June 07, 2022
When it comes to nocturnal predator and hog hunting, the majority of equipment on the market is aimed at gun hunters, with few products designed specifically for bow hunters.
Well, if you’re a bow hunter who enjoys chasing wild hogs, coyotes or other predators in low light conditions, now you’re in luck, as FeraDyne Outdoors has launched a range of thermal optics as part of its new Covert Optics brand.
One of the highlights of the range is the ThermX TRF, which FeraDyne claims to be the world’s first thermal rangefinder. Designed to detect anything with a heat signature up to 1,600 yards away, it can be used as a rangefinder and scouting tool when hunting predators, and it even has applications for deer hunting (where that’s where it’s at). is legal). For example, if you are in your tree waiting for daylight, you can monitor your surroundings to see if there are already deer in the immediate vicinity, allowing you to position yourself correctly for a potential shot when the first rays of light appear. Likewise, you can scan the field when you leave in the evening to make sure you don’t scare off deer in the next county when you return to the truck.
As for using the TRF, it’s fairly straightforward, with three buttons on the top of the unit controlling all functions and menu navigation. To use the rangefinder, all you need to do is turn the device on, hold the back button once you’ve acquired your target, and the distance is displayed at the top of the display screen. If you continue to hold the button, the TRF will remain in telemetry mode until you release your finger from it.
Powered by a Lepton 3.5 micro core sensor with 160×128 sensor resolution and 9hz frame rate (9fps refresh rate), the TRF displays images quickly and offers a wide range of features and options. Images are viewed via the 1.5-inch (160×128 resolution) color OLED display, with the unit offering 8X magnification, as well as a narrow 7-degree field of view to aid in target acquisition. If you need to adjust the display due to temperature or lighting conditions, there are four palette options: White-Hot, Black-Hot, Green, and Color. Further adjustments to improve image visibility can be made by manipulating the device’s brightness control.
For archery hunting with the TRF, the unit comes with threaded holes on both sides so it can also be mounted on a compound or crossbow as a thermal sight, where permitted . Zeroing is done via the crosshairs menu, which allows you to set and save different “pin” configurations, including the ability to change pin distances and remove certain pins if desired. The unit offers four preset options, including a single-pin configuration, vertical arc (multi-pin), and configurations specifically for FeraDyne’s Ax crossbows.
All spindles are fully adjustable, with the ability to change elevation and windage at the push of a button. To aid in pin positioning, the device’s Visible Laser Pointer (VLP) can be enabled through the menu, and the laser can be exposed by removing a screw on the front of the device.
The TRF offers multiple options for pin sizes and colors, allowing you to customize the setup to your liking. If you are using the multi-pin configuration, adjusting the first pin automatically adjusts the other pins by the same value, which is helpful in the calibration process. The orientation of the display can be changed via the menu to display images correctly whether the device is mounted on a compound or a crossbow. It is important to note, however, that if you plan to use the TRF as a sight, you will need to purchase a mounting plate from FeraDyne (sold separately).
At just 3.4 x 3.25 x 1.5 inches and weighing just 7 ounces, the TRF is light and compact, but it’s also well built, with a waterproof and shockproof construction to withstand heavy use in the field. If you’re a hunter who’s always looking for the ultimate challenge – like shooting down coyotes or hogs with archery gear at night – or just want to check out the terrain before heading to your stand in darkness to avoid spooking deer, check out this masterpiece of thermal optics from Covert. — Associate Editor Mark Demko