Skip to comments.Troops left to fend for themselves after Army was warned of flaws in rifle
Posted on 02/21/2014 3:26:13 AM PST by Timber Rattler
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My '14, on the other hand, would always connect when I asked it to and it could penetrate anything - even those heavy concrete gravestones. Hiding behind them didn't help them a bit.
One other plus to the '14 was the M76 grenade launcher. We had a Staff Sergeant who was a Korea vet and a master at firing those finned grenade adapters with an M26 in them - he always nailed what he fired at and we younger guys emulated him and got our own launchers, adapters and blanks. With practice, you could hit within a meter or two of what you wanted to out to 125 meters or so with a frag and it really was effective. A real virtuoso could put one of those puppies right above your target in an airburst. Just had to remember to switch the gas assembly back into action after you fired so you could go back to ball rounds.
No jump pay for me...you lucky dog!
Gotta fess up on this one. I fired expert on the range with the M-16 and did very well on the Quick Kill course. (unsighted close range reaction shooting) But when I was on point coming around a hairpin turn in a trail I saw an NVA soldier standing not more than 15 feet away. Both of us startled simultaneously and I let loose a full 20 round mag on full auto like a big dummy. He did the same thing probably with the 30 rounds in his AK. We both missed, turned around and got the hell out. A 5 minute firefight ensued with two dead NVA and no hits for them, and as usual they broke contact.
Talk about a meeting engagement!!! It taught me a great lesson about full auto and buck fever.
Hah! Love that story.. Your NVA is probably telling his grandkids about his close escape.
My radio operator and another guy turned a corner on a trail through some dense stuff and ran point blank into a VC who fired straight at them full auto. The radio operator flew backward through the air and landed on is back. We fired at the VC who got away clean - then ran over to see how bad things were with the radio operator. When we got to him, he was lying still on his back, eyes closed and we were frantically asking him how bad it was.
He slowly opened his eyes and said “is he gone yet?”. Not a scratch..
Love that story too. As we used to say “There it is.” People often fail to appreciate the often comic nature of combat because of all the horror, savagery, suffering and tragedy, but the laughs are part of it too. I guess that what kept most of us from going completely nuts.
All you have to do is keep it clean. Granted that can sometimes be a challenge, but you should still be able to pump several hundred rounds through it before getting nervous.
It's biggest weakness is the 5.56mm round. Not range, not enough shock/energy. I prefer the 6.8mm for it.
But it'll still kill you dead, and quick.
I thought the DOD would have done just as well picking the Ruger "Mini-14" platform with a heavy barrel. FAR more reliable for the slackers that won't clean their weapon...or the unfortunate few who had to run 1000 rounds through it without the opportunity to clean.
What's a couple of MOA at 100 meters in combat? Still more accurate than the AK platforms. Just as reliable too.
Nobody wants to hump a heavy rifle all day long, but they sure want one when the shooting starts! The Marines were smart to stick with the M16A4.
The choice between an M16 and an AK47 is an easy one and it does not favor the M16. The reliability of the AK is palpable, you can feel it. It must be the rarest thing that ever happens in Russia that any sort of a Kalashnikov action rifle jams or misfires, they must have reporters there from every newspaper and news service in Russia if it ever happens.
If you want to be serious about accuracy with an AK style rifle there’s always the Vepr...
If I remember correctly we were told to put only 18 rounds in a 20 round clip to keep it from jamming. As I said, if I remember correctly.
“Our military has rotted from the head down...I would not encourage any friend or family member to seek a career there in this day and age.”
All part of the plan. Now that the military is at war
with heterosexual and christian soldiers it wont be long
before it will be full of Obamas people. Do you think
Obamas people will have any problem firing on American
Size, distance, killing power discussions aside, one of the major reasons for that, as I was always told, was interchangeability.
I have multiple AR15s, and have yet to see one of them malfunction. Of course I get good quality mags/ammo and keep them reasonably clean.
When your baby cake AR platform has choked on green cased battlefield ammo my M14 will still be rattling them off down range killin stuff.....dead
5.56 green tips require 10” of bodymass to dump their energy. Shot placement is key. Not so much with the 7.62.
I’ll take the AR-style 5.56 any day. Great rifle.
Spray-and-pray typically isn’t possible with a 3-rnd burst until the chamber is hot, in which case it works just fine. If the firer is pulling the trigger so fast that the chamber heats up the weapon kindly obliges and goes full auto.
The AK-47 is the spray and pray weapon.
