Skip to comments.SOCOM SCAR Enters Service
Posted on 07/21/2005 3:32:57 PM PDT by spetznaz
July 21, 2005: SCAR (Special operations forces Combat Assault Rifle) has begun field testing with American commandoes. SOCOM (Special Operations Command) did not want to wait for the U.S. Army to finish work on their similar XM-8 rifle. SOCOM has the money, and authority to develop their own weapons. In this case, SOCOM wanted a weapon that did everything the XM-8 did, and a little more. Some 22 months ago, SOCOM asked rifle manufacturers to submit proposals, and FN (a Belgian firm) came up with the best ideas. One advantage FN has was its ability to quickly implement requests for design changes. FNs rapid prototyping shop was often able to turn out a new part in hours. This, and FNs long history of good weapons design, gave them the edge.
There are two basic models of the weapon. The 5.56mm SCAR-L weighs 7.7 pounds (empty), while the 7.62mm SCAR-H weighs 8.5 pounds (empty). A 30 round 5.56mm magazine weighs a little under a pound, while a 20 round magazine of 7.62mm ammo weighs a little over a pound. Special sights can weigh a pound or two, so a fully loaded SCAR won't weigh much more than ten pounds. FN also came up with a grenade launcher for SCAR.
Both models operate the same way, and have many interchangeable parts. SCAR-L is basically a replacement for the M4, which was designed (with a shorter barrel) as a close combat version of the M16. The SCAR-H will replace the M14, a 1950s era 7.62mm weapon (a replacement for the World War II M1) that is still favored for long range and sniper work.
The current SCAR design is the result of much feedback from the field. For example, the rate of fire was lowered to 600 RPM (rounds per minute) from the 800 typical with the M14 and M16. This makes SCAR easier to hold on target when firing full auto.
SCAR-H can be quickly converted to fire AK-47 ammo (the 7.62x39 round) with a changeout of the barrel and receiver. This also makes it easy for SOCOM to adopt the new 6.8mm round. Both models can be fitted with a longer and heavier sniper barrel. SCAR is built to be more rugged than the M-16. The barrel is good for some 36,000 rounds, twice as many as the M-16. Barrels may be switched by users without special tools. Both models of SCAR take all the special sights and other accessories SOCOM troops favor. SCAR is meant to be easily modified and personalized for each user. Its expected that SOCOM experience with SCAR will influence the next generation of U.S. Army and Marine Corps small arms.
It definitely passes the coolness test.
I've read several other articles about this and believe its an idea that is past due. The M16 is just too fragile.
My opinion based on what I hear, and owning one.
They are fun to shoot and accurate, but hard to maintain.
One wonders why the capability to change out the barrel and fire Ak47 rounds?
What are the chances of having the barrels on hand when only AK rounds are available.
This seems more like an option to sell it to foreign armys, which seems inadvisable these days.
Where can I get one....
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
SCAR has been reopened for re trials...
and my favorite POF
Among others have weapon systems as good if not better than
FN entry..not the politcal clout but privately owned American companies with some great ideals
I want one!!!!
Whatever. Looks like a updated slab-side FN-FNC.
I say 'Meh'.
It might be for spec ops guys deep behind enemy lines and maybe short on ammo, and thus may need the ability to scavenge and use Kalashnikov rounds from neutralized enemies. I doubt that separate barrels would be issued to all and sundry, and thus it would only be a factor for a small cadre of users that might need such capability.
I concure, that it passes the coolness test. I'm glad to see they aren't stuck trying to continue using a round that doesn't kill what you are shooting at.
I had no maintainence issues with the M-16A2's we had in the desert. I cleaned mine about 2x per month, not one misfire in 13 months.
The M9 is another story, but then we weren't talkin' pistols were we? lol
Might you have a link. That is quite interesting .... I thought the trials were over and FN won the golden apple. What caused the changes? Thanks.
The new 6.8 round seems to have respectable ballistics, superior to the 5.56. But I'm old fashioned, I still like my FN-FAL in .308.
POF plus Noveske's Krink Brake..this puppy will come in 6.8 SPC and 6.5 Grendel as well as .556 NATO
US Company and US inventors
I agree with your comments. Necessity is the mother of invention. I would add that the sound or noise signature of an AK47 when fired is quite noticeable and distinct. By having the capability to convert to an AK 47 round, perhaps the sound from this FN weapon will be similar to an AK47 and which will will permit our spec ops folks to not be as detectable in a firefight. Every little bit of surprise and stealth helps.
Bolt locks back after the last round is fired.
Angled axis of stock pivot puts the folded stock out of the way of the ejection port, allowing firing when folded.
5.56 accepts M16 mags.
Gas operated (yecch!)
It actually fires the 7.62x51 NATO round, same as the G3, FN FAL, M240 series, M-14, and a host of other weapons. AKs fire the 7.62x39.
As for why, one can only speculate that the users wanted a round with a little more punch than 5.56.
From the story:
SCAR-H can be quickly converted to fire AK-47 ammo (the 7.62x39 round) with a changeout of the barrel and receiver.
Other than behind the lines use, this seems less than usefull. Even there, if it does not use AK clips the time consuming task of transfering amo from captured clips to your own clip pretty much makes that a PITA.
And deer season is not that far off. :-)
But if you look at the picture, which was actually generated by the manufacturer, it very clearly says 7.62x51. The magazine also appears to be a 7.62x51 mag, not 7.62x39.
Perhaps there's a third variant of this weapon that does use AK ammunition, but the one pictured and described in the company literature uses NATO rounds.
Just read the story. I didn't make this up.