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Old May 29, 2011, 10:49 AM   #1
SR420
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How accurate is the M14 EBR platform?

This is for those of you wondering just how accurate the M14 EBR platform is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Different:


Short answer: sub-MOA

Long answer:

From M14 Rifle History and Development Fifth Edition by Lee Emerson copyright 2011,

"M14 EBR-RI - In 2008, the U. S. Army Tank Automotive Command (TACOM) began a project to modernize the M14 in support of U. S. Army units in Iraq. This work was performed by the Weapons Product Support Integration Directorate of the TACOM Life Cycle Management Command at Rock Island, IL. The M14 EBR-RI Program Manager was Doug Carlstrom from inception through at least June 2010. The first 400 M14 Enhanced Battle Rifle - Rock Island (M14 EBR-RI) rifles had been completed by June 2008. Another 2,200 units had been completed by March 2009. On May 05, 2010, TACOM completed its five thousandth M14 EBR-RI rifle. Another thirty units were completed that month to fulfill all requests submitted by combat unit commanders to date. The conversion of a M14 to a M14 EBR-RI included replacing the M14 stock with a Sage International late second generation M14 EBR stock, reaming the flash suppressor, replacing the cartridge clip guide with a detachable cantilevered sight base (Sage part number M14DCSB), shimming the gas cylinder, and adding a vertical grip (Sage part number 4249), a Harris bipod and a Leupold & Stevens, Inc. variable 3.5-10X day scope with medium height rings. The M14 EBR-RI rifle was shipped to the combat unit with six magazines, a vertical fore grip, a sling, an Otis Products, Inc. cleaning kit, a combination tool and operator manual. By mid-2009, some minor changes were made on new rifles: 1) a crush washer replaced the stainless steel shims 2) a redesigned operating rod guide to make use of the hand guard screws and 3) an improved detachable cantilevered sight base. The acceptance criteria was a maximum of 1.5 MOA with the result averaging 0.89 MOA for the first 5,000 built. The five TACOM rifle builders observed that TRW and Winchester barreled actions typically delivered the best accuracy. Only one rifle in the first 5,000 units was rejected for not meeting the accuracy requirement."
What's truly amazing about the M14EBR-RI is that all of the barrels are standard weight 22.0" chrome lined USGI tubes.

Just imagine the accuracy that could be extracted from tubes the big name precision M1A &
M14 barrel makers are offering when these barreled actions are bolted into SAGE EBR stocks.
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Old May 29, 2011, 01:55 PM   #2
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Awesome. Can you share pictures of your targets? I always love a good sub-MOA group.
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Old May 29, 2011, 02:15 PM   #3
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This is a combat-proven battle rifle. It is superior to the AK & M16 in a lot of categories. Of the vets I know who were around when the U.S. Army switched from the M14 to the M16, I don't know too many who were happy about the new M16 rifle. The M14 platform is also still used as the M21 / M25 sniper rifle (I know there are 2 other sniper rifles in service now), but the M21 & 25 are still in service as a sniper rifle. Also - it is a perfectly good hunting caliber, used by a lot of hunters.

So to me, this is a very versatile platform, a battle-tested, combat proven, very high quality, very accurate, durable rifle that has stood the test of time..
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Old May 29, 2011, 03:58 PM   #4
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And topping the scales at over 14 pounds. That accuracy comes with a price. The M14 EBR is pushing into 240B weight ranges when you start adding up loaded magazines.

It is a good system, no doubt about it, but it was "a workable solution NOW" instead of a "perfect solution next year" from the military perspective.

SR420, I don't know what your financial link to Sage is, but you've been bringing up EBR threads for months now basically saying the same thing.

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Old May 29, 2011, 04:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Of the vets I know who were around when the U.S. Army switched from the M14 to the M16, I don't know too many who were happy about the new M16 rifle.
You met one now. I was there during the switch over, and was quite happy with the M16A1. I was trained with the M14, used one in training and when I was in the 82nd. Went to the M16a1 when I was with the 101st in Vietnam. I was quite impressed. It was every bit as reliable, plenty accurate to 300 yards (remember this was a jungle enviorment, not much shooting beyond that). It was lighter as was the ammo. We increased our basic load from 240 to 460 rounds. Also, in trails the M16 as a sniper system got confirmed kills to 700 yards.

