Sniper Country Duty Roster collective wisdom

Rifle camouflage:

Rifle Cammo:

Rod did an outstanding job on my .300WM while at SMTC. It really looks great...Scott is
right, the guy can really paint a rifle. That seems to be one way to do the job. There were
some rifles that had a form of ghillie on them. that method seemed to be effective also. I
like the paint because there is less to get snagged on brush during the final phase of your
stalk. Remember to paint the inside of your front scope cap also. I got off my first shot at
the observer, but got busted when he started scanning my area. What did he see? My big
round shiney black Butler Creek scope cap. Of course I may have stalked a little too close
also. It does'nt matter if it's flipped up or to one really stands out under obsevation
by optics. Worse than the end of a barrel. alittle cammo paint on the inside will solve that

I liked the tomatoe stakes also..Scott, Bob and I could not find any when we went to
Wal-Mart, and I still cannot locate any here...Still looking. In Florida, prone shooting can
be a problem due to all of the very jungle like undergrowth. The shooting sticks are the
way to go.

Scott is right about wind...that was probably the hardest thing to get right...but we also
shot through some incredible winds while at SMTC. I thought hurricane Earl had followed
me up to W. VA.

P.C., FL. USA - Friday, September 25, 1998 at 10:27:49 (EDT)

I have never tried sneaking up on someone so I don't know how effective this would be
against a human target but works great for predators with sharp eyes looking for anything
out of the ordinary. I took a piece of burlap and made a "sock" to slip over the gun up to
the scope and secure it with several rubberbands it gets frayed with use and breaks up the
outline quite well. We spray paint the rest of the gun and scope with removable bow paint.
One of the guys I hunt with uses a vet wrap for horses, it sticks to its self not the gun.
Comes in several colors and white works great for winter snow plus its easy to take off or
change. None of these methods effect the point of impact either.

Pat <>
USA - Friday, September 25, 1998 at 12:52:30 (EDT)

Cammying up gear - Remember, besides the rifle we are also talking about observer
optics, back up weapons, firing support etc.

There are many ways of doing this. First you have to remember what the eye picks up on.
Two of the killers here are shine and outline. Shine is pretty easy to subdue with flat spray
paint and the like. As you stay in this occupation over the years you try different
techniques. Don't get in one mindset. Recently I have gone to the following technique. I
start off with bowflage tape and tape everything except the barrel. When taping don't put
it on smoothly, rather intentionaly make it a wrinkled mess. This will help to cut down
smooth surfaces and reflection. I then take 60 grit sand paper and sand the tape giving it a
fuzzy surface. For the barrel I stick to paint as I'm paranoid about screwing with barrel
harmonics. A good paint to use is this "granite" paint I found at the Home Center. It has a
zillion little beads in it that, after drying, leaves a rough, absolutely reflection free surface.
Seal the granite paint with a satin clear coat, then paint to desired color. This painting
technique works well with bino's, firing supports etc. It wears off after awhile but, hey,
blow a couple of hundred dollars on a Birdsong teflon finish instead!

In order to cut reflection down off of optics, use scope shades first, then kill flash lens
covers or strech a nylon stocking over the objective lens. When using scope shades you can
line them with light colored burlap (wrinkled again) to cut down on the black hole effect
that a trained observer can pick up on. In high light conditions such as sand or snow you
can tape over the lens shade and cut a small opening in it. THis will still allow enough light
to enter, but cut down on shine. Gauze also works well in this manner.

In firing position drape your head veil over the weapon up to a point just past the scope.
This covers up bolt manipulation, loading etc.

Gooch out.
gooch <>
Sherwood, AR USA - Friday, September 25, 1998 at 17:32:07 (EDT)

Patt:GREAT ideas !The vet rap and bow paint would certainly be very flexible in letting
the shooter adapt the camoflauge to their specific environment(s) with minimal down time
for the rifle to be outfitted as required.

I'm personally more interested in this type of versatility as opposed to having a weaopon
almost to the point of being permanently altered by using non- removable paints and other
such means.

Heck,even hockey stick tape (white or black in colour) could be used as well.

