Thursday, January 26, 2012

Kestrel Meter 4000 Portable Anemometer

With at least 17 years of shooting experience behind me, I have personally witnessed how 'full-value' winds (crosswind) affected my shooting accuracy  at ranges beyond 200 meters. As distance increases the drift of the bullet from its original flight path also becomes larger. For example, a 5m/sec wind velocity can deviate your bullet at least 1 meter away from the point of aim (of course, also your intended point of impact) at 500 meters. For this reason, I always study the environment to detect wind velocity (speed and direction). I have read too many literature regarding this matter but I always rely on my own data gathering especially if I am using a hand-loaded ammunition. So, to master the wind estimation techniques (one of the required skill of a sniper), I avail of an excellent tool called the portable wind meter. A very good friend introduced me to his favorite Kestrel wind meter back in 2005. Since then, this device was my constant companion during marksmanship training and competitive shooting matches. 

Aside from wind, shooting accuracy is also affected by other factors such as temperature, humidity and density altitude.  These data are also incorporated into most advanced portable targeting computer applications due to their importance in long range marksmanship. I always required my students to record the temperature during their shooting day to compare the shot group locations when they shoot in a different firing range there is significant change of temperature.

When I was working as a military observer with the United Nations, we were issued the Kestrel 4000 every time we were tasked to assist the landing of small airplanes in an airstrip located in the middle of the swamps.

We reported to the pilots relevant data that he needed such as  wind speed, temperature and humidity in the ground. 

 I like the Kestrel 4000 for its ability to accurately measure all of these parameters in a four-ounce, pocket-size package. 

It is now among the Philippine Army  snipers' 'wish list' of desired gadgets. 

Kestrel 4000

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