I do like the sights better on the M14 vs the 'A1. That was taken care of with the A2. When I came home I started shooting for the NG using the NM M14/M1A. It worked quite well to 1000 yards. I also went to sniper school and taught sniper schools using the M-21. Again I was impressed.

I've done some pretty good shooting to 1000 and resisted the ARs for High Power & Long Range shooting. With the introduction of heavier bullets, the ARs have proven they could hold their own. In fact they've beaten the scores set by the M14s in Service Rifle Matches.

All that being said, the M-14s have their place, but its a stop gap between the AR SDMR and M24 Sniper Rifles (in 300 WM).

In reality I'd rather see the funds spent on training the average sholdier to shoot.
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Old May 29, 2011, 07:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
And topping the scales at over 14 pounds. That accuracy comes with a price. The M14 EBR is pushing into 240B weight ranges when you start adding up loaded magazines.
Uh, just how many loaded magazines are you carrying to equal the 27.6 pounds of an M-240B weighed empty? Let me crunch some numbers here. If your M-14EBR weighs in at lets even say 15 pounds, that's 12.6 pounds lighter than the M-240B weighed empty. Now according to TM 9-1005-223-12, the weight of a loaded M-14 magazine with 20 rounds M-80 ball ammunition is 1.9 pounds so that's 6.63 magazines or 132.6 rounds of ammunition for the M-14EBR in order to equal the weight of one empty M-240B club. Now when you load up a 100 round belt (and still come up 32.6 rounds fewer than the M-14EBR) that weight is going to increase a bit. Of course being a weapon designed for sustained fire, you're probably going to want to throw in a spare barrel lest you overheat and have a cook-off situation so let's add in that extra weight as well. So now how many more magazines can you carry for the M-14 to equal the weight of the now loaded and combat ready M-140B?
Not trying to bust your ding-ding here or anything but I mention this because I think your comparison weights were pretty much apples and oranges comparing an EBR to an M-240B. I believe that a more accurate comparison of comparing an EBR to another semi-auto precision rifles such as say an AR-10T or PSG1 would have been more appropriate as well as similar weight classes. IIRC correctly, a PSG1 weighs slightly more than 14 pounds and the AR-10T is either in that same weight range or maybe just a little less but still comparable.
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Old May 29, 2011, 07:31 PM   #7
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I agree with kraigwy that the M16 is a better combat rifle. What it gives up in power it more than makes up for in light weight, controllability, firepower, and excellent sights. With quality ammo (LR instead of green tip) the M16A2 is more than capable of sub-MOA performance. One shot stopping power becomes less important when you have 29 more rounds behind it in a gun that does not jump off target.
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Old May 29, 2011, 07:44 PM   #8
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There is no way an issue M16A4 (or previous versions) stacks up against an issue M14 past 700 meters.

I'll give the nod to the Knight's Armament M110 SASS, that weapon could stack up against the M21 / M25 - but no M16.

If the M16 were capable of giving the average soldier the ability to engage the enemy out to 700 meters then they wouldn't be re-introducing the M14 in the EBR configuration:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mk_14_E...d_Battle_Rifle
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Old May 29, 2011, 07:55 PM   #9
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The military says the max effective ranges for the M16 are 300 meters point targets, 800 meters area targets. Again, with sniper ammo instead of green tip it is more than capable of precision fire.

I used to shoot a 1000 meter pop-up range several times a year with my M4, ACOG, and green tip ammo. Most guys on my team averaged 70% hits on the 1000 meter E-types, and that's with a service carbine, 4 power scope that required tremendous hold-over, and 3 MOA ammo from the prone unsupported.
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Old May 29, 2011, 08:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
If the M16 were capable of giving the average soldier the ability to engage the enemy out to 700 meters then they wouldn't be re-introducing the M14 in the EBR configuration:
The "average" soldier couldn't' engage targets with the M14 in the EBR configuration either.

Its training more then the rifle. People shoot ARs at 1000 yards all the time, beating the M14/M1As.

A 5 mph wind at 700 yards moves the bullet over 2 feet, not many "average" soldiers can judge wind with in 5 MPH.

