Greatest Battle Rifle Ever


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taprackbang
September 6, 2008, 03:03 PM
Great! I got you all to take a look.

Greatest Rifle, in my opinion of course. I am aware that many will disagree with that, but I shoot well with mine and it feels good. I have grown rather 'attached' to my PTR 91F and wanted to post some target results for you guys. This was all perfomed with iron sights at 50 and 100 yards repectively.

Also I custom built my own CETME furniture for my PTR. Have some pics included too.

Enjoy!

To Dilute a battle rifle is to dilute it's purpose, and diluting a man's tools invariably dilutes the man..

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paratroop23
September 6, 2008, 08:11 PM
I don't know if it's the greatest, but the G3 type rifle is pretty damn good! I love my PTR91KPF, and I'm still pretty salty that this particular rifle was left off the Military Channels "Top Ten" Battle Rifles. It wasn't even mentioned, and it was/is widely used throughout the world!

It could have easily replaced the Steyr Aug!!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UVsWgSX8dM

ftierson
September 6, 2008, 08:43 PM
Although the FAL and G3 are fine weapons, the greatest battle rifle ever is the M1 Garand.

It doesn't even require much discussion...

:)

Forrest

tn-dave
September 6, 2008, 10:51 PM
I gotta agree: M1 Garand

Ash
September 6, 2008, 10:58 PM
As far as general issue goes, the M1 was far superior to every other rifle carried by every other nation at the time. However, I would say the Spencer was far greater than the 1853 Enfield or the Springfield. A repeating cartridge-fired weapon compared with a muzzle-loading percussion rifle is a far greater difference than a semi-automatic repeating rifle versus bolt action repeating rifles. A single soldier armed with a Spencer had firepower equal to 5 or 10 or more muzzle-loaders.

Ash

Loomis
September 6, 2008, 11:03 PM
M1 garand? Please. THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country. That's hardly number one material

JImbothefiveth
September 6, 2008, 11:06 PM
M1 garand? Please. THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country. That's hardly number one material
I thought it was also used in Korea, and in parts of Vietnam.

P.S.: Thank you vets!

Jason_G
September 6, 2008, 11:06 PM
THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country.
You forgetting Korea?

Jason

Meowhead
September 6, 2008, 11:07 PM
garand garand garandSo what exactly makes a semiauto .30-06 with capacity eight and awkward reloading better than, say, a semi- or select-fire .308 loaded from 20-round magazines?

grendelbane
September 6, 2008, 11:10 PM
THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country.

This statement is not anywhere near correct. The Garand was used in WWII and the Korean conflict. It also saw some service in Viet Nam. Many countries have used the Garand besides the US, including, but not limited to, Denmark, Greece, South Korea, Italy, Turkey, and Ethiopia.

I am sure that I left some countries out.

Ash
September 6, 2008, 11:10 PM
It was used by only one nation (but copied by the Japanese) in WWII, but it was used by numerous nations after the war. In any case, one cannot seriously use that as a criterion to condemn it. Indeed, that is a lousy reason to. After all, the greatest tank in the world in 1995 was the M1 Abrams. Yet, that tank was used by only one nation in the world.

The M1 was a dead-end design (okay, almost dead end as it did spawn two offspring) but when compared with every other rifle fielded during WWII, there is no comparison.

Ash

Gator
September 6, 2008, 11:15 PM
Greatest ever? M1 Garand, hands down. Do you doubt General Geo. S. Patton? :D

You can also add Australia, Austria, Cambodia, Canada, West Germany, Haiti, Japan, Norway, Philippines, Thailand, and Columbia to "gendelbane's" list.

ftierson
September 6, 2008, 11:15 PM
Originally posted by Loomis
M1 garand? Please. THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country. That's hardly number one material

Thanks for the chuckle, Loomis...

I needed it...

:)

Forrest

High Planes Drifter
September 6, 2008, 11:50 PM
M1 garand? Please. THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country. That's hardly number one material

Son, put down the bong.

JImbothefiveth
September 6, 2008, 11:54 PM
I think the m-14 is serious competition for the garand. Don't know enough to comment on the CETME, FAL, or g3.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:12 AM
I'll bet a twenty spot that everyone who votes Garand is old enough to qualify for AARP and Social Security.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:13 AM
We all know that the SCAR is going to take the title.

TimboKhan
September 7, 2008, 12:17 AM
M1 garand? Please. THat rifle was used in only one war by only one country. That's hardly number one material

Sigh. Well, there is a reason they call it "The Forgotten War", I guess.

I think the Garand is pretty sweet, but it's all a tad subjective. I like my Springfield 03-A3 quite a bit, but I also really, really like Swedish Mausers. The more I shoot those old Swedes, the more I like them.

In terms of just pure ruggedness, you can't skip the Mosin-Nagant. I know that they aren't anywhere near as accurate as some of the other rifles you can think of, and I know that they have their faults, but I can't think of a rifle that is more purely rugged and willing to take abuse than the Nagant.

ftierson
September 7, 2008, 12:23 AM
Originally posted by Chuck Spears
I'll bet a twenty spot that everyone who votes Garand is old enough to qualify for AARP and Social Security.

What are you, an age bigot...?

:)

(Please note that, by the use of the smilie face here, I'm indicating that this comment was meant humorously. :) Unfortunately, certain types of humor don't come across well in this communication format).

I probably didn't have to add the disclaimer, but better safe than sorry...:)

Forrest
OK, so I admit that I'm old...

