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Posted: 8/3/2001 7:27:31 AM EDT
Just saw that Sniper special on the History channel and was struck by the relatively basic nature of the Vietnam era sniper rifle. Basicly a civilian/Wal-mart grade Rem 700 with a 3x9 Unertle/Redfield scope. Compared to todays technology that seems pretty tame. Makes you wonder if some of use, including me, should spend less time tinkering with our guns, handloads etc, and spend more time perfecting the craft.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:42:56 AM EDT
To add to that, Hathcock often used M72 "special ball". My guess is that his weapon was basically 1 moa capable, when you consider rife+scope+ammo. In MHO many shhoters spend [i]way[/i] too much time at the shooting bench and tinkering with finetunning handloads. Get out there and shoot!
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:46:29 AM EDT
I think Hathcock used a Winchester model 70. There are model 70's used in the Army as sniper rifles as well as remington 700's. I think I remember seeing that Hathcock's favorite was a model 70 though. Just my $.02
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:49:44 AM EDT
I think your right about the Win70 being Hathcocks rifle. Do you suppose they even bedded, free floated, etc the rifles than?
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:53:26 AM EDT
How did Hathcock do it?
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It wasn't Sgt Hathcock... It was "Col Mustard" in the Library, with a knife! [:D]
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:56:14 AM EDT
In MHO many shhoters spend way too much time at the shooting bench and tinkering with finetunning handloads. Get out there and shoot
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Absolutely true. One caveat, though. The nearest range is 30 miles away from me, and only open one day a week..and then only 100 yards. "Getting out there and shooting" is something I can't do much. If it were not for the fact that I shoot a ton of competition in five different disciplines, I'd be "spending way too much time tinkering with handloads" too. Not for want of trying, just due to the logistics of the thing. I think a lot of us are in the same boat.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:58:02 AM EDT
Originally Posted By bobbyfenn: Just saw that Sniper special on the History channel and was struck by the relatively basic nature of the Vietnam era sniper rifle. Basicly a civilian/Wal-mart grade Rem 700 with a 3x9 Unertle/Redfield scope. Compared to todays technology that seems pretty tame. Makes you wonder if some of use, including me, should spend less time tinkering with our guns, handloads etc, and spend more time perfecting the craft.
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Hathcock's rifles were hardly off the shelf 700's of the day. He was a competitive shooter prior to going to VN. He won camp perry. If I remember correctly, they had a very capable custon gunsmith with them in VN. They did much customizing to the rifles. Used the best barrels they had. Probably trued the actions. Trigger job. Floated. You get the picture. Practice is VERY important, but good equipment will let you (or Hathcock) get the most out of your abilities.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 7:58:20 AM EDT
Typical flatlander....just kidding.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:02:18 AM EDT
I believe the older M-21 sniper rifles were the Winchesters. Current US Army sniper rifles are M-24's and based on Rem700. Someone can correct me if that's wrong but I believe that is correct. Yes, many of us spend WAY too much time blaming poor equipment, bad ammo, wind, and crappy barrels for poor shooting. Much like when I go to a CMP match and folks have free-floated, match sighted, custom ammo, hair trigger "service" rifles. Not to mention spending 30 minutes to suit up with shooting jacket, one-point sling, blinders, magnifying glass eyepiece, shooting mit and everything else, and STILL not shoot to Hathcock's standards. Practice, practice, practice.......
