As-issued Vintage Military Rifle (VMR) Games levels the equipment playing field, emphasizing personal skills while also avoiding the escalating arms race for more and more precise—and expensive—target rifles and designer cartridges.
The M1903 Springfield rifle was only five years old when the U.S. Army recognized the chronic problem of recoil causing the steel receiver tang to split the wooden stock where the two meet. In 1908, the Army told Springfield to make all subsequent rifles with a 1/16 inch gap between the tang and the stock, solving the problem.
When CMP introduced the “as-issued” games a little over a decade ago, a military surplus Mauser or Mosin-Nagant could be had for about $100 and an M1 carbine in NRA Very Good condition fetched, if memory serves, about $400. Today—thanks in large part to the skyrocketing popularity of the carbine—a quick online check of non-collector milsurp M1 carbine prices varies from $630 to $1350. Whether that is still “inexpensive” is up to the individual shooter’s wallet.
The sling may be the most underrated accuracy aid in rifle competition.