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MILINET: RECAP "Your rifle: the M-16A4--MC TIMES"

October 17 2002 at 8:46 AM
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Dick G  (Login Dick Gaines)
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from IP address 209.130.138.67

 
17 October 2002

MILINET: RECAP "Your rifle: the M-16A4--MC TIMES"

The below presents the subject Marine Corps Times article followed by responses in the order recieved and/or posted by MILINET.

MILINET will revisit this issue as information warrants.

Semper Revisiting,

Anthony F. Milavic
Major USMC (Ret.)

=========================ARTICLE UNDER DISCUSSION=====


MARINE CORPS TIMES

30 September 2002

Your rifle: the M-16A4
In tests, it beat out the popular but unreliable M-4, Corps says

By C. Mark Brinkley and Gordon Lubold
Times staff writers

Fielding the new M-16A4

Who will get it?

Infantry Marines around the Corps.

When is it coming?

Possibly by yearâ??s end, depending on when contracts are awarded.

Whatâ??s new?

The M-16A4 differs only slightly from the A2 model Marines now use. The A4 adds a rail system that allows Marines to use different sights and other equipment. The hand guards also are different.

So who gets the M-4?

A popular weapon, the M-4 still could go to some ground-combat units. Reconnaissance units already use it and Marine officials are still determining which Marines should field the M-4.

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. â?? After nearly two years of testing, evaluating, re-testing and re-evaluating infantry rifles, the Corps quietly decided to stick with what works.

In head-to-head tests, the M-16A4 simply was more reliable than the lighter, shorter M-4 carbine, a popular weapon many considered a sure bet to win the contract as the Corpsâ?? next infantry rifle.

When briefed Aug. 30 on the results of the final testing round, Marine Commandant Gen. James Jones chose the M-16A4.

So as early as the end of the year, depending on how long it takes to get the contracts awarded and the weapons shipped, infantrymen could begin seeing M-16A4s in their own units. The Corps likely will field more than 30,000 of the weapons to grunts around the world.

A classic, updated

There are relatively few changes between the A4 variant and the M-16A2 rifle used by Marines for decades. The only substantial change is the military rail system added to the upper receiver, which allows grunts to attach scopes and night-vision equipment to the weapon.

â??There were more concerns about the reliability of the M-4 than the M-16A4,â?? said Col. Terry Lockard, head of the Ground Combat Element section of the plans, policies and operations branch at Marine Corps headquarters.

The details of those concerns still are under wraps. Marine officials declined Sept. 19 to release the results from the final round of testing, which was conducted this summer by members of the 25th Marines, an activated Reserve infantry regiment serving at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

The Marines who conducted the study were on leave and unavailable for interviews, Marine officials said Sept. 18.

The decision came as a surprise to officials with Colt Manufacturing Co. Nearly three weeks after the Corpsâ?? decision, Colt representatives still were unaware that their M-4 carbine had been labeled as unreliable.

Word of the results first came Sept. 18, when they were asked to comment on the decision.

Representatives of Colt, based in Hartford, Conn., said the company, which has sold more than 7 million M-16 rifles over the last 40 years and produced more than 150,000 M-4 carbine rifles, believes the carbine is the best choice for Marines and soldiers in combat.

They faulted the Marine Corps for not including the company in its testing.

â??Colt has worked closely with the Marine Corps when asked regarding the introduction of the M-4 into the Marine Corps ground forces,â?? said Mike Reissig, director of sales and marketing at Colt, in a written statement faxed Sept. 19 to Marine Corps Times. â??We were aware that some units in the Marine Corps were conducting field experiments with the M-16 and the M-4. However, Colt cannot comment on the issues regarding functioning of the M-4 during these recent Marine Corps evaluations as neither we nor the government were included in this process.â??

Reissig added that the decision to leave Colt and the government out of the testing is a break from the usual process.

