One of the most common questions I get asked is, “What scope should I use?” It seems that the world of precision shooting is shifting from the MOA MIL-dot scope to the MIL/MIL scope, a scope that has MIL adjustments with a matching MIL reticle. For those shooters who are used to the traditional MOA-adjustment scope, it may seem like a “new world” of math and re-training, when in fact, it’s not.
Let’s think about a typical shooting situation. You start off by sighting in your rifle at a distance of 400 yards, applying all the fundamentals of marksmanship to the best of your ability. Your bullet impacts 6″ low. Being that you are 400 yards away, you would divide 6 by 4 and get the answer 1.5. You then come up on the elevation approximately 1.5 MOA or 3 clicks on a ½ MOA scope. The next shot you fire hits your target. Not too bad for an MOA scope; you simply do a little math.
Now let’s take a look at our MIL/MIL scope with 0.1 MIL adjustments on the same 400 yard line. You fire a shot and you see that the round impacts .4 MILs low. Instead of doing any math in your head, you simply reach up and dial up 4 clicks (0.4). The next shot you fire is dead on. No math involved, what you see is what you get. This can be applied at any distance. If you see that the bullet impacts 0.7 MILs low at a given distance, you simply dial in 7 clicks on your 0.1 MIL elevation turret.
What scope is best for you?
This is, in my opinion, a personal shooter preference. Having said that, let’s take a look at the benefits of both, and apply them to a shooting scenario.
Let’s say you’re a part of a sniper team deployed to a hostile environment. You and your spotter see a target of opportunity and are given permission to engage from your sniper position. Your laser range finder (LRF) was destroyed during your infil, so you resort to doing some basic MIL-dot range estimation based on his height.
You send your first shot downrange and your spotter sees the bullet impact. He quickly calls out to you, “.6 MILs high, .4 MILs right.” Without doing any math as you would with the MOA to convert it to inches, you simply dial down the elevation 6 clicks and hold for the wind .4 left. In such cases where distances are unknown, you do not have a LRF at your disposal, or your MIL-dot range estimation is off due to various environmental factors such as mirage or angle to target, the MIL/MIL would be best for you.
(Featured image courtesy of ar15.com)
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