The British Issue GPMG

Themanwho said:
The 50 rd box mag for GPMG is readily available from the system, and works reliably. The rounds do rattle around in the box though, so for that stealthy touch, you can make "bullet bags" by cutting the catches off old box mags and rivetting them to a 44 Pattern water bottle pouch(with the bunny ears cut off). This will also work reliably, and will hold about 60-70 rounds if memory serves.
That's Ally!
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
Themanwho said:
The 50 rd box mag for GPMG is readily available from the system, and works reliably. The rounds do rattle around in the box though, so for that stealthy touch, you can make "bullet bags" by cutting the catches off old box mags and rivetting them to a 44 Pattern water bottle pouch(with the bunny ears cut off). This will also work reliably, and will hold about 60-70 rounds if memory serves.
I take it you mean the container for the belt.

Cutaway said:
The ones I've used were of a vinyl or Butyl laminate material, so were light years ahead of the metal boxes that dig into your body when carrying the gun.
As you say belt bags can be jury rigged, but they're still not a patch on the purpose made items.
These have a metal throat to ensure smooth feeding and a leaf spring the length of the rd which keeps a constant tension on the belt & prevents damage to the individual links. You might have to see them to understand what I mean.

While the '44 Patt pouch might look ally, I'd still plump for an item that had nothing which might impede the smooth feeding and operation of the gun.
 
I seem to recall that the box magazine ( I think that was the proper name for it) worked fine for the first 50 rounds but didn't like having the next belt fed over the top of it. Does anyone else recall this or am imagining it?
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
EX_STAB said:
I seem to recall that the box magazine ( I think that was the proper name for it) worked fine for the first 50 rounds but didn't like having the next belt fed over the top of it. Does anyone else recall this or am imagining it?
The little flap thing would catch and make an awful racket as the link grated its way across the top of the box but by then you would be well into 60 or 70 rds of returned fire so apart from minor risk of snagging it wasnt really an issue. I never felt the need nor thought I would get away with a compo can on the feed tray, ditching the box afterthe first 50 was very easy and in a real firefight (How rare did they used to be?) who would care as WIS and Soco would clean it up!
For serious live firing I would ditch the box mag or hook a 44 pattern water bottle pouch through the holes on the bottom of the feed tray. The best thing about a box mag was the security it gave for that belt of 50, you would notice it if it fell off unlike 5 or 10 rds of a belt at £100 per round eh OZ?
 

Regiment646

Old-Salt
Another thing that we do (Israel) Is to wrap the fabric of a sandbag around the bipod and hold it in place with Tie tabs ,This is for when the "Magist is Running with The Mag He holds the left part of the bipod in his left hand and the Fabric makes a better holder ,than the bare metal.
An Israeli Assault bag carries 125 rounds
A Solider carries in his front two Ammo pouches 2 links of 80 rounds,
on each side of his Efod/Webbing 2 Assault Bags , On his lower back Another Assault Bag and the spare Barrel and tool kit and some times another 2 Assault bags in his upper back pouch.
To carry the GPMG He has a big heavy webbing strap.
Per Platoon there used to be 2 GPMG ,1 up front on the outer left hand side ,and 1 at the back ,now they have been replaced by the 5.56 Negev
ecept for the 2 GPMG in the Coy Support role.
Reg646
 
So with the Israeli system, do you put on another pre-loaded bag rather than drop you next belt into a bag fixed on the weapon?
 

Regiment646

Old-Salt
Yes when Attacking you just change the bags like you do with Magazines on a rifle.
Reg646
 

woody

LE
Used the box on a weekend once seemed more trouble than worth.
Thats seems to be prevailing wisdom so they linger in armouries unused.
Gpmgs normally used in sustained fire role mounted on a tripod .No1 carries gun spare barrel bag 2 barrels and c2 sight box .And as much ammo as possible.No2 his own rifle tripod and lots of ammo .Guns seemed available for use in the light role either in sangars or out on patrol on ops .Though where they came from and who decided on their
use was a mystery ?
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
Woody are you counting ammo regularly and charged if any is lost on ops? That was the best use for the box, a belt of 50 to keep the bad guys heads down with clean ammo, something you couldnt always guarantee in a dug in op or similar!
The best answer on a vehicle for top cover is for the gun to be ring pintle mounted and to use the open 200 link cradle!
 
woody said:
Used the box on a weekend once seemed more trouble than worth.
Thats seems to be prevailing wisdom so they linger in armouries unused.

