Friday, May 7, 2010

Don't sugarcoat it.

This sums things up pretty succinctly. Back when one didn’t have to apologize for the possibility of hurting somebody’s feeeeeeeeeeeeeelings just because Grandpa Schmidt still had family in the old country.

It's interesting to see "center of target" instead of "center of mass" being illustrated.


  1. I'm not an infantryman (or even a soldier for that matter, I was a sailor) so someone may correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding of the use of the "battle zero" might explain the aim point in the photo.

    The way I understand it, for a battle zero, the sights are zeroed for 300 yards. Because of the arc of the bullet path, at any target up to 300 yards away, the point of impact would at or above the line of sight. I believe for a .30-06 M1 Garand, the apex of the bullet's arc would be about 8 inches above line of sight.

    With a battle zero, you aim for the belly button. That way, at any range up to 300 yards (and even a little beyond), you'll hit them somewhere in the vital area between the chest and the abdomen.

    It may just be coincidence, but it appears to me that the center of the black in the photo would be right about at the German Soldier's belly button.

  2. Sailorcurt,

    I'm sure Geodkyt a.k.a. Shorter Half, who was infantry, will be able to expound upon this in great detail seeing as his gun/militaria-geek button was stuck to "ON" many years ago.

  3. “The society that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools.”


  4. Sailorcurt has it basically right. A hit ANYWHERE will generally take a "civilized" opponent (not fanatic, or doped to the gills) out of action. Aiming dead center means that even if you are off by a foot or so in elevation, you have a really good chance of hitting him somewhere between shouldes and knees -- which, with a military rifle round at range is generally sufficient to take out even "uncivilized" opponents. They may still be alive, but they aren't a serious threat anymore, and won't likely survive long enough to close to a range where they are likely to be able to effectively return fire.

    A couple of caveats -- First, with the current 5.56mm round, the trajectory is so flat out to 300m that the round doesn't have enough variance in point of aim vs. point of impact to make it worthwhile to aim at something much larger than the torso. Second, in Advanced Rifle Marksmanship, we were taught to aim for the center of the ribcage, if time, target exposure, and target speed allowed. (Center of whatever we could see of the target, if too much was behind hard cover).

    Of course, with machineguns, you aim for the center of the whole man, or even the whole squad, counting on the dispersal of rounds (called teh beaten zone) to scatter them around, getting more periphial hits on more men at the expense of solid precision hits on one man.

    Shorter Half