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Publication numberUS20050257414 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/060,207
Publication dateNov 24, 2005
Filing dateFeb 16, 2005
Priority dateNov 10, 2004
Also published asDE202005017276U1
Publication number060207, 11060207, US 2005/0257414 A1, US 2005/257414 A1, US 20050257414 A1, US 20050257414A1, US 2005257414 A1, US 2005257414A1, US-A1-20050257414, US-A1-2005257414, US2005/0257414A1, US2005/257414A1, US20050257414 A1, US20050257414A1, US2005257414 A1, US2005257414A1
InventorsSergey Zaderey, Andrew Evans-Hendrick, Andrew York
Original AssigneeLeupold & Stevens, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tactical ranging reticle for a projectile weapon aiming device
US 20050257414 A1
Abstract
A reticle of a projectile weapon aiming system such as a riflescope includes a primary aiming mark adapted to be sighted-in at a first selected range and further includes a plurality of secondary aiming marks spaced apart below the primary aiming mark. The secondary aiming marks are positioned to compensate for ballistic drop at preselected incremental ranges beyond the first selected range, for a selected group of ammunition having similar ballistic characteristics. Angles subtended by adjacent aiming marks of the reticle can be adjusted by changing the optical power of the riflescope, to thereby compensate for ballistic characteristics of different ammunition. In some embodiments, the reticle includes a set of windage aiming marks spaced apart along at least one secondary horizontal axis intersecting a selected one of the secondary aiming marks, to facilitate compensation for the effect of crosswinds on the trajectory of the projectile.
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Claims(22)
1. A reticle for a projectile weapon aiming system, comprising:
a primary horizontal sight line including,
a horizontal central portion, and
a horizontal post portion being at least one and a half times thicker than the horizontal central portion;
a primary vertical sight line including,
a vertical central portion, and
a vertical post portion being at least one and a half times thicker than the vertical central portion, and
wherein the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines define and extend radially from a primary aiming point;
a plurality of vertical secondary aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure and intersecting the vertical central portion; and
a plurality of vertical long range aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure, intersecting the vertical central portion, and disposed between a pair of vertical secondary aiming marks in closest proximity to the vertical post portion,
wherein an area between the vertical secondary aiming mark closest to the primary aiming point and the primary aiming point is devoid of vertical long range aiming marks.
2. The reticle of claim 1, further comprising:
a plurality of horizontal secondary aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure and intersecting the horizontal central portion; and
a plurality of horizontal long range aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure, intersecting the horizontal central portion, and disposed between a pair of horizontal secondary aiming marks in closest proximity to the horizontal post portion,
wherein an area between the horizontal secondary aiming mark closest to the primary aiming point and the primary aiming point is devoid of horizontal long range aiming marks.
3. The reticle of claim 2, further comprising:
a plurality of horizontal tertiary aiming marks intersecting the horizontal central portion, each horizontal tertiary aiming mark disposed between and equidistant to a pair of horizontal secondary aiming marks; and
a plurality of vertical tertiary aiming marks intersecting the vertical central portion, each vertical tertiary aiming mark disposed between and equidistant to a pair of vertical secondary aiming marks.
4. The reticle of claim 3, wherein each horizontal and vertical tertiary aiming mark indicates 0.5 milliradians from adjacent secondary aiming marks.
5. The reticle of claim 3, wherein the thickness of the horizontal and vertical tertiary aiming marks is approximately equal to the thickness of the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines.
6. The reticle of claim 2, wherein each horizontal and vertical secondary aiming mark indicates 1 milliradian from an adjacent secondary aiming mark.
7. The reticle of claim 2, wherein the thickness of the horizontal and vertical secondary aiming marks is approximately equal to the thickness of the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines.
