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 Post subject: Labradar
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 10:30 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
Looks like cnnhead and ChipEck have plunged for a Labradar http://http://mylabradar.com/. The orange thingy is a doppler radar. I guess that a chronograph measures the time taken for a bullet to pass between two points but a Labradar measures velocity via radar so I guess it cannot be a chronograph (it measures the frequency change of the emitted to received signal and infers the velocity from the difference - apparently).

There were a bunch of not-very-complimentary youtube videos about it which made me hesitate but with a desire to see it work (and a 30 day money back helps), I plumped for one.

Yup - as I suspected the thickos bleating on about it not working had not read the manual. yes, there is a manual, no, it is not long, yes, there are things you have to select from the setup menus (such as trigger - 'noise' or 'detect through the radar signal' (choose noise) - then select distance from muzzle to unit...).

It works like a charm and gives the splits of velocity at set distances, it also dumps the data into csv files, divided by manually-selected series. (I am going to research calculating BC from the velocity decay as well as calibrating local police speed traps - this thing should measure a car's velocity - just have to work out how to trigger it (and I assume it works with bodies heading towards it as well as away...)

I will record a youtube video (this weekend) and post the url - but so far.... every club should have one


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 1:48 am 
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Joined: Fri May 20, 2016 1:03 am
Posts: 67
Look fwd to your review

I'm glad you like it! I ordered one the day before yesterday.


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 11:43 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 11:46 am
Posts: 399
Location: Western Washington State, USA
Greetings,

Many thanks for a very unbiased and factual review.

I have been thinking of buying one for the simplicity of setup.

My concern is, how does it perform in the rain? That is, where I live it rains a lot and while the device would be sheltered from the weather does heavy rain affect it's accuracy?

Looking forward to your next update.

Cheers,

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 12:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
The unit is waterproof - rubber seals on the USB and SD card slots and the manufacturer is very responsive and helpful. Given the unit is sealed and if the wavelength isn't reflected by water droplets - my guess is rain is transparent to the system (otherwise radar wouldn't see planes in clouds) - which would be a bit tricky - you guys would be cut off from air transportation 300 days a year!.

I decided to go the whole hog and buy the case and stand (buying a system rather than monkeying around). It works like a charm, set up in a minute and all data is dumped to an SD card for analysis (in the dry). maybe I'll dig out a lawn sprinkler..

On another topic, when shooting in heavy rain, can you see the bullet path?

~zip


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 1:47 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2008 4:20 pm
Posts: 4774
Location: Scottsdale AZ
You don't have to shoot in the rain to do that. Many high power rifle shooters can call their shots by the vapor trails of their bullets.


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 5:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 8:34 pm
Posts: 317
Location: Texas
I tried to send them money for literally years (since early 2014). They promised me a unit, then said the first 25 were pre-production and went to reviewers. The president wrote me a personal email promising me a unit from the next batch. Then...nothing. I harangued them at SHOT and got more promises and then...more nothing.

OK, so their initial customer service sucked. That's firmly in my mind and left a very bad taste in my mouth.

If you're smart enough to read the manual (not the impression I get from the YT reviewers I've seen) and actually get to test this thing, I want to see one question answered: At what distance does it crap out, under perfect conditions, when tracking a common long-range bullet such as a boattailed .224 diameter projectile?

As far as I've been able to thought-experiment the use of the device, it has no utility over and above much cheaper devices unless it can continue to track a bullet past 100 yards. To me, it seemed a solution for long range shooters to figure out some interesting numbers. For pistol shooters, it seems convenient to set up and use (but not enough to justify the cost unless the only place I have available to shoot is an indoor range where I'm not allowed to walk past the firing point at any time.)

Just out of curiosity, what was the use case in your mind that prompted you to say "Yeah, I could use it for that"?

PS - Your note about clubs owning one is a good one. I hadn't thought of that. For a shared device, at least you know that one of your buddies isn't going to shoot your chrono; there should be no need to ask me how I know this.


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 7:06 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 20, 2016 1:03 am
Posts: 67
BenEnglishTX wrote:
Just out of curiosity, what was the use case in your mind that prompted you to say "Yeah, I could use it for that"?



