Compare High Power Rifle to Military KD Qualification?


February 17, 2003, 01:40 PM
Hi, all - I just shot my first High Power Rifle match yesterday(a John C. Garand match) and posted a score of 413-1X. Needless to say, I'm pretty stoked!:D It wasn't for record/standing or anything, because I had several saved rounds that I was allowed to shoot as alibis because I was a first-time shooter, but I'm still pleasantly shocked by how well I did.

My question for you all is this: what category would a score like this correspond to if I had been firing USMC/US Army qualification(i.e. Marksman, Sharpshooter, or Expert)? And, for that matter, how closely does High Power competition correspond to USMC/Army Known Distance marksmanship training/qualification from any given era(pre/post WWII, Vietnam-era, contemporary, etc.)?

I ask mainly because, although I was in the Army Reserve/Nat'l Guard from 1988-1996, I was a tank crewman and as such did not do a whole lot with the M16 beyond familiarization-fire - but I'd still like to know what being able to post a low-400's score would have done for me if I had gone back in time and shot like that in Basic Training...

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Steve Smith
February 18, 2003, 11:47 AM
Good job on your first match! Was that a reduced match or a full course?

I don't know how to correlate the two types of matches. The Army course is Hit/Miss only, not decimal scoring. I know most Army Expert shooters are somewhat humbled when they shoot a real HP match...of course they still shoot better than the equivaent Marksman would, but they do find that they need to hold a lot harder and watch the wind more.

February 18, 2003, 01:15 PM
Hi, Steve - the match was held as part of a clinic for beginning shooters, and as far as I know, it was conducted as a full J.C. Garand course of fire:

- 200yd targets only
- 20 shots prone slow-fire
- 10 shots standing to prone rapid-fire
- 10 shots standing to sitting rapid-fire
- 10 shots off-hand slow-fire

My 413-1X isn't a "real" score, because I was allowed to fire saved rounds as alibis, and the Garand match rules apparently do not allow for alibi fire as a rule - my M1's gas plug came loose a little in the rapid-fire stages, and had to be re-tightened so that my rifle would cycle properly.

I know where you're coming from on Army qualification, when I fired in Basic (1988) it consisted of pop-up silhouettes that you either hit and knocked down or not, at various ranges from about 50yds to 300yds, IIRC.

I'm pretty sure, though, that the Marines still shot High Power-style at known-distance bullseye targets until fairly recently - or, at least it looked that way in Full Metal Jacket. :rolleyes: Maybe someone could sound off in respect to that?

Just had another idea, Steve - if you could use your mighty Moderatorial powers to move this topic to Rifle Country, we might get a few more people to chime in on the topic...

Steve Smith
February 20, 2003, 02:26 PM
Kor, here's the USMC qual course:

Marine Qual is as follows:

200yds, 5 shots each, slow fire, sitting, kneeling, standing.
Type "A" target(the older 5V style) 12" 5 ring.

200yd rapid fire, standing to sitting, 60 seconds, mags loaded 5+5, on the Type "F" target(1/2 man size hit/miss)

300yd slow fire, kneeling/squatting, 5 rounds, Type "A" target

300yd rapid fire, standing to prone, 70 seconds, mags loaded 5+5, Type "F" target

500yd slow fire, prone, 10 rds, Type "E" (man size hit/miss) target

Slow fire is 1 min. per shot.

All scoring is 5,4,3,2 (no 1s) Max score 250
Expert: 220+
Sharpshooter: 210-219
Marksman: 190-209

Sounds a little easier than an NRA HP target IMHO.

February 20, 2003, 02:47 PM
Ah - muchas gracias, sir!

An off-topic question - I overheard another spotter using the term, "favor," to his shooter several times(as in, "Favor 9-ring," "Favor 10-ring," etc.). Exactly what is the word supposed to mean, in the context of High-Power jargon?

Steve Smith
February 20, 2003, 03:14 PM
"Favor" is a term used in team matches. In a team match, the "coach" who is a wind coach is constantly shouting out commands to his shooters during the rapid stages. If there is a wind change it is faster to have the shooters "favor" one side of the target than to have them put on a sight change...especially if it might change again. "FAVOR LEFT" or "FAVOR RIGHT" are shouted to the shooters as they fire. If nothing is said in the next shots the same "favor" is continued. If the command is repeated, you favor more.

"Favor the X" is kind of a joke, as you ALWAYS want to favor the X! ;) :D

FWIW, giving coaching info in an individual match is considered cheating and is not appreciated. A scorer should only call out the score, not the location, of the hit.

February 20, 2003, 06:32 PM
Again, many thanks, sahib!

Jon Coppenbarger
February 21, 2003, 12:19 AM
sounds like you had a great time at the match and it also sounds like you will be back again.
thats a great score for the first time out. do not worry about those extra time shots, every range I go to (ok most every range)
will let you do that as we are out there to have fun and learn a great sport. it sounds like you have found a good place to go and if you noticed everyone there was having a great time.