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:25 AM
Maybe the question should be changed to "greatest battle rifle for its time." How in the world could anybody in their right mind call the Garand the "greatest battle rifle ever?" If it is the greatest ever then how come nobody is using it right now other than some backwoods Mississippi county militia? What makes the Garand better than our current models? It's low capacity? Its outdated feeding system? The heavier materials it uses? Fill me in here. I'm lost.

Stevie-Ray
September 7, 2008, 12:25 AM
I still have to say FAL. But then, I don't own a Garand and would still like to.

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 12:25 AM
The greatest MBR of all time, I think, is the Enfield.
Why?
Because it pushes the limit of what a bolt-gun is capable of.
When you have a boltie that can go toe-to-toe with a Garand and keep the greatest empire in the world from pursuing newer technology for 40-50 years, you know you've got a winner.
Doesn't hurt that I actually own one, either...

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:26 AM
What are you, an age bigot...?



(Please note that, by the use of the smilie face here, I'm indicating that this comment was meant humorously. Unfortunately, certain types of humor don't come across well in this communication format).

I probably didn't have to add the disclaimer, but better safe than sorry...

Forrest
OK, so I admit that I'm old...

Nothing wrong with being old. But you still owe me twenty bucks. :)

Tyris
September 7, 2008, 12:29 AM
Garand doesnt even have a box mag or a pistol grip.
Garand = Fail.

I vote for the FAL.

-T

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:29 AM
Come on, now folks are starting with the bolt actions. The greatest battle rifle ever is a bolt action? I respectfully disagree with you guys and your nostalgic ways. Our troops are delighted that you don't run the armory though.

ldp4570
September 7, 2008, 12:31 AM
I'm in that list with the M1 Garand as the best. Second place would be the 98Mauser rifles. Third would haxe to go to the Mosin/Nagant rifle and its cartridge. Even though the rifle is no longer a front line service, the 7.62X54R is still in service over 100yrs later.

SomeKid
September 7, 2008, 12:31 AM
Hey Chuck. I am 24. You owe me $20 bucks. A non AARP member/SS user thinks the Garand is awesome.

(And since you are kind of close, you can even come and hand it to me in person, want to meet at a range sometime?)

NotSoFast
September 7, 2008, 12:31 AM
M1 Garand without a doubt.

ftierson
September 7, 2008, 12:33 AM
Originally posted by Chuck Spears
Nothing wrong with being old. But you still owe me twenty bucks.

Old means that you don't take sucker bets...:)

Forrest

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 12:37 AM
Come on, now folks are starting with the bolt actions. The greatest battle rifle ever is a bolt action? I respectfully disagree with you guys and your nostalgic ways. Our troops are delighted that you don't run the armory though.
I say greatest in respect to its time, sir.
If I were to arm our soldiers RIGHT now, it'd be with the ACR.
If I were to arm our soldiers in four years, it'd be with a caseless rifle.
The ACR is the best rifle in general that I can think of for modern combat, especially when in 6.5 Grendel.
And it does qualify as an MBR (because assault rifle is a subset of MBR), so, yeah.
Heck, if you want to go with bang for the buck, than the AK-47 is your man.
The AK is THE ONLY rifle for many people.
The AR... just doesn't have that distinction.
In many foreign countrys, when they say "rifle" they mean "AK". They have become synonymous.
60 years ago, the Enfield held that spot.

CU74
September 7, 2008, 12:37 AM
Key riced all my tea. Not this again!

Stevie-Ray
September 7, 2008, 12:39 AM
Hold it guys, I voted FAL and I am retired and belong to AARP.:confused:

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:40 AM
Hey Chuck. I am 24. You owe me $20 bucks. A non AARP member/SS user thinks the Garand is awesome.

(And since you are kind of close, you can even come and hand it to me in person, want to meet at a range sometime?)

You're disqualified due to lack of sound body and mind. Seriously, you guys are crazy if you think the greatest EVER is the Garand. Key word being "EVER." Is everybody forgetting that? How can something be the greatest EVER when nobody even uses it right now? Obviously it's not the greatest EVER since no modern military would even think twice about marching into battle with it. You guys belong in a thread titled "Hey guys, what was the greatest battle rifle for its era?" Then you can get proud and nostalgic about your outdated design. It was the greatest ever a half century ago maybe. But if you seriously think that it is the greatest EVER in the year 2008 then you need medication and professional supervision since your mental facilities are not running full speed.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:41 AM
Old means that you don't take sucker bets...

Forrest

You win this round, pops. :)

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:42 AM
Hold it guys, I voted FAL and I am retired and belong to AARP.

Some people age more gracefully than others. You have good genes.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:44 AM
Just relax and let the FN SCAR prove itself in the coming years.

Ian
September 7, 2008, 12:45 AM
Realistically? The AK.

But the M1 has class in spades.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:49 AM
If I really wanted to ruffle some feathers I'd start in on the Garand's .30-06 chambering. But despite my young age I have learned some life lessons already from prior gun discussions with folks. Lesson number one: no matter what, leave the .30-06 alone. It's followers can be like a pack of rabid wombats.

HB
September 7, 2008, 12:52 AM
Maybe the question should be changed to "greatest battle rifle for its time." How in the world could anybody in their right mind call the Garand the "greatest battle rifle ever?" If it is the greatest ever then how come nobody is using it right now other than some backwoods Mississippi county militia? What makes the Garand better than our current models? It's low capacity? Its outdated feeding system? The heavier materials it uses? Fill me in here. I'm lost.