Jeff B. <>
Truro, N.S. Canada - Friday, September 25, 1998 at 19:33:16 (EDT)

Weapon Camo - Paint works well to a certain extent. When using paint, don't paint the
weapon as if it were a deck chair. Frost the paint on so that you will get varying hues from
a single paint, it also allows for a flater appearence. Once you ahve finished "frosting" on
the paint, go over it with flat clear coat. Burlap extended just past the muzzle allows break
up of the muzzle, however, the percursory collumn of air, that forms the initial muzzle
blast, will move it out of the way allowing the bullet to pass unmolested. Wrap the barrle
loosely with burlap to within 1 inch of the forstock, if you wish to use burlap, DO NOT
capture barrel and forestock as you will destroy barrel harmonics. Add loops on the burlap
for adding short pieces of foliage. And I do mean short, 2 inches average with a spread of 1
to 3 inches. This combination doesn't seem to interfer with barrel harmonics for us but you
must experiment with the combinations prior to using in a must shoot situation. The
advantage of burlap over paint is ease of changing colors for the terrain or season. Use the
same techniques as finding best torque, load, etc. On the optics, we cut odd shaped
openings in a plastic disc and trap it inside the Butler Creek Cap. Add burlap stings over
the front or go with the draped veil (my personal favorite).

Rick <>
Fayetteville, NC USA - Friday, September 25, 1998 at 21:33:14 (EDT)

Re: Rifle / Barrel camo. For those who have made a ghillie suit and had "TONS" of those
strands of burlap you pulled....ever wondered what to do with them?? Take some adhesive
spray and spray the barrel and then sprinkle the strands over the barrel !! Makes use of
something you normally throw away....also good on the field boots.Breaks outline great and
so far hasn't affected the accuracy.
Just an idea. OUT HERE

Will <>
Deep South on high ground !!, USA - Friday, September 25, 1998 at 23:16:53 (EDT)

If I am building a sniper rifle from the ground up, is it better to use a stainless action or a blue one? Also, what is the best way to make a stainless action a bit less obvious?


Jim <>
Ft. Meade, MD USA - Thursday, November 12, 1998 at 19:32:43 (EST) 

RE: Camoing SS rifles.
Three methods, one cheap, one expensive, one a pain in the ass:
1) Bowflage. Removeable spray paint sold to Bow and turkey hunters. Walmart usually had the best prices in Clarkesville TN. You can paint your stuff to match where you are operating, so keep a set of cans in your D-kit. Its a pain getting the paint out of the cracks and crevices of your gear, and for Gods sake keep the stuff out of your trigger!
2) Send your pride and joy to a company like ROBAR. It will protect your weapon as well, and if you want to be really sick you can still paint over THAT. Pricey though.
3) Ghillie your weapon. It is a hassle and the stuff catches on everything. I have not done this, so does anyone know if it messes up your non-ghillied zero?

E Engler <>
CP Greaves, ROK - Saturday, November 14, 1998 at 01:53:19 (EST) 

Way back I remember a discussion on how to cammo a barrel. On the way in this morning I remembered something we used to do hunting down south. Did it to keep mud & rain out of the barrel, but it might work for cammo as well.

We used to get those disposable foam ear protecters (the ugly black ones the consistancy of coarse sandpaper, not the shiney blaze yellow ones) and cut slits around the edges lengthwise - from the bottem to about half way to the top - they kind of looked like those onion flower things in a bar.

Anyway, we'd stick the center part into the barrel, with the other parts sticking out the sides to keep it where we could grab it and pull it out. A side effect of this is that the parts sticking out hung over the edge of the barrel, breaking up the outline.

As far as we could tell it had no effect on accuracy, but we're talking iron sights at 50 yards here so it is something that would have to be checked. The only other drawback that I can think of is they may find it after you leave. You'll never find it to take out with you.


Jim <>
Ft. Meade, MD USA - Friday, November 20, 1998 at 09:07:25 (EST) 

Rick, Gooch,

any help on the spraypaint job for old "Berlin Betty" ?

