mil reading should be, we divide 666.672 by 345 = 1.932 mils.

    Now we know that when we range our target at 345 yards, using the 18" side of the target, our measurement should be 1.932 mils.

    Lie down and range the target, trying to capture exactly what 1.932 mils looks like.

    This exercise has helped many of my students to become more proficient with ranging. Give it a try and see if it helps you as well.

    This method will work with MOA reticles as well.
    www.precision-applications.com

    It's knowing that when I get up in the morning and my feet hit the floor, the Devil says, "Shit! He's awake!"

    Shortly before World War I, the German Kaiser was the guest of the Swiss government to observe military maneuvers. The Kaiser asked a Swiss militiaman: "You are 500,000 and you shoot well, but if we attack with 1,000,000 men what will you do?" The soldier replied: "We will shoot twice and go home."

    "There are so many Russians, and our country so small, where will we find room to bury them all?" - anonymous Finnish soldier

  • #2
    I'm one of the guys that hard pressed to get the 10ths right, much less the 1000ths. This sounds like a very effective technique, though. At the ranges I shoot (<600), the .1 mil variance gets me to a 16" spread. Hope that's good enough if I ever need it.

    Hope you had a good class today, btw. I'd wanted to crash it, but sounded like you had a full group down there.

    Comment


    • #3
      Good idea Shep. Danged good idea. Once you know what the picture looks like, the brain can hold on to it better.

      "Do the right thing even if it means dying like a dog when no one's there to see you do it." Vice Admiral James Stockdale, NAVY PILOT

      "Honor, Integrity, Commitment to core values. When they become abstract concepts or "ideals", all is lost." Me.

      "Character is doing the right thing, even when no one is looking." J.C. Watts

      "I have never seen a projectile turn in flight and come back at the ship that fired it, I cannot however make that same statement regarding missiles." Me.

      Deus lo vult! = "God wills it!"

      Comment


      • #4
        Basically, students were pressing me on a way to help them see it, without having to practice it for 20+ years like I did. I came up with this idea on the spur of the moment and it has worked pretty well.
        www.precision-applications.com

        It's knowing that when I get up in the morning and my feet hit the floor, the Devil says, "Shit! He's awake!"

        Shortly before World War I, the German Kaiser was the guest of the Swiss government to observe military maneuvers. The Kaiser asked a Swiss militiaman: "You are 500,000 and you shoot well, but if we attack with 1,000,000 men what will you do?" The soldier replied: "We will shoot twice and go home."

        "There are so many Russians, and our country so small, where will we find room to bury them all?" - anonymous Finnish soldier

        Comment


        • #5
          When I was up at Flea's every weekend this is exactly what I did a few weeks to try and train my brain to see correctly, I think it worked pretty well so I'll give the big thumbs up here.
          CelticRaven

          -- Poor is the country with no heroes and worse yet, is the country that forgets its heroes.

          Plan for what CAN happen, not what HAS happened.
          --CelticRaven

          The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
          --Thomas Jefferson

          Comment


          • #6
            Good stuff, thanks!

            Comment


            • #7
              Ok help me out here after working through some of the math I'm not coming up with the same calculations. Need some clarification so I get this right.
              If you take 18" X 27.778 = (I'm getting) 500.004
              500.004 / 345 = 1.449 Mils Is this right or am I missing a step somewhere?

              I was using the average size of an adult head 9" X 27.778 = 250.002
              250.002 / 345 = 0.724 Mils
              The reason I went with the head is more often than not LE (snipers) will take the head shot because of the instant nuteralization effect on the target. If an LE (sniper) needs to take the shot in the first place it has gotten to that point. However, the issue that I can see with this is that now your making calculations inside a Mil, for example. 345 yards is 0.724 but 400 yards is 0.625 Mils. Thats called spliting hairs and I know some of you guys out there can see that difference but at this point in my limited experince I'm am not capable of seeing it. I do like the method and will use it to get more practice but none the less is my math right or have I missed something? Thanks



              [quote]
              When I am teaching a student to range an unknown distance target using their ranging reticle (mil or MOA based), by far the hardest part for the student is to acccurately measure the target and get the proper mil/MOA measurement.

              One of the most difficult parts is that most students have a hard time getting a 1/10 or finer measurement. For instance, I will oftentimes be able to get a 1/1000 measurement, i.e., 4.255 instead of 4.2 or 4.25. I did not used to be able to do this, but after ranging with a reticle for over 20 years, I can oftentimes see that fine a measurement when measuring wtih a reticle. I can only say that it comes from all the practice I've had over the years.

              I've tried to come up with a way for the students to practice ranging and try to see these finer measurements for themselves. Here's what I have come up with, and it has worked for many students.

              1. Place 1 or more ranging targets out at known distances. An LRF is handy for this. Home Depot sells for sales signs and the like (some are plain, solid white), which make excellent ranging targets. Mark them each with a large number to tell them apart; I use spray paint for this.

              2. Once you have your target(s) in place and you know the exact distance, as well as the exact measurements of the ranging targets, figure out the ranging math for each target "backwards". Like this:

              You are ranging an 18"x24" target, using the 18" measurement. Our formula for ranging a target measured in inches, with a desired results in yards, using a mil reticle is:

              Size of target" x 27.778
              mil measurement

              or

              Size of target " x 27.778 = X. X divided by (mil measurement) = range to target in yards

              So, we already know the answer for our targets, because we put them out and ranged them with an LRF already. What we don't know is the mil reading.