Best comment yet....

The "Brown Bess" was the best gun around for general military use for a hundred years, and the Garand was the best gun for the WWII era, but if I wanted to take a stroll in say, Afghanistan, I don't think I'd be grabbing one.

Although I hate the M-16 (in .223, at least) as a military arm, it has been around for about 40 years, and seems to work pretty well. I think the M-14 is a little overrated for general issue (heavy, most people can't shoot past 300 yards in combat anyway). The AK-47 would be fine for 90% of combat in most areas IMHO.The days of battle rifles are over for the most part.

I've always liked the SMLE myself though :)

HB

Srigs
September 7, 2008, 12:52 AM
Enfield in 303.

ftierson
September 7, 2008, 12:54 AM
Keep in mind that there may be some terminology problems related to this discussion...

Generally, battle rifles are rifles that fire full power rifle rounds and were designed to be fired semi-automatically (but often with select fire capabilities)...

Assault rifles, on the other hand, are rifles that fire intermediate power rifle rounds and are designed for full and semi fire...

For what it's worth...

Forrest

HorseSoldier
September 7, 2008, 12:56 AM
I like the Garand, but any chest thumping about how many nations used it after WW2 may be ignoring the fact that the US essentially gave them away for free to anyone who could mumble something about not liking communism in the 1940s and 1950s.

The whole topic is kind of all over the place, really, since we're already deep into anachronistic apples and oranges. By "best" do we mean the most ergonomic and easiest to fight with in some absolute sense? If so, then the Garand ain't it. Do we mean "most historically significant"? If so, the Garand is way up there. Do we mean "best of its era" in terms of effectivesness? If so the Garand is pretty much eclipsed by the StG-44 before WW2 is over, though I'd give it the nod circa 1941-42.

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 12:59 AM
Generally, battle rifles are rifles that fire full power rifle rounds and were designed to be fired semi-automatically (but often with select fire capabilities)...
Nope, a battle rifle is just a rifle used as standard issue by an army.
The Enfield is a battle rifle.
The FAL is a battle rifle.
The AK-47 is a battle rifle. (and also an assault rifle)
The use of the word "battle rifle" to describe semi-auto full-power rifles comes from when that's what armies used as battle rifles.

msgttbar
September 7, 2008, 12:59 AM
Carbines are NOT rifles. The Thread is about rifles, so that leaves out the AK, M16, M4, etc. Probably the greatest difference maker was the Garand which introduced the auto loading capability to the battle rifle. Since the M-14 is basically a modified M1 to add a box mag, I think of it as a variation of the M1. Todays soldier really doesn't carry a rifle, he carries a carbine. The big thing I remember about the M1...They are Heavy.

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 01:03 AM
Carbines are NOT rifles. The Thread is about rifles, so that leaves out the AK, M16, M4, etc. Probably the greatest difference maker was the Garand which introduced the auto loading capability to the battle rifle. Since the M-14 is basically a modified M1 to add a box mag, I think of it as a variation of the M1. Todays soldier really doesn't carry a rifle, he carries a carbine. The big thing I remember about the M1...They are Heavy.
Yeah, they are.
There's no "Carbine Country" forum here.
A carbine is a shortened version of a rifle (with the exception of the M1 Carbine, which is a true anomaly).
The full-size AK is 16" and thus is not a carbine. Go smaller than that, and you hit carbine territory.
Also, if an army arms its soldiers with carbines, then they become battle rifles.
We've started using the word MBR to distinguish semi-auto full-size rifles from assault rifles.
If the OP was talking only about semi-auto full-power MBRs, then my apologies.
That title would probably go to the FAL.

HB
September 7, 2008, 01:12 AM
Is the M16 a carbine, there is no parent "rifle" that is bigger, but it has a little brother, the M4. There are shortened AK's, so the AK is a rifle as far as I can tell.

.223 ain't no pistol cartridge either, but it's a little weak as a rifle cartridge. While I like the Garand, it did have a relatively short service life.

The Garand was more or less a transition design between the big bolt guns and sub guns and the later assault rifles.

Once again, it all depends on era.

Sorry, Nolo got there first
HB

Claude Clay
September 7, 2008, 01:15 AM
m-1 garand
swiss k31
mosin nagant 91/31
m-16
sks/ak47

HorseSoldier
September 7, 2008, 01:16 AM
Well, carbines were originally shorter versions of service rifles (or shorter alternatives to it) intended for use by cavalry (who had trouble handling a long infantry musket/rifle from horseback) and units that needed personnel/local defense weapons, like artillerymen or engineers.

The assault rifle is a weapon partially optimized for the modern equivalents of mounted use, and an attempt to condense the service rifle and PDW/local defense weapon into one package.

So . . . you could, possibly, argue that assault rifles are more descendants of the historical carbine than the long infantry service rifle. But it requires a certain amount of ignoring inconvenient historical developments, like the fact that the long infantry rifle and the shorter cavalry/everybody else carbine were mostly already condensed into a single weapon before WW1 (SMLE, for instance) or at the latest just after that war, long before the assault rifle really came into its own.

