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Old July 4, 2019, 06:49 PM   #26
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But it does not cover the reality that the 10% can be 1000 meters.
Reality would be that about 10% are beyond 300m. So 301 and up. Some of those will be 1000 meters and up, but the percentage on those would be nowhere near 10%--it would be some small fraction of a percent.

A plot in the study shows the probability of seeing an enemy at a given distance.

Looking at the plot in the study, about 80% are seen under 200yds, about 90% under 300yds, about 96% under 400yds, and maybe 98% to 99% are under 500yds. The plot doesn't go above 500 yards given that only 1% to 2% of the data is out beyond that distance.
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So if your round (or the gun capacity with short barrels that reduces it) to under 300 meter and you are getting hit at 1000 then you are SOL.
True, but based on the study it's more because the odds of even seeing the person who's engaging you at that distance are just about nil than because of what weapon you're carrying.

It certainly makes sense for there to be the capability to engage distant targets for the times when they are out a long way, but it doesn't make sense to give 100% of our troops that capability so they can deal with maybe 1% to 2% of the threat. It doesn't make sense to handicap them 100% of the time with lower round counts on hand, more recoil, heavier weapons, etc. for situations that only happen very rarely.

What would make sense is to have a small percentage of the troops equipped with heavier weapons and trained for the small percentage of longer range engagements while leaving the vast majority of troops armed and trained to deal with the vast majority of situations.
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Old July 4, 2019, 07:09 PM   #27
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Military going 6.8mm

Great news for us .270 users as 6.8mm is 270 caliber, yes the cartridge will be different but bullet size is .270. We all know how the 270 WIN drops deer & elk sized game & now it will win wars for us also. Like old Cactus Jack said, it's a GREAT caliber!!
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Old July 4, 2019, 09:13 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by RC20
So if your round (or the gun capacity with short barrels that reduces it) to under 300 meter and you are getting hit at 1000 then you are SOL.
No, not SOL. You just engage with weapons designed to address that range (mortars, gpmgs, grenade launchers) instead of “infantry hand weapons.” Outfitting the entire platoon with a weapon to address a problem that occurs 2% or less of the time doesn’t make sense if you make the weapon less effective at ranges where combat occurs 98% of the time.
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Old July 5, 2019, 01:22 AM   #29
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Sometimes I wonder if we don't go too far in our quest for one that that does everything.

A regular camp hatchet has a flat side for driving nails, and usually a notch for pulling them. Works, but a claw hammer works better. On the other hand, the claw hammer sucks at chopping wood.....

One of the lessons learned by the front line guys in WWII was that a mix of weapons works in a mix of terrain and situations. Between M1 Garands M1 Carbines, Thompsons or the Grease Gun, and the BAR, somebody was packing something suited to what ever came along in infantry vs infantry combat. When more was needed, it was time for support weapons, belt fed, or arty or air. I think we still pretty much do that today.

After Korea, the military really focused on trying to reduce the needed arms to one (if possible) that did everything short of belt fed support. For some things that can work, for others, not so much.

With the M16 we got a light weight select fire weapon, SMG firepower and 300yds usable range, but there's no free lunch and long range performance was less than the larger rounds used previously.

IS this really that important, today?? dealing with various "terrorists" is a bit different from facing the Afrika Korps at Kasserine Pass. And its different from Khe San, Chosen, or Guadalcanal, or the Normandy bocage or ...or... or...

I don't know what it is in our system (other than perhaps greed) that causes us to re-invent the wheel every time someone notices we need something that rolls, but we do it, over and over.

Am I saying we should still be using WWII weapons and tactics? No. not ALL of them, at any rate. I just think that if we did use them, they would still work. We still use the M2 .50 BMG don't we??

