The Next Gen 7.62mm NEGEV NG7 Machine Gun

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Later this month IWI will officially unveil their new NEGEV NG7 Machine Gun. It will be chambered in 7.62x51mm but retain the same size as the standard model IWI Negev.

The company is calling it “the World’s Only 7.62mm Caliber Light Machine Gun with Semi-Automatic Mode”. As far as I know this is accurate. I don’t think that the FN Herstal Mk. 48 (M249 chambered in 7.62mm) has a semi-automatic fire mode. This feature will allow troops to use the machine gun as a rifle if the situation requires it, for example if they run low on ammo.

Machine gunners are often given awful stocks. It is nice to see some real thought put into the design of the NG7 butt stock. It is foldable and is adjustable for both length of pull and cheek height. The butt plate is of the tyre tread variety.

The stock is based on the FAB Defense GLR-16 AR-15 stock. [ Thanks to Joe for the tip ]

From the press release …

The NEGEV NG7 includes a semi-automatic firing mode that enables accurate fire in combat situations, including ambush, Close Quarter Battle (CQB), and when shooting via telescope – and is the only 7.62 with single bullet firing capability. In automatic mode, its rate of fire is over 700 bullets per minute. Exceptionally lightweight (weighing less than 8 kg), it can be fired from a variety of mounts, including special mounts on helicopters, land vehicles, and naval vessels.

Features include a gas regulator for additional power in harsh conditions such as mud and dirt, tritium night sights, picatinny rails for optical and other devices, and four safety mechanisms to minIWIze unwanted fire. The NEGEV NG7 – which delivers remarkable Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF) and long service life – is drum or belt-chain fed, fires from an open bolt position, and is easily dismantled for maintenance in the field.

One reader of the blog told me that he first saw a prototype 7.62mm version of the Negev about 15 years ago but nothing came of it. Good things take time!

[ Many thanks to Ziv and Ed Friedman (Shooting Illustrated). ]


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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  • http://www.youtube.com/80spodcastchannel nature223

    that ISNT new thinking, the MG-34 has semi and the trick was to use the semi for ranging and setting up a killzone, then they’d hose it with full auto.
    nice looking beast, who needs a bullet hose when you want to trick the baddies with a reliable single round fired.

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/ Steve (The Firearm Blog)

      I don’t think they are claiming to be the first ever to make a semi-automatic machine gun.

      • http://www.youtube.com/80spodcastchannel nature223

        true, I was merely relating an earlier example.

      • Madeleine Goddard

        I suspect the best early example is the Bren (.303 Enfield then 7.62mm in its later L4 incarnation) dating from a 1929 prototype. The point of the Bren in British Empire/Commonwealth use was that single shot semi-automatic was the default setting to conceal the fact that an automatic weapon was being used. The firer could switch to auto once a suitable target appeared. I have seen range firing in the early 1990s where successive single shot rounds went through the same hole at 600m and burst groupings were inside a 4″ circle; the lack of ‘spray’ was actually a weak point compared with the later FN MAG.

  • Joe Schmoe

    Good stuff.

    Having shot and used the 5.56mm Negev LMG in my time in the army, I can safely say that this should be an impressive LMG. I’ve never seen a gun, other than the M240, suffer so much abuse (mostly at the hands of the soldiers themselves) and still fire:

    http://youtu.be/rEElWxmBJck
    http://youtu.be/mWGV1ugQ1HU

    And shaving off 4KG off the current [Israeli] issue M240B is no mean feat, I’m sure that IWI is going to be receiving a lot of love letters from the M240 gunners in the reserves once/if they switch to the NG7.

    The buttstock by the way is a variant of the FAB Defense GLR-16:
    http://www.fab-defense.com/en/category-buttstocks/id-8/ar15-m16-buttstock.html

    It’s also interesting for them to put the rail on the back of the weapon, the latest 5.56mm Negev variant has the rail on the barrel itself so that it can be zeroed to it since you have to change barrels, gunners are therefore issued several Mepro-21’s for each barrel.

    • http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/ Steve (The Firearm Blog)

      Thanks for pointing out the stock. I have updated the post.

    • Erwos

      I had a GLR-16 stock on my AR-15 carbine, and it is excellent. I also have the variant with the recoil-reduction springs, which I use on my Saiga 12… it helps tremendously in controlling it during rapid fire.

  • John Doe

    Looks like a thoughtfully designed machine gun. The stocks on current M240s and M249s aren’t too comfortable, so I like that considered that.

    I wish I could fire off a few belts, looks great.

  • charles222

    I don’t think we should really be counting a weapon produced seventy years ago that was replaced before the 1940s were over, either.