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:04:28 AM EDT
Oh, by the way. Did anyone happen to notice he was from ARKANSAS!!! That's a great state to be from. <------------------- [:D]
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:36:39 AM EDT
Also, if you read the book "Marine Sniper" by Charles Henderson, it goes into his upbringing a bit. He was born dirt poor way out in the country, and his mother and grandmother depended on young Carlos to put food on the table with his .22. In addition, he had to sell the pelts of the rabbits he shot to buy cartridges. If he didn't shoot well, or practice sound fieldcraft, they didn't eat and he ran out of rounds to try again. He just applied this same discipline to the hunting of men in defense of his fellow Americans. Rest In Peace, Gunny. Jarhead out.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:44:34 AM EDT
Originally Posted By M4Guy: Oh, by the way. Did anyone happen to notice he was from ARKANSAS!!! That's a great state to be from. <------------------- [:D]
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Didn't you guys give us a President as well..? [puke]
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:58:20 AM EDT
Back during WW2, the USMC aquired (mostly through unofficial channels) .30-06 Winchester model 70s. They fitted them with Unertl 8x and 10x target scopes. These were used for sniping by the Marines in WW2, Korea, and Vietnam. They also used Springfield 1903s fitted with the same scope, and some M1Ds or M1Cs (not sure which). But it seems the privetly purchased model 70s were the main sniper weapon of the USMC. During WW2 and Korea, the logistics types pretty much refused to issue M72 "special ball" to USMC snipers, so they used M2 ball and M2 AP like everyone else. In Vietnam, the snipers got M72 "special ball", and they also used some handloads. In Vietnam, the pre-64 (often pre WW2!) model 70s were well used and beat up. They switched to the .308 Remington 700 and the Redfield scope during Vietnam. But from what I read, Hathcock did most of his work with the model 70. The main reason they switched to the Remington was the very poor quality of the post '64 / pre '68 Winchester. The new Remington 700s were worked over by USMC gunsmiths. The same gunsmiths probably worked to keep the old model 70s working. The weak link in the model 70 (assuming the scope was properly mounted) in terms of accuracy was the ammo. M2 ball is 2 moa stuff, and the M72 "special ball" is 1 moa stuff. In a more practicle sense, the limitation was the scope. The Unertl was designed as a target scope, and had a narrow field of view. Neither it nor the Redfield were sufficiently rugged.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:05:54 AM EDT
Also: If you walk into a gunstore, buy a modern quality .308 bolt action, properly mount a Leupold scope on it, and feed it Federal .308 match ammo, you will have a setup that is as accurate (and probably much more so) then USMC snipers used in 'nam. Hathcock did well because he was a very good shot who had good woodcraft skills, and the right mental attitude. His equipment was marginal by todays standards.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:09:35 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Jarhead_22: Also, if you read the book "Marine Sniper" by Charles Henderson, it goes into his upbringing a bit. He was born dirt poor way out in the country, and his mother and grandmother depended on young Carlos to put food on the table with his .22. In addition, he had to sell the pelts of the rabbits he shot to buy cartridges. If he didn't shoot well, or practice sound fieldcraft, they didn't eat and he ran out of rounds to try again. He just applied this same discipline to the hunting of men in defense of his fellow Americans. Rest In Peace, Gunny. Jarhead out.
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Here, here. I met in person Jim Land, hathcock's commander and trainer, and got him to sign my copy of "Marine Sniper." One of my more favorite posessions. Thanks, Gunny, from a grateful, if somewhat forgetful, nation.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:13:33 AM EDT
M4Guy - the M21 was a modified M14...I don't believe there was a bolt gun with this designation. RE marine armament during WW2... I beleive the primary sniping weapon employed was the 1903A1... a '1903' bolt gun painstakingly tuned by Marine armorers and equipped with a very long unertl 8x target scope... It was a good sniping rifle by WW2 standards and the Marines employed snipers to great effect...in stark contrast to the abysmal army solution...the 1903A4 (I have one).. The 1903 action, as well as the M1C and M1D rifles based on the "Garand" saw use in Korea and some limited use in early Vietnam... I believe the "hunting" rifles such as the win 70 began to see use in Korea.... Of course, I could be wrong, I wasn't present at either conflict and exceptions always exist.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:15:59 AM EDT
I remember reading that Hathcock got a lot of his kills by scoping a M2HB and setting it up on a mount that could be adjusted by knobs. Then just sighted it in on paths and latrines the VC used around his firebase. Not a lot of skill involved doing THAT!
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:16:21 AM EDT
How did he do it? One shot at a time.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:19:28 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/3/2001 9:18:29 AM EDT by medicjim]
Forgot to mention... If you fire a 30-06 round from a marginal rifle, and net a 1.5 MOA accuracy.... and you aim perfectly at a man sized target at 800 yards... by definition, most of your shots will hit within a circle 12 inches in total width, centered on the target... most hits within 6" of center mass are leathal... of course, you do have to aim perfectly and call wind perfectly...but heck, that's simple, right?
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:32:48 AM EDT
Originally Posted By medicjim: RE marine armament during WW2... I beleive the primary sniping weapon employed was the 1903A1... a '1903' bolt gun painstakingly tuned by Marine armorers and equipped with a very long unertl 8x target scope... It was a good sniping rifle by WW2 standards and the Marines employed snipers to great effect...in stark contrast to the abysmal army solution...the 1903A4 (I have one)..
