KU Reader Opinion Piece: The M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle

KitUpHK M27

Here’s another good write up by Mike Perry.  I encourage you guys to submit your opinion pieces via the Fireteam page.  Me and the KU Team pick the best submission, and so far, MP has been kicking a** with his submissions.

-Brandon

By: Kit Up Reader Mike Perry

Wave Of The Future Or Back To The Past?

The recent decision to issue all 13 man U.S.M.C Infantry and Light Reconnaissance fire teams the magazine fed M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle, replacing belt fed M249 Squad Automatic Weapons, represents a paradigm shift in how the Corps views individual firepower on battlefields of the present and future. It has also touched off a decades old debate about whether magazine fed weapons can supplant the suppressive fire and quick change barrel options only a belt fed weapon can deliver.

Made by Heckler and Koch, the first of 4,476 M27’s are already seeing combat, with its  main selling points being lighter weight (7.9lbs unloaded vs. 17lbs) for the SAW, better accuracy and less bulk. As for any claimed deficiencies in firepower, supporters contend that the suppressive fire argument is baseless because tests revealed the IAR hitting targets consistently with less ammunition than the SAW, and that,  for the most part, SAW’s were being used as  IAR’s anyway, using short bursts per minute at 85 rpm or less, which negated barrel changes.

A Lance Corporal, who’s carried a SAW for 3 years commented: “That’s why I have to work out all the time, so I can lift it.” Weight aside, however, he added: “It’s my best friend, I like having more firepower.”

He’s yet to fire an IAR, though he has held one, and indicated, “It felt like a toy,” compared to the M249, but stated he’d like to try it, because the M249 was a beast to lug around and could be cumbersome in tight spots.

Views such as these drove the policy change.

Ammunition requirements are that 22 30 round magazines be issued for each IAR, though it is unlikely they will all be carried by one man. This roughly equates to the load out of a SAW gunner with 600 rounds usually carried in 200 round boxes by one man.

With M249’s being relegated to the company level, only time will tell whether the decision to adopt the IAR proves to be a wise one. So far, only the U.S.M.C is implementing the idea.

Weight 7.9 lb (3.6 kg) empty
Length 36.9 to 33 in (94 to 84 cm) w/ adjustable stock
Barrel length 16.5 in (42 cm)
Width 3.1 in (7.9 cm)
Height 9.4 in (24 cm)

135 Comments on "KU Reader Opinion Piece: The M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle"

  1. the M27 attempts to replace the hole in the Rifle squad caused by eliminating automatic fire from our rifles. moving toward the M4, called a rifle but is actually a carbine or PDW only made it worse.

    the M27 is a definite step back and is a foolish acquisition. a smarter move would be to either go with a barrel between 16 and 18 inches long, accept the penalty of range at the far end, and put automatic fire back into the system. not a 3 round burst but fully automatic fire.

    Fallujah and urban combat is what drove this decision and it can be solved by a little thinking, not this snap decision by HQMC.

  2. What occurs to me is this: if the M27 is only 7.9 pounds and is basically an improved M16A4, why not just make them general issue across the squad?

    That would allow fire teams to shift more flexibly between base of fire and maneuver elements and keep up steady suppression even if a Marine or a rifle goes down.

    Now that even the Army is dropping the 3-round burst, I'm not sure why keeping the M16A4 as the standard is all that compelling. Must be a cost issue I guess.

    I get tired of seeing millions overpaid on fighter jets per copy and the basic small arms that we actually use on a daily basis get short shrift. Probably 2-3 F-35s would pay for the entire bill of replacing all USMC service rifles.

  3. The M27 has tremendous advantages in terms of weight, reliability, and flexibility. Remember the SAW fires only full-auto, which is a tremendous disadvantage in the COIN operations that are so common in our current environment. It also has superior safety characteristics, because it fires from a closed bolt. As the author notes, it has been extensively tested and shown that it can defeat targets with fewer rounds. How often do Marines change barrels while on patrol? One valid criticism of the M27 concept is its reliance on 30 round magazines. The videos I have seen thus far of the Surefire High Capacity magazines do not inspire confidence, but the product is early in its history and competitors should show up if the Marines emphasize the need for a larger magazine.

  4. The new surefire 60 round mags combined with more m27s per squad could be something to think about?

  5. bigger mags would just drag you back to the SAW concept and the M27 would be dead for a different reason…you designed a new weapon and the more you perfected it the more it looked like the old one.

    oh and this extensive testing you're talking about takes place in a situation where precision fire is needed, not suppressive fire.

    just curious but i don't see anyone else climbing aboard this freight train. if it had value, then you know Special Ops would be all over it but in this case the USMC designed a weapon to meet an extremely narrow need. additionally the 82nd and Special Ops have designed light wt. SAWs that could better meet the needs of the Corps than a decision to throw money at a problem.

    lastly and most importantly is the fact that this weapon slaps Marine Corps doctrine in the face. frugality and practicality are suppose to be hallmarks. this weapon is neither. i can guarantee that the only reason why this weapon made it this far is because we have an airwinger as Commandant. none of the previous Commandants would have been baffled by the bullsh*t that is the M27.

  6. The Marines are doing the smartest thing with this and they are no fools, this is their doorway to replace the M16/M4 they start with replacing the SAW then moving on to everyone having an M27.Brilliant!!! the Marines Rock!. I have friend in now who love the M27 bigtime.

  7. this is a route that the british army went down when they replaced the fully automatic general purpose machine gun with the l86 lsw magazine fed light machine gun……the attached article explains that that experience has shown the need for some form if fully auto weapon and the minimi has been isued as a result with the l85 being used as a long distance suppression weapon due to its high accuracy……perhaps there is room for a similar compromise in the marine units.

    The L86A1 LSW is a magazine-fed automatic weapon originally intended to provide fire support at a fireteam level. It has a longer barrel than the L85A1 rifle and a bipod, shoulder trap and rear pistol grip, together with a shorter handguard. The extended barrel provides an increased muzzle velocity and further stabilises the bullet, giving a greater effective range. The weapon is otherwise identical to the L85 version on which it is based, and the same 30-rd magazines and sighting systems are used. Like the L85 rifle, it has a rate-of-fire selector on the left side behind the magazine housing, enabling either single shots or automatic fire.
    The increased barrel length, bipod and the optical performance of the SUSAT gives the weapon excellent accuracy. From its inception, the L86 was a target of criticism on much the same basis as the L85. The LSW has the additional issue (shared by any light support weapon derived from a rifle, for example the heavy-barrel FN FAL) of its inability to deliver sustained automatic fire as it does not have a quick-change barrel, and is not belt fed.[15]
    The primary use of the LSW has shifted to that of a marksman's weapon within many infantry sections, capable of providing extremely accurate precision fire at ranges of over 600m.[16] The role of a light support weapon is instead filled with the L110A1 FN Minimi which is a belt fed weapon with a quick-change barrel.
    The L86A1 was upgraded to the L86A2 at the same time as L85A1 rifles were upgraded to L85A2 standards, undergoing the same set of modifications.

  8. After talking to people who talked to the Marine brass I do know the IAR will NOT replace the M-16A4 this was discussed and voted down the M-16A4 will be upgraded later this decade to a new A5 standard, if funds and budgets allow. The free floating Barrel give a IAR a accuracy advantage BUT the new A5 will have a free floating barrel too.

    The M-27 reflects different tactics and gear split the USMC is having with the Army. The Army spray and prey tactics which fails time and again is not how marines fight. Accurate fire and long range firepower of the full sized M-16 and ACOG scopes proves successful against Taliban terrorist in combat time and again. The IAR has very high approval rating and the SAW has the lowest of all US weapons in the field. So dose the M-16A4 and M-4 troops like them and proves unlike the Army the well trained rifleman works best all the time.

    Marines Rock!!

  9. Carl Milkowski | January 16, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Reply

    In his book WAR by SEBASTIAN JUNGER, he talks about an Army squad from the 173d Airborne Brigade in Afghanistan who's SAW gunner took pride in carrying "The Beast." The gunner would frequently attach his 250 round drum and use the weapon to do arm curls when not on patrol. The SAW gunner also took pride in the accuracy of his shots and conserving ammo during fire fights.

    Anybody who thinks Soldiers "spray and pray," when the action starts either has no conception of disciplined Army fire and maneuver or wants to spew out propaganda.

  10. A Marine has to work out to be able to carry the 17 lb SAW??? Marines carried the BAR through WWII, and up and down mountains in Korea. The BAR weighed aproximately 20 Lb and the ammo was much heavier. Have modern Marines become physical wimps?

  11. I don't understand what it does that the M16 could not have been adapted to do. Why design a new weapon when it's so similar to the standard issue? Other than the piston, what makes the M27 so much better than the M16 to fill the role of the SAW?

    I am sincerely curious.

  12. Only time will tell. I do, however, think its good that they're using it though. At least well get an idea of what it's capable of and how to better implement it in the future.