The fact that the M16 has almost the same barrel length as the M14 or FAL (and longer than the G3) would also seem to muddle the issue, unles one goes with the notion that "battle rifle = full power rifle cartridge" idea, which was useful for a time to distinguish the FAL/M14/G3 from more successful designs (i.e. assault rifles), but it's rooted in the false idea that the assault rifle is a specialized tool whereas the full power cartridge firing battle rifle is a generalist tool. Both are generalist tools, but the assault rifle is so much more successful it's essentially chased the battle rifle off the battlefield almost entirely.

For whatever that's worth.

dmazur
September 7, 2008, 01:18 AM
I read through everything and I'm deeply saddened. I thought the Garand's status as the greatest battle rifle ever was secure.

It was definitely innovative, and the design was as much how to mass-produce it as how to make it function reliably.

However, I'll grant the FAL may hold the title as "greatest ever", based on adoption by many, many countries, reliability, etc.

Lesson number one: no matter what, leave the .30-06 alone. It's followers can be like a pack of rabid wombats.

On this topic, I've never noticed a cult following of the .30-06. :)

High Planes Drifter
September 7, 2008, 01:20 AM
On this topic, I've never noticed a cult following of the .30-06

I read this, and then your sig line. I chuckled.:neener:

ftierson
September 7, 2008, 01:31 AM
You mean that we're not all working with the same definition/understanding of 'battle rifle' here...

Who would of thunk it...

:)

Forrest

aka108
September 7, 2008, 01:32 AM
For all around performance in the worst of conditions, from a cost to mfg standpoint the AK is probably the best. Son did a couple of tours in Irag and they always kept some picked up AK's in arms reach in the amtacks.

Dees
September 7, 2008, 02:15 AM
Realistically? The AK.

But the M1 has class in spades.

This.

Dookie
September 7, 2008, 04:14 AM
lets put it simply
You are going to be sent to a battle zone in the present, your choices or firearms are.
1. Garand
2. M-4/M-16
3. British 303
4. AK47
5. Mosin
6. M98

If you choose anything but the high capacity, semiauto, lightweight, reliable, weather friendly. You need to stop watching Patton, who had serious flaws as a general, and get into reality. No matter how great the rifles were of yesteryear they are nothing compared to modern rifles.

They sure don't make cars like they used to, thank goodness

35 Whelen
September 7, 2008, 04:47 AM
I'd love to vote for the Garand (I own one), but I cannot for one reason: If I run out of 8-round en bloc clips, I have a single shot. I firmly believe the M1A/M-14 is the best (I DON'T own one). The M14 is essentially a select-fire Garand with a detachable magazine. It came along in the 50's and is still in service. I can't do the M-16 because of the little pipsqueak cartridge. Can't do the AK-47 because of its minute of paper plate accuracy, and I don't know enough about all the others to say.
I once mentioned to my father, who was in the Army in the 50's, how heavy the Garand is. He replied: "Of course it's heavy! They taught us in basic training that if you run out of ammunition, you grab it by the barrel and use it for a club. THAT is why they designed it to be so heavy."

35W

Kind of Blued
September 7, 2008, 05:50 AM
There is no correct answer to this question because the question is too vague.

There is however, a single greatest battle rifle ever for 1940, 1947, 1954, and 1961 individually, although, I refuse to inform you of the facts. :neener:

U.S.SFC_RET
September 7, 2008, 06:08 AM
Nothing beats the 30-06 for speaking with authority. Two soldiers would hold the M1 Garand at the level and have their buddies step and jump over ledges and walls and there is no way you can do that with the FN Fal or any of the semi auto "battle rifles" concerning now or then.
Even with the weight as a factor that battle implement can be shot pretty damn easy standing up freehanded because it balances so well. Last month I seen a fellow shoot 3 clay pidgeons in a row at 105 yards off of a bank, he shattered them.
They are fairly cheap to buy through the CMP and can warm a veteran's heart unlike anything else. They carry nostalgia and shoot like the devil.

stubbicatt
September 7, 2008, 07:50 AM
:rolleyes:

Not this again.

"Clearly" the best battle rifle ever is the one you have and shoot well.

Hutch
September 7, 2008, 08:07 AM
I'll ask the question correctly :)

Which battle rifle was the most clearly superior in its day, that day being the defining conflict of the 20th Century? See how easy the answer is when the question is refined?

M1 Garand, no question. Would I prefer to carry it today into <shudder> combat? Nosiree.

D-Day
September 7, 2008, 08:21 AM
Ever? As in all-time? That would be impossible to say. We won't live long enough to know.

Best of our lifetime? Well, depends on how old you are.

Best because of the wars it fought (such as Nazis) for sentimental reasons?

Best because it was adopted by the most countries?

Best because of reliability?

Best because of design and simplicity?

Best because of mag capacity and size of caliber?

It's tough to say. Regardless, I will have to say the M1 Garand is the granddaddy of modern battle rifles and deserves its reputation and respect.

I'd go with an M14, but we can't say about the wars it fought because it only saw a small window of opportunity in Vietnam and limited applications since.

The FAL seems the most widely adopted, and they are tough and reliable. However, just because they're adopted doesn't mean they have been used.

I'm not sure what's to say is best. Whatever works for those countries that facilitated these rifles (or continue to do so) works best for them.

Whatever works best for you is the best.

taprackbang
September 7, 2008, 10:45 AM
M1 garand? Please...