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I believe you are right that the 1903 was the primary USMC sniper rifle during WW2. They often removed the return spring from the Unertl, and reset the scope by hand. I don't know to what extent they modified the 1903s (they were using M2 ball and AP at the time--improving the rifle wouldn't result in much net improvement!). Peter Senich's books cover all of this in detail. I don't have them in front of me, so I'm going by memory.
Originally Posted By medicjim:The 1903 action, as well as the M1C and M1D rifles based on the "Garand" saw use in Korea and some limited use in early Vietnam... I believe the "hunting" rifles such as the win 70 began to see use in Korea....
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They first aquired the model 70, and I believe some model 54s, for use in WW2. However, the 1903 was probably the primary USMC sniper rifle during this war.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 9:59:18 AM EDT
Originally Posted By raven: I remember reading that Hathcock got a lot of his kills by scoping a M2HB and setting it up on a mount that could be adjusted by knobs.
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No. He got his kills the old fashioned way. He earned everyone of them in the mud and the heat and the blood of combat. The [b]one[/b] you're talking about was from an M2 on a firebase onto which Carlos attached bases so he could use his same scope and rings off his M70. He then used the T&E of the M2 to dial it in on the paths around the firebase. He fired on a VC courier's bicycle loaded with AK-47s, knocking him ass over teakettle but uninjured, but the VC made the mistake of picking one up and firing at him. Carlos dropped him with one shot...[b]from 2500 yards[/b].
Not a lot of skill involved doing THAT!
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Still think so?
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:01:29 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:02:03 AM EDT
A friend of mine won an NRA sanctioned 600 yard match in Eastern NC a couple of weeks ago. Camp Butner I believe. He used his stock Chinese M-14 and Portuguese surplus ball! The weapon may have had a trigger job I guess but otherwise it was just his everyday range gun. I don't believe it was even bedded. He was shooting against very good competition, many of whom were using the best equipment money can buy. I'm sure Ronnie would be the first to tell you not to bet the farm on those odds but it just goes to show you how far practice and desire can take you. Word I got, from others who were there, is that there were a lot of long faces among the space gun shooters when that day ended...LOL Rocketman
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:08:47 AM EDT
Hathcock had a decent rifle, but what it all came down to was talent and skill. Remember, he did win a national shooting title a few years before Vietnam, so that put him at a VERY high level of skill. If you read Marine Sniper, he shot almost constantly and had a uncanny skill level of estimating range and windage. And as was stated above, he had to be very accurate to eat as a child. No game taken=no dinner. I would imagine his stalking and hiding skills vere devoloped from a young age in this fashion. I wish I could have met him vefore he died. I would given him a thank you for doing his job protecting american troops. Vietnam was pure BS, but he still went out and did his job for his friends and country.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:11:25 AM EDT
Hathcock used a Model 70 in 30-06 on his first tour, which is when he got most of his kills, and a Model 700 in 308 on his second tour.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:12:29 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Jarhead_22: The [b]one[/b] you're talking about was from an M2 on a firebase . . . He fired on a VC courier's bicycle loaded with AK-47s, knocking him ass over teakettle but uninjured, but the VC made the mistake of picking one up and firing at him. Carlos dropped him with one shot...[b]from 2500 yards[/b].
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If I recall correctly, he made several shots with the M2 from the firebase, and the 2,500 yard shot wasn't the courier. He probably got way more than 93 kills, particularly when him and his spotter took on the company in Elephant Valley. The two of them worked their way through nearly 80 men over several days. Then there was the general he got at 800 yards after helicopter insertion, and the VC sniper who almost got him, and many, many more. Hathcock had the shooting skill of a top NRA Highpower long range shooter, combined with the woodcraft of a hunter who stalked his prey the old fashioned way . . .
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:18:15 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Jarhead_22:
Originally Posted By raven: I remember reading that Hathcock got a lot of his kills by scoping a M2HB and setting it up on a mount that could be adjusted by knobs.
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No. He got his kills the old fashioned way. He earned everyone of them in the mud and the heat and the blood of combat. The [b]one[/b] you're talking about was from an M2 on a firebase onto which Carlos attached bases so he could use his same scope and rings off his M70. He then used the T&E of the M2 to dial it in on the paths around the firebase. He fired on a VC courier's bicycle loaded with AK-47s, knocking him ass over teakettle but uninjured, but the VC made the mistake of picking one up and firing at him. Carlos dropped him with one shot...[b]from 2500 yards[/b].
