The Range-finder

Working alongside the Vickers Machine Gun from its introduction into service until the time it was withdrawn was the Rangefinder. This page contains photos of the rangefinder and its associated equipment along with some downloadable files such as the training manuals and range tables.

For a general overview of the range-finder, please watch our YouTube video:

A number of Manuals and handbooks for the range-finder are available for download, including all of those that are referenced on this page.

Rangefinder, Infantry, No. 2 (Barr & Stroud), Mk. III:

Stand, Instrument, No. 14:

Mk. I

Introduced in March 1912, by List of Changes 15,844.

Mk. II (Also: Stand, No. 1 & 2 INFty R.F., Mk. II)

Introduced in March 1912, by List of Changes 15,845.


Introduced in August 1936 by List of Changes A9,916.

The stand … consists of three telescopic legs hinged to a socket; the legs permit of adjustment of the stand for height. The socket is fitted with an extension tube which permits of adjustment for height without disturbing the position of the stand, the tube being clamped at the desired height by means of a clamping screw. A pivot, to which the carrier of the range-finder is attached, is supported in a bearing secured internally to the upper end of the extension tube and permits the range-finder traversed in the horizontal plane.


Case, No. 12 Range-finder:

Mk. I

Introduced in March 1912 by List of Changes 15,844 as a case with 2 testing rods. This was amended in November, 1913, with LoC16561 to add a clip and screwdriver and the fittings were modified by virtue of LoC16562 .

Mk. II

Introduced in March 1915 by List of changes paragraph 17,102.


In August 1918 (List of Changes 20,812), the Mark III case was introduced and will take Range-finders Marks II to V; Marks I an II cases will not take Range-finders Marks IV and V. The adjusting lines painted on the wood of the Mk. III case were omitted in December 1918 (LoC 21,419).

Mk. IV

A new case fitted with lath, introduced in August 1936 (LoC A4,824). All previous marks were modified to introduce the lath and subsequently called the Mk. I*, II* and III*.

The case for range-finder is of wood, and is provided with internal fittings to hold the range-finder, and the Mark II stand in its frog.

A metal adjusting lath is secured to the inside of the lid of the case by means of four screws at the centre. Four end screws are screwed into the case through elongated slots in the lath, so as to allow for expansion of the metal. These end screws should never be screwed tight home. The lath has two white lines placed exactly 80 centimetres apart. These are used for testing the coincidence adjustment of the range-finder on an artificial infinity.

A stay is fitted to the lid of the case to keep the lid in a vertical position whilst adjusting the range-finder by means of the lath. The stay is held in position by a plunger, and is drawn within the case when not in use.

A metal clip is attached to the front of the case to hold the screw-driver.

Cover, No. 12 Range-finder:

Mk. I

Introduced in April 1912 by List of Changes 15,893.

Mk. II

Introduced in March 1915 by List of Changes 17,103.

The Marks II and II* covers are similar to the [below] but are of waterproof canvas with leather straps. The covers are provided with a small cylindrical box to accommodate a cleaning brush. The Mark II* is a conversion of the Mark II by the addition of a bucket to carry the Mark III stand.


Introduced in October 1930 by List of Changes A5,521 and modified by LoC A9,916 t0 add a bucket for the Range-finder stand.

The Mark III* cover is similar to the Mark IV and is a conversion of the Mark III by the addition of a bucket to accommodate the Mark III stand.

Mk. IV

The Mark IV cover … is of canvas web fitted with a web sling for carrying. It is well padded internally with felt, the pads being covered with canvas as a protection against moth. A hole is cut in each felt pad to receive a pocket, in which cleaning materials may be carried, and a bucket is sewn to the exterior of the cover to accommodate the Mark III stand. The cover is fastened by means of straps, tabs and studs.



Frog, No. 14 Instruments Stand, Mark I

The frog is made of leather, and consists of a cylindrical leather body to take the Mark II stand, a cover to protect the head of the stand, and a loop at the back for attachment to a waistbelt.