ARMORER’S HANDBOOK

Prepared by DOL Maintenance Division Technical Services Branch Fort Drum, NY Author: Charles F Ruggiero Jr. Ordnance Equipment Specialist Course Instructor

About the Author The author of this publication is Charles F. Ruggiero Jr, a civilian employee of the Department of the Army. Chuck is employed by Headquarters, 10th Mountain Division (LI) & Fort Drum. He is assigned to the Directorate of Logistics, Maintenance Division, and serves as the Ordnance Equipment Specialist assigned to the Technical Services Branch of the Support Maintenance Activity. Chuck serves as the course manager and primary instructor for the 10th Mountain Division Unit Armorer Course. The UAC is an 80 hour formal course that encompasses all of the material presented in this publication, and which goes into much greater depth than this single reference volume can provide. In addition to his instructional duties at the UAC, Chuck also provides training at the unit level. Among the subjects he teaches are machinegun operating theory, small arms maintenance, MOS 45B upgrade training, and premarksmanship instruction. A qualified range instructor, he is a Distinguished Honor Graduate of the USAF Combat Arms Instructor Academy. His military experience includes active duty service with the US Army. A graduate of the US Army Infantry School, he served as an infantry soldier in Vietnam during the period July 1968 to July 1969. His US Army service includes duty with the Army National Guard in MOS 45B (Small Arms Repair), and with the US Army Reserve in MOS 12B3H (Combat Engineer Instructor). Currently a member of the NY Air National Guard, he serves as an Air Force Security Police Officer, specializing in weapons instruction. His experience includes virtually everything related to firearms. He is a qualified instructor with rifles, shotguns, revolvers, pistols, sub-machineguns, grenade launchers, machineguns, rocket launchers, flame weapons, mortars, demolitions and pyrotechnics. He has worked at the Organizational, Direct Support and General Support levels of maintenance as a weapons specialist. He also served more than eight years as the weapons quality assurance inspector at Fort Drum. In addition to training thousands of students in his long career, and working on a myriad of different weapons and systems, he has used most of these types of weapons in combat situations.

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Foreword Congratulations! Whether you have been serving as a Unit Armorer, or have been recently appointed to such a position, you are a member of an important group of weapons specialists. Throughout history, man has engaged in armed conflict. Over recent centuries, the advancement of technology has resulted in more lethal and sophisticated arms and ammunition. Today, these weapons are used by America’s military and law enforcement personnel to deter aggression and defend the public. Armorers have always played a vital role in tactical operations. Whether building offensive weapons of war, designing and fitting body armor, or casting lead shot for muskets, their contribution to the outcome of battle is undeniable. As technology improved the implements of war, it was always necessary for the armorers to keep up with the changes in order to maximize these contributions. The requirement for trained and highly skilled armorers is as critical now, even with today’s modern weapons systems, as it ever was. The assumption that modern metallurgy and design technologies have lessened the need for small arms maintenance specialists is false. In fact, the opposite is true. Today’s armorer has a serious responsibility, providing quality assurance through inspections and periodic preventive maintenance checks. A trained and experienced armorer can detect faults and make repairs, preventing failures of firearms in the field environment. Military personnel and law enforcement officers have a tough, dangerous job. They need reliable weapons to protect lives, safeguard property, achieve the objectives of tactical operations, and defend themselves. The reliability of their weapons is the direct responsibility of the armorer. In addition to performing firearms inspection and maintenance, armorers have many other duties. Included among these are administrative, logistics and training support functions. This publication, which provides guidance primarily to US Army armorers, details these other duties. Members of other military branches and police organizations may also find this publication useful. No single publication could ever provide all the useful information relating to the maintenance of firearms. The subject-matter area is so expansive, that I could go into endless detail. Instead, I will attempt to present general principles and their application to a broad range of common military and law enforcement weapons.

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In my many years of military and civil service, I often wondered why there was not a handbook like this one in circulation. Hopefully this publication will fill the need for a single-volume reference, providing answers to the most common questions encountered in the weapons maintenance field. In addition to maintenance training, I also have extensive experience as a tactical instructor. This book is written from a different perspective than one usually finds in a maintenance document. It will combine the maintenance and tactical aspects of firearms, by explaining not only how weapons are repaired, but also how they are used. As a result, there will be extensive information on ballistics, ammunition, marksmanship and maintenance. I have long been critical of single-issue training programs. Defense attorneys must study the entirety of statutory and case law before graduating from law school. Likewise, cardiologists must complete their general medical studies before they can become specialists. No one would ever consider consulting a lawyer or doctor who only had a partial education, for obvious reasons. It is only logical that armorers should be well versed in all aspects of firearms theory and practice. Just as surely as no one would want to be operated on by a poorly trained doctor, no person who carries a duty firearm should ever have to rely on a weapon maintained by an armorer with inadequate training. This book includes review exercises and a “final examination," much like any correspondence course. This process provides immediate feedback to the reader, validating the study process. I must caution the reader, however, that this handbook should not be used as a substitute for formal training! No one ever qualified for any career by reading a book or two. Formal, hands-on on study is essential to success. This book will not re-invent the wheel. Much needed data can be found in technical manuals and other publications. I will simply provide a reference listing to achieve that study. This is only proper, since data in manuals changes frequently. If I were to reprint technical manual data here, this book would soon become obsolete. No document like this could ever have been created without reference materials or the input from other knowledgeable persons. At the end of this book you will find a comprehensive listing of relevant publications, reference materials and recommended reading on the subject of firearms and armorers.

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army.315-772-9023 FAX: 315-772-0015 DSN: 341-9023 DSN FAX: 341-0015 Commercial FAX: 315-772-0015 E-mail: ruggieroc@drum-emh4. who does not react emotionally to situations. not personal. I speak my mind without consideration of political correctness and bureaucratic attitudes..not politics! If this offends you.mil guntutor@hotmail. it is that of a clear-thinking. please contact me.com -or- Throughout this publication you may encounter opinion-based statements that appear critical or negative about existing policies or programs. it’s probably because that program needs to change! Please don’t think that my position is one of arrogance. 10th Mountain Division (LI) & Fort Drum AFZS-DL-MT (ATTN: Mr. please don’t read this book! Chuck Ruggiero July 1998 4 .This is the third revision of this publication. I focus on reality. Sorry. I’m truly sorry if these statements offend some bureaucrats. If you find a problem with this document or wish to make a change or inclusion. Technical Services Branch T-790 Eighth Street West Fort Drum. and I consider my opinions to be valid and professional. As a result. analytical professional. Here are my address and phone numbers: HQ. which were basically “read-along” handbooks. but I’m more concerned with what happens to the soldier on the battlefield or the police officer on the street. this will be revised again.. I have spent a good number of years engaged in my profession. If I appear critical about a program. but since the employment of firearms is always a life-or-death struggle for the combatants. Instead. The format is different from the two preceding volumes. Undoubtedly. Ruggiero) DOL Maintenance Division. New York 13602 Telephone: Commercial .

Maintenance Tips 156. Firearms Operating Characteristics 66. Safety Rules 120. Answer Keys 5 . Foreword 5. Marksmanship 121. Chapter 3.Table of Contents: 1. Cycle of Functions 72. Table of Contents 6. Maintenance Management 41. Cartridge Cases 95. Priming 97. Final Examination 210. Publications Management 24. Ballistic Terminology 103. Firearms Safety and Marksmanship 107. Armorer Tools and Maintenance Tips 136. Hammers 138. Chapter 4. Safety Awareness Concept 110. About the Author 2. Cooling 76. Operating System Design 80. Armorer’s Glossary 196. Ammunition and Ballistics 82. Supply Management 32. Calipers 137. Chapter 1. Armorer Duties 12. Chapter 2 Examination 105. Chapter 1 Examination 65. Arms Room Publication Reference 207. Propellants and Projectiles 92. Physical Security 50. Pliers 139. Range Operations Support 55. Ballistics Factors and Marksmanship 132. Tactical Training Operations Support 57. Combat Operations Support 63. Chapter 3 Examination 134. Recommended Reading List 209. Files and Stones 142. Special Tools and Gages 148. Human Physiology and Anatomy 129. Files Management 14. Chapter 4 Examination 159. Introduction to Arms Room Duty 8. Chapter 2. Unit Arms Room Operations Checklist 204. Wrenches 140.

comfortable. the interface between man and technology. those standards primarily address security.an operating sink with cold and hot water supply . 18 feet square.minimum 60 square feet of maintenance area for repairs . There are other considerations not addressed in those documents. Introduction to Arms Room Duty An arms room. all of them met the standards for security.parts bins sufficient to contain all authorized repair parts .a steel workbench. computer.storage cabinets specially designed to hold ammunition .an electric fan or other positive ventilation means . operating ease and accessibility. and some which were totally impractical. I have been in hundreds of arms rooms on military bases and in police agencies throughout the country.lighting adequate for detailed inspection of metallic components .a dehumidifier capable of maintaining 30% to 45% humidity . etc. storage capacity. is a fixed facility used primarily for the purpose of storing weapons and associated equipment.a set of gunsmith tools and all special gages as required . cushioned desk chair . .a clearing barrel or clearing container .an intercom to the front desk or orderly room . fire protection and construction techniques. fire protection and construction techniques.an emergency eyewash station .sufficient rack space for the total number of weapons on hand . with a wooden top 6 . Arms rooms should meet certain general standards for physical security. The properly designed arms room will have: . I have seen well-designed rooms.an agency-approved alarm system .Chapter 1.a large bench vise.racks specifically designed to hold each type of weapon on hand .a telephone and duress alarm system .a minimum entrance width of 36 inches . bench grinder and rotary multi-tool (Dremel Tool) . file cabinets.administrative space for a desk.properly designed electrical service to accommodate power tools . As an arms room inspector. or vault. Although the general specifications for military arms rooms are defined in manuals printed by the Department of Defense.non-skid cushioned rubber floor mats in maintenance areas . the most important of which is ergonomics.illuminated magnifying lamp with six inch lens .storage lockers for auxiliary equipment such as night vision devices . However.a “day door” or “issue door” which denies entry while issuing weapons .

This is not the best policy. a still-frame video recording system is strongly recommended. bushes. so are their weapons! Some arms rooms also double as evidence rooms. fences or shrubbery should be placed to block direct viewing by the public in an unsecured area. measures should be taken to protect your operation from public view. This is never wise. This should accommodate the number of personnel expected to stand at the door during issue or turn-in of weapons. However. 7 . Video equipment should be positioned and installed so as to not be easily detected. found property and civilian privately owned weapons (POW’s) should be maintained separately from organizational weapons and property. since the evidence technician or evidence officer usually needs total control over the evidence area to protect the “chain of custody” for legal purposes. Traffic control aids such as speed bumps should be placed to prevent rapid escape by vehicle. It is what should be designed into each arms storage and issue facility nationwide. poorly lit part of the building is an invitation to a strong-arm theft.The previous listing is not a “wish list”. If the co-location of both is necessary. In addition to the standard alarm requirements for weapons storage areas. and is a simple dead-bolt that turns without a key in the lock. Likewise. It allows the arms room to be open for issue and turn-in. This can prevent intrusion while your back is turned. with a direct video feed to the agency’s alarm monitoring station or desk sergeant. while keeping people outside. for accountability purposes. but if you are stuck with such a facility. I have seen arms rooms with entrances that were located on the outside of buildings. Also. An entrance in a secluded. the arms room should also have a lobby or waiting area. If possible or affordable. If a direct video feed is impractical. accessed and disabled by potential thieves. a critical failing of most arms room design is found in the day door or issue door. which it will be as you are getting weapons out of the racks. However. This typically is a half-door or “Dutch door” with a counter-top surface. Replace the lock with a double-keyed dead-bolt to maximize security. the interior entrances to arms rooms should be well illuminated and clearly visible. the typical lock inside the door is easily reached. alarmed areas for separation of arms and evidence. and should be avoided. make sure you have key and lock control programs that prevent the possibility of unauthorized persons gaining access to evidence. Keeping evidence in the arms room increases the number of persons in the evidence area. Hedges. video surveillance should be provided. In addition to the stated requirements. Limiting the number of persons with access to the evidence storage area is always the best policy. If your soldiers or officers are standing in the rain. not every agency has the luxury of owning two secure.

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Maintenance Management 5. Garrison duty describes those activities of the armorer when the unit is not engaged in field or tactical operations. Armorers usually also perform numerous other duties. Supply Management 4.soldiers may be given a 90 minute lunch break. Although there are functions common to both types of duty. and who must go home or to a restaurant. As a result. there are many differences. This accommodates soldiers who do not eat in the dining facility. It is composed of the activities the armorer performs routinely. Files Management 2.5 hours.Armorer Duties: The duties of a typical military armorer fall into two major areas of activity: garrison duty and field duty. It also implies that the operation is conducted from an arms room. Consider the following factors: . shower and change into their uniform.soldiers usually have physical training formations in the morning. the armorer is really only present in the arms room 32. . .the soldier’s duty day typically ends at 1700 hours. The arms room may or may not be equipped with an intrusion detection system. but only if he or she is there on a full-time basis 9 . Publications Management 3.during a 5 day workweek. Some arms rooms require 24-hour surveillance by military or law enforcement personnel. the armorer frequently will be tasked to support classroom and range training sessions. they may report for work in the duty section about 0900 hours or even as late as 0930 hours. Take note that many of the concepts and operating principles apply to military and civilian agencies. Garrison duty includes five separate and distinct functions: 1. there is no dedicated position for the unit armorer. and in the US Army force structure. Physical Security Additionally. from 1130 hours to 1300 hours. The lack of a dedicated full-time position for the armorer means that the quality of the work the armorer can perform is compromised to some degree. the armorer usually serves as an in-house source of information and expertise in matters related to firearms training and maintenance. . As such. and after PT are given time to eat.

. A unit armorer can be any soldier from any occupational specialty. typically. and 92Y training only teaches minimal skills. it is still only a part of the duty day. Even worse. but that’s not the case. issue and turn-in of weapons. This should be a full-time position in the Army force structure. if the armorer is to complete the tasks according to the technical manual. or any other arms rooms duties. 10 . in addition to any other auxiliary equipment such as night vision devices. The only attempt to provide training for armorers on an Army-wide basis is at the 92Y Supply Specialist course.in a 13 week period.in a typical military arms room. as in other branches of the armed forces. files management. general housekeeping. . artillery. signal. These tasks must be completed once every 13 weeks ( a calendar quarter). publications management. where there are at least armorer courses offered. . The supply specialist has many other duties besides the arms room. the commander has the latitude to appoint whomever he or she considers fit for the position. But for this soldier. infantry. 18 light machineguns. there are 422. as I perform this duty on nearly a full-time basis. 6 medium machineguns. The Army assigns the job. there will be approximately 120 rifles. GPS gear.. maintenance or food service. and also can not afford all the hours needed to do the job well.the 200 hours needed to conduct PMCS also does not include any of the time needed for supply management.e.just the inspection process (not including any repairs) will take over 200 work hours per calendar quarter.the armorer is responsible for performing all the Preventive Maintenance Checks and Services (PMCS) on all the equipment in the arms room. Compounding the problem is the fact that there is no training standard for unit armorers.With an understanding of how few hours are actually spent in the performance of mission-specific tasks. . i. It should be easy to understand why it is so difficult for armorers to keep up with the workload in the arms room. a half dozen pistols. there are no training or qualification standards for the instructors! I should know.each quarterly PMCS takes approximately one hour per weapon. This would be acceptable if every unit had a 92Y Supply Specialist. Also.5 work hours using the above stated method of determining available hours. to a supply specialist. now consider these factors: . . and about 1000 rifle magazines. etc. 160 bayonets.

Tactical Employment of Firearms . which prepare an individual for this mission.Transportation.Ammunition and Ballistics . 11 . this is because like the armorer position.Operations Security (OPSEC) .Firearms Safety . to understand the use of the equipment. Division Commanders and MACOM Commanders may appoint an individual to teach an armorer’s course.Firearms Maintenance Techniques . Among the subjects that this person must master.Garrison Commanders. Storage and Handling of Ammunition This list is far from inclusive. so there are no job standards.The Modern Army Recordkeeping System (MARKS) . there are no duty positions in the Army. The maintenance NCO might not know a thing about OPSEC.Destruction of Small Arms to Prevent Enemy Use .Shop Safety . An armorer instructor must be well versed in all areas concerning weapons maintenance and training.Army Supply Procedures . A good infantry NCO does not necessarily make a good maintenance instructor. He or she should have served in a combat arms MOS as an actual user of the equipment. Unfortunately.Firearms Design and Operating Theory . The armorer instructor must not only be familiar with the subjects presented. the job does not actually exist.Physical Security . When a suitable candidate is found. there is no school that prepares the candidate to teach armorers.Small Arms Pre-embarkation Standards . The search for a good candidate to teach armorer’s courses can be exhaustive and fruitless. A background in maintenance and inspection at the direct support or higher level of maintenance should be mandatory. but experienced as well.Publications Management . and fund that effort locally.Principles and Techniques of Instruction . are the following: . no qualification standard for such a position. however. Physical Security or marksmanship training. There is.Basic and Advanced Marksmanship Principles . Formal training in the presentation of instructional materials should likewise be mandatory.Use and Care of Hand Tools . Again.Inspection Techniques .The Army Maintenance Management System (TAMMS) .

The nature of battle is such that if one side wins.. when foe meets foe. You must perform all the duties previously mentioned and still perform your MOS duties. It is an additional assigned duty. Preventing the failure of weapons on the battlefield is the direct responsibility of the armorer. that you be given the facts. What I am openly critical of. the cost of failure can be death.. because one is not properly recognized for the fulltime work it requires. and one of the most important areas of responsibility in the military. The armorer’s job is dynamic. If we do everything else correctly. in the Army there is no such position as Unit Armorer. their respective commanders or supervisors would fire them. What this means in reality is that you. There is no such position as Armorer Instructor. but we fail to maintain that soldier’s weapon to the highest standard. since you ostensibly are about to enter the world of armorer duty. When the soldier meets that enemy. the other must surely lose.I am presenting this information for the purpose of enlightenment. I prefer. difficult. if we train. no special skills identifier. house. is the fact that I have no knowledge of who these people are and what qualifications they have. no badge. I also urge you to understand that I am not being critical of armorer instructors at other installations.. If you can feel comfortable with all that. no central system for the identification of school-trained armorers. Since the essence of battle melds into that one moment in time. If these people were not good at what they do. even though I’m one of them. The fact is. 12 . Any soldier who faces an enemy on a battlefield must have reliable equipment and good training. The use of military force to settle international disputes is always filled with danger. then let me personally welcome you to the greatest challenge in the US Army...nothing except hard work. The sad news is. the unit arms room. there is no greater responsibility.. not criticism. you will inherit two full-time jobs. no medal. no patch. no advanced training. the armorer. I am sure they are the best persons locally available for the job. will be evaluated on the basis of your performance within your MOS. care for and support the soldier in everything he or she does. above and beyond that expected of your peers. we have compromised the military mission.. There is no standardized training. no kind of recognition system. It also is an additional assigned duty. feed.and neither does the Army! The bottom line is: there is no support structure for this duty like there is for any MOS...

13 .Welcome to your new job.

technical bulletins. This material not only provides an historic reference of what you have accomplished. There is a large quantity of technical data associated with weapons. A standardized file system makes the transition quick and efficient. maintenance directives. lubrication orders. That’s the nature of battle. How these documents are maintained is important. The armorer has to handle a large volume of documentation. Files Management The need for a standardized filing system should be readily apparent. maintenance advisory letters. 14 . the filing system is a vital part of the management process. but also provides information to others on current operations and planned maintenance actions. They define the essence of the arms room operation. safety of use messages. No one likes to think of himself or herself as being expendable. let’s discuss what you need to know to succeed. We’ll begin by examining those five areas of responsibility previously mentioned in the definition of garrison duty. But let’s be honest. The Army does not like to think of you that way. If a soldier is lost as a result of an enemy action. and other sources of critical information. They include policy directives. The same principles apply. either. end term of service (ETS). Such a system would enable a soldier working in one office to move to a new office and find all needed documentation in the same familiar folders. The new soldier needs to become familiar with the work in progress as soon as possible. now that we understand how tough the armorer’s job can be. that soldier must be replaced. regulations. we have to expect casualties. In the arms room. but of military necessity. A good file system allows us to deal with the change while keeping disruption to a minimum. These documents have an impact on all levels of activity within an arms room. Even if we are not contending with a combat environment. etc. and general correspondence. modification work orders. promotional reassignment. This is true whether you are a military armorer or a member of a civilian law enforcement agency. This not just a matter of convenience.Okay. because proper administrative management of the arms room is essential to success. we still always lose soldiers due to permanent change of station (PCS). This data can be found in technical manuals.

I personally believe every soldier in the Army should attend a MARKS class. Thomas is an associate instructor at the Fort Drum Armorer Course. This individual.Ensures the Army has the information needed to complete the mission. . MARKS applies to all unclassified records.Provides instructions for the systematic identification. retirement and destruction of Army information recorded on any medium (paper. Doug Thomas. or any other). applies to all files of every type at any location. Records that are identified as TOP SECRET may be set up under MARKS. Check with your local DOIM to determine if classes are available to you. Mr. 15 . and is based upon the numbering system used for Army Regulations and other publications. storage. Detailed information on MARKS can be obtained by reading the applicable DA publications. Even if the installation or base you are assigned to is too small to have a functioning DOIM. Whatever method is used. there is still an office responsible for files oversight. can be reached at 315-772-6647. Mr. . or MARKS. It also applies to classified materials identified as CONFIDENTIAL or SECRET. or DOIM. This program is easy to understand and use. or in any other manner that will make accountability or control easier.Preserves records needed to protect the rights and interests of the Army. This agency is responsible for administering the files policies at the local level. There is usually no cost for this training. including those identified as For Official Use Only (FOUO). microform. or in many cases by contacting your DOIM or servicing agency with files inspection authority.The method of using and maintaining files is found in Army Regulation 25-4002. Most US Army installations have a Directorate of Information Management. The following information will help to explain the purpose of MARKS: . maintenance.Furnishes the only legal authority for destroying Army information. and former members. the disposition instructions found in Army Regulation 25-400-2 will be applied for TOP SECRET records. its members.Provides for the removal of less active records from office space to low-cost storage areas. electronic. At Fort Drum we are fortunate enough to have a files management specialist who provides classroom instruction on MARKS. the Modern Army Recordkeeping System. and an invaluable asset to the Fort Drum community. . . or DSN 341-6647.

A separate publication. in reality. establishes the need for the use of technical manuals at the unit level. The publications address policies and procedures for the particular level of maintenance identified by the series number of the document. The following explanation of the publication numbering system will help you understand the relevance of this information 16 . Heavy Maint.Publications Management MARKS prescribes the method for filing. and parts to be replaced. Publications have to be inventoried periodically. controlling and disposing of information. and the content changes must be posted as needed. unit maintenance is broken down further into two categories. prescribes the manner for posting content changes. General Support. are used to identify series of publications. AR 750-1. paragraph 3-8a. states that the Army has four basic levels of maintenance. They are the Unit. and in the correct binders. and labeled accordingly. However. DA Pamphlet 310-13. it also determines the manner in which you will maintain publications in your arms rooms. So. Organizational Field Maint. 1 through 5. operator and organizational maintenance. titled “Army Material Maintenance Policy and Retail Maintenance Operations”. Actually. Reference publications must be properly identified as defined by MARKS. as they are the source of authority for the application of maintenance procedures. The levels of maintenance are also known as echelons. As such. The armorer is required to have technical publications on hand. Before we can understand how this need is established. we need to look at Army maintenance policy in general. The code letters are used in technical manuals to identify specific maintenance procedures. is only part of your responsibility. and Depot levels of maintenance. A number and code letter identifies each echelon as follows: 12345Operator/Crew Maintenance Organizational Maintenance Direct Support Maintenance General Support Maintenance Depot Maintenance Code C Code O Code F Code H Code D Crew Maint. The echelon numbers. we have five maintenance levels to contend with. Army Regulation 750-1. Depot Maint. at each individual level or echelon. to ensure your publications are current and complete. Direct Support. merely having the publications on hand.

50 caliber M2 machinegun: TM9-1005-213-10 TM9-1005-213-23 TM9-1005-213-23P Are the numbers confusing? They are for most people. such as “1” for Aviation. “3” for Chemical. Armament and Chemical Acquisition and Logistics Activity. the technical manuals for the Browning . IL. In the case of the . because almost no one is trained to understand the TM numbering system. rather than having to print the full name of that agency every time a reference to it is made. Here’s what the above numbers mean: The designation TM means that the publication is a technical manual. and you will deal with them on a daily basis.Let’s take technical manuals as an example. You can see it is much easier to use TM9 as the designator. it begins with the designator TM. The number 9 refers to the proponent agency. because all weapons have technical manuals. 17 . the designator TM9 means that the proponent agency for this machinegun is: The US Army Tank-Automotive/Armament Command. “9” for Ordnance. since our reference publication is a technical manual. There are different designators for different proponent agencies. which tells us what type of document we are dealing with. Rock Island Arsenal. and so on. We’ll use as an example.50 caliber machinegun. “7” for Infantry. The following are some of the more commonly encountered designators: TM TB LO SC AR DA PAM GTA CTA TDA TOE MTOE Technical Manual Technical Bulletin Lubrication Order Supply Catalog Army Regulation Department of the Army Pamphlet Graphic Training Aid Common Table of Allowances Tables of Distribution and Allowances Table of Organization and Equipment Modification Table of Organization and Equipment So. the organization responsible for the development of the included policies or doctrine. All publications have a designator. “5” for Engineer.

This identifies it among other . 213th item) Of course. small arms to 30mm. in fact. but no technical manual for it. Not every item in an FSC requires a TM. specific items) Anti-Tank Weapons Pryotechnics Chemical-Biological masks and equipment Training Aids and Devices There are literally thousands of FSC’s. selfpropelled howitzers and so on. Let’s catch up to our .Okay.. covering many types of equipment. We understand TM9. If we added another. and in the case of the . All of the TM’s relating to the Browning M2 machinegun will therefore begin with TM91005-213. and what particular item it happens to be. the last TM would be number 500.. shotguns. The item identifier is usually a 3-digit number.50 caliber M2 machinegun. so far. regardless of what level of maintenance they cover. It means that of all the items in this FSC. and it required a TM. Every item of type-classified and standardized materiel in the US Federal Supply System falls into an FSC category. revolvers. The next item in our example of the . any firearm less than 30mm in terms of bore diameter. the Browning M2 is the 213th item in the FSC requiring a technical manual.50 caliber machinegun example so far: TM9-1005 (it’s an Ordnance TM. which allows us to single out an individual piece of equipment within the same FSC as another item. Our example so far tells us: TM9-1005-213 (Ordnance TM. etc. 18 . For instance. So the item identifier is merely an indicator of what items in an FSC require a TM. the number is 213. pistols. for small arms up to 30mm) The next element is the item identifier. there is a stock number for a paper clip. the 213th item happens to be the Browning M2 machinegun. This second element is known as the Federal Supply Class. This number is sequential in nature. machineguns. it would be number 501. howitzers.50 caliber machinegun.50 caliber machineguns as the Browning . Some examples would be: FSC 1000: FSC 1005: FSC 1010: FSC 1340: FSC 1370: FSC 4240: FSC 6920: Small Arms (general classification) Small Arms to 30mm (specific items) Small Arms above 30mm (again. There are some in the 1000-series (1000 to 1099) for mortars. If we were to have 500 items in an FSC that required a TM. FSC 1005 includes all rifles.so good.50 caliber machinegun is the number 1005. For instance.

1 through 5: 12345Operator/Crew Maintenance Organizational Maintenance Direct Support Maintenance General Support Maintenance Depot Maintenance The maintenance level indicator tells us which levels of maintenance activity the manual addresses. The first digit tells us the lowest maintenance level included in the publication. it describes which level(s) of maintenance the manual is written for.50 caliber M2 machinegun). Organizational. Organizational and Direct Support Maintenance Procedures) 19 . and General Support manual Organizational. Direct Support. Organizational. Do you recall the levels of maintenance described earlier? Ignoring the codes for a moment. It is a two-digit number. 213th item (the Browning . 102030405012131415232425343545Operator manual only Organizational manual only Direct Support manual only General Support manual only Depot manual only Operator and Organizational manual Operator. First. Direct Support and General Support manual Operator. If the second number is a zero (“0”). General Support and Depot Manual General Support and Depot Manual So the Browning . General Support and Depot manual Organizational and Direct Support manual Organizational. The second number tells us the highest maintenance level included. Direct Support.Next we come to the maintenance level indicator. which tells us several things. Organizational and Direct Support manual Operator.50 caliber M2 machinegun technical manual for the Organizational and Direct support levels of maintenance would bring us to: TM9-1005-213-23 (Ordnance TM. General Support and Depot manual Direct Support and General Support manual Direct Support. this means that the publication is written for the level indicated by the first digit only. let’s identify each level of maintenance by its respective number. Direct Support. small arms to 30mm.

9mm. 20 . This should be obvious from observing that some weapons have a TM dedicated to maintenance instructions and another to parts listings. as in “23P”. What’s a virgule? You probably know it by the common slang term: slash. it indicates that the manual contains only parts diagrams and listings. we see the letter “P”.Now there are several items left to discuss. What is important is making sure you have the current technical data on hand. Manuals that contain both maintenance instructions and parts data are indicated by the placement of an ampersand (&) between the second digit and the letter “P”. there are TM’s with such large amounts of maintenance instructions that they need to be broken down into different volumes. at the end of the maintenance level indicator. for the Pistol. If. Including Repair Parts and Special Tools Listing. and /3 at the end of the TM designator. So a TM broken into three volumes would have the symbols /1.50 Caliber Machinegun TM9-1005-213-23 Organizational and DS Maintenance Manual for the Browning M2 . the volume numbers are shown at the end of the designator. for “parts” is included. there is no parts listing. There are some pieces of equipment so complex that multiple TM’s are needed. It looks like this . Also. separated by a virgule. Examples would be: TM9-1005-213-23P Parts and Special Tools Listing for the Browning M2 . as in “23&P”. Just the letter “P” means that there is only a parts listing.“/”. However. If the letter “P” immediately follows the second digit. You will become more familiar with the numbering system as you work with it. After a while. and no maintenance instructions. M9 Organizational and Direct Support Repair TM9-1005-317-23&P Remember that if the letter “P” is absent. /2. the numbers will seem less important. this indicates that parts diagrams and listings are included.50 Caliber Machinegun Organizational and DS Maintenance Manual. the inclusion of the ampersand (&) and the letter “P” means both maintenance instructions and parts listings are included. The first one is whether or not the letter “P”. When this is necessary.

the DOD is making the transition to Electronic Manuals. Within the EIR Digest will be information on the current recommendations to improve equipment such as your unit weapons. On the surface. Now that you know how to decode TM designators. These changes might not appear in an actual change to a TM for a long time. but who am I to judge? After all. which are usually small enough to fit in a shirt pocket. the programs that manage the EM’s only permit printing on one side of the page.5 by 11 inches in size. uses 8 times as much paper. “What must I have on hand in my arms room library?” The following four pages will sum up all of the preceding information on the publications needed in the arms room. engineering reports. and only prints to one side. 21 . you must also subscribe to the TB43-0001-62-series. wasting paper. Is that efficient? Not by my estimation. All you need to do is make sure you have the most current disc. This publication includes late-breaking technical information and changes resulting from product improvements. The end result is that an operator manual. the question arises. are now 8. it appears as though they save a lot of printing and distribution costs. you can even download the TM’s. and the savings this system affords should be obvious. Also. Each CD-ROM will have the most current data. they print out blank pages. In addition to the current publications and all applicable changes. and actual changes to TM technical data. The big benefit to electronic manuals is that the need for conducting traditional. the distribution costs alone probably justify the use of the electronic medium. It’s about time! Private industry made the change many years ago. The suggestions are printed along with investigation results. My experience with the current EM’s is that they are not efficient enough in terms of printing out the documentation when it’s needed in the hands of a soldier. since computer printers don’t print to both sides of a page. time-consuming inventories will be reduced. the TACOM Equipment Improvement Report Digest. If you are on-line. since each page is four times the normal size. so you need the EIR Digest to be absolutely current on the Army’s maintenance standards for your weapons and combat equipment. Operator manuals.At the time of this writing. For instance. any operator manual. This eliminates the need for a distribution system totally.

o. c.) e. excerpted and given verbatim as appears here: 2-28. which are conducted by unit-level personnel. This includes operator and organizational level maintenance tasks.and 20. AR 750-1 makes it clear that all unit level PMCS will be conducted to one standard: the one found in the equipment TM. Persons who want to know why they need so many TM’s on hand frequently challenge me. Commanders at all levels will a. Where does one find the requirement for a TM for each operator or item of equipment? 22 . which states: c. The TM 20-series PMCS tables are used to perform scheduled PMCS services that sustain and extend the combat capable time of the equipment. Material will be maintained at the maintenance standard specified in paragraph 3-1a. Emphasize the conduct and supervision of PMCS performed at the unit level. (Author’s note: for reference and clarity. Let’s discuss this in detail. Maintenance is a command responsibility. Paragraph 2-28 of AR 750-1 (1 August 1994) provides the following mandates. The maintenance standard is based on TM 10 and 20-series. and in the course of my routine duties.Earlier in this section I stated that AR 750-1 required the use of technical manuals by unit personnel. refers to Preventive Maintenance Checks and Services.series to identify and repair faults. In my classes. PMCS. PMCS”. maintain and conduct training of operators and crews to properly use and maintain equipment. Emphasize the importance of maintenance and ensure that subordinates are held accountable for the conduct of maintenance operations. the first two sentences of paragraph 3-1a state: “The Army has one maintenance standard. Establish. of course. Ensure that all unit level PMCS as required by the -20 level TM’s to include all DS level services are scheduled and performed. Unit mechanics will use the TM 10. Literal requirements for the use of the TM by the armorer are found in paragraph 3-9c.

if time permits. Faults detected before or during the mission not affecting FMC may be corrected. As a result. b. the operator must have the TM is his or her possession. The manual is to be used only by the armorer. And. So. you should only keep one on hand. qualified and appointed personnel. Commanders are responsible for providing resources. a literal reading of these paragraphs tells us that the commander must create a climate in which maintenance is performed to the PMCS standard. As for the TM 20-series manuals. or recorded/reported for correction after the mission. The operator must perform maintenance checks according to the TM 10-series PMCS tables. Faults detected during before operations checks that make the equipment not FMC or violate a safety directive must be corrected before the mission. and using the operator level TM. if your arms room has 160 M16A2 rifles. Faults detected during the mission affecting FMC must be corrected during the mission. assigning responsibility. The operator must continue to make checks before. one per operator/rifle combination. the checks are a continual process. 23 . So. during and after the use of the equipment. In order to meet this requirement. The cornerstone of unit maintenance is the operator/crew performing PMCS from the applicable TM 10-series. After operations checks detect faults resulting from the mission and ensure the identification and correction of faults to maintain the equipment to the maintenance standard. This excludes the operators from performing organizational PMCS.The need for operators using the TM 10-series is also found in AR 750-1. you need 160 M16A2 operator manuals. because it must be used to conduct PMCS while the equipment is being operated! Translation: you need one operator TM for each operator. paragraphs 3-9a and 3-9b as shown here: a. only one organizational manual is really needed. the operator needs to perform the during operation checks. and should never be given to the operators. because in the field environment (where the weapon is actually used). The before and during PMCS checks concentrate on ensuring equipment is fully mission capable (FMC). Unit maintenance is the first and most critical level of the Army maintenance system. Organizational maintenance can only be performed at the 2nd echelon level by trained. It is the foundation of the maintenance system and requires continuous emphasis by all commanders. and training their soldiers to achieve this standard. Commanders must establish a command climate that ensures that assigned equipment is maintained to the maintenance standard defined in paragraph 3-1a above.

in my many years of inspection experience. The first pages will be instruction pages that tell you how to post the changed information. and cross out. Posting a change means to actually go to the basic publication. put the word “posted”. They usually receive the changes and just put them in the binder. but if I inspect your arms room and find the changes not properly posted. remove the old pages. Reading the instructions on the first pages. All you need do is remove the staples from the manual. you get no credit for having them at all. The title of this manual is “Army Publications. There are two primary means of making changes to publications. crossing it out.“ This manual prescribes the manner in which changes to publications are posted. They will typically tell you to remove page X and replace it with page Z. That’s all there is to it. This is because the units sharing an arms room in garrison will probably deploy to different locations. they are called pen-and-ink changes. Page changes usually arrive in the form of a small booklet made of individual pages stapled together. and then writing in the new information. Then post that sheet in front of the manual to prove that the information has been placed within the TM. Several pages earlier. remove. and put in the new ones. and your initials on the page change cover sheet. Okay. or in a consolidated arms room where each armorer from each unit must have his or her own publications. as well as those in DA Pamphlet 310-13. the overwhelming majority of unit armorers do a dismal job of maintaining current manuals. It only takes a few minutes. how to keep them current. and page changes. and why you need the EIR digest in the arms room. without posting the changes. I mentioned DA Pamphlet 310-13. how many copies you need on hand. Posting and Filing of Publications. the pages would be cluttered with scribble and become illegible after a while. how to conduct inventories. and each unit will need its own manuals. Pen-and-ink changes involve the looking up of the old information. Otherwise. and so on. you know how to decode TM designators.The exception to this would be in a unit where there is an assistant armorer who desires his or her own copies of the TM’s. Now we’ll cover the last. and most important items concerning publications. the date you accomplished the change. Obviously this is useful only where there are minor changes to be made. in front of the basic publication. Sorry. This applies to printed manuals only. and/or replace information on the pages therein. Unfortunately. After you change the pages. makes doing the job easy. 24 .

since the content is approved by the relative proponent agencies. Also be aware that each year they print a summary of all the articles appearing in that year’s issues. 25 . page-worn. read the PS Magazine and apply the information it contains. and the EIR Digest. Therefore. In addition to the equipment TM. I can not understand the disclaimer. that the use of the information appearing in this technical bulletin is optional. so do the manuals. Honestly. Why? Just because the technical data may have changed since you last read the book. there is another significant source of relevant maintenance information. Are you familiar with PS Magazine? It is a small. hip-pocket sized publication which is in a sort of “cartoon” format. make sure your publications are maintained in sturdy. or which have missing pages should be replaced. When the unit goes to the field. The reason for this is simple. and the content is approved by the appropriate agencies.Also. because the data in the tables is subject to change so often. On the top of page one is a disclaimer which states that the use of the information contained within an issue is optional with the user. Finally. in order to be useful. which is actually a Technical Bulletin. in the TB 43-PS series. Make sure you keep copies of the annual article summary. I am frequently challenged by persons who state. rightly so. waterproof binders. Since I have had to do this “reverse referencing” many dozens of times. it seems that this would therefore be a source of official data for the user community. you must use the manual when performing PMCS. because of its design and image. This is the PS Magazine. Many soldiers don’t really take this publication seriously. It can make finding information a lot easier when you need to research a particular piece of information. is certainly valid form a technical point of view. I can state with certainty that anything appearing in PS Magazine is definitely printed in the appropriate source documents. Since it is an official publication. there is usually updated information in the section on small arms. weathered. and all the changes thereto. It stars MSG Half-Mast and a cast of other familiar cartoon characters. Information in all your publications needs to be legible and complete. The armorer who attempts to memorize the PMCS tables will be doomed. This results in my having to go to reference publications to find the actual source of authority for a maintenance procedure. Since it is printed monthly. The information contained within. however. Publications that are torn.

The stocking of parts. using the wisdom of the old adage. yet I still find problems with the management of the arms room. and you’ll find the warehouse overflowing with green widgets in the very near future.. One of the most glaring deficiencies is in the area of supply management. there will be no green widgets in stock. I hear these excuses all the time: “The unit is out of funds. The Army supply system is not difficult to understand. type of equipment used.. mobilization requirements... It is probable that not enough emphasis is being placed on arms room needs when the unit budget is looked at. something else is wrong.” All of the foregoing excuses are without merit. It is a demandsupported system. You can help to cure that problem by being a vocal advocate. the retailer drops it from the inventory.. meaning that you only get what you ask for. number of vehicles operated. “the squeaky wheel gets the grease. and other common factors.. I do not know how someone can take something so simple. and make it so complicated! Usually. cleaning materials and other needed items is based upon customer demand. lubricants. I have found most areas to be in full compliance with the intent and letter of the applicable regulations.” “The Self-Service Supply Center was out of stock.” 26 .. tools.. I find many arms rooms lacking in the basic supplies they need to sustain training and contingency operations. mission. This is the same method by which commercial retailers operate their businesses. Think about it: how many hula-hoop repair kits have you seen on store shelves recently? I have to admit that some armorers constantly amaze me when it comes to the area of supply management. Order several hundred green widgets every month. If the system has no requirement for a green widget. Monetary appropriations are based on unit size.. If the customer stops purchasing a certain item. If you find that there is never enough money to support the arms room operation.Supply Management In many arms room inspections.” “I didn’t have time to re-order it.” “We’re not authorized to have that stuff on hand. because no one wants it....

This tells me that the problem is not the supply system or financial resources. you will not get something unless someone knows you need it. there should never be an excuse for running out of something. Prior planning is essential to all successful military operations. The unit. There is always time to procure what you need. you need to communicate your problem up through your chain of command. How the supply system will evolve is not presently known. proven abilities and personal commitment to excellence. equipment and cleaning materials. I find the armorer has taken no steps to inform management of his or her needs. Most times. using unit funds purchases these items. and is indicated for your level of maintenance. It is true that you sometimes go to the SSSC site. None of them considers the weapons in your arms room unimportant. Often I see unit armorers complain about the lack of funds. it’s the armorer’s fault. If you find you are usually waiting at the end of the line for supplies or equipment. if you anticipate your operational requirements. and well funded. The end result is the excuse that the unit can not afford it. I honestly believe that you will not find a single Unit Commander. First Sergeant or Supply Sergeant who thinks the arms room is unimportant. what about the excuse that you are not authorized to have something on hand? Well. The back of each technical manual has a listing of materials and supplies authorized for the maintenance of the equipment covered by the TM. when every other aspect of the unit supply operation seems to be well organized. Self-Service Supply Centers (SSSC’s) stock common tools. And. It is usually found in Appendix D. talk to your SSSC manager about availability of an item you need. With the current downsizing (at the time of this writing) taking place within the Department of Defense. depending on the format of the manual. You should always maintain on hand the amount of supplies and equipment needed to sustain 30 days’ operation under field conditions. Again. If it appears in the manual. you must let people know what you need if you expect to get it. and that includes supply management as well.The meaning of this is simple. These personnel hold their positions because of their training. This does not mean that the item is unavailable. More than likely. you are authorized to have it on hand in the arms room. 27 . things are changing. Each one of them knows that those weapons are the reason we have an Army in the first place. and find that they are out of a particular item you need. efficient. to see if a shipment has arrived. experience. Also. as long as you anticipate your needs. Therefore. It means that you have to go back after a week or so has elapsed. this is an easy one to answer.

and may employ only temporary. will probably be in the support structures involved in the general logistics field. the DOD needs to become more efficient. Currently. supply operations information is codified within the 710-series of Army publications. If the operations are kept inhouse. Changes will take place and the system as we know it now might be radically different in a few years. The end result. many installations are under what is known as a “commercial activities study”. It is also possible that contractors will establish their own warehousing and supply operations right on military installations. and always refer to the current doctrine to make sure you follow proper acquisition procedures. However this efficiency is attained. By necessity. You might obtain everything you need from a local contract vendor. transportation and maintenance. and support services may be less than what you are used to. DOD agencies will have to cut back the number of employees. Logistics deals with three specific areas of activity. The re-defining of global threats in the post-Soviet era is driving it. and additional rounds of base closures in the years 2001 and 2005. since the cost of military operations continues to climb. or keep it in-house. on-call. This is a study the DOD conducts to determine if it is least expensive to contract out a function. DOD leadership is currently calling for the elimination of tens of thousands of DOD civilian jobs. such as Sears or J. you should expect more streamlined business methods to be employed. the system will have to change to accommodate it. meaning DOD civilian employees will continue in their present status. Here at Fort Drum.C. the military armorer. Penney. The move to the use of the IMPAC credit card for unit local purchases is an example of this trend. supply. so keep abreast of things.Downsizing is a reality. Change for the sake of change is not always beneficial. At the present time. All of this will have an impact on you. or CA study. Hours of operation may be fewer. The “re-engineering” seemed to not be as effective as the proponents of change stated it would be. The entire system is being evaluated for change. which will be noticed at the user level (that’s you!). or contingency-justified personnel. we went through a re-organization of our local SSSC. seasonal. 28 . and they eventually re-established the system similar to the way it was set up originally.

