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Rob

It is everything you say and it is indeed an example of a target rifle being used for a sniper rifle. Circumstances forced that situation ..WWII and Korean War and USMC used what it had. However as accurate as this rifle is, what a contraption it is. Infinite problems with that scope situation with all sorts of fitting issues. That it was used successfully , that the Marines made it work is an example of Adapt & Over Come.

Simply amazing it did so well considering its a pile of parts and a nightmare to carry without damage happening. Its but one of 3 examples of how our military in WWII slam dunked half assed weapons into the sniper mission. IE..put an anemic 22LR scope on the 03A3 to make the 03A4 sniper rifle and side mounting scopes on M1 Rifles and those scope anemic in optical power. American "sniper rifles" in WWII were at best "inadequate" but we used what we had and we did.

Wow...what a sad legacy but thankfully, today we don't suffer for lack of proper sniper platforms.
 

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On a side note, when the M1941 USMC sniper rifle clones showed up here at Quantico Vintage Sniper Match , they always out shot all other sniper rifles from WWII era (all nations) at 800/ 1000 yds and always always outshot the 03A4 sniper rifle clones at 800 and 1000 yds. Now at 300 and 600 yds, it was parity . If the shooter was good, he could shoot as good or better with his PU Sniper, 03a4, No.4 T, Swede sniper or M1 C/ D rifles at 300/600 yds. It was a matter of optical power that allowed better accuracy at 800 / 1000 yds and the M1941 USMC sniper rifle had the advantage.

It was not that the caliber 3006 would out perform 762x54R, 303 Brit, 6.5x55 Swede at 800 / 1000 yds. Nope...it was optical advantage that the M1941 USMC sniper rifle had.

For obtuse reasons the M1941 USMC Sniper Rifle Clone Guys began to only shoot 300 /600 as they began to use our match as a prep match for CMP Vintage Sniper Match which only shoots these anemic distances. (CMP holds "games" , not real sniper matches but I digress ...justifiably) . These guys saw no need to push to 800 /1000 yds and that is a shame , a lost opportunity and a sad note. In the first two years of our match, they did press to 800 /1000 but later on, gave it up because CMP Fantasy Military Vintage Scoped Surplus Rifle Sniper Match is only 300 /600 yds, they saw no need to shoot longer distances.

THere are readers of this forum that if given a chance , they'd leap for the 800/1000 yd line and shoot their sniper rifles. Sadly many don't have access to a range to do this and we do have many shooters at Quantico match that show up on Day 2 of the match because they want the chance to shoot 800 / 1000 and they take that opportunity which is not available back at their home regions. If CMP held 800/ 1000 yd competition, it would be well received and taken advantage of but most sadly, 800/ 1000 yds is work and CMP holds "games" .
 

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Fantastic video and amazing shooting Rob. It's very rare for an original to be put through the paces like this, and I'd guess this is the first time it's ever been captured on video.

The casual viewer may not appreciate just how rare an event this is. Steve Norton's video showing off one of his Unertl rifles is the only other video of an original Unertl Sniper rifle available on the internet. Every other video is of a clone or a fake, including the Forgotten Weapon's video showing off the rifle that was about to be auctioned.

There are only a couple dozen verified as original. There are probably a couple dozen more "probables" sitting in safes. There are maybe a couple dozen more sporterized into hunting rifles waiting for someone to discover and restore them. But all told, I'd bet there are less than 75, in any condition, in the world.

I think your channel is conducting work that has never been done before; documenting the actual performance capabilities of original sniper rifles. The more you can get your hands on to record and archive, the better the sniper community can really understand. We all have our preconceived opinions on what a Warner and Swasey would be capable of. Or what an anemic 03a4 might be capable of. Or how much the M1D improved the accuracy potential of the M1C. All decades worth of opinions. But your channel has the opportunity to put them all side by side. That's never been done before. I commend your efforts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Fantastic video and amazing shooting Rob. It's very rare for an original to be put through the paces like this, and I'd guess this is the first time it's ever been captured on video.

