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April 17, 2006

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It’s the Real Sling, Baby

While looking over the photos of the Marine Corps M40A3 sniper rifle, I was horrified to see that the sling swivels were attached to the side of the stock, rather than the bottom, and assumed that the Corps had now relegated the Model 1907 shooting sling to use merely as a carrying strap. Teach your grandmother to suck eggs! A Marine sniper rifle without a real, working sling is unthinkable.

Closer inspection revealed that it can be mounted on the side of the rifle as a carrying strap, but lurking demurely on the bottom of the McMillan A4 stock was a pair of swivels, one for the issue Harris bipod, and the other for the old M1907. Right where it should be.

Civilians, especially hunters, now tend to ignore the old three-piece M1907. It’s heavy, slow to use unless you practice with it, and far more than you need as a carrying strap. But these slings were once common, and I recall that a lot of hunting rifles came with M1907 slings as standard equipment.

The secret to using one successfully is simple: Get it tight enough so that your left hand goes from red to blue to purple. Then you go through purple to sort of an indigo black, and you’re just about right.



Dave's right about using the military type sling when hunting, it creates a solid base. I have a Turner "All-Weather" on my Ruger. The best place to learn its proper use is at a CMP Garand Match...not only will you learn proper technique, you'll also have fun and learn from experienced shooters.


Funny how few comments this raised. I was taught to shoot by the military and can't imagine not using a sling. I am always amazed at how many just treat them as carrying straps, even those who served in the military.

My daughters all shoot with slings and are fine shots because of it and lots of practice!!!

Ralph Bernieri

I agree with reader-Michael-I have used "sling shooting" for some time now, and althought I served in the active military, the branch I served in (USAF)as a security specialist did not teach us the technique. I was taught growing up by WWII vets, friends and family,of our deer hunting group.
While hunting out west, I found sling shooting very valuable where trees, or fence posts, were far and few between!

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