One last point, if we equip everyone with the "wonder weapon that does it all" and they do get into a situation where its not the best tool for the job, then nobody handy has the best tool for the job.
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Old July 5, 2019, 08:14 AM   #30
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As an individual rifleman, I would like the 6.8 upgrade, but knowing tactics and available support weapons, the 5.56mm is still more than adequate for 90% of the combat situations. While we have fought in the jungles of the South Pacific and Vietnam, and more recently the desert terrains of Iraq and Afghanistan, future planning is now focused more on urban and sub-urban terrain.
That's part of the problem with a discussion like this... on the modern battlefield (which may or may not be a 'field' so to speak) the idea of 'one size fits all' is completely out the window. Because of the locked up mindset of the military, reducing everything to the lowest common denominator, the idea of adapting a firearm to the mission at hand will never be realized. The AR platform is ideal in this role... 2 pins and you have any number of options at your fingertips.
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Old July 5, 2019, 09:28 AM   #31
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We all know how the 270 WIN drops deer & elk sized game & now it will win wars for us also.
There was the legend that a ranking member of the original selection group was an avid .270 hunter and pushed for the caliber in lieu of 6.5 or 7mm.

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The AR platform is ideal in this role
What are we going to get, then, an AR in a different caliber? I had hopes for the Textron system.

Operations now are relatively small, we could afford a golf bag system to furnish a variety of infantry weapons to suit the need.

There is also the image of elitism; CO 1 to CO 2, "My troops are more eliter than yours 'cause we got fancier guns."
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Old July 5, 2019, 02:04 PM   #32
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From everything I read, a Textron cartridge is still in the mix. Less weight is still one of the requirements.
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Old July 5, 2019, 02:23 PM   #33
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This reminds me of a discussion I had with an old Marine some years ago. He had fought in Korea and Vietnam, but the discussion was about Korea. I had asked him what weapon he had preferred back then, and his answer was not what I expected. He said he used the weapon that fit his needs for that day/moment/mission. Sometimes he’d carry an M1, and sometimes a carbine, sometimes other weapons, including Chinese SMGs.

Obviously no one weapon covered all the bases for him.

As for today’s needs, I think we need something with a little more grunt than the 5.56, but I have no suggestions any better than what others have mentioned. That said, what would a necked down 30AR cartridge do?
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Old July 5, 2019, 05:39 PM   #34
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As for today’s needs, I think we need something with a little more grunt than the 5.56, but I have no suggestions any better than what others have mentioned.That said, what would a necked down 30AR cartridge do?
If the military wants our soldiers armed with something that sends more 'ummmph' at the enemy than the 5.56, then instead of switching to an untested cartridge, why not just do what the Brits did and adopt LMT's 7.62/.308 MWS?

The 7.62mm is a cartridge the military already has experience with, and the MWS is not just a top-tier '.30-cal AR,' but it's based on their proven MRP platform which allows for easy barrel changes in the field. That, in theory, would allow operators to change over to any barrel with a 308-derivative chambering (provided LMT or a sub-contractor made such a barrel).

The MWS is a familiar 'AR-pattern' platform, has the same modularity and ergonomics as it's 5.56 counterpart, can run a fixed or collapsible stock, uses common SR-25 type magazines, and barrels can be had in various lengths from 16"-20", in standard C/L or SS SPR type, depending on the mission specs or the operator's requirements.

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Old July 6, 2019, 12:24 PM   #35
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My conclusion is the M4 with M855A1 is the best of the currently available choices to equip most soldiers with. Superior ballistics and increased range are a poor trade-off for most circumstances where increased rate of fire and volume of fire from the squad or platoon as a whole is preferable. No alternative to the 5.56 is going to increase that rate or volume of fire.

Ballistic superiority and longer range is really only attractive when you look at individual soldiers instead of the squad. Would I personally give up 17% of my ammo capacity for superior range and terminal effect? Absolutely. I would rather have 25 rounds of 6.5 Grendel than 30 rounds of 5.56 any day. But would I rather that my squad have 2160 rounds of 556 or 1800 rounds? 2160 rounds for sure.

Ballistically superior and longer range alternatives like 7.62x51 or 6.5 CM are appropriate for designated marksmen and for some machine guns, but I don't see an advantage to equipping most soldiers with these chamberings or a 6.8 chambering like SPC that would reduce the available volume of fire for a squad.

Longer range targets are engaged with the M2 or a Mk19 from a MRAP. A squad does not need to be so far from a target that 6.8 SPC is necessary to engage it effectively, and also so far away from an MRAP that a Mk19 couldn't do it. When there are trade-off's to pay, most soldiers should be equipped for the rule, not the exception.

