PDA

View Full Version : Is this another "M-16 style system" failing as before?



greensideout
10-11-09, 11:45 PM
Can someone here share some insite, knowledge of the M4?
We went this route before in Nam with the M16!

WASHINGTON (AP) — It was chaos during the early morning assault last year on a remote U.S. outpost in Afghanistan and Staff Sgt. Erich Phillips' M4 carbine had quit firing as militant forces surrounded the base. The machine gun he grabbed after tossing the rifle aside didn't work either.

When the battle in the small village of Wanat ended, nine U.S. soldiers lay dead and 27 more were wounded. A detailed study of the attack by a military historian found that weapons failed repeatedly at a "critical moment" during the firefight on July 13, 2008, putting the outnumbered American troops at risk of being overrun by nearly 200 insurgents.

Which raises the question: Eight years into the war against the Taliban in Afghanistan, do U.S. armed forces have the best guns money can buy?

StoneTheWeak
10-11-09, 11:49 PM
Negative. As accurate as our M-16 might be, its still a ****ty weapon from a reliability standpoint. Works fine, and yeah we're supposed to keep it clean, but in reality, we all know that there isn't always enough time to get every bit of sand and piece of **** out. I'd rather pick up an AK from a downed insurgent.

tangovictor87
10-12-09, 12:04 AM
If you take care of it, it will take care of you. same with any weapon system.

Wyoming
10-12-09, 12:15 AM
If you take care of it, it will take care of you. same with any weapon system.

Maybe so, but the bad guys are still using AK's.

You think maybe they know something?

Gunner 0313
10-12-09, 12:37 AM
:flag:Seriously, I don't know why this is discussed in the open squad bay.

StoneTheWeak
10-12-09, 08:06 PM
If you take care of it, it will take care of you. same with any weapon system.


Within reason, but it's not always possible to stop in the middle of a firefight and clean sand out of the bolt. Yes, theoretically, all our weapons should be kept at 100%, but in a combat environment is it always possible? I don't know, I've never been shot at, but my first thought isn't going to be, "****, better clean my bolt."


H&K was developing an assault rifle that had the same ballistics performance as an M-16 with the reliability of an AK, it was on future weapons, some bad azz chit.

BR34
10-12-09, 08:50 PM
From what I understand from what I've read about this incident, that soldier fired 12 mags through his rifle in a short time span. Now I'm no M16 apologist (I actually hate the rifle and the caliber) but no matter what weapon system you're firing if your barrel starts melting you're going to have reliability problems.

Garyius
10-12-09, 09:37 PM
While I was in the guard, we were switching over from the A1 to the A2. We had thousands of rounds of 55gr to burn off our last trip to the range, and I shot thirty five magazines from my A1 at a night range (army, 75 to 300 yards with lit popups). We had footlockers full of mags, and spent a while loading rounds even with the stipper clips.

I shot all the mags full auto, even with gloves the barrel got too hot to hold and I had to hold the front of the mag. By the last 5 mags the barrel was glowing so red I could see from it. The rounds were cooking off as I went from the bolt release back to the trigger.

She kept chugging out the rounds anyway. As did most of the rifles there.

brian0351
10-13-09, 07:16 AM
There are too many factors to consider! I was actually at Keating this time in 2007...it starts to get really cold and wet up there!

How fast did he shoot those rounds off? How old was the weapon? How clean? How dirty did it get in the firefight before it malfunctioned? How old was the ammo?

For every person who condemns a weapon you'll have someone who swears by it.

And the thread starter mentioned "As before"...if your referring to the M-16's initial deployment to Vietnam and the problems it had then, most of those problems were tied to faulty ammunition.

StoneTheWeak
10-13-09, 12:26 PM
The M4 and M-16 are the same weapon aren't they? Aside from the barrel and stock, they use the same receiver, and the M4 is full auto.

ggyoung
10-13-09, 12:29 PM
:flag:Seriously, I don't know why this is discussed in the open squad bay.