The Army's SDM use the M16s, but regardless of what rifle, SDM is about the training of the soldier, not the rifle.
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Old May 29, 2011, 09:36 PM   #11
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I agree that the M-16 is a VERY accurate weapon. When it comes to putting a round on target at long range, it's a matter of plugging in the correct values (range, wind, elevation, humidity, etc.) and applying proper fundamentals to put the round where it needs to go. However, what kind of damage it does to a target at longer ranges is another factor to consider. Here while the AR is an accurate weapon, at longer ranges it's ability of the 5.56mm round to do serious damage to the target is always going to be far less than the 7.62 NATO will do. Don't get me wrong, I have several ARs and love all of them but when it comes to shooting targets at longer ranges such as deer back home, I will always grab a larger caliber than a 5.56mm no matter how accurate it is.
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Old May 29, 2011, 11:24 PM   #12
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Quote:
while the AR is an accurate weapon, at longer ranges it's ability of the 5.56mm round to do serious damage to the target is always going to be far less than the 7.62 NATO will do.
Not if you can't hit what your aiming at. It's about Marksmanship, the shooter not the rifle.

Give you an example, I went to a HP match yesterday. Two shooters stand out. One shooting a M1A super match, one an as issued CMP M1 Garand. There is no doubt the Super Match will out shoot the as issued Garand using surplus ammo, but the Garand shooter at this match out did the M1A shooter by 20 points at 600.

Another something to take into consideration. Everyone knows the 45 ACP is the cats meow for stopping power. @820 fps the 230 grn 45 ACP develops about 340 ft lbs of energy (muzzle energy), a 77 grn 223 develops about 450 ft lbs of energy at 700 yards.

If one was to pay attention to High Power shooting, he would know that people are legging out quicker with the ARs then we did with the M14s. Younger people and ladies are getting more involved in HP shooting, and more juniors and ladies are legging out since the ARs have shown up. Why is that? Because the ARs are easier to shoot.

Plus the ARs are cheaper to shoot, both in rifles and ammo.

The main thing is the shooter, regardless of what rifle we're talking about.
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Old May 29, 2011, 11:35 PM   #13
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There is a reason the EBRs are being issued.

There is a need there that the M16 obviously cannot fill. If the Army could fill that need simply by issuing different ammunition for the M16s don't you think they would do that?
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Old May 30, 2011, 01:05 AM   #14
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If you look at the ballistics with the super heavy 223 bullets at 1000 yards and compare their remaining energy to the 308 you would be surprised at how little a difference there is.

They are still traveling faster and flatter. Wind drift may be a bit different however, as a heavier bullets have more inertia.
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Old May 30, 2011, 07:56 AM   #15
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Quote:
If the Army could fill that need simply by issuing different ammunition for the M16s don't you think they would do that
Look at the SDM program put on by the AMU/CMP, that's exactly what they are doing.
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Old May 30, 2011, 08:07 AM   #16
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Jimro, check your scales.


Quote:
Jimro
And topping the scales at over 14 pounds...

Quote:
USMCGrunt

Uh, just how many loaded magazines are you carrying to equal the 27.6 pounds of an M-240B weighed empty? Let me crunch some numbers here. If your M-14EBR weighs in at lets even say 15 pounds, that's 12.6 pounds lighter than the M-240B weighed empty. Now according to TM 9-1005-223-12, the weight of a loaded M-14 magazine with 20 rounds M-80 ball ammunition is 1.9 pounds so that's 6.63 magazines or 132.6 rounds of ammunition for the M-14EBR in order to equal the weight of one empty M-240B club. Now when you load up a 100 round belt (and still come up 32.6 rounds fewer than the M-14EBR) that weight is going to increase a bit. Of course being a weapon designed for sustained fire, you're probably going to want to throw in a spare barrel lest you overheat and have a cook-off situation so let's add in that extra weight as well. So now how many more magazines can you carry for the M-14 to equal the weight of the now loaded and combat ready M-140B?
Not trying to bust your ding-ding here or anything but I mention this because I think your comparison weights were pretty much apples and oranges comparing an EBR to an M-240B. I believe that a more accurate comparison of comparing an EBR to another semi-auto precision rifles such as say an AR-10T or PSG1 would have been more appropriate as well as similar weight classes. IIRC correctly, a PSG1 weighs slightly more than 14 pounds and the AR-10T is either in that same weight range or maybe just a little less but still comparable.




Quote:
Jimro

SR420, I don't know what your financial link to Sage is, but you've been bringing up EBR threads for months now basically saying the same thing.
Jimro, what are you trying to say here... wouldn't it have been easier for you to say that you don't know and leave it that?
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Old May 30, 2011, 08:09 AM   #17
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More from Different:

Quote:
TACOM-RIA shoots three round groups from a bench on a 100 yard indoor range with M118LR ammunition. The M14EBR-RI rifles are shot using Leupold Mark IV scopes. The Sage stocks on these rifles have a barrel tensioning screw. The M14EBR-RI has a USGI standard profile chromium plated barrel of which the majority were manufactured by TRW or the U. S. government Springfield Armory. The TRW and Winchester receivers and Winchester barrels tend to produce smaller groups.

