M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle

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A couple of weeks ago at the NDIA Joint Armaments Conference Brigadier General Michael M. Brogan revealed that Marine Infantry Automatic Rifle (IAR) had been given the designation “M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle”.

At the end of last year it was announced that Heckler & Koch had won the IAR competition with their entry of a slightly modified H&K 416.

I visually inspected the H&K IAR which was on display at SHOT Show and the only difference I noticed between it and the standard H&K 416 was a slightly heavier barrel profile compared to the standard M4-style barrel with its grenade launcher cutouts. It has a bayonet lug attached to the barrel which is something I have not seen before in H&K 416 marketing material.

The H&K IAR on display at SHOT Show

The Marine command touted this project as the development of a new class of weapon. I have gotten the impression that in reality they wanted a new carbine but did not want to deal with DoD and Congress politics to get it. The Army is already looking into developing a new carbine and the USMC would have been hard pressed to persuade the powers-that-be to give them funding for their own independent carbine project.

[ Many thanks to Nathaniel for sending me info on the M27. ]

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Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • Mike

    Awesome political maneuvering by the Corp to get their piston “Reece” rifle!

    • Will spaulding

      Go back to the M60

      • Bobby

        Maybe the Maremont ‘Lightweight’ version, but the M240/M249 design is far too superior. I left the US Army Infantry in April 2001, and when we got rid of our ‘pigs’, we were a bit skeptical—why change a ‘good thing’. I carried both the M240 and M249, and I loved th both. ACCURACY was ‘off the charts’ better…and the M249 (I at first never thought that a 5.56 MG was worth even having), but it was the best light suppression weapon I ever carried. When I got promoted to team leader, I would switch up with one of my guys and make them carry my M4, simply because I could use it with the same, or better effectiveness. Old ‘Top’ used to bitch at me on training ex’s….but he quit arguing with me when I wouldn’t stop! LOL!

  • sturmgewehr

    “a new class of weapon” ROTFLMAO

  • Samopal

    Well I guess inventing a new class of weapon is a fine way to get around the red tape… I remember reading about this a few months ago and thinking, “there’s no way this is going to happen”. Guess I was wrong.

    What exactly does the USMC say an “IAR” is? How did they ever pass this off as a new weapon system?

    • zimos

      IAR stands for infantry automatic rifle.

  • http://www.WeaponsCache.com WeaponsCache.com – Matt

    Why H&K? The rifles better be made in the US, that’s all I can say.

    I wonder what the HK has that the others dont.

    • Bobby

      They are assembled in the US, at HK’s factory….with a mix of parts from Germany and the U.S.

  • AK™

    Looks like a decent upgrade from the SAW. Sometimes you don’t need a hail of bullets,just a couple of well placed ones.

    I wonder what they are going to use for x-mags..like the Beta Drum? IWG 90 rounder?

    • chino

      “a couple of well-placed ones”?

      IIRC there’s already exist a class weapon that does exactly that – a rifle.

  • http://bit.ly/9L8dJ0 leopard

    I think you meant MWG 90 rounder.

  • iMick

    I pity the marines who come against a GPMG and/or have to fire and maneuver while being supported buy these things. Funny how quickly history gets forgotten for “innovation”. Call me old skool, but if/when I’m supporting my mate with fire, I want a bit more than 100 rounds, or worse, 30! This is just a modern day BAR.

  • Komrad

    I can’t complain. I want our boys to have the best damn weapons available.

  • Harald Hansen

    I’m issued the HK416N (‘N’ for ‘Norwegian’) and it has a bayonet adapter thingy under the barrell, I think. I’m not issued a bayonet, though, so I’m not 100% positive what it’s for…

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com Steve

      Harald, thats interesting. Thanks.

  • Clodboy

    “I wonder what the HK has that the others dont.”

    Experience and production capacities.

    Unlike the other piston AR’s, the 416 has already been adopted as the standard assault rifle of two countries (Norway and Turkey) as well as certain Special Forces units around the world.

  • Vitor

    Beautiful rifle, and the fact it apparently didn’t overheat without open bolt is quite impressive, or they just wanted a HK416.

  • mi6lethaltool

    The LWRC was a better choice!

  • jaekelopterus

    It’s exactly a revolutions, but it’s nice to see the Corps getting something besides old Army toys.

  • http://americanmohist.blogspot.com Jimmy

    I hope they’re using a midlength gas system, as opposed to the carbine-length HK416 had.

    I wonder if the USMC is acknowledging the ballistic superiority of 16.5in barrel versus the 14.5in of M-4s. Why did M-4s settle on 14.5″ anyway?

  • Darwin

    USMC has never liked the M4 carbine which is why it is not issued widely. Infantry Automatic Rifle is not even remotely a new designation.
    it will be made in HK’s new US facility which is required by law.
    These are extremely well made, but expensive, rifles.
    Well liked by SF Forces who bought a bunch of uppers for their M4′s.
    Now if USMC could just get of that Beretta that was forced on them. At least they were able to get it modified somewhat to be more reliable.

  • Carl

    So… they’re replacing a machine gun with this? Doesn’t seem credible to me. If they are indeed looking to replace their M16s let’s hope they won’t come to regret abandoning the 20″ barrel. This is only 16.5″…

  • shockfish08

    Personally I would’ve chosen the IAR made by LWRC, it probably would’ve been way less expensive than this HK thang. Also it has that awesome open-bolt in full auto mode and closed bolt in semi-auto mode to keep things cool and accurate, not to mention it had polygonal rifling for better cleaning qualities, less round deformation and greater accuracy overall.

  • http://www.howtogetagun.ca/ HowToGetAGun

    Hey if you don’t want to wade through a political quagmire, go around it. Looks like a new class of weapon to me!

  • Burst

    This is one sweet looking rifle. Moreso than any current issue one, IMO.

    If what Steve says is true, they may dispense with the drum idea entirely, and use the contract to pick up an extra batch of HK mags.

    A more intriguing idea would be a scaled down HK-11 drum, the ones with the big winding gears.

  • Tahoe

    Automatic rifle, my ass :) This is, as noted, a sneaky way to get a new carbine. Although my impression was that the IAR competition was, originally, an actual SAW-replacement contract. Given the options, I think I’d rather have a new SAW than a new M4.

  • Nonlinear

    I think they will use regular 30 round mags. That’s the whole point of the IAR.

    Apparently some officers thought that you don’t need the volume of fire of the SAW and that the IAR with STANAG mags will improve mobility and will save ammo.

  • Zach

    Will these rifles be issued with Beta C mags? Also it seems stupid this IAR does not have the capability to fire from the open bolt position like the LWRC rifle did. H&K might have a higher build quality but it’s a shame it does not have this safety/longevity feature.

    Also guys check out the Strike AR15 upper. This upper on top of an H&K would be a killer mix.

    http://www.dndguns.com/shrike.htm

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com Steve

      They Corps dropped the 100 round magazine requirement. That is when I realized they were, in fact, wanting a carbine not a machine gun.

      EDIT: That and the fact that the rifle they chose (HK416) fires from a closed bolt.

  • zack

    Glad the the Marines will have a good weapon system, H&K makes some very good weapon systems and i would have chosen them as well. Just because they are not a US company isn’t a good reason for them to not be chosen.

  • Lance

    Steve you mean the Army is upgradeing there M-4s to the same standered as the USMC IAR. I like it Id perfer a standerd M-4 buttstock though. I like that the Marines stuck a bayonet lug on a 416 which never came with one.

    Proof that the AR system has years and years of more life in the military.

  • Redchrome

    HK has a plant in Newington, NH. My understanding is that even when the US Military buys foreign weapon designs, they still usually get them built in the US if there’s any substantial quantity.

    The Armatac 150-round drum ought to work well for this thing.
    http://www.armatac.com/
    FWIW, Armatac is even talking about the IAR on their website.

    I will say that the Armatac CL-mag I have seems to work pretty well, tho it is rather expensive as magazines go.

    Here’s an interesting set of links I just found. Looks like they’re developing a bag to carry/protect the CL-mag, which doesn’t have to be removed when you use the mag.
    http://www.armatac.com/bagproto/

    Tech support from Armatac told me a while ago they’re still on track with their quad-column 50-round AR mag; but I don’t know any more than that.

  • Randolph

    Matt, the rifles or most of their value will be made in the US. Otherwise HK would have never got the contract. Or aren’t US workers hired by HK US citizens any more. ;-)

  • jdun1911

    I’m very surprise that they picked the H&K instead of Colt. Piston AR aren’t the way to go. If they wanted a piston rifle than they should have picked an non-AR platform that have the charging handle attached to the piston.

    It is very time consuming to fix piston binding malfunction in an AR piston rifle. That’s because the charging handle isn’t attached to the piston.

    IAR is a concept that I supported but IMO they picked the wrong rifle.

  • AK™

    Whoops..my bad.

  • Big Daddy

    This makes no sense at all. It just a way to play some silly red tape political game from the Marines. This is NOT a SAW of any kind!!!!!! That’s a Squad Auto Rifle, that means putting out rounds at a high rate. Without a quick change barrel and a high capacity magazine this in NOT a SAW or IAR or whatever they want to call it.

    A real SAW was the old BAR, Bren gun which was the BEST since it featured a quick change barrel. Even the WWII German MG 34 and 42 were more of a SAW because the whole infantry squad was based around that weapon itself.

    The concept of a SAW or whatever the Marines want to call it now, is simple. It’s a full auto rifle type weapon that puts out much higher volumes of fire for each infantry squad. That gives them more support in terms of fire power against targets. It allows the squad to maneuver tactically. There’s more to it but that’s basically it as I understand it. The M-249 looked like a good idea on paper but in reality was not due the the 5.56mm round, it’s heavy weight and other issues. If it were in a larger round it would have been much more effective. Hence the development of the MK48 and M-240L.

    A heavier barrel, Bipod and possibly firing from an open bolt does not make it a SAW, I guess that’s why they call it an IAR. Why they totally dismiss weapons like the Ultimax 100 I just do not understand, now that’s exactly what an IAR is or should be. Did they test it in the field? Did they even try them? This just looks like a way for the Marines to get a piston rifle in their inventory then turn around and say “hey these things really work well we need more, at least 2 per squad” and then everybody should/will have one.

    The thing that intrigues me is that it has been concluded that a more powerful round is needed in certain terrain. This is using the 5.56mm round, so to me this is one step forward and 3 steps behind. It makes no sense at all.

  • Overload in CO

    Is this the version that fires from an open bolt?

  • Mike N

    It’s too bad that we cannot just pick a new carbine without years of BS.

    At any rate, maybe a larger mag and the heavy barrel will provide some better sustained firepower over the M4, or even the M16. The soviet designed RPK illustrates a similar concept for a “SAW”, and it’s been effective for about 50 years now.

  • Tylermar

    I thought some thing was up I was like so they are gonna carry one of this thing with a backpack full of 100 round beta magizines and the 416 is way better then the m16

  • Keith

    I would expect the corp to field 1 or 2 hundred rounder (or whatever hi-cap they decide on) with these guns as they are a supplement to the SAW, but I like the idea of a shorter heavier barrel than the 16, those short heavy barrels are accurate (actually the SAWs base accuracy is better than the 16) and ballistically you don’t lose near as much going to a heavy 16.5 than to the M4 profile 14.5. I don’t see it totally replacing the full size rifle, but it’ll be a good addition. and with the new SOST rounds improving both base platform accuracy and lethality (we hope) and this bringing better volume of fire to the squad.. so carbine minus redtape or actual SAW supplement, good pick

  • Lance

    The Marines arn’t getting ride of the M-16A4 either there still buying them from FN and Sabre Defence. The IAR will fill a RPK role and If the corps chooses to go for a all 416 sysytem they will have a 20 inch version adopted.The M-27 may replace M-4s in USMC service but wont replace in its current form the M-16A4.

    Ohh and darwin Beretta won a contract for a bunch of NEW M-9A1s for the USMC.

  • Don

    I realise that his may be off-topic, but I was just wondering that since everyone takes into serious consideration and discusses about the barrel length, why not go with bullpups?

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    At the same NDIA presentations, it was mentioned that a series of improvements to the Army’s M4 are planned (in parallel with the consideration of an all-new carbine), one of the first being a heavier barrel to permit higher rates of sustained fire.

    Seems odd that the USMC is adopting an IAR just when the British Army is effectively abandoning its own IAR – the L86A2 LSW – to carry 7.62mm guns instead. And being a bullpup, it has a 25 inch barrel within about the same overall length as the M27.

  • jdun1911

    What happen when you drop 100 rounds drum onto the ground? You get dents. What happen when you get dents? You get magazine malfunctions. Than there is the durability issue with the springs.

    Beta C mag and whatever might be great for civilian uses but they are not durable enough for combat.

  • 1371/E-5

    I really dont like the idea of and area supression weapon that only has 30 or even 40 rounds. You can not force the bad guys to keep their heads down any better with that than you can an M16A4 or a M4 on burst. The reason weapons like the SAW are heavy is to lessen the effect of recoil so you can keep firing while the other members of you team advance, it is called a fire team rush. I have carried a SAW and agree it ain’t light, but when you need to keep rounds on target it will do it all day long.

  • McThag

    Big Daddy: the BAR doesn’t have a quick-change barrel.

  • Redchrome

    Don,
    bullpups are great for some things; but I am confident that fitting a giant magazine (100-150rnds) to a bullpup rifle would get a bit awkward. The bulk would interfere with mounting it to your shoulder, and the weight would make the rifle balance too far back.

    If anyone has tried putting a Beta C-mag into an AUG or an SA80/L86 and has a different perspective, please correct me. I’ve never had a chance to try it myself.

    Also, bullpups do not lend themselves to easy stock adjustments to accomodate armor/no armor, or shooters of different size. There’s also some minimum length requirements for a bullpup stock (accomodating the bolt travel, magazine, and space between the magazine and hand without becoming a thumbhole stock), and if you want the stock shorter than that, you can’t have a bullpup.

    All that said, they’re great tools provided they’re used within their limitations. (as with any tool).

  • http://americanmohist.blogspot.com Jimmy

    I’ve tried a c-mag and a 90-rnder with a Bushmaster M-17S bullpup. It was very uncomfortable, because the magazines stick out right where your wrist goes in holding the pistol grip. It will take a special version of magazine to clear the wrist.

  • Vitor

    Found some insight from a marine who actually participated in the IAR tests!

    http://www.m4carbine.net/showpost.php?p=676763&postcount=13

    “I was also an 0311, and worked with the office that did all the testing for the IAR. The LWRC did not make it to the end. The HK416 D did extremely well, and we innitially were just test fire dummies that contractors got data from, but soon starting working with that office to gather more data. This included gathering data from non combat MOS and infantry marines.

    The 416 D performed above and beyond. On a benched test it held a 2MOA group using MK262 ammo on full auto, and survived the torture test. (every weapon had 40,0000 rounds fired through it at one point). Weapons where replaced after the torture week.

    The only negative aspect of the IAR is that they come with a grip pod(my opinion).

    The FN scar was also a pretty good contendor, but it recieved many negative remarks from the test bed in regards to ergonomics. Many Marines would hurt themselves from the reciprocating charging handle, and the accuracy didn’t compare to the 416.

    The biggest “user” test was shooting on an Echo target with a 5 round magazine. HK416 had a higher number of hits on an echo than any other rifle. Trust me … not only us, but there were many other people just like us traveling around doing all these tests. The 416 just performed better. “

  • kcoz

    Can anyone tell me if this IAR is supposed to totally replace the M249 or is it just for units involved in MOUT and room clearing. I can see the advantage of the IAR over the SAW when clearing a room but not in the open mountains of Afghanistan. As far as I know thats where most of the action is for our troops these days.

  • kcoz

    Another thing didnt they already try this with the original M-16A1. Who remembers the old days when one man in the squad was the designated “Automatic Rifleman” and fired on fire auto while the rest of the squad fired semi. It was a pretty sorry response to an RPK. Which is why they came up with the M-249 to supplement the M-60s in the platoon

  • Big Daddy

    I didn’t say the BAR had a quick change barrel, I said the Bren did. And the BAR made by FN did, the USA made ones did not. But the BAR was a SAW/IAR no doubt.

    This still does not make sense. As E-5 said the weapon(M-249) needs weight to maintain it’s integrity during high rates of fire other wise it would not be accurate at all. Hence my bringing up the Ultimax 100 and it’s firing concept. Whether it can pass the required tests is something that has never been released or talked about.

    I am sure the HK weapon is great but not as an IAR sorry, it’s not that much of an upgrade to an M-16 with a heavy 16″ barrel. The new round though does work better with shorter barrels and is supposed to be more lethal too.

  • Redchrome

    I have trouble believing a 2MOA group on full auto, even off a bench. Maybe if it was clamped into a rigid fixture I would have an easier time believing it.

    Still, for the money that the thing costs, one should expect exceptional performance under the worst conditions or the best.

  • Zach

    Good point about bringing up the Ultimax, I forgot all about this gun.

    It would have been nice to see this weapon compete in the trials.

    http://www.ultimaxsaw.com/Ultimax%20vs.%20M-249.html

  • James Belushi

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzlzsdG6TsY&feature=player_embedded

    Just saying, you can have a ultra high capacity system that isn’t fragile, and is reliable.

  • Big Daddy

    The person that designed the Ultimax and it’s magazine also designed the beta C. The only thing is that they use a different material for the beta and it now is required to use a lube. The ultamax drum does not need a lube. This weapon has seen battle and I have not read any bad reports, I have not read any reports. But I still have to wonder if the Marines even seriously tested it, probably not. The Singapore government and private industry did not make enough of an effort in terms of payola.

  • James Belushi

    The Ultimax is the ultimate tool, shooting the gun is the real ticket, Sullivan and Freemont did the feed system together. The link I showed in the above post is a “DUAL ULTIMAX”. The patents are very similar when looking at only one drum at a time.
    They didn’t want the ultimax for one reason or another, shame. I guess because they were looking more at the rifle aspect.

    The M27 feed device is going to be ??????? or maybe multiple alternatives????????

  • sheepdog

    Can anyone tell me if the Marine Corp has assigned a NSN to the HK 416 M27 yet?

  • Brazilski

    @Clodboy

    Actually, it has been acquired by at least three countries as I know that the Dutch KCT (Corps Commando Troops) uses the 416 as well. Quite an interesting development that was as the Dutch only switched from the FN FAL to the Diemaco/Colt Canada C7/C8 in 1995 (basically quality finish license built M16A3′s and M4A1′s), áfter Bosnia. The first time their new C8′s actually saw combat (Afghanistan) they were imediately rejected by the KCT and replaced with 416′s.

  • Para-Frog Devil Dog

    I agree that an open bolt, 7.72 auto rifle would be better but then again the SAW is a pain to lug arround and heavy. Funny how most people commenting about infantry weapons never served a day in uniform and never missed a meal……..How do you spell WANTABE?

  • R_Ogozalek

    Buy American save a job. How about an LWRC IAR and a S&W M&P 45 for America’s Soldiers?

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com Steve

      R_Ogozalek, it will be manufactured in the US.

  • R_Ogozalek

    @Para-Frog Devil Dog – they pay taxes so we can have cool toys. I’ve never served infantry,but I get to run fighter jets in AFTERBURNER!!!

  • howard

    as long as they have enough ammo for ANY firefight and the rifles are stone reliable, it doesn’t matter to me what our guys use.
    they’ll either use it or replace it.

    as far as range, these are usually good to 600m.
    i’d make sure each one has a superlative scope and
    more training for the shooter.

    my next suggestion to the brass is to give each unit extra rifles and
    the ammo mentioned and RPGs for those reach out and touch someone situations. the videos i’ve see (engagement rules i suppose) all show a terrible amount of chit chat about the targets and not as much fire power as i’d like. maybe they wouldn’t put me in charge of the policy but i still prefer a massive response to the incoming as the best way to resolve it.

    the primary use of rifles in Afghanistan (again in the videos i’ve seen) is simply to get the other side to keep their heads down.

    each unit has to have a way to bump it up a notch once that objective has been achieved. is this a good place to mention again the RPG or more motars in close combat? you get the enemy to slow down and hunker down and lob nasty stuff back at their positions until they are DOA.

    close up combat is the highway to more injury from what i’ve been through.

  • Warhawk1982

    Hitler and Krotch must’ve been the lowest bidder. Any other American manufacturer would have been better, Colt, LWRC, POF. This, as with the acquisition of all foreign weapons is a purely political maneuver.

  • SEAL76

    I used the Stoner63A in Vietnam and that was 5.56mm. It was a great weapon and USA manufactured. Why can’t we beef up the Stoner design and field it again in a more robust version? Why are we so dependent on foreign designs? Perhaps we should convert the Stoner weapons system to 7.62mm and do away with the 5.56mm as a SAW round.

  • Michael

    The HK 416 is an incredibly reliable weapon from what I’ve read. I’m no Green Beret, but if I had to go into a war zone and had a choice between an M4 Carbine and a 416, I’d take the 416 hands down.

    That said, I agree with WeaponsCache Matt in that there are better rifles made here in the US, in my opinion the LWRC M6 series are some of the best of the AR-15 family.

  • Wayne Louis Burnham

    Zach…. :) Sorry guy – the Shrike is vaporware from well over five years ago. As with a small number of others, I’ve kept my $1,000 deposit on the $2500 price of the day. Most sensibly backed out. They are now a cultural iconic joke on subguns.com for all of us who initially went crazy for them. (Hell, I sold off my RDIAS which I bought entirely for use with a Shrike – and that was in 2005!)

    They made functional units, but utterly failed to succeed in production. Several friends of mine got to fire the limited run of near-prototypes, which were all extensively hand made.

    Who knows? My thousand is long since spent and I never asked for a refund like 95% of others (and they all received), but I won’t be holding my breath.

    —–

    As to this 416 – hey, any weapon any branch thinks is the cat’s ass is fine with me, but, just like AUG, the SA80II, the FAMAS, the G36, the G36K, FNC, AR70, SIG55whatever, etcetera ad infinitum, these are all just .223 auto rifles with really tiny differences to user or target.

    This is clearly not an LMG, but an individual soldier’s weapon. If this one works better for them than any variant of an extant M16, as far as 1/10,000 more reliability, 1% better normal accuracy or just looks or feels cooler, then great – but again, it’s just another .223 auto rifle.

    It is NOT a SAW, which, with the limits of .223, is always debatable as an LMG, no matter how much lead it can reliably throw.

    The military, like the feds and cops are very trend conscious and always want a new revolutionary improvement in their choice of arms, but often they are little different than what they replace or augment.

  • Zack Mathews

    I don’t think this is replacing the SAW, otherwise the marines would not have ordered twice as many of these as they have saws in service. It’s too close to an m16 not to be a replacement for it

  • James Bond
    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com Steve

      James, thanks for the photos!

  • Lance

    Vk

    Your not following the BIG picture theArmy too Is going after a piston powerd M-4. So in the end the Marines wanted to test there won design. And got a varient to be used th same way a RPK is used.

  • http://N/a lawndart

    This tool is just what it says; a carbine. The marine who participated in the testing said it all; this carbine beat out all the others. This is not a SAW, nor is it a replacement for the present SAW. It is simple (the corps likes things simple), robust and accurate.

    The LWRC is a neat concept, but it is not simple (the corps likes things simple). It was not reliable or robust enough in the testing regimen.

    When we get a real SAW (Someday, over the rainbow..) I believe it will fire a more capable projectile. Long ago and far, far away I sassed my team sergeant too many times for a Monday. I got to carry a BAR (after I blew the dust off of it and a real old guy showed me how to run it and love it.) The magazines weighed a LOT, the rifle weighed a LOT, the ammunition weighed a LOT, but everyone wanted to know where the BAR was. They either wanted to hide from it, or hide behind it. It was amazing.

    Just take and enjoy this new carbine for what it is, a new and more robust carbine. The corps will keep after things until any feeding issues that MIGHT pop up are taken care of. Accurate, simple as a brick, robust and reliable; this is a step in a good direction. Ha, and no Big Army or Congress. That is good for so many style points.

    Next step, Ultimax, he, he, he.

  • Chris MG42

    Dude, awesome weapon!! I’m a war maniac and I love it! But still the MG42 machine gun is better….. By the way I also love HK M27……

  • Scorpion

    Damnit, why’d you guys have to show me that damn Ultimax? Now, I want one with a folding stock and an 18″ barrel. Are they even available in a civilian version?

  • john D

    20 inch heavy barrel with bipod plus some good 3-12×50 scope would be better config for LMG

  • Spike

    Ahhh!

    In the fine tradition of the 6mm Lee Straight Pull and the Johnson M1940 Semiautomtic Rifle!!!

  • Rohan Wilson

    1. USMC introduced the SAW (Minimi) to replace the BAR following the US Navy SEALs success with Stoner.
    2. USMC removed the fully automatic feature from M16s. Only the “automatic rifleman” retains fully automatic fire.
    3. USMC pushes the automatic rifleman forward as point man with his auto fire.
    4. USMC has 7.62mm MG squad at company to provide belt feed suppressive fire.

    The IAR M27 is really a direct gas sub-machine gun / carbine for the fire team point men.

    Most western nations have adopted the Minimi, and have direct gas selective fire rifles.

    Many nations have tried “drum magazines” which do not work, are bulky and heavy compared with belt. A 100 rd belt weights 3 pounds, a 100 rd drum 4 pounds and is the size of a 200 rd SAW box!
    http://www.defendamerica.mil/articles/jul2003/a072803b.html

    Armies in A-stan are now pushing down 7.62mm GPMGs and “marksman” rifles back down on squads / sections because of lack of range.

    In 1958 the Powell Review recommended a .258” rifle. A .258” rifle (selective fire / direct gas) backed up by a belt .258” M46 SAW in a 9 man (Sqd Ldr and 2 fireteams) as proposed by SLA Marshall is what is needed.

    For over 50 years we have been trying to make 5.56mm and 7.62mm work.

    It’s time for one light calibre, one rifle, one LMG for ALL rifleman in all services.

    (I spent 5 years in the Australian Infantry, using F1 9mm SMG, M16 and L1A1 7.62mm.)

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com Steve

      Rohan, all good points. Just one minor correction: the IAR is gas piston operated, not direct gas.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @Rohan, I agree.

    Furthermore, there is some interesting work going on in barrel metallurgy and computer sights which could transform the capabilities of the military rifle (provided that the ammo is up to the job). See: http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/future%20small%20arms.htm

  • Rohan Wilson

    Correction folks, reversing my terms. (thank you Steve)

    The IAR M27 is really a gas piston sub-machine gun / carbine for the fire team point men.

    Most western nations have adopted the Minimi, and are NOT direct gas selective fire rifles.

    Many nations have tried “drum magazines” which do not work, are bulky and heavy compared with belt. A 100 rd belt weights 3 pounds, a 100 rd drum 4 pounds and is the size of a 200 rd SAW box!
    http://www.defendamerica.mil/articles/jul2003/a072803b.html

    Armies in A-stan are now pushing down 7.62mm GPMGs and “marksman” rifles back down on squads / sections because of lack of range.

    In 1958 the Powell Review recommended a .258” rifle. A .258” rifle (selective fire / gas piston) backed up by a belt .258” M46 SAW in a 9 man (Sqd Ldr and 2 fireteams) as proposed by SLA Marshall is what is needed.

    For over 50 years we have been trying to make 5.56mm and 7.62mm work.

    It’s time for one light calibre, one rifle, one LMG for ALL rifleman in all services.

    (I spent 5 years in the Australian Infantry, using F1 9mm SMG, M16 and L1A1 7.62mm. My company commander was a M60 gunner during Vietnam. He used to carry the gun (20 pounds), 800 link (52 pounds) and 4-6 litres of water in 100+F wet heat!!!! If anybody wants to keep 7.62mm try carrying that load or face running out of ammo.)

    also,

    A rifle is only as good as the man behind the sights. Computers don’t work when the batteries go flat.

  • IRgRunt

    Getting to fam-fire one of these next week. I’m absolutely psych”ed about it. To be perfectly honest, I’m skeptical about this rifle “replacing” the SAW. I don’t care if this thing comes with head-seeking auto-correcting barrier-penetrating magically enhanced rounds; unless you can give me a 200-round mag with it, it won’t fit into the current fire-and-maneuver strategies we have in place. IMHO we should keep the SAW’s where they’re at and integrate the IAR’s into the fireteam in addition, thus ramping up the volume of fire rather than reducing it. I’d love to have one of these babies stacking up as the “1″ man…. Just my $0.02.