â??Normal procedures for conclusive testing of government small arms includes the participation of contracting representatives from the U.S. government and Colt engineers, along with the service participants,â?? Reissig wrote. â??These tests, when performed, are conducted using strict quality assurance procedures. Additionally, Colt does not manufacture any after-market [modification] kits for these weapons and we feel these should not be included in any evaluation of the basic rifle.â??

The M-4 has emerged as a popular weapon across the services, and it currently is fielded by all four services and the U.S. Special Operations Command. Colt officials said the Air Force recently awarded the company a contract for more than 25,000 of the carbines.

â??Those of us at Colt consider our responsibilities to the servicemen and women of this country to be of utmost importance,â?? Reissig wrote.

â??We believe the M-4 would clearly be the most suitable weapon for the Marine Corps in close combat and in fighting the counter-terrorism campaigns of the future.â??

Despite the popularity of the M-4 â?? some would say an emotional enthusiasm for the weapon â?? the Corpsâ?? assessments of the M-4 showed the carbine malfunctioned far beyond the number of allowable incidents, said one Marine officer with marksmanship training experience and who is familiar with the selection process.

â??It was overwhelming in that case,â?? the officer said.

Assessments take into account firing, chambering of rounds, extracting, feeding and other endurance tests.

Testers are allowed only a certain number of failure incidents before the weapon fails the entire test, he said.

â??The M-4 had quite a few incidents during the assessment,â?? the officer said. â??The A4 came out on top for the assessment.â??

Both Colt and FN Manufacturing of Columbia, S.C., make the M-16A4. It is unclear which company would get the Corpsâ?? contract for the A4.

M-4s for some

Still, some infantrymen could receive the carbine in the coming years.

â??It wasnâ??t a complete decision against the M-4,â?? Lockard said. â??The division commanders are going to come back and make a recommendation on who in the ground-combat element should receive M-4s.â??

That could include Marines who work in close quarters, such as Light Armored Vehicle crewmen. Recon Marines already use the carbine, which is about 1.5 pounds lighter and six inches shorter than the M-16A4, or 9 inches shorter when the tubular stock is fully collapsed.

Other than the reliability issues, the M-4 was a solid performer, Lockard said. When it came to marksmanship and field firing, there was little variance between the two weapons.

â??Not an appreciable difference,â?? Lockard said. â??There was a bit of an edge that goes to the M-16A4. It does better at longer ranges, certainly.â??

Army tests of the M-4 conducted in 1992 prepared the Corps for such results. In those tests, the shorter-barreled carbine was able to penetrate helmets out to 505 yards.

The M-16A4 was able to do the same out to 567 yards.

But the Marine Corps seemed willing, initially, to trade standoff distance for mobility, of which the M-4 offers plenty. Shorter and lighter, the weapon seemed ideal for urban settings, where quarters are tight and engagements are close.

â??Generally speak- ing, the Marines sort of liked the M-4 overall,â?? Lockard said. â??The portability issue, the ease of maneuverability and so on.â??

Stopping-power debate

Some reports out of Afghanistan claimed that the M-4 lacked the stopping power of the M-16A2, a problem that could be attributed to its shorter barrel. Lockard said those reports were not a factor in determining which weapon to select.

â??That was absolutely not an issue,â?? he said.

General failures were a concern, however. Many Marines know of the M-16â??s rampant failures when it was introduced during the Vietnam War. No one wants to see the M-4 fail Marines in combat.

â??Iâ??m happy they did the honest thing,â?? said the officer familiar with the study.

â??The worst thing is a weapon that doesnâ??t work properly. It may not be what they originally wanted, but if they go this route, at least they know itâ??s going to work.â??

Ultimately, both weapons offer rail systems that give Marines the ability to use scopes and other specialized attachments. This way, the basic infantryman can depend on his weapon to work when he needs it most.

One Marine infantry weapons officer said thatâ??s the most important factor of all.

â??There are some arguments that have the M-4 is better for the urban fight, or for ease of transportation in the AAAV or Osprey, but I am not convinced it is the weapon of choice for all environments.â??

