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Any reason I shouldn’t get the most basic Kestrel (or eBay cheap)?


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Just for a bit of long range plinking and varminting. I’ve got StrelokPro so can manually input wind speeds and use that for ballistic calcs. Anything I’m missing or I’d benefit from on the fancier models?

Or would one of the £10 / £20 jobbies on eBay be just as good?

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Fancier Kestrels do the ballistic solving for you.

But the most basic Kestrel is fine to input details into Strelock etc.Just make sure you get a Kestrel that gives you Temperature, Wind Speed,  Barometric pressure and Altitude.

I previously owned the Kestrel 2500 and used the details along with Lapua 6DOF solver and TRASOL solver and was able to easily make hits out to 1000m.

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10 hours ago, Catch-22 said:

Fancier Kestrels do the ballistic solving for you.

But the most basic Kestrel is fine to input details into Strelock etc.Just make sure you get a Kestrel that gives you Temperature, Wind Speed,  Barometric pressure and Altitude.

I previously owned the Kestrel 2500 and used the details along with Lapua 6DOF solver and TRASOL solver and was able to easily make hits out to 1000m.

Cheers - I can get temperature, wind speed and barometric pressure off my watch, so theoretically I could do without that data on the wind meter, but understand it's much less faff to have it all in 1 place.

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what watch do you have that can do that? and what apps do you use? ive just got an apple watch and looking for some good apps

 

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Be mindful of things like temp off watches. Often their thermometers are affected by your body heat of your wrist.

And I doubt wind speed AND direction on the watch will also be as accurate as an impeller in the wind.

But hey, give it a try and see.

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what's the point of knowing the wind speed at the shooting position only?  I've never shot anywhere where it's the same down range - and that's where there's more influence on the slower bullet.  Seems like a gadget - thing wrong there of course.

A little practice and reading the wind becomes reasonably straight forward (again only where there's indicators)

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32 minutes ago, Popsbengo said:

what's the point of knowing the wind speed at the shooting position only?  I've never shot anywhere where it's the same down range - and that's where there's more influence on the slower bullet.  Seems like a gadget - thing wrong there of course.

A little practice and reading the wind becomes reasonably straight forward (again only where there's indicators)

i know the temp can be affected by body heat and of course wind speed is needed to be known throughout distances to target but i find knowing wind speed at the firing point helps me better estimate down range wind speeds. but the distances i shoot (upto 1000yrds max - rarely past 600) basic info is enough for me to help with my judgement! i dont need barometrics and Coriolis details for my shooting as im not going miles out, just wondered if anyone knew of any decent apps for basic info to help with judgment.

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4 hours ago, Catch-22 said:

Be mindful of things like temp off watches. Often their thermometers are affected by your body heat of your wrist.

And I doubt wind speed AND direction on the watch will also be as accurate as an impeller in the wind.

But hey, give it a try and see.

Watch doesn't do windspeed, only temp, barromatric pressure and altitude. Temperature is hugely variable if on your wrist (it can be 10-15 degrees out during hard exercise) but seems quite accurate if you take it off and leave in the shade for 10 mins. Probably just as variable as a Kestrel which is in your pocket or left in the sun to be honest.

@Engiebenjie - it's a Garmin Fenix 5. I mainly use it for it's exercise tracking stuff, but it does give me a lot of the data I need for StrelokPro, which is the app I use. Just missing the windspeed / direction really (and no markers on most of the places I shoot, other than natural features such as trees and grass etc.

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The Kestrel is supposed to be spun around by its lanyard for 10-15 seconds to help reset the thermometer.
Ultimately you asked the question if you needed a Kestrel or not. If you feel the watch gives you everything you need for Strelock to give you an accurate firing solution then go for it! I have no idea how far you’re shooting - if it’s out to hunting distances (eg 300m) then you don’t. But I’d argue for 600m+, especially on ranges where the wind is often variable or if you’re shooting unknown distances, I think a Kestrel will help you get 1st round hits. But give it a go and test to see if using the watch works for you. If it works then happy days, no need for a kestrel.

Measuring the wind at the firing point may sound pointless, but bullet deflection due to wind at the muzzle increases exponentially down range.

Agreed, wind down range is highly variable but it does at least gives you a starting point from which to work. If you have trees near the firing point and the end target, then you can measure what the wind is at the firing point and use that as a comparison or baseline against what you think the trees near the target are doing.

Some MOD ranges don’t have anything to easily guesstimate what the wind is doing (areas of Salisbury Plain) and so I’d rather have something in my pocket to help get me in the ball park than not. But if you’re the Ray Mears type...then good for you! 

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52 minutes ago, Catch-22 said:


Ultimately you asked the question if you needed a Kestrel or not. If you feel the watch gives you everything you need for Strelock to give you an accurate firing solution then go for it! 

