General Dynamics Lightweight Medium Machine Gun

General Dynamics in the USA have recently unveiled a new systems called the LWMMG that utilises the .338 Norma Magnum round, positioned between the 7.62mm GPMG and 12.7mm HMG, but based on neither.

The press release says

General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products, a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), today unveiled a next-generation Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LWMMG) at the Joint Armaments Conference in Seattle, Wash.

Identifying an unmet warfighter need, General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products conducted its own research and development program to develop the LWMMG in just over one year. The weapon is designed for low-cost production and for maximum effectiveness at the small unit level, where weight and lethality are decisive factors.

“The LWMMG is an affordable weapon that closes a current operational gap, providing .50 caliber-like firepower in range and effect at the same weight and size of currently fielded 7.62mm machine guns,” said Steve Elgin, vice president and general manager of armament systems for General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products. “Weighing in at 24 pounds and featuring a fully collapsible stock, the LWMMG offers superior mobility and portability in both mounted and dismounted operations.”

General Dynamics’ LWMMG also offers a distinct advantage in both extended and close-in fighting by using the highly efficient .338 Norma Magnum cartridge for increased accuracy and lethality out to 1,700 meters, a distance currently gapped in the operational capabilities of warfighters.

“By employing the larger .338 NM round, the LWMMG delivers twice the range and dramatically increases lethality above the 7.62 round,” said Elgin. “In addition, the LWMMG goes beyond providing suppressive fire and gives warfighters the ability to attack point targets at significantly extended ranges.”

The LWMMG has a firing rate of 500 rounds per minute, a maximum range of 5,642 meters, and is equipped with quick-change barrel technology. In addition to use by dismounted infantry and on ground vehicles, the weapon can be used as the armament system aboard helicopters and littoral craft, providing greater range and effectiveness for those platforms.

“The LWMMG is a well-designed machine gun ideally suited to provide long-range lethality to U.S. and allied forces,” Elgin said.

Interesting.

Click here to read the data sheet and Wikipedia has a good page on the 338 Norma Magnum

There are lots of pluses but ammunition weight might be a problem in the dismounted role and the .338NM isn’t used by anything else we have so it would mean yet another ammunition nature being inserted into the logistics chain.

Is this a solution in search of a problem, a game changer, a piece of equipment that can usefully fill a gap or somewhere in between?

 

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James
James
June 2, 2012 11:18 pm

Don’t know if we’d have a use for it, but you can bet your bottom dollar that a savvy old company like GD does not spend a year and $millions reinventing the wheel unless they’ve been tipped the wink by the DoD that there will be a service buyer, and once either the US Army or USMC have bought it, other internationals will line up.

Would be interesting to see if there’s the capability to provide pretty accurate single shot suppressive fire out to 1500m+ – that is something companies cannot do unless they have snipers, which they mostly do, but the snipers are always miles away dressed up like a tree and doing the kitten crawl at 0.02 mph when you want an long range burst and some heavy fire support. I don’t know if this weapon is the one to deliver that single shot accuracy / heavy burst Jekyll and Hyde character, but there may be a need for it.

Presumably it can easily be re-chambered in .338 Lapua, which is a standard nature now.

Sol
Sol
June 2, 2012 11:27 pm

NAVAIR has been looking for a heavier weapon than the M240 for use on the MV-22 and CH-53. using the 5.56 caliber machineguns in the aerial gunnery role has been found lacking so that’s the market place without the weight penalty of a 50 cal.

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 3, 2012 1:24 am

That’s the heaviest looking lightweight gun I think I’ve ever seen. Any weight details or did I just miss that like a goon?

Observer
Observer
June 3, 2012 1:55 am

… yawn?

@James

I suspect they didn’t really develop it from scratch, GD was the point man for ST Kinetic’s venture into the IAR program, which was a pretty sad failure, but I suspect some of the tech got reused. Compare the general body shape of the gun and the join between the buttstock and the main body of the MG in the 1st picture and the 2nd video (especially the one in the background) with that of the Ultimax 100. A lot of similarities. In fact, it simply looks like a U-100 upsized and chambered for belt loading. Which is a good marketing strategy.

Obsvr
Obsvr
June 3, 2012 4:14 am

A cynic might ask is the proposed type of ammo within its patent period and if so who owns the patent. MMGs are support not platoon weapons. Proper MMGs don’t need a butt.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 6:55 am

Hi James,

Interesting that you positioned it at coy level (I would, too).

RE ” to deliver that single shot accuracy / heavy burst Jekyll and Hyde character, but there may be a need for it”
– Russians have had their platoon support weapon for that for decades, but it has only half of the (claimed) effective range
– on the other hand, in an emergency it can switch to firing the round that the is also used in the rest of the platoon

RE “Presumably it can easily be re-chambered in .338 Lapua, which is a standard nature now”
– would you do that? This round packs 6.5% more efficiently, and has a lower drag factor (I guess the Lapua would still be a preferred choice for snipers; Now, there would still be some in a company, or would such a team become a bn asset?)

Chris B: 24 lb, in the link, at the end of the leading-in article

S O
S O
June 3, 2012 6:57 am

“Is this a solution in search of a problem…”

It’s a solution for mounted use, the problem being the fact that everything that’s armoured is armoured against 7.62NATO AP at the very least.

This problem calls for an intermediate cartridge between 7.62×51 and 12.7×99.

James
James
June 3, 2012 7:22 am

ACC,

If .338 Lapua is the sniper’s choice, let them have it. All the sniper geeks will have spent years obsessing about it, and it is probably the best answer.

If a .338 LMG is needed for suppressive fire at 1500m, for God’s sake let’s not have a second nature of .338. The QM will go nuts at having to indent for and control two types of nearly identical ammo. As far as I’m concerned, with burst fire it is not accuracy you are after, but the beaten zone and making a shedload of banging and ricochetting noise downrange. For single shot aimed suppressive fire, Lapua is better than anything else in .338, so let’s go with the flow. Real question is can you get both heavy auto AND pretty accurate single shot out of this weapon? If not, GD missed a trick. Might need a barrel change or different optics, but as a support weapon that’s do-able.

Marcase
Marcase
June 3, 2012 7:41 am

As a replacement for the crew-served but especially vehicle mounted .50cal M2 this LWMMG might have a future, if the .50cal gets replaced entirely.
The .338 NM ammo is lighter (in bulk) than the ubiquitous .50cal, and the LWMMG might have a lighter (ring-mount) recoil than the “Ma Deuce” making it more adapatable and an ideal ‘drop-in’ replacement for vehicle and especially helicopter gun mounts.
But vehicles can carry .50cal ammo without penalties so weight is a non-issue in that respect.