C. Mark Brinkley is the Jacksonville, N.C., bureau chief for Marine Corps Times and can be reached at (910) 455-8354 or at cmark@marinecorpstimes.com. Gordon Lubold reported from Washington, D.C.

===============================RESPONSES==============

27 September

MILINET: Resps "Your rifle: the M-16A4"

======================================

I guess no one was listening?

Hep

-------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE--------------

 So, according to the article...
The ammunition the rifleman shoots out of the rifle --- stopping power ---
was never an issue in the USMC requirement to replace the M-16A2. A
quotation in the article, "...... It may not be what they [sic USMC]
originally wanted, but if they go this route at least they know it's going
to work.", leads me to believe that enough folks at HQMC had, or have,
fallen under the ninja spell to make a move to replace the infantry rifle
(such as it is), and with it the rifleman... with a BS ninja gun [M-4] and a
ninja wannabe commando of some kind.
 Say it isn't so! Is even the, up to now, solid and undefeated US Marines
also succumbing to the latest fad and turning into some kind of door kicker
cult that no longer understands (or cares about) the value of the rifleman
armed with a general purpose battle rifle?
 Thank Chesty that at least the Corps had the integrity to go with, what
was apparently, plan-B, the M-16A4, after their darling boy [M-4] failed to
make it to the finish line. It's of little consolation though, since the
rifle is still chambered for the 5.56mm round.
 I guess I just don't get it. In an urban environment I would want the to
have the option for me and my Marines to be able to remain outside of a
building, and shoot through the wall(s) with 7.62mm rifles to nail the
bastards inside, than have to enter it, play Russian roulette with mines and
booby traps, get into a free-for-all gun, club, and knife fight and play hot
potato with hand grenades with the bad guys because our 5.56mm M-4s don't do
exterior walls. But damn, they sure do look cool! Come on over here CNN
and get a flick of us in our shades and bandannas and 10 days of whiskers
grippin our ninjababy M-4s! Yup. That will be sure to impress the hell out
of al Qaida, Hizbulla, Al Fatah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the rest of the
boys in this country and around the world, who are moving into position to
take us on.
 But as long as there are Marines there is hope. Perhaps the failure of
the M-4 and selection of the M-16A4 has broken the spell. If so, the newly
sober and wiser Marines may want to refocus on what a rifle is supposed to
be about. To look at the TOTAL RIFLE --- the rifle AND its ammunition ---
as the real measure of a rifleman's weapon. And maybe, the Marine rifleman
just might come out of this with a 7.62mm NATO rifle to go down range and
down town with after all.
One Shot... One Kill

s/f
Howard

------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE------------

Anthony,

       Paradigm paralysis is a difficult condition to overcome. Why else would the "new" weapon of choice be appropriately named the M-16A4.                                                        Â

Semper Fidelis                                                         Â

RJI

--------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE-----------

No matter what it looks like, it STILL lacks the stopping power to drop an enemy soldier in his tracks with one shot. Once again, expediency has given way to common sense.

Paul Davenport
Col USMC (Ret)

===========================2nd GROUP OF RESPONSES========

30 September

MILINET: 2nd Resps "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times

============================================

I'm beginning to believe this choice of the M-16A4 is more about appropriations and politics than a rifle to do the job. It is indeed a shame that so little concern is given to the rifleman that has to use the weapon. But what's new? What further amazes me is that we task a reserve unit as a testing unit to help determine which rifle the Corps will choose to be the service rifle. Why not put together a unit of experienced Marines with weapons backgrounds? You don't go to the milk man to learn how to make butter. It is also hard for me to understand what test parameters were chosen and how they went about achieving the obviously flawed result. There has been thread after thread about the inadequacy of the 5.56MM round for a long time, but obviously ignored by those who should be paying attention to what's going on in the field.

