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Thread: US Army Considers Adopting an Interim Battle Rifle in 7.62NATO: eventually adopt 6.5

  1. #181
    The 120-130 grn bullets are around 500bc and still Cary enough energy at 300 yards to take down a Elk in a cartridge that fits in a ar15. It's there and it's a upper and mag away from being available to our soldiers. Like said above keep the sniper platform and heavy machine guns using the same ammo. 7mmm/300Norma/300wm/338nm/338lm and do a light machine gun that fires Grendel

  2. #182
    Chieftain stanc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by montana View Post
    It's been cancelled.
    Or maybe not. https://kitup.military.com/2017/09/i...bat-rifle.html
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  3. #183
    Super Moderator LRRPF52's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by n9nwo View Post
    The problem with the .224 and 6mm is that they do not pack enough energy to take on stone houses. Or mud brick houses. The Russians found that out with 5.45x39 in Chechnya.

    6.5mm makes sense. Our heavy cartridge should be the .338NM (8.59x63) for the M240 and sniping.
    And they still use 5.45x39 as their primary rifle cartridge, while augmenting it with semi-auto sniper support with 7.62x54R, and machine-gun support from 7.62x54R.

    I can see the .338 being great to supplant and replace .50 BMG on vehicles, but not replace 7.62x51 NATO for dismounted machine-guns. No way does that make sense if you look at the weight of metallic cased .338NM for gun teams, which would be brutal. Now if you could make a .338 CT cartridge with the necessary performance to take advantage of .338 without exceeding the current weight of metallic 7.62 NATO, then you might have a good argument, but I can make a better argument for 6.5mm LSAT for dismounts with reduced ammo weight, and increased performance on target.

    We have the opportunity to introduce a lightweight multi-role LMG that exceeds the performance of 7.62 NATO with less chamber pressure, less ammo weight and bulk, that also reaches well beyond 1000m when looking at the projectiles with .280 or higher G7 BCs.

    When dealing with masonry and cinder block, as well as mud, belt-fed weapons and DMs or Snipers are preferred if we haven't AT4d or SMAW-D the building already. For simultaneous room clearance, the though of entry-level soldiers clearing rooms with over-penetrating cartridges scares me, as they aren't trained to do it well outside of Ranger Regiment, and Ranger Regiment has had many incidents of fratricide in the house over the years, even with all the training they do.

    No conventional unit is going to even make a dent in the level of training Ranger Battalion does, even if their full chain of command within the Brigade tried to support it, because they are laden with so many training distractions from above the Brigade level, they can't possible fit relevant training into the schedule.

    M855A1 already smokes cinder blocks as it is, which is more of a benefit to the SAW and a possible liability for the M4A1 for that target. With the amount of firepower an Infantry Squad and Platoon bring to bear, riflemen end up cleaning up the mess in the aftermath much of the time. They aren't a huge asset to firepower and decisive conclusions of heavy engagements outside of being able to facilitate maneuver due to their lighter weight and ammunition carrying capacity for endurance.
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  4. #184
    With an infantry PL son in one of the units that would be first to get any new technology, I can tell you his perspective is there is no support much less pull for any 7.62 rifle / carbine.

    It does not solve any problem they have. And would only make problems they do have worse (weight & sustainability).

    This is not LT wisdom, this is the combined wisdom of very senior ncos who have been in some of the worst situations we've seen in the last 10 years. And with a large percentage of Ranger regiment experience.

    As to the Marines, my understanding is they are supplementing the 249, not replacing it. Just gives them the flexibility to go back to a 249 situation in less urban environments, but not be forcing the 249 into close-quarter stuff.

    The mythical rpk range advantage is largely the result of not understanding plunging fire and poor tactical siting decisions / ROE in some of our recent battles. 240 Bravo's out range rpks in pretty much every situation. We just don't train or use them in extreme long-range plunging fire situations. There are better tools to solve that problem, where it's the only solution for insurgents.

    Raise the topic of the taking back the rifleman half kilometer to anyone actually leading and fighting modern infantry and the first thing out of their mouths is "that just tells me those people don't know how to use their 249 and 240 Bravo's. And weapons squad."

    Tell them you're going to give them a new individual weapon system that extends range 200 yards, but adds weight and or reduces ammo load and you get an immediate response.

    Of course they would be in favor of any solution that extends range and lethality without increasing weight or decreasing ammo sustainability. But even Grendel can't do that, as much as we like it.

    So until there is some break thru that changes the weight/loadout equation, it does not justify the logistical nightmare a new cartidge would incur. (Strategic reserves and all that)

    In my son's world, the core issue is finding range time and budget to remain proficient with their longer-range weapons. Fundamentally, at the squad, platoon and Company level where your longer-range assets come into play. And my son's unit gets more of that then most of the other IBCTs. But it's still not enough.

