Here’s what you really need to know about wind at a match

Dthomas3523

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  • Jan 31, 2018
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    Been in a wind kick lately. Here’s what you really need to know about wind when at a match. And it’s not how to read wind down to 1-2mph.

    The important thing is how to only miss once on a stage. This is assuming your fundamentals are sound and you can spot your shots. As well as assuming you are building good positions and managing time properly. If not, work on those and forget this for now.

    Let’s say your wind reading ability sucks (most do, so don’t worry). And that you can basically tell which way the wind is coming from. Let’s also say you can break wind down into “low” “mild” and “high” wind. Go into your calculator and come up with a value for each of those such as 3-5mph, 5-10, and 10-15. Then using the quick wind formula we always talk about, see what your holds will be for the median of those wind brackets. Say 4mph lightC 7mph mild, and 12mph high. This gives you a starting point when your at a match and you can say “the wind is blowing mildly from right to left.” Instead of attempting to call wind to 2mph when you aren’t skilled enough to make that call (yet), make easy references so you can make quick decisive calls at a match

    You decided that mildly is a 7mph and you have a 7mph gun and we are shooting at 500 yds. So your starting point is a .5 right hold. It’s a standard 2moa plate so it’s .6 wide.

    Don’t second guess yourself unless you know someone is a good enough shooter and their wind value is different and their bullet is similar to yours. Do not listen to the mid to low pack shooters. Even if they are your buddies or you’re also a mid to low pack. Their holds will include trigger slaps, bad zero’s, etc etc. Unless someone is absolutely trustworthy, go with your guess starting point which is a .5 right hold.

    So, now we have our hold. Don’t second guess. Get up there, build a badass postion hold .5 to CENTER (none of this edge of plate reference bullshit). Make a good trigger press and make sure you absolutely see the shot. If you don’t see it, it’s basically wasted, especially if you miss.

    Now here is the most important part. What to do after the first shot. If you center punch the plate, awesome. If not and you see it swing a little left or right, just add or subtract a tenth. If it moves a lot left or right, add or subtract two tenths. Remember, it’s .6 wide, so that’s .3 each way. You’d need to barely swipe the edge to need to move .3. So most will be .1 or .2. Obviously if you see where it hit, measure it. But the quick reference if little swing vs big swing will get you close.

    If you miss on the “pro” side (upwind), most everyone will correct pretty well. As you were holding .5 and it’s .3 from center to edge, you’ll either miss and see the miss at .2,.1 or zero. Most everyone has no problem seeing that and putting it on center and continuing.

    Where the real problems happen is when people miss down wind. It’s away from the center of reticle where we like to be.

    And this is where the edge of plate referencing bullshit screws people up. We get into the habit of referencing the edges cause it’s a defined point. So, when people miss down wind, and say they miss by .5 off center. They see that its .2 off the edge and for some odd reason, they are scared to make the correction which is *at least* .5. They make the .2 correction which barely gets them on the plate. Then they either make a bad trigger press or the wind picks up slightly and they miss in the exact same spot. Thats when you hear “I don’t know how I hit the same spot, I held more.”

    So, first, only reference the center of the target. And we know it’s .6 wide (.3 from center to edge). So, the *absolute minimum* you should ever correct is half a target. At the very *minimum*. I always hear people calling corrections for .1 or .2 when someone misses. That is always wrong.

    Since on the theme of quick reference, if you ever miss on the downwind side, on a standard 2moa target, just add .5 to your hold. (if you missed by a mil, obviously correct that). But if you miss just off the edge (which is where you see most misses, .2 or so off edge), don’t even think about it. Just add .5 to your hold. Trust me. Do it and your will never again hit the same spot even though you corrected. You’ll either hit center, or within .1 of center each way most of the time. The exception is very switchy wind days.

    .5 seems like a big correction, but think about it. You were attempting to hit center and missed. So that’s .3 already. You can even make it a habit to correct and entire target. Add .6 to your wind call. You held .5 and missed down wind, immediately move to a 1.0 or 1.1 hold. I promise your second round hit percentage will improve exponentially.

    If you have good fundamentals, you can use this method to easily shoot 80%+ of available points at most club matches. Depending on the day, that’s top pack or winning.

    Come up with light, mild, and high wind values. Make the call. See the shot. Gauge the swing of steel. If you miss on amateur side, correct .5 or an entire target. Your scores will improve exponentially without needing to be a 2mph wind reader.
     

    Skookum

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  • May 6, 2017
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    Been in a wind kick lately. Here’s what you really need to know about wind when at a match. And it’s not how to read wind down to 1-2mph.

    The important thing is how to only miss once on a stage. This is assuming your fundamentals are sound and you can spot your shots. As well as assuming you are building good positions and managing time properly. If not, work on those and forget this for now.

