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HK 416 & M4 carbine saga

#1
http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/the-usas-m4-carbine-controversy-03289/#more

Basically to sum up, 'western' engineers assumed that soldiers are reasonably rational and will look after their weapons. However, 'eastern'/Russian engineers assumed that all their soldiers were conscripted half-wits that would mistreat and forget everything they learnt about marksmanship and maintainance requirements; and so built their weapons to those standards.
 
#2
I like the way that everyone who hadn't been near an M16/M4 was calling for the SA80 to be binned and for us to re-equip with M4's, and it appears that that article shows that US soldiers were having the same problems as we had with SA80A1's with their M4's!

The grass is always greener......
 
#4
mongoose9 said:
Good comment Praetorian
Indeed.

All the L85A1/A2 naysayers seem to forget that the M16 series had a troubled start and considerably more of them were built before changes were made.

Why exactly does the M16 series have that little thumb plunger on the side again?
 
#5
I think its a built in forward assist thingmywhat. Why on earth would it need one of them? :D

M4 just does not compare with A2 for accuracy, on the 25m ranges at the COB none of the Septics could get anywhere near the 10-15mm groups some of our guys were producing, and most of the Spams were none too complimentary about its reliability.
 
#6
In terms of ergonomics, I think the M16 variants wins hands down. You can operate safety, firing mode and magazine catch with the fingers on your right hand without having to remove hand from the firing position.

The problem with the M16 really is that the gas blowback fouls the firing chamber resulting in the need for more maintenance. The HK416 solves that by using a piston system - imo that is a good improvement on a tested design.

Dun like bullpups...
 

Alsacien

LE
Moderator
#7
danielsan said:
I think its a built in forward assist thingmywhat. Why on earth would it need one of them? :D

M4 just does not compare with A2 for accuracy, on the 25m ranges at the COB none of the Septics could get anywhere near the 10-15mm groups some of our guys were producing, and most of the Spams were none too complimentary about its reliability.
I trained on the Canadian variant, forward assist is designed in to provide an option when dirt builds up in a weapon.
Could not comment on the M4 for accuracy, the Canadian variant is excellent, but I believe it has a higher spec chamber/barrel.
 
#10
SparkySteve said:
Galil doesn't look half as ally as an SA80A2 with a UGL!
True, buts probably lighter and easyer to patrole with.

the main advantadge AR15s (ether hk416, M16a4, M4a1 ext...) is that its more fun fireing ten rounds rapid from the left sholder. if you think one in eight is left handed, and there are 100,000 regs, 45,000 TA + 6,000 RM, its not a small factor.
 
#11
danielsan said:
M4 just does not compare with A2 for accuracy, on the 25m ranges at the COB none of the Septics could get anywhere near the 10-15mm groups some of our guys were producing, and most of the Spams were none too complimentary about its reliability.
Were they using irons sights?

Anyhow, the AR-15 series still appears to have some legs. Colt (official US supplier) has developed a gas piston system much like HK's so as in the past since the original M16 showed up, there might be another alteration. At the moment I think it's the M16's 3rd generation (A4), the M4 being a little older.

One thing that the AR-15 has over it's competitors is that it's a great modular system - you can fit a lot of accessories namely due to the big civilian market in the US.
 
#12
Am I the only person here thats found that they shoot better with a bullpup? I think its a more stable firing position!

P
 
#13
Praetorian said:
Am I the only person here thats found that they shoot better with a bullpup? I think its a more stable firing position!

P
i do, but thats probably due to the fact thats all iv ever been issued with (being the young thing that i am), id most likly feel diferently if i had grown up with SLR.
 
#14
Well look out M4, C8, and 416! The SA80A2 is going to give it a run for its money with the introduction of the quad rail. At last the platform can take a surefire M600A, LLM, downgrip, and God knows what add-on!

At last the weapon looks "Ally" :twisted:
 
#16
It's not a case of it doesn't get used much. In order to be used, it needs to be cleared, by both DOSG and the IPT who own the kit. The Quad rail for the L85A2 is new when put up against the M4,C8 weapons.
 
#17
Praetorian said:
Am I the only person here thats found that they shoot better with a bullpup? I think its a more stable firing position!

P
Bull pups are more stable because they have been engineered that way IE Firing Chamber located closer to the shoulder resulting in less recoil being felt.

I have fired both a bullpup and m16 variants and in terms of accuracy, the bull pup wins. But in terms of ergonomics, the M16 variants come out tops. Also, you can fire an M16 left handed. Wouldn't want to try that with a bull pup, with the exception of the F2000.
 
