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Carlos Hathcock .30-06

 
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  #1  
Old 02-23-2010, 04:34 AM
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Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Just in the middle of reading the biography of Carlos Hathcock by Charles Henderson- Marine Sniper. The book certainly has me drawn in, am up to the chapter about the Apache, the man hating female sniper- very frightening.

Anyway, It is amazing to think what Hatchcock and the lads were able to acheive with the .30-06, loaded with the 173 grain Sierra BT at 2550fps. Henderson states that Hathcock kept his M70 zeroed at 700 yards. I crunched the numbers using the current 168gr SMK and for a 700 yard zero, the bullet would strike around 24" high at 100 yards, 59" high at 375 yards and from there, gradually fall to its zero. I wonder if this was actually the zero he used or if Henderson has not gotten it quite right.

I have been working on a client's .30-06 today, its a very old Parker Hale/ Mauser action/ English trigger/ English light weight barrel in OK condition for its age. It had a re-stock and I was asked to bed the old girl. Seems to like the Hornady 165 grain BTSP at 2950fps which for an old rifle, is a healthy load. I will probably take it out for a couple of long shots before the rifle goes back to the owner so it will be great to give it a work out.

I certainly have a lot of respect for how guys like Hathcock and also match shooters, have been able to use the .308 and .30-06 and read the wind at 1000 yards. With my .308 culling rifle, I am absolutely hopeless past 450 yards. Although I should learn to use the .308 out further, the .30-06 is very appealing.

Have any of you guys become smitten with the old .30 for inexpensive LR work?
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Old 02-23-2010, 07:44 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

I've been using a Winchester pre-64 M70 target rifle in 30/06 Springfield for 1000 yard shooting. Had this rifle for 40 years. There is a Unertl Ultra-Varmint 15X on top.

My Ruger 77ST '06 shoots very small groups with Sierra 125 grain bullets at 250 yards so it is my coyote carry rifle.
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Old 02-23-2010, 08:30 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

It might shock you even more to know that the sgt's rifle shot about a 2" group at 100 yards and that he had to reset the scope after every shot.

I have read this book about 3 times its great! Henderson got it right alright. It was writen when Hathcock was still alive and there was alot of input from Maj Land too.

I love history. My first military rifle was the M14 in 308 win wow what a weapon.

After your done with that read SHOOTER its about Somila/Iraq a good read to.
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Old 02-23-2010, 09:00 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

My views of hunting and the world in general are not very mainstream so you can just take note of that fact up front.

At the moment I have several goals to achieve one of which is getting an elk beyond 100 yards with a bow. That may take me some few years to do. Another is to take a big game animal beyond 500 yards with a pistol and that should be easily accomplished this Fall.

On my list of potential challenges and things that would make my life varied and interesting is to have Nesikachad put me a set of competition iron sights on my308 in 40X and use them to kill a big game animal beyond 1000 yards with it. It may be that my eyes are no longer up to the challenge and it may be a waste of money but it is in the back of my mind as something interesting to do once my current list of challenges gets thinned out.
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Old 02-23-2010, 09:17 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Gunny Hathcock's venerable Winchester could certainly tell a tale or two.



It is a Model 70 National Match version made before 1940. It had a standard weight barrel as well as a clip guide milled into the receiver bridge so 5-round stripper clips could quickly and easily charge the magazine. The stock on his is the original standard one, not the Marksman stock later used. There's clips of the same type of rifle and scope used in WWII on TV sometimes.

Carrying a Unertl 8X target scope in external mounts, the scope had to be pulled back after each shot. Sliding forward in the mounts from recoil, that was the norm for those older Lyman, Fecker, El Monte and Unertl target scopes favored by competitive shooters.

His ammo was select lots of M72 30 caliber match ammo with 172-gr. FMJ boattail bullets. They left at near 2700 fps from new barrels. But the Gunny's barrel was worn enough that they left a bit slower. Note that M118 7.62 NATO match ammo wasn't made until 1964.

I read somewhere that the USMC's Marksmanship Unit at Quantico MCB, VA, checked his rifle out after he retired from active duty. Its barrel was rather worn and readily swallowed a bore erosion gage. It shot about 2 feet at 1000 yards, not nearly as well as it did when new. But Gunny Hathcock was so familiar with its trigger and sight settings for the trajectory its bullets followed, he didn't want to use anything else.

Last edited by Bart B; 02-23-2010 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:48 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi Nate View Post
Just in the middle of reading the biography of Carlos Hathcock by Charles Henderson- Marine Sniper. The book certainly has me drawn in, am up to the chapter about the Apache, the man hating female sniper- very frightening.

Anyway, It is amazing to think what Hatchcock and the lads were able to acheive with the .30-06, loaded with the 173 grain Sierra BT at 2550fps. Henderson states that Hathcock kept his M70 zeroed at 700 yards. I crunched the numbers using the current 168gr SMK and for a 700 yard zero, the bullet would strike around 24" high at 100 yards, 59" high at 375 yards and from there, gradually fall to its zero. I wonder if this was actually the zero he used or if Henderson has not gotten it quite right.

I have been working on a client's .30-06 today, its a very old Parker Hale/ Mauser action/ English trigger/ English light weight barrel in OK condition for its age. It had a re-stock and I was asked to bed the old girl. Seems to like the Hornady 165 grain BTSP at 2950fps which for an old rifle, is a healthy load. I will probably take it out for a couple of long shots before the rifle goes back to the owner so it will be great to give it a work out.

I certainly have a lot of respect for how guys like Hathcock and also match shooters, have been able to use the .308 and .30-06 and read the wind at 1000 yards. With my .308 culling rifle, I am absolutely hopeless past 450 yards. Although I should learn to use the .308 out further, the .30-06 is very appealing.

Have any of you guys become smitten with the old .30 for inexpensive LR work?
One of my uncle's was detached to Hill 55 as a Seabee. He told me that when he was to go on patrol that once a month before she was killed was terrifying .
If you watch Saving Private Ryan the left handed sniper is using a Unertl. This will give you an idea of what had to be done to reset the scope and take another shot.
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  #7  
Old 02-23-2010, 12:55 PM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Gunny Hathcock (aka White feather) had the stuff ledgends are made of. He had a natural skill that Very few have, and Unbelivable Courage, and is an American Hero!

I read that book years ago, when all my buddies were shooting 300mags and 7 mags and ''poo-pooing'' the ol 30-06. Mr Hathcock was an inspiration, and role model of courage and marksmanship for a young kid (me) with an old M-70 Win 30-06. I pushed my limmits (very meager by current standards) to 380yds under 3'' at 17 yrs old and daydreamed of what I could do with such skill. Hahaha pretty funny now, but grandpa hunted with his dads 30WCF and never saw any reason not to close the distance to under 100yds. And thats how my dad taught me, so 380 was HUGE for me. Now-a-days dad and I are on the same page, pushing our personal best's well past my old milestone of 17yrs ago. Grandpa is gone and so is Gunny Hathcock, but lessons from both are still with me today when I hunt.

In NO WAY am I comparing myself with a real life hero or even implying that I have EVEN ONE OUNCE of the Gunny's skill or courage. But he was an inspiration to better my marksmanship, just like grandpas inspiration to be stealthy in the woods.
While I belive there are far more efficient/effective L/R/H calibers out there, Gunny Hathcocks prowise proved to a young kid (me) that there wasnt anything wrong with shooting a so called ''whimpy old -06''. I learned alot.
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