I have life time friends from shooting at matches like the one you attended and I can not tell you one person that I shot with or against that was not very nice. ( well steve gets a little mean once in awhile) just kidding. LOL

you will not find a more knowing shooter than him as he has alot put away up in his head and I find myself picking his brain on a weekly basis.

go back again next month, it gets better if you can believe that, trust me the fun does not stop. jon

February 21, 2003, 01:46 AM
...I definitely had a great time, and YES, I WILL be back!

As it was, I already knew the match organizer/Chief Line Officer and several other shooters as customers at the store where I work, so I wasn't too worried about them being "CMP Nazis" or "range snobs." Nevertheless, I do have to give them props for putting on a great first-timer's clinic, and for some excellent coaching and advice.

Besides, I was(and still am) in awe of my newfound ability to not just get on paper, but tag the 9- and 10-rings from 200yds - especially since I'd never fired on paper any further than 100yds before(I've shot at G.I. silhouettes and steel gongs from 200-300yds, but that was strictly hit-and-miss). Intellectually, I knew that if I got the basics - position, sight picture, trigger control - right, that accurate hits would follow, but getting to actually see the spotter in the black is a whole 'nother gig...

Anyways, I've also discovered that having a pit crew to spot and disk your shots is awfully darn civilized - beats heck out of hiking 200yds out and back just to check your grouping!:D

February 21, 2003, 09:37 AM
Kor: you think 200 yards is a kick? Wait till you get to the 600 yard line.

Steve Smith
February 21, 2003, 11:11 AM
Kor, one of your next steps is to learn how to run those pits properly. That means fast fast fast and accurately. The NRA says 15 seconds in an acceptable pit service time. BS. Especially if you're pulling for a good shooter. A good shooting will be whacking the 10 and X ring almost every time, so you won't have to look far for the hole and the score marker shouldn't have to move much. Target service should run about 6 seconds or less for a good shooter. You're new so that won't happen, but work at it. You'll understand and appreciate it when its you that wants ultra-fast service.

Some tips:

Watch the impact area and figure out where the "10 ring" is in the dirt. That way you already know where to look on the target when you pull it down.

If a hit is BETWEEN you and another target (between impact areas) don't pull the target until TOLD to do so.

Have a paster ready in your fingers so you can go faster. It goes liek this: Get a black and a buff paster and put them on the back of your hand. First shot is fired and you pull the target and mark it. Send it back up. It was in the black so you know you need that black paster. Next shot goes and you pull the target down, move the spotter, place the paster that you already had in your hand on the old hit, score, and send it up. Now you know where the last shot was, so you go ahead and grab that color and be ready.

You may wonder why this is so important. If you take 15 seconds per service then over the 20 minute slow prone you've taken 5 minutes of the shooter's time. If the wind is switchy I might not shoot for 5 or 6 minutes and then if it settles I will hammer them in as fast as I can. When my follow through is over my eye is in the scope to look at wind. I then grab a round and put it partway into the chamber, put my finger on the bolt release and wait for the target to come up. I'll keep my eye in the scope and watch wind and wait for you to shoot the target back up. As soon as it appears I let the bolt close and I fire the shot again. You will be amazed at how fast a good puller and a good shooter can work together if the conditions dictate. Its good to watch conditions when you're pulling, too, because you will know what kind of urgency the shooter is under.

I think Jon (JC121) was pulling for me when I tied for first in the slow prone at the CO Regionals. Wind wasn't bad but Jon was really fast and knew I wanted to shoot fast. I think I finished my 20 rounds in about 10 and a half minutes.

February 21, 2003, 01:09 PM
Steve, I know where you're coming from on pit service, I had to take a turn in the pit myself. I was lucky, though - we were squadded in such a way that we had two scorers per target on most firing points, so we could divide the labor equally(I pulled and disked, my compadre spotted and pasted). I also learned to feel for the bullet's slap in the target frame, as well as watching the impact area(we split responsibilities there also, I watched the target for the hole, my buddy watched the impact area), so we were getting pretty quick after we got past the learning curve.

Thanks again for the info/advice! I could learn to really like this sport... :cool: :D

April 4, 2003, 05:41 PM
Most army AND marine experts are pretty humbled shooting the NM course.

One day when I shot a low 400 score, about a 415 or so, I commented to a Gunnery Sergeant that had shot 'expert' for years that I wasn't all that good.

He opined that merely breaking 400 was probably put a guy in the 'expert, USMC' catagory.

He had shot USMC 'expert' for years and told me that when he tried out for the team, he was always humbled.

Even reduced, the NM or Leg course is pretty damned difficult.

Sometimes the guys I shoot with give me a friendly drubbing, but almost all of them have told me that I shoot one hell of a lot better than most PA deer hunters.

This course is DAMNED DIFFICULT.

at 200 yds, the reduced 600 yard target has a 1.79" X-ring.

Think about it a minute! That's well under 1 MOA for a service rifle with iron sights.

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