Is there someone out there in the hierarchy who cares and has the moral courage to stand up and say, "ENOUGH!" Even the toughest know after being beat over the head long enough it hurts and one should avoid what brings about the trauma. Maybe that's the problem? They aren't the ones suffering the trauma and have forgotten what might have once been an issue to them.

BH

---------------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE----------

Anthony, I feel like the line troops have been screwed once again, but this time knowingly. How can a "Marine" possibly NOT know about one round knock down and the Combat requirement for it. Ask any cop of experience and he will swear by it, why else does he use a high tech expanding bullet! One round knock down is essential for survival. Like Howard, what I see is a compromise, we won't go with the M4 and that will get us hell, so we better not change the round to 7.62MM for double hell. We all have political markers out there, is this a time to call some of them in, or would it be a waste of valuable assets. Should we organize and find out names and rank of the decision makers? Hep is right, no one was listening.

Semper disappointed and bewildered,

John Bishop

----------------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE---------

A few observations: Judging by my/our experience clearing buildings in Inchon and Seoul- a long rifle is a serious problem-too hard to maneuver in tight places. Thompson worked best. MI could shoot thru almost anything-saw a NK dropped who was hiding behind a light pole.

.45 auto stopped a man no matter where you hit him. Incidentally I carried the .45 always with a round in the chamber, but on half cock.

Lee

========================3rd GROUP OF RESPONSES======

4 October

MILINET: 3rd Resp "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times

=====================================

To Lee
Â
True. Full size 7.62mm battle rifles can require more effort to maneuver
quickly in tight places, such as the inside of buildings and
LAVs/AAVs/M113s/Bradleys. For instance, the 7.62mm NATO AR-10A4 is 41inches
long and weighs 9.6 lbs empty. The 7.62mm AR-10A4 Carbine is 37.1 inches
long and weighs 9 lbs empty. That, compared to the 5.56mm M-16A2 (and
M-16A4?) which is 39.6 inches and 7.9lbs empty and the 5.56mm M-4 ninjagun
at 29.8 - 33 inches long (collapsible butt stock) and 5.65 lbs empty.
 Unfortunately Marines and soldiers don't have the option today to use
Thompsons for close fighting. So, when it gets down to trigger time, I'll
stick with that longer heavier full size 7.62mm rifle over the lighter and
shorter carbine or any 5.56mm weapon every time. Guess I just feel better
having a weapon in my hands that I know can get the job done at 6 feet or
800 yards, since the hostiles on the receiving end have a tendency to turn
up at any distance.
 In 90-91 more than a few Marines in my battalion were trying to wheel and
deal to swap their 5.56mm M-16A2s for the 7.62mm NATO L1A1s (FNFALs) the
(fortunate) Brits were carrying in our area in Saudi before the ground war
kicked off. They were unsuccessful. A couple of sand dunes over, those
(unfortunate) Brits who were stuck with that ridiculous 5.56mm suitcase gun
(I don't know any other way to describe it) were trying to wheel and deal to
swap those pieces of sh-- for the Marines M-16A2s. They too were
unsuccessful.
 Seems when the reality of combat became a factor, the Brits and Marines
intuitively understood that a full size rifle of the same caliber is a
better weapon than a carbine (or what ever that Brit thing was), and a rifle
that shoots a larger, more powerful bullet (L1A1) is even better still, than
a rifle that shoots a smaller less capable bullet (M-16A2)... length and
weight be damned.
 Our battalion was mounted in AAVs for the campaign and we had a
combination industrial area and townhouse built-up area as final objectives
in Kuwait (providing we survived to make it that far). Inspite of those
considerations, individual Marines were putting on full court presses to get
their hands on the longer, heavier L1A1s, because they..... understood. In
25+yrs I never once heard a 0331 (machine gunner) say he wanted to swap his
M-60 machine gun or the even longer and heavier M-240G machinegun (47.5
inches, 24.2 pounds) for a rifle. As far as they were concerned, firepower
trumped size and weight of the weapon.
 I noticed that you said the solution for you and your buddies in Seoul for
the M-1 being too hard to maneuver in tight places was the 45cal Thompson,
however you did NOT mention the 30cal M-1 or M-2 carbine. I'm guessing
that's because the M-1 and M-2 carbines may have been the Korean War
equivalent to today's unreliable, underpowered and ineffective M-4. Would
you or your buddies have carried the lighter and shorter carbine instead of
the Thompson if you had the choice between the two? Or swapped out your
M-1s for carbines if you had the choice?
 The military model of the Thompson (in my opinion) IS the ultimate weapon
of all time for combat in close places. It is incomprehensible to me why
they are not being brought out of war reserves and/or massed produced again
for issue as a special purpose weapon for infantry. Any USMC rifle company
that is LAV or AAV borne or any mechanized army M113 or Bradley unit could
easily carry multiple Thompsons (and shotguns) inside of their vehicles for
use when the tactical situation calls for them. USMC rifle squads/platoons
armed with a mix of Thompsons, shotguns, 7.62mm battle rifles (let's not
forget the excellent M-79 grenade launcher) and 45cal pistols would (again
in my opinion) be ideally equipped for urban combat.
 A final thought. While I would be the first to acknowledge that the 45cal
Thompson isn't broke, and is a guaranteed manstopper, I sure would like to
see what a Thompson could do if it was chambered for the 50AE round....