8. The reticle of claim 2, wherein each horizontal and vertical long range aiming mark indicates less than 0.5 milliradians from an adjacent long range aiming mark.
9. The reticle of claim 8, wherein each horizontal and vertical long range aiming mark indicates 0.2 milliradians from an adjacent long range aiming mark.
10. The reticle of claim 2, wherein the thickness of the horizontal and vertical long range aiming marks is approximately equal to the thickness of the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines.
11. The reticle of claim 1, wherein the primary aiming point is transparent.
12. A riflescope comprising:
an elongate housing supporting an objective lens and an eyepiece lens proximate opposite ends of the housing, and further supporting an erector lens assembly between the objective lens and the eyepiece lens;
a reticle positioned between the erector lens assembly and the eyepiece, the reticle including,
a primary horizontal sight line including,
a horizontal central portion, and
a horizontal post portion being at least one and a half times thicker than the horizontal central portion;
a primary vertical sight line including,
a vertical central portion, and
a vertical post portion being at least one and a half times thicker than the vertical central portion, and
wherein the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines define and extend radially from a primary aiming point,
a plurality of vertical secondary aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure and intersecting the vertical central portion, and
a plurality of vertical long range aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure, intersecting the vertical central portion, and disposed between a pair of vertical secondary aiming marks in closest proximity to the vertical post portion,
wherein an area between the vertical secondary aiming mark closest to the primary aiming point and the primary aiming point is devoid of vertical long range aiming marks.
13. The riflescope of claim 12, wherein the reticle further comprises:
a plurality of horizontal secondary aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure and intersecting the horizontal central portion; and
a plurality of horizontal long range aiming marks each indicating an equal unit of measure, intersecting the horizontal central portion, and disposed between a pair of horizontal secondary aiming marks in closest proximity to the horizontal post portion,
wherein an area between the horizontal secondary aiming mark closest to the primary aiming point and the primary aiming point is devoid of horizontal long range aiming marks,
14. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein the reticle further comprises:
a plurality of horizontal tertiary aiming marks intersecting the horizontal central portion, each horizontal tertiary aiming mark disposed between and equidistant to a pair of horizontal secondary aiming marks; and
a plurality of vertical tertiary aiming marks intersecting the vertical central portion, each vertical tertiary aiming mark disposed between and equidistant to a pair of vertical secondary aiming marks.
15. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein each horizontal and vertical tertiary aiming mark indicates 0.5 milliradians from adjacent secondary aiming marks.
16. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein the thickness of the horizontal and vertical tertiary aiming marks is approximately equal to the thickness of the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines.
17. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein each horizontal and vertical secondary aiming mark indicates 1 milliradian from an adjacent secondary aiming mark.
18. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein the thickness of the horizontal and vertical secondary aiming marks is approximately equal to the thickness of the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines.
19. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein each horizontal and vertical long range aiming mark indicates less than 0.5 milliradians from an adjacent long range aiming mark.
20. The riflescope of claim 19, wherein each horizontal and vertical long range aiming mark indicates 0.2 milliradians from an adjacent long range aiming mark.
21. The riflescope of claim 13, wherein the thickness of the horizontal and vertical long range aiming marks is approximately equal to the thickness of the primary horizontal and vertical sight lines.
22. The riflescope of claim 12, wherein the primary aiming point is transparent.
Description
RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit under 35 U.S.C. § 119(e) of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/626,967, filed Nov. 10, 2004.