    Anyway: STEVE! CAA/FAB/Mako does not qualify as a “nice stock” by any stretch of the imagination. Cheaply made junk. There is also zero reason to provide an adjustable comb on an area weapon; waste of time and plain counterintuitive to the purpose of a machine gun.

    • Joe Schmoe

      May I ask what FAB Defense equipment you have used?

      Because in the army I used their stock, forward VFG, pistol grip, rails, etc, and all have served me faithfully and never broke or even hinted at that. Most of the Israeli army uses FAB Defense aftermarket items.

      So where did you get that FAB is automatically “cheaply made junk”?

      And secondly, it is clear that you haven’t handled many AR’s in your time. One of the hardest things is to get a good cheek weld while being able to see through the sights, especially when they are raised scopes (Trijicons, etc).

      http://img69.imageshack.us/img69/9341/shaldagnegevacog.jpg
      http://media.militaryphotos.net/photos/albums/LIC-2004-ISRAEL/abv.jpg

      • Riceball

        In all fairness to Charles re his comment about an adjustable cheek piece, he did say that he thought it was useless on a area weapon, not useless in general.

      • Joe Schmoe

        @ Riceball –

        Granted that I may have been a bit harsh but an MG requires a raised stock for the same reason as any rifle or other weapon, to get a good cheek grip while being able to align your eyes with the sights level.

      • Charles222

        I’ve used their light mounts and stocks. And yes they are trash compared to any other vendor on the market. As for your silly assertion that machine guns need a raised stock-I carried a SAW for the better part of two years. Never felt inferior for being unable to adjust the height on it.

        As for the guy saying a machine gun is not an area weapon, are you stupid, or just pretending to be? “spray and pray” is not at all the same as using a machine gun against an area target. Feel free to consult FM 3.22-68 if you don’t believe me.

      • Alex-mac

        Adjustable length and height butt-stock increases ergonomics which increases accuracy.

        With polymer shaping technology it should really come as standard.

      • Joe Schmoe

        @ Charles222 –

        Well Charles, I don’t know what to tell you. But I have never heard a complaint about FAB Defense accessories up till now; care to clarify why they are trash (besides not having the Surefire name written on the side)?

        And if you were a SAW gunner then let me ask you a question; look at the following two photos (first one’s Google returned):

        http://media.defenseindustrydaily.com/images/ORD_M249-CB_lg.jpg
        http://img37.imageshack.us/img37/6908/20051021135134saw200510.jpg

        With the scopes attached are these gunners able to make a solid cheek weld? Answer: No.

        Now wouldn’t it be nice if they had a stock that could raise the cheek rest? A stock that could also fold to the side completely out of the way for CQB and vehicle transportation? How would such a stock be a bad thing?

        To be honest, I see this all to often in many gun forums, etc. A lot of “old-timers” are very resistant and derisive to new innovations and tactics, saying that since the old way was worked, why improve?

        Times change, equipment and tactics get better. So what if the old stock design “gets-you-by”, if it can be improved upon then why not do it?

      • Erwos

        Charles222, as I noted in another comment, I own the stock referenced in the post and it works fine, just as well as the Magpul gear I’ve used at a similar price point. Are you sure you’re not confusing CAA and Fab? CAA rips Fab off, they’re not the same company.

    • S O

      A machine gun is no “area weapon”.

      Spray & pray means to waste ammunition, no matter what weapon you use.

      Suppression requires accuracy, too. Lots of bullets in the area somewhere else does not suppress the more resolute half of the hostiles. You need to visit their place closely and repeatedly to force them to stay behind cover.

  • Brando

    HK 11/21 series are select-fire.

  • S O

    (“the World’s Only 7.62mm Caliber Light Machine Gun with Semi-Automatic Mode”. As far as I know this is accurate…)

    I think MG 8 and HK 21E may disagree with you, but that’s a matter of the definition of “light”. Maybe they define “light machinegun” as “machinegun for which you don’t get a tripod issued”. HK21E may also be out of production (I’m sure you can still order it if you want to buy bulk, though).

    http://world.guns.ru/machine/de/hk-21-and-23-e.html

    • Aurelien

      I believe it’s just a PR thing… In the 1920s the French Army started using the MAC24 (later 24/29) which was a mag-fed light machinegun that could fire semi or full auto. So thats not really that revolutionary.

  • http://army.fresh.co.il Ziv

    As i told Steve earlier, there were attempts to make an israeli 7.62mm MGs. The first one was made at the early 80s and relied on the soviet RPD, later during the 90s there was a different failed version of the negev. hopefully i’ll post some more details about it later on

  • adolf stalin

    Ever heard of the new HK MG121, light semi auto capable German machine gun. I would rather buy German. 8kg is light for 7.62nato. Germans are still the Master race, when it comes to engineering of any kind

    • Leonard

      You kinda ruined your otherwise valid point through your stupid nickname and the use of the term “master race”.

