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https://www.marinecorpstimes.c...ng-new-mk-13-rifles/

Marine snipers are getting new Mk 13 rifles

By: Shawn Snow   21 hours ago


Marine snipers have been carrying some version of the M40 rifle since the Vietnam War, but now the Corps is about to arm its snipers with a new weapon system.

Marine snipers will soon be carrying the Mk 13 Mod 7 sniper rifle, Marine spokesperson Capt. Christopher Harrison confirmed to Marine Corps Times Monday.

The selection of the Mk 13 Mod 7 closes a chapter in the Corps’ journey to upgrade its sniper teams with a new rifle that will extend range and lethality.

The Mk 13 fires a .300 Winchester Magnum, or Win Mag round, and has a range that pushes beyond 1,000 yards, former snipers told Marine Corps Times.

Since 1966, Marine snipers have been carrying the Remington based bolt-action M40 as the preferred rifle. That rifle has gone through multiple modifications, including changes in 2014 that produced the M40A6.

Former snipers who spoke to Marine Corps Times said they have long complained that the M40 simply didn’t have the range to contend with conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

And the M40’s nearly 1,000-yard range is behind other sniper rifles in the U.S. military’s arsenal. The Army’s M2010 Enhanced Sniper Rifle can engage targets at 1,300 yards.

One sniper hailed the decision to equip the Corps’ snipers with the Mk 13 as a “long time coming.”

However, the rifle isn’t the only piece of gear the Corps may be interested in.

Pictures have appeared online from Josaphat Orozco photography that show Marines firing the Mk 13 with the Nightforce ATACR scope.

The Navy’s recent budget documents released in February sought money to buy “the MK 13 Rifle with associated optic.”

But Marine Corps officials would not confirm whether the Nightforce optic will be fielded with the Mk 13 at this time.

However, one former sniper said that, if fielded, the new scope is even more exciting than the Mk 13.

The new scope comes with the Horus Tremor3 Reticle. The reticle allows an operator to rapidly engage targets at long ranges. It features special wind dots that aid a shooter in quick wind estimations.

The documents for justification of the fiscal year 2018 annual defense legislation included nearly $4.3 million in funding for the rifle. The Corps plans to purchase 356 rifles, which will kit out the Corps’ sniper teams with the Mk 13.

Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane division out of Crane, Indiana, holds the contract for the Mk 13 Mod 7. It falls under Naval Sea Systems Command.
 
Posts: 13882 | Location: Eastern Iowa | Registered: May 21, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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quote:
Originally posted by Sigmund:
The new scope comes with the Horus Tremor3 Reticle.


Thanks for that.

Interesting developments, the TReMoR3 reticle in particular. It seems to me that it’s either love or hate Horus reticles. The Tremor reticles aren’t quite as overwhelming as the Hx-series types, but I’ve still seen many complaints that they are all “too busy.” I’d like to see some official Marine Corps training and policy guidance on using the reticle after they’re issued.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39944 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by sigfreund:
quote:
Originally posted by Sigmund:
The new scope comes with the Horus Tremor3 Reticle.


Thanks for that.

Interesting developments, the TReMoR3 reticle in particular. It seems to me that it’s either love or hate Horus reticles. The Tremor reticles aren’t quite as overwhelming as the Hx-series types, but I’ve still seen many complaints that they are all “too busy.” I’d like to see some official Marine Corps training and policy guidance on using the reticle after they’re issued.


I own a NF 7-35 w/Tremor3. I spoke with Todd prior to making my purchase. They cannot release any training manuals on use of the reticle. The only way a civilian can get similar training is by taking one of his classes.
 
Posts: 1800 | Location: Ohio | Registered: October 17, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't have any time behind a NightForce optic, but my Vortex is equipped with an EBR-2C. Similar concept, but there are some significant differences.


I find it very intuitive whether I am dialing or holding. If you have someone spotting with a MIL reticle, it makes corrections easy if they spot your misses.
 
Posts: 13445 | Location: The Edge of the Ozarks | Registered: December 04, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Watched some videos, it appears there is some extra voodoo going on with that Tremor reticle.


Neat stuff. Neat.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ux3Xc3rm9sE
 
Posts: 13445 | Location: The Edge of the Ozarks | Registered: December 04, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Busy Busy reticle. Certainly has plenty of aim points if you have the time to count out which ones to use.........dj


Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
 
Posts: 3776 | Registered: April 06, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by sigfreund:


Interesting developments, the TReMoR3 reticle in particular. It seems to me that it’s either love or hate Horus reticles. The Tremor reticles aren’t quite as overwhelming as the Hx-series types, but I’ve still seen many complaints that they are all “too busy.” I’d like to see some official Marine Corps training and policy guidance on using the reticle after they’re issued.