Because we as former Marines and the Marines of today (my youngest son included) need to know about the short comings of our weapons. It was our life support system and still is. The M-16 was a pile of crap in Vietnam and is now. Just ask the Marines that were on Hill 881 South. I lost a couple of damn good buddies on that hill. The M-16 was a good money maker for the Johnson family that is in Pres. johnson as they had a lot of stock in Colt Firearms. One other thing here ladybirds family had a lot of stock in the Huey helicopter company.

Garyius
10-13-09, 12:39 PM
The M4 and M-16 are the same weapon aren't they? Aside from the barrel and stock, they use the same receiver, and the M4 is full auto.

No, the M-4 uses a barrel ramp to get it to feed correctly, and uses a different buffer.

Some of the M-4s are full auto (the A1s), most are three round burst.

0331 2 0369
10-14-09, 08:11 AM
Unless we see a detailed report of the findings of their weapons after the firefight, we will never really know. However, the M-4 is a good weapon. Like the M-16 series, you dont have to give it a good detailed cleaning all the time but you do have to keep it well lubricated. I engaged the enemy on numerous occaissions when my weapon was dirty. It worked good for me because I always kept it well lubricated especially when I didn't have time to clean it properly. I always kept the ejection port cover closed also. I saw a lot of Soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq that walked around with their ejection port cover opened.

As for the AK..... Great weapon but lacks accuracy at longer ranges such as what we can do with our m-16. At least the ones that I have fired but they were older AK's that were worn. Those weapons were designed with that type of environment in mind.

Quinbo
10-14-09, 10:07 AM
Arm chair quarter backing here.
I guess the Army completely skipped the training on what to do if your weapon fails to fire. Apply SPORTS .. if that doesn't work go to secondary weapon. No secondary, fix bayonets.

stretchusa
10-14-09, 10:24 AM
The machine gun he grabbed was a SAW that failed to fire after 600 rounds according to the full story. If you fire the SAW in the cyclic rate with changing the barrel that is what happens. But as has been said before, there is not enough information to reach a conclusion.

greensideout
10-14-09, 11:53 PM
There are too many factors to consider! I was actually at Keating this time in 2007...it starts to get really cold and wet up there!

How fast did he shoot those rounds off? How old was the weapon? How clean? How dirty did it get in the firefight before it malfunctioned? How old was the ammo?

For every person who condemns a weapon you'll have someone who swears by it.

And the thread starter mentioned "As before"...if your referring to the M-16's initial deployment to Vietnam and the problems it had then, most of those problems were tied to faulty ammunition.

Thanks for the input---I didn't know about the "faulty ammunition" reason.
I did, however know that the lack of a forward assist for the bolt, and the tight tolerance to make the M-16 shoot a 1 MOA were the major downfall. The AK-47 enjoys a loose tolerance and a 2 MOA at best. The AK just keeps on going---really, in combat do we give a chit if a rifle shoots a 1" group or a 6" group? Maybe it's time to re-think how a battlefield weapon should be designed.

greensideout
10-15-09, 12:10 AM
There are too many factors to consider! I was actually at Keating this time in 2007...it starts to get really cold and wet up there!

How fast did he shoot those rounds off? How old was the weapon? How clean? How dirty did it get in the firefight before it malfunctioned? How old was the ammo?

For every person who condemns a weapon you'll have someone who swears by it.

And the thread starter mentioned "As before"...if your referring to the M-16's initial deployment to Vietnam and the problems it had then, most of those problems were tied to faulty ammunition.

Thanks for the input---I didn't know about the "faulty ammunition" reason.
I did, however know that the lack of a forward assist for the bolt, and the tight tolerance to make the M-16 shoot a 1 MOA were the major downfall. The AK-47 enjoys a loose tolerance and a 2 MOA at best. The AK just keeps on going---really, in combat do we give a chit if a rifle shoots a 1" group or a 6" group? Maybe it's time to re-think how a battlefield weapon should be designed.

Garyius
10-15-09, 08:51 AM
It was way before my time, but I read a few books on the subject because I really like shooting ARs. <br />
<br />
Back then the army was in charge of weapons designing and buying, and their ordinance branch...

