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Guns & Shooting Hunting NAW+ Tips & Tactics

Understanding Rifle Reticles

by Todd Hodnett   |  June 15th, 2012 0

Long-range shooting is not magic, and it’s not that hard. With the right tools, anyone can do it. Embrace the new technology, and enjoy your improved long-range capabilities.

Whether you shoot long-range to practice your hunting skills or just for fun, you’ll want to investigate all the rifle reticles on the market. Each has advantages and disadvantages depending on how you intend to use it. We’ll help you figure out which is best for the shooting you do.



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Duplex reticles are simple but quick and useful. They are great in low light, and give you the ability to accurately extend your range.

It’s also possible to use this reticle for range estimation and turn it into a ballistic reticle.

To begin, we have to understand what the duplex-to-duplex measurements are in your scope. To do this, place a target at 100 yards. Then, measure from duplex-to-duplex either with a measuring instrument or by marking the target. Then, using a mil reticle, overlay the marks to find what the duplex-to-duplex distance would actually mil.

Let’s say that from duplex-to-duplex measures two mils. You could then zero your rifle at the top duplex at 100 yards. This would make my crosshairs zeroed at one mil, or close to 273 yards. The bottom duplex is two mils from the 100 zero (at the top duplex) and equivalent to 417 yards. Now we have a basic Duplex reticle that has been turned into a ballistic reticle!

There is another use for the duplex reticle. If the scope is a second focal plane, you can find out exactly where half power is.

Go back to the target where we measured the distance between the duplexes. Turn down the power on the scope until the two marks that represent the Duplex-to-Duplex measurement on the target now fit between the crosshair and a Duplex. The magnification ring is now at a true half power. Not all scopes will be correct at the number that is engraved onto the magnification ring.

When we turn down the scope to half power, we can accurately extend our range. When we turn down the scope to half power, we double (in mils) any measurement we make with the scope.

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