No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Epic fail avoidance

No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Postby thekev506 » Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:20 pm

As you can zero the majority of ironsights on rifles in A3 the ability range a target is pretty important. No matter how good you are at it, without a rangefinder of some sort or a really long ruler, estimating distance is guesswork. That said, some basic mapreading skills will help you estimate with greater accuracy (and can also help in marking targets on map.) I've made this example to demonstrate how to use your map in ranging.

For the sake of clarity I've left enemy markers on my map in this example. This wouldn't be the case in an FA session, but the methods and explanations here will transfer over with no real difficulty. Also, this method will work without binoculars just as well as it does with them, though obviously the ranges will be much shorter. Click on the images for larger versions!


Here I am, sat on a hill, looking over my domain, a buddy with an MMG sat next to me (out of view.) Wait, I see something moving, let me use these binoculars to take a better look...


A bad guy! He's very far away, and completely oblivious to my presence, so I don't need to worry about alerting him; I can take my time. My first job should be to identify landmarks near the target. Here we can see the target has a derelict building to our right, and windmills directly behind him. These are things that will be represented on our map, which gives us a point of reference. Other good points of reference can be treelines, vegetation, and hills (if you're confident about reading elevation.) I'm going to keep my view in roughly the same direction as I bring up my map, centring on the building as I can see it without binocs.

Next, I'll bring up my map and place the compass directly over my position. The compass will be pointing in the same direction as I am facing, so if I haven't moved I can look down the compass bearing until I see my point of reference on the map.


By doing these two things we can mark contacts on the map very accurately. But I'm not content just having a good idea where to look, I want to be able to give an accurate estimation of range, so that my MMG friend can zero his sights in and suppress. Now that I know where my target is on the map I can use the map's grid to range. At the level of zoom we're using here a single grid square = 100 metres squared. I'm right on the edge of the grid, so I can count the lines I cross to the building.


As we can see, the target is a little bit over 700 metres from our position, maybe 720 if I had to take a guess. For the sake of zeroing, though, we can round to the nearest 100, so the gunner would zero for 700. Simple!

Obviously being on an almost perfect east-west line with my target and being situated right on the gridline makes this very easy to do, and situations will seldom be this perfect in-session, however using these methods as a starting point will still come in handy.
Last edited by thekev506 on Sun Apr 20, 2014 1:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Postby wolfenswan » Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:25 pm

Another thing:
The little red line on the compass indicates the direction I'm facing (the bearing), while the two yellow lines are the current field of view (roughly).
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Re: No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Postby Cookie » Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:26 pm

This is going to be extremely useful at some point, thanks a lot for the superb guide, Kev.
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Re: No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Postby Bodge » Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:54 pm

Also things to remember with diagonal grid squares basic geometry can be your friend. Remember the 3, 4, 5 right angled triangle. 5, 12, 13 works too. Not always relevant but can be useful at times.

What that means is that 3 East followed by 4 North is a distance of 500m as the crow flies.
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Re: No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Postby harakka » Sat Apr 19, 2014 3:19 pm

thekev506 wrote:Next, I'll bring up my map and place the compass directly over my position. The compass will be pointing in the same direction as I am facing, so if I haven't moved I can look down the compass bearing until I see my point of reference on the map.

I love you. I had never ever noticed the compass matches your direction. I wonder if this was already the case back in OFP.
Me and him, we're from different ancient tribes. Now we're both almost extinct. Sometimes you gotta stick with the ancient ways, the old school ways. I know you understand me.
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Re: No Rangefinder? No Problem!

Postby Kefirz » Sat Apr 19, 2014 11:58 pm

Nice guides Kev, or dare I say it, comrade hero tutor?
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