Mechanical Training

Mechanical training includes characteristics and capabilities, disassembly and assembly, operations and functioning, serviceability checks, and weapons maintenance. It also stresses the performance of immediate action to clear or reduce a stoppage, and the safe handling of rifles and ammunition (see Chapter 2). Examples of mechanical training drills, along with tasks, conditions, and standards, are provided in Appendix A. These examples are also used for initial entry training at the Army training centers. Mechanical training must encompass all related tasks contained in the soldier's manual of common tasks (SMCT) to include the correct procedures for disassembly, cleaning, inspection, and reassembly of the rifle and magazine (Figure 3-1).

Army Preventive Maintenance Magazine

Serviceability inspections and preventive maintenance checks must be practiced to ensure soldiers have reliable weapons systems during training and in combat. Technical information necessary to conduct mechanical training is contained in the soldier's operator's manual (Ml6Al - TM 9-1005-249-10; M16A2 - TM 9-1005-319-10). Once the basic procedures have been demonstrated, soldiers should practice the mechanical training skills under varied conditions to include during nighttime, and in MOPP and arctic clothing.

As part of mechanical training, soldiers must be taught and must practice procedures for properly loading ammunition into magazines to include both single loose rounds and speed loading of 10-round clips (Figure 3-2).

Figure 3-2. Loading and unloading magazine.

Figure 3-2. Loading and unloading magazine.

Basic Marksmanship Procedures

Emphasis on maintenance and understanding of the rifle can prevent most problems and malfunctions. However, a soldier could encounter a stoppage or malfunction. The soldier must quickly correct the problem by applying immediate action and continue to place effective fire on the target.

Immediate-action procedures contained in Chapter 2 and the operator's technical manual should be taught and practiced as part of preliminary dry-fire exercises, and should be reinforced during live-fire exercises.

Immediate-action drills should be conducted using dummy ammunition (Ml99) loaded into the magazine. The soldier chamber the first dummy round and assume a firing position. When he squeezes the trigger and the hammer falls with no recoil, this is the cue to apply the correct immediate-action procedure and to refire. Drill should continue until soldiers can perform the task in three to five seconds.

The word SPORTS is a technique for assisting the soldier in learning the proper procedures for applying immediate action to the M16Al and M16A2 rifles.

First, THINK, then:

Slap up on the bottom of the magazine.

Pull the charging handle to the rear.

Observe the chamber for an ejection of the round.

Release the charging handle.

Tap the forward assist.

Squeeze the trigger again.

NOTE: When slapping up on the magazine, be careful not to knock a round out of the magazine onto the line of the bolt carrier, causing more problems. Slap hard enough only to ensure the magazine is fully seated.

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