But as a (carried) infantry support weapon as a replacement for the 7.62 M240/GPMG – not so much.
Even though the LWMMG screams SOF and undoubtedly some will find their way to the snake-eater community, regular light infantry doesn’t carry .50cal HMGs so the real need for this .338 NM on the platoon/company level is rather moot.

Also, the US Army as prime customer is notoriously conservative re new weapons and ammo (remember those XM-8 /6.8mm projects), so I doubt the LWMMG has any real future.

Then again, Ma Deuce *is* getting really old…

S O
S O
June 3, 2012 7:53 am

Marcase, the difference in ammo volume is relevant to vehicles. The weights are irrelevant differences.

The reason for why AFVs make much use of 7.62NATO is that they can many times as much belted 7.62 as 12.7.

Pete Arundel
Pete Arundel
June 3, 2012 8:17 am

Well, having done a bit of quick Googling, it appears that the .338 Norma Magnum and .338 Lapua Magnum are based on the same case (.416 Rigby) but the Norma cartridge is shorter. In theory, since rim diameters etc are the same, you could re-chamber all your .338 LM sniper rifles for the Norma cartridge but, due to the longer COAL, you maybe couldn’t re-chamber your LWMMG for the Lapua round.

Considering the fact that the .338 Lapua Magnum is already in service with several countries it makes you wonder why GD picked the Norma cartridge for their new machinegun.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 8:33 am

Hi Pete, RE ” you could re-chamber all your .338 LM sniper rifles for the Norma cartridge but, due to the longer COAL, you maybe couldn’t re-chamber your LWMMG for the Lapua round.”

…or have both with the “Remington Modular Sniper Rifle (MSR). This is a switch chambering and barrel sniper rifle that can also fire .338 Lapua Magnum, .300 Winchester Magnum, and 7.62x51mm NATO cartridges.” as Wiki says, but who wants to buy new rifles

Phil
June 3, 2012 9:27 am

What would it do?

In a conventional at it battle you need shit loads of firepower downrage making a nasty beaten zone. We already have weapons that can do that and out at the ranges mentioned in the article how on Earth are you going to know where a canny enemy is?

In an Afghan style conflict there are other systems in use that can provide pin point accuracy out at range (snipers) and can smash it up at longer ranges from sangers or vehicles where weight is no issue.

It seems to fill a gap where really there is no actual gap except in Modern Warfare 3.

We already possess and so do most first world armies a variety of systems at company group level that can provide overlapping fields of fires out to a realistic, likely range.

ChrisM
ChrisM
June 3, 2012 9:55 am

“currently gapped in the operational capabilities of warfighters.”

Some sick came up into my mouth.

John Hartley
John Hartley
June 3, 2012 10:14 am

This is sort of what I have been going on about. This new .338NM GPMG has been on an ARRSE thread for a week or so.
I think 7.62×51 is too light for the roles asked of it lately, but jumping to .338 NM or Lapua, may be too heavy(esp the ammo).
I think a 7.62+P is probably the way to go. Though you would have to size it 7.7×52 to stop it being used in old,weak guns.
The wars in Iraq/Afghanistan have reminded the top brass that good small arms are needed. Many are now worn from these conflicts. There may be a window for new small arms & calibres in the 2015-25 period.
If you want to look 40 years ahead, look up the US patents on hybrid cartridge/rail gun machine guns.

B.Smitty
B.Smitty
June 3, 2012 1:44 pm

Would make for an interesting coax or RWS mount, where you have the fire control, optics and stabilization needed to hit targets 1700m away.

B.Smitty
B.Smitty
June 3, 2012 1:47 pm

You really won’t get ammo commonality between sniper and MMG ammo. Snipers will always need match-grade rounds. So let them have whatever caliber they want.

Observer
Observer
June 3, 2012 1:48 pm

“As a replacement for the crew-served but especially vehicle mounted .50cal M2 this LWMMG might have a future”

Not going to happen. Way too many M2s in stock to be replaced easily. Been tried, no dice.

“or have both with the “Remington Modular Sniper Rifle (MSR). This is a switch chambering”

And chucking an entirely new adaptable bolt system into a weapon not designed for it? Sounds like a prescription for trouble. These things arn’t exactly LEGO.

“This problem calls for an intermediate cartridge between 7.62×51 and 12.7×99.”

Go straight to 12.7mm. Problem solved.

“We already possess and so do most first world armies a variety of systems at company group level that can provide overlapping fields of fires out to a realistic, likely range.”

So true. No niche for this poor guy.

Aussie Johnno
Aussie Johnno
June 3, 2012 1:53 pm

.338 came into operation on marksmans rifles specifically introduced because of the conditions in Afganistan. .50 sniper rifles being too heavy and 7.62 being limited at range. You have to wonder where such Afgan specials will fit in once the Afgan operation winds down and we go back to jungle bashing or worrying about urban warefare. Post Afganistan you have to bet that funding priorities will move away from Armies so exotic calibres will probably be restricted to the SF world.

James
James
June 3, 2012 2:30 pm

Counterpoint, for debate.

ROE developed from Bosnia via the Gulf to Afghanistan are likely to prove enduring, and applicable to future interventions anywhere else. The lawyers are in their comfort zone. Phil and Observer are correct about existing weapons systems offering overlapping coverage (out to 5+ kms for Infantry company and armoured Squadron integral weapons), BUT, once you get beyond 1000 metres it is all of the HE variety, and that is a problem for ROE. A couple of systems buck this trend – Javelin an example.

So the issue is how do you extend the lethality, yet remain on the side of the ROE? You need precision effects.

(BTW, I’m not making a case for this weapon – I don’t know enough about its’ capabilities. But this is a good thread to hijack).

In addition to the existing sniper pair, strikes me you want something like a guided 40mm grenade as direct fire out to about 2000m, and guided 81 mm mortars along with a laser designator on a small UAV under company control covering the 2000-5000m gap. Impress the lawyers enough with the precision aspect, and you’ll get the tick in the box. Both 40mm grenade and 81mm mortar are small enough to kill the enemy without blowing down the house.

Of course, in the gloves off fight, both systems can revert to the balls out “HE and as much as possible” traditional usage.