  • IRgRunt

    Update on M27 post-fire: we need this rifle. AR or no AR, this thing needs to be put into the fireteam pronto. It’s balanced, it’s accurate as hell (comparable to a Mk12 IMO), it’s as light as the current standard issue rifle, has a rate of fire that exceeds that of the M249, comes with a multi-purpose optic, is easy to clean, will mount an M203…the only issue is the mag capacity. But, having run back to back ranges with this thing and the M249…I spent more time doing remedial action on the SAW than I did actually firing it. M27? No issues whatsoever besides the ridiculous amount of mags I had to carry. And in all honesty, the fast reload time of the M27 when compared to the SAW almost eliminated the difference in volume of fire; there were more lulls, but they were so short it didn’t really affect anything, whereas the several seconds needed to reload the SAW (or fix it when it went down) felt like an eternity while the M-16A4′s on line had to eat through their very finite supply of ammo to make up the difference during these lulls in automatic suppression. The other factor in all of this is one that became very apparent to me while operating this weapon system: I no longer need an A-gunner. This is truly a one-man weapon system with no extra barrel, no bipods to fix, no linked belts to feed…so what’s to keep us from giving that A-gunner an IAR as well? Sure, we’d need to carry more ammo as a whole, but I can’t imagine what would scream “overwhelming response” more than two of these engaging at once…then we can start thinking about talking guns, split-team maneuvers etc… M27>M249. No question.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    Thanks for those test comments. The obvious question is: is there any reason why the M27 shouldn’t replace the standard rifle?

  • Lance

    The M-27 as a shorter barrel and less accurate that a A4 but can do everything a M-4 can.

  • http://teamliquid.net cliffton

    carrier tilt no longer an issue somehow?

  • IRgRunt

    In all honestly I don’t see why this shouldn’t replace the standard issue rifle. And no, this rifle is far more accurate than an M16A4. It’s balanced better as well. M16A4 has a contract standard of 7 MOA. M27 shoots at 2 MOA. As a battle rifle, this thing is beastly.

  • SDJarhead08

    Thanks for the updates IRgRunt! I was impressed the Marines were able to pull one on the system to get the fire teams what they really need. What people here do not understand is that the M249 is still going to support at the platoon and company levels, hence is why this move is surely motivated by getting it placed in the system first as a “new” class of weapon for the SAW. Once it get’s absorbed within the fire team, it will most definitely end up as a carbine with a double edge.

    Marines have always trained at engaging long range targets with their carbines. Because of its rugged build, accuracy and easy familiarity it was the best choice to easily and quickly incorporate without too much re-training. As for the number of magazine vs the M249. Not everyone can carry an M249, but everyone can definitely carry one of these in one of it’s variant set ups and ultimately put more rounds down range when needed as far as the fire team is concerned.

  • IRgRunt

    ^Precisely.

  • michael

    should’ve gone lwrc…..

  • IRgRunt

    Maybe, maybe not. I’m happy with the H&K personally, it does just fine without the open-bolt feature.

  • Bear

    Currently I spec/order gear and kits for deployable assets. It seems like after every action (and sometimes when there was none) the M16/M4/M249′s come back needing extensive time on the bench in the armoury. At one point we had an almost 2:1 ratio of equipment to staff, and we were still hard pressed to meet the TOE for every op. Ops in Bosnia did not seem to be nearly as hard on the gear (failures were very rare, but action was far more limited). Most of operators that I support currently IF they have to utilize the AR platforms are begging for the 416/M27 (which are not easy to come by through channels). We have issues with teams handing off AK’s, RPk’s, and RPD’s they had “aquired” when their rotations were over. The common refrain is the lack of armoury support (never has been much in Ag, getting scarce in Ir) for the AR’s that the AK’s don’t need. If getting them 416′s keeps them happy, I am sold.

  • Brazilski

    @Bear

    I agree, but I also think that in principle the problem is with the platforms and not with the lack of support. Individual weapon systems should not need such an ammount in the first place, because if they do it means they are much more prone to fail in the field too and weapon failures cost lives. I have no real knowledge of the 416, but if it can rougly provide AR handling and accuracy with AK reliability, I am sold too.

  • IRgRunt

    M27 was pretty painless to clean with 95% of the carbon being around the piston and some up around the rail. While I can’t speak for the SAWs, which suffer from rampant and consistent failure, I’ve put my M16A4 through the wringer time and again, and I’ve never suffered a jam, misfeed, or any other stoppage. The reason for this, I believe, is my refusal to use the issued magazines. I bought a whole set of P-mags (and snagged a few of the “brown-followers” from the IAR shoot) and between that and making sure my weapon stays properly lubed I’ve never had any issues with feeding or stoppage. So, considering that the M27 comes with these special “brown-follower” mags specifically designed for it, combined with the gas-piston, I don’t foresee those issues being as frequent as they have been in the past.

  • Msgt Bob Menning

    The M249 has a much better rate of fire and I haven’t seen the Heckler and Koch bettering the accuracy yet as some have claimed.

  • Redchrome

    Thanks much for the range report IRgRunt. A good range report beats armchair-warrioring six ways from sunday.

  • SDJarhead08

    I think you make a good point and I feel it goes underrated of the importance of a doing a good clean and lube of your weapon, along with good trigger control. Not to start some Marine vs Army fight going. But the at fact remains the Marine Corps stresses this issue far better then the Army does. In boot camp we spend a good month tearing down our weapon and cleaning the bejeezus out of it long before we even get to fire it. We’re taught the first and last thing you do is PM that weapon. We sit down to eat, break out the weapon. We take a breather, break out that weapon. Before we secure after an operation, break down that weapon. Before it goes back to the Armorer, break down that weapon. CLEAN THAT WEAPON!

  • http://www.newchapter.com Chazbo

    Cant wait to use this in COD MW4…LOL Great looking gun, looks easier for the Bad Boys to lug around then the M249s – Great Job on the gun.

  • Dennis

    Yet another poodle shooter. When are the honchos going to wise up and give our folks a REAL rifle? Think .30 Caliber folks, anything else is B.S.

  • Ward Lemons

    As a retired “Gunny” and a former grunt serving in the FMF, I’ll be open minded about this weapon. “Change is good” right? Yes, a six inch group at 500 meters is interesting, however, I remain concerned about the lack of rounds/suppression capabilities of this new weapon compared to the SAW. When the SAW came on scene in the 80s it opened up a whole new world for the rifle squad as far as increased firepower going down range. I hope we’re not regressing on those improvements. To that end, I think the IAR has some big shoes to fill. I’d sure love to try one and see for myself.

    Simper Fin,
    Retired Gunny Lemons

  • http://www.yahoo.com Dwill286

    Hey guy, ya it isnt the perfect replacement for the M-249, and thats why it isn’t replacing it. The new commadant issued a proclamation saying that it is up to the unit commander’s dissgression on how they will be fielded after a freild test this year. Meaning the unit COs will decide to either A) get rid of all the M-249s and replace them with M-27s or B) mix the unit with a couple of each. What is impressive is the accuarcy down range, but the 30 rounds? I’m not buying it. But Because Amos said that means thats its just a loop-hole to get congress to buy new guns for the MC to get some high quaility carbines not army handed-down shit. Personaly, from combat expeirence we need a 7.62 widly issued weapon, that 5.56 just isnt doing what the old planners had originaly sought after. But a drum-fed M-27 would be Kick-ass!

  • Buzz

    This is not a Saw or an LMG. Designated Marksman Rifle maybe. But a very short barrel which raises questions. This is why we are 13 trillion in debt. Wasted money in my opinion.

  • Some Guy

    Well, the Ultimax 100 isn’t all as reliable as it’s said to be. Drum Magazines have an inherent tendency to be unreliable, seeing as how one needs a really long, and powerful spiraling spring.

    And due to the fact that drum magazines do not rely on a vertical profile (that is, a magazine which loads everything vertically) to load rounds, but instead a lateral one, the rounds being loaded by a drum magazine have a tendency to be pushed too far to the left or right, rather than straight up. If we take a look at a standard box magazine, and the weapons that use them, you’ll see that the rounds are designed to go nearly straight up into the chamber. A drum magazine, obviously works with a spiraling spring, meaning that instead of rounds being pushed straight up (or relatively up) their pushed at an angle, and often times, straight to the side. This leads to problems with an already inherently unreliable system, that basically creates a large amount of failures.

    Drum magazines are also relatively heavy, and if one is dropped on the ground from a standard weapon in a “quick” combat reload, it is conceivable that the drum magazine may become more bent or other wise damaged than a regular magazine, given it’s own weight compared to a regular magazine.

    What you find is, usually, unreliable relatively light drum magazines that have high round caps, and heavy, low cap magazines that generally tend to be reliable.

    Compared to a standard M-4 or M16, the primary difference with the HK416 styled weapon is the gas system and inherent reliability. While an ordinary M16 or M-4 can be a decent weapon, they tend to be unreliable in a large amount of situations, especially fully automatic fire and ‘dusty’ environments. Standard M16′s are quoted as being able to fire “90 Rounds per minute”, despite it’s ability to theoretically fire over 800 RPM. The reasoning for this is that the M16′s Direct impingement system disallows continuous automatic fire due to the fact that gases are vented directly into the receiver, essentially building up to many gases and dirt for fire to be adequate, or even safe, if a 90 RPM rifle builds up the kind of “Plaque” that it can in a few short moments.

    As well, HK416′s can work, theoretically, under water and when slathered in mud, dirt, sand, etc. compared to an M16 that, if briefly submerged in water and taken out quickly (say, a few seconds) will essentially misfire and create an “explosion” as a result of the water blocking the area for the gas. While it’s conceivable that direct impingement can do a decent job, the direct impingement system simply uses gases to press down on the bolt. If anything is in the way of the bolt, such as a water, grime, minute amounts of dirt, or other gases, it will push on that instead, and usually fail to push back the bolt adequately enough to reload.

    On piston operated mechanism, the gases are usually confined to a smaller, more protected area, that is designed to push on a rod, that will push on the bolt, reloading the weapon. The gas piston operation reduces the amount of recoil by nearly the same amount as in the direct impingement system, but takes away the “direct” impingement part, increasing reliability by creating a more suitable area to dump gases in and out of than the chamber. As well, becuase the gases are vented out of the weapon directly, rather than traveling the gas tube and into the chamber, the physical heat of both the gas tube and chamber are reduced. Considering that the HK416 also uses a heavier barrel, it is conceivable that the barrel also overheats at a slower rate.

    Overheating is a major problem with firearms, and considering the fact that no hot gases are vented into the chamber or gas tube, it is conceivable that the weapon drastically reduces problems associated with direct impingement.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heckler_%26_Koch_HK416

    As well, The IAR in and of itself is not an entirely new concept. The marines originally organized their squads in groups of 13, compared to the Army’s 9, which were more intently focused on the maneuverability and movement of a small squad. While an Army squad is a unit based around the use of a machine gun, a Marine Squad is a unit based around the use of three, mobile fireteams intended to be exploited both tactically and strategically. Originally, the marines place the BAR, or browning automatic rifle in this position, to serve as a “Light Weight” machine gun that could both serve as a standard semiautomatic rifle and provide suppressive fire.

    Problems with the BAR were it’s excessive size and weight, and lowered magazine capacity and inability for a quick change barrel. While the M249 is smaller, lighter weight and is capable of firing more ammunition faster, the BAR was fa more powerful, using a .30-06 round, and the increase of fire power seemed to more than compensate for the lack of rounds fired.

    The issue with the M249 in general is that it is TOO heavy for it’s firepower. The weapon is reliable, accurate, and has a large ammunition capacity, but due to it’s lack in actual power, it’s ability to effectively neutralize enemies is drastically diminished.

    The goal would essentially be an M249 styled weapon that simply fired more powerful rounds, with a 17 pound weapon system being capable of several hundred rounds in continuous automatic fire (compared to a 20 pound, 20 round BAR). The MK. 48 seems to be an ample substitute, however, it’s lack of versatility and rarity, coupled with expense, makes that option somewhat harder to achieve, although entirely plausible.

    In my opinion, a SAW weapon does not need the capability of being vehicle mounted, seeing as how an M16 does not need this capability either, and the addition of 20 round box magazines to be available for a SAW weapon designed for continuous automatic fire seems superfluous.

    (Things lacking from an Mk. 48 to say, an M249).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1918_Browning_Automatic_Rifle
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mk_48_machine_gun

    While I believe the HK416 is a much more reliable system than the M16 and M4, I believe that there are a few problems. First, I believe that they should implement a quick detachable barrel (which of course, wouldn’t be all that hard to do), and secondly that they should allow for belt fed capability that allows M249 chained links and soft pouches.

    If you take a look at the Ares Shrike, you’ll find that it is essentially a belt fed rifle, and if you look at things such as the HK21 and HK23, you’ll find that it’s relatively easy to convert a standard rifle to being belt fed. AS a matter of fact, there have been M16′s which have been felt fed in the past, and it is conceivable that any weapon could be converted to a belt fed System.

    If you allowed the weapon to be belt fed, which is a relatively easy thing, and redesigned it to use standard M249 links, you could essentially create a weapon with the capability of using both 30 round magazines AND the ability to be loaded 100-200 round belts. With these few additions, it would be entirely possible to create a system that is roughly 8 pounds and capable of firing hundreds of 5.56mm x 45mm NATO rounds reliably. That, not only would serve as a useful SAW weapon, but that could easily be converted to a CQC carbine by simply retracting the stock and loading in a 30 round magazine. You could also, conceivably, replace every M16, M4, and M249 with the same weapon, that while more expensive than the M16 and M4 would more than compensate for the decreased price in a SAW weapon, and allow everyone in a squad to potentially assume multiple combat roles as necessary. Considering that the weapon is generally lightweight (the same weight as an M16) while being the same length as an M4 carbine, and yet possessing the same firepower as the M249, the HK416, if it adopted and implemented correctly, could potentially outclasess our current Rifle, Carbine, and Machine gun, in all aspects except being slightly heavier than the M4 carbine.

    If 5.56mm rounds are still all the rage in the future (caseless 5.56mm rounds, hopefully), it is conceivable, that, as well, Mk 262 rounds could be adopted instead that could somewhat compensate for the lack in firepower, with increased lethality and better accuracy. Before the adoption of caseless rounds 6.8mm Remington rounds could also be used.

    It is in my general opinion that, once caseless rounds are in mass production, there will be no real reason to use 5.56mm rounds over more powerful 7.62mm x 51mm NATO rounds. 5.56mm rounds will still be half the weight, but 7.62mm rounds will be roughly the same weight as current 5.56mm rounds, meaning that a perceivable “weight cap” could be applied.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heckler_%26_Koch_HK21
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ares_Shrike_5.56

  • Rohan Wilson

    LSAT project if adapted will mean all you folks will have to something else to bitch about. The plastic case is fairly mature, caseless not so. Having a plastic case protects the ammunition from moisture. Even with plastic case there is only about a 33% weight saving. 7.62 plastic (16 grams) will still be heavier than 5.56 brass (12 grams)!

    .258 plastic will weight the same as 5.56 brass. .258 will have 50% more energy, mass but only 50% more recoil. Recoil equal to an AK-47, and roughly the same rate of rapid fire. It will kill to 600 meters.

    LSAT weapons can have “backward” feed meaning effectively a 6” longer barrel without going bullpup. A 20” barrel LSAT will be the same length as M4 carbine. Short barrels make a poor round (5.56) worse.

    7.62 plastic, caseless or brass is uncontrollable on automatic, period. Useless inside buildings. Extra recoil slows down follow up shots. It is far too overpowered for all but long range shots. You are carrying wasted overkill. Weight is killing our soldiers.

    Half the fire put down range is suppressive fire. That’s the SAW’s job. Steady bursts to keep the enemies head down. Fire and maneuver! 5.56 is to light to cut threw walls, 7.62 just to heavy, and near impossible to use on you feet assaulting. .258 is the answer.

    Having used both mag feed (30 round) and belt, I’ll take belt. 6-10 bursts, reload, 6-10 bursts reload, is not steady suppressive fire. A 100 belt gives 20-30 bursts and one slower reload. A good partner can reload for you without the gun stopping. Solo, your teams fires rapid covering the reload. Battle is never a solo event.

    The SAW is gas piston and is reliable if looked after. It would be a lot lighter without the needless mag feed option. Without a spare barrel you will cook any weapon. A well trained gunner can change barrels in seconds!

    .258 small arms means a new sniper / medium machine round can be optimised for that job. A round equal to somewhere between .300 WIN mag and .338 is the target. 8.0 x 68mm is a good start. Plastic 8.0 x 68 would weight about the same as 7.62 brass.

    A sustained fire machine gun built around an 8.0 x 68mm on a tripod will give a “mini” .50 gun portable to go with infantry companies go, to the top of any A-stan mountain on a man’s back. Snipers would use it too. It will easily penetrate soft body armour at 1000 meters.

    The most important thing is that LSAT is American. SAW is not. Until the USA get a USA replacement weapon, the M16 and 5.56 will live on.

  • IRgRunt

    Did another shoot today. Just as good as the first time around. As to everything the above poster said: you’re on target in a lot of ways. But one fundamental thing that a lot of people are missing is that a large part of the idea behind the IAR is to explore a different school of thought, one NOT centered around a machine gun. The employment of this weapon system has been left totally up to the commanders of the units issued them. That being said, it’s not a replacement for the SAW…yet. It’s an automatic rifle meant to keep up with the pace of assault efforts of the Marine rifle squad. A 23lb weapon system slinging 5.56 in this matter is far inferior to a 10lb weapon slinging the same ammo at a faster (yes I said faster, the cordite is still on my clothes) rate of fire more accurately. Suppression is the product of accuracy and volume of fire. In the past, we’ve leaned toward volume over accuracy with the SAW, settling with a 200 round belt of ammo to get the job done. The problem is that the SAW, with ammo and SL3 gear, is a pain to carry, a pain to maintain, and I don’t care if you legally adopt it and treat it as your firstborn child, they suffer from rampant mechanical failure, and at the end of the day the number of bodies dropped by rounds fired from the SAW do not justify the amount of fire it puts out. Enter the M27. The accuracy of this weapon is what makes it effective. I can do the same job with 3-5 rounds that I needed 15-20 rounds to do with the SAW. I can suppress AND put accurate rounds downrange, and I can move at the same pace as other members in the fireteam. Speed = Win. Besides this point, a Marine proficient in speed reloads can drop a dry mag, insert a fresh one and ride the bolt home in about 2-3 seconds, if not faster. Considering the doctrinal pause between bursts of fire is that same 2-3 seconds (or 4-5 depending on the rate) I fail to see how the reload really cuts the volume of fire. In fact, I know it doesn’t. As for overheating…I’m not gonna lie. The barrel on this SOB gets HOT, and the sustainable rate is in fact a lower round count per minute than the SAW. But if I’m doing the same job with fewer rounds, it starts to reach the point of being a wash. The SAW still has it’s place with the infantry, but as far as dismounted ops in mountain terrain, I can see why it’s time might be limited.

  • Some Guy

    Actually, Rohan, your wrong.

    The math is that a brass case for a 5.56mm NATO round is roughly 6 grams, and a 5.56mm x 45mm NATO round is 4 grams, and the powder or propellant is roughly 1-2 (basically 1.6) grams. So, Caseless rounds, theoretically, could/would be a 4 gram round plus 1.6 grams of powder, sans the 6 gram brass. Meaning that, if we include the primer and a caseless binder with that, a 5.56mm x 45mm NATO caseless round would be (and, is, as in the LAST caseless ammunition) slightly over 6 grams, or roughly half of what a cased round is.

    A 6.8mm Remington round is roughly 7.5 grams. If we take the math of the powder used, roughly 17% more powder compared to the 5.56mm x 45mm NATO round, or 1.95 grams, and add that to the 7.5 grams (assuming that the case and powder size are exactly the same) we’ll get that it’s over 9.45 grams per 6.8mm Remington round. That’s only a 2.55 gram reduction from the 5.56mm x 45mm nato round, instead of the full half.

    If we assume, that say, the extra weight of the primer and binder leads to roughly 6 grams per caseless .223 round, and 9.75 grams per 6.8mm remington round, we’ll find that for every caseless 1000 5.56mm x 45mm NATO rounds you can have, you can only have roughly 666 6.8mm Remington caseless rounds.

    The case of a 7.62mm x 51mm NATO round is roughly 12.5 grams, so, a 9.5 gram round with roughly 3.64 grams of powder is equivalent to 13.64 grams plus various other materials. While a 7.62mm and 5.56mm round is almost cut in half, due to the high round weight to case weight ratio in rounds like the 6.8mm Remington, not a large amount of actual weight is reduced comparatively.

    Secondly, the 6.8mm Remington only theoretically has 30% more recoil, but it’s conceivable it might have more.

    Thirdly, your wrong about the “7.62 plastic, caseless or brass is uncontrollable on automatic, period”. I can prove you wrong in so many ways.

    First of all, you say that it’s “uncontrollable on automatic, period”. My question to you is, what about an M240 on a TRIPOD? What about an M240 just in general, or on a bipod? Many soldiers have fired the M240 at the shoulder with relatively few consequences. Or what about the Mk.48? Or the BAR, or the M1 garand, or the M60?

    Hell, have you done any research at all? The AR-10 was extremely viable at reducing recoil, seeing as how it uses the same firing system as the M16, and it was more reliable, given the cleaner powders and larger chamber that allowed gas to build up without causing adverse effects. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

    A gas system uses the systems own gases to cause the action and, essentially, reduce the recoil. If the same powders are used, then the same energy to gas ratio will be equal, meaning that, if the same (or, to the ratio the same) amount of gas per the recoil of the round is sent back into the weapon, then the backward force of the gas will counter act the same proportion of the recoil, meaning that the M16 and AR-10, theoretically, should have the exact same recoil. The reaction effect is irreversible, however, if the gases (or the same force, say, on a piston rod) are sent rearward into the rifle, then this can compensate for, the rearward recoil, provided that the gas has the same kinetic energy as the bullet itself (which it does). Forward momentum and transfer of kinetic energy can keep the bullet moving forward even when some of the gas is filtered back into the weapon.

    Of course, the short stroke piston operation is much better as it’s more reliable and less likely to jam, and requires less cleaning and doesn’t overheat as quickly.

    And if you notice, the FN SCAR Mk. 17 and HK417 already make use of the system to drastically reduce the recoil and make an accurate, powerful battle rifle.

    The issue of recoil is a moot point. Recoil can be absorbed, diffused and ultimately diminished. Through the use of advanced firing systems, recoil reducers, hydraulic buffers and soft pads (along with stable potions and better firing tactics) recoil can be reduced to an effect that causes it to be virtually irrelevant.

    The biggest issue is weight, which, of course, can easily be reduced through plastic and caseless rounds. The LSAT will most likely be the weapon of the future, along with the LSAT rifle and the advance of “more lethal calibers” for the weapon.

    The Ak-107-Ak-108 are prime examples of how felt recoil can be virtually eliminated through the use of an advanced/complicated firing system. There are also various of other shock reducing materials. Hell, a simple shock system like in a car can reduce felt recoil. It’s not a very hard thing to do.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AK-107
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lightweight_Small_Arms_Technologies
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/5.56x45mm_NATO
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/7.62x51mm_NATO

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    A few comments:

    A plastic-cased LSAT round in a long-range intermediate calibre (similar in performance to a 6.5mm Grendel with an 8 gram bullet) will weigh about the same as the current brass-cased 5.56×45 ammo, i.e. about 12 grams, or half of the weight of the current brass-cased 7.62×51 ammo. So you could have one 6.5mm LSAT calibre with a performance which enables it to replace both the existing 5.56 and 7.62mm rounds, for no more weight than the current 5.56mm.

    There are of course ways of reducing the perceived recoil which can make firing powerful rifles much more comfortable. However, apart from muzzle brakes, they do nothing to reduce the actual recoil force – they just spread it out over a longer period so it’s more of a long push than a sharp kick. The best way to reduce the recoil force is to increase gun weight, which is not what you want in a military rifle, given the burden on dismounted infantry. In a typical modern assault rifle (weighing around 4 kg), the cumulative recoil of firing 7.62×51 ammo on full automatic will push the gun off target, just about whatever you do.

    This year I had the chance to fire several 7.62mm military rifles, as well as HK 416 and 417 guns in 5.56mm, 6.8mm and 7.62mm. The FN SCAR H kicked much more noticeably than the heavier HK 417. I could only fire on semi-auto due to range limitations, but the experienced soldier and small-arms specialist with me told me that in burst fire only the first bullet from the SCAR-H hit the target – the rest went wild. When (on a separate occasion) I fired the three HK rifles in quick succession, I found that the peceived recoil gap between the 5.56mm and the 6.8mm HK 416 guns was much less than the gap between the 6.8mm and 7.62mm, despite the greater weight of the HK 417. The MURG tests in the USA also showed that people could shoot 6.8mm guns just as quickly and accurately as 5.56mm.

    So my conclusion is that a typical 6.5/6.8mm intermediate round develops recoil in a military rifle which is easily manageable by most shooters, whereas 7.62×51 does not.

    I go into the calibre question in a lot more detail here: http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/The%20Next%20Generation.htm

  • Some Guy

    The Caseless LSAT project basically already in motion, and caseless ammunition is going to be the wave of the future.

    While the LSAT machine gun is just as reliable (actually conceivably more, seeing as how the caseless ammunition requires no ejection port for the case) as the M249 while only being 10 lb, the machine gun is practically the same weight as a loaded M16 while having much less recoil, an extremely high rate of fire and increased reliability (along with linked ammunition that is literally half the weight).

    And with the Adoption of a LSAT RIFLE, which is in current production (and very likely to succeed in testing, given the capabilities of the machine gun) it is highly likely that a new, very light weight rifle and machine gun will be given to units at the squad level.

    200 rounds will be 2.5 pounds, while 100 rounds will basically be 1.25 pounds, or a quarter of a pound over the weight of a standard 30 round magazine.

    The issue with Intermediate rounds, is that, while they are only slightly heavier than their lighter counterparts in cased ammunition, they are much heavier than their caseless counterparts.

    For instance, a cased 6.8mm Remington round, or a cased 6.5mm Grendel round, is basically 15.5-16 grams. Compared to a 12 gram cartridge, this is basically negligible, as it’s only a 33% (1/3) increase in weight. A caseless 5.56mm round is 6 grams, while a caseless 6.8mm Remington or 6.5mm Grendel round would conceivably be roughly 10 grams, or a 66% increase in weight. A 7.62mm x 51mm NATO rounds is twice as heavy cased or uncased.

    Meaning that the difference in power and ability compared to weight is a larger issue with an intermediate round than with the standard rounds. So, while you get roughly a 33% increase in power and a 33% increase in weight with cased intermediate rounds, you only get a 33% increase in power to a 66% increase in weight.

    Basically, it’s much more efficient to use the standard 7.62mm and 5.56mm rounds when it comes to weight in caseless rounds.

    But, the widespread phenomena of “recoil” being too high is obviously high enough to promote some problems. There have always been people who prefer more powerful rounds, such as the 10mm Auto, .45 ACP, and 7.62mm x 51mm NATO rounds when it comes to weapons, and always those that preferred 9mm and 5.56mm x 45mm NATO rounds. But, you don’t NEED automatic fire as a rifleman in general combat, and the military tends to lean towards semi-auto accurate fire anyways, compared to full auto. This is obviously the best way to conserve ammunition, but it as well increases lethality, as if accuracy is promoted, then not only will each round fired become increasingly more important, but accuracy in general will increase, obviously.

    There are reports of being able to tell the difference between terrorist organizations and United States groups by the sound of fire, and semi-auto shots on our side compared to full auto from the terrorists.

    Meaning that we are basically training marksmen to engage our enemies, and not automatic rifleman. Automatic fire, for a rifleman, is practically irrelevant.

    For suppressive power it’s relatively important, but it’s also possible to achieve suppressive firepower without full auto. The point of suppressive firepower is to keep the enemy hiding, and if they walk out into your “wall of fire” they’ll surely die, so either you quickly win the battle or they hide.

    But, IF the recoil is too high, at least for the general public, although I’ve never experienced problems with it, and despite that these few problems have been proved to be able to be reduced significantly, then I’d be all for an intermediate round.