I´m fixin to paint my M 21. I have bought some of the Granite spray paint that leaves a structure effect. Color is light brown.
Did you ever use any stencils? Camo net, leaves, rope ?

I guess its ´like working a Ghillie start out light and darken later ?

My Mauser is green around the receiver now since the stock is camoed already, but this time I´ll go for the works.

I have a new stock sitting here for the M 21 and want to bead blast and phosphate it anyway, so if I screw up, so what.

At least I´ll get some real weird looks from our conservative hunters in loden shooting their Drilling´s

Torsten <>
Germany - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 11:19:47 (EST) 

I don't know if you can get it over there but a really great base to put on your stock to camo and your barrel, if you don't care about leaving it on, because it sticks!! Is to use a product made by 3M called Rock Guard. It's used on the bottom of car or truck rocker pannel's to keep them from getting chipped up from rocks. The 3M is white and when you spray it out it sort of spits out in a heavy spotty pattern and depending on how you put it on you end up with a surface that is not abrasive on the face but doesn't leave a smooth shine either. If its clean, it will stick to it and its tougher than wang leather!! If you have seen some of H&Ss cammo stocks that are kind of "rough" in appearance that is what it would be like, and it's made to have paint to stick to it.
Pat <>
USA - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 12:54:40 (EST) 


that sounds like the stuff I am using now, its a no name brand, but from what you describe it sounds like what I have here.

The can spits like a lama, and the stuff is sort of tan base color with black and some white specks in it. If applied correctly it looks like stone. I have used it for some 1:16 scale Models I made, but this is the first try at a rifle. I´ll zap some pics around once it is done. The only parts I dont cover are : bolt, scope knobs, butplate, flash hider. Other than that I´ll just be creative.
The stoney base paint has to harden out before I apply the next coat, otherwise it softens too much and the roughness melts away.
I´ll top it up with some bronze green and rust brown, but will try to keep it light in color as a dark/black bangstick is what I dont want in the first place.

Torsten <Ya know>
G3ermany - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 13:21:39 (EST) 

Torsten, I am using some paint called Zolatone on stocks. This stuff is pretty heavy duty as it is used in truck beds and such. The paint comes in many colors but my favorite is the OD green base with brown and black splatters. There is a raised texture when dry and other paint sticks to it.
Rich <>
WA USA - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 15:07:36 (EST) 

that sound like a winner.

I have to get some of that when I´m in country in Febuary, were can I get it ??? Do they have a home page ?

Torsten <you know>
G3ermany - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 15:14:20 (EST) 

Torsten: While you probably know all this already, I'll elaborate for the crew. Material for a good camo job is a just walk outside away. Just pick up some vegetation from the yard. Fallen leaves, tall grass, and even a twig. Use these to mask over the base color. You can create really nice effects this way. Just hold the object about 25mm away (or less) from the stock. By experimenting you can get a feeling of depth by varying the camo paint colors. Once done, you can stand well back and "dust" the whole rifle lightly with a color that matches the predominent terrain. This tones down some of the camo and you have to watch it as if done too heavily, you will lose that feeling of depth.

One thing to also consider: The final finish may look very nice, artistic even, and will blend in very well up close, but if you make the pattern too small or too tight, it will appear as one solid object from a distance. You need to keep the variations big enough to break up the outline. Adding to much fine detail will only casue it all to run together. This is easy to spot at a distance. I think specifically of LeMay's rifle which I picked out at 250 yards. It had a very nice camo job. I couldn't see him in his ghillie at all, but after a bit of searching, I found his rifle because the camo color melded into one color at that range. It stood out.

