Col. George Hanger on marksmanship training

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Some things never change…

Some remarks respecting the training of a raw countryman, or a mechanic from Birmingham, perfectly awkward and generally very ignorant.  He is consigned to the superintendence of the drill serjeant.  He is first taught to walk, next to march, and hold himself tolerably erect.

Then a firelock is placed in his hands, which he handles at first as awkwardly as a bear would a plumb cake.  When he is taught the manual exercise and fit to do regimental duty, they then take him to fire powder.  Whilst the drill serjeant is teaching him to fire either by files or by platoons, the serjeant says to him, laying his cane along the barrels of the firelocks, ‘Lower the muzzles of your pieces, my lads, otherwise when you come into action, you will fire over the enemy.’ 

After this the recruit is taken to fire ball at a target.  How is he taught?  Thus he is spoken to:  ‘Take steady aim, my lad, at the bull’s eye of the target; hold your piece fast to the shoulder that it may not hurt you in the recoil; when you get your sight, pull smartly.’  This is the general way in which I believe they are taught, and in the name of truth and common sense permit me to ask you how a drill serjeant who is no marksman himself can teach an ignorant countryman or a low order of a mechanic to be a good marksman.  In my humble opinion, excellent in their way as they are to discipline the soldier and form him for parade and actual service in the line, the serjeant is just as capable of teaching him how to solve one of Sir Isaac Newton’s problems as to teach him to be a marksman.

Reflections on the menaced invasion, and the means of protecting the capital
Lord George Hanger, 4th Baron Coleraine
London, 1804

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High Power with Issue Rifles

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How much of a difference does match grade equipment make compared to standard, rack grade, issue rifles and ammunition? National champion CPT Freeman of the USAR Service Rifle Team shares his experience in competing with both.

By actual test, the difference in score between a top end match grade rifle with highly refined sights and trigger, ammunition, and shooting accessories (padded shooting coat, sling, glove, etc.) is less than 15%, even with a beat up, bottom-edge issue rack-grade rifle and ammunition with no refinements and no shooting accessories. It will likely be even less in most cases.

BLUF: Scores are earned by skill. Even the best match grade equipment can only account for the last few percentage points in the score.

The same holds true with handguns and practical shooting.
https://firearmusernetwork.com/race-guns-vs-regular-guns/

Highpower Service Rifle Living History

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Jim Laughland has more patches commemorating all the different years he’s shot at the National Matches than there are rounds fired in a LEG Match. The very friendly and excellent shooter shares some of his many stories and pictures in our interview below.

http://www.beingofservicerifle.com/interview-jim-laughland/

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