    Despite being less efficient for the weight than the standard military calibers.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    Some Guy,

    I hope that LSAT will be the future, but if it succeeds it will almost certainly be in plastic-cased rather than caseless form. There are some fundamental problems with caseless which don’t look as if they’re going to be solved any time soon, so the LSAT team are very much focusing on the plastic-cased ammo; caseless is on the back burner. Incidentally, I was at the NDIA Infantry Weapons conference in Dallas in May and not only listened to the official LSAT presentation but had the opportunity to examine the guns and ammunition and to discuss them with the LSAT team. Only one rifle had been built then as a demonstrator and it had only just been fired for the first time – it certainly is not “in production”, there is no Army funding even to continue its development at present. The current status of the LSAT project is that three 5.56mm LMGs had been built by May this year, and a total of eight LMGs plus 100,000 rounds of plastic-cased ammunition are due to be delivered to the Army by May 2011 for evaluation. What happens to LSAT after that will depend on the evaluation.

    Incidentally, the current third-generation plastic-cased 5.56mm LSAT is showing a 41% weight reduction in belted MG form compared with brass-cased, but that’s partly because the plastic belt links are so light (the LSAT MG links weigh only 0.5gm compared with 2.0gm for the current steel links). Without the links, the LSAT ammo actually weighs 8.3gm per round, compared with 12.2gm for the brass-cased.

    As far as the calibre is concerned, as has been discussed on other threads 5.56mm has proved inadequate at the longer small-arms ranges being experienced in Afghanistan so use of 7.62mm rifles and MGs has greatly expanded. They seem likely to form a permanent part of small-unit equipment, as they did in the pre-5.56mm days. So you’re not just comparing a 6.5-6.8mm intermediate with 5.56mm, you’re also comparing it with 7.62mm. If LSAT works and is bought in 5.56mm, the troops are going to want an LSAT 7.62mm as well; and an intermediate round with a comparable long-range performance will weigh a lot less than 7.62mm.

    In the meantime, the Army has a number of improvements to the M4 Carbine lined up (as well as running a competition for alternatives which might replace it). Far from automatic fire “being irrelevant”, one of the top priorities for the updated M4 is to provide it with a full-auto switch rather than the 3-round burst which is what it has at present, along with a heavier barrel for more sustained fire. So full-auto controllability – and therefore recoil – is very much an issue.

  • Some Guy

    Actually, the “Fundamental Problem” with caseless ammunition was solved a long time ago. The primary problem is that they have a tendency to overheat, like all weapons, and this overheating causes cook-offs to occur, which can be dangerous. This is obviously much more likely on unprotected caseless ammunition than with cased ammunition.

    However, due to a better binder/better propellant, created by Alfred Nobel (Guy who made dynamite) and successfully replicated after his death, it is now possible to have caseless rounds which are relatively safe to fire, compared to normal rounds, without the threat of a cook-off. This is becuase he used Hexagon, or, basically C-4, with the propellant to cause a propellant that was just as powerful but less shock and heat sensitive (like C-4, TNT, etc. compared to Nitroglycerin). It should also be noted that, Alfred Nobel invented a safer way to handle Nitroglycerin (Dynamite!), and, considering that modern smokeless powder pretty much is nitroglycerin, nitrocellulose and wax, it’s somewhat reasonable that Alfred Nobel invented a reasonable shock/heat resistant material that stems from nitroglycerin, let alone any explosive in general.

    Anyways, Caseless ammunition has been used several times in the past, and like the G11, has been used somewhat successfully. The failure with the G11 was the failure of the caseless round to a few unsafe cook-offs, which while rare even among the G11′s at the time, has now pretty much been mostly eliminated. The G11 gained a nasty reputation for being unsafe, was German (right after WWII) and used a weaker round compared to the Belgium 5.56mm, and so it was only natural for the more standard, regular, and easily adaptable round to be adopted over the G11′s ammunition.

    However, the G11 did not fail to produce solid, reliable, caseless ammunition, nor did it stop many other caseless manufacturers (I believe you can still buy caseless .22 rounds, just for the fun of it).

    Basically, caseless ammunition is alive and well and will pretty much go on to be the best type of ammunition to use, although, maybe not the most widespread.

    As far as what you’ve heard on the LSAT, I wouldn’t doubt it. But, many improvements have been made sense the time that information was officially published, or 2008. Now that’s it’s practically 2011, or three years later, caseless ammunition has proven to be a viable source for ammunition, and is relatively effective.

    Anyways, as I have proved with tah mathsesz, it’s basically less efficient to use intermediate rounds than full powered or “low” powered rounds. The point being that 6.5mm grendel and 6.8mm remington rounds basically take normal sized cases, blow them out and fill them full of high strength powder, and then replace the smaller bullets with much larger (7.5-8 gram bullets, or twice as heavy as 5.56mm rounds).

    Simply put, while a 8 gram round and a 6 gram case and 2 grams of powder/primer is only 4 grams heavier than a standard 12 gram 5.56mm round, or 25% heavier, when you subtract the 6 gram case you get that an 8 gram round 2+ grams of propellant is vastly heavier than a 4 gram round and 1.5-2 grams of propellant. If we assume a 6 gram 5.56mm round and a 10 gram 6.8mm remington, we notice a 66% increase in overall weight, compared to only roughly a 25% increase of power (1800 joules to 2400 joules, roughly, from full length barrels). Originally, it was a 25% increase in weight (12 to 16 grams) and a 25% increase of power (1800 to 2400), fairly reasonable, but now it’s 25% increase of power and a 66% increase of weight.

    Considering that a 7.62mm offer a 100% increase of power at 100% increase of weight, we get that a 7.62mm is roughly 2.64 times more efficient in the “Weight to Strength”, or weight to power ratio than a standard intermediate round converted to either caseless or lightweight case.

    The point being that while a .223, Ak-47, 6.8mm and 6.5mm grendel use roughly 2 grams, something like a .30-06 only uses 4 grams. The main weight of the .30-06 or a .308, or even a .223 comes not in the POWDER weight, but in the case that is needed to support the VOLUME, heat, and backlash of that powder.

    Considering that, in the case of the 6.8mm Remington and 6.5mm Grendel (no pun intended), That the bullet weight is not only vastly heavier for it’s comparative case size, but actually larger than the case it’s intended to be in. Their essentially 7.5-8 gram rounds in 6 gram cases. If we take the weight of say, a .308 round, 9.5 grams, and combine that with say, 3.5 grams of powder (which, if it used the same ‘new’ advanced powders as the 6.8mm remington and 6.5mm grendel, it could be less), you get a 13 gram round. Now, granted, this is roughly a .5 a gram over the cased weight of a .223 round, but it’s almost the same and virtually half of what it was before.

    If you compare the “halved” weight of .223 and .308 rounds to the 62% difference in intermediate rounds, it ends up being a relatively large difference.

    Let’s just compare the amount of weight per 1000 rounds. Standard cased .223 rounds are basically 12.31 grams per round, or, 12.31 kilograms per 1000 rounds, or 27.082 pounds. This will be our based standard to judge things by.

    A standard .308 round is around 25.5 grams, so, you can have roughly 482 .308 rounds per 1000 rounds of 5.56mm ammunition, or basically half.

    A standard 6.8mm remington round is, roughly, 16 grams, if we include case weight and extra powder along with the weight of the round. So, for every 1000 rounds of .223 ammunition, we can have 750 6.8mm remington rounds. The 6.8mm remington, obviously, is not the “Same”, as per every 1000 rounds of 6.8mm remington rounds you have, you need to carry around 35.2 pounds of ammunition, compared to 27.1 pounds of .223 ammunition. It’s basically a 7 pound difference; that is, you could theoretically carry an extra 265 .223 rounds per 1000 rounds of 6.8mm remington rounds in weight.

    Hardly “The Same Weight”.

    Now, in caseless rounds, it’s theoretically possible to have 2000 .223 rounds per every 1000 .223 cased rounds. In terms of .308 rounds, you can have roughly 946 rounds per 1000 rounds of regularly cased .223 ammunition. True, it’s not a FULL cut in half or equal, but it’s around 5% of the estimated ammunition weight volume, which is practically negligible.

    But, with caseless 6.8mm remington rounds, you can only carry roughly 1300 rounds compared to 1000 .223 CASED rounds.

    That is 700 rounds away from the 2000 round mark for caseless .223, meaning that.

    That is HARDLY the same weight, and actually a 35% decrease in volume of fire.

    The 6.8mm Remington, only has a 25% increase of power for such a drastically marked decrease in volume of fire.

    Were as you basically cut the amount of rounds in half with the .308, you essentially double the firepower, meaning that you have roughly a 105% decrease in volume of fire, but a 105% increase in power.

    You lack 1000 rounds, but you easily make up for it with DOUBLE the firepower. In terms of the 6.8mm Remington, you lose 70% of the same 1000, but only gain a 25% increase of power.

    With these kinds of statistics, it is reasonable to conclude that the .308 is much more efficient in terms of WEIGHT, which is roughly 2.8 times more efficient to be exact.

    If we use the 6.5mm Grendel and use the highest/lowest percentages possible on each side, we only find a 2.64 timer higher efficiency rate, which only means that a completely maxed out match grade 6.5mm Grendel is only .16 times more efficient than a 6.8mm Remington, meaning that the efficiency is much worse.

    I know this a lot of information, but, I’ve done a lot of research/math into the matter and fact the problems with using intermediate rounds as a permanent solution.

    It would be an AMAZING temporary solution until the ability of caseless/plastic cased rounds were perfected/ became cheap.

    The information and statistics are clear and speak for themselves. Intermediate rounds are simply too inefficient, in terms of weight and mass, when compared to .308 rounds or .223 rounds.

    Or basically 7.62mm x 51mm NATO rounds and 5.56mm x 45mm NATO rounds, instead of .308 and .223.

    The point being that, intermediate rounds will NOT weigh a lot less than 7.62mm rounds and still be lacking in terms of firepower comparably.

    The argument of recoil has come up time and time again, and basically recoil is an issue that can easily be dealt with. Should it ACTUALLY become too huge of a problem, I suppose we’ll have no choice to but to switch to the intermediate rounds, despite their inefficiencies.

    Simply put, the weight/strength ratios will drastically be changed when it comes down to caseless and plastic cases, making intermediate rounds, with heavy rounds and light cases, less useful.

    It is conceivable that we could use, like a, 5 gram “intermediate” round that got like, 980 m/s (like in a 6.5mm Grendel, or like a super charged 5 gram .223 round) and still have massive savings on weight and massive increases of power, although these types of rounds would obviously be less useful than the heavier versions (as excess speed causes turbulence, and a lack of mass causes instability, making the rounds exponentially lose capabilities in long range ballistics).

    Still, all of this information and the HK416 really gets me hyped up, and I’m interested in everyone’s input.

    I wonder if like, instead of replacing the SAW gunner, we could like, replace a rifleman with an “Auto Rifleman” carbine weapon, sort of like how we had an M1 Garand and Thomspon Sub Machine gun in WWII.

    Perhaps the second rifleman, instead of using an M16, could use more of a designated marksmen and be all like a “single shot guy” compared to a “Burst Shot guy” to increase the capabilities of a squad.

    And then the grenadier would of course have a rifle in between these two, with a grenade launcher of some kind of course.

    Still,

  • Rohan Wilson

    Some Guy,

    Can you please explain your maths and did you read Anthony’s comments?

    “If we assume a 6 gram 5.56mm round and a 10 gram 6.8mm remington, we notice a 66% increase in overall weight, compared to only roughly a 25% increase of power (1800 joules to 2400 joules, roughly, from full length barrels). Originally, it was a 25% increase in weight (12 to 16 grams) and a 25% increase of power (1800 to 2400), fairly reasonable, but now it’s 25% increase of power and a 66% increase of weight.”

    Changing brass 5.56 to brass 6.8/6.5 gives an across the board 33% increase in energy and weight.
    1800-2400 is a 33% increase. (not 25%)
    12-16 is a 33% increase. (not 25%)

    Changing caseless 5.56 to caseless 6.8/6.5 gives a 33% increase in energy and 66% weight.
    1800-2400 is a 33% increase. (not 25%)
    6-10 is a 66% increase. (correct)

    Changing plastic 5.56 to plastic 6.8/6.5 gives a 33% increase in energy and weight.
    1800-2400 is a 33% increase. (not 25%)
    8-12 is a 33% increase. (same change as brass).

    As stated by Anthony above plastic case is mature and protects the round from the environment. 120mm UK caseless tank rounds have swelled and contacted in the heat and humidity of Iraq, till the point the no longer fit in the breech of the tank guns. Caseless is not “real world” mature yet.

    LSAT is a chance to replace two calibers with one. This is what US Special Forces wanted when they developed the 6.8mm in the first place. 5.56 was too small, 7.62 too big. They wanted a single solution. The US Army blocked it.

    You can go for 7.62 but can it give the improvements on 5.56 without the cost of weight?
    7.62 caseless 13-14 grams (unlikely LSAT) has no weight advantage over 5.56 brass (12 grams). 7.62 plastic (the likely LSAT solution) is still heavier at 17.5 grams.

    Recoil is still a problem. The “laws of Physics”. Muzzle breaks (blast and flash), prolonged recoil (slow re-aim), heavier rifle (more weight) just shift the problem.

    Plastic cased 6.5mm round at the same weight as the current brass 5.56 and rifle!
    A 6.5mm round with a third more energy (more “knock down”)
    A 6.5mm round has a third more presented area (bigger “hole”)
    A 6.5mm round has only a third more recoil (your figures), much more controllable automatic fire.
    A 6.5mm round increases the effective range by a third to 600m+ downrange.

    The new term in small arms is “rounds per kill”.
    If a 6.5mm will kill to 600m, a 7.62 to 800m, is it better to carry 3 6.5mm rounds and kill 3 people than carry 2 7.62mm rounds?
    5.56mm is said by the US Army to need 3 rounds per kill with the M4.

    Why would you what to have two calibers, two logistic streams, two rifles and two lots of training?

  • Some Guy

    Well, the percentage depends on if your going up, or down.

    12/16 is 3/4, or 75%, representing a “25%” difference, were as 16/12 is 4/3, representing a “33%” difference. Basically, twelve divided by sixteen is the equivalent of 3/4, which would represent a 25% difference, were as sixteen divided twelve is the equivalent of 4/3, which would represent 33% difference.

    There similar enough. But, as you might already know, an Ak-47 uses 8 gram rounds, a 5.56mm x 45mm NATO uses 4 gram rounds, a 6.8mm remington uses 7.5 gram rounds, a 7.62mm x 51mm NATO uses 9.5 gram rounds, the like.

    Well, a 5.56mm x 45mm NATO rounds “powder weight” is roughly 2 grams, as is a 6.8mm Remington’s powder weight. The “bullet weight” of a 5.56mm round is 4 grams, were as it’s 7.5 grams with the 6.8mm remington. The case weight for both, could, conceivably, be the same (even the 6.8mm Remington is stated as having “17% more case capacity”).

    EVEN IF we ASSUME that the 6.8mm remington (or 6.5mm grendel) has exactly the same amount of powder and a case that is exactly the same (which, it isn’t) the difference in BULLET WEIGHT alone is what causes the difference.

    A 7.5 gram round is, 7.5/4 times heavier than a 4 gram round, or, 1.875 time as heavy. If you throw in the weight of the powder, or 2 grams, a 6.8mm Remington bullet with powder is 9.5/6 times as heavy as a 5.56mm round, or 1.583 times as heavy. If you throw in the weight of a case, or in that case make it a complete cased cartridge, or 6 grams, You get that the 6.8mm Remington is 15.5/12 times as heavy, or, 1.29 times the weight.

    A 6.8mm Remington, in real life, is roughly 16 grams (it varies) while a standard 5.56mm round is supposedly “12.31 grams”. If we do 16/12.31, we get that a 6.8mm Remington is roughly 1.299 times as heavy, or, basically 30% heavier.

    Of course, if we take 2385 joules and divide this 1760, or 2385/1760, we get roughly a 1.355 power difference. For 30% more weight, we get roughly a 35% increase in power.

    However, if we drop the weight of the case (presumably, around 6 grams), and go back to using the theoretical numbers (to potentially “maximize” it’s chances) we get a 9.5 gram total CARTRIDGE weight for a 6.8mm Remington round and a 6 gram cartridge weight, if we only include the weight of the theoretical minimum of a caseless round; I.E. only the weight of the bullet and the powder.

    With the relatively accurate (but not perfectly accurate) numbers, we get that a 6.8mm remington cased cartridge is 15.5/12 times heavier than a 5.56mm cased cartridge.

    However, with caseless rounds, we get that a 6.8mm Remington caseless cartridge is 9.5/6 times heavier than a 5.56mm caseless catridge.

    15.5/12 is roughly 1.291, while 9.5/6 is roughly 1.583. Meaning, that, while a cased catridge is only “1.291″ times as heavy, a caseless cartridge is “1.583 times” as heavy. This of course due to the INHERENT fact that, a 5.56mm bullet is roughly 4 grams while a 6.8mm Remington bullet is roughly 7.5 grams. 7.5/4 is 1.875, which means that the bullet is
    “1.875 times” as heavy.

    My point is, why use a cartridge that is “1.583 times” as heavy, when it’s only 33% more powerful, when you could be using a round that is 105% as heavy but 105% as powerful?

    You save weight by using a 6.8mm remington over a 7.62mm, in both the theoretical caseless and cased ammunition, but in terms of caseless ammunition the weight saved is vastly disproportionate to the power. 58.3 divided 33.3 is roughly .57. 105/105 is 1.

    Meaning, that although a 7.62mm round is heavier, you get 105/105 power/weight increase, compared to a 58.3/33 power/weight increase.

    Essentially, according to the statistics above, a maxed out 6.8mm Remington round is only .57/1 as efficient as a 7.62mm round in terms of weight, or 57% as efficient.

    My point is, a 6.8mm remington round, if it were to be caseless, only allows you to carry 350 more rounds than a 7.62mm round if it were caseless, yet it is only 2400/3500 times as powerful. While a 5.56mm round is ONLY 1760/3500 times as powerful, you can carry roughly 1050 more rounds. 2400/3500 is .685 times as powerful, while 1760/3500 is .502.

    So, while a 6.8mm remington round is “worth” .685 of a 7.62mm round, and a 5.56 is only “worth” .502 of a 7.62mm round, becuase of the increased volume of fire power present with the 5.56 (350 to 1050, for 6.8mm to 5.56m), the 5.56mm is more efficient than the 6.8mm, and accordingly, the 7.62mm is more efficient, in terms of weight, than the 6.8mm.

    I’m basically saying that the 6.8mm Remington round is only .57 times as efficient, in terms of weight/energy, as the other two rounds.

    Now, while a 7.62 round would be roughly 13 grams, were as the “theoretically maximized” 6.8mm remington round would be 9.5 grams. Yes, the 6.8mm remington is 3.5 grams lighter, or 9.5/13 times the weight, or .731 times lighter. This means that per every 1000 7.62mm rounds, you could carry an extra 367 rounds. However, the 6.8mm remington is only 2400/3500 as powerful as a 7.62mm round, or .685.

    Meaning that while you would conceivably save weight, you wouldn’t be saving as much weight as you COULD, or theoretically possible.

    I hope that cleared up all my mathsz. xP

  • Rohan Wilson

    First you state increase, i.e. the % increase from 5.56 to 6.8, then you flip to difference, 6.8 over 5.56. If you are to compare you need to use the same method.

    “12/16 is 3/4, or 75%, representing a “25%” difference, were as 16/12 is 4/3, representing a “33%” difference’
    One is an increase, the other a decrease, with different denominators, and unless you stay with one method (increase / decrease) it does mater.

    ‘My point is, why use a cartridge that is “1.583 times” as heavy, when it’s only 33% more powerful, when you could be using a round that is 105% as heavy but 105% as powerful?’

    Three different measurements methods in on sentence.

    If we stick to one measurement consistently, comparing to 5.56 caseless.
    6.8mm 158.3% of the weight, 133% of the energy => 84% “efficient”
    7.62mm 205% of the weight, 205% of the energy => 100% “efficient”

    You have only compared differences and not totals, a basic maths error.
    It is not, repeat not 57% “efficient”, whatever “efficient” really means.

    The 6.8 was designed to throw a heavy projectile, hence the heavy round.

    “It is conceivable that we could use, like a, 5 gram “intermediate” round….”
    A caseless 5.56 M262 demonstrates.

    Caseless 5.56 (4 gram projectile / 2 gram powder) = 6 grams
    M262 caseless (5 gram projectile / 2 gram powder) = 7 grams

    M262 116% of the weight, 100% of the energy => 86% “efficient”
    Is M262 really an in-efficient round?

    Therefore the M196 is more “efficient”
    M196 93% of the weight, 100% of the energy => 108% “efficient

    If using your logic an intermediate round by 100% “efficient” at around a third heavier (8 grams) than 5.56 caseless, the hypothetical is

    6 gram bullet (93 grain), 2 approx grams of propellant.
    This would mean a 6.0mm round at 2400J at 890m/s with a high ballistic co-efficient and high penetration. A mini Grendel.

    Personally I would prefer something around this configuration or 6.25mm.
    The question is does this give better effect (terminal ballistics, etc) than 5.56 or 6.8?

    BUT most importantly for warfighters is what round gives the best balance between weight, recoil, accuracy, penetration and terminal ballistics at ranges soldier fight.

    AND back to the main blog, the M27.

    The M249 weights 22lb with 200 rounds.

    SOCCOM use the M46 which has a 16” barrel saves 4lb they use 100 belts and smaller cloth “peanut bags” that saves nearly 3lb.
    A M46 with 100 rounds drops to 15lb.

    A M27 weights 8lb empty, 9lb with 30 rounds.

    Is the M27 really worth it?

    Just give M27 to Marine riflemen (wow! every marine has automatic fire again, a 16” barrel rifle and all the benefits of the M27 IAR) and give M46 to Marine automatic riflemen (wow! a lighter SAW, the system that marines introduced to the USA and Western world).

    The M16 / M249 can be happily junked!

  • Some Guy

    Only problem with SOCOM weapons is that, their expensive, and made out of “rare” materials like Titanium.

    Currently, or supposedly, there is a shortage of titanium, or really, the ability to mine and shape it.

    Which is were the inability to basically process it comes in, inflating the price for “first come, first serve” and as well making production relatively slow.

    An M16 is like, 800-1000 dollars, and so like, two-three of those/m-4 is less 3000 dollars, plus another 4000 dollars for the M249.

    So, basically, a single M249 costs as much an entire fire team of M16′s.

    Two of those, even in SOCOM version with minus extra stuffsz and no special materials is, at least, 8000 dollars, plus another 2000 per M27 rifleman.

    Meaning that it’s basically 12,000 per fire team now, instead of the original >7000.

    In my opinion, we should do what the NAVY seals and other Special Forces do, or like to do, that is, basically give everyone a machine gun or a designated marksmen weapon. The lethality of that kind of squad, an entire group of people with semi-automatic precision fire and massive suppressive/area of effect fire would be…

    Pretty much amazing. Give one or two guys an M27 with a grenade launcher or something like that. Slower auto guys, but given the grenades in between, it wouldn’t really change much.

    But again, that’s expensive.

    While the military has the capabilities of buying awesome weapons, and even amazing body armor, they’d rather buy the cheapest body armor they can THAT’S ONLY DESIGNED TO STOP ONE SHOT, that is of course “fragments” and “9mm rounds fired from a sub-machine gun”, becuase they obviously think that a FUNERAL WITH HONORS and rehabilitation is cheaper than high grade body armor.

    And a person’s life.

  • Rohan Wilson

    Only tripod is Titanium on the M46.
    http://www.fnmfg.com/products/m249fam/mk46mod1.htm

    The body armour is required to have multi-shot resistance.

    “A SAPI is able to stop up to three rifle bullets of a caliber up to 7.62x51mm NATO M80 ball and of a muzzle velocity up to 2,750 ft/s (840 m/s). The ceramic plate is backed with a shield made of Spectra, a material up to 40% stronger than Kevlar.[1]”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Small_Arms_Protective_Insert
    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/ground/interceptor.htm

    As for cost, if M16/M4 are so cheap, why use M27 or M249 or any machine gun? The M27 is a modified M416

    “In July 2007, the US Army announced a limited competition between the M4 carbine, FN SCAR, HK416, XCR, and the previously-shelved HK XM8. Ten examples of each of the four competitors were involved. Each weapon fired 60,000 rounds in an “extreme dust environment.” The purpose of the shoot-off was for assessing future needs, not to select a replacement for the M4.[6][7] The XM8 scored the best, with only 127 stoppages in 60,000 total rounds, the FN SCAR Light had 226 stoppages, while the HK416 had 233 stoppages. The M4 carbine scored “significantly worse” than the rest of the field with 882 stoppages”.

    That’s why you replace the M16/M4. Quality cost money.
    Is there a maths answer for that? mathsz. xP

  • Rohan Wilson

    Correction. Bipod, not tripod is Titanium.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Some Guy,

    The problem with your “efficiency” calculation, comparing ammunition weight with muzzle energy, is that most combat does not take place at the muzzle. As Rohan said, you need to compare the terminal ballistics at ranges at which soldiers actually fight.

    In the present conflict in Afghanistan, more than half of all small-arms fire-fights take place at over 300 metres. Just over a quarter take place in the 500-900 metre range band. Apply this information to your energy calculation and the results change dramatically.

    Compared with 5.56mm M855, the 6.5mm Grendel with 8 gm bullet (a good example of a long-range intermediate) produces only 1.4x the energy at the muzzle, but at 300m it delivers 2.0x, at 500m 2.74x and at 800m 3.7x as much energy.

    Compared with the 7.62mm M80, the 6.5 Grendel produces only 0.77x as much energy at the muzzle, but 0.87x at 300m, 0.96 at 500m and 1.1x at 800m.

    So even if we stick to the energy delivered to the target (there are other factors, as I will go on to), taking the above into account in your calculation will result in a long-range intermediate being shown to be far more efficient across the spectrum of practical combat ranges.

    That’s not all. The practical effectiveness of the 5.56mm M855 begins to fall off dramatically beyond 300m (make that 200m from a short-barrelled gun like the M4 Carbine). That’s why there’s been a huge demand for more portable 7.62mm weapons, both rifles and LMGs. By the time you get to 500m, 5.56mm weapons are effectively useless in combat; they are so much dead weight, and their efficiency drops to zero.

    A third factor concerns bullet performance. For an FMJ rifle bullet to perform effectively requires it to yaw quickly and reliably on impact, turning over to travel base-first. This creates a much bigger wound and disables the target more quickly. Neither the 5.56mm M855 nor the 7.62mm M80 perform that well in this respect, and in ballistic gel tests the 6.8mm Rem demonstrates more disruption than the 7.62mm, at least out to 300m. So despite delivering less energy to the target, it can be just as effective.

    I hope you will appreciate two things from all this:

    1. That your muzzle energy calculations are far too simplistic and do not reflect real-world conditions.

    2. That a long-range intermediate like the 6.5mm Grendel is in practical performance terms much more efficient than either the 5.56mm or 7.62mm rounds (and incidentally, in small-arms terms “round” means the same as “cartridge”, not just the bullet as your posts seem to indicate).

  • Brazilski

    @Wilson

    What I can see about that Mk46 doesn’t excite me at all. That lightweight barrel, fluted or not, is gonna have issues and anyone can reduce weight on a weapon by simply cutting down option, in this case the magazine well. They’ll probably claim it’s redundant on a beltfed LMG, but I was under the impression the Minimi’s magazine feed was actually more usefull than generally thought. We had a special exposition at the army museum in my town dedicated to the Dutch Commando Korps an the Minimi they had on display was magazine fed. That doesn’t say everything of course, but it wouldn’t make much sense if they didn’t use it. I can imagine having your Minimi magazine fed is much more comfortable when you’re on the move.

    @Williams

    I hear a lot about Grendel’s longrange performance, but I was wondering how it compared to the 6.8 SPC at shorter ranges. Not just in “effectiveness”, however vague that might be, but also in terms of recoil. Isn’t the Grendel cartridge much heavier loaded? Also, Alexander Arms claims the chubby case doesn’t increase the risk of feed problems, but I won’t take their word for it. As far as I know the only chubby >pistol caliber ever to be tested in combat is the 8mm Lebel and that was only in bolt-action rifles.

  • Some Guy

    lol, I realized all that.

    I was specifically talking about energy to weight ratios, and stated that many times.

    Besides, the .45 ACP has the same muzzle energy as a 9mm. Actually, the .45 ACP usually used has LESS, if we’re talking about a 15 gram round fired from a 4-5 inch barrel or, at 253 m/s.