Do you think it would be a wise investment for a biggish defence company to make a “Universal Target Designator” – assuming that’ll be a laser on a Picatinny rail – and a set of fuses for common HE ammo types that hunt down the laser speckles? Small fuse for 40mm grenades, big fuses for mortars and artillery shells.

Phil
June 3, 2012 2:43 pm

In the few instances where you can’t bring anything but HE down on a target (and even then the 81mm is handy) is it worth lugging this thing around just in case its in the right place at the right time? And surely then a MMG is just as bad a weapon in ROE terms?! And if you want it single shot you’ll need a bloke who is trained to that standard, we could call him a sniper or something.

I just don’t see the utility. If it was completely free in every way and hovered their way into battle with no fuel needed for the power source and had hollywood belts of ammo then cool.

I can’t see the weapon being realistically justifiable. On paper it might sound good, but not in the real world with real logistics and weight issues.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 2:53 pm

Hi Johnno,

As you say “.50 sniper rifles being too heavy”… for A-stan!
– in urban conditions, at lesser ranges, you can take out guys lurking behind walls
– as you say, SF and police/ c-terrorist future for the lesser calibers

But this new “thingy” could be an optional extra at bn level, being capable of both bursts and sniper shots (?) at a distance

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 3:03 pm

Hi James, why lug the heavy mortar barrel around when you can have one of these in a (disposable) backbag – so quite a few for a half-platoon patrol. 1m accuracy and can loiter for 30 mins
http://ytilaerniereh.com/2011/09/12/the-us-army-has-given-aerovironment-a-5-million-contract-for-a-lethal-backpack-uav-called-the-switchblade-it-is-the-first-announced-order-for-this-type-of-weapon-but-it-has-probably-been-in-the-hand/

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 3:13 pm

This one is better (in the sense of showing the iPad steering and accuracy) though not in production yet

Fedaykin
June 3, 2012 4:40 pm

Problem is there is no money to got out and buy a new machine gun for the British armed forces.

Given the choice between .338 Norma and .338 Lapua Magnum the latter would be the better choice as it is a NATO standard round with production set up. In respect of this particular machine gun it sounds like US special forces want a machine gun that is more portable then the .50cal and harder hitting the the M240.

But back to my initial point the British army fields the FN Minimi, FN MAG/L7 and the .50cal already which gives good reach out to different ranges. Introducing another machine gun in these cash tight times and with the draw down from Afghanistan is rapidly approaching.

The more acute issue for the army post Afghanistan is funding a replacement for the L85A2 IW. I was talking to the bods from Riflecraft a few weeks back (MOD sction 5 dealer) and they have heard on the grapevine that the Army won’t think about that until 2018. My guess is is with the Afghanistan draw down and the upcoming reduction in manpower for the army they will retire the most sh@gged L85A2 and retain the best rifles for as long as possible. I could even see an incremental replacement program with the most deployable of units like the Paras and Commandos getting new rifles first and other regiments slowly being changed over.

Anyhow don’t expect any new machine guns anytime soon.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 4:45 pm

They as in” the most deployable of units like the Paras” just had a “day out” shooting with the French rifle (OK, it was under the banner of urban combat training, so probably of no significance)

Fedaykin
June 3, 2012 5:01 pm

I have no doubt NEXTER will probably tender a FAMAS variant on any IW replacement contest for the British army. I doubt that it would be short listed on the other hand. It is an older design the L85 with a few inerrant flaws like its delayed blow back operation.

The choice appears to be rebuild L85 again or buy new rifle. I have heard some strong arguments for rebuilding the L85 again as it means rifle racks and training facilities can be retained but the practical question is it possible or cost effective to rebuild the remaining rifles for a third time?!

If its buy new rifle then its a matter of unit cost and the ability of a supplier to meet what will be a large contract plus all the ancillery equipment with offset. I doubt the British Army will want an M4 or AK variant so its down to what else is available. Best bets I think are:

HK G36
HK 416
FN 2000
FN SCAR
CZ 805
Beretta ARX-160
Remington ACR

On top of that expect a few wild cards.

James
James
June 3, 2012 5:29 pm

Fedaykin,

wild card no 1. The old SLR. I do appreciate that’s the thoughts of an old war horse with his eyes misting up, but as far as I’m concerned, there was bugger all wrong with it. Never ever went wrong on me, you could trust the calibre to put down anything it hit, it was pretty accurate, and it really was not that heavy, nor 4 mags of 20 rounds too much of a burden to carry around. There was also apparently a trick with a matchstick to convert it to full auto, but I never knew what that was. Didn’t need it, really.

On that basis, I’d vote for the FN SCAR in 7.62, with the 5.56 variant for those who have some need not to carry a proper battle fighting rifle about.

Someone recently said there’d been some technical issues with the FN SCAR. I don’t know what they may have been – cheap plastics or poor manufacturing maybe. But we’ve got enough time to sort that out.

James
James
June 3, 2012 5:38 pm

….oddly enough, my brother-in-law in Arizona can get a proper old FN SLR for $950 through some American dealer, all legit. Do you think it would be worth it? I’m certainly thinking of it. We spend 3 weeks a year on his ranch in the summer. Could bring back happy old memories, the $950 over a few years becoming peanuts. Hmmm.

(Obviously, the weapon would be registered to him, I’d only be borrowing it, all above board)

x
x
June 3, 2012 5:43 pm

Actually if the US hadn’t just put some more orders for M4 in I could see MoD actually going with M4. HK416 and Berretta to expensive sadly. ACR nope. CZ non-AR mag.

Rebuilding SA80 again. I hope not. It may function now (thanks HK) but come on it is getting on a bit.

We need TAVOR. (That opinion subject to change.)

James
James
June 3, 2012 5:49 pm

If it has not already been done to death elsewhere on TD, 5.56 or 7.62 for combat troops****? There was once a time where the wounding ability of 5.56 was thought to be a plus, but armies seem to be going away from that now. Must say my heart was always with 7.62.

