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Discussion Starter #1
as I sit here with a dog-eared copy of Cartridges of the World, I notices that in the military section in that back, they have some variations I am unfamiliar with.

in 7.62x51 (.308), 7.62x63 (30.06), and 12.7x99 (.50BMG) they list seperate ball loads for "overhead fire applications". the only differences I see between these and their standard FMJ counterparts is a more stringent accuracy requirement.
for example: M2 ball (30.06) has a 7.5" @600 yards. the overhead fire variant calls for a 5" group @600 yards.

are these OFA loads simply selected lots of standard ammo, or are they manufactured differently? also, why would an OFA application require more accuracy?

any ideas?
 

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OFA was used in training scenarios. Remember the "crawl under the barb-wire with MG fire overhead" scenarios? The lots were chosen for the accuracy variations shown. The idea was to minimize the spread, keeping the bullets safely above the recruits. It's considered a source of low morale when you kill a recruit who was actually doing the right thing. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #3
ah, thanks! do they still train this way? I understand live fire drills, but we dont actually shoot at/near our boys anymore, do we?

I was thinking along other lines; I thought that overhead fire = anti-aircraft fire...
 

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Still

I don't know what now means but back in 56 in ITR (Infantry Training Regiment) at Camp Geiger they shot over us.
 

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I was shot over during training back in '04, to teach us the sound of different rounds, estimate distance etc.
And again in '05 in Iraq, but thats a hole other story.
 

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You mean they don't have the "Infiltration course anymore"? We crawled it twice during the day and once at night. Barbed wire, machine guns, blocks of TNT, flares. It was great fun.
 

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Any rifle company that goes through Range 400 at 29 Palms does an overhead fire exercise. As the shootee in that training it's a lot of fun, we shot lots of rounds. There are gunners and leaders rules that we followed that broke the basic machine gun rules, on top of range regs set by base to make sure we were safe but effective.
 

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There is one recorded incident I am aware of that I think happened at Ft. Dix.
This one platoon was loading back on trucks and they were missing a kid so they started looking and found him stone dead in one of the lanes. The malfunction investigation concluded there was a partial lead core in one bullet causing it to fly wild when it came out and drilled this poor kid right in the top of his head and the bullet continued on down through the body and exited never to be found.
The siezed every last round of that lot in the entire world and shot every last remaining round on witness target and not one more round showed the problem.
 
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