      Yes we Germans are pretty good at engineering, but it’s not in our genes but result of education and culture, and it took us decades if not centuries to get there.

      That aside, I think this NG7 looks pretty exciting, and a comparison with the HK121 would certainly be interesting (though the HK121 is basically a 7,62 version of the MG4).

      • S O

        …and the MG4 is a belated and somewhat embarrassing quasi-copy of the FNH Minimi formula.

    • West

      Im not usually a big fan of censorship but I think somebody should consider removing this commenter from the site.

      Frankly, im a bit embarrassed to post my name next to ‘adolf stalin’ and his comments about the Master Race.

    • John Doe

      “Ever heard of the new HK MG121, light semi auto capable German machine gun. I would rather buy German. 8kg is light for 7.62nato.”

      Valid point.

      “Germans are still the Master race”

      Leave, and never come back please.

    • http://www.youtube.com/80spodcastchannel nature223

      Hey…it’s just a name. so what what if both are evil
      and the hitler reference is only history.. so what, it was only “some people, he tried to exterminate”
      and the need to come here and make trouble is a given internet right..ask any troll on another place of the internet
      those are pretty bad, but the most annoying is; all of the previous could’ve been avoided if his parents had practiced proper family planning to stop making people with a hidden need to be a jerk for some sick attention.

      STEVE, blocking i.p’s are always a good alternative to repeat troublemakers.

  • Lance

    Looks nice and looks lighter than a M-240B/L. Has some PKM features in the design and looks nice. Though like the SEALs I still have my sights set on the classic M-60E3.

  • Axel n

    These lightweight 7.62 machineguns, do they last as long as the 5kg heavier older grneration? I would suspect that making parts ligter also shortens the service life of the gun.

    • Joe Schmoe

      The older generation (M240, etc) was designed in an age of slide rules and where aluminum was cutting edge technology. Today’s modern 3D design tools and materials help create weapons that are not only stronger, more reliable but also lighter.

      • jdun1911

        Give me a break. Sheet metal is sheet metal. It the same old stuff just repackaged and marketed to a new generation.

      • S O

        Surface finish quality can now be done much, much better than twenty years before because of advances in very hard tools.

        Finite elements numerical simulation allows for calculation of parts’ stresses and lead to a better understanding for how to avoid stress spikes.

        Quality control of today is much better than 20-30 years ago. We have now non-destructive testing methods to detect even tiny irregularities and micro fissures. We can furthermore measure whether the metal is within spec (alloy et cetera) with non-destructive testing methods.

      • jdun1911

        Let take an example: Ma Deuce otherwise known as the M2 Browning .50 Caliber BMG Machine Gun.

        The US military use M2 that was built BEFORE WWII. They still work. They are being use in Afghanistan and other places. To said modern guns are built stronger and better than their newer counterpart has no concept of history and their design.

        You still have a lot of weapons that was made before 1900 that are still in use around the world. The Mosin Nagant and Lee Enfield come to mind. Old guns before the age of computers was overbuilt and made to last basically forever. They were overbuilt because in the old days men were men.

        Again Sheet Metal is Sheet Metal. Marketing is marketing and unfortunately the public school system don’t teach critical thinking skills anymore.

      • W

        jdun, id hate to burst your bubble, but the PPSH submachine guns and post AK47 AK series are constructed of stamped sheet metal. There are plenty of those weapons lying around. The MP5 and G3 series also used stamped steel receivers, and those weapons are PLENTY rugged enough. This argument of stamped versus milled receivers is absolutely rediculous. Different construction methods for different designs.

        SO, excellent post!

      • John Doe

        @jdun1911 The phobia of innovation isn’t necessary. While there are solid designs like the M2, innovation makes things better.

        Sheet metal is not just sheet metal. That’s like saying, “Oh, wood is wood.” There’s well made sheet metal, without defects, and there’s stuff stamped out of Chinese sheet metal that’s partially rusting.

        While new methods don’t make it better, old designs with tons of metal don’t necessarily make it better either. It’s a combination of good design and good manufacturing that makes a good gun.

        Let’s move with the times.

  • snmp

    FN have the Minimi in 7.62 NATO for around 8kg (in service with French force in Afghanistan)

    By the way the semiatutomatic mode in Machinegun mean more parts & more defects problems

  • Jack Luz

    Sooner or later, this was going to be a natural progression with the NEGEV. I wonder if Singapore’s Ultramax 100 is not far behind.

