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Carlos Hathcock .30-06

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Unread 02-24-2010, 09:12 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Around 1970, The US Navy Small Arms Match Conditioning Unit at San Diego had some Rem. 700's with Redfield's atop them they were testing for accuracy with different lots of M118 match ammo. They would ship two ammo cans of the best shooting lot with each 700 to SEAL team units. Typical accuracy at 600 yards tested in a machine rest was 6 to 7 inches.

They also had some silencers on a few of these rifles. About 16 inches long and near 1.5 inches in diameter, they did reduce the report quite a bit. But accuracy with the silencer attached suffered a bit limiting their use to no more than about 400 yards.
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Unread 02-24-2010, 11:15 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

well guys I didn't have to read the book to get to know Hathcock.my good friend how sniped along with him told me alot about him.he was all so Hathcocks coach before thet went to war.but now both are shooting up in the clouds looking down at use.and I sometimes wounder if they are laughing at us or cheering us on.but hey they both gave us the freedom to do the things we sometimes take for granted.just wish they didn't have to do the things they did for us.
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Unread 02-24-2010, 03:00 PM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Hathcocks rifle burned up in an APC after it hit a mine in Vietnam. I read the book too, it is a great read. I'm sure he had more than one though.

Originally Posted by Bart B View Post
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.
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Unread 02-25-2010, 04:46 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Interesting how Winchester has always been plagued with troubles (or did they just plague themselves with troubles). Can I ask, why did the match shooters prefer the M70 to the M700?

My LR rifle is based on an M70 action. It is a 1999 stainless controlled feed model. The things I like the most are the three position safety, being able to field strip the bolt and the extraction. Of course, all of these features are relative to the bolt and not the action with regard to accuracy potential. I have often wondered which was the the most rigid of the two. The M700 is certainly easier to bed etc.

One other question, I thought that the 168 grain SMK as loaded by federal was the current service load for the M24. Is this correct?

Am just at the chapter in the book where Hathcock is under arrest (captain Land's orders) for working too hard and Land has put him on a diet of beer to try and slow him down. "I want that skinny little sh#t arrested"
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Unread 02-25-2010, 06:14 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Originally Posted by Kiwi Nate View Post
Can I ask, why did the match shooters prefer the M70 to the M700?

I have often wondered which was the the most rigid of the two. The M700 is certainly easier to bed etc.
Here's the advantages the Winchester 70 has over the Remington 700:

* Magazine charges more reliably from stripper clips, either from the clip guide milled into the receiver bridge or a screwed on clip guide. And the 70's magazine feeds rounds more reliably.

* Extractor's more reliable; either the original claw style or newer sliding one in the bolt face.

* Safety is more reliable and locks the firing pin, not the trigger.

* Easier to operate in rapid fire with better shaped and longer bolt handle.

* Easier to swap barrels on with its recoil lug intregal with the receiver.

* Classic controlled round feed versions easier to remove fired cases from in single fire operation.

* Winchesters 70's are near 3 times stiffer than Remington 700's.

* Receiver doesn't twist a bit loose from epoxy bedding after a few hundred rounds with bullets heavier than 165 grains and has to be rebedded.

Winchester Model 70 based match rifles have shot smaller test groups at the longer ranges that most benchrest records.

Last edited by Bart B; 02-25-2010 at 08:34 AM.
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Unread 02-25-2010, 08:36 AM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

Originally Posted by Kevin Thomas View Post
There were a couple of errors in Henderson's account here, but they're relatively minor and shouldn't detract from the story itself. First, there was no such thing as a Sierra 173 grain FMJBT. The bullet was a match grade M72/M118 bullet produced at Lake City or Frankford arsenal. Good bullets, and they'd stay supersonic out past a thousand yards. Not a fair comparison with the Sierra 168, since the HPBT is considerably more accurate, but won't stay supersonic our that far. They lose it, break the transonic range and usually start tumbling around 900 yards or so. The newer 175 grain HPBT loaded in the current 7.62mm M118LR was the hybrid that resulted to cure both the accuracy issues of the 173s, and the BC deficiencies of the 168 in one bullet. Done pretty well in that, and is still helping Mujihadeed get their promised 72 virgins, one round at a time. In WWII and Korea, snipers usually used 168 grain AP rounds, as they were the heaviest available, and there were no match rounds in production for most of this period. The match rounds came out of some work done by some very competent competitive shooters who wound up serving as snipers (sound familar?) in both WWII and Korea, eventually going to the M72, the M118, the M118 Special Ball and the M852, and finally the M118LR. There's a whole story here about how these rounds evolved, and it's a pretty interesting one.

Never got the chance to meet GySgt Hathcock, but I've shot with his son on several occasions. He was my coach in Long range Firing School at Camp Perry in 2000, and a genuinely nice guy. Major Land went on the work for the NRA competitions division (and may still be there, I'm not sure). It's his signature on my Distinguished Rifleman's certificate, which I thought was just pretty damned cool. By the way, if you like Henderson's book, check out "Shots Fired In Anger" by Col John George. The story of an NRA competitive shooter who found himself fighting in the Pacific. His detailed knowledge of precison shooting, natural interest in and knowledge of guns made him a fascinating commentator on the fighting.

Kevin thomas
Lapua USA
Kevin tell you alittle story if you don't mind. I joined the marines 1960 did boot camp at Pendleton my first duty was seagoing marine stationed in Long Beach,Ca. Every year you have qualify so I did mine at Kaneohe Bay,Hawaii Marine base got to meet Carlos he was with the 4th Marines shooting the Pacific Div didn't mean alot to me back then. At that time Hawaii was called foreign duty station 2yr tour but you got extra pay and was good duty. I crossed path again at Cherry Point during the cuban missle deal I was heading to Cuban and that was the last time I saw him. Just a side note my last duty station was with the 4th Marines at Kaneohe Bay (I had to extend my enlistment to for that duty) I made the landing at Chu Lai in May 1965 then got out.
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Unread 02-25-2010, 07:46 PM
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Re: Carlos Hathcock .30-06

I used to run into this older guy in the local elk moutains, well worn 30-06 in his hands, and Im talking very large drainages that you cant even think of shooting across, magnum country. Felt kinda sorry for the guy, me packing my 340WM. But dang, every year went buy and that guy was tacking a 6x6 out of the mtns. ususally opening day. Later a friend told me his rafters in garage were full of horns, Not feeling bad for him any more, he new that gun and the country, I find old hides of his still
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