BE, your question was not directed to me, but since i just ordered one, and watched a few youtubes on it, i thought i might reply.

As you intimated, in my case I do shoot nearly all indoors, but perhaps more importantly, the two indoor ranges i belong to do not allow anyone forward the firing line. I had also read the lighting could be a real issue with most chrono, particularly indoors. Finally, I shoot bullseye pistol, so 50 yards is the maximum. I've been having real issues reloading for accuracy. and the LabRadar seemed like the only real option. I am hoping the tracking feature will be of some use as well.

From a couple reviews i read, it seemed like 100 yards WAS the maximum for tracking, I remember one person mentioning that he started getting some FTTs (Failure to Track) at around 80 yards.


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 7:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2013 5:50 pm
Posts: 171
Location: Wisconsin
I have had mine for many months now. Extremely happy with it.

Chip


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 8:35 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
Hi BE-TX - here is my ramble-answer....

From the top...

Smarts reading the manual....

You can download it from here http://www.mylabradar.com/admin/incoming/20151117131553_UserManual11-Labradar-EN.pdf
yup - not much to it. I personally shy away from youtube videos that start with crashing heavy/thrash/death metal intros and then lots of shouting.

If you scan the manual and read the bits they advise you to... it is all pretty simple (but the flow diagrams leave a bit to be desired). One goof didn't set up the trigger option correctly. So if you can chew gum and walk (at the same time) and can read - RTFM before starting (and certainly posting on YT).

It is easy to set up successfully. Although - I would make it a bit more claymore-ish with a print saying - "front towards target"

At what distance does it crap out?

According to the manual.... (it is all about cross section)

projectile diameter Maximum range
.223 (5.56mm) 40-60 yards
.308 (7.62mm) 80-100 yards
.355 (9mm) 100-130 yards

para 4 is a statement that sumarises.. "it seems convenient to set up and use (but not enough to justify the cost - unless you can't set one up at a range) - not a bad starting point....

Answering para 5 '(what) prompted you to say "Yeah, I could use it for that"?

I 'angsted' for quite a long time, principally about the cost (eye watering), modified by the negative videos but:

1) I like tech... (the first functional cavity magnetron was developed at my university).
2) I like Gunn effect diodes (since my Dad made a portable speed-trap radar in the 60s)
3) I liked the simplicity of setup (lining up the bloody hoops and then the target),
4) once setup - the repeatability (ie not missing one from a series),
5) storage of data in SD card (v clean) transposing numbers of trying to attach a printer to a shooting chrony..
6) the distance splits, not just mv but distances out to the target.
7) I don't use PF but cross checked the Ke (which I like)
8) I had the ca$h
9) it is way too cool (I mean - a radar set!)
10) I would use it much more and would get more meaningful data
11) the data will allow calculation of BC (may be interesting)
12) you can lend it out without it getting shot (but I probably wouldn't lend it out - "the stand broke and it fell off the table" etc etc)

In the against column..

1) Co$t
2) Co$t
3) negative reviews
4) I have a chrony (see above)
5) if I sell my chrony - it won't offset the cost (see 1&2)
6) classic example of want vs need

The aftermath....

Good decision (but see Sec II item 6). It is simple to set up and produces great data that is easy to record, store and analyse

Bit of a ramble but that sort of sums up Does that help?

Bit chilly here today and tomorrow - but will shoot a youtube vid over the weekend..

I will add in the next week or two...

- migrating to a Dillon 650 from a Square Deal B
- the handgun Acreage Bullet catch
- the new .223 AR15 Arceage bullet catch

~zip


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 4:29 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:52 am
Posts: 23
Location: Poland
Simple setup, ready to use right out of the box. I use it for measuring pistol projectiles only (32-9-45) and almost exclusively at indoor ranges. It beats "optical" chronographs in this conditions since it's not affected by (artificial) light sources. I use European version which has limited transmitting power, but I'm interested in muzzle velocity only and I don't care for readouts on further distances.
When it gets warmer down here (probably April) I will test it outdoor in various weather conditions (perhaps even in the rain :-)).