The US Army, Marine Corp and Navy Seals (USSOCOM, JSOC, NAVSOC) have all chosen (independently I might add) the KAC AR10 over m14/m1-a variation. These guys can shoot whatever it is they want so it isn't a political consideration.
But now that everyone is coming out with .308 versions, in the M4 platform, not sure the room clearing/close quarters can be used anymore. The .308 has a lot more a$$ behind it, but the last time I checked, going door to door was a mans job. But the way they’re pushing kids thru basic these days, not sure how many qualify as men, as the PC monster has infiltrated.
However, my Noveske Leonidas is wonderful. 12” barrel in .308. Its a masterpiece.
I feel it is remarkably reliable, and extremely powerful... but atmospheric conditions can completely degrade its accuracy.
I don’t dispute the advantages the 7.62 has. In fact, you can get a .458 SOCOM to work with your 5.56 lower and magazines for some real CQ punch. The initial debate, however, was over the soundness or the AR family design an the effectiveness of the 5.56 round. My point was, at ranges within 250 m, I believe the 5.56 performs well enough to be regarded as something other than a hot 22LR due to its yawing, spalling, and fragmenting characteristics.
I have also put in a lot of high dollar parts to get it that way.
But for a dirty environment, it wouldn't be my first choice.
Direct gas impingement on the bolt face - It craps where it eats.
Go to a piston-drive upper receiver ala AK47-series weapons, and it runs cooler and cleaner and most of the reliability issue goes away.
Not a difficult fix; the uppers are already available, and they are a drop-in retrofit.
LWRC makes them, as well as other companies.
I don’t know why they wouldn’t go to that simple expedient upgrade.
Sort of on the order of going from the M1 Garand to the M14 service rifle.
Wasn’t it a wrong powder issue in the early M16s?
How similar is the Springfield Armory M1A to the M14? Other than the semi-auto only configuration, is there any other differences?
I have a late 90s vintage M1A, love it. Tack driver accurate, and enjoyable to shoot.
Have a AR as well, but I enjoy the M1A a lot more.
Dien Bien Phu?
Wasn’t Khe Sahn ringed by higher elevation hills too?
Pardon for breaking in but I’ve trained with all of ‘em, and tested all of ‘em. I’m still a 30 caliber guy even if it means carrying a few less rounds. One of my favorite stories comes from the Pacific in WW II. The Japanese thot that palm tree logs would be fine for bunkers. But those ‘06 rounds snuck right thru over a foot of wood. .223 won’t do that. Tough learning curve for Hirohito’s guys. In today’s world lots or kinds of body armor will stop .223-—not so much for 30 cal which will at least butt-roll the target even if it’s wrapped in enough armor to stop the slug.-——And then there’s the dirty gas problem of the no-op-rod system-—just a bitch to clean at the wrong time.
It appears Khe Sanh had hills "near" but not "surrounding".
Woof, Woof, Brother Dawg...
The M4 looks cool but is unnecessarily short.
Almost no difference at all. Most M1As have cast receivers and aftermarket barrels but they are dependable, accurate, and solid like the originals.
Better you than me, Laz!
I can agree with that.
As a friend once said to me, “you can always build a better mouse trap”. I’m a fan of the M4 and 5.56. I think so much of this debate and I think the gist of the article is, there’s better stuff out there. Even if we’re talking about modifying the existing platform, with better triggers, operating systems(mid length - pistons), and better ammo.
At the end of the day, the best thing about an AK is the operating system, which was copied from the Germans and used in the M14 and other .308 battle rifles back in the day.
Limited utility is fine, so long as you're using it within the bounds for which it works. (The F35's
do everything mentality for airframe is a contra-wise example of how having equipment too generalized makes for a poor tool for any specific task.) The PS-90 was originally developed for tank-crews (limited space) and support personnel (geared toward admin and simple/easy field-stripping and cleaning).
I love the thing. Love the Garand too.
I learned to shoot on a Garand when I was a kid - an uncle of mine was a Pacific Marine, a gunnery sergeant.
My old man was Army Airborne in Europe.
My first three firearms that I ever touched a trigger on were a 1911, a Winchester 1897, and a Garand.
Love ‘em all. Like the modern stuff too, but there’s something wood and metal together that just MAKES the rifle...
“It’s time to put veterans with combat experience into weapon development programs over the civilian developers at Picatinny.”
Same goes for Natick Labs.
The Army is developing it’s what third combat uniform in ten years?
