In June the US Army began upgrading their .50 cal M2 heavy machine guns to the slightly improved M2A1 variant. The M2A1 allows the operator to replace the barrel without have adjust headspace and timing. Army.mil reports …
Bonner said this is the first major change to the M2 weapon system since the machine gun was fielded in the 1930s.
This fiscal year, the Small Arms Repair Facility expects to overhaul 1,700 M2 machine guns. An additional 3,600 are planned for fiscal year 2012 and the program is slated to continue for several more years.
“This is a lot of good work for the small arms facility,” said Bonner. “This work is going to last for several years.”
Approval for the conversion program included a pilot overhaul and conversion in February and March. In June, the first of the 1,700 weapons for fiscal year 11 were inducted.
In almost 80 years of service, John Moses Browning’s M2 has remained virtually unchanged.