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  helpful tips on reticle and turret combinations
« on: October 03, 2008, 23:48:40 PM » by bergerbullets
In this article i would like to deal with the 'problem' that is usually encountered with many scopes on the market, that even though they can be of high quality, they always seem to trip over one feature.  Mainly this is the Turret and reticle combination.  What do i mean by this?

i'll give you one simple example to start with then move on.  the last time i was spotting for a guy over here i was calling corrections for him in Mils since that was what the leupold mk4 Spotting scope has. He had a Combination scope so when i called 1.5Mil Right correction, he dialed in MOA and we had another miss. well different increments and calculations are not good when you are trying to focus so here goes my article.

the vast majority of scopes have a Mil dot reticle which was originally designed for army purposes.  I will not go into all the details of analizing a mildot reticle. if used as it is intended, it is more complex than one thinks at first glance however the mildot works in Mil radians meaning the distance from the center of each dot to the next measures 1Mil and the distance from the center of each dot to the exterior perimeter of each dot is 0.9mils. 
1Mil equates 10cm at 100m or 3.45MOA at 100 yards.
1MOA = 1.047" @ 100yards.  You already notice that this jumble mumble of cm and inches, meters and yards is too much confusion for the less mathematically oriented:)

the problem arises here.  Most scopes have turrets and reticles that do not match, meaning one is in Milliradians(cm) and the turrets are in MOA (inches). 
my last purchase infact was in a scope which had Milradians reticle and Mil radians turret which is the best you can get because there is no conversion to do.  MOA turrets and MOA reticle are available by Nightforce and US Optics. very good scopes and I have tried both now.

If your high magnification scope has mil reticle and MOA turrets as most have you can do without the conversion if you follow this simple procedure.  By this i am assuming that your reticle is in 2nd focal plain, meaning when you turn the magnification ring, the image grows but the reticle remains the same size.  90% of the scopes have reticles in 2nd focal plain and will usually be supplied this way unless requested by the purchaser. Military tend to be 1st focal plain though.

take a paper which is fairly large such as an A3 paper and place it up close, about 25yards will do for this test.  im saying 25yards just to make sure any shooter is able to shoot and hit a spot on paper.
you will need to fire about 8 shots on the paper, basically KEEP aiming at the SAME POINT OF AIM.
draw a small dot and fire your first shot at it.
keep aiming at same spot and dial 1MOA right or left windage(windage knob) and always keep dialing in the same direction.
note: If you want you can calibrate your reticle so that distance between each Dot is 2MOA. This is better for long range shooting and all you have to do more is to Dial 2MOA instead of 1 for the 8shot string.

Keep aiming at the original point of aim and shoot again.
Dial 1MOA and shoot again.  Do this for 8 times.
the paper you should have should look like this  *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *
when you are finished with this string of shots, dial the windage knob 8MOA back to the original place so keep track which way you were dialing.

Now keep the rifle in a steady position ideally on a rest and place the center of your crosshairs on the 4 shot.  Slowly turn your magnification knob so that the image grows and at one point you will notice that the mildots on your reticle are now exactly on each of those holes that you shot.(assuming you did not screw up the shots,thats why i said keep it at relatively close range)

Once your reticle fits in the shot holes, take a little bit of tipex and draw a small line between the magnification knob and the scope tube marking the calibration of the scope.  NOW you have an MOA turret and MOA calibrated reticle onthat particular magnification. This means that each 1MOA dialed on the turrets equals the distance from one Dot to the other. (now you can call them MOA dots instead of Mil dots because now they are in Inches)

Useful applications of this:
Imagine you are shooting at a 3x3inch target at 70meters. your first shot hits low by 4 MOA Dots.  all you have to do now is dial 4MOA on your turret and your next shot will be dead on that target.  this also applies for windage.
 this way it is much easier to do any compensation and you now have a turret and reticle Matching each other.  Those that have previously used my scope know how helpful this can be.
Further advantages of this is that you can now tell the other shooter next to you how much you are really dialing for wind and he can dial it into his scope assuming you are shooting same projectile at about the same velocity and at the same distance.  you will see that making hits at distance is now much easier.  Most guys before use to be telling the others, "listen im holding 1Mil for wind"  That meant nothing because they were not using scopes calibrated on Either TRUE MIL or TRUE MOA. True Mil being 10cm at 100m or 3.6" at 100yards.

Side note, If your scope turrets have clicks in 1/4MOA per click then the distance between each shot at 25yards should be 1/4 of an inch since 1MOA is about 1inch at 100yards
. in this way you verify the exact click value of your scope.

One more tip: if you shoot at an Unknown Distance Target(UKD) and you hit really low because it was quite a way out there then what happens if you only have 4 dots below your crosshair? No problem, The vertical line of your reticle should have a total of atleast 8 Dots. use the top dot to measure the amount of drop that occured.  Put the first Dot of the reticle on the POINT OF AIM and using those 8 dots on the reticle measure where the projectile hit.  If it was 6 Dots down then it is 6MOA. Dial 6 MOA into the Elevation turret and you are dead on.
try it out and come back with feedback:) 

« Last Edit: October 04, 2008, 00:39:21 AM by bergerbullets »

range it, dial it, squeeze the round off.
Certified Precision Rifle Handloader, Basic & Advanced- Russell Simmonds Reloading School - UK

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