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hmb
08-06-2008, 15:19
I spent 28 years in the Air Force. I fired a weapon 3 times in my 28 years of active duty. In ROTC summer camp, we shot M-16's for qualification.
Five years later, I qualified with a handgun prior to going to Turkey. Prior to going to Turkey in 1995, we qualified with Glock 19's at Fort Brag.

My boss in Ankara Turkey was a Two Star General. As far as I could tell, he was the only officer in the outfit who had a pistol. His pistol was secured in his quarters. I do not believe he carried a pistol to the office.

The Turkish Military provided our security. None of our US officers had authority to carry a handgun. Many of our officers jogged 4 miles in the down town Ankara streets. It's a wonder none of our officers were not killed.
At the time I was not interested in fire arms, but it wouldn't help because we could not have or carry a firearm. All Turkish Officers are issued a hand gun.
What a way to run a railroad!

28 years as an Air Force Judge Advocate.

crazypilot
08-06-2008, 15:38
I hear you. 7 years in and I've shot the M16 twice and never got to qualify with the M9. I've gotten more training from Front Sight than I ever did in the AF (so far). I've shot my friends ARs many times as well. Sucks how many AF are deployed and can't even shoot correctly or even take a gun apart.

JimBianchi
08-06-2008, 16:18
I did 22 years in the AF, 17 has security police with half that time in the armory.

I knew the weapons better than my first wife!

Qualified expert on every gun I fired.

The best practical combat training (pistol and rifle) was when I was on EST (AF SWAT) and we trained with LA county sheriffs dept SWAT.

That was the real stuff. Only availible if you are on their team or invited to train with them.

Best in the world IMO.

Wish I could do it again.
(Of course it may kill me now. Getting older sucks.)

MrMurphy
08-06-2008, 18:55
All depends on your arming group. Had a guy I knew who was a network admin guy, fired in basic and never again (4 year guy).

I've shot everything we use except the .50 (M16/M4/M9/M249/M240B) and the shotgun so far, toss in the M24 etc too (forgot about that). M4 every six months, M9 and the rest every year. Our actual firing times are going up (more ammo to practice with) which is good.

I've trained more/better before I came in, but with our crazy scheduling, they're trying to do better, I'll give them that.

Grayson
08-07-2008, 17:08
So, like, something I was wondering:

If you're in the AF, do you ever get the 'option' of doing more shooting than what you're required to do (qualification and the like)?

I figure they'd frown on guys like me enlisting and going on weekly taxpayer-funded shooting sessions ;) - so I figure there has to be a limit, naturally.

But say that someone just wants to hone his skills with the M4 or M9, or avoid getting rusty...do bases have ranges where you can check out a weapon and some ammo and practice on your own time?

JimBianchi
08-07-2008, 17:11
So, like, something I was wondering:

If you're in the AF, do you ever get the 'option' of doing more shooting than what you're required to do (qualification and the like)?

I figure they'd frown on guys like me enlisting and going on weekly taxpayer-funded shooting sessions ;) - so I figure there has to be a limit, naturally.

But say that someone just wants to hone his skills with the M4 or M9, or avoid getting rusty...do bases have ranges where you can check out a weapon and some ammo and practice on your own time?

No.

You will have to buy your own M4 and M9 and practice at a commercial range or any place legal.

Grayson
08-07-2008, 17:38
Ah, I was afraid of that... :/

(Especially since I was unsure if I'd bother with the hassle of trying to keep any personal weapons on base if I were to enlist...)

md2lgyk
08-08-2008, 05:39
Not a direct comparison I know, but I was in the Air National Guard (retired in 2006). Every unit I was in had a shooting team. I was a member of all of them. The last even hand-receipted me an M9 and a match-grade 1911 so I could practice at my club's range. Practice ammo was also furnished.

MrMurphy
08-08-2008, 07:28
If you're Stateside and married you can keep the weapons at home (unloaded). If you're single it's a hassle.

I've known quite a few crew chiefs, loadmasters, etc who own a 92FS so they can practice on their own with the same kind of gun they normally carry. I own a 92FS for the same reason.

bnkrtstk
08-08-2008, 08:31
A friend of mine is a navigator on C135, he said he was issued a sideam but his crew decided not to carry them because it was too much hassle.

Stickman
08-09-2008, 08:22
hmb,

Category C shooters were required to fire every 3 years by USAF policy last I heard.

You would have been Cat C.

I've got a few friends who are CATM, they can pull the reg if you are interested.

Skycop1
08-09-2008, 12:51
It all depends on your arming group and your job. Arming group A (cops, OSI agents, PJ's, combat controllers etc) shoots much more often.

I am an OSI agent (Air Force investigator) and I shoot pretty often. I must qualify twice a year and must pro fire twice a year at a minimum by regulation just to stay qualified. I can practice more then that if ammo is available (it usually is). We are not suppose to shoot civilian ammo through our duty weapon. We carry M-11's (military version of a Sig 228). OSI agents have it a little easier then most as we can carry our duty weapon 24/7, on or off duty. Of course over seas it all depends on the sofa agreement.

For Long arms (M-4, Uzi, MP-5, 870) we must qualify annually.