Have to agree. Garand is awesome, but the operating system seems a little much compared to the simple, roller delayed blowback op sys of a G3. Guarantee you a PTR is much more rugged than a Garand, never breaks, weighs less, is just as accurate (read HK 91 review in Boston's Gun Bible) AND my PTR holds 20 rounds of .308 excitement versus 8 rounds in an M1. I would opt for an M1A over the M1. BTW, I shot an M1A and it was more cumbersome than my trusty PTR 91. I would really like to shoot a FAL though.

oneshooter
September 7, 2008, 11:05 AM
As for taking a walk in the sandbox with a Garand? Many of the Marines I have let use my Garands, both NM and as issued, would have gladly taken them back. Seems thay liked the fact that one could put rounds on target at 200-500yds and the target would stay down!!

Oneshooter
Livin in Texas

RecoilRob
September 7, 2008, 11:19 AM
No one has mentioned the Martini-Henry......bloody heathens.

HM2PAC
September 7, 2008, 11:23 AM
As with any of the rifles, innovation will eventually make todays best choice obsolete tomorrow.

The newer designs have more going for them, however they owe their existence to a previous design of some sort.

Let's take a step back and look at the 8mm Lebel. The creation of smokeless powder and its use by the French had the entire world at unease.

No one is going to choose the Lebel to go to Afghanistan today, but no one in their right mind is going to say that it didn't rule the roost in its day.

It's all perspective.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 11:33 AM
As for taking a walk in the sandbox with a Garand? Many of the Marines I have let use my Garands, both NM and as issued, would have gladly taken them back. Seems thay liked the fact that one could put rounds on target at 200-500yds and the target would stay down!!

As opposed to the currently used M-14? The Garand was quickly replace bc of obvious flaws. The M-14 took its place and is still in use today. If you are truly in love with the ballistics of the Garand then you'd take the M-14 into Iraq and Afghanistan. It's simply a better offensive rifle. The soldiers you had this experience with were obviously just being polite since you are probably a nice guy to be around and earned their respect. But you'd be mistaken to think they'd actually take a Garand into battle.

JImbothefiveth
September 7, 2008, 11:49 AM
full power rifle cartridge
I think this should also be defined.

amprecon
September 7, 2008, 11:49 AM
The PTR-91 or (G3 Series) has the ergonomics of a tree branch. I wouldn't call it great from that "perspective".
There's no doubt the Garand is a great battle rifle and it no doubt gave us an edge in combat, but I believe the rifle that was the ray-gun of it's day and was so advanced it so outgreatly outclassed the other weapons of the time as to relegate them to the category of bow & arrow was the Henry repeating rifle.
I've heard opinions of the Garand being outdated and obsolete for modern times, but let me say that if all I had to use were my Garand, I may want for a smaller more compact rifle, but 8-rounds of .30-06 at my finger tips to be fired as fast as I can pull the trigger is nothing to sneeze at and I don't think any adversaries would consider it obsolete either.

Art Eatman
September 7, 2008, 12:04 PM
I find it somewhat strange to define "best" without considering the tactical doctrines of the armies which used some particular rifle.

If your tactical doctrine is to have aimed fire out at 400 yards and more, you don't have any use for an AK.

If your tactical doctrine is to get up close and personal, the AK is superior.

Seems to me an awful lot of these arguments are comparing screwdrivers and chisels...

RP88
September 7, 2008, 12:10 PM
I'm giving my vote to the AK47. 61 years old, and still going as strong and as good as any other 'superior' assault rifle out there.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 12:18 PM
I've heard opinions of the Garand being outdated and obsolete for modern times, but let me say that if all I had to use were my Garand, I may want for a smaller more compact rifle, but 8-rounds of .30-06 at my finger tips to be fired as fast as I can pull the trigger is nothing to sneeze at and I don't think any adversaries would consider it obsolete either.

And I don't think any adversaries would want to be shot with a bow and arrow either. I can have 8 arrows at my finger tips to be fired as fast as I can pull the string is nothing to sneeze at either. Does this mean we should be sending Pocohontas into battle? Sure, the Garand will still fire a bullet and it can still kill a man. A rock can kill a man too. But they're still considered obsolete for modern warfare. Marching into battle with a Garand puts you at a huge disadvantage if your adversaries are carrying modern battle rifles. Every armorer in every country on this planet understands this concept yet most people on THR can't seem to grasp it. They'd rather use nostalgia instead of logic.

Crunker1337
September 7, 2008, 12:25 PM
G3. .308 firepower, rugged reliability, relatively lightweight, capacity to mount just about anything you want to put on it. Maybe it doesn't have great ergonomics, but let's bear in mind, that doesn't matter as much as some people think it might--you don't necessarily need it to be REALLY accurate, just... accurate enough.
Of course, if you want to get a little more in your face, the answer is, of course, an AK.

Blofeld
September 7, 2008, 12:29 PM
Springfield Armory XD .45, hands down. Sure, it's shortened barrel firmly places it in carbine terrority, and the fact that it is never issued with a stock ruffles feathers, but with a higher capacity than the Garand, it is the rifle of the future.:D

Seriously, M-44. Purely because you can still get 10 and multiple cases of superior ammo for less than the price of one AR clone.

Pigspitter
September 7, 2008, 12:35 PM
I guess that the M16A2 has been deemed unworthy of "greatest battle rifle" status. Either way, it still gets my vote.

HorseSoldier
September 7, 2008, 12:42 PM
Which battle rifle was the most clearly superior in its day, that day being the defining conflict of the 20th Century? See how easy the answer is when the question is refined?

M1 Garand, no question. Would I prefer to carry it today into <shudder> combat? Nosiree.