#18
super_stab69 said:
SparkySteve said:
Galil doesn't look half as ally as an SA80A2 with a UGL!
True, buts probably lighter and easyer to patrole with.

the main advantadge AR15s (ether hk416, M16a4, M4a1 ext...) is that its more fun fireing ten rounds rapid from the left sholder. if you think one in eight is left handed, and there are 100,000 regs, 45,000 TA + 6,000 RM, its not a small factor.
I never bought into this idea that lefties are disadvantaged by the SA-80 series. I am a leftie and- guess what- I learned to fire right handed from the very start. No bother. I first fired a bolt-action No.8 rifle at the age of 13 when in the ATC and carried on from there. Considering an SA-80 is the first weapon 99% of recruits will handle on a regular basis (and even if they've been through the cadets they'd have used the L98 Cdt GP variant), it should never be a problem for lefties. IMO, anyone who hasn't already had a wealth of experience shooting left-handed who says the reason they can't use the SA-80 is that they're left handed is just a mong who can't shoot.

If you think about it, when aiming most of the movement is controlled by the left hand and with the weapon in your shoulder the right hand is little more than the bit the trigger finger hangs off. A lot of lefties play golf "right-handed" under the same principle. On the downswing, it's their dominant left hand that controls the club.

(Granted, if you're taking about the need to fire from cover left-handed, that's a different story.)
 
#19
Hmm... now my own views as a man who used a few differant varients of Eugene's rifle.

The gas system on the M4 and it's predecessors is one of three commen causes of problems... the other two are operator mantainance (not really an issue with line units but the support folks have a problem with the concept) and the aluminum magazines.

Carbon fouling on the bolt carrier causes friction and can prevent the action from fully cycling. This can cause the cams on the bolt to not fully engage without a tap on the forward assist or prevent the round from extracting properly as the groove which catches the rim of the brass is filled with carbon resulting in a double feed (ie. next round from the magazine is stripped off and jammed into the chamber alongside the partially extracted casing.)

Magazine... hoo-boy was this an issue which was a pet peeve of mine. A dirty magazine (again from carbon fouling) will not feed properly. A magazine with a worn spring will not feed properly. A magazine with bent lips will not feed properly. Used to burn my bunions to see a troopie either banging a magazine into the well rather than seating it smoothly or letting his rifle rest on the magazine as if it were some sort of unipod.

Mantainance... nothing needs to be said about this as it should be commen sense. Long as the damned rifle has had a honest attempt at it's innards being clean and oiled before the shooting starts, it will fire and continue to do so until your on your fifth magazine... then carbon fouling starts rearing it's ugly mug and you start having an incremental chance of a stoppage.

Anyway... back to the M4 in particular. It is a fricking carbine... meant for CQB or arming truck drivers not infantrymen just like it's predecessor in history, the M1 carbine. The short barrel seriously impacts both accuracy and terminal performance when compared to full length M16A2s.

We had XM-166s in my first unit... was to the M16A1 what the M4 is to the A2. Only men who carried the shorty were RTOs and the poor bastards who humped the M67 90mm recoiless rifles (since replaced with M3 gustavs) in other words... it was a compact weapon for self defense and not much else.

During the insanity of "transformation" a decision was made to streamline our light infantry for urban operations... and the M4 was superior to the M16A2 for the SWAT style tactics we adopted. Great idea... until we got into Afghanistan and started having engagements occur out past three hundred meters. Quick fix was to start issuing ancient M14s from stocks as a designated marksmen tool... of course, the unaccurized rifles (M21 is a modified M14 used for sniping) were less than ideal but they could extend the shooters effective range for hitting point targets beyond the M4s and were more suitable for situations when a burst from a SAW wasn't applicable.

Personally, I would love to see a 6.8 system (Remmington .270) come into service rather than yet another 5.56. Elements in USASOC have utilized a Colt product in that caliber to great effect... it's got a nice flat trajectory and mantains lethality over distance without going into the ammunition weight and controllability problem of 7.62...

P.S. concerning bullpups... only fired three... the original SA-80, the Steyr AUG, and the French FAMAS. Hated all of them... real pain in the neck to change magazines and badly balanced. Of course the latter was probably just a personal issue since I was used to a conventional layout.
 
#20
Gents would some of the board members who have been on Ops of late care to comment on how often They and their comrades clean their wepon when on active service.
john
 

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