    Yet the .45 ACP has more recoil and is generally regarded as being a lot more powerful than the 9mm.

    As a matter of fact, I crunched a few numbers a while ago, and found that basically Momentum x Muzzle energy x Raw Inertia, compared to a relative constant (In my case, a .30-06) can be used to predict and determine “Effective Range” along with most terminal ballistics information, in bullets of relatively equal aerodynamics. For a slight few changes in Aerodynamics (Ballistic Coefficients are nice to know) calculated in, I found that, basically, my math was pretty accurate.

    Basically, I realize that there are many other factors to consider, but, it’s still basically less efficient.

    Anyways…

    I think that a 6.5mm grendel, 6 gram bullet/2 gram powder idea would be great. .7 pound magazines (with 30 rounds) or less, and for every 1000 5.56mm rounds you can carry you would be able to carry roughly 1500, or for every 650 5.56mm rounds (17.5 lb) you could carry 1000 6.5mm caseless rounds. :D

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Brazilski,

    The 6.8×43 and 6.5 Grendel are very similar in ammunition weight, muzzle energy and recoil. Comparative short-range gel tests between the 6.8 and the 5.56mm have been published, but I’ve not seen any similar tests of 6.5mm vs 6.8mm, although I have read that the standard 6.8mm loading performs better in gel tests than the 6.5mm with 8 gm Lapua Scenar.

    Of course, any military ball bullet would be different from the Lapua, and would designed (along with the rifling twist) to maximise its terminal performance. Given similarly optimised loadings, I suspect that there would be little difference between the effectiveness of the 6.5 and 6.8; the 6.8mm makes a fractionally bigger hole initially, but the 6.5mm bullet is longer and heavier and would do more damage as it yaws.

    I am not sold on the 6.5mm Grendel cartridge in its present form, just on its ballistics. The short, fat case design was clearly imposed by the need to keep the cartridge length the same as 5.56mm so it could be used in the AR-15 while still using long, low-drag bullets. An optimised conventional military case would probably be longer and slimmer (as I have illustrated, with a bit of photoshopping, in my presentation here: http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/The%20Next%20Generation.htm

    However, I think that the only realistic opportunity for an intermediate round being chosen to replace 5.56mm/7.62mm will be the plastic-cased LSAT programme, where you’d be introducing entirely new ammo and weapon designs anyway.

    @ Some Guy,

    Yes, I know you were specifically talking about energy to weight ratios, that’s why I pointed out that the muzzle energy figures you were using were inappropriate and gave results which did not reflect real-world combat situations.

    Let me spell out in more detail the implications of using energy at the target rather than muzzle energy, by looking at 5.56mm vs 6.5mm:

    50% of targets between the muzzle (6.5mm 1.4x more energy) and 300m (2x): an average of 1.7x.
    25% of targets between 300m (2x) and 500m (2.74x): an average of 2.37x
    25% of targets between 500m (2.74x) and 900m (we’ll take the figure for 800m – 3.7x): an average of 3.22x. So the average for the short-range half of the engagements (0-300m) is 1.7x, the average for the long-range half (300-900m) is 2.37+3.7 / 2 = 3.22x, giving an overall average of 2.46x.

    To sum up, the 6.5mm only delivers 1.4x more energy than the 5.56mm at the muzzle, but averages 2.46x across the range of targets. So the figure you should be using in your calculations for the energy difference is 2.46x, which makes a considerable difference to your results.

    Perhaps you could spell out what you mean by “Raw Inertia” and how this differs from “Momentum”?

  • IRgRunt

    As far as fiscal responsibility on the side of weapons acquisition for the Marine Corps, as I asked EXACTLY the same questions of the officers briefing us on the weapon system, “Is it unfeasible to replace the current SI weaponry, in it’s entirety, with this weapon system?” The answer “YES” To replace the current standard issue with this weapon would cost 3/4 billion. And about what Some Guy said about mixing the teams with suppression and match grade marksman weapons respectively, I’ve been preaching this for awhile. A fireteam of four Marines each carrying an M27 with an M203 on the bottom can only be described as “overwhelming response incarnate” where responding to enemy fire is concerned. A mag dump followed by a volley of 40mm would certainly serve as the international kinesic for “You done @#%’ed up.” But, alas, that being said, there’s just no way to realistically field that kind of configuration without making the brass’s eyes bug out of their head followed by a sharp “You want to spend HOW MUCH MONEY?!” Unless of course you’re say, MARSOC….

  • Lance

    2 Rohan

    The rea; thing is that the test did show the M-4 had more stoppages in dust test. BUT the reason the M-4 has killed all the other competitiors (except the HK416) is they offer no clear advatgae there still a 5.56mm pea shooter you have to clean it more but it has littel advantage and the FN is more complexe and expensive than most grunts need. Thats why a caliber change is needed before a rilfe change happens. 6.5 and 6.8 offor alot more than 5.56mm offers.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @ IRgRunt

    “overwhelming response incarnate” where responding to enemy fire is concerned. A mag dump followed by a volley of 40mm would certainly serve as the international kinesic for “You done @#%’ed up.”

    They used to do that Vietnam with M16A1, especially during ambushes. Everybody would fire auto, everybody would go dry at the same time, then a big pause as everybody reloads, then another fusilade, another pause.

    Charlie learnt to go to ground quick, wait and move during pauses.
    In close combat you will be overrun!
    (The arm distance of a 40mm is 30 meters remember)

    @Brazilski
    The minimi on magazine feed doesn’t work well and jams. On belt, the weapon has to drag link up into the weapon. On magazine, the rounds are forced up by magazine spring and the weapon fires at 1000rpm, not the normal 750rpm. The weapon is “balanced” at 750rpm. On “Adverse” it cycles at 1000rpm, on the assumption that dirt, and girt, etc will slow it down to normal 750 rate.

    @Lance
    The M16 is cheap because it is super mass produced, not good. The AK is cheap because it is super mass produced and basic. I have used both direct gas and piston weapons. I would clean my weapon 2-3 times daily, more if I fired it. Piston weapons, clean the carbon off the gas piston and your 90% done, direct gas and carbon is all over the place and in the gas tube you couldn’t clean. When your weapon stops, it only your life.

    Your granfather’s generation could pull a M1 apart, and that’s far more “complex” than a FNC. The M1 was too expensive for other nations to copy or afford. If you can’t cope with modern weapons go back to bolt actions.

  • SEAL76

    The Italians copied the M1 Garand though in a shorter version. It was called the BM59 and was designed around the M1. It had a detachable 20 round Magazine. Very much like the M14. Apparently a very well made weapon.

  • SEAL76

    There never was and never will be an agreement when it comes to the perfect round or weapon configuration. I think that we can agree that there are rounds and weapons that do a better job than others in given situations.

  • IRgRunt

    “They used to do that Vietnam with M16A1, especially during ambushes. Everybody would fire auto, everybody would go dry at the same time, then a big pause as everybody reloads, then another fusilade, another pause.”

    Well, hopefully by that time you’d have your SAW laid in and…oh…wait…

  • Rohan Wilson

    SEAL76

    100% correct.

    Unfortunately for the average 18 year old soldier they only get the one rifle and it needs to a good all-rounder. There is only a fix amount of time and money to train. Some fights are close (Iraq and Vietnam), some fights are long (A-stan and Falklands).

    You don’t get to pick your wars. The vietnam vets who trained me found the M16 great close, usless for long, the L1A1 heavy but great for long, useless close. The M60 was just plan heavy.

    Military history is full of attempts to introduce “intermediant” calibers. The 6.5 for the Avtomot (1913), 276 Penderson for the M1 (1930s), .270 for the EM-2 (1940s), .258 for the AR-15 / Stoner (Powell report 1958), .250 British and 6mm SAW (1970s) and finally 6.8 SPC this decade (2005).

    Only the M16 uses direct gas. Every other 5.56 small arm today uses gas piston (HK-33 delay blowback in the past). Is only the nation in the world to get it right is the USA? The M1 garand, M1 cabine and BAR were piston.

    I ask people to take a step backwards and think how different the world would be with Russia with the Avtomat, the US with a lighter 10 shot .276 M1 Garand (rifle and carbine) and a 30 shot BAR.

    Would we be having all this debat if the Stoner (rifle, cabine and LMG)and .258 had been introduced? Would Mikhail Kalashnikov be king?

  • Some Guy

    lol, well, about the whole fire and then reload thing…

    If we used MACHINE GUNS instead of rifles we could pull it off without the need to reload every few moments.

    And then the DM’s would be constantly firing at a slow, steady rate.

    Mix in a few grenadiers and your good to go.

    Or, you could stagger your full auto, and have some people fire while others reload, kind of like fire and maneuver except with fire and reload. xP

    But I don’t think that full auto is very efficient, and I think that bursts/accurate shots are probably more viable than anything.

    I also think that full auto fire and grenading an area might be great if you REALLY want the target dead, for special ops and for last resorts, or if your ambushed, but I don’t think it’s necessarily the best idea.

    Problem with full auto is that you run out of ammo quickly, and when your fighting in an extended combat operation, ammo conservation is key.

  • SDJarhead08

    Okay, this whole issue over this weapon has just about turned anal. Unfortunately we cannot know what type of battle we will encounter over each hill, around the next turn or in the next alley way. Sure full is not very efficient all the time, but dammed well needed some of the time. Fire discipline is just that! Knowing when is the right time to go full auto and when not to. Flexibility is key and that is only accomplished by having a wide selection of tools to choose from. So far, I like the choices the Marines have made. The rest comes from good training and experience. If someone can actually orchestrate a gun fight in which some people are firing while other are loading, I want to see it. This is the weapon and the Marines are the experts when it comes down to knowing what they want for how they are going to deploy it. I’m just glad that no batteries are needed, cleans up fast and shoots with less jams. The rest depends on the individual user.

  • Lance

    @ Rohan
    I agree a piston helps thats why the army is adding them to the new m-4A2 which is being deloped and might see service by late next year.

  • Rohan

    @SDJarhead08

    Live is a compromise, battle even more so. The more tools you introduce, the less time you have to master each one of them.

    The USMC experts never wanted the M16 in the first place.
    The USMC experts introduced the M249 and lead the way.
    The USMC expects put 3 round limiters on M16 (SOCCOM took them off).

    The Brit Army didn’t need Minimi and went for the magazine feed LSW L86. They tried and tried, then like the rest of the western world went for belt feed.

    High capacity magazines are great in theory, but grit and sand defeats them. For them to work the in “field” conditions the springs need to be so powerful you can’t hand load then. The Bren mags worked with gravity, the L2 HB SLR 30 round mags had to have special leaf springs to make up. High capacity magazines end up no more reliable than belt.

    The other lesson with using heavy barreled rifle in the SAW role is the battering they take. The 7.62 L2 was 7 kg and kicked bloody HARD on auto (the M60 was 10kg). The HK 21 was beefed up to take the belting of auto fire (no pun intended). Even on short burst these weapons are firing many more rounds than rifles. I hope the Corps has money for replacements. Half the problem with M249s is they are worn out.

    Lastly, the lighter 5.56 has less energy and recoil to drive the weapon. Any 5.56 weapon will stop more, regardless of brand name compared to 7.62 M43, and less again to a 7.62 NATO weapon. AKs and FAL / SLRs rarely stop.

    The irony is that the intermediates, 6.8 and 6.5 have muzzle energy and recoil closer to M43 rounds. A intermediate rifle and SAW should be as reliable as AKs.

    The L2 was designed in the same frame as the M27. Recon patrols and rear people were to use it instead of the “complex” M60. In Vietnam SASR used M60s and L2 were left at home. The M27 will be a good automatic rifle. Young marines will be wanting to trade their M16s for M27 as rifles. I also note that the Corps plans to keep at least a M249 in one fire team per squad for sustained fire. Flexibility of 3 uniform fireteams is lost.

    In ten years time when the M27 used as IAR are worn out, the next generation can bitch about GWT generation expects.

  • Rohan

    For those who don’t know what a L2 is, it is a heavy barreled SLR (British FAL variant), also called C2 in Canada.

    The US developed their own 7.62 NATO heavy barrel the M15. It was found that the M14 with selector, bipod and pistol grip could do the M15 job, the M14A1.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M14_rifle

    Does anybody remember the M14A1? No it was a failure!

    The M14 was developed as a means of taking the place of four different weapons systems—the M1 rifle, the M1 Carbine, the M3 “Grease Gun” and the M1918 Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR). It was thought that in this manner the M14 could simplify the logistical requirements of the troops if it took the place of four weapons. It proved to be an impossible task to replace all four, and the weapon was even deemed “completely inferior” to the World War II M1 in a September 1962 report by the comptroller of the Department of Defense.[12] The cartridge was too powerful for the submachine gun role and the weapon was simply too light to serve as a light machine gun replacement for the BAR. (The M60 machine gun better served this specific task.)

    So much for experts.

  • Some Guy

    The M14 was a piece of shit.

    WAS, a piece of shit. Nobody knew what they were doing. Now a days, with some modern improvements, it’s a wonderful designated marksmen weapon. Not really amazing, but it’s got little recoil, and is basically a relatively reliable (piston operated!) semi-auto/full auto .308 marksmen weapon. The FN SCAR can of course, outclass the M14 in weight, accuracy, size, and recoil (depending on the model of M14). Low recoil M14′s are ridiculously loud..

    If we were going to go with a battle rifle, my bet would be the AR-10. Direct impingement usually sucks, but, seeing as how the AR-10 (and, direct impingement) was designed for .308 rounds, if we copied and AR-10 exactly as Eugine Stoner and his people made it, it might actually be useful.

    Supposedly, the AR-10 was top notch in reliability, accuracy, recoil, and weight compared to all the possible replacements of the battle rifle, but due to a technical difficulty- that is one of the testing rifles had an aluminum barrel, at the extreme disapproval of Eugine Stoner- one of the aluminum barrels exploded.

    Becuase the M14 was favored anyways (the newer version of the M1 garand, basically), and due to the accidental burst of an aluminum barrel, which was only a prototype and not meant to be misinterpreted as the actual production rifle (although it was believed that all AR-10′s behaved this way) the M14 was chosen.

    But oh noesz, the .308 has too much recoil! Then of course, they chose Stoner’s design!

    Due to the arbitrary notion that a .308 was too powerful in an M14, it was deemed “Too uncontrollable!” in any weapon. In reality, the AR-10 showed extreme controllability in the .308 form, and the AR-10 was only chosen to be in the AR-15 becuase the United States said so and had forgotten or ignored the earlier tests of the AR-10.

    Eugene Stoner, once again, spoke out against this, but Colt bought the company he worked for, and therefore half the patents, and so he was incapable of marketing the AR-10. He invented the AR-18, the grand daddy to all gas piston weapons, and eventually said “Screw the United States” and left to South America and Europe, where he created the same weapons without having to worry about patents.

    If you notice, the rest of the world uses the Gas piston operated systems (G36, SA80, Ultimax 100, Hk416…), while the United States is the only country to use direct impingement; oh yeah, in a 5.56mm round form, which makes absolutely no sense.

    In my opinion, an AR-10 would be fine.

    What we need now, however, is probably some form of case less low weight 6.5mm grendel round, in a short stroke gas piston operated weapon with a polygonal barrel, the ability to belt fed, quick change barrels and the ability to shift between bull-pup and a “standard” format.

    A 13.5 polygonal barrel can basically achieve what a 20 inch barrel can, so if we designed heavy short barrels (and, the short stroke piston operation could have a 4 inch barrel or a 28 inch barrel and be fine, unlike the direct impingement system) we could have the same accuracy and power from ‘carbine length’ weapons as we could regular length weapons.

    Then, if we had a platform with outer parts that could be switched between a bull-pup and standard configuration, we could have the advantages of both bull-pup weapons and regular weapons in a single working unit, without making compromises and allowing increased flexibility.

    The quick detachable barrel will not only serve to increase the ability of a SAW weapon, but also serve as the ability to switch between carbine, full length, and “Marksmen” length barrels, along with match grade barrels and the like in a few short moments. In a few short moments, you could go from a carbine to a SAW, or vice versa, and allow everyone in the unit the ability to preform any function necessary.

    Due to the increased reliability and “round” life of both the gas piston and polygonal barrel, it would easily be incredibly reliable and “robust”. Not to mention, that when the barrel fails (usually before the system itself) you’ll just be able to replace it. xP

    All you need to do, probably, is replace some old springs and most weapons would probably be back to new. Unless you of course, broke it.

    The weapon would essentially pay for itself, even if it was more expensive, however, I have a few ideas for cheap manufacture.

  • Rohan

    @Some Guy

    “and, the short stroke piston operation could have a 4 inch barrel or a 28 inch barrel and be fine”
    By the way it isn’t fine. Short stroke is more tolerate, but not that much. You need gas pressure inside the barrel to drive the piston.

    Have you ever fired 7.62NATO standing up, semi or auto? I have. Double taps standing you lean in hard, if you want to hit anything. M60s, 10-15 rounds standing unsupported will sit you on your arse.

    If in the states, buy yourself a L1A1, put a match stick under the sear and you’re fully auto, semi-legal. Set up a “figure 11″ target (frontal human target) at 25 meters.

    Put 90 rounds down (3 round bursts, 18 rounds per magazine, 5 magazines) standing unsupported, not prone (repeat twice) and then on a fourth target, drop a 20 round magazine standing unsupported.

    Count the holes; about 30, <30, <30 and 1, I'll bet. And a photo of your shoulder please.

    Then blog about how you love 7.62.

  • Lance

    The M-14 was and is a fine weapon the M-4 had rather good remarks from GI in Vietnam and ose its jobs fine in the NAVY before it became the M-14 DMR. The reason the M-14 wasnt a good assult rile was due to being too light and its old style stocks where harder to grab than a normal pistol style grip. The M-14 has advantages over the SCAR H in relighablity and ease of maintence.

    I very doubt we ever will go to a AR10 for assult perposes and Dispite some European countries useing piston riles most of the free world uses US M-16s and M-4s so the DI is in use all over.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Lance
    The M14 (5.5kg) weighed more than either the FAL / L1A1 or G3 (5kg).
    The FAL was titled the rifle that kept the free world free!

    All the Nato Countries use piston as their main rifles except Canada, Denmark (C7) and USA.

    Countries buying M16 clones buy HK416 (eg Norway, various SF forces).

    If you take out FMS (gifts to nations) there are few countries choose the M16 family over other weapons.

    FNC, G36, AUG and HK 416 generally win in open competitions. Many countries, including Israel, Korea, Singapore, etc are developing their own gas piston weapons.

    The M27 is just a HK416 model.

  • Rohan

    “Being a former Infantry Marine and veteran of Desert Storm and Somalia, a piston operated rifle would have been a boon for me, not just for reliability, but weapons maintenance. As none of the carbon-laden gases are injected into the bolt and receiver, there is no appreciable carbon build-up and fouling. Maintaining a Piston gun is very easy, and fast.
    A similar non-piston M16 requires the Gas tube to be periodically replaced or cleaned by an armorer. Also, under sustained fire a gas tube changes size due to heat and metal expansion, causing the weapon to change cyclic rates, this throws the timing of the rifle off. In turn this can cause “Short-stroking”, slam-fire, and eventually can cause the bolt to seize or tear the locking lugs off the bolt, not to mention deforming the bolt.
    If you want more info on piston operated M16/M4 rifles, email me::
    [email protected]

    http://community.nytimes.com/comments/atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/12/m4-and-m4a1-guns/?sort=oldest&offset=2

  • Some Guy

    Rohan, your Grand Daddy never had a problem firing .308 rounds, let alone .30-06 rounds from a weapon known to have problems with muzzle rise due to it’s long action.

  • Rohan

    All the Nato Countries use piston as their main rifles except Canada, Denmark (C7) and USA. AND Netherlands.

  • Rohan

    @some guy.
    Your granddaddy was up against bolt actions.

    A guy with an AK will drill you 3 times by the time you get your long M1 .30-06 or M14 .308 lined up and fire.

  • Lance

    Wrong Rohan

    Denmark Holland Lithuania Canada, USA, Mexico South Korea (Marines) just name a few use M-16s.

    The FAL was advertised as the free worlds gun but it wasnt since the M-14 and G-3 together were used more and are used today alot more than FALs are. The M-14 isn’t too much heaavier than a FAL and is alot less bulky thean a G-3. And is used by numerious countries like South Korea Phillipines Lithuania Nigeraugua Estonia and Sudan. The M-14 is a good weapon and I know men who carried one and live by them Vietnam and present, and said they woldnt goto a creek for a FAL or G3.

    The M-16 has beaten the FNC in some competitions in Asian countries and in Africa, Canada back in the 80s had the FNC up aginst the M-16 and chose the M-16, and Isreal South Korea DO NOT use FNCs or G-36 South Korean Marines use M-16s.

    I go half way and say piston wepons have a cleaner advantage. The Army is adding pistons to the new M-4A2. But this constant complining from some idividuals here is crap or arm chair worrier talk, yes some guys get a worn out M-16 and have bad days, but having carried a A2 I had no problums with jams of slam fires. Take care of your weapon itll work as designed.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Lance:

    “Denmark Holland Lithuania Canada, USA, Mexico South Korea (Marines) just name a few use M-16s.”

    Mexico has developed their own 5.56mm rifle, the FX-05, which uses a gas piston action. See: http://world.guns.ru/assault/mex/fx-05-xiuhcoatl-e.html

    South Korea also use their own 5.56mm rifle: the K-2. While based on the M16, this mainly differs in using a gas-piston action. See: http://world.guns.ru/assault/skor/daewoo-k1-and-k2-e.html

    “The FAL was advertised as the free worlds gun but it wasnt since the M-14 and G-3 together were used more and are used today alot more than FALs are.”

    The USA was almost the only purchaser of the M14 (the only other one I know of was Taiwan, who bought the production line). Those M14s in service with other countries (totalling about 20) were almost entirely donated from surplus US stocks after the introduction of the M16.

    Both the FN FAL and the G3 were far more widely used than the M14, and all their users selected and paid for them in open competition. The FAL was used in over 90 countries, with production lines in several of them. The G3 was not quite as successful, being used by around 40 different countries.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Lance.
    NATO countries using M16 as main rifle! Yes add Lithuania.
    But since when is Mexico and South Korea (Marines) NATO?
    Read the carefully before responding. Who is wrong mate?

    And also,
    Israel is moving over to Travor TAR-21 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IMI_Tavor_TAR-21

    And were in Africa did the FNC lose to M16?

    If it wasn’t for the US in the 50′s the FAL / L1A1 would have been .280.
    It would still be service today, practically unchanged since the 50′s.
    90 countries is double the nearest competitor.
    http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/Assault.htm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EM-2_rifle

    I WAS infantry and trained by Vet Vets (Vietnam Veterans). Australia was the only army their that used 7.62 NATO L1A1 as the standard rifle in Vietnam. However out of a 9 man section, 1 carried a M60, the 2 scouts and section commander M16s, the lead “1st” Rifleman L1A1 / M79 until replaced by the M16 / M203 and the rest L1A1.

    Half carried L1A1 and half carried M16 (less the gunner).

    Sections carried 3 types of ammo; 7.62 Link, 7.62 Ball, 5.56 Ball. Logistically dumb.

    Getting back to M27. Spoke to M60 infantry Vet Vet Xmas. As a gunner he believed that he wasn’t doing his job useless he put 200 rounds at the start of a contact. A current infantry bloke was there too. He could not believe that the USMC were dumping belt feeds. “Our rifles (F88 / AUG) have auto already, dumb”.

    “But this constant complining from some idividuals here is crap or arm chair worrier talk”

    As a “some idividuals” (individual?) and an old “worrier” (warrior?) who has used both 5.56 and 7.62, I have seen the pros and cons. All of us just wanted one reasonable selective fire rifle and one reasonable belt feed light machine gun. Is that crap?

  • Lance

    Toney
    Alot more countries use M-14s than you think South Korea Adopted them over the FAL to replace M-1s in the 60s. lithuania and Estornia adopted the rilfe in the 1990s. The reason the FAL was successful it was not surperior but cheaper to buy than M-14s Most test showed both designs where equally reliaghable and the M-14 was more accurate at longer ranges.

    Mexico has recnetly only adopted a few FX-05 and HK sued them over patent infringments on the G-36 Most Mexican Army personel stayed with the M-16 over the FX05.

    Yes the Soth Korean Army uses K-2s but ROK Air Force and Marines use M-16A1s and M-4s. Samll number yes but they still use them.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Lance

    Lithuania
    “Lithuania was given 200 M16A1 rifles by the US on 7/7/1997. On 1/9/1998, Lithuania received 40,000 M14 rifles (from the US again), along with 500,000 rounds of 7.62mm blank ammunition and 1,500,000 7.62mm ball ammunition. They also received a few thousand anti-tank rifles.”
    http://www.freeexistence.org/lith.html

    Estonia:
    “Adopted by Estonian military as marksman’s rifle, modified by E-Arsenal called the Täpsuspüss M14-TP (Precision Rifle M14-PR), with heavy barrel, bipod, synthetic stock, and optical 4X sight.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M14_rifle

    South Korea:
    Unknown number (of M14s) provided by the United States under military assistance programme. http://world.guns.ru/assault/as15-e.htm

    In limited use with reserve forces and for ceremonial duties.

    It was NOT, repeat NOT selected over FAL.

    Sorry mate Sth Korean Marines use the K2 rifles. .http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Daewoo_K2_rifle_DM-SD-01-05735.jpg

    Mexico were copying the G36 not the M16, correct?
    Mexico received their M16s under FMS.
    http://www.prio.no/NISAT/Publications/The-US-Arms-Central-AmericaPast-and-Present/

    Lance a simple internet check who stop a lot of embarrassment.

  • Lance

    Rohan you need to calm down not every one agrees with you on your dream of infantry and weapons many dont with me. I was tought shooting by Vietnam era vets as well as modern Vets of Iraq and afghanistain. So dont lecture me on whos worthy of posting here Rohan. You have your opions so do I.

    South Korea Marines and snipers use M-14 I saw them packing them around in the local news about the South. And it was tested in the 1960s and adopted before M-16A1s and the evuntual K-2. Soth Korea tried FAL G-3 and M-14 and chose the M-14. M-14s are limited now But im talking about mid 1960s. Looks at the local nes there are South Korean Marine I saw picture dated in 2010 armed with M-16A1s and M-60s. If you disagree yell at Asscociated press not me.http://www.mymotherlode.com/news/world/405352/SKorea-mourns-2-marines-killed-NKorean-artillery.html

    Not AP but still new link no pic but author says the same.

    Yes the FX is a G-36 copy and Isnt replaceing M-16s in Mexico except for Special Forces who still use M-16s anyway. the FX-05 is ment to replace units armed with G3s NO UNIT in Mexico who has M-16s will be thought of to be issued FXs. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FX-05_Xiuhcoatl

    Isreal is only equiping Units in the west bank with Tavors and all other units still use M-4s and even M-16A1s. The Tavor is also too expensive to feild too all Isreali units as well.

    I respect your opion and Austrillia a good allie in the dire days of WW2 in the Pacific in Korea and Vietnam. But To tell me that my country rile sucks and is crap and always has been, I dont respect those comments. Im glad you like the F88. But you dont see me calling it crap. Dont call my issue M-16 that either since I carry one and never ran into your issues with M-16s in my time shooting them for duty, training, and on the competion field.

    By the way to extend a olive branch and hope we can be civil here . I agree that US made a mistake with 7.62 NATO. Heck the FAL was designed to use 7.92 Kurz which in my opion should have been NATO standerd since it did a job well for assult rilfes.

    Now we got facts and ideas of both sides. lets let bygones beat bygones and talk about M-27s this int about M-16s or M-14s or US vs European gun designs. Keep it on subject leave it on that.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Lance

    Unfortunately any discussion on small arms development and armies will always be taken in context of national interest. Major powers will always want their own rifle. The M27 will never fly as a standard rifle, even if it is only a M16 variant with gas piston.

    Australia has only developed 4 small arms; the Aussten, the Owen, the F1 and the Leader.

    The Aussten was a copy of the sten and a total piece of shit. Every fault of the Sten times ten. Unsafe, unreliable and a sop to Britain. The Leader T5 was a cheap “local” 5.56 just crap.