But I also suspect next-generation carbine ammo will not be 6.8 SPC, but rather something novel like that telescoping case stuff about which we don't know enough to comment intelligently. If it doesn't reduce the rate or volume of fire for a squad, and it also increases range and terminal effect then it's all good.

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Old July 6, 2019, 12:44 PM   #36
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The Unicorn Cartridge-a perfect description.
The Army had more crack shots in the days of the 45-70, 30-40 Krag than it does today.
6.8 ? IIRC the Japanese and Italians found their 6.5MM rounds lacked range and punch.
The 7.62 x 39 lacks the range and punch for a support weapon.
Firearms are only as good as the troops using them.
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Old July 6, 2019, 04:05 PM   #37
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...which allows for easy barrel changes in the field. That, in theory, would allow operators to change over to any barrel with a 308-derivative chambering (provided LMT or a sub-contractor made such a barrel).

...can run a fixed or collapsible stock, uses common SR-25 type magazines, and barrels can be had in various lengths from 16"-20", in standard C/L or SS SPR type, depending on the mission specs or the operator's requirements.
These would be fine things, its wonderful when you have a modular weapon, adaptable to virtually any and all mission particulars. Except, when you don't.

There are a few points that need to be considered. #1, There's no free lunch. #2 Murphy is alive and well and still in business.

SO, what are the real world down sides to the idea?
First it when you have a "golf bag" full of different barrels (uppers, assembiles, stocks,) and such so you can fit the weapon to the mission as precisely as possible, SOMEBODY has to carry it.
No, not the operator on the sharp end, he's only carrying one configuration at a time on the mission. But the guys in the support train have to pack it all around (and that means a full set of everything possible for each sharp end troop),

And all those parts not only have to be maintained serviceable, the have to be near enough to the action to be able to be issued. SO, at least part of them have to be forward deployed with the troops, not back at the log base.

This adds cost and complexity to the logistic train. Be sure to figure that into the balance.

And then there will be the inevitable Murphy action of not having the stuff you want to use, ON HAND. Sorry Capt'n we order 14" uppers for this mission but they only sent 6 and the rest are all 20" Things like this (and worse) WILL HAPPEN.

Add in "specialty" cartridges and/or different calibers for different mission needs and it gets even more complex.

And then on top of all those possible issues, consider the cost in the long term. We have literally an institutionalized habit of leaving behind (or destroying) equipment and supplies when we leave.

What's the cost, of leaving or destroying a conex full of barreled uppers, all the different variations for a company issue needs, because some clerk decided it "cost too much to ship it home".

Multiply that a few dozen times and it could be real money. On the books it can be written off as a "combat loss" but its an unneeded waste, that might not be fully made up by the time that company makes its next deployment or maybe even just the next mission, and then the operators are stuck without that versatility that is the claimed advantage to having all those options in the first place.

When (not if) this happens, that unit will go into battle with what every they have in their hands at the time, EXACTLY as they do, today.

I'm not saying there won't be any benefits to a modular system where things work like Legos or Barbie's clothes, only that there will ALSO be drawbacks, which affect both the cost of the system and its operability.

The more options we give the line guys, the more the support guys have to handle, or the line guys suffer when some part of the support system breaks down.

and, one more thing,. it won't be the operators making the choice of what to carry. It never has been and never will be, absent a fundamental change in our system. (the spec ops guys are different, I'm talking about regular line troops)

Some level of planner, (usually an officer) will spell out what is required/allowed for the mission, and all the Squad leaders will get a choice about is which troop carries what, from what is provided.

My big point is that what looks great on a Pentagon powerpoint spreadsheet doesn't mean it will be as great in the field.
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Old July 7, 2019, 08:35 AM   #38
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...which allows for easy barrel changes in the field. That, in theory, would allow operators to change over to any barrel with a 308-derivative chambering (provided LMT or a sub-contractor made such a barrel).

...can run a fixed or collapsible stock, uses common SR-25 type magazines, and barrels can be had in various lengths from 16"-20", in standard C/L or SS SPR type, depending on the mission specs or the operator's requirements.
Quote:
These would be fine things, its wonderful when you have a modular weapon, adaptable to virtually any and all mission particulars. Except, when you don't.

