M14 Forum


USMC M14 Sniper Rifles... yes or no?

This is a discussion on USMC M14 Sniper Rifles... yes or no? within the The M14 forums, part of the M14 M1A Forum category; My reply in another thread turned into a hijack, so I started a new thread... Originally Posted by Nordlander If you check out my earlier ...


Go Back   M14 Forum > M14 M1A Forum > The M14


Like Tree10Thanks
Reply
 
LinkBack Moderator Tools Display Modes

Old September 10th, 2013, 11:00 AM   #1
Lifer
 
2336USMC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Road
Posts: 2,955
USMC M14 Sniper Rifles... yes or no?

My reply in another thread turned into a hijack, so I started a new thread...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordlander View Post
If you check out my earlier thread on the USMC snipers using M14 rifles in Vietnam you will see that Marines did use the M14 as a sniper rifle there but used no set scope and were not issued the ART as it was an army thing .From pictures and the rifles I observed in the sniper school museum the Marines mostly used the starlight scope 4x Kollmorgen the 3x9 Redfield and an occasional 4xWeaver or Lyman Alaskan .Bill Donavan who was Hathcocks armorer in 'Nam mounted a Unertl on his M14
I should clarify what I said. When I said that the Marine Corps did not use M14-based sniper rifles during that time frame, I mean officially. AFAIK, they were not used at the USMC sniper school, USMC snipers were not trained in their use, and there was no supply system support... I have also read that there were some scopes mounted on individual Marines' M14 rifles, but these were cases of individual Marines taking initiative, scrounging up a scope and some type of mount, even locally made in the nearest maintenance shop with a welder. To me, if an individual 0311 Infantry Rifleman (not a sniper) scrounged up a scope and mount and put it on his rifle, that doesn't make him a sniper and also doesn't make his rifle a USMC-issued sniper weapon.

Similar example to make my point: The USMC bought and evaluated a few ACOG scopes in the early 1990's. They decided it was a good thing, and a new program was developed: the Designated Marksman program. ACOG scopes were purchased and issued to top scoring shooters. Those shooters attended a Designated Marksman training course, and on completion they were referred to as Designated Marksmen and their ACOG-equipped M16A2 rifles were referred to as Designated Marksman Rifles (the first USMC DMR, pre-M14 DMR which came along a few years later.) This all started in the mid-90's IIRC.

So, to me those ACOG scopes were USMC-issue and the DMR rifles equipped with them were official USMC-issue.

So on to the point: AFAIK there were no USMC DMR rifles issued or used during Desert Shield/Storm, 1990-91 time frame. The M16A2 DMR rifle wasn't created until years later. BUT... I bought an ACOG when they first came out in the late 80's. My ACOG has a serial number in the 200 range. I brought that scope with me to DS/S and carried it mounted to my issue M16A2. Does that mean I can claim to be a USMC Designated Marksman, or that I carried a USMC Designated Marksman Rifle in DS/S? No, I was just a Jarhead that used a little initiative and carried what I could get.

A similar issue comes up when discussing the history of the Army XM-21 sniper rifles. Some folks will state that the Army XM-21 sniper rifle was in service in Viet Nam since something like 1965, and there's a photo of an M14 rifle with an M84 scope that proves it... except that if some enterprising soldier got his hands on an M84 scope and had a mount welded up out of angle iron, that does NOT make his rifle an XM-21 sniper rifle. The XM-21 rifle came from the Army Marksmanship Unit having been fully rebuilt to NM specs and wearing an AR-TEL scope, and it said "Rifle, XM-21" on the crate...

This might seem nitpicky, but I just think we should try to keep the history straight. Just because a Marine found a way to bolt a scope to his M14 rifle, even if that Marine was an actual trained sniper, that does not make his M14 rifle a sniper rifle, or USMC-issued. It's just an M14 rifle with a scope bolted to it. It's not a Marine Corps M14 Sniper Rifle. There was no such item during that time.

As a matter of fact, there never has been a Marine Corps M14 Sniper Rifle. There have been Marine Corps M14 Designated Marksman Rifles, and USMC Enhanced Marksman Rifles, but never an M14 Sniper Rifle. The USMC has never accepted an M14-based system as a true Sniper Rifle...

Hope that makes my position more clear.

Thanks from m1sniper
2336USMC is offline  
Remove Ads
Old September 10th, 2013, 11:15 AM   #2
Master Gunner
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Lake Marion, S.C.
Posts: 855
AFAIK bolt actions used in USMC sniper, scout/sniper school. At least one marine in 'nam had an ART that was "borrowed" from the army.