COPYRIGHT NOTICE

©2004 Leupold & Stevens, Inc. A portion of the disclosure of this patent document contains material which is subject to copyright protection. The copyright owner has no objection to the facsimile reproduction by anyone of the patent document or the patent disclosure, as it appears in the Patent and Trademark Office patent file or records, but otherwise reserves all copyright rights whatsoever. 37 CFR § 1.71(d).

TECHNICAL FIELD

This application relates to projectile weapon aiming systems such as riflescopes, to reticle configurations for projectile weapon aiming systems, and to associated methods of compensating for ballistic characteristics.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Projectile weapon aiming systems are discussed herein principally with reference to their use on rifles and embodied in telescopic sights commonly known as riflescopes. It will become apparent, however, that projectile weapon aiming systems may include aiming devices other than riflescopes, and may be used on weapons other than rifles, which are capable of propelling projectiles along substantially predeterminable trajectories, e.g., handguns, crossbows, and artillery.

A factor that must be taken into account in long-range shooting is the curved trajectory traversed by a bullet or other projectile as it falls from its initial trajectory while traveling the distance from the gun to the target, i.e., “range.” An aiming line of sight emanating from a reticle aiming mark of a riflescope rigidly affixed to the gun is straight, and hence the line of sight can intersect the curved trajectory only at a discrete range. At other ranges the projectile will pass below the aiming line of sight, necessitating the use of elevation adjustments for aiming.

A challenge in a long-range shooting environment is ranging a fairly small target at long distances. Typically, an operator looks for a target of a known height. For example, a operator may search for a target of approximately one meter in height or length, or other known target sizes that can be easily superimposed or divided to provide a one meter target. The target is then bracketed between reticle aiming marks which represent angularity. The known target height is divided by the bracketed angular value which may be measured in milliradians to provide a range. A ranging reticle may have a 10 milliradian scale to range a one meter target within an average effective range of 100 meters to 1000 meters. The scale is non-linear and the ranging process is easily implemented to 500 meters. In practice, a one meter target will subtend 10 milliradians at 100 meters, and two milliradians at 500 meters. At 1000 meters, the target will subtend one milliradian and the operator must perform 50% of the effective range estimation within the span of 1 milliradian. This becomes a difficult task due to the lack of scale resolution and because the target is further away.

A “mil-dot” reticle was developed by the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1970s as an aid for a soldier in estimating distances. The mil-dot reticle has since become the military standard for range estimating within all branches of the service. The term “mil-dot” refers to milliradian, and the dot is spaced in 1 mil increments on the crosshairs. By using a formula, a table is generated based on the sized of the target being range-estimated. The viewed target is bracketed between the dots and the generated table is consulted. The round or football-shaped dots of a mil-dot reticle often obstruct viewing in long ranges. Furthermore, as with other conventional reticles, the mil-dot reticle does not provide sufficient scale resolution for ranges exceeding 500 meters.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,032,374 of Sammut and U.S. Pat. No. 5,920,995 of Smith, propose reticles having a series of secondary aiming marks spaced below a primary aiming mark at predetermined intervals for compensating for bullet drop. Sammut and Smith further include a rangefinder offset from the crosshairs for determining or estimating an observed range based on an object's height. The rangefinder has evenly spaced marks at a scale to assist in long distance estimation. After determining a range, the shooter selects the secondary aiming mark most closely corresponding to the observed range. However, the rangefinders are separate from the crosshairs and cannot be used for ballistic drop compensation or for horizontal leading. The secondary aiming marks of Sammut and Smith are not scaled to assist in accurately estimating ballistic drop and horizontal leading for distances greater than 500 meters.

The present inventors have recognized a need for an improved projectile weapon aiming system for accurately compensating for ballistic drop and windage for a variety of ammunition having different ballistic characteristics.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In accordance with preferred embodiments, a reticle is located proximate a rear focal plane of a riflescope, an erector lens assembly and an ocular of the riflescope. The reticle is for use in a projectile weapon aiming system and includes a primary aiming mark and primary horizontal and vertical sight lines. The primary horizontal and vertical sight lines include a central portion extending radially from a primary aiming mark and a post portion extending radially from the central portion. The post portions may be at least three times thicker than the central portions to draw a shooter's eye to the thinner central portions.

Secondary and tertiary marks are positioned on the sight lines to provide range finding and lead compensation for distances less than 500 meters. Tertiary marks may be disposed equidistantly between adjacent secondary marks to subdivide a unit of measure indicated by the secondary marks. Quaternary or long range marks are positioned on the sight lines and provide scale resolution for range finding and lead compensation at distances greater than 500 meters. The quaternary marks are positioned proximate to the post portions and remote from the primary aiming mark to reduce visual obstruction for short range targets. A plurality of quaternary marks may be disposed between a pair of secondary marks to indicate incremental units of measure. The secondary, tertiary, and quaternary aiming marks are further positioned to provide hold over compensation for ballistic drop at preselected incremental ranges for an elected group of cartridges. The secondary, tertiary, and quaternary aiming marks may have a thickness approximately equal to the central portions to reduce visual obstruction.

