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Best Ww2 Sniper Rifle.


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Any thoughts on what was the best sniper rifle in WW2. I know that the best snipers are dependent on training and experience, so it does not necessarily follow that the users of the best rifle made the best snipers.

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You re right about the rifle does not make the man. There is a big difference between a 'sharpshooter' and a 'sniper'. The sniper rifles themselves were pretty much all the same standard and the calibres weren't that far apart.It was more to do with the user, although the Japanese had a 7.5mm rifle which had a barrel so long that the propellant was completely burned out by the time the round left the barrel, which in turn meant that was no 'muzzle flash' whatsover. This meant that a well concealed sniper would very unlikely be discovered. A massive advantage, which is unrivalled even today.
I have actually fired the three main wwii rifles,the mosin-nagant , mauser kar98 and the lee-enfield ,and i must admit, the differences in accuracy and comfort were minor, howver, being a Brit, if push comes to shove, I'd run with the lee-enfield. :P

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So if there was little in the weapons themselves who had the the best snipers with the highest kills ? I assume that the conflict on the eastern front was the main theatre for sniper operations due to the length of the conflict.

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Not entirely true, as I have only mentioned Bolt Action rifles. There were other 'semi automatic ' rifles . but that it another topic. Certainly on the Eastern Front , numbers had alot to do with it. I have a translated copy of the Soviet sniper's manual, and it is incredibly basic.
However , snipers in Normandy , had a dramatic impact on both sides , and in this campaign, due to the reletively short distances involved, the skill,of the individual came very much to the fore.

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Guest John Sukey

For ruggedness I would pick the No4Mk1T. (at least for WW2)
As for the eastern front, the russian snipers were vastly overrated. A famous russian sniper was brought to the U.k. at the end of the war and taken to Hythe. Given a No4Mk1T to try out, the onlookers quickly found he really did'nt have a clue.

The Finns also had a well known sniper who gave hundreds of russians the opportunity to die for Lenin. The odd thing about his equipment was that for the most part he used the iron sights! In this case it was the man, not the equipment as he was using a Finnish rework of a Moisen Nagant.

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Guest John Sukey

So if there was little in the weapons themselves who had the the best snipers with the highest kills ? I assume that the conflict on the eastern front was the main theatre for sniper operations due to the length of the conflict.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Wneh they asked a German general how much trouble the russian snipers gave his troops, his reply was "what snipers?"

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I'm glad you brought up the Finn. i'd nearly forgotten about him. I believe he had approx 400 confirmed targets destroyed and used iron sights because it was what he was used to using for shooting game etc for their pelts ( eiders mostly, i think) pre war and because most of the targets were in the woods in the snow, and under 400 yards away. He used head shots on game to stop the pelts/fur etc being destroyed.
He was seriously wounded by Artillery, and never went operational again.

As for the Russians, they had masses of manpower, and I have never really classed them as snipers, mostly marksmen , which is true even today. Each Motor Rifle platoon has a 'marksman' armed with a Dragunov SVD, in the Platoon HQ. He has little extra training, and is there because he is the best shot.

Anyway, the SVD is still the only sniper rifle to date which has a bayonet lug fitted! Why?

There were several high profile women snipers in Russia but may have been a PR coup. The Russians certainly led the way in the Semi Automatic field with the Tokarev rifle, which the Germans copied badly.

I have fired several of the WWII Rifles and I must admit there was little difference between them all, except for the quality of some of the sights.
I did enjoy it though :food-smiley-004:
Interesting about the Hythe chap, but then in his defence, he may have had the language barrier and have a fairly low standard of training, coupled with the fact his soviet rifle may have been the only weapon he had ever used. If you know any more of this , I would be interested.

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Guest John Sukey

More info. I believe I read that bit about the russian sniper in a past issue of The Armourer. Since I have been getting them from issue No1, there is just too much material to cover.

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