View Full Version : The world's WORST GPMG?

Abominable No-Man
December 5, 2001, 07:30 PM
I know that this subject is a bit off of the beaten path, but for all
those out there who have a bit of experience (or, even those
who read a lot, or, heck, anyone who wants to jump in...) what,
in your experience/opinion has been the WORST GPMG(or SAW
or medium MG- anything smaller than the .50 that is crew-served)
ever inventoried? I assume that I'm speaking to a mainly
American audience, but any foreign ex-military/police/etc. are
welcome to respond.


December 6, 2001, 12:29 PM
Chauchet (sp).

December 6, 2001, 02:07 PM
Oh yeah - from what I've heard the "chow-chow" is the worst. Here's a pic from the archives here :


See the curved magazine under the weapon? Those curved "grooves" along it's flank are actually open to the elements - water, dirt, mud, etc. Yeccch :)

Jeff White
December 6, 2001, 03:20 PM
....the M60. A cobbled together design combining features of many other GPMGs. The US Army would have been better served if we had just copied the MG42, which is what we wanted when we set out to develop the M60.


December 6, 2001, 04:28 PM
you forgot to add that they took the worst parts of the other MGs.

Personally I didn't mind mine too much, considering I only carried it to the field and shot live ammo twice yearly. Cleaning after heavy MILES use was a bitch though.

Derek Zeanah
December 6, 2001, 08:49 PM
Dude, I loved the M60 -- I could disassemble/reassemble faster than anyone else in the btn way under time (wasn't EIB time 2 minutes?). Great cadence too thuck-thuck-thuck-thuck-thuck...

Yeah, they jammed, and I saw lots of melted barrels, and they were a pain to clear under stress (don't let the bolt go forward before closing the feed tray!), but you've gotta love those things.

I liked 'em way better than the Ma-Deuces -- just good chemistry.

Hell -- I'll vote for the M-2 'cause I could never reassemble them correctly! :D

Oh yeah -- when the barrels got really hot during night-fire you could see the rounds going through the barrel with PVS-&'s. Can't beat that.

December 7, 2001, 02:46 AM
Melted barrels, throat erosion, clogged gas system. All in one day (ha!). The M-60 was a serviceable GPMG, however, considering what they replaced with it (Browning 30 cals) they could have designed a better system.
About field stripping, yeah it was easy! Had a guy in our company who would do it blind folded. Took about 30 seconds longer than it would normally, something like 2:30-2:45. Bn CSM (a notorious hard ass, as they all should be!) caught him doing once in a tent during a warfighter. Next thing you knew it was a Bn CTT station.

December 7, 2001, 02:57 AM
Now that you mention the M60, could someone please explain the procedure necessary to change the barrel and give a rough time estimate?

To answer the initial question:
"Any GPMG that has not been derived from the MG42." ;)

December 7, 2001, 08:58 AM
I think the Chauchat was a squad automatic weapon not a GPMG. The GPMG is crew served, i.e., two or three guys, like the M60.

Jeff White
December 7, 2001, 11:57 AM
..it's one of the features that does work well. Clear the weapon, lock the bolt is to the rear, grab the release (in front of the receiver at the rear of the handguard) push it from left to right and flip the lever on the right side up. Using the asbestos mit, or grabbing the bipod legs if you don't have one, pull the barrel forward and set it aside. Grab the new barrel and insert it, then flip the lever down. The whole thing can be done in seconds. Of course if the AG installed the gas piston backwords in the other barrel, you've now got a 23 pound bolt action rifle instead of a machine gun. Just another design flaw. Weapons designed for use by GIs should be as fool proof as possible. It wouldn't have taken much, a keyway or some other modification to either the gas piston or the gas cylinder to make it impossible to put this in backwards, but it has been a common cause of malfuntions since the weapon entered service.


December 7, 2001, 12:32 PM
OK, BIgG, you got me on SAW vs. GPMG (although the original post did include SAW's ;) ). The Chauchat was just a POS. Much worse than the Browning 1917 and 1919's.

December 7, 2001, 01:39 PM
You got that right, pardner! Chauchat is plain doo-doo.

I responded to the title GPMG failing to note the expanded definition in the text of the msg.

December 8, 2001, 09:18 AM
...using the classic definition of "GPMG" (A weapon that can be fired from bipod or tripod, is belt-fed and usually equipped with the ability to change barrels rapidly so that it may be used as a light squad-level machinegun as well as in a sustained-fire MMG/HMG role), I'd have to say that the postwar French AA 52 is one of the worst.

Possibly the only military with a worse "not-invented-here" syndrome than the US, the French decided to go with a homebrewed cartridge (7.5mm French) and instead of licensing production of the Belgian FN MAG or the German MG-3 like nearly everyone else in NATO, they designed a machinegun with the rather unique capability of extracting most of the cartridge case while leaving the neck in the chamber. Needless to say, this is less than conducive to proper functioning. About the only good thing to be said about it was that it was only slightly heavier than its competition, and therefore made a better boat anchor or club after it jammed.

Stephen Ewing
December 9, 2001, 01:29 AM
Tamara, wasn't that the one that the troops had to lube the cases to ensure proper extraction......and also ensure that each case picked up as much crap as possible, thus creating more stoppages?

The more I look at it, the more I think the MAG is the only decent gun that isn't simply a MG-42 clone.


December 11, 2001, 06:25 PM
Well, changing the barrel on the M60 sounds easier than I thought.
With the MG42/MG3 you lock the bolt to the rear, push the safety on, open the barrel-change-flap on the right side of the receiver, extract the hot barrel, insert new one, close the flap, push safety off. Takes ten seconds, max.