    Let’s say your wind reading ability sucks (most do, so don’t worry). And that you can basically tell which way the wind is coming from. Let’s also say you can break wind down into “low” “mild” and “high” wind. Go into your calculator and come up with a value for each of those such as 3-5mph, 5-10, and 10-15. Then using the quick wind formula we always talk about, see what your holds will be for the median of those wind brackets. Say 4mph lightC 7mph mild, and 12mph high. This gives you a starting point when your at a match and you can say “the wind is blowing mildly from right to left.” Instead of attempting to call wind to 2mph when you aren’t skilled enough to make that call (yet), make easy references so you can make quick decisive calls at a match

    You decided that mildly is a 7mph and you have a 7mph gun and we are shooting at 500 yds. So your starting point is a .5 right hold. It’s a standard 2moa plate so it’s .6 wide.

    Don’t second guess yourself unless you know someone is a good enough shooter and their wind value is different and their bullet is similar to yours. Do not listen to the mid to low pack shooters. Even if they are your buddies or you’re also a mid to low pack. Their holds will include trigger slaps, bad zero’s, etc etc. Unless someone is absolutely trustworthy, go with your guess starting point which is a .5 right hold.

    So, now we have our hold. Don’t second guess. Get up there, build a badass postion hold .5 to CENTER (none of this edge of plate reference bullshit). Make a good trigger press and make sure you absolutely see the shot. If you don’t see it, it’s basically wasted, especially if you miss.

    Now here is the most important part. What to do after the first shot. If you center punch the plate, awesome. If not and you see it swing a little left or right, just add or subtract a tenth. If it moves a lot left or right, add or subtract two tenths. Remember, it’s .6 wide, so that’s .3 each way. You’d need to barely swipe the edge to need to move .3. So most will be .1 or .2. Obviously if you see where it hit, measure it. But the quick reference if little swing vs big swing will get you close.

    If you miss on the “pro” side (upwind), most everyone will correct pretty well. As you were holding .5 and it’s .3 from center to edge, you’ll either miss and see the miss at .2,.1 or zero. Most everyone has no problem seeing that and putting it on center and continuing.

    Where the real problems happen is when people miss down wind. It’s away from the center of reticle where we like to be.

    And this is where the edge of plate referencing bullshit screws people up. We get into the habit of referencing the edges cause it’s a defined point. So, when people miss down wind, and say they miss by .5 off center. They see that its .2 off the edge and for some odd reason, they are scared to make the correction which is *at least* .5. They make the .2 correction which barely gets them on the plate. Then they either make a bad trigger press or the wind picks up slightly and they miss in the exact same spot. Thats when you hear “I don’t know how I hit the same spot, I held more.”

    So, first, only reference the center of the target. And we know it’s .6 wide (.3 from center to edge). So, the *absolute minimum* you should ever correct is half a target. At the very *minimum*. I always hear people calling corrections for .1 or .2 when someone misses. That is always wrong.

    Since on the theme of quick reference, if you ever miss on the downwind side, on a standard 2moa target, just add .5 to your hold. (if you missed by a mil, obviously correct that). But if you miss just off the edge (which is where you see most misses, .2 or so off edge), don’t even think about it. Just add .5 to your hold. Trust me. Do it and your will never again hit the same spot even though you corrected. You’ll either hit center, or within .1 of center each way most of the time. The exception is very switchy wind days.

    .5 seems like a big correction, but think about it. You were attempting to hit center and missed. So that’s .3 already. You can even make it a habit to correct and entire target. Add .6 to your wind call. You held .5 and missed down wind, immediately move to a 1.0 or 1.1 hold. I promise your second round hit percentage will improve exponentially.

    If you have good fundamentals, you can use this method to easily shoot 80%+ of available points at most club matches. Depending on the day, that’s top pack or winning.

    Come up with light, mild, and high wind values. Make the call. See the shot. Gauge the swing of steel. If you miss on amateur side, correct .5 or an entire target. Your scores will improve exponentially without needing to be a 2mph wind reader.
    "But... But... But... I have 0.2 graduations on my reticle so I can be precise!!!😭😭😭"

    I don't know how I ever manage to hold for wind with a TMR or a G2B mildot. Maybe I'm just lucky?

    Great post.
     

    SSSamurai

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    Great post!

    I also recommend that shooters who are looking to improve their wind calls spend more time behind a spotting scope. Matches always need ROs! Some shooters are reluctant to give up trigger time, but you will learn a ton sitting behind a spotting scope and watching others play in the wind. You'll get to hear how pros approach the wind calls, and how they make corrections. Invaluable experience, but often overlooked because we all want to bang steel.
     

    Dthomas3523

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  • Jan 31, 2018
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    Rule of thumb:

    If you miss pro (upwind), your corrections will *generally* be smaller. As shooters usually underestimate wind more than over estimate it. Also, we don’t mind if we bracket and give 3/4 of the plate width for wind to blow bullet into.