There are a few points that need to be considered. #1, There's no free lunch. #2 Murphy is alive and well and still in business.
SO, what are the real world down sides to the idea?
First it when you have a "golf bag" full of different barrels (uppers, assembiles, stocks,) and such so you can fit the weapon to the mission as precisely as possible, SOMEBODY has to carry it.
No, not the operator on the sharp end, he's only carrying one configuration at a time on the mission. But the guys in the support train have to pack it all around (and that means a full set of everything possible for each sharp end troop),
And all those parts not only have to be maintained serviceable, the have to be near enough to the action to be able to be issued. SO, at least part of them have to be forward deployed with the troops, not back at the log base.
This adds cost and complexity to the logistic train. Be sure to figure that into the balance.
So, it sounds like the Brit military is fully capable of fielding the MWS among its troops with no real-world logistical or supply problems ... whereas the American Mil branches are so beset by such concerns that they freeze up worse than the typical Fuddley with 'buck fever' on opening morning at deer camp.

Sad Fuddleys, our guys ... if true.
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Old July 7, 2019, 09:21 AM   #39
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My big point is that what looks great on a Pentagon powerpoint spreadsheet doesn't mean it will be as great in the field.
And as has already been shown in this process, what what looks good on the powerpoint spreadsheet isn't going to be what actually even gets fielded, if it even gets fielded. Things keep changing in the process.

So yeah, they have chosen 6.8 (until this changes). Now they just need to build a cartridge to go with the bullet and a gun to go with the cartridge and to have it all work harmoniously in battle conditions while at the same time meeting these new standards. What could possibly go wrong?
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Old July 7, 2019, 10:01 AM   #40
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What the military needs and what they get are two separate things.

In a perfect world they would have an array of weapons to use for specific theatre's of combat. The closest we have today it the M-4 and the ability to swap uppers/calibers. There is always going to be a need for the designated marksman.
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Old July 7, 2019, 12:01 PM   #41
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Logistics-which include maintenance-require a very high degree of standardization, it's "one size fits all" because that eases resupply and repair.
Our "caliber wars" are fine for us armchair commandos, when you have to supply 100,000 or more troops in the fields for months on end, you want things as uniform as possible. There were problems in Vietnam in having a rifle in 5.56 and a machine gun in 7.62, plus grenades, both hand and the M-79. And again, the training is too often inadequate.
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Old July 7, 2019, 12:02 PM   #42
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So, it sounds like the Brit military is fully capable of fielding the MWS among its troops with no real-world logistical or supply problems ...
It might sound like that, but be not so certain the Brits have no issues, just because we don't hear they have issues. Nobody advertises their foul ups.

If its just here and there, once in a while, then probably no one outside the Brit services will hear about it. Unless it becomes something frequent and system wide, odd are no one with hear about it other then the folks it happened to, bitching about it over a pint or three at the pub.

My point was to recognize that it can, and very likely will happen, to someone, somewhere, at some time, and that should be taken into consideration when doing the cost/benefit assessment of the idea. Generally the possible cost of screwups doesn't outweigh the benefits, but that decision can't be made accurately without taking the cost of the possible screw ups into account.

The other side of the coin is that while it might be a very minor thing in the big picture, when a logistic screwup affects you or I in our small picture world, its a rather big thing, to us.

we've come a long way since WWII, where we had a lot of screwups several so notorious they made it into the general history books. The problems with the M16 in Vietnam are famous, still, and part of those were logistic screwups (accidental or deliberate). I'm confident Desert War vets have their own stories of screwups, here and there, that weren't bad enough or big enough to make it into the history books, or haven't made it there, yet.