Even for the WW2 era, if we're purely talking about the weapons design themselves, the Garand is a nice and solid performer, but does it really stand head and shoulders above the G-43, the SVT-38/40, or the FG-42? For actual combat use at real combat ranges, the StG-44 is markedly superior.

The Garand's main claim to fame is not its superiority as a design, but the fact that the US issued it as a standard weapon, whereas the G-43, SVT-38/40, and StG-44 only supplemented bolt guns (and so few FG-42s were built that the design is nothing but statistical static at the big picture level). This really doesn't make the rifle the "greatest battle implement ever devised," it makes US industrial capacity in the 1940s the "greatest battle implement ever devised" . . . but we all knew that.

(Note: I say all this as a fan of the Garand, but it's wrapped up in a lot of mythology these days because it's what grandpa carried or it looks good in Saving Private Ryan or because it can still hold its own in rifle competitions that have about zero to do with real combat marksmanship.)

HB
September 7, 2008, 12:46 PM
I'd love to vote for the Garand (I own one), but I cannot for one reason: If I run out of 8-round en bloc clips, I have a single shot.

That holds true for any external magazine or clip fed rifle. What if you drop your mags? or I'm running like hell away from the battle? Get realistic with that expectation. But yeah, the Garand shined then, but now, not so much.

HB

rswartsell
September 7, 2008, 12:49 PM
As usual, the argument is already 3 pages in before anyone sets down the definition of what we are arguing about. What is being argued here?

1. the greatest single technological advance in battle rifles?
2. the greatest battlefield advantage over contemporaries?
3. the most widely accepted and used innovation?
4. the most reliable?
5. the most tacticool?
6. screw history, whats the most effective rifle available to me now?
(a) what role is the owner playing? Infantry? Guerrilla? Militia?
(b) what theater or geographical are of ops?

etc., etc. etc. the original poster was happy with his battle rifle and wanted to incite some commentary and he has done it.

Glad you are happy with your rifle, and next time you want a cogent discussion maybe you could define the parameters and frame the discussion a bit more.

Roadwild17
September 7, 2008, 12:50 PM
My answer, anything better than a pointy stick.

Really, it dosent matter what the best rifle is. The best rifle is the one you own, are comfortable with, and can make work for you.


This is my rifle.
There are many like it, but this one is MINE.
My rifle is my best friend. It is my life.
I must master it as I must master my life.
My rifle without me is useless. Without my rifle, I am useless.
I must fire my rifle true.
I must shoot straighter than my enemy who is trying to kill me.
I must shoot him before he shoots me. I will...
My rifle and myself know that what counts in war is not the rounds we fire,
the noise of our bursts, nor the smoke we make.
We know it is the hits that count. We will hit...
My rifle is human, even as I, because it is my life.
Thus, I will learn it as a brother.
I will learn its weaknesses, its strengths, its parts, its accessories,
its sights, and its barrel.
I will ever guard it against the ravages of weather and damage.
I will keep my rifle clean and ready, even as I am clean and ready.
We will become part of each other. We will...
Before God I swear this creed.
My rifle and myself are the defenders of my country.
We are the masters of our enemy.
We are the saviors of my life.
So be it, until there is no enemy, but PEACE.

TexasRifleman
September 7, 2008, 12:52 PM
I guess that the M16A2 has been deemed unworthy of "greatest battle rifle" status. Either way, it still gets my vote.

The general argument is that the 5.56 family of rifles don't fit the "battle rifle" category but rather "assault rifle".

Battle rifles are, and it can be a religious thing sometimes, generally described as using a "major" cartridge while assault rifles use an intermediate cartridge.

I'm gonna have to go with the FAL in the battle rifle category worldwide, though the Garand always holds a special place for Americans.

Loomis
September 7, 2008, 01:02 PM
Best battle rifle of all time should be measured by...years of service, number or wars used in, Quantity produced, and number of countries odopting it.

By that critieria, I would estimated the ranking thus:

1. enfield
2. AK
3. mauser(all variants)
4. FAL
5. G3/CETME
6. AR
7. M14

As time goes on, naturally these rankings will change based on my criteria. The rifles no longer in production will drop, as the ones still in production rise higher. In another 25 years, I see it this way:

1. AK
2. AR
3. G3/CETME
4. FAL
5. enfield
6. mauser
7. M14

M1 Garand is nowhere near the top 5, let alone first place.

jerkface11
September 7, 2008, 01:08 PM
Since the term battle rifle doesn't really mean a thing I vote M-16.

Ash
September 7, 2008, 01:36 PM
Greatest Battle Rifle of All Time should always be based on others in use at the time. Titanic made more money than Gone with the Wind, but when you adjust for inflation, GWTW is still a bigger movie (biggest of all time). Context really does matter.

Ash

HorseSoldier
September 7, 2008, 01:47 PM
Best battle rifle of all time should be measured by...years of service, number or wars used in, Quantity produced, and number of countries odopting it.


By your criteria, the M14 doesn't have much business on the list -- the Moisin-Nagant has it beat -- longer service life (by a wide margin), many many more produced (more than even the SMLE), many more countries used it, and it saw service in more wars. The M1 Garand has it beat -- much longer service life as a standard service rifle (almost 30 years versus 7 years -- a handful of DMRs don't really count), many many more produced (four times as many M1s), and many more nations adopted it as a standard weapon, and it saw major service in more wars.