**** Not much fussed what is best for loggies or gunners. The Andrew can probably cope with 5.56, and the Kevins won’t matter so long as they are only trusted with fully de-activated classroom instructional versions. They wouldn’t notice any difference anyway.

x
x
June 3, 2012 5:49 pm

@ James

If I had brother-in-law in Arizona I would be buying an M1 for him to keep in his gun room. Along with a Ruger GP100 4in (.357), Ruger Blackhawk Hunter (.44mag), Ruger Single-Ten, Colt New Frontier (.45 LC)… :)

James
James
June 3, 2012 6:16 pm

X,

you misunderstand,

aged late 40s, I don’t want to learn any new weapons. I just want to bring back fond memories with the muscle memory, and to teach my happy little boy and teen-angst-ridden girl some moves on a proper weapon that I can remember and not appear to be an idiot by forgetting. To be honest, my girl is more suited to the knee in the balls style of self defence, and I’m right with her on that. Any young bastard that so much as thinks of treating her in the manner I used to think was not just normal, but part of being a young man is going to have a serious shock. Delivered by her in immediate self defence, and then followed up by me in slow time, with planning and complete abuse of my ability to sit back and plan a really nasty campaign. And yes, that is completely double standards, but you only get one daughter in this life. Mrs J is completely with me on this, and she knows what I’m like.

They both went through pre-qual on a Ruger mini 10/24 or something last year, as all visiting children do in my brother in law’s house. Several hundred .22LRs down range, and eventually some soda cans successfully hit at 50 metres.

x
x
June 3, 2012 6:23 pm

It is a Ruger 10/22 in 22lr or a Ruger Mini-14 in .223Rem

Observer
Observer
June 3, 2012 6:33 pm

That’s the problem, it’s not the US SF that requested the weapon. No one did.

@x

TAVOR/SAR 21’s are not really outstanding, it’s a basic rifle that goes bang when you pull the trigger. No fancy stuff and you shouldn’t put in any. After all, you won’t want to buttstoke an enemy only to hear “laser targetting on, airstrike ordered.” *oh shit…*

@James

Think any HE, even the 40mm kind, into a populated area at 1km is a pretty much no-no. It’s the area effect, you can’t tell who else might be around. Like Phil said, 1km RoE? Snipers. Nice idea, but way too late. 1980 would have been the right time for it, and if they knew what they know now.

No, no blind shooting through walls, absolutely no. You think this is CoD??!! “Cop kills kid through random discharge of firearm”. God, the press will kill the government.

James
James
June 3, 2012 6:39 pm

It was the .22LR with iron sights, apparently bought from Walmart for cheap as chips – you have to love America for the consumer culture. I’m not sure a 7 and 12 year old are quite ready for .223. This year we may get Oli moving up a calibre, but only if she wants to. My little boy needs more muscle bulk before he can stand the recoil of a .223, but sod it, he’s only 7 now. First gun I ever fired was a .22 sub-cal conversion on an SLR, and I was in Cadets at that point.

Oli’s quite good at the knee in the balls trick though, and also the “Gone with the Wind” face slap that her mother taught her. Not much used it seems, but fairly shocking when delivered with a screech to alert any adults present. I wish they banned these school dances though – as she’s even more gorgeous than her mother, every boy wants to dance with her.

Observer
Observer
June 3, 2012 6:55 pm

@ James

Heaven help you when she hits 15. lol

x
x
June 3, 2012 6:59 pm

@ Observer

Think of it this way. Look the British soldier has had a rifle diet of unbranded baked beans (read SA80). If we put them on a diet of sirloin (read HK416 or ARX-160) they would choke. No we need to feed them branded baked beans. The TAVOR fits the bill exactly. I like simple things that go bang. :)

As I said my opinion is subject to change. My preference is for ARX-160. Too expensive and possibly a bit too trick. If we go the AR-15 the options are limitless. HK416 yes. But a carefully selected blend of AR options, perhaps using one of specialist AR builders to provide a prototype may be the way to go. There is a deep pool of small arms expertise in the British Army; a “SA80” should never happen. I don’t like the idea of the rifle being a cheap system. A premium AR15 comes in at about $1500 and add $500 for optics you are looking at $2000. The UK needs about 100,000 so we are looking at a bill of £200million; I always convert defence dollars into pounds one for one. Two F35s? Two thirds of a T26? (Don’t laugh at the back.) A C-17 with leather seats?

How does the SAR-21 really run young sir? Don’t be shy share…

x
x
June 3, 2012 7:07 pm

@ James re parenting

Not really the place to comment on parenting. But over 10 years involved with cadets I saw all sorts of parenting. The worst was the father who let his son do what he wanted to the daughters of others and yet his own daughter lived the life of nun. Two abortions and a suicide attempt between 16 to 18 makes me think he was getting it wrong with her. Tread a careful path. Teenage girls are like expensive foreign sports cars; great until something goes wrong and then it can be very expensive.

Is there no topic we don’t cover here? :)

Coming up, “Knit that teapot cosey!!!” and it will make a man of you.

James
James
June 3, 2012 7:18 pm

X,

problem is, I never realised that night of conception (dunno, got a funny shiver down my spine I’d never had before, thought to myself even on the vinegar strokes “this one’s a bit special”) that I’d be getting a girl who would one day turn into a 1967 Maserati or whatever your analogy leads to. I was actually hoping for a boy to teach rugby to, and who could then join some non-girly regiment and largely replicate my life.

Shit happens. She is however sent by God, and by God she is a devilish little angel. Utterly bloody drop dead gorgeous, and she’s only 12 (fathers can say that sort of thing that would have others under suspicion of nasty things). Twists me round her little finger endlessly. Pretty brainy too. She gets all of that from her mother. My role in her life is to be the one she runs to when her life is a bit wonky, and to have the big open wallet. Earlier this weekend she informed me of the new laptop she wants me to buy – a jaw / floor moment, and I’m still sorting out the bills for her pony’s barbed wire gash and stitches.

I am truly grateful for what God delivered, if a bit apprehensive and also suspicious it’s his revenge on me for all of my serial abuses of gentlemanly conduct. But you have to play the cards you are given.

Fedaykin
June 3, 2012 7:19 pm

@ x

CZ-805 can use AR mag, like the G36 the magazine housing is changed over. It might also be the right price for the treasury. I know there are many an old war horse who would love to see a modern SLR variant but nobody makes them in the numbers required and I think the Army itself would regard it as a retrograde step. I know people really push for the M4 but it is a flawed rifle and a retrograde step as well.

My personal choice would be the Beretta ARX-160 but as others have rightly pointed out price could well be a sticking point…then again if the order is big enough its amazing what manufacturers can pull out of the bag on unit price. HK and FN always have a good chance but I wonder if unit price again would be a sticking point with the same caveat with the Beretta if the order is big enough price can be driven down.