Additional aspects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of embodiments, which proceeds with reference to the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a riflescope mounted on a rifle in accordance with a preferred embodiment.

FIG. 2 is a schematic diagram showing optical elements of a riflescope in accordance with a preferred embodiment.

FIG. 3 is a view of a reticle in accordance with a preferred embodiment as viewed through an ocular (eyepiece) of a riflescope.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged view of the reticle of FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is an enlarged view of a portion of the reticle of FIG. 4.

FIG. 6 is a view of a reticle of FIG. 4 with indicated holdover compensation for indicated cartridges.

FIG. 7 is a view of a reticle of FIG. with indicated holdover compensation for indicated cartridges.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Throughout the specification, reference to “one embodiment,” “an embodiment,” or “some embodiments” means that a particular described feature, structure, or characteristic is included in at least one embodiment. Thus appearances of the phrases “in one embodiment,” “in an embodiment,” or “in some embodiments” in various places throughout this specification are not necessarily all referring to the same embodiment. Furthermore, the described features, structures, or characteristics may be combined in any suitable manner in one or more embodiments.

Furthermore, the described features, structures, characteristics, and methods may be combined in any suitable manner in one or more embodiments. Those skilled in the art will recognize that the various embodiments can be practiced without one or more of the specific details or with other methods, components, materials, etc. In other instances, well-known structures, materials, or operations are not shown or not described in detail to avoid obscuring aspects of the embodiments.

FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a riflescope 10 mounted to a rifle 14 in accordance with a preferred embodiment. FIG. 2 is a schematic diagram showing an arrangement of optical elements 16 of riflescope 10, together with ray trace lines 18 indicating the path of light from an observed object (not shown) located to the left of the assembly of optical elements 16, as the light travels through the optical system along an optical path. With reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, riflescope 10 includes a tubular housing 20 that supports at opposite ends an objective or objective lens assembly 22 and an ocular or ocular lens assembly 26 (sometimes referred to as an eyepiece or eyepiece lens assembly). Objective 22 focuses the image of an observed object at a first (front) focal plane 28 located medially of objective 22 and ocular 26. An erector lens assembly 30 interposed between objective 22 and ocular 26 inverts the image and refocuses it at a second (rear) focal plane 32 between erector lens assembly 30 and ocular 26. A preferred riflescope 10 may comprise, for example, a VARI-X° III brand riflescope sold by Leupold & Stevens, Inc., Beaverton, Oregon, USA, modified according to various preferred embodiments to include a reticle 40 of the kind described below. At least a part of erector lens assembly 30 is movable in response to rotation of a power selector ring 34 or other power selector mechanism to adjust the optical power of riflescope 10 within a predetermined range of magnification. For example, the optical power of riflescope 10 may range between approximately 8.5× and 25× magnification, in accordance with a first preferred embodiment, or between approximately 6.5× and 20× magnification, in accordance with an alternative embodiment. Other embodiments may allow optical power adjustment within different ranges of adjustment, such as 4.5-14×, 3.5-10×, and 2.5-8×, for example, the optical zoom ratio in each instance being approximately 3:1. In yet other embodiments, the optical power of riflescope 10 may be fixed.

Reticle 40 is located in the optical path between objective 22 and ocular 26 and more preferably between erector lens assembly 30 and ocular 26, at or adjacent second focal plane 32. By way of example, reticle 40 may be used in a riflescope 10 in a configuration of certain riflescopes sold by Leupold & Stevens, Inc., Beaverton, Oregon, USA under the trademarks LPS®, VARI-X®, VX®, and others. However, the reticles described herein are not limited to use in riflescopes or with rifles, but may also be used in various other types of sighting devices and projectile weapon aiming devices and may be used to aim one or more of a variety of projectile weapons, such as rifles, pistols, crossbows, artillery, and others.