    Owen, a private in the army, had a hell of a time convincing the brass that a sub-gun was a good idea. “Gangster’s weapon!” Then the brass wanted it in .38 rimmed. They had lots of rounds. Rimmed in an auto weapon is stupid. We followed the Brits and finally went with 9x19mm. The Owen was good for the times, almost un-jammable. In PNG and the jungle; drop it mud, pick it up and fire. A little AK! By Vietnam it was past its used by date, the ammo old and degraded. Australia regardless developed the F1 SMG, a 9x19mm SMG in the age of the assault rifle. What a waste of time.

    The Owen and F1 were replaced by the M16 in the Infantry Corps.

    Not a great history is it. It may not be nationalist, but that’s the truth of it.

    The M1 Garand was the greatest rifle of its period, no question. In the age where submachine was a “Gangster’s weapon”, and marksman school of infantry ruled, it was king. A great part of American history. Caliber was of the economics of the depression. It was going to a hard act to follow and any replacement was going to find it tough.

    Change came in two ways: the “main steaming” of the SMG, Germany with the MP18 into the MP40, and the work of the USMC in “Banana wars” with the Thompson. Germany re-wrote the rule book with MP-44. The best of SMGs and the semi-automatic rifle. Change would not come easy. A new rifle and a new caliber. The AK suited the “spray and prey” Soviet SMG tactics. Unfortunately the US didn’t get a weapon that continued the “marksmanship” school that could be a M2 carbine / SMG as second.

    The other change was the MG-42. Simple, relatively light belt feed (compared to other belt feeds) machine gun. Not a magazine feed automatic rifle (BAR), not a half way house, the Bren (magazine feed, quick change barrel MG), not WW1 leftovers (Vickers, M1919)

    USMC squads are based on the 13 man squad. This evolved through trial and error, in the Pacific. Raiders played a big part, the MARSOC of the day. It has stayed unchanged for 65+ years (unlike the army). The cornerstone was the fireteam was BAR automatic rifle. M1 Garand could easily over-power bolt-actions. With the coming of the AK, at close ranges and only close (jungle, urban, forest, night-time, fog), that advantage was lost. The introduction of the M14 actually made it worst, because the fireteams lost their BARs. Unless infantry could keep “stand-off”, they were at a disadvantage. Automatic fire was with the M60s. M60s were with company weapons platoon. They were dispersed down to platoons and squads to make up. The M60 is a platoon weapon, but not a squad weapon (unless Mech).

    For good and bad, 5.56 was introduced. The M249 was to be the new BAR, the cornerstone of the fireteam. A light assault caliber, belt feed machine gun. Not a RPD half way house (no quick change barrel), not an automatic rifle, the RPK.

    The problem was urban. Iraq uncovered this. The issue is that you want to send rifleman into houses to clear rooms. Inside rooms is a “SMG” environment. A 7.62 rifle is at a severe disadvantage, a M16 is much better and a M4 is shorter and better still. The US Army’s solution was M4s. This made the 5.56 issue worst.

    For urban, the M249 is also in trouble. Once the building is secured, move SAWs in and defend, during the assault no way (unless a big building, wide hallways, a platoon task). USMC found itself breaking teams into rifleman teams to assault and SAW teams to support, and then back to normal between buildings and crossing open space. This meant reorganizing teams in “contact” constantly.

    The M27 is about giving the fireteams an automatic “rifle” weapon to stop this. As described above high capacity magazines, fixed barrels, etc, create different problems. The Bren was VERY accurate, too accurate. Soldiers complained you “had to wiggle it about” during firing because it didn’t spray its fire. It took two men to keep a Bren firing and feed with magazines. The MG-42 had much better suppression fire. It also means that the fireteams lose the cornerstone of their firepower. SLA Marshall stated fire developed around the sound of BARs!

    The USMC has trialed different squad structures. A tactical and not a technical solution. Giving a M27 to the “point” fireteam is a solution, or the other talked about, having a SAW fireteam with 2 SAWs in a squad. However flexibility is lost and you introducing a new weapon, more training, etc. A technical and not a tactical solution.

    Is the Mk46 the half way house? Is a hammer fire belt feed design an option? (most MGs are striker fired on closing the bolt) Hammer fire would allow an open/closed bolt weapon that is one of the weaknesses of LMGs.

    I’m am not trashing America. The AR-15 in 6.6mm probably would have been the standard rifle if the barrel didn’t burst. The M14 was resisting change. Stoner designed the first true “assault LMG”, the Stoner 63. The M27 and M249 are European weapons making US weapons designs better. There are plenty of good American small arms producing better rifles than the M16 family and better American calibers than 5.56. LSAT is hopefully the American solution.

    The issue is change.

  • Lance

    @ Rohan
    I agee a larger caliber rather than a change in wepon will be best. Im personally find 6.5 Grendel the best awnser. At some compatitions I found some private owners of 6.5G shoot in both close and open aras with far better knock down power than 5.56mm and better control than a 7.62mm rifles. I perfer 6.5 better than 6.8 due to two factors 6.5 has less friction and less heating than 6.8mm and 243 or 6.5mm bullets are easier to make and find in the world.

    Anyway. We all got opions and prefrences.

  • Rohan Wilson

    “Isreal is only equiping Units in the west bank with Tavors and all other units still use M-4s and even M-16A1s. The Tavor is also too expensive to feild too all Isreali units as well”.

    New recruits in the Caracal Battalion, which is made up of units of male and female combat soldiers, will be using the Israeli-made advanced assault Tavor rifle, the IDF reported. The weapon, heavier but more balanced in weight and more accurate than the M-16, has been introduced into several battalions over the past year.

    The new women soldiers will undergo basic training at the Givati Brigade training base, where Givati soldiers were the first to use the new weapon. The changeover to the Tavor in all IDF units is expected to be complete in three more years.

    http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/132673

  • Lance

    Not really most of the units you mentioned are station near gaza or West bank. the tavor is only good upto 530 yds less than the 800 meters compaired to units in North Isreal ared with M-16s. Not all units will use Tavors. There some units useing galils.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IMI_Tavor_TAR-21

  • Some Guy

    With polygonal rifling and modern materials, along with a different firing system, a weapon firing .308 wouldn’t have that much recoil or be too large. xP

    The AR-10 was amazing, and now the British are using a variant. I wonder how that’ll pan out.

    I suggest hydraulic buffers, recoil pads, a hammer grip, and various other types of recoil reducers.

    It’ll make the recoil basically absent; the gun will probably vibrate a little though. xP

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Some Guy:

    “I suggest hydraulic buffers, recoil pads, a hammer grip, and various other types of recoil reducers.

    It’ll make the recoil basically absent; the gun will probably vibrate a little though.”

    The measures you suggest may help the firer to control the recoil, but at the most they will convert the recoil thrust from a sharp kick to a less sharp one which goes on for longer. They will not do anything to reduce the total recoil thrust, or the problems of keeping a 7.62mm rifle on target during a burst of automatic fire.

    There’s this little constraint known as Newton’s Third Law which states that “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction”. Which means that if the bullet and propellant gas go forwards, the gun goes backwards with equal force. That law is unbendable and non-negotiable.

  • Rohan

    Currently, the Tavor is used by the Givati Brigage – which was the first IDF brigade to receive the Tavor in 2006 – and the Golani Brigade, which was equipped with the rifle in 2008.

    Golani brigade is the unit of northern command and fights regularly in Lebanon.

    The Nahal Brigade is expected to switch the M-16 assault rifle for the Israeli Tavor assault rifle in 2010, as part of a long term process in the IDF that seeks to equip all ground forces with the Tavor.

    http://dover.idf.il/NR/exeres/E11447EB-C780-4F86-9EB6-A3DBB553C3C4.htm

    Is the MAIN IDF web-site wrong?

  • Rohan Wilson

    @ Lance.

    The web site you quoted , did you read it?
    Yes other units won’t get Tavor’s but Micro Tavors, not M16 or M4s.

    “In November 2009, the Micro Tavor was selected as the future standard infantry weapon of the IDF, ahead of all other forms of Tavor.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IMI_Tavor_TAR-21

    The Nahal Brigade is expected to switch the M-16 assault rifle for the Israeli Tavor assault rifle in 2010, as part of a long term process in the IDF that seeks to equip all ground forces with the Tavor. Currently, the Tavor is used by the Givati Brigage – which was the first IDF brigade to receive the Tavor in 2006 – and the Golani Brigade, which was equipped with the rifle in 2008.

    Golani Brigade is the brigade of Northern Command.
    Not Gaza or West bank.

    http://dover.idf.il/NR/exeres/E11447EB-C780-4F86-9EB6-A3DBB553C3C4.htm
    “dover IDF” is the official IDF site.

    It will be interesting to see if Israel keeps the Negev or develop a LSW Travor.

  • Some Guy

    “There’s this little constraint known as Newton’s Third Law which states that “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction”. Which means that if the bullet and propellant gas go forwards, the gun goes backwards with equal force. That law is unbendable and non-negotiable.”- Tony Williams.

    I’m aware of of Newton’s Third Law, but your statement “That the Gun will go backwards with an equal force. That law is unbendable and non-negotiable”, is incorrect. Your correct, in the sense that you must conserve energy and momentum, however, you never stated that.

    The Direct impingement, and gas piston systems, utilize the concept of the Third law to reduce recoil. They rely on expanding gases to counter act the backwards recoil. While the recoil is always the same, and unchangeable, the felt recoil is what changes.

    If you were to fire two bullets of equal force and energy, back to back, pointed in opposite ends of each other, they would counter act each others recoil. The Force of the system would remain the same, but the Net Force of the system would be zero.

    Theoretically, if you did it correctly, there would be no movement from either cartridge at all.

    While you cannot utilize frontwards force (or kinetic energy) to counter act backwards force, you can use the expanding gas of the weapon (after the gas has already transferred enough kinetic energy to the round, and the round is carried forward by it’s own momentum) to counter act some of the recoil.

    Theoretically, if we say the gas have a mass of X, and the bullet has a mass of Y, if the gases transfer kinetic energy to the system of Y in an inelastic collision, through the laws of conservation of energy and momentum, Y and X will become a system of Y + X. So, if the mass of X is, say, 2 grams (as in the powder of a .223 round) and the mass of the round is say, 4 grams, then the velocity of 2 grams of powder would be, say, 5640 m/s, and then that velocity and energy would transfer to the four gram bullet, creating the system (X + Y), or 6 grams, reducing the velocity of the system to roughly 940 m/s.

    If you notice, nitroglycerin mixed with nitrocellulose and wax would probably be around 5640 m/s, while the bullet velocity is around 940 m/s, what you find in a 5.56mm round.

    So, when the bullet leaves the barrel, some of those expanding gases (1-2 grams) is sent back into the weapon to press on the bolt or a piston, and because the gases are sent backwards into the weapon, they counter act the backwards recoil with enough force to reduce some of the recoil.

    To address your second point that it will be uncontrollable no matter what…

    Of course, however, The key advantage of the Direct Impingement system and the Gas pistons is that the recoil has a “Straight Back recoil impulse”, meaning that all the recoil is going backwards, rather than up, reducing muzzle rise and making it easier to stay on target.

    And with a Hydraulic buffer, the backwards recoil of the round is diffused over a longer area, making the sharp “jolt” when firing, less, making the weapon more controllable.

    So, while you are correct that the direct impingement system, hydraulic buffers and recoil pads largely make the recoil more manageable, you actually reduce the total amount of felt recoil and over-all movement of the gun when using the correct firing system.

    In terms of felt recoil, what you should be worried about is the law of conservation of momentum. A .45 ACP, fired at 253 m/s and being 15 grams, only produces roughly 480 joules, compared to a 7.45 gram 9mm fired at 390 m/s has around 570 joules (these are the standard loads).

    If you notice, the 9mm round has MORE energy than the .45 ACP, by a roughly 18.75% increase. Yet, the .45 ACP is known to be “more powerful”, and have greater recoil.

    If you look at the momentum, the 9mm round only has 2.925 kg * m/s, while the .45 acp has roughly 3.795 kg * m/s.

    And the .45 ACP has more recoil. xP

    A standard nato .308 round has 7.98 kg*m/s, while the .223 round has 3.854 kg*m/s of momentum.

    If we’re talking about manageability and felt recoil, however, something like that Ultimax 100 works on the principle of “constant recoil”, which diffuses the recoil over a larger area, making the felt recoil less, and virtually absent. While the weapon does technically have backwards force, because it’s at such a steady rate, the felt recoil is relatively low. So, a .308 using the “Constant Recoil Principle”, or essentially the same firing system as the Ultimax 100, would have vastly reduced felt recoil, and still be just as controllable in automatic fire.

    A hydraulic buffer, and the soft recoil pad, as does a blanket or a pillow, works to reduce felt recoil by diffusing it over a larger area, meaning that the recoil can easily become manageable if you exploit the system correctly.

    And, because you have less backwards recoil to deal with with a Gas system, it should be even easier to reduce it with extra accessories.

    And a hammer grip simply makes the weapon more stable, because the human body works well with hammer grips over that weird side grippy thing.

  • Some Guy

    HOLY SHIT o_o

    I meant “2820 m/s”, instead of 5640 O_o

    My bad.

    xD

    The reasoning is still sound though. xP

  • Rohan

    There is lots and lots of you tube of M14 firing;
    auto and rapid.
    Very few show the target.

    Watch the barrel, is it steady or blowing rounds everywhere?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CYeNlJ8yHgA&NR=1

    Half of his rounds go over the top
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSefhmWhgos&NR=1

    Watch how the SCAR (H) kicks this guy around and where he hits.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FW6Bzud2W1o&NR=1&feature=fvwp

    AR-10 on auto.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6W76QtdbauA
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WNDk4bXLTew&NR=1

    Now watch the muzzle on auto of a M27

  • Rohan

    Hay Lance, double standards!

    Lance on 26 Dec 2010 at 9:30 pm

    “Im glad you like the F88. But you dont see me calling it crap. Dont call my issue M-16 that either…”

    NZ Army evaluating the FN SCAR (firearms blog)
    Lance on 24 Dec 2010 at 10:36 pm

    “I think Bullpups and standerd rilfes have there ups and downs. I think the QZB-95 and the Aug-77/88 are crap from the get go.”

    Lance on 26 Dec 2010 at 9:30 pm
    “But To tell me that my country rile sucks and is crap and always has been, I dont respect those comments”.

    Why should I respect your comments?

  • Brazilski

    @Rohan

    The AR’s direct gas system combined with the linear setup feeds the recoil directly to the shoulder. On a low recoil system like a 5.56 that’s a pro because it reduces muzzle climb. On a high recoil system it’s a con because it’ll kick like a mule.

    In an ideal world an ideal assault rifle would fire neither the 5.56 nor a 7.62, but something in between. That something should be build from the ground up without having to conform to 5.56 dimensions. Finally an ideal assault rifle would not have a direct gas system.

  • Some Guy

    The 7.62mm is “Completely uncontrollable in full auto” why is it that we have M240′s mounted on tanks that work just fine?

    Obviously, it’s controllable.

    It’s just a matter of correctly utilizing your resources.

    However, there is an inherent problem with the 7.62mm, and it’s the weight.

    The reason I’m for caseless rounds, along with some kind of light weight intermediate round, is due to the issue of weight.

    Recoil has never truly been a problem.

    Oh, and about your videos, I don’t really think that their shaking around that much.

    And their all like, 130 pounds lol.

    And full auto isn’t necessary, nor is it efficient.

    Semi-auto is far more effective and efficient anyways. xP

    And, if your in close quarters combat (the only real situation in which a rifleman needs to be going full auto) your going to WANT it to shake around a lot, because shooting a guy in the same spot 20 times really isn’t going to help you out that much.

  • Rohan

    @Some guy.

    Thanks for the physics lesson, but you missed one point.

    7.62x51mm has double the impulse, change in momentum, to use the correct term (7.98 kgm/s) of the impulse 5.56 x45mm (3.854 kgm/s).

    Any device you use to reduce recoil, can be used with any weapon, and your back to square one.

    7.62 will have double the recoil of a similarly design 5.56.

    Any device that “prolongs” recoil, means the weapon pushes for longer and prolongs the time before the next shot.

    Muzzle breaks create lots of muzzle flash and dust. 10-20%. Any bigger and the flash and blast in significant.

    The gas tapped of the barrel is only a tiny, tiny amount. Only enough to operate the working parts of the weapon. Stuff all.

    Even a 10-20% reduction in recoil ( 7.98 kgm/s down to 7. 2- 6.2kgm/s) still put 7.62 1 9/10 to 1 2/3 of “normal” 5.56 of 3.8 kgm/s!

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    Some Guy, you seem to be confused about a few technical issues.

    The only way in which the propellant gas can be used to reduce the recoil is by diverting some of it to the side or the rear instead of letting it escape forwards from the muzzle. Which is what happens with recoilless guns, in which most of the propellant gas is channelled to the rear – enough to balance the recoil of the projectile. With an ordinary rifle, you can achieve a limited version of this by by fitting a muzzle brake. You didn’t mention this in your list of methods to reduce the recoil force of a rifle, but it is in fact the only way of delivering a significant reduction in recoil (a suppressor has a lesser effect by converting some of the gas energy into heat in the suppressor, but you didn’t mention that either).

    A gas-operated system (whether direct impingement or piston) makes no significant difference to the total recoil force. What any autoloading mechanism (gas or recoil) can do is encapsulated in the point I made in my last post: “…at the most they will convert the recoil thrust from a sharp kick to a less sharp one which goes on for longer. They will not do anything to reduce the total recoil thrust….” That applies to the “constant recoil” system, and of other methods used to spread out the recoil force such as floating firing or differential recoil. The total recoil force remains the same.

    Furthermore, these do not “diffuse the recoil over a large area”. They spread it out over time. The only way to diffuse recoil over a larger area is to fit a big, wide butt plate.

    Certainly, spreading out the recoil over a longer period of time helps make automatic fire easier for the firer to control, but that is very different from your claim that it makes the felt recoil “virtually absent”. As far as the effect of gun mechanisms on controlling the recoil of automatic rifle fire in 7.6mm NATO calibre is concerned, you might like to consider the following: various gun designers have tried very hard to make such rifles controllable, but not a single one has succeeded.

    Your statement about the “straight back recoil impulse” makes no sense. This has nothing to do with the gun mechanism, it is purely down to the shape of the stock: the traditional dropped stock, with the butt well below the axis of the barrel, encourages an upwards rotation of the gun on recoil, whereas a straight-through stock – with the butt in line with the barrel – pushes straight back. This remains true whatever gun mechanism is used.

    Your comparison of .45 and 9mm pistol recoil and muzzle energy is a straw man argument. Yes, I am well aware that .45 has more recoil but 9mm more muzzle energy. So what? I haven’t been talking about muzzle energy, which is calculated in a different way from gun recoil. You’re just confusing the issue with irrelevances.

    You seem to be very fond of crunching numbers, but remember the old saying: GIGO!

  • Brazilski

    @Rohan & Tony Williams

    “The only way in which the propellant gas can be used to reduce the recoil is by diverting some of it to the side or the rear”

    Actually there are other ways propellant gas can be used to reduce recoil, namely counterbalancing and to a lesser extend “shifted pulse”. In this case propellant gas is not diverted to the rear, but rather some of the tapped gas is used to drive a second mass creating additional recoil but in the opposite direction. Rather than reducing recoil these systems negate the effects of recoil in a given direction.

    “The gas tapped of the barrel is only a tiny, tiny amount. Only enough to operate the working parts of the weapon.”

    Not necesarily either. The FAL had an adjustable gas tap to allow the operator to increase the ammount of gas tapped as the rifle grew older and needed more “fuel” to work reliable. I imagine that an adjustable gas tap could also be used to vent off a percentage of the gasses. surely this would decrease balistic performance for the bullet, but it would allow soldiers to choose between setting and perhaps opt for a less powerfull but also less kicking round in certain situations.

  • Rohan

    @Brazilski
    I’m fully with you, as I have already said numerous times above. Unfortunately the US military didn’t take the opportunity to change. They could have solved a dozen problems in one hit:

    Change the upper with new caliber, gas piston, rails, 16″ compromise length rifleman barrel.

    If you wanted to spend more, the lower: Open / closed bolt, auto / semi .

    @Some Guy
    The M240 is a 24lb machine gun, not a 12lb rifle.

    The average fit 18 year old soldier weighs 180lb, not 250lb.

    Short controlled bursts (2-3 rounds) are used to kill at close range (<25 meters), spray (3-5 rounds only) from M249s is for likely enemy positions for suppression.

    Firing whole magazines and "shaking it about" is a receipt to run dry and die.

    Leave the "shaking it about" to disco dancers.

  • Some Guy

    I didn’t miss any points, As I stated, obviously the momentum will always be the same. But most of the energy and force can be diffused over a larger area, softening the blow.

    And as you like to say, time, although space is time; I don’t think I need to go into the complex concepts of the space time continuum.

    You can never eliminate recoil, but you can reduce the net force to zero, and you can soften the blow.

    I’m not suggesting that we eliminate the momentum or even the recoil, because that would be impossible.

    I’m saying we can lower the felt recoil to manageable levels.

    With methods, some of which you yourself have stated, that already exist and utilize basic principles of physics.

    And the shape of the stock isn’t the only thing that decides where the recoil is oriented.

    The direction you fire is usually the main determinant for the direction of the recoil.

  • Some Guy

    I know it’s heavy xP

    Actually, it’s like 32.5 lb loaded with 100 rounds O_o

    But the point was that it is controllable.

    All you need is the proper amount of force reducing the felt recoil and the recoil is controllable.

    Whether it’s with raw weight or with some crazy firing mechanism.

    Ak-107-Ak-108 comes to mind.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AK-107

    Long story short, You use the gases to counter act on a star shaped sprocket that in turn moves back a counter balance to reduce the recoil.

    It’s kind of friction/roll delayed.

    It’s a little complicated, and somewhat expensive…

    But supposedly it “Eliminates all felt recoil”.

    I’m not entirely sure on it’s reliability, it’s an AK design so it should be pretty good, AND I’ve seen videos of it working in the mud, water, etc. but it looks like a good idea xP

  • Rohan

    @Brazilski

    “The Abakan is a revolutionary new assault rifle design that has been adopted by the Russian Federation Military as its new main battle rifle. It features an ingenious blowback shifted-pulse recoil suppression system that allows the operator to fire his first two rounds before any recoil is felt.
    “http://www.spetsnaztraining.com/view/ak74_spetsnaz

    Sorry, mate all it is doing is delaying recoil, not removing it. Like the G11 with its long recoiling barrel, the aim with Abakan is getting 2 round salvo away before the internal mass fully transfers to the rifle proper and therefore recoil to the shoulder.

    Watch the you tube on G11. It demonstrates this. The weapon fires a high speed salvo (3 rounds at 2100rpm), then the weapons kicks. It actually kicks with 3 times the “normal’ recoil of a single shot (obviously). A G11 on normal auto (40rpm) the rifle is normal. One shot, one recoil.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdErfyYeJeU

    Remember G11 uses a small 4.73mm 3.25 gram / 50 grain bullet at 930m/s / 3050f/s. 5.56 fires a 4 gram / 62 grain at the same speed.

    4.73 has “only” 80% of the recoil of a NATO 5.56mm on single shot.
    4.73 has about 110% of the recoil of a NATO 7.62 on “salvo”

    G11 has a long recoiling barrel. In the video is there no recoil on salvo. NO!!!!!

    As for opening up the gas vent, all you do is push the bolt harder and faster backwards, compress the operating spring and fly forward harder and faster. The weapon fires faster.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @ Some Guy.

    Mr Physics you obviously cut the class on Newton’s second and third law. Conservation of momentum, Mass x velocity, etc.

    A 12 lb rifle will recoil at half the speed of a 24 lb MG.
    Who gives a flying f##k about the belt, whether 50 or 200 rounds, 32.0001 lbs or 33.9999 lbs. 32.5 lb, that would have even less recoil than a 24 lb gun. The M240 is controllable because there is more mass & therefore more inertia to overcome.

    Using your logic, it’s like comparing a M82 Barrett to a M2HB. A M2HB is controllable on auto, therefore a M82 is controllable on auto too. WTF!

    And,

    The “proper amount of force” to overcome firing recoil is called the “SHOULDER”.

    As for AK-107, Valery Shilin (the site quoted), Shilin flunked physics.
    Shilin claims the AK-107 system “Eliminates all felt recoil”.

    World Guns on the AK-107 states:

    “The counter-mass is linked with second gas piston and moves in opposite direction to bolt group. Synchronization is achieved using a simple rack and pinion system. In this system, only the impulse of the fired cartridge is transferred to the receiver, and through the buttstock to the shoulder of the shooter”.

    IMPULSE of the cartridge is RECOIL, Mr Physics!

    “The impulses of the heavy and fast-moving bolt group are compensated by the counter-mass, and do not affect the shooting, unlike the AK where the moving bolt group produces a lot of additional recoil and vibration. The “balanced system” was employed in the AKB rifle, developed by V.M. Kalashnikov (son of the famous Mikhail Kalashnikov) in Izhevsk, and in the AEK-971 rifle, developed in Kovrov, both unsuccessfully tested during “Abakan” trials of late 1980s.”

    And remember you said the gas moving the bolt backwards would reduce recoil! World guns says moving the bolt produces additional recoil. Hummm.

    http://world.guns.ru/assault/rus/ak-10710-e.html

    Basic equal & opposite forces.

    AK-107
    Piston forwards = piston backwards
    Bullet forwards = rifle backwards

    Once again so you don’t miss the point:

    “the impulse of the fired cartridge is transferred to the receiver, and through the buttstock to the shoulder of the shooter.”

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Brazilski:

    “Actually there are other ways propellant gas can be used to reduce recoil, namely counterbalancing and to a lesser extend “shifted pulse”. In this case propellant gas is not diverted to the rear, but rather some of the tapped gas is used to drive a second mass creating additional recoil but in the opposite direction. Rather than reducing recoil these systems negate the effects of recoil in a given direction.”

    Sorry, I disagree. Recoil is created by material (bullets and propellant gas) leaving the gun. Nothing that remains within the gun can reduce this, only spread it out over time as I’ve said. The kind of systems you are talking about mainly address a different issue, which is the disturbance to the gun caused by the bolt assembly banging to and fro. Systems like the Russian balanced piston type (as used in the AK107/8) smooth out such forces and thereby make it easier to hold the gun in the aim in automatic fire, but they don’t affect the actual recoil force.

    @ Some Guy:

    “All you need is the proper amount of force reducing the felt recoil and the recoil is controllable.

    Whether it’s with raw weight or with some crazy firing mechanism.

    Ak-107-Ak-108 comes to mind.”

    I see you are now confusing “weight” with “force”.

    Newton’s Third Law means that if you double the weight of the gun, the recoil force generated by firing the shot will move the gun backwards at half the speed. The recoil momentum remains the same, but the energy is reduced. But we have been talking here only about the controllability of 7.62mm infantry rifles in automatic fire, not machine guns, and you do not want to increase the weight of the rifle; the military is in fact trying to reduce weight.

    In reading comments about the AK 107 you should bear in mind that this is chambered in 5.45×39, which generates less energy and less recoil force than even the 5.56mm, so there isn’t a lot of kick there to start with – even the AK-74 doesn’t recoil much. 7.62×51 NATO is a different beast altogether.

    Have you actually fired any of these 7.62×51 military rifles? I have – several different types, including the latest ones, the HK 417 and FN SCAR MK17. The idea that they would be controllable in automatic fire is frankly no more than a joke.

  • Some Guy

    I tried to explain this earlier to you guys.

    You can’t eliminate recoil, just felt recoil; I already know that, and it’s easy to eliminate “Felt Recoil”.

    I tried to explain that, in the system of forces, GASES are introduced, that with math have the same momentum as the bullet, which is how you use frontwards recoil to counter act backwards recoil.

    “Recoiless Rockets”, obviously, have very little felt recoil.

    According to you, NOTHING can stop the recoil of something, like, say, an RPG.

    A Standard RPG-7, that the terrorists use, has an initial velocity of 115 m/s and fires between a 2.5 and 4.5 kilogram round.

    Let’s just give you the benefit of the doubt. 115 m/s forward, with 2.5 kilograms, is 287.5 kg * m/s.

    According to you, because the recoil of an RPG-7 is “Impossible to Stop”, the person holding it would go flying backwards. And average 180 pound person would, theoretically based on that level of impulse, fly backwards at roughly 3.51 m/s.

    Which isn’t the case.

    AND FYI, the RPG has a ROCKET on it that ignites after the starting ingition to get the thing in the air. The rocket actually flys out at around 295 m/s, but the initial gunpowder ignition is around 115 m/s.

