Reading the 25 May newsletter, I came across some information regarding rifle and pistol qualification that needs to be clarified to some extent. I have qualified with the three service rifles that the Marine Corps had up to 1988: They were the M-1 Grand, M-14, and the M-16. From the fifties and well into the eighties, the course of fire for qualification for recruits never changed.
To Fred Romero: There has never has been numerical numbers such as 10s, 9s, or 8s for recruits to qualify with the rifle range during the 1960s. Only 5, 4, 3, 2, and the maggies drawers. Could have confused the numerical numbers for qualification with the pistol as a police officer. Here are the actual numbers.
COURSE OF FIRE – 5O ROUNDS – TOTAL – 250 POINT
200 HUNDRED METER LINE
Ten Rounds Slow fire – Offhand Position – Ten Minutes – 50 Points
Ten Rounds Rapid fire – Sitting Position – Fifty Seconds – 50 Points
300 HUNDRED METER LINE
Five Rounds Sitting and Five Rounds Kneeling – Ten Minutes – 50 Points
Ten Rounds Rapid fire – Prone Position – Sixty Seconds – 50 Points
500 HUNDRED METER LINE
Ten Rounds Slow fire – Prone Position – Ten Minutes – 50 Points
RIFLE QUALIFICATION SCORES
250 to 220 Expert
219 to 210 Sharpshooter
209 to 190 Marksman
189 – Below Non-Qual
With the exception of one time during the late sixties the Marine Corps toyed around with the “C” Course. The “C” course consists of silhouette targets similar to the targets on a combat course. Only the rounds in the black would be counted for score; fours, trays, and deuces were eliminated. The objective was to teach point of aim, point of impact. Only Marines would qualify on the “C” course; the recruits continued to qualify on the “A” course.
Ron Huffman: During recruit training the recruits only fired for familiarization (FAM Fire). There were no qualification badges passed out for FAM fire.
Jim Lunch: During rapid fire the command was with a clip of two rounds lock and load: Or with the other two service rifles, with a magazine and two rounds lock and load; once fired the shooter would insert a clip or magazine of eight rounds to complete the string of rapid fire.