AF-Odin
08-09-2008, 17:37
hmb

Understand where you are coming from. There was a VERY wide disparity in the AF based upon where you were, your AFSC, your mobility status, your arming group, local policies, budget, and and and. Spent most of my time (28+) being required to qualify at leat annually (even the 4 years I spent as an ATC instructor due to still being on mobility tasking) and the last 8+ years qualifying with my primary weapon (M-9) every six months and secondary weapon (M-16 later M-4--anybody remember the GAU-5?) annually. However, during Desert Storm, almost got killed by a SSgt who got excited when we had a situation that required quickly manning a defensive perimiter. He put the mag in an M-16 and chambered a round with the muzzle pointing right at my head @#$%^&*. When all was said and done, we had a discussion of when and where he had last qualified---Basic Training more than8 years earlier. He had never left the states until deployed to augment my SQ and had never been in a mobility position. Someone stateside had "pencil Whipped" the training folder because they were in a hurry and thought that "this guy will never touch a weapon, he is an intell analyst."

I am glad to hear about some of the changes that have been made to AF Basic Training withsome more emphasis on weapons and expeditionary operations. My son-in-law (a non-rated intell Maj) even had to attend (at AF expense) a special civilian school which taught a good defensive pistol and rifle course before he deployed to OIF earlier this year.

MrMurphy
08-09-2008, 18:59
There was some GAU-5 and GUU-5s still floating around in the hands of OPFOR at Creek Defender last year. :)

DJ Niner
08-09-2008, 22:24
GAU-5A

GAU-5A/A <------- DJ's favorite

GUU-5P

http://img253.imageshack.us/img253/7425/gau5aabp2.th.jpg (http://img253.imageshack.us/my.php?image=gau5aabp2.jpg)

Circa 1986-87

You can barely see the holstered M15 and the SAC patch on the flight jacket.
This GAU was my in-transit guard weapon when we moved M-60s to a distant range in another state for training.

Morris
08-09-2008, 23:20
My first assigned rifle was a mixmaster GAU-5A, later a GUU. I was CATM, then TACP. EVen in TACP, it was once a year. As CATM, I always thought this was stupid and thought the low hum I heard was LeMay spinning in his grave.

The reality is that the AF needs to view firearms as a necessity and at a minimum, qual once yearly. But the reality is that command woudl rather spend for cool stuff like drones versus bullets and rifles.

If I had the power, I'd open my LE training to any bonafide .mil types just so that they could get trigger time. But LOP (liability oriented policing) gets in the way, and to a certain degree, for a good reason.

When will the AF wake up?

bluelineman
08-10-2008, 22:27
I was on mobility for 5 of the 8 years I was in. I qualified with the M16 just about every one of those years, M9 once. I was also on our squadron skeet shooting team in Alaska and shot a Beretta 686 O/U shotgun weekly during that season each year. It was on the adjoining Army base that I was attached to (see avatar). The Beretta was a confiscated weapon that they let us use, they had 2 of them.

Sigluvr
08-12-2008, 19:56
I was in CE and got to fire the M-16 at least once a year. If you make friends with the mobility Sgt. he can call you when he has a no-show to fill that slot. He gets a letter down telling him he better have x shooters to the range on a particular day, if he doesn't have that many people available then he starts down the list of people who asked to be sent more often. It prob. helped me that I never shot less than expert. Not because I'm such a great shot, but the test is so easy!

Tom

Sam White
08-12-2008, 23:14
I'm Supply and arming group 3. Since I was deploying they made me qualify again. I hadn't shot in a while (haven't been able to shoot due to life events) and was sick as a dog and still shot in the top 3 of the day. I don't tell anyone because it wasn't much of a victory.

Grayson
08-13-2008, 06:42
The reality is that the AF needs to view firearms as a necessity and at a minimum, qual once yearly. But the reality is that command woudl rather spend for cool stuff like drones versus bullets and rifles.

+1 IMCO (in my "civvie" opinion), everyone in uniform ought to know the "basics" of combat, no matter what the job - or at least have the option of "re-qualifying" every so often on their own time (but with military equipment/ranges). Or at the very least, those deployed overseas...

I mean, even in "conventional" war, there has to be those among the enemy that don't CARE that you're a medic, or paper-pusher, or chaplain...or pharmacy specialist...;)

swingline
08-13-2008, 20:19
I've shot the M9 three times in the last 90 days due to more "efficient" changes in our mobility requirements.

noway
08-18-2008, 20:51
When I was overseas ain my main group or det I had to qualify 2x per year. I received expert all times.

I also qualified with the M9 during my last year in Okinawa and shot the USMC course once at Camp Hansen Okinawa.

USAF qualification is really a joke and when I left you had no score other than placing all shots ( 40 iirc ) on a simulated man torso place at 25yards that supposes to simulate a human at 100yards ;(

dewidmt
08-22-2008, 12:09
As stated, all depends on your mobility status and arming group. My first 4 years in, only fired the M16 twice (if you fired Expert, you only fired every 2 years, they figured you didn't need trained). After that, I became an IDMT and was required to qual with the M9 (Expert also). When I deployed, I was required to carry the M9 and did so in Colombia, Peru, Kuwait and Iraq. But there are ways to fire more....get to know some of the folks on your deployments, like the OP's Turkish tour. In Colombia, we were in the jungle and firing up everything they had (G-3's, M60 E-3's, old M79 grenade launchers) in exchange for them shooting our M16's and M9's. In Peru, we went to the local infantry unit that was our site security and they let us play with their toys, including teaching us some "demo" with C-4 and dynamite! In Kuwait, I hooked up as an "extra" medic for a Seabee convoy crew and was trained on the 249, Mk 19 and M-2 50 cal. Stateside, you can see about getting involved with the Security Forces Squadron and see if they would like to hold an "Excellence in Competition" match for either M16 or M9. I participated in both and was awarded the badge for the rifle. It can be worn on any uniform combo and is awarded to the top 5% of experts in the Air Force.....