As for TAVOR I can see the attraction, small bullpup at apparently a reasonable price…there is just one rather big problem! Its just not politically acceptable, whilst the UK does buy from Israel in respect of defence it tends to be small procurement of very high tec electronics that goes under the radar of the press. A massive procurement of assault rifles would send the left wing press berserk…remember Javelin was not the armies first choice when it comes to a MILAN replacement they wanted an Israeli SPIKE variant. The just couldn’t get around the politics of such a purchase.

Fedaykin
June 3, 2012 7:23 pm

Anyhow maybe its getting to be the time that Think Defence does an article or series on the problems of an IW replacement now the A-Stan draw down is coming up.

IXION
June 3, 2012 7:30 pm

I have 2 daughters, well

One complete idot sevant dingbat.

—– And

One psycho bitch queen fiend who from the pit of hell.

Both of whome will kill me the day they bring home some poor sap of a fella… I will die laughing at the poor sap.

Daughters- I give you the advice my old Gypsy Grandfather gave ne 30 years ago.

If your having kids, have boys not girls, then you only have one prick to worry about, not thousands…..

I like the comment about fash cars very aposite.

IXION
June 3, 2012 7:32 pm

Actually we use to say about the Psycho bitch quen form hell, that she severely restricted our movements asa family.

Under SALT 1 we had to give the soviets 14 days notice if we went out of county…

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 3, 2012 7:42 pm

Top AR-15 for $2000? call it MSRP (Price) $4995

And fits nicely into our headlined matter: http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2010/12/21/noreen-bad-news-338-lapua-semi-auto-ar-style-rifle/

(Not that we need 100.000 of those)

x
x
June 3, 2012 7:43 pm

@ Fedaykin

I plumped for M4 more on economic grounds. If the US are buying so many thousands we tack our order on to theirs. Base M4 is still better than SA80. But you are right it is flawed.

I like the Beretta too. It is wizard. Super ergonomics. Field stripping simple. It is a good system it offers UK armed forces so many options. The one size fits all system doesn’t work.

SLR? “Night at the Legion” time. Sorry. The arguments it can reach out to 8nm and kill armoured elephants do nothing for me. In most scenarios (deserts to one side) how often can you see out beyond 400m before there is cover? 300m? 200m? You can’t shoot something you can’t see. Weight of fire outweighs out right reach. Rounds carried outweighs out right hitting power. Whatever that the latter is supposedly as young Philip will point out.

As for TAVOR. We wouldn’t get them to build it. We would just buy the “design” and use over seas aid money to get the Indians to build them for us…….. ;)

x
x
June 3, 2012 7:47 pm

@ ACC

Somebody like say JP Enterprises will build a rifle for $1500 that will piss all over SA80 spec’s wise.

Heck even a cheap Smith and Wesson Sporter would be better screwed together than the original SA80.

I think a buy of 100,000 is reasonable.

x
x
June 3, 2012 8:13 pm

@ James re equine vets

On the whole are mercenary barstewards; money doesn’t buy competence either. It does pay to shop around. Sometimes the old boy network doesn’t work. Just because everybody on the yard or your hunt uses a certain practice doesn’t mean squat. Next time when yours has a small injury try somebody else it could save you a fortune in the future.

Post and rail can cost a small fortune too.

Personally I think horses are dumb. I prefer fowl or small parrots.

Is there no subject this blog doesn’t cover? :)

James
James
June 3, 2012 8:19 pm

X,

re deserts and intervisibility.

Thing is, we’ve been mostly fighting in deserts the last 20 odd years, and all the likely future hotspots seem to be deserts. So the ability to reach out a couple of hundred yards further seems quite useful.

Not sure about armoured elephants (there’s always HESH for them, that will please Mr Fred), but with an SLR you can always crunch it down on a Paddy’s skull if he gets a bit boisterous during a perfectly calm, reasonable and within the law 4 am house raid. Paddy normally falls down the stairs rapidly on those occasions. Try that with an SA80 and it will likely fall to pieces in your hands.

x
x
June 3, 2012 8:48 pm

@ James

Well I suppose the RLI loved their FALs. But if you read about their bush war they weren’t tremendously good shots.

I think the 5.56 is here to stay. For a while at least. It is too good a compromise. The only way we will change is if the US change.

A properly constructed 5.56 rifle should be more than adequate for skull bashing. There are such things as forged and milled uppers and receivers. Not every rifle uses pressings…

James
James
June 3, 2012 9:01 pm

X,

hence why I think FN SCAR is probably well worth looking into, if we can get beyond whatever technical issues it may have***. Versions in 5.56 and 7.62, but exactly the same training, about 90% parts commonality.

*** alleged – I don’t know if they really exist. If they do, it’s probably only quality control or quality of components. FN having been making rifles for donkey’s, so they are hardly going to turn out a design dog.

I am particularly impressed with the side-folding stock, which means you’ll be able to get a man-sized 7.62 into a sneaky-sized recce wagon. I am also agog as to what the Drill Sergeants in the Household Division are going to make of it. They were pretty pissed off with SA80 needing little vinyl covers for the sight area, so Lord knows how they are going to deal with a folding butt.

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 3, 2012 11:04 pm

I’m not really sure if much has changed in terms of rifles has it?

– Bullpup,
– Bayonet mount,
– 5.56mm,
– Reliability,
– Lightweight,
– Mounting for sights,

Done.

x
x
June 3, 2012 11:41 pm

@ James

SCAR is well designed and well built rifle. It is just too expensive. It has never really though done more than an AR-10 system could do nor is a qualitatively better than 416 in .223 And that is why the US Army is still buying M4 and the USMC still buying M16. That is the problem I was referring to in that other thread. Think of it as a Betamax rifle. Also in the dingier corners of the web some who have used it and have experience of the rifle question this aura of uber-reliability; but to question SCAR for some verges on heresy. It seems to be too reliable. As I said there are wide variety of options on the AR platform that can answer many of the UKLF rifle needs. For example don’t our SF and the Pathfinders use Colt C7?

Observer
Observer
June 4, 2012 3:56 am

“How does the SAR-21 really run young sir?”

50/50 with my old M-4. The M-4 is handier, especially with a retracted stock, but the TAR/SAR aquires the target faster due to the single plane optics (no foresight/rear apeture alignment).