Section 1. check AR 7102. which are easily pilfered and sold at gun shows. is one such reason. One thing is certain: the changes will alter the way you handle supply issues right now As far as current Unit Supply Procedures are concerned. This is an acronym that means Prescribed Load List. how to account for items. DA Pam 710-1-1 explains the term PLL. and have no more ability to read the future than you do. there exists excellent guidance on the subject. the unit can not have a total of more than 300 items in its’ entire PLL. Army Reserve and Army National Guard units have a 360-day control period in which to submit the necessary demands. Normally. Active duty Army units must submit three demands for an item within a 180-day control period. inspection and inventory procedures. and at this time the most recent issue is Supply Update 14. but I have no extra-sensory powers.I wish I could provide more guidance than this. What you must understand about a PLL is that it is demand supported. the title of which is “Using Unit Supply System Manual Procedures. for different reasons. Regardless of the number of items you might require in a PLL. For a greater understanding of the logic behind this publication. only if there have been a sufficient number of historical demands for the item. An item will be stocked and maintained in your PLL. This is. 29 . It appears in DA Pamphlet 710-2-1. but don’t count on being given any policy waivers. which is subject to change in the future. The item must also be appropriate to your level of maintenance. There are exceptions as explained in DA Pam 710-2-1. your agency policies will determine the availability and access of small arms parts. you will never maintain your own PLL items in your arms room. Keep up with the changes in policies and implementing regulations. Again. based on policy at the time of this writing. repair parts procedures. Both of these publications appear in the most recent SUPPLY UPDATE. There must be a demonstrated need for an item before it can be added to your PLL.” This publication covers how to request and receive supplies. Chapter 8. with an essentiality code of “C”. will usually keep a PLL. of course. For non-Army personnel. in order to qualify for PLL stockage. The physical security of gun parts. make sure you refer to the current doctrine. and much more. Every unit that is authorized personnel. tools and equipment to perform maintenance. The PLL is the quantity of repair parts kept on hand to support a unit’s daily organizational maintenance requirements. This is normally for a pre-determined number of days of supply.

etc. PLL items are the parts you need to make repairs. Here’s the simple rule concerning these materials: Don’t buy any. be fired. commonly titled “Expendable/Durable supplies and Materials List. Things get lost. Demands will not be shown in the system according to your actual usage. broken or worn out. which is tailored to your unit’s field requirements. In addition to the items found in this listing. you must also maintain the required Basic Issue Items (BII) or Additional Authorization List (AAL) items as found in the back of the operator TM. Make sure you have everything you will need to sustain operations in the field. you subvert the system. These items include cleaning rods. and don’t use any! You are only authorized to use those items appearing in the technical manual or otherwise approved by the Army. When you hoard parts or swap them with a buddy.This is why it is so important to use the supply system properly. Remember that you are authorized by the equipment TM to maintain certain items on hand in the arms room. Do not base your requirements on a typical month’s usage in the arms room. or you will fall short of what you actually need in the field. Do not assume the operator has what he or she needs. unauthorized cleaning materials (wire brushes. don’t store any. Using the maintenance level codes discussed earlier (page 15). green pads. These are items used by the operator and armorer. misplaced. unauthorized cleaning agents (brake cleaner. barrel bags and so on. These items include homemade tools.). 30 . Then when you really need a part. patches. slings. The items you are authorized to have on hand are found in Appendix D in the back section of most technical manuals. because you have not shown a consistent demand over time for that particular item. Lastly. you may keep on hand any items with a maintenance level code of “C” or “O”. even if you have issued it to that person. These are not PLL items. 409. magazines.” Remember also to maintain a 30-day supply. you must be mindful of the fact that there are items prohibited in the arms room. Find the codes in column two of the table in Appendix D. it won’t be there. Keep in mind that in the field your weapons will get dirtier. and commercial cleaning items not approved by the Department of the Army. tool cases. etc. etc.). stolen. carburetor cleaner.

and damage your weapon. flammable (read the label). you can do physical damage to the weapon. states that a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) will be maintained in each work area where hazardous chemicals or materials are used. dangerous or explosive material must be stored and handled in accordance with Army fire prevention regulations? The items must be maintained in certain types of facilities or specially designed cabinets. and all of these products require “adequate ventilation”? When is the last time you visited an arms room with windows or an air purification system? When you spray that stuff in your arms room. the Army might expect the unit to pay for the damage out of unit funds. for very good reasons. This is especially true if the use of unauthorized procedures is encouraged within the unit. First. the fact that people have been doing it for years does not justify anything. you re-cycle it through your lungs. You don’t need a chemistry or biology degree to know that breathing cancer-causing solvents is not a wise thing to do. The installation’s Fire Inspectors must approve the storage. The fact is. they’ve been violating Army policy for years! If you use one of the unauthorized cleaning agents or materials. What about the fact that there is no ventilation in any arms room. toxic. 31 . injurious. and the areas in which they are stored must be placarded and identified to firefighters and emergency personnel. the use of these items is strictly forbidden. Has your squad leader provided you with the MSDS for that can of brake cleaner? Probably not. since the use of that item is prohibited in the arms room. Do you know the hazards associated with this chemical compound? Have you read the label warnings? How about the fact that any flammable. these items are not authorized because they can have deadly. Many of today’s weapons have hi-tech finishes which do not tolerate chemicals like brake cleaner being repeatedly used on their surfaces. carcinogenic (read the label). explosive in confined spaces if ignited (read the label). Regardless of what someone tells you. Also.The reasons are many and varied. applying to all branches of the DOD. Many of these chemicals are toxic (read the label). either. One of them is called the DOD Hazard Communication Program. or carcinogenic (cancer causing) effects. if you use an unauthorized material or cleaning agent. or classified as hazardous materials (read the label). This policy. Are you getting the point about reading the label? I made some subtle hints about it in the preceding paragraph. Second.

This does not mean that you will not have a supervisor. With inhalation. inhalation is most dangerous. it is important that you set up a management program that prevents you from overlooking an important task. to the lungs Of the three methods. residue is left on the surface of your weapon. so the likelihood of your inhaling a chemical in a contaminated area is very high. Your nose is right over the weapon. 32 . You determine you need something 2. to the stomach Through the mouth or nose. the supply cycle is extremely simple to understand. especially if you are ignorant of the danger. Think about it. As you need more. but the end results can be deadly. many armorers fall short in this single aspect of supply management: the ability to properly forecast requirements and maintain adequate stockage of needed items. Some compounds take years to do their damage. A final point or two about supply: when broken down to its essential elements. all we need to do is breathe and it invades our body. you can prevent depletion of the items on hand. Regardless of how simple this seems.Also. The order is shipped and you receive it 4. managing your daily activities. The end result of such a policy is the availability of needed items at all times. Here is a simple explanation of the supply system at the user level: 1. the methods by which chemicals attack your body? Absorption: Ingestion: Inhalation: Through the skin or mucous membranes Through the mouth or nose. Do you recall. from your chemical warfare classes. you re-order it That’s all there is to it. But it does imply that the boss is not always there. In your arms room. it’s sort of necessary to breathe. By simply anticipating demands. But can you see where most people fail? Step 5 is usually ignored until the entire on-hand stock is exhausted. since with the other two we need to actually touch the material or swallow it. As such. you generally will work without direct supervision. when you use these chemicals. You use the item 5. and you inhale the vapor created. You order it 3. the chemical cooks off. When you fire your weapon at the range and it heats up. Conducting routine inventories can prevent shortfalls.

and is a computer system using special software that tracks maintenance and supply actions. he or she will be your first-line supervisor. When all else fails. an ULLS Specialist enters data into the system. The acronym stands for “Unit Level Logistics System”. and maintained by the armorer outside the ULLS system. The ULLS system tracks organizational maintenance. with the possibility of portable or laptop computers being issued to the armorer at some time in the future. when the unit goes to the field. to collect the data. ULLS is the Army’s means of moving into an information-based electronic data tracking system at the unit level. ULLS is effective and efficient. As an armorer. Also. This person can only input the data that you provide. if your data is incorrect. Your Supply Sergeant earned that position by being proficient. So. For instance. these issues will be addressed. Often. but don’t expect that anyone else will do your job for you. I really sympathize with supply NCO’s. This means you have to collect all the data needed for the ULLS clerk. but has limitations. the system used by the armorer is manual in nature. In this case. And. and yours alone. incomplete or inadequate. and submit that data for input into the system. Remember that the responsibility for keeping the arms room properly supplied and functioning in the correct manner is yours. the ULLS system is not located in the arms room. All of these activities will be your personal responsibility. ask your Supply Sergeant. You can expect help from your superiors. But for the present. There is a system for tracking maintenance actions on a scheduled basis. They have a tough. and must be accomplished without direct supervision. a good rapport obviously benefits both parties.One method the Army is using to deal with this problem is ULLS. Eventually. demanding job that goes unappreciated by most people. Therefore. you still need to use paper-based forms anyway. you need to have a strong working relationship with your Unit Supply Sergeant. there may be times when the ULLS system is not available. and the submission of maintenance requisitions. It involves the filling out of forms. the system will not reflect the true scope of your operation. Operator maintenance of small arms will still have to be recorded on an inspection form. as we will learn in the next section. the filing of documents in folders. 33 . and should be able to answer almost any supply question.

let’s get specific about what they are and how they should occur. The DD 314 is ordinarily used only to schedule organizational maintenance such as Preventive Maintenance Checks and Services.” This form is merely a scheduling calendar that provides for the entering of specific information concerning the equipment for which it is used. you should also schedule events such as mandatory annual safety and serviceability inspections of your unit weapons. Therefore you may find that scheduling the disassembly and inspection of 20 machineguns on the same day is a bit challenging. However. and DA Pam 738750. The information needed to establish a maintenance program for your arms room is found in the Maintenance Management UPDATE. which implements those instructions. There are many different types of inspections. titled “Preventive Maintenance Schedule and Record. established by its respective organizational maintenance manual. However. or you may combine up to 20 identical items on one form. or PMCS. A comprehensive maintenance plan will ensure that required tasks are scheduled and completed. the maintenance for all the items appearing on the DD 314 must be done at the same time. The use of the DD 314 is required for any item that has periodic maintenance requirements. Concerning inspections. Using such a plan can prevent you from overlooking something critical. Merely possessing the ability to perform repairs does not guarantee that the work gets done. it is easy to forget a required task. Considering the sheer volume of work that must be done in the arms room. Make sure you are using the current issue! Maintenance actions are scheduled on DD Form 314. Also use this form to schedule the mandatory 180 day verification inspections for all your night vision devices. 34 .Maintenance Management The proper management of maintenance actions is essential to the successful operation of an arms room. This publication includes AR 750-1. The intelligent armorer divides and balances the workload to prevent stress that can contribute to errors. A separate DD 314 may be used for each item in your arms room. which establishes maintenance policy. each with a specific purpose.

Annual Safety and Serviceability inspections are special inspections of equipment to determine its suitability for military use. After a certain amount of time their age prevents them from performing properly. morale and welfare. the inspector should look for any obvious defects. such as chemical compounds used in cleaning and repair. and a tag that indicates the supply status of the item is affixed to it. They determine whether items have deteriorated or reached the end of their life cycle. If any defects are found. The units providing your Direct Support or General Support maintenance functions do not normally maintain a schedule of units to inspect.Command Inspections are conducted to provide unit commanders with an assessment of the capabilities of the units or personnel under their command. but also a disassembly of the weapon. Technical Inspections are normally conducted to determine the suitability of an item for turn-in or issue through the supply system. supply. They may require several days to complete. to include all components thereof. Some items. training. A technical inspection involves a complete maintenance evaluation of an item. Sampling keeps the cost of inspections down. or may be conducted on items within the supply system. Quality Assurance Inspections may be part of the repair or rebuild process. they are conducted to determine whether an item meets required safety standards and maintenance specifications. have a maximum life span known as shelf life. This includes OPSEC. the entire quantity on hand will then normally be inspected. and other major organizational functions. The mandatory annual small arms inspections should be conducted according to TM standards. During this disassembly. Supply condition codes are assigned. and may also involve a formal in-brief and out-brief. meaning that a representative quantity is inspected. QA inspections may be sampling inspections. and provides fairly reliable results. As the name implies. maintenance. It will have to be your personal initiative that gets this critical inspection accomplished. Usually teams composed of subject-matter experts from varied areas of interest conduct these inspections. A command inspection will often look at the entire operation of a military organization. The armorer is the individual responsible for scheduling this annual inspection. then reassemble and function check the weapon. 35 . to include not only the use of all gages authorized. as well as written summaries of findings. enter findings on the DA 2404. social actions.

gaged and tested according to strict technical requirements. In the case of turning in a weapon for maintenance.. In-process inspections. the weapons must be cleaned prior to turnin. or may result from a problem occurring during the repair cycle. These inspections determine whether equipment in use or operating techniques comply with safety standards. Initial inspections are bench inspections conducted to determine the total condition of an item submitted for repair or ECOD (Estimated Cost of Damage) evaluation. depots and ammunition plants.Surveillance Inspections are normally conducted by QASAS personnel. Their function is highly technical and can be dangerous. Very often a problem will be discovered during the repair or rebuild of a component. to guarantee that the munitions issued to soldiers are safe and combat ready. Accredited personnel. Maintenance Inspections are usually conducted in a shop environment. If a QASAS inspector tells you to do something.. visually inspected. The inspection worksheet is amended. 36 . This may be due to the fact that some assemblies are not routinely broken down for initial inspections. or roadside spot checks. others are done when you are turning in an item with a maintenance request. Other compliance inspections might include Safety Equipment Inspections (SEI’s). Any faults found will be annotated. usually assigned to the Provost Marshal Office conduct these. and their training is extensive and challenging. that could not be found during the initial inspection. Some acceptance inspections are done when a new item is received. This is due to the requirements for special tools and fixtures that are sometimes used. The item will be completely disassembled.do it! Compliance Inspections are conducted to determine conformity to written policies or regulations. The acronym stands for Quality Assurance Specialist for Ammunition Surveillance. clean and/or serviceable. and either repaired or referred to the appropriate maintenance level for action. They are conducted to determine whether an item is complete. also called inline inspections are conducted as an item is being repaired or overhauled. QASAS inspectors work at ammunition supply points. and additional parts needed are ordered and replaced. An example would be a Physical Security Inspection. This is necessary for certain gaging steps to be accomplished during the subsequent initial inspection. There are several different types of maintenance inspections: Acceptance Inspections are conducted upon receipt of an item.

you have special responsibilities and training that make you best qualified to perform this function. This means the armorer must perform PMCS for every weapon and item of equipment in the arms room. They are separate and distinct functions. including unassigned equipment. you serve as your unit’s quality assurance inspector. That should not be confused with the organizational maintenance inspection responsibilities of the armorer. Proper PMCS inspections will prevent most problems from occurring in the field. PMCS stands for Preventive Maintenance Checks and Services. but the organizational level PMCS may be conducted only by the unit armorer or assistant armorer. In fact. and to inspect that work. As the armorer. First line leaders and supervisors such as squad leaders. As a unit armorer you must be familiar with the nature and intent of inspections. The final inspection process usually includes a full function check of the item. 37 . PMCS is the foundation of the Army maintenance effort. This ensures the quality of the work meets established Army criteria. PMCS inspections are conducted routinely according to a schedule mandated by the equipment TM or unit SOP. section leaders and platoon sergeants have the authority and responsibility to supervise the work of their subordinates. PMCS inspections are conducted by unit personnel at the operator and organizational levels. More than 90% of all maintenance problems are detectable and repairable at the organizational level. Operators may not perform organizational maintenance functions. to determine accuracy and proper function.Final inspections are conducted on an item when it has been through the maintenance process. and re-checking with all appropriate gages and test fixtures. They may assist the armorer by disassembling. the focus here is to prevent problems. As the name implies. Sometimes a weapon must also be test-fired during final inspection. The armorer is appointed by the unit commander to serve as the unit organizational maintenance specialist for the items contained within the arms room. Accordingly. cleaning and layout of their weapons. Only personnel trained and appointed to this duty position can perform this level of work.

an operator can intentionally turn in a weapon he knows to be defective. In this case. The armorer must display tact in dealing with first line leaders and supervisors whenever necessary. As a result. the armorer is directly representing the commander. there is an assumption of responsibility. However. the problem is now your problem. it is possible that the weapon may have parts missing or maintenance deficiencies.. 38 . the armorer has just assumed responsibility for these problems. The armorer must make the individual NCO or officer involved understand the requirements of the armorer position.The armorer represents the interests of the commander in the arms room. As an appointee designated by the unit commander. His or her conduct must be exemplary and professional in all aspects. he or she is responsible for its care and condition. It should be easy to understand then. This is for logical reasons. When the armorer accepts a weapon and returns the issue card to the operator. This is because the assets in that arms room are the ultimate responsibility of the unit commander. It is not uncommon for a troop leader to feel that the armorer is challenging his or her authority by re-inspecting a weapon before accepting it into the arms room. It is a function of the proper stewardship I mentioned earlier. The same is true when the operator possesses the weapon. Difficulties invariably result from the misconception that the armorer is interfering with the authority of a troop leader. If you fail to inspect a weapon and accept it with faults. All because you failed to inspect it on acceptance. the armorer is required to check all weapons before taking possession of them. the most important of which is the fact that the transfer of possession of a firearm is a custody transaction. It should not be difficult to explain this to an individual who feels you are directly challenging his or her authority when you re-inspect a weapon at the arms room door. If the armorer fails to inspect a weapon when it is turned in to the arms room. why the armorer has inspection authority and responsibility. This assumption of responsibility means that while the weapon is in the possession of the armorer. and deny the responsibility for it.. and are then inspected by a higher echelon. not the operator’s.because it was in your possession. The operator can always claim ignorance of the problem and state that it happened while the weapon was in your possession.

and by whom. I hope this clarifies the subject of inspections. Remember that the written word lasts longer than the best memory. 39 . but a caution to refer to the guidance in the governing directive. I will. To begin with. Most TM’s have a PMCS checklist that will tell you the interval at which a certain PMCS function is to be performed at the organizational or higher level of maintenance. Let’s move on to a related topic. when they are conducted. PMCS is always performed in accordance with the schedule required by the equipment TM. Copies of paperwork related to annual inspections are retained until the next inspection. so that maintenance personnel will have the space they need to make their entries on the form when your weapons are repaired. no matter how simple or trivial it might seem." The specific instructions on the use of the DA 2404 are found within DA Pam 738-750. what they are. you must have the equipment TM opened to the page that provides the guidance for that function or check. Now that we have come to the subject of PMCS. provide certain highlights for your use of the form. Chapter 3. When a DA 2404 is returned with your copy of a maintenance request after repairs are completed. always use the DA 2404 whenever conducting any inspection. instead. This will permit others. like the assistant armorer. if you turn in a DA 2404 with a maintenance request. When performing a maintenance function or during PMCS. maintain that form in the files with your copy of the maintenance request. Writing down your findings will make sure they are not overlooked.So. you will be protected against the loss of the original by having a record of all your findings. Again. You must always keep the most recent DA 2404 used during PMCS on hand for inspection or quality control purposes. Always use the carbon paper and make a second copy. the “Equipment Inspection and Maintenance Worksheet. This is a valid requirement. the blank line might be needed if a status symbol change is made. the use of the DA Form 2404. there will be no re-invention here. This way. Also. Very often you will be interrupted while working on a weapon. This copy should be retained for 180 days according to DA Pam 738-750. let’s look at how it should be conducted. paragraph 3-4. because technical data in manuals frequently changes. Always leave a blank line between entries. to continue or add to your efforts.

With the TM in front of you. as the item number entry in the first column of the DA 2404. and make the repairs according to the organizational maintenance procedures listed in the equipment TM. as these items are non-mission capable. to ensure operational continuity. it is a simple matter to follow the checklist and do as it instructs. then circle the item number in the first column of the DA 2404." then that item is deadlined. Yourself. it is highly recommended that there be a trained assistant armorer in each arms room. Other shortcomings should be submitted within a reasonable period of time. or NMC. By the way. This tells the repairer where you found the problem on the PMCS checklist.Memorizing the steps in a PMCS procedure is a fatal mistake. Items with deadline deficiencies indicated by the status symbol “X” should be submitted immediately. because if the procedure changes. When this is accomplished they should be submitted to your servicing DS maintenance unit for repair. Use the item number that appears in the first column on the PMCS checklist. Continue going down the PMCS checklist until you have inspected every listed component. If you encounter a problem that meets the requirements listed in the column titled “Not Fully Mission Capable If:. on the DA 2404. using the schedule you established on your DD 314’s. you will not be performing it to the specifications resulting from the change. or the assistant armorer must repair any maintenance faults found which are correctable at your level. This means that the item cannot be used until the deficiency is corrected. If you do encounter such a problem. Make sure you follow the instructions exactly. to let the repairer know that the TM mandates the deadline. and annotate your findings on the DA 2404. Always use the current TM while working on any equipment in your arms room. but certainly no more than three working days after discovery. Note any deficiencies or shortcomings you find. Order the parts needed from your PLL clerk. You must repeat this same PMCS procedure for each item in your arms that has a PMCS requirement. 40 . You will get no extra points for creativity! Maintenance faults that cannot be repaired at your level must be transferred to a maintenance request.

Earlier in this text I made reference to the term ECOD. H and D.The servicing DS maintenance unit may have to defer. replace. If so. an acronym for Estimated Cost of Damage. Maintenance. installing. The basic codes used for the assignment of responsibility in the MAC are also used in the SMR code. F. Remember that the TM must have the “P” designator in its TM number. The SMR code for each individual part of an end item is given in the parts listing and breakout diagrams within equipment TM’s. It also allocates the tools and test equipment required. In addition to the general information provided for in the MAC. These functions may be inspecting. and Recoverability code. use and dispose of an item. The unit armorer. that is a serious event. based upon their operational workload. testing. so study the manual. There are several additional codes you must learn. is a chart called the Maintenance Allocation Chart. the amount of time the procedure should take. The MAC assigns responsibility to each level of maintenance using the five maintenance level codes given earlier: C. it can affect the unit’s warfighting capability. especially a crew-served weapon like a machinegun is deadlined. The reason is obvious. You will be notified when to return with the items needing repair. O. use or repair an item is given in the Source. or other factors. as the best trained individual where small arms are concerned. 41 . parts availability. replacing or overhauling an item or component. Specific information on the SMR and its breakdown is usually found in Appendix C of most 20-series and higher level equipment TM’s. Let’s examine how you determine what is and is not repairable at your level of maintenance: In each technical manual for the organizational level and above. there are steps they will take to schedule your repairs when they are able to do so. servicing. The SMR code is a five digit alphabetic code that tells you how to procure. This chart authorizes and assigns to each level of maintenance the responsibility to perform certain functions. specific authorization to install. or the parts will not be listed in that publication. According to DA Pam 738-750. or delay the repairs. When a weapon. This is because that equipment is incapable of performing the combat mission for which it was designed. needs to know about the ECOD process. and provides special remarks concerning individual procedures. removing. items with deadline deficiencies may not be deferred. or SMR.

Fair wear and tear (FWT) Acceptable training damage Battle damage Negligence Willful Misconduct (criminal intent) If damage to a piece of equipment results from one of the first three reasons stated above. How does equipment become damaged? There are five basic causes of equipment damage: 1. as the DS personnel may need to determine the cause for the Survey Officer’s report. The Survey Officer will conduct an investigation to determine the circumstances of the loss or damage. 2. Cleaning or modifying the weapon may hide the true cause of the damage. until a determination of cause has been made by the appointed Survey Officer. you will be a principal in the investigation. 3. This is because that damage is usually due to factors beyond the control of that soldier. the Army. The decision rests with the unit commander. If the cause is determined. 4. the armorer has a responsibility to the commander. If an ECOD is to be conducted. If the damage is due to the negligent or criminal behavior of that soldier. and the taxpayers to ensure that any damage to equipment is found and reported. and who is ultimately responsible for them. 5. This is nothing to be concerned about. In cases such as these. Do not first make any unit level repairs. or modify the condition of the item in any manner. As the commander’s representative in the arms room. there are some basic rules you should know about the investigation that will result. In the event that a determination is made that criminal intent was involved. as the official custodian of the weapons for maintenance and physical security purposes. First. Simply be honest and accurate in your statements. and will probably request an Estimated Cost of Damage inspection. 42 . that’s an entirely different matter. complete a maintenance request and specify that the ECOD is being requested.This is because the unit armorer. who “owns” the assets in the arms room. since you discovered the crime. turn the weapon in as-is. You will be questioned as a matter of procedure. and a Survey Officer may be appointed. handle it like any weapon being turned for maintenance. is most likely to detect damage to the weapons and related equipment. even if you fear that something you say might make you look bad in terms of how you perform your duties. it may be possible to recover the cost of the damage from the soldier involved. we hold the soldier harmless. If not.

Usually these PMCS inspections will be done quarterly. Remember that your role in this entire process is limited. When it becomes apparent to you that something criminal might have occurred. This is one of the reasons why PMCS has to be conducted properly. you schedule maintenance according to the PMCS tables in the appropriate TM’s.or combat.. You should maintain a copy of this publication in your arms room. Lastly. Many times. by the book. The detection of failure or damage to weapons is your responsibility as the unit armorer. By reporting your initial discovery and making your statement to the commander or case investigator. keep all copies of your inspection findings and associated ECOD papers until your chain of command or the investigator has informed you that they may be discarded. You can not fix problems until you know they exist. You must maintain full accountability for the whereabouts of your unit’s weapons. Physical Security The regulation that deals with this subject is AR 190-11. 43 . It may be helpful for you to keep notes concerning your statements or facts revealed to you. they won’t. at the frequency indicated. but it depends on the weapon. It is typically found in a copy of the Physical Security UPDATE. Ammunition and Explosives. they won’t become apparent until the weapon is needed in training. and local policy (which may require you to exceed the PMCS frequency as given in the TM).. Failing to maintain adequate physical security of your weapons can have severe legal consequences. Remember. I strongly urge you to get AR 190-11. and know it inside and out. read it. This does not mean that when you first discover the damage that you should not ask what happened. it’s usage. 24 hours per day.Second. Do not rely upon the honesty of others. If you don’t look for problems. learn it. The physical security of unit weapons is one of the most important aspects of your job as an armorer. discontinue your questions and report your knowledge of the incident to your commander. and make the false assumption that every soldier will honestly report damage to you. since it mandates the practices you must observe on a daily basis. you have fulfilled your official responsibility. the type of unit you are in. but these should be considered confidential and properly disposed of when no longer needed. and you have no authority over the decisions or findings. Physical Security of Arms. do not interrogate the soldier(s) involved. Conducting proper inspections is the foundation of good maintenance management.

You have the combination to the main door and the safe. access to the rack and locker keys. One is the type of facility in which the weapons are stored. There are many elements to a good physical security program. Do not rely upon what your “buddy” knows. you will be required to explain any discrepancies in the methods of weapons issue and inventory. In such an important position. easily concealed in some cases. For this last reason. They are portable. all personnel appointed to positions as unit armorers or assistant armorers must have a background check to determine suitability for the duty appointment. This is because you have unrestricted unaccompanied access to the arms room. and whether or not it has an alarm system. I do not need to go into great detail to make you understand the importance of the security of your weapons. Negative domestic or financial information may be disqualifying. and the ability to turn off the entry alarm system. and other high dollar items are in your personal care. Your medical records will be checked to see if you have any history that would indicate mental instability or substance abuse problems. Local law enforcement agencies will be asked to provide information about any arrests or legal problems in your past. and the other is the Physical Security Branch of your local Provost Marshal Office. NVG’s. Once appointed. you become the person in the “hot seat” as far as physical security goes. trustworthiness and judgment are critical. He may know less than you. One is the controls placed on personnel issuing or receiving the weapons. 44 . rifles. and you can wind up in legal jeopardy. pistols. All those machineguns. Your personal integrity. and the tools of the trade for terrorists and violent criminals. and how they handle the weapons when they are in possession of them. In your arms room may be as much as a million dollars in equipment. grenade launchers. One is the publications dealing with such matters. they must be controlled in a manner that prevents even the slightest chance of them falling into the wrong hands.There are resources you can rely upon for information on physical security. you should contact one of the physical security specialists working in that office. or even more. Still another is the careful selection of the personnel who will have unrestricted access to firearms and ammunition. As such. mortars. If you have any questions concerning physical security matters. to include excessive alcohol consumption. Other factors concerning you will be evaluated to determine if you are eligible to serve in this position.

and other similar information should likewise be restricted. Why is this essential? Regardless of what you believe about the Cold War being over. Learn them.You will have to make frequent checks on the security of the assets stored in the arms room. If you allow the wrong persons to gain information about a planned movement of your unit’s weapons. or OPSEC. Enemies do not have to be foreign. There are those in the international community who will always be envious of the United States. anti-technology. You will be responsible for transporting the firearms to and from maintenance facilities. there is the ever-present threat created by criminals. We live in a time where the threat of domestic terrorism has become reality. or environmentalactivist extremists. In the Second World War. The domestic terrorist may come from any segment of society. Some have been religious extremists. qualifications. Good OPSEC means protecting sensitive information from prying eyes and ears. The security of the arms room not only deals with the assets stored therein. even though an officer or NCO may actually hold that title. and availability should not be discussed with anyone outside the Army who does not have a specific need to know. more than you might think. availability of ammunition. the results could be disastrous. anti-government. is also your responsibility. such as quantity and type. maintenance status. In short. The best way to deal with the problem of not knowing who might have a hidden agenda is to keep the information to yourself. AR 530-1 provides the regulatory guidance for this program. but also applies to the information concerning your unit’s weapons. You will conduct serial number inventories and sign documents attesting to the accountability of unit weapons. These persons range from local drug users desperate for cash. and we will always have enemies. 45 . which describes OPSEC indicators. Particularly important is the information in Appendix B of this regulation. These people can live in any community and range from highschool dropouts to college post-graduate students.” The logic still applies. They are extremely important. Information about your unit’s weapons. the concept was summed up in the slogan “Loose lips sink ships. The status of weapons training. and know them. you are the functional security manager for the arms room. the threat posed in the past still exists. Operations Security. You should become familiar with its requirements. This solves the problem of data falling into the hands of the wrong people. to sophisticated crime organizations with international contacts and millions of dollars in assets. Aside from domestic terrorists.

it may be true that you can go to a gun show. Always be security conscious! 46 . Do not throw them in the trash! Also note that the destruction notice refers to unclassified material! Did you know that there was a requirement to destroy some unclassified documents? You know it now! To sum it all up. Yes. and each requires the other to succeed. The front cover of some of the TM’s used in your arms room bear the following cautions: “WARNING: This document contains technical data whose export is restricted by the Arms Export Control Act (22. including burning or shredding out-of-date or unwanted copies. Be above reproach in your behavior. Physical Security deals with the lock-and-key issues. the TM’s for the M203 Grenade Launcher and the Mk19 Machinegun are two examples. Never make the false assumption that you can trust someone because you know them. Violations of these export laws are subject to severe criminal penalties. Both are important.” These warnings are clear and unambiguous.Sensitive information may appear in places that seem unlikely. Be professional in your attitude towards security. The key to adequate security is your behavior. It would be stupid to assume that persons outside the Army do not know the knowledge contained in these books. and it will be impossible to compromise you.” “DESTRUCTION NOTICE: For unclassified. thrift store or similar establishment. limited documents. You must protect the information in these manuals as indicated. Well. You can be criminally prosecuted for allowing the contents of such documents to fall into the hands of unauthorized persons. Your efforts may actually deter crime by denying an opportunity. USC 2571 et seq. and OPSEC deals with the information aspects of your arms room security program. and others will rise to meet your standards. The government means business when they print statements like this. But the fact that someone else committed a crime and got away with it is not a valid defense if you are charged with an offense under the law.) or Executive Order 12470. Where do these warnings appear. and purchase a copy of one of these books. There are countless crimes committed by friends and acquaintances every day. swap meet. destroy by any method that will prevent disclosure of contents or reconstruction of the document.

Here the challenge takes on a new dimension. publications management. anything that can go wrong. Now let’s discuss field duties in greater detail.. 47 . wind. supply management. You must now do everything under the most adverse conditions imaginable. Rain.Until now we have covered the duties typically performed in a garrison setting. maintenance management and physical security. You will now be exposed to the external environment. and extremely high or low temperatures will tend to lessen your abilities and induce physical and mental stress.the enemy. files management. Picture yourself doing your work to the same standards of excellence if subjected to the following: Blizzard conditions Artillery barrages Aerial bombardment Tactical blackout Mortar attack Sniper fire Chemical attack Ground assault Torrential rains Sabotage Any (or many) of these conditions may exist on your battlefield.. Although there are many things unique to field duty. If you want a real perspective on this. You do not have the physical facilities that make your tasks easier. there is something else waiting to ruin your day. For instance. Remember. still must be performed in the field environment.to wage war. All the elements. Apart from the lack of comfortable support facilities and the effects of the environment. ice.. mud. Your job is no longer a matter of performing the routine tasks to a technical standard. ask any soldier or veteran with an appreciable degree of combat experience the following question: how bad can it get? You might be shocked by the answer. just because you are in the field does not mean that the PMCS schedule is abandoned. Although this is where the majority of time will be spent. probably will go wrong. sand. many of the requirements and practices we covered in the garrison duty section will apply. the real mission begins when we go to the field. After all. snow.. this is the very essence of the military force. The field offers new challenges and difficulties.

their tent flap!) In addition to the placement of support troops in proximity to the fighting. Soldiers need food. typically are assigned to units that may be medical units. morale support and many other things to remain sharp and efficient in the field. waiting for the maintenance work to come to their door (or more appropriately. chemical or aerial attack no matter where you might be located. remember that the job has everything to do with combat support. there is also the fact that the enemy will bring the fight to your territory. medical attention. if the enemy is being routed and our troops advance. The result is usually to define a “rear area” where non-tactical troops and organizations can function normally. The mission defines the force structure. To understand the role you might be called upon to play. water. Normally. artillery. support elements may roll forward to provide adequate levels of assistance. finance units. The result is that not all support troops can expect to sit comfortably in a rear area. The soldiers who support the combat arms troops (infantry. however. If no one has ever explained the combat nature of the armorer’s job. As previously stated. Each infantry battalion requires support to sustain operations in the field. engineers and others).Field duty describes those activities when the unit is in the field or engaged in tactical operations. including active combat with an armed enemy. This rear area may be a mile or dozens of miles away. clean clothing. although the idea may be to keep strategic support elements out of harm’s way. maintenance units or any other type of organization required by the mission. we want to keep strategic assets and key support organizations out of the direct path of the enemy. An Army without food and bullets will win no wars. 48 . let’s look at the enemy’s logic and possible plan of action for ground attack. However. but it is important for you to understand. there is the ever-present risk of artillery. the events will dictate the tactics employed by field commanders. The majority of soldiers are not infantry troops. After all. it is necessary to deploy support elements to forward positions. For example. Sometimes. It takes a lot of support personnel to make the Army work effectively against an enemy. maintenance items. The importance of logistical support can not be overstated. So. This will be in very general terms and not very detailed. that’s why we have the weapons in the first place. we must understand some facts about force structure.

They train in the field more frequently than support troops. air defense. and given the option. and just how suicidal it might be to take them on directly. can have the net effect of incapacitating our forces overall. these are general statements and do not address specific types of units or personnel. Without food. ammunition. Most support troops only qualify with a weapon once a year.. It may be more effective for the enemy to wage a campaign against our resources instead of against our troops directly. fuel. 49 . chemical. the enemy may elect instead to go for the softer target: . The enemy believes the support force to be an easy target. The enemy knows how hard the combat troops train. if successful.our support systems. In looking at the means the enemy may employ to defeat you.. logistics and intelligence capabilities. He has to maximize his potential by making the most efficient use of manpower. and eliminating your contribution to the battlefield effort. commo and intel. Combat arms troops perform their primary functions in the field environment. may bring the battle to you while avoiding our infantry and other “hard” targets. artillery. and don’t spend as much time in the field as combat arms soldiers. On the other hand. To do so may cause massive casualties for the enemy force and the loss of valuable equipment and resources. and their training is mostly in combat-related tasks. As an option. this increases the odds of a favorable outcome for him. to defeat our warfighting capability. support troops perform their daily tasks in a non-tactical environment. intelligence and signal forces. including ground troops. The loss of those personnel and other resources could spell disaster for that enemy. Keep in mind. we’ll examine a hypothetical situation: The enemy infantry brigade commander has an array of assets to use. full frontal attack against our own combat arms troops. the effectiveness of our operations may degrade with the passage of time. This type of campaign. If the enemy can disrupt our communications. water.The enemy has some options in battle. ammunition and supplies. Understanding this is simple. This commander can commit his forces to a head-on. the support troop. aviation assets. There is less risk in seeking out you.

gun barrel to gun barrel? You will quickly realize that the percentage of soldiers with actual “trigger time” against an enemy is relatively small. You have heard the term “attitude adjustment”. or training cadre organization. As long as you pay your premiums and never have an accident. look at the shoulders of the members of your unit. Your defeat of the enemy begins with your personal sense of confidence in your abilities. End result? Your defeat. marines and airmen. that is the average experience. who have gone through their period of service without firing a single shot in combat.. I’m a supply specialist in a support unit. How many wear combat patches? How many actually faced an enemy. and have no skills. But this validation is no justification for failing to train for the possibility of meeting the enemy. The reason is: many soldiers believe that it will “happen to the other guy. In fact. Who provides that training?. Where do you gain that confidence? Through training that develops the skills needed to perform those tasks required in combat. He may well come looking for you. an enhanced Brigade.So. Whether you are a member of a Division..” Now. if you do meet the enemy.. and we all know that sports coaches give “pep talks” to motivate their players. especially if you are perceived as a “soft” target. YOU do! 50 . it seems like a waste of money. It’s sort of like auto insurance. There is a distinct reason for going through all this. you increase the odds of the enemy prevailing over you. This fact is responsible for the mindset that says “that stuff happens to other guys. It is not necessary for you to be in a front-line infantry unit to meet the enemy in a combat area. why gamble on being prepared to deal effectively with the enemy? After all.. But what happens if you have a wreck and have no coverage? Now let me ask you a harder question: if you are a military professional (which you are). and I’ll never see the enemy face to face. Look at the members of your own force structure. Preparing to meet the challenge presented by a potential enemy begins with the proper attitude. this mindset may be validated by the experience of millions of other soldiers. the bottom line of the preceding statements should be apparent to you.” History illustrates how likely it is that a soldier can complete an entire 20-year tour without facing an enemy. sailors. You must have the winning attitude in combat.

You do not want to develop them by trial and error on the battlefield! Your training begins right now with the development of the proper attitude. and if you honestly believe “it will never happen to me”. and therefore no Soldier Training Plan. practical recommendations I will now make in the remainder of this chapter. is where you begin to adopt the winning attitude needed to prevail in battle. You must want to win! You must possess the needed skills! 51 . It should therefore follow logic that advanced training does not exist. your understanding of what combat is like or may be like. Why are you in the military? b. no MOS upgrade training plan related to armorer duty. these skills are essential. Machismo. or any other kind of training and evaluation process. then I have two questions I’d like to ask: a. Second. cadence counting and bonding are not enough to defeat the enemy. the duties you may have to perform. So. If for some reason you deploy to a combat area. But that experience is not documented or annotated anywhere that I know of. because no training plan currently exists to prepare you for what you may experience in combat. and how you perceive yourself accomplishing those duties. Most of your effort will therefore have to rely upon two factors: First. Why are you even bothering to read this book? Now. Remember that the Army does not even have a standardized plan or concept for armorer training at the basic level. the common sense. Most of these are based on a combination of personal experience. from where does the concept for self-training spring? Well. it really comes from the collective experience of those who have performed the duty in the past. you have to do it. It comes back to my earlier talking points in this book. out of necessity. and my personal interviewing of many persons who have experience in the field. right now. If you honestly don’t think this is important. There is no dedicated full-time MOS for the armorer. and I have looked for such information for a long time. I truly hope that you take this issue seriously. my many years of work and teaching experience.Wait a minute! What did you just read? How can you provide the training you need? Well.

My primary point is this section is simple: the armorer should always go to the range whenever personnel assigned to the same unit conduct live-fire training. If you are not going to the range whenever the unit conducts live-fire operations. 52 . whenever the unit will occupy a range facility. Can you see yourself digging around for a TM when the enemy is firing on you. GTA 7-1-30 requires “checking the block” for the armorer. but let’s do a reality check on this subject. Tactical training operations support 3. Your chain of command needs to know the importance of your presence at the range. a soldier loses a valuable training opportunity because of equipment failure. Range Operations support 2. and the remedies for them.Field duty encompasses three principle areas of responsibility: 1. That will not happen if you do not go to the range and work on weapons as they fail. and it must be reflexive in nature. as you attempt to repair a machinegun that has failed during an enemy assault on your unit? The skill must be developed before it is needed. As stated earlier. it is possible to spend an entire 20-year career in the military services without engaging in armed conflict. This means that you have the ability to do it with your eyes closed. This document is a checklist of all the equipment and personnel needed to conduct range training. it interferes with the training mission. Combat operations support Range Operations Support Fortunately. GTA (Graphic Training Aid) 7-1-30 should be completed by the Range OIC or other responsible officer or NCO. If there is no armorer present to repair the weapon. spare weapons and maintenance area at the range. It is true that the equipment TM will contain troubleshooting procedures. major conflicts involving military force structures on a global or multi-national basis do not happen very often. You must know their causes. tools. something is seriously wrong. It is also extremely important that you be there to assess the failure. It is important that you develop skill in dealing with many different types of malfunctions. Most of your live-fire experience with weapons will result from range training operations. Whenever a weapon fails on the firing line.

let’s complete the analogy. and does not know how it works? Of course not! Only a certifiable idiot would do that! Oops!! We have discovered a problem here! The sad.. Why? .. You will have to convince your command element of the necessity for this concept. and add to your experience level. Would you ever consider taking your weapon to an armorer who has no training.. you literally can be killed. so you can’t test-fire the weapon in the arms room. the gun may have been disassembled and reassembled.. Your lack of visual indicators of the failure may lead to a wrong diagnosis of the failure. develop better diagnostic skills. 53 . End product?. Sorry. Would you ever consider taking your car to a mechanic who has no driver’s license. You need to qualify with each one and become proficient as an operator. You are an infantry soldier. but brutally honest truth is: this describes the present reality in too many cases.. The ammunition has been turned in. improve your ability to work with the tools needed.you didn’t properly assess the situation.. All of this is easily avoided if you are at the range! You will be exposed to a greater variety of problems.. and even just clearing the gun can eliminate important indicators of the failure.When someone clears the weapon and brings it back to the arms room. you know how important the braking system is.. Here’s the logic: If you own a car. and have found nothing.a weapon in the rack that may still not work properly. you literally can be killed. If you go to combat and your weapon does not work.. you can’t examine the unique circumstances that caused the failure. has never driven a car... Why else do you need to be at the range? Equally important is the fact that you need to actually fire each of the types of weapons in your arms room. has never operated a weapon like yours. and does not know how the brakes work? Of course not! Only a certifiable idiot would do that! Okay. If the brakes fail.. A function check may not reveal the problem. and so the defective weapon goes back in the rack. and you’re not at the range now. but I have looked for any kind of mandate for this in Army doctrine.