RonS
09-12-2008, 18:05
The AF always seemed to be conflicted about small arms, it was like they could never take anything less than a 500 pound gravity bomb seriously. We qualified once a year, then after a couple of ADs from guys playing with their weapons they went to something called weapons familiarization where we had to shoot a few rounds once a month. They didn't even get out targets, we just blew a couple cylinders down range and went back to the armory. After the first month of spending more time cleaning than shooting, the second month there were a lot of guys who went home with clean guns and ammo in their pockets. M16 qualification consisted of hitting a man size target, there were no scoring rings. This was all in the 73-77 time frame on a SAC base, when I was in Taiwan I never got to qualify because the local base commander would not let us use our range. Carried a Model 15 for a year and was never sure it would work, the best I could do was one night after I figured out I was never going to get to sight it in I put a pencil down the barrel and pulled the trigger to make sure the firing pin hit it hard enough to bounce it.

norton
09-12-2008, 18:13
My nephew A/F. He volunteered and did a 6 month tour in Iraq.
He is assigned to an Army unit. He was hunting down bad guys, and carried an M4 all the time.

eodcole
09-17-2008, 11:53
+1 IMCO (in my "civvie" opinion), everyone in uniform ought to know the "basics" of combat, no matter what the job - or at least have the option of "re-qualifying" every so often on their own time (but with military equipment/ranges). Or at the very least, those deployed overseas...

I mean, even in "conventional" war, there has to be those among the enemy that don't CARE that you're a medic, or paper-pusher, or chaplain...or pharmacy specialist...;)

I agree as a member of the Air Force but the shooting course does not lend to teaching anyone anything about combat. Hell I think the only reason we have to wear body armor now is because of other shooters. I know I'm scared out there on the firing line when I have some dip**** that doesn't even know how to put the firing pin back in correctly and pin it. I'm glad we have that kevlar on that's for damn sure. Then then you have the desk riding officers that hardly ever touch a firearm and they can't hit the damn silhouette that's 15ft in front of them. I hate when they point their guns at me by accident, it sure makes my ass pucker a bit.

I was afforded the opportunity to attend a shooting course by what was then known as TEES(tactical explosive entry school) taught by Alan Bronsnan. It was a hoot. We did disabled vehicle drills where we shot through the windshield of a junk car while sitting it, the back passengers would retreat to a safety barrier and they started laying rounds down in order for you to retreat back to their position. We also did moving car drills to hit targets on the side of a road. There was lots of other CQB and breaching training (which was the best part). It was an awesome course and I think the company is now called Olive Security Group or something like that.

weatherman
09-20-2008, 13:07
I was in From 1975 to 1995. The last 10 yrs was in support of SAC. I was on what was called "SART". We were to deploy to other airfields and supply weather support to aircraft coming back from a "nuc" strike on the USSR.

We were required to qualify on the M-16 once a year.

freedom790
09-20-2008, 13:37
+1 for my cheyenne brother! we qualify with our M4s now twice a year on the 25m range with targets sized to approx what they would look like out to 300m. If your lucky you get to TDY somewhere and shoot on a popup range where your targets are actually out to 300+ meters. Its a whole different world when your shooting at true range.

Up north of here at Guernsey they run a course for predeployment officers and whatnot, one of my troops was up there training them and he came back telling me he would never do it again. When the paper pusher captain kept flagging him with his weapon was not enough, the captain decided to fire a round almost into his own foot while bounding.

Obviously something is needed in the way of additional training for these guys and gals if its being pointed out from everyone and their brother.

stengun
09-20-2008, 22:26
Howdy,

I was in the Air Guard as a SP. Speciallized in ABGD outer perimeter security for C-130's. I fired many rounds while in the ANG.

I currently talking to the Air Force about working for them as a civilian as a Combat Arms Instrutor. This would be a cool job, teaching city kids how to shoot!

Paul

Morris
09-20-2008, 22:46
I currently talking to the Air Force about working for them as a civilian as a Combat Arms Instrutor. This would be a cool job, teaching city kids how to shoot!

Good luck with that. If anyone from CATM remember the first days of training, it was stressed that small arms training was supposed to be integral with the usual AF training. LeMay wanted airmen who could shoot.

The problem is that the Air Force gets lazy and forgets that even airbases can be overrun in wars. As our airbases become more remote from the FEBA of wherever, the idea that "is it really necessary to have the line troop armed" goes away. Your best firearms training that well exceeds what CATM does goes to the tip of the spear types, STS, TACP, Combat WX, Ravens, SP, etc.

The scariest time I ever had on the range as a CATM troop was when the office types from command came to shoot. I had one loaded rifle pointed at the boys, I had one office type file a sexual harassment complaint on me because I made her get into the prone position (true, very true story).

In my world, the Air Force would have EVERYONE qualify yearly, and those advanced airmen able to go to the necessary shooting schools for their AFSCs and assignments. Hell, to the above poster, I'd love to run a school for SF/SP types on what they need for engagements on base and remote.

Oh well, it's a shame to see and I hope my beloved Air Force understand the needs, especially when it's airmen are at remote FOBs and the like, even supply troops and the like.

MrMurphy
09-21-2008, 02:40
A bro of mine, now in Baghdad went through a bunch of Army schools prior to going downrange again. Considerably better training than anything the USAF ever gave him, and even for the Army they were fairly new (shooting on the move with popups walking down a path, transitioning from 9 to 4 and back, etc).

He was glad he got something other than 25m simulated 300m.

phifer8390
09-22-2008, 21:04
A bro of mine, now in Baghdad went through a bunch of Army schools prior to going downrange again. Considerably better training than anything the USAF ever gave him, and even for the Army they were fairly new (shooting on the move with popups walking down a path, transitioning from 9 to 4 and back, etc).