The casual viewer may not appreciate just how rare an event this is. Steve Norton's video showing off one of his Unertl rifles is the only other video of an original Unertl Sniper rifle available on the internet. Every other video is of a clone or a fake, including the Forgotten Weapon's video showing off the rifle that was about to be auctioned.

There are only a couple dozen verified as original. There are probably a couple dozen more "probables" sitting in safes. There are maybe a couple dozen more sporterized into hunting rifles waiting for someone to discover and restore them. But all told, I'd bet there are less than 75, in any condition, in the world.

I think your channel is conducting work that has never been done before; documenting the actual performance capabilities of original sniper rifles. The more you can get your hands on to record and archive, the better the sniper community can really understand. We all have our preconceived opinions on what a Warner and Swasey would be capable of. Or what an anemic 03a4 might be capable of. Or how much the M1D improved the accuracy potential of the M1C. All decades worth of opinions. But your channel has the opportunity to put them all side by side. That's never been done before. I commend your efforts.
Thank you Jamie. That was one of the ideas behind this channel - if possible, show what the system could do. Yes, it is still "range only" setting, but at least it gives you the idea what was happening, how the rifle XYZ was functioning, and what kind of accuracy (if any) it produces after all those years, how "user friendly" it is and etc...I'm also going to build on the World at War idea more, where two opposing rifles are put against each other - I'm just working out details on it now.
 

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My old man was a rifleman in the 1st Marine Regiment on Okinawa. He was fascinated by the snipers he saw. His regiment had a very active sniper team. Dad said whenever a company would get pinned down by machine guns or mortars, the snipers would get called up to take them out. A lot of guys had a lot of contempt for the snipers. They were attached to the regiment intelligence section so at night they’d get to go way back behind the line. Dad says they got to sleep on cots, eat warm chow, get hot coffee in the morning, and then when they got called up front, they came bouncing in bright eyed and bushy tailed. Dad talked to one of them who had been in the Corps for ten years. He’d been on the rifle team before the war and spent most of the war on rifle ranges at one of the recruit depots. Finally got put in for combat duty and knew the regiment XO from the rifle team. Got assigned as a sniper which was considered good duty in the 1st Marines. I’ve got all of this in one of dad’s diaries laying around somewhere.

All of this is to say that at least in the 1st Marine Regiment, based on what my dad saw on Okinawa, those rifles and scopes were considered rear echelon gear and were handled by target shooters who took good care of them. In that sense those sniper rifles were probably just the right equipment in just the right hands.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
On a side note, when the M1941 USMC sniper rifle clones showed up here at Quantico Vintage Sniper Match , they always out shot all other sniper rifles from WWII era (all nations) at 800/ 1000 yds and always always outshot the 03A4 sniper rifle clones at 800 and 1000 yds. Now at 300 and 600 yds, it was parity . If the shooter was good, he could shoot as good or better with his PU Sniper, 03a4, No.4 T, Swede sniper or M1 C/ D rifles at 300/600 yds. It was a matter of optical power that allowed better accuracy at 800 / 1000 yds and the M1941 USMC sniper rifle had the advantage.

It was not that the caliber 3006 would out perform 762x54R, 303 Brit, 6.5x55 Swede at 800 / 1000 yds. Nope...it was optical advantage that the M1941 USMC sniper rifle had.

For obtuse reasons the M1941 USMC Sniper Rifle Clone Guys began to only shoot 300 /600 as they began to use our match as a prep match for CMP Vintage Sniper Match which only shoots these anemic distances. (CMP holds "games" , not real sniper matches but I digress ...justifiably) . These guys saw no need to push to 800 /1000 yds and that is a shame , a lost opportunity and a sad note. In the first two years of our match, they did press to 800 /1000 but later on, gave it up because CMP Fantasy Military Vintage Scoped Surplus Rifle Sniper Match is only 300 /600 yds, they saw no need to shoot longer distances.