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It has been a while since I read that book, but I clearly remember being way more than just one kill with the M2HB. So many in fact I became less and less impressed. This was way back when I was 14 or so, and knew jack about guns. But somehow Hathcock's sighting a heavy machinegun onto a latrine and waiting for some poor sap to squat into your crosshairs fails to impress me, even if the latrine is 2000 meters away.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:22:44 AM EDT
Originally Posted By DonS: If I recall correctly, he made several shots with the M2 from the firebase, and the 2,500 yard shot wasn't the courier.
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I'll dig out my copy of "Marine Sniper" when I get home from work tonight and confirm. Regardless, it's still incorrect to say that he "got a lot of his kills by scoping a M2HB and setting it up on a mount," and that there's "Not a lot of skill involved doing THAT!" Maybe he got a couple of his kills (out of 93 confirmed and [b]many[/b] times that number unconfirmed) that way, but most of them were taken down on his belly with the bugs and the snakes in Indian country. And yes, there is quite a bit of skill in doing it that way. Jarhead out.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:29:52 AM EDT
Hathcock was naturally a good shot just like Edward Van Halen is a natural axe grinder. Some people are hust better shots than others. I have a couple of friends who have some really nice match ARs & M1As, but they are still terrible shots.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:30:21 AM EDT
Originally Posted By raven: I remember reading that Hathcock got a lot of his kills by scoping a M2HB and setting it up on a mount that could be adjusted by knobs. Then just sighted it in on paths and latrines the VC used around his firebase. Not a lot of skill involved doing THAT!
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Please put down your Playstation II controller, and pick up a copy of Marine Sniper and read it. Not a lot of skill involved doing THAT! [}:D]
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:31:02 AM EDT
Originally Posted by raven: It has been a while since I read that book, but I clearly remember being way more than just one kill with the M2HB. So many in fact I became less and less impressed. This was way back when I was 14 or so, and knew jack about guns. But somehow Hathcock's sighting a heavy machinegun onto a latrine and waiting for some poor sap to squat into your crosshairs fails to impress me, even if the latrine is 2000 meters away.
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You have your opinion, to which you're entitled, and the rest of the shooting community has theirs. In my experience, the cold barrel shot, out of any long gun, is the true test of a shooter. From 2500 meters, with a standard riflescope only manufactured to be useful out to about 800 meters, a one shot kill is phenomenal. I challenge you to find a quote in "Marine Sniper" to back up your assertion. I'll dig out my copy tonight, as I already said, and attempt to back up mine. Here I go again, taking Marine Corps shit personally. Oh well. As they say, "Pain is temporary. Pride is forever." More to come...
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:39:27 AM EDT
Originally Posted By bobbyfenn: Makes you wonder if some of use, including me, should spend less time tinkering with our guns, handloads etc, and spend more time perfecting the craft.
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Agreed, this is done in all the shooting sports. I see it all the time in Sporting Clays, which is a shotgun sport. All manner of gun, choke, and shell changing going on when we should be paying attention to the basics like gun mount, hold point, break point, and keeping that damned barrel moving! (you shotgun shooters know what I mean now don't you?)
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:42:25 AM EDT
Never surrender, Jarhead_22!!!!!!! I'll back you on this one. To my recollection, ONLY once did Hathcock use the 50 for a kill. I'm amazed at these armchair snipers who could dishonor Gunny's memory this way. Look turdz - Even IF Hathcock had ONLY ONE kill that showed skill, THAT'S ONE MORE THAN YOU. Till you've walked on water, don't criticise those who sank after walking on the water briefly.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:42:41 AM EDT
I understand that Hathcock may have achieved some of his skills using slam-dunk methods, but what the hell is wrong with that? If he used an artillery bracket to destroy the enemy, more power to him. He wasn't exactly involved in sporting game. If I possessed an ounce of his skills and was faced with the situation, you can bet that I would have done everything in my power to obtain a fixed heavy weapon to blast the enemy far outside his retaliatory range. I like to eat, I like to hang out with women, and the only way you do that is by *staying alive.* Rudel, Kozhedub, Prien, Nishizawa, Bong, Bader, Murphy-- they've probably all been over-publicized. But they are the ones I love reading about!