He was glad he got something other than 25m simulated 300m.

It does seem lately that if you are going somewhere that might see combat that you get some extra training. I know a few people that also got sent through some Army training. I would love to get someadvanced training. I cannot even get my unit to allow me to get 9mm "trained." I have shot the ar-15 twice in my 6 years in.

DannyW
10-10-2008, 22:17
It was and I'm sure still is all about your AFSC and where you are stationed. I was a babysitter for Alert aircraft and their special cargo at RAF Lakenheath from '79 to '82. We qualified with each weapon (M-16, M-203 and M-79, M-60, and depending on post training the always special S&W Model 10) every year. I left there and was an Instructor at the Police Academy at Lackland from '82 to "84 and got to fire everything in the Security Police inventory every quarter.

Ralff
10-11-2008, 13:48
I haven't fired a government weapon in at least 4 years.

Former 3C0, recently retrained into 9S100.

aduke05
10-21-2008, 19:42
I haven't fired a government weapon in at least 4 years.

Former 3C0, recently retrained into 9S100.

Not many 9S's out there. Where you assigned?

Ralff
10-28-2008, 10:46
Not many 9S's out there. Where you assigned?


Looks like I missed this, sorry. :tongueout: I'm at headquarters.

AFshooter
11-14-2008, 20:09
Over four years in and counting. Aircrew.
Fired 100 rounds M16 in basic training.

Never touched an M9.

afcop724
11-15-2008, 14:52
Weapons training is a joke, it teaches you just enough to get yourself killed. Everyone thinks they are a "sniper" now because they think they can group at 300 meters.

Rumur has it though that we are going to a new course of fire. Heard that we will be doing shoot and move stuff. We will see I guess.

Publius2
11-21-2008, 16:36
It does seem lately that if you are going somewhere that might see combat that you get some extra training. I know a few people that also got sent through some Army training. I would love to get someadvanced training. I cannot even get my unit to allow me to get 9mm "trained." I have shot the ar-15 twice in my 6 years in.

Yeah, when I deployed they didn't send me to any Army training (well, not for weapons anyways) but they did send me to Contingency Skills Training at the Air Mobility Warfare Center up at Fort Dix. About two weeks of supplemental training in combat first aid, convoy operations, small unit tactics, and MOUT. Got to play with MILES gear, NVGs, simunitions, and one of those live-fire simulators where you shoot a fake M9 (wired to a computer) at a movie screen.

Morris
11-21-2008, 23:44
Live fire simulators for line airmen are a waste. They are far better served by Force-on-Force weapons systems like Simunition(r).

I want a general to take command and demand that everyone become proficient with a rifle at least once a year. But then again, the skies will part and God will pat me on the head too. In other words, ain't gonna happen because it doesn't involve high tech flying BS stuff.

culleniii
12-11-2008, 20:16
I was in the Chair Force for 5 years 2000 to 2005. I was a 3C0-Communications Operations Specialist.

In BMT--basic military training--we shot semi auto M-16 100 rounds. We then had force on force training with flashlights ---im serious.

At the unit, we recieved requalifications once---went to range shot 100 round semi auto matic M-16 and then we cleaned them. The range was a 50 yard range and for longer distances we just shot a smaller black target--i guess thats substituted for shooting 200 yards or whatever.

I actually got written up for talking about weapons. They told me that it wasnt the place to talk about violence and weapons, I told them I didnt think I joined the Boy Scouts---(which we actually did more shooting there--I was an Eagle Scout) and they didnt like that.

I wouldnt have trusted my unit members to guard a laundry facilitiy.

As far as killers, I could have killed half the squadron with a knife before they decided to duck.

Our "commander" even bragged that we were the last unit to be deployed from Florida.

afcop724
12-11-2008, 22:02
I was in the Chair Force for 5 years 2000 to 2005. I was a 3C0-Communications Operations Specialist.

In BMT--basic military training--we shot semi auto M-16 100 rounds. We then had force on force training with flashlights ---im serious.

At the unit, we recieved requalifications once---went to range shot 100 round semi auto matic M-16 and then we cleaned them. The range was a 50 yard range and for longer distances we just shot a smaller black target--i guess thats substituted for shooting 200 yards or whatever.



I forgot all about the flashlights. He is not lying folks I did the same thing.

You are right about the smaller targets, they are "simulating" 300 meters. That is why everybody I work with that qualifies thinks they are snipers.

I have seen scores as low as 8 out of...what is it now 40? I could fire an 8 with my eyes closed. Another problem I have with our firing is that it takes all day to empty 100 or so rounds.

To me the Air Force always seemed terrified of guns. Even fellow "cops" that I work with act like they are nervous around a tool they carry everyday. Maybe 10 on my flight are worth a damn in a fight and only about 4 of those I honestly trust with my life.


If you are in the Air Force and you want to learn how to shoot, buy a gun and some off base range time.

Mwildt
12-14-2008, 23:46
I'll be shipping out February 3rd, I'll post back with what training we get now when I'm able to.

Morris
12-15-2008, 01:54
What will be your AFSC?

Mwildt
12-18-2008, 01:01
What will be your AFSC?

Opted for the 2T2X1 - air transportation. I would had to have waited till July/August at the earliest if I went with my other options. I'm looking forward to getting there and knocking this out.

bluelineman
12-21-2008, 12:42
Opted for the 2T2X1 - air transportation. I would had to have waited till July/August at the earliest if I went with my other options. I'm looking forward to getting there and knocking this out.

Give us the scoop when you get done. I am curious about 2T2X1 as well (for USAF Reserves).