Whether playing the piano or fixing a machinegun. The best way to lessen the chance of failure is to have an aggressive preventive maintenance program. this only applies if I can survive the downsizing of DOD! Once you have received proper instruction and gained experience. there is no program that supports this requirement. I frequently take my training on the road to distant locations... call me at one of the numbers listed in the foreword. All the tools. Many soldiers have developed no skill at clearing obstructions or applying immediate action in the event of a malfunction.. It is only logical that if you are to be the maintenance specialist for the weapons at the organizational level. and how the operator can take positive steps to do the same thing in case your service is not available in an emergency. Remember always that the quality of your work is dependent upon the quality of your training. It will be your personal initiative that makes this happen. Maximize your opportunity to learn from experience every time your unit goes to the range! 54 . I will travel worldwide in TDY status to any location that wants to host the training. and a malfunction occurs. It is not exaggeration to state that the mechanical and functional status of a weapon can mean the difference between life and death in combat. the soldier is dependent upon his or her assigned weapon for two reasons: mission completion and survival. using the train-the-trainer approach. When you are at the range. and would be glad to help you and your fellow soldiers. books and equipment in the world are worthless without the skills needed to employ them. use the event to conduct on-the-spot training for the operator.. Explain what went wrong. so time and ammunition can be allotted for your training.. your skills will improve! From that point on you have a responsibility to share certain elements of your knowledge with others. including hostile areas.In combat. How can you possibly attain that skill if you do not train with the weapons? You need to discuss this with your chain of command.. Get formal training! If you don’t have a resource. Again. what you are doing to solve the situation. which result from. your skills should at least be equal to those of the operator. Of course.training! By the way.such a program presupposes that there is a maintenance capability involved. let me re-iterate a statement made in the foreword to this book: do not use this book as a substitute for formal training! Doing so is foolish and dangerous.. But wait a minute. the level of your performance is tied directly to your abilities..

I will not go into the content and scope of the regulations. that is a catastrophic event. to prevent others from experiencing the same problem. but will instead describe the proper way to react to a serious event. The injury or death that happens from heat stroke or falling into a foxhole is likewise different in nature and scope than that which occurs as a result of a weapon failing on the firing line. but we are dealing with the weapon-related problem here. the barrel blows up. Your range operations party personnel will attend a range safety briefing. and be issued a copy of the regulation. If two or more weapons are experiencing the same serious problems. You must know. continue to call out the cease fire order until it does.Before leaving this subject. if parts break. breech or action assembly. that results in damage to a firearm or tube weapon. each is a serious event and training immediately should cease. The ammo lot will be suspended pending inspection. let’s also discuss what should happen when a serious failure of a weapon takes place: with or without injury to the soldiers involved. First. The following types of situations would warrant immediate action as a serious event: The catastrophic failure of a barrel. In other words. We are not going to interrupt training and shut down the range because someone’s rifle is not properly feeding ammunition. understand and obey all applicable safety regulations while conducting training at the range. Any event that results in injury or death. Any event that indicates ammunition defects. Events that indicate ammunition failure are important because a bad lot of ammunition can affect many other units and their personnel training at different locations. If firing does not immediately cease. immediately cease-fire! Any military member or person present at a range who witnesses an unsafe act or accident can immediately call a cease-fire. 55 . or the breech fractures in your weapon. I would like to first make the point that I am not talking about your “run of the mill” malfunction. Certainly. suspect the ammunition. Catastrophic failure implies a situation that can not be remedied by immediate action due to the degree of damage experienced.

so let them notify everyone possible who might be able to come out to the range to inspect the weapon. your TACOM-ACALA Logistics Assistance Representative. The weapon should be inspected by someone from the direct support shop. Walking about the site. the presence of dirt in the receiver. If they are unsuccessful in making contact. make sure all non-essential personnel are moved a minimum of 75 meters to the rear. or a weapons or ordnance specialist from your local Directorate of Logistics. or the lack of lubrication. This inspection should be conducted at the accident site. Move all non-essential personnel away from the firing line to a safe distance. Do not allow others to walk about the accident site prior to the arrival of military police. Leave it exactly where it is. ask to see that person’s supervisor and explain the nature of the request for the inspection. The information required and the format for the transmission of information can be found in the range safety regulation. Remember. Remember. DO NOT remove the affected weapon from the firing line. Do not clean the weapon. Advise Range Control of the need for medical assistance or MEDEVAC. The area and all equipment present have now become an accident investigation site. can be a contributing factor. but turn it in for evaluation concerning the cause of the accident in “as is” condition. The exception would be only if failing to clear and relocate the weapon would cause further injury or damage. and someone insists the weapon be cleaned first. take it back to your arms room. For instance. Range Control has a list of persons to contact. and even further if possible. Cleaning the weapon eliminates critical evidence of the failure.Next. if dealing with a catastrophic ammunition problem with the Mk19 HE ammunition. simultaneously treat the injured persons while your RTO contacts Range Control. range control personnel or other officials investigating the event. you should recover some casings for examination by the direct support troops. don’t tamper with the evidence! 56 . kicking and scattering shell casings and links with the toes of your boots may alter critical evidence unintentionally. Do not remove expended rounds from the range unless cleared to do so. For instance. in exactly the same condition it was in when the mishap occurred. If you go to turn that weapon in to your small arms support shop. Again. and they clear you to remove the weapon from the range. Secure the area. Protect the scene. and if possible. DO NOT clean the weapon! Range Control will handle the needed contacts regarding ammunition problems. the ejection pattern of the weapon tells a lot about the placement of the gun and aiming point of the muzzle.

e. But whenever time permits. Remember. Working out in the wilderness provides many benefits. Night training also imposes the difficulties of dealing with noise and light discipline. Your arms room has no windows and is virtually seamless in construction. take advantage of the field environment (and its pitfalls) to sharpen your skills. Take several different weapons apart. You will not be capable of performing a task like this with much ease and fluidity unless you have practiced it. one pistol.Tactical Training Operations Support The tactical training environment provides the best opportunity to develop critical skills needed by the armorer. You might not be very comfortable disassembling a machinegun in frigid temperatures. etc. once you develop the tactile perception needed to accomplish this. One way to improve your abilities is to develop tactile perception. snow. Graduate from that to the “blackout drill. you can’t replicate the field conditions in your arms room.. You will get the opportunity to train in all kinds of weather extremes. such as two M16A2’s. You can do this any day of the week in your arms room. so training to improve skills is necessary. Oh. the armorer must also be performing his or her primary MOS duties. no one will do it for you. do it under the worst conditions you can encounter in the field: cold. but you should learn how to do so with a minimum of risk and exposure.” Here’s how it works. i. scatter the parts on a table. but it is a realworld task you might have to perform in stressful circumstances. so close the door. In other words. and then reassemble them in a totally dark room. let’s not forget to try it in MOPP level 4 as well! If you do not develop these skills. one rifle. Do not take two of the same type of weapon apart. use the technique I have named “the bag drill. Even with your flashlight. so train in the field whenever possible. Put all the parts in a laundry bag and gently shake it up. When you can reach into the bag and blindly identify the part in your hand. you should become familiar with the feel of the parts. wind and high heat.” In this case. take a weapon apart completely. it can be difficult to see worn or cracked areas on a part. you are on your way. turn out the lights and go to work. Now. rain. 57 . At times it will be absolutely necessary to turn on a flashlight with a red lens. To acquire this ability. one shotgun. and how to determine their orientation in the dark. and the position of that part in your hand. Of course.

which are designed to disintegrate on contact. Do not allow soldiers to tamper with blank rounds. There are different styles of BFA’s for the M16/AR15 family of rifles. soldiers will be running and hitting the ground with their weapons.In the tactical training environment you can expect to see many more problems with your unit weapons. Stay properly fed. Spend some time becoming familiar with physical security of arms. You should know how to maneuver through the area with relative ease. We’re talking about safety. Changing the amount of powder in a blank round by opening the crimp and adding or removing powder can have very negative consequences. The usual cause of the increased failure rate is due to improper attachment of the blank firing adapter (BFA). At close ranges they can cause serious injury or death if mishandled. In addition to blank rounds used for training. and stoppages may be more frequent. as well as the proper operation on the weapon. This is due to the fact that unlike the range exercise. there are also SRTA (short-range training ammunition) rounds. with gloves and mask properly worn. Get used to the work/rest cycle. Understand that if contact with an enemy is made. Study the methods of chemical decontamination of the weapons and auxiliary equipment. you may have to work under extremely difficult circumstances. or use of the wrong BFA. Do not tamper with blanks. Attend properly to personal hygiene. Take apart some weapons in MOPP Level four.50 caliber rounds are lethal out to 700 meters! Many “simunitions” use frangible rounds. ammunition and explosives in the field. You should have an intricate knowledge of how fighting positions are built to accommodate certain weapons. Prepare for that by pushing your personal limits beyond the comfort zone. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that these rounds are harmless! Use your time in the tactical training environment to learn an overview of your unit’s operating policies in the field. Blanks must be handled with respect. You never know when the enemy will ring your doorbell! 58 . rested and hydrated. and the transition to plastic ammunition for training in limited range areas is becoming very popular. Plastic rounds can be lethal! The . They may also fire more blank rounds at the cyclic rate of fire during simulated attack and defense scenarios. Make sure you check the type required against the description and stock number in the operator TM. Blank rounds will leave your weapons dirtier.

The consequences of failure are unacceptable to even consider. let me explain it now: In combat. “This is not the Olympics. If you fail to do so. Only a complete fool would deny the importance of properly functioning armament in a firefight. Combat Operations Support Here’s where all your training and experience pay dividends. and do your job. courage and dedication can make all the difference in the world when needed. missions can fail. You. To do so requires great courage. Each individual soldier will rely upon his or her weapon to provide the firepower needed to defeat the enemy and stay alive. which might ultimately lead to the failure of the unit mission. or choose not to do so. Our forces fight to win by achieving specific objectives. and the survival of your fellow soldiers. or you lose. the armorer is only useful if he or she is equal to the task at hand. When death is the cost of failure. experience. the armorer’s mission is to ensure that all weapons are capable of sustaining fire against the enemy.” The armorer is a resource in combat. it is the armorer’s responsibility to get to that operator’s firing position. of defeat of the unit. and resolve the problem. There is no medal for second place. The loss of that fighting position may have catastrophic consequences. The responsibility for the proper care and maintenance of these essential tools of battle is a serious one. If the weapons fail to operate. You win.All this will happen only if you are self-motivated and truly care about the quality of your work. If a weapon fails. your inability to perform your duty may result in the death of that soldier who can no longer defend his position. Become a part of the team. Remember always that in unity there is strength. Like all resources. As I often say in my classes. That is the key to survival on the battlefield. and the willingness to expose yourself to risk in getting to the soldier in need. If no one has ever told you this before. no budget is big enough to cover the price. and the operator can not resolve the problem by immediate action. Your training. and soldiers will die. 59 . the unit armorer. can contribute directly to the success or failure of your unit to close with and defeat enemy troops.

but their purpose is combat. His mission is simple. the philosophy of “do what you have to” becomes the order of the day. At such times. and like all combat gear must be maintained to the highest standards attainable. Much happens by chance. But honestly. This procedure may be restricted normally to personnel performing duty at a higher maintenance echelon.I have trained hundreds of personnel for arms room duty a various military installations. and on-site repair. inspection. there may be consequences that are completely unacceptable. It may become necessary for you to perform an emergency maintenance procedure under combat conditions. To keep these weapons operating at the highest possible state of efficiency requires a team effort. these are not hunting weapons. Be flexible. Most of the soldiers I have trained. The soldier puts these skills to use by aiming true and keeping the weapon clean and serviceable to the operator maintenance standard. If your unit’s weapons fail because of poor maintenance. He intends to kill you. can you see yourself just throwing your hands in the air because you are not allowed by the TM to touch a particular part? If you don’t do what you have to. And the armorer provides technical expertise. You must be capable of reacting and adapting as needed. 60 . including those who graduated from the 92Y school. the soldier. not sporting weapons or competitive weapons. but you must understand the need for flexibility. Therefore. such as being in the wrong place at the wrong time. and you cannot repair them. or when your forward support unit is engaged with the enemy. This does not only apply to the garrison or training environment. and the armorer. In combat. They are combat weapons. he may succeed! In tactical environments. The enemy will not wait until you fill out a form and evacuate a broken weapon to a repair facility. the concept of how you will perform critical maintenance tasks needs to be flexible enough to adapt to the situation I am not advocating or supporting a deviation from traditional maintenance concepts and requirements. The problems arise when you are actually engaged in offensive or defensive operations. The trainer develops marksmanship and maintenance skills in the individual soldier. The battlefield is a fluid and dynamic environment. you will still have a forward support unit providing most of the technical assistance and maintenance support you require. have told me that no one ever explained the nature of their combat duties to them. there are no “time outs”. This team includes the trainer. It applies specifically to the combat environment. we use these weapons for training. Keep in mind. Yes. The soldier is only as good as his equipment allows.

Obviously. perform inspections as follows: .During recovery from offensive operations . Most maintenance problems are identifiable right at the unit level. The towel will prevent rattling if you load the tools and parts correctly. and a shoulder strap. a spool of wire. You can eliminate the need for emergency repairs to some extent. Can you see yourself lugging a big.Immediately following defensive operations Regardless of how carefully you plan by inspecting everything thoroughly.As dictated by climate conditions .As directed by the unit commander . a set of straight punches. a rubber mallet. will go wrong. The common tools to carry are side-cutting parallel jaw pliers. Make sure they are also accessible. allowing both hands to be free. Having them in a toolbox or parts container may seem okay when nothing is happening. the best kind of maintenance is preventive maintenance. Take the common parts and tools. During a firefight. The most frequently used parts will be available to you. and usually at the worst possible time. wire twisting pliers. parts. and wrap them in a brown towel. It’s the basis for Murphy’s Law. If they are buried under a ton of canvas and wood in the back of a truck. bright red toolbox across the battlefield? My personal method is to use a canvas pouch such as a map case or canvas bag with a closure device like a snap or buckle. A multi-tool also is very useful. however. Remember the Boy Scout philosophy of being prepared? Your PLL will probably be increased if you go to combat. which states that anything that can go wrong.Prior to engaging in offensive operations . and prevent them from falling out of the bag. that’s exactly the wrong place for them to be. We can mitigate the effects of chance through preparation. Become familiar with those parts most likely to fail and have them immediately accessible. you won’t have them when you need them should the enemy attack your unit. In a combat operations area. just by conducting more frequent and more intense inspections. 61 . You can therefore control your weapon and movement easier under stressful conditions. That is simply the nature of things. ball peen hammer and several screwdrivers. Make sure you have a red-lens flashlight also. It will follow you as you low-crawl from point to point. and therefore systems can and do fail.

consider cannibalization as a source of parts. KIA. and the TM does not assign the reassembly to your level of maintenance authority? Do what you have to. Make sure that you walk the paths to the positions in daylight.You can also pre-position critical PLL items.Anticipate failure. Be aware of the dangers of swapping bolt assemblies between weapons without being able to check the headspace.50 Caliber machinegun. as well as the functioning of each part. and that they can identify you. personnel turnover will occur on the battlefield due to PCS. What does this mean? Very simply. This will cut response time to the DFP in need. injury.Know the personnel in the positions. bunker or tower is an excellent candidate for PLL parts pre-placement. . Don’t rely only on the challenge and password. Get to know the weapons and anticipate what might go wrong. If you have only one M2 . If several weapons fail and you have no more parts to repair them with.Know the paths to the defensive fighting positions. MIA. you need to have a response plan. and deal with failure. What happens if a weapon malfunctions because a part has become dislodged. so you can find your way without error in the dark. ETS. To make the greatest contribution to your unit and fellow soldiers during combat operations. 62 . prepare for failure. This is why you must understand the weapon and all its parts. Fratricide happens. Make a working weapon from the working parts available. This may prevent the need for you to expose yourself to enemy fire (a good thing!). you must analyze your situation and draft a mental course of action to follow in case of emergencies.Share your knowledge of the weapon with the operator. Make sure every new soldier knows your approach to his or her position. Remember. and prevent a broken ankle or a poked eyeball in the dark. why not keep the parts with the weapon if at a defensive position? Any weapon in a fixed position like a DFP. Try to prevent it. emergency leave and so on. . and allow the crew-served weapon to get back in action faster (also good!). But it may be preferable to take that risk rather than be overrun by the enemy because you have no crew-served weapons operable on the battlefield. . and make sure they know you by sight and voice. Train the operators to perform immediate actions using the PLL parts that may have been placed at the DFP. Here are four of the elements of a typical response plan: .

HE rounds. and be ready to put your knowledge into immediate action if ordered to do so. and rarely done.Burning. Use heavy rock if you have to. or drive over it with a heavy vehicle. break. det-cord. If available. Would you put your hand down there? Neither will the enemy. cut. axe. Prevent discovery by stomping through the swamp water and muddying all of it up to conceal where the parts have been thrown. The weapons must be crushed between the force of the explosive and the ground. You must generate temperatures high enough to warp. such as grenades. you must train for it. pike or other heavy tool to destroy the weapon. But. twist or puncture the weapon receiver to prevent its use. Bend. This decision is made by the Commander. remember that standing water will show mud disturbances for a long time.Scattering and burial of parts. If you dump them in a swamp. If you use explosives. Use a hammer. Make sure you remove critical parts so the weapon will not function. A campfire will not suffice. he’ll put the weapons together and use them. etc. . If the enemy finds the hole. shred. Or smash it against a tree. or in his or her absence. Any method that works can be used.Mechanical means. smash. 63 . DO NOT bury all the parts in one hole.Finally. bend it between two thick branches.Explosives or gunfire. like all other combat tasks. claymores. . tear. sledge. Understand it. It is only used under the most extreme of circumstances. Many types of explosives can be used. This manual details the methods by which you will destroy your unit’s weapons to prevent them from falling into the hands of the enemy. or you will just launch the weapons in different directions. unthinkable duty of the armorer. so get the TM and read it. Burying parts in a cat-hole or field latrine is a good idea. Try to dump the parts in a deep body of running water if possible. competent command authority. we must look to TM 750-244-7 for the instruction on how to perform the final. You can also use direct gunfire such as with armorer-piercing rounds through the most critical assemblies. make sure the weapons are placed on solid ground. or bedrock if available. not the other way around. . The principal means of destruction are: . Place the demo material on top of the weapons. Use an accelerant like POL products. a thermite or a thermate grenade will totally destroy a pile of weapons. melt or distort the metal components.

a parachute and of course. the DOD has moved away from the “zero defect” concept. But when you get down to basics. easy to remember. 100% reliability must be the standard. 99% just does not make the grade when it comes to weapons maintenance. the soldier will possibly not survive. That 1% of 10. aptly titled “Chuck Ruggiero’s 200% Rule”. Certainly. and you will succeed. except your own conscience. there are some basic items that must work reliably. the individual weapon. 100% of the time = 200% Readiness Simple. 64 . Which unit do you want to send into battle with sub-standard weapons? You must be nearly fanatical in your devotion to quality. all equipment should be maintained this way. if these items fail.000 can equal the size of an entire unit. 100 soldiers will carry inoperable weapons into combat if 99% is the acceptable standard. No one. the first time and every time they are needed. concise.000 soldiers. Think about it. and absolutely correct. That weapon must work! Failure at that moment carries the highest penalty imaginable. In recent years. in any unit that is deployable to a combat area. How can you develop such a high performance capability? By adopting a standard which only permits total success. the entire contest is about the individual soldier meeting the enemy on the battlefield. I want to touch again on the subject of inspection of small arms. The 200% Rule is simple: 100% Reliability. I urge you to use my standard. This concept stated that anything less than perfection was unacceptable as an output. To ensure reliability of these items. Picture this: In a division with 10.Remember that only the Commander or competent command authority can make this decision. How do you maintain weapons to that maintenance level? Where does the motivation and drive to achieve perfection in firearms maintenance come from? Well. The lives of your fellow soldiers may depend on the quality of your work. Examples are the soldier’s chemical defense ensemble. Remember that no one is going to stand over your shoulder to see if you are doing your best in the arms room. When it comes to military equipment. it largely comes from the attitude of the maintenance soldier. that is. inspections must be thorough and the maintenance performed must be to the highest attainable standard. Acting on your own may have serious legal consequences! Before we leave this chapter. as the benchmark for quality assurance in your arms room. Never forget that.

What publication establishes MARKS policy? Answer: ________________ 65 . _____________________ 5. _____________________ b. _____________________ 2. _____________________ d. What does the acronym “PLL” stand for? Answer: _____________________ 3. _____________________ e. What are the 5 causes of equipment damage? a. Four elements of a typical combat response plan were outlined. _____________________ 6. _____________________ b. _____________________ c. _____________________ e. What are the codes for the 5 basic levels of maintenance? Answer: ________________ 7. _____________________ c. _____________________ c. _____________________ d. _____________________ b. Describe them: a. Describe the five separate areas of Garrison Duty: a.Chapter 1 Examination 1. How often do you conduct a PMCS inspection? Answer: _____________________ 4. _____________________ d.

_____________________ e. _____________________ 10. who can replace the item. What publication details the physical security of arms. 66 . and how to dispose of it. What are the five reasons given in this chapter? a. Each parts listing includes a five-place alphabet code which tells you how to procure an item. _____________________ c. _____________________ b. What is the correct name of this code? ANSWER: ______________ Answers to this and all examinations can be found at the back of this book.8. The frequency of inspection for your unit weapons should be increased in a combat area according to certain criteria. _____________________ d. ammunition and explosives? Answer: ________________ 9. whether it is to be repaired.

Chapter 2: Firearms Operating Characteristics This chapter will examine firearms and how they work. ammunition and ballistics. I will cover topics of importance. and physics. stock bedding. propellants and primers. These people should immediately be subjected to drug testing. chemistry. But ask yourself a question: “How can I repair anything I do not truly understand”? Many soldiers and police officers know very little about their weapons. These other areas of expertise include drafting. cooling. I will preface this chapter with a few words of caution. engraving. thermodynamics. I could always use a good mentor (they’re hard to find!). 67 . This is a primer that is designed to introduce you to concepts. firearms training and the use of firearms in hostile situations. It would be ridiculous to assume that a basic handbook such as this could do more than make simple points to explain theories and data. A detailed study would include subjects such as metallurgy. instructional principles and techniques. tool and die making. pattern cutting. the list could go on endlessly! If you ever meet anyone who has a detailed understanding of all these sciences. Anyone who ever tries to tell you that they know all there is to know about firearms is a dangerous lunatic. forensics (ballistic forensics. and thousands of individual gunsmiths and pistolsmiths. arts and other areas of expertise. metalworking. dye penetrant testing. human anatomy. This chapter will include information on operating systems. sniping. etc. non-destructive testing (magnetic particle inspection. radiology and fluoroscopy). microscopy). These weapons are made by hundreds of manufacturing companies. Wow. there are many other areas of art and expertise involved in gunmaking. please give that person my name and address. The subject of firearms is expansive and could go into endless detail. I will describe the most useful information in general terms. In addition to the hard sciences referenced in the second paragraph on this page. advanced marksmanship theory. theories and systems. street survival training. which will help you understand common terms. This chapter only provides a broad overview of the subject of firearms. applying chemical finishes. Some of it may go beyond your duties as an armorer. There are virtually thousands of different types of firearms in use all over the world today. I caution you to refer to the reference listing at the end of this handbook for specific sources of information. Accordingly. so let’s solve that problem here and now.

Ejecting 8. rifles. self defense. Cycle of Functions All weapons have a cycle of functions. Most. using different technologies. although many of them share common features. but not all. revolvers. Chambering 3. A magazine is a feeding device that loads more than one round. What features are common depends on the type of operating system employed. Firearms may vary in the means of accomplishing this objective. Feeding 2. 68 . This cycle is the sequence of events that takes place in a logical order. military purposes or criminal purposes. of the principles apply to different types of weapons. Each of these has characteristics which are unique. machineguns. Cocking A more detailed explanation of each step in the cycle is as follows: Feeding occurs when a round of ammunition is positioned in such a way that it can be readily introduced into the chamber of a weapon. It may include a bolt. the product will always be the same: the propelling of a projectile toward a specific target. The method of feeding may be the placing of a single round in a feedway. Extracting 7. Firing 5. causing the weapon to load and discharge a round of ammunition. with the specific objective of hitting a target.The entire purpose of a firearm is to launch a projectile. derringers and other types of projectile launching systems. There are different types of operating systems. or it may require the feeding of ammunition into a magazine. Locking 4. There are handguns. The action assembly area is that area of the receiver or frame of the firearm which contains and uses moving parts to sustain the cycle of functions. A firearm may be used for competitive shooting. Regardless of the intended use. so that the weapon can rapidly be reloaded without having to open the action assembly area. which supports the end objective of launching a projectile from the muzzle of the weapon. target practice. The nature of this act may vary. shotguns. hunting. slide or similar component that aids in the feeding or ammunition. Most firearms use the following eight-step cycle: 1. Unlocking 6.

The ramp sits at the top of the magazine well. directly below the chamber and aligned with the tip of the upmost round in the magazine. At this point the round can no longer travel forward. Not all operating systems utilize a locking chamber. The rotation of the cylinder accomplishes chambering. Most slide operated semi-automatic pistols will have a chambering ramp (called a feeding ramp by some manufacturers. It may also involve the use of a rolling or dropping “locking block”. it is deflected upwards into the chamber area. and seats it within the chamber. This offset chambering will probably be a compound deflection. the projectile tip is deflected at an angle which allows it to easily enter into the chamber.Ammunition may also be fed by means of a belt of ammunition. As the round is pushed forward in the direction of the chamber. Offset chambering usually involves an inclined chambering ramp. A belt is usually held together by metallic links which disassemble from the rounds during feeding. Locking takes place when an assembly such as a bolt or slide closes and locks into position in preparation for firing. and to prevent problems such as case deformations that would occur if the round were not forced to remain in the chamber during firing. where the cylinder rotates to place the round of ammunition in a straight line with the bore of the barrel. Chambering is completed when the shoulder of the cartridge (where the case tapers in a bottleneck cartridge. In-line chambering is most common in revolvers. a device which fits into a locking recess in a similar fashion. or aligns the cartridge cylinder of the weapon. and chambering has occurred. Chambering may be in-line or offset. Chambering is that action which takes the round from the feeding position. where the round first deflects from the ramp and then from a surface in the top of the chamber. although that term is imprecise). feeding is accomplished manually when the operator places the rounds into the cylinder. or the case mouth in a straight-walled cartridge) makes contact with the corresponding shoulder of the chamber. Locking may involve the rotation of a bolt assembly with attached locking lugs that fit into corresponding recesses. 69 . perfecting alignment as the bolt or slide closes. As the round is stripped from the magazine by the forward motion of the slide. Locking is usually required to protect the operator from the force of discharge in high-powered systems.

If the shooter pulls the trigger back on the first round. and the weapon will not fire. Firing is initiated when a firing pin. The weapon provides only a single action. When the trigger gets far enough to the rear. the act of pulling the trigger performs a single function: releasing the hammer or firing pin. locking takes place simultaneously with chambering. I will get into the headspace issue later in this chapter. the hammer does not move to the rear. in the M1911 Colt semiautomatic pistol. allowing the weapon to fire. and are usually found in systems such as rocket launchers. Single and double action firing are more easily explained if you consider the weapons that use these systems. or similar part engages the primer or other ignition source. and keeps the proper headspace relationship between the bolt and chamber. but these are not common on small arms. cocking and firing. Double action weapons provide both the cocking and release from a single pull of the trigger. and the weapon performs a double action. Some systems may use electrical ignition systems. This implies therefore. causing a spark or flame that will ignite the main propelling charge. striker. or may be the direct result of manual force applied to a moving part. or slide and barrel. Firing may result from the release of energy stored in a compressed spring. the shooter performs two acts.In all cases. At this point it becomes necessary to explain the terms single action and double action. As the trigger is pulled to the rear. In some systems. For example. In other words. cocking the weapon and pulling the trigger. the first shot must be fired in single action. It is completed when the propellant has been expended. The shooter must manually cock the hammer to the rear to prepare the weapon for firing. since they describe handgun-firing methods. In other turning bolt systems. Single action refers to the fact that in a revolver or semi-automatic of that type. as in some turning bolt weapons. the round is essentially fully within the chamber by the time the bolt begins its rotation. the hammer or firing pin is forced back into the cocked position. So the shooter performs a single act. releasing that cocked part. locking protects the operator and weapon from damage. 70 . pulling the trigger. it is also rotating the locking lugs into the locked position. that device is then released. that the shooter must first cock the firing mechanism to put the hammer or firing pin in the proper position for release. As the bolt moves forward to chamber the round.

or in a rimmed cartridge. Gravity ejection occurs in weapons such as the M203 grenade launcher and the M2 . as the slide cocks the hammer to the rear after each shot. either by forcefully expelling the case. This causes the case to kick forward at the top. Unlocking is the opposite of the locking action. This contact causes the shell casing to kick out of the slide in the opposing direction. a spring-loaded device called the ejector is built into the bolt. It usually is fit into an ejector rail cut into the slide. Most commonly. Ejecting is the removal of the spent cartridge case from the weapon itself. will fire all subsequent rounds with a single trigger pull. Extracting is the removal of the expended cartridge case from the chamber. opening the chamber. Both weapons. It pushes the top of the case forward as the barrel is slid forward. or the next shell. causes the expended case to be forced downward. In the case of most bolt operated rifles. allowing firing with a single pull of the trigger. meaning that some part. 71 . however. As the slide moves to the rear. the ejector is a spring-loaded pin that contacts the top of the cartridge at the base. In the M203. causing the expended cartridge to tumble downwards to the ground. or allowing it to fall due to the effect of gravity. With most slide operated semi-automatic pistols. As the mouth of the expended case clears the ejection port of the weapon. the extractor pulls the case from the chamber. just above the rim of the case. This is essentially a round pin that presses against the left side of the cartridge base. the ejector is a fixed metal part attached to the top of the frame at the rear of the gun. extracting the shell casing from the chamber. usually by means of a device called an extractor. Some are themselves made out of metal with springlike properties. the base of the case contacts the stationary ejector. or the opening of the breech. kicking the round out to the right (in a right-handed rifle). and flex slightly as they snap into position during chambering. the spring expands under the pin.In the case of the M9 9mm Beretta semi-automatic pistol. As the bolt or slide moves to the rear. chamber or cylinder to permit the removal of the spent cartridge case. Gravity ejection usually is assisted. Most extractors are spring loaded so the extractor can snap into the groove or over the rim during chambering. The extractor is therefore usually attached to the bolt or slide. and the case kicks out to the right.50 caliber machinegun. The extractor usually has a claw device that fits into the groove at the bottom of the case. the ejector is on the left side. pulling the trigger to the rear does cause the hammer to move backwards.

All the cases in the chamber are then simultaneously ejected rearward. and they are not semi-automatic. accomplishing ejection.In the M2 machinegun. The first is that it will fire only one round each time the trigger is pulled. a carrier device seated in front of the rim of all the cartridges in the cylinder. The second element is that the weapon automatically reloads and re-cocks itself. because it fires more than one round with a single trigger pull. However. This prevents brass and links from falling from the aircraft and entering engine intakes or damaging the tail rotor assembly of a helicopter Cocking prepares the weapon for firing by compressing a firing pin spring. Remember that ejection has not taken place until the case is removed completely from the firearm. In a revolver. In addition to ejection of the cartridge case. After all rounds in the cylinder are expended. it is essential to recover the spent links and brass by means of a catch bag or ejection chute assembly. 72 . meaning that the link is incidentally expelled from the feed tray as ammunition is fed into the weapon. This forces the ejector. The feed tray assembly will usually have a link ejection port or chute. In aircraft applications. as in the case of a single action handgun. we also have the matter of link ejection to contend with in a machinegun. Most link ejection is passive. Cocking may be part of the cycle of functions. The definition of “semi-automatic” has two elements. How a weapon is cocked is what determines whether a weapon is truly a semiautomatic firearm. the cylinder is swung outwards. ejection is accomplished by the manual effort of the shooter. or storing energy in a compressed spring and moving part that is usually held in place by a device called a sear. resetting a hammer. allowing the cylinder to be reloaded. This downward feeding of the new round forces the expended casing down. Therefore it must be magazine or belt fed in order to sustain automatic reloading (reloading includes both feeding and chambering). or it may be a manually induced process. the next round feeding into the T-slot on the face of the bolt assembly displaces the recently fired case. to the rear. any single shot weapon will also do this. The shooter then depresses the ejector rod to the rear. or just an opening where the links fall out of the weapon onto the ground. A fully automatic machinegun does not meet the requirements of the definition either.

where the bolt has to travel forward after the trigger is pulled. allowing for faster cooling of the barrel due to air circulation. 73 . chambering. Here are some of the advantages: 1. It is essential that gunsmiths and repair persons fully understand the nature of each step in a weapon. most weapons use all eight steps. employ what is known as firing from the open bolt position. there is one more thing I would like to address. Before I leave the subject of functioning characteristics. In these systems. allowing for feeding. Weapons that fire from the open bolt position have distinct advantages. until discharge. locking and firing to occur as a result of that single trigger pull. However. This is unlike the open bolt system. 2. so those steps are omitted from the cycle. Some weapons. Some weapons do not employ a locking system. Weapons that do not are the exception. not the norm. When released. an expanding spring launches the bolt forward. The barrel is open at both ends when the bolt remains locked to the rear. the round is already in the chamber and the system is locked and cocked when the trigger is pulled. Most weapons fire from the closed bolt position. Pulling the trigger releases the bolt.Although the preceding steps in the cycle of functions are common to most firearms. This deals with the positioning of the bolt during the firing process. not all systems employ all eight steps. The heated cartridge case is immediately extracted and expelled from the weapon as the bolt moves to the rear. This reduces the potential for a cookoff. 3. A weapon using this system has the bolt cocked to the rear when the operator pulls the trigger rearward. Since the round is already positioned and the system cocked. pulling the trigger immediately fires the round. usually machineguns or fully automatic weapons. A cookoff is a round that spontaneously ignites due to residual heat in the chamber. if they intend to repair that firearm. removing the heat source. The advantage of the closed bolt system is speed. Most of them have to do with cooling of the system. which is usually held to the rear by a device called a “sear”. The system does not place a round into the hot chamber except when actually firing. The net result is a slight decrease in the time required from the moment of trigger pull.

maximizing contact with the cooler air and the hot surface. and may be adopted for that particular reason during the design process. and is therefore not sustained over time. in a really hot weapon. The closed bolt system fires as soon as the sear releases the hammer or firing pin. heat will build up due to the thermodynamic nature of the chemical reaction that takes place within the cartridge case. since bullets travel at hundreds or even thousands of miles per hour on the way to the target. 74 . but that does take twice as long to accomplish if the hammer needs to go rearward first. the latter option is not logical. Of course. It therefore becomes imperative that we either engineer cooling features into the weapon. speed is of the essence. Even a fraction of a second can be critical in a gunfight. and can take you by surprise. This increases cooling potential. Cookoffs are unintended events. On a firearm. If the weapon is very lightweight. Cooling The act of firing a round generates heat and pressure. the closed bolt method places a round in that hot chamber automatically (in a semi-automatic or automatic weapon).In a gunfight. A heat sink absorbs heat away from a component and then radiates it into the air. The temperature generated by the burning of propellant powders is in the magnitude of thousands of degrees Fahrenheit. Still. This is because the trigger does not have to first bring the hammer back and then release it. Another factor to consider would be the thermal potential of the metals used. In a military or law enforcement weapon. As a result. How this heat is absorbed by the weapon and dissipated or removed. the weapon will react faster. Unfortunately. is a function of engineering and design. One design element might be the total surface area available for cooling effect. the surface can be designed to efficiently displace heat. if the hammer is already cocked in a handgun. causing injury or even death if the muzzle is not pointed in a safe direction at the moment of discharge. The time value may be very small. if we fire the weapon rapidly. what appears to be an unusually shaped surface with many levels or recesses might actually be a heat sink by design. or refrain from firing many shots in a short period of time. The reaction is only momentary because the powder increments are small. engineers design certain surfaces for heat dissipation. This does increase the potential for a cookoff round. it may not have sufficient mass to withstand thermal stress efficiently. Similar to a heat sink. Some metals cool more rapidly than others. Heat sinks commonly have many fins.

Let’s look at the three basic types of cooling features commonly found on firearms: 1. Convection cooling Radiational cooling simply allows for the dissipation of heat into the surrounding cooler air. Conduction cooling on a weapon usually results from high chamber operating temperatures being transferred into surrounding surfaces such as the barrel and receiver of the weapon. Conduction cooling 3. or in a breeze. Convection cooling requires the presence of a moving air current. melting the cube. there is no more heat source. the gun heats up and gradually cools. you cool down faster because of the increased cooling potential. If you stand in front of a fan. from these newly heated surfaces. When we cease firing. Thermal energy is then carried away by other means. the water is actually being cooled down. it takes a long time to cool down. Think of the radiator in your home that carries a warm fluid from your heating system. and as it heats up the air surrounding it. 75 . The chamber heats up as ammunition is fired. The net effect is cold water as the ice absorbs the heat from the water. The moving air has greater potential to carry away heat. as the surrounding air heats up due to radiant energy. This is the least efficient means of cooling. cooling the gun. The transfer from the chamber to the cooler metals has the net effect of cooling the chamber. The heat radiates into the surrounding air. determines the cooling rate. As the warmth from the water is transferred to the ice cube. The radiator heats up. and what metals are used. If you run a mile and stand in still air. the room will get cold as we lose the ability to generate radiant heat energy. This cooling of the radiator due to the loss of a heat source is what happens in a firearm as well. How the weapon is designed. others (like some machineguns) may take more than an hour to cool. the radiator actually loses thermal energy and cools down. and the gun eventually returns to normal (nonoperating) temperature. Conduction cooling occurs when a heated object is in direct physical contact with a cooler object. Simply put. Some weapons may cool down in a matter of minutes. If we don’t sustain the reaction by continually pumping hot fluid into the radiator. such as radiant cooling. An example is an ice cube in a glass of water. but in some cases the only one available due to design limitations. Radiational cooling 2.

since there are no fans to generate air currents. excessive heat can cause parts to expand. As previously explained. which reflects heat energy away from the handguard and back towards the barrel. Exceeding this causes serious problems. them. Actually. When the weapon becomes too hot. The net effect is the super-heating of the air between the heat shield and barrel. You can see this occur if you have oil on the barrel of an M16 series rifle. Most weapons are designed with tolerances that allow for a degree of expansion. As the barrel heats up and the cycle is established. there can be profound metallurgical consequences. All gun parts are made of metals with specific properties such as malleability. it can be quite costly. ductility. This process establishes a convection cycle as heated air is continually replaced by cooler air. Third. or soften. First of all. smoke will jet up from the cooling holes as the oil cooks off on the surface of the barrel. 76 . Second. can be lost. If these changes are more than operating clearances can normally withstand. the end result will be parts wear or breakage. If you disregard the damage that heat can cause. During practice firing. Cooling is an important consideration in the design and use of a firearm. Overheating changes the characteristics of some metals and can seriously affect the way your weapon performs. The obvious exception to this would be in combat or some other type of firefight. competitive shooting or other recreational shooting. The tops and bottoms of most handguard assemblies have cooling holes in them. changing critical tolerances. It can even result in an accidental shooting of another person (or you!). a cookoff is usually an unintended firing of the weapon. The temper. the handguards of many weapons are designed to accomplish this. Many handguards have an inner heat shield. hunting. This can result in damage to the weapon or injury to the operator if the breech is being opened at the moment of discharge. and the heated air rises from the top holes. it is foolish to overheat your weapon. tensile strength and relative hardness. heating metallic parts above critical operating temperatures can anneal.You might be asking yourself how convection cooling works on a firearm. or hardness of the metal. No weapon should ever be fired to the point that heat is created faster than it can dissipate. This creates an updraft that brings the cooler air in from the bottom. you increase the potential for a cookoff.

where the cooled steam turned back into water. The assistant gunner simply kept refilling the water jacket with the reclaimed water. Understanding operating temperatures is essential in critical shooting applications. Most heat damage can be avoided. always pay attention to ambient temperatures and the effects of direct sunlight. used compressed gases. Cool weapons. The tube led into a condenser bucket. cover your ammo with a towel. The water was brought to a boil. One way to do this is by seriously overheating the barrel. On the firing line. surrounding the barrel. Change the characteristics of the barrel. you hat. referred to by most gunsmiths as “barrel whip”. There are even more bizarre cooling systems. On your rifle or handgun. Other systems. Inaccuracy defeats the entire usefulness of the weapon. As long as that casing sits in the chamber. They are not supposed to glow a bright red! Any sniper will tell you that they record both cold bore and warm barrel data in their logbooks. prevail in combat.Gun barrels in particular are designed to operate within a specific range of temperatures. you are stuck with radiational.30 caliber machinegun series featured some weapons that used a water jacket. each rifle barrel has a harmonic oscillating frequency. This will increase the speed at which the weapon heats up as it is fired. like cool heads. Additionally. Rounds should never be left in sunlight. Speaking of cooling. Ammunition should always be kept in the shade until immediately before firing. Temperatures in excess of those normally tolerated by the metal results in damaged barrels and poor accuracy. we change the pitch it produces. such as missile systems. As the weapon fires. There are other. such as nitrogen. more exotic cooling systems used on some weapons. just like a tuning fork. If we change the properties of a tuning fork. the metal vibrates. Gun barrels are supposed to get warm. and steam exited through a vent tube. The same thing happens with a gun barrel. Leaving your weapon in direct sunlight obviously causes the metal to get hot. it’s transferring heat to the chamber walls. It also will require more cooling time if left in direct sunlight. and the barrel whip can change. The Browning . conduction and convection cooling. Even single shot bolt rifles can sustain some damage if the operator does not immediately extract and eject the spent shell casing. for cooling. or keep it in the box until used. 77 . Lightweight firearms should not be fired at the full cyclic rate for a prolonged period of time. Sunlight also affects your ammunition. as this causes problems with over-pressure when firing the round. but they do not apply to small arms.

there are thousands of firearms. The shooter determines the cyclic rate of fire. In this case. This depends on how far back the hammer is pulled. thereby accomplishing feeding and chambering. Recoil operation 4. all of them different to some degree. hammer or similar device. as the trigger is drawn rearward.Shotguns Another point about manually operated weapons should be made. The operator should therefore be trained to increase manual proficiency and speed. As a practical matter. The weapon can remain in the half-cocked position. there will often be a half stop notch. In firearms using a hammer.Bolt action rifles . This causes primer impact and detonation. Firing may require the manual setting of a cocking handle. How quickly and efficiently the weapon operates is the direct result of operator ability. they mostly conform to the basic operating principles of the systems indicated above. All of the steps in the cycle of functions are performed manually by the operator. Some systems release the hammer or firing pin immediately. but on many systems locking happens as the action is closed. Closing the breech or chamber will usually lock the system.Operating system design There are four basic types of operating systems used in firearms: 1. there are many variations and nuances of these systems.Revolvers . energy is first stored in a compressed spring. used to make sure an accidentally snagged hammer does not discharge the weapon. This includes opening the breech or cylinder and inserting a round. since all steps are performed manually. On some weapons a separate lock-piece is employed. and there are some unusual operating systems I will not cover here. and then released. Examples of manually operated weapons are: . Gas operation 3. Blowback operation Be certain. Manual operation 2. Manual operation is achieved using the muscle power of the operator. or the fully-cocked position. The half-cocked position is an intermediate safety. 78 . As I have already stated.

to physically move the action assembly parts. In direct gas operation. the gas created by the burning propellant will physically interact with the components of the action assembly within the receiver. In this system. Using the AR15 or M16 series of rifles as an example will explain this method. gas pressure is vented into the gas tube. fully seated inside the bolt carrier when the bolt is locked into the chamber. 79 . Gas systems. Within the front sight frame is a gas port that connects a vent hole in the barrel with the gas tube. The bolt is in reality a piston. a quantity of pressurized gas escapes from behind the bullet as it travels past the front sight frame. However. the result is the rearward movement of the carrier. These are normally referred to as “carbon” (incorrect. When the bullet passes the vent hole. More intensive cleaning is therefore required. In this case. As a result. fewer contaminants will enter the receiver. which rely upon the burning propellant. the bolt unlocks and moves to the rear as well. The gas travels rearward through the gas tube. The proper cleaning is critical for reliable performance. and the bolt carrier’s expansion chamber is actually a cylinder. The expanding gas pushes a free-floating piston to the rear. The carrier key mounted on top of the bolt ports the gas downward into the bolt carrier body. there is usually mechanical intervention. create significant fouling deposits. The energy is transmitted rearward by the operating rod. As gas enters that chamber. The rearward movement of the carrier causes unlocking and subsequent steps in the cycle of functions to take place. As the rod moves rearward. since the bolt is already locked fully forward. The relationship is the same as any piston operating within a cylinder. as carbon is an element. In the indirect system the gas does enter the action assembly area. This piston in turn contacts an operating rod. to which the bolt is mounted.Gas operation uses the gas pressure created by the burning propellant to provide the power for operating the system. and before it leaves the muzzle. not a collection of combustion byproducts). In this case. through to the carrier key. There are two basic types of gas operation. the seal created by the piston rings on the base of bolt causes a separation of the bolt and carrier. as in the case of the M60 machinegun. With indirect gas operation. and into the upper receiver. into an expansion chamber. The bolt sits inside this chamber. the gas enters a cylinder on the bottom of the barrel. direct and indirect. because the gas is ported out of the cylinder and does not go all the way back to the receiver. the gas actually travels into the upper receiver.