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:43:17 AM EDT
You're apt to win, jarhead, because I read that book when I was 14 and haven't read it since. But I remember picking it up because I thought it was going to be the story of the superlative sniper, crawling in the boondocks for days, making incredible shots with his rifle, taking out generals, etc. For three chapters it was just Hathcock sitting behind sandbags with his tricked-out .50, and I was real disappointed. I don't even think I finished the book, and never heard about the sniper duel until the History Channel piece. I'll go see if there's a copy at the used bookstore.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:47:32 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/3/2001 10:49:59 AM EDT by HANGFIRE]
Raven, I for one think your comment exposes your young and tender years status. Long shots are extremely difficult to make under any circumstances. Enemy targets are to be destroyed whenever and wherever possible. Many of our war dead were caught and killed answering the call of nature or sleeping. There are no "TIME OUTS" in war. PS Thanks for your efforts to turn a thread about an AMERICAN HERO into shit sandwich[V]
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:51:52 AM EDT
Originally Posted By raven: But I remember picking it up because I thought it was going to be the story of the superlative sniper, crawling in the boondocks for days, making incredible shots with his rifle, taking out generals, etc. For three chapters it was just Hathcock sitting behind sandbags with his tricked-out .50, and I was real disappointed.
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Well, you must not have finished the book, or read past chapter 3.
I don't even think I finished the book, and never heard about the sniper duel until the History Channel piece.
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OOooooppsssss!!!!There you go!!!!!!!!!!! Funny how we ALL spout off 'bout things we don't know nothing about. Me included.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:51:58 AM EDT
Originally Posted by garandman: Never surrender, Jarhead_22!!!!!!!
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Surrender? I'm not familiar with the term... Or as a braver, tougher Marine than me once said, "Surrender Hell, we just got here."
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:53:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/3/2001 10:52:55 AM EDT by raven]
Long shots are extremely difficult to make under any circumstances. Enemy targets are to be destroyed whenever and wherever possible. Many of our war dead were caught and killed answering the call of nature or sleeping. There are no "TIME OUTS" in war.
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Long shots are a lot less hard when you've got a .50, it's fixed on a secure mount, got a big-ass scope, and is finely adjustable with knobs. As Hathcock racked up the kills with this setup, his achievement of 83 kills didn't look so incredible. I'm never said this is somehow 'unsporting', nor am I saying Hathcock isn't a great sharpshooter with the Winchester.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 10:59:09 AM EDT
EVAN KENNEDY, small man.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 11:02:01 AM EDT
Originally Posted By raven: Long shots are a lot less hard when you've got a .50, it's fixed on a secure mount, got a big-ass scope, and is finely adjustable with knobs. As Hathcock racked up the kills with this setup, his achievement of 83 kills didn't look so incredible. I'm never said this is somehow 'unsporting', nor am I saying Hathcock isn't a great sharpshooter with the Winchester.
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First off, as I said, the cold barrel shot is a bitch. Carlos didn't fire off a belt or two. He hit that butterfly trigger once, and someone died. He didn't walk the shots in on target. And it was 93 confirmed, many more unconfirmed. Not 83. How about checking fire until you break out your copy of the book and can post fact, not just fuzzy memories? Cool?
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 11:06:19 AM EDT
Raven, BOY, your talking bad about Gunny Hathcock on a gun site. That's like going to a Southern Baptist's site and putting down Jesus. First thing, if the Gunny were still alive you wouldn't rate the sweat off his balls. Secondly, you need to wipe that water out from behind your ears and go do some research to find the error in your ways. UncleSam out.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 11:07:19 AM EDT
Originally Posted By raven: Long shots are a lot less hard when you've got a .50, it's fixed on a secure mount, got a big-ass scope, and is finely adjustable with knobs. .
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fine adjustment knobs on a 50??? when did this happen??? Am I wrong here???