Gpmgs normally used in sustained fire role mounted on a tripod .No1 carries gun spare barrel bag 2 barrels and c2 sight box .And as much ammo as possible.No2 his own rifle tripod and lots of ammo .Guns seemed available for use in the light role either in sangars or out on patrol on ops .Though where they came from and who decided on their
use was a mystery ?
That was my experience. Of course back in the day they were readily available in the light role. For a time, we had eight man sections with 6 SLR and two GPMG operating as two fireteams. Just what you need for "winning the firefight!"
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
Perhaps a Gimpy for fire support and the minimi for the assault team, thenn you dont miss out on continuous fire when reorging!
 

Themanwho

LE
Book Reviewer
Cutaway said:
Themanwho said:
The 50 rd box mag for GPMG is readily available from the system, and works reliably. The rounds do rattle around in the box though, so for that stealthy touch, you can make "bullet bags" by cutting the catches off old box mags and rivetting them to a 44 Pattern water bottle pouch(with the bunny ears cut off). This will also work reliably, and will hold about 60-70 rounds if memory serves.
I take it you mean the container for the belt.

Cutaway said:
The ones I've used were of a vinyl or Butyl laminate material, so were light years ahead of the metal boxes that dig into your body when carrying the gun.
As you say belt bags can be jury rigged, but they're still not a patch on the purpose made items.

These have a metal throat to ensure smooth feeding and a leaf spring the length of the rd which keeps a constant tension on the belt & prevents damage to the individual links. You might have to see them to understand what I mean.

While the '44 Patt pouch might look ally, I'd still plump for an item that had nothing which might impede the smooth feeding and operation of the gun.
As far as I remember, that's the name in the ISPL: "box, Magazine, 50rds", but I stand to be corrected. The last time I made any of these bullet bags was in the late 80's, but they worked well. The bags tied to the Feed tray tended to cause misfeeds due to misalignment of the feed tray(caused by the weight of the rounds), but if the bag was clipped to the purpose built locating stud, the rounds fed fine.

As you say, I'm sure the factory built bullet bags/boxes available are better. However, the chances of getting them through the system are remote to say the least, and in the mean time the bullet bag works, and can be knocked up by a unit REME Armourer in very little time..
 
ugly said:
Perhaps a Gimpy for fire support and the minimi for the assault team, thenn you dont miss out on continuous fire when reorging!
That's three ammunition types instead of two though...
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
Not forgetting 40mm. Never a problem to have lots of different ammo in the Army as long as you get your returns for resupply correct then it should work, worst comes you can relink 5.56 ball for the minimi! Dont tell me that the minimi uses a different powder? That would really take the biscuit. The acceptance trials for the minimi were to ensure common Nato spec ammo would work in all.
 
I'd still favour limiting ammunition types where possible. We never had 40mm grenades of course. Two GPMG and six SLR makes a very formidable section. Granted we only used this formation on exercise but I don't recall any problems. If you put a couple of 40mm UGL on the SLRs, well!
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
But then you still have 2 ammo types and the army copd with supply or at least you could shout bang correctly. With 7.26 Nato staying for the foreseeable future there is no real challenge to ensuring that the correct ammo scales are distributed. All taught at Brecon.
 

woody

LE
Supposedly billed for lost rounds but plenty of buckshee around :mrgreen: what sort of muppet says count out a 100rds from that box of loose rounds ? and it wasen't done with a nod and a wink .
supposedly going to check every head stamp at the end but it was typical rush rush so every thing just handed .Someone hada problem with loosing some part of the minmi belt even though it was in a zipped bag but he got away with it as noone could prove how many rds in it to begin it.
The box may have its uses and not going to go anyway near the pintle mount .6 months of when we had wimks in afgan makes it a sore point.
 
ugly said:
Perhaps a Gimpy for fire support and the minimi for the assault team, thenn you dont miss out on continuous fire when reorging!
This is what Belgian Paracommando rifle sections have. Not sure about the rest of their infantry.
 
baboon6 said:
ugly said:
Perhaps a Gimpy for fire support and the minimi for the assault team, thenn you dont miss out on continuous fire when reorging!
This is what Belgian Paracommando rifle sections have. Not sure about the rest of their infantry.
I thinkI'd missed Ugly's point on this. We had a GPMG in both fireteams so one GPMG went in on the assault. It's then on the objective for the re-org.
Pepperpot-tastic!
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
Yes I agree that was the mid 80's lessons learnt from the Falklands era, with the Minimi you can take the belt fed auto into the objective and have some good forepower available to cover the reorg or fight through stages!
I think I'd prefer ato assault with a minimi than a Gimpy just on weight, not having had one so to speak!
 

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