    If you miss on the amateur (downwind side), your corrections are going to be much larger *generally* speaking. Since you are holding center and miss.....it’s a minimum of half plate if you barely missed. And we want to favor more into the pro side, so there’s another 2-3 tenths.

    If you can beat anything into your brain from this post, hammer in that when you miss downwind, you need to be making *big* corrections. Small corrections is the culprit of watching shooters walk the rounds in and lose the first 2-4 points on a stage.
     

    supercorndogs

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    Nice post, when I first started out I thought reading mirage was the most important thing to learn. I quickly realized the wind is rarely less than 10mph here, and usually 10-20mph. So mirage is usually pegged out.
     
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    Sokam101

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    amazing advice. Me being a new shooter. I think I missed alot at my first match trying to hold for wind that wasnt there lol
     

    308pirate

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  • Apr 25, 2017
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    Rule of thumb:

    If you miss pro (upwind), your corrections will *generally* be smaller. As shooters usually underestimate wind more than over estimate it. Also, we don’t mind if we bracket and give 3/4 of the plate width for wind to blow bullet into.

    If you miss on the amateur (downwind side), your corrections are going to be much larger *generally* speaking. Since you are holding center and miss.....it’s a minimum of half plate if you barely missed. And we want to favor more into the pro side, so there’s another 2-3 tenths.

    If you can beat anything into your brain from this post, hammer in that when you miss downwind, you need to be making *big* corrections. Small corrections is the culprit of watching shooters walk the rounds in and lose the first 2-4 points on a stage.
    It's like the old naval gunfire rule: first shot under, second shot over, full broadside on target.
     
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    Sokam101

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    Thats much better than holding less for wind that is there.
    At what distance do you see wind come into play? I have a 300 yard range and I dont think ive ever had wind push my 6.5 around at all. So I was expecting it to at 700 at my beginners PRS match and it didnt really matter. I was calling a 5mph wind but I was way over holding.
     

    308pirate

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  • Apr 25, 2017
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    At what distance do you see wind come into play? I have a 300 yard range and I dont think ive ever had wind push my 6.5 around at all. So I was expecting it to at 700 at my beginners PRS match and it didnt really matter. I was calling a 5mph wind but I was way over holding.
    You should be able to answer your own question with a ballistics calculator/program.

    Precision rifle shooting is actually a fairly technical sport. You need to become technically literate.

    To answer your question: there's no answer. How far downrange the wind comes into play depends on the ballistic performance of your projectile and the strength and direction of the wind.
     

    Sokam101

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    You should be able to answer your own question with a ballistics calculator/program.

    Precision rifle shooting is actually a fairly technical sport. You need to become technically literate.

    To answer your question: there's no answer. How far downrange the wind comes into play depends on the ballistic performance of your projectile and the strength and direction of the wind.
    Very true. I also learned never to dial for the wind lol. Noob mistake. But I had a blast.
     

    Dthomas3523

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  • Jan 31, 2018
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    A

    At what distance do you see wind come into play? I have a 300 yard range and I dont think ive ever had wind push my 6.5 around at all. So I was expecting it to at 700 at my beginners PRS match and it didnt really matter. I was calling a 5mph wind but I was way over holding.
    This is all dependent on wind speed and terrain. There isn’t a good answer in general.

    Which is why most people need to focus on other things first. Most matches have 80% or more 600yds and in where missed shots are because of other factors.
     

    Dthomas3523

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    Very true. I also learned never to dial for the wind lol. Noob mistake. But I had a blast.
    I’ll dial in certain situations. But until you get comfortable, just hold.
     

    littlepod

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    When is best to dial?
    The only time I've dialed for wind is on a mover target. Shot the first shot to verify my wind call, dialed it, and then held the mover lead consistently when it moved left and right without having to add/subtract wind from the equation.
     

    Sokam101

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    The only time I've dialed for wind is on a mover target. Shot the first shot to verify my wind call, dialed it, and then held the mover lead consistently when it moved left and right without having to add/subtract wind from the equation.
    That's really smart. What type of matches do you shoot moves at?
     

    Dthomas3523

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    The only time I've dialed for wind is on a mover target. Shot the first shot to verify my wind call, dialed it, and then held the mover lead consistently when it moved left and right without having to add/subtract wind from the equation.
    Wasted shot. Dial your wind call and go to work, don’t touch the turrets again unless you have a ton of time. Many mover stages will only give you X number of passes and you don’t have time to do anything after the timer starts.

    To the original question, it’s personal preference. You can dial on single target stages so you don’t have to move too far off a center hold. The wind needs to be steady, if not you might end up with negative holds and such.

    Or on big steady wind multi target stages, you can dial the initial target or two out and hold the rest.
     