BR34
10-15-09, 09:04 AM
The AK just keeps on going---really, in combat do we give a chit if a rifle shoots a 1" group or a 6" group? Maybe it's time to re-think how a battlefield weapon should be designed.

So nice it had to be said twice.

Well said. I completely agree.

Garyius
10-15-09, 09:11 AM
I just reread what I said above, and it will make more sense if I explain that McNamara was in a huge fight with all the services, because he wanted to have all the services use the same equipment,...

montana
10-15-09, 10:19 AM
why dont they use the M14? almost same round as AK accorate at long range..never had a jam..was out for two months in monsoons lots of mud and blood...and on many ocasions i turned it so hot it just sizzeld and poped and you couldnt touch the barrol gaurd...never heard one complante from others that packed it...oh ya it has great knock down power...

BR34
10-15-09, 10:45 AM
7.62x51 is not almost the same as 7.62x39.

Unless you're talking about just the bullet's diameter.

Garyius
10-15-09, 10:46 AM
why dont they use the M14? almost same round as AK accorate at long range..never had a jam..was out for two months in monsoons lots of mud and blood...and on many ocasions i turned it so hot it just sizzeld and poped and you couldnt touch the barrol gaurd...never heard one complante from others that packed it...oh ya it has great knock down power...

I am going to sound like I am taking McNamara's side here...

The M-14 was too large to arm our Asian allies. In particular, the books say that the average Vietnam army draftee was 5 feet tall and the M-14 was sinply too long and heavy for him.

Just as bad, the army had limited production ability for the M-14 and simply couldn't produce enough for US forces and our allies.

The M-14 also had serious problems in auto fire. Then recent historical studies of battle effectiveness and field studies had shown that throwing a lot of bullets at a target were better than firing one well aimed shot. The problems were the the M-14 rifle 1) recoiled in auto fire in such a way that most of the rounds fired auto were not near the target and 2) the 308 round was so heavy that troops couldn't carry enough for a sustained fight using auto fire.

The AR rifle, with proper ammo, was a fairly nice weapon. The Air Force loved it as soon as they saw it because it was the perfect flight line and air base defense rifle. The AF really pushed the rifle, and rightly so because it met their needs where the army refused to get them a good rifle.

The first test sets of ARs that were sent to Vietnam were widely popular with US troops and the Vietnamese test troops. Initial field reports were that the bullet did massive damage and that it was actually better than the 7.62x51. All these tests were with the correct design ammo, and the test troops were either elite US troops or were trained and supervised by elite US troops.

To counter that, the army career officers had a complaint that the bullet was inaccurate in extreme cold weather and that snow caused burst barrels in the AR where that did not happen with the M-14. Colt 'showed' the secretary that the snow trials had been rigged to favor the M-14.

McNamara seems to have made the right call to field the M-16, given all the reports, both rifle field tests and then then current historical studies on what wins battles.

Garyius
10-15-09, 10:56 AM
7.62x51 is not almost the same as 7.62x39.

Unless you're talking about just the bullet's diameter.

One more and I am going to stop. I reload both.

The 30/06 (M1 round) and the 7.62x51 (the M-14 round, also known as .308) both use the same diameter bullet, which is exactly .308"

The russian 7.62x39 comes in two flavors. The first is the ruger bore, which is .308 and uses the same diameter bullet as the US 7.62x51 (using the lighter bullets). The russian and chinese rifles use a .311 size bore and you should be using that size bullets. I reload with .310 size because it is cheaper and I don't see a bad result at 100 yards which is as far as I shoot my commie rifles.

mattlw201
10-15-09, 11:14 AM
One more and I am going to stop. I reload both.

The 30/06 (M1 round) and the 7.62x51 (the M-14 round, also known as .308) both use the same diameter bullet, which is exactly .308"

The russian 7.62x39 comes in two flavors. The first is the ruger bore, which is .308 and uses the same diameter bullet as the US 7.62x51 (using the lighter bullets). The russian and chinese rifles use a .311 size bore and you should be using that size bullets. I reload with .310 size because it is cheaper and I don't see a bad result at 100 yards which is as far as I shoot my commie rifles.

