TFBTV: USMC Rifle Range Qualification

On this episode of TFBTV, Miles Vining takes a look at how the U.S. Marine Corps goes about the annual rifle qualification process that every Marine undertakes every year. Qualification is not only important for keeping up the fundamentals of marksmanship, but also plays into a Marine’s cutting score, or a number that is calculated, and puts them in the zone to be promoted. It isn’t sexy CQB training, but these are the building blocks that marksmanship comes from, and allows Marines to be accurate and successful in combat. Here we have an in-depth look at how this training takes place in the United States.

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Alex C.

Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.


  • Set

    Hands in pockets? Not in the old Corps. Good stuff otherwise.

    • Bill_J

      “A Marine with cold hands and empty pockets is a fool” Chesty Puller

    • USMC03Vet


      • USMCRet

        Hands in pockets, no covers on their grapes WTF. That is all just plain nasty.

    • SnakeEater-0317

      Old corps? “A marine with cold hands and warm pockets is a damn fool”- Col. Puller. Gtfoh with that pog bs.

    • nadnerbus

      Next thing you know, their moostache hairs will be in violations.

  • USMC03Vet

    Lance Coolie!

    Best. Rank. Ever.

  • Ben Wong

    really wheres my NCO chewing out ppl with hands in their pockets bad enough they shooting with ACOG’s boy back in my days Iron sights rules ! sight alignment sight picture.

  • michaeljball

    1. Only POGs get butt-hurt about hands in pockets
    2. I agree that table 1 should have remained irons, but life goes on

  • Excellent video, Miles!

  • Ron

    The reason Table 1 is shot with RCOs instead of irons, is there was all kinds of research over the last decade that it was counter-productive to train with the weapon in the degraded mode of operation.

    • Bram

      Never thought it mattered much. Either you know how to shoot or you don’t. Nice glass doesn’t make up for bad breathing or sloppy trigger pulls.

      • Ron

        Beyond the basics of shooting, you need to know how to use the optic. When the RCO was first fielded, what the Marine Corps found was most did not know how to use it, and that was linked to they were trained to use irons and since that was the first thing they were trained on, it took several times more training to train them on how to use their optics.

  • Bram

    Can you even hit the target at 500 with the M4? That round must really be running out of gas that far out of a short barrel. (I only ever qualified with M16A2 over iron sights.)

    • Absolutely. In my experience, a 16″ barreled carbine, which is only slightly more powerful than an M4, peters out at about 900 yards, and your accuracy starts going to hell. Now, lethality isn’t great at that range, but even out to 800 you can have an excellent hit rate if you practice the fundamentals. 5.56mm is a very flat-shooting round, really, even at longer ranges.

      My local range is a 1,000 yard deal, and I shoot 480 yards on a routine basis with my Arsenal SLR-104FR and Colt 6920.

  • RECO

    Damn Devil Dogs Get Ya friken hands out your trouser pockets(2:50). Have some posture and discipline.

  • Phil Hsueh

    Nice looking range, much better than the ranges I qualed at on Pendleton. I’m really jealous that you get to qual on a range with dirt and grass, instead of hard/packed dirt and gravel.