This energy. 80 . This force is called the recoil impulse.Recoil operation is based on the law of physics that states that every action has an equal. and that translates into higher chamber pressures. An interesting question arises: if the same amount of force is exerted rearward. or recoil force. The greater the mass. and fully compress the recoil spring. it must also have a locking system. and the shooter remains in position. may outweigh the bullet by a factor of several thousand times the bullet mass. If there is a significant loss of pressure. which is felt at the shoulder. The net effect upon the shooter is perceived as a slight impact. This force must also be powerful enough to extract the shell from the chamber. As we discharge a weapon. the recoil impulse. the less effect the force will have upon it. and is more easily influenced by the pressure of discharge. powder type. operates and cycles the moving parts. the system can malfunction easily. Of course. An equal amount of energy is created which moves in the opposing direction. reloaded ammunition is not an option for the military armorer. Recoil operation is also very dependent upon proper operating pressures. etc. why doesn’t the gun propel itself rearward at the same rate at which the bullet travels downrange? The answer is simple. energy is expended in one direction as the bullet moves towards the target. The design and manufacture of a recoil-operated system is truly a feat of engineering. The correct ratio of weight versus force must be achieved. with the body of the shooter behind it. Recoil operated systems rely upon the generation of a force sufficient to unlock and move the action assembly components to the rear. but opposite. Recoil systems require high chamber pressures. The metals used in recoil operated systems must be durable and capable of withstanding punishing impacts repeatedly. as well as accommodating proper timing through component design. force and velocity produced. We must consider the inversely proportional relationship of the mass. reloaded ammunition must be kept within strict parameters for powder charge weight. The bullet moves downrange. For this reason. The weapon. Because the operation requires high pressure. reaction. The bullet weighs only a fraction of an ounce. These are common characteristics of recoil systems: high pressures and locking systems. This is because the round must generate sufficient force to create the recoil impulse needed. rearward.

Blowback operation is similar to recoil operation in some ways. The action assembly components are moved to the rear by the force caused as the propellant gases expand. As the propellant burns, pressure is created in the chamber. This pressure causes the bullet to dislodge from the case mouth and to then proceed downrange. An equal but opposite reaction is created as the gas pushes in both directions: front and rear. In the recoil system, the recoil impulse moves the bolt and barrel to the rear. In the blowback system, it is the direct pressure against the face of the bolt caused by the expanding gas. This should not be confused with gas operation, which traps and uses some of the escaping gases. In blowback operation, the gas simply pushes the base of the cartridge against the face of the bolt. The resulting action is the rearward movement of the bolt assembly. An easy illustration is a party balloon. When blown up, it stores potential energy as pressurized air. If you open the mouth of the balloon slightly, gas will escape. If you let go of the balloon, it will fly in the opposite direction of the escaping air pressure. Since blowback systems rely on this direct pressure against the face of the bolt, a locking system would be counter-productive. Much of the force would be lost during unlocking. Consequently, blowback systems typically do not lock. Since they have no locking system, we have to operate in the range of lower chamber pressures, to prevent damage to the weapon and operator. So, the common characteristics of blowback operated systems are lower chamber pressures and no locking system. Most blowback weapons are chambered for pistol cartridges, such as 9mm or .45 caliber. Some are a bit different, however, like the Mk19 40mm machinegun. This weapon uses the delayed blowback system. In this system, the bolt is still actually moving forward at the time of firing. The blowback force has to overcome the forward momentum of the bolt, and then move it rearward. This type of system is useful in dealing with slightly higher chamber pressures than found in most blowback weapons, and allows firing the heavy 40mm projectile. The speed of a blowback system is controlled by the mass of the operating parts, the chamber pressure, and the tension of the recoil spring. The cycle of functions is shorter, as there are no locking or unlocking steps to be performed. The shorter cycle can result in higher rates of fire, since the weapon has to perform fewer steps in the cycle of functions with each shot fired.

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Ammunition and Ballistics Let’s begin with the acceptance of a basic premise: the entire purpose in firing a weapon is to cause the projectile to impact on a target. All that happens in a firearm does so to support this one requirement. Ballistics is a very complex subject that many find confusing and difficult to understand. For the purposes of military small arms, it is not critical for the average marksman to have any knowledge of ballistic theory, except as pertains to bullet drop and the effects of wind. However, for those who hand-load ammunition, complete knowledge is essential. The typical military armorer will never perform this task; as mentioned earlier, it is prohibited. However, we cannot fully understand the weapon if we do not understand what it is designed to do, and how it does it. For anyone who repairs, maintains, services or modifies firearms, knowledge of ballistics is important. It enables a better understanding of the operation and performance of a given weapon. Although working with ballistics involves mathematics and firing tables, a basic knowledge is easy to achieve. Just remember the caution that a little knowledge can be dangerous. There is usually no reason to “re-invent the wheel” when it comes to ballistics. The performance data for most military and sporting rounds are available from hundreds of sources. In this chapter, I will present broad principles, and explain some of the computations that produce the numbers we find in ballistic tables. Let’s begin with a definition. Ballistics is a science. It is a combination of physics and advanced mathematics. It is the examination and assessment of projectiles in flight, how they behave under motion, and what terminal effect they have upon a target. Ballistic studies are not restricted to weapons alone. Ballistics applies to other areas of science such as meteorology, astrophysics, astronomy, flight engineering, and forensic medicine. With respect to the science of ballistics and its reference to firearms, we are concerned with three principle phases of activity. These are interior, exterior and terminal ballistics. Interior ballistics deals with the behavior of the cartridge from the moment it ignites until the time the projectile exits the muzzle on the way downrange. Interior ballistics is a static science, since all of the parameters are already known, and the outcomes are easily predictable. Interior ballistics considers such factors as bullet weight, seating depth, rifling form, propellant type and quantity, bore diameter, barrel metallurgy, and other factors.

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Exterior ballistics deals with the flight of the projectile, on its way to the target. It commences at the moment the projectile leaves the muzzle, and deals with its flight until impact with the target or the earth. Exterior ballistics is a dynamic science, because the conditions affecting the flight are infinitely variable. In my classes, I always explain this by stating an argument similar to the following one: If you fire a weapon on a rainy day, will the bullet hit a raindrop? If it does, which raindrop will it hit? And how will hitting that raindrop affect the flight path of the projectile from that point? What if it hits another raindrop? While this argument may seem silly, it is factual in its basis. It illustrates that there is an infinite capacity for the round to be affected on the way to the target. Exterior ballistics looks at the motion of the bullet in flight, the effects of wind, drag, gravity, temperature, humidity, altitude, angle of elevation, barometric pressure, and many other factors. Terminal ballistics examines the impact of the bullet with the target or the earth. Terminal ballistics is also a dynamic science, because there are also many variables that are unpredictable. These include target material, composition, fluid content, penetration depth, angle of entry, interior deflection, projectile design, projectile material, relative movement of the target, bone density, fat mass, target weight, etc. Again, infinitely variable. As with other areas of interest concerning firearms, there are sometimes disputes about the validity of certain claims about performance or capability. In a subject as vast as firearms technology, one would expect that. I caution you to seek the truth through enlightened study. Always checks your sources, and the references of your sources. There are a lot of sales pitches out there for one bullet that outperforms another. Manufacturers have a vested interest in making you believe their product is best. While their ballistic charts may be accurate, exercise proper judgment when assessing their claims of performance. As I have just stated, always check your sources. It is common to hear exaggerations when exchanging hunting stories. In my many years of experience I have learned that the average shooter is woefully ignorant of ballistic performance. Rather than rely on the claims of your buddies, I urge you to check valid references on the subject. As I stated earlier in this text, there is a reference publications listing at the end of this book. Please use it and increase your knowledge through continued studies.

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Propellants and Projectiles Since the function of the firearm is to fire the projectile, we will begin our analysis by discussing how this takes place. We will take a short historical overview, and then talk about current technologies. Early firearms used black powder, a mixture of charcoal, sulfur, and potassium nitrate (commonly referred to as saltpeter). There is great controversy about the origins of black powder. You will undoubtedly read conflicting claims, and time has shrouded the facts. When firearms were first invented, it was rapidly discovered that round lead balls were the most preferable projectiles. Lead was readily available, being an element. Lead also has a low melting point, meaning it could easily be melted over a hot fire. Lead also has sufficient weight to inflict serious damage on a target. Black powder causes significant fouling, and so most leaden balls were cast a good deal smaller than the bore diameter of the weapon they were to be fired from. The melting of lead and casting of ball shot was the function of the armorer. The undersized dimensions of the lead ball shot made the weapons inaccurate at any range, and so the need for improvement drove technology ahead. The rifled barrel appeared, which improved the accuracy of lead shot. Initially, the same lead shot was wrapped in a cloth patch and the combination of the rifling and patch caused the bullet to spin, improving accuracy. However, the weapons of the day were difficult to load, since they were loaded at the muzzle. An improvement was the Minie’ (pronounced Min-yay) system, commonly called the Minie’ ball (erroneously pronounced mini-ball). This system used a hollow conical bullet that would expand inside the barrel, causing the round to spin, and was more accurate. Next came the introduction of smokeless powder, which was about to revolutionize the firearms industry. Smokeless powder is available in different types today, although the initial type was a simple single-base powder. Single-based powder is composed chiefly of Nitrocellulose (NC), with a nitrogen component of about 13%. Steeping cellulose, a naturally occurring fiber, in nitric acid, makes NC. An antiquated term often used is “gun cotton," when talking about early single based powder.

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Finally it is chopped to the appropriate length. The paste formed is then passed through dies and extruded into shape. Ball powder was made by taking the mixture and spraying it into cold water.45% (13. This temperature increase results in damage to the chamber and bore of a weapon. Cordite was an early double based powder.40% 0.7% (coating added) Potassium Sulfate 1. It also makes the compound more sensitive.30% Diglycol powders replace the nitroglycerine with either one of three chemicals: Diglycol-dinitrate.50% 1.The NC is made into a gelatin by dissolving it in alcohol or ether. forming spheres.75% 0. Army M2 double based powder is based on the following formula: Nitrocellulose Nitroglycerine Barium Nitrate Potassium Nitrate Ethyl Centralite Graphite 77. 85 . It also has the unwanted side effects of increasing temperatures. Triglycol-dinitrate or Methyl trimethylol-methane trinitrate The advantage of diglycol powders is that they have lower operating temperatures. increasing its detonating ability. and increases muzzle flash. Modern processes have since replaced those manufacturing techniques.15 nitrogen content) 19. Nitroglycerine accelerates the dissolving of the NC and lends additional explosive power.0% (coating added) Double-based powders are NC mixed with nitroglycerine. Stabilizers are also added to the chemical compound during processing.60% 0. The result is a gelatin-like substance that can then be easily formed into shape. reducing muzzle flash and prolonging weapon life.0% (coating added) Diphenylamine 0. Army IMR (Improved Military Rifle) powder is composed as follows: Nitrocellulose 90. which got its name from the fact that it was cut into long cords and trimmed for use in the cartridge.30% Dinitrotoluene 8.

The size and shape of grains of powder are critical.15% nitrogen content) 19. Gunpowders. the size of the surface burning area increases. They are really excellent powders. until the grain is consumed. A colloid is a substance in which fine particles are suspended in a continuous medium. As it burns. are considered to be low explosives. or in a perforated starlike shape.70% 6. 86 . they have high power output and fewer unwanted temperature effects. They typically involve molecular decomposition. Neutral powder is formed as single perforated grains. However. and the addition of the nitroguanidine requires the use of solvents.00% (13. All smokeless powders fit into the category of colloidal cellulose nitrates.Triple-based powders are basically double based powders. Progressive powder is formed in rosette shape. As they burn. sheets or strips. smoke output is increased.00% 54. Using a lower percentage of nitroglycerine. neutral or progressive. but nitroguanidine is added to lower combustion temperatures. but the nitroglycerine is replaced with an ester of glycol. or has multiple perforations. They are not popular with small arms manufacturers or users. The chemical constituency of Army M15 triple based powder is as follows: Nitrocellulose Nitroglycerine Nitroguanidine Ethyl Centralite Cryolite 20. Triple based powders are used in artillery rounds and tank rounds. the total burning surface area of the grains decreases. as propellants. possibly due to cost. They produce large volumes of high temperature gases and do not rely on atmospheric oxygen to sustain the reaction. The surface burning area remains relatively constant during combustion. Powder grains are further defined by type as degressive. and thus cost.00% 0. Degressive powder is usually formed into balls. but expensive. since they define the burn rate and hence the power generated.30% Triglycol powders are triple based powders. adding to drying time.

gilding metal is used in jacketed bullets. the burn rate is usually less than 400 meters per second. or 1300 feet per second. change states almost instantaneously. That’s fast! The difference in the explosives is felt in their effects. Low explosives have a pushing or shoving effect. The jacket provides a bearing surface that resists the effects of friction to a greater degree than the naked lead bullet. Store ammunition powder only in DOT approved containers. or 27888 feet per second. especially pistol powder. to impart spin as the bullet travels down the muzzle. In addition. in relative terms. Never store smokeless powder in the same area as combustible or flammable materials. Never mix powders. Although you. Keep in mind that the burning propellant creates expanding gases. as a military armorer. Do not remove the projectile and “super-charge” the cartridge by adding more propellant. 87 . High explosives on the other hand. They have burn rates as high as 8500 meters per second. The jacket also is soft enough to have the rifling contours easily engraved upon it. Lead balls and conical lead shot were replaced by jacketed bullets. which must produce the desired velocity in a barrel only several inches long. will never handle or store gunpowder in your arms room. High explosives produce a shattering effect. Low explosives change from a solid to a gaseous state slowly. Never tamper with an assembled round of ammunition. They have shorter peak pressure times. creates chamber pressures that launch the round at a speed far in excess of the burn rate of the propellant itself. destroy it. it certainly does not hurt to know how to handle it. Do not keep any old or deteriorated powder on hand. This explains why a propellant burning at a rate of only 1220 feet per second might create a muzzle velocity of 2600 feet per second. powders differ greatly for specific purposes. A jacketed bullet has an outer surface made of a material that is more durable than the lead core. These gases expand because their density is less than that of the atmosphere.In a low explosive. due to rapid temperature rise. The trapped chemical. The storage cabinet should be self-venting to prevent explosion if a fire erupts. Typically. Never repackage a powder in another box. The improvements in powder technology led to a parallel advance in projectile design. This material is composed of about 85% copper and 15% zinc. expanding violently. and NEVER smoke in a powder storage area. Pistol or shotgun powders should never be used in rifle cartridges.

Today. Correspondingly. circulation. lessening the amount of lead fouling in the barrel. The use of these materials minimizes friction loading while providing the strength needed for high-velocity projectiles. Projectiles must have proper balance in order to spin reliably and maintain their stability during flight. Most commonly referenced are the Hague Declaration of 1899. Projectiles are designed to accomplish a certain task. and the Geneva Conventions. it is a common practice for manufacturers to use soft steel casing around the core of the bullet. many projectiles during the civil war era were highly erratic in terms of their flight characteristics. caused fouling which could actually prevent the weapon from being loaded and fired. the Declaration of St. Military organizations are restricted to the use of fully jacketed rounds as a result of several international treaties. and prevents the use of certain types of ammunition by military forces. There are many types of projectiles currently in use by hunters. The forces you might encounter may belong to rogue nations that have no regard for international laws. and other vital body functions. Early weapons that used the lead bullet exclusively. competitive shooters. The technology of today also makes the use of special alloys and plastic coating a reality. Petersburg of 1868. law enforcement personnel and civilians. Today. However. in combination with black powder. 88 . Remember that insurgents or guerrilla fighters will use whatever means they have to defeat you. Early projectiles suffered from a lack of concentricity due to the limits of the machinery of the day. the sophistication of the computer-assisted design and manufacturing process makes sure that even inexpensive ammunition is reliable and accurate.Having a jacket also prevents the lead from making contact with the bore. This may be something as simple as putting a clean hole in a piece of paper. and to coat this casing with a thin veneer of copper. (whatever that means). The focus of these international documents centers on the idea of killing or wounding humanely. and the subject is instantly incapacitated). Hit it. (The medulla oblongata is the nerve tissue at the base of the brain that controls respiration. or ensuring a “lights out” penetration of the Medulla Oblongata by a single sniper shot from a great distance. you should be aware that not all military forces in the world observe the requirements of these conventions.

The human body is mostly fluid. and an increased probability of tissue necrosis. Projectiles that overpenetrate simply waste energy. or a compound core made of an inner core of lead to provide sufficient mass. increasing cross-sectional area and enlarging the permanent wound channel. Since I am dealing with the subject. which is highly desirable in a law enforcement or personal defense weapon. I will take the opportunity to discuss the mechanisms of injury involved in gunshot wounds. A jacketed round with a recess in the nose. cartilage or bone. This projectile is entirely encased in a metal jacket for the reasons previously described. The typical human body only averages between 8 and 9. leaving the softer lead core exposed at the tip. Different organs and structures will vary in their reaction to a bullet. There are variations of the hollow point that feature serrations or notches on the mouth of the projectile. do not transfer enough lethal force in some cases. creating a larger temporary cavity in the target. This recess results in greater injury through more controlled expansion than that found in the semijacketed round. a higher chance of inducing shock trauma. Due to the nose design. This can result in more capillary bleeding. due to the density of the tissue and engorgement of blood. it will displace more fluid. lower friction loss. The jacket provides a tough outer shell to prevent lead atomization due to heat and high pressure during launch. The jacket ends at this point. and conformance to the laws of war. uniform penetration. flight stability. The lead easily flattens inside the body. The core may be a simple lead core. or the point at which the taper of the nose begins. Semi jacketed. with a steel inner nose to increase penetration. This round has a jacket that covers the base and sidewalls of the projectile. The expansion of the projectile also results in less penetration depth. and present danger to others in the backstop area behind the intended target. Hollow point.The following are some of the more common types of projectiles currently being manufactured and used: Fully jacketed. including bone structures. or segment into individual secondary projectiles within the body. 89 . These cartridges may expand like the petals of a flower for even greater cross-sectional area. Soft tissues will react differently than muscles. The jacket proceeds forward to the beginning of the ogive.5 inches total depth from the sternum to the posterior aspect of the spinal column. All structures of the body contain fluid.

can result in ancillary bleeding through damaged capillaries. The bullet. resulting in significant blood loss. high-velocity bullet will more easily deflect from bone or dense tissue. at the same time. It should be obvious that shooting someone in the toe will have a different effect than shooting that person in the eye. they can only be displaced. he creates a temporary cavity by retracting tissue. the organ can be destroyed or cease to function. This is simply the tissue through which the bullet passes. moving at incredibly high speed. Many bullets are heavier at the tail than at the nose. The result will usually be death. but also results in the bullet turning within the body. traumatic penetration of a high-velocity projectile. the mechanism by which the temporary cavity is created. This increases aerodynamic performance.When a bullet enters a human body at high velocity. or tissue death. However. The result is tissue necrosis. the placement of the shot means everything in terms of the ability of any given bullet to neutralize a human target. Again. This is because the bullet desires to occupy the same area as the tissue. Fluids. marksmanship is important. possibly changing course inside the body. 90 . creating a cavity. which is destroyed by the bullet. The bullet can only be most efficient when it strikes something vital. The temporary cavity caused by the entry and passage of the bullet is created by the displacement of blood or other fluids. When a surgeon operates on a patient. For this reason alone. One is the permanent wound channel. The temporary cavity in and of itself can sometimes have little or no consequences. This is the principle upon which the science of hydraulics is based. As the bullet enters. If this permanent wound channel involves a vital organ. A lighter. however. This is because the bullet does not react within the body as it does in the air. the damage done depends to a great extent on the location of the entry point. and the tissue contains fluid. so the tissue is compressed and displaced. displaces fluid as it enters the body. As a bullet enters the body. This fluid is not so easily driven from the tissue that holds it. and the tissue or organs that are struck by the bullet. the shape and weight of the projectile will greatly influence its’ path and internal trajectory. yet this in itself may have no lasting effect. it attempts to compress the fluid contained within the tissue. This cavity has several elements. can not be compressed.

Consider also that a limb or appendage may have to be amputated as well. are designed to do exactly what I have just described. especially hollow-points. and the fact that the bullet is now traveling within a fluid medium. It no longer has the same velocity. this type of tumbling within the body is caused by the heavier mass of the projectile base overtaking the light nose. will yield different results (in medical terms). Most bullets will have this tendency to tumble within the body. This should not be confused with tumbling through the air. These items may simply present themselves as debris that must be debrided from the wound channel. In addition to tissue destruction. The end result is a 180-degree turn. and blood loss. there is always the danger of serious infection. as projectiles. is presented to the tissue through which it passes. if bone is struck. from base to tip." or increasing the size of the permanent wound channel as the longitudinal aspect of the bullet. or other gear to be driven into the body by an external impact just immediately prior to the bullet entering the body. It is also common for clothing articles. in the same manner. the base may expand. increasing cross-sectional area. There are other projectiles for special uses that I will now describe: 91 . This has the effect of “cleaving. which cause deviation to the flight path. buttons. unless striking bone or hard tissue causes a compound deflection. or may become secondary projectiles. Once the base is leading the bullet through the body (again. Again. and it has been subjected to the forces of impact with the body. and you get a composite view of what happens to a gunshot victim. This again has the effect of widening the wound channel and displacing a greater fluid volume.The reasons for this are the initial shock caused by impact with the body. All this is well and good. Also. Many persons have survived the initial wound and later died of resulting infections. but the trauma inflicted is still significant. Shooting two different people with bullets from the same weapon. its spin characteristics are changing. depending on the type of projectile being used). traumatic shock. The individuals may react differently. Predicting how an individual human body will react to the impact of a bullet is virtually impossible. The heavier base of the bullet will cause the bullet to turn 180 degrees forward. the bone fragments themselves may become secondary projectiles as they are driven through surrounding tissue by the force of impact. presenting the heavier base end first as it travels through tissue. which I will cover later.

as they are very deadly and have fewer tendencies to ricochet around your bedroom. a paper or chemically impregnated disk. The projectile contains a chemical that will ignite when exposed to air. This is done to ensure uniformity of size and shape between AP rounds and ordinary ball rounds. This allows the tracer to move downrange some distance from the muzzle before igniting. easy to manufacture. Extremely effective. above a flat plane. Wadcutters are used primarily for target shooting and competition. This core is usually surrounded by a lead casing and covered with a gliding metal jacket. Incendiary bullets will spontaneously ignite when the projectile case is ruptured as it hits a target. Dewilde’s bullet used layers of explosive and incendiary chemicals. such as phosphorus. The idea is to set the target on fire. and a subigniter in addition to the tracer element. Therefore incendiary bullets are only effective on targets that are themselves combustible. The liquid would pool on the inside of the bullet. and observation of bullet impact or for incendiary effect. The flame is produced by barium nitrate and magnesium mixed with chemicals to produce specific colors. the rotation caused by the rifling in the barrel would extract the nitroglycerine by centrifugal action. feed reliably. This is necessary so that the weapons that fire different types of ammunition. ground illumination. Armor Piercing ammunition contains a projectile that has a hardened steel or steel alloy core. like machineguns. There have also been explosive-incendiary bullets invented by DeWilde and Pomeroy. making it effective against a wider range of targets. distress markers. In liquid form it is highly dangerous. They also make an excellent personal defense round. since it was absorbed by a piece of fibrous paper inside the bullet. making scoring disputes very rare. Tracers are available in different degrees of brightness for special purposes. 92 . but unfortunately you will not find any of them in current use. Some tracers include an igniter. and to prevent blinding the gunners at night. As the Pomeroy bullet proceeded towards the target. The purpose for this is the masking of the location of the weapon. In solid or semi-solid form. Tracers produce a trail of flame and/or smoke to mark the path of the bullet through the air. nitroglycerine is relatively stable.Wadcutters are projectiles having either a flat nose or a nose with a slight rise in the center. circular edge. They can be used for signaling. Pomeroy’s bullet was hollow and contained nitroglycerine held in a semi-suspended state. They create a hole in a paper target with a perfectly smooth. and on impact would explode like a mini-grenade.

I have only provided basic information on the more common types.I do not desire to get shot! Armor piercing ammunition is restricted in some areas by local and state laws. period! There are bullets available that will defeat and penetrate personal body armor. Second class pistols may not feed all hollow point ammunition with the reliability needed for combat. If you are going to carry a handgun for selfdefense. They also feed more reliably than some wadcutters. for any reason. there usually is a good reason. First class pistols can handle any ammunition. bunkers and other “bullet resisting” targets. It is difficult to make general recommendations about which bullet should be used for which purpose.. A few more facts about projectile and cartridge combinations should be made at this point. Some will even penetrate armor rated for threat level IIIA. But one suggestion seems to be offered by nearly all knowledgeable persons. As you can see. If we used the shape of the inner core. not synthetic-fiber body armor. There are other types of ammunition not listed here. Sometimes the choice of the right ammunition can make the job a lot easier and safer. vehicles. I do not know about you. Handguns can be divided into classifications based on how reliably they feed a range of ammunition types. you should probably carry hollow point rounds. If a handgun is cheap..The part of the projectile that penetrates the armor needs to be a different shape. The expansion and lessened ricochet potential make them excellent candidates for close-quarter combat. I can think of no legitimate reason for any private citizen to own or possess AP type ammunition at any time. so we wrap it in the outer lead casing for that purpose. to maximize the penetrating abilities of the inner core. but I consider myself to be a bullet resisting target. Armor piercing ammunition can be used against buildings. The projectile shape overall has to be aerodynamically efficient. the bullet would not fly to the target as well as it could. As much as I support the right of the individual citizen to keep and bear arms. as happens in a home defense situation. there are different rounds for different purposes. Armor piercing ammunition defeats plate armor. including high-powered +P ammunition reliably. you get what you pay for. lightarmored vehicles. Third class pistols should only be loaded with ball rounds to prevent feeding jams. How do you know what classification a pistol falls into? Basically. These bullets are not armor piercing rounds. 93 ..

and belted. each with its own design characteristics. When extracted and ejected from the gun quickly. The condition of a cartridge case is obviously important. but only if a sufficient volume of rounds are used to make the equipment investment pay for itself. Cartridge cases evolved slowly. Cartridge cases changed greatly after the civil war. absorbing most of the heat from the burning of the propellant. resulting ultimately in the extruded brass cases we are familiar with in the present time. It was not until the development of a good brass cartridge case. and since some cases are made of steel alloys or other ferrous metals. These include the primer. at the rate that the technology of the period permitted. some for general use and some for special purposes. A cartridge case holds all the components of the round together. some can actually rust. all equally important: 1. filled with a lead ball and black powder. most of the heat source is removed. but merely a means of keeping all the ingredients for shooting handy. The following illustrations shown common cartridge case types: 94 . rebated. There are many types of cartridge cases. propellant and projectile. rimless straightwall. Compounding the problems in development was the fact that many calibers had not been standardized. It was not a cartridge in the sense that we know one today. Most cartridge cases of the Civil War era were crude and nonuniform. 3. rimmed bottleneck. If the case is damaged it might not feed properly. rimless bottleneck.Cartridge cases Early cartridge cases were nothing more than a paper sack or capsule. Cases can become pitted. There were dozens of new weapons developed during this period in history. The cartridge case acts as a heat sink. which can save the shooter money. Some of the more common ones are the rimmed straightwall. The cartridge case provides three main functions. 2. Most cartridge cases can be reloaded. The cartridge case expands during firing to create a gas seal. that the benefits of smokeless powders could be fully realized. Their improvement was limited by the abilities of the machine-tool industry.

This is the type of case most commonly used in military firearms. Using this example I will explain another commonly heard firearms term: 95 .The above diagram shows a typical centerfire. bottleneck cartridge case.

The case is not long enough to occupy the total chamber length.Headspace is a measurement of length. in which the chamber also narrows. This can happen if the case length is oversized. 96 . the firing pin might not protrude far enough to strike the primer. If headspace is inadequate. Keep in mind that the chamber of the weapon has a corresponding shoulder. Timing is defined as follows: Timing: The proper sequencing of the steps in the cycle of functions: Usually a sub-function of mechanical design. to the commencement of the shoulder angle of the chamber. it refers to the distance from the base of the cartridge. Timing should be discussed at this point. When a step does not occur as expected. However. a stoppage takes place. All weapons. It can happen with reloaded ammunition that has not been properly sized or trimmed. Headspace is important for several reasons. the above definition is generally accepted by those in the firearms field. require timing. This requires no control or input from the operator of the weapon. defining the total area or length required.50 caliber machinegun. If the headspace is excessive. in contact with the face of the locked bolt. the timing of a weapon provides for the steps in the cycle of functions to occur in proper order. When the term timing is used. Specifically. the opposite is true. Timing is usually a product of design. and the weapon ceases to function. requiring no intervention by the operator. As the definition implies. There is great controversy among some of the nation’s best known and wellrespected gunsmiths. This creates problems because the cartridge now has room to over-expand during firing. it happens automatically. since the term commonly is associated with the word “headspace”. and the bolt will not lock into position. The shoulder of the case seats against the shoulder of the chamber. This is because that weapon features adjustable timing. headspace would be the distance from the very bottom of the cartridge. as to exactly the point where shoulder contact becomes a critical element. Looking at the illustration. to the point where the sidewalls end and the shoulder begins to taper. possibly causing a rupture of the case. as the case may now be too far forward. In some cases. however. which causes the parts to move in a sequence that permits the cycle to perpetuate itself. most soldiers think of the M2 Browning . that means there is not enough room for the round to seat fully.

the brass cannot be reloaded. leading into the main charge area. With this ammunition. The compounds used in primers are usually not disclosed by the manufacturers to the public. no reloading. Center fire priming technology is based upon two different primer designs. designed the Boxer primer.Priming Most cartridge cases use one of two types of ignition sources. like a plastic explosive. including the extractor groove and primer pocket. The case of the cartridge has a raised metallic “pip” in the center. The Berdan primer. It is more difficult to remove. because to dislodge the primer you need only push a rod or wire through the vent hole from inside the case. and if the pip in the center of the pocket wears down. the Boxer and Berdan primers. An emerging technology on the horizon is that of caseless ammunition. upon which the priming compound is crushed. Each time a piece of Boxerstyle brass is reloaded. Not to confuse the issue. in which the entire cartridge case is made from a combustible plastic compound. Instead it is simply a soft brass alloy cup containing the priming chemicals. there is no brass residue. Inside the base of the cartridge is a vent hole or flash hole through which the ignition flame passes to ignite the main charge of powder. either center fire or rim fire priming. His primer features an anvil set inside the primer shell. but most current primers are non-corrosive. Edward M. since the case is expended when the round is fired. A British Colonel. 97 . does not contain an anvil like the Boxer style does. against which the priming compound is crushed when the firing pin strikes the base of the primer. the new primer containing a new anvil and priming charge. but the base of the cartridge can also be called the head when we are referring to the base in its entirety. The Berdan primer is easier to manufacture since it has no internal anvil like the Boxer does. which it eventually can. invented by US Army Colonel Hiram Berdan in the 1860’s. is placed in the primer pocket above the hole. It features several flash holes around the periphery of the primer pocket. This is an easy style of cartridge to reload. and no need for extraction or ejection. and are considered to be trade secrets. Older primers used corrosive salts and chemicals that could rust or otherwise damage a weapon’s finish. Center fire priming is accomplished using a primer that is inserted into a cylindrical recess in the center of the cartridge base. Boxer.

in the mouth or groin area can have extremely serious medical consequences. SRTA rounds can impact with soft tissue and cause serious trauma or even death. make sure you use the correct blank firing device. Although these rounds are designed to generally not inflict lethal wounds. Failing to use the right equipment could cause your weapon to fire as a single shot firearm. firearms are not toys. when using blank ammunition. Currently. They are not interchangeable amongst themselves. Blanks contain no projectile and usually have a crimped or rosette mouth case. some blanks have an “over shot wad”. And. ear. keeping the powder in the case and keeping it dry. Also. The basic rule of thumb is. In order for it to work. Therefore. usually a person playing the role of aggressor. These rounds typically have plastic projectiles containing a dye or powder. It not only involves the development of the science involved. never fire a blank round at a representative enemy closer than twenty feet away. The M60 machinegun blank ammunition is an example of such a round. There are different blank firing adapters for the various configurations of the M-16 series of rifles. throat. possibly death. SRTA or short range training ammunition is another type of less-than-lethal ammunition. Anything fired in a weapon. to keep costs down and reduce the amount of real estate needed for firing exercises. Without protection from the projectile. A common type of less-than-lethal ammunition is blank ammunition. blank firing adapters may launch off the end of a weapon if not properly secured. or with the BFA for the M-249 machinegun. marking a target as having been hit. They should be used with ballistic face shields and body armor to protect the “target”. they can still kill! Blank rounds at close ranges can generate tremendous muzzle-blast energy. it still needs to generate enough temperature and pressure to cause the weapon to cycle properly. a hit in the eye.How long it will take for this technology to be adopted is unknown. or to launch the BFA off the end of the barrel. Either situation is unacceptable. even the so-called “safe” ammunition is not really safe. it will be some time before this technology is practical to use. They easily fragment on contact. 98 . Considering that this would require the replacement of many millions of weapons in the United States alone. However. but will also require the complete replacement of the entire current technology. One should not be fooled by the term less-than-lethal. the US Military forces are using less-than-lethal ammunition. If fired against a human body they will cause severe injury and even death under certain circumstances. Refer to the equipment information in the back of the operator’s manual (-10 TM) for the right gear. This ammunition is used in training.

These grooves force the bullet to spin as it travels down the barrel. and indeed are used during forensic examinations to determine whether a particular gun fired a certain bullet.59 grams per pound. but everyone finds it easier to say fifty caliber as opposed to five hundred caliber. Consequently.357 caliber = 357/1000ths of an inch . Using this standard. specifically a unit of weight.002285714285714 ounces.22 caliber . The term grain refers to a unit of measure. because the fit is so tight between the bore surface and the sides of the projectile. What exactly is an avoirdupois pound? It is a system of measure based on sixteen ounces. In this case.45 caliber = 220/1000ths of an inch = 450/1000ths of an inch Rifling refers to the spiral grooves engraved along the inner length of the bore of a firearm. we need to examine some ballistic concepts and terms. it should be expressed properly as . It is always expressed as a decimal based fraction measured to the nearest thousandth of an inch. there are 7000 grains in one avoirdupois pound. or . but I like to be precise! As you can see.50 caliber bullet is actually one half inch in diameter. These marks. or a single grain weighs . Using this method. I know that’s an intolerably long number. The grain is based on an old system of measurement in which the heart kernel of a single grain of wheat was used as the standard.Ballistic Terminology To understand what happens to a bullet during launch all the way through to the time it comes to rest on the ground or in the target. A reverse image is engraved upon the surface of the bullet.5 grains. Caliber is a term used to describe the diameter of a bullet or the bore of a weapon.50 inches. 7000 grains or 453. 99 . a grain is a very small unit of weight.500 inches. we can see that a . Grain is a term frequently heard when describing bullets or powder. an ounce contains 437. called striations. are unique from weapon to weapon. Further examples: .

which makes for a predictable trajectory to the target. It is expressed as a decimal based fraction with a value between zero and one. can make predicting the precise point of impact of the projectile tip very difficult. There are different ways of calculating ballistic coefficiency. Ballistic coefficiency describes the ability of a projectile to overcome drag resistance. but also has a pronounced effect upon the penetrating abilities of the projectile when it strikes the target." Most manufacturers will publish the ballistic coefficiency for their projectiles in the literature accompanying a box of ammunition. Precession is a natural phenomenon that affects all bullets as they leave the muzzle crown of a firearm. or one half the value of the number “one. The lands dig into the side of the bullet as it passes down the barrel. This effect. at which time the bullet will tumble wildly. the higher areas between the engraved grooves are called lands. to wobble. Use it also to predict the reduction in velocity on the way to the target caused by air resistance. From that point on. Precession is the tendency of an object. a shock wave travels through a bullet as it exits the muzzle. the spin of the projectile takes over and it finds its rotational balance point. Other sources are commonly found in firearms trade publications and gun magazines sold to the public. as a spinning top does when it hits the ground.500. Precession in an extremely light projectile can contribute to the tumbling effect inside the body. A zero represents no ability to fly. Rotational speed or spin rate is another crucial element. One method states that if a bullet has half the ability of the “standard” bullet. The ballistic coefficiency of a projectile must be known if you wish to calculate the drift of a projectile subject to a crosswind. 100 . it flies smoothly.Inside the barrel. until the spin begins to decay. It not only determines the length of time during which a bullet will retain its aerodynamic performance. It is the number of times the projectile will spin per second (also expressed in turns per minute). The air has a moisture content and density. and a one indicates the ability to indefinitely sustain flight under hypothetical circumstances. at extremely close ranges. and in attempting to punch through this resistance. This shock wave causes the bullet to wobble slightly. In a few milliseconds. or simply put. it will have a coefficient of . in rotation. to deviate from its longitudinal axis. This spin is needed to give the bullet aerodynamic and gyrostatic stability as it flies through the air. clutching the bullet and causing bullet rotation or spin.

101 . the weight of the projectile. Then divide this number of inches.00. the greater distance the bullet will travel while overcoming the effects of aerodynamic drag. Remember. However.0472 inches at 100 yards. the burn rate. simply determine the number of inches below the point of aim. and the distance to the target is 200 yards. The heavier the bullet is. and we are 12 inches below the point of aim.Sectional density is an expression regarding the relationship of the weight of the bullet to its diameter. Minute of angle (or minute of arc). In our example of 12 divided by 2. and might exceed the rated pressure for the weapon. It is usually expressed in feet per second or fps. The scope will usually have an adjustment wheel or index that is graduated in clicks. and type and twist of the rifling in the bore.28. The 360 degrees of a circle are further divided into 60 minutes of arc. Muzzle velocity is controlled by the type of propellant burned. the more power is required to get it to the same velocity as the lighter bullet.0 minutes of angle. Sometimes it will be given in a metric value expressed as meters per second or mps. is a term describing an amount of deflection from a given straight line heading. projectile design. so check the scope data manual. simply divide 12 by 2. This requires higher chamber pressure. The higher the sectional density. we would divide by 2. where the bullet impacts the target. For example. divide by the hundreds of yards! Since the distance is 200 yards. if the bullet strikes the target 12 inches below the point of aim. If the distance were 228 yards. These clicks may represent anywhere from 1/8 MOA to a full minute of angle. If a minute of angle at 200 yards equals two inches. Muzzle velocity is the actual speed at which a projectile travels as it leaves the muzzle of a weapon. To calculate the needed MOA scope adjustment to compensate for bullet drop with any rifle. It is given as a decimal fractional value. by the hundreds of yards to the target. The actual value of a minute of angle is 1. a bullet with higher sectional density might possibly not achieve the same muzzle velocity as a lighter bullet. each composed of 60 seconds of arc.00. etc. since 6x2=12. and represents the ability of the bullet to sustain momentum during flight. we simply move the decimal point two places to the left. This has the effect of limiting the maximum velocity possible when reloading. the length of the barrel. we come up with a need to adjust the scope a total of 6. 2 inches at 200 yards. the answer must be 6. Reversing this math formula proves the answer to be correct. For practical purposes it is adequate to round off this figure and say that 1 MOA equals 1 inch at 100 yards.

