FOG HORN

Vectronix Terrapin – Legendary
Performance By: Sal Palma

2012
Twobirds Flying Publication

inches in length, 4.1 inches in width and 1.9 imches in height. Certainly larger than pocket size but not at all obtrusive. The housing also features a ¼ -20 tripod interface.

K.I.S.S. is the modus operandi when discussing Vectronix’s Terrapin, but don’t let this less sophisticated member of the PLRF family fool you; in spite of its simplicity the Terrapin remains eminently capable. Terrapin is an eye safe Class I laser range finder operating in the 905 nano meter wavelength. The evaluation sample met the manufacturer’s range specification, which is published as 20 meters to 2400 meters. The unit opeartes on two 3 volt CR123 batteries which should provide in the order of 7000 measuremets. Theactual number of measurements will vary with environmental conditions and other factors.

The package weight with batteries is 500 grams and an aluminium chassis that is 5

Optics is exceptional, as in all Vectronix range measuring devices. Terrapin is a monocular design with 5x magnification, which I felt was somewhat stingy given its ability to range out to 2000+ meters. I would have preferred 7x magnification, which makes it easier to range smaller targets at distance. The 24 mm objective diameter is large enough to allow an abundance of light ensuring exceptional low light resolution. The eyepiece can be

Copyright 2012, Towbirds Flying Publication. All Rights Reserved.

Vectronix Terrapin
focused for a sharp and clear image, permitting a dioptric setting of ±4 DPT.

2012
The distance button depicted as the broken arrow and the function button designated with the letter “F”. Depressing the distance button fires the laser returning the line-of-sight range, which Vectronix refers to as the slope range. If held for more than a second, it will also illuminate the reticle for low light operation. The Terrapin will range up to three targets along the line-of-sight. Accessing this feature requires that you configured 3dOn.

I love Terrapin’s reticle; it is clean, efficient and illuminated. Line to line spacing is 10 mils and line to dot spacing is 5 mils

Operating the Terrapin involves the use of two push buttons.

The default configuration is 3dOFF. To enable 3d simply depress the F button three times in rapid succession; when you see 3dOFF illuminated press the distance button to switch the range finder to 3dOn. Other configuration changes are easily made following a similar procedure. The Terrapin can be configured to range in meters, yards, or feet. It can also be configured to operate in “Night Vision” mode. Incorporated in the Terrapin’s programing is a “Gate” feature. The Gate acts to prevent the LRF from returning a measurement for targets closer than a specified distance. I found it to be extremely useful for working in wooded areas, where one needs to range beyond the tree line Gates are adjustable
Copyright 2012, Twobirds Flying Publication, All Rights Reserved

Vectronix Terrapin
from 200 meters to 2000 meters, as necessary. Terrapin was designed to be a handheld laser range finder, but if you want to maximize its performance use of a tripod is mandatory. Vectronix offers a range of carbon fiber tripods that were simply awesome. Vectronix recommends using a carbon fiber tripod to eliminate magnetic interference when using a device equipped with an electronic compass; for example, its extraordinary PLRF25C. I recommend using a carbon fiber tripod for the same reason but I also like its light weight. Sniper teams and other operators work in environments where ounces count, and anything that can be done to reduce weight should be done. It has a direct impact on operator combat effectiveness and wellbeing. There are a number of carbon fiber tripods available from different manufacturers but I liked Vectronix’s approach. Their tripods are specifically designed to be an integral part of its ranging and surveillance products.

2012

Copyright 2012, Twobirds Flying Publication, All Rights Reserved

Vectronix Terrapin
Manufacturer Specifications Optics Magnification 5x Field of view 8° / 142 mil

2012

Rangefinder Laser type 905 nm Range capability 20 m to > 2400 m (1.8 km on NATO target) Conclusion There are laser range finders and then there is a Vectronix PLRF. The Terrapin offers robustness, reliability and accuracy at a manageable price point. If you’re a law enforcement organization struggling with diminishing budgets the Terrapin will give you basic capabilities with superb performance and reliability. For the serious hunter or precision shooter, you won’t find anything in the commercial space that will outperform Vectronix’s Terrapin. You can buy a Casio watch that will deliver a variety of functions, but a Rolex does much more than tell time. The choice is yours but Terrapin, like your Rolex, is a lifetime investment. Accuracy (1ó) ± 3 m Physical Dimensions (l x w x h) 128 x 104 x 47 mm Weight (with battery) 500 g

-SP

Copyright 2012, Twobirds Flying Publication, All Rights Reserved

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