Morris
12-26-2008, 05:47
Sweet! Future FedEx workers. :)

MrMurphy
12-26-2008, 10:38
Alcoholics Moving Cargo!

Have fun.


I deployed with a girl (also a cop) i straight up told to her face if we ever saw action, I would shoot her first and take her rounds (somewhere fairly harmless, like a leg). She was an ammo carrier, not a team member.

Quite a few others shared the sentiment though they weren't quite so blunt.

We qual'd twice a year on the M4, once a year on the M9 and once a year on the M203/249/240 if you were lucky (enough new kids came into the unit, or guys back from deployment that a lot of "M-4 only" troops were around. If you were deploying, you got a fresh M9 and some heavy weapon (in my case, 203 and I already had 240) qual. I actually liked the 249 but they wouldn't LET me reshoot (even though they only had like a five man class).

They're supposed to shoot more often, and more realistically and some of the stateside guys I deployed with did so, but being overseas, it was hard. For anything but 25m range, we had to go to an Italian range (thousand meter with pits and popups) which involved paying the carabinieri to escort the vehicle out there, stay there, and come back, which wasn't cheap..so unless there was a 203 or 240 class going with a LOT of people, they didn't do it.

dickmartin
12-26-2008, 11:29
I never served in uniform (4-F, high blood pressure). However, I spent 35 years 7 months as an Air Force civil servant. During part of my career I was assigned to duties that involved occaisional TDY (business travel) overseas to areas of "high physical threat", later labeled "hostile fire zones." Civilians assigned to such duty were offered the option (it was not required) to receive training on the M9 pistol in case it became necessary, while on assignment overseas, to carry a gun. The "M9 qualification course" was four hours long; three hours in classroom and one hour on the range where 60 rounds were fired at silhouette targets at seven, ten and fifteen yards. Twenty-four rounds were fired for "familiarization" in which no score was counted, followed by thirty-six rounds for scoring. After completing this course one was "qualified" to carry an M9 on duty.

I had some fun the second time I took the M9 qual course: My instructor was a young Security Forces (police) Senior Airman appearing to be about 20-22 years old. He apparently assumed this old civilian had not handled firearms before. It had been explained that to qualify as "expert marksman" one had to place thirty of the thirty-six "scoring" shots inside a circle about six to eight inches in diameter on the silhouette target, about where one's solar plexus would be located. I asked the airman to verify that the first 24 shots did not count, and only shots in the solar plexus circle counted toward "expert marksman" status. Then I proceeded to put 24 non-scoring shots on the head of the target, followed by 36 scoring shots, all in the "expert marksman" circle.

bluelineman
12-28-2008, 07:40
I asked the airman to verify that the first 24 shots did not count, and only shots in the solar plexus circle counted toward "expert marksman" status. Then I proceeded to put 24 non-scoring shots on the head of the target, followed by 36 scoring shots, all in the "expert marksman" circle.

:rofl::rofl::rofl:

http://img218.imageshack.us/img218/5110/afg050214062ov9.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

Morris
12-28-2008, 17:36
Ya forgot the star for rifle too. :)

Harley Rider 1955
12-29-2008, 00:26
From 1976-1980:
Qualified on the M16 in basic training. That was the last time I handled a military rifle. Qualified with a (I believe) S&W model 10 in .38 special only once. This was at Homestead AFB.

MDLibertarian
01-05-2009, 19:53
There was some GAU-5 and GUU-5s still floating around in the hands of OPFOR at Creek Defender last year. :)

Not to thread hijack, but what are the differences between the two models and from the M4s?

DJ Niner
01-06-2009, 00:27
If i remember correctly...

GAU-5 - 10.5" barrel
GAU-5A/A - 11.5" barrel
GUU-5P - 14.5" barrel (predecessor to the M4?)

My old "guard weapon" for weapon transport duties, circa 1985:
http://img253.imageshack.us/img253/7425/gau5aabp2.jpg

MrMurphy
01-06-2009, 05:13
Pretty much what he said, I never did figure out the exact differences between them, but the Gau/Guu series was basically AFspeak for "CAR-15".

And in recent memory (less than six or seven years ago) there were still a few in service. K9 SSgt I know armed with one when she was new to K9 (so about four years or five years back, when the M4 was still coming into service for Security Forces and the majority of cops had M16A2s). Guessing in the 2002/2003ish time range.

When you consider the GAU/GUU were only procured, IIRC for a short time in the 60s or 70s, those were some old rifles running around.

Morris
01-06-2009, 10:42
My GUU-5P from my TACP days was a depot mixmaster. Original M16 lower, M16A1 upper, straight barrel, multiple overstamps and additional stamps.

Naturally, the AF had to have it's own designators for guns so the GUU seemed to fit.

When I was CATM in 1990, I remember opening a crate from a local Guard unit that was M16s, original, 1/12 barrels with the prong flashiders. Wild.

Redhat
01-07-2009, 08:42
GAU/GUU barrels also had different twist rates. :cool:

Morris
01-07-2009, 10:45
It didn't really matter with the gay 25 yard compensated ranges. Nothing like shooting a supposed 200 yards at the 25 yards.

Redhat
01-07-2009, 19:04
It didn't really matter with the gay 25 yard compensated ranges. Nothing like shooting a supposed 200 yards at the 25 yards.

Morris,

Surprisingly, we have taken those who qualified on the 25 meter targets to an actual 300m range and they did very well at full distance, so if they are taught what the adjusted aiming points are for a given target distance (represented by the circles on the 25m silhouettes) they had little problem.

DJ Niner
01-08-2009, 00:37
GAU/GUU barrels also had different twist rates. :cool:I didn't know that. I don't doubt it, just never knew it.