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 11:16:24 AM EDT
I've never shot the M2 but I know plenty people that have. Even on a sturdy mount, it giggles all over the place. The shock wave alone creates quite a dust storm. If you can get consistant hits out to 2500 yards with one, or a mile and a half, you got to be pretty damn good. Wind, humidity and mirage all come into play even with a .50 cal.. One cm of deviation at 100 yards turns into 1 meter at 1000 yards. And it keeps getting bigger. At 2500 yards, one mil dot measure is about 8 feet.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 12:22:04 PM EDT
Originally Posted By antiUSSA:
Originally Posted By M4Guy: Oh, by the way. Did anyone happen to notice he was from ARKANSAS!!! That's a great state to be from. <------------------- [:D]
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Didn't you guys give us a President as well..? [puke]
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No, he doesn't count. He's anti-american and a traitor to our country and the constitution. He might have been born here but he's not an Arkansan or even an American at heart. Should have been him in VN getting shot at. At the very LEAST he should not have been allowed to become a politician and decide the fate of thousands of military members worldwide. I can never forgive him for that, and on behalf of Gunny's great state he has officially been disowned. So I [puke] with you.
Originally Posted By medicjim: M4Guy - the M21 was a modified M14...I don't believe there was a bolt gun with this designation.
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OK, thanks, I wasn't sure. I know I have the sniper FM laying around somewhere and I thought the M21 was a bolt gun, but couldn't remember for sure what it was.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 12:24:23 PM EDT
Jeeze, Raven, not to pile on, but W-T-F?!?! 1. Tell us the size of and range of the farthest thing you've ever fired at and hit, cold shots only. 2. What were you shooting. 3. How many rounds to hit it? I'm a fair guy, so I'll put up right now. HKSR9T, .308 semi, 375 yards, into a honeydew melon, 2 shots into about an inch. I've hit the 40 inch ram at 800 yards, hell, I DANCE on it, but I KNOW it's at 800 yards, exactly, and it still took me 2 shots to get the elevation exact the first time. I AM NO RIFLEMAN. I have probably slightly better than decent skill with a rifle, but I damn sure know enough to know how difficult a 1.5 MILE shot is. Please, is there somebody, ANYBODY, who lives near RAVEN and will let him shoot their .50 at a target 2,400 yards away. I will personally pay for the single round he gets.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 12:35:16 PM EDT
335 yards. Milk jug. Rem 700 BDL. .223 rem 55 grain handload. Nikon 3-9x40 monarch. 12mph wind left to right gusting. 1 shot. Scott
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 12:55:30 PM EDT
It's been a while since I read [i]Marine Sniper[/i], but I recall the .50 caliber shooting was only briefly mentioned. Clearly, Hathcock scored most of his kills with a pretty standard (now days substandard!) setup. Some of his actions were extremely impressive. His 2,500 yard shot with the .50 showed considerable skill and knowledge (the top .50 cal shooters today could probably do that kind of thing with more often, but their rifles are more accurate than the M2HB, and their ammo is much, much better). His action in Elephant Valley is one of the most impressive and gutsy sniper/spotter actions of them all; I think you pretty much have to go to the Eastern Front of WW2 or the Russio-Finnish War to see things that compare. His killing of the general at 800 yards after being choppered in and then crawling for several days through the elephant grass is classic. And his sniper duel is as classic as it gets. Hell, it was even copied in [i]Saving Private Ryan[/i].
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 1:19:04 PM EDT
Please remember the incident that so severely injured him that he was unable to continue with normal service. Riding on an APC he was injured when a mine exploded. Then he WENT INTO the burning APC to save other marines. His burns took years to heal. I don’t have the book in front of me, so I may have a few details wrong.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 1:51:09 PM EDT
OK gents lets the the story right. Gunny made the shot at 2000 yards, not 2500 yards, It was an M2 with an eight power scope. In 1965 the USMC adopted the Remington model 700 with a 3/9 power Redfield scope. When I arrived in Viet Nam in 1970 we did not have a single Model 70 in the inventory. The M40 in 1970 was as follows Caliber: 7.62X51 mm Weight: 9.25 lbs. Mag. Cap. 5 Barrel: 24" (always Remington) Twist Rate: 1:10 right hand twist Stock: Oil finished Walnut Sights: 3/9 Redfield ( Accu-range) Former Marine Sgt. Young, W.F.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 1:54:41 PM EDT
Not to take away from Gunny Hathcock, or incur any flames, but it has since been revealed that there was another Marine in Vietnam whose score exceeded Hathcock's; Chuck Mawhinney. He was also profiled in the History Channel's program, and I believe that they said that he had 108 confirmed kills. At any rate, he is still very much alive and the USMC recently located his service rifle and restored it for display in a USMC museum.
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