Some of the Sage International stocks in use by the U. S. military do not have a barrel tensioning screw, e..g, U. S. Marine Corps M39 EMR rifles.

NSWC Crane tested a rack grade M14 dressed in a Sage International M14 EBR stock at 600 yards with M118 ammunition. The rifle shot 2 to 2.5 MOA five shot groups at 600 yards. That particular stock may or may not have had the barrel tensioning screw. According to Mike Petersen, TACOM-RIA, the barrel tensioning screw does significantly shrink the group size.

References

Luppino, Art. Center X M1A/M14 Maintenance & Cleaning for Improved Accuracy. Lenny Magill Productions: San Diego, CA, 1992. Approximately 120 minutes: VHS and DVD.

Petersen, Mike. Internet discussion thread on Guns & Ammo Combat Arms 2011. April 16, 2011.

Plaster, John L. "New Life For An Old Warhorse." American Rifleman March 2011: 64-65, 84-87.

Poole, Eric. R. "Inside Rock Island." Guns & Ammo Combat Arms 2011: 16-21.

Stonecipher, Kent. "M14 Enhanced Battle Rifle - Rock Island (M14EBR-RI)." Oklahoma City Firearms Examiner: June 25, 2010. www.examiner.com

Stonecipher, Kent. "The M14 Enhanced Battle Rifle at Rock Island Arsenal." Oklahoma City Firearms Examiner: July 30, 2010. www.examiner.com
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Old May 30, 2011, 09:39 AM   #18
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USMCGrunt,

Look son, you did the math yourself and showed that once you add ammunition, not even a 210 round basic load, the EBR is the same weight as an M240 DRY.

Which is why a machine gunner carries just the gun, and possibly a starter belt. The AG carries the tripod, and the Ammo Bearer is the mule carrying the rest. Three men to service ONE weapon. You have to have become familiar with the concept of crew served weapons in the Corps. You remember exactly how fast those crews MOVED across country and in formation? Remember HOW LONG it takes to get them maneuvered into position because they travel with a HQ element because the enemy loves to take out weapon crews?

You need a Squad Designated Marksman to be able to KEEP UP with the rest of the squad, do everything that an Infantry Rifleman has to do, and in a perfect world he isn't carrying something that looks like a space gun to make him a target.

The EBR is in the same class of weight as a "sniper rifle" and when it has optic and ammo it is right there with the M110 which we do issue as a sniper rifle. The EBR is not an ideal weapon for designated marksmen. Great rifle (and plenty of real snipers love them), yes, but not an ideal SDM platform.

But like I said before, it was a matter of "what can we do RIGHT NOW" as opposed to "what is the ideal solution next year" that pushed the whole gamut of SDM options out there. M16A5, Mk12, SPR, M14, EBR, or even rack grade M4s.

Now squads do carry two m249 SAWs, and those are heavy enough on there own, but where do they fall in? Right next to the team leader for immediate control of his units most casualty producing weapon. So where does the SDM fall in? Next to the Squad Leader? Or as a rifleman in one of the teams? It is a tough question. The large amounts of different answers I've seen combined with the many options for weapon systems makes it an interesting little problem.

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Old May 30, 2011, 09:56 AM   #19
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SR420,

You are right, I will check my scales.

The EBR is 11.25 lbs dry. Not including optic or ammo. That is a half pound heavier than an M110 dry (not including optics or ammo) at 10.75 lbs.

When you slap on the optics and put in a magazine the M110 is over 15.25 lbs. Using the same scope and ammo means that we add another 4.5 lbs to 11.25 and come up with 15.75, still a half pound heavier than the M110.

I ain't saying that the EBR isn't a good rifle, but it falls much closer to "sniper" rifle than "SDM rifle" because of the weight. Don't get me wrong, the M110 isn't an ideal SDM rifle either. Right now the Army doesn't have a good answer as to where the SDM program is going.

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Old May 30, 2011, 08:27 PM   #20
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The M16A4 and M4 can't be as great as some of it's proponents say it is otherwise no one would have issued an Operational Needs Statement that spawned the re-issue of the M14 as the EBR.