XXXMarine is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 12:27 PM   #3
Scout Sniper
 
Harleystoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 720
M-14 sniper

Griffin & Howe made both a mount and a detachable base to scope the M-14. I ran across one of these in the Army, and 2 since I've been out. All samples of these have been clean (unmarked). The mount was identical to the M1C sniper mount, with 3/4" rings designed to use the M-84.
The United States, up thru Vietnam, has never gone into a war with an up-and-running sniper program. Then they go into knee-jerk reaction and try to modify existing equipment. The G&H mount and base were issued in the Army, and a stop-gap until the ART I came out.
The Marines have always been into bolt guns.

Harleystoo is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 12:57 PM   #4
Old Salt
 
Nordlander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Sweden Valley Pa./Missoula Mt. USA
Posts: 1,323
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2336USMC View Post
My reply in another thread turned into a hijack, so I started a new thread...



I should clarify what I said. When I said that the Marine Corps did not use M14-based sniper rifles during that time frame, I mean officially. AFAIK, they were not used at the USMC sniper school, USMC snipers were not trained in their use, and there was no supply system support... I have also read that there were some scopes mounted on individual Marines' M14 rifles, but these were cases of individual Marines taking initiative, scrounging up a scope and some type of mount, even locally made in the nearest maintenance shop with a welder. To me, if an individual 0311 Infantry Rifleman (not a sniper) scrounged up a scope and mount and put it on his rifle, that doesn't make him a sniper and also doesn't make his rifle a USMC-issued sniper weapon.

Similar example to make my point: The USMC bought and evaluated a few ACOG scopes in the early 1990's. They decided it was a good thing, and a new program was developed: the Designated Marksman program. ACOG scopes were purchased and issued to top scoring shooters. Those shooters attended a Designated Marksman training course, and on completion they were referred to as Designated Marksmen and their ACOG-equipped M16A2 rifles were referred to as Designated Marksman Rifles (the first USMC DMR, pre-M14 DMR which came along a few years later.) This all started in the mid-90's IIRC.

So, to me those ACOG scopes were USMC-issue and the DMR rifles equipped with them were official USMC-issue.

So on to the point: AFAIK there were no USMC DMR rifles issued or used during Desert Shield/Storm, 1990-91 time frame. The M16A2 DMR rifle wasn't created until years later. BUT... I bought an ACOG when they first came out in the late 80's. My ACOG has a serial number in the 200 range. I brought that scope with me to DS/S and carried it mounted to my issue M16A2. Does that mean I can claim to be a USMC Designated Marksman, or that I carried a USMC Designated Marksman Rifle in DS/S? No, I was just a Jarhead that used a little initiative and carried what I could get.

A similar issue comes up when discussing the history of the Army XM-21 sniper rifles. Some folks will state that the Army XM-21 sniper rifle was in service in Viet Nam since something like 1965, and there's a photo of an M14 rifle with an M84 scope that proves it... except that if some enterprising soldier got his hands on an M84 scope and had a mount welded up out of angle iron, that does NOT make his rifle an XM-21 sniper rifle. The XM-21 rifle came from the Army Marksmanship Unit having been fully rebuilt to NM specs and wearing an AR-TEL scope, and it said "Rifle, XM-21" on the crate...

This might seem nitpicky, but I just think we should try to keep the history straight. Just because a Marine found a way to bolt a scope to his M14 rifle, even if that Marine was an actual trained sniper, that does not make his M14 rifle a sniper rifle, or USMC-issued. It's just an M14 rifle with a scope bolted to it. It's not a Marine Corps M14 Sniper Rifle. There was no such item during that time.

As a matter of fact, there never has been a Marine Corps M14 Sniper Rifle. There have been Marine Corps M14 Designated Marksman Rifles, and USMC Enhanced Marksman Rifles, but never an M14 Sniper Rifle. The USMC has never accepted an M14-based system as a true Sniper Rifle...

Hope that makes my position more clear.
Sorry but I couldnt dissagree more. The model 70 Winchester wasnt a designated sniper rifle in WW2 or Vietnam but the Marine Corps used them in both wars ;indeed their entire sniper program was started in Vietnam with an "unofficial rifle" the Model 70 Winchester . Gunny Hathcock sure made a lot of "unofficial kills "with his Winchester 70 as did Chuck Mawhinney in nam with his "unofficial M14"

Nordlander is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 01:46 PM   #5
Lifer
 
2336USMC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Road
Posts: 2,955
Hmm, well let me try to restate...