No bayonet though, which was one of my worries. I console myself with the thought that 1) bayonet combat is rare and 2) My specific unit runs with a machette clipped to the side of the field pack. If push comes to shove, reach back and pull for 1 foot of blunt edged blackened blade. That should do the trick. The other units have to be content with buttstroking the bastard.

More stuff later, lunch hour’s almost over.

Re:40mm at 1km

On more considered thought, there IS a 40mm round that would be very useful in MOUT, MV Teargas. Sniper in a room with inhabited rooms next to him? One round of teargas. Let’s see him cry and shoot at the same time. Wrong room? Apologise after the people in there stop crying. I’ve been wondering if AP rounds could have some teargas built in as well, the 40mm HEAT penetration for armour is pathetic (1-2 cm), if you can slip some gas into an APC or a bunker, you might not kill it, but you might end up forcing an evacuation. But this is just theory, need more info on practicality.

Phil
June 4, 2012 9:03 am

Small arms.

The technology is about as mature as its going to get.

And we are after a combat rifle useful in combat and not a rifle for use at Bisley.

We just need reliability, easy maintenance, accessory rails and half decent erganomics. This is a general purpose assault rifle, nothing else. It does not have to be suitable for SF, it does not need 3 magazine release catches to knock against kit and drop the mag off.

It just needs to be robust, useful and relatively accurate.

There are a number of possibilities out there. Let’s just buy the cheapest. Doesn’t matter if its bullpup or whatever. I’d prefer bullpup but it shouldn’t happen if it impacts on the other requirements.

Small arms really should be a simple aquisition process. Even designing one should be easy since there are only so many ways to skin a cat. I am sure a bull pup HK416 could easily be made, it’s simply a matter of engineering.

If there is a fuss over the SA80 replacement I’ll be annoyed.

x
x
June 4, 2012 10:04 am

@ Phil said “it’s simply a matter of engineering”

:) It always is……….

My point about the C7 and SF is that it ain’t £3000 rifle. Quite the reverse actually it is slightly cheaper than the bog-standard Colt built equivalent rifle. It is an example of that rarity, a good procurement choice. The Canadians, submarines to one side, have a good-ish track record with their equipment purchases. Your friends the Danes use C7; a nation who make wise procurement decisions. As do the Dutch and Norwegians both countries with who we have close defence relationships.

There should be no reason why SA80’s replacement should cause a ripple. SIG replaced Hi-Power without anybody beyond the defence realm noticing. But I don’t think it will happen. A £200million 100,000 unit procurement won’t slip by unnoticed. There will be calls for it be built here etc. etc. and so on. If it is crap it will be a poor decision by the administration who signed it off where ever it is built etc. etc. and so on. I think if it means getting a good deal we should forego ideals like a bullpup layout.

Picture of a Cloggie with a C7.

http://cdn5.thefirearmsblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/attachment-tm-tfb.jpg

Phil
June 4, 2012 10:38 am

Most of the modern assault rifles these days, internally, are almost exactly the same. The ARX 160 does some neat things but strip out the bolt carrier assembly and it looks almost exactly like M16s, SA80, HK416 etc

Just buy whatever, the SAA instructors will still talk bollocks about its origins and reduce confidence in it anyway.

James
James
June 4, 2012 11:36 am

X,

Sigs replaced Browning Hi-Powers? I never knew (really). Does this mean that soldiers no longer have to throw their personal pistols at the enemy to have any kinetic effect?

I thought Brownings were like the rock of ages – just sort of there, forever, whether they work or not. Particularly the .30s. I’ve got photographs of my grandfather on the MTB he commanded in WW2 with a Browning .30 mounted on a bridge wing, my old man in a rock built sangar with a Browning .30 on a tripod in Cyprus while fighting EOKA, and me firing a Browning .30 from a Ferret. Separated by nearly 60 years, same old ironmongery. It could be said we’ve had our money’s worth out of them though.

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 11:43 am

Blimey, the Dutch militaries got the right idea. And I aint talking about the gun. But yeah, MoD shouldn’t be able to arse this one up, surely…

I wonder what can be done, if anything, to reduce part count? Or maybe, I dunno, split the weapon into enclosed assemblies that can just be interchanged when duff.

Phil
June 4, 2012 11:53 am

@James

“Sigs replaced Browning Hi-Powers? I never knew (really).”

We used them to arm the Afghan Local Police recruits.

http://www.imagebam.com/image/085ad1193994884

x
x
June 4, 2012 11:56 am

@ James

The end of a great British tradition of throwing your side arm instead of firing it. Tossed properly a Webley revolver was like a boomerang. True.

@ Chris B

It isn’t a question of reducing parts. More of the quality of the parts and how they are blended.

To the untutored eye these look the same,

http://www.lmtstore.com/complete-weapon-systems-firearms-guns/cqb-mrp-defender-model-piston-16.html

http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product4_750001_750051_785513_-1_757785_757784_757784_ProductDisplayErr

But they are different.

James
James
June 4, 2012 12:11 pm

X,

Private Bill Speakman VC had the right idea. After running out of grenades, he threw empty beer bottles and tins of compo cheese at the enemy. Far more effective than a Browning Hi-Power.

I was singularly unimpressed with the 9mm round, in my case fired from SMG. Yes, you can kill a pheasant on Bulford ranges with a SMG, but you can’t penetrate a standard black jerrycan at 40 paces. It bounces off. The SMG is – to my knowledge – more lethal when fitted with a bayonet than when fully loaded. The bayonet was the only saving grace of the weapon, but for some reason the bayonet was not much issued.

x
x
June 4, 2012 12:23 pm

It isn’t the round itself more the way it is loaded. Enough decent powder, the right bullet (not necessarily some super duper hollow point), and it will be effective.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 4, 2012 12:24 pm

RE “It isn’t a question of reducing parts. More of the quality of the parts and how they are blended.”
– also about tolerances. Modern precision machinery tempts to go for tight tolerances. The opposite example is is the AK-47 and its western relatives: very loose, and it takes a lot to make it jam

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 12:56 pm

Well, I was rather thinking of a bit of both. More wiggle room (tolerance) and trying to reduce the number of fiddly bits if possible. There’s some clever buggers out there, maybe they can invent some sort of new camm or something that does the work of three levers? We can but dream.

x
x
June 4, 2012 1:09 pm

There is nothing that can be removed from the DI AR15. They are already quite simple. I think the 5.56 will still be with us 50 years from now.

Perhaps a caseless 6mm round? Perhaps. I don’t know.