What were the twists, if you have a reference? Curious...

Redhat
01-08-2009, 06:51
DJ,

GAU's were 1:12, GUU-5P's 1:7. The diff between the GAU 5, 5A and 5A/A were barrel lengths.

Morris
01-08-2009, 16:28
I hope so Redhat. My experience with Cat B & C troops was less than that unless they were over the course shooters.

Redhat
01-08-2009, 18:17
Morris,

I kow what you mean...some trying times to be sure however, what do you expect with the limited amount of time we invested!

Who did you work with back then?

Morris
01-09-2009, 16:50
With Det. 1, HQ WA ANG after I got out of ADAF as a loader on 15s at Happy Ho-Ho Holloman. Good time and the NCOIC was a hell of a shot, shot competitively (Camp Perry, Presidents 100, etc), generally like it, did the school in late summer of 1990. Fond memories of the barber poles at Bullis. But it was also an odd time while I was a Det. 1 as I was nearly shot in the boys by a Cat C swinging her loaded M16 on the line from a kneeling position to ask a question. Finger was on the trigger so I removed the rifle from her as she started pulling the trigger Enoka style. That was an "innie" moment but also generated a complaint because I was too rough with her. Then there was the sexual harassment complaint because I had a female volunteer get into the prone position as a demonstration for females. Seems I picked her out because she had a belly size to match her breasts and she though poorly of that.

Said enough of that after two years and went on to TACP. Finished out in November of 1998, bit over 10 years total.

Redhat
01-09-2009, 18:00
Morris,

Glad you survived!!! I think every one of us has had at least one of those "out of body experiences"!!! Mine was on my first day training BMT. Guy shooting over barricade has a stoppage and did the same thing...pointed it right at me! I rested the gun away from him and proceeded to chew his butt then the guy training me came over laughing and said he would take it from there and "why don't you take a break".

One thing I'll say for CATM...you will develop excellent situational awareness or you won't be around too long! :wow:

Morris
01-09-2009, 18:46
Remember the ranges at Medina? I remember the backside of one range we were training on was the Navy's range or something. I remember doing 203 training and a practice round went way high, caught a wind and sailed over the top to the other side.

I never knew US Navy emblemed K-Cars could drive that fast on the range roads . . .

USMC03Grunt
01-10-2009, 12:06
Alright, being prior Marine infantry and today being a CATM troop, I'm going to give you all the straight-up scoop on the Air Force's policy on small arms training. During the Chinese offensive of 1950-51 in Korea, the air base at Kimpo near Seoul was protected by army troops. However, when the NKA and red Chinese moved south, these units were recalled back to the front leaving Kimpo undefended. When the reds came, the air police were seriously out-numbered and fought a delaying action until they were overwelmed. Then the reds came for the base populace. Airmen in those days received no firearms training at all and when they needed to defend themselves, they had no idea how to fire their weapons. The reds captured these untrained airmen and hung them in the hangers. General Lemay upon learning of this fiasco instituted SAMTU (Small Arms Marksmanship Training Unit) that eventually became CATM until we were taken over by the cop carear field in 1997. After the development of SAMTU until today, every airman has received marksmanship training. That's the sunny side.
Now for the foul underbelly of this beast. The training we are allowed to give airmen today really amounts to nothing more than a CYA policy for the air force! If little Johnny goes downrange and gets his balls blown off, parents and politicians will ensure heads will role if they can't show that they had any training to defend themselves. However, the level of training is minimal at best with reduced size targets fired at from 25 meters. Time limits are VERY generous and qualifying scores are so low, it boggles my mind! For example, for your Cat. C shooters, the cooks, bakers and candlestick makers, you need to only hit the black target (just break the line on the black and it counts) 18 times out of 50 attempts and you qualify. I ran the numbers once and I think it comes out to something like 30% or so and we'll say you are fit to fight a war.:shocked: Cops, TAC-P, OSI, PJs and others that are what we call Cat. A shooters fire at least once a year and on the same AFQC course of fire, need I think 30 or 32 our of 50 to qualify. Pilots, arms courriers, and others of that sort made up the Cat. B shooters that fell in between needed a score of 25 or 50% to qualify. So how easy is it to qualify as a Cat. C shooter, well, one day when I was at Hurlburt Field, I took out some pro-rounds, fired the AFQC on burst and still managed to qualify to Cat. C standards. I don't remember the exact score now but I thought it was an interesting experiment to try. Hmm, what is your needed score on a EOC test for your next skill level or a passing PT score???:whistling:
So how often do airmen qualify with their weapons? It used to be Cat. A shooters would qualify every 12 months with cops at least firing AFQC and then TRQC (a more in-depth course of fire...though still quite easy) 6 months after firing the AFQC so in other words, every 6 months. Cat. B shooters would fire ever 15 months and Cat. C shooters would fire every 30 months, all to align their firing cycles with their AEF rotation cycles. However, this past year seen a new 2226 come down with a new policy of Cat. C shooters going away and now airmen that used to be classed as Cat. C shooters will only fire within a 90 day window prior to deployment overseas to the AOR!:faint: So much for practice makes perfect!
To be quite frank and honest, the training is a joke. Lemay as already said is spinning in his grave faster than a prop on an AC-130 and rightly so! We give a morning class that lasts maybe 3-4 hours, then after lunch, go out to the range for maybe a couple more hours then spend about another hour cleaning the weapons and signing off the 710. That's it folks! If you are a Cat. C shooter, you can possibly see your entire military shooting career total 8 or 16 hours if you seldom or never deploy.
Now lets look at the firing line as well. We mainly deal with a 1/7 shooter/instrutor ratio. Depending on your block official, you may get one that will cater to your every need, hold your hand and wipe your ass the whole time on the firing line. Got a stoppage? Raise your hand and an instructor will come over and fix it for you...unless you're lucky (or unlucky, depending on your point of view) enough to get someone like me that will yell back to you to "fix it!" I won't be there for your firefight so I damn sure won't coddle you on the range.
Finally lets look at the mindset of the average student we get in these classes. One common variety we get is the "too cool for school" crowd that sees themselves as some sort of operator and refuses to be taught anything. My last shop was run entirely by reservists and one student was offended that we lowely reservists were instructing them! Of course he barely qualified but today we pick off foam ear plugs at 25 meters with the same rifles from the rack as the students so if they have problems with being taught by reservists (our shop of reservists had the highest qualification rates in ACC BTW), we're more than happy to take them out for a shoot-off. Put your money where your mouth is son!:supergrin: Then there is the more damning student that figures that they joined the Air Force, not the Marines and they will probably never need to fire this weapon (shades of Kimpo anybody?) and see it as a waste of their time. This bunch has very poor attitudes, generally the ones we see doping off in class or getting kicked off the firing line for stupid stunts, and some of our worst shooters. Oh well, not much you can do about these ****-birds other than hope they qualify just so you don't have to see them in remedial class at the end of the month. Over the years I've just learned that the "too cool for school" crowd and "I don't wanna be here" sand-baggers are not the ones you teach to. I go into class each day and look for the airman that is paying attention to my every word and taking in the information I pass along. THAT is the person I am there to teach!
I guess this post has covered a lot of ground here from how we started training to how simple the qualifications are to the students we get, both good and bad and the things that get under my skin about the whole program. Bottom line is that the Air Force has a mentality of not wanting to spend any more time and money on small arms training than absolutely necessary yet maintain such low standards of qualification so to not prevent anybody but the most clueless shooter from deploying to the AOR. My best advice is that since we can only teach to the lowest common denominator the most basic of skills, get out there on your own, practice, get better training than they allow us to teach and better yourself because the Care Force sure as hell isn't going to do it for you. Just remember the next time you go out to qualify that NOBODY (myself included which is why I pay my own way to private shooting schools) is "too cool for school" and you can always either see something in a different perspective or even learn something totally new.:)

