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The Horus TReMoR 3 Reticle: Best General-Purpose, Long-Range Reticle?

The Horus TReMoR 3 reticle is an amazing tool, but it's confusing to use at first. After a two-day course at The Site, we cleared up the confusion and took it to the next level.

The Horus TReMoR 3 Reticle: Best General-Purpose, Long-Range Reticle?
The Site is located in Mt. Carrol, Illinois. Most people don't think of Illinois as a firearms training Mecca, but The Site has an impressive facility and offers courses for every shooting discipline.

As an instructor at The Site Firearms Training Center in Mount Carroll, Illinois, I have seen many new and exciting innovations in the firearms industry make their way through the classroom. One such innovation is the TReMoR 3 reticle, which was developed by Horus and is analogous to other, more common “Christmas tree” reticles like the EBR-7C. When looked at side-by-side with these other reticles, the TReMoR 3 (and its slightly different, updated version, the TReMoR 5) seems a little more like the heads-up display of an F-16 than the reticle of a rifle scope.

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The Site's training director, Jim Kauber, is a former U.S. Navy SEAL. He started the new TReMoR 3 reticle course after a law enforcement agency asked him to create a training curriculum after they'd adopted the reticle.

No matter the application, from competitive fields to hunting to law enforcement, rifle shooting tends to require a degree of simplicity and efficiency in the systems used to help acquire targets and engage them accurately. So many lines and numbers whose meanings are not immediately clear on a reticle seem at first glance to inhibit this goal of simplicity and efficiency, cluttering up the visual field and confusing the user. This was my mindset when I was invited to a new, two-day TReMoR course by Jim Kauber, The Site’s president and director of training. While I was thoroughly excited to learn something new and do some shooting, I still felt some measure of uncertainty that such an apparently complicated reticle could really do anything that simpler designs couldn’t. By the end of the course, however, my eyes were opened to the efficiency and flexibility offered by all those extra lines and numbers, which turned a tool that is usually nothing more than a simple ruler into a veritable Swiss Army knife. For this course, Kauber allowed me to borrow his gear, as I did not have a scope with a TReMoR reticle. I shot his 22 Creedmoor, which was custom-built by Benchmark Barrels with a 26-inch medium Palma contour barrel with 1:7.5-inch twist, Tikka T3 action, and KRG Bravo stock. The scope was a Horus HoVR 5-20x50, and for ammo I shot 80-grain Sierra MatchKing bullets at 3,448 feet per second (fps).

TReMoR Breakdown

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For the course, the author used a custom .22 Creedmoor rifle with a Horus HoVR 5-20x50 scope with a TReMoR 3 reticle.

TReMoR stands for The Refined Milling Reticle, and refined it is, bearing features that make often-complicated tasks, such as determining unknown distances via target size, simple and straightforward, a change that is deeply useful for practical applications in law enforcement and competitions. On the vertical reticle line, a section of one-tenth mil increments allows for a more accurate measurement of targets than can be achieved with basic .2-increment reticle markings. The TReMoR 3’s rapid range bars above the horizontal reticle line, a feature omitted in the TReMoR 5, allow for a target’s distance to be easily determined without the need to do any math by measuring a 12-inch target against the lines, which increase from a value of .5 to .9 mils. For example, if a 12-inch target at an unknown distance is measured with the rapid range bars and is found to be .7 mils tall (with the bottom of the target touching the horizontal reticle line), the distance is quickly known to be 435 meters, or 476 yards, based on the information provided in Horus’s TReMoR 3 Field Guide.

This system can be incredibly useful for law enforcement snipers who may be aware of 12-inch objects in an environment or for competitors who may be in match situations where electronic range-finding is not permitted. While only being able to use the TReMoR 3’s rapid range bars for 12-inch targets is certainly a drawback in situations where the exact sizes of targets or other reference objects may not be known (such as when hunting), they are still a useful backup tool for anyone who may find themselves in situations where a shot must be taken at an unknown range. They are a reliable alternative to electronic solutions, and when paired with the .1-increment markings at the top of the reticle, provide time-saving analog information that can be used to accurately and quickly determine range.

