[SHOT 2020] FN Mk48 Light Machine Gun in 6.5 Creedmoor

    FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    Out on the FN booth, on a pedestal all of its own, was the new FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM light machine gun, chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor, it was a response to a US Special Operations Command tender for a version of the 7.62×51 Mk48, a larger calibre variant of FN’s Minimi (or the M249 normally chambered in 5.56×45).

    FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    This is our first look at the gun in person, the new MK48 6.5CM was developed for US SOCOM in 2018 and made public at Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC) in May 2019. Existing MK48 Mod. 1s can be configured at the armourer level to the Mod. 2 in the new calibre with an upgrade and barrel conversion kit.

    Interestingly the gun was marked as a Mk48 Mod. 0, conversion kits for the guns are planned  (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    The 6.5 Creedmoor gun embodies all of FN’s latest updates to the Mk48 including a more ergonomic adjustable stock with variable length of pull and cheek piece height. It has a locking charging handle, an improved double notched sear an proved forend with picatinny rail segments at 3, 6 and 9 o’clock.

    FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    FN say the feed tray is now more robust with a strengthened tray latch and the bipod legs have also been improved. The gun on display at SHOT Show was fitted with a Surefire SOCOM260-TI suppressor.

    FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    Development of the gun is still underway and is intended to fulfil an intermediate role between the 5.56×45 Mk46 and the 7.62×51 Mk48 Mod. 1. The exact weight of the gun is currently undisclosed but from handling it feels very similar to the weight of the Mk48 Mod. 1.

    FN Mk48 Mod. 2 6.5CM (Matthew Moss/TFB)

    Austin visited the FN booth and took a look at FN’s brand new SCAR 20S in 6.5 Creedmoor, check that out here.

    Matthew Moss

    Matthew Moss – Assistant Editor.

    Matt is a British historian specialising in small arms development and military history. He has written for a variety of publications in both the US and UK he also runs www.historicalfirearms.info, a blog that explores the history, development and use of firearms. Matt is also co-founder of www.armourersbench.com, a new video series on historically significant small arms.

    Reach Matt at: [email protected]


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