Redhat
01-10-2009, 20:07
So USMC03,

Thanks for the historical perpective. How long you been on the job?

Oh and if you were king for a day, what would you like to see?

USMC03Grunt
01-11-2009, 06:44
So USMC03,

Thanks for the historical perpective. How long you been on the job?

Oh and if you were king for a day, what would you like to see?


Been doing this gig now for several years. Love the job and I'll say that it's the best job in the Air Force but it would be a lot better if it was its own career field again rather than falling under SF.
As far as what I would like to see, I dunno. I wonder if this mindset of "corporate military" would allow for any productive changes. I guess the best place to start would be in the recruiting offices. Remind people that you are entering into the "Armed Forces" (it even says that on your ID card...well it used to before they came out with the new ones that read "Uniformed Services"...sort of like a dog catcher or the fry-guy at McDonnalds wear a uniform of sorts too, eh?) and that you WILL be required to carry a weapon, fire it an qualify with it. Next would be boot camp where they have made progress by replacing the portfolios with blue M-16A2s that are deactivated so that's a step. However, why not move along to actual funtional weapons they learn to dissasemble, fire on the range and go through "warrior week" (complete with corny "battle field sounds" and 550 chord simulated C-wire) all with the same weapon?
Next suggestion would be to rachet down on the course of fire and those that fail. Instead of being able to "qualify" with 18 our of 50, (36% of your rounds hitting the target ain't cutting it in my book) why not bump it up to 37 out of 50 in order to qualify? If you look at the Marine KD course where 186 out of 250 is needed to qualify (and it's not hard at all to qualify on that course either BTW), the 74% of your rounds on target comes out the same. Now I'm sure you are going to get some stellar performers that aren't going to manage that so then what? What happens if you fail an EOC or PT test? EOC test failures from what I've seen gets one more try at it and if they fail a second time, you're all through. PT test failures go through remedial PT of sorts then they are re-tested and again, if you fail may be grounds for discharge. Why not apply these same levels of standards to small arms training as well? Even for those that manage to qualify, why not include their scores in considerations for promotion or other awards? Better your score, the more points you get towards that next promotion.
"We're not the Marines so we really don't need to shoot like them." is what I'd expect the canned response to be. However, lets look at that new "Airman's Creed" that states over and over again that we are "warriors". Warriors know how to fight and if you can't handle those weapons of war, what kind of a warrior are you? Lets look at the core values, "Excellence in all we do." Can you really say that you are upholding that core value when you only have to get 18 out of 50 rounds on the targets? Does missing just shy of 2 out of your 3 rounds on target sound anything like excellence to you? Doesn't sound like any kind of "excellence" I ever heard of. If you want to make claims of being "warriors" and "excellence" and all the virtue that goes along with that, then you had best toe the mark and be able to back it up or else it is nothing more than lip service and false bravado.
So now we train them to a compitent level, what do we do about keeping that level high? Simple, everybody qualifies every year no matter if you're an AFSOC operator or the cook in a flight kitchen. The idea that currently you dont' fire unless you are deploying is absurd and does nothing to better the shooter. Shooting as you know is a perishable skill and if they don't deploy for several years, you will always be starting out at the bottom every time they come out to shoot. I alway like the anology of taking a PT test, then sitting around for a few years doing nothing but sucking down ding-dongs and Ho-Hos and then trying to pass the same PT test several years later. Doesn't work and neither does not keeping ones shooting skills sharp.
Next, don't settle for a morning class and an afternoon firing 20 rounds for zero, 30 rounds for practice and 50 rounds for qual but instead a few days doing grass drills and a couple days actually on the firing line. We used to spend a week around the target barrels doing grass drills then 3 days getting down our zero, a day for pre-qual (in case your weapon went **** up before qual day) and a 5th day of actually qualifying. I'm not saying that we have to go to that extreme but a couple days of grass drills, then 3 days shooting with qual on the last day would be a week of training that should be enough to take down the toughest smurf at 25 meters.
"Well what about the work load on the CATM shop?" How about more instructors being trained? How about moving CATM back into it's own career field under wing training again with the manning to handle a work load of that nature? Yes, all this will cost money but IMHO, it's better to give our airmen (a lot of whom are deploying in ILO positions...wait, I think that term has now been changed to Joint Tasking or some PC name like that) better training with the small arms they will carry over here than spend on yet another F-22 that isn't really needed in today's conflicts.

