The Plumb Reticle, A Leap Forward
When I was assigned to 3rd Special Forces Group, our ODA was engaged in a multiple direction small arms ambush. There were enemies firing AK 47’s and RPGs at distances of about 75 meters from our gun trucks. There was elevated support by fire positions putting the ODA in the center of an L style ambush. They were firing PKM’s, RPK’s, and RPG’s at our team from a couple of hundred meters away. The sound of rounds popping and zipping by me and the concussion of RPGs exploding will be etched into my memory forever.
Everywhere you looked, you could see the enemy firing. They were running from position to position, popping out from around rocks to fire. Sometimes you could only see part of their heads or shoulders. Sometimes all you could see was a muzzle flash. They were at all different distances; it was chaos. It was a guessing game to figure out ranges to the enemy. You would get a short opportunity to shoot back accurately. Most of the firing was purely suppressive in nature. It is a testament to the resilience and organic firepower of the modern Special Forces team that we came out without casualties.
Upon my return CONUS, I began my journey that leads me here. While trained by FM 23-9, the CMP, and my father, I came to a rapid realization that not only how I trained needed to change, but that scope reticles did not fit requirements of the modern combat environment.
Reflex red dot type sights do allow for quick target acquisition and engagement, however, this type of sight does not allow for accurate deliberate target interdiction at mid-to-long ranges. Lower magnification fixed power scopes and their reticles allow for some rapid mid-range engagements with very limited range estimation capability. They sacrifice reflex capability and long-range interdiction for compromise of capabilities. A precision target interdiction type of reticle allows the user to calculate distances to targets from stable fixed positions. This enables the user to take very accurate deliberate shots on target. This sacrifices all other aspects of target engagement in the name of deliberate and stable precise shots.
What is needed is the strengths of each type of reticle blended into one. That is exactly what the patented Plumb reticle provides. We provide the combat marksman and competitive shooter an unparalleled advantage.
Now the ability to engage targets at close, mid, and long ranges can be executed through one variable power optic. Modern variable power optics provide true one power capability. These same optics provide up to 8x power magnification. With the advent of these optics, we could now use the Plumb reticle to unlock their true capability.
With the Plumb reticle, reflex shooting in one power is easily facilitated. The 4.5 mil illuminated arc with central dot allows the user to engage very close targets without issue. The reticle’s outer vertical lines correlate to the target width at approximately 15 meters. The reticle’s central arc is calibrated to an 18” wide target (IPSC target) at 100m. This allows for minimal adjustments for most reflex engagements.
Once a target exceeds 100 meters in distance, yet still requires rapid engagement, the reticle has a funnel at the bottom of the central arc. This funnel is made of two lateral parabolic arcs. These arcs represent the flight of the bullet as it leaves the firearm. The arcs are set the appropriate distance apart for the distance away from the shooter, of the width of the intended target, at that distance. This allows the shooter to elevate the rifle quickly to compensate for bullet drop.
When left and right sides of the target’s head or shoulders touches the sides of the small or larger arc respectfully, the target is at that range and can be engaged effectively. This is because the shooter must raise the rifle to make the sides of the arcs touch at that set distance. This will be the distance of bullet drop. This ranging technique will provide the user the point of aim and impact for the target at that distance. This also allows the user to range and engage targets that are partially obscured or behind cover.
This patented feature allows Plumb reticle users to transition very quickly from reflex to mid-range target engagement. This provides the user the ability to suppress enemy personnel or engage mid-distance competition targets with unparalleled speed. With new dual focal plane versions soon to be introduced, the ability to transition between close, mid, and far target engagements will be unprecedented.
Versions are available that are non Bullet Drop Compensated versions. This allows the user to develop data on their rifle and cartridge combination and engage unknown distance targets in yards or meters.
Once targets reach extended ranges, or if the environment allows for deliberate engagements, the Plumb reticle allows for unprecedented flexibility. The Plumb reticle can still be utilized like a standard “Mil-Dot” reticle with a few enhancements. The scope can be calibrated for the users Data On Previous Engagements or “DOPE”. Then the elevation knob can be used on the variable power scope. This is just like any other “Mil-Dot” scope. This compensation for drop is just like any other standard scope. These adjustments are based on knowing the size-to-target. The Plumb reticle brings another innovation to help solve range estimation.
When the situation requires deliberate precision engagements to unknown distance targets, “milling” the target is required. This allows the user to determine the size of target in Mil-Radians, then dividing that number into the size of target in millimeters will give the range to target in meters. Once the distance is determined, elevation on the scope can adjusted to compensate for bullet trajectory.
Only found on the Plumb reticle, the “milling trees” allow for very precise target size estimation. These are found mid-length of the horizontal and vertical bars of the reticle. This allows easy and accurate target width and height to be determined. They are comprised of solid bars increasing in length, gapped at .1 of a milliradian from each other.
This allows the negative space between bars to equal odd numbers and the solid bars to correlate to even numbers. When the reticle is super imposed on the target, the user should fill as many full milliradian segments on the bars as possible. The excess viewed area of the target should “spillover” into the milling tree. The excess portion of the target viewed in the milling tree will correlate to a 1/10th of a milliradian estimate.
This will allow the user to obtain the size in milliradians very quickly. This would also for obtaining a height measurement as well as a width measurement in some cases allowing for quickly determining an average range to target based on both measurements.
As our near peer competitors work to spoof, jam, and back azimuth counter fire laser emissions, a non emission target ranging system is needed. The patented Plumb reticle is unique in providing first round hits distance targets with out emissions. The training threshold for competency is far below other systems at far lower production costs.
The Plumb reticle provides the user new capabilities, increased speed, and unprecedented flexibility. I have combined the best from all reticle types and combined these strengths into one reticle. Users can now engage targets in a full spectrum of ranges, environments, and conditions. To engage targets from 1 meter to 1000 meters, you need just one optic, one reticle, for all environments.