    Tony, YOU seem to keep confusing MASS with WEIGHT. Newtons, are the metric measurement for force.

    And what else. Oh, yeah, WEIGHT.

    “Mass x Acceleration of Gravity” = Weight.

    “Mass x Acceleration” = Force.

    Weight, as we know it, IS ALL FORCE, so no, by doubling the mass you’ll get half according to the equation of impulse and momentum, but if you double the weight you’ll get an entirely different result.

    Kinetic energy is superseded by momentum, so while the Kinetic Energy of a system can change, momentum can’t, which is why I’ve been using momentum in my equations.

    AND A THIRD THING. If you put two bullets back to back, and fired them, so two bullets were of the same energy, power, weight, mass etc. were identical, the net force would be ZERO.

    So, no, there wouldn’t be any recoil.

    And also, there’s something called FRICTION. If you were to put a gun against a brick wall, the brick wall would theoretically stop the gun from moving back as much as it should?

    Why is this? Shouldn’t the brick wall move back slightly, even if it’s only a minuscule amount (seeing the massive mass of the brick wall and gun combined, let’s just say over a 1000KG instead of like 5 for a gun).

    IN PHYSICS LAND, the brick wall would move back, with the gun, at a speed equal to 201 times the speed of the gun. But in real life, the static friction of the wall would have to be overcome, and if it wasn’t, then the brick wall wouldn’t move at all.

    Meaning that, a 1000KG brick wall, with theoretically enough friction, wouldn’t even budge. Anything with enough friction wouldn’t even budge, why is why the momentum eventually slows down, instead of a person constantly moving backwards…

    So, if a 100 kilogram person, according to you, were to fire a single 7.62mm x 51mm NATO round and generate 7.98 Kg * m/s, because there is NO WAY TO STOP IT, he would continue flying backwards at .07980 m/s endlessly (despite the fact, that of course, he could turn around and fire in the opposite direction and theoretically slow himself to back down to zero).

    As you can see, your theory is completely incorrect, because in real life, it doesn’t work THAT WAY, which is why I showed you such examples.

  • Lance

    @ Rohan
    the FAL and G3 where just as unstable fireing on full auto sorry all three where in there best in cobat used in Semi AUto.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Some Guy,

    I despair of ever having a sensible debate with you. Every time I point out your errors of understanding, you come back with something completely irrelevant, apparently in order to confuse the issue. This time, it’s rockets and recoilless guns, which have absolutely nothing to do with the recoil of infantry rifles chambered in 7.62×51 NATO, plus some frankly absurd calculations which demonstrate a lamentable lack of understanding of physics.

    For the record: in a rocket, the exhaust gases go backwards at high speed, generating a force which drives the rocket forwards with equal force. The two forces balance, so there is no recoil (unless the rocket is fired from a tube with a closed base, in which case the tube will recoil).

    In a recoilless gun, the great majority of the propellant gases are directed backwards, with a force which balances that of the projectile travelling forwards. Therefore there is no recoil. Some versions of recoilless guns have in fact fired a heavy mass backwards with equal force to the projectile travelling forwards, but most just rely on the propellant gases as this causes fewer problems for those behind the gun.

    In both of the above cases, Newton’s Third Law is obeyed: the forces involved are equal and opposite, so there is no recoil.

    In a conventional gun like the 7.62mm rifles we have been discussing (the M14, FN FAL, HK G3, HK 417, FN SCAR MK17) the bullet and propellant gases go forwards, therefore to obey Newton’s Law, the gun must go backwards with equal force.

    As I have pointed out, fitting a muzzle brake causes a proportion of the propellant gases to go sideways or even slightly backwards, reducing the recoil force, but only by about 30% (the exact figure depends on how big you make the muzzle brake). However, muzzle brakes are not usually fitted to military rifles except the most powerful, such as those in .50 Browning calibre, as they have disadvantages.

    So we are left with the unescapable fact of Newtonian physics, which it seems you find it impossible to grasp:

    IF THE BULLET AND PROPELLANT GASES GO FORWARDS FROM THE MUZZLE, THE GUN MUST BE DRIVEN BACKWARDS WITH EQUAL FORCE

    In your example of a gun butt placed against an immovable object like a brick wall, the recoil force is transmitted via the wall to the ground. Since the mass of this planet is enormous, the effect which a gun recoil has on it is too small to measure.

    Your “calculations” concerning the effects of recoil in your “physics land” are complete nonsense. You said: “the brick wall would move back, with the gun, at a speed equal to 201 times the speed of the gun” Even if the brick wall were free to move and mounted on a frictionless surface, it would only be pushed back with equal force: if it weighed 1,000 times as much as the gun, it would be pushed back at only one thousandth of the speed of the gun in free recoil, and so on.

    When people fire these rifles, the recoil force pushes their shoulders and upper bodies backwards, causing the muzzle to rise. Which is why automatic fire from powerful rifles like the 7.62mm results in bullets flying over the target. If floating in outer space, the firer would indeed be driven backwards indefinitely (spinning end over end), but on the Earth, friction between the firer’s feet and the ground transmits the recoil force to the ground – but not before it has pushed back the firer’s shoulder and caused the muzzle to rise.

    You didn’t answer my question about whether or not you have fired any of these military rifles yourself, so I assume you have no personal experience of the recoil they generate. I weigh 200 lbs, I’m over 6 feet tall and I am not a weakling, but I have fired these rifles and I know that on full auto I could not control the recoil sufficiently to keep a burst of fire on target.

    Give it up, Some Guy. You have been desperately trying to confuse the issue with a blizzard of irrelevant or downright nonsensical statements and calculations, but all those do is reveal your basic ignorance. I will no longer respond to your posts on this issue, but will leave you with the essential point, repeated one more time for emphasis:

    IF THE BULLET AND PROPELLANT GASES GO FORWARDS FROM THE MUZZLE, THE GUN MUST BE DRIVEN BACKWARDS WITH EQUAL FORCE

  • Brazilski

    @Tony Williams

    It’s only a matter of speech. When people say “recoil” they generally refer to the recoil felt by the operator, not the initial backwards force created by the round being fired. No, the backwards force created by the round being fired can’t be made to simply dissapear, but theoretically the direction can be changed to “null” eliminating the felt recoil completely. The reason I said “theoretically” here is because no weapon has yet been created that fully succeeds in doing this, but compared to other modern firearms, e.g. the AEK has come a long way. Recoil is a vector. If you put another vector against it in exactly the opposite direction and of the same force the sum will be zero and there will be no felt recoil. Even the recoil force generated by propellant gasses and the bullet leaving the barrel can be countered this way, as long as an equal force in the opposite direction is generated simultaneously.

    @Lance
    I agree that all three (M14, G3, FAL) were in there best on semi, but I’d still say that out of the three the FAL fared best and the M14 worst. Even though the M14 might not have kicked harder than a FAL or a G3, it had an outdated rifle stock simply making it more difficult for the operator to control the weapon in full auto compared to other weapons that generated the same ammount of recoil but did have a pistol grip. The rolling blocks of the G3 delayed recoil making it easier on the soldier on semi, but once that bolt came at the end of the spring it hit hard. The FAL’s adjustable gas system combined with the weapon being relatively heavy made that the recoil was more bareable than with the other two. FALs on full auto were used succesfully at least by the Australian SAS amongst others.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Some Guy

    1. RPG is NOT a rifle. Unless you have a jet of gas coming out the back of you rifle, IT IS NOT recoilless. WTF!

    2. Yes, weight is not mass. But in common English people do not quote the mass; “I weigh 980 Newton” for a 100 kg man.

    3.You scenario, you have two bullets in opposite directions,

    Bullet forwards = bullet backwards.

    In a firing rifle,

    Bullet forwards = rifle backwards.

    Yes you can make a recoilless rifle firing bullets backward. The rounds are twice as heavy and you’ll kill everybody behind you. WTF.

    4.The brickwall is attached to the Earth. Attached to the wall there is 6585428230000000000000 short tons of planet below. The Earth will recoil, but because of its mass is massive, hardly at all. If the wall is just sitting on the ground, yes it would recoil very slightly and friction would stop it.

    A rifleman is not a 1000kg brickwall. WTF.

    5. The 100kg man is pushed at 0.08 m/s (0.07980m/s to be precise). WTF do you think that is, Mr Physics? It recoil impulse. The firer has to counter push and absorb the energy.

    6. Friction is always there, where did we say it wasn’t. WTF!

    Mr. Physics, I don’t know who taught you physics at school, but you keep giving examples of totally different and irrelevant things.

    Once again, a fail.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Lance.

    Both the USA with the M14 and British with the L1A1 removed the automatic fire off there rifles. What does that till you.

    Yes, the G3 and FAL has auto, good for spraying and wasting ammunition. 7.62 rounds are heavy and if you want to waste then firing at the sky, instead of shooting people, so be it.

  • Brazilski

    @Rohan Wilson

    That they wanted to conserve ammo.

    I’m not saying you’re wrong, but that’s not an argument. The main reasons why the automatic fire was removed, at least for the M14, were to conserve ammo and prevent “panic spray”. The same reasons why today many countries have swapped full auto 5.56′s for three round bursts.

  • http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/ Tony Williams

    @ Brazilski:

    “Recoil is a vector. If you put another vector against it in exactly the opposite direction and of the same force the sum will be zero and there will be no felt recoil.”

    Absolutely correct. But to achieve that, the gun MUST expel mass or gases out of the back with the same force that the bullet and propellant gases generate out of the front. In other words, you need a recoilless gun like the 84mm Carl Gustav or similar. This CANNOT be achieved in a standard infantry rifle.

    As Rohan and I have already pointed out, balanced piston designs like the AEK, AK107 etc reduce gun disturbance by cancelling out the effect of the bolt assembly banging to and fro. They can do NOTHING to cancel out the recoil force of the bullet and propellant gases.

    As I have also pointed out several times, Newton’s Third Law cannot be bent, twisted or magically overriden by fancy mechanisms, any more than the Earth’s gravity can be nullified so we can all float around in the air.

    I am tired of repeating basic physics lessons, so I’ll bow out of this topic.

  • Rohan

    @Brazilski

    SASR used all sorts of weapons. They cut the barrel off SLR to make them louder. The aim was just to make them louder. The used cut down L2s because the L1s aren’t automatic. And they carried a mix of M16, shotguns and even M60s. They just poured fire out so the small 5 man patrol could suppress and break contact. The VC used to think they were up against a platoon because of the noise.

    Lots of noise, lots of spray and run away.

  • Rohan

    And SASR used the L1A1, not the selective fire FAL.

  • IRgRunt

    All very interesting but also very moot. It’s chambered in 5.56, which is reasonable in carrying terms, and is controllable in full-auto with this weapon system. I’m pretty sure if someone takes a 5 round burst from this weapon from between 50 and 100 meters, he’s not gonna have much to say about the effectiveness of the round or the control of the recoil because he’s gonna be dead or at least very nearly so. Because, afterall, the fully automatic feature was designed to be used from these kinds of ranges. Anything beyond that (say 600m) and you have a rather effective weapon capable of firing sub 2 MOA on semi-auto. So we have a relatively light weapon, that uses a relatively light round, to provide both accurate suppressive and point fire, and has firing modes that make it effective at close, intermediate, and long range engagements, enabling it to perform under a broad range of circumstances and scenarios….

  • Some Guy

    You guys obviously have no way to understand conceptual physics. And you don’t read my posts.

    I was providing examples.

    I specifically pointed out that the rocket uses an initial gunpowder explosive to get the thing flying out, and that after a pre-designated amount of time the rocket ignites; so initially it’s powered by gunpowder, then by rocket.

    Yet you tried to tell me that it’s only rocket powered.

    I’m sorry your brains are so simple you can’t fit multiple concepts in at once, and that I can’t MENTION a related basic physics concept about anything else without you getting confused.

    And being 6 foot tall and 200 pounds doesn’t mean your not a wimp.

    There are still 150 pound, 5’6, 80 year old WWII Vets that fire M1 garands and M1 Thompsons without even flinching.

    The point of me mentioning all these examples, was to show to you that the rifle doesn’t HAVE to move backwards, that there ARE ways to eliminate the felt recoil.

    FYI, Recoil = backwards energy.

    Felt Recoil = Felt energy.

    So, for instance, an M1 Garand produces roughly 4000 joules of backwards energy, but only 20 joules of felt recoil. If it was a full 4000 joules, a 100 kilogram person would fly backwards at 80 m/s.

    Obviously, some of that recoil, and by some of that recoil I mean 99.5% of it, is obviously diffused somewhere.

    It’s usually the design of the firing mechanism.

    I’ll explain to you, again, using examples; hopefully you’ll be able to understand.

    A pillow, carpet, and those giant air bags used to save the lives of suicidal jumpers that the police use, work to diffuse the force of a moving object by taking that same amount of force and spreading it over a larger area, or a longer area. Something like concrete or marble for instance, is inelastic, and diffuses the force over a much smaller space, because it is very hard. Where as the softer materials diffuse it over a larger area of space.

    1 Newton is equal to 1 “Kilogram moved one meter”. If one Newton is spread out over 3 meters, then you experience 1/3 of a Newton over a period of 3 seconds, rather than the 1 Newton all at once.

    So, if the backwards force is counteracted by something and diffused over a longer period of space, the FELT recoil or net force is less, while obviously the total force of the system remains the same.

    Here’s the thing though. The kinetic friction of regular grade pure steel on pure steel is 0.57. Both the static friction and kinetic friction must be above the amount of force required to over come the static friction and kinetic friction, or else it won’t move.

    So if the force is lowered enough, even if it’s spread out over a longer area, friction theoretically would eliminate all backwards motion.

    But you don’t even need that, because the stored potential chemical energy in your arms and shoulders are exploited to provide forwards kinetic energy, allowing you to keep the rifle motionless anyways.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @ Some Guy
    “1 Newton is equal to 1 “Kilogram moved one meter”. If one Newton is spread out over 3 meters, then you experience 1/3 of a Newton over a period of 3 seconds, rather than the 1 Newton all at once”.

    The correct answer.
    The Newton is the SI unit for force; it is equal to the amount of net force required to accelerate a mass of one kilogram at a rate of one meter per second per second. In dimensional analysis, F = ma, multiplying m (kg) by a (m/s2), the dimension for 1 Newton unit is therefore:

    1 Newton = kilogram x meters / second / second

    Bureau international des poids et mesures

    You’re confusing force and work. Both are related, but they’re not the same thing.

    If an object of mass, m, experiences an acceleration, a, then we know the sum of the forces acting on the object is m * a. In other words, F = ma. The unit of force is the newton (N). Note that distance (or displacement) does not factor in the equation.

    If an object experiences a force, F, and moves a distance, d, in the direction of the force, we know that the work done on the object is F * d. In other words, W =Fd. The unit of work is the newton-meter, which is known as a joule. Note that mass does not factor in the equation.

    Read more: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Can_a_force_of_3_newtons_move_a_1-kg_mass_3_meters_and_a_3-kg_mass_one_meter#ixzz1A7DDVDo2

    Some Guy you have quoted neither work (Watt), energy (Joule) or force (Newton).

    1 Newton will accelerate a mass one meter per second faster every second, not move it a fixed distance, unless against a resistance.

    “You guys obviously have no way to understand conceptual physics.”

    “Some Guy” it is you who obviously has no understanding of conceptual physics. You really don’t even understand the most basic concept, force in physics.

    Another dismal fail.

    Stop, you are only showing how ridiculously stupid you are.

  • Some Guy

    lol, just because I didn’t say exactly the way your source said it doesn’t mean I’m wrong.

    You merely misinterpreted what I was saying, which you seem to do a lot.

    And why do I need to explain what energy and work is? O_o

    If you didn’t already know what all of this was to begin with, it would explain why you didn’t know how to reduce felt recoil.

  • Rohan

    Some Guy on 03 Jan 2011 at 6:41 am
    “Tony, YOU seem to keep confusing MASS with WEIGHT. Newtons, are the metric measurement for force.

    And what else. Oh, yeah, WEIGHT.

    “Mass x Acceleration of Gravity” = Weight.

    “Mass x Acceleration” = Force.”

    But, now you say, on 04 Jan 2011 at 4:21 pm

    “1 Newton (force) is equal to 1 “Kilogram moved one meter”

    What is Force?
    Mass x acceleration or Mass x displacement?

    “You merely misinterpreted what I was saying, which you seem to do a lot”.

    The reason we misinterpreted what you are saying is because you don’t know yourself.

    Stop, you are only showing how ridiculously stupid you are.

  • Jim72

    I just talked to my son, he is a marine, he loves this weapon.

  • IRgRunt

    ^^The only people I know in my company who have anything seriously negative to say, are those who’ve yet to shoot it.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Jim72.

    It must the first time in the history of the Corps that Marines are putting their hands up to be an automatic rifleman! Normally everybody ducks for cover when they pick these sort of jobs. No body wants to carry the extra weight. Every fireteam will want to be all automatic rifleman.

    I would be interested to how many Marines would rather a M27 instead of a M16A4 or M4 (as long as made in the USA!)

    The next question is whether the M27 should be the Army M4 replacement?

    If that happens why not 6.5 Grendel as well. The Army fired 1 million M855A1 rounds in testing, what’s another 1 million rounds in developing 6.5 Grendel steel tip copper rounds?

  • Lance

    @Jim72

    Thank you for your sons service. Like I said almost every Solder, Marine Airman and Coastguard men ive meet likes the M-16 or M-4 they carry. Most problems with the weapon are from personel who either dosnt shoot for a liveing so he dosnt take care of a weapon or he is lazy and dosnt want to clean it which its his problem not the weapons. I shoot a A2 rifle for over 8 years and quallify with one per year for work. I never had any of these so called unfixable failers when i soot my rifle. The A-4 is a improved A2 with a detachable carry handel and Marines have no planes to get ride of them for at least 10 years.

    So Jim72 I have no qualmes with the AR I doby your son will either.

  • Brazilski

    @Tony

    “Absolutely correct. But to achieve that, the gun MUST expel mass or gases out of the back with the same force that the bullet and propellant gases generate out of the front.”

    The system has to direct mass or gasses TO the back, it doesn’t necesarily have to leave the weapon, as long as the countermass/ countergasses can generate the required amount of force before coming to a stop. To achieve this for 100% is extremely difficult to say the least, but in any case with a lower percentage a reduction in recoil can still be achieved.

  • Rohan

    Brazilski

    Great idea, but…

    A mass or gas to the rear (butt) will push the rifle forward. Yes.

    But when it stops, it compresses the return spring. To compress a spring you must push on both ends or one end against a fixed object.

    A mass or gas to stop will push the rifle backwards, and stop the forwards motion.

    The the opposite happens, as the bolt group moves forward.

    This will prolong the recoil impulse over time. Instead of a short “kick” you will have a longer “push”.

  • Rohan Wilson

    Opps, always check your typing!

    Then the opposite happens, as the bolt group moves forward.

    This will prolong the recoil impulse over time. Instead of a short “kick” you will have a longer “push”.

  • D

    Interesting that it took this long for the US military to bridge the niche between a M4 and the SAW (which the Soviet Union did with the AK47 and PKM with the RPK).

  • Some Guy

    Well, I also said 201 times greater or something like that, when what I was really trying to say was “201 times slower”.

    If you interpret it correct, it would mean 201 times slower, but, you would have to do a lot of assuming and interpreting, so it’s obvious that my writinsz skellsz aren’t always tah best.

    Essentially though, the point of all this is, that FELT recoil is not, impossible, to push down to such a minuscule amount, that it’s easily manageable.

    Which you’ve been saying that it is impossible, and that no matter what the rifle will move backwards.

    Maybe not with any rifles you’ve encountered, but there are those that exist, and it is physically possible.

    If you apply enough force to counter act the initial force in the opposite direction, the Net Force will drop to zero, and no acceleration, or movement, will occur.

  • Some Guy

    Okay guysz, I think I’ve found, pretty much, a decent recoil reducer. Some of those guns in there are AR-10′s, and the original recoil reducer was designed for 7.62mm rounds, so it’s also seen a lot of use on M14 styled weapons.

    Supposedly, their working on a lot of different models, including Ak-47 39mm round ones and they already have an AR-15 one.

    It maybe adds an inch to an inch and a half to the weapon, and probably less than .25 of a pound, but imo, even if that thing added 2 inches and .5 a pound it would still be worth it.

    Also, it already has a great level of reliability, is noted for it, and is made by surefire, which, has a great reputation for reliability and durability.

    Check it out!

  • paul

    my question is, what is the point of an automatic carbine that only holds a 30 round magazine?… when the whole point of the M249 is suppressive fire, which holds a “porkchop” mag.

  • Rohan Wilson

    @Some Guy.

    Tony Williamson 15 Dec 2010 at 3:25 pm

    “There are of course ways of reducing the perceived recoil which can make firing powerful rifles much more comfortable. However, apart from muzzle brakes, they do nothing to reduce the actual recoil force –”

    It’s just another muzzle brake.

    “SureFire muzzle brakes utilize an Impulse Diffusion™ design that significantly reduces weapon recoil and muzzle rise, with minimal blowback directed back toward the shooter”.

    Not the cloud of smoke (blast) rolling sideways and backwards round the firer. OK for competitions solo, but combat is not solo on a two way range. It may not effect the firer, but what about the guy next to you. I would not want to be beside the guy firing this. This is the major complaint about the AK-74.

    Big bore sniper rifles get away using muzzle breaks firing single shots. The spotter sits behind the firer.

    Using this in the real world, ie in A-stan, the dust cloud raised up would be huge. Also I would like to see a night time and IR picture of the thing firing.

  • Atheist_Crusader

    It’s a shame that the USMC had to use such an obvious maneuver to finally get their hands on that gun.
    The reason? Politics. There are tons of people who’d rather have a bad american rifle that a decent foreign one. Out of senseless pride oder ill-begotten patriotism or whatever.

    The real shame is, that is’s usually not the guys who actually use that guns. They pay with their lifes for a crappy rifle while those idiots keeping the HK416 (or any other rifle that’s better then the M16) away from them can feel all safe and patriotic.

    So yeah, congrats to the USMC for evading the political bullshit and getting the rifle they wanted.

  • http://none BillyJoe

    Redchromeon 09 Jun 2010 at 11:19 pm link comment
    “I have trouble believing a 2MOA group on full auto”
    I’m a complete novice when speaking of combat (never having shot or been shot at in combat), but what is the point of having 2MOA accuracy with a full automatic AREA coverage weapon? Or is the enemy so tough you need a full magazine of rounds per man to kill them?

  • Some Guy

    Your always going to have the same amount of gases shooting out, regardless of using a muzzle brake or not.

    You don’t want to be next to a .50 caliber sniper rifle because it goes “BOOM”. The muzzle has nothing to do with it.

    In a weapon as low powered as a .308, 6.5mm grendel, or 5.56mm?

    It probably won’t change much, considering that the gases already kick up dirt and whatnot.

  • IRgRunt

    @BillyJoe

    The idea behind the IAR was to cut down on volume and load up on accuracy. And it’s actually sub-2 MOA. I’ve heard 1.5 to 1.8, but it’s damn accurate whichever it is. And yes, these numbers were applied to firing it on automatic.

  • Some Guy

    As well, the only realistic firing rate of a machine gun is like, 85-100 RPM anyways.

    You don’t fire full auto anyways- it wastes too much ammo.

    You basically fire bursts, wait, fire bursts, etc., good fire discipline.

    Because it’s possible to fire in bursts with an assault rifle like weapon, it was just found to be overdoing it with a more expensive, heavier, larger M249.

    In this circumstances that you need full auto for like, 20 seconds straight, you’ll still be able to have at least one M249 in your squad.

    It allows you not only to have faster, more maneuverable fire teams, but should you decide to “base your squad” around a central machine gun (like some Squads do), you still have that capability.

  • ozzie!

    I have personally shot this weapon in its testing phase. i am a team leader in an infantry squad and have been in almost 3 years now. this weapon by far out does any weapon the marine corps now has to offer. we will be faster as a team and more maneuverable. the M 249 saw is out dated although still an awesome weapon. we took the M249 out and shot it with a bunch of grunts and still could not accurately hit a target out to 200 meters. i was hitting targets up to 700 meters with the H&K M27 on semi using less rounds and with the reflex sight on top of the SDO up to 100 meters on automatic in the standing. there is no way we could have done that with the M249. in my opinion every marine should carry one. it is a 2 sub minute of angle weapon comparing the m16 which is a 7 min of angle. i can not wait to see what the taliban has to say to this when we take it to country in a few months.
    oh and here is something for the mag capacity. right now my battalion is still figuring out what to do for how many mags we should carry. the gunner says 8 which makes sense. you will only really put your weapon on auto on 100 meters or less. further than that semi. and you will use less rounds to kill the same enemy. noise suppression doesnt work in afghan. they are fearless. and if you cant accurately hit a target with automatic suppression it is pointless to shoot at all. especially if you cant even see what you are shooting. (8-22 mags somewhere in there is what the marines will be carrying we are still experimenting with it though. )

  • Some Guy

    Well, the M249 CAN have 2 MOA, which is a reason why we adopted it. But the thing is, the military keeps buying poor, sometimes unrifled replacement barrels, and the weapons are severely worn out.

    For a military of around 300,000 combat troops, we only have around 10,000 M249′s. Considering that their designed to use automatic fire, in training and in actual combat, the weapons have taken a beating.

    Besides, the M249 design is really best used for the 7.62mm x 51mm NATO round.

    The Mk. 48 and M240 are where it’s at.

    Simply put, it’s easy to match the M249′s required firepower in a much smaller, cheaper weapons platform than.

    While it’s potential firepower is higher, this simply isn’t used very much at the squad level, and over-all is outmatched by more powerful rounds, like the 7.62mm x 51mm NATO round.

  • Rohan

    @ Ozzie
    A few of comments.

    If your M16 is shooting 7 MOA, why the hell is it kept in service?

    Is it because it’s worn out or that’s what the M16 shoots in the real world?

    The M249 can’t hit targets accurately at 200m.”The M249 is outdated” The M249 is 20 years younger than the M16!

    Is it because it’s worn out or that’s what the M249 shoots in the real world?

    What MOA the M27 shoot is 5-10 years time?

    What sight did the M249 and M16 have? The M27 had “reflex sight on top of the SDO”. Is that comparing “like with like”?

    The issue of a “high capacity” magazine has not been addressed. Is 8 magazines (240 rounds) enough to allow effective fire to allow maneuver?

    When squads operate independently, away from its base of fire 7.62 MGs, will one of the fire-teams have to revert to having a M249 to survive?

    Not all fire is frontal. Enfilade fire best for from LMGs, by mutual interlocking fire. Is the USMC giving this to only platoon weapons?

    If you believe the 50 year old M16 rifle should be replaced by the M27, the obvious question is should the M249 LMG be replaced by a modern belt feed?

  • Rohan

    I need a new keyboard and check my grammar.

    What MOA will the M27 shoot in 5-10 years time?

  • Some Guy

    I don’t think any of us know, but judging by it’s heavy barrel profile (at least compared to the M16 and M4), it’s hammer forged barrel (which is considered to be a lot stronger than straight milled barrels), and the use of the new marine rounds, along with the fact that the firing system is designed to prevent the weapon and barrel from overheating, I wouldn’t doubt that this weapon is going to have a lot longer barrel life than a standard M16 or M4.

    Truthfully, it will probably not have as long a barrel life as the M249, but because a lower volume of fire is expected from the weapon (hundreds of rounds, instead of thousands) it could very easily “outlast” M249′s in terms of service length, but not necessarily service use.

    There is a lot of hype about M16′s, mainly about how “accurate” they are. But M16′s are only functionally required to have 7 MOA; while it’s possible that some factory production M16′s might have better accuracy than this, 3-4 MOA is a lot to expect from most service rifles.

    What you find is that most military rifles sacrifice accuracy for reliability and versatility (such as guns being able to fire multiple types of rounds, such as tracers, armor piercing rounds, lighter and heavier weight variants etc.). A military sniper rifle is expected to have roughly 1-2 MOA, while civilian competition “sniper” rifles are generally sub MOA. High grade civilian models can be .5 MOA or less straight out of the box with standard factory loads. Of course, they are not as reliable, and not as versatile, but they are generally more accurate.

    The obvious problem with sacrificing accuracy for reliability with the M16 is that it’s not very reliable to begin with, and was made to be accurate. Of course, if the gun was considered “Accurized” and light weight- I.E. 6.6lb and 2 or less MOA- then it wouldn’t work at all, which is what we found out in NAM.