    Also. I'm sure everyone knows the hk416 is phenomenal! The m27 is just about the same thing so the least you (the ones on the opposing side) can do is have faith in another weapon in your arsenal.
    http://militarytimes.com/blogs/gearscout/2011/10/

    Anyway. I look forward to serving in our military. Have a good evening everyone.

  13. the HK doesn't provide any advancement over the M16A4. the debate between the DI vs. Gas isn't at all resolved yet. GAS caught on in the civilian market because the AR market was getting tapped out. everyone already had one.

    but the point remains. the M27 with the way that its employed provides no benefit to the rifle squad except that it can go full automatic, but (yes i'm repeating myself) that IS NOT the way that advocates recommend it be employed.

    repeating myself again and i'll leave weapon nomenclature behind, you're talking about relatively long distance precision weapons fire. YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT A DESIGNATED MARKSMAN! not a M27/BAR gunner.

  14. The Austrian Styr has a heavy barrel quick change out ability, why not do the same for the M27?

    IMO though both the M27 and M240 are the wrong calibre- after 300 meters, the round loses almost all kinetic power. Oh yeah a longer barrel would definitely help– 16 inches for a combat rifle??

  15. It seems like a massive waste of time and money. They could have taken a soldier's SAW, handed him an M16 (that could do full auto), and told his buddies to carry some extra mags. Why wouldn't that have worked? It would take no time at all and not cost any more than an extra rifle and some ammo. That versus years of development and who know how many dollars poured into it.

  16. W – Thanks for sharing the study. Interesting read.

    You would find the same type of reports from WWII in comparing the BAR and the 1911. Different weapons used in different situations.

    S – I'm avidly reading your posts. You'll find at the heart of this subject are those that understand tactics and the way the squad fights (fire/maneuver) and those enthralled by tech (geardos). Geardos don't know or care about the time tested role of the squad's automatic weapon (not submachinegun, there's a difference). All one has to do is point at the BAR, M14 and M16 as previous failed experiments to prove your point.

  17. Steven Bridwell | January 16, 2012 at 3:27 pm | Reply

    Let me see if i can add something from a former Army M249 gunner. I carried the SAW for 3 years in a mechanized unit 2/6Inf. and light infantry units 5/21Inf. 2/9Inf. Why the big concern with the weight from the Marines? Did the Manchu mile(25 miles) road march while deployed to Daharan Saudi Arabia in the fall of 94 and had no problems carrying the SAW nor did any other gunner from the company plus numerous long movements, road marches and exercises. Are the Marine physical standards dropping so low with the times that it is now an issue?
    The SAW is also a very accurate and dependable weapon system with the proper training and upkeep. A good gunner can also fire single shot with enough practice, that is no B.S.
    There is not a lot of need for pray and spray but nice to have if needed and the extra ammo in the belt. We had a 100 round canvas pouches to use instead of the 200 round green plastic rattletrap ammo was issued to us in. Not a lot of jamming issues either if taken care of.
    Somebody please tell me why we are spending dollars we don't have to downgrade our fighting capability by replacing a solid LMG for a glorifed assault rifle.
    For the Manchu's keep up the fire.

  18. were marines in WWII and korea wearing 40 pounds of personal armor?

  19. it does have a 16.5 inch barrel. check your facts.

  20. @Majrod

    Im not saying solders are bad at shooting I say general training the Army dose is poor. Most solders hunted and or shot guns long before enlisting so they have skills to begin with. the whole pop-up target system the army trains with dose NOT tech good marksmanship and only tells the shoot to throw lead at it till they drop this is fine under 200 yards but fighting in Afghanistan showed us this fault Wanat did very well there was no fault with M-4 or SAW but dumb solders who spayed lead way too quick and wreaked there weapons. The lack of air and artillery of tanks supporting proved too that it was one reason they got there but kicked in that one engagement. the use of mostly carbines by the Army in Afghanistan also is bad idea since open engagements the M-16A2/4 is a far better weapon to use with ACOG RCO scopes.

  21. What I don't get is that they are saying a standard load is 600 rounds? What? I'm not in the military, so I might just be ignorant, but i've read about guys (Army and Marines) carrying 1200-1500 at the minimum. How the **** is a squad going to carry that much, if i'm correct, plus their own ammo; I mean really?
    And as to the debate up above- ( I might be ignorant) but-
    The Army (from what I know) only has Soldiers qual out to 300 because the M4 is standard issue, the Marines on the other hand have EVERY Marine qualify out to 500 because they use the M16A4; so wouldn't that make them naturally better marksmen? Note- i'm not bashing the Army and i'm certanly not saying they teach/use "spray and pray". Every service deserves respect.

  22. I'm going back and forth on this…. I like the idea of replacing the SAW with a "semisniper" rifle. There's a bigger need for precision and range than there is for shear firepower. The SAW is a machine gun. Built to defend against massed attack and to provide continuous high volume fire. No one can say it isn't an amazing weapon. Probably the best LMG we've ever had, am I right? Armory of Famer for sure.

    You seasoned rifle-jocks correct me if I'm wrong…..

    But isn't A-stan pretty open? Long ranges, mountains, valleys, fields… From what I've seen in pictures it looks like a snipers wet dream.

    I would think that the weapon that can send it the furthest down range in such an environment would be the best choice. We have scopes that can see an alien picking his butt on Saturn, after all.

    Range and precision. That's where it's at. As for massed firepower, that the SAW so amazingly offers, don't we have M2's and M240's that can fill the role? Not to mention how fast we can get air and other assets in the game now.

    I think it's not a bad thing. We have three or four machine guns on tap, already. Replacing one with a precision platform doesn't seem like much of a loss in firepower to me.

  23. Lance – You clearly don't know what you are talking about. Unlike Marine targets soldiers are not credited with a hit if they don't hit the silhouette. One strength of Marine marksmanship is they shoot 500m targets. One weakness is they can score up to 80% of a targets value and not hit the black or silhouette.

    Also soldiers are not issued an unlimited number of rounds per target. Your spray & pray comment is an atrocious characterization of Army marksmanship. I suggest you find better sources than comic books.

    For more read my posts in the following military.com story… http://www.military.com/news/article/marines-wont

  24. it makes a difference Gant because we're messing with the rifle squad based on a fight in the desert. the National Command Authority is already talking about a turn to the Pacific and i'm just worried that we've picked up alot of bad habits from all our time in the desert.

    go out to the Northern Training Area in Okinawa and you'll get an eye opener about close in fighting. in a close in fight you need a base of fire to maneuver on your target or to repel an attack. the M27 cannot provide that base. and you can talk about fast air and helos but what happens when you're operating underneath a jungle canopy? all the hopes and dreams of air power alone winning the fight go away. so you're back to your rifle squad having to provide its own fires to break contact or win the assault on the enemy.

    old school stuff.

    and when we get into that fight again do you want your machine gunner to be carrying a SAW or a M27 with 22 magazines spread around the squad?

  25. @Gant: My issue is why they went through years of development and spent a lot of money to end up with what is essentially a modified M16. As far as I can tell, with minor changes, the M16 can do exactly what the M27 does. I still haven't found why the M27 is so much better than the M16 that it was worth the time and money.

  26. I'm not in the military but, you're problem with that is that M2's and M240's are platoon weapons and aren't available to any one squad. If a squad get's ambushed or attacked and they don't have some source of high volume fire things will go badly, and that's the problem with the IAR. Yeah it's accurate and with a "higher amount of accuracy" can tie the SAW in simulated situations and situations where you are facing medium to sporadic fire but i don't know if any testing was done where the weapon absolutley HAD to perform in the role it's supposed to fill. It just seems like it wasn't thought out that well.

  27. @Majrod

    I watch marines Qualify and they are much much better program again Im NOT bashing solders (Except the idiots at Wanat who ruined there Carbines, by shooting way too fast and inaccurately.) Problem is that Solder go out at MOST to 500yeards to shoot Marines go to 800 meters to shoot so in Afghanistan the Marines are much better in engagement with terrorist which they can engage 300 meter further out than the Army with all M-4s can.Both services can benefit from each other the Army can learn rang range marksmanship (none Sniper) and the Army has better skills in Urban combat. Not meaning to bash Majrod or the Army the Army can do better im saying. Also they probably will threw cuts but should anyway ditch the ICC and going to a all M-4 army since M-16s have there place in combat.

    I've seen marines and Airmen shoot alot and know plenty of solder who tell me abut there shooting time. Im NOT using a comic book and I don't respect people who resort to personal attacks to make a point its very unprofessional.

  28. "…. suppressive fire argument is baseless because tests revealed the IAR hitting targets consistently with less ammunition than the SAW,"

    That's not really supressive fire is it?