The question to me is what is really a "sniper rifle." The standards vary hugely from one country to another, and through history. If we call any old rifle with a scope a "sniper rifle" that waters down the true history, and leaves room for the fakers and humpers to bend the truth more.

To me, if an individual Soldier/Marine/Sailor/whoever, finds a way to bolt a scope onto a rifle, that doesn't make it a "sniper rifle."

I think the real definition should be, whatever army or military branch issued that weapon to the soldier, did that service call it a "sniper rifle" when it was issued?

For example, the Soviets bolted scopes onto Mosin Nagant rifles during WWII. AFAIK those rifles were no different than any other Mosin Nagant, except for the scope bolted on. But, when the Soviet Army issued those rifles, they called them sniper rifles, and they issued the rifles to snipers for the prupose of sniping. That is a sniper rifle.

Opposite example, when I bolted my personal ACOG onto my M16A2 during DS/S, did that make my rifle a USMC M16A2 Sniper Rifle? No, because the USMC did not issue it to me as a sniper rifle.

Nordlander's example of the USMC Winchester Model 70 sniper rifles is a very good example. Those rifles were built by the USMC specifically to be used for sniping, they were issued to snipers, and the USMC called them sniper rifles when they were issued. (again AFAIK, I wan't there, based on my study of the history...) That's a USMC sniper rifle.

If an individual Marine had a scope shipped from home and bolted it onto a rifle that was NOT issued to him by the Marine Corps as a Sniper Rifle, then that rifle cannot be properly called a USMC Sniper Rifle.

If the Marine Corps did at least test, experimentally, the M14 rifle as a Sniper Rifle during Viet Nam, and did issue an M14 rifle to a Marine and called it a Sniper Rifle when it was issued, or even so much as "Experimental M14 Sniper Rifle" or "Test M14 Sniper Rifle" that's good enough, I would consider that to be a rare example of a Marine Corps M14 Sniper Rifle, if that's what the Marine Corps called it when it was issued.

But, I have yet to see any documented history of that ever happening. Someone show me a document proving that the USMC ever issued an M14 Sniper Rifle...

2336USMC is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 01:54 PM   #6
Old Salt
 
Nordlander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Sweden Valley Pa./Missoula Mt. USA
Posts: 1,323
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2336USMC View Post
Hmm, well let me try to restate...

The question to me is what is really a "sniper rifle." The standards vary hugely from one country to another, and through history. If we call any old rifle with a scope a "sniper rifle" that waters down the true history, and leaves room for the fakers and humpers to bend the truth more.

To me, if an individual Soldier/Marine/Sailor/whoever, finds a way to bolt a scope onto a rifle, that doesn't make it a "sniper rifle."

I think the real definition should be, whatever army or military branch issued that weapon to the soldier, did that service call it a "sniper rifle" when it was issued?

For example, the Soviets bolted scopes onto Mosin Nagant rifles during WWII. AFAIK those rifles were no different than any other Mosin Nagant, except for the scope bolted on. But, when the Soviet Army issued those rifles, they called them sniper rifles, and they issued the rifles to snipers for the prupose of sniping. That is a sniper rifle.

Opposite example, when I bolted my personal ACOG onto my M16A2 during DS/S, did that make my rifle a USMC M16A2 Sniper Rifle? No, because the USMC did not issue it to me as a sniper rifle.

Nordlander's example of the USMC Winchester Model 70 sniper rifles is a very good example. Those rifles were built by the USMC specifically to be used for sniping, they were issued to snipers, and the USMC called them sniper rifles when they were issued. (again AFAIK, I wan't there, based on my study of the history...) That's a USMC sniper rifle.

If an individual Marine had a scope shipped from home and bolted it onto a rifle that was NOT issued to him by the Marine Corps as a Sniper Rifle, then that rifle cannot be properly called a USMC Sniper Rifle.

If the Marine Corps did at least test, experimentally, the M14 rifle as a Sniper Rifle during Viet Nam, and did issue an M14 rifle to a Marine and called it a Sniper Rifle when it was issued, or even so much as "Experimental M14 Sniper Rifle" or "Test M14 Sniper Rifle" that's good enough, I would consider that to be a rare example of a Marine Corps M14 Sniper Rifle, if that's what the Marine Corps called it when it was issued.

But, I have yet to see any documented history of that ever happening. Someone show me a document proving that the USMC ever issued an M14 Sniper Rifle...
The Marine Corps has used an M14 in some form of sniper activity from Vietnam up to today . Has it been the main USMC sniper rifle , no it has not but is has still been used extensively by the Marines . Let's not get paper shuffling mixed up with combat . The M14 was used by Marines in a sniper designation or in a telescopic mode from Vietnam until today with many enemy KIA's accredited to it.