FIG. 3 is a pictorial representation of an embodiment of reticle 40 as viewed through ocular 26 of riflescope 10. Reticle 40 is preferably formed on a substantially flat disc of optical quality material, such as glass or plastic, and includes a primary aiming point 50 defined by the intersection of a primary horizontal sight line 52 and a primary vertical sight line 54. While primary sight lines 52 and 54 and other indicia, described below, may be marked on the surface of a transparent reticle disc, they may also be embodied in other forms, such as reticle wires, iron sights, illuminated reticle devices, projected targeting displays, head-up displays, simulated reticle images, and the like. Thus, the terms “reticle”, “mark”, “marking”, “marks”, “lines”, and the like are not limited to permanent inscriptions on a physical object, but are intended to also include all kinds of visually perceptible patterns, signs, and symbols, regardless of the way in which they are created and regardless of whether their elements are permanent or transitory in nature, or a combination of both permanent and transitory elements.

The primary horizontal and vertical sight lines 52, 54 include central portions 56, 58 respectively that extend radially from primary aiming point 50. Primary horizontal and vertical sight lines 52, 54 further include one or more widened post portions 60, 62, respectively, that extend radially from a corresponding central portion 56, 58. Post portions 60, 62 may be one and a half times thicker than central portions 56, 58 of primary horizontal and vertical sight lines 52 and 54, and may be at least three times thicker, to draw a shooter's eye to the thinner central portions 56, 58 and thereby help the shooter to locate primary aiming 50. In some embodiments, innermost ends 64 of widened post portions 60, 62 may serve as reference points for range estimation or windage compensation.

Referring to FIG. 4, an enlarged pictorial representation of a portion of the reticle 40 of FIG. 3 is shown. Reticle 40 includes secondary horizontal aiming marks 66 a-e equidistantly spaced along the horizontal central portions 56. The secondary horizontal aiming marks 66 a-e are spaced to compensate for wind effect and to lead a moving target. Reticle 40 further includes secondary vertical aiming marks 68 a-e equidistantly spaced along the vertical central portions 58. The secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e have a thickness that is approximately equivalent to or less than their respective central portions 56, 58 and are finer than the circular, oval, or football shapes of conventional mil-dots. Accordingly, the secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e are less likely to obscure targets at long ranges. As can be appreciated, finer marks afford greater target visibility and more accurate shot placement. In the depicted embodiment, each central portion 56, 58 includes five secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e that divide the central portions 56, 58 into milliradians. The fifth secondary aiming mark 66 e, 68 e terminates the respective central portion 56, 58. A corresponding widened post portion 60, 62 extends proximate from the fifth secondary aiming mark 66 e, 68 e.

The reticle 40 may further include horizontal and vertical tertiary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d disposed on corresponding central portions 56, 58. The tertiary marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d subdivide the measure between the secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e into equal halves. Accordingly, a single tertiary aiming mark 70 a-d, 72 a-d is disposed equidistant between two adjacent secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e. In the depicted embodiment, a tertiary aiming mark 70 a-d, 72 a-d measures 0.5 milliradians from an adjacent secondary aiming mark 66 a-e, 68 a-e. As with the secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, the tertiary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d have a thickness that is approximately equal to or less than the respective central portions 56, 58. The tertiary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d may have a length less than the secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e to indicate the measure of a lesser unit value.