    We are currently training limited far more than weapon limited. And there are large interests which only make money if they sell new weapons systems. But addressing training / budget issues is not sexy and does not make these companies money.
    Last edited by pinzgauer; 10-04-2017 at 03:34 PM.

  5. #185
    Chieftain stanc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    As to the Marines, my understanding is they are supplementing the 249, not replacing it.
    My understanding is that the M27 replaced the M249 in the rifle squad.

    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    The mythical rpk range advantage is largely the result of not understanding plunging fire and poor tactical siting decisions / ROE in some of our recent battles. 240 Bravo's out range rpks in pretty much every situation.
    The issue is not with the 7.62x39 RPK, but the 7.62x54 PKM, which at least equals the range of the 7.62x51 M240B, and outranges the 5.56x45 M249 and M4.

    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    So until there is some break thru that changes the weight/loadout equation, it does not justify the logistical nightmare a new cartidge would incur.
    Adopting a new cartridge would not create a "logistical nightmare." Been done many times: .50-70 > .45-70 > .30-40 > .30-03 > .30-06 > 7.62x51 > 5.56x45.
    They even handled the logistics of fielding a new cartridge (.30 Carbine) during the biggest war in history, so it's quite illogical to think it would be a nightmare now.
    Last edited by stanc; 10-04-2017 at 05:34 PM.
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  6. #186
    Quote Originally Posted by stanc View Post
    My understanding is that the M27 replaced the M249 in the rifle squad.
    So you have confirmation the M249's are being turned in? Not kept in inventory? :-)

    That may be the case... don't claim to be an expert on things USMC. Just Army perception is this is a supplement, not replace.

    The issue is not with the 7.62x39 RPK, but the 7.62x54 PKM, which at least equals the range of the 7.62x51 M240B, and outranges the 5.56x45 M249 and M4.
    Correct, PKM, rather. Which on paper, may be ballistically slightly faster than the 7.62x51, but in the real world are effectively equal. Except the PKM has sights to 1500m and on paper an effective range of 3800m, yet the 240B effective range (by us) is 1100M. So what's the difference?

    Our forces train and operate side by side with allies using the PKM. Every bit of input from folks who have done so is that they are effectively equal, and if anything the 240B is a bit more accurate at the same range.

    So you want to compare a crew served against a squad weapon???

    The PKM issues you hear about are not from them being carried as squad or platoon weapon... it's insurgents who can setup at a known distance at extreme ranges, and do harassing plunging fire (defilade/indirect), typically from very high sites. And they do train at that, as they do not have the other options that we do to deal with that type of situation.

    Some of this is doctrine as well. An Army IN platoon has tools available to them to deal with that situation. Most of the well known "we can't deal with PKM's" situations were (in retrospect) poor tactical decisions associated with FOB siting and/or peeling of what should have been company assets. (Mortars, etc). It was not that a normal Army Platoon/Company does not have multiple methods to deal with that threat. It was local decisions in nearly all cases. "Hey, let's put a platoon in a FOB at the bottom of a valley between two ridgelines that we don't control due to ROE"

    Just saying- any perceived PKM risk as justification to increase solder payload or reduce ammo sustainability is not supported by the guys who would use it.

    Adopting a new cartridge would not create a "logistical nightmare." Been done many times: .50-70 > .45-70 > .30-40 > .30-03 > .30-06 > 7.62x51 > 5.56x45.
    They even handled the logistics of fielding a new cartridge (.30 Carbine) during the biggest war in history, so it's quite illogical to think it would be a nightmare now.
    Not really going to debate this... if you really think there is appetite to do such a large change you are far more optimistic than most of us.

    Clearly the Army can roll out new ammo types, has done so multiple times in recent memory. But it does not obsolete our emergency reserves, which a new cartridge would. Recognizing this would require simultaneous individual and squad weapon changes. That or introduce a third ammo type into logistics and remove the commonality between the carbines and SAW's.

    There are bigger expenditures on less useful stuff. But this is a big enough change it really needs to be a transformative breakthru to justify doing. (Like M-14 to M-16 was)

    Do I think having grendel (or similar) carbines and SAW's would be neat? For sure. Worth reducing ammo capacity for same weight by 16% (roughly)? Not so sure.

    If we had better Joe training/performance at 300m now it'd be a better argument. If they can't hit at 300m, do we think they can at 500-600m?

  7. #187
    Chieftain stanc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    So you have confirmation the M249's are being turned in? Not kept in inventory? :-)
    I didn't say the M249s were not being kept in the inventory. I said that the rifle squad's M249s were being replaced by M27s.
    As for confirmation, there were official announcements at the time. But, all I could find in a quick search today is this article:
    The M27 IAR is being phased in to replace the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon... http://www.2ndmardiv.marines.mil/New...-the-m249-saw/
    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    Correct, PKM, rather. Which on paper, may be ballistically slightly faster than the 7.62x51, but in the real world are effectively equal. Except the PKM has sights to 1500m and on paper an effective range of 3800m, yet the 240B effective range (by us) is 1100M. So what's the difference?
    I said the M240B and PKM are equal. You said the M240B outranges the PKM "in pretty much every situation."

