No 8 Rifle Safety Case


Very detailed response Steve, most of which sums up a number of the problems with delivering this core activity to a wider audience.

I had 48 cadets for firing the No.8 & L98A2 at the weekend, and it was a good day however we encountered the following issues, which seem to rear their head at all shoots;

  • High number of cadets not current.

  • Delays the start of firing as staff are completing tests, and not acting as Safety Supervisors

  • Due to Skill Fade following severe lack of exposure, some tests continue into the Afternoon

  • Cadets not expecting to fire both weapons if trained on both, once trained on the L98 exposure to No.8 severely reduced.

  • Lack of Qualified/Authorised Staff to support the range.

  • Staff are double hatting as SAAI/WI & RCO/FPSS reducing ability for WHTs to be concurrent activity. A single staff drop out can reduce the number of lanes that can be used due to being consistently lose to limits.

I had a 16 lane range, however was only using 9 lanes due to a combination of weapons being used for test and available staff. All cadets got 40 rounds with the No.8 and L98 trained cadets also got 60 rounds, however for the most parts the cadets are in down time.

However I am loathe to restrict numbers, when historically cadet numbers have been very poor (<15) the challenge is having the staff available to run a worthwhile concurrent activity and maintaining maximum activity for the cadets.

With the impending end of safety case for the No.8 and with VERY limited availability to Air Rifles and qualified staff, depending on the roll out period, we may find that the number of eligible cadets for the L98 severely drops and we will end back at a situation where the cadet numbers make organising range days not seem worthwhile.


This is where we have still never recovered from the following:

a) Withdrawl of the No4 as a training/testing platform meaning that we have to use No8’s which would be more use for Love Firing

b) Withdrawl of qCWHT meaning that staff who are qualified to run ranges and safety supervise having to test.


Why we ‘lost’ QcWHT other than a teddy chuck baffled me. Having someone whose role was purely to test was a brilliant idea and losing the DP 303s was not such a brilliant idea. Due to where we are we don’t hold .22s so training is a no no and losiing our DPs was a massive nuisance. I remember being told when I was an RCO not to use N°8s for training to keep them serviceable!!

If staff didn’t double hat the Corps would grind to a halt. How many sqns have stand alone subject instructors doing only one or maybe two subjects who don’t do anything else, AT bods who only do AT, RCOs who only RCO, etc and likewise TO, Adj, H&S, DofE etc etc who only do those roles, ie do not instruct or do anything else? Many activities are becoming more specialist and demanding to maintain as a result the same people will specialise.


Just to help those who might be put off… yes, cost of air rifles + pumps is required at sqn cost. Material for range construction can be claimed back (up to a certain amount - £250? - I would need to check old emails), tgts are available via your parent unit:

5.5 Metre (5 Bull) Sect/Ref No 6920-99-428-0582, DofQ = Each, suggested Qty is 500 (to avoid repetitive demands & associated collection issues. State no alternative.

Pellets are dirt cheap - & no ammo transport issues! :wink:

From a post I made (Nov 2013) concerning air rifle range set-up:

For 3 rifles + appropriate kit (pump, bags, some pellets, etc), you are looking at about £1200. For 2 rifles + kit, it is approximately £850. Allow at least £200 for ancilliary equipment such as shooting mats, spotting scopes, etc – or get what you can from Service sources!

We need more “air rifle only” RCO cses - one per yr (& at St Mawgan) isn’t enough.

If you have the space & the dosh, an air rifle range is a fantastic asset. The marksmanship standard of our cadets went up considerably & I think we were top of the Wg for marksman awards last year. :slight_smile:[quote=“daws1159, post:100, topic:719, full:true”]
Rather than wasting the money on Air Rifle which is quite frankly Pony i’d rather just buy a couple of Squadron owned .22 Target Rifles and get some real shooting done.

the air rifle is an excellent wpn to start off cadets with their shooting “career” & also to improve the skills of those who were already up to a good standard, especially when moving to the L98 or L81. Incidentally, the “bull” on a 5.5m air rifle tgt is a one mm dot!

On the contrary[quote=“Teflon, post:103, topic:719”]
Why we ‘lost’ QcWHT other than a teddy chuck baffled me


The BIG issue is that SASC will not accept that cadet shooting is markedly different from adult Service (3-positional) use of the service rifle. Consequently, we are hammered with complex trg/NSPs/WHTs for single shot bolt rifles. Until the mentality changes, the problems will still remain. Adopt the NRA?NSRA “rules” - end of firing, breech inspected by the firer, breech flag inserted. Add on a simple check by the RCO/safety supervisors. No firing off of actions on empty chambers, & leaving bolt closed for the air rifle. Heaven forbid that an RCO could train/test a cadet on a bolt action rifle… :scream:


One problem is the armed forces not understanding cadet forces … full stop and directly migrating something that is done during the working day in the forces to the part-time environment to the cadet forces.
A bigger problem is that whoever was in charge of the ATC and no doubt ACF at the time weren’t able to explain / tell them or weren’t bothered as they’re unable to see that it would create problems. It’s easier for them to roll over and issue a policy after the fact rather than fight our corner, as they aren’t at the business end having to deliver.
No wonder in the ATC at least live shooting has lost the prominence it had as an activity. If air rifle shooting was going to be a proper activity we should have all been supplied with the kit, rather than passing the cost onto squadrons.