    So now our “lightweight accurate” rifle is back up to 8 lb and extremely inaccurate, while still being unreliable.

    So functionally…

    The M16 has a very low MOA. Surprisingly, an increase in inherent reliability of the firing system allows you to focus more on accuracy, reducing certain necessities when compared to poorer firing systems. While it is theoretically possible for an M16 to be extremely accurate, it cannot preform this way due to it’s extremely low reliability under field conditions. Therefore, an inherently reliable system (or, an extremely reliable system) can suffer slight reliability issues for increased accuracy and performance, without hindering it’s reliability as drastically as a weapon, like, say, the M16.

  • PMI

    @Some Guy – Prior to the introduce of the A4 the average Marine was required to maintain 7 MOA at 300 yards when BZOing his A2. The rifles themselves were capable of greater precision than that. The 3-4 MOA from the factory claims are completely accurate.

  • Some Guy

    I’m sure that the weapons can get 3-4 MOA. The thing is that, most people think that the M16 is “Inherently accurate”, and somehow super accurate at around 1 MOA or something.

    The truth is that it is a lot less than that. Actually, Military M16′s generally have around the same MOA as an Ak-47, which their said to be “more accurate” than, but Ak-47′s are generally harder to aim.

    That’s mostly due to a mixture of worse ergonomics, poor sights, higher recoil, and a much more curved trajectory compared to the 5.56mm.

    Not to mention that most enemy soldiers are not trained as well as our people, making them less accurate.

  • Dane

    The IAR is a SAW. The M249 “SAW” is a light machinegun and is probably the most misunderstood weapon in our military.A SAW is a weapon that uses the same caliber and fires using magazines.The m249 was never designed to be a SAW but just a LMG for a squad.The IAR will not replace the 249 but just bring the numbers down on a squad level.The IAR gunners combat load will be 14 30 round mags.The IAR is an excellent weapon with extreme reliability and amazing accuracy.The most effective suppression on the enemy is killing him not just puttin his head down.

  • Mike Kole

    Re bullpups, they also typically have a lousy trigger due to the requirement of a long mechanism used to deploy the firing mechanism which is well behind the trigger assembly. The Corps has always stressed and been proud of their marksmanship. A rough or heavy trigger won’t help achieve good shot placement.

    The KISS principle (Keep It Simple Stupid) is paramount in combat. Overly complicated firearms systems are overly prone to malfunctions that are difficult to correct in the field.

  • Rohan

    @ Mike

    ‘Re bullpups, they also typically have a lousy trigger”

    Is there any data to back up your statement, ie AUG, F2000, Tavor vs M16, SCAR, hk-416, or is this a view based on no scientific data.

    “The Corps has always stressed and been proud of their marksmanship. A rough or heavy trigger won’t help achieve good shot placement”.

    Most Garands come to me with a total trigger weight of between 6 and 6.5 Lbs. The final stage of the trigger pull is weighty and long.
    http://www.shuffsparkerizing.com/Pricing.html

    “The KISS principle (Keep It Simple Stupid) is paramount in combat. Overly complicated firearms systems are overly prone to malfunctions that are difficult to correct in the field.”

    Forget self-loaders and bring back bolt actions!

  • Mike Kole

    ‘Re bullpups, they also typically have a lousy trigger”

    Is there any data to back up your statement, ie AUG, F2000, Tavor vs M16, SCAR, hk-416, or is this a view based on no scientific data.

    No, I don’t think it takes a scientist to feel a rough trigger with a very unpredictable break. What kind of “data” do you want? Measure the trigger weight and feel for creep before it fires., My comments are both anecdotal from foreign troops who have the bullpups and from my own experience with the Steyer Aug, the British military Enfield bullpup and a couple of others, which all felt about the same. Any armorer I have spoken with about bullpups has said pretty much the same thing; it goes with the breed and because of the nature of the trigger mechanism it’s difficult if not impossible to do anything about it. The gun isn’t designed for sniper work, obviously, but it is nice to have a crisp trigger, regardless of the weight.

    “The Corps has always stressed and been proud of their marksmanship. A rough or heavy trigger won’t help achieve good shot placement”.

    Most Garands come to me with a total trigger weight of between 6 and 6.5 Lbs. The final stage of the trigger pull is weighty and long.
    http://www.shuffsparkerizing.com/Pricing.html

    “The KISS principle (Keep It Simple Stupid) is paramount in combat. Overly complicated firearms systems are overly prone to malfunctions that are difficult to correct in the field.”

    Forget self-loaders and bring back bolt actions!

    That would make the Marines happy! Hey, bullpups are nice to carry, great for close-in work and tight quarters and generally well made weapons. My personal opinion, from shooting several thousand rounds through several of them, is that the trigger is inferior to that of a standard rifle. If you like the gun and can work with the trigger, God bless you. There was no intention of starting an issue here. I just thought personal opinions based on some experience would be encouraged. Hmm, maybe we could get the government to print some more money and do a multi million dollar study on what we can all go out and feel for ourselves?

  • Rohan

    @mike

    What was that about triggers?

    I read that the M16A2 actually has three trigger pulls, depending on where in the 3 round burst cog you are. Sounds very complicated.

    The guys in the US SF firearms mag had no problem shooting 2″ groups with the AUG (Styre, not Steyer) None of the guys in the army here do.

    AUG and Tavor are built and designed as bullpups, not bullpuped M18 that became the L85 (not Enfield).

    It appears your “anecdotal” evidence is based on triggers alone (bad in M1 and M16A2) and not the way the weapon actually shoots. Based on your comments the M1 and M16A2 must be junk.

    At the end of the day its how accurate the system is and where the bullet goes that counts.

  • Lance

    The M-1 never had trigger problems and most have had a crisp trigger. The Navy solvedf the M-16A2 problems with the A3 and wennt back to full auto. Yes AUGs have crappy triggers but L-85s dont depend on the gun model.

  • Rohan

    @Lance.

    Pity the Army, Marines and Air Force don’t use the m16A3!

    Wasn’t that keen on the L85A1 when I got my hands on it when the Gurkhas were in Oz. Very bulky and top heavy. The L85A2 trigger may be better.

    As to AUG, the dual pressure takes a bit of getting used to. It was designed as combat weapon not a target rifle. It runs better dirty.

    I’ve shot sheet, small bore target (hair trigger), full bore target (firm trigger) and every weapon in the 90′s Australian Army. Every mode of shooting has a different trigger. It’s what your used to.

  • Lukas

    There was a time when we would have come up with our own solution. Now we have to rely on someone else.

  • Lance

    @Rohan

    Ive shot AUGs too they have crappy triggers compaied to the M-16A2 and A3 The trick with the A2 was to advoid bust fire unless in CQB situations which trigger pull was alot less relivant. Strabge alot more nations adopted the M-16 than the AUG.

  • Rohan

    @ Lance
    The three round burst limiter cycles regardless, hence the 3 trigger pulls. Using auto is a distraction augment. Unless you have a A3, (only Navy) it is a issue.

    “Strabge alot more nations adopted the M-16 than the AUG”.

    M16A2 is half the price of AUG, simple. It depends on how much you want to spend. Australia is developing an ungraded AUG, the EF-88.

    A lot of countries received their M16s for free or near free (Iraq the latest).

    The WHOLE eastern block use AK, and more AK-type rifles have been produced than all other assault rifles combined.

    By that logic 9mm should be the standard pistol round, as most of the world use 9x19mm. That means there a lot people are wrong!

  • Lance

    The M-16A2 usally is reqired to have minimum of 5 or less lb trigger pull so it sould have decent pulls for all three bursts. No Problem the new Army M-4A1 also dont have burst so burst wont be in new M-4s in Army service.

  • Rohan

    @ Lance.
    The regulation trigger pull for a M16A2 is not less than 5lb, it’s actually 7.5lb.

    The F-88 (AUG-77) is 4Kg (8.8lb) semi and 7.5Kg (16.5lb) for auto (dual pressure trigger)
    Australian Army Manual of Land Warfare P2 Inf Vol 4 Pam No 9

    As for M16/M4
    Are you tired of the rough, creepy and sloppy 7 to 9 lb. trigger pull of the AR15/M16 rifle, when a precision shot is required to get the job done? GG&G has an answer
    http://www.lpstactical.com/ar15m16settrigger.htm

    ADA271577
    Title : Trigger Pull Testing M16A2 Rifle and M4 Carbine
    Abstract : Using the current procedures of MIL-R-63997 for M16A2 Rifles, 22% of random trigger pulls taken failed the requirement of 5.5 – 9.5 pounds. Based upon an acceptable failure rate of 1%, trigger pull shall be taken three consecutive times with a requirement of 5.5 to 11.0 pounds. Using the current procedures of MIL-C-70599 for M4 Carbines, 65% of random trigger pulls taken failed the requirement of 5.5 – 9.5 pounds. Based upon a acceptable failure rate of 1%, trigger pull shall be taken three consecutive times with a requirement of 6.5 – 12.3 pounds. Trigger Pull, M16A2 Rifle, M4 Carbine

    http://oai.dtic.mil/oai/oai?verb=getRecord&metadataPrefix=html&identifier=ADA271577

    The trigger pull on an M-16 is 7.5 lbs. As a general rule, the trigger pull on rifles/shotguns is in the range of 5.5-8 lbs.
    Target shooters will reduce the trigger pull to as little as, about, 2 lbs, for competition triggers.
    The M-16 actually has a very heavy, two-stage trigger, which has about 1/8th inch of slack, a hard stop to the sear, and then a very hard (what is called “dragging”) break as the sear is released.

    Shotguns, as issued by the Army, have a weight of pull of 5.5 lbs. (the M-1/M-14 , by way of comparison to both of the above, had a trigger pull of 6.5 lbs, and a much smoother release than the M-16, though sitffer than the shotgun).

    T. Karney
    SSG Calif. National Guard
    Unit Armorer
    http://www.isthatlegal.org/archives/2007/04/gun_control_cam.html

    As for M4A1.

    As of September 2010 the Army has announced they will buy 12,000 M4A1s from Colt Firearms by the end of 2010 and will by early 2011 order 25,000 more M4A1s. The Army announced also to have open competition for the newly designed M4 bolt carrier and gas piston operation system, which will be fitted to the newly bought M4A1 carbines. The service branch plans to buy 12,000 of these conversion kits in early 2011. In late 2011 the Army plans to buy 65,000 more conversion kits. From there the Army will decide if it will upgrade all of its M4s.

    With 64K of US Troops in A’stan out of 548K of US Army, having 37K of M4A1 and 12K of conversion kits, that’s a drop in the ocean. (65K kits are maybe). And What about Marines who use M16A4, don’t use M4 much and NOT M4A1.

    http://marinecorpstimes.com/news/2010/09/marine-corps-passes-on-army-carbine-updates-091110w/

  • Lance

    @ ROhan

    I know you love your AUG but its trigger pull is 7-8 lbs too. Most of the very bad trigger pulls come not from design but crappy armorers in the feild who do quick fixes. I never beleve in full auto any way and semi can do most of your work for you anyway. I know bullpup lovers love to spray and prey. The USMC dosnt allow burst or auto fire unless in close urban situations. As an example in the Battle of Fallugia USMC use M-16s in semi auto got soo many head shots and kills the UN had set a commission to see if there were war crimes going on. The Corps never wanted full auro or bullpups and carbines only and they do fine Rohan.

  • Rohan

    @ Lance

    You don’t read things. The AUG actually has a heavier pull, 8.8lb for F88. I gave you a free hit and you totally miss it! The AUG trigger is far too heavy and we need 6.5mm.

    The Australian Army uses auto only as required, and any soldier firing “spray and prey” would be in trouble, ie on a charge. Our Army used L1A1 until 1990 with no auto. Australian Infantry are called RIFLEMAN. The mind set is semi, period.

    During Battle of Lon Tan when a company of 109 from 6th Battalion, RAR was hit by a regiment of 3000, the blokes with L1A1 “bet” each other to head shoot as the assault waves of VC/NVA come in. Head shots are nothing new to trained rifleman. (This was the company’s first battle by the way!)

    We don’t need 3 round limiters because the blokes are trained to short fire bursts and that way from day one (like US SOCOM). 2-3 Bursts are only for “fleeting” moving targets at close range ie jungle and urban. Rapid bursts (not full auto) is used by forward scout (point-men) during “contacts” ie encounters with the enemy at ranges less than 50 meters. This is to keep the enemy head down till the rest of the section (squad) can get to cover and “win” the initial firefight.

    We don’t need a separate automan M27 to do the job every rifleman can do. We have M249 for that. Every Marines needs a M27 to replace M16.

    We don’t need to take off 3 round burst because we didn’t need it in the first place.

  • Rohan

    Note.

    2-3 ROUND Bursts are only for “fleeting” moving targets at close range ie jungle and urban.

  • Lance

    @ Rohan

    Yes I agree the idea of a IAR is not needed in modern warfair and I still think this whole idea was to get the HK 416 into service to eventually adopted as a rilfe not a light MG.

    I admit I got hooked off subjuct Rohan im sorry.

    We argue sometime but we always must stay civil.

  • dawghowse

    The big problem is it’s still 5.56. The military as a whole should give up on this caliber and go with either 6.5 or 6.8.

  • Rohan

    Instead of trying to fit an intermediate round (6.5 or 6.8mm) into a 5.56x45mm magazine well (2.24″ / 57mm), a better option would be to use the 7.62x51mm magazine well (2.75″ / 70mm). Ironically more and more 7.62 rifles (HK-417, M-14, SCAR-H) are entering service.

    With bigger magazine well, the new 6.5x48mm could have been developed. Tony William’s 6.5/8/800 (6.5mm, 8gram/123grain, 800m/s / 2600fps) would perfectly fit into a long .30 Remington. ( 6.8x43mm SPC brass). Longer and slimmer brass (10.7mm diameter) than 6.5mm Grendel (11.2mm) would result in a better feeding MG round. Parallel sided Grendel brass is not good for MGs.

    A high ballistic coefficient Sierra 6.5mm 123 grain HPBT bullet (BC .510 G1) has the same energy at 1000m as a 7.62NATO. A steel arrow tipped M855A1 6.5mm type bullet would put both 5,56 / M855 and the 7.62 / M80 to shame. Unlike 6.8x41mm, 6.5x48mm is much more than just a 5.56 replacement. A 6.5x48mm rifle would become an accurate battle rifle, not just an assault spray gun.

    The recoil would be half way between 5.56 and 7.62. It would slow down firing and force shooters to aim more (like 7.62), keep to short 2-3 round bursts (not 5-10 full auto unlike 5.56) and still be a good hunting rifle for civilians. Teenagers would learn to aim a rifle not a plinking gun.

    With a bigger magazine well, a thicker modern polymer magazine could be used. Remember over half of the M4 dust test failures were due to the poor thin M16 magazine.

    For the US, a lightened HK-417 with M27 features (open/closed bolt), 16.5” barrel (still a rifle to the Corps) and a lightened Mk48 LMG with 18’ barrels are obvious choices for 6.5x48mm. 10” barrel HK-417 carbines would ONLY be for pistol carriers (field officers, tankers, aviation) and SOCOM. 6.5x48mm should be designed from day one to fire in a carbine.

    With selective fire intermediate weapons in the squad, less LMGs are needed. A new squad structure is also needed. The older Army 11 man squad (which was trialled by the USMC in the 80’s when M249 was introduced) maybe a solution.

    Fireteams of 5 would have a team leader and two pairs; a rifle pair and a LMG team. The machine gunner would have a “number 2” to carry ammo, spare barrel and to protect him, solving M249 issues. For urban combat, pairs can swap between teams, creating rifle assault teams and LMG support teams. LMGs would stay outside of houses and only enter large buildings behind rifle teams. In open terrain individual radios will allow the squad to spread out. Pairs can operate dispersed with a “scout” rifle pair forward, LMGs and team leaders to flanks and rear guard of a rifle pair.

    The 11 man squad has 9 riflemen (4 x M203) and 2 LMG, compared with
    10 riflemen (3 x M203) and 3 IAR/SAW (Marines) or
    7 riflemen (2 x M203) and 2 SAW plus 1 rifleman and 1GPMG if platoon GPMG team attached (Army)

    Change the cartridge, change the rifle and change the squad and give every warrior (Army, Marines, Navy and Air Force) the tools for the job.

  • that1guy

    There isn’t much doubt in my mind that the M27 was in part designed to sidestep the Individual Carbine race. There also isn’t much doubt the M27 provides less volume of fire than the M249. The important question is who can better support the squad – 1 guy with an M249, or 2 guys with M27s. I know you can’t compare directly, especially without knowing the context of the situation, but this is what it will come down to. It’s a difficult question, and I don’t think anyone knows the answer yet.

    • telcom911

      Several posts have mentioned this but – Since when is there but one M249 in a squad? It has been a few decades since I was one of Uncle Sams Misguided Children, but I do recall each squad carried three SAW’s, one in each fireteam.

  • Rohan

    @that1guy
    The answer is do you change the squad or just the weapon?

    Change the squad and have fever real LMGs, or keep the current squad and go to a M16/M27 combo. The lesson from history is that the C2A1 and now L86 were failures. The magazine feed Bren types survived because it had a 2-3 man crew. In Canada two C2s formed the Gun group, while UK and Australia had a single GPMG.

    The only “success” was the BAR in Marines, but only by doubling and then quadrupling the amount of M1919s in the battalion. Against Germany and the MG42 (the only real belt feed LMG of the war), would have Marines chosen the 3×4 + 1 structure with company M1919s?

    Army is now having to “attach” a GPMG team to each squad for A’stan, is in effect forming an 11 man WW2 squad.

    Two LMGs is the minimum (and maximum) a squad needs (with a real intermediate round). If everybody else has a M27, who cares whether 2x M27 is better than 1 x M249 with a number 2!

  • Lance

    Sorry Rohan but NO USMC units were in the ETO all in the Pacific

  • Rohan

    @Lance.
    Against Germany and the MG42 (the only real belt feed LMG of the war), would…??? (hypothetical)

    “Sorry Rohan but NO USMC units were in the ETO all in the Pacific”

    As organized ground combat units, yes (I’m not sure Iceland counts, but technically they were there to help the Brits defend it).

    As members of ships’ detachments, yes.

    As members of joint staffs, yes.

    As members of the OSS, yes (there is a great story about a Marine captain serving with the OSS who held a bar full of German officers at gunpoint and forced them to sing the Marines’ Hymn before he escaped).

    When it had embarked, this regiment had orders to report to the Commanding General, I Corps (Provisional), FMF, Atlantic Fleet.p-38

    On the day following the arrival of the 6th Marines in Charleston the 1st Marine Brigade (Provisional) was formally organized; its commander was Brigadier General John Marston. The troop list included:

    Brigade Headquarters Platoon
    Brigade Band
    6th Marines
    5th Defense Battalion (less 5-inch Artillery Group)
    2d Battalion, 10th Marines
    Company A, 2d Tank Battalion (less 3d Platoon)
    Company A, 2d Medical Battalion
    Company C, 1st Engineer Battalion
    1st Platoon, Company A, 2d Service Battalion
    3d Platoon, 1st Scout Company
    Chemical Platoon
    On 18 June, General Marston arrived in Charleston from Quantico, bringing with him a small headquarters detachment and his instructions from the CNO for the operation of his brigade in Iceland. These orders dated 16 June, gave him a simple and direct mission:

    In Cooperation with the British Garrison, Defend Iceland Against Hostile Attack. p-39
    http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USMC/I/USMC-I-I-4.html

    Sorry Rohan but NO divisional USMC units were in the ETO all in the Pacific!

  • Lance

    Might have been a few MPs on ships but no USMC ground units saw combat aginst the German Whermact.

    As for OSS yes but none where offically still in the Corps while in the OSS.

  • Rohan

    @Lance.
    Against Germany and the MG42 (the only real belt feed LMG of the war), would…??? (hypothetical) You again totally miss the point (twice).

    You also show you know little about the role of Marines aboard US Navy ships. It’s not just a “few MPs”, but Marine Ships Detachments.

    Shipboard detachments of Marines served throughout the landings in North Africa, the Mediterranean and the Normandy invasion as gun crews aboard battleships and cruisers. A 200-man detachment was normally carried aboard a battleship, and 80 Marines served aboard cruisers to man the secondary batteries of 5-inch guns providing fire for the landing forces.

    http://www.tecom.usmc.mil/HD/Frequently_Requested/Marines%20in%20WWII%20Sheets/Marines%20in%20Europe.htm

    “As for OSS yes but none where offically still in the Corps while in the OSS”.

    Assigned to the secretive world of spies and saboteurs were 51 Marines who served with the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (OSS) to engage in behind-the-lines operations in North Africa and Europe from 1941 to 1945. These OSS Marines served with partisan and resistance groups in France,…

    ORTIZ, PIERRE (PETER) J.
    (First Award)
    Citation:
    The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Pierre (Peter) J. Ortiz (0-12779), Major, U.S. Marine Corps (Reserve), for extraordinary heroism while attached to the United States Naval Command, Office of Strategic Services, London, England, in connection with military operations against an armed enemy in enemy-occupied territory, from 8 January to 20 May 1944…..

    ORTIZ, PIERRE (PETER) J.
    (Second Award)
    Citation:
    The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting a Gold Star in lieu of a Second Award of the Navy Cross to Pierre (Peter) J. Ortiz (0-12779), Major, U.S. Marine Corps (Reserve), for extraordinary heroism while serving with the Office of Strategic Services during operations behind enemy Axis lines in the Savoie Department of France, from 1 August 1944, to 27 April 1945…

    http://classic-web.archive.org/web/20080119043428/http://www.homeofheroes.com/valor/1_Citations/03_wwii-nc/nc_06wwii_usmcN.html

    Strange how the US President gave 2 Navy Crosses to a Major, USMCR who according to Lance is not in the Corps.

  • Lance

    Yes but no Marines saw combat aginst the whermact no Marine fired his M-1 or BAR at a German solder.

    As for OSS they were under army rank and command in the OSS and after the war released to the USMC again.

    Check out the History channels documantary on the OSS.

  • Rohan

    @Lance
    Attached means under command but still part of your parent organisation.

    Corpsman are attached, are US NAVY, not Marines.

    Marines served under OSS (yes) but as Marines.

    “Yes but no Marines saw combat aginst the whermact no Marine fired his M-1 or BAR at a German solder”

    Exactly, the Marine structure was never tested against the Hilter’s Germany (Whermach or SS). What I said 5 posts ago.

  • Todd

    Hmmmm. I seem to recall my history where the Quartermaster General of the Federal Army during the Civil War refused to issue repeating rifles because they “used too much ammo”. It cost a lot of lives that didn’t need to be lost. Their worth was proven at Chickamauga when the 21st Ohio’s Colt revolving rifles were about the only thing that kept the entire Army of the Cumberland from being overrun by Longstreet’s Corps. As others have mentioned – we’re forgetting our lessons from history.

    A 30-round magazine is insufficient for the task of an “automatic rifle”. Like with the SAW, a 30-round magazine should be a backup – not the primary. There is nothing wrong with the SAW – there never was. I do, however, liek the idea of not having to deal with a belt-fed system. If they want to keep Marines alive they better issue a solid, durable, high-capacity drum with this weapon and make damn sure the barrel can handle it. Does this weapon start from the closed bolt and transition to the open bolt like some other systems do? This would facilitate cooling. What’s the effective range on this weapon? The SAW boasted 900 meters – which gave a squad a long reach.

    What both Army and Marine squads really need in the Afghan environment are designated marksmen in each fire team or squad armed with light “sniper system”. This allows them to pick off enemy riflemen with precision but looks similar to an M4 at a distance so the shooter doesn’t “advertise” he is the marksman. One of the main problems we have in the COIN fight is CIVCAS (civilian casualties). Our soldiers are unable to pluck out enemy shooters at less than 200 meters (that should be a head shot – even with an M4, folks!). So, they call in a HIMARS, CAS, or Excalibur and destroy the whole house along with the women and children nearby. I know that some units have already began creating designated marksmen for this purpose – to surgically remove the cancer in the village. The 5.56 SPRs are pretty good, but I believe it should be a 7.62 system for the range and penetration. A US Army fire team has a team leader (M4), grenadier (M4 and M203), SAW gunner, and rifleman (M4). This sounds like a good job for that extra rifleman.

    v/r

    Todd

  • Chris H

    This can hardly be described as a new class of weapon. I built a similar weapon myself and 90% of the parts are from the Armalite parts bin. Still a jumped up 22 though. While I wouldn’t like to be shot with one if my life depended on it I’d rather carry something that could reliably kill my opponent instead of just reliably injuring and sometime killing.

    I hope we have seen the last of the M4 barrel profile, those compromise barrels pollute the civilian marketplace where they are bought by people who will never even see a grenade launcher.

  • Buzz

    We’ve come a long way from the old Browning Automatic Rifle aka; the BAR!

  • mike

    This truly is horrible. I like how it makes sense to all the civvies. Its unfortunate that know nothings prevailed.

  • Pete Drucker

    This is 1967 all over again. The Marine Corps sent Stoner Assault Rifles with multiple concepts on to a Marine grunt company with little or no field testing in the States as a possible replacement rifle for the M-14. It was a debacle, the weapons consistently jammed, although the concept on paper was very promising. The solution was to recall the Stoners and bring in the M-16. To this day when I tell the buddies that we did not have a squad weapon in Vietnam, they are puzzled by my remarks. It seems that most regarded the M-60 as the total replacement for the automatic rifleman which it was not. That’s why more small arms ammo was expended in Vietnam because every one thought they were the AR. Kidding aside, using one guy on full auto was not the brightest idea. We needed a SAW/BAR weapon than and need it now. Wonder if those 1967 geniuses are still with the Corps. The Stoner should have worked and if the implementation had been done right, would probably be in the inventory today.

  • http://AKO Infantry SGT.

    Ok, so this is neat but a replacement for the SAW it is not. the only real advantage I see is in CQB. were the SAW is bulky and aquard while clearing rooms. but for every other situation give me the SAW. I can’t imagain manning a check point, suppressing an area target, or direct fire support without a belt fed weapon, for these reasons. 1) standard rate of fire for target elimination is 3 to 5 round burst (7 trigger pulls) 2) area suppression is 7 to 10 round burst (3 trigger pulls) that is alot of reloading. 4) the current set up with the saw allows for accurate fire from 600 to 800 meters. I could not see this weapon doing that. 5) the magazines we currently use do not like high rates of fire. (without double springs) so would there be separate mags that look the same. (that has joe failure writin all over it) and 90 round mags (please I dont know of one that could discharge the whole load with out a jam, especally if they are old) 6) last but probably most important. a 7lb weapon firing 5.56 on full auto is a handfull. and if they think that silly gheto grip bypod is going to keep it grounded they need help. with the SAW you smash it into the ground and lean your weight into it. those silly plastic things would break.

  • oicu812

    I see no advantage over a similarly configured Colt M16. None. The HK is a cobbled together conversion of Stoner’s rifle. If he wanted it to have a conventional piston he would have designed it with one. The HK is a bloated, overweight weapon full of proprietary parts, has a sharper recoil impulse, and is not a replacemnt for a belt fed weapon.

    How about proper training with a lightweight belt fed like Knight’s LMG? A 10 lb grim reaper for sure.

  • Rohan

    oicu812

    “I see no advantage over a similarly configured Colt M16. None. The HK is a cobbled together conversion of Stoner’s rifle. If he wanted it to have a conventional piston he would have designed it with one”

    What was the Stoner 63 system???

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stoner_63

  • oicu812

    Uhhhhh, the Stoner 63/63A is not even close to the Stoner AR series in design or construction. Do you want me to spell it out for you or can you read it for yourself?

    FYI, Knight’s LMG is an evolution of the 63A and is the finest LMG in the land. THAT is what should have replaced the belt fed SAW. At only 10 lbs., 2 lbs more than the HK, give me that belt fed.

    http://www.knightarmco.com/lmg.html

    So, tell me, what does the HK IAR have over a similarly configured M16?

  • Todd

    I see this system being used on reconnaissance missions where it’s desirable to be a bit lighter, quieter, and quicker. If this is used for normal patrolling operations then I foresee Marines coming back to the COP saying, “man, I wish we had brought the SAW!” after they’ve already loaded some of their buddies on the MEDEVAC chopper because they ran out of ammo and were not able to effectively suppress the threat.

  • Rohan

    OICU

    Mate, I with you. M27 is just an updated M16, but with a piston.

