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The M1C Caliber 30-06 Sniper Rifle

In Korea, the maximum kill range of the M1C was normally only 600 yards, because of the resolving power limitations of issue scopes and lack of match grade ammunition. USMC snipers, for example, used regular issue .30-caliber ball ammunition. When available, the heavier .30-caliber armor-piercing ammunition was used for increased stability.


TM 9-1005-222-12: M1, M1C, M1D Operation, Maintenance (1969)

FM 23-5 - (MAY 1965) U.S. Army Field Manual for the U.S. Rifle, Cal. .30, M1

TM 9-1275 - (JUNE 1947) - Maintenance U.S. Rifles, Cal. .30, M1, M1C, M1D

Tech Manuals: FM7-10: Rifle Company, Rifle Regiment

TM9-2200: Technical Manual for WWII Small Arms



M1C Sniper Rifle, M82 scope, M2 flash hider

M1C Sniper Rifle, M82 Telescope, M2 Flash Hider, T4 leather cheek pad

The M1C, configured as above, was approximately 36 inches long, weighing almost 12 pounds. On the basis of Infantry Board tests of the M1E7 and M1E8 rifles, the M1E7 equipped with a two and one half power telescope was standardized in June 1944 as U.S. Rifle, Caliber .30, M1C (Sniper's).

In order to assure meeting production requirements, the M1E8 was adopted in September 1944 as U.S. Rifle, Caliber .30, M1D (Sniper's), but except for a few prototype specimens the M1D was not produced during WWII, and would not properly be considered as a WWII infantry weapon. Relatively large numbers of standard M1 rifles were converted into M1D configuration during the early 1950's, but it was the M1C that was the principal sniping weapon for the American army in Korea.

M1C Sniper Rifle, M84 scope

M1C with M84 scope

The Marines used the M1903A1/Unertl as its primary sniper rifle, partly because the M1C was in short supply during early action.

.30 Caliber Bullet performance at 600 Yards for MV=2800fps

Bullet, gr Accuracy, Radius Penetration
Ball M2, 152 7.5 inch 11in, Oak
Tracer M1, 152 15 inch Red trace 125-900 yds
AP M2, 165.7 10 inch .3in, armor
Match M72, 175.5 3.5 inch 11in, Oak

M1C Sniper rifle

5th Marines Staff Sergeant John E. Boitnott of Kentucky, credited with nine kills, poses for a combat photographer during a break in the action in July 1952. Having a PFC volunteer draw enemy fire by walking around, Boitnott was able to identify and sight-in on enemy positions.

Note the extremely worn finish on the M82 sight. The M82 had a magnifying power of 2 1/2 diameters, a field of view of 35 yards at 100 yards, and universal (fixed) focus. The tube diameter was .866 inch, and the overall length of the scope was 12.875 inches with the rubber eyepiece and objective shield extended.

In Korea, snipers achieved reasonably consistent results with the M1C between 400-600 yards, with 600 being the maximum effective range. Partly this was due to the poor resolving power of issue scopes, and partly the lack of match grade ammunition. USMC snipers used regular issue .30-caliber ball ammunition. When obtainable, the heavier .30-caliber armor-piercing ammunition was used, for its increased stability at longer ranges, although both lighter and less accurate than match grade.

Like the M1, the M1C was a robust weapon, maintaining proper function and accuracy very well under combat conditions.


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