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The Lee-Enfield "Mad Minute"

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baltimoreed View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote baltimoreed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 25 2021 at 10:23am
We had out BAMM last Saturday at my cas club. I shot my Krag constabulary [school] rifle before lunch and my remilitarized 1903 Springfield with a 10 rd extended mag after lunch. I shot them both mad minute style, holding onto the bolt which worked great. I like shooting my bolts that way. Hopefully I’ll have an Enfield before too long to play with. We only shoot 10 rd strings, had one rifle miss and 3 revolver misses. A broken revolver on stage 3 knocked me out of first place I think  But we all had a good time. Any day spent at the range is a great day. 
‘Give’em he!!, Pike’
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Strangely Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 1:33pm
An interesting thread about someone who seems to be disregarded as a myth by some self appointed experts on Youtube and held as a demi God by others! 

I often think the idea of the Mad Minute is misinterpreted by some. It was never part of the training of a soldier other than the 15 round rapid to be shot in 60 seconds; instead it firmly belongs in Skill at Arms demonstrations of the day and military tattoos which were very popular at the turn of the century when the new "short" rifle was still something of a newcomer.

Alfred Snoxall did exist and was first mentioned in print by Major C.H.B. Pridham (Duke of Wellington's Regiment) writing in his book, Superiority of Fire (1945) along with other notable marksman such as Sgt Major Jesse Wallingford who was very much better known on the Bisley "shooting circuit" of the day. 
I rather think Wallingford was happy in the limelight whereas Snoxall from the little I have discovered about him appears to have joined the army, done a splendid job and left in a sea of manpower all of whom were looking for jobs after the Great War.
One snippet my wife discovered for me was written by one of his teachers in her diary who caught him stealing apples from her garden aged eleven!   

Major Pridham was an officer instructor at the school of Musketry in Hythe at the same time that Snoxall was there, hence the mention in the book which gives some concrete providence to the story some 25 years after they last worked together. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hoadie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 2:48pm
Mick;
Are you anywhere near Westminster?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Strangely Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 2:52pm
Originally posted by hoadie hoadie wrote:

Mick;
Are you anywhere near Westminster?

Westminster London?

No south of London, about 80 miles away but close to Southampton. 
I'm still being moderated so you might have to wait for this reply! 
Mick
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hoadie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 3:01pm
Westminster must cover alot of real estate. My good friend is in Westminster, Wiltshire..I liked the place when I was there, alot. (But they have a peculiar habit of driving on the wrong side of the road!)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Strangely Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 3:12pm
Warminster not Westminster which is the seat of government power in the UK and the name you probably keep hearing on news reports! 

Not far away (30 miles) and the home of the School of Infantry situated at the west side of Salisbury Plain, also home to the School of Infantry small arms museum. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Strangely Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 3:14pm
Originally posted by hoadie hoadie wrote:

I liked the place when I was there, alot. (But they have a peculiar habit of driving on the wrong side of the road!)

Hoadie, oddly enough I had the same feeling last time I was over the pond! 
Mick
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hoadie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 3:48pm
Well, Frank (who lives in Westminster - Wiltshire) took me to some big Infantry base near his place. He's practically on the salisbury plain..& he's close to Stonehenge.
Quite a place..wish I had more time (& $) to explore with over there.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote baltimoreed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 3:55pm
Before my wife got too ill to travel I had hoped we could get to Britain and Wales. We did get to Ireland before she fell apart. It was a marvelous trip with my best friend and his wife. He did all the driving as it was their 4th trip to Ireland. 
‘Give’em he!!, Pike’
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Honkytonk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 5:02pm
In '87 out rugby club did a two week your if England and Wales. Five games with local squads. Got the s#+t kicked out of us in Wales. Also got to watch a test match at Twickenham between England and France. A little different crowd than at a Canadian NHL hockey game!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2022 at 5:04pm
I must admit, these guys were exceptional!  Mick, do you know the diameter of the Inner score ring of the target they used?  

This makes our US CMP Match rapid fire stages seem incredibly slow! In the vintage matches, Rapid Fire is 10 rounds in 80 seconds.  The time starts with the shooter standing and 5 rounds in the magazine.  So some time is used up to drop down into the prone position.  Then recharge the magazine after the first five rounds are fired.  It really is plenty of time to make deliberate shots.  Sometimes my rapid fire stage scores are better then slow fire, which is single shot only, requiring the rifle to be taken off the shoulder for each shot, and that breaks your concentration and natural point of aim. 

Modern Service Rifle CMP matches have a 60 second sitting rapid fire and 70 second prone rapid fire stages. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Strangely Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 20 2022 at 9:06am
Geoff it's believed Snoxall and the others all shot on the Second Class figure target which has an inner of 24" inches. 
Up until about 20 years ago we could shoot the Mad Minute in competition at Bisley but a bullet was discovered lodged in a garage roof near the range and it was the perfect excuse to play the "Health & Safety" card and stop the shoot. They (NRA) also thought some of the smaller cadets couldn't handle the No.4 safely during the Mad Minute practice apparently.

I have since discovered that the bullet in the garage roof was 7mm and believed to have come from the running deer range, heaven forbid the truth should get out! 

My best back in the day was 20 rounds although I usually delivered 19 getting them all on, some of the lads were regularly doing 25 and getting them all on the target which in those days was a turning figure target with an 8"?? strip down the middle scoring 5 and 4 elsewhere on the target.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 20 2022 at 12:14pm

I grew up not far from Warminster, "Brizzle".

passed through it many time going to Bisley & Hazlemere. back in the 70's.


I'm going to have to go digging for it but I have an old musketry manual that shows a circular course, with many, varied stations spaced out about equally, round it. Basically you ran from the stations & did a drill at each one as you came to it, running various bayonet engagements, ranging & sighting exercises & at one point the live firing sections. you shot outwards from the circle. IIRC it was slow, timed & snap shooting scattered about from the "sides" & front to a distant berm.

Each of the dozen or so “stops” was labeled for the particular exercise to be performed there. One was labeled as the “exercise 22”. The “official” name for the mad minute.

If you look earlier in this thread there's an image & a set of dimensions for the target mentioned.



Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 20 2022 at 12:20pm
Honkytonk, did you match against "Glynneath RFC" in South Wales?
That was my old club & the site of the assault course & zip line through the trees going up the hill & back over the lake!
Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 20 2022 at 12:32pm
Holding an 8 minute group in a "flat out" rate of rapid fire is indeed exceptional skill (all shots within the 24 inch inner at 300 yards).   Some shooters struggle to get an 8 minute group in prone slow fire!  

Most shooters of vintage bolt action rifles on this side of the pond do well to hold 3 to 4 MOA in the ten shot 80 second rapid stage.  

  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Strangely Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 20 2022 at 12:46pm
Originally posted by britrifles britrifles wrote:

Holding an 8 minute group in a "flat out" rate of rapid fire is indeed exceptional skill (all shots within the 24 inch inner at 300 yards).   Some shooters struggle to get an 8 minute group in prone slow fire!   

I'b better qualify this; the Mad Minute we did before they stopped the practise was at 200x yards which is the distance most of the snap & rapid stuff is done, everything else tends to be 500x & 600X. 


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