Wndsn Quadrant Telemeters

Description and use.

The Wndsn Quadrant Telemeter is a simple observational tool for measuring angles via various inputs combined with a number of means to directly process the acquired values.


What is a Quadrant Telemeter?

The best tool is the one you have with you, on you. Wndsn Telemeters are wallet-size distance and altitude nomographs developed in our applied science lab: Wndsn Telemeters combine a thousand years of civil engineering, surveying, navigation, and astronomy in one durable, low tech, high utility instrument that can be brought anywhere, is self-containing, and independent of external, modern technologies. Wndsn Telemeters are naked-eye tools that offer various means of measuring angular size, as well as graphical computers providing functions to process or convert the measured values. Their purpose is to help you navigate using known landmarks or astronomical features, to get a "second opinion" to cross-check values obtained with different means, or in emergency situations when other methods fail or are unavailable.

A tool for makeshift navigation, surveying, and rangefinding, the double-sided Wndsn Pocket Quadrant Telemeter enables you to do more than merely guessing distances. Find an object of known size, or distance, or angle and measure with the appropriate scales and utilize the baked-in trigonometry to find the desired value by aligning the provided string across the various scales.

Note that you can measure any dimension; width, height, etc., the trigonometry doesn't care where in space the triangle is located.


The word Telemetry is derived from Greek roots: tele; remote, and metron; measure; and we do exactly that; measuring from afar.

A telemeter is a device used to remotely measure any quantity. It consists of a sensor, a transmission path, and a display, recording, or control device. Telemeters are the physical devices used in telemetry. Electronic devices are widely used in telemetry and can be wireless or hard-wired, analog or digital. Other technologies are also possible, such as mechanical, hydraulic and optical. [Wikipedia]

Why Low Tech?

At Wndsn, we ask two questions in order to devise our solutions:

  1. What happens when the lights go out.
  2. What can we provide that can't be improvised.

When electronics stop working, all our usual strategies and technological solutions are unavailable. The worst case model, based on our high frequency research, is a reality in which electricity and data networks aren't available or accessible.

How can we ensure successful navigation, surveying, rangefinding, and local positioning in adverse conditions where guesswork isn't good enough?

Rangefinding and navigation can be improvised without specific tools, but we can make a difference by improving the accuracy by one or even two orders of magnitude.

The solution is to go back before the age of electricity and look for tried and true knowledge that was good enough for thousands of years. The answer is obvious: low tech. In the face of potential high-frequency disturbances, low tech becomes valuable as both backup and main tool.

Navies around the world still (and again) offer sextant training to their midshipmen, knowing that there is always a place for the art and science of low tech (but high utility) navigation. The sextant and its predecessors, traditional celestial navigation, surveying, triangulation, as well as analogue wayfinding techniques and the venerable astrolabe form the DNA of our Telemeters.

For our distance measuring instruments, for mission-critical durability and reliability, we prefer the analog and graphical kind of telemetry.

Shop Wndsn Quadrant Telemeters