Our guys work hard at doing it right, but we are all humans and best laid plans...etc. As long as that is accounted for in the initial planning of a weapon (or other system) we're doing all anyone can do.
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Old July 7, 2019, 01:26 PM   #43
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Great news for us .270 users as 6.8mm is 270 caliber, yes the cartridge will be different but bullet size is .270. We all know how the 270 WIN drops deer & elk sized game & now it will win wars for us also. Like old Cactus Jack said, it's a GREAT caliber!!
270 is .274 and its a tweener. Not that it does not do fine, but a 130/150 grain 30-06 would do the same thing and more so with a VLD design.
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Old July 7, 2019, 01:44 PM   #44
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First and foremost your weapon systems should be on par or better in dealing with your most capable adversary. Thatr would be China (not unlikely with their imperialist take over anything they ever sailed by or walked to in the past policy ala SEAS region (my new term, South East Asia Sea)

As for mortars and such, if they are not there when you need them then you have an issue. Air support and other artillery are the same. All that stuff is either over tasked or not available at all times.

So, historically it started out at 50 yards and muskets with a bayonet cause you got one shot off (or the bloody Brits just charged you anyway and yes I know I am mixing up all sorts of stuff here time line wise)

Then when modern cartridge came into being they went overboard the other way. Sights out to 2500 yards, volley fire, area suppression (left to machine guns).

The Germans returned some sanity to it with the 7.92 Kurtz. If they had changed the caliber to a 6.5 they would have had something.

The US eventually in Vietnam then went overboard and dropped to a varmint round.

A 6.5 class returns things to a reasonable compromise. With a SAW you can reach out to 1000 for suppression as well as DM kill em or keep em down.. It still a small enough cartridge to allow a good combat load-out.

Its all a compromise and I think 6.5 class is a good balance.

Unless you offer diffetnt bullets you will never ben able to offer a
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Old July 7, 2019, 02:31 PM   #45
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One of the lessons learned by the front line guys in WWII was that a mix of weapons works in a mix of terrain and situations. Between M1 Garands M1 Carbines, Thompsons or the Grease Gun, and the BAR, somebody was packing something suited to what ever came along in infantry vs infantry combat. When more was needed, it was time for support weapons, belt fed, or arty or air. I think we still pretty much do that today.
WWII was not deliberate, it evolved and a lot of Horse trading went on. At the end you saw about half a rifle company would have Thompson or M3. While the M1 was an effective open field weapon, it was a hindrance in city fighting.

The problem is even belt fed might not be there, mortars/arty and air support is not always there when you need it and in a large battle was overtasked - The BAR was just a compromise as the US did not have a good belt fed setup (Bren was better wiht more rounds and on top feed). Certainly better than nothing but not as effective and round limited as a bipod 30 caliber belt fed would have been ak MG42.
After Korea, the military really focused on trying to reduce the needed arms to one (if possible) that did everything short of belt fed support. For some things that can work, for others, not so much.


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IS this really that important, today?? dealing with various "terrorists" is a bit different from facing the Afrika Korps at Kasserine Pass. And its different from Khe San, Chosen, or Guadalcanal, or the Normandy bocage or ...or... or...
China particularity is going to be an issue and to ignore Russia is a really bad thought considered their actions of late. US is re-building the Armored Combat Brigades and looking for a light tank to support the Infantry.

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I don't know what it is in our system (other than perhaps greed) that causes us to re-invent the wheel every time someone notices we need something that rolls, but we do it, over and over.
We used to be deliberate until M16, we are again and too much so. There is a compromise in between. Keep in mind the M1 was an anathema to the Army with its single load selector on the 1903. The stupid Nam era mad minutes proved a point. Select fire for the most part wastes ammo. They get that now and its semi auto most of the time save the SAW which is suppression.



Quote:
Am I saying we should still be using WWII weapons and tactics? No. not ALL of them, at any rate. I just think that if we did use them, they would still work. We still use the M2 .50 BMG don't we??
Nothing has changed. WWII set the standard for Combined Arms that the Brits set in the 1800s. Tools have changed of course (all from 1800s and some from WWII) but the concept is the same. It works right for the macro, just not the micro all the time.

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One last point, if we equip everyone with the "wonder weapon that does it all" and they do get into a situation where its not the best tool for the job, then nobody handy has the best tool for the job.
We aren't talking wonder, no such thing exists. But it should be the best of what we can offer.