The reticle may further include horizontal and vertical quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d disposed on corresponding central portions 56, 58. The quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d further subdivide the measure between adjacent secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e. The quaternary aiming marks may also be 74 a-d, 76 a-d referred to as long range aiming marks as they provide a scale for distances at greater than 500 meters. The quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d indicate less unit value than the tertiary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d. Thus, a plurality of quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d may be incrementally disposed between secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e. The quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d may indicate 0.2, 0.25, and 0.33 value of a measure between a pair of adjacent secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e. With secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e spaced one milliradian apart, the quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d may indicate 0.2, 0.25, or 0.33 milliradians. The quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d have a thickness that is approximately equal to or less than the respective central portions 56, 58. The quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d may have a length less than the secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e and the tertiary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d to indicate the measure of a lesser unit value. Although milliradians have been referenced herein, alternative units may be used to reference an angle subtend, such as minute of angle (MOA) wherein 1 MOA= 1/60th degree.

The secondary and tertiary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, 70 a-d, 72 a-d provide ranging and leading reference for distances up to 500 meters. For distances greater than 500 meters, the quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d provide scale resolution for increased ranging and leading precision. The finer increments of the vertical quaternary aiming marks 76 a-d enhance the ability to use the reticle for projectile drop compensation at greater distances. The finer increments of the horizontal quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d can be used at greater distances to accurately estimate windage deflection trajectory and to effectively lead moving targets. The finer thickness of marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, 70 a-d, 72 a-d, 74 a-d, 76 a-d reduces visual obstruction of a target and facilitates ranging and leading techniques. The thickness of the marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, 70 a-d, 72 a-d, 74 a-d, 76 a-d is sized appropriately to the magnification for which the reticle is designed. In operation, the scale provided by the reticle 40 may be subdivided and/or combined by a trained operator to produce reference combinations for target ranging, leading, and holdover precision.

The primary aiming point 50 may be embodied as a transparent aperture with the central portions 56, 58 terminating prior to their intersection. So embodied, the primary aiming point 50 reduces obstruction for improved target acquisition at long ranges.

In the depicted embodiment of FIG. 4, five secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e are sequentially disposed on corresponding central portions 56, 58. As can be appreciated, the number of secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e may vary depending on reticle size and anticipated ranging and leading needs. A tertiary aiming mark 70 a, 72 a is disposed between the primary aiming point 50 and the first secondary aiming marks 66 a, 68 a. Similarly, a tertiary aiming mark 70 b-d, 72 b-d is disposed between second, third, and fourth secondary aiming marks 66 b-d, 68 b-d. Quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d are disposed between the fourth and fifth secondary aiming marks 66 d-e, 68 d-e.

Quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d are preferably disposed remote from the primary aiming point 50 and proximate to the widened post portions 60, 62. The distance proximate to the post portions 60, 62 is referred to herein as the corner areas 78. In FIG. 4, the corner area 78 may be defined as between the pair of secondary aiming marks 66 d-e, 68 d-e which are the closest to the post portions 60, 62. Enhanced resolution for drop and lead compensation at great distances is typically desired in corner areas 78. Thus, quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d are not disposed between the primary aiming mark 50 and a first secondary aiming mark 66 a, 68 a or between secondary aiming marks 66 b-d, 68 b-d proximate to the primary aiming point 50.

In FIG. 4, the tertiary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d provide 0.5 milliradian subdivisions between the secondary aiming marks 66 a-d, 68 a-d which provide 1 milliradian subdivisions of the central portions 56, 58. The quaternary aiming marks 74 a-d, 76 a-d provide 0.2 milliradian subdivisions on remote or corner areas 78, of the reticle scale to facilitate accurate ranging beyond 500 meters.

As can be appreciated, FIG. 4 is provided for illustrative purposes only and numerous variations in reticle design may be employed and still be within the scope of the invention. For example, the number of secondary aiming marks 66, 68 may vary. Quaternary aiming marks 74, 76 may also be disposed between third, fourth, and fifth secondary aiming marks 66 c-e, 68 c-e. However, as the quaternary aiming marks 74, 76 are for long distances, they are not disposed between the primary aiming mark 50 and the horizontal and vertical aiming marks 70 a, 72 a closest to the primary aiming mark 50. In such a location, the quaternary or long distance aiming marks 74, 76 obstruct target viewing. Tertiary and quaternary aiming marks 70, 72, 74, 76 may also be disposed between the same pair of secondary aiming marks 66, 68.

