gatnerd

Military Guns and Ammunition

Hosted by gatnerd

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

  • 3358
    MEMBERS
  • 191133
    MESSAGES
  • 0
    POSTS TODAY

Discussions

PDW again   Small Arms <20mm

Started 20/12/20 by DavidPawley; 123560 views.
mpopenker

From: mpopenker

20-Sep

Just my 2 cents:

PDW is a role. depending on circumstances, this role can be performed by a variety of weapons, from pistols to standard assault rifles. Any "one size fits all' approach, as usual, will create a solution which is less than ideal in every specific circumstance, for one reason or another

So, in reality, there should be several different options for the PDW, depending on the specifics of every non-rifleman which may need a weapon for defensive use.

For example, a grenadier or short-range ATGM crew member would be best served with a shortened variant of the standard issue assault rifle. The designated marksman with a moderately bulky semi-auto rifle would be best served with a compact subgun. Ditto vehicle crews. And so on.

stancrist

From: stancrist

20-Sep

autogun said:

What about infantrymen whose primary task is deploying weapons such as anti-tank or AA missiles, grenade launchers or anything else other than a rifle or LMG?

For armies equipped with relatively lightweight carbines, wouldn't the standard individual weapon be the best option for ATGM gunners and such?

autogun

From: autogun

20-Sep

stancrist said:

For armies equipped with relatively lightweight carbines, wouldn't the standard individual weapon be the best option for ATGM gunners and such?

That depends. The US Army seems keen on adopting a bulky new infantry rifle which is anything but lightweight. 

The role of a grenadier is to place his/her grenades as accurately as possible. The bigger and heavier is the standard infantry rifle, the less weight is available for grenades, so the less effective the grenadier will be in the primary task.

stancrist

From: stancrist

20-Sep

mpopenker said:

PDW is a role. depending on circumstances, this role can be performed by a variety of weapons, from pistols to standard assault rifles.

Certainly, some individuals consider PDW to be a role.  However, others view PDW as a specific weapon type. 

In the US Army Small Arms Master Plan, the PDW is clearly a type of weapon, different from pistols and rifles.

mpopenker said:

Any "one size fits all' approach, as usual, will create a solution which is less than ideal in every specific circumstance, for one reason or another

So, in reality, there should be several different options for the PDW, depending on the specifics of every non-rifleman which may need a weapon for defensive use.

Yes, that seems logical.

mpopenker said:

For example, a grenadier or short-range ATGM crew member would be best served with a shortened variant of the standard issue assault rifle.

Concur.

mpopenker said:

The designated marksman with a moderately bulky semi-auto rifle would be best served with a compact subgun. Ditto vehicle crews.

I agree that a compact SMG seems best suited for vehicle crews, but why give an already heavily burdened infantryman 5-6 lbs more gun and ammo to carry, when he is already equipped with a very effective anti-personnel weapon?

stancrist

From: stancrist

20-Sep

autogun said:

The US Army seems keen on adopting a bulky new infantry rifle which is anything but lightweight.

Yes, but IMO it's unlikely that they would equip grenadiers and ATGM gunners with a PDW of different caliber.

Despite the weight, I would expect those personnel to get armed with the XM5 rifle, or at best an SBR variant.

US Army Prototype NGSW 6.8mm Raptor - All You Need to Know

This is a very unusual full powered battle rifle with an impossibly short barrel. Find out how this US Army prototype M4 replacement is able to achieve a hig...

ETA:  Of course, that assumes grenadiers continue to use the single-shot M320 grenade launcher.  If a new, larger and heavier semi-auto weapon should be developed and fielded, a grenadier so equipped probably would carry no secondary weapon, as is typical of XM25 users seen in Afghanistan photos and video.

  • Edited 20 September 2022 23:37  by  stancrist
schnuersi

From: schnuersi

20-Sep

stancrist said:

No PDW proponents have comments?

Sorry I am bit short of free time currently. It somehow got lost.

stancrist said:

Why do you think most non-infantry actually need to have a weapon on their person at all times?

Well, it used to be a weapon at arms length or in easy reach with a few steps. Which used to mean a standard issue rifle nearby.

But with changes in to mode of warfare, the lack of seperation between friendlies and potential hostiles and a different approach to casulties came the armed at all times requirement. Which under the circumstances in the past two decades seemed sensible.
Since I am of the opinion that a traditional pistol is only a usefull weapon for a well trained user this is a bad choice for general issue for non infantry or even non combat personel. Yes, it would be possible to train cooks and clerks to this level but in my experiences with large organisations and the military in particular this seems very unrealistic.
The conclusion: a different kind weapon is needed. SBR and carbines IMHO are to large allready. Cooks and clerks (to stay with the example) will not keep such a weapon on the person all the time. Which would result in a fall back to the original situation of a weapon in easy reach which has been defined as not desirable or sustainable anymore. The conclusion to this IMHO is either a PDW of a size and shape like the MP7 or MP9 or some sort of stocked pistol. My prefered solution is the former.


Since the situation now has changed it is indeed questionable if the weapon on the person all the times is still sensible. Same with the issuing of handguns in addition to rifles to riflemen.

Another approach would have been to keep the sharp seperation between friendly military personell and foreigners. Under these conditions the weapon in easy reach approach would certainly have worked. But in their infinite wisdom the leaders of the western world decided this was not the way they wanted things to be handeld.

stancrist said:

Other than armored vehicle crewmen, which personnel truly need a lightweight, compact PDW?

Vehicle crews, not necessarily armored or even ground vehicles, really need such a weapon. If such a weapon is available the question IMHO rather is why not issue it to anybody else who doesn't need a rifle. SMGs used to be issued like this. At least to a certain degree and depending on nation. For non infantry personell a rifle is of little use. Their contribution in a fire fight with a rifle would be minimal. Especially in an environment where most vehicles, armored or not, are armed with a GPMG or HMG, so there are lots of MGs around, it makes more sense to equip the non infantry personell with the most compact weapon possible they still can effectively use for self defense and buy time for the MGs to be manned.

stancrist said:

Are "compactness and carryability" actually needed by the vast majority of military occupations?

If the approach is a weapon on the person all the times, my answer would be yes.
If its not there are certainly more options. For example the P90 beomes an intresting contender. Its certainly to big to be carried on the person all the time for most people and occupations. But for a in close reach type of weapon its a good choice. Its short and boxy shape makes it easy store, to handle and to grab. It has a high capacity magazine. Is easy to shoot and effective in the desired range spectrum.
Several more classical 9x19 SMGs also become an option. As would be 5,56 SBRs and carbines. It really depends on the exact circumstances, requirements and preferences.

stancrist

From: stancrist

21-Sep

schnuersi said:

       stancrist said: Why do you think most non-infantry actually need to have a weapon on their person at all times?

Well, it used to be a weapon at arms length or in easy reach with a few steps. Which used to mean a standard issue rifle nearby.

But with changes in to mode of warfare, the lack of seperation between friendlies and potential hostiles and a different approach to casulties came the armed at all times requirement. Which under the circumstances in the past two decades seemed sensible.

The conclusion: a different kind weapon is needed. SBR and carbines IMHO are to large allready. Cooks and clerks (to stay with the example) will not keep such a weapon on the person all the time. Which would result in a fall back to the original situation of a weapon in easy reach which has been defined as not desirable or sustainable anymore. The conclusion to this IMHO is either a PDW of a size and shape like the MP7 or MP9 or some sort of stocked pistol.

Since the situation now has changed it is indeed questionable if the weapon on the person all the times is still sensible.

So, since the situation of the past two decades changed (due to the withdrawal from Afghanistan) and Western armies are now back to planning/preparing for conventional warfare, perhaps there is no longer a genuine need for a PDW of a size and shape like the MP7 or MP9?

schnuersi said:

       stancrist said: Other than armored vehicle crewmen, which personnel truly need a lightweight, compact PDW?

Vehicle crews, not necessarily armored or even ground vehicles, really need such a weapon.

Why?  For most air and ground vehicles, it looks like an MP7-size PDW is more in the "nice to have" class than a real need.

schnuersi

From: schnuersi

21-Sep

stancrist said:

So, since the situation of the past two decades changed (due to the withdrawal from Afghanistan) and Western armies are now back to planning/preparing for conventional warfare, perhaps there is no longer a genuine need for a PDW of a size and shape like the MP7 or MP9?

Yes that is a possibility.
If COIN and non secure base perimeters are gone there is much less need for soldiers to be armed everywhere, all the time. The question is if this really is the case.

stancrist said:

Why? For most air and ground vehicles, it looks like an MP7-size PDW is more in the "nice to have" class than a real need.

That depends on what you concider "nice to have".
I would argue that on both pictures the crewmember would deliberatly need to remove the weapon from the bracket and pick it up. Which in both cases involves turing in the seat and reach to the side behind them. Or when they allready left the vehicle stay in the open door and reach back inside. A carbine is also very unwieldy should it be required to use it while still in the seat.A PDW that is in a pistol like holster, strapped across the chest or even just dangeling down on its sling is far more convenient, will not get lost or forgotten and is easy to bring to bear and use while still sitting.

In addition a carbine really offers no advantage to the crewmembers.

Using 5,56 weapons for allmost everything really is only an advantage for the ammo supply. At least as long as no new loads are introduced for use in carbines and/or SBRs.
If the new 6.8 really becomes the standard rifle and MG ammo issuing 5,56 weapons makes little sense. The logistical advantage is gone and a new cartidge tailored to the need might be introduced without making things more complicated. Chances are if 9x19 can be replaced as well logistics become simpler.

stancrist

From: stancrist

21-Sep

schnuersi said:

I would argue that on both pictures the crewmember would deliberatly need to remove the weapon from the bracket and pick it up. Which in both cases involves turing in the seat and reach to the side behind them. Or when they allready left the vehicle stay in the open door and reach back inside. A carbine is also very unwieldy should it be required to use it while still in the seat.

All good points.

schnuersi said:

A PDW that is in a pistol like holster, strapped across the chest or even just dangeling down on its sling is far more convenient, will not get lost or forgotten and is easy to bring to bear and use while still sitting.

Also some good points, but I have my doubts about just how "convenient" such a PDW would be for a number of military jobs.

To look at the example of helicopter crewmen, I cannot imagine any way to wear an MP7 that would not prove problematical.

schnuersi said:

Using 5,56 weapons for allmost everything really is only an advantage for the ammo supply. At least as long as no new loads are introduced for use in carbines and/or SBRs. If the new 6.8 really becomes the standard rifle and MG ammo issuing 5,56 weapons makes little sense. The logistical advantage is gone...

Not true.  There would be substantial advantages in logistics, economics, and training by using 5.56 carbines and SBRs which are currently in the inventory for the personal defense requirement.

There is beau coup 5.56 ammo on hand, and Lake City is set up to produce more.  It would cost much money and time to acquire new PDWs and establish production lines to make PDW ammo.

schnuersi said:

...and a new cartidge tailored to the need might be introduced without making things more complicated. Chances are if 9x19 can be replaced as well logistics become simpler.

If 6.8 SIG enters service, it would certainly seem to offer a superb opportunity to adopt and field a new PDW cartridge to replace both 5.56mm and 9mm.

The trouble is the US Army recently bought a whole bunch of new 9mm pistols and SMGs.  I don't see the leadership being willing to trash those weapons.

schnuersi

From: schnuersi

21-Sep

stancrist said:

Also some good points, but I have my doubts about just how "convenient" such a PDW would be for a number of military jobs.

Of course there are allways exceptions and outliers. 100 % is to much to ask. In my experience on such large scales a 75 % solution would be a really good result.

stancrist said:

To look at the example of helicopter crewmen, I cannot imagine any way to wear an MP7 that would not prove problematical.

The funny thing in the helicopter in the background you can see the carbines mounted. So these guys have carbines and pistols. They also carry spare ammo for both. The MP7 is larger than a pistol but without silencer and without a scope its still pretty compact. With all the pouches on their chest they could certainly swap the pistol and spare ammo for a MP7 and tuck it in there or use a holster diagonally across the chest.

stancrist said:

Not true. There would be substantial advantages in logistics, economics, and training by using 5.56 carbines and SBRs which are currently in the inventory for the personal defense requirement.

There is beau coup 5.56 ammo on hand, and Lake City is set up to produce more. It would cost much money and time to acquire new PDWs and establish production lines to make PDW ammo.

This argument could be applied to any change in equipment.
Of course there would be a transition period. Nobody said throw all 5,56 away. Just stop aquiring new and use up the old stocks. Transition to the new weapons and caliber unit by unit. After some time the old stuff will be phased out gradually.
Yes switching production causes cost but if the new ammo is smaller and needs less resources after a short time there will be savings.
Similary the argument with simpel training. Once training of people on the new weapons starts these will become the new normal over time. Especially if more and more service personell only ever knew these.

stancrist said:

The trouble is the US Army recently bought a whole bunch of new 9mm pistols and SMGs. I don't see the leadership being willing to trash those weapons.

I agree. I do not think this will happen. My arguments are not for a particular military or what they will do in the near future. For me its allmost entirely academic. Its about discussing options and trying to find an ideal.
In reality we will propably see 9x19, 5,56 and 7,62 stay for the next decades. With 4,6 and 5,7 in lower scale use by some. 6,8 will be in additon to that. It most likely will not really replace anything. The result will be worse logistics and less economy of scale.

TOP