Nordlander is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 02:05 PM   #7
No social life
 
GARRARD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Tampa
Posts: 10,457

Awards Showcase

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2336USMC View Post
I think the real definition should be, whatever army or military branch issued that weapon to the soldier, did that service call it a "sniper rifle" when it was issued?
That's good enough for me. I'd also point out that most if not all designated sniper rifles in our military are highly accurized as well. They usually have superior barrels and often have adjustable triggers.

GARRARD is online now  
Old September 10th, 2013, 02:13 PM   #8
Lifer
 
2336USMC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Road
Posts: 2,955
Not trying to have a urinating contest here, to me this is a normal good natured conversation around the campfire...

But as far as I know, the Marine Corps has only issued two specialized version of the M14 rifle ever... (Edit.. Sorry, not counting the match rifles built specifically for competition, I'm talking about rifles issued for combat.) The first was the M14 Designated Marksman Rifle. Not a sniper rifle, a Designated Marksman Rifle. I owned one (I signed for posession of it) as an EOD NCOIC. I have shot them. They exist, but the Marine Corps specifically called it a DMR because it was NOT a sniper rifle, and it was not issued to snipers.

Same story with the M39 Enhanced Marksman Rifle that came out after I retired... It replaced the the M14 DMR in the same units I was part of, still not a Sniper Rifle. If the Marine Corps considered it a sniper rifle or intended it for sniping, they would have said so.

There are several Marine Corps snipers on this forum, were any of you issued an M14 rifle as a sniper rifle? Not as a backup spotter weapon, the spotter is as likely to have an M4 carbine as anything, but as the sniper's weapon?

Just trying to keep the history straight. Someone show me a photo of a Marine Corps issue M14 sniper rifle...

And by the way... I did not serve as a paper shuffler.

2336USMC is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 02:15 PM   #9
Banned Camp
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Arizona
Posts: 81
The rifle itself is a rifle. The Snipers use the rifle based on accuracy. There really isn't anything that states, This is a sniper rifle. The word sniper isn't even in the nomenclature.

Arawn is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 02:48 PM   #10
Old Salt
 
Nordlander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Sweden Valley Pa./Missoula Mt. USA
Posts: 1,323
A sniper can be used as a single lone shooter and his spotter or can be used in a support mode during an attack or support mode in a static area to deliver aimed accurate fire at specific targets . There is not just one mission for a sniper . Anyone who has been to USMC sniper school as I have will tell you this . And certain rifles are better at certain jobs in a sniper designation. That's why the Marines use a Barrett 50 for certain missions ,the M40 for certain missions and the M14 in various forms for certain missions . Every scenario is different and as a pro golfer doesn't use one club for every shot neither does a USMC scout sniper

Nordlander is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 03:26 PM   #11
Master Gunner
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 886
In Nam I was issued a xm21 National Match M14 with an M84 scope. The first one was in 1966. If I recall correctly the Army never called any M14 a sniper weapon but a national match. I believe there was an aversion to the term sniper in Nam and I was never referred to as a sniper at battalion but was called a sniper by company and other units I worked with including some SF units out of B13,B11 and B16.
The M14 had a medium barrel, reworked trigger group, quick detach mount. and starlite mount which I carried for night use. The bolt. op rod and gas cly was worked over and the stock was bedded. I can't remember what else was done to it.
I was also issued national match in a special white box the came with 20 round's with each resupply.
Greg

Thanks from mustang7
gregaba is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 03:38 PM   #12
Master Gunner
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: USA
Posts: 895
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harleystoo View Post
Griffin & Howe made both a mount and a detachable base to scope the M-14. I ran across one of these in the Army, and 2 since I've been out. All samples of these have been clean (unmarked). The mount was identical to the M1C sniper mount, with 3/4" rings designed to use the M-84.
The United States, up thru Vietnam, has never gone into a war with an up-and-running sniper program. Then they go into knee-jerk reaction and try to modify existing equipment. The G&H mount and base were issued in the Army, and a stop-gap until the ART I came out.
The Marines have always been into bolt guns.
Sorry Harley,,I disagree regarding the scope mount.YES,the G&H scope base WAS used,and several,if not most of them were actually removed from M1C rifles, they even had the serial number of the M1C they were taken off of stamped into them,, Unmarked ones have also been observed (left over replacements??) The mount however was made by the Army Weapons Command.And there were 3 basic versions of it. Small round knob IIRC this one had a flat slot cut in it for a screw driver,,large round knob,and last was a large round knob that had the sides cut flat (wrench flats). I'll have to review my books to confirm which had the slot.
You are 110% correct in the that the US has always had to play "catch up" when it comes to snipers and sniper equipment.