Wind Dots and Moving Targets

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The wind dots are one of the best features of the TReMoR 3 reticle. You'll need calculate the wind dots to your rifle setup, though.

The most significant feature of both the TReMoR 3 and 5 is arguably the wind dots. Located on the “Christmas tree” portion of the reticle, these dots can be calibrated to the user’s ballistic data to give a quick and accurate reference point for the wind when holding over. Using the 4.0 mil elevation reference line to calibrate, the first step is to determine what distance gives you a 4.0 mil elevation correction using your ballistic program of choice. Then, use your ballistic program to determine what wind speed would give you a .95 mil correction (the value of the second wind dot on the line). This velocity will equate to the value of two wind dots, so dividing it in half will give you the value of one wind dot. If the velocity for a .95 mil correction is determined to be 10mph, then the calibrated velocity of one wind dot will be 5mph. This value only stays true for holdovers from the rifle’s zero. However, dialing up 5 mils will halve the calculated wind dot value.

After the class did the calculations for our respective rifles, we went onto the range to test our math and the effectiveness of this system. Rather than correct off a first miss, or spend precious time doing calculations based on the perceived wind speed, all that needed to be done was visually estimate the mph value of the wind and hold roughly that value on the wind dots. After a bit of practice, the speed with which I was able to fire off shots based on my spotter’s and my own wind calls was a happy surprise - the amount of hits even more so. As with the rapid ranging lines, the usefulness of this tool over other methods of wind adjustments became immediately apparent to me. Hunters can ensure more accurate and fast first shots. Competitors, especially those in PRS matches, can save time and mental energy during stages, and law enforcement snipers can also save vital seconds and be confident in adjusting their wind holds without the need to do math during stressful situations.

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The Rapid Ranging feature is a useful tool to quickly figure target distance.

The wind dots, as Kauber informed us, could also be used for moving target lead calculations. While the TReMoR 3 comes with mph value lead reference marks, it was explained to us that they’re accurate out of the box only for 7.62mm rifles and only to 400 meters. They were still fairly usable for other calibers and accurate to farther distances for calibers with higher velocities, but determining those values required extra math - doable, but unnecessary. As such, the wind dots proved to be a faster and simpler solution for mover lead references than the predetermined mover mph reference points. It is also worth noting that the mph mover reference points were removed in the TReMoR 5. Using the wind dots as mover lead references consists of determining what your holdover needs to be and calculating the mil lead for the moving target using your method of choice. Then, all that needs to be done is to look at the corresponding mil value of that lead on the wind dots and breaking the shot when the target reaches that wind dot. When using the leading edge of the moving target as the reference point for timing and shot release, some measure of slop is permissible and will still get you a good center shot on a moving target with far more reliability than other systems. Competitors and law enforcement may find this especially useful.

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The fine-ranging capability can be used to estimate the size of a target. This is especially useful for law enforcement wanting to know the dimensions of a window or door at distance when they can't send in a team directly to find out. Knowing the approximate size allows the team to build a breaching charge that will properly fit the target.

Any simplification and increase in ease and reliability of the engagement of moving targets is certainly welcome in situations where misses have consequences. Even recreational shooters will encounter less frustration when engaging moving targets. I was not the only member of the course who grew bored with how much I was hitting the movers with this method! Ultimately, while the TReMoR reticles are intimidating at first glance, it is clear that their applications are varied and relevant to a variety of disciplines. With some simple practice and instruction, what seems unnecessary is quickly revealed to be a valuable time-saver that can benefit hunters and competitive shooters alike. I walked away from this two-day class fully absolved of my doubts and eager to share the many benefits of this reticle’s various features with my fellow rifle enthusiasts. The TReMoR 3 (or 5) is certainly useful for anyone needing a extra speed, flexibility and reliability in their shooting, and I highly recommend it.




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