Don’t get me wrong I am not against the ACO having air rifles, I would happy get on a RCO course and convince the CWC to purchase the kit required to get an air rifle range at Squadron.
I am bitter because we’re getting a new building and cannot pick up a HQAC approved (and encouraged) activity on unit – where it is supposed to happen – because we have been supplied with a building/room too short to accommodate it.
I am bitter because every year we are encouraged more and more to consider air rifle for our shooting “needs” yet I am in a situation where I could have done (in a spooner hut) to a building where it is not possible…

I would be happy to see air rifle as a progressive activity, and in the ideal world I would run an evening once a month air rifle shooting on Squadron.
Using it as a platform into the military way of shooting in preparation for 0.22” and 5.56mm (and even 7.62mm) shooting is ideal. But as a sole activity, it is a bit of a joke that the same rifle can be used in the Cadets back garden without training, without a formal “range” or anything else the MOD/RAF imposes on ATC Air Rifle shooting

But I don’t think that should be seen as the SOLUTION to shooting in the ATC. I am against moving away from “real guns” and playing with military hardware – we are a military sponsored/supported youth organisation and should be encouraged to embrace those links not cut them off.

There is a vast difference between the Scouts and the Air Cadets in terms of attitude, approach, and formality but when it boils down to it, both are youth organisations offering kids extra-curricular activities they don’t get at school.
With the reduced RAF stations and with it reduction in places on annual camps, with the lack of gliding and fewer and fewer AEF opportunities (short of the QBFP how often do we see/hear of Cadets flying in something not in a Tutor? Once a year? it used to be once a month!), with the introduction of ECOs fieldcraft is now getting harder…shooting is hard enough without encouragement to leave it and adopt air rifle.
It is getting to the point only the uniform, drill and formal rank structure which separates the ACO from other youth organisations effectively all doing the same thing for the same reasons…


[quote=“steve679, post:106, topic:719, full:true”]It is getting to the point only the uniform, drill and formal rank structure which separates the ACO from other youth organisations effectively all doing the same thing for the same reasons…
… without the baggage that being MOD sponsored brings.

There are lot of adverse comments about Scouts, but if they manage to deliver similar to what we do without as many constraints, who are the fools? Does it matter that they aren’t as disciplined as we profess to be?

Most scout groups meet once a week and get things done and the majority of ATC units do 2 nights.


here here!!

what do we achieve on a parade night the Scouts don’t?

classification lessons…radios…maybe air rec and other RAF “general service knowledge” based training.

the Scouts don’t do classroom work, having lectures on Navigation, propulsion or satellites. they get all the “fun stuff” AT, initiative exercises, leadership/teamwork tasks without the bore of lessons!!


Maybe it’s time you took your woggle and went and joined the scouts then?


The way things are going in the ATC they may well be in the next revision of the ATC dress regs.


Yeah you’ll get a blue one for doing nothing with a further series of Bronze, Silver & Gold :roll_eyes:


I assume the safety case is MOD-wide not RAF specific, so the safety case for CCF will expire at the same time?

I would say approach your local CCF for access to the new rifle but it looks like we will also not be getting them (in the south) until 2018.


The safety case is MOD wide and will be ‘owned’ and managed by the relevant project office in DE&S.


Well there are two words

owned and managed

that I wouldn’t feel sit happily together in the same sentence wrt the MOD.


so it would seem HQAC have caught up with the rest of the shooting world and admitted there is a new rifle on its way

(see scrolling banner on sharepoint)

Why oh WHY are these announcements in a memo style format without any kind of official stamp? no header indicating which office it has come from. no title/signature block signing who has made the annoucement.

it is the equivalent of a electronic post-it note placed on to the front page of Sharepoint like these are notes placed on the work’s fridge indicating some minor distruption


I don’t quite understand what it’s referring to regarding the No8 out of service date.
Is it now being extended???


Can’t access the document at the moment, our unit password needs to be renewed! However, the No 8 OSD was scheduled for 30(?) Sep 2016. Unless some detailed (urgent) work is going on behind the scenes with all concerned, especially the MOD “sponsor,” with only 2 months to go, there will be huge issues with (ACO) cadet .22 shooting - there won’t be any until sufficient stocks of the L144 are distributed.


I think you mean huge issues with cadet .22 shooting full stop, not just ACO. All the MOD sponsored No. 8 rifle users will be losing the No. 8 on the out of service date, which means no .22 shooting for anyone unless using LPW. We do not currently have the HK conversion kits for the L98A2 as they needed to be returned for maintenance/upgrade and there is no ETA on their return. The L144 roll out is going to be very slow even for the ACF. Our county hasn’t actually had No. 8s for a while so there are many cadets who have never fired .22. Going from air rifle to L98A2 is a big step.


Ok copied from the document…

“The out of service date for the No8 will be managed to allow remaining stock of rifles, spares and specialist tools to waste out as armouries are converted. There is agreement in principal for Cosford Armoury to isolate serviceable stock for the benefit of Units still using the No 8.”

The document also states at the begining a 3year roll out commencing 2017



That is still a rather vague statement - “managed” = extended?? Date range? End of 2020 to coincide with all units to getting replacements?