Quote:
M14 7.62mm Enhanced Battle Rifle (EBR)

Mission
Provides infantry squads with the capability to engage enemy targets beyond the range of M4 Carbines and M16 Rifles.
https://peosoldier.army.mil/newpeo/E....asp?id=IW_M14

Quote:
According to Bruce Stout, Director of the Weapons PSID, the M14EBR will provide a cost effective solution to the Army's need in the Global War on Terrorism for a larger caliber squad rifle effective out to 800 yards.
http://www.army.mil/article/10394/

http://www.americanrifleman.org/arti...-battle-rifle/

Last edited by C0untZer0; May 31, 2011 at 12:01 AM.
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Old May 31, 2011, 06:38 AM   #21
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Any unit that deploys can write an ONS for anything they think they can use, such as "dazzlers", search wands, or megaphones.

The long range ambush tactics the bad guys use in Afghanistan dictate long distance engagements. There aren't enough M110s to give to every SDM (a rifle that at least looks cosmetically like an M16) and so there really was no other viable option but to issue M14s. Heck there aren't enough of any one system to really do the job.

But having a capability doesn't mean you will use it well. Soviet infantry doctrine gives one sniper per platoon (we have no US equivalent, and only Stryker companies have dedicated snipers) armed with an SVD. But having that capability didn't win the war in Afghanistan for the Soviets.

But that is the nature of evolving warfare. Twelve years ago the acronyms "SDM", "MRAP", or "IED" meant nothing to me. Now they are just part of the problem set I have to deal with.

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Old May 31, 2011, 08:49 AM   #22
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Quote:
TACOM-RIA shoots three round groups from a bench on a 100 yard indoor range with M118LR ammunition.
Just to clarify, is TACOM's requirement of 1.5 MOA with an average of 0.89 MOA based on 3-shot groups?
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Old June 3, 2011, 12:00 PM   #23
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Quote:
Jimro

The long range ambush tactics the bad guys use in Afghanistan dictate long distance engagements.
There aren't enough M110s to give to every SDM... so there really was no other viable option but to issue M14s.
Heck there aren't enough of any one system to really do the job.
I understand that M110s are very slow in coming... it's going to take a couple years for the Marines to replace their relatively small number of M39s with M110s.

TACOM has built over 5000 M14EBR-RI rifles and they have a supply of over 80K M14s that can be converted.
Jimro, would over 85,000 EBRs be enough to really do the job?
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Old June 3, 2011, 12:21 PM   #24
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Quote:
TACOM has built over 5000 M14EBR-RI rifles and they have a supply of over 80K M14s that can be converted.
TACOM built 5,000 rifles over the course of 2 years according to your article. So it isn't quite as simple as walking over to the armory and pulling out another 5,000 enhanced M14s.
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Old June 3, 2011, 02:25 PM   #25
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Jimro, would over 85,000 EBRs be enough to really do the job?
No, 85,000 EBRs would not be enough to arm every SDM. At 2,500 a year that would take TACOM 34 years. Sure would be something if we haven't figured out a better SDM solution in 34 years.

1.5 million man Army, 1 soldier in 9 to be an SDM. 85,000x9=765,000 or about half of our total force. If you limited the SDM concept solely to "ground combat forces" then 85,000 becomes slightly more reasonable. But you have to have the rifle for that squad member to train on. I haven't seen an M14 on active duty stateside outside of Ranger school OPFOR.

But even if you did have the rifles, it still isn't an ideal solution. Different organizations have different concepts of how they want SDMs to train and operate.

Stryker guys love the M14 SDM solution because they ride to the battle in Strykers. Mech guys are just fine with an accurized M4 or M16 because the Bradley is the primary firepower in the system. Light guys like having the M14 systems in the armory "just in case" but there are no B4 slots in the light infantry companies to really run an SDM program (something the Stryker guys do have).

Hell, the Army even has two SDM schools on active duty, the Infantry School teaches an SDM course through the 29th Regiment, and the AMU puts on their own SDM course using accurized M16A4s. I don't know what the National Guard is doing, but each state probably has its own program.

I think that the real answer is to follow the Soviet doctrine and give each company 3 snipers like the Stryker guys have. This works out to be the equivalent of 1 sniper per platoon, but it allows you to have the institutional knowledge to keep an SDM program up and running. Still, I would like a rifle that didn't stand out so much over the standard issue rifle.

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