  • Jack Luz

    Sooner or later, this was going to be a natural progression for the NEGEV. I wonder if Singapore’s Ultramax 100 is not far behind.

  • Jacob

    I’m not very up to date on military weapons. Are the metals used to make machine guns more thermally stable or is a different system used to release all the heat generated during firing?

    • Burst

      The former, I suppose. The days of manual waterpumps and cooling fins attached to MG barrels are long gone, and the design makes the heat outside the chamber a fractional issue.

      If your barrel is melting, the chassis’ heat may be of concern, but there are likely to be equally pressing issues, at that time.

    • W

      machine guns have features that facilitate heavier rates of fire, such as thicker receivers, thicker barrels that are quick changable, heavier gas tube, and open bolt system (which allows for better cooling to prevent cook offs).

      Other than that, they are not drastically different than rifles. They are just designed to accomodate higher and more prolonged rates of fire.

  • Michael

    Semi Auto mode, When I saw that I was thinking maybe a Civilian version, Oh how nice that would be.
    7.62 machine guns get smaller, lighter and now semi auto. Maybe its time to bring out the Bren Gun

    • David

      And mag fed again too. Agreed, I would love to shoot a Bren on full.

      • http://www.youtube.com/80spodcastchannel nature223

        belt feed is a BOTTOMLESS magazine, but a box feed adapter would be cool too.

  • love adolp

    There are many light weight machine guns, this product has good marketing, but its nothing special.HK 21 was about 8kg and had semi auto funtion, the still experimental HK121 is a light weight weapon as is new polish PKM based 7.62nato Machine gun. Only people who believe marketing hype are newbies, people well versed in arms cannot be influenced by marketing tactics of companies with average products who depend of ignorance. Most nations on earth love germans and their products

    • Michael

      But it is usually the “Newbie” Marketing type that buys the Kit

      • love adolp

        Micheal, i disagree. Military men of all nations know what is good, but politicians are corrupt everywhere, so a bit of bribe (campign contributions) in the right hand gets contracts

    • jdun1911

      People that understand the history, design of firearms, and uses are not stupid enough to fall for marketing tricks. People that actually used their brain do not not fall for marketing tricks.

      A valid point is that newer gun design tend to be lighter. You can’t say they are strong or more durable.

      I can open a human skull with the butt stock on a Mosin Nagant without much problem. However the butt stock of the SCAR will break into two. Your opponent will be so pissed that he’ll kill you with his own bear hands. Not because you hit him but because you hit him with a cheap ass plastic butt stock.

      • W

        I dont think a opponent would have much emotion after a well-trained operator with a SCAR is done with him. he’ll have couple of 22 or 30-caliber sized holes in his upper chest and head with a terminal case of “dead”.

      • mosinman

        i dont like the scar but i know it works. that being said i think that weapons should be light yet strong.

  • Sid

    I entered service in 1986. The problems we were having with the M-60 was that the damn weapons were shot out. Too many rounds put through them for the metal used. Most of our guns were in the shop as often as they were in the field.

    The issue became one of how much metal must be used to make a gun last in the long term given the abuse it will receive. The M240B is a heavy gun. Also, it cannot be fired as easily as the M-60. It is a heavy metal answer to an engineering problem.

    If an army buys a machine gun, they have several options:
    1) buy a lightweight gun that will need refit more often
    2) buy a heavy gun that will need refit less often
    3) invent something a whole lot better than what is currently available

    From reading this, I think IMI is claiming they have done #3 above. Only time will tell.

  • mosinman

    Isreal sure seems to know how to make some pretty good weapons. id like to see how this think stands up to that barret m-240 varient

  • http://flickr.com/greyguns Greyghost

    Looks more like an m60 than anything else, very nice.

  • David

    Actually that stock IS a Fab Defense GLR-16 with Fab’s universal adjustable cheek piece. It’s a 23 dollar part that can be mounted on any of FabDef’s AR stocks. But what is important here is that if the 7.62 is too much recoil in a light weight MG (the m60 had an obscene amount of weight to soak up the 7.62’s power) then that stock can be swapped for Fab’s GL-Shock recoil absorbing stock. Seeing that this undercuts the M240’s weight by 4kg I’m expecting this to be a very popular upgrade since it will be a drop in $70 part. I run this stock on my shotgun and it greatly reduces soreness and fatigue from running 3″ magnum buckshot and slugs in my ultra-light Mossberg 500.

  • Nikusha

    Semiautomatic exclusivity claim is incorrect. HK21E has a semi auto and short burst modes, plus full auto, of course. so not sure why they claim its the only 7.62 with semi-auto mode. maybe HK21E is no longer made.