How this translates into comparative efficiency of the two rounds is easier to understand. At 1900 yards downrange. Muzzle energy is expressed in foot pounds of energy. etc. theoretical. stability and shape. Muzzle energy is only of value when factored into other calculations that determine the true potential of the bullet to affect the target. dimensions. while the M2 bullet can do the same for an object weighing 21588 pounds.50 caliber machinegun. The shape factor can be eliminated from the equation for any two bullets having identical shapes. The M16A1 bullet has the potential to lift a 1290-pound object one foot. This is. or a one pound object two feet. This product is then divided by a constant that allows for corrections in the speed to weight relationship. It is a product of a calculation that multiplies the weight of the bullet in grains. speed. A equals the diameter of the bullet. thereby simplifying the mathematics. Two foot pounds of energy will lift a two pound object one foot. the M16A1 bullet. A foot pound of energy is that energy required to lift a one pound object one foot. Hatcher in 1934 is still used today by many people as a model for determining ballistic performance in a human target. 102 . at the muzzle. of course. and K equals the shape factor. and the effects of gravity.Muzzle energy is a value that explains the amount of physical work force that can be expended by the movement of the projectile. Stopping power is a term used to describe the relative destructive abilities of a projectile. the M2 bullet has more impact energy remaining than the M16A1 bullet can deliver at the muzzle. the M16A1 bullet delivers 1290 foot pounds of energy at the muzzle. RSP equals relative stopping power. In this example. It disallows for factors resulting from the impact. but is nonetheless valid from a mathematical point of view. E equals the bullet energy. This is a considerable difference in power performance. The formula is expressed as: RSP=E x A x K In this formula. A formula devised by Colonel Julian S. kinetic energy. while the M2 incendiary round provides a whopping 21588 foot pounds. At 1900 yards downrange. by the square of the projectile’s velocity. versus the M23 incendiary round fired by the M2 . Colonel Hatcher’s formula considers the bullet weight. with its poorer ballistic coefficiency. An example would be the M193 ball round fired from the M16A1 rifle. would have barely any terminal effect upon the target. It is also used to make relative comparisons of the efficiency of one bullet versus another. The difference in purely analytical terms expresses the ability of the amount of force exerted to move an object.

the higher number value equals higher relative stopping power. 103 . certainly the most prolific firearms inventor in history.22 or 55. Gatling.50 Caliber Machinegun Winchester Model 94 Rifle … more weapons than I could name. Browning High Power pistol M1911 Government Model Pistol Browning A5 Autoloading Shotgun Browning .14. Therefore. When compared to the end value for another bullet. a bullet with a value of 40. Chinn and many others. Berdan.25 The end product is a number.25 Hollow-point: 1. Rubin. As such it represents a greater contribution. Ruger. The development of the theories that led to the discoveries go back much farther than most people realize. as did Garand. It is true that the earliest known written work dealing with the science of ballistic trajectories was Nuova Scienzia by the Italian scientist Niccolo Fontana.30 Caliber water-cooled machineguns Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR) M2 . He is the developer of the following weapons. and dealt with the optimum elevation to achieve maximum range with an artillery projectile. I could not possibly go into any depth here.The shape factors are assigned as given here: Ball rounds: 0.00. His work was published in 1537. Samuel Colt earned a place in history for his contribution to the science. Smith & Wesson. usually containing a residual decimal value. but as stated in earlier chapters.1 Wadcutter: 1. many names come immediately to mind. this number is meaningless. The father of modern ballistic theory would have to be Benjamin Robins. an English mathematician and physicist. Boxer. such as 43. The most renowned would be John Moses Browning. By itself. When speaking of the development of small arms and ammunition. I feel it is appropriate to mention a few facts relating to the improvements in ballistic science.9 Flat-nosed: 1. I will recommend a good library. Prior to leaving this chapter.00 has 20% less power than a bullet with a value of 50. The body of knowledge advanced by Robins was more concisely applied to the workings of man-portable firearms.

He was the first to prescribe that bullets should be loaded from the breech end. it swung in an arc below a pivot point. were still relatively useless. such as bullet mass. Isaac Newton and others. When struck with a bullet. other calculations could now be made that were not previously possible. Robins was definitely ahead of his time. mass. even though it sometimes appeared to not relate directly to my employment. In my years of association with firearms I have always attempted to improve my knowledge. He based his recommendation on his observation that a large amount of pressure was lost as gas escaped past the round projectile. the pendulum would react by moving in the direction of travel. 100 years before practical rifled barrels began to appear. in-depth understanding can only come from many years of careful research and study. my self-improvement has led to career advancement. Your activities should center more upon research as a form of educational resource. Most of the information you could ever possibly require has already been developed and printed in one form or another. resistance and velocity. This is the rifling we are familiar with today. He advised eliminating round shot and replacing it with an elongated projectile fired from a barrel with spiral grooves cut into it to give spin. These developments. 104 . and not the muzzle. While it is easy to achieve a working knowledge. the velocity could be calculated. Robins invented a device called the ballistic pendulum in the year 1740. being deflected by that bullet. Just like an ordinary pendulum. At the beginning of this chapter I cautioned you that ballistics is a complex and difficult subject. The size of the arc would be measured. Some of his concepts would not be employed until some 100 years after his death. Please remember my admonition to not re-invent the wheel. His contribution did not end with the invention of his pendulum. The work of Robins appears in his writing titled New Principles of Gunnery. rather than consuming time by trying to develop theories that have already been proven. There was still no practical way to measure the velocity of a projectile in flight. With the speed of the bullet known. while important in understanding the nature of the physical relationships between motion. Robins’ discovery opened an entire new world of scientific knowledge about ballistic flight. Remember that this is happening in 1740. However. Using the other known data.The work of Benjamin Robins expanded upon developments in mathematics and the physical sciences made by discoverers such as Galileo. and I strongly recommend that you study and learn.

__________________ 4. __________________ 3. __________________ b. __________________ 5. __________________ d. What are the two common types of center-fire primers? a. __________________ d. What are the eight steps in the cycle of functions? a. What are the ingredients of black powder? a. __________________ c. __________________ g. __________________ 2. __________________ b. __________________ c. __________________ b. What is a double-based powder? ANSWER: _______________________________ 6.Chapter 2 Examination 1. __________________ c. __________________ h. __________________ c. __________________ b. __________________ e. __________________ b. What are the four basic types of firearm operating systems? a. __________________ 105 . What are the three basic types of cooling methods employed by firearms? a. __________________ f.

7. How many grains are there in an ounce? ANSWER: _______________________________ 8. What is the value of a minute of angle at 100 yards? ANSWER: _______________________________ 9. How is muzzle energy expressed? ANSWER: _______________________________ 10. Who invented the M2 .50 caliber machinegun? ANSWER: _______________________________

Answers to this and all examinations can be found at the back of this book.

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Chapter 3. Firearms Safety and Marksmanship
This subject is understandably important. Firearms are lethal by design. A lack of the basic safety rules concerning firearms can be deadly to those who handle them. This applies whether you are a manufacturer, armorer, gunsmith, police officer, hunter, soldier, target shooter or competitor. One would assume that merely being a firearms professional automatically qualifies a person as competent in the safe handling of firearms. This is a false assumption that should not be tolerated. All persons handling firearms require proper instruction in the handling of those weapons. A firearms instructor should be formally trained, certified as to his or her professional competency, and qualified with the firearms taught. Most states have a qualification process for civilian law enforcement personnel who provide firearms training. These certifications are required whether the individual trains at the range during live fire, or teaches marksmanship or maintenance techniques in the classroom. The reasons for this are easy to understand. There is always the issue of public liability, because personnel armed in the performance of their duty are responsible for their actions with their assigned firearm. As employers, law enforcement agencies do not want their personnel injured in the line of duty, as this causes the temporary (or permanent) loss of a highly trained individual. And, as compassionate human beings, we do not want to see our fellow professionals and their families affected by an avoidable tragedy. In the military, however, standards are not so rigidly enforced. Some branches of the armed forces, such as the United States Air Force, have trained and qualified personnel serving as full time instructors. The dedicated position allows them to concentrate on their duties, develop professionally, and provide competent instruction in the use of weapons and deadly force. The United States Army has no such equivalent position. The closest would be the Drill Instructor serving at a TRADOC installation, teaching basic military marksmanship courses. However, once the soldier graduates from basic training and the MOS producing school, there usually are no personnel dedicated solely to the task of live fire training at the unit level. The problem presents itself after a soldier has completed training upon initial entry to active duty, and is then subsequently assigned to a troop unit or other organization. At this point the soldier usually only qualifies annually with the assigned weapon.

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Each army division has a G3 Training section that is responsible for oversight of military training. These personnel schedule trainees, coordinate the use of resources, approve the contents of Program of Instruction materials, and provide other critical functions such as planning the master training calendar. The G3 personnel are not present to supervise the training of soldiers on the firing line. There is very little present in the way of a quality control mechanism to ensure that unit NCO’s are teaching properly. Very few NCO’s who are tasked with teaching pre-marksmanship courses have actually attended a formal course that would qualify them for teaching these subjects. Very often the NCO is tasked to provide training by the “hip pocket” method, whereby someone hands him a manual just before the class takes place, and tells him to “teach” the subject. During recurring qualification training, the soldier is supposed to receive a block of pre-marksmanship instruction prior to live fire. The individual PMI requirements are explained clearly in the Field Manual (FM) for each respective weapon. In my classes I usually find many students who are or have been assigned to crew served weapons by the “hey you” method. These soldiers sometimes received NO crew-served weapon instruction during BMT or AIT. Therefore, the quality of the PMI at the unit determines the safety margin during the training exercise. During PMI, it is not adequate to merely recite the range safety rules and tell the soldier to put his hearing protection in place. The soldier may be totally unfamiliar with the operating system of the weapon due to the lack of prior training. Please do not misunderstand my intentions in presenting this information in this manner to you. I do not intend to discredit or defame the persons assigned to the training task. My only intent is to illustrate the nature of the core problem that results in tragic injuries and deaths during live fire training, and only a fool would deny that these accidents take place. By presenting this issue, I hope to impress upon you why accidents take place, and why they can be avoided. If the training with instruments of lethal force is not conducted to the highest standard attainable, the consequences can be totally intolerable. When dealing with deadly force, complacency itself is a significant contributor. For this reason alone you should never ignore the safety factor, and the safety factor to a large degree is controlled by the quality of the training provided to soldiers.

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I will not bore you with a litany of tragedy that details the unfortunate outcomes of individual events. I will state with certainty, however, that when you become complacent about safety, you become a target for disaster. I commend those military leaders who rigidly enforce safety concepts in training. I also know for a fact that there are many times when safety is not a high enough priority. This is not a statement of opinion, but a matter of historical detail that can be found in the records of the US Army Safety Center. As an institution, the US Army has a great safety record and safety program. One would be a fool however, to deny that people make errors in judgment.

Safety Awareness Concept The concept behind safety awareness is simple: almost all accidents are avoidable. Even in cases where some condition may be unseen by the operator of a piece of equipment, it could have been foreseen by the manufacturer, designer, shipper, sales person, trainer or supervisor. The safety awareness concept requires that you be pro-active in nature. You can not simply respond to an accident and then say, “Well, we should have done this...”. You must actively look for indicators of pending problems, and solve those problems before they result in injury or death. Not all tragedy associated with firearms results from poor operator training. It can be a consequence of many other factors. Sometimes a weapon is simply not well made, as in the case of the typical “Saturday Night Special." This term refers to a firearm so cheaply made that a criminal can afford to use it and throw it away. Throwing it away is probably in his best interest, because these weapons frequently fail disastrously. There are more firearms on the market like this than you might think. Most of the makers of rifles, shotguns and pistols are reputable manufacturers with years of experience, good reputation, and technologically advanced production facilities. However, many are made cheaply overseas, and imported under popular brand names. These weapons can range from just being unreliable, to being potentially fatal to operate. In your arms room you may encounter a variety of personally owned weapons, or POW’s. Possibly you may receive offers, as armorers usually do, to either buy one of these weapons, or repair and maintain it as a “side project." You should be aware that federal and local laws regulate who may repair, service or modify a firearm.

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Doing so is a misappropriation of government funds and a UCMJ violation. but an inspection process as well? Why not establish professional credentials and curriculum standards for the persons they license to do business within the state? The whole purpose of this discussion is to make a point: Safety is everyone’s business. and the weapon fails with tragic results. There are no professional credential requirements. and no supervision by the state agencies that issue the permit. armorer. it is sometimes impossible to determine the actual competency of a gunsmith until he has done his worst to your weapon. Some states like New York only require an individual to obtain a permit to operate as a gunsmith. All parties concerned. no formal training. since the gunsmith has a license issued by the state? Is it the gunsmith. as long as they pertain to the performance of your official duties. you are specifically exempted from the laws that regulate these activities. Being the armorer does not entitle you to violate the law by setting up an unlicensed gunsmith shop in your arms room." As a result. you should never attempt to repair. was it a failure of his tutor? Why should he be liable if the state issued him a license and he has business insurance? Or it is the state. How could you be expected to know it would fail. In a commercial or civil environment like the above example. first line supervisor and trainee are equally responsible for the safe conduct of training with live firearms. range officer-in-charge. whose lack of attention to detail might have missed significant indicators of pending failure? If he received training somewhere along the way. all levels of decision makers are responsible for the consequences.In your duty position as the armorer. the unwary customer? Maybe you could have taken it to someone else for servicing and repair. all parties have a certain degree of ownership for the responsibility. who is really to blame? Is it you. This brings me to another reason why “accidents” take place: poor or improper maintenance. which failed to oversee the industry adequately? Should they not only have a licensing procedure. Anyway. In a military environment this is no less true. If an accident occurs. Possibly you should have inquired further before making your final decision. The rule of thumb is expressed in the Latin term Caveat Emptor or “Let the Buyer Beware. safety officer. the commander. 110 . Assuming that you were confident in his work. service or modify a firearm with which you are unfamiliar.

This is the essence of the safety awareness concept; accidents are preventable, everyone owns responsibility for the incident, and only a pro-active approach can minimize the potential for disaster. Therefore, the issue of the quality of training is important. Quality training that meets the defined standards of the equipment technical manual and field manual can mitigate or minimize the potential to a very large degree. Using the converse argument easily proves this: if we fail to train people properly with lethal instruments, accidents will occur, even though they are largely preventable. In all my classes I stress two things over and over: safety and combat readiness. Anyone who has attended one of my classes will tell you that I am nearly fanatical on the subject of safety. The reason is simple. I have been involved in several accidents, and learned from them. Fortunately, those accidents caused no injury, just property damage. My experiences have made me a believer in the value of safety and safety training. I am a member of a small volunteer fire department in a rural area of New York State. As a member of the department I am also the training and safety officer. It is completely unthinkable in the fire-fighting profession to send untrained and unqualified personnel into the path of danger. Training must be conducted by officers of the department or State-certified instructors who are themselves qualified to conduct the training. The reason for this standard is obvious. Fire is dangerous, and the fire-ground is a deadly environment in which we operate. The same degree of danger is always present when we train with firearms. Safety training can mitigate the possibility of danger to the trainees, but the weapons themselves are never any less dangerous to work with. Therefore, safety training is imperative. Safety is more than a concept or training standard. It is also an attitude that will affect the way in which you perform your daily work. If you are not mindful of the safety requirements of your job, things will go wrong. As an armorer, you are the person most directly responsible for the condition of the weapons in your arms room. Usually the repair is beyond the capability of the operator, and is performed by the armorer. Even if it is above the level of the armorer’s capability, the armorer is still the individual responsible for ensuring that the weapon is repaired at the higher level shop. When an accident occurs, the armorer’s ownership of the problem is immediately recognized. A pro-active attitude in your approach to your duties will minimize your exposure

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Safety Rules With an understanding of the basic concept of safety awareness behind us, let’s take a look at the basic rules for firearms safety. What I present here is a summation of the time-honored offerings of; The National Rifle Association, the various doctrines of the military branches of the armed forces, and the teachings of renowned firearms professionals whose names are immediately recognizable by any reader of shooting magazines. These concepts are universally accepted. The document I use to teach safety is called the Ten Commandments of Firearms Safety. I will present each rule, followed by an expanded explanation of its logic or application to military operations. 1. Treat every gun as if it is loaded Even when you know a weapon is clear and safe, you should still treat it with the same respect you would accord a loaded firearm. This contributes to good safety habits, which may actually save a life by preventing accidental discharge of a weapon. In treating a weapon as if loaded, you must always control the direction of the muzzle. When handling a firearm, be mindful of the surrounding area. If inside a building, which direction is the safest one in which to point the muzzle? The finger should never be on the trigger of a firearm except when it is loaded and being fired, period! Poor trigger control contributes to many of the accidental shootings that take place in this country every year. If you use dummy ammunition to test the functioning of a firearm, respect it and treat the weapon as if loaded with the real thing. Never mix dummy rounds and live ammunition in the same area. About ten years ago I had an accidental firing of a weapon in my work area, because I was testing the weapon and actually had a live round in a chamber. That was a stupid, preventable error! I am not above admitting my mistake. I certainly learned from it, and as embarrassing as it is to sometimes admit it, I use it as an example in my classroom lectures. Hey, if it can happen to me, it can happen to you! The bottom line is, even though I made a critical error, my awareness of muzzle direction prevented a tragedy and only resulted in a shattered window and damage to a vehicle parked outside. What prevented injury was the fact that I treated the weapon as though it were loaded, and controlled the muzzle

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Armorers are required to have dummy rounds to function test the weapons in the arms vault in accordance with technical manual requirements. In all cases, dummy ammunition should be clearly distinguishable from live ammunition. The cases should be crimped, painted black, or have holes drilled through the sidewalls. They should also have no primer and no flash hole. Use only the dummy rounds that are authorized by the weapon manual. Your local Ammunition Supply Point should supply dummy ammunition. Check with your unit S4. 2. Be sure of your target All too often, soldiers fall on the battlefield as a result of fratricide. Police officers train using firearms simulators to teach judgment shooting. As a firearms instructor, I often use a simulator to train engagement techniques. Training with a simulator is only one method of ensuring that you only engage the proper target at the proper time. There are many things to consider when engaged in actual combat situations. On the range the option is simple. All you have to do is engage the silhouette target. This is great for teaching basic marksmanship, or when fighting a paper army, but ineffective in teaching real engagement techniques. In combat, you need two things to make you effective in engaging targets while avoiding friendly elements. The first of these is situational awareness. You must be fully conscious of the position of all personnel in your immediate area, both friend and enemy. You must not only be aware of their presence, but of their movement and intended course of action. Situational awareness also includes understanding your role in relation to others in the force structure that is engaging the enemy. Are you engaging the proper targets in the assigned sector of fire? Can you engage targets of opportunity? Is your fire supporting and complementing that of others in your force? There are five basic steps in engaging targets: 1. Target detection: what’s out there? 2. Target identification: is it friend or foe? 3. Target assessment: what is its relative threat and priority? 4. Target acquisition: are my sights properly placed for action? 5. Target destruction: engage and neutralize The steps are a logic path. At each step along the path you apply a conscious decision concerning engagement before proceeding to the next step.

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The other element is positional awareness. Are you properly in position to engage the target effectively while minimizing collateral damage? Are there friendly or non-combatant personnel in the field of fire? When it is imperative to engage, can you avoid friendly casualties? Positional awareness also defines your ability to react to events, your ability to move, to take cover and concealment. Especially in urban tactical environments, positional and situational awareness largely define the logic behind the shootdon’t shoot decision. The same dedication to shooting logic should be made when hunting game, while at the range, while defending your home, or while plinking at cans in the yard. A firearm should never be discharged unless and until the logic can be determined. Shots in the dark are responsible for killing family members as well as intruders. Always be sure of your target! 3. Be sure the bore is not obstructed This seems like a simple enough concept. If there is a foreign object in the bore, it can cause catastrophic failure of the barrel. I think we can all agree on that one. Do you realize, however, how little it takes to occlude the bore of a weapon? In my classes I show students photographs of an M16A2 barrel that suffered such a failure. It was placed in a milling machine and cut into a cross-section so the inside can be clearly seen. The photos plainly depict what caused the failure of this weapon. What did it take to do this damage and endanger the life of the operator? A few grains of sand, shown graphically in cross-section, lodged in front of the projectile. With a high-powered rifle or handgun, it is essential that you take the time to inspect the bore prior to firing. Do this every time. Remember always that there are two separate steps involved: making the weapon clear and safe. “Clear” means there is no ammunition in the chamber or feedway. The term “safe” not only means that the safety is engaged and the weapon is ready for transport or holstering, it also means that the weapon is safe to fire. If you did not check the bore, the weapon is not truly safe to fire. How can a bore become occluded? Simply put: inattention to detail. The M16 series of rifles does not tolerate having water in the bore during firing. Yet if you carry the weapon with the muzzle elevated or at sling arms in a driving rainstorm, you almost guarantee that the situation exists. Putting a muzzle cap over the opening solves that problem nicely.

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people tragically are killed unintentionally by the negligent use of firearms. or your friend as easily as an enemy. This is called a “squib round. It is almost impossible to avoid in some low crawl situations. Whether you intend to shoot it or not. To a great extent. It will sometimes happen that a projectile will lodge in the bore due to failure of the propellant or other factors. leaves or seeds can enter the muzzle. Make sure the chamber is empty first! When moving through shrubbery or low vegetation. Check to make sure your muzzle is clear when leaving those areas. An unintended target will suffer the same consequences when struck by a bullet. and therefore no concept of loyalty or guilt.It is extremely easy when maneuvering to allow a muzzle to make contact with the ground. that I fail to see why so many people violate it. but anyone can make a mistake. do so prior to firing the weapon. as when crossing swamp or desert.” If your weapon recoils noticeably lighter and has a muffled report. Simply put. Always remember that your weapon has no mind. your child. cease-fire! Your bore might be obstructed by a projectile. If you do not have a muzzle cap on the end of the barrel. 115 . It will kill you. In all cases. Always remember that stupidly is lethal when dealing with lethal power. and it does happen. anything the muzzle of a weapon is pointed at is a target. most of those tragedies are avoidable. 4. Finally. inspecting the bore prevents tragedy. Never point at anything you do not want to shoot This one should be considered a “no brainer. It seems to make such perfect sense. This usually happens only with reloaded ammunition. plant stems. After crossing this type of terrain. it is in the direct line of fire. Each day in the United States. but this is the one rule most commonly broken. Now let’s discuss the unthinkable! Never chamber and fire a live round in a weapon with a blank firing adapter mounted to the muzzle! It’s hard to acknowledge that some people can actually do this. you must be eternally mindful of the position of the muzzle. we must never ignore problems associated with bad ammunition. If practical. it is smart to examine the bore.” I am sorry to say this.

This weapon will never fire until a human being picks it up and pulls the trigger. New York (a member of the 174th Security Police Squadron. not knowing it is loaded. for leaving a loaded weapon unattended. it’s usually against the law. There is no room for negligent behavior with a firearm. he frequently makes the following statement: “I can take this firearm. what makes firearms so dangerous? It’s not the gun. it’s the person behind the trigger. I could come back a year later and this weapon would still be sitting here loaded. Negligent behavior with a firearm is not only inadvisable.I am not going to engage in a political argument for or against firearms. You may find yourself being the target of that person’s anger. Never leave a loaded gun unattended This rule should be easy to understand. New York Air National Guard. Remember that if you develop poor safety habits with a firearm. Your attitude around your company area or in your arms room should be exactly the same. There is no excuse. This is especially true if the person is unfamiliar with the weapon. and end up shooting someone. I can not tell you how many times people “horseplay” with a firearm. It should only be done when all parties involved have personally determined the weapons to be clear and safe. I would not want to live with the knowledge that I killed someone by accident. If a person picks up a firearm. 116 . Keep in mind that the term unattended infers that you have not left it in the personal custody of another person. All soldiers are responsible for the physical security of the firearms assigned to them. 5. the end result can be devastating. who assumes responsibility. In his firearms classes. I will pass on to you the comments of a good friend and fellow firearms instructor. load it. So then. the shock of unexpectedly facing the bore of a firearm can have profound medical consequences for some people. The only time an unloaded weapon should be pointed at another person is during tactical training in personal defensive maneuvers. It’s the person behind the gun” His statement is undeniably true. even when you are absolutely certain that the weapon is clear and safe. I have often said that you should not do anything unless you can withstand the consequences of your actions. or with weapons in general. You should also be aware that the target of your “horseplay” might not appreciate your actions. and a New York State Corrections Officer). It’s not the weapon that’s unsafe. ever. Also. and place it on this table. Jeff Hunt of Hancock. there can be terrible results. I can tell you that horseplay is not tolerated in my classroom or in my presence. If it were possible.

The criminal now has little option but to engage you with countering lethal force. loaded firearms should never be found in an arms room. 2. furniture and other objects. Your actions in using a firearm against an intruder in your home must be legally justifiable or you may be criminally prosecuted. The bullets will penetrate walls. Again. 3. Take a wild guess about that one. I would like to pass some sobering facts on to you: 1. unhampered access to it in an emergency. In my years of experience. he usually already has his weapon deployed. Many persons who keep firearms in the home are not trained in their proper use. Keep eternally in mind the fact that you are dealing with lethal force whenever you are handling a firearm. do you think I have ever found loaded firearms in an arms room? The answer. A self-defense firearm is useful only when you have immediate. 4. but in my office at Fort Drum I have a document advertising a shooting match where alcohol was served. sadly. The entire home becomes a free-fire zone during an indoor firefight.This does not happen so much in a military environment. The use of a firearm in self defense is often precluded by the fact that if an intruder is armed. Drawing a firearm during a break-in escalates the potential for violence. Avoid alcohol before and during shooting I know you will find this hard to believe. Store them clear and safe at all times. 6. killing people you cannot see. What makes this all the more impossible to believe is that this event took place at a US Military Reservation! 117 . 5. you really need to examine the logic for having a firearm loaded. I certainly did. and a shooting situation is the wrong event to learn from. If the loaded firearm is usually kept on hand for self defense. Of course. proper procedures are not always followed. and there is no way you can “out draw” him. Where it happens frequently is in the home. Following proper clearing procedures when departing the range or training area should prevent that from happening. Unfortunately the persons who find loaded firearms are usually children. 6. is yes. because the training is geared to prevent this from occurring. When there are children in your home.

Keep in mind what could happen! In addition to alcohol. Safety is everyone’s job! Alcohol and drugs on the range are an invitation for disaster. If you know an individual to be in such a state.I can think of NO valid reason why alcohol would be anywhere near a shooting event. be permitted to check a weapon out of the arms room. Under no circumstances should any person who consumed alcohol within 8 hours prior to training. The physical effects of an earlier state of intoxication can affect reaction times and judgment ability. all personnel should be questioned about prior alcohol use. Persons taking any type of antihistamine that may cause drowsiness should not be armed. 118 . refer to my earlier statements about the safety concept. it still fails the “smell” test. Alcohol and firearms are non-compatible. and was so astounded by the posters and flyers for it. barbiturates or amphetamines. do not allow that person to be armed. alcohol use is not uncommon during shooting events. This applies to prescription drugs as well as recreational use of controlled substances. Prior to engaging in any training with firearms. If an individual is taking a prescription drug that presents a problem. Among these are aspirin or prescription anti-coagulants that can contribute to uncontrollable bleeding. I happened to be at this military installation the day after the event. anti-depressants. If you are thinking right now that this is not your job. if he or she has ever seen an alcohol related shooting. simply reschedule the training when the person is medically cleared. or sleep deprivation that may result from binge drinking. There are also drugs that can complicate injury in the event of accidental injury at the range. You should also consider the effects of a hangover. Sorry. You would be surprised how common it is. Ask any doctor who has worked a residency in an emergency room. drugs pose problems as well. and alcohol was a factor? What makes this so incredulous is the fact that military discipline is usually so rigid that such events are almost impossible. that I took one. In the civilian community. Could you imagine what would have happened if one of the contestants or spectators had been shot. Plenty of “good ol’ boys” plink at backyard targets while enjoying a six-pack. no matter how unpleasant the consequences. The same is true of persons taking psychoactive substances like mood elevators. You might attempt to rationalize by figuring that at least the contestants probably did not consume alcohol.

8. junkyards. Examples are quarries. be aware of the area behind your target. Heavier projectiles such as shotgun slugs tend to retain much of their mass while ricocheting off wet trees. when operating in close proximity to an enemy force or when combat is imminent. This alludes to the matter of situational awareness I discussed earlier. Never climb a tree or cross a fence with a loaded firearm In a military environment. You must always know what is downrange behind your target. It should be remembered that you can carry a magazine in a rifle. building sites. Ricochet rounds frequently kill. You must know the maximum range of the weapon and projectile combination you are using. This should only be done in a military environment. however. Read and understand the field manuals for the various weapons in your arms room. and the weapon can be truly safe to handle while climbing. which can change the way a bullet will react when it strikes the tree. Depending on the angle of incidence.7. When firing any firearm. a bullet may not fragment. it is sometimes necessary to violate this rule. Some tree bark can absorb great amounts of water. and may retain much of its velocity and force even though the direction may change. The danger is amplified in areas where compound deflection can take place. Be sure of your backstop. If you do not. with the bolt forward on an empty chamber. It is possible to have a compound ricochet deflect more than 90 degrees and still have sufficient lethal force to wound or kill. Never shoot at a hard flat surface or water. The deadly potential of these rounds should never be overlooked. There is no reliable method to predict the behavior of a deflected or ricochet round. High-powered rifle bullets usually perform in this manner. Some types of projectiles tend to over-penetrate the target. then you are not justified in discharging your weapon. When in the woods. be mindful of the ricochet potential of trees. It should never be done while hunting or stalking game. and rock formations. 119 . There are techniques for moving weapons partially loaded to increase the margin of safety while maneuvering. This should only be done.

action open Again. like fuel cells. Firearms safeties are mechanical devices. this is countermanded by the requirements of military training or operations as needed. Accidental shootings are common during hunting forays and while carrying weapons to and from civilian shooting ranges. subject to the same failures as other mechanical devices. As I frequently state: “No one was ever shot with an unloaded firearm” You would be astounded to know how many people claim the firearm that accidentally discharged was unloaded. ever. In all my classes.Generally speaking. You should develop the good habit of checking your safety each time you draw your weapon from the arms room. This is the reason why we always perform a function check of our firearm after reassembling it. and every time you issue one to a soldier. Ladies and gentlemen. stress and friction. 120 . All metallic components in a firearm are subject to wear resulting from heat. I always make the following point: “Never. An empty chamber equals no bullet wounds. 9. trust your life to the safety of any firearm” This is a valid statement. be aware of certain dangerous targets. Bullet wounds only come from bullets. It does raise an important issue regarding the transportation and handling of firearms. Let common sense prevail! Just check your local newspaper for time to time and you will see what I mean. This means that an area 40 degrees to the left and right of your point of aim must be clear of downrange hazards. It shouldn’t happen. but it does. like people! In addition to human targets. that is simply not possible given our understanding of the laws of physics. The components of a firearms safety are no different from any other parts in terms of their ability to wear. Carry your weapon empty. an 80 degree fan of fire should be considered. aircraft or ammunition points behind your target. The reason we suggest always carrying the weapon empty is simple. or before using it.

there was never a requirement for a handgun safety course prior to licensing a person to carry a concealed firearm. prosecuted. a more prudent attitude towards gun safety is being adopted. and beyond the reach of children No rocket science here. they can no longer make that claim. Separate storage decreases the danger of accidental shooting. I am proud that I have been selected as an instructor in Jefferson County. where I reside. the anti-gun crowd could always point to the lack of safety training. either! Most agencies have regulations or internal SOP’s that require the separate storage of ammunition and firearms. Many handgun enthusiasts I know balked at the idea of imposing another socalled “restriction” on getting a firearms permit in New York State. to join a local shooting club where good safety habits are taught and weapons are respected for what they are. I urge you. I am pleased to see that in New York State. all the safety rules presented here. usually a County Court Judge. Their claim was that unqualified persons would carry guns in public. having met the criteria for the definition of a duly authorized firearms instructor as codified in the New York State Penal Law. It is a good practice to maintain in the home as well.10. I certainly favor any approach that increases public safety while not infringing upon Constitutionally guaranteed rights. Do not forget that your own personal negligence may result in criminal prosecution as well. but often are not. I see that it benefits them rather than hinders them. you’ll be happy. Trust me on that one! The tragedy of children being shot with loaded firearms stored in homes is outrageous. Since the course is now becoming mandatory. Negligent parents should be. Persons applying for the license demonstrate their knowledge of weapons safety and their ability to handle the weapon even before the license is issued. In the past. The issue of handgun control is a political powder keg. The licensing officers of the various counties. If you have children. 121 . Store guns and ammo separately. if you are a gun owner. make sure they are taught as well. If an intruder grabs your gun to shoot you and it’s unloaded. In the past. The end result is the disarming of another argument by the anti-handgun forces. and apply. Please remember. Doing so may literally save your life or the life of a friend or loved one. Personally. are imposing the requirement as a local option as of the date of this manual.

Very often. I am referring to common everyday maladies that can be cured with a screwdriver or other simple tools. results in weapons often being sent to direct support units for no valid reason. I have had to do this many times. A well-trained and seasoned armorer can spot trouble and prevent failures. He or she can contribute to the training effort. You might be asking yourself the eternal question “Why”? The answer is again simple. and not the shooter. while it is the shooter who is the problem. A well trained. You may also have to test fire a weapon on the range to determine its accuracy for training and qualification. you may overlook the fact that the shooter just does not know what he is doing. Without an understanding of proper form and technique. before we can talk about improving accuracy. If the weapon is not accurate. At this time you test fire the weapon to determine if the weapon. How are you going to make that diagnosis if you do not know how the weapon normally reacts and performs? Failure of the armorer to understand how the weapon functions. Understanding marksmanship principles is critical to the armorer’s overall understanding of the weapon as a system. competent armorer on the range can eliminate that mistake.Marksmanship I can hear my critics already: “What is a section on marksmanship doing in a maintenance handbook”? People who ask that question are displaying their own ignorance about firearms maintenance. There are many things the armorer can do to improve the accuracy of a weapon. There is no value in perpetually adjusting sights for someone who does not know what a good sight picture is. a weapon is sent in for repair. saving money and resources. If your marksmanship skills are not what they should be. One of your tasks in making a firearm repair is to properly isolate and diagnose the fault. However. you may not hit the target either! This is the reason why armorers must fire and be familiar with all the weapons in their respective arms rooms. I am not talking about anything exotic such as free-floating a barrel or bedding a receiver. is causing the problem. maintenance has everything to do with marksmanship. and conserve resources by eliminating unnecessary maintenance actions. Since the entire objective of the weapon is to cause the projectile to impact on a certain point. we must make sure the concepts of marksmanship are fully understood. 122 . It usually takes place when a shooter can not hit the zero target. the chance of placing that shot on target diminishes.

Among these are excessive alcohol consumption. firearms training is not a pleasant experience. None of them contribute to proper use of a firearm. but an understanding of the real principles of marksmanship begins with a look at the human body. Most of the physical processes are influenced by the state of mind of the person firing a weapon.” Many are concerned about qualifying with their service firearm. it is required that they maintain qualification because of their duty position. Some people are upset by the noise." No. this is not medical school. However. They must not “compete” with themselves. This implies a psychological state of being. If that works for them. it serves as a reminder of basic training. or the study of the interface between human and mechanical elements. because what we are talking about is ergonomics. It is possible that the calm one finds in their morning dose of caffeine can offset the negative aspects of the physical reaction to the stimulant. the physical effects of caffeine consumption are well known and accepted. External stress factors can contribute to poor performance at the range. and pressure exerted by their superiors. anger. Some persons will claim that they perform better after their morning cup of coffee. 123 . Have you ever considered that the so-called “benefit” of a hot cup of coffee at the range may actually harm performance? It is well accepted that caffeine is a powerful stimulant. This is true regardless of whether we are dealing with a trainee at the firing range. The range firing experience should be handled like any other learning experience: calmly.Human Physiology and Anatomy Welcome to “Anatomy 101. For some. This is practical. resentment and drug use. it is important that the shooter be put at ease about the firing mission. or freezing in cold weather. They do not like lying in the mud. There are many factors that influence the stress level of a shooter at a firing range. that’s fine. Others are just concerned about having to come out to the range to re-qualify. It is probably the last thing we should be giving to some soldiers prior to firing a weapon. lack of sleep. The first element I wish to discuss is psychological stress. There are many physiological effects related to caffeine. We are not psychologists. For some persons. What the shooters need to understand is that they must be aware of their own psychological state. and our aim is not to resolve issues dealing with internal conflict. For many. or a sniper engaging an enemy target. Trainees at the range are frequently emotionally “on edge. workplace stress.

124 . that require no application of conscious thought. anxiety is the enemy of proper marksmanship. as the rifle is in balance on a fulcrum. In some cases it is unavoidable. Good marksmen observe this through their rifle scope when concentrating on a target. and often can use meditation techniques to obviate the negative effects of autonomic functions. and hence the weapon.Stress and attitude are directly related. and in others it is desirable. When one becomes overly conscious of the pulse. especially when we want to determine the ability to perform under stress. As the shoulder rises. You should emphasize the need to relax when coaching a shooter with erratic performance. what we think can severely affect them. The presence of these functions greatly influences the firing of a weapon. and attempts to control it. For instance. A proper attitude about the purpose of the training can reduce the stress associated with it. As a result. breathing. The shooter must make a conscious effort to relax. blood is pumped through the arterial and venal network to and from organs and tissue. The reticle will move slightly with each pulse. the result is usually an increase in pulse rate. the muzzle goes down. we must breathe and have a pulse in order to live. As the body inhales air. Very often this single step resolves many performance problems. can experience accelerated pulse and other symptoms associated with cardiac ailments. a person with a pessimistic attitude about cardiac health and a fear of death. As the heart beats. the body in the prone position moves as the shoulders are raised to accommodate the increased volume of the lungs. Conversely. Each beat of the heart causes a slight movement of the body. Among these are pulse and pulse rate. the hand. so does the buttstock. However. the chest expands. In a corresponding fashion. While we do not have to think about these functions for them to take place." It is important that the shooter understands the inability to control autonomic function. and stimulus response. Fatigue is a common influence contributing to poor performance at the range. Many refer to this as “scope jump. We can influence the functions of the autonomic nervous system to some extent. Autonomic nervous functions are those tasks performed by the body. This directly affects the point of aim of the weapon.

If we shoot with the rib cage expanded to different degrees of inflation. you are breathing. Therefore the physical conditioning of the shooter will always affect the ability to deal with fatigue as an element in marksmanship training. and then you exhale. and then shoot. This does not contribute to good shooting. control of your actions in firing the weapon must be timed to the respiratory cycle. I can immediately tell a lot about the shooter’s health and psychological state by watching the rise and fall of the rib cage. 125 . the position of the barrel and muzzle in relation to the body changes. The idea is to be uniform from shot to shot.During qualification firing. If the performance of a shooter at the range is sporadic and below standards. watch the expansion and fall of the rib cage. When in good physical condition. the shooter must be well rested. All the shooter needs to do is think about it. Using the fully expanded or deflated lungs allows you to immediately achieve the same shoulder height with each shot. Correspondingly. If you are on the firing line trying to determine why the trainee is missing the target or doing poorly. This is fine as long as you are relaxed and can always have the shoulder height at exactly the same point. Always remember that marksmanship is a combination of mental and physical effort. In order to achieve maximum results. the height of the shoulder will be different. This means adequate sleep and a proper psychological state. So will our sight picture. The best method is to time the shot so that the hammer falls in one of the lulls between exhalation and inhalation. Doing so may tell you not to waste your time looking for mechanical factors associated with the firearm. Some people prefer to take a breath and cut it off at some point. ask about how well rested he or she might be. You breathe in. there is a slight pause before you inhale. the effects of sleep deprivation will be mitigated to a certain degree. Applying a conscious effort to relax and breathe normally can greatly contribute to proper performance. At this point the rib cage is not expanded. At rest. Being aware of the respiration cycle while in a firing position is a simple thing to do. Be conscious of your breathing pattern. This is what accuracy is all about. If you think about it as you read this handbook. there is a slight pause. As an experienced range instructor. the healthy person may breathe anywhere from 12 to 18 times per minute. Again. It is nearly impossible to obtain proper rest if one consumes massive amounts of alcohol the night before firing. Breath control is one factor that can greatly improve shooting performance. Proper conditioning can reduce fatigue. It is one of the simplest ways to improve your score.

but the soldier does not know that. every time does it. in which the point of the front sight is placed at the lowest point in the center of the target. meaning we aim for the center of mass of the target. Others require a six o’clock hold. Remove the fingers and the eye is in exactly the same place every time.Visual control technique is often an overlooked factor. front sight. and centered in the rear sight. In that case. Place the nose against the closest finger. A lower point of aim will increase the chances of a hit in a vital area. Many shooters. since using the wrong hold position can cause you to expend many useless hours wondering why you cannot hit the target! Some handguns employ a six o’clock hold. With the M16 series rifle as an example. To obtain a good sight picture. line of sight. Many people have a tendency to shoot high on the target. the front sight is placed squarely on the desired point of impact. Some weapons. there is no reason why the average marksman can not qualify if the proper sight picture is achieved and maintained. eye relief must be consistent. They are: the eyes. It is important to know the design characteristics of the weapon. This is because handgun firefights take place at very short distances. In order to be accurate with a firearm. and a subsequent shot will often go high as well. especially if it is a peep-type sight (a circular element). Many people will be fearful of placing their nose against the rifle. The important thing it to put the front sight squarely in the center of the circle or notch of the rear sight. assuming they can be injured. rear sight. There are six elements to proper visual control we must consider. target. and eye relief. can achieve deadly accuracy with a rifle out to 800 meters using nothing more than open. we must not only line up the various elements. Very often a problem with obtaining a good sight picture will be related to eye relief distance. In a proper sight picture. iron sights. a finger or two can be placed against the charging handle and used to gauge the eye relief. The human eye will normally tend to center the rear sight. While a rifle telescope does extend the range of accuracy. the best way to achieve this is to place the tip of the nose against the charging handle. require a center hold. 126 . while observing the trainee in action. myself included. You can solve that problem also. but properly concentrate on them. Making sure that the face is placed on the buttstock at precisely the same location. Eye relief is the distance from the lens of the eye to the rear sight. by design.

. This will prevent problems assuming positions. Beware of holding the visual sight picture for too long. If you have the option. the net effect is different for the same shooter who fires both weapons. If the shooter cannot hit the 50 meter target.In a proper sight picture. obviously. The density of the atmosphere and it’s related moisture content affects our ability to see clearly at longer distances. Therefore. A good pair of sunglasses also can be beneficial on bright days. enables better control of the sight picture. At short-range targets. This has nothing to do with the performance of the bullet or barrel. Concentrating on the front sight will keep the image centered as much as possible and result in better performance. fire from a position that keeps you out of direct sunlight. This is because the bifocal lens provides the shooter with two images. as regular glass frames tend to move while shooting or assuming a new position. Do not attempt to fight the wandering of the muzzle. the temperature. the distance from rear sight to front sight. This is the reason why their accuracy is usually 50 to 75 yards. 127 . The sighting length determines the accuracy of the weapon to a great degree.. This is because the further apart the two sight elements are. It is almost impossible for the shooter wearing bifocals to see the target while looking through the near vision part of the lens. Persons who wear bifocal glasses often have trouble at the range. If investing in prescription shooting glasses. A pistol. The sighting length. The front sight should be in perfect focus. This happens normally and can not be controlled to a great extent. An M24 (or Remington 700 PSS) sniper rifle has a different sighting length than an M16A2. the effect is negligible. and affix to the head with a headband. For this reason. the more precisely they define the sighting line to the target. emphasizing the front sight. near and far. “well. the two enemies of good visual technique. It results from the shorter sighting length causing a corresponding lessening of visual accuracy. the rear sight and the target should appear fuzzy. If you stare at a light bulb and then close your eyes. This will reduce sweating and squinting. one should make sure they are impact resistant. Visual accuracy is also affected by external factors such as temperature or mirage. causing a distorted image.” Also consider the benefit of firing from a shaded position. has a very short sighting length. varies from weapon to weapon. Doing so. do not accept any kind of explanation that starts with the words. or to obtain prescription glasses specifically for shooting. you can experience the effect. This results what is commonly called retinal burn-in. it may be necessary for the shooter to go without glasses.

