Bangstickery in the RNR

Discussion in 'Royal Naval Reserve (RNR)' started by SimpleReservist, Aug 8, 2013.

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  1. MOD EDIT: This didn't really fit into the 'Walk Of Shame' thread so I have created a stand alone thread about bangsticks and training on them here.

    One of the issues with trained strength in SeaRes, is that the NMT103 A and B are reqd, each lasting 2 weeks, and I suspect neither were taught when you were in. Unfortunately every one who is reqd to use the SA80 now has to do those 4 weeks of courses. This might be a sticking point. But I'm yet to be convinced that you need to be on the TS to go AIB. Good luck
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 12, 2013
  2. Okay, I'm more than a little bit bemused here. In 1989 I was able to go from "never touched an L1A1" to live-firing on the range in under a day, after which point I was trusted with it on exercises with blank, on ranges with live rounds (sometimes with fellow STABs downrange), stagging on (very occasionally, usually just had a right-angled torch and a pickaxe handle)... GPMG, LMG (the proper L4 Bren, not this modern rubbish), pistol, 84mm MAW, followed suit, as did conversion to L85/L86 in '92, all taught in a similarly short and to the point manner.In 1996 it took four drill nights (admittedly, it was solid work) for the entire new entry cohort to be ticked off as safe to fire L85 and L86 live on the range or blank on exercise (and from hazy memory, the most time-consuming part was getting everyone to demonstrate that they could put the sling back on properly); this a mix of moderately experienced to total newbies.In both cases we somehow managed to avoid littering the countryside with dead bodies, either our own or of others, and the worst weapon-related injury we got on exercise was a sliced-open palm (his non-regulation "slap the top cover really hard to make it slide back into place" turned out to be a bad idea; it refused to move and instead cut his hand enough to need a couple of stitches) So what radical transformation has taken place, that it now takes four *#@&ing weeks of instruction to be able to handle the Rifle L85A2? It seems to have gone from "you can't do more than NSPs with a weapon until you've done the one-week course" which is what I was told in 2009, to quadrupling now. Have I, as often happens, missed the point epically, or is this just more of the course inflation the military seems determined to inflict on itself?
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  3. As a fully qualified armourer on all variants of the SA80, it'd be a real shitter if I had to do four weeks of "this is how you put on a sling."

    Having said that, it's a hoop I'm prepared to jump through to get to where I want to be.

    Also, ****ing about with guns is cool.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    I'm bemused as well as you should not teach all of the weapons lessons in one hit.
  5. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    You are Danny Nightingale, I claim my five quid.
    • Like Like x 1
  6. The 4 week thing was supposed to make things better for the RN's small weapon skills. Instead, we made it into an uncompromising process that probably adds little.
  7. This is a symptom of the Armed Forces, there is now more emphasis on PROCESS than OUTCOME. It means that most of the things taught in the units, now has to be taught by the lead schools. Who requires this? The lead schools (it helps justify their existence!).

    Someone needs to challenge every single process that the RN impose on the RNR and challenge whether it is really necessary. During a period when they want the RNR to expand and get people to TS faster, they need to consider what can realistically taught in units or over a number of weekends - and this may require contracts with training suppliers changed so that things are delivered at weekends.
  8. The 4 week weapon course was imposed on us by the Army, as we now have to follow their training phams.
    'Nuff said really
  9. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Quite right as well. A tried and tested method.
  10. Wouldn't it be twice as safe if the course was eight weeks? If not, why not? Wouldn't making the world twice as safe be a good thing? Think of the children! And if eight weeks is good, wouldn't sixteen weeks be *four times* safer? How safe should we be before someone, anyone, starts to ask "this is getting silly"?

    Padding out courses is a good alternative to meaningful activity, but does it add to actual effectiveness (which includes safety, but isn't limited to it)? Do the Territorial Army *really* require four weeks of instruction before they can handle rifles, or do they somehow manage to do it a little quicker?

    It's not a major problem - I've given up on the idea that a member of the Armed Forces should aspire to be qualified to be armed, since that's apparently no longer the way things are done - it's just amusing to me that we used to be able to do this safely, effectively and - crucially - *enjoyably*. When did the military accept so wholeheartedlly the notion that it's subversive and/or dangerous to enjoy turning live rounds into noise, empty cases and (hopefully) good groups on target?
  11. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    It's not so much padding out the course, it's because (bar Infantry badged TA in the main) most reservist (and some regulars for that matter) weapon handling skills are gash and unsafe.
    • Like Like x 2
  12. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    My bold. That's not actually the case. 100 metres was used for grouping only. Once the sights were adjusted on the weapon system for the user, they were further checked at 100 and then any further shoots would be carried out at 200, 300 or sometimes even 400 metres.

    As for the quote about the average educational requirement for the basic Infanteer, it doesn't take education to operate a weapon system, just good training. Matelots may have a better educational standard than the Army, but in my experience their weapon handling is shite and they couldn't hit a cows arse with a banjo.

    Just saying like.
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  13. Legal as decided by whom? I bet it was the SASC, a reviled Corps in their own Army. There are lots of things wrong with Small Arms employment in the RN, starting with the fact that there is an institutional belief that it is a Senior Rate's sport.
  14. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    When i did my short range instructors course, the SASC Major running it was a complete trumpet. You had to know the weapon system inside out or he would treat you with utter scorn and he looked down on us throughout the entire course. As you would expect, i really endeared myself to him when over a beer in the mess, i asked if having short arms was a requirement of joining the SASC. Obviously this was said after i had passed.
  15. Pussy.

    10 characters
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  16. Let's be sensible hear, it DOES not need 4 weeks to teach someone to shoot to 300 yards (most ranges are still in yards even if they say metres!). It need a week at most, and then regular well coached shoots. These could and should be at weekends, and the regular instructors (if needed) should work weekends to support the RNR.

    Of course, this does require ranges to operate at weekends as well, and adequate ammo, but this is the cost of requiring reservists to do more. The alternative would be to put the course as a post mobilisation, pre-deployment training, if 4 weeks really are needed.
  17. That All Arms Banjo Handling Test is a bastard.
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  18. To put it into perspective, back in the early 1990s the TA requirement was to *attempt* both the Annual Personal Weapon Test and the Basic Fitness Test, and to achieve a pass on at least one of them. There were an unsurprising number of bountyhunters who were probably firing live rounds for the only time in a year, and the target was probably the safest place to stand. Accuracy didn't happen, but safety did.

    Those of us who sought out more opportunitiies (probably three or four weekends in a really good year) comfortably passed APWT, and a few (sadly not me) got the chance to do a lot more for the shooting team. It's not an enormously high bar - your typical TA REME unit doesn't usually make musketry a command priority - but safely meeting the standard was possible without enormous commitment of time or effort.

    Is it "delusional" to have seen it and done it in several different places? Just asking...

    And the rocket scientists. Don't forget the rocket scientists.
    When I just wanted to turn live rounds into noise, I loaded and fired my own... until 1998 :(
  19. Blackrat

    Blackrat War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Not often this happens, but i actually chuckled when i read that.
  20. Bollocks I dont know what the crack is now but when i went through it was exactly that a week and it was rushed and I'm surprised people didn't die. I don't believe I was safe when I left Raleigh and I don't believe many other people in my entry were either.
    I have seen some shocking things with weapons and more training at an early level can only be a good thing.
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