The Chinese Type 81 rifle probably has the M14 beaten as well on all counts, and it only narrowly noses out the Czech vz.58. Hell, the Galil may or may not have the M14 beaten on numbers produced, but it's exported better and definitely fired more shots in anger on more battlefield.

Some Americans have an inordinate fondness for the M14, but its really more of a minor footnote of a weapon, not anything that has any business on Top XYZ lists.

SlamFire1
September 7, 2008, 01:56 PM
Greatest Battle rifle was the Brown Bess.

Made from 1722 to 1860.

Beat that anyone.

Loomis
September 7, 2008, 02:31 PM
M14 is still in use as a sniper rifle. I didn't think about the SKS or the moisin-nagant. they should be on the list.

M1 garand should not be on the list and does not boast a longer service life than the m14. Actually, you could really call them the same rifle. Make number seven "m14/m1a/m1 garand". Does that make you feel better?

Galil is an AK. it's on the list.

vz 58? how many countries use it? one? two? How many wars has it been in?

chinese type 81? How many years of service? How many countries adopted it? Pretty poor showing imo. Besides, it's basically an AK. I would lump it in with the AK. So it's already on the list.

Slam fire says: "Greatest Battle rifle was the Brown Bess.

Made from 1722 to 1860.

Beat that anyone."

The enfield is still in use in india and was manufactured well into the 1980s, and may still be manufactured somewhere. Production began in 1895. So it comes close to the brown bess in longevity, and certainly beats it in production numbers and number of countries adopting it.

oneshooter
September 7, 2008, 02:40 PM
'Chuck Spears: As opposed to the currently used M-14? '


No as opposed to the M-4 carbine. The ballistics of the cartridge out of it will not do the job needed at 200-500yds.

And yes I am a nice fellow, former Marine, and competition shooter. Try the M4, with issue ammo, at the above range and THEN tell me a Garand won't do the job better! :neener:

Oneshooter
Livin in Texas

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 02:56 PM
No as opposed to the M-4 carbine. The ballistics of the cartridge out of it will not do the job needed at 200-500yds.


But our troops aren't limited to the M4. We have M14's in service right now for certain uses. And in those scenarios they are far superior to the Garand. You said those particular soldiers at the range loved the ballistics of the Garand and wouldn't mind taking it into battle. But if they wanted a battle rifle with those kind of ballistics then they'd be much better off with one of the M14's we're currently using in battle.

senior
September 7, 2008, 02:58 PM
Maybe Chuck should think for a second, yep, i'm old, but that M1 saved my butt more times than i care to count! Get one, shoot it, then try telling me its not the greatest!!! In my time i carressed that sweet rifle more times than i ever did my wife!

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 03:00 PM
When you boil it down though, it doesn't matter if the Garand or M14 is better at 500 yards. How many of our soldiers are skilled enough to make a combat kill at 500 yards? The ones that are skilled enough are equipped with the proper rifles. And those rifles blow the Garand out of the water. Everyone else is perfectly fine with the 5.56mm since they are engaging enemies well within it's limitations. We just need to spend a little extra money and make sure those guys are shooting hollow or soft points. And no, we aren't restricted by the Hague Convention. The US didn't sign that document and isn't restricted by it.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 03:03 PM
Maybe Chuck should think for a second, yep, i'm old, but that M1 saved my butt more times than i care to count! Get one, shoot it, then try telling me its not the greatest!!! In my time i carressed that sweet rifle more times than i ever did my wife!

I already own one and have shot it extensively. I like my Garand and I enjoy its historical significance. But if you think it is the weapon of choice for modern combat then you are seriously mistaken. Hypothetically speaking, what if we had some Revolutionary War vets on this forum? They'd be preaching about their muskets and how it saved their lives and so on. Does that make their musket the best battle rifle ever? Wake up and smell the coffee. Modern firearms have far surpassed the Garand. It's history. It was a great rifle for its time. But its time was over half a century ago.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 03:04 PM
And the firearm eroticism was a little overboard there.

HM2PAC
September 7, 2008, 03:16 PM
Actually, the more I think about it, the greatest battle rifle ever.....

is Naval Gunfire.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 03:39 PM
Helicopter gunship mounted GE Miniguns count? If the new rules allow, then I'll change my vote from the SCAR to that.

amprecon
September 7, 2008, 03:40 PM
The M1 Garand is not that far behind technologically than what we have offered to us today.

Ash
September 7, 2008, 04:29 PM
The Brown Bess was not significantly better than the other muskets of the day (the Charleville, on which the Springfield was based, was just as good). And, besides, it was a smooth-bore, not a rifle.

The M14 doesn't count because it wasn't significantly better than the competition (AK, CETME/Hk, FAL, etc).

The M1 Garand belongs, and belongs BIG TIME, because it was considerably better than every other rifle fielded by any nation at the time it was adopted. Only the Soviets began WWII with a semi-auto, and it didn't reach full-adoption. The Germans never battle rifle in anything but trifle numbers their Assault Rifle were barely issued and made no significant impact on the war. Everyone else, EVERYONE ELSE, were using rifles based on designs of the late 1800's. Even the French MAS 36 was archaic when adopted.

The Spencer was used in large enough units that it can be counted the most advanced weapon used, when compared to the enemy, in the last 200 years.