For years on end when I was on active duty we would rag on anyone wearing faded “cook whites” BDU’s, then the Army introduces the ACU that seems lighter in color than a bleached set of woodland BDU’s. Then there is the velcro with the loud “RIIIIPPP” when trying to get something out of your pocket.
Only an upstanding member would even notice this.
Or had BELIEVED the reports the scouts brought to Custer!
But we need drones and GPS guided Ipads...
Will they have any problems when the citizens SHOOT BACK???
It’s a never-ending debate. One day we’re likely to see an argument between particle beam and plasma weapons on this forum.
Never found an AR10/15 or variant that could hold its water against a Springfield. Tried alot of them (cannot say I tried them all) and they were just not reliable in my book.
They all had their little quirks. Be it magazine, picky on what kinda ammo, could not handle dirt, barrel sensitive to being touched against something, soft touched primers, etc.
The Springfields all shot and operated with the same amount of reliability as long as the person did not try to “customize” and go all Rambutt with it.
Sorry, the Alphabet Brigade just chose wrong and liked the color black.
And what is wrong with “Baby Cakes”? That is a pretty name.
The transition to the short barreled M4 configuration, combined with wartime demand for sustained full auto, revealed some developmental issues that required attention. The Army ARDEC and Naval Surface Warfare Ctr applied some engineering corrections to slow the rate of fire, decrease heat buildup and increase magazine reliability, and addressed the issues with the M4A1. That variant was not fielded widely outside SOCOM until 2012, which is probably the larger story lost in the “M4 carbine sucks” propaganda.
556mm lethality is another constant point of contention, mostly brought up by those who have never shot anything with it other than paper. In moving to the 14.5” barreled M4 from the 20” M16A2, the issue M855 ammo no longer performed as well - you can’ t give up 5.5” of barrel and expect nothing will change, especially at extended ranges. But, troops love the carbine and greatly prefer the size and weight of the M4 to the M16 it replaced - and there is no free lunch.
Thus the development of heavier 68, 75 and 77gr projectiles with higher ballistic coefficients that perform better at range when fired from the M4 barrel, at least compared to 62gr M855, while retaining the light weight, accuracy and high probability of hit endemic to the M4.
After fielding the 762mm FN SCAR-H, SOCOM declined to adopt the 556mm version, maintaining it does not represent any significant improvement over the current generation M4 carbine. Keep in mind the SCAR was a clean sheet design, developed using the best engineering talent in the industry and incorporating hundreds of hours of dialogue with veteran combat riflemen.
The “craps where it eats” blather and most other criticisms of the M16 series are meaningless in view of the impossible to ignore reality that no weapons system offers the accuracy, light weight, lethality, speed of engagement and high probability of hit equal to Stoner’s design, which is why it’s been in continuous service around the world since 1962 and is the most popular semiauto rifle configuration in the history of the US commercial firearms industry.
If you insist on avoiding the gas impingement characteristic of the original design, there are excellent gas piston variants like the HK 416 that add weight and complexity while theoretically increasing reliability under certain conditions.
Is 762 more lethal? Sure. Is the M14/M1A more effective at longer ranges or through hard cover? Certainly. Is a Kalashnikov variant more reliable under the worst conditions? Arguably.
What none of that helps with is the fact than in a short to medium range rifle fight, the guy that hits first usually wins -and if the guy shooting at you has a 556mm rifle based on Eugene Stoner’s AR15, you are at a disadvantage armed with anything else.
I qualified expert with the M-14 rifle during basic. I marveled at the ease with which I could knock down a man size pop up target at 400 yards. The semi auto recoil is not bad at all. It is a great semi-auto battle rifle. But when you switch that piece to full auto, then it becomes an anti-aircraft gun after 2 rounds. The cartridge has too much power for the rifle’s weight on full auto.
The M1A is not shipped with a bayonet lug, but that is easily corrected by installing a pre assault weapon ban flash supressor. Early M1A receivers were made from surplus M14 receiver blanks, current M1A receivers are made from precision investment cast AISI 8620 alloy steel. The military M14 receivers were manufactured using the drop forge process, which is more complicated and more expensive. M1A’s lack a provision to mount the disconnector and selector lever, and the stock inletting for same. Oher than that I know of no substantive differences between the M-14 and the M-1A.
You got an excellent rifle there. Its a keeper.
The AK can be said to have the STG44 as an inspiration, but the M14 has the M1 Garand for inspiration. Operating system is nothing like an AK.