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Old 07-15-2010, 05:51 PM   #1
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Rifleman Skills

The term 'rifleman' is frequently brought up in posts regarding shtf rifles, survival rifles, and battle rifles. But what are the skills required, besides the obvious one of marksmanship, to become truly proficient as a 'rifleman'?

How does someone who does not have experience as a military rifle man or infantry man develop the ability to defend his hearth and home regardless of rifle type?

Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks for any input.

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Old 07-15-2010, 06:09 PM   #2
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Re: Rifleman Skills

Once you have the basics of safe gun handling and marksmanship, I recommend taking a course in learning how to fight with the rifle/carbine. There are several excellent instructors who teach at ranges around the country. I can personally recommend http://www.eagtactical.com/ and http://www.yfainc.com/
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Old 07-15-2010, 06:51 PM   #3
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Re: Rifleman Skills

I'd suggest reading Jeff Cooper's book The Art of the Rifle. It will give you an excellent idea of what a rifleman is and how to go about becoming one.

Basically, if you can make the rifle do whatever you want and/or need it to do (within its own capabilities), you are a rifleman.
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Old 07-15-2010, 08:11 PM   #4
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Re: Rifleman Skills

Not to hijack the thread, but I believe this is kind of on the same note. Where would one go for pistolero skills? Is there an equivalent to Art of The Rifle for Pistols?
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Old 07-15-2010, 10:10 PM   #5
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Re: Rifleman Skills

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snake45
I'd suggest reading Jeff Cooper's book The Art of the Rifle. It will give you an excellent idea of what a rifleman is and how to go about becoming one.
Basically, if you can make the rifle do whatever you want and/or need it to do (within its own capabilities), you are a rifleman.
...And then you need to learn practical self-defense decision making, tactical movement, the practical use of the rifle in self-defense, and how to retreat quietly.
It helps to get together with rifle-shooting friends, and set practical rifle-skill tests on each other. Each time you go out to shoot, one of you devises a skills test for the others (and himself) to accomplish. These tests should include multiple shots at a few different distances, and should also include tactical movement. As your skills advance, you should mix in difficult-to-discern no-shoot targets, and impractical targets (too hard to hit, too far away, and so on). Shoot/no-shoot decisions should be presented, addressed practically, and then discussed after the day is over.
There's more, but that's a good beginning.
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Old 07-16-2010, 07:31 AM   #6
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Re: Rifleman Skills

EXCUSE ME! EXCUSE ME! There is only one "Rifleman", and he lives in North Fork!

Nuff said!
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Old 07-16-2010, 07:53 AM   #7
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Re: Rifleman Skills

Quote:
Originally Posted by IBX2000
How does someone who does not have experience as a military rifle man or infantry man develop the ability to defend his hearth and home regardless of rifle type?

Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks for any input.

IBX2000
Have reread your original post, and have a different take on it this morning.

If your primary interest is "defending hearth and home," it probably isn't necessary to become a "rifleman" as that might be defined by Jeff Cooper, the Appleseed organization, the USMC, etc.

There's a better than 95% chance that your "hearth and home" defensive needs would actually be better served by a shotgun or even a handgun. A pistol-caliber carbine (including the "cowboy type" lever actions) might also be useful. Up one step from that would be a semiautomatic rifle in .223/5.56mm. But there are very, very few of us anymore whose "home and hearth" would demand the capabilities of a full-on battle rifle, or the skill to get maximum performance out of one.

On the other hand, perhaps you meant something very different by "hearth and home."
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Old 07-18-2010, 02:38 AM   #8
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Re: Rifleman Skills

Well I guess what are the skills needed to function as a rifleman in a shtf or other situation? Obviously shtf will be very different from a self defense grid up world with law scenario.

I see it as:

Marksmanship
Fieldcraft
Navigation
Being able to run your weapon system whether it is bolt, single shot, semi, whatever.
Being able to gunsmith your system and ammo.

People talk about the weapon more than what or how to do with it. There are endless debates on which is best and what gear to have. But what happens after you make that selection? How can I/you as an individual with a limited budget and no military training make the best of whatever gun we run so to speak?


Thanks for any thoughts.

IBX2000
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Old 07-18-2010, 06:40 AM   #9
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Re: Rifleman Skills

A hitch in the Marine Corps should do it....
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Old 07-18-2010, 07:59 AM   #10
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Re: Rifleman Skills

Fieldcraft and navigation? I might be wrong, but I don't think that most people put those things into the basic "rifleman" skillset. That would be more of a scout/sniper thing, I'm thinking. John Plaster has a book or two out on The Complete Sniper or something of the kind, but I don't know exactly what's included.

There are all kinds of fieldcraft/survival books available, but I'd advise you to check out used book stores, flea markets, and eBay for (I'm not kidding) old Boy Scout Manuals, the older the better (pre-1970 at least). I have one from 1940 or so that would be a darn good survival manual all by itself.

For rifle marksmanship, I'll still recommend Jeff Cooper's The Art of the Rifle.

For running some particular weapon system, maintaining it, and gunsmithing it, the net is great, if you can pick the wheat from the chaff. AR15.com, for example, is jam-packed with mall ninjas and wannabes, but the M14 firing line forum is a no-BS place with plenty of old pros and good help. Where you are right now is a GREAT starting point--we have our own share of experts in various systems, including Patrick Sweeney, Kevin Gibson, Charlie Petty, to name just three (there are others, too). Ask specific questions about specific guns and you'll get good answers here, or will be directed to good answers.
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Old 12-27-2011, 06:19 PM   #11
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Basic Drills
Courses of Fire

Above are two good sources. The USMC does a fine job of marksmanship instruction and as a combat force they are the most proficient of all the services.

You didn't say where in midwest you are but there are a fair number of high power rifle matches around. You will learn to shoot standing, sitting, and prone from 200-600 yards and on some ranges 1000 yards.

You can start off with something as simple as a 1903A3 Springfield. If you are not into reloading that is a priority.

With a bolt rifle you will need a detachable 5 shot mag (2 of them) or stripper clip reload capability such as the 1903.

PM me and maybe I can give you some places to check with as I know lots of shooters across the country.

The Appleseed Clinics are good if there is one near you by all means give it a go.
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Old 05-19-2013, 06:19 PM   #12
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The "Army teaches you almost nothing about rifle work as is really needed, in basic. Perhaps they do a bit better if you have an infantry MOS. The Marines, last I knew, waste a lot of time teaching you silly bullseye position shooting, which is almost never used in combat. Especially the sitting and kneeling variants, when what you should be working on is snapshooting from standing. Most people need a full one second longer (to get the hit) with such shooting than is needed by a real shooter. During that one second, you are taking 4 or more shots per second from each enemy. that is not good.

While you can learn slowfire basics at NRA matches, that sort of stuff, especially the 600 yd nonsense, is almost never of any use in combat. There will be no spotter shots, there's no wind flags, theres no 20" wide, erect, stationary targets. Also there's no ear protection (probably) and such stuff takes up time and money that should be better spent on much closer, much faster, "save your life" sort of training. You need an electronic shooting timer, and when prices on ammo drop, you need a .22lr conversion unit. You need a trigger job and "glow in the dark" sights, as well as a sound suppressor, night goggles, and a laser target designator. It is dark half of the time, guys. Scopes and match peep sights are nearly worthless, at night, except on snow and in full moonlight. You need practice at hitting dodging, cover using men, from 10 to 200 yds. you need to learn to use a light on your rifle, for indoor work. you need to learn to hit from awkward firing positions, from either shoulder around cover. You need a bit of work on hitting while you move, and with one arm only, in case you are wounded or have to help a wounded buddy walk, etc. In all, you are looking at close to $10,000 to get set upw with gear and training. Are you ready to spend that much, along with about 100 hours of dedicated practice?

Last edited by whatsit; 05-19-2013 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 05-22-2013, 05:10 PM   #13
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get these books from your public library

order them from the Interlibrary Book Loan System. Jim Carmichael, THE COMPLETE BOOK OF THE RIFLE. EXPERTS BOOK OF THE SHOOTING SPORTS, edited by David Petsnal, and Chuck Taylor's COMBAT RIFLES. I may be wrong about the title of chuck's book. Anyway, you want a shooting timer, Google for Shooting Chrony, $100, and work on getting the hits faster and faster, at ranges from 5 to 100 yds, mostly on 10" circles (a man when he's head on prone to you) or a 6" circle (his head and shoulder as he bobs out from behind cover to fire at you).

The start position is with the rifle held horizontally across your thighs, finger outside of the trigger guard, safety is engaged. this is known as the "low ready" start. from low ready, at the starting 'beep" of the timer, shoulder your rifle and hit the 10" disk at 25 yds. 1.0 second flat can be done. most people will miss if they take 3 full seconds or more. at 50 yds, 1.3 seconds is needed for reliable hits. 100 yds, 1.7 seconds. most people can't hit it in less than 5 seconds, average of 3 tries, and that includes several "trial" shots in that time span.
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Old 05-22-2013, 08:07 PM   #14
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Or like Sarge says, join up and get paid to learn...wise words indeed
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Old 05-22-2013, 11:12 PM   #15
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except you will learn very little from the Military, and very slowly, if at all. Most learn nothing about small arms, actually, much less about effective combat riflery.
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Old 05-23-2013, 08:48 AM   #16
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except you will learn very little from the Military, and very slowly, if at all. Most learn nothing about small arms, actually, much less about effective combat riflery.
but you could do something useful with your life besides criticize others...like serve your country? When you grow up you'll understand Putzit
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Old 05-23-2013, 09:45 AM   #17
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One of the inside jokes about firearms instruction has to do with the names of various courses. This is due to the fact that few would pony up for courses titled: Fundamentals of Marksmanship, More Fundamentals, Still More Fundamentals and so forth.

Time spent upon fundamentals is not wasted. Close combat or CQB does require an expanded skill set, but it is still based upon fundamentals of marksmanship. Obviously, a precise sight picture and trigger stroke aren't as important at 7 yards as they are at 250. Be careful about who you might pick as an instructor, there are scads of folks out there who are lousy teachers at best, criminally fraudulent at worst.

There are military manuals commonly available that handle fieldcraft and navigation. The older Boy Scout manuals will help somewhat, depending upon your definition of "fieldcraft". There's a military field manual about patrolling that might cover some other stuff.

About "gunsmithing", what you want is generally referred to as armorers training. Firearms generally aren't technological wonders, they're simple machines. Depending upon what you have in mind, there are military manuals available for them also. Brownells will also have the Kunhausen series of make/model specific firearms. If you can get your hands on them, the armorers manuals issued by various manufacturers are very good items. However, they also presume that you've had the hands on training from the course they're written for. They will give you suggested preventative maintenance items and intervals.

This could be the subject for a long article or thin book, but while I've used the shotgun as a weapon for 40 odd years, it isn't necessarily the best choice for defensive purposes. In certain cases, the AR pattern rifle with an adjustable stock and negligible recoil could be a better choice. FBI research has proven that with the right ammunition, the .223 will penetrate less building material than commonly available defensive/duty handgun ammo.
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Old 05-23-2013, 01:56 PM   #18
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Im 60, punk, and volunteered for Nam.
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Old 05-23-2013, 06:13 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whatsit View Post
Im 60, punk, and volunteered for Nam.

Quote:
but you could do something useful with your life besides criticize others...like serve your country? When you grow up you'll understand Putzit
It's ok to attack ones argument but no personal attacks, and that includes name calling.
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:05 AM   #20
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yeah, and what did he call ME, punk? or can't you read?
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