Ash

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 05:03 PM
The only place I can find a real definition of a battle rifle:
A battle rifle is a rifle or carbine used by a military force, for martial purposes, that is unlike the rifles for civilian hunting and target shooting. Militarily, a main battle rifle is one that is used as a service rifle, such rifles are in bolt-action, semi-automatic, burst fire, and automatic models; some have selective fire capability.
Now, Wikipedia goes on to distinguish battle rifles from assault rifles, but that seems contradictory to their above statements (which in no way excludes any assault rifles today from its definition), and, thus, it is my opinion that assault rifles, while distinct, are a subset of battle rifles.
(This line gets ever more blurred when you consider the original iteration of the Garand: 20-round magazine, .276 caliber, equal in power to .280 British--which was used in an assault rifle--but not full auto. Does this mean that semi-auto ARs and AKs are battle rifles but, somehow, the fully automatic versions aren't?)
Notice that the definition also includes carbines.
Greatest Battle rifle was the Brown Bess.
As has been mentioned, the Brown Bess is not a battle rifle. Because it is not a rifle.

My list of Top 10 Battle Rifles of all time?
10. FAL
9. AR-15/M16/M4
8. StG-44
7. Garand
6. Mauser 98
5. Martini-Henry
4. Pattern 1853 Rifled Musket
3. Henry Rifle
2. Enfield/SMLE
1. AK-47
This list is based on LASTING IMPACT that the rifles had, not modern effectiveness. Either through length of service, breadth of service, innovation, or a mix, that is how I rated these rifles.
I realize that this list is very similar to American Rifleman's list.
That's because I largely agree with their choices, just not the order (though I don't blame them for putting the Garand at No. 1, considering their readership.).
Note that I chose some of these rifles, not for their individual service, but for the number of offspring they spawned (the Henry, etc.).

mgregg85
September 7, 2008, 05:06 PM
Garand=Greatest battle implement ever devised.

I would rate the AK-47 as a close second along with the FN FAL.

HB
September 7, 2008, 05:33 PM
Maybe Chuck should think for a second, yep, i'm old, but that M1 saved my butt more times than i care to count! Get one, shoot it, then try telling me its not the greatest

I'm sure cavemen were pretty happy when they finally made a bow but that doesn't make it the best weapon ever. The Garand is close to being obsolete on the modern battle field, because no weapon is truly obsolete.

The M1 Garand is not that far behind technologically than what we have offered to us today.
True, but the 8mm Lebel used the first smokeless round, does that make it revolutionary? The M1 is special to Americans, but it certainly isn't the best, most used, or most recognized rifle. Although the AK meets two of those requirements :evil:

Garand=Greatest battle implement ever devised.
Pretty sure the tank takes that one, Patton


Somebody kill this thread and make a more specific one...
HB

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 05:51 PM
But specific threads aren't easy enough to dilute with technicalities and semantics.

HorseSoldier
September 7, 2008, 05:56 PM
M14 is still in use as a sniper rifle. I didn't think about the SKS or the moisin-nagant. they should be on the list.

M1 garand should not be on the list and does not boast a longer service life than the m14. Actually, you could really call them the same rifle. Make number seven "m14/m1a/m1 garand". Does that make you feel better?

M1A isn't a military rifle and never was.

The M14 sees very limited use as a designated marksmans rifle. Its lifespan as a general use service rifle was less than 100 months. That's an incredibly poor showing for anything that's supposed to be on a "greatest" list based on numbers produced, years used, etc.


Galil is an AK. it's on the list.

It's essentially an AK, but my point is that a relatively minor AK variant has seen more combat use than the M14. The same point could be made about some of the Mauser makes and models that served in different places and times as well.

vz 58? how many countries use it? one? two? How many wars has it been in?

Nearly a million built, and while it's only the primary service rifle of the Czech and Slovak armies, it's seen combat use in:

Vietnam (US involvement & Chinese-Vietnamese border war)
India-Pakistan border disputes and Indian counter-insurgency operations
Afghanistan (80s-Present, maybe earlier than that)
Iraq
Lebanon (70s-Present)
Various parts of Africa and elsewhere in the world

And I'm not sure where all else.

Basic point: Again, another minor design that rivals the "mighty" M14 in its "importance."

chinese type 81? How many years of service? How many countries adopted it? Pretty poor showing imo. Besides, it's basically an AK. I would lump it in with the AK. So it's already on the list.


Internally it's about as much an AK as a vz.58 is . . . which is to say it isn't.

But it is the primary long gun of the world's largest military force (still having not been fully replaced by their new bullpup). While total production numbers seem sketchy, it's definitely millions and millions more than the M14, and it's seen combat use in SE Asia, South Asia and Africa.

Again, my point being that if your list is based on # built, # years service, and # of conflicts, then the M14 probably isn't even in the top 10.

Gunnerpalace
September 7, 2008, 05:58 PM
The answer should be obvious: A Phased Plasma Rifle in the 40 Watt range.

But seriously the I'd say the AK, or G3

taprackbang
September 7, 2008, 07:15 PM
Battle rifles are, and it can be a religious thing sometimes, generally described as using a "major" cartridge while assault rifles use an intermediate cartridge.

Let us not forget these words of truth by TexRifleman.
Gimme a 7.62 or .30-06 over 5.56 anyday!

Of these 'top 10 lists' of battle rifles that were compiled, the beloved G3 is not mentioned. The FAL is awesome, but has it's lesser points. (Gas system, etc.) And Israelis had problems with sandy combat conditions and their FALs in wars past. Not an issue with a G3. Absolutely rugged, brute, practically indestructible and reliable. (And accurate