Treebark camo is a good example of this effect. Up close it really can look like a tree trunk as you are close enough to see the detail. But at a distance it just looks like a dark blob as the whole blends together and loses its effect. Broader and more broken and varied patterns blend better.
Scott <>
USA - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 15:35:41 (EST) 

Zolatone is available at any auto paint supply store that supplies to auto body shops. It is quite handy. Tintable acrylic urethane primer is also available (my favorite PPG K-36). It comes flat white, is hard as nails and can be tinted any color. A quart is $26 and will do a room full of stocks. Tint small portions of the quart, as needed.
Chuck <>
USA - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 16:43:14 (EST) 

Scott x: your right about the camo. Sometimes I use more than one print rather than pants shirt all the same kind. At a distance that treebark looks like a ninja suit. You know out here in the west the old fall leaf pattern is the best in most covers. I once had a Forest service worker 5' away not seeing me wearing that stuff and I had a uncamoed rifle. He had a mind set that he was looking for a wounded rabbit and walked up to me in almost no cover. I also like the light tiger stripes as they tend to blend in with the heat waves but larger brighter prints seem to work best out here anyway. Yucca and sage and grain fields are the background. In light CRP grass nothing works except hide behind a thistle.
B.Rogers <>
USA - Wednesday, December 16, 1998 at 22:05:50 (EST) 

LeMay, by the way, it was during that second week multiple team scenario (barn - drug lord) when I picked you and Herig out of the bush. You may have had Rod paint your rig after that event. The rifle was very green and I could easily make out the top of the barrel, and most of the scope. I had a broadside view of you so that made it easier. The color really stood out when compared to the background. I never could see you or Rae, only a hint of you. But both rifles were relatively simple to pick up once my eye was drawn to them. I think they were in thier original color at the time. The McMillian impregnated camo was pretty bright and glossy when compared to the stuff you were laying in.
Scott <>
USA - Thursday, December 17, 1998 at 13:39:55 (EST) 
Another thing about painting your rifle (or whatever else). Along with fine patterns blending together as mentioned, bear in mind that colors appear darker from a distance. Paint two objects the same color and look at one 1 yard away and one 30 yards away and the more distant one looks darker (given the same lighting conditions.) So you don't want to look down at the rifle at your feet and then look up at the hills a mile off and say, well they look the same color now. This is probably too fine a point to often make a difference in practice, but it's anoher tidbit of knowledge that you can add to your mental files. Also good to know when you're scanning for a target of a certain color.

Dave <>
San Jose, CA USA - Thursday, December 17, 1998 at 20:14:51 (EST) 

Does anyone have any information on "Bow Paint?" I can't seem to find it either on the Internet or in any of my local shops in San Francisco. Any tidbit of information would help. Also, would like to know people's reaction to the use of this paint for camoflouging their rifles.

Darren <>
San Francisco, Ca, USA - Sunday, February 14, 1999 at 17:11:51 (ZULU) 

I used bow paint a few years back to camo my coyote hunting rifle and it works fine. It will wear off with use but isn't bad and you can remove it later on when want to change colors. If you can't find it in a sporting goods store try to find an archery supply store they should carrry it.
Pat <>
USA - Sunday, February 14, 1999 at 22:59:44 (ZULU) 
Camo on guns. A couple years back there were some gun covers called "snake skins" that were available around the country at different stores. They were reminicient of "Gun Chaps" but were just a elastic based camo gun cover that was supposed to protect the guns during transient. These things were tight enough to be used to cover the barrels and forends. You could cut them without them unraveling and they could be made into scope covers that were easily removed and camoed the whole gun. I usually used them to cover stainless barrels and black stocks. The nature of the cloth was real good as a camo for any rifle. If you can find them they were about $10.00 and by cutting them you could make a set of covers with a little imagination. that were superior to tape and sometimes paint. I just run a little camo tape around the barrel or ends of the scope to hold them in place and the gun is protected as well as camoed. It save a lot of wear and tear. Does get wet but it is easily removed and dried when it's all over. Just something some of you might want to try.
B.Rogers <>
USA - Monday, February 15, 1999 at 04:54:27 (ZULU) 
Spartan Supply CO. ( 1-800-251-3904 ) -- carries 4 oz. cans
of Bow-Flage removable spray paint.
CALUMET, IL, USA - Monday, February 15, 1999 at 13:03:20 (ZULU) 
Bill R,
Your right on the snake skins, that is what I am using on my coyote rifle. I use a couple of rubber bands on mine to keep it in place and it works great!!
Pat <>
USA - Monday, February 15, 1999 at 15:33:57 (ZULU) 

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