s/f

Howard
Â
===============================4th GROUP OF RESPONSES======

7 October

MILINET: 4th Resps "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times

=================================

Howard,

I agree with most of what you have said. In addition, I have never known anyone who has used the M1 Garand in combat that did not think it was the best infantry rifle ever issued. My opinion was-and still is, that it was too long for room clearing. You asked about the M1 and M2 carbine, we landed in Inchon on rainy night, the air was full of soot from the burning city, those factors compounded by the mud in our foxholes quickly convinced us that the carbine was too unreliable. I discarded mine for an M1. Shortly thereafter I discovered the Thompson, took the shoulder stock off of it, and found it perfect for clearing buildings (when we were in Seoul). I also found the Thompson to be excellent for the kind of "up close and personal" fighting that we experienced at the Chosin Reservoir.

I can offer no opinion on the .223 caliber, I have never fired the M16, or its successors, but I have fired .22 rifles and pistols for many years-They are great for target practice, but I sure as hell wouldn't want to rely on one in combat. On the other hand, maybe I should reconsider that in light of the recent shootings (.223 caliber) in Maryland?

Lee

---------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE----------------


I can tell you about the carbine in Korea. It did not take long for anyone armed with a carbine, who could, to stop by the aid station and pick up an M-1 from a Marine who no longer needed it. It was worth packing around 8.5 pounds of M-1 that you knew would do the job when it was needed. Â

PR

============================5th GROUP OF RESPONSES======

8 October

MILINET: 5th Resp "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times/MD Sniper Shootings

Lee responded, after his excellent discussion of the carbine and its inadequacies in Korea <snip>I can offer no opinion on the .223 caliber, I have never fired the M16, or its successors, but I have fired .22 rifles and pistols for many years-They are great for target practice, but I sure as hell wouldn't want to rely on one in combat. On the other hand, maybe I should reconsider that in light of the recent shootings (.223 caliber) in Maryland?Â

Don't take this wrong but consider the following. As to the .223 invovled in DC sniper incidents, first six fatalities were single round head shots; the younster shot today was hit three times in the chest and is in critical/stable condition (think I have those terms right). Not surprised by a head shot fatality. A .30-06 or .308 chest shot times three would not be in any condition other than dead. Am glad for the boy that the sniper is using 5.56 instead of rifle caliber. But what should our armed forces be using??? A weapon that only wounds with three chest shots?

Will anyone else in position to take action take note of this situation?

