Ranging using mils (Snipers)

After playing the Long-Range sniping demo posted in the forum it has activated my interest in sniping and particularly ranging using mils.

I have put my name forward for a Sniper Cadre being held next year and would like to get my head round the formulas for ranging / windage.

Could someone possibly teach me the formulas needed to estimate distance to target etc and windage? PM or post here.

P.S. My maths is crap so a real idiots guide would be great!
Presumably it's just the MKA formula used by MFCs among others. Draw a triangle and divide it with a horizontal line. Divide the bottom portion with a vertical line. Write M in the top part, K in the bottom left and A in the bottom right.

M is metres (height or length of the target), K is kilometres (distance to the target) and A is Angle in mils (the angle viewed when looking at both ends of the distance M). The verical line represents "x" (times) and the horizontal line represents "/" (I havent got a divide symbol on my keyboard).

If you want to find out M, cover the M in the triangle. This leaves K (vertical line) A. Or "distance to the target x angle." So you can calculate the height or width of an object if you know its distance and can measure the angle that it subtends.

More usually in the Army, you will want to know the range (K). In this case, cover the K, leaving M (horizontal line) A. If you know the height or width of the object and can measure the angle, divide the height (or width) in metres by the angle in mils to get K.

Typically, with enough accuracy to give you reasonable results without making for difficult calculations, a man is 2m high, a tank is 6m long, a lorry is 3m wide and the vertical distance from window cill to window cill in a house is 3m, in an office block it's 4m.

You can measure the angle with binoculars or sights. Binocular graticules are 10 mils apart. (Nobody has trusted me with posh sights yet so you'll have to get that measurement from somebody else).

So, naughty person (2m high) is walking towards you, pull out the binos and see that he is two graticules high (20 mils). Quickly draw a triangle with MKA in the right places. Put finger over K (as you don't know it). This leaves M (2m) divided by A (20 mils). Quick bit of mental arithmetic - 2/20 = 1/10 = 0.1, but that's kilometres. So he must be 100m away. By the time you've done this, forget adjusting your sights, throw a grenade and run away.

Now you know that you should have watched him exit his APC (6m long) when it was only one bino graticule wide. 6/10 = 0.6km or 600m. Engage with LSW and call for mortar support.

Edited to add:

Nothing restricted in this post; I learned this in the Scouts (when Scouts WERE Scouts).
Windage is a black art. Aim half a body into the wind in a breeze, a body into the wind if it's fairly windy and so on. Personally, I wouldn't get too technical as wind blows in gusts and you've no way of measuring the wind speed along the full distance to the target. (Advancing enemy don't usually carry range flags or tow smoking chimneys).

all the tables ( inc. windage ) are in the pamhlet No 4, wittliy entitled "Sniping". Judging distance is dne by MKA and PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE.

At one point I'd actally memorised the entire windage table for the old Schmidt und Bender ( 222,343,5678...)

I collect spores, mould and fungi and have no friends or social life.
it helps by knowing the size of objects to guage an accurate range. using mildots or mils on the grats on a set of binos

1 make up a table of size of objects, e.g size of a lanny, bedfords etc
2. measure against grat pattern of and guesstimate size of target in mils
3. times the size of target by 1000
4. divide by number of mils and it should give you an accurate range.
you must know the size of target before hand with this method.

this is called the subtension rule. At 1000m 1 mil=1m

the best method is swag.

you could also use the mildot system as used on the S&M 3 x12 vari scope which is issued. same method but u need and mildot master which is a windage and range calculator. look at www.mildot.com

and yes i also memorised the 6x42 as well.

windage is all about expereince and practise, as mentioned get hold of Pam 4, it explains it all.

if your going on the course, good luck its nails

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