Even the strongest person tires eventually. Whenever possible. This aids in proper circulation.Physical strength should be considered as a factor in determining shooting ability. and delays the onset of positional fatigue. this is not conducive to good shooting results. thick vegetation. still keeping the weapon pointed at the target and remaining prepared to fire. Do not overlook the fact that poor performance on the range may be due to lack of strength caused by poor conditioning or fatigue. This contact promotes too much pivoting effect and creates instability in the position. holding a position while the rest of the line is placed in a check fire status can be very tiring. where the soldier must also carry the basic load of equipment as well as needed ammunition for crew served weapons or other items. The shooter should be instructed to modify his or her position while standing by for orders. should be avoided. As a physical activity. Of course. As previously stated. Often. The net result is an increase in pulse and respiration rates. This demand for oxygen creates an increased demand for arterial blood flow. It should be noted that bone on bone contact. Firearms operate at high sound levels measured in decibels. This is an important factor to consider in training. In a combat situation. The large muscles of the body require oxygen to perform work. On the range. Noise must also be considered during firing exercises. shooting requires adequate physical strength. or other materials that will cushion the physical contact. the shooter should assume the most comfortable position the circumstances will allow. possibly for hours. reduces skeletal and muscular stress. physical strength relates directly to physical conditioning. such as between the kneecap and elbow in the low kneeling position. The shooter should therefore be instructed that the skeletal structure must be used to support the weight of the weapon and holding of the shooting position. the shooting positions are uncomfortable and must be held for a long time. 128 . A position should take advantage of soft ground. Again. These factors also must be considered to a much greater extent in combat. We demand soldiers be physically fit because of the rigorous activity military service demands of them. hearing protection must be worn at all times on the firing line and within a reasonable distance (50 meters) of firing positions. the soldier may have no option but to remain in position.

Besides the physical effects of high noise. or a ringing in the ears. Before you go looking for phantom problems. PMCS. the instructor watches to see if the shooter will flinch. The noise can hurt us. tremendous damage can take place. Noise levels above 120 decibels can have long term or permanent effects on human hearing. there are also the psychological effects to consider.The noise radiates outward from the muzzle of a weapon as a standing wave. The annual gaging process. threshold shift. you can help in achieving a more relaxed state. The greater the pressure of discharge. To achieve this. the louder the noise level. but the anticipation and fear can be eliminated with proper instruction and good.357 magnum revolver or a . If you can help the shooter overcome the fear and anticipation of the noise. This disturbs the lay of the weapon and ruins the placement of the shot on the target. and the lay of the weapon is being disturbed prior to discharge. You might see them move in a slightly exaggerated manner as they fire the weapon. and the attendant noise. In this method. look at the weakest element. If the shooter flinches. A single exposure to high decibel noise such as from a . and your subconscious mind knows this. if you look for these factors on the range. and not the weapon. the problem will be the performance of the shooter. When the firing pin falls on a dummy round. In all but a few cases. may result from unprotected exposure to high noise levels. instructors use the ball and dummy training method. double layered hearing protection. or tinnitus. the fall of the hammer is being anticipated. Again. you can save hours trying to find a mythical problem with the weapon. and recurring inspections make it unlikely that an inaccurate weapon will ever be on a firing line. wear hearing inserts inside shooting headphones. live and dummy rounds are placed in a weapon’s magazine. 129 .50 caliber machinegun can do permanent damage resulting in hearing loss. Anticipation of recoil. is probably the most common element contributing to poor shooting. Tinnitus. The problem is that people who flinch usually also anticipate the discharge of the weapon. This is why so many people react to gunfire by flinching. Civilian firearms may not be cared for as well. so the weapon may be at fault more often. Rapid movement of air molecules causes the noise. When the wave reaches the components of the ear. Observe the people on the firing line. To check for this. The reaction to the noise is normal.

If you can see the imprint of the stock checkering embedded on your skin. should move until the position is corrected. The trigger should be in the center of the pad between the tip of the finger and the first joint. A proper grip is one that adequately controls the firearm and allows for movement of the trigger finger without using other parts of the hand or wrist. sometimes with a second trigger. At this time the trigger is set for firing. The trigger should not be centered in the crease of the joint. Also. The trigger should be pulled back slightly until a greater degree of resistance is felt. On these weapons. If not. the shooter should “settle in” by slightly wiggling. If accomplished improperly. Staging the trigger puts it in proper position for firing. it can disturb the position of the weapon and cause the shot to miss the target. and not the weapon. If the body is not properly positioned. To guarantee proper trigger control. This usually reduces the amount of pull needed to discharge the weapon. it can have negative effects on the shot group. all of the other efforts may be wasted. as closing the finger will pull the trigger. your grip is probably too tight. As expressed in the chapter on safety. the body. the shooter should take position and aim at the target. It should be comfortable and feel natural. it should not be broken or changed. and hence the weapon. This process should be repeated until the image remains the same when opening the eyes.Trigger control is another essential element of proper marksmanship. In the prone position. the trigger is staged first. 130 . The trigger finger should be firmly placed on the center of the tang of the trigger. When the eyes are reopened. A good rule of thumb is to check your palm after you relax your grip. the finger should never be on the trigger except when actually discharging the weapon. Once the grip is established. The shooter should then close his or her eyes and relax for a moment. Natural point of aim describes the position of the body relative to the target and weapon. It must not be a “power” grip. when the position is proper. This is often referred to as trigger creep. Some weapons employ what is known as a set trigger. This is because the trigger finger is the one part of the human body that moves during the firing process. towards the shooter’s hand. Care should be taken to not realign the skeleton. a proper grip is essential. the shooter needs to remove the slack in the trigger. Without proper manipulation and control of the trigger. the weapon should still be on target. as the hand and fingers will get numb as the circulation is impaired. Upon settling on the trigger.

then the recoil force will move the skeleton and cause the point of aim to change slightly. In other words. As stated earlier. raising the pulse. or dope. After making your best determination that the poor performance on the range is not the fault of the trainee. This is particularly true if they have been owned by more than one person. and then enter a wind on a different azimuth. The longer the shot. It is not trivial. creating a demand for more oxygen. Such thinking would be lunacy. For general military marksmanship. The answers are usually simple ones. and is not commonly the cause of poor range performance. Ballistics Factors and Marksmanship In addition to all the human anatomical and psychological factors. This should not be interpreted to mean that it is never the weapon. we often forget that fact. either. we must also consider the ballistic performance of the weapon. as you can never be sure how many rounds have been fired or how well it was maintained. etc. the accuracy of the firearm and ammunition must be analyzed. One thing to remember about wind is that it is not constant. This results in the second and other subsequent shots to not be exactly on target with relation to the natural point of aim of the body. causing fatigue. This requires more effort then to hold the sight picture. the weapon in a military environment is regularly inspected and gaged. Personally owned weapons are most likely to have mechanical and accuracy problems. On the way to the target the wind might change course several times by five degrees or more. the greater the effects of wind on any given bullet. The bullet will hit areas of passive. for wind. I am continually amazed at the number of leaders who can not understand why their soldiers do poorly at the range. A windy day can defeat even the greatest group of marksmen at the range. or calm air.If this procedure is not followed. The first external factor to consider is environmental. we must evaluate other factors to find the cause. When we compensate. because the soldier in battle does not have an unlimited ammunition supply. especially when we’re talking about grandpa’s old Damascus-twist shotgun. 131 . Did that light bulb over your head just go on? I hope so. there is little or no instruction for wind calculation and offset. This is a mistake.

the heart. we never fire out to those distances. the maximum range of the M855 ball round fired from the M16A2 rifle is 3600 meters. the effect of gravity becomes more powerful than the effect of drag in changing the course of the bullet. At about 2/3 of the bullet’s maximum range. we will hit the trachea at short range. producing the same effect. the weapon will tend to shoot high and the shooter should hold lower on the target. You will never fire an M16A2 at a target 2400 meters away. Some military firearms are designed to have a zero distance of 25 meters. probably severing an artery or the spinal column. Keep in mind. At 8 inches over the line of sight. we will hit the abdomen. At any distance within battlesight zero range. This is because the maximum ordinate. is usually between only 3 and 8 inches. and accomplishes the task of killing the enemy. the highest point of the trajectory over the line of sight. be a consideration. so that the line of sight intersects the line of flight for a given distance. It just is not possible to do so. if we aim for the heart. At this distance the bullet roughly intersects the line of sight as it passes through the target. Battlesight zero distance is that distance at which the enemy can be reliably hit between throat and belt buckle. with no range estimation. or zeroed. If we aim to the center of mass. 132 . Weapons are manufactured this way to compensate for the effects of gravity at shorter ranges. Within the practical limits of military marksmanship. bullet drop does not have that drastic an effect. or sight adjustment. It changes over time as the forward speed of the bullet diminishes. On most ranges the ground is level. we will always hit a vital area within battlesight zero distance. fatal wounds are easily inflicted. but when firing up or downhill. The projectile begins flight below the line of sight. Zero describes the proper placement of the sights. crosses over it. In most military training. This is still a fatal wound. This is to accommodate something called battlesight zero distance. At distances slightly beyond 250 meters. Information on this phenomenon can be found in any good shooting textbook or magazine. The rate of bullet drop also is not constant. and falls down below it at a certain distance downrange.Another factor to consider is the slope of the terrain. But this can only be realized when the sights have been properly adjusted. All weapon barrels point upwards in relation to the line of sight. This will offset the difference. Pitching the barrel upwards provides a greater working distance without having to adjust the sights. Bullet drop at 600 meters is significant. The bullet will normally drop to cross the line of sight again at 250 meters. It should however.

Learn and understand the factors affecting marksmanship. Ammunition is seldom a problem with military weapons. A proper working knowledge of the weapon is essential to diagnosing faults and making repairs.Adjust sight range is that range at which the enemy can be hit between throat and belt buckle. If a remarkable change in accuracy occurs with a civilian weapon. When we adjust sights. or sight adjustment. Even with the right workup of powder and shot. since reloaded ammunition is never used. Just remember that the failure does not need to be mechanical. Make arrangements to forecast additional ammunition and get on the firing line. it could be human. the powder may be old or other factors may prevent proper performance. given no more than a 50 yard error in range estimation. and all other factors are the same. Heed my admonition to become personally proficient with the weapons you are going to inspect and repair. we are raising the trajectory of the bullet. No one but you can make this happen! 133 . suspect the reloaded ammunition. and thereby extending the range of accuracy of the firearm beyond the zero distance.

__________________ d. __________________ c. What are they? a. What are the three elements of the Safety Awareness Concept? a. __________________ b. What are the five basic steps in engaging targets? a. Complete the following sentence: In order to achieve maximum results. __________________ 5.Chapter 3 Examination 1. Can you reliably predict the direction of travel of a ricochet round? ANSWER: ___________________ 6. What are ”autonomic nervous functions”? ANSWER: ________________________________________________ 7. __________________ b. __________________ 3. The term “safe” has two meanings. __________________ b. __________________ e. __________________ b. __________________ c. __________________ 2. __________________ 4. A person suffering from a hangover as a result of binge drinking will suffer physical effects. What will be influenced by these physical effects? a. control of your actions in firing the weapon must be _________________________ 134 .

135 . __________________ f. __________________ d. __________________ e.8. What is the definition of “maximum ordinate”? ANSWER: __________________________________________ Answers to this and all examinations can be found at the back of this book. What is the definition of “six o’clock hold”? ANSWER: __________________________________________ 10. __________________ c. __________________ b. __________________ 9. What are the six elements of proper visual control? a.

or using the wrong type of pliers. Readers are urged to obtain a copy of the technical manual for detailed study. 2. Operate only the equipment you are authorized to use. Obey safety rules and regulations-they are for your protection. 7. The following are the safety rules for tools found in the front of TM9-243: 1. Armorer Tools and Maintenance Tips This chapter deals with the tools used. Inspect tools and equipment for safe conditions before starting work. usually resulting from improper tools or the wrong use of those tools. but feel compelled to: some armorers ruin parts by using poor maintenance techniques. Learn the safe way to do your job before you start. it often occurs that armorers injure themselves by improperly using a tool. 5. Sadly. Conduct yourself properly at all times-horseplay is prohibited. many people attempting to repair firearms do as much damage as good. Think safety and act safety at all times. There are definitive guidelines for the safe and proper use of hand and power tools. 3. Many people do damage with the ubiquitous hammer. tool information can be found in detail within TM9243. 4. the universal adjusting tool. I am hesitant to make this statement. I will cover general concepts and points of reference. For Army personnel. 8. It is easy to mar the finish of a surface by slipping with a screwdriver. Report any injury immediately to your supervisor. or as I refer to it. Wear proper clothing and protective equipment. and the care and maintenance of firearms. 10. Support your local safety program and take an active part in safety meetings. 6. In addition to damaging weapons. 136 .Chapter 4. Advise your supervisor promptly of any unsafe conditions or practices. 9.

5. Personnel removing misfired HE rounds from the Mk19 machinegun (the armorer’s job). 3. Keep each tool in its proper storage place. Military armorers have no choice. A clean work area with all tools properly organized contributes to increased productivity. Keep your tool set complete. Never use damaged tools. Use when working with any tool. Safety shoes. When they burn. or working near overhead hazards. Gloves. 5. 137 . These include: 1. should wear protective ballistic body armor. Tool habits are also important. Keep your tools in good condition. Use each tool only on the job for which it was designed. chemicals. Use in all noise hazard areas. heat. they can save grief and pain. Civilian clothing should be fire resistant. Safety straps or belts. If followed properly. 2. Special clothing. Helmets. 4. the duty uniform is what it is. Safety equipment should always be worn when using tools. Not mentioned in the TM is the clothing worn. they also melt into the skin. 6. safety. flexible soles. sharp edges. Non-skid. Hearing protection. When working with power tools. like shop aprons or face shields should always be worn when working with welding processes or acidic chemicals. worsening the injury. Use to protect hands from cold. Polyester or synthetic fabrics should be avoided because of flame hazards. Use with elevated or suspended items. The following tool habits are listed in the TM: 1. Keep your tools within easy reach and where they can’t fall on the floor or on machinery.These are all commonsense rules we can live with. 6. When at the range. steel toes. 2. 3. make sure the sleeves and trouser legs will not become entangled. non-slip. and supply discipline. 4. Eye protection.

They feature a scale graduated in inches. fractions or millimeters. The dictionary says that the term gage is a variation of the term gauge. the term gage is usually understood to be a special tool for measuring the gauge or dimension of an item. 138 . Hermaphrodite calipers. Can be used as a divider by changing the points. a special tool. Vernier calipers are precision tools that must be understood in order to be used. 2. There are many types for specific purposes as illustrated in TM9-243. but with a spring joint and adjustment nut for precision measuring. This gage is a special tool used to measure the inside diameter of a weapon tube such as that found on a mortar or howitzer. Vernier calipers.Calipers Calipers are used for taking precise measurements of distance. Used for measuring inside and outside dimensions. The trammels hold chucks which measure distance from point to point. Trammels. Once locked. fine adjustments are made using the adjustment control. The various types of calipers are: 1. Similar to simple calipers. By the way. They feature a rod and beam on which trammels are clamped. The sharp point may be easily removed on some models and types. As used. and require periodic calibration. 5. 6. Simple calipers. Measures distances outside the range of calipers. Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment). Feature two locking screws for precise positioning of the movable jaw. Calipers should always be stored in the special case in which they are shipped. They have no scale and are used for simple measurements of distance. of unknown origin. thickness and length. They have no locking mechanism. This is true even though one of the definitions of the term gauge means the same thing. I am often challenged on the use of the terms gage and gauge. They are commonly used in small arms shops to verify the pull length of a pullover gage. The straight leg terminates in a sharp point. They are hinged and use a scissor action. 3. They are usually TMDE items (Test. Slide calipers. 4. One straight leg and one curved leg. Spring-joint calipers.

and dead blow hammer. 139 . Inserts are made in diameters between one inch and three inches. They are the machinist’s peen hammer. Other types of measuring tools are rules. They are used on highly polished or soft surfaces to prevent damage caused by a hard hammer face. One rule to remember is: “When reassembling a firearm. surface plates and dial calipers. levels. inside. It is a matter of common sense. These inserts are available in different degrees of hardness. Dead blow hammers are filled with shot. Some are available with the ability to measure up to 24 inches. They also have a flared base on the handle to prevent the hammer from leaving the hand accidentally. Two inserts are mounted. in the hands of the wrong individual. it can do thousands of dollars in damage in a very short time.” There are several different hammers in the armorer’s tool kit. magnetic base indicator holders. bobs. outside and depth. peening rivet heads and striking metal in tight workspaces. tapes. stop. one on each side of the head. encased in rubber and molded as a single piece. angle plates. You are probably doing something seriously wrong. refer to the TM for details. registering speed indicators. Most micrometers measure distances up to one inch. Hammers Probably the most dangerous thing in the arms room is the hammer in the armorer’s tool kit. The machinist’s peen hammer has a flat head on one side used for striking punches and chisels. This makes the hammer more useful as it can perform more tasks. The judicious use of a hammer requires no tremendous skill or training.There are three basic types of micrometers. They have a wrap around grip featuring a knurled surface to prevent slippage. there are different measuring scales used. All three types are capable of measurements to the nearest 1/1000th of an inch. adjustable parallels. and you did not need the hammer to disassemble the weapon. soft-faced hammer. The other end of the head is called the peen and is used for forming soft metals. There is a type of soft-faced hammer that uses removable inserts. In addition to the three basic types of micrometers. vernier and metric. Soft-faced hammers can deliver heavy blows. if you have to use a hammer. standard. Again. These three are. Improperly used. v-blocks.

Parallel jaw pliers.They are available in four types: standard. since they are gripping devices. If you are working with a soft material. In the case of bolts with parallel head surfaces. parallel handles and a fixed pivot. Some hammers feature a wedge that is inserted into the wood of the handle. 2. 140 . Commonly called “dikes. pliers tend to round off the corners after a period of time. Lineman pliers. Usually included in the armorer’s tool kit. This will result in a wrench being unable to properly fit. Before using any hammer. making the wrench and the nut or bolt useless. a cutting edge and a pivot. They should never be used to grip. Pliers are available in different types as follows: 1. They have great striking power and protect the finish of surfaces due to their rubber coating. they are the tools of choice. This wedge can loosen and fall off the hammer. so they should be avoided in many cases. However. Pliers also compress surfaces as they grip. Slip joint pliers. 3." they pivot and are used to cut light materials like wire. these may feature a pair of side cutting jaws. The pivot allows the pliers to open for larger objects. They are used for gripping flat surfaces. slimline. you can permanently damage the material. Pliers Pliers should only be used when gripping or cutting is to be performed. or nuts with the same features. a serrated gripping section. making serious injury possible. Have side-cutting edges. sledge and ball peen. always check the condition of the head to make sure it is securely mounted to the handle. 4. When used on nuts and bolts. a wrench should always be used when possible. These surfaces can easily cause damage to components and material surfaces. have serrated or knurled surfaces on the inside of their jaws. A damaged surface can cause the hammer to deflect unexpectedly causing injury or damage to the work. Check the striking surface to make sure it is not chipped or damaged in any way. The one-piece construction eliminates broken faces and handles. The movement of the jaws is parallel at all times. a wire cropper. Pliers. Diagonal cutting pliers. Lineman pliers used for electrical work must have insulated handles. when brute locking or gripping force is required. Have serrated jaws with a gripping section.

Therefore. They are available with 6 point and 12 point openings. they have flat serrated jaws. The correct wrench must be selected for the type of work to be done. only the insulation is cut. 9. They feature locking handles for permanently gripping wire between the the jaws. a fixed pivot and curved handles. twists the wire when pulled to the rear. Wrench styles are: 1. 6. bolt head or stud on all sides. They have smooth round jaws. wrenches are used to loosen or tighten nuts. Box end wrenches surround the nut. they cannot be used on shafts if the ends of the shafts are not accessible. An inner arm. End cutting pliers are sometimes called nippers. They are used to cut wire or nails flush with the working surface. Box wrenches are available as offset. Also sometimes called “duckbill” pliers. usually offset from the shank by 15 degrees. and structural tapered handle. 7. Open end wrenches. studs and pipes. Flat-nose pliers. half moon. Quality wrenches should outlive the mechanic if used and cared for properly. Wire stripping pliers are multi-purpose pliers used to strip insulation from various gauges of wire. featuring open jaws. Straight-lip flat-jaw tongs are used to hold bearings in place. They are used for gripping and bending flat materials like sheet metals. The jaws feature cutting edges for terminating the wire. a fixed pivot and curved handles. Most wrenches are made of forged alloys for strength. split-box. 8. not the wire core.5. Wrenches Available in many styles. Wire twisting pliers are indispensable parts of the armorer tool kit. bolts. When used. ratchet. featuring spiral grooves. The wrench length is determined by the jaw opening. 141 . 2. 10. They have straight jaws and long straight handles. Round-nose pliers are used to make bends in soft wire.

10. 7. hinged handle or screwdriver handle. They fit over the heads of bolts or on top of nuts. They are used for convenience. 4. Torque wrenches are used to tighten nuts and bolts to specific or defined tightness. or chain. Spanner wrenches use hooks or pins to grip an object to apply rotational force. t-bar handle. 6. you can take metal away. adjustable pin face. Socket wrenches are fixed to a ratchet handle. In my classes I teach a truism I learned many years ago: “When working with a file. Vise grips are actually a type of pliers. and fixed pin face. speed handle. Combination wrenches are composed of box ends and open ends. or when a job requires both types of wrench. Used when the correct size wrench or socket is not available or suited. synthetic fiber. Adjustable wrenches adapt to different size items and feature a dial which adjusts the size of the opening. have hexagonal sides at the handle and head. The Newton is also used as a metric equivalent. hose coupling pin. 5. They use progressive force to overcome resistance. They typically can be used from either end to fit the work performed. The various types are adjustable hook. but you can’t put it back. The tightness is measured in degrees of resistance expressed in inch pounds or foot pounds. They are usually available in 6 point or 12 point configuration. 8. Files and stones The mainstay of an armorer’s or gunsmith’s craft.3. fixed hook. The strap may be made of cloth.” 142 . Strap wrenches wrap around an item and tighten against it as force is applied. files and stones can also do great damage if used improperly. 9. but are considered wrenches because they lock onto an item and function as an adjustable wrench. Hex key wrenches also called Allen wrenches.

The file should not lower or alter the dimensions of the surface in any way. also known as mill tooth files. and you’ll never remove too much metal. American pattern files are usually used for fast removal of material where precision is not important. 2. and for cleaning out square corners. Swiss files are made to more exact tolerances. The file should be used to smooth down or remove excess metal caused by damage to the original surface. 8. and then check the work. They are used in slots and keyways. The different styles are: 1. are tapered towards the point on all three sides. All surfaces of weapons are precisely the way they should be. 3. tapered to the end-point in width and thickness. Curved tooth files. There are two basic types of files. are used in soft metals such as aluminum. They are used for filing internal angles. Round files taper slightly towards the point. or triangular files. and any change in dimension can cause misalignment and faulty operation. They are used for filing circular openings and concave surfaces. They are used for lock repair and filing ward notches in keys. They are double-cut with one uncut face. Mill files. It is important to remember that you should never change the radius of a curve with a file. 6. They are used to sharpen mill or circular saws. They are used for filing saws having 60-degree teeth. Three-square files are tapered towards the point. They are used for filing rectangular slots and keyways. American pattern and Swiss pattern.I prefer that my students use a file sparingly. Files are formed in the shape of the surface upon which they are to be used. Repeat this. 4. Taper files. My preference when working with a file is to make only several passes. 7. They are finishing tools used on delicate work and usually feature finished handles with rounded ends and knurled surfaces. but much narrower. 5. Pillar face files are similar to hand files. Many surfaces are camming surfaces. Warding files are tapered to a narrow point for narrow space filing. Square files taper slightly towards the point on all four sides and are double cut. Care must be taken when working with a file on a weapon. or in draw-filing or finishing metals. 143 .

the file can scratch or damage the surface of the work.Swiss pattern files are usually purchased in sets of twelve. taking care of the ones you have is critical. crossing (oval). is to fill the teeth of the file with chalk before use. One way to prevent damaging the surface of a piece of material with a file. test fixtures. Shooters just assume that the weapon is made of durable metals and will last a lifetime. flat. It is the responsibility of the armorer to conduct this inventory. Stones and files should not be oiled as it impairs their effectiveness. Special Tools and Gages There are many special tools. they will not give the performance you expect of them. gages. half-round. Stones are used to polish metal once it has been filed. The filing surfaces must be protected from damage. The finer grits are used for fine polishing or buffing. military included. and round. give no thought to the consequences of repeatedly firing a weapon. 144 . The teeth of files will clog up with material. This is a mistake in judgment. when it is really just clogged with metal. When this happens. Doing so smoothes out the metal and prevents a foothold for oxidation to form. A recently filed surface that has not been stoned will increase friction and promote damage. knife. All files must be cared for. joint (round edge). The files must be cleaned often or they will not perform properly. Stones are available in different shapes and grit sizes. square. testing and maintenance of firearms. Many people. Although better tools may be highly preferred. They should be stored in boxes or pouches to prevent banging into other tools in the tool box. barrette. If you do not. three-square. slitting. A wandering file can do a lot of damage. you use a file scorer and a file brush. All tools should be inventoried and inspected monthly to make sure the required work can be done properly when needed. The exception to this is oilstone. usually only used for sharpening metals such as knife and razor edges. To clean a file. Many people mistakenly discard a file thinking it is worn out. After stoning it is usually necessary to polish a surface further with garnet paper or jeweler’s rouge and a buffing wheel. Always be conscious of what you are doing with a file. equaling. The types included are marking (half round). jigs and devices used in the inspection.

However. military or civilian. Surface dirt that covers a component may prevent an inspector or gunsmith from seeing small fatigue cracks or other deformities on the surface. should have a thorough annual checkout by a trained. They will detect if the bore is straight. A weapon will have its service life shortened if not properly cared for. it is important that the weapon be thoroughly cleaned. And the owner should Browning High Power pistol. how much trigger pull is required. if used to extreme excess. the gages and special tools will reveal the status of the weapon. There is no compelling need to immediately disassemble and clean your weapon at the first signs of it. like the The so-called “carbon” left as a dirt residue in some guns does not present the big problem you would assume it should. competent professional. It is a normal byproduct of the combustion process. clean their take the action assembly apart to clean it not disassemble some weapons. A reasonably good job will suffice. most notably automatics such as auto-rifles and machineguns. which raise dirt from the pores of the metal surfaces. prior to being inspected with any precision tools or instruments. One of the worst offenders in reducing the service life of a weapon is dirt. as long as it is not mixed with lubricants or other fluids. and always present to some degree. Maybe not in your lifetime. As a dry powder-like substance. it will just wipe off or blow away. This is sometimes made difficult by products like CLP. Every firearm. Many weapons. how much of a gunsmith’s business is people just do not. You would be surprised to learn generated by this one factor. Many firearms. However. Once cleaned for inspection. The weapon must be cleaned well enough that no residue is found in the receiver or barrel. What I am declaring is that there is no need for the classic “white glove” inspection. The weapon should always be maintained in overall clean condition. or if fired with the wrong ammunition loads. Buildup of contaminants on surfaces may prevent accurate readings during inspection. failure is inevitable. or not trapped between working surfaces. 145 . or will not. Many do not know how to periodically. I am not declaring that it is permissible to have a dirty firearm. and whether the headspace is correct. but that weapon you leave to your son or granddaughter will not last forever.The fact is that as mechanical devices. also leave small brass particles in the receiver. A small amount of this “carbon” on working surfaces during normal operation is to be expected.

Even if you do not fire the weapon all year, damage may still be present. Metal will degrade due to oxidizing processes, and captive springs held under tension in the weapon all year would go soft and become unsuitable for firing. An annual inspection prevents pending problems from becoming serious. Small arms repairers and civilian gunsmiths who determine the serviceability of a firearm commonly use the following special tools and gages: Pullover gages, as mentioned earlier, measure the inside diameter of a bore. They are used only on large caliber weapons such as mortars, recoilless rifles, howitzers, and cannons. They have a sliding inner scale that is fully extended when placed in the bore. The gage is attached to two long rods, and inserted at a diagonal pitch. At the desired distance down the bore, one rod is held rigid, and the other one is “pulled over." This causes the gage to flip over inside the bore. The sliding scale will then compress to the true inner diameter. The gage is removed and the scale is read, and then verified with a vernier caliper. Borescope gages are optical devices that are placed down the bore of a weapon. They feature the ability to illuminate the interior of the bore, and can magnify the image of the inner surface. They are available from small, fiber-optic devices that fit down the barrel of a rifle, to monstrous setups that require several people to operate. The larger devices are used in howitzers, cannons, and inside jet aircraft engines. Some borescopes have a flexible head assembly, and some have telescoping sections featuring numerous lenses. Headspace gages are available in two basic types, adjustable and standard length. The adjustable headspace gage features a small inset screw assembly with a numerical index. The screw is turned in or out to determine the actual or working headspace. The standard length gage is a “no go” gage. Slightly larger than the maximum allowable headspace, the bolt should not lock up with the gage inserted. If it does, it indicates that the gage is too far forward. This means the shoulder is worn and the headspace is excessive. Timing gages are typically used only for automatic weapons that feature adjustable timing. The gage determines whether or not the firing pin will release with the bolt a certain distance from the locked position. If the firing pin releases with the bolt too far to the rear, the timing is early, and the weapon could fire out of battery, or unlocked. If the pin does not release with the bolt fully forward, the timing is late, and the weapon will not fire. Muzzle erosion gages measure the degree of wear at the muzzle of a firearm. Sometimes the muzzle will wear for different reasons, and will result in a clearly defined loss of accuracy. The gage is typically a “no go” gage. If it does not fit, the muzzle is not worn.

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Radius gages measure the degree of radius of a curved surface. They are extremely useful in finding problems related to the timing of the steps in the cycle of functions. Barrel straightness gages are designed for a particular caliber. The tolerance for a straightness gage is extremely important. Some can read warpage in the bore to less than .0015 inches. The bore must be extremely clean, as the slightest dirt or residue can prevent the gage from passing through. Firing pin protrusion gages determine the minimum and maximum amount of the striking point of the firing pin, which protrudes from the firing pin hole in the bolt or slide. Firing pin hole gages are used to determine if the hole through which the firing pin protrudes meets a defined standard. If the firing pin hole is too large, or eccentric, the firing pin might not strike the primer properly. Hole diameter gages measure the openings for pins, plungers and detents when the diameter of these openings is critical. They are usually of the “no go” type. If the gage fits the hole, the hole is enlarged or non-standard. Chamber reflection tools are used to illuminate the inner surfaces of the chamber for inspection. The usually feature a highly polished reflective surface, and seat with the mirror portion in the smaller area of the shoulder. Air gages precisely measure the diameter of the lands and grooves within the bore. The air gage is a mechanical device operated by air pressure. It can measure distance to the nearest 1/10,000th of an inch (.0001 inches). Trigger weights are used to determine the minimum and maximum weight values required for trigger release. They are hung from the trigger on a rod, and usually are in weight values of ounces and pounds. Pull scales are devices that measure resistance to pull. They can also be used to determine trigger pull, or to determine deflection when pulled against an object such as a machinegun receiver. In this case, the amount of pull required translates directly into a measurement of the tensile strength of the metal frame. Special tools and gages require constant care. They should never be kept in a toolbox. They should be stored in the protective cases in which they are issued. Most of them will require periodic calibration, which will guarantee that they are within required specifications for wear or other factors.

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In addition to the tools previously listed, there are special tools that are manufactured locally for certain weapons. Check Appendix E in the back of your small arms TM’s for specifics. Some of these tools make the job easier, and some are required for PMCS. Of course, if the tools are required, and you don’t have them, you have one of two problems. Either you can’t perform the maintenance procedure for which the special tool is needed, or you are doing it with more difficulty than needed. When I inspect arms rooms, I also look for the special tools, to see if they are on hand and being used. That tells me a lot about the knowledge of the armorer and the attention to detail during the maintenance process. You should inventory and inspect your tools frequently. A monthly inventory will turn up any tools that are missing, broken, damaged or that need replacement. If you purchase your own tools, remember to buy quality hardware! You only get what you pay for! The investment in quality will last a long time, and the cost of a single gun damaged by a bad tool will make the price differential worthwhile. Never lend a tool out without getting a hand receipt for it. Even your closest friends may simply forget to return a tool to you, and that tool may be an accountable item. Why pay for another person’s foolish mistake? Even if you do not use your tools, you should still inventory them. It is possible something could have been stolen, and you need to be on the lookout for the eternal enemy of metal: rust! If your arms room or work area is not climatecontrolled, your tools could be deteriorating without your knowledge or awareness. Army and other DOD personnel can inventory their toolbox using a document numbered “SC 5180-95-CL-A07-HR”. This is the hand receipt form from the Supply Catalog for the toolbox, which in military jargon is known as “Tool Kit, Small Arms Repairman”. Keep blank copies of this inventory document on hand, and keeping up with your toolbox will be much easier. In addition to the tools in your toolbox, consider the items you will use in your arms room which are perishable. Batteries for flashlights, some cleaning materials, adhesives, paint, and solid film lubricant have a lifespan. Check the expiration date or shelf life dates of these products to make sure the required items are not only on hand, but also in usable condition. The simplest way to accomplish this is to roll the inspection of those items into your monthly inspection of your tools and other equipment items. A proper itemized inventory of your work-related equipment is essential to good arms room management.

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Maintenance tips You might assume that this section would be extremely detailed and full of juicy information on all those weapons in your arms room. Sorry to say, that’s not true. I stated in the foreword to this document that the particulars on the individual weapons would be found in the related technical manuals, and I meant it. Do not ever assume that you know all there is to know about a firearm. In my many years of experience I have seen so many changes and revisions to technical manuals, I could never remember them all. In every case, when working with a firearm, have the manual opened to the appropriate page for the procedure. And, make sure you inventory your publications so you know the manual is current and complete. You have already learned how to obtain and inventory your manuals. You know how to post changes and revisions to the contents of those publications. I explained the importance of a good filing system and how to plan and schedule your workload. Previous chapters have also covered the essentials of firearms operation, ammunition and ballistics, safety, marksmanship, and other subjects. Here, in the last section of this chapter, I will sum up everything by leaving you with a few pieces of valuable information and insight. To begin with, this handbook does not end here. Following this chapter is the Armorer’s Glossary, painstakingly compiled and typed by myself. The sources are many, including USAF lesson material, myriad firearms textbooks and years of experience. Use it, and benefit from the knowledge it contains. I also want to pass a warning on to you. Even as of the date of this handbook’s first publication, the Army is considering drastic changes to the status of Unitlevel PLL and other maintenance policies. Do not use this document as a static, stand-alone source of information. Use it only as a resource to point you in the right direction, and then check the real source document, the technical manual I will pass some wisdom on to you. The United States Army has some of the finest combat weapons in the world. Each weapon has undergone years of development, acceptance testing, and is subject to continual revision and reengineering as a result of the EIR and suggestion programs. Many soldiers and other professionals who attend my classes come to school with opinions of certain weapons. That’s fine, we all have our own opinions. You have read several of mine in this document. But many times those opinions are founded on half-truths and hearsay. I would like to set the record straight on certain weapons right now.

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those stories are true.177 caliber BB pistol. and I take care of it. This is an absolutely false claim. Never assume that bigger is better. and just as much subject to mobilization as any other military member. every one. A soldier could spend days at the range and never zero and qualify with a badly bent front sight. you’ll find out what I mean. If the post is bent.The M16 rifle has undergone remarkable transformations in its history. What can you as the armorer to improve accuracy with the M16A2 rifle? For starters. You can stop this practice at the unit level. That’s all it takes to keep some soldiers from qualifying with their rifle. The sights are mounted on the upper receiver. has a purpose and design to achieve that purpose. attend one of my courses. If the buttstock moves in relation to the lower receiver. today. A comparative judgment is just what it sounds like: apples and oranges. If the buttstock screw becomes loose. The operator is not authorized to remove the screw. I am still a holder of a military identification card. it must be replaced. Each recoil of the weapon will cause the sight picture to change slightly. the point of impact changes. You should also know that the mistakes of the past belong in the past. it will be too loose to maintain a proper sight picture. It may seem tight.308 round outclasses the . I have an M16A2 assigned to me. It is a one-time use item. It will be reliable enough to save my life if the need ever arises. And the sights are hardly ever lubricated. You can also make the adjustment of the front sight easier by using the front sight removal tool found in Appendix E of the M16 series rifle TM. I continually hear comparative judgments made by soldiers who say the . and cannot be tightened once the initial torque has been broken. Every weapon and projectile combination. The current M16A2 and M4 carbines are second to none in quality and capability. If you are ever shot with a “little” bullet in the wrong place. This includes everything down to a . and I have total faith in it. but as soon as the weapon fires. I was there as a rifleman. The sight posts bend because soldiers use nails or other items to adjust the front sight. then every time the post is turned while adjusting sights. Very often a front sight post will be bent on an M16 series rifle. The face of the shooter rests on the buttstock. 150 . If you want the facts. Make sure the operator lubricates the front sight when doing his PMCS.223 on the battlefield. If you have heard stories about how some of them failed to perform in VietNam. the recoil loosens the screw again. do not allow personnel in your unit to loosen the buttstock. I should know.

Provide a photocopy of the shop drawing for the item. The only one being cheated here is the shooter. The rifling in that barrel is also right hand twist. I just gave you the comparative weights of the two projectiles. This can cause the soldier to disturb his or her position. An ineffective buffer will not dampen the effects of the recoil of the weapon as much as it is designed to. It will make dealing with a troublesome sight post much easier. In addition to the differences in weight. take the tool with you. To begin with. however. The pitch. The M855 ball round was designed for the M16A2 rifle. and the targets will be missed. 6 lands and grooves. Many people believe that the M193 (55-grain) projectile and the M855 (62grain) projectile are the same. I have seen many soldiers cheat by adjusting the rear sight for elevation on the zero target. is one turn in 7 inches. This is true of any rifle barrel. Make sure the buffer in the weapon is serviceable. The rifling in that barrel is a right hand twist. It contains several small steel cylindrical weights. Make sure the soldiers properly zero their weapons at the range.These tools are easy to obtain. They must move freely and independently of each other in order to function properly. If you shake the buffer and feel a single solid mass of weight moving inside. and lessen accuracy. This is probably because you failed to check their front sight. 151 . High heat can cause the barrel to warp. The net effect is a greater recoil force perceived at the shoulder of the shooter. You can improve accuracy and effectiveness by making sure they comply with the FM standards for field zero of their weapons. causing a loss of muzzle velocity and long range accuracy. The M193 ball round was designed to fit the M16A1 rifle. they are probably rusted together and the buffer should be replaced. and it’s bent or frozen in place. there are other differences that make these rounds incompatible for the wrong weapon. with six lands and grooves. with one complete turn every 12 inches. Be careful about overheating M16 barrels. Simply fill out a work order request and submit it to your servicing Direct Support organization. At longer ranges the zero setting will not be valid. When you go to the range. This is terribly wrong. while preventing more damage to the sight elements.

stress or friction. and you will see that the performance in terms of relative distances is different.The velocity of the two rounds is different. the diameter of the bolt cam pin will wear down. This again is absolutely wrong. Use the force. Unfortunately. In the hands of a competent. with good reason. I have seen first hand the awesome trauma inflicted by this class of weapon. Check the TM. the care of the M60 determines how well it will perform. Read the section on Combat Operations Support in Chapter One for clarification. The result would be that the second round could not chamber. This will verify the diameter of the pin is still within standards. The M16A2 rifle and M4 carbine are feared by our enemies. trained individual. I am absolutely positive about this statement: If an M60 fails. it is slowly being done away with. I know many people think they are old and unreliable. this could prove deadly. The inner surface of the cam pin recess in the bolt can also wear. Remember always that any two metallic components in direct contact. When conducting PMCS inspections. are supposed to be looking for those worn parts! Don’t ever blame the failure of an M60 on worn parts. I have seen this happen to several rifles during my career. If the wear becomes excessive. The bolt is designed to allow the cam pin to install from one direction only. 152 . the armorer. If the bolt could be installed improperly. the bolt cam pin can actually be put in the bolt from the wrong direction. and the rotational speed is different. will wear. As with any weapon. In combat. If you fail to reinstall it. Blame the failure on yourself. This would mean that the ejection pattern would put the expended cartridge case inside the weapon instead of ejecting it out to the right side. because that is exactly where the blame lies. the consequences will be very unpleasant. Remember that you. reliable and dominates the firefight. the ejector and extractor would be out of alignment by 180 degrees. the M60 is lethal. Beware of the bolt cam pin. that are subject to heat. After a period of time. and with proper care. the weight is different. always attempt to put the pin in the wrong way. and the weapon would cease to function. it’s probably the fault of the operator or armorer. Trust in your weapon is a force multiplier. The M60 machinegun is perhaps the world’s finest all-purpose machinegun. This prevents the bolt from being improperly installed.

and the latch from the left. and that contributes to problems as well. These barrels must be changed on a regular basis as explained in the operator TM. and is made worse by fear. without fail! When you do your unit level PMCS. make sure you inspect both barrels. and that will only happen if they are maintained properly. sweaty palms. he needs to clean both barrels. If he is going to the range. Also remember that the operator manual prohibits taking the gas system apart for cleaning unless it fails to move freely. he needs both barrels. At 23 pounds it is a highly uncomfortable and impractical sniper rifle! Another error is the improper installation of the cover hinge pin and latch. They can be dangerous to themselves. upside down. A spare is something extra. how can anyone use it to properly sight the weapon? Check to make sure the top is not broken under the rivet. or improperly on the M60. Keep an eye on those “60 gunners” in your unit. Do not allow soldiers to take them apart just to shine the piston. In all. Doing it the wrong way can damage parts on the weapon. It is not a spare. There is also the common mistake operators make of reinstalling the piston backwards. There is a lot of negative maintenance being done on M60’s. If the soldier is going to clean it. Make sure they zero correctly. it can make the thing nearly impossible to remove in a hurry. Doing so will cause the weapon to probably fire a single shot and then quit firing. and I dread the same fate for the M240B. and oily fingers. Make sure you show the first line leaders in your unit the page in the TM that states this. I have identified about two dozen parts that can be installed backwards. More importantly. The hinge pin always goes in from the right side. This is important in combat. or damage will result. They must work when needed. 153 . If the weapon is being turned in for maintenance. The M240B is replacing the M60 in many units. There are six in the trigger housing alone. both barrels go with the gun.The M60 should never go anywhere without both barrels. like a spare fuse or spare tire. Check those traversing and elevating mechanisms! They are the most neglected items in the arms room. period. Anyone who attends my classes will tell you that I do not permit the use of the term “spare barrel” in my classroom. the M60 was a victim of poor unit maintenance. Have you inspected the range scale on the rear sight of the M60 lately? If the numerals and range lines are worn off. Always. Unfortunately.