THere are readers of this forum that if given a chance , they'd leap for the 800/1000 yd line and shoot their sniper rifles. Sadly many don't have access to a range to do this and we do have many shooters at Quantico match that show up on Day 2 of the match because they want the chance to shoot 800 / 1000 and they take that opportunity which is not available back at their home regions. If CMP held 800/ 1000 yd competition, it would be well received and taken advantage of but most sadly, 800/ 1000 yds is work and CMP holds "games" .
I understand what CMP is doing and trying to accomplish, so I'm not angry at them, but my God, organization like this, could take it to the completely different level if they wanted to...that being said, it is mostly up to us and small shooting clubs, to organize more "fun" matches and competitions, where people could shoot at different / mixed ranges, targets and stages. Our own @alund and @tony lacy are doing fantastic job at their events and after few years, those championship matches are at almost full capacity. I think upcoming Modern Sniper match in October will be overbooked.
Point is, there is interest in that type of the competitions and people are willing to participate, if events are organized... but that has to be happening at the local levels, because I don't think we will ever convince CMP to do something like that, lol.
 

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Rob, when modern scopes are allowed on 03A4 rifles and some guy has gone to the expense to get a real M73 or Lyman Alaskan period scope and that guy trying to shoot the 03A4 "as issued" loses the match because the fantasy scoped 03A4 shooter has better optical modern glass......that takes the CMP event into the "games" arena.

Henry County does the sniper match thing like it ought to be done. Saluting them. CMP...they run a Scoped Surplus Rifle Match . "Fun" is an excuse not to run a rigorous match but granted most who show up at Camp Perry want to have "Fun".

Many love to go to Camp Perry and bon voyage. As I told some Va. Rifle Team buddies..."No, I am not going to Ohio to shoot 10 rds at 300 yards and 10 rds at 600 yards when I can shoot as many rounds as I want 100 to 1000 yards here at Quantico , eight miles out my back door". In fact will be on 1000 yd line tomorrow and its bloody well true I won't be shooting a mere 20 rounds ! Now trek to Henry County Sniper Match...Oh yeah, thats on the short list !!
 

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If you really like the 'work' Rob does with his whole family then maybe the Patreon subscription would be a way to support his family efforts.
He posts the vides earlier for those that subscribe and it allows me to think up witty comments before it lands here....makes me look smart!

You too can look smart! Re enlist!
 

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My old man was a rifleman in the 1st Marine Regiment on Okinawa. He was fascinated by the snipers he saw. His regiment had a very active sniper team. Dad said whenever a company would get pinned down by machine guns or mortars, the snipers would get called up to take them out. A lot of guys had a lot of contempt for the snipers. They were attached to the regiment intelligence section so at night they’d get to go way back behind the line. Dad says they got to sleep on cots, eat warm chow, get hot coffee in the morning, and then when they got called up front, they came bouncing in bright eyed and bushy tailed. Dad talked to one of them who had been in the Corps for ten years. He’d been on the rifle team before the war and spent most of the war on rifle ranges at one of the recruit depots. Finally got put in for combat duty and knew the regiment XO from the rifle team. Got assigned as a sniper which was considered good duty in the 1st Marines. I’ve got all of this in one of dad’s diaries laying around somewhere.

All of this is to say that at least in the 1st Marine Regiment, based on what my dad saw on Okinawa, those rifles and scopes were considered rear echelon gear and were handled by target shooters who took good care of them. In that sense those sniper rifles were probably just the right equipment in just the right hands.
Jack if you could find that diary, it would be invaluable for us to see. At the very least that segment discussing snipers, if you understandably didn't want to share the whole thing. We have very little information regarding the actual use of USMC snipers in the war, and most of that is from the 2nd Division, which utilized structured scout-sniper platoons. Despite the majority of photos of Marine snipers from WWII coming from Okinawa, we know very little about the men behind those rifles. The fact that your dad talked to one of the snipers and discovered he was an old Team shooter is especially cool to me, being a fourth generation National Match competitor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If you really like the 'work' Rob does with his whole family then maybe the Patreon subscription would be a way to support his family efforts.
He posts the vides earlier for those that subscribe and it allows me to think up witty comments before it lands here....makes me look smart!

You too can look smart! Re enlist!
Hahahaha! Thank you Pat. Also, big thanks to all who are helping behind the scenes!
 
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