Currently its gone to all Tommy guns.
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Old July 7, 2019, 11:22 PM   #46
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I understand 6.5, but; what planet did the 6.8 come from. Ok, I know 277. But really, why not 6.9mm! It is just this in your face, I am a dumb american theme that will not die.
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Old July 9, 2019, 12:19 PM   #47
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Will likely piss off the Creedmoor fans.
Why would it piss off the Creedmoor fans. Regardless what rifle/ammo chosen, I doubt the Army is going to give me one to hunt antelope with.

I'm old school, I was issued and used the M16a1 in Vietnam, It worked great, I had no complaints.

I'll let the youngsters worry about it.

My concern is with the soldier himself. Just had a long talk with my Grandson, a Captain just back from the IOAC. Just like in my days, a vast majority of infantry soldiers dont care and worse cant shoot what they have.

If I had a vote (which I dont) I'd dump the money into Marksmanship Training. Which in reality wouldnt matter anyway because the Army will not allow the time and ammo required to practice what they taught in that Marksmanship Training.

I have a copy of a report where the Army compared their snipers with civilian competitors. The military snipers didnt stand a chance. The test was done with Civilian Target Rifles, and Military Sniper Rifles. The Civilians dominated with both guns. Why, because (unless the sniper on his own to shoot more at his expense and time) he cant compete. Reason is, the Civilians devote more time and expense into shooting.

I know, there is more to sniping then shooting, but I'm addressing marksmanship.

And in the Marksmanship dept, it doesnt matter what the Army Chooses.
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Old July 9, 2019, 12:53 PM   #48
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The Pentagon doesn't get to decide that kind of stuff. Nor would it be announced in an on-line NRA magazine. Those decisions are very decidedly political and would not be made without input by NATO Allies.
And nowhere in that article does it say anybody is "Moving" anywhere. It simply says the busy work for senior officers in looking at 6.8mm calibre projectiles.
"...300m isn’t the average..." It is in Europe. Mind you, that was based on W.W. II battle fields with no input whatever from the Middle East or anywhere else.
"...medium size machine gun round..." Anything that is not a .50(14.5mm for the Russians) cal. is considered to be Medium or Light. However, it's due to the weight of the gun, not the calibre. The BAR, for example, was a Light MG. The .30 Browning a Medium MG.
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Old July 9, 2019, 05:54 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by T O’Heir
"...300m isn’t the average..." It is in Europe. Mind you, that was based on W.W. II battle field
From the Hitchman link I posted earlier: “For attack and defense in the European actions, it was found that about 80 percent of effective rifle and LMG fire takes place at less than 200yds and 90 percent at less than 300yds.”

That’s from AORG and FECOM studies during WWII according to the study.

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; July 9, 2019 at 06:03 PM.
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Old July 9, 2019, 08:45 PM   #50
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Quote:
Great news for us .270 users as 6.8mm is 270 caliber, yes the cartridge will be different but bullet size is .270. We all know how the 270 WIN drops deer & elk sized game & now it will win wars for us also. Like old Cactus Jack said, it's a GREAT caliber!!
LOL, the notion that .270 is a great caliber because it drops deer and elk is spurious at best. Lots of calibers are capable of dropping deer and elk just just fine. It really isn't the caliber so much as the cartridge/bullet combo and how well the shooter can put the shot into the right anatomy. All calibers are great calibers as much as they aren't.

The argument might be more salient if the military was after deer and elk, but they aren't.

Quote:
270 is .274 and its a tweener. Not that it does not do fine, but a 130/150 grain 30-06 would do the same thing and more so with a VLD design.
LOL, again, every caliber is a 'tweener' except the very largest and the very smallest.

----------------------------

Late last year, they were talking about a 6.8 caliber miracle rifle that could shoot farther than guns today, penetrate any body armor today or that is expected to be developed in the next quarter century (how do you test for that?), in an 'impressive gun' that will withstand the rigors of weather, use, soldier abuse, etc.
https://www.militarytimes.com/news/y...-lot-deadlier/

Of course, it will have superduper electro-optics, be suppressed, etc.
https://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/...ons-prototypes

So everything is going to be new and different and they want to field this very quickly as they are looking for "rapid development."

There are a lot of corners that are going to get cut.
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