The 30/06 is a .30 bullet, not a .308. The 30 is the diameter of bullet. The .30/06 and .308 are two different rifle rounds. I own both. Im also certain that the nato 7.62 equates to .308. .311 would be 7.64 or something crazy. Never heard of that.

mattlw201
10-15-09, 11:16 AM
I retract my statement about the 7.62. Should have done proper research. I still hold my statement about the 30/06 and .308.

Supersquishy
10-15-09, 11:19 AM
Did you know the .223 casing is slightly different then the 5.56 NATO? You can shoot .233 Rem in a 5.56 NATO but not the other way around, at least not supposed to.
http://www.winchester.com/lawenforcement/news/newsview.aspx?storyid=11

Garyius
10-15-09, 11:56 AM
Did you know the .223 casing is slightly different then the 5.56 NATO? You can shoot .233 Rem in a 5.56 NATO but not the other way around, at least not supposed to.
http://www.winchester.com/lawenforcement/news/newsview.aspx?storyid=11

Correct.

Here is a FAQ from the Gun Zone that explains it much better than I can:


http://www.thegunzone.com/556v223.html

BR34
10-15-09, 12:10 PM
Did you know the .223 casing is slightly different then the 5.56 NATO? You can shoot .233 Rem in a 5.56 NATO but not the other way around, at least not supposed to.
http://www.winchester.com/lawenforcement/news/newsview.aspx?storyid=11

I've shot 556 out of a 223 AR I used to own.

I later sold the AR. ;)

BR34
10-15-09, 12:14 PM
I retract my statement about the 7.62. Should have done proper research. I still hold my statement about the 30/06 and .308.

You're confused about how these things work. For instance, I reload .45 ACP, you would think the bullet's diameter would be .45. They're actually .452. Similiarly, a .44 is actually .429, and .38 is actually .356/.357.

You're right about some of your post though. 7.62x51 is .308 win, but that's not to be confused with 7.62 Russian, which is actually 39mm, not 51, making it significantly less powerful than the 308/7.62nato.

stretchusa
10-15-09, 12:15 PM
Thanks for the input---I didn't know about the "faulty ammunition" reason.
I did, however know that the lack of a forward assist for the bolt, and the tight tolerance to make the M-16 shoot a 1 MOA were the major downfall. The AK-47 enjoys a loose tolerance and a 2 MOA at best. The AK just keeps on going---really, in combat do we give a chit if a rifle shoots a 1" group or a 6" group? Maybe it's time to re-think how a battlefield weapon should be designed.
I for one, enjoy the nice MOA I get from my M4/M16A4 what have you. When it comes to making a shot that takes down my enemy I want that 1" group over the 6" group. However I believe the time has come for the military to move away from direct gas impingement to a gas piston system like the HK 416. Two of the four choices for the IAR had the gas piston system and were wonderful.

greensideout
10-17-09, 08:32 PM
I for one, enjoy the nice MOA I get from my M4/M16A4 what have you. When it comes to making a shot that takes down my enemy I want that 1" group over the 6" group. However I believe the time has come for the military to move away from direct gas impingement to a gas piston system like the HK 416. Two of the four choices for the IAR had the gas piston system and were wonderful.


While I agree with you on the MOA, (I like a tight shooting rifle too) I must insert that Kalashnikov had it right when he chose to go with the middle ground of accuracy in exchange for funtion. How many AKs are in use around the world? That's a good vote for the weapon! As Big Al pointed out, it's still popular with the "bad guys".

As an aside, the short slap piston action is good. The RVN carried it when I was there. (The M-1 30 cal carbine). I like that weapon however, I don't think they needed the M-16 to replace it because of the size.

Could it be about making new arms and MONEY?

Rooger
10-17-09, 08:47 PM
Could it be about making new arms and MONEY?