 

My question wasn't do I need a Kestrel or not, but which one do I need (or did I even need a Kestrel and would a ten quid eBay special give me what I needed)? Just to be clear - the watch doesn't measure windspeed or wind direction so I have a fundemental gap in the data needed for Strelok.

In a roundabout sort of way I guess I've got my answers - the more expensive Kestrels give temp / pressure etc which I can get from my watch (albeit not the most integrated solution but fine for me for occasional use). So watch plus basic Kestrel seems to be my answer 👍

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  • 10 months later...

My apologies for necro'ing a thread, but just wanted to add a little bit to information/opinion gathered here.


First of all, in most of the UK, I'd say the cheaper kestrel and your cellphone app would be sufficient.  You have (at least when I was last there) pretty decent cell coverage across the country, so a cell phone for a ballistic app makes sense, especially if it's just plinking or varminting on some pasture.

That being said, I'd add that a Kestrel is most importantly a good training aid, for learning to call the wind speed.  In dynamic hunting (or tactical) situations, pulling a Kestrel out to read the wind is farcical.  Where the higher end Kestrel's come into play,  is when they have the AB software with the custom bullet models (higher end models).  Those custom curves are much more reflective of what a bullet will do in reality, than most cellphone ballistic apps.  Is it worth the extra coin?  That's really up to the shooter and their situation, but make no mistake, at range the CBM's (derived from actually shooting, and tracking the bullets on Doppler radar) show a marked improvement over the antiquated methods that give a more linear drop projection as the BC decays in flight (especially trans sonic). To be fair, sometimes they still need to be "trued" slightly.  But once calibrated, the ballistics from a Kestrel 5700 (or Garmin 701 or their new watch) they are spot on.

In the US, many places don't have good cell coverage, as well as the heat here can be pretty intense, which can (and does) force a phone into an automatic shutdown if left too long out in the direct sun.  Kestrels (and the like) don't suffer from that weakness.  I've seen a lot of shooters have their phones go down due to heat, in the middle of a match, leaving them with no ballistic data to work with.  They either learn to right it down in advance, or they migrate to a high end Kestrel.  <shrug>

It's all about what works for you and your situation (location, training level, etc.)....non of these options are a pancea for not practicing or preparing.

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  • 1 month later...

Sorry to hijack the thread, but I am in the process of deciding on what Kestrel, currently thinking of the 5000,with link to work with strelok Pro, any help would be appreciated 

 

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As per catch 22 , with StrelokPro and a 2500 kestrel with the tripod and wind vane kit should do the job . Also in StrelokPro settings click add vertical deflection of crosswind to the calcs. This helped to solve a few bad wind/ direction  misses . If wind is at 90’ the deflection from left or right is quite a bit different in your up elevation calls , bullet can be pushed down or it climbs up the crosswind  . Upto .3 mills at 200 y with the 223  . I’ve been adjusting week by week for no reason. Now leave turret set for zero wind and 100y zero and just try to understand my aim offs with StrelokPro for what to expect when foxy  passes by . 
have fun with the basic kit then move up . Been using StrelokPro for 6 years and only found this a few month’s back so we’re always learning little bits of info . Cheers Rich 

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To the OP, StrelokPro supports the Weatherflow in the app. For a cheap option it’s a no brainier to me.

Richard Uttings take on it:

https://youtu.be/k9HnZPRsqr0

Kestrel is excellent but I am not sure how much longer the tech is going to be relevant, so I would not personally invest in the Elite models especially with the likes of Trijicon Ventus already here. 

https://youtu.be/0dgdZSDg_YA

 

 

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7 hours ago, ds1 said:

To the OP, StrelokPro supports the Weatherflow in the app. For a cheap option it’s a no brainier to me.

Richard Uttings take on it:

https://youtu.be/k9HnZPRsqr0

Kestrel is excellent but I am not sure how much longer the tech is going to be relevant, so I would not personally invest in the Elite models especially with the likes of Trijicon Ventus already here. 

https://youtu.be/0dgdZSDg_YA

 

 

Not at 8k it won’t be .😂

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18 minutes ago, One on top of two said:

Not at 8k it won’t be .😂

You should see the sailing version - about £80k for fat blokes on boats.

Point is the tech is there now so it’s going to get cheaper and better. Honestly I think I would have bought one had it given wind readings out to 1km……..price is in the same ball-park (cheaper by about £700) than ‘normal’  Vectronix 25c lasers. 

Given the ‘gaming’ in sports like PRS etc anything that reads the wind for you down range at multiple points is going to give an advantage and will be afforded by the ‘sportsmen’ one way or another. 

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Does anyone know were I can get a Weatherflow Wireless Bluetooth, meter from, as thinking of trying 1 of these, as can't justify the money for a Kestrel, 

 

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