Referring to FIG. 5, an expanded view of a portion of FIG. 4 is depicted to illustrate one example of length measurements of secondary, tertiary, and quaternary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, 70 a-d, 72 a-d, 74 a-d, 76 a-d. The secondary aiming marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e may have a length 80 of 0.40 milliradians. The tertirary and quatnerary aiming marks 70 a-d, 72 a-d, 74 a-d, 76 a-d may have a length 82 of 0.15 milliradians. Such lengths 80, 82 are one example of a configuration to facilitate mark and subdivision recognition. The thickness of the marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, 70 a-d, 72 a-d, 74 a-d, 76 a-d and the central portions 56, 58 may vary from about 0.02 milliradians to about 0.06 milliradians. As can be expected the reticle dimensions disclosed herein may vary from an initial view depending on increased or decreased magnification. Nevertheless, ratios between marks 66 a-e, 68 a-e, 70 a-d, 72 a-d, 74 a-d, 76 a-d, central portions 56, 58, and posts 60, 62 remain constant.

Referring to FIGS. 6 and 7, reticle 40 is shown with holdover markings for four military cartridges. If the time to place a shot is imminent, an operator can compensate for projectile trajectory using predetermined holdover markings. To facilitate better holdover accuracy, vertical marks 68, 72, 74 provide increments that correlate to any ballistic trajectory. When needed, an operator may forgo ranging, estimate the distance, and use a corresponding mark. In a similar manner, horizontal marks 66, 70, 74 may be used to estimate windage or movement and lead a target.

Projectile weapon aiming systems have been described herein principally with reference to their use with rifles and embodied as riflescopes. However, skilled persons will understand that projectile weapon aiming systems may include aiming devices other than riflescopes, and may be used on weapons other than rifles, which are capable of propelling projectiles along substantially predeterminable trajectories, e.g., handguns, crossbows, and artillery. Thus, it will be obvious to those having skill in the art that many changes may be made to the details of the above-described embodiments without departing from the underlying principles of the invention. The scope of the present invention should, therefore, be determined only by the following claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7603804 *Sep 3, 2004Oct 20, 2009Leupold & Stevens, Inc.Ballistic reticle for projectile weapon aiming systems and method of aiming
US7705975 *Aug 14, 2006Apr 27, 2010Michael Christopher FarrisReticle
US7905046 *Mar 6, 2008Mar 15, 2011Thomas D. Smith, IIISystem and method for determining target range and coordinating team fire
US8001714Aug 13, 2007Aug 23, 2011Aaron DavidsonBallistics systems and methods
US8286384 *Jun 27, 2008Oct 16, 2012Leupold & Stevens, Inc.Ballistic range compensation for projectile weapon aiming based on ammunition classification
US8365455Aug 10, 2010Feb 5, 2013Huskemaw Optics, LlcBallistics systems and methods
US8756852 *Apr 29, 2009Jun 24, 2014Safariland, LlcNon-lethal/lethal projectile launcher ranging and sighting system
US20120210625 *Apr 29, 2009Aug 23, 2012Kramer Michael TNon-lethal/lethal projectile launcher ranging and sighting system
EP2062004A2 *Sep 5, 2007May 27, 2009Verdugo, EdwardReticule
Classifications
U.S. Classification42/122
International ClassificationF41G1/38
Cooperative ClassificationF41G1/44, F41G1/38
European ClassificationF41G1/44, F41G1/38
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jan 4, 2006ASAssignment
Owner name: LEUPOLD & STEVENS, INC., OREGON
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:ZADEREY, SERGEY YURY;EVANS-HENDRICK, ANDREW;YORK, ANDREWW.;REEL/FRAME:016971/0792;SIGNING DATES FROM 20050921 TO 20051125