Not a stranger to a "Christmas Tree" style reticle. Been looking at a Gen II XR reticle for about 7yrs, many thousands of rounds. I was loaned a S&B 5-25 last year with a Tremor 3. Mounted it on my 40X 22LR and put several hundred rounds on it mostly shooting holds. With my experience with the Gen II XR it was easy to quickly focus on a specific point of the reticle. Next mounted it on my match rifle. Timed myself holding vs dialing. Multiple minute of man size targets at various distances faster holding, multiple minute of head faster dialing. Understand the benefit of the wind dots. It's nice to not need, think about wind dope, multiple targets run with similiar wind/dot. Sometimes would hold the left or right side of the dots for a more precise hold. Shot two matches with it. My conclusion after roughly 1500rds and lots of dry firing, it's not for me. Common size targets I'm shooting in matches faster to dial, more precise. Even with all the reticle markings.... still holding in "space" or between markings at longer distances. A handful or more times in those two matches could not see my impacts, reticle covered them. If I can't see my impacts hit or miss, might as well close my eyes before breaking the shot. Caught myself moving the scope/reticle down as I broke the shot to get the target in the open part of the reticle, very bad habit to get in to, matter of time I move before or as I'm breaking the shot. Not uncommon in matches to have a wide spread L-R between targets, often at 10-12X for those, larger field of view to find targets. At that magnification the TreMor 3 reticle benefits go away.
 
Posts: 2636 | Location: 9860 ft above sea level Colorado | Registered: December 31, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Oh, worth noting I very much wanted to like the Tremor 3. The thought of not dialing, not wearing on the turret mechanism.... Had 3 scopes quit tracking last year, always happens in a match!
 
Posts: 2636 | Location: 9860 ft above sea level Colorado | Registered: December 31, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for your comments about the Tremor reticle, offgrid. My first higher tier scope was a Leupold Mark 6 with one of the H-number Horus reticles. It doesn’t have wind dots per se, but is more of a plain grid with various marks that can easily be used for elevation and wind holds or other windage POA adjustments. I was very taken with the design and I also liked the idea of its eliminating uncertainties with mechanical tracking mechanisms.

After seeing the first Tremor reticle I wanted one for another scope, but it wasn’t available and I settled on the more traditional Leupold Tactical Milling Reticle—as I have with several sights since. In retrospect, I’m glad I did for the type of shooting I mostly do. Even with the Horus reticle I have that’s much simpler in design and therefore less complicated (and potentially confusing) to use than the Tremor, it’s still possible to make aiming errors without careful concentration. Dialing the proper elevation and then holding left or right on the horizontal crosshair as necessary allows me to better focus on the target rather than the reticle.

I have mused at length on the value of gridded and similar reticles for engaging targets that are available for short times at unknown distances, but my practical experience is limited, so yours are very valuable insights.

Again, it will be interesting to follow the Marine Corps training guidance along with their field reactions to the Tremor.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39944 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
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Originally posted by IndianaBoy:
If you have someone spotting with a MIL reticle, it makes corrections easy if they spot your misses.


That is definitely true. I have a Leupold spotting scope with Horus reticle, and it is very useful even when someone is dialing corrections.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39944 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'm just a civilian desk jockey and haven't recently stayed in a Holiday Inn Express. A few years ago I attended a Rifles Only course where Nic Irving was an instructor. Nic was an Army Ranger sniper in the sandbox, with something like 33 sniper kills. During evening hydration sessions, Nic spoke quite a bit about his tours and went into more detail about the stories in his book.

Nic stated that he was deployed with a KAC SR-25. I don't recall the scope brand, but he stated it had a traditional mil reticle. During our course he used an SR-25 with S&B PMII scope, borrowed from the owner of the property where the course was held.

Rifles Only has a drill known as "Moving Chaos", which was developed from feedback of their special customers -- military, contractors, alphabet agencies, and the private groups they cater to. Moving Chaos is a timed drill on steel targets, as follows:
- IPSC mover (3-4 mph) at 500 yards
- 8-10" plate at 300 yards
- 8-10" plate at 400 yards
- 10-12" plate at 600 yards
- IPSC mover at 500 yards
Yardages are approximate, and plate size varies proportionately as target distances are increased or decreased.

BTW, instructors and students alike did this drill with our scopes dialed to 500 yards. We held over/under for the other distances.