Morris
01-11-2009, 07:08
Preaching to the choir Marine. In my TACP days, I'd take my guys and we'd do advanced training. I've known a few Guard CATM shops that had their instructors head off to Thunder Ranch and the like but no chance for the line folks.

Like in the cop world, it takes a major event or the loss of life to make changes to the training thoughts and regime.

Jeepnik
01-30-2009, 16:19
I guess it sorta depends on when and where you are. Nigh on forty years ago, damn I'm getting old. We had more than a few oppurtunities to shoot. The only problem was that there was usually someone shooting back. That kinda sucked. So don't complain you don't get to waste government ammunition. You could be in a position to be "required" to do so, and that's never really a good thing.

pennlineman
02-18-2009, 14:11
If i remember correctly...

GAU-5 - 10.5" barrel
GAU-5A/A - 11.5" barrel
GUU-5P - 14.5" barrel (predecessor to the M4?)

My old "guard weapon" for weapon transport duties, circa 1985:
http://img253.imageshack.us/img253/7425/gau5aabp2.jpg

Hmm, Now I know who was messing with my sights! It only took me 24 years to figure it out. DJ! :tongueout:

pennlineman
02-18-2009, 14:28
Or was it me messing with his sights, opps :devilish:

DJ Niner
02-19-2009, 01:13
Probably the latter. :supergrin:

98LS-WON
02-28-2009, 13:22
28 years as an Air Force Judge Advocate.

Lawyers are in the same boat as Docs. Not a line officer or in charge of people = no need to waste $$ training you for something you won't get to do.

TheGreatGonzo
02-28-2009, 14:01
Remember the ranges at Medina?

Too well! We set them on fire shooting old tracer rounds left over from Just Cause! :wow:
Gonzo

Morris
02-28-2009, 16:31
Excellent!

meangreenlx50
03-16-2009, 19:14
Even with 90 day prior quals before deployment to the Afghan AOR, I was still showing people the right way to handle the M-16. Even one of my semi-gun informed guys was issued a M-16 with a training bolt and a severly worn bolt catch from the armory at BAF. I think the whole weapons training in all services is to PC (not often enough, realistic or done to instill cofindence in handling the weapons). ND are to common in the AOR.

Seoull
03-23-2009, 00:38
Hello all. I was ADAF for about 10 years. originally 811X0 (showing age), currently 3P0X1 (Air Guard). April will be my 20 year mark for service. It is easy to see why former Marines and Army members would see Air Force quals as a joke. The Marine Corps is 98% combat trained troops (guesstimation :tongueout:). From your mechanics to your SF guys. As far as medics cooks and most of your admin personnel, the Navy is who you rely on for the most part. I have qualified with army troops that spent all day at the target and still not qualified, but still get signed off, so Air Force isn't the only one suffering from lack of training. I will totally agree with the argument that more is needed, but it's little hard to turn a 80% "admin" branch of service into killing machines overnight. Unfortunately, until Air Force personnel start getting killed as a result of direct fire from firefights and not IED's and morter attacks, the level of small arms training will not increase. :crying:

On a different note, I would love to see the military go to the Glock. The whole thing about thumb safeties is BS. If you have a person shooting an M9 once every 3 years, how the hell are they going to remember to flip the damn safety. Not to mention, Sig's don't have them. My 2 cents. Thanks for reading. And thanks to all who serve and have served.

mbramsa
03-23-2009, 05:11
On a different note, I would love to see the military go to the Glock. The whole thing about thumb safeties is BS. If you have a person shooting an M9 once every 3 years, how the hell are they going to remember to flip the damn safety. Not to mention, Sig's don't have them. My 2 cents. Thanks for reading. And thanks to all who serve and have served.

I agree. We're supposed to carry in red status (one in the pipe, weapon on safe) when we're outside the wire but I always carry in black (weapon on fire). I use a Blackhawk Serpa drop-leg that covers the rear of the weapon so you have to look pretty close to see it's on fire. On the FOB we have to carry amber (chamber empty, full magazine).

Morris
03-23-2009, 14:22
On the FOB we have to carry amber (chamber empty, full magazine).

Ha! We call that Israeli style. I always found that stupid but understood that a few mental midgets with the occasional ND may have driven that policy.

I remember a brief period when the skycops at McChord at the gate went that way, AT THE FRIGGIN GATE! Next to one of the bigger poop holes in Pierce County too. Ay carumba.

01coltcolt
03-23-2009, 20:32
Aircraft Maintenance.........We get the sh@t end of the stick 11 deployments 2 remotes in 16 years ********n noners??????????????:steamed: