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Military Guns and Ammunition

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This is intended for people interested in the subject of military guns and their ammunition, with emphasis on automatic weapons.

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LMAO Germany adopts an AR-15   Small Arms <20mm

Started 14/9/20 by QuintusO; 114495 views.
schnuersi

From: schnuersi

24/3/22

stancrist said:

The ugliest machine gun of modern times...

IMHO its not uglier than the PKM or all the FN MAG/M240 and FN Minimi/M249 variants.

But beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.

schnuersi

From: schnuersi

24/3/22

JPeelen said:

The design team had no idea about the role of high rate of fire in German machine gun thinking.

Carefull. Do not blame the wrong people.
Just like with the G36 the designers pretty much exactly delivered what they where asked for.
Just as with the G36 the focus of the requirement was on weight reduction. Long service life was not part of it. As was no high ROF. Actually the ROF was not specified at all if i remember corretly.
I am well aware that the MG5 is not exactly great... as a GPMG. The reason is simple it was not designed as one. It was designed as a 7,62x51 LMG. Allmost entirely focussed on use by dismounted infantry. It was pressed in the GPMG role because some decision makers insisted on the GPMG concept.
The fact that all successfull GPMGs where designed as MMGs with LMG use as an aftertought eluded them. So the German Army got a MG that fullfilled the requirements for an LMG but it is issued and used as GPMG.
Never the less my point was that a modern take of the MG42 would allmost certainly not look like a MG42. Regardless if by take on the MG42 we mean a high ROF MG or a weapon using the same or similar operating principle.
I do admit my post was not entirely serious though.

Farmplinker

From: Farmplinker

24/3/22

Bring back the MG08/15! With modern coolants, we can reduce the size of the water jacket. Modern metals, lighter receivers and barrels. #itworkedforgreatgrandfather!wink

Apsyda

From: Apsyda

24/3/22

The MG5 is all together a fairly unimpressive modern machine gun.

It hardly gains anything on weight from the FN MAG, and doesn't have the legendary overbuilt nature or reliability to pair with it.        

Compared to other modern LMGs from FN/SIG/KAC, it falls fairly short. Even when compared to modernized-with-a-sledgehammer guns like the M60E6 it comes up somewhat short. Its a shame, HK typically makes pretty well developed guns, but they somewhat dropped the ball there.

  • Edited 24 March 2022 21:40  by  Apsyda
schnuersi

From: schnuersi

25/3/22

Apsyda said:

Compared to other modern LMGs from FN/SIG/KAC, it falls fairly short.

Because of what exactly?

Apsyda said:

Even when compared to modernized-with-a-sledgehammer guns like the M60E6 it comes up somewhat short.

No it doesn't. Older guns simply do not fullfill the safety requirements. Just to name one example.

Apsyda said:

HK typically makes pretty well developed guns, but they somewhat dropped the ball there.

And again, no they did not. They designed and build exactly what they where asked for,

The question few people seem to ask is: why is the MG5 as heavy and at the same time less durable compared to older MGs.
Its for example because of all the fancy safety features. The mechanics for round in chamber indicators and similar do have weight. These add up fast. Add all the rails and other fancy features like foldable, adjustable stocks, and you have to save weight somewhere. Where if not from the receiver?

If such features are necessary can be debated never the less they have been put into the requirements. The MG3 or FN MAG nowadays would not be accepted into service for the simple reason that these guns do not fullfill the current safety and HSE requirements. If they are the most durable and reliable guns on the planet doesn't matter. Environment and HSE trumps everything except cost.

Apsyda

From: Apsyda

25/3/22

It comes up short in that the gun is 10 lbs heavier than those other LMGs. Adding features like round counters doesn't justify a 10 lb weight increase. Even doing the honest thing and acknowledging that the MG5 is designed for more significant sustained fire than the KAC AMG/FN EVOLYS/SIG MG68 etc, falls short because the MG5 had receiver breakage issues despite all of that increased weight.

The M60E6 beat out the HK121 in testing against each other by the Danish military. As far as I'm aware, that was the most modern light machine gun trial done in the West. If I'm wrong on that, I'll be gladly corrected. But it should be indicative that the M60E6 is the better LMG/GPMG of the two firearms. Or at least on par, despite being lighter and being made of stampings rather than castings.

Frankly things come off more as you excusing the MG5 of its faults without applying those same rules to other modern LMGs that have the deal with them all the same while coming in lighter and/or more effective.

  • Edited 25 March 2022 13:14  by  Apsyda
schnuersi

From: schnuersi

25/3/22

Apsyda said:

Adding features like round counters doesn't justify a 10 lb weight increase.

Yes it does. If the requirement is for a gun with a round counter.

Apsyda said:

ven doing the honest thing and acknowledging that the MG5 is designed for more significant sustained fire than the KAC AMG/FN EVOLYS/SIG MG68 etc

It isn't quite the opposit is true. Sustained fire is not a focus of the MG5.

Apsyda said:

But it should be indicative that the M60E6 is the better LMG/GPMG of the two firearms. Or at least on par, despite being lighter and being made of stampings rather than castings.

No. Such a trial or competition is not indicative of anything. Because to understand why the Danes decided on which gun you would need to look at their evaluation process in detail. Which you can't since such information are usually not open to the public.
In most cases the gun selected simply was the cheapest one offered. Its also important to note that the Danish military did not procure the M60 as GPMG but as 7,62 SAW/LMG. Its only issued as infantry weapon. So the Danish competition doesn't allow any conclusions about the M60 as a GPMG. A role in which it is notoriously bad.

Apsyda said:

Frankly things come off more as you excusing the MG5 of its faults without applying those same rules to other modern LMGs that have the deal with them all the same while coming in lighter and/or more effective.

I am not excusing anything. I am pointing out that the problems are in the procurement process. Not in the design process. As mentioned by me befor: its the same as with the G36 which was also claimed to be badly designed. Which is not true. Its perfectly up to spec. If the specifications are sensible is a different matter entirely. The specifications are not made by the design team but by people in the MoD. Who got apparently what they wanted. A LMG with all modern bells and wistles plus a couple of fancy boutique features. Of course the resulting gun is not as light as it could be and will not be good as an GPMG.

Wessels3

From: Wessels3

25/3/22

The reason is simple it was not designed as one. It was designed as a 7,62x51 LMG. Allmost entirely focussed on use by dismounted infantry. It was pressed in the GPMG role because some decision makers insisted on the GPMG concept.

Aside from safety and environmental considerations, it seems that an army would probably be served best by not having a GPMG, but to differentiate the SAW/LMG and the GPMG/MMG, even though both are 7,62x51. For instance, the M60e6, or even a magazine-fed LMG like the Hk 11, for the SAW/LMG role, and the MG3 for the GPMG/MMG role. In this way the SAW can be made as light as possible even though some durability may be sacrificed, while the GPMG/MMG can be built heavier and more durable, and have a high rate of fire, because it will not be required to fill the SAW role. 

schnuersi

From: schnuersi

25/3/22

Wessels3 said:

Aside from safety and environmental considerations, it seems that an army would probably be served best by not having a GPMG, but to differentiate the SAW/LMG and the GPMG/MMG, even though both are 7,62x51. For instance, the M60e6, or even a magazine-fed LMG like the Hk 11, for the SAW/LMG role, and the MG3 for the GPMG/MMG role. In this way the SAW can be made as light as possible even though some durability may be sacrificed, while the GPMG/MMG can be built heavier and more durable, and have a high rate of fire, because it will not be required to fill the SAW role.

I used to think the same. But now I think it doesn't really matter. The lightweight MG for dismounted squad use that became fashionable in the last two decades was a specific requirement for the COIN operations which dominated military operations at this time. More specific the theatres in which these operatons took place and the way they have been carried out.
Since this is mostly a problem of the past IMHO it makes little sense to get equipment optimised for yesterdays war.
Its not that GPMGs don't work. They are just not optimised for a specific situation because of the general purpose nature. But they do offer advantages.
With the return to mechanised combined arms warfare the need for a 7,62 SAW/LMG is significantly reduced IMHO. In this environment the SAW comes into its own again. Bascially we are back in a pe 2001 situation. So the needs changed back again.
This of course depends a lot on the nation. But as far as I can see allmost all NATO members are pulling out of adventures in strange and foreign lands and focus back on homeland and alliance defense.
 

stancrist

From: stancrist

25/3/22

schnuersi said:

I used to think the same. But now I think it doesn't really matter. The lightweight MG for dismounted squad use that became fashionable in the last two decades was a specific requirement for the COIN operations which dominated military operations at this time. More specific the theatres in which these operatons took place and the way they have been carried out.

Since this is mostly a problem of the past IMHO it makes little sense to get equipment optimised for yesterdays war.

Its not that GPMGs don't work. They are just not optimised for a specific situation because of the general purpose nature. But they do offer advantages.

With the return to mechanised combined arms warfare the need for a 7,62 SAW/LMG is significantly reduced IMHO. In this environment the SAW comes into its own again. Bascially we are back in a pe 2001 situation.

There is a famous quote which seems applicable here:  "It's like déjà vu all over again."

I'm also reminded of another quote, something about failing to learn from history.

Pre-2001, US and NATO focus was on preparing for mechanized combined warfare against the Russians, but that was not the type of wars actually fought.

IMO, you're looking at it wrong.  The 7.62 SAW/LMG is not just "optimised for yesterday's war."  It's better than the GPMG even for equipping mech infantry.

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