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Rangefinders... Is paying for a built in inclinometer worth it?

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Unread 03-25-2008, 12:32 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Starkville, MS
Posts: 40
Rangefinders... Is paying for a built in inclinometer worth it?

Guess the topic says it all... is paying that much extra for the built in inclinometer worth it (e.g. Bushnell's ARC, Leupold's RXII, etc)? Maybe only if you live in mountainous areas? How critical are the calculations that it provides for accurate shooting? I frankly dont understand how shooting at an incline/decline affects range/POI... can someone kinda explain?

Just cant decide if I wanna pay for it or not.
- Gabe Caver

Starkville, MS
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Unread 03-25-2008, 08:19 AM
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 6,518
Ward Brien, builder of the Angle Cosine Indicator, has written an article on this exact subject. I will have it ready for a premier in the next Newsletter in a week.
- -
Long Range Rifles, LLC - Ready To Ship

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Unread 03-25-2008, 11:55 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: SW MO
Posts: 1,343
I recently was wondering a similar thing myself as I was thinking about getting an angle cosine indicator for my rifle. I used the Pythagorean theorem to do some calculations assuming I was 300 ft above my target and found that the horizontal distance just wasn't enough different than the angle distance to affect bullet impact by more than a couple inches at most. Goodgrouper responded to my post and his very respectable opinion was that if angle were greater than 10 degrees and/or distance were over 1000 yds then a person would need to compensate for angle.
I would say that if terrain were very steep with possible steep up or downhill shots of several hundred yards or more, a rangefinder that gives you true horizontal distance would be worth it. The Leupold RX II offers this feature and only runs $300 new. I don't know how reliable these are, but the small size would make them quite portable.
The critters have to win every time, I only have to win once.

NRA Life Member
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Unread 03-25-2008, 12:06 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Yakima, Washington
Posts: 3,775
This should give you some good reading. There's some good stuff in this thread.
Up/Downhill corrections
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Unread 03-26-2008, 05:13 PM
Gold Member
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 723
I would only get one if it were top quality.- for LR ranging, a Leica or Swarovski will be better than the Leupolds and you can get an angle cosine indicator for the angle estimation.

Vectronix sells good quality RF( so it seems, I dont have one) with integrated clinometrers but are VERY expensive.
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Unread 03-30-2008, 11:00 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 23
My 2 cents - I purchased the Leupold RX IV for an Elk hunt to the Rockies this past fall. Maybe it was just my unit that was bad. But I found them to not to work well at all. Leupold says they will range 1500 yards, farthes I could get during 5 days of hunting was 506 yards. Cost $500 - sold them for $250 junk! I would say they might be very handy if you bow hunt or only plan to shoot less than 300 yards. I purchased a Lecia range finder and a Angle Cosine Indicator - will use them and a Mil Dot Master or ballistics print out to figure correct compensation for up/down slope.
21 year Navy Vet.
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Unread 03-31-2008, 12:00 AM
Gold Member
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: North Idaho
Posts: 668
Elkhunter: You hit the nail on the head. I had to Rx4's and they were crap. one wouldn't range past 900 yards and the other was so blurry you couldn't see out of it. What a joke. That's what ya get for making crap over seas. I bought a swaro and couldn't be happier. Just get an angle cosine indicator and buy a leica or swaro and save yourself the trouble.
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