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 1:30 pm

Then the simple answer is to not base it on the AR15. I’m only saying this on the proviso of whether there is a chance to make the weapon easier to manufacture and more reliable, easier to maintain in the field.

Phil
June 4, 2012 1:37 pm

Tolerances translate into accuracy. You need some degree of accuracy. It’s all well and good having a rattling AK47 but shooting straight is still an important thing even when the weapon is much more likely to be used to suppress than engage individuals. And you can’t disregard the morale component: which professional soldier wants a gat that can’t shoot very straight. It’s an instinctive no no.

Most assault rifles seem to have the reliability down as good as its likely to get. And the most complex parts tend to be the trigger mechanism housing which has all the sears and little springs. The rest of the assault rifles are pretty robust lumps of metal or cams being guided along rails. As long as you have good QC is there much in the modern generation of assault rifles? They’re nearly all basically the same.

James
James
June 4, 2012 1:59 pm

Is the consensus that AR-15 and the later models from all sorts of companies is as good as it gets, or at least good enough? Therefore it is merely a matter of quality of build, and unit price?

I tried the French FAMAS, way back in the early 80s when the UK still had SLR as the standard rifle. I was quite impressed by the 3 round burst mechanism. In the space of time it took for the 3 rounds, the gun did not climb much at all, so they were reasonably accurate at least at shortish ranges. Put it on full auto and it was very different, unless you were trying to shoot down something in the sky. I also quite liked the folding bipod and the integrated spike bayonet.

Turned out to be quite useful experience – in 1995 in Sarajevo we had a bit of a scare getting Gen Janvier from the airport to the city centre. One of his bodyguards got hit in the upper forearm and dropped his weapon onto the floor of the UN G-Wagon. It was not difficult to pick it up and do a “Beirut unload” through the window while Drives got us the f*ck out of there rapido, although I would not claim they were all aimed single shots in accordance with the British Army’s Yellow Card ;).

x
x
June 4, 2012 2:05 pm

@ Chris B

The AR15 is a known quantity. Trying another design leaves you open to all sorts of risks. Money will still be tight in 2018. I can’t see anything coming along to usurp the AR in just 6 years.

Observer
Observer
June 4, 2012 2:22 pm

One of the problems we Singaporeans and the Israelis highlighted during TAR/SAR development was the AR15’s DI system. It choked up to easily and led to jams. The AK uses a short stroke piston which improved reliability. Other problem was the aluminium mag. Lips bent too easily.

Problem 1:
AR15 DI system chokes up easily. 5.56mm gives good accuracy.
AK47 Short Stroke Piston very reliable. 7.62S gives poor accuracy.

Solution?
A short stroke piston system chambered in 5.56.
Accuracy and reliability. We hope. Check back in 20 years when the guns are worn down.

A linear problem solving solution.

Problem 2: Aluminium STANAG M-16 mag lips bend to easily, leading to bad feeding.

Solution:
Plastic translucent mags. Though they did overdo the AK influence and made the feed system a mini-AK banana clip and AK style back catch, which is not STANAG. Might be a bit of a booboo there in case of coalition interfacing or needing to bum mags from the 2nd line troops still using M-16s. Oh well. Lets wait and see if their SAR21 Mk2 is any better.

Long story short.

Kill the damn DI system.

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 2:29 pm

The AK is known. All you really want is approximate accuracy, the ability to suppress, not neccessarily sniper accuracy.

x
x
June 4, 2012 2:38 pm

@ Observer

One of the better piston AR’s.

http://www.adcorindustries.com/wordpress/index.php/products/

Observer
Observer
June 4, 2012 2:39 pm

5.56mm DMR ammo is your friend. :P

Do you see anything wrong with a short stroke system firing 5.56 marksman ammo?

@x

It’s .. I won’t say a con, more like.. it’s marketing. Most of what they bunged on the site is intrinsic in all short stroke systems. P-rails can be fitted to any rifle, not only the B.E.A.R.

x
x
June 4, 2012 2:43 pm

Found this on the YouTubes,

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 4, 2012 2:46 pm

Here’s a short history from the early 50s to the point that Observer started from (for the Singaporean-Israeli development)
– the other branch (that the Israelis got their Galil from) ran until 1998, ceasing production as exports were not pursued
http://www.strikehold.net/2010/01/18/an-airsoft-rk95/
– apologies that the nutshell description is under airsoft

Observer
Observer
June 4, 2012 2:50 pm

@x

Interesting.

I take it that you like the idea of short stroke 5.56 too?

I’m actually wondering if “impulse averaging” can handle 7.62 NATO. Might be worth an experiment for a new GPMG or Battle Rifle.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy
June 4, 2012 2:51 pm

Observer,

I would think that in Singapore the light nature of the round, in the thick foliage, would be counted as a disadvantage?
“firing 5.56 marksman ammo?” or any 5.56

Phil
June 4, 2012 2:52 pm

No you dont need sniper accuracy, but you need very decent accuracy. I believe strongly in the strength of the morale component of combat power: give blokes rattly rifles that don’t shoot particularly straight and they’re going to feel pretty rotten. We can’t fight human nature, yes the weapon will expend 95% of its ammo suppressing, but that’s not how it feels to the average Tom. Like boots and scoff, you can get away with cheap both but spend a bit more and the effects are tangible. Even if it seems to make little sense in pure utilitarian terms.

Observer
Observer
June 4, 2012 2:53 pm

Vegetation? :P

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 3:02 pm

@ Observer,

As much as I would like to see part count go down, short stroke has basically proven itself superior to DI. Didn’t the Yanks do some tests a few years ago where the HK416 and FN SCAR came in as 1 and 2, or was it 2 and 3, in terms of stoppages? I think having a little room in the internal tolerance to accomodate ambient temperature changes and the odd bit of small debris is acceptable, providing the rounds can still be used in a suppressive manner out to about 500m.

What was that .45 ACP sub machine gun that someone built, the one where the bolt assembly recoils back and down into the handgrip (or was it behind the magazine well)?

Of course now I’m well and truly shitting on my earlier argument about low part count.

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 3:04 pm

@ Phil,

I think it was Gabe… somebody whose name eludes me right now, who was pretty confident in the AK’s accuracy, describing complaints against it as just a lack of shooting technique!

Gabe Suarez

x
x
June 4, 2012 3:09 pm

@ Observer

Yes I prefer it. The Adcor solves the problems especially the weight. Keeping heat and fouling away from the bolt group has got to be a good idea in an AR15. Keeping the oil cool will preserve its performance. Keeping “dirt” levels down can only be good to in an AR system. So it is a win, win.