              Let's say that we put the target out at 345 yards. The target is 18"x24", and we decided to range using the 18" side.

              18" x 27.778 = 666.672.

              The range is 345 yards. To figure out what the mil reading should be, we divide 666.672 by 345 = 1.932 mils.

              Now we know that when we range our target at 345 yards, using the 18" side of the target, our measurement should be 1.932 mils.

              Lie down and range the target, trying to capture exactly what 1.932 mils looks like.

              This exercise has helped many of my students to become more proficient with ranging. Give it a try and see if it helps you as well.

              This method will work with MOA reticles as well.[/b]

              Comment


              • #8
                Nuegene, your math is on the money.
                www.precision-applications.com

                It's knowing that when I get up in the morning and my feet hit the floor, the Devil says, "Shit! He's awake!"

                Shortly before World War I, the German Kaiser was the guest of the Swiss government to observe military maneuvers. The Kaiser asked a Swiss militiaman: "You are 500,000 and you shoot well, but if we attack with 1,000,000 men what will you do?" The soldier replied: "We will shoot twice and go home."

                "There are so many Russians, and our country so small, where will we find room to bury them all?" - anonymous Finnish soldier

                Comment


                • #9
                  Here's the cool part of all this. You don't need 1000 yards to be able to practice this. If you only have two or three hundred yards, just cut some smaller pieces of cardboard say in two or three inch squares. Paint them white and staple them to a 18 inch furring strips. Place them between the firing line and the end of your range. Being smaller it will simulate distance. Now, just like Shep said use your LRF to find all the yardages and then start ranging with your reticle. Back feed the formula to find out what the mil reading should be and then build on that skill.

                  It works and remember. Murphy is always in your rucksack. Don't rely on that LRF always. Batteries go dead and gear breaks. Keep your ranging skill level high.

                  Take care, flea
                  "with the patience of an oyster....I watch and wait"

                  Training the US, one shooter at a time.






                  http://www.centralvirginiatactical.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Range by Height is an average russian Technique. Some scopes, pops etc have a lower number, in this case 1.7, representing 1.7 meters in Height of the average individual. (Depends on the Country I guess!) So, they learn to estimate the scoped target, feet at the lower line, head at the upper. Looking above this, you can see the range in meters listed above the targets head. Soon, the shooter learns to estimate range by scoped appearance, and the measured lines, become useless. Just gotta keep em off a zoomed reticle, that messes up your whole day!
                    Attached Files

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The entire reticle view looks like this. Each inverted "V' is a different elevation, depending on the lower numbers which are measured in meters of height for an individual.
                      This all goes back to American Schools, IDENTIFY THE SIZE of a KNOWN TARGET, but hey, its the basic K.I.S.S. program. Once they figure it, factor it, its BY BY SPOTTER!
                      Attached Files

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yeah but people suck to range in general. They average between 5'2 and 6'2 depending on where you are... Lots of variance. Oh and they move... several years ago started a chart on standard sizes of things around the world... Maybe I need to find it and dust it off.
                        CelticRaven

                        -- Poor is the country with no heroes and worse yet, is the country that forgets its heroes.

                        Plan for what CAN happen, not what HAS happened.
                        --CelticRaven

                        The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
                        --Thomas Jefferson

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If folks are all ya got, then that's what ya range. If you are talking about military-type Sniping, then a person's height is good enough to get you a solid torso hit when aiming center-of-mass.

                          If the guy you are trying to range is carrying an AK/RPK/RPG, they are better for ranging.......if you can get 'em to stand still long enough to range. Armored vehicles (BMP's and the like) are excellent, as are non-military vehicles........a 14" rim is a 14" rim no matter what country you're in!

                          I've got a chart that has the measurements of just about everything you can think of.
                          www.precision-applications.com

                          It's knowing that when I get up in the morning and my feet hit the floor, the Devil says, "Shit! He's awake!"

                          Shortly before World War I, the German Kaiser was the guest of the Swiss government to observe military maneuvers. The Kaiser asked a Swiss militiaman: "You are 500,000 and you shoot well, but if we attack with 1,000,000 men what will you do?" The soldier replied: "We will shoot twice and go home."

                          "There are so many Russians, and our country so small, where will we find room to bury them all?" - anonymous Finnish soldier

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            [quote]
                            If folks are all ya got, then that's what ya range. If you are talking about military-type Sniping, then a person's height is good enough to get you a solid torso hit when aiming center-of-mass.

                            If the guy you are trying to range is carrying an AK/RPK/RPG, they are better for ranging.......if you can get 'em to stand still long enough to range. Armored vehicles (BMP's and the like) are excellent, as are non-military vehicles........a 14" rim is a 14" rim no matter what country you're in!

                            I've got a chart that has the measurements of just about everything you can think of.[/b]

                            The North Koreans loved those Dragunovs, Im 6'4" and I figure if they are using the old scopes, Im gonna get shot in the Junk!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hey Boss...can I get one of those charts...cause ya know I struggle
                              "Flawed But Repeatable"

                              Comment

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