The M9 9mm pistol is not a bad weapon. in my educated opinion. property or resources. It’s only function is to fire when pulled from the holster. it is an entirely different matter. The standard seems to be. Use the material you have learned in training. pretty ineffective. For law enforcement personnel. it becomes imperative that you conduct more aggressive inspections quarterly. Remember that PMCS stands for Preventive Maintenance Checks and Services. Does this mean I am comfortable with a maintenance policy that reacts to a failure. you know how to conduct a proper inspection of a firearm. that does not mean you cannot inspect it. myself included. Keep in mind that this weapon is classified as a personal defense weapon and is issued to officers. will tell you that a reactionary maintenance policy like that can get people killed. turn it in for repair. All military police personnel carry the Beretta M9. Just because there are no gages or special means of inspecting the M9. Is it the same quality of weapon as the SIG P229 or the Glock 19? No. “When it breaks. pilots and certain other personnel. who get the SIG Sauer M11 Compact 9mm Pistol. and fire it regularly. For those of you who serve as armorers in a law enforcement unit. Those comparisons are not valid. Any person who carries a pistol to protect life. You can do better than that. You must carefully look for indicators of wear on mating and camming surfaces. Now that you know the annual inspection is not very effective. I have one assigned to me also. For specifics. It is needed as a last-ditch means of getting the enemy before he gets you. If you have taken an armorer course (hopefully mine!). but neither is it in that price range. and does nothing to prevent that failure? Obviously not. I would sooner expect to wake up and find out that the sun was gone forever. The Army is not in the habit of sending companies of officers to assault an objective with 9mm pistols in their hands. be vigilant! The inspection standards for the M9 during annual safety & serviceability checks are. check the technical manual.” Hopefully this will change. Make sure your M9 pistols have had the slide modifications applied to them. except for CID agents and MP Investigators. 154 . This weapon plays a limited role and will seldom see use in real combat. I consider having to draw my pistol to shoot someone in the performance of my military duty to be the most unlikely event possible.

Simply put. you can turn the weapon upside down and it will fire after you shake it. the pivot pin and trigger mechanism flanges on the underside of the receiver must be checked for parallelism. as well as the locking recesses in the tops of the legs. when this weapon shows up on the battlefield. two very worthy things to consider. 155 . Second. If the legs frequently fall out of the underside of the handguard assembly. and should be checked. In an emergency. resulting from the change to the three round burst employed on the M16A2 rifle. but like any weapon. The standard is also found in the organizational maintenance section of the -20 series TM. No. The Mk19 40mm machinegun. but easy to compensate for in a tactical sense. has limitations. Also." a technique whereby an assailant can dismantle your pistol as you aim it at him. the cocking handle should always be drawn to the rear with the palm facing upwards. I do not want you to aim an M249 at me and fire. then the spring below the pivot is probably worn. The point I would like to make is that it is a different weapon than the M60. I have not yet had a single student who was aware of the requirement to check the top of the bolt slide for bulges. I hope you do not misunderstand my intention here. This is accomplished with a straightedge. this has nothing to do with the “Gangstas” of Hollywood rap-video fame. The overall emphasis is on ammunition conservation and fire discipline. it also ensures that the cocking handle will not override the bolt. I can not sing the praise of this weapon any louder.Be mindful of the “LA grab. the fight is over in a matter of minutes. if not seconds. First. no bullets equals no victory. The M249 machinegun is adequate for the task it performs. and the procedure is defined in the PMCS table of the organizational maintenance manual. Several things should be understood about the M249. It was designed to provide automatic firepower to the fire team and infantry squad. I will certainly be killed. if you lose the trigger bar spring for an M9. Wear is very common in these areas. The M249 is generally a reliable weapon. This not only prevents the soldier from receiving a hand injury on the ejection port cover. A weak point of the design. while it is still in your hand. This tells me many armorers do not follow the PMCS table. or my voice will leave me forever. Check the yoke and pivot of the bipod assembly. and should not be compared to it.

It must be flush with the surface of the recoil plate. and damages the barrel nut on the M16A2 rifle. what more could a soldier ask for? The newer barrels seem to be made of a thicker material. Oh. out of the mount before tightening it. There is a modified version of the M203 currently being fielded for mounting on the M4 carbines. and is functionally identical to the M203. and you cannot outrun it. This weapon is designated as the M203A1. period! The M203 grenade launcher is a fine weapon as long as it is properly mounted to the M16A2 rifle! And. or slack. The only real difference is in the mounting hardware. the toughest enemy will cry “uncle." It will easily crush your entire hand if the bolt goes forward. nothing you can hide behind. Also check the operating depth of the breech insert. Make sure you have plenty of LSAT on hand to lubricate it. which provides the pathway for the firing pin. At 325 to 375 grenades per minute. they don’t like going through the feed throat mechanism sideways! Make sure that you read and understand the Mk19 operator and unit maintenance technical manuals. All training should conform to the standards as given in the Mk19 field manual. you have no business firing it.007 inches below flush. If you do not understand this weapon..” You should be aware that this weapon and CLP are not compatible.never twist the belt on a runaway gun with a Mk19. devastating terminal effect.. Make sure you remount the sling onto the correct swivel! Having the rifle sling hanging in front of the barrel during firing is very unpleasant. Make sure when you remount the weapon that you have taken all the end-play. unless you want to be nicknamed “Lefty. I almost forgot. The weapon mount must be safety wired in place.There is no place you can hide from this weapon. An improperly mounted weapon will be inaccurate. There’s just something funny about those high-explosive grenade rounds. (Make sure your Last Will and Testament is completed if you want to overlook the sling mount!) Check the TM and make sure you have no old-style firing pins in your M203’s. or to a maximum depth of . 156 . The –23 TM lists three entire pages of safety warnings. The old ones would dent if the rifle fell over while propped against a tree. Never put your hand inside a Mk19 with the bolt to the rear. that’s your job! Decent range.

One person can not hold back the charging handle and manipulate the barrel to install it. If needed. To install the barrel. When properly set up and operated by a well-trained crew. but only adopted in 1934. It will easily engage and defeat vehicles. This weapon has the distinction of being in continuous service longer than any other weapon in the current US Army inventory of fielded small arms. Millions of them have been produced. This is a low maintenance weapon made of quality materials. for this purpose. Many of the M2’s currently in use date back to World War Two.50 caliber machinegun. Since the weapon generates significant heat. Knowledgeable M2 gunners always carry a spare used link. This will hold the barrel extension to the rear. It was offered to the War Department in 1920.50 caliber link. you can take the medium sized coil of a . the M2 is a fearsome weapon. allowing the soldier to move forward to install the barrel. aircraft. 157 . bunkers and light armored vehicles with its wide range of available ammunition. it is possible for an individual soldier to install the barrel alone. they can place that link in position immediately. This is accomplished with a set of headspace and timing gages which should always be kept with the weapon. This weapon fires from the closed bolt position and immediately places a round in the hot chamber when the trigger lever is released. Maine. Respect it and it will last indefinitely. They are built to withstand the test of time by Saco Defense. Always remember these things about the M2: Headspace and timing must be checked when setting the weapon up for firing. Invented by John Moses Browning. It usually requires two persons because the barrel weighs 26 pounds and is very long. buildings. on their ID tag chain. one soldier normally pulls the cocking handle to the rear until the barrel lock mechanism is visible in the clearance hole beneath the trunnion area on the right side of the weapon. In the event that your assistant gunner is killed while emplacing the weapon. However.The M2 Browning . a cookoff is always likely. but are in as good condition as the day they were purchased. it took over 20 years to perfect. It has tremendous range and terminal effect. Saco. Read and understand the safety warnings in the technical manual and field manual. and place it between the barrel extension and trunnion after pulling back the handle.

__________________ 3. What are the various types of spanner wrenches? a. __________________ c. __________________ f. What are the six types of calipers? a. __________________ c. When should pliers be used? ANSWER: __________________________________________ 6. __________________ c.Chapter 4 Examination 1. Which Army publication provides guidance on the use and care of hand tools? ANSWER: _________________________ 2. __________________ e. __________________ 4. __________________ 5. __________________ b. __________________ b. __________________ 158 . What are “nippers’ used for? ANSWER: __________________________________________ 7. __________________ d. __________________ c. What are the three basic types of micrometers? a. __________________ e. __________________ b. What are the three types of hammers that may be found in the armorer’s tool kit? a. __________________ b. __________________ d.

What does a pullover gage measure? ANSWER: __________________________________________ Answers to this and all examinations can be found at the back of this book. What are the two basic types of files called? a. __________________ 10. 159 .8. __________________ b. What should you never change when working with a file? ANSWER: __________________________________________ 9.

It will cover specific maintenance items for the following weapons: M60 Machinegun M16 Series Rifles/M4 Carbines M249 Machinegun Mk19 Machinegun M2 Machinegun M9 Pistol M203 Grenade Launcher M224 & M252 Mortars M24 Sniper Weapon System There are additional sections to check your administrative functions and the small arms toolkit. that’s it. I hope you have a greater appreciation of the importance of this duty position. I will leave you with a warning I gave in the front of this handbook: DO NOT USE THIS HANDBOOK AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR TRAINING! If you think you can get by cheaply by not investing the time in training an armorer. local schedule permitting. to other installations and locations to conduct training. Finally. there is a publications checklist. Following this page is an Armorer’s Glossary explaining commonly used terms in detail.Well. For those commanders and leaders who may read this. In addition. Use this checklist to self inspect your arms room operations. Good luck. and I again ask you to advise me of any inclusions or changes required. do not hesitate to contact me. and good shooting! 160 . My address and information appear in the front of the book. I hope this handbook is useful. the consequences may be more than you are prepared to deal with. I am always willing to travel. The only cost involved is the TDY travel expense. If you have no local training resource to conduct armorer or firearms training. there is a copy of my Unit Arms Room Inspection Checklist.

Shotgun or doublebarreled sections house all the mechanism or working parts. It is also used to indicate the different forms of charging the weapon such as bolt-action. A mechanical device operated by air pressure used to precisely measure inside and outside dimensions. etc. breech-action.000th of an inch. The term may be further modified as side-action. Adapters are made to conform to the outer walls of the chamber and reamed to fit the auxiliary cartridge. The part to which the barrel is attached. belt-action. and refine a weapon in order to improve the characteristics of the designed function and accuracy capabilities. In a rifle it is often called the receiver. To point or direct a weapon that propels a projectile towards an object or spot with intent to hit it. The sum total of the scores from two or more matches. snapsection. the diameter of which does not exceed 3 minutes of angle at 100 yards. rework. Normally used to measure the diameter of lands and grooves of a barrel. For sporting purposes.Armorer’s Glossary Marksmanship Term Definition Accuracy Accuracy is the ability of a firearm and its ammunition to fire bullets into small groups at various ranges. a rifle is considered accurate if it will shoot into a circle. lever-action. pump-action. To modify. provided the tournament program clearly states the matches which will compromise the aggregate. usually in 1/10. Accurize Action Adapter AFQC Aggregate Aim Air Gauge 161 . individual matches or both. An auxiliary chamber to fire smaller cartridges in a barrel of like caliber. team matches. Air Force Qualification Course: Course of fire fired by Air Force personnel with a weapon. but having a larger chamber. etc. This may be an aggregate of match stages. to determine their individual proficiency under the provisions of Air Force Instructions (formerly called Air Force Regulations).

bombs. and mines. drill hall and offices. shot and their necessary primers.45 caliber automatic pistol. A slang term used in competition to define an allowable refire. Also a common name for a type of stock. materiel. Alignment Alloy Alternate Ammunition Angle of Departure Anneal Anodize Anschutz Anvil Arched Housing Armory 162 . Military armories are usually a large building containing an arms vault. fuzes. Ammunition includes shells. pyrotechnics. Also. a housing with the rear portion curved where it contacts the palm of the hand. together with projectiles such as bullets. Type of munition normally containing an explosive element and designed to inflict damage upon structures. and allowing to cool. The angle of departure is actually the angle of elevation for the given range. machineguns and bayonets. A metal composed of two (2) or more metals and/or other ingredients mixed together while molten. propellants and detonators. A component part of primer construction against which an explosive primer mixture is smashed in order to initiate combustion. See Sight Alignment. whose utilization is prescribed by match conditions. See Boxer Primer and Berdan Primer. An extra member of a competitive team. See Ballistic Coefficient. personnel. Referring to the mainspring housing of the . A place where firearms and instruments of war are deposited. or military objectives. To render soft. Also describes the degree of deviation from a plotted course or trajectory. grenades. German manufacturer that produces standard and free rifles. See Small Arms. a manufactory (usually one belonging to the government) of arms.Air Gun Air Resistance Alibi A weapon which uses air to propel the projectile. To subject a metal to electrolytic action as the anode of a cell in order to coat it with a protective film or color. Police armories are usually vaults with alarms and access controls. such as rifles. pistols. as in the case of metals by heating to a low red heat.

belt or strip. An NRA term meaning a centerfire rifle of any caliber or weight. Same as Adapter. not equipped with a Schuetzen-type butt plate or palm rest. and to reload by stripping and feeding another cartridge from the magazine and into the chamber. The trigger must be pressed for each successive shot. The overall performance rating of an individual in his ability to score with a particular type of weapon. not usually public. Normally has a hardened steel alloy core. The act of building a weapon to a complete unit. and light automatic weapons. Also.Armor-Piercing A projectile designed for use against armored aircraft and vehicles. An NRA term meaning a sight without restrictions as to material or construction. and the pressure on the trigger is continued. shoulder. a collection of parts so assembled as to form a portion of. or complete weapon. extraction. The area to the rear of the firing line where competitors assemble prior to their relay being called to the ready line and the firing line. determined after firing a definite number of rounds or matches. reloading. repeating firearms. manufacture or issue of arms and military equipment whether for land or naval service. Arms in which the force of the explosion of each shot is used to unlock the mechanism. from parts already manufactured. locking and firing continuously. An establishment. repair. as long as the ammunition lasts in the magazine. extract and eject the empty shell. Prize given to winning shooters or teams. ejection. Arms in which the force of the explosion of the first shot is used to continue the operation of unlocking. A competition term describing any supporting surface not specifically authorized for a shooting position. especially pistols. nor with a trigger capable of set trigger functioning. A term used to describe hand. This number is usually figured on a percentile basis and is used in establishing a classification. Arms Arsenal Artificial Support Assembly Assembly Line Autoloading Automatic Auxiliary Chamber Average Award Any Rifle Any Sight 163 . This name is commonly applied (in error) to autoloading. for the storage.

or modification of missiles. a hill. solid core bullet intended for use against personnel and material targets not otherwise requiring armor piercing or other special ammunition. See also Interior Ballistics. or force. The science that deals with the motion. A numerical value. in precision shooting. or actually does. real or imaginary. which will safely deflect. designated as a decimal fractional equivalent between the numbers zero and one. appearance. and crossfires. condition. Extreme forward point of projectile.Aperture A front or rear sight. Exterior Ballistics. using a hole for viewing to obtain sight picture and alignment. or any other barrier. One of the factors used in a formula to determine a ballistic coefficient. Apex Axis Backing Targets Backstop Base Wad Baffles Ball Ammunition Ballistics Ballistic Coefficient Ballistic Form Factor 164 . which indicates the effect which air resistance will have upon the flight of a missile or projectile. temperature or any other modifying substance. Its function is to seal the chamber. The larger the ballistic coefficient. An integral part of shotshell construction. prevent sticking of fired shells. propellants. and Terminal Ballistics. A mound of earth. The art of designing missiles or projectiles so as to give them efficient motion and flight behavior with the limitations set up by their purpose. Small arms cartridges with a general purpose. and aid in obtaining uniform pressures and velocities. that passes through a body and about which the body may. wind. revolve. to assist in identifying the number of rounds fired. Also the adjustable or changeable disks that are components of the front or rear sight to obtain different diameter holes for viewing. stop or absorb bullets. used on the firing range. gravity. behavior. to deflect and/or absorb stray or ricochet bullets. A straight line. the more closely will the trajectory correspond to the ideal flight which would be obtained if the missile could be projected in a vacuum. which separates the brass head from the powder charge. Structures of wood or other materials. A blank target placed to the rear of the scoring targets. protect the shooter from blowback. rifling.

Movement of the barrel during the process of firing. A ring. Band. usually of metal. A predetermined sight setting that. enters a counterbored chamber and the "belt" around the head of the case strikes the shoulder or forward face of the counterbore. or other material. plus those of the rimless type. These movements are transmitted to the barrel by the forces of the propelling gas and the kinetic energy developed by the projectile. usually linked. thus seating solidly into the chamber. Description of a weapon locked in firing position. This shoulder gives the appearance of a metallic "belt" around the case. receiver and guard.Ball Powder A propellant composed of small dense spheres of nitrocellulose coated with a layer of nitro-glycerine and a detergent. A belt-like cloth. will enable the firer to engage targets effectively at battle ranges when conditions do not permit exact setting of sights. encircling the barrel. Short for ammunition belt. Barrel Bandoleer (or Bandolier) Barrel Barrel Blank Barrel Whip Battery Battery Cup Battle Sights Bead Beaver Tail Bedding Belt Belted Cartridge 165 . A small knob of metal on a firearm near the muzzle. therefore. That part of a gun or firearm through which the projectile is fired and which gives direction to the projectile. A primer housing used in shotshell reloading. with compartments designed for carrying ammunition. but unchambered and unthreaded. A cartridge design of the rimless type. worn suspended over one shoulder. employing a step-cut or shoulder approximately one-eighth inch in front of the extractor groove. to increase and maintain its accuracy. A steel rod or tube that has been bored and rifled for a given caliber. used for a front sight in aiming. The belted case. to its stock. The precision fitting by hand of a rifle barrel. used for attaching forearms or other parts or accessories. across the chest. or under the arm. The belted case gives all the desirable features of the rimmed case. The forearm portion of a rifle or shotgun whose dimensions are wider than normal. carried on a weapon.

whose anvil is constructed out of part of the cartridge case. (b) A type of sport or competition shooting. used as a propellant or explosive. caliber. equipment and shooting methods. A cartridge having. The goals of organized bench rest shooters are development and encouragement of extreme accuracy in rifles. A weapon which employs this method of operation is characterized by the absence of any breech lock or bolt lock mechanism. Sighting with both eyes open. Bend Berdan Primer Biathlon Big Bore Binocular Vision Bipod Black Powder Blacken Sights eliminate Blade Sight A metal blade. (a) Escape. a ruptured cartridge case or a faulty primer. Not interchangeable with the Boxer Primer. The drop below the line of sight at the comb and heel of a buttstock. The common method is to use a carbide lamp allowing flame to deposit carbon on the sights.Bench Rest Bench Rest Shooting A rigid bench for rest shooting of firearms. popular in Europe and Asia. (a) Shooting from a bench rest. potassium nitrate and sulfur. (b) Type of weapon operation in which the force of the expanding gases acting to the rear against the face of the bolt furnishes all the energy required to initiate the complete cycle of operation of the gun. An event combining cross-country ski racing and shooting. the ultimate aim being to have all shots of one group in one bullet hole. There are practically no restrictions as to weapon size. to the rear and under pressure. A mixture of finely divided charcoal. where an attempt is made to fire a number of shots into the smallest possible group. A center fire primer. attached to the upper side of the barrel near the muzzle. in place of a projectile. shape or weight. of gases formed during the firing of the gun. A slang term used to define the weapons used in NRA or National High Power Rifle Matches. Blowback may be caused by a defective breech mechanism. design. To apply any black substance to sights to glare. a paper cup or wadding in the mouth of the case. ammunition. A two-legged stand or mount for a scope or weapon. Blank Cartridge Blowback 166 .

The steel machining at the rear of the bolt that serves to unite all the components of the bolt assembly. A device used to examine the interior surfaces of the bore of a weapon. It usually contains the extractor and firing pin. May be due to excessive pressure. This means that he can keep his muscles relaxed and avoid the tremors that develop from strain and tension. (a) The interior of the barrel through which the charge or bullet passes. and supports the base of the cartridge. The forward section of a two-piece bolt. (b) The diameter measured from land to land. improper firing pin length. when not affected by wind shift.Blown Primer A primer that has ruptured or unseated itself in the base of the cartridge. boiling-like motion of mirage. by reducing base drag. or the brass case being improperly annealed (soft brass). or a mount for a small remote camera which projects the image on a screen for the purpose of examining the interior of the barrel. A device containing mirrors to inspect the bore. That portion of the bolt grasped for manual operation. A firearm whose locking and unlocking action is controlled by the manual operation of the bolt. The tapered rear end of a bullet designed to increase ballistic efficiency at long range. The position the firer assumes that allows him to use his bones to support the weight of the weapon and use his muscles principally to hold bones in their supporting position. Bluing Boat-tail Boil Bolt Bolt Action Bolt Face Bolt Handle Bolt Head Bolt Sleeve Bone Support Bore Bore Reflector Borescope 167 . That portion of the bolt that engages and supports the head (or base) of the cartridge. Usually a collection of lenses within a tube. An oxidizing process which is used to color metal in various shades of blue and tends to prevent rust. The appearance of an upward. May also be a fiber-optic device. A sliding mechanism that closes the breech in some types of small arms. capable of enlarging the view of the area being inspected. defective primer. with a reflecting mirror and light.

The projectile fired from a small gun. Empty brass cartridge case. Browning or the Browning Arms Company. (The bullet pull is used as a measure of the uniformity and efficiency of the crimp holding the bullet in its case) Bottleneck Boulenge Test Boxer Primer Brass Breath Control Breech Breech Block Browning Bridge Bull Gun Bullet Bullet Base Bullet Drop Bullet Gauge Bullet Profile Bullet Pull 168 . Shape of bullet from nose to base. insuring greater accuracy. The extra weight of the barrel reduces vibration. The rear end of the barrel into which the cartridge is inserted. The energy required to pull a bullet from its case. It is a completely self-contained unit whose anvil is a small metal cone inside the primer cup. An extra heavy barreled sporting or target rifle. Metal arch connecting both sides of a receiver. to stop further oxidation or rust. in such a manner as to minimize disturbance of sight alignment and sight picture. such as the Browning Automatic Rifle. To exercise proper control of the breath during the aiming and firing process. Any steel device used to seal the breech of a rifle at the instant of firing. (b) Any weapon designed or manufactured by John M. A method of determining bullet velocity by using a type of chronograph. Gauges normally used to measure the diameter and concentricity of a bullet.Boresight An instrument inserted in the bore of a weapon to determine the bore axis and its alignment with the sights of the weapon. (a) An oxidation produced and retained on the surface of gun barrels by means of acid. Rearmost end of the bullet. A cartridge case whose neck diameter is smaller than its base. The vertical drop of a bullet due to gravity. A center fire primer favored in the United States.

A plate of metal. to cant a rifle. The visible path of a bullet passing through the atmosphere which can best be seen through properly adjusted optical aids. calibers are normally expressed in millimeters. Locking or moving with a cam. used in conjunction with a cam or roller assembly. The portion of a stock from the action rearward. (b) The blackened area of a target. plastic or horn placed on the butt to protect the buttstock against damage. it is often cut into the surface of a bolt. also a shot which hits it. Bullseye Butt Plate Buttstock Cam Cam Effect Camming Slot Cannelure Cant Caliber Call Carbide 169 . In firearms. the caliber is measured from the surface of one land to the land directly opposite. providing a purchase for the extractor. the diameter of the bore of a gun barrel. The ability of a shooter to determine the approximate location of his hit on the target through noting the position of the sights at the instant of firing. The diameter of a projectile. A chemical whose reaction when mixed with water. the calibers of small arms and their ammunition are usually expressed in hundredths or thousands of an inch. as. eccentrically pivoted. placed in different parts of weapon actions to give short locking motions. An engagement surface. produces an acetylene gas. hence any successful hit. In the US and Great Britain. when so expressed. a groove in a cartridge case. A groove in a bullet for containing a lubricant or into which the cartridge case is crimped. In continental Europe. To revolve to the right or left on the axis of the bore while aiming. and used to cause rotation of the bolt for locking or unlocking. as of a bullet or shell. In rifled arms.Bullet Puller Bullet Trace Device used to remove a bullet from the cartridge case. (c) A trade name for a commercially produced pistol powder. A rotating piece. usually a diagonal recess. the designation usually represents a close approximation rather than an exact measurement. (a) The center of a target.

powder and primer. A method of shortening a cartridge case to a specific length. It is called cast-on when to the left. The process of hardening the surface of metal while leaving the core soft. from a straight line with the axis of the bore. Carbine Carrier Block Cartridge Cartridge Case Case Forming Case Gauge Case Hardening Case Trimming Cast Bullet Casting Cast-Off Cease Fire Center Fire Challenge 170 . An instrument used to measure the case length against a standard. The form of cartridge case in which the primer is placed directly in the center of the base. Such challenge must be made immediately upon the posting of the score. Usually a brass or steel case used to house bullet. For the right-handed person. A bullet formed by pouring molten alloy into a die and letting it harden. Forming objects by pouring molten metal or other liquids into a mold. Resizing the cartridge case to a specified size and shape by the use of a resizing die. Usually found in pump and automatic shotguns and some types of rifles. powder. case and primer. A complete round of ammunition. The command given to cause all firing to stop immediately. originally used by cavalry. When a competitor feels that a shot fired by himself or another competitor has been improperly evaluated or scored.Carbide Lamp A miner's-type lamp whose flame is used to put carbon deposits on sighting equipment to reduce glare. That part of a weapon which lifts a round from the magazine and lines it up with the chamber. he may challenge the scoring. A light weight shoulder arm or rifle having a short barrel. it is to the right on all rifles and shotguns. containing bullet. The distance a stock is offset at the heel to the right.

some classifications used are: MASTER. mine shell or cartridge with a charge or propellant or explosive filler. (a)A given quantity of explosive. He is responsible for range safety and enforcing all rules. A unit attached to a weapon to chamber the first round. in match conditions. (b) To insert a round of ammunition in the chamber of a firearm or gun. to operate the bolt so as to chamber a round of ammunition. to improve the grip. A projection on a part of the butt stock to afford a rest for the cheek at the time of firing a rifle. by predicted performance. The average scores of an individual. In NRA matches. using time lapse principles.Chamber (a) The compartment at the rear of a gun barrel that holds a charge or cartridge. Pressure created by the rapid burning of a propellant within the chamber of a weapon. attempting to eliminate unfair advantage of one person over another. When all shots have gone into the highest numerical scoring ring or rings. that are used to permit competition between individuals that have similar or equal abilities. with a particular weapon. during firing. MARKSMAN. Diamond-shaped patterns incised in metal and wood for ornamentation. a cartridge or round of ammo. (b) In small arms. A rod with various attachments used in cleaning the bore of a weapon. An electrical device used to measure the velocity of a projectile. bullet or shell. and. A unit used to rapidly feed rounds into a magazine. when used on a stock. A saucer-shaped disc used as a target in skeet and trap shooting. A shotgun bore slightly constricted at the muzzle. (d) To charge a gun. EXPERT. Will have full charge of the range and pits and will conduct matches on the schedule approved by the executive officer of the range or club. or used as the propellant for a bomb. SHARPSHOOTER. (c) To fill a bomb. Chamber Pressure Charge Charger Charger Clip Checker Cheek Piece Chief Range Officer Choke Bore Chronograph Classification Clay Targets (Clays) Clean Target Cleaning Rod 171 . for matting the surface. one of the compartments in the cylinder of a revolver. either by itself.

A round left in a hot chamber. Shooting trainer. but erroneous. A group of three or more bullet holes that touch each other. or director. affecting the strike of the bullet. The projecting end of the striker. or bursting. instructor. (b) Term used to describe the act of removing all ammunition sources from the weapon to make it safe. The ridge which forms the upper edge of a buttstock. (b) A popular. (c) Act of checking the weapon ensure all ammunition has been removed. sometimes a professional. primer. bolt. propellant. A pair of guide grooves milled into the forward end of a rifle receiver bridge so as to hold a clip in position for loading. plunger or firing pin of a firearm to make ready for firing. but which has not reached a temperature to initiate firing. extending back and free of the bolt in a bolt-action weapon. Click Clip Clip Shot Clover Leaf Group Coach Coated Lens Cock Cocking Piece Cook-Off Cooked Round Comb Commands Compensator 172 . Ballistics of this round are not usually the same as a normally fired round. a gun or firearm. To draw back the hammer. or explosion in. caused by an overheated chamber or barrel igniting a fuse. Term used to describe the mechanical adjustment of the rear sight. A device used on a barrel of a weapon to reduce recoil and muzzle rise. The accidental and spontaneous discharge of. Term used in scoring targets on which five or more shots are fired so closely as to make it impossible to distinguish the individual bullet holes. (a) A metal device for holding ammunition ready for insertion into certain types of firearms or magazines. Orders given on a range for the conducting of all firing. On many sights the action will make a clicking sound. Magnesium fluoride coating on an optical surface to increase light transmission and improve contrast.Clear (a) Term used to express the fact that the range is clear for firing or proceeding downrange. scoring and target operation. term used to describe a box-type magazine.

by revolution about an axis. Type of reticle used in telescopic sights. Cone Cordite Core Coriolis Force Creep Crimp Cross Fire Cross Hair Crown Cyclic Rate Cylinder Cylinder Bore Damascus Danger Zone 173 . that which is covered by the jacket. In competition. used in making shotguns in the 19th century. adding a small percentage of vaseline. diverting the object to the right of the velocity in the northern hemisphere. projectile). formed by absorbing nitroglycerine in guncotton. A deflecting force exerted by the rotation of the earth upon any object in motion. The part of a multifiring firearm holding a number of cartridges and presenting the loads successively for firing. To mechanically fold inward the mouth of a cartridge case about the base of the bullet. A shotgun barrel without constriction or "choke". the maximum rate of fire for a given weapon. especially one having no function apart from the whole. An early double-based smokeless powder. keep as much of the brass case in the chamber as possible. bullet. as an airplane. The guns were produced by twisting together dissimilar metal strips and welding them. The awareness of trigger movement during application of pressure.Component A constituent part of the whole. and extruding the mixture through a die into long strings or cords. Applied to the rate of fire of an automatic weapon. The internal part of a bullet. The angle cut in the breech end of a barrel to allow the bolt to be breeched tighter and therefore. air particle or automobile. Two or more intersecting lines of fire. such as cartridge components (primer. when a shooter fires on a target other than his own. sealing it in place. to eliminate burrs and control the path of escaping gases. Any area forward of a firing line as defined by range regulations or rules. powder. A highly ornamental combination of metals. The cut made at the muzzle end of a barrel. and to the left in the southern. The rate at which a succession of movements repeats itself.

A propellant containing nitrocellulose and nitroglycerine. Such a reaction is sudden and instantaneous. The scattering of shots or pellets fired on a target. A firing cycle whereby the hammer is cocked for firing by the rearward movement of the trigger. A compound used as a stabilizer in the of smokeless powders. An establishment for storing supplies or records. for maintaining equipment. A malfunction in a semiautomatic weapon resulting in the firing of a second round automatically. Usually resulting from the effects of wind. resulting in an explosion. but sometimes specifically due to reactions set up by the projectile rotation. Process of removing a primer from a cartridge case. A lateral divergence of a projectile from the projected line of its heading.Dead Rod Decapping Degressive Powder A malfunctioning operating rod on an M1 rifle. or form metal by pressure. A combustion process which produces a vigorous evolution of smoke and flame. A compound or element which is added to an explosive to reduce its burning rate. A point reached in a pressure curve where additional pressures will no longer produce additional velocity of the projectile. A propellant whose surface area and rate of evolution of gas decreases as the powder burns. A tool used to cut. Dispersion Double Double Action Double Base Powder Double Barreled Double Firing Drift 174 . Delta Depot Deterrent Detonate Die Diphenylamine manufacture Disk An implement used by target pit personnel to signal the value of each shot to the firing line. Two bullet holes that appear as one. or for assembling and processing personnel. such as graphite which is used to coat smokeless powders. A rifle having two barrels. and which moves through a material at speeds faster than the speed of sound (1100 feet per second). stamp.

and the limits of human vision. A bomb. A lens in an optical instrument for making the image appear erect instead of inverted.Drop (a) The vertical drop of a projectile. A non-functioning cartridge. maintenance testing or display. A person practicing the fundamentals of marksmanship with a weapon. (c) The setting on the vertical adjustment of a rear sight to allow sufficient trajectory to strike a selected target. A device used either in skeet or trap shooting to throw the clay target into the air. (b) Distance measured from the line of sight to the top of the heel and comb of a gun stock. without the use of live ammunition. Also. Usually found on rifle bolts and inside fine watches. A device used to protect the ears from the sound of weapons firing. A series of small circles polished in metal which overlap to form a pleasing and finishing effect. Dry Fire Dud Dummy Ear Plug Effective Range Ejection Ejector Elbow Pad A cushion for the elbow usually attached to the sleeve of a shooting jacket or coat. (a) Height or altitude. used for training. (b) The distance at which the average man can place hits on a target within the kill zone. (b) The angle of elevation. primarily used to hold small amounts of oil as a lubricant and rust inhibitor. Limitations placed on this range are the terminal effect of a projectile. The raised sighting plane placed on top of the barrels of a shotgun or rifle. A part in a firearm for throwing out shells or cartridges. the firing or "snap firing" of any weapon with an empty chamber. The process where a case or cartridge is being thrown from the weapon by the ejector. bomb or shell. (a) The range up to which a weapon operates with the desired effect. Electric Trap Elevated Rib Elevation Energy Engine Turn Erector Lens 175 . or cartridge that has failed to function. The capacity for doing work and overcoming resistance. shell.

to denote a rifle of greater velocity than normal. Distance from the aiming eye to the rear sight. A measure of the diameter of the field of vision which the observer can see at one time while looking through the telescope. maintenance or inspection.Erosion Wearing away of a weapon bore due to combined effects of gas washing. scoring and mechanical abrasion. A unit of measure used to indicate velocity of a bullet. The exploding gases expand the case and cause it to conform to the diameter and shape of the chamber. Practice firing with a weapon. A favor does not exceed more than one minute of angle. Such as the command. To disassemble the major components of a firearm for cleaning. A slanted metal surface at the rear of a barrel which guides cartridges into the chamber during feeding. distinguishes a rifle of extreme power and velocity. "favor right". a coaching command which causes the shooter to aim his group right or left. In rifle team shooting. The process of driving live cartridges from the magazine or belt into the path of the bolt or slide. The term NITRO EXPRESS. To shape a cartridge case by firing it in a larger chamber. A part in the gun for removing shells or cartridges from the chamber. Expert Extended Front Sight Extraction Extractor Express rifle Eye Relief Familiarization firing Favor Feeding Feed ramp Feet per second Field of view Field strip Fire form 176 . The process of removing a live or spent cartridge case or shell from the chamber of a weapon. It was a black powder term. A bar of steel or extension of the front sight to increase the sight radius. velocity and chemical action. The highest level of qualification attainable in military qualification courses of fire. an eminent British gunmaker. as now used. Corrections greater than this are made by sight movement. A term coined by Purdey. the bore diameter becomes enlarged. Due to the high temperatures. prior to chambering.

A firing station on a firing line. such as position. squeezing. breathing. A spasmodic physical reaction. A rod or plunger that strikes and detonates a primer to fire the main explosive or propelling charge. usually caused by anticipation of recoil. etc. sighting. also called the fore-end. That part of a magazine on which the cartridges rest for feeding.Firing line Firing pin A line at which marksmen are stationed for firing. A spring that transmits energy for function to the follower. The base or bottom of a magazine or receiver. The accumulation of a deposit within the bore of a firearm caused by solid products remaining after a cartridge has been fired. etc. that causes inaccuracy in shooting. A substance or mixture used to facilitate the amalgamation of metals or minerals when melting them. Firing point Flash hole Flat base Flinch Floor plate Flux Folded Follower Follower spring Follow through Forearm Fouling Fouling shots Frangible bullet Free bore 177 . A cartridge in which the base of the case is folded to form the primer pocket. glass. which upon striking a target breaks into a powder or small fragments without penetrating. The portion of the stock lying under the barrel in front of the action. A type of base used on a bullet. The purpose is to reduce chamber pressure. A type of barrel rifling where lands have either been completely eliminated. are fluxes. or reduced in front of the chamber. Shots fired for the purpose of warming the bore so that following rounds will be better stabilized. borax. A brittle plastic or non-metallic bullet for firing practice. When all the elements of firing a shot are maintained until the shot strikes the target.. A hole in the head of a cartridge case through which the primer flash ignites the propellant.

spark or friction. Also. An instrument or tool used for measuring a dimension against and established standard. used in conjunction with the cycle of operation in a weapon.Foot pound A measurement of the expenditure of energy. the gases themselves cause the rearward motion of the action assembly components through direct pressure against these parts. An automatic or semi-automatic weapon that utilizes part of the expanding propellant gases in the barrel to unlock the bolt and actuate the loading mechanism. or a one pound object two feet. especially a shotgun. This metal can be readily engraved by the lands as the bullet moves down the bore. Usually used to express the energy of a bullet exiting a muzzle. A completely jacketed bullet. A device (usually shaped like a cup) fitted over the base of a bullet designed to prevent the hot gases from fusing or melting the base of the bullet and to act as a gas seal. causing the action assembly components to move. In gas-operated systems. Typically 85% copper and 15% zinc. or scale of measurement. a small hole drilled into the barrel through which some of the expanding gases escape to furnish power for the auto-loading cycle. An explosive compound extremely sensitive to shock. such as military ammo. as determined by the number per pound of spherical projectiles fitting the bore. Full metal case Fulminate of Mercury Function Gage Gain twist Gas check bullet Gas-operated Gas port Gauge Gilding metal 178 . used to set off other explosives. A foot pound is that unit of effort which will lift a one pound object one foot. Operate. Two foot pounds will either lift a two pound object one foot. A system of rifling in which the pitch of the lands and grooves increases from breech to muzzle in order to gradually accelerate a bullet to maximum rotational velocity as it leaves the muzzle. thickness gage. such as a headspace gage. the size of the bore of a firearm. erosion gage. Soft metal used to jacket a small arms bullet. etc. A measurement. In the direct method. standard measure. a piston forces an operating rod to the rear. In the indirect method. and so on.

Glass bedding An epoxy resin (glass) used to ensure better fit between the rifle barrel and action to the wood of the stock. The spiral grooves cut into the bore of certain types of firearms.5 grains per ounce. A unit of weight based on the approximate weight of a single heart-grain contained within a kernel of wheat. a series of three or more holes made in a target by a series of successive shots. A soft form of carbon used as a lubricant and as a glaze for grains of propellant to prevent the buildup of static electricity and the danger of premature explosion. receiver and breech mechanism. There are 7000 grains in one pound. to enable a projectile to present its point in the direction of motion. A person who manufactures. A wood or metal cover which encloses the upper half of a rifle barrel and protects the firers' hands from heat. Also used to strengthen the recoil mortise in the stock. using controlled explosives to shoot projectiles or signal flares. but when used with nitroglycerine and suitable amounts of solvents. or 437. The operating lever which turns the cylinder when the hammer is pulled back on the receiver. The mechanism that strikes the firing pin or percussion cap in a firearm. to impart spin to the projectile for the purpose of aerodynamic stabilization. In firearms. Short for bullet group. Bullet weights and powder measures are typically expressed in grains. modifies or repairs guns. imparting the needed spin to a projectile around its longitudinal axis. A high explosive formed by the action of sulphuric acid and nitric acid upon cellulose. Its shattering effect is too high to be used as a propellant. The rate of acceleration of a body falling to the earth. A gun whose hammers are concealed within. A gun whose hammers are on the outside of the action. it forms the main ingredients of many modern propellants. Also used as a flash inhibitor. Grain Graphite Gravity factor Groove Group Gun Guncotton Gunsmith Gyrostatic stability Hammer Hammerless Hammer gun Hand (pistol) Handguard 179 . A mechanism consisting essentially of a barrel. usually by rifling.

In centerfire systems. (b) An action (heeling). A projecting circular covering placed around the front sight to prevent damage. The head of the case is actually at the bottom of the round.45 caliber ammo. May or may not have controlled expansion features. in contact with the bolt. A strike or impact on a target by a bullet. which includes the extractor groove or rim. primer pocket and primer. A fixed front sight sometimes confused with a globe sight which has interchangeable front sights. (a) To hold fire. In rimless. in contact with the face of the locked bolt. Portion of a cartridge case. to the commencement of the shoulder angle of the chamber. i.Hand loading Manufacture of ammunition by an individual using hand tools. A brief delay of a round of ammunition in firing. caused by the firer tightening the large muscle in the heel of the hand to keep from jerking the trigger. Markings on the head of a cartridge case that usually indicate the source and date of manufacture. Butt extension of a rifle which fits under the armpit of a shooter. A term used to describe government issue fully-jacketed ball ammunition. (b) A sight picture obtained by the shooter and described as a hold. to the mouth of the cartridge case where it contacts the shoulder of the chamber inside the barrel. In rimfire systems.e. or the top of a buttplate. the distance from the base of the cartridge in contact with the recoil plate or slide face. the distance between the base of the cartridge. usually refers to . Hangfire Hard ball Head Headspace Head stamp Heavy slide Heel Hit Hold Hollow point Hooded sight Hook 180 . straight walled handgun cartridges. to the point of the chamber where the opposing side of the rim makes contact. (a) The upper rear corner of a buttstock. the distance between the base of the rim. Sometimes inverted to fit over the shoulder of a shooter in the prone position. 6 o'clock hold or center hold. Addition of weight to a slide to reduce recoil. to refrain from shooting.. after being struck or subjected to other igniting action. A projectile with a cavity within its point. Also used to describe the act of re-loading a previously fired cartridge case.

the capacity of a moving body for performing work. A bullet that is lubricated before loading. The metallic covering of a bullet.e. i.Housing A covering or frame used to protect integral parts of a firearm. Part of a sling used to prevent the sling from coming loose. usually causing a bad hit on the target. containing lubricant grooves not visible in the finished cartridge. or when the firer does not have time to make sight adjustments. etc. Unimproved metallic sights. to give luster. The effort by the firer to fire a weapon at the precise moment the sights align with the target. Built into a barrel containing a minimum degree of choke. Area in which projectiles are expected to strike. A process whereby certain parts of a weapon are polished in a circular pattern. That energy exerted by a moving body by virtue of its motion. Tumbling of a bullet in flight caused by failure of the bullet to receive sufficient spin from the rifling. ejection or the like. The action a person performs when a stoppage has occurred in a weapon. being quantitatively one-half the mass times the velocity squared. Immediate action Impact Impact area Improved cylinder Initiator Inside lubricated Iron sights Jacket Jam Jerk Jewel Keeper Kentucky windage Keyholing Kick Kinetic energy 181 . to put the weapon back into operation with little or no loss of time. More technically. To stick or become inoperative because of improper loading. owing to its own motion. trigger housing.. The striking of a projectile on a target or surface. Used to describe the recoil of a firearm at the moment of firing. A form of sighting and aiming usually employed when a weapon has non-adjustable sights. mainspring housing. A sensitive explosive that detonates to initiate the action in an explosive train or device. Type of choke on a shotgun which controls the shot pattern. May be leather rings or metallic hooks.

when charged with abrasive. Rear sight for small arms. The straight line between an observer's eye and a target along which sight is taken. The action of aiming ahead of a moving target. The marks left on the target by the bullet as it passes through the target. (b) A particular combination of components that comprise a loaded cartridge. Known distance firing Knurl Laminated stock Land Lap Lead Leaded barrel Leaded edge Leaf sight Length of pull Lever Lever action Line of bore Line of sight Load 182 . hinged so it can be raised for aiming or lowered to keep from being broken when not in use. The gluing of thin strips of wood together into order to produce a stock that will resist warpage and give added strength. usually made of lead. The extended bore axis of a gun. The moving handle which locks or unlocks the action in guns or double rifles. usually used on target and bench rest stocks. To checker or roughen a surface to afford better grip. No other part of the body touches the ground. Purpose of this type of firing is to give the shooter the opportunity to apply all the principles of marksmanship. A rifle whose action is operated by a lever under the stock. (a) To place ammunition is a gun. Standard length of pull for rifles is usually 13. iron or copper. He learns to zero his weapon for all usable ranges and to make practical application of sight adjustments. is used for fine grinding or polishing.Kneeling position A position that is assumed by the shooter where the weight of the body is supported on one knee and the opposite foot. Excessive lead deposit in the grooves of a barrel. so as to hit the target. One of the raised portions in the bore of a rifled gun. A plug. The distance from the center of the trigger to the center of the butt.5 inches. Usually serves as a trigger guard as well as an actuating device.

i.. ammunition or equipment used for competitive match purposes. and function.Loading block Device designed to limit a specified number of rounds. Training conducted for purpose of teaching disassembly and assembly of weapons. Extension on a locking mechanism that locks the breech. the plug in a shotgun is a loading block. accuracy and ammunition. i. The greatest distance to which a weapon can shoot. The swing away portion of a revolver which permits the loading and unloading of the cylinder. The improper operation of any part of a weapon. fitting into the corresponding locking recesses.e. (b) That part of a gun or firearm that ammunition ready for feeding and chambering. but a slightly different process using a blacklight and special dye. Loading gate Locking lugs Lubricate Lubrication groove Machine rest Magazine holds Magnaflux A process used for detecting invisible minute cracks and flaws in ferrous metals. That part of a weapon which furnishes energy to the hammer or striker. using powdered metal. Skill in shooting small arms. (a) A structure or compartment for storing ammunition or explosives. A device used to support a weapon in place to check functioning. Magnaglo Magnum Mainspring Malfunction Marksmanship Match Match grade Maximum effective range Maximum ordinate Maximum range Mechanical training Mercuric primer 183 . A shooting competition for the award of prizes.e. Normally found on a single action revolver. A primer containing fulminate of mercury. care. oil. Special weapons. cleaning.. etc. A substance used to reduce friction. The greatest distance the average shooter may inflict casualties or damage. Highest point of trajectory above the line of sight. A term used to denote a weapon of more than normal power. Grooves on a bullet that are filled with lubricant. Used for the same purpose as magnaflux.