James
James
June 4, 2012 3:11 pm

Phil,

quite right.

Also importantly, the boys and girls – especially of non-combat units – need to spend much more quality time with their weapons. My AGC(SPS) Chief Clerk was dreadful at this – held it as though it was going to bite him, and one of the LCpl clerks didn’t realise she had to put the SA80 into her shoulder to fire it properly. Honestly. It was a bit of a surprise for the staff branch when I ordered 3 days of proper military training (you know, CFTs, camping out, field firing, night patrols, bayonets on dead pigs, and an 80 mile march from Minehead to Dartmouth), but what was more surprising for me was that none of them apart from the combat unit officers were really very clued up at all in terms of being a proper soldier.

That was quite a fun Monday. Everyone turned up to work in the HQ as per normal expecting a normal week, I gave them 3 hours to go home and come back with kit for 3 days of proper soldiering, then took them out in a 4 tonner and Landrover for a gentle 15 miler on Salisbury Plain before we deployed to Minehead to basher up on the cliffs. Honestly, you should have heard the whinging. It only got worse at 1900 when I told them there were another 48 hours to go, when they’d thought my madness would only last for the daylight hours. However, by the end, they all confessed to enjoying it. The 3 SO2s also proved themselves in my eyes, although that was not so necessary.

Phil
June 4, 2012 3:27 pm

B

I think with the AK it is made by so many places, and with very different levels of QC and precision, and they are in such a varied condition and in such a varied number of models that I am sure some shoot beautifully and others will hit the bloke stood behind you.

We had some brand spanking new AK47s that were to be issued to the ALP. Brand new, straight out of the box complete with their accessories and dodgy tins of ammunition that you opened with a tin opener. But anyway, they felt like air rifles. The wooden furniture had the same feel as a cheap Chinese air rifle and they just felt nasty. A lot of us had a good bit of fun playing with them and nobody could get a good grouping with the things even two of the snipers much to everyone’s deep joy and mirth.

x
x
June 4, 2012 3:29 pm

@ James

How much range time do you think a soldier should have?

Do you think there would be any benefit to every body going to the range once a month and shooting 100 rounds? Full bore no small bore stuff. Just pulling stuff out of the air.

That would cost, post 2015, about £100million a year.

Phil
June 4, 2012 3:34 pm

Range time.

Its a qualitative rather than a quantitative thing. I’d rather the blokes spent less time on the range but did quality shoots and got good coaching and have plenty of time per session.

There’s a massive difference between getting to practise and become one with the rifle as it were, zeroing and doing varied shoots and angrily smashing 50 blokes through an APWT serial in an afternoon.

Observer
Observer
June 4, 2012 3:46 pm

Does the APWT have a component where you have a short run, then a shoot? It’s surprisingly hard to shoot while hyperventilating.

James
James
June 4, 2012 3:51 pm

X,

oddly, I think time just spent with the weapon is pretty valuable. Just handling it, hefting it, learning to be never more than 20 inches from it. It may seem strange, but if every soldier in barracks carried around an unloaded weapon as a matter of routine, familiarity would naturally grow, and it would not cost £100 million a year.

I also think that all PT sessions should be with a weapon. Always thought that from the days when I was a young Troop Leader. Used to get the Armoury opened up so we could all collect our weapons at 0700, return them at 0900. There’s bugger all point in going for daily gentle jogs at a constant pace in a group – you can do that sort of inefficient PT in your own time, if you want. Instead, go in a straight line from A to B as a squad, at varying paces, sometimes carrying people, other times fording or swimming rivers, climbing walls or fences, and always with your weapon.

Apparently, I was an “interesting” Troop Leader, but I never had any shortage of the boys wanting to be in my Troop. I did have an old nanny of a Squadron Sergeant Major request to be re-assigned when I was first appointed a Squadron Leader, and I was very happy to tell the CO that I entirely supported his wish. Got by with a decent young Troop Sergeant who was on double acting rank, and did a better job than the old nanny would have done.

Phil
June 4, 2012 3:59 pm

@Observer

Trying to remember.

No, no running in the APWT or ACMT as its called now. But that’s just the basic qualification and there are shoots that require one round say standing, another prone in a few seconds.

Other shoots require a bit of huff and puff like the ISBR range and so on and there are various competition / skill at arms shoots that require some hundred metre sprints etc. The shooting possibilities are very varied.

James
James
June 4, 2012 4:01 pm

Observer,

i’m not current with today’s specific tests, but there have always been a range of shooting tests involving running and shooting. Normally called “March and Shoot” over 8-15 miles in full kit, but there are also the Infantry Combat Fitness Test (ICFT) over 3 miles in fighting order, and the Assault Course in fighting order onto a 25 metre firing point. So yes, it’s pretty normal.

Phil
June 4, 2012 4:03 pm

Or falling plate shoots where you mong the brief and shoot the opposing teams plates – happened to a friend…

Chris.B.
Chris.B.
June 4, 2012 4:05 pm

@ Phil,

I can’t verify what size plates he’s shooting at, but an interesting watch none the less;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSuAPjw2Jgw

Just to be clear, I’m not advocating we adopt the AK-47 as our new service rifle. Just think the design of it is headed in the right direction with the short stroke piston (the one lifted out of the HK416 would do nicely) and some wiggle room in the internals wouldn’t do too much harm.

x
x
June 4, 2012 4:14 pm

Phil said “Its a qualitative rather than a quantitative thing. I’d rather the blokes spent less time on the range but did quality shoots and got good coaching and have plenty of time per session.”

That is more what I am on about. I said 100 rounds because that is a good day’s shooting. It was more of a convenient measure. I see no value in shooting .22lr systems.

Being an infantry man is a skilled trade. But if clerks can’t shoot you could start to ask why are these posts are “uniformed”? It isn’t as straightforward as that but it does make me wonder.

It is easy for us “armchair” staff officers to talk about kit. But I wonder how much could be done to improve “defence”, if there are improvements to be made, by the implementation of schemes or re-organisation. I think such things will probably be beyond the ken of us non-professionals. But if say a dedicated afternoon shooting for all soldiers (beyond those in combat obviously) improves the “quality” of our forces I wonder what else could be done?

Phil
June 4, 2012 4:20 pm

I am sure James will agree when I say it is down to t