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Recently i've been trying to use claymores but I never seem to be able to position them in a way that makes them effective. I'm aware that you can avoid them by crouching or going prone but in the situations where i've used them, the other team seems to just freely walk into them without triggering them. There was one instance where one was planted several feet from the sliding door inside the Metro near the Cafe entrance and someone actually scaled over it like it was a fence?

If I want to protect a doorway, how many approx feet in distance should the claymore be placed to effectively cover any attempt to enter the doorway?

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Although I've never played BF3(so not posting as an answer), I would assume they work similar to the CoD series. Back when MW1 came out, I found a strategy guide on how to plant claymores with tons of good spots. Basically, you want to place them at a 45 degree angle from a wall about 2-3 feet back from a corner or doorway. Enemies running through will trigger them and they will explode when they reach the center of the their range increase kill chances. If this is completely irrelevant let me know and I'll delete it. –  turbo Apr 13 '12 at 16:13

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This actually can be kind of tricky with the location to where you place your claymores. I have not 'climbed them like a fence' before because they usually blow up in my face.

Although, I have entered a doorway (running through) where the claymore has gone off and not harmed me at all. [it should have killed me]

My recommendations:

For claymore locations on Metro: would be at the very top of both front and back escalators on objective B. These are usually squeezed points where players [on average] sprint up carelessly to attempt to either flank or bypass that objective.

For claymore locations near a doorway: I would place them facing the doorway, sitting in a location your enemy would not be facing when they enter that room ( when the claymore gets triggered, it blows up into their back). This method will strive to prevent the enemy from noticing the claymore (so they dont bypass it or disarm it safely).

If that method isn't applicable, your best option is try to conceal the claymore by hugging a wall facing outward towards the door and having it placed about a foot back from the door.

Keep in mind results may vary. Different players techniques vary and these are just a few recommendations.

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In Addition you can place the claymores in places where the enemy wont see them very well. This can be on a darker surface or something with the colour of the claymore. Also it's very nice to place them into some objects like a bush or a box. Places with many stuff on the ground are nice too. Keep in mind that the lasersight-attachement will show your clays on the minimap, so keep them in positions where noone will directly look at. –  Streuner Apr 13 '12 at 7:46
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Staircases tend to catch me out on some maps. –  Ric Apr 13 '12 at 8:47
    
Entrances to buildings (all ones with staircases are pretty much the same) on the left side (the side with no stairs) usually works. Although sometimes if you run fast enough it won't kill you, just knock off like 85% health. That;s still pretty scary though –  SSumner Apr 13 '12 at 14:45
    
Yea, i've run through them too and sometimes they don't damage me either which is ok on my side, i'm really just trying to figure out the mechanism for what causes them to explode. I agree that right at the exit from escalators off to the side is pretty effective. I've tried to place them at the center of the two middle escalators about 10 ft. back and it doesn't do much damage. –  Rubber Mallet Apr 13 '12 at 20:39
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On Metro, I place them on the outside of the outermost escalators on the set closer to C, with them slightly angled towards the escalator. I usually get kills with them that way –  SSumner Apr 16 '12 at 15:19

Claymores can activate other explosives. I put them near an enemy Minefield and then shoot them so they destroy the Minefield. Otherwise I use them as a Trap, making the Minefield Explode when an enemy Soldier goes near it, but not getting the kill.

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A claymore is directional. You need to have it facing the enemy for it to be triggered (which is differently from how it works in real life in that you don't need to manually trigger it). I also believe its damage is directional but I'm not positive about that part.

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