    Stoner had it right with the 63 for rifle and carbine, but not the LMG. The ports on the wrong side for the LMG. Knight’s fixes that with a better updated gun. Have 2 out 3 fire teams with LMG.

    I carried a M60, so everything is a holiday after that.

  • Rohan

    @Todd FYI

    Is the SAW the right weapon?
    By CWO2 Jeffrey L. Eby – Originally Published April 2001

    1st Force Reconnaissance Company has modified all of their M249s to the para configuration.

    While the Marines in force recon normally carry M4A1 carbines in direct action missions, the M249 (para) is no longer than a CQBW. Though heavier, it provides a base of fire that may be necessary while moving to the extract point.

    The Marines of 1st Force never carry the spare barrel. It is unnecessary when compared to the mission essential gear required for a deep reconnaissance mission. While it can be successfully argued that the M249 is problematic and temperamental, Ist Force has had no problems carrying the M249 (para) in condition three…

    http://www.mca-marines.org/gazette/m249-employment-concepts

  • khayle35

    The 249 SAW is cumbersome and becoming outdated. There are already M27s in Afghanistan now, and the marines issued them have no problems so far. Besides the auto setting, it still has a semi setting, and its proven to be highly accurate even up to 800 meters.

    The Corps is NOT using it to replace the M4 or M16, contrary to what several of you are suggesting. The M4 is used with vehicle operators and special forces because of its size. The M16 is still a workhorse as is. There are plans to expand the paltry magazine of the M27 though, as that is a main concern for machine gunners.

    2 of my buddies in the grunts have it, and they like it so far. They say its easier to clear houses with than the SAW and the fact that its half the weight is a God-send on extended maneuvers. None of us are sure if its gonna be a permanent replacement, however…

  • Todd

    Rohan:

    I liked CWO2 Eby’s article. He raised some good points and questions.

    He made an interesting point of the rate of fire for a SAW being too fast and we perhaps should only employ a weapon with a 500 – 600 rpm rate of fire. He argues this would conserve ammo and barrels. The M60 MG had about a 650 ROF and nobody seemed to complain about it firing too slow.

    He talks about the ability of the M249 to effectively fire out to 1,000m, but there was rare opportunities for it do so along with the gunner’s inability to put his rounds on target at that range without an AG (which SAWs don’t normally have). The addition of ACOGS (which I’m a big fan of) and similar low-magnification scopes on the SAW takes greater advantage of its long reach and ability to employ it in an SBF position. M249s are normally issued with a tripod for this purpose, but I can’t remember ever seeing the tripods used. Has anyone here use the SAW in combat in this manner?

    He makes some good arguments about the difference between a LMG (the M249) and an AR (what the M27 is supposed to be). The biggest potential advantages I see with the M27:

    - the large round drum is compatible with the squad’s M4s, so if the AR goes down, its ammo can be transferred and an M4/M16 take over its role. The linked ammo of the M249 cannot be used in any other weapon system unless you take time to de-link it.

    - It’s obviously lighter and far more compact (depending on how bulky the drums are). The M27 in a semi-auto setting can be used in a CQB role like the M4/M16 – the SAW is considered too destructive and imprecise for this purpose.

    - Like Eby points out, the M249 drum is notorious for slipping off and the belt spilling on the ground. The gunner has to stop and police it up (mabye under fire!). I’ve seen this happen quite a few times. If the M27 magazine or drum accidentally falls out, it’s not so much of a catastrophe to recover.

    - The drums of the M27 will likely be quieter than the rattling plastic 200 round drums of the SAW and are designed as reusable. SAW drums left on the battlefield can be used later by the enemy for their own guns or as an IED.

    Potential disadvantages of the M27:

    - May not have the longer reach of the M249 in a SBF role – but that’s not really what it was made for anyway.

    - The barrel may not the stamina of the SAW’s in a sustained fight, and as far as I know it’s not interchangeable.

    Here’s something to ponder, guys: the M27 has a longer and more accurate barrel than the M4s in the squad. What is the M27 held a dual role not only as an AR but also as a designated marksman rifle? Put an ACOGS or other magnified scope on it, put it in a semi-auto mode and it theoretically has the ability to act as a pseudo-sniper rifle. In fact, there could be a total of four selector settings on the weapon:
    - safe
    - semi: for designated marksman role
    - five-round burst: for sustained ROF without excessively burning ammo or the barrel
    - full auto: for immediate suppression at the cyclic ROF

    v/r

    Todd

  • tfansoi

    this is a battle rifle(using the term lightly in 5.56) Gas piston does run a little cooler and cleaner, but a lot of the old bug-a-boos from the M16 direct impengement have been sorted out. This gains nothing but a nice rifle in an in-adequate caliber.
    Make it in 6.5 Grendal (6.5×39) and it will out perform the 7.62 over 300 yards. with less barrel wear.

    This is not SAW. fortunately, the have the new M240L coming in 7.62×51 and lighter than the older M240 for a SAW.

  • tfansoi

    Marines were attached to the British in WWI but you don’t see anyone making the claim they weren’t MARINES!

    • Prexybill69

      Correction to the Marines in WWI comment.

      The Marines were actually assigned to the U.S. Army’s 2nd Infantry Division. The 4th Marine Brigade was comprised of the 4th and 5th Marine Regiments.

      • Thad Rivers

        I thought the comment about Marines with the British was WWI, not WWII?

  • patrick

    I don’t get it i thought the point of having a SAW was to have large amounts of ammo to pin the enemy down so he could be flanked. If you deploy just another assault rifle that won’t be possible will someone plz explain.

  • Mitch C.

    The problem is that we have convinced ourselves that we need 200 rounds in our squad automatics to be effective. In reality, the increses in accuracy and mobility more than make up for the decrese in capacity. This is definately a better suted wepon for the automatic rife role than the m249.

    • Cole

      I say this with respect, especially because I haven’t experienced combat, however i tend to think nobody who has ever been in a firefight with the enemy would agree with your comment. The purpose of the SAW gunner’s job is to suppress the enemy… 200 rounds goin down range at 800 per minute is not easy to replace, especially with a carbine assault rifle with nothin particularly outstanding about it. It’s basically like the M4A1 CQBW with slight variations. Nothin all that special, there are 3 other rifleman in a fireteam that can make point-target engagements with longer M16A4 rifles while the SAW gunner can lay down suppressive fire to keep the enemy’s head down and behind cover. Beside the benefit of not having to reload, the SAW has a psychological aspect to it that just scares the living hell out of whoevers on the busniess end of it. I mean, c’mon. It’s 200 rounds!

  • Borderwatch

    so much for supporting our economy buy buying AMERICAN… as the United States has learned when battling the taliban…5.56 just doesn’t cut it…..the US needs to go to 308 0r 7.62×39 to get the distance the 5.56 isn’t…
    I say bring in the B-52 and carpet bomb them into submission

    • Cole

      I never had personal experience with this, however at some point during the Iraq War they changed up the ammunition that was issued to Marines in-country. Formally, they were using 62gr 5.56rds, which recieved a multitude of complaints regarding it’s lack of punch. In some cases, they would shoot a target that would fall to the deck, get back up with it’s rifle and engage the Marine that it down. Then they started issueing 77gr 5.56rds and the Mariens seemed a lot more pleased. From what i heard, on unarmored targets it was pretty typically 1-n-done, with a second shot to confirm.
      Again, i never had this experience, but i tend to agree that the US military needs to use higher caliber weapons… 6.8 or 7.62 for example.

  • Griff Nasty

    Nice carbine… but to suggest that it could sufficiently replace the M249 in the automatic rifle role is ridiculous. The whole purpose of the SAW is to lay down a high volume of suppressive fire – while remaining lighter and more mobile than a conventional crew-served machine gun such as the M240B or the M60.

    By the way, the purpose of the 14.5 inch barrel on the M4 is two-fold: first, it’s easier to maneuver in urban combat (i.e. room clearing); second, it’s easier to deal with while jumping out of an airplane, dismounting a combat vehicle, etc. Anyone who complains about its accuracy clearly doesn’t get enough trigger time at the range – or has a crappy EOTech mounted to it. Practice more, or get a Trijicon ACOG – as a matter of fact, I would recommend both.

  • W

    It delights me to see the USMC is finally learning the lessons given (though not necessarily learned) by World War II. The Soviets were far ahead of their time, employing automatic riflemen with RPK rifles (having parts commonality with the AKM), snipers as designated marksmen, and mobile machine gun teams with PKMs.

    I dislike the lower receiver of the HK 416 though because the magazine well is optimized for the HK steel magazine, though USGI mags fit less than ideally. Pmags cannot be used unless the Emag is utilized. HK would have been smart to utilize a magazine well that can fit all magazines. I would also like to see a higher capacity magazine that is actually reliable to be fielded as well (preferably not a drum, though a double stack magazine with 60 rounds…if the surefire ones will be worth a darn).

    I believe the M27 is more ideal as a automatic rifleman’s weapon than the M249 SAW, being lighter, more accurate, and more reliable. Perhaps to reduce logistical requirements, 416 uppers (with 14.5″ and 20″ barrel) uppers will also be fielded to systematically upgrade existing weapons, though i doubt it given the current competition for the next service rifle. perhaps the M27 is a interm solution?

  • http://N/A James Guest

    Sturmgewehr is correct. Simply correct. This is a joke, a really funny jackass joke. The high-quality milled G 3 H&K (Copy of a German Weapon developed at the end of WWII) As a sad matter of fact, the last version of the G 3 is actually better than this “new class of weapon”.
    1. Proven fact that 30 cal weapons produce more casualties between 150 and 400m.
    2. 30 cal (8mm) rounds with cheap tungstun cores traveling at 2900fps do NOT bounce off windshields and DO penetrate body armor plates at 300m.
    3. Blowback piston actuated roller actions are the most reliable.
    4. G 3 is MUCH less expensive, even retooled in 6.8mm.
    5. Only reason to go to 5.56 or even 6.8 is the sad fact that we now have girls in the military. 8mm was calculated long ago a being the best caliber round, considering: recoil, velocity that cold be achieved, penetration, wieght of rounds carried, etc.
    6. .338 is highly touted. 8mm is .332
    7. If you have a doubt, buy a high level H&K G 3 and take it to the range and shoot house.
    8. Even the FN built better weapons in 7.92 and 7.62 or .308
    9. This is not a MG or a suppressing fire weapon Automatic Rifleman’s weapon, BUT the H&K G 3 had a drum fed, 30 cal version that is/was!!!!!
    10 BTW what was wrong with the Stoner???

    • MIchal

      “cheap tungstun cores?” First what is tungstun?
      If it is tungsten then LEARN TO SPELL CORRECTLY not like some idiot with no school!!!
      Second Tungsten carbide cored armor piercing ammo is EXTREMLY expensive. So expensive than even now the US is not buying any large numbers of ammo even in times of war. The couple milion they buy is an insignificant amount that will be issued to elite tier 1 spec-ops. Normal “cannon-fodder” special forces and infantry will get the standard ball ammo no matter what type of enemy they will have to engage…

  • C. Carbon

    Take a weapon from a company… put on a different barrel and change the epic European style sights to some crappy sights (looks very similar to SCAR’s sights)… have your own military designate it whatever they want (M27 IAR)… Now claim it’s a total american design… seems legit. They’d be better of with the old idea of a SCAR-L IAR… or with the new LWCR which in my opinion would be perfect in the hands of US military. Taking advantage of other countries’ technologies and pretend it’s their by “dressing the gun with different clothes”…

    Well it’s all just influence H&K has… that’s the only reason.

    Anyway, wouldn’t it be better to try something new? Why not put the IAR guys with a 7.62x51mm weapon… and leave the riflemen with 5.56x45mm… It’s not like soldiers these days don’t need a high caliber weapon anymore…

    • E3

      “Take a weapon from a company… put on a different barrel and change the epic European style sights to some crappy sights (looks very similar to SCAR’s sights)… have your own military designate it whatever they want (M27 IAR)… Now claim it’s a total american design… seems legit. They’d be better of with the old idea of a SCAR-L IAR… or with the new LWCR which in my opinion would be perfect in the hands of US military. Taking advantage of other countries’ technologies and pretend it’s their by “dressing the gun with different clothes”…

      Well it’s all just influence H&K has… that’s the only reason.

      Anyway, wouldn’t it be better to try something new? Why not put the IAR guys with a 7.62x51mm weapon… and leave the riflemen with 5.56x45mm… It’s not like soldiers these days don’t need a high caliber weapon anymore…”

      What are you saying?? Have you not met American’s? Most claim there ancestoral heritage and wear it on there sleeve…LWRC and S&W could easily produce a weapon = to the 416…Me personally I would’ve gone with LWRC

  • SuperCobraDriver

    Great idea! This will be a great improvement in firepower for the rifle squad. You get 3 M27′s per squad. Better accuracy than an M4/16 and better automatic fire. PLUS the corps is keeping 9 SAW’s per rifle company (that’s 1 per rifle suad). Every rifleman should be issued one.

  • 0311 Marine

    Okay I’m a rifleman with 1st LAR about to deploy at the end of this month and I’m issued the M27 IAR. I’ve been using it the entirety of my work up once I returned from my first Afghan deployment in which I was issued the SAW. And let me say this. Marines Love This Weapon. This weapon is SubMOA meaning at 100 meters a shot group is smaller than a 2 inch group, we’ve used this rifle not only as a suppressive weapon but also as a DMR. The M27 is incredibly accurate. At 100 meters I’ve put 10 rounds in a group the slightly larger than the size of a quarter. On fully automatic I put another 10 rounds in a group 8 inches in diameter. Next the weapon is incredibly easy to maintain, after putting 700 rounds through the weapon the only carbon needing to be cleaned was the gas piston, barrel, chamber and a slight carbon ring on the bolt face.

    For negatives we HATE that there has been no word of issuing out 100 round magazines. My unit issued every IAR gunner 22 30 round magazines. To make matters worse the supposed “good” magazines which are supposed to feed better and reduce jams stick to the magazine well. You press the magazine release but alas the magazine is stuck there and must be yanked out. Due to this we Marines feel that this weapon should NOT replace our SAWs but the M16A4s and later on the M4.

    Note one of the reasons why this replaced the M249 SAW was that the weapons is way more accurate. The argument is why send 100 rounds of suppression when a Marine only needs 1 round to kill. Marines place a high regard to accuracy and well aimed shots. Do most of us ground pounders agree to this? No, I loved my SAW in a firefight. It just felt safer throwing more rounds then everyone else.

    All in all Marines want this weapon. We love it. Just give us 100 round Magazines like Beta C Mags or replace the M16s and M4s and keep the SAWs instead.

    • Prexybill69

      Although I don’t have any experience with the M27,it seems to me that it is a rifle-not a Squad Automatic Weapon/Light machine Gun. If the Marine Corps was really looking for a replacement for the M-249, they should have looked at the ARES Shrike, a LMG upper receiver that is designed for the M-16/M-4 lower receiver. It’s several pounds lighter than the M-249. The ARES-16 AMG-2 dual feed (Belt or Magazine) version in its lightest configuration weighs only 7.5 lbs (3.4 Kg) vs. the M-249′s 17lbs (7.5Kg). In addition, the ARES system can also accept the M-203 grenade launcher!

  • NorThor

    Nice to see that the marines finally managed to trick the higherups to get them the hk416, because thats really what it is. I used to be norwegian army and can tell you that this is a great weapon. only time I’ve ever had a jam with this thing was when I was stupid enough to take it inside after firing it in -56 degrees celsius and then take it outside again to fire it again.

    • Thor

      Yes, HK416N is a great rifle but has as all gas driven weapons problems in extreme cold (Colder than – 15 Celsius), but NorThor wouldn’t know since he probably is a fake and never has fired a real HK416.

      NorThor, stick to your softgun model and stop talking about things you dont have a clue about! But if You are just a moroon who can’t get your facts stright and really has some experience with the HK 416 (M27), post your weapon number for proof of thruth (I can check it).

      As a fact, the standing cold record in Norway is minus 51,2 (Karasjok, Northern Norway1999) and not minus 56 Celsius as NorThor boasts. There was no military exerecise in the Karasjok area in 1999 in the actual record time, so NorThor is propably a another faker with just a HK416 softgun. And he has probably never experienced REAL cold (And he most probably hasn’t been in the Norwegian military at all).

      So, for some practical tech bits on the M27 (HK 416N in the Norwegian military): It’s very precise for an assault rifle (1 MOA or less), quite heavy for a 5,56 assault rifle (4,6kg empty with Aimpoint Comp M4, sling and foregrip attached). Very controllable and precise on automatic fire with support, and goes nicely through three 30 round mags on short bursts without any extreme heating of barrel.

      DaggerSix
      Captain, Norwegian Defence Forces

      • http://yahoo,com CCarterUSAret

        The H&K 416 is the best military battle weapon to hit the market in years, the US Gov will spend billions on a n ew project rather than taking something that has been proven already our tax dollars @ work. Take the Bareta9mm pistole its a peice of crap feilding was stoped at one time because of cracks in the upper slide not to mention it has neg knock down power. The H&K 45 usp or tactical would have been twice the buy and 10 times the weapon one shot one bad guy down even if you hit his pinky toe. Its not about whats best for the troops its about whats going to put more money in the politicains pockets and ever high ranking officers that now work for the privat sector.
        Hope one day our troops will come first love all u guys & gals

        • Cole

          You don’t need to waste money buying foreign pistols when we already have a battle proven .45 caliber weapon system made in America. The 1911 is issued to Marines in Force Recon and the MSOTs, and i’ve been hearing rumors for years that they are going to be fielding them (again) with the grunts, replacing the 9mm brick… i mean M9

      • northor

        I was with 2nd bataljon KPB rifle company on mauken shooting range, the air temprature was -30 with extreme winds coming from the north making the effective temprature -56. That was what we were informed of while we were up there. several guys ended up with frost damages on the march down to the camp. If you’ve been up there you know that is no exaggeration, the place is the coldest military camp in norway due to the geographic features of the valley a real “kuldehøl”, we’ve had everything from french alpine rangers, to US troops up there and they all freeze their balls of (some of us evens sold some of our bootcovers to the US guys who didn’t have stuff like that for 3 times the cost listed in the TS-forms) .

        we were the first contingent in our battalion to try the rifle and the AG416 grenade launcher and had just gotten the new lubricant designed to work with the weapon in the cold (the old stuff apparently had water traces in it, so we were told anyway). And even under those conditions the weapon freaking worked like a clock untill i was stupid enough to bring it into the heating cottage (varmebu). I got chewed out pretty hard for that by our instructors.

        I’ve used the weapon in other situations without issue, I’ve had the barrel partially frozen after stepping one leg through the ice dipping the barrel in as well, worked fine after clearing it. Crawled through a partially frozen swamp, still works, weapon was covered in mud, still works. (Aimpoint was dirty though so I couldn’t hit anything) Its just a good reliable weapon. Only issue was with the rødfis (blank) adapters, they expanded inside the barrel making it impossible to get out and demanded a complete barrel change.

    • DM Dineen

      From what I have seen is almost all rifles freeze up when taken in and out of a warm shelfter. Even our old manuals showed how to build racks in the weather to stop the icing issue.
      My knowledge stops 20 years ago, where my issue gun was an H&K MP5A2 or M16A1. They would stop under the conditions you describe. The Finn RK62 or Gallil AR being nothing but good AK rifles could be made to work easier since a charging handle could be beat against something.
      I have never held the M416 – but from what others report it is a fine weapon.
      Personally I don’t ever want to have to pack anything in sub-zero temperatures again, unless it is a flask of good brandy.

  • http://www.airsoftking.com Gas airsoft guns

    The M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle (IAR) is well known for its lightweight, the magazine-fed is approx 5.56mm weapon, The Infantry Automatic Rifle program introduced in the year 2005.

  • BillyJoe

    I have NO experience with battle rifles beyond the M1 Garand I had in basic training in 1962 so have no comment on the H&K, M4, M16, SAW, etc. However, the new M855A1 round described in the article below sounds like a LOAD OF KRAP!

    I a giving you this M855A1: Should it be the New Round for Soldiers and Marines? by Jeremy Stafford•March 7, 2012
    http://www.gunsandammo.com/2012/03/07/m855a1-should-it-be-the-new-round-for-soldiers-and-marines/
    I am not a ballistician, but I know a load of crap when I see it. There are elements within the U.S. Department of Defense that have been recklessly careening down the road to an improved “green” 5.56 round for a long time. After burning through millions of dollars (at least $32 million, according to the last report), it appears that they’ve finally gotten what they wanted in the M855A1.
    The M855A1 EPR project has had serious issues since its inception. The problems include a lawsuit from the original designer of this round and the attendant multi-million dollar payout. In addition, there was an embarrassing revelation in 2009 that the initial bismuth alloy projectile would destabilize in higher ambient temperatures, causing it to miss the proverbial side of the barn. Great job, guys. Design a round that doesn’t work in the heat while we’re engaged against enemies operating in hot environments! Too determined to be deterred, they went back to work and “fixed” the round, leading us to where we are now.
    I don’t want to be a total naysayer, so let’s talk about the advantages of this new round. It shoots flatter. Of course, the reason it shoots flatter is because they’ve juiced the round up so that it will fly at 3,100 fps. This would be a great achievement except for the fact that they did it by increasing the chamber pressure from 55,000 psi to 63,000 psi. That’s a number closely approaching proof-load pressures. So are new M4s being constructed using stronger materials to handle this hot round? No, of course not. The M4 is being manufactured to the same Technical Data Package (TDP) that they have always been. This means that not only are parts going to wear out at a much higher rate (which is already is an issue with the M4), but if, God forbid, there is any bullet set-back, the number of M4s reportedly going “high order” (i.e., blowing up) should increase exponentially.
    While on the subject of the effect of the M855A1 on service weapons, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that the new round cuts barrel life by almost 50 percent (information sourced by Individual Carbine contenders recently supplied 10,080 rounds of the M855A1 EPR so that they could tune their submission for this new load).
    But no amount of tuning is going to alter the fact that the EPR has a 5.5 MOA accuracy standard. 5.5 MOA? Seriously? The Mk 318 SOST round that the USMC has fielded in Afghanistan is held to a 2 MOA standard, but the latest and greatest round that it’s being replaced by is held to a 5.5 MOA standard? Additionally, the Mk 318 has better terminal ballistics against soft targets, holds together better through intermediate barriers and costs half what the M855A1 costs. In this era of dramatic cost-cutting, it is absolutely mind-boggling as to why they are insisting on fielding a round so inferior in just about every aspect to one that’s already in theater — and pay twice as much for it!
    The reasons for the increase in cost are easy to determine. The three-piece construction of the EPR consists of a copper base and a steel penetrator encased in a reverse drawn (from base to tip) copper jacket. This makes for a complicated manufacturing process that doesn’t really provide an advantage over currently fielded options. The EPR penetrates cinder block marginally better than some of the existing offerings, but it still fares very poorly against windshield glass and other intermediate barriers. It also does not penetrate SAPI body armor or its equivalent, meaning that if we were to come into conflict with another well-equipped nation, we would be forced to fall back to the M995 Armor Piercing ammunition anyway. The original spec for M855 that called for a penetrator was set forth in the 1970s, a time in which steel helmets were common issue in the world. But steel helmets are fading with history and no longer the norm on a modern battlefield. Our enemies today don’t often wear helmets—and the enemies of our tomorrow won’t be wearing ’70’s-vintage steel pots. The inclusion of a non-armor-penetrating steel tip on the 855A1 is a foolish additional step that serves no purpose other than to increase cost. The three-piece construction also increases the chance for something to go wrong, leading to more inconsistencies from round to round and increased accuracy variations.
    The last thing I want to touch on here is the “green” aspect of the M855A1 EPR. This issue has been pushed down our throats for years, and it appears that the DoD has bought into it in a big way. The fact is that aerosolized lead from the ignition of primers containing lead is the only source of lead contamination that presents an issue (unless our soldiers and Marines have taken to licking the exposed base of the current M855 or fail to wash their hands after training).
    OK, so let’s consider the bullets that are put into the ground during training. There has never been a single scientific study that has proven that lead from expended rounds has leached into surrounding soil or found its way into the water table. Not a single study. Not one. The whole concept of a “green” round is flawed. If airborne lead is the concern, shooting outdoors mitigates exposure. I currently work on an outdoor range where I’m exposed to airborne lead just about every day. My blood is drawn and tested for lead twice a year, and I’ve never had a high reading. Not even a remotely abnormal reading. The “green” issue is a political red herring. It’s a distraction. It is an answer to a problem that exists only in the minds of people who put such concerns above the concerns of putting holes into bad people.
    So…to recap: The M855A1 EPR is poorly conceived and poorly executed and represents, at best, only an incremental improvement at an exponential cost. Our warriors and our taxpayers deserve better.
    I would like to thank Dr. Gary Roberts for his invaluable friendship and mentoring. If not for what I’ve learned from him, this rant would not have been possible.
    This article was originally published in Guns & Ammo’s Book of the AR-15, now available in stores.

    • Rohan

      The article you quoted is totally emotive and has little substance.

      Eg
      The reasons for the increase in cost are easy to determine. The three-piece construction of the EPR consists of a copper base and a steel penetrator encased in a reverse drawn (from base to tip) copper jacket.

      The Mk318 is reverse draw and it’s OK, so are most hunting rounds!
      The M855 is a three part round now.

      Blood tests for lead are very limited.
      “It should be noted that there are limitations in both blood and bone lead measurements when the exposure has been in the past. As the half-life of lead in human blood is 28 to 36 days, levels in blood reflect relatively recent exposure (ATSDR 1999).”
      Final Report of the Expert Panel to Review SAS Veterans’ Health Concerns

      The MOA figures of 5 MOA are for mass produced and not the “best” figure of 2 MOA, the same “best” marketing figure for Mk318.

      Neither M855 or 7.62mm M80 will piece SAPI and even .30-06 M2 AP will fail against ESAPI.

      And there are multiply studies (Florida, Sweden and others back to the 90′s) about Lead in ground water. The SAS in Australia rebuilt their ranges because of lead.

    • BanditZeroThree

      BillyJoe,

      My son is a Marine Corps Corporal and squad leader, currently at EMV /29 Palms, ahead of downrange deployment mid year. I am forwarding your analysis to my friend and congressman Allen West; who sits on the Congressional Armed Services committee. He will follow up.

      Thanks,
      B3
      Out

    • mitchell marlow

      Who gives a rats ass…give a Marine Rifleman any weapon and he will proficiently kill the enemy with it

      Former USMC Assistant Fireteam Leader/ M249 SAW gunner With 2ND Platoon INDIA COMPANY 3RD BTN EIGHTH MARINE REGIMENT 1987-1991
      Mitchell B.Marlow

  • Dreadnaught

    I can’t believe all the B.S. I see on this. I would like to know how many of you have been in combat….. And I have used the EOTEC in combat and it works great. Different optics for different missions. I believe the Marines are going to this to go around all the red tape to get the system into the field asap. And someone commented here about the issues with Direct gas impingement having been worked out. Really? I need a weapon that I don’t have to clean all the time. I don’t have access to fancy dodads like sonic vibration B.S. in the field. our small arms could be better,a lot better. The guy who is at the tip of the spear should have the best rifle money can buy! We buy the best ships,Aircraft ,MRAP’s etc. The trigger pullers could use a great weapon and caliber combo. Redtape is getting men killed. Like I said the majority of you have not been there or done it. So tone it down ‘Experts’!

  • http://8tracks.com/owneroak25 building wood

    It’s arduous to search out educated people in this particular subject, but you be understood as you understand what you’re speaking about! Thanks

    • Martin woodhead

      Its a very nice 5.56mm rifle and probably makes a great dmr its not a suppresive weapon though.
      The laws of physics rather puts a downer on firing lot of rounds very fast out of a rifle.
      The British tried the same idea with light support weapon it just doesnt work.

    • SharonAnne

      something I have not seen is if the M27 fires from an open bolt when on automatic. The equivalent rifle from LWRC fires from a closed bolt on semi and open bolt on full auto. This is very important for a firearms intended for suppression fire and fire superiority. Does anyone know if this is the case for the M27?

  • Big Brotha

    Brits are equipping their military with a rifle from an American-owned company (LMT)
    as the Americans are equipping their military with a rifle from a Brit-owned company (H&K)

    • Cole

      Wait wtf are you talking about exactly? H&K? Heckler & Koch? That’s German, not British…

    • Eric

      And the HK is built in America

      • nick k

        lol German made built in America the m27 was copied completely from the Stoners M16 lol.