Of course it is! Remember the military/industrial complex Ike warned about? It was before my time but as in all things historical I've studied it a lot.

SlingerDun
10-17-09, 09:58 PM
U.S. soldiers and about two dozen Afghan troops was shooting back with such intensity the barrels on their weapons turned white hothehahe Bull****http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/images/icons/icon6.gif

Zulu 36
10-17-09, 10:02 PM
I am going to sound like I am taking McNamara's side here...

The M-14 was too large to arm our Asian allies. In particular, the books say that the average Vietnam army draftee was 5 feet tall and the M-14 was sinply too long and heavy for him.

Just as bad, the army had limited production ability for the M-14 and simply couldn't produce enough for US forces and our allies.

The M-14 also had serious problems in auto fire. Then recent historical studies of battle effectiveness and field studies had shown that throwing a lot of bullets at a target were better than firing one well aimed shot. The problems were the the M-14 rifle 1) recoiled in auto fire in such a way that most of the rounds fired auto were not near the target and 2) the 308 round was so heavy that troops couldn't carry enough for a sustained fight using auto fire.

The AR rifle, with proper ammo, was a fairly nice weapon. The Air Force loved it as soon as they saw it because it was the perfect flight line and air base defense rifle. The AF really pushed the rifle, and rightly so because it met their needs where the army refused to get them a good rifle.

The first test sets of ARs that were sent to Vietnam were widely popular with US troops and the Vietnamese test troops. Initial field reports were that the bullet did massive damage and that it was actually better than the 7.62x51. All these tests were with the correct design ammo, and the test troops were either elite US troops or were trained and supervised by elite US troops.

To counter that, the army career officers had a complaint that the bullet was inaccurate in extreme cold weather and that snow caused burst barrels in the AR where that did not happen with the M-14. Colt 'showed' the secretary that the snow trials had been rigged to favor the M-14.

McNamara seems to have made the right call to field the M-16, given all the reports, both rifle field tests and then then current historical studies on what wins battles.

The military already knew they had a size problem with Vietnamese troops as quite a few were issued the M-1 Garand. An M-14 wasn't going to be much of an improvement.

I've shot a full-auto M-14 equipped with both the regular stock and the heavier stock with pistol grip that was developed for the full-auto version. You are correct in that it was really hard to hold a group even with a short burst - regardless of stock. The rifle was too light. Plus, it overheated very rapidly on full auto. As most older vets know, the M-14 barrel was not changeable like a machine gun.

The AF certainly did like the AR-15 rifles. So much in fact, that the AF didn't change to the M-16A1 version at all (except in special forces units). In fact, the only reason the AF upgraded to the M-16A2 was because of the ammo changes. The rifle I carried for my first 13-years in the Air Guard was an AR-15. No forward assist. It had the retro-fitted chromed bore and chamber, and my unit put M-16A2 furniture on our rifles, but otherwise it was an AR-15. Shot like a champ too. Never wanted the forward assist with live ammo, just with blanks sometimes.

For my last year I carried a short-barreled M-16A1 with telescoping stock that superficially appears to look like the M-16A4 variant. I think the AF PJ's and Forward Air Controllers were getting rid of them to swap over to M-16A2 models and Security Police inherited them. My unit only had a half-dozen, so they went to the three flight sergeants and the top three in the head shed (those of us least likely to need to shoot - in theory).

That said, I would still prefer to carry a 7.62mm rifle, which is why I bought an HK-91 for my own use.

Ballistically speaking, the 7.62mm NATO is a far better round than the 5.56mm. It shoots farther with accuracy, is affected less by wind and intermediate targets, and it does greater damage to the human body.

Garyius
10-18-09, 02:12 PM
However I believe the time has come for the military to move away from direct gas impingement to a gas piston system like the HK 416. Two of the four choices for the IAR had the gas piston system and were wonderful.


I think the ruger AR is going to be the best test. Military rifles in peace time may get 1k rounds per year in a really good year. Some civvie fun shooters and action rifle gamers will do that in a weekend. If the ruger stands up there it may be a good field rifle system design.