How to use a golf rangefinder is easily learned after you have been using one for some time. A golf rangefinder is essentially a device that enables you to view your current aiming distance, with the aid of a lens. Rangefinders come in three different models; they are binoculars, laser rangefinders, and compasses. Each model has a slightly different feature set that enables the user to more easily use the device.
Locking ranges are the most common feature found on a golf rangefinder. These allow you to adjust the scope without having to remove the device from your eye. Laser ranges are usually found on the top (or “optic”) part of the device and the other two types are fixed and removable scopes. The first model usually has a tiny red dot that allows you to align your sight with the scope. The locking mechanism allows you to maintain the correct distance as you move across the range.
Another useful feature is the windage adjustment, which allows you to adjust the slope of the rangefinder reticle for greater accuracy. Scopes with windage adjustments will wind up and down along the vertical axis, but will not adjust for horizontal movement. Most windage adjustments are on a knurled wheel that rotates around a spring, which in turn, adjusts the vertical angle. This feature is useful when you want to measure the range and are not moving around very fast. Simply slide the knurled wheel to the desired adjustment position, look up, and take your measurement.
A critical aspect in learning how to use a rangefinder correctly is being able to take successive readings of your target distance at various ranges without the device affecting your accuracy. This is why most rangefinder users find that their initial readings are inaccurate and need to go back and check their numbers. This is also true of mechanical rangefinders, especially if they are used outdoors. When a person needs to measure the distance to the hole, or to the pin, they often have to hold the rangefinder steady while looking through the sight and adjusting until the right number of digits are obtained. The user manual will advise you to never hold the rangefinder horizontal to your eye, as this can cause the distance reading to be incorrect.
Some golfers also find that their rangefinder gives them problems when they are working on different obstacles. Sometimes the rangefinder will focus incorrectly, or the magnification may be off-set, or there will be dead zone areas where your aim will be off completely. The user manual will often address these problems in detail.
Other problems will occur when the rangefinder is being used at an object that is too close to be useful. You may find that your rangefinder has a problem focusing when you are using it on branches, trees, or other close up objects. Sometimes this happens simply because the rangefinder doesn’t have a high enough power source to allow for brighter images. If the image is dim, then the rangefinder may not have enough light to reach the target, and the result will be a fuzzy distant target. In order to resolve this problem, you may need to upgrade the battery of the rangefinder.