Vietnam Sniper Team


Late Summer 2017 a new sniper team idea was tried out at the Burtonwood show by Roger Hearn and Kieran Rizzotti 
with an impromptu photo shoot to see how it looked. 
Since then the idea has been developed and important kit sourced to the point that we can now 
complete a sniper team report for the Rolling Thunder page.


The following pictures have been recreated from training circular TC 23-14 Sniper Training and Employment 
and show all the period equipment on issue to snipers  and their observers and sniper teams in general 
when deployed in Vietnam

Description of the gear of the Americal 23d Infantry Division in 1971. 
I’ve also attached the link to the original footage of the Americal Divisions own sniper school 
of which our impressions where based upon. 



Some of the smaller hard to find items such as range cards are missing from the photographs 
and big ticket ones like the Starlight scope too but these will be sourced.


This is the individual sniper equipment issue layout and shows 
the M14 rifle (match grade), the 3X 9X variable power Redfield telescopic sight and its mount, 
ERDL camouflage clothing, 
cleaning kit, 
camouflage stick, 
M56 webbing, 
poncho liner, 
boonie hat, 
M14 bayonet and scabbard, 
entrenching tool and cover


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This is the sniper team equipment layout and would have been carried and used by the observer. 
It shows the M49 observation scope with carrying case and M15 tripod with bag ,
 M17(a1) Observers binoculars and plastic case, 
PRC/25 radio and batteries, 
compass with pouch, 
rucksack (the sniper would also carry his own).

This is the match grade M14 rifle with mounted 3X 9X variable power Redfield telescopic sight 
and M1907 leather sling. 


The rifle has had its flash hider removed so that a Sionics M14SS-1 noise suppressor can be fitted.

The match grade M14 rifle with accessories including an Sionics M14SS-1 noise suppressor


The M49 observation telescope with its carrying case



The M15 tripod for the M49 scope with bag.
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Sighting the M49 Observation Scope



M17(a1) binoculars and plastic case.

The correct way to hold the binoculars to prevent the ingress of light when observing..


Holding and sighting the compass.


The correct eye relief when using the mounted telescopic sight.

The standard standing position.


The cross-legged sitting position.


The standard kneeling position.

The standard prone position.

The teams observer himself a trained sniper.  


An observer with map and compass, passing on updates
and locations of possible enemy movement over the horn to his unit 


With his M56 pouches and canteens carried around his back, making it easier for him 
to get into the prone position. He has chosen to carry An M203 as extra firepower incase the team get “bumped”


Using the telescope, observation, M49.


The observer, seen here using the M17A1 binoculars. 
Which are kept in their plastic case, carrying, M62A1 with nylon strap. 
Note the combined use of ERDL fatigues and OG boonie hat. ERDL was not always issued in full complete sets.

We hope that this report and these pictures will inspire you to recreate something that your interested in 
and bring it to life for the public.

RAF Burtonwood Nostalgia Festival display






 Prime reference material because the internet only gets you so far.  
TC23-14 - Sniper Training and Employment, 13 Cent Killers, Inside the Crosshair, the Long Range War

Article and photos thanks to Roger Hearn and Kieran Rizzotti  from Rolling Thunder 
Any Photos should not be used without prior agreement.


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