Higinbotham

----------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE-------

Terry, this guy seems to have good rifle sense. I can only guess about the
"equities" in armed combat, but there must be a few parallels with hunting
large game, particularly of the dangerous variety. I'm in no way, shape, or
form an advocate of the 5.56 mm, but I'm surprised your friend is not more
worried about getting off quick shots in tight spots. I worry about
quickness bear hunting in thick stuff, and Mr. Whiskers doesn't even shoot
back. Maybe your friend doesn't have to pay the same price in reaction time
with big recoilers that I do. Is he bigger than Jessie Ventura? Then
there's the matter of weight. The first year I hunted Augusta and Highland
counties, I carried a Marlin lever action chambered in 45-70, a 30 pound
ruck (with water purification gear, flashlight, matches, extra ammo, GPS,
first rate binoculars, toilet tissue, a wide mouth pee jar, and, well you
get it). In those days I also carried a model 629 Smith and Wesson pistol
in 44 magnum. I must have looked like Neil Armstrong landing on the moon.
I carried all the stuff for about a week and then swapped out my ruck for a
day pack with two canteens of water and the GPS. I also kept the rifle and
ten rounds. Guess what? I haven't needed the pistol in eighteen years of
hunting, and I've never used more than a dozen rounds of ammo actually
hunting in any one year. I wonder if it's not something like that with
"over-kill" weapons?

I would menace commercial aviation using a Thompson chambered for the 50
Action Express. Three rounds on auto and it'd be pointed straight up. I
shoot the .44 magnum with comfort from both single and double action
handguns, but for crying out loud, not on full automatic. The 50AE has
substantially greater free recoil than the 44 magnum. Admittedly, a
Thompson's chambered for 50AE would be comforting for close-range sorting of
hemorrhoidal Kodiaks in alder thickets, or maybe velociraptors in phone
booths, but I'm confident that the .45 ACP is more than sufficient for
hairless apes, and I'm also confident that I can keep it down on the target
on full auto.  Besides, how much more do you need the Thompson to do than
chewing up cinder block walls?  --Bucky


=============================6th GROUP OF RESPONSES=====

10 October

MILINET: 6th Resps "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times

==========================================

Sir: Â

I still maintain the M-14 is and has been the best American weapon...Other nations have produced excellent weapons also...AK-47, SKS and I'm not sure what Isreal uses except for the Uzi, but I would bet they would be good...If we want to keep the M-16 concept, then rechamber it for something heavier...I recommend the .243 or .270...But why bother...Go back to the M-14 and quit screwing with politics!

 SF...b...Â

------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE-------------

Ironically, the Marine Corps is calling it the Designated Marksman's Rifle and, reportedly, is issuing one, and possibly two, to each rifle squad in the MEB. Unfortunately, the Corps and its Spear Chuckers don't have the political courage to replace ALL 5.56mm weapons with those chambered for the 7.62mm and give everyone ONE-ROUND KNOCKDOWN power and simplify logistics.

Semper Disgusted,

Anthony F. Milavic
Major USMC (Ret.)

===============================7th GROUP OF RESPONSES====

11 October

MILINET: 7th Resps "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times

====================================

Accurate repeatability of hits at long range relies on spot well, and rifle position. The M-14 provided both with the hinged butt plate. As an ordinary rifle expert requalifying while in DI school. I scored six hits on the five inch spotter disk at the five-hundred yard line. I doubt if a shooter firing an M-16 could do the same; nor could I. During my time, I was convinced that the M-14 was the premier rifle among the three types I fired. I was astonished when we went to the "Tinker Toy".

Â
Al

------------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE------------

Major . . . you are on target as usual. I find it extremely difficult to understand why the Marine Corps is recommending that we keep a service rifle that does not serve our needs. I own a Colt AR15 Sporter Match HBAR, but would not want to take it to combat with me and I sure don't understand why anyone else would unless it was a larger caliber. I would sooner take my 12 gauge and 45.