    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    So you want to compare a crew served against a squad weapon???
    What I want is not the issue. Enemy 7.62x54 rifles and machine guns outrange 5.56x45 carbines and machine guns.
    That range overmatch is what originally prompted people to advocate a 7.62x51 rifle to replace the 5.56x45 carbine.

    Quote Originally Posted by pinzgauer View Post
    Not really going to debate this... if you really think there is appetite to do such a large change you are far more optimistic than most of us.
    I never said there is an "appetite" to do such a large change.

    I said that such a change has been done many times in the past, so there is no reason to think that it could not be done again, and without being a "logistical nightmare."
    If at first you don't succeed, give up.
    Anything that can't be done easily, probably isn't worth doing.

  8. #188
    Quote Originally Posted by stanc View Post
    I didn't say the M249s were not being kept in the inventory. I said that the rifle squad's M249s were being replaced by M27s.
    As for confirmation, there were official announcements at the time. But, all I could find in a quick search today is this article:
    So time will tell, as this gets into semantics. One of the big rumors was that the M27 M249 thing was just to get it into procurement channels, then the argument becomes easy to have them issues to all marines (surprise).

    Even with the structural differences in Marine squads/platoons, the need for a LMG does not go away. So we'll see if it sticks. I predict you will see 249's in the Marines resurface, just wait. :-)

    I said the M240B and PKM are equal. You said the M240B outranges the PKM "in pretty much every situation."
    Probably the term I should have used would have been "is more effective". For some very specific reasons:
    4437331410_15452544d1_b.jpg and ammo quality.

    I'm not going to get into details beyond that. Just very clearly: Joes who use the 240's and train side by side with guys using the others, would never swap.

    The PKM thing appears to be mythos, similar to the AK had in VN days. And yes, we lost some to PKM's, and will. But not because of weapon differences. If you want to know why, go read "To Quell the Korengal" or "Choosen Few". (Both good reads on their own merit).

    What I want is not the issue. Enemy 7.62x54 rifles and machine guns outrange 5.56x45 carbines and machine guns.
    That range overmatch is what originally prompted people to advocate a 7.62x51 rifle to replace the 5.56x45 carbine.
    Those "people"... :-) No one I know who is currently serving thinks this is a good idea, or even a need. And I'm talking IN types carrying the guns. It would be about like issuing M14's... lose the capability for realistic burst fire, and only a nominal range increase over the M4's and none over the SAWs.

    Do I think a Grendel or slightly larger (or even Grendel at bolt gun pressures) would have been better than 5.56 way back. Probably, knowing about Iraq and A'stan. But when you are solving the VN problem it would have been hard to make the case.

    But with the heavier bullets, improved ammo, barrels to support it (SOCOM, etc), 5.56 in M4's and SAW's are meeting the current mission requirements. And where it doesn't, the 240's kick in.

    I could see maybe a DMR thing with 7.62 at the squad level. But give up the suppressive capability of the 249? Or shorter range burst fire from the M4's? Nope.

    An Army line platoon has (6) 249's and (2) 240B's. The 249's are quite effective out to 600-800m as currently operated. Do we think Joe's with super7.62 will be able to outshoot a 249 with optic and bipod? (OK, the super7.62 would probably have an optic as well). But won't be doing full auto. Probably not a bipod. Not belt fed.

    Carbine and saw replacement in 7.62 for line units won't happen anytime soon, I'd bet money on it. For multiple reasons. And I predict a move to 6.5whatever carbine/SAW will not happen until some breakthrough in weight/loadout occurs. Which does not appear to be on the near horizon.

    Meanwhile, for some unit's, if they want/need a 7.62 carbine they can currently get them and use them. And for some situations, they make sense. As a binary 5.56 OR 7.62 (but not both), see what they pick. We pretty much already know that answer. :-)

  9. #189
    Super Moderator LRRPF52's Avatar
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    Stuff I've been saying for many years now.

    If anyone wonders why we call our SAWs and M240s the most casualty-producing weapons in the Infantry Squad and Platoon, there should be no more doubt about why after this weekend, sadly.

    M240 maximum effective range was listed at 1800m, which is extreme plunging fire range.

    Most people don't have a clue how Infantry Squads and Platoons are even employed, including most of the people in the military.

    This is one of the reasons why there is so much focus on riflemen and carbines, instead of weapons that count so much more, like machine-guns, DM systems, and mortars.
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