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:17 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
The US agent says it will work fine in the rain but is not waterproof so put a plastic bag over it. (where have I heard that before?)


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 5:48 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:56 pm
Posts: 476
Location: MInnesota
I've had mine since late May last year.
The huge pluses are:
    Quick set up take down and no waiting for the line to go cold
    Use with Ransom Rest - no worry about shooting screens/chrony
    Ease of use
    Continuous tracking
    No worries on cloudy days
    Works in rain - we have a covered range

Downside:
    Cost
    It's expensive
    Oh did I mention it's price

- Dave

I'd buy it again in a heartbeat.

_________________
Certified Safety Instructor: Rifle & Pistol
They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
~ Ben Franklin


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 11:47 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 8:34 pm
Posts: 317
Location: Texas
Zipp0 wrote:
Hi BE-TX - here is my ramble-answer...
And an incredibly thoughtful and helpful answer, it was. I appreciate it very much.

At least I now know that they're actually shipping in quantity. Due to the bad initial contacts I had with them, I had just permanently filed them in my mind under "vaporware" and forgotten about them.

I'd never get rid of my 35P but it would be nice to have a unit that I could use at the local public indoor range. Also, for those times when I actually make the long trek to my home club with a variety of guns for shooting all day, having the 35P set up at a rifle bench and a Labradar on the pistol line (during the week, I often have the whole place to myself) sure would make things convenient.

And then there's the "none of my friends would ever shoot my chrono again" factor. That one's important to me. :)

Reconsideration commencing.

Thanks again, to you and all the respondents.


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 2:03 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
Do you mean 'friends' like this?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qGsgU_5TC_c

(sounds Canadian to me...)


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 8:45 am 
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Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 8:34 pm
Posts: 317
Location: Texas
Zipp0 wrote:
Do you mean 'friends' like this?
Almost exactly, except substitute a .45 ACP and it only took one hit.

That video was weird. What do you call shooting the chrono twice in one session? Persistence is usually an admirable trait but not when it comes with a lack of brains like that.


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:09 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2011 7:38 pm
Posts: 163
This is probably the best of the Youtube reviews out there. It also covers some of the issues that other reviewers, who ignored reading the manual and following the instructions, seem to have experienced.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGz3Gbf5njw

I bought one and tested it Friday, Saturday and Sunday with pistol and rifle, indoors and out. I connect mine to a USB external battery pack.

The only problem that I have had is you need the unit with 18 inches to the side and or slightly behind the muzzle. You set this distance in the preferences and 6 or 12 inches work very well. 20 or24 inches do not.

Again, it seems to me that the major issues of the people who had problems came from not reading or ignoring the information in the manual.


Mike Davis


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2017 7:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
warming up here over the next couple of days - will shoot and post brief video


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:03 am 
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Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:56 pm
Posts: 476
Location: MInnesota
jmdavis wrote:
.... I connect mine to a USB external battery pack.
Mike Davis


+1 on the battery pack, during one on my early long range sessions I drained the internal batteries. Luckily I had an external pack in the truck for my phones that kept us going. I bought one to use exclusively for the Labradar and now that's all I use.

- Dave

_________________
Certified Safety Instructor: Rifle & Pistol
They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
~ Ben Franklin


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 8:49 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:13 pm
Posts: 73
OK - I uploaded a quick Labradar video to You Tube - I may revisit it but here is the first cut:

https://youtu.be/QyAWRcDi_xQ

The backstops are 'Acreage Bullet Catches', made here in Nebraska. They are AR400 steel, very portable and very neat and I have them at 25 m/yds and 50 m/yds. I have a prototype for .223 (which will feature here in a week or two).

~Zip


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 Post subject: Re: Labradar
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 5:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 11:46 am
Posts: 399
Location: Western Washington State, USA
Greetings,

Have you tested the LabRadar with an old fashioned Chronograph? That is, set up the screens at 15 feet and compare what the LabRadar calculates for a 15 foot setting.

I cannot think of a positive test for either device to verify the velocity readings.

Still thinking I may "need" a LabRadar in my toolbox.

Cheers,

Dave


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