  29. lol at the Army spray and pray comments… Dude, you can't be serious.
    If Marines were such a great shot as you claim them to be, why is it the Army wins best Sniper every year, why is it an Army Sniper had the most confirmed kills in Nam? We understand the point of supressive fire, we understand without supressive fire you can flank your enemy. I will bet you my AR I will out shoot you any day of the week, either with an M4, or a bolt gun. My friends that are Marines talk about their training with me and it's pretty damn pathetic.
    I dont have a problem with jarheads, my uncle was ANGLICO and my grandfather was a Raider in WW2, but you are spitting out a bunch of BS you don't have a clue about.
    Who has the longest confirmed kill in the US Military, the Army using a .50… Who has the longest confirmed kill with an 7.62, the Army..
    I guarantee you're a boot as POG running your trap

  30. The modern Marine, fully decked out, weighs upwards of 320lbs.

    This includes the Marine himself, fully geared up and ready to walk out the door and fight, standing on a scale.

    A far cry from their ancestors, I'm sure.

    Try googling skeletal injuries that a lot of our guys are facing now because they're loaded up like Christmas trees.

  31. @ Moondawg

    The modern Marine, fully decked out, weighs upwards of 320lbs.

    This includes the Marine himself, fully geared up (SAW loadout) and ready to walk out the door and fight, standing on a scale.

    A far cry from their ancestors, I'm sure.

    Try googling skeletal injuries that a lot of our guys are facing now because they're loaded up like Christmas trees.

  32. uh….

    same team. no need to slam anyone's training. or pride in their respective service and that goes for both sides.

    we got real live people that hate not for the branch you serve in but because of the country you were graced by God to be born in.

    cancel all this service sh*t talk and take aim at the people that need the fire.

  33. Lance – You don't know what you are talking about. Most soldiers don't shoot during training beyond 300m. The farthest target on Marine qual is 500m. Stop making stupid generalities and you won't be judged by what you say.

    BTW, "the "idiots" at Wanat were being over run. Silver stars were awarded and more soldiers were killed in a direct fire engagement than any other battle in Afghanistan. Many of the platoon's heavy weapons were knocked out early. If you had the faintest idea what dismounted close combat is like you might understand why barrels were shot out. Like I said. Stop saying stupid stuff and you may not be judged by what you say.

  34. S – Lance is not kidding. He actually believes that BS. Scary

  35. Fundamentally it appears few realize the Squad’s automatic weapon exists for two reasons, achieve fire superiority and provide sustained suppressive fire so the squad can fire/maneuver. We learned the BAR, M14 and M16 were inadequate as the squad’s automatic weapon because magazines and fixed barrels don’t provide sustained automatic fire. Rich B pointed out this tried and true lesson was recently relearned by the British Army.

    Prioritizing accuracy over rate of fire in the squad’s automatic weapon is like prioritizing speed over cargo capacity when purchasing a truck for a construction business.

    Either someone forgot the basics or the M27 is a back door to get an HK416 in Marine hands.

  36. Rich – Excellent insight. I hope more read and heed.

  37. The M-27 was made because full auto fire in mass in the SAW was proven waste of ammo w/o killing enough Taliban to be worth a belt fed. in Afghanistan so a more accurate rifle that's meant to shoot full auto bursts so accurate support fire was installed and even know Majrod hates the IAR and Marines. most marines how been surveyed and like it and is far more accurate than a SAW is the SAW will stay as a secondary weapon the IAR seems to be well liked.

  38. that's not how i remember it. urban fighting in Iraq opened alot of eyes. going room to room building to building…doing more room clearings than all the big city SWAT Teams put together and under those circumstances (if i'm remembering correctly) many were complaining that the SAW Gunners couldn't keep up.

    it went something like this. by the time you would get your gunner in place and ready to provide support if necessary, it was time for him to displace and get to a new position. they were dragging (anyone would … no knock on their conditioning) and some thought that they needed a better weapon to get the job done.

    under those circumstances (urban warfare..fleeting targets) it was felt that precise automatic weapons fire was more valuable than suppressive fire (remember the ROE's)

    but the Army and Marine Corps fight in more than just cities. i guarantee in parts of Africa (and with China making a push don't be surprised to see Marines and Light Fighters …i predict that the Army will bring light fighters back) and in the jungles of the pacific suppressive fire will be needed.

    i guess in summation, i think HQMC took the lesson from the urban fighting in Iraq and made a weapons decision based on one type of combat…not taking into account the ability to fight in 'every clime'…

    we learned alot in these years of warfare…but we're going to have to unlearn alot of lessons too.

  39. at’s how jacked up this concept is. HQMC pushed this out the door and told the Battalions to figure out how they’re going to use it. no doctrine. no guidance. just a shiny new toy without any thoughts about how it would be utilized in the fleet.

    Is that really any different that how most new MC systems are fielded. I sign for gear on my CMR all the time and im like *** is this?? SSgt, you know what this is?…Never heard of it! Call MARCORSYSCOM, ok they say its for…….ok well I still dont know what we will use it for. I think the only reason people talk about this stuff now is because of the internet.

  40. I get all the tatics vs. tech, but does anyone here realize that most of the guys who are actually Marines dont like the SAW. Everyone has opinions but the HQMC isnt stupid, they have been winning Americas battles long before any of use were born. They know how and what is needed to fight.

  41. I'm not worried about kinetic power. That's more of the round itself, I believe. Not too savvy on bullet physics.

    Humans are is soft enough… Even out to the 800 meter mark you don't need too much power behind the round. As long as the metal meets the meat you'll do some damage.

  42. The marines have a long tradition of clever, low cost solutions. I would suggest to immediately expand the introduction of M27 to replace M16s as well, so that every man in the 13 men squad carries a M27. This way the squad will have 13 weapons capable of suppressive fire and 13 riflemen in terms of agility and load carrying ability. Before the M27 they had 4 suppressive weapons /9 riflemen, with the M27 replacing the SAW they have 4/13, but with the M27 as the only weapon they will have 13/13. Isn't that a leap improvement in capability? I am sure that the Army will follow 15 years after (just like the LAV-25/Stryker example!!!)

  43. The HK IAR is another piston conversion errrr abortion, of a Stoner M16, a rifle that was not designed to have a piston system scabbed on top of the barrel. This rifle will do no more than a similarly configured A4/A5 that is kept well lubricated. I would rather slam my testicles between two bricks than carry an HK IAR.

    If you want to see what the USMC should have adopted, go by Knight's booth and handle his LMG. 10 lbs., yes, 10 lbs., of belt fed heaven.

  44. why not get everyone an M27 since its basically a better M4/M16. Then after that get a saw gunner in there with a M240.
    one or two DMR carrying a vamped M14 (EBR?)
    that would be a nice squad setup, good stuff for fun times and not that costly since we al know the M4/M16 has served all it should and switching to an M27 requires no or not to much extra training.

  45. The heavier barrel allows for a higher sustained rate of fire, so simple.

  46. It is about time! I carried a SAW in the beginning of the 1st Gulf War, and it was a pain in the ***!! Had a lot of problems, but I think they fixed most of those in later builds.

    This is a good idea, now that there is a plethora of high cap mags out there. It lightens the Automatic Rifleman's load, and give him a bit of camouflage since it looks like an M16/M4.

  47. Maybe the Brits are different from our Marines, but I find it telling that they quickly started pulling M240/M249 weapons to augment their L86 loadouts out once they were deployed; nothing beats a machine-gun, and no souped-up rifle can takes its place. The real question should be: Do the Marines really want to replace their machine guns with heavy rifles?…..

  48. That's why we also use the SAW's big brother, the M240 in 7.62 NATO.

  49. Lance – Don't hate Marines. Hate stupidity and branch parchiolism which places you square in my sights.

    Marines may love the M27 after less than a year who likes hauling weight? (Oh, based on your previous posts I'd like some sources.) Let's get in some rock 'em sock 'em firefights and see what's popular. The M1 carbine was popular until one got in a firefight. Audie Murphy carried one on occasion but when he knew he had to go kill someone he reached for an M1 or Thompson (read American Soldier).

    Read and learn from my comments about the role of the squad automatic weapon. You're focused on tools while I'm talking tactics. There's a difference between a fanboy and a professional.

  50. it's fun to troll people like you.

  51. I think you've hit the nail on the head, it seems that both the Marine Corps and Army brass have learned the wrong lessons from Iraq. It would seem that both services came away from Iraq with a severe case of last-war-itis and and seem convinced that urban warfare will be the future of all warfare and have made weapons purchases based on that notion; in the case of the Army it was replacing their M16's with M4's and the Corps replacing (some) SAWs with the M27. Rather short sighted thinking and worrying that the Army & Marine Corps brass have gone back to the last war kind of thinking that plagued our military in decades past.

  52. Faker? Sure (as I pin your lips closed with my CIB).

    You CONSTANTLY play the Army training is substandard card. You're the one that said "spray and prey" (it's "pray"). You're the mental giant calling guys who fought at Wanat "idiots".

    I'm tired of your crap. Don't like being called stupid, don't write stupid things! You often parrot stats and specs but that doesn't mean a thing unless you can do some analysis and "understand". I let most slide. When you start picking on the Army with ZERO facts don't get surprised someone is going to make your scalp his playground.

  53. Funny with faker like Majrod who thinks he know more about the Marines and combat in Afghanistan than the Generals in charge. It is funny how he says the IAR is junk but studies in the last couple of years show it a success in combat. Some how he scared that is precious SAW will go away, even know it isn't. Combat studies in the desert show the SAWs heavy fire power isn't needed and lighter more accurate fire is.

    This idea about the IAR replacing the M-16 is bogas since the Marines are in a few year updating the M-16A4 to a new A5 version. Calling me stupid is proof your a faker and a know itall who is full of it.

  54. @Majrod you don't now crap of tactics and your full of crap. The Solders at Wanat did some major mistakes and I just said rifle training was not as good as the Corps. You are stupid and your a jerk from the ground up Majrod I could out shoot your jerk-weed anytime. Im also not saying im a solder im using key articles from Marine Times and Army Times and Military.com for my info you are pulling hot air from your mouth to make crap up.

  55. G – M2’s/M240s are a company/platoon or vehicular asset. Rifle squads don’t have them unless they are given a vehicle or a company/platoon asset (M2s also weigh about 100lbs). The SAW belongs to the squad to enable its fire and maneuver.

    Historically the need for an automatic weapon at the squad level is a given. Germans gave an MG34 or 42 to each squad. We gave our guys BARs, then M14s and then M16s each time recognizing we weren’t solving the problem. .30 cals/M60s were too heavy (like the M240). Single barrel magazine fed weapons too light hence the SAW.

    OEF IS encouraging longer engagements. Hence the revival of the designated marksman and the M14 at the squad level but when it gets to the last 100 yards, the decisive point in dismounted battle, the need for a dedicated squad automatic weapon hasn’t disappeared. MGs are somewhat defensive but their ability to keep the enemy’s head down or restrict his movement is what allows the squad the ability to maneuver to a point where the enemy must either surrender or die. Changing mags and hot barrels fail where the SAW doesn’t

  56. S – Remember the old saying about "preparing to fight the next war like the last one"?

  57. the IAR is not a weapon which came from the Iraq War if anything else it came from the current Afghan War. The SAW was fine in close quarter combat in open 500+ meter fighting its less accurate and its rate of fire wasn't needed. So the IAR was made to offer a in-between weapon. The SAW is not going away its be in the ranks on commanders digression.

  58. Yes, please correct a career infantryman on his lack of tactical acumen based on your tons of experience. I haven’t played MW2 in a while…

    Mistakes were made at Wanat? OK, tell me what those “idiots” (your words, not mine) didn’t do right to cause their weapons to jam?

    Explain how the Army's basic rifle training is "NONE SNIPER"? (Again, your mumblings not mine)

    There’s an old Irish saying, “when you’re in hole, stop digging”. I’m happy to hand you more shovels as you dig frantically wearing those “panties” as a hat.

  59. Lance no offense my brother at all but those movie terms you use of spray and pray are long gone in any service. We will all wait and see, the i have a friend who talked with a friend who is in the Marines is a load.One thing you got right is that the Marines Rock!!!, Th Army has great shooters and blows away the Marines at camp perry most of the time.

  60. Majrod nails it again!!!!!!!

  61. The IAR fall between a M-16/M-4 and a M-249 in firepower and use of trained automatic riflemen. the IAR is not a M-16 meant to replace the M-4 the Marines will not replace current M-16s with anything except a proposed M-16A5.

  62. Thank you for being respectful disagreement. Wish Majrod would be the same. But I didn't want to make people think Army cant shoot didn't say that and I know solders who shoot great. I was talking about basic rifle training. and The whole all M-4 army idea wrong they should have some M-16A2/4s in with the platoon. I also know and like the Army sniper corps there choice and Army selection of weapons like the M-14 EBR and M-2010 which a .300 Mag round is far better for sniping than the 7.62 NATO round.

    the IAR has been around for over 2 years ill send other story. This is from 2010 so its been in Marine hands for just over two years. And most Marine who shot it like it.
    http://www.military.com/news/article/corps-set-to

    I don't know why you hate the M-4 so much Majrod liking Belgian plastic isn't much better. And the IAR won over much more plastic weapons in the whole IAR competition.

  63. Wow Lance.

    You're good for comic relief but get a grip dude. I guarantee as moto as you're sounding one day in the Squad Bay will have you getting a hole stomped in your chest and then your Squad Leader will probably drag you into a closet for some wall to wall counseling.

    That's why I suspect you're not real. Sorry buddy but you have fanboy written all over you. I bet if you ever make past boot camp you'll realize that fairy tales and bunny rabbits aren't exactly part of Marine land. The devil doesn't wear multi-cam and those guys are cool too.

    Just relax. You're embarrassing yourself.

  64. The two comparison criteria between SAW and IAR are basically the sustained rate of fire and the weight. SAW with the barrel change has inherently a higher sustained rate of fire, because when you have barrel overheating you just change the barrel. IAR on the other hand has the weight of a rifle enabling the carrier to carry more ammo and to be more agile. The solution to all the problems is simple, equip all 13 men with IARs! This way every marine will have the ability of suppressive fire and this is very important in the rapid changing battlefield situations where it would be either dangerous or time consuming to bring the SAW carrier to the appropriate place to suppress the enemy. Moreover, if there is a need for prolonged suppressive fires then the marines of the 4 man fire team can alternate in that role giving time to their weapons to cool. And as I said before with 13 IARs you have simultaneously 13 riflemen (in agility) and 13 carriers of suppressive fire weapons!!!

  65. Lance – Easy there, you sound like you are going blow a gasket. What I would like to know is "Have you served in a Infantry billet?". If so, was there a deployment(s) to a combat zone?
    The reason I ask is that some of the people here are Infantry and some have served in under fire. It appears to me that you are "going off" in all directions.

    Now as for me; I believe the Corps should keep both for the time being and use which ever best suits the mission. The M27 does have its drawbacks; 1) no quick change barrel, 2) not belt feed even as an option and only 30 round mags available. The advantages 1) lighter weight than the M249, 2) looks like a M16/M4 series weapon, tougher to spot.
    The M249 on the other hand is heavier, doesn't feed from magazines reliably(it didn't even when first issued). Advantages over the M27 1) better sustained rate of fire(due to the belted ammo), better prolonged sustained fire due to the quick change barrel feature(important if more then 200 rounds are fired by the weapon in a short period of time); yes, barrel heat is a big issue, especially if you attempting suppressive fire.

    The point being is that everything is a compromise and this debate goes back the rifle, the cartridge, and the pistol etc., etc., etc… what do you think?

  66. Two things:
    First, we could of just refitted the old M-16 that had full auto with a heavier fluted barrel and free floating quad rail forearms. Save us serious money, even after we buy all the oil to keep it working.
    Second as to why Army dominates at Camp Perry or has more snipers. This is the same reason as why division one state school teams usually have an advantage over a division two school- shear volume of enrolment. That said, I believe the Marines stress marksmanship to all their people. Army if your MOS is cook, I don't see a lot of range time in your future.

  67. I find it hard to believe that the Marines haven't found any higher-capacity magazines to meet their liking.
    – various extended 40 and 45 round magazines
    – 60 round quad stack magazines on the market or in development
    – various drum designs

    I'm sure one of these solutions must work.

  68. I don't think you can count automatic fire as a disadvantage to a COIN environment…

  69. For a defense contractor you can be pretty ignorant with your comments. While you can have an opinion your assesment of the battle of Wanat is off base and distasteful. I worked at the CSI ( Combat Studies institute ) and have insight on that battle . They were not idiots, it was a calculated attack that took advantage of the terrain. Those "Idiots" fought bravley and did their job proffesionally as Soldiers and as shooters. As far as BRM the Army trains (Infantry) much like our Marine (Infantry) bretherine with Reflexive and medium to long range engaements quite regularly, and in the Infantry we are taught for precision not pray and spray like you say. You sir are an embarrasment and a diservice to this whole thread. I work as a contractor here on Bragg, with deployments under my belt in an Infantry billet in combat but your comparisons between Army and Marines is full of bias and distasteful. For someone who claims to be proffesional on the thread you can be quite nasty. I have had the honor of working with a lot of Marines and have enjoyed learning from them as I am sure they picked up stuff from us. Again you are ***** and should seriously pull your head out your six point of contact.

  70. Not Saying those men where not brave but shooting over 300 rounds a minutes in a M-4 or any rifle is a dumb thing to do. You don't just empty and empty mags in rapied fire use your LMG or IAR or M-240 for that. The whole M-4 debate you cherish about this is nonsense the M-4 was fine until some of them ruined there rifle by poor choice in rapid fire panic fire.

    I will not talk about your insults in many ways im not surprised your a current poster here using another name. Your use of four letter words and insults just to say you disagree proves your not who you say you are.

    if you disagree say so don't have to make it personal.

  71. Like William C stated I bet the IAR wil soon get 60rd or 100rd mags and it will help get increased firepower for IAR gunners. This is NOT a big mistake just opening a alternative for some operations for a LMG that's light weight and more accurate than a SAW.

  72. It is possible that the 60rd mag MIGHT see some use, the 100rd, highly unlikely. It is way too big/long, and of course unwieldy. The problem with these double stack mags is the bulkiness not only when in the weapon, but to carry. Plus, the M16 or IAR don't need that type of feeding device. Wait to a guy gets in a bad situation and starts dumping those things. You want to talk about heat? 30rd mags are sufficient.

    Now to the meat of the matter. The IAR concept should be what everyone in the unit is doing, save for the machinegunner. The IAR weighs about 1.5 lbs less than the KAC LMG. The IAR is not even in the same league. It doesn't have a quick change barrel and is not belt fed. It is a bloated piston CONVERSION of an already excellent and established design. I have yet to see anyone here tell me where the HK weapon is superior to a similarly configured M16. Lance?

  73. For use as a rifle its not really much better as a M-16 the free floating barrel is a bit better in accuracy. However the heavier barrel makes the weapon shoot for longer periods or time on full auto making ti better to shoot in automatic. the piston helps too to keep the action cooler than a DI M-16 would have.

  74. I always question the testing and how it is implemented. Also you need to consider the process as outlined in the article I linked regarding who was allowed to compete. To replace on a large scale a belt fed weapon with a mag fed weapon is suspect up front.

    My personal opinion is this "piston" M16 fad got these guys all goofy, and as misguided as that thinking is, they went with it. They wanted it to win. In the end, I don't believe a conversion of a DI rifle is going to win the day.

    The SCAR is an example of a rifle designed with a piston operating system. If the DoD has to have one, there it is. Funny after all the development and testing, that word again, they determined it does not do enough of a superior job over the M16 series to warrant adoption. So there ya go.

  75. "This rifle will do no more than a similarly configured A4/A5 that is kept well lubricated."

    Actually this is factually untrue. Since the gas piston IAR keeps heat and carbon away from the bolt-carrier group, it will technically perform superior to a direct impingement design IAR.

    In a carbine, the DI is reasonably reliable. With a IAR, that is entirely a different matter due to the frequency and rate of fire.

  76. lance i think you need a nice tall glass…

  77. In the United States, FN is represented by two entities.
    FNH USA, located in McLean, Virginia, is responsible for sales, marketing and business development with the U.S. military, government agencies, law enforcement and the commercial sector.
    FN Manufacturing, located in Columbia, South Carolina, is the U.S. manufacturing arm of FN and is currently producing M16 rifles, M249 light machine guns, M240 medium machine guns, FN bolt-action rifles and FNP pistols. FNM is one of only three manufacturers designated by the U.S. Government as the domestic industrial base for small arms production. I would say that makes them as American as apple pie.

    Browning M-2 included in that foreign crap? Like I said, I didn't care for SCAR either. But they do put out some nice stuff.
    As to no money. We seem to be buying a lot of stuff. M-9 Beretta official side arm. Unless of course you want a Sig P226 or H&K Mark 23. ****, we'll even rebuild WWII era 1911s. USSCOM wants SCARs, buy them. Damn Afghanistan and Iraq got no jungle, how inconsiderate. Take out some cash and refurb my M-14 that will get the job done over the desert. Marines really want better rifle, call the H&K 416 an M27, justify by saying it is an upgraded LMG. LOL need cue cards to keep up

  78. Not sure, but Tom Coburn, R-Okla wasn't really pushing the SCAR. No advantage to his district, they are made in South Carolina.
    "In an April 12 letter to acting Army Secretary Pete Geren, Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn said purchase of the M4 – a shortened version of the Vietnam-era M16 – was based on requirements from the early 1990s and that better, more reliable weapons exist that could give Army troops a more effective weapon.
    Coburn asked the Army to hold a "free and open competition" before inking sole-source contracts worth about $375 million to M4 manufacturer, West Hartford, Conn.-based Colt Defense – which just received a $50 million Army contract for M4s on April 20.
    "I am concerned with the Army's plans to procure nearly half a million new rifles outside of any competitive process," Coburn wrote in the mid-April letter obtained by Military.com."
    So as I see the good Doctor was acting in a fiscally responsible manner. Would you got to the contractor that built your neighbors shed and give him the contract to build yours, without checking on some quotes? And looks like he had good reason as everyone was dumping the M-4.
    "The 416 is used by the Army's elite Delta Force, and a recent Army Times investigation showed the service's top equipment buyers ignored data from the spec ops community showing the M4 had fundamental flaws. Enamored by the development of futuristic weapons such as the XM29 and, later, XM8 – neither of which were ever fielded – the M4 stayed in the hands of Soldiers deploying to hot, dusty, austere environments like Iraq and Afghanistan." From http://www.military.com/NewsContent/0,13319,13131

  79. "Glock fan",Excellent posting and this is what the Marines will do no doubt about this at all.I don't care what some may say here they don't know at all.The Marines are not dumb at all and will get to do this in a back door way in the wake of budget cuts.

  80. Here a link to show all other services but the Army are NOT adopting a replacement for the M-4 and M-16s in service.
    http://www.military.com/news/article/marines-wont

  81. "but shooting over 300 rounds a minutes in a M-4 or any rifle is a dumb thing to do"

    hindsight 20/20 for the armchair commando. When you are faced with the quantity of tali like those men faced, you fire your weapon until they stop advancing on you. period. i would rather live melting my m4's barrel than die with the rifle in good condition. The battle of wanat is one of the most compelling cases for the M4 to be replaced with a more durable and reliable weapon system…even if it is a improved M4.

    "the M-4 was fine until some of them ruined there rifle by poor choice in rapid fire panic fire."

    Again, it wasn't a matter of the right or wrong choice. they were in the ****. They did what was necessary to survive. When a situation like wanat happens, soldiers have to trust their weapon system. It certainly demonstrated that the M4 wasn't as reliable or trustworthy as the range shooters and fanboys thought it was. The M4 debate is not nonsense. It is about valuing the lives of soldiers over the cronyism so rampant in our defense industry. Apparently, the M4 "being good enough" is acceptable to you…for many of us, it is not.

  82. actually, it provides plenty of advancement over the A4. It is more suitable as a automatic rifleman's weapon than the A4 and M249. The M249 was foolishly adopted as a replacement to the M60, and replacing a 7.62 caliber weapon with a 5.56mm one is utterly stupid (it is even stupider that we use two different cartridges instead of a intermediary one).

    The Soviet Army has been employing automatic rifleman since WWII. The RPK is a testimony of this. It replaced the RPD because it had commonality with the AK.

    The US military needs designated marksmen and automatic riflemen as bad as it needs machine gun teams, grenadiers, and other important niche in the infantry platoon. The US is foolishly relearning those lessons in Iraq and Afghanistan despite them being learned 60 years ago.

  83. Thing is no other firearm in the market would have survived the punishment they where infecting on there rifle. There is no wonder gun that can take over 800rounds under a minute and survive. The XM-8 failed because its forearm easily melted in full auto fire and FN and HK fire arms fared no better. The thing no one admits there is no vastly superior weapon to the M-4.

    The M-4 is fine when you take care of it.

  84. I was actually talking about platoon commander stuff

  85. Maybe you all can educate me on what the SQUAD's automatic weapon is suppose to be. According to the Marine Corps doctrine I learned, the M27 makes perfect sense being that the A gunners OFFENSIVE role is not suppression but volume of accurate fire. Again, Im not talking about Afghanistan, just doctrine. Follow me here, A rifle company has 3 rifle platoons and a weapons platoon (Mortars, MG's etc.) and Marine Corps doctrine is to fight 3:1. If the goal of the rifle squad is to close with and destroy, through fire and Maneuver, shouldn't the automatic weapon be just as maneuverable as the other weapons in the squad? M27 fits that billet. All the talk about large volumes of fire coming from the A Gunner in a fire team are referring to either support by fire positions or defensive employment or erroneous in their thinking. Anyone who has ever seen a squad/platoon online rushing in the O will knows that A gunner isnt blowing through drums and doing barrel changes. In either case, before any major effort, support by fire team/squad/platoon can be reinforced with 249's 240, mk19's or M2's weapons platoon/company. Even the Bn Commander of 2/7 realized that SAW gunners fall behind in the attack and removed them from squads.

    Google Automatic Rifle Concept: Part II—Reorganizing the Infantry Squadby CWO3 Jeffrey L. Eby USMC Gunner

    My finally point is practicality. For those of you who dont have to carry Assault Packs/Flak/Sapi's/NVG's/PEQ's/Flashlights/Flex Cuffs/Chemlights(naming the components not essential for combat) carrying the saw might not feel that bad. But when you have some of the fittest and hardiest Marine's unable to keep up with the remainder of the squad, something needs to change. Its up to you to decide whats important to you, but im my opinion, there is nothing I need to do with a SAW that I cant do with a M27.

  86. Correct, any weapon system would probably fail if you dump that many rounds through it. Would that of been my main concern at Top Side. I doubt it, especially since I could grab another weapon from someone no longer needing it. The initial strike was effective, with dead and wounded. The MG gunner down in initial strike, everyone a little stunned. So much for the "LMG or IAR or M-240 for that".
    Who knows melting the M4 could have kept some one alive. That M4 was the only support going and not like we're talking he sprayed at insurgents at 300yds. These are Bad Guys at the wire. Trying to regain an initiative, you do what you can. I'm not gonna second guess them way back here.
    As to vastly superior, Lance your more than likely right, but I'll take whatever edge this old, fat guy can get now.

  87. "Thing is no other firearm in the market would have survived the punishment they where infecting on there rifle."

    Punishment like less than ideal maintenance and conditions
    and prolonged firing can be remedied with many other weapons available. The direct impingement M4's strong point isn't rapid fire like what was encountered at that battle. There are other designs that could have at least mitigated the vulnerability of infantry reliant on obsolete technology.

    "There is no wonder gun that can take over 800rounds under a minute and survive."

    *** are you talking about? there are plenty of designs that can survive 800 rounds per minute. Its called gas piston technology. They will also eventually fail, but it is guaranteed that the direct impingement will fail from overheating a lot sooner than a gas piston design.

    "The XM-8 failed because its forearm easily melted in full auto fire"

    Which is a easy fix, except people like you think the weapon system is a failure because of one small drawback. The XM8, during the 2007 dust bin test, had the fewest malfunctions about of three competitors…by a wide margin. Of course, the XM8's critics ignore this test conveniently.

    "and FN and HK fire arms fared no better."

    oh please, on a technological and practical level you are wrong. Any weapon whose bolt carrier group maintains lubrication and cooler operating temperature is going to be more resistant to prolonged fire. Guaranteed. There was a independent test done comparing the SCAR to the M4 design, which demonstrated to me that FN conducted many hours of research to ensure the weapon would perform optimally in harsh conditions. The SCAR featured superior cool-down and heat dissipation to the M4. Weapons like the 416, with a cold hammer forged barrel, are superior to Colt's M4 barrel.

    "The thing no one admits there is no vastly superior weapon to the M-4."

    They don't admit something that isn't true. I will not admit it because it is factually wrong and has been demonstrated so…especially the Battle of Wanat. Any marginal advantage a infantryman can get from a weapon system, he should have access to it. Not shelf a superior system because some bean counter or defense contractor decides a individual soldier is not worth the trouble.

    "The M-4 is fine when you take care of it."

    Again, thank you for proving my point. It is just fine by your standards. Utter ********. Well, perhaps you are overly grateful it isn't your life on the line in Afghanistan.

  88. "Oh, based on your previous posts I’d like some sources"

    Oh don't expect sources from this clown. you will find yourself disappointed.

    lance, its best you quit while you are not too far behind.

  89. the soviets have done it since world war II, with the RPK (modified AK) replacing the belt-fed RPD and the PKM filling in the niche of a light machine gun.

    Where it got ****** up was when:

    1.) The US Military fielded both 5.56 and 7.62 cartridges instead of a common intermediate cartridge.
    2.) Replaced the M60, a 7.62 weapon, with the M249, which is a 5.56 one.

    The M249, in my opinion, fills in the niche of a 7.62 weapon, although being woefully inadequate in this role. As a 7.62 weapon, it would be effective, though thats why there was the FN MAG.

  90. Thing is that some here don't like some design and that's there opinion but they tend to make ti a fact and somehow they cant be wrong. All I can say is that despite what some say should say they think of is what weapon the military should have dosnt mean crap to the military brass so trying to call me names is waste of time some don't know jack either.

  91. "I don’t care about your dumb CIB"

    thank you for proving multiple points. If you have no respect for a coveted military award like the CIB, then that pretty much shows everybody what kind of sniveling little worm you are.

  92. "I said, an HK IAR has NO performance advantage over a SIMILARLY CONFIGURED M16"

    This is incorrect. the IAR M16 that was originally fielded was extremely unpopular. The HK IAR eliminates many of the issues from the M16 IAR by incorporating a gas piston design and heavier barrel, both of which are a NECESSITY when fulfilling the role of Infantry Automatic Rifle.

    "The M16 can also use 60rd quad mags and 100rd Beta mags, so no advantage there, and they aren’t all that anyway. Give me 30′s."

    None of which have been proven yet, though there are developments being made. You seriously want ******* 30 rounders in a IAR!? that is ridiculous. The Soviets have been employing drum magazines and extended magazines for the RPK since the weapon's introduction after World War II. It is stupid that the US hasn't developed a reliable AR15 magazine over 30 rounds and people are willing to settle for 30 rounders. Ridiculous.

    "Here is a glowing example of why the IAR is bad mojo unlike the RPK, while mistakenly attempting to supplant a belt-fed weapon to some degree, it shares almost NO parts commonality with the M16. See proprietary."

    The IAR is a very smart concept, though I believe that the marines jumped the gun by adopting the HK 416 variant without knowing 100% what the next service rifle (that is assuming any branch of service gives a **** about commonality anymore…much to the taxpayer's chagrin) is going to be. I find it as a waste of the taxpayer's dollar. It makes sense if the 416 is the next infantry rifle, though i doubt this.

  93. you work for the DOD from "time to time"? LMAO hahaha, i didn't know working for government was so casual.

    haha, man im so afraid of your brass buddies…bragging about who you know with electrons over a blog just makes you sound like a idiot. I suggest you put your gear and camo away, move out of your mom's basement, and get a life.

  94. xcalbr, I don't believe that the strength of the piston design is in the "weapon whose bolt carrier group maintains lubrication and cooler operating temperature is going to be more resistant to prolonged fire." Even though carbon shooting back in to carrier group, a properly lubed M4 won't have an issue. The melt down occurs even when using piston designed rifles. It's mainly a product of friction of bullets through a barrel. That said the piston design does mitigate some things. Less heat in the bolt carrier area does help cool the weapon faster, but in not real a factor at this rate of fire. The gas tube in the DI design is more likely to fail from heat. Piston design eliminates that totally. Biggest help, a heavy, cold hammer forged barrel that is chrome lined and fluted. That is just simple physics. But like I said before I want every advantage my old, fat a** can get.

  95. I see you point, I would say generally speaking, the average Marine are more foot mobile than the average Soilder.

  96. I think the point was that the average Marine is a better marksmen that the average soldier. You would have to compare cooks to cooks, admin to admin, grunts to grunt etc. There you would have to admit that Marines on average better marksmen. In the end though who really cares. The Army is X bigger then the MC and therefore doesnt need the same level of trained shooters.

  97. It would seem to be suppressive to the guy with the new bullet holes in him.

    If you're talking about suppressive fire in terms of "keep everybody's heads down over by that house" and not engaging a specific target, I certainly agree that a belt-fed weapon would seem to have an advantage over a mag-fed weapon.

  98. "xcalbr, I don’t believe that the strength of the piston design is in the “weapon whose bolt carrier group maintains lubrication and cooler operating temperature is going to be more resistant to prolonged fire.”"

    Well, you don't have to believe, though scientifically, this is true. Since the bolt carrier group contains critical parts necessary for feeding, firing, and extracting technically, a mechanically reliable bolt carrier group can continue to fire until the barrel melts. During rapid fire, the M4's gas tube and bolt carrier will fail long before the barrel.

    "Even though carbon shooting back in to carrier group, a properly lubed M4 won’t have an issue."

    Many civilian shooters have tested DI Ar15's with impressive results, just with proper lubrication and no cleaning, though i do not believe this is the same as conditions in afghanistan or the battlefield. The battle of wanat demonstrated what happens to weapons that may not be optimally cleaned or lubricated. It is hard to emulate those conditions on a civilian range.

  99. "Many civilian shooters have tested DI Ar15′s with impressive results, just with proper lubrication and no cleaning, though i do not believe this is the same as conditions in afghanistan or the battlefield."
    Don't want to say shootings, shooting but… Many units due some hard core training. This should come fairly close to actual conditions. I just haven't encountered the bolt carrier failures in a DI system. Some of those carriers I've come across from John Wayne at the range, made me ill they were so nasty looking. Maybe I've just been lucky?
    "the bolt carrier group contains critical parts necessary for feeding, firing, and extracting technically, a mechanically reliable bolt carrier group can continue to fire until the barrel melts."
    Concur, the M249 is perfect example. My contention is the DI system bolt carrier up to task. Hence the " Many civilian shooters have tested DI Ar15′s with impressive results, just with proper lubrication and no cleaning". Just like John Wayne above, "Oh that's how it comes apart!"
    "During rapid fire, the M4′s gas tube and bolt carrier will fail long before the barrel."
    And in that line you have it. I believe the Achilles heel is the gas tube itself. I have got them a glowing before. Especially when shortened for use in an M4 barrel length. Not to mention Eugene Stoner design was for a longer barrel. Once you start to shorten, you mess with the timing. The timing being off will also start to give some problems in the feeding and extraction areas that some may erroneously perceive as a bolt carrier problem.
    Alas, I can't have a DI system without the gas tube, to prove my conjecture. I think we agree on most points. Like Da Big Guy says, give me every advantage. Bring on the piston. I'll take my favorite flavor, Sig 556.

  100. You didn't really state that you wanted the 16in on the M4. Be nice.

  101. Johnny, pet Bandit there for a minute and relax. I think both points are valid. I do not blame the carrier group. Though I believe the magazine article since it holds up with what I've encountered. It does come across more as an ad for SLiP2000 and Bravo Company MFG. I can see why they like to show links to it.
    Would of liked to see an apples to apples comparison. That way I could tell if some of the smaller parts in the bolt carrier group need to be replaced more frequently due to the DI. Namely the extractor spring, though this may be nick picking. Now that would be a more fair comparison. Wish I had both rifles and a butt load of ammo to check. I don't think there be a significant difference with the lube protecting the parts for the most part but would have a definitive answer. When I get a mean failure rate, I could establish an X number of rounds the service rifle should overhaul the small parts anyway.
    Colt list M4 rate of fire at 700-950 RPM. Army manual ARMY TM 9-1005-319-10 at 700-970. HK416 Technical Data (none listed for the M27, but should be comparable) for the 16.5" barrel listed as approx. 850 per min. So should be close to each other. For testing you could get them to match with different buffers and buffer springs.
    Now as to total meltdown. Set both rifles up, blast on full till with beta mags till they stop. Using the same rate of fire and same type barrel. Piston should be last man standing. The gas tube will give out (i.e. melt), before a push rod. But would like to see this for fact. Oh and if by some chance barrel melts first, whole debate is then mute. But if you still got to know, water cool the barrels.
    No Kool aid. Can I interest you in a rum and coke.

  102. to support ronc's comment, you are comparing a carbine test and trying to argue against the applicability of a gas piston in a infantry automatic rifle. Apples and walnuts. Perhaps I can interest you in a nice tall glass…

  103. "I just haven’t encountered the bolt carrier failures in a DI system"

    Where I was going with this was a hot bolt carrier is more likely to jam due to the variables that plague it…namely lubrication drying out. Not to sound like a advertiser, but this is why a nickel-boron bolt and carrier is extremely advantageous.

    Since the M16 IAR was unpopular for various reasons, i cannot agree that direct impingement is ideal for a infantry automatic rifle.

    The gas tube is indeed the achilles heel and the killing blow is the fact that it dissipates heat in the components that are critical to the rifle. This is a very damning disadvantage. I would rather the piston heat up than the bolt carrier group (which dries lubrication and increases wear) and gas tube. From a gun smith's perspective, heat dissipation is essential, not just a perk, for any weapon design.

  104. “I just feel like if they told me that they didn’t like my gun because it was the wrong color or if was too little, too light, too heavy or whatever, that is one thing, but they disqualified—partially disqualified—it because of us as a manufacturer.” -knight

    I agree that this outstanding weapon should have been selected. It would have effectively fulfilled the niche of a squad automatic weapon and infantry automatic rifle, retaining advantages such as its ridiculously light weight (10lbs) and being belt-fed.

    I believe the procurement of a weapons platform that retains no commonality with existing weapons is foolish, all the while "replacing" a belt-fed machine gun with a rifle (that does not have a quick detach barrel, uses proprietary parts, and fires from a ******* closed bolt).

    That goes without saying, the M27 is a outstanding weapon that was foolishly adopted by a military branch more concerned with careerist-mentality than producing results for soldiers on the ground. One more example of our flawed acquisition process that unnecessarily compromises ground troop effectiveness.

  105. thats the problem lance. it is not a light machine gun. You cannot replace a belt-fed, open bolt weapon with a closed bolt, magazine fed one. That is utterly incompetent.

  106. its utterly amazing how the carrier tilt myth is continually spread across the truck stop bathroom…i mean internet. Seeing 416's that have literally had tens of thousands of rounds through them, the upper receivers and buffer tubes were mysteriously unharmed…but H&K isn't exactly amateurs…are they?

    It beat the FN "piece of crap" lance? A link was gratuitously provided pointing out the incompetence of the military hardware procurement process. You still believe any competition in the IAR would have been fair? utter bull. The Marine commandant was skeptical of the competition results. The FN IAR was by far the most innovative out of all the designs, incorporating a closed bolt and open bolt automatic adjustment feature.

  107. "SOCOM uses the M-4 and Mk-18 far more now than your think. Yes the SCAR H is still being bought but the M-4 replacement the SCAR L was dumped last year."

    The SCAR L wasn't dumped. I don't know where you heard this from. You may not know this but the Navy's SOCOM branch acquired SCAR L, H, and mk 20 rifles. So much for dumping the "L" variant LOL.

  108. So let's make our little squad. Now not knowing the mission were gonna have to make some allowances. So God help us, here is mine.
    Fire team A:
    Leader- M16 variant with flat top, full auto, quad rail, free floating heavy fluted barrel along with a 40mm grenade option. Rifleman 1&2- Sig 556 with full auto, quad rail, free floating heavy fluted barrel. DM- Mk14EBR.
    Fire team B:
    Leader- Mk12. Rifleman 1&2- Sig 556 yada yada as above. IAR-Mk48.
    And lastly you, the squad leader. Primarily in jungle/urban setting something quick. How does a H&K MP5N with a can if you think quiet going to help. MP5N over MP5SD version for less weight and length if suppressor not needed. Primary area of operation is open space, would more than likely go with M110.
    First three in each fire team using same ammo magazines. Sig's should stay on semi unless situation dictates. Both team leaders with lots of bang. Designated Marksmen and Infantry Automatic Rifleman same caliber that has range and punch. Well that's my try.

  109. Nearly every trend (at least for the MC) indidcate that our next few battles will be on urban terrain. This goes inline with the idea that the worlds populations are migrating towards littoral regions and there by increasing urban populations.

  110. Lance, I with you on this one. Marine *rifle squad* tactics and Army *rifle squad* tactics are similar only to the degree that we both use combined arms and fire and maneuver. The differences begin and end there. Yes, the MC does use plenty of Army FMs, but the implementation of the same doctrine and philosophy are different. Maybe from the outside looking in they are similar but small unit leadership and dismounted maneuver typify small unit tactics in the MC, where as (Keep in mind, I am a Marine) Army tactics seem to rely on light/medium/heavy/ armor reinforced infantry to some degree in order to close with. Final point in defense of Lance, what difference does it make if someone in the Army has a CIB or not, it literally means nothing to the average Marine. I dont think he is trying to be disrespectful, awards etc really dont mean as much in the MC as they do in the Army. I personally don't really care about the CIB or CAR either. I know several Marines who have been in combat and don't have a medal or ribbon to show for it. By the same token, on a daily basis I see several Marines who have found over 15-40 IEDs personally, been shot at, blow up, breached minefields, houses etc and dont have a CAR. I know a company commander who has a CAR and never left the FOB. No biggie.

  111. Curious if anyone knows why the Ultimax 100 didn't make the cut. Apparently some were submitted to the USMC for the IAR comptetition. Was it the lack of a semi-auto option, reliability, weight or what? It seems similar in size and weight to the KAC LMG, and it's been in production since 1978.

  112. "Converting an AR to take an op rod makes as much sense as converting a bicycle to take ski poles"

  113. "actually, it provides plenty of advancement over the A4. It is more suitable as a automatic rifleman’s weapon than the A4 and M249."

    Going with Solomon on this one, and what do YOU know about what is "suitable as an automatic rifleman's weapon"? Define for us an "automatic rifleman", and don't feed us regurgitated internent drivel. The M249 was never intended to be use in that role. I will say again, oh wise one, and after all the times I have suggested and linked to it, you have conveniently ignored Knight's LMG. It smokes the 249, and the the Teutonic Turd isn't even in the stadium. Mag fed versus belt fed is ludicrous.

    One more question, have you ever even shot a 416 much less had one in your hands? Think about your answer carefully.

  114. The crux of this whole debate is a tad off. The IAR isn't, nor should it be expected to be, comparable to the SAW. They both have a purpose. The first argument should be why isn't every rifleman carrying the best IAR. The contention that the M4 is that weapon doesn't hold up. Sorry there is better out there. Now is the better VASTLY superior as to justify cost, well if it were me and mine I would say yes. Though not vastly better, as I have always said give this old, fat a** and our guys every advantage.
    Second is the SAW. The 249 isn't liked all that much. Yes I know some guys love them, take a hundred pics mainly to show everyone they hump a beast. I got pictures of my sister, but that doesn't mean you would want her either. I think first you should decided on a cartridge. My personnel take is for its intended purpose, 7.62 X 51mm a better choice. Then right now for the big bullets the Mk48 seems to be the winner. If you decide that that advantage doesn't overcome its logistical disadvantage of having to field two cartridges or that the L in LMG should be 5.56 X 45mm. Teeny bullets is your choice. Go put the Knights LMG, Nevgev, MG4 and Mk46 (maybe with the collapsible stock) or whatever else you can think of through the ringer. You will get a winner from the testing, not everyone's OPINIONS.
    From what I gather, Marines aren't TECHNICALLY dropping the SAW. So to me this does look to be a work around to getting them a better weapon. Going to clear some houses leave it home. Going on a little walk in some ones else back yard bring one, hopefully the winner of the competition and not the current barbell.

  115. thanks for the perspective btw, Ronc

  116. the issue is that with only having 30 rnd stanag mags you will never hit a RoF that will damage the rifle.

    i honestly think a M4A1 with the HBAR and FF DD RAS II would do the exact same thing the M27 is doing and it would have been cheaper.

    they are wanting 600 rounds to be issued, if they took the M4A1 gave it a beefier gas tube(ala surefire test video) it could easily pump out 600rnds no issues(again surefire did 500(5-100rnd mags) no issues at all with a bigger gas tube).

    and hes right a well lubed A4 or M4A1 should never have issues if using a good magazine as well

  117. im still waiting on the Marine Corps to get with the program on rifle setups. if they want a 20" thats fine my person AR is a 20" but lets face it the rifle stock is crap as is the burst cog. same with the age old KAC M5 RAS.

    its time for the marines to get with the program, get a FF rail, a full auto FCG and get a collapsible stock(ala VLTOR A5). that would greatly increase the Marines capabilities in combat.

    whos with me?

  118. the only advantage i see to the A2 stock is like you said as a club, you should check out then VLTOR A5 its proven to be more reliable than the A2 stock, its more than just a carbine stock, thats why i mentioned it specifically

  119. Have you ever had to reconsolidate or reorganize after a firefight? It's not just a question of the same ammo. How do you cross level magazines for different weapon systems? You plan on unloading/reloading mags in between firefights?

  120. "Going with Solomon on this one, and what do YOU know about what is “suitable as an automatic rifleman’s weapon”?"

    Its quite simple. A automatic rifleman is intended to provide suppressive fire…in a light infantry fire team. Of course units can be flexible, alternating between the IAR and SAW for units that require certain levels of mobility. Of course, mechanized units can retain the SAW.

    A automatic rifle is supposed to provide accurate, suppressive fires with a rate of fire higher than standard carbines. Of course, it is supposed to be lightweight enough to maneuver with other infantrymen, though belt-fed machine guns rarely are light enough to maneuver to a same degree as riflemen. That is the disadvantage and the marine corps has considered this disadvantage large enough to allow a non-belt fed automatic rifle to take the place of the SAW.

    Of course, fundamentally, I disagree with this. We have the technology to produce a light belt-fed light machine gun. I believe, in afghanistan (which is, i digress, a tactical anomaly), the M27 is certainly advantageous for a rifle squad, though should not replace a belt-fed light machine gun completely.

    "Define for us an “automatic rifleman”, and don’t feed us regurgitated internent drivel."

    My definition of automatic rifleman comes from US Army FM 7-8. Again, the purpose of a Automatic Rifleman is to suppress and prevent the enemy from observing and maneuvering. One can certainly see the advantages of belt-fed machine guns for this role, especially on a platoon level.

    "The M249 was never intended to be use in that role. I will say again, oh wise one, and after all the times I have suggested and linked to it, you have conveniently ignored Knight’s LMG."

    The M249 was intended as a light machine gun, down to a fire team level, to replace the M60 (which was also replaced by the M240 as a general purpose machine gun).

    On the contrary, I am not ignoring the Knight's LMG as i have responded to your posts about it multiple times. If this weapon is more reliable and durable (or even just as) as the SAW, then it is a no brainer. 10 lbs for a belt-fed light machine gun is a significant advantage.

    Like I have said previous times, I believe the decision to replace "all" belt-fed M249's with a closed bolt, magazine fed M27 is shortsighted. The M27 IAR should be included in a fireteam up to a infantry platoon, though it shouldnt completely replace the SAW. the M27 is certainly suitable for light infantry and fire and maneuver in afghanistan.

    The disadvantage of the Knight's LMG is that its untested. however, I am basing my confidence in its design and reliability from Knights Armament, which i hold in high regard.

    "It smokes the 249, and the the Teutonic Turd isn’t even in the stadium. Mag fed versus belt fed is ludicrous."

    As i have said before. A closed bolt, magazine fed weapon cannot replace a belt-fed, open bolt one. However, it should be included in infantry units. the Soviets have done this successfully since WWII (they interestingly replaced the RPD with the RPK).

    "One more question, have you ever even shot a 416 much less had one in your hands? Think about your answer carefully."

    I carried one for a year. I am intimately familiar with it. The disadvantage that I noticed was its rail system, which heats up around the gas block (this is also typical of any gas piston rifle), though this is a easy fix. I have found the 416 to be a outstanding carbine.

    Have you even touched one? your opinions seem to eerily parallel those of internet forums and blogs (especially those with anti-HK sentiment).

    Get over it. The HK 416 is more than a adequate weapon. There is a reason why it was developed and adopted. The people that I have known in my life that use or have used the 416 in combat seem like they are reasonable subject matter experts. Far more professional than those Luddite reactive and close minded souls that prefer we live in the dark ages because "old is best".

    Ronc, i have to agree with you. Both weapon systems have their purpose in a infantry unit. There are better weapons than the M4 (sorry) and the M249 is generally disliked as finicky and unreliable.

  121. i actually run a 20" with the VLTOR A5 on my personal AR-15 and it is by far the softest shooting AR ive ever used, and everything ive read says its more reliable than the A2.

    VLTOR has good explenation over on m4carbine.net explaining the design and improvements they made to the system, and what makes it the most reliable design there is

  122. >The M249 was intended as a light machine gun, down to a fire team level,
    >to replace the M60

    Coming late to the party, but you're flat-out wrong on that claim, Ronc.

    The M249 was intended to replace the M16 with a spring-loaded bipod, which was what the designated automatic riflemen were being issued. The M60 was a platoon-level base-of-fire weapon, with 2 M60 teams per platoon (versus 2 automatic riflemen per squad).

    Conceptually, there is a definite break in coherent thought when you are asking your covering fire system to maneuver with the fire teams that it's supposed to be covering. The most common result is that the SAW gets used as a belt-fed burp gun instead of laying down suppressing fire (or being in overwatch, ready to lay down fire) while the fire teams maneuver.0

  123. I'd like to see what you think makes a chopped and channeled rendition of a Stoner LMG a better choice than the CETME Ameli/MG82 (which gets rid of the gas system in its entirety and has a truly fast-change barrel)?
    http://www.militaryfactory.com/smallarms/detail.a
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CETME_Ameli
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR5Tde4kv-M

  124. These weapons will not hold up. You will see horrible carrier tilt. Broken hammers, bent hammer pins and most likely broken disconnectors…all things inherent of a piston design regardless of who made it. The carrier tilt will destroy the threads on the receiver extension thus destroying the lower receiver group. This wear will be exacerbated because these guns are going to be fired ALOT. The knights LMG would have been the better option.

    By the way I am a certified ar-1/M16 armorer. I have one of the best armorer certification in the industry. I have seen alot of broken/destroyed piston driven ar's. I am looking forward to the near future when the whole piston ar15 market completely implodes…

  125. "Soldier" and not, Solder (/ˈsoʊldə/,[1] /ˈsɒldə/[1] or USA /ˈsɒdər/[2]) is a fusible metal alloy used to join together metal workpieces and having a melting point below that of the workpiece(s)

  126. When giving his exit speech, Pres. (5 star General & 1st Supreme Allied Commander Europe) Dwight D. Eisenhower, warn against the fledgling military industrial complex, in that it would control all facets of the U.S. military. Telling the military what it needed.

  127. 800 meters? it's called air support.

  128. And you want flechettes.

  129. Thanks to both & all

  130. Why not use a belt fed conversion of the M4? It's been done before.
    Look here
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAgmFimitAw

    Now i'm not an armorer or anything so I don't know how this would hold up maintenance and reliability-wise. However I meets both ends of the spectrum. Full auto supressive fire with a high capacity belt system and the compactness and portability of an M4.

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