Nic stated that the chaos drill is a surprisingly valid test for the work he did in supporting the Marines as they entered villages. Nic said that in such instances it was best to dial elevation to the most challenging and/or most common distances, then hold over/under as target distances varied from the dialed "zero". In such situations, he felt a more traditional mil reticle worked better than the so-called Christmas tree reticles.

I have limited experience with Christmas tree reticles, but really don't care for them. I agree with offgrid on his comments. Of all the Christmas tree reticles I've seen, the Gen II XR (I think) on his Premiere and Tangent Theta scopes are the only ones that I would consider owning.
 
Posts: 6070 | Location: Colorado | Registered: January 26, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks, fritz, for your always-informative comments. Irving’s books are well worth the read. I have read many different accounts of modern military sniping, but as I recall, he goes into more detail about many issues than the autobiographies written by most military shooters.

quote:
Originally posted by fritz:
it was best to dial elevation to the most challenging and/or most common distances, then hold over/under as target distances varied from the dialed "zero". In such situations, he felt a more traditional mil reticle worked better than the so-called Christmas tree reticles.


Regarding the above, one of the things about the various gridded and “Christmas tree” reticles I have noticed is that the first segment above the horizontal crosshair often has 1 milliradian (or more) of space that’s not broken into segments like other parts of the reticle. The current Tremor3, for example, doesn’t break up the section above the middle until the second mil, and then it uses a different design than most of the reticle. Some reticles have no calibration markings at all above the center. The only reason I can imagine for that practice is to leave a clear area that doesn’t obscure the target. The obvious problem, however, is that if it’s necessary to hold low as you describe for closer targets than what the scope is zeroed for, the shooter has to estimate the offset rather than having precise aiming aids.

Several years ago when considering a specific reticle I spoke with a representative of one company. When I mentioned the above issue, it was obvious that they hadn’t considered the technique of holding low and when I asked about it, my impression from him was, “Why would you want to do that anyway?” Your experiences that you recount above make it clear why someone might want to do that.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39944 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by sigfreund:
Several years ago when considering a specific reticle I spoke with a representative of one company. When I mentioned the above issue, it was obvious that they hadn’t considered the technique of holding low and when I asked about it, my impression from him was, “Why would you want to do that anyway?” Your experiences that you recount above make it clear why someone might want to do that.

OK, I'm talking gaming here, not military applications. But based on Nic Irving's field experience, there are some crossovers.

A few years ago we had a monthly steel match in northeastern Colorado. There was a timed stage where we engaged 3 sets of 3 targets from 3 different positions -- a roof top and two windows. SWAG-ing the numbers, let's say I have one set of targets at 400, 600, and 750 yards. My dope requires 6, 12, and 17 MOA of elevation for the targets, respectively.

For me, time constraints were tight enough that dialing each target didn't work, so I dialed only the middle target of each set, then held over/under as necessary. So in this case, I dialed 12 MOA for the middle target. I shot the close target with a 6 MOA under hold, dead on for the middle one, and 5 MOA over hold for the far target. My NF reticles have 10 MOA under hold capabilities in the reticles. I commonly see FFP mil reticles with 3, 4, or 5 mil under hold capabilities.

It would have taken about the same time for me to dial 6 MOA for the close target, then hold over 6 and 11 MOA for the next two targets. But I deal with wind hold amounts much better at 5 or 6 MOA from the horizontal portion of the cross hair than I do at 11 MOA away.
 
Posts: 6070 | Location: Colorado | Registered: January 26, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by IndianaBoy:
Watched some videos, it appears there is some extra voodoo going on with that Tremor reticle.


Neat stuff. Neat.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ux3Xc3rm9sE


There's no voodoo involved. It's just mils and mils have been proven to work. I've tested the wind dots out to 600 yards and they're spot on. Any further than that and I dial elevation. Reticles are personal preference. The top 3 reticles last year in the PRS were the EBR 2C, H59 and the SKMR. All three are Christmas tree style reticles. Find what you like and train with it. I typically do something similar to what Fritz does. I dial my zero for the closest target then run ballistics zeroing at that yardage and calculate hold overs for the targets further out.
 
Posts: 1800 | Location: Ohio | Registered: October 17, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by fritz:
I commonly see FFP mil reticles with 3, 4, or 5 mil under hold capabilities.


Yes, at full magnification all my FFP scopes have at least 5 mil hold under capability, and sometimes more. My highest-powered scope is 25×.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39944 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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God Bless our Snipers - and their rifles !
 
Posts: 2434 | Registered: April 20, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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