m1sniper is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 03:44 PM   #13
Old Salt
 
sac troop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Northwest
Posts: 1,614
Seems like a big part of the discourse centers around how we want to define the term "issued". To some if an item is procured through the existing command structure it is de facto (issued). Others have a more exacting definition.

sac troop is online now  
Old September 10th, 2013, 03:45 PM   #14
Old Salt
 
bustedknuckles's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,001

Awards Showcase

I am out of the loop on this, i always got the SAW out of the armory. if a Marine called a sniper carried it would it be a sniper rifle, or a snipers rifle? just as i was the sawgunner the D.M. was not a sniper either. i would say whatever the Marine was issued in sniper school, thats the U.S.M.C. sniper rifle per say, But Marines adapt and overcome or borrow whatever tools aid the mission, and alot of times that means a Barrett or a M40 or a M14. if the rifle is in the snipers armory then its an approved U.S.M.C. sniper rifle.

bustedknuckles is offline  
Old September 10th, 2013, 03:58 PM   #15
Lifer
 
2336USMC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Road
Posts: 2,955
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordlander View Post
A sniper can be used as a single lone shooter and his spotter or can be used in a support mode during an attack or support mode in a static area to deliver aimed accurate fire at specific targets . There is not just one mission for a sniper . Anyone who has been to USMC sniper school as I have will tell you this . And certain rifles are better at certain jobs in a sniper designation. That's why the Marines use a Barrett 50 for certain missions ,the M40 for certain missions and the M14 in various forms for certain missions . Every scenario is different and as a pro golfer doesn't use one club for every shot neither does a USMC scout sniper
I totally understand what you are saying about the proper tool for the job. I'm not a sniper, never been to scout sniper school, don't rate the MOS. Just an EOD Tech. But, having worked side by side with them, I have at least an understanding of what they do.

I think where we disagree is this: You seem to be saying that any rifle ever carried by a USMC sniper while doing his job is a USMC Sniper Rifle. I don't get that. I'm sure that USMC snipers have carried every weapon ever in the USMC inventory, and some weapons that were never even in the inventory at some point in history, but that doesn't make that weapon a USMC Sniper Rifle.

Was there ever a Marine sniper that carried an XM177E2 on patrol? Does that mean the XM177E2 is a Marine Corps Sniper Rifle? Same for the M4, I'm sure snipers carry them all the time as protection on the way to a hide, does that mean the M4 carbine is a Marine Corps Sniper Rifle? M16A1 Sniper Rifle? M16A2 Sniper Rifle? M16A4 Sniper Rifle? M3 grease gun, M1 Thompson, Rem 870, whatever the mission required, I get that, but does that make it a USMC Sniper Rifle...

I get the feeling I'm chasing a dead end here, but as I say I'm just trying to get the history right. If a rifle was issued by the USMC as a sniper rifle, then to me it's a USMC sniper rifle. If we knew all the details, there may be a mission somewhere where a Marine sniper went out with a MAC-10 with a suppressor, but does that make the MAC-10 a Marine Corps Sniper Rifle?

2336USMC is offline  
Reply

  M14 Forum > M14 M1A Forum > The M14



Search tags for this page
m14 marine rifles 4 sale
,
m14 sniper rifle usmc sale
,
marine corps sniper rifle used in 1990
,
nomenclature of marine corps sniper rifle
,
remington 700 serial viet
,
show me pictures of m14 riffels
,

sniper rifles m40 x m21

,
sniping
,

what guns did usmc rifleman carry in 1990s

,
what kind of scope mount do marines use for m1a
,
what kind rifle did scout sniper use in desert storm
,
what model m1a do marine snipers use
Click on a term to search for related topics.

Moderator Tools
Display Modes


Similar M14 Forum Discussions
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Polytech M14S Headspace issue mellc1 The M14 33 February 21st, 2014 08:12 PM
OOPS ... I sold all my M14 rifles ... gone over to the dark side ..[;) Lazerus2000 Modern M14 28 May 8th, 2013 09:41 PM
The quest for M14 accuracy ? Where is the point of diminishing returns? Lazerus2000 Accuracy 66 September 21st, 2012 10:24 PM
Like or dislike certain ammunition Budman1 Ammunition 36 July 24th, 2012 03:11 PM
Comparison M14 vs Dragunov SVD spring1898 The M14 33 April 27th, 2012 06:23 AM



Top Gun Sites Top Sites List