When I was with 3d Bn, 3d Marines (1966/67) on my first tour in Viet Nam we still had the M14, which was in my opinion far superior to the M16. It was not that much heavier or was it more difficult to supply. In fact, the whole idea of having a service rifle and machine gun of the same caliber made it easier to supply. The difference in weight between the M14 and the M16 is negligible. If you really want to talk about weight, I remember being a BARMAN with E 2/5. Now that weapon could feel like it weighed 29 pounds instead of 19-1/2 pounds after you had moved a few clicks down the road. I would not, however, have traded it for any other weapon. It was the best weapon I ever had when in the Marine Corps. Lets get back to weapons that do the job.  Â

William P. Horrobin
Capt., U. S. Marine Corps
(Ret.)

--------------------------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE-----------

I haven't heard anything about the FN FAL. It's the same cal. as the M14. Is it not a good weapon? Too expensive?

Hep

--------------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE------------

There are several weapons on the market that will work. My point is lets get rid of the 5.56mm cartridge and adopt a weapon that is chambered for a cartridge that has one-round knockdown power--the 7.62mm M-14, or the 7.62mm FN FAL, or the 7.62mm AR-10, or the 30-06 M-1 Garand, or . . . whatever!

Semper One-Round Knockdown Power,

Anthony F. Milavic
Major USMC (Ret.)

============================8th GROUP OF RESPONSES====

14 October

MILINET: 8th Resps "Your rifle: the M-16A4"--MC Times

=============================================

Major:

We continue to have this dialog. It would seem to me with the number of
experienced responses you have received, that given the right forum,
something could be initiated to entice the military into looking at the
issue closer. There is no doubt about the technical issues related to the
5.56 round versus the 7.62 round, it would be the politics that need to be
overcome. We need a recent retiree or active duty champion for this cause
who has a forum and is willing to get this out to the public. Somebody like
Col. Hackworth who has a Fox News forum could be helpful in bringing this
issue to the public arena where it needs to be.

One solution that was suggested was to make different uppers for the M16 in
different calibers. I think this idea has merit.

Regards:


Lorace W. (Tinker) Sykes
NORTHROP GRUMMAN
ELECTRONIC SYSTEMS
6608 Sun Scope Drive
Ocean Springs, Ms. 39564
Voice: 228-872-7315
FAX: 228-872-7395
E-Mail: tinker.sykes@northropgrumman.com
The enemy invariably attacks on two occasions ----- when your ready and when
your not.

--------------------------------------------ANOTHER RESPONSE------------

Anthony Milavic--Thought you might enjoy this from a retired Air Force friend. Even though he spent his career driving B-52's, dodging Soviet SAMs over North Viet-Nam and working as project officer on the MX missile system, he is a dyed in the wool shooter of the long guns persuasion, with whom I have discussed the M16 situation at great length. Enjoy.

Higinbotham


</ym/us/ShowLetter?box=Inbox&MsgId=54_821105_12763_993_48227_0_27510&bodyPart=2&YY=27295&order=down&sort=date&pos=0&view=a&head=brief>

AR10B
20" Chrome HBAR barell. 1.12 inch.
Weight: 9.6lbs. (M-16 is 8 lbs. AR10 standard would be in the high 8's)
Caliber .308/7.62MM

This whole thing reminds me of the Springfield rifeld musket episode during the late unpleasantness between the states. War Dept Ordnance (read the good Mr. Ripley) had what we now call the I-know-what's-best-for-you syndrome even worse then.

   ....hostility toward new innovations, particularly to
   breech loading weapons. He said the need for
   [advanced] weapons ". . . introduced. . . many
   kinds and calibers of arms, some in my opinion
   unfit for use as military weapons, and none as
   good as the government musket, producing
   confusion in the manufacture, issue,and use of
   ammunition, very injurious to the efficiency of troops
   . . . ." and that the muskets "as now made have
   no superior arms in the world. . . ."
  http://165.29.91.7/classes/humanities/amstud/97-98/weapons/thesis.htm

Cheers,
Mike

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