Sudden air pressure exerted at the muzzle of a gun by the rush of hot gases and air upon firing. Mushroom Muzzle Muzzle blast Muzzle brake 184 . An optical phenomenon produced by a stratum of hot air of varying density across which the observer sees reflections.0472 inches at 100 yards of distance. A rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation.Metallic sights Micro sights Any sight not containing optical lenses. A true mil is the angle determined by an arc. will move the strike of a bullet 1 foot on the circumference. The movement of a 1000 foot radius. when it descends to the heel portion. A device attached to the muzzle of a gun barrel which uses escaping gases to reduce the effective recoil force of the barrel assembly on the carriage or frame. The end of the barrel of a gun from which the bullet emerges. The sixtieth part of one degree which amounts to about 1. Mouth (a) The opening at the end of a muzzle. the length of which is 1/1000th of the radius. Usually seen as heat waves. It also reduces muzzle blast and muzzle flash. A unit of angular measurement used in gunnery. A form of butt stock in which the comb is carried back horizontally almost to the butt. used on handguns. the mil is considered to be 1/6400th of the circumference (instead of 1/6283. Failure to hit a target. Expansion of a projectile. Viewing with only one eye while shooting. as there are 6283 true mils in a circle). Device used for the placement of sights on Micrometer sights Mid-range Mil Minute of angle Mirage Misfire Miss Monocular vision Monte Carlo Mounts weapons. The point halfway between the firing line and target. A momentary or permanent failure of a round of ammunition to fire after igniting action is taken. (b) The opening at the end of a cartridge case. by 1 mil. Normally refers to a rear sight which has 1/4 or less minute of angle graduations.

(b) That area of a bullet from the widest part to the point. used in double based powders. Nitric acid mixed with glycerine. The inside diameter of a cartridge neck. and which emerges from the muzzle with the projectile. it is highly explosive and unstable. The curved or tapered front of a projectile. relative to the gun. A measurement made from the line of sight to the line of trajectory of the bullet at any point. A tool used to slightly enlarge the neck of a cartridge case that has been fired. An operation used in reloading to shorten a cartridge case to a specified length. The correct position of the body in relationship to the target. as it emerges from the muzzle. The eyepiece of an optical instrument. usually a single perforated cylindrical grain whose burning area remains constant. As a liquid. The sealing of a chamber in a gun to prevent the escape of gas in a particular direction. A term applied to primers containing no potassium sulfate. That portion of a cartridge used to contain the rear of a bullet.Muzzle flash That portion of visible light emitted by the combustion of the propellant. forming what is called guncotton. Nitric acid mixed with cellulose (usually in the form of cotton or wood fiber). Usually expressed in feet per second. A propellant. A rear gunsight having an open notch. Muzzle velocity Natural point of aim Neck Neck reamer Neck size Neck trim Neutral powder Nitrocellulose Nitroglycerine Noncorrosive Nose Objective lens Obturation Ocular lens Ogive Open sight Ordinate 185 . used in smokeless powder. The speed of a bullet. The lens at the front of the telescope which forms the "primary image" of the object viewed. (a) That portion of a revolver hammer that strikes the primer.

relatively rough finish to a firearm by use of powdered iron and phosphoric acid. together with the needed maintenance tools and equipment. explosives. (b) A projectile fired from a gun that does not use gunpowder as a propellant force. and when the eye moves off the optical axis of the scope. An earthen mound protecting ranges.Ordnance Military weapons.e. or flatten by hammering with a peen. such as caused by shotgun pellets. parallax occurs only when in the optical system of the scope. A small hole in a weapon. To draw. Small gummed pieces of paper used to patch bullet holes on a target. i. Orifice Outside lubricated Overbore Over and Under Palm rest Paradox Parallax Parapet Parkerize Pasters Pattern Peening Peep sight Pellet 186 . combat vehicles. A gun or rifle in which the barrels are placed on top of one another. the gas port. To impart a dull.. Lubrication of a bullet's exterior. including the border and all master lines. A rear gunsight having a small hole in which the front sight is centered in aiming. the primary image of the object falls behind or in front of the reticle. bend. Usually referred to as a cartridge case with a greater powder capacity than is considered adequate for the size of the bore. and battle material collectively. with respect to the reticle. An apparent movement or displacement of objects in the field of view of a telescope. (a) A checkering pattern on a stock or grip. The term used to describe a barrel partially rifled at the muzzle. (a) One of a group of projectiles in shotgun shells. In a telescope sight. ammunition. (b) The shot pattern on a target. An extension or attachment below the rifle forearm which aids the normal handgrip.

Pistol (a) Any firearm. (b) The graphic curve of pressures in pounds per square inch resulting from various powder burning rates. as distinguished from a revolver. Pistol grip Pitch Plungers Point Post hooded. A gunstock. especially a self loading pistol. A slang term for gunpowder. such as the "prone" position. Force exerted against an opposing body. called strikers in bolt action rifles. usually short barreled. A corrosive salt found in black powder compositions. (c) A machine-pistol. Commonly called "saltpeter". applied and developed by students prior to actual firing. Various mechanical means by which weight or volume of powder may be measured. Potassium nitrate Powder Powder measure Powder scale Premarksmanship training Premium grade Pressure Pressure curve Pressure peak 187 . (a) The arc of the projectile in the La Boulenge Chronograph test to determine velocity. Match grade weapons further modified to specifications and designated by the stamped letters P. open or or may be incorporated in several manners and shapes. and which fires automatically. Position A prescribed method of holding a weapon. (b) A firearm in which the chamber is an integral part of the barrel. Usually a short barreled weapon firing pistol ammunition. (a) A firing point or stand. such as a piston. A vertical front sight. The greatest amount of pounds per square inch (PSI) of pressure created within the chamber. (b) Nose of a bullet. (b) The firing pins which are struck by the hammers in shotguns and double rifles. (a) Any cylindrical part that operates with a plunging action. A device used to measure powder by weight.G. The angle which the butt of a firearm takes in relation to the line of sight. A period of instruction in which the fundamentals of marksmanship are taught. within optical telescopes. It may be metallic. designed to be held and fired in one hand. any substance that can be used as a propellant in a cartridge. the grip of which turns down.

An object projected by an exterior force. A characteristic of most rifle powders whose burning increases as the volume increases. used in making smokeless powders and gelatin dynamites.000 PSI above standard loads. Primer cup Primer pocket Primer salt Primer setback Primer vent Progressive burning Projectile Proof Proof mark Proof test Propellant Pyrocellulose 188 . as occurs when the base of the cup is not properly supported by the bolt face or breech block. Located in the head of the cartridge case between the primer seat and the propellant in the case. electric impulse or some other disturbance to set off a propellant or an explosive. continuing in motion by virtue of its own inertia. The backward movement of a primer cup in a cartridge or shell case upon explosion of the propellant. A stamp used by gun manufacturers to identify all weapons having met the proof standard. used in small arms cartridges and certain other ammunition. to allow the primer flame to ignite the powder. A variety of pyroxylin. that creates pressure as a result of its combustion process. to maintain an increase in pressure on the base of the projectile. A recess formed in the head of a cartridge case to hold the primer. depending upon the manufacturer. A residue of potassium chlorate which is deposited in the bore through the use of corrosive primers. percussion. Proof test loads are usually 20.Primer A sensitive explosive device that responds to friction. an initiator. driving a projectile toward the muzzle of a weapon. Normally called the flash hole. A weapon which has successfully withstood the proof test load without showing signs of metal fatigue. An explosive powder charge for propelling a bullet. A small cup holding a primer mixture and other components. A standard set by gun manufacturers to insure a weapon will withstand a safe pressure for its given caliber. Proof marks are usually found on the underside of the barrel or receiver or both.

Commands used to ascertain if personnel are prepared to commence firing on a range. to which all other components are attached. Also. The individual in charge of firing on any given range. usually in pairs on opposing sides of the receiver. Also a deflecting surface used to position a bullet for chambering in an automatic weapon. receiver. The frame of a firearm. Rail Ramp Range (a) A prescribed area where weapons firing is conducted. as opposed to a forged or milled. where shooters may wait their turn to fire. In a semiautomatic weapon. A device inside a receiver used to guide the bolt or moving parts in a specified path. usually found on weapons which used a stamped. The backward movement of a gun or part thereof on firing. The force in foot pounds exerted rearwards by a firearm when fired.Qualification In the military. An inclined plane designed to give proper elevation to a front or rear sight. (b) The distance to a target from a firing point. the continued manipulation of the trigger assembly so as to fire a rapid succession of shots. caused by backward pressure of the recoil impulse. Range officer Rapid fire Ready commands Ready line Reamer Receiver Receiver bridge Receiver sight Recoil Recoil energy 189 . the mounting points for some sights or palm rests. for training or identification purposes. A tool used to enlarge a hole such as the primer pocket of a cartridge. A connector used to span the recess of a receiver to increase its strength. the minimum marksmanship score needed to attain a certain classification of shooting skill. a result of the equal but opposite reaction to the energy moving the bullet forward in the bore. Rear sight mounted directly on a receiver. such as a machine gun. The area just to the rear of the firing line.

while the projectile is in flight. A cushion attached to the butt of a shotgun or rifle to absorb recoil and protect the body of the shooter. used for defining the line of sight with greater accuracy. (b) To refill cartridge cases with primer. in the body of an optical telescope or other device. A piece of metal attached to the uppermost part of the slide or barrel. (a) To insert ammunition into an already-fired gun for the purpose of continuation of fire. tending to spin the slug to affect stability. A handgun having a rotating cylinder carrying several rounds of ammunition. Tools used in reloading ammunition. or fly off at an angle after striking an object or surface. (a) The action of cutting spiral grooves longitudinally into the bore of a gun barrel. Recoil pad Reload Reloading dies resizing Reloading tool Resizing A machine or device used in the loading of ammunition. Rest Reticle Revolver Rib Ricochet Rifle Rifled slug Rifling Rim 190 . A projectile used in shotgun ammunition with spiraled grooves. The outer or extreme circumference on the head of a cartridge used for head spacing in some cases. powder and projectiles. the theory being that the air forces through the grooves. To skip. (b) The spiral grooves cut in the bore of barrels. designed to be fired from the shoulder. to insure accuracy. normally located in the forward part of the action which transmits the recoil of the barrel and receiver group to the stock. improve the appearance of the weapon. bounce. and reduce barrel vibration. Used to raise the sighting plane. each round being in a chamber that comes into line with the barrel before firing. for the purpose of re-using the case. etc. wires or the like. and also for extraction. A support for a gun while firing. such as and recapping dies. A process whereby a cartridge case is swaged to a desired size or shape. seating and crimping dies. A system of lines.Recoil lug A metal surface. A firearm with a rifled bore.

The name is derived from the German term for a bird's beak. A mechanical device on a weapon to keep it from firing accidentally. A round of ammo which has been placed in the chamber of a hot weapon and heated. (b) Small cracks that appear in gunstocks due to moisture content changes and/or age. A slang term for shotgun. That part of the lockwork of a firearm that engages the hammer or striker to hold it in a cocked position. normally the scope base.Rimfire A cartridge in which the priming mixture is placed in the fold of the head of the shell. holding it to the rear. A cartridge case that is deformed with partial or complete circumferential separation around the body. That portion of a telescope that attaches the telescopes to another object. Type of hook used in positional shooting. Rimless Rimmed cartridge Ruptured cartridge Safety Safety fan Scaled round Scatter gun Schuetzen Schnabel Scope Scope mounts Score Sear Sear nose Season cracking 191 . (a) A small split in the cartridge brass case which occurs when the brass is old and the grain relaxed. The total value of all the required shots fired in a match or qualification course. A cartridge case design in which the case bears no rim about the head. The extractor in this case will fit into an extractor groove. within that area considered the danger zone. Short for telescope. A cartridge whose rim extends beyond the cartridge case to control headspace and facilitate extraction. The tip of a forearm when it is made in pointed or in ornamental form. The rim is crushed by the firing pin or striker to initiate the charge. The 35 degree area to the left and right of the line of fire (totaling 70 degrees). A portion of the sear that engages the notch of the of the hammer or striker. also called a cannelure. or a round that has been heated by the sun.

or the standard length commercial trigger. (b) A component used in the manufacture of shotgun shells. A slang term for cartridge case A tool used in rifle cartridge reloading for the purpose of facilitating ease of maintaining the cartridge case within the loading press.45 caliber pistol trigger. Hammer offset to the side of the breech. Similar to flinch. That part of the action assembly in a shotgun that holds a shotgun cartridge in proper position for feeding. chambering. Of a firearm or gun. (a) Terminology for a fired round.Sectional density Semiautomatic The weight of a bullet in grains. divided by its diameter. or removal. A thin piece of material placed between surfaces to obtain proper adjustments. Usually refers to the standard M1911A1 . using part of the force of an exploding cartridge to extract the empty case and chamber the next round. Usually two triggers are used. (a) In shotgun shooting. Cartridge typically used with shotguns. A device for lightening the trigger pull at will in order to remove the disturbing effect of a heavy pull during target shooting. A reaction of the shoulder toward the butt when anticipating recoil. but requiring a separate pull on the trigger to fire each round. the front trigger sets the sear. (b) In match or qualification firing. A classification used in qualification firing. Semi-rimmed Set trigger Sharpshooter Shell Shell holder Shell latch Shim Shot Shotgun Shotshell Shot string Short trigger Shoulder hunch Side by side Side lock 192 . A cartridge case design in which the case head bears both a rim and a hollow groove for the extractor. the firing of a series of shots as the result of a single command. A smoothbore gun used for firing a charge of small shot at short range. containing numerous pellets or projectiles. A weapon with two barrels placed next to each other. the elongation of the shot pattern. while a light touch on the rear trigger will discharge the round.

Side mount A metal fixture with rings used to secure a telescope sight to the side of a receiver. A name usually applied to the "hand" of the butt stock. made possible by cocking the hammer. A leather or web strap used to carry or support a rifle. thereby silencing sound waves. Commonly called the pistol grip. The distance from the front to rear sight. with the sights superimposed over the point of intended impact. A device through which a target is viewed to align the target with the path of the projectile. Sight Sight alignment Sight picture Sight radius Sighting shot Silencer Single action Single base powder Single shot Sitting position Sizing Skeet Skid shot Sling Slow fire Small of stock Smokeless powder 193 . The target as viewed by the shooter. a non-repeating firearm. A type of known distance firing in which one shot per minute is authorized. To shape cast a bullet to the desired diameter. When the front and rear sights are brought into proper alignment with the line of sight to the target. A shot gun sport in which shooters engage flying clay targets. A device fixed to a muzzle. Shots fired on a target used to adjust sights. with a double-action firearm. An elongated bullet hole of any length caused by the bullet entering the target while the target is turning into or out of view. Sitting with the weight of the body supported by the buttocks and feet or ankles. or to turn or shape a cartridge case to specific dimensions. sometimes compounded with nitroglycerine. to baffle propelling gases. (a) A firearm whose hammer must be cocked by hand before firing. (b) Type of fire. A type of smokeless powder. with no other portion of the body touching the ground. A weapon that is capable of loading with one round. made of nitrocellulose primarily. A nitrocellulose base powder.

closed at the base and with the lead exposed at the nose. caused by the rifling. The revolution of a bullet around its own axis. (a) A liquid capable of dissolving powder residue. and pointing upward. The act of fitting the cheeks or face to the side of the stock so that during recoil. and made of a standard measurement to fit the average person. A pointed bullet shape.Smooth bore Soft point bullets A firearm with no rifling. (b) A solution of ether and alcohol to cool burning of smokeless powder. A round of ammunition with little or no powder. Solvent Speed lock Spin Spitzer Spotting scope Squeeze Squib round Stake Stippling Stock Stock weld Stoppage Stove pipe Striation Striker 194 . to which the action and barrel are mounted. Refers to the parallel impressions left on the exterior of a projectile as a result of passing through the rifling of a firearm. A term used to define the rearward motion of the trigger finger on a trigger. A trigger and hammer designed for extra fast hammer fall. The wooden or plastic part of a firearm. filled with a lead or lead alloy core. To roughen a stock to improve grip. A firing pin or projection on a hammer which strikes a primer to cause firing. either for hand firing or for mounting to the shoulder. the face will remain in place. A telescope used by a shooter to observe bullet hits. until a weapon fires. A type of bullet with a non-fouling jacket. A malfunction of the weapon resulting in the jamming of a cartridge case in the action of a weapon. An interruption of the cycle of operation. retaining a proper sight picture to follow through. and to mix down the ingredients during the manufacturing process. To tighten or secure a screw or pin in place using a sharp punch and hammer.

the piece connecting the spring and the hammer. The lowest portion of the butt of a rifle or shotgun. A shotgun sport in which clay targets are thrown at a fixed height within an angle of 130 degrees. releases another mechanism. The object at which a shooter aims. A tapered portion of a barrel extending from the end of the chamber to the beginning of the rifling. usually barium nitrate and strontium salts. (a) The piece in a shotgun lock connecting the tumbler and mainspring. which pivots. A slightly elongated bullet hole in a target caused by a bullet that has tipped over in flight and was not rotating truly on its longitudinal axis.Sustained fire A rate of fire in which fire is sustained over a specific period of time. The curve on a vertical plane traced by a bullet. when pulled. A frame into which a target is mounted. Swage Swivel Tang Target Target frame Telescopic sights Terminal velocity Tersulphide of antimony Throat Tip shot Toe Tracer Trajectory Trap Triangulation Trigger 195 . A method of shaping metal through pressure. A chemical agent used in hardening bullet metals. A projectile that has a chemical composition. (b) In a revolver. which produces a visible trail of flame and smoke to mark the trajectory to the target. The constant velocity of a falling body attained when the resistance of air or other ambient fluid has become equal to the force of gravity acting on the body. to the target. Any sight which magnifies an image. (c) The oblong loop used to mount the sling strap to the weapon. with respect to the line of sight to the target. A mechanism which. A metal strip attached to the receiver and projecting towards the butt to assist in securing the barrel to the stock. A sighting and aiming exercise. and used to adjust fire. Usually the sustained rate of a military firearm is the number of times per minute that the average marksman can successfully engage a mansized target at battlesight distance. as in a firearm. as with the finger.

That part of a weapon which prevents accidental pull of the trigger by partially encircling it. A term that applies to a front sight of a pistol that has a portion cut forward to reduce glare. Used to determine the amount of pressure required to actuate a trigger. Prevents excess trigger movement rearward. Trigger creep An undesired movement of the trigger before the sear disconnects. Trigger guard Trigger pull Trigger stop Trigger weight Tube sight Tumbler Twist Undercut Unload Unlock Unqualified Velocity Ventilated rib Vertex Vortex Wad Wad cutter 196 . (b) Length of trigger travel during actuation. The distance in inches which a bullet travels within the barrel before completing one full revolution. Speed.Trigger control of the The ability to pull the trigger without movement weapon. To put the safety in a firing position. Type of sight enclosed in a tube for protection of the sight elements. (a) The amount of weight or tension needed to actuate a trigger. The highest point of a trajectory above the weapon. A strip of metal running the full length of a shotgun barrel with rectangular holes evenly spaced to help eliminate heat waves from the line of sight. To remove a magazine and/or ammunition. producing a flat sighting plane. Not having requisite qualifications. A wake or disturbance in the atmosphere caused by the rapid passage of a projectile through the air. failing to achieve a qualifying score in a match or course of fire. A bullet that cuts cleanly through a target upon impact. in a given direction and in a given frame of reference.. A material used in shotgun shells to retain powder charge and control gases. or rate of motion. usually having a reduced propellant load. The hammer in a so-called hammerless gun.

Windage Wind doping Wind flag Wind gauge X-count X-ring Yaw Zero 197 . To adjust the sights of a firearm by calibrating the results of firing. An individually developed cartridge not manufactured commercially. Moving the windage adjustment of a weapon to compensate for wide shots caused either by wind or misalignment of the sights.Wet fire Wild cat Slang term used to describe firing live ammunition. Of a projectile. to turn about the vertical axis. (b) A graduated scale on a rear sight used to correct deviation of a bullet due to wind effects. A range flag used to show wind direction and velocity. An inner circle placed inside the 10-ring of a target for purposes of ranking scores without numerical changes of the total score. (a) A device used to calculate and record the force of wind data. The number of x's or center shots fired. Calculating the velocity and direction of the wind by visual means.

Are scheduled services performed within 10% time variance? (DA Pam 738-750. Are required -10 and -20 series technical manuals for each type of weapon on hand? (DA Pam 25-30. Are personnel utilizing DA Form 2404 when performing all scheduled services? (DA Pam 738-750. paragraph 3-4 b) m. paragraph 3-4 d(2)) ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 198 . Is the ACALA Equipment Improvement Report Digest being distributed to the arms room? (TB 43-0001-62 Series) e.Unit Arms Room Operations Checklist 1. paragraph 3-3) ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ h. paragraph 3-3d) ____ k. Have the Unit Armorer and assistant(s) attended the division Unit Armorer Course? ____ g. Is an adequate stockage of required maintenance forms on hand to support maintenance operations? (DA Pam 738-750) GO NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ f. Arms Room Administration: a. Are required services being properly scheduled on DD Form 314 in accordance with technical manual criteria? (DA Pam 738-750. Is a DD Form 314 properly established for all equipment requiring periodic organizational services? (DA Pam 738-750. Is PS Magazine being distributed to the Arms Room? (TB 43-PS Series) d. MTOE/TOE/TDA) b. paragraph 3-3 b(1)(h)1) ____ j. Is a signaling system used to show the current month's maintenance requirements? (DA Pam 738-750. paragraph 3-3) ____ i. Is the DA Form 2404 used for scheduled services kept on file until the next service is performed? (DA Pam 738-750. Does the unit armorer perform all scheduled maintenance on unassigned equipment? (Equipment TM) ____ l. Is DA Form 2404 being completed and turned in whenever deficiencies or shortcomings are noted? (DA Pam 738-750. paragraph 3-4 d(1)) n. Are all changes to technical manuals and other publications present and properly posted? (DA Pam 310-13) c.

60 & 81mm Mortars) ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ t. Military Publications. Are the first and last entries of the DA Form 2408-4 signed only by the unit commander? (DA Pam 738-750. Is documentation on hand to support compliance with annual inspection and gaging requirements? (Equipment TM) ____ r.GO o. paragraph 5-3 j) ____ u. Appendix E as required? (DA Pam 738-750. para 5-3 k(1)) w. Are faults on equipment requiring support maintenance being promptly transferred to a DA Form 2407 and submitted to the appropriate DSU for repair? (DA Pam 738-750. paragraph 3-6 e(4)(a)) s.. para 3-4 d(1)(b)) ____ p. paragraph 5-3 f) (i. Is a DA Form 2408-4 maintained for each item listed in DA Pam 738-750. Does the arms room filing system comply with the MARKS requirements of DA Pam 25-400-2? x.e. paragraph 3-6 b(1)(a)) NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ q. Is the organizational copy of the DA Form 2407 showing repairs to unit weapons retained for 180 days? (DA Pam 738750. Are the following publications on hand in the arms room?: Maintenance Management Update? Physical Security Update? DA Pam 25-400-2. paragraphs 5-3 m(1) & 5-3 m(2)) v. Are all entries on DA Form 2408-4 correct and legible? Are all cumulative totals correct? (DA Pam 738-750. Is the DA Form 2407 being utilized to request annual safety and serviceability inspection and annual gaging from support maintenance? (DA Pam 738-750. Posting and Filing of Publications? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 199 . The Modern Army Recordkeeping System (MARKS)? DA Pam 310-13. Are DA Forms 2408-4 promptly submitted to Watervliet Arsenal each April 10th and October 10th? (DA Pam 738-750.

laced at both ends. Is the hydraulic buffer assembly leaking or completely dry? r. Are tripod assemblies adjusted properly and in good working condition? ____ ____ ____ 200 . cover. Do wear characteristics indicate that barrels are being routinely changed IAW TM requirements? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ t.GO 2. Is the auxiliary equipment present for all M60 machineguns (barrel bag. Does documentation in the arms room correspondence files indicate barrel/bolt headspace checks in the last 12 months? i. painted flat black. T&E mechanism. Are the handguard baffles or latch assembly broken? s. Does the T&E mechanism zero and operate properly? h. burrs. Is the phosphate finish on each M60 in good condition and touched up with solid film lubricant IAW TM requirements? k. nicks or other deformities? m. combination tool)? d. trigger housing and buttstock torn. Are the rubber coatings on the handguard. with stamped numbers)? ____ c. Are gas cylinders and vent plugs safety wired? f. Are the machineguns free of light-reflecting surfaces? j. Are the cocking handle guide rails free of distortions. Are bipod legs in good condition and functioning properly? g. glove. Are both barrels for each weapon properly tagged (ID Tag. Are all M60 machineguns properly assembled? e. Are the drive spring and spring guide properly matched and serviceable? q. M60 Machineguns a. pintle. Are all M60 machineguns clean and free of rust? ____ NO GO N/A ____ ____ b. Are the proper types and quantities of cleaning tools and supplies on hand for each M60? n. cut or loose? o. Are bolt camming surfaces chipped or worn excessively? p. Are rear sights unbroken and completely readable? l.

Are all components present and properly functioning? ____ 201 . Are compensators tight and properly aligned at top dead center (TDC)? g. Are the bolt carrier gas keys properly aligned. Are the weapons of current configuration (all MWOs applied)? ____ d. Are bolt locking lugs free of chips or excessive wear? p. Are magazine catches adjusted for proper tension and operating depth? q. Are handguard heatshields in place and unbent? j. Are all M249 barrels identified by serial number to the machinegun receiver? ____ ____ NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ c. M249 Machineguns a. M16 Series Rifles/M4 Carbines a. and free of cuts or tears at the leading edge? m. Are the rifles free of light-reflecting surfaces? e. Is the phosphate finish on each rifle in good condition and touched up with solid film lubricant IAW TM requirements? f. tightened.GO 3. Do rear sight assemblies operate properly throughout the full range of motion in elevation and traverse? k. Are the proper types and quantities of cleaning tools and supplies on hand for each rifle? c. Are all M249 machineguns clean and free of rust? b. Are all rifles properly assembled? d. Are bolt rings in good condition and properly installed? o. Is the forward assist feed pawl present and functioning? l. Do all rifles function properly in all modes? h. Are all rifles clean and free of rust? b. Are the barrel assemblies properly tightened to the upper receiver assemblies? n. Are pistol grips and buttstocks tightly mounted? i. Are sling swivels of the proper type and correctly mounted? 4.

Are only the authorized lubricants used by the Mk19 operator? (LSA. Is required safety wiring present and properly installed? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ d. LAW) ____ 6. Is the vertical cam assembly free of pits. Mk19 40mm Machinegun a. Are compensators tight and properly aligned at top dead center (TDC)? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ m. M2 .50 Caliber Machinegun a. mounts. nicks and burrs? f. Are all M2 machineguns clean and free of rust? b. Are bipod legs in good condition and functioning properly? f. M922. DODIC B472 available for function checking of Mk19's IAW PMCS tables? ____ e.GO e. Are all M2 machineguns properly assembled? d. Are dummy rounds. GMD. Are all Mk19 machineguns properly assembled? c. Does the T&E mechanism zero and operate properly if used? ____ 5. Are cotter pins and safety wire present where needed? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 202 . LSA-T. Are all receiver welds free of cracks or pits? l. Is the phosphate finish on each M249 in good condition and touched up with solid film lubricant IAW TM requirements? ____ n. Are charging lugs burred or damaged? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ g. Does the unit armorer make front sight adjustments at the firing range during zero phase? k. Are all Mk19 machineguns clean and free of rust? b. Are cocking handle front tabs excessively worn? i. Are the cocking handle stop pins secure? h. Are cocking handles bent or distorted? ____ ____ NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ j. Is the auxiliary equipment present for each M2? (Barrels. headspace & timing gages. pintle and T&E) c. Are the proper types and quantities of cleaning tools and supplies on hand for each M249? g.

Is the flat spring for the trigger lever adjustment stop nut present and in good condition? ____ NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 7. Are lock washers present beneath handgrip screws? e. Are recoil springs serviceable (TM9-1005-317-23&P. Is the retracting slide handle assembly spring present and in good condition? n.GO e. 40mm. Are the tripod leg extension lock assemblies operational? l. Are M203 barrel grips secure and unbroken? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 203 . item 2. Are the pistols free of light-reflecting surfaces? d. Are the pistols clean and free of rust? b. M203 a. page 2-6)? 8. and absent of any excessive lateral or end play? d. Are M203 barrel extensions loose? e. Are rear sight components functioning properly? f. Are all grenade launchers securely mounted to M16 series rifles. Are the barrel locking notches worn? j. Do the pistols function properly? f. Are all receiver rivets tight and secure? m. Are the feeding system components properly configured? h. Is the backplate lock latch of the proper type? i. PMCS table. Does the T&E mechanism zero and operate properly? k. Are the grenade launchers clean and free of rust? b. Pistol. Are the proper types and quantities of cleaning tools and supplies on hand for each M2? g. Are all grenade launchers properly assembled? c. Are the pistols properly assembled? c. M9 a. Grenade Launcher.

Is the weapon visually clean and free of rust? (Only the sniper may disassemble the weapon) ____ e. Are all components of the weapon system present in the shipping case? c. Are all breech inserts at flush or a maximum of . Are barrel assemblies free of dents or burrs? h. Are M203 mounts properly safety wired? g. Sniper System. Are all radioactive items and cases properly labeled? g.GO f. Are deficiencies above the operator level being corrected by the manufacturer? (No DS/GS level maintenance authorized) ____ f. 81mm. distortion and inner moisture? 11. Do all M203 grenade launchers function properly? i. Are tool inventories conducted on a recurring basis? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ b. Are bipod assemblies functional and in good condition? f. Have tubes been borescoped and inspected IAW with TM? e. M224 and Mortar. Are all mortars clean and free of rust? b. 60mm. Is a copy of SC 5180-95-CL-A07-HR kept in the arms room? ____ 204 . Are baseplate assemblies functional and in good condition? h. Does the M224 mortar function properly in each mode? 10. M24 a. Small Arms Toolkit a. Is the nylon carrying bag in good condition? ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ d.007 inches below flush with respect to the face of the recoil plate? ____ ____ ____ NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 9. Are optics free of scratches. Is all auxiliary equipment present and in good condition? c. M252 a. Mortar. Have the snipers attended required schools? (Only school trained snipers may perform unit level maintenance on the M24 system) ____ b.

Is the toolbox in good repair and have a functioning lock? d. Are broken. Is the file cleaning brush used to keep files in working order? ____ f. Are special tools as required by TM's on hand? ____ 205 . worn or unserviceable tools turned in for replacement as needed? ____ NO GO N/A ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ e.GO c.

M7/M8/M9 Blank Firing Attachment.50 Caliber HB Dictionary of US Army Terms Evaluation of Cannon Tubes Grenade Launcher. The user is cautioned that some of the publications referenced may have been superseded. General Basic Cold Weather Manual Bayonet. M224 81mm Mortar. M252 81mm Mortar. M2. revoked or rescinded since the date this manual was printed. EQUIPMENT 60mm Mortar. M21 Browning Machinegun. M203 Grenade Launcher. M203 M16A1/A2 Rifle Marksmanship M2 Practice Bolt PUBLICATIONS FM 23-90 TM9-1010-223-20&P FM 23-90 TM9-1015-249-20&P FM 23-90 TM9-1015-200-20&P AR 310-50 TB43-0001-62 Series TM9-1300-200 FM 31-70 TM9-1005-237-23&P TM9-1005-314-12&P TM9-1005-316-12&P FM 23-65 AR 310-25 TM9-1000-202-14 FM 23-31 TM9-1010-221-23&P FM 23-9 TM9-6920-746-12&P 206 . Codes & Acronyms ACALA EIR Digest Ammunition. . M224 60mm Mortar. M19 Blank Firing Attachment. 40mm. M29A1 Abbreviations. Field manuals are listed to provide the armorer with an operational overview of the equipment. The user must verify that the following publications are current. Operator manuals and DS/GS manuals are not included in this listing. M252 81mm Mortar. M29A1 81mm Mortar.Arms Room Publications Reference The following listing provides the designations for the manuals and publications most commonly used in the unit arms room by unit maintenance personnel. 40mm.

62mm.50 Caliber.50 Caliber. M60 Modern Army Record Keeping System Physical Security of Arms. M249 Machinegun.50 Caliber. Compact. 7. 9mm. M2 Machinegun. 40mm.56mm. 7. M11 Posting and Filing of Publications Preparing and Managing Correspondence Procedures for Destruction of Equipment Recoil Amplifier.62mm. M16A2 Rocket Launcher. . 5. 5. 7. 5. 9mm.56mm. 7. M190 Shotgun. M240 Machinegun. M1200 Small Arms Ammunition (NATO) Small Arms Ammunition to 30mm TM9-1005-213-23 TM9-1005-213-23P TM9-1005-231-24&P FM 23-27 TM9-1010-230-23&P FM 23-14 TM9-1005-201-23&P TM9-1005-313-23 TM9-1005-313-23P FM 23-67 TM9-1005-224-24 TM9-1005-224-24P AR 25-400-2 AR 190-11 FM 23-35 TM9-1005-317-23&P TM9-1005-325-23&P DA Pam 310-13 AR 340-15 TM750-244-7 TM9-1005-203-12&P TM9-1005-249-23&P TM9-1005-319-23&P TM9-1340-203-20 TM9-1005-303-14 TB34-9-74 TB9-1305-201-34 207 .56mm. Mk19 Machinegun.62mm. 5. M249 Machinegun. Ammunition & Explosives Pistol and Revolver Training Pistol. . M60 Machinegun. .Machinegun. M2 Machinegun. Mk19 Machinegun. M240 Machinegun.62mm. M9 Pistol.62mm. M3 Rifle. M60 Machinegun. 7. M16A1 Rifle.56mm. M85 Machinegun. 12 Gauge. 40mm.

Small Arms Repairman Unit Maintenance Operations Use and Care of Hand Tools Various Machinegun Mounts FM 23-10 TM9-1005-229-12 TM9-1005-309-23&P SC 5180-95-CL-A07-HR FM 43-5 TM9-243 TM9-1005-245-14 208 .45 Caliber.Sniper Training Submachinegun. . M231 Tool Kit. 5.56mm. M3/M3A1 Submachinegun.

serious books on guns). 1947 Chinn. 1975 Wilson. Grenville Press. Paul. 1968 209 . R. “Textbook of Automatic Pistols”.Recommended Reading List The following publications are recommended for both the casual and serious student of firearms technology. ARCO.. Ludwig. 1976 Lugs. Brownell & Son. 1979 Greener. Jane’s Publishers. 4 volumes. Stackpole Books. Bonanza Books. “Carbine Handbook”. Denis. W.Philip B. Winchester Press. and will have few. through a process called inter-library loan. W. “The Machine Gun”. US Govt Printing Office. 1961 Wahl.. author unknown. Holland Press. “The Rifle in America”. “Mauser Bolt Rifles”. Archer. Edawrd. George M. If your local library does not have one of these books on the shelf. Infantry Journal Press. Your local public library can always obtain books. (You will find that most national chain bookstores are politically oriented towards the liberal “arts” crowd. 1963 “Textbook of Small Arms. 1910 Lowry. (with Hogg. 1951-1954 Olson. “Interior Ballistics”.. Funk and Wagnall’s. 1977 Nelson. “Firearms Past and Present: a Complete Review of Firearms Systems and Their Histories”. Ian). if any. D. “The Gun and Its Development”. 1964 Hatcher. H. “American Ammunition and Ballistics”. 2 volumes. Many of these publications are still in print and can be purchased at local gun shows or ordered through bookstores. R. “The World’s Submachine Guns (Machine Pistols)”. “Jane’s Infantry Weapons”. “The Book of The Garand”. Jaroslav. Thomas B. ed. even rare ones. Julian S. 1929”. 1975 Sharpe. Volume 1. Doubleday & Co. 1948 Matunas.. pester the librarian to order it for you through I-LL. K. International Small Arms Publishers. E.

What is the Federal Supply Class for pyrotechnics? ANSWER: ________________________ 5. What maintenance level is represented by the code letter “F”. What publication prescribes the method of posting changes to manuals? ANSWER: ________________________ 3. Which items in your arms room require the use of a DD Form 314? ANSWER: ________________________ 10. What does the acronym “ULLS” stand for? ANSWER: ________________________ 9. Why should technical manuals be maintained in sturdy. how is that shown in the TM number? ANSWER: ________________________ 6. ANSWER: ________________________ 4. waterproof binders? ANSWER: ________________________ 7. If a technical manual includes a parts listing. Does MARKS apply to classified as well as unclassified materials? ANSWER: ________________________ 2. What is an SSSC? ANSWER: ________________________ 8. What is an ECOD? ANSWER: ________________________ 210 .End of Course Examination 1.

56mm) rounds identical? ANSWER: ________________________ 19. In what year was the Browning M2 machinegun adopted? ANSWER: ________________________ 211 . Are the ballistics for the M193 and M855 (5. What is the shape factor value for a hollow point round? ANSWER: ________________________ 17. b. What occurs if the gas piston is installed backwards in an M60 machinegun? ANSWER: ________________________ 20. What two things do you need to make you effective in engaging targets while avoiding friendly casualties? a. What are the principal means of destroying weapons per TM 750-244-7? a. What is a cookoff? ANSWER: ________________________ 13. ____________________ b. ____________________ 18. Who invented the Berdan primer? ANSWER: ________________________ 16.11. For what purposes are wadcutter rounds primarily used? ANSWER: ________________________ 15. What is “gilding metal”? ANSWER: ________________________ 14. c. d. __________________ __________________ __________________ __________________ 12.

and make sure they know you share your knowledge of the weapon with the operator anticipate failure. O. AR 190-11 9. and deal with failure 6. fair wear and tear acceptable training damage battle damage negligence willful misconduct 5. Prescribed Load List 3. and D 7. files management publications management supply management maintenance management physical security 2. AR 25-400-2 8. maintenance and recoverability code 212 . source. F. prepare for failure. As required by the PMCS listing in the appropriate technical manual 4. H.Examination Answer Keys Chapter 1 Examination Answer Key: 1. C. know the paths to the defensive fighting positions know the personnel in the positions. as directed by the unit commander as dictated by climate conditions prior to engaging in offensive operations during recovery from offensive operations immediately following defensive operations 10.

1.Chapter 2 Examination Answer Key: 1. charcoal sulfur potassium nitrate (saltpeter) 5. radiational conduction convection 3. 437.0472 inches 9. A powder using nitrocellulose and nitroglycerine as its primary elements 6. John Moses Browning 213 .5 8. manual gas recoil blowback 4. Boxer Berdan 7. feeding chambering locking firing unlocking extracting ejecting cocking 2. In foot-pounds of energy 10.

The tasks performed by the body that require no application of conscious thought 7.Chapter 3 Examination Answer Key: 1. safe to carry safe to fire 4. judgment reaction time 5. The highest point of the trajectory over the line of sight 214 . Timed to the respiratory cycle 8. no 6. The point of the front sight is placed at the lowest point in the center of the target 10. target detection target identification target assessment target acquisition target destruction 3. almost all accidents are avoidable everyone involved owns some responsibility you must be proactive in your approach to safety 2. the eyes rear sight front sight line of sight target eye relief 9.

Chapter 4 Examination Answer Key: 1. adjustable hook fixed hook hose coupling pin adjustable pin face fixed pin face 8. The inside diameter of a bore 215 . simple spring joint hermaphrodite slide vernier trammels 3. inside outside depth 4. american pattern swiss pattern 10. TM 9-243 2. When gripping or cutting is to be performed 6. To cut wires or nails flush with the working surface 7. The radius of a curve 9. machinist’s peen hammer soft-faced hammer 5.

a round that spontaneously ignites due to residual heat in the chamber 13. Estimated Cost of Damage 11. Unit Level Logistics System 9. Self-Service Supply Center 8.End of Course Examination Answer Key: 1. no 216 . composed of 85% copper and 15% zinc 14. 1370 5. By the inclusion of the letter “P” 6. situational awareness positional awareness 18.25 17. a metal used in bullet jackets. Colonel Hiram Berdan 16. 1. yes 2. DA Pamphlet 310-13 3. established by its respective organizational maintenance manual 10. Any item that has periodic maintenance requirements. direct support 4. Because you will take them to the field 7. Target shooting and competition 15. burning mechanical means explosives or gunfire scattering and burial of parts 12.

1934 217 .19. The weapon may fire only a single shot 20.

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