    Sokam101

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    Wasted shot. Dial your wind call and go to work, don’t touch the turrets again unless you have a ton of time. Many mover stages will only give you X number of passes and you don’t have time to do anything after the timer starts.

    To the original question, it’s personal preference. You can dial on single target stages so you don’t have to move too far off a center hold. The wind needs to be steady, if not you might end up with negative holds and such.

    Or on big steady wind multi target stages, you can dial the initial target or two out and hold the rest.
    Good point. I guess you need to find out what works best for you holds or dialing.
     

    308pirate

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    I guess you need to find out what works best for you holds or dialing.
    You need to know both. It's not either or. What I meant by a long game is that you need seat time to work out for yourself when one technique works better than the other.

    It's like learning to rise the trot. I know how and I could talk to you about it all day but you'll never figure it out till you get up on the horse.
     
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    Sokam101

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    You need to know both. It's not either or. What I meant by a long game is that you need seat time to work out for yourself when one technique works better than the other.

    It's like learning to rise the trot. I know how and I could talk to you about it all day but you'll never figure it out till you get up on the horse.
    Perfect. I wish this season wasnt ending for me in the north east. COvid really killed the first half of the season. Thank you for all the help.
     

    MakeSawdust

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    This is a great post. I mind fuck myself into the trap of making too small a correction, even though I already know this. I'm not sure why we do it. I agree that unless you are shooting a very small target and measure the miss, no correction for a missed target should be less than .3 mils or .4 mils.
     

    Dthomas3523

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    This is a great post. I mind fuck myself into the trap of making too small a correction, even though I already know this. I'm not sure why we do it. I agree that unless you are shooting a very small target and measure the miss, no correction for a missed target should be less than .3 mils or .4 mils.
    To get out of that habit, if you miss on the downwind side, unless it’s way (like a mil or more), don’t even measure it. Just add .5 or .6 to your next shot. Don’t think, just do it.

    You’ll have more success and once you get in the habit, you’ll be able to confidently adjust just .3 or .4 when you need to.
     

    ofelas

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    Pay attention boys, a couple interesting observations from DThomas the moderator here.
     
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    accurate obsession

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    This is a great post. I mind fuck myself into the trap of making too small a correction, even though I already know this. I'm not sure why we do it. I agree that unless you are shooting a very small target and measure the miss, no correction for a missed target should be less than .3 mils or .4 mils.
    Absolutely true, just this past weekend shooting a stage that was right at a 1000yds I did exactly that. Just happens that I was in a very solid position and I saw my miss splashes low corner off the ”amateur” side ( cuz that’s what I am) TWICE and didn’t make the big corrections to get on solid. Damn, ended up making a few hits barely on right edge, lot of points left behind.
     

    accurate obsession

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    You decided that mildly is a 7mph and you have a 7mph gun and we are shooting at 500 yds. So your starting point is a .5 right hold. It’s a standard 2moa plate so it’s .6 wide.
    First off I really appreciate threads like this, in regards to PRS I fit squarely into the group that needs to heed to the info you have laid out in these two threads. Building solid positions so you can see as many of your shots as possible, the size of corrections from that info, etc. My question is in regards to bracketing your corrections "you have a 7 mph gun" what exactly is that referencing and how was it determined?
     

    Dthomas3523

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    First off I really appreciate threads like this, in regards to PRS I fit squarely into the group that needs to heed to the info you have laid out in these two threads. Building solid positions so you can see as many of your shots as possible, the size of corrections from that info, etc. My question is in regards to bracketing your corrections "you have a 7 mph gun" what exactly is that referencing and how was it determined?
    Sign up for the online training or search here and google for determining your rifle mph for quick wind solutions.

    Not trying to be rude, but we have typed it out many, many times.
     

    ACard

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    Sign up for the online training or search here and google for determining your rifle mph for quick wind solutions.

    Not trying to be rude, but we have typed it out many, many times.
    The online training is a bargain at the charge, lots of very solid info. I was glad I signed up and I have been active in precision rifle marksmanship for 40+ years.
     

    accurate obsession

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    Thanks for the heads-up. Sounds new to me but I realize these topics have been discussed many times over, I should have done a quick search before.
     

    Gustav7

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    Thanks for the heads-up. Sounds new to me but I realize these topics have been discussed many times over, I should have done a quick search before.
    A helpful tip (if you didn't know), from someone who used snipers hide for almost 2 years before actually signing up on the site.

    Google's search engine is very good, and I always (and still do) use Google the most for searching topics. If you just put either the phrase you're looking for, or a bunch of keywords into google and finish any search with the word, "snipers hide"... you'll get a ton more hits from the site.

    Example for google search: how do I find out what mph my rifle is? wind mph gun snipers hide

    I entered that into google and the first 5 search hits are all from here, and are all 2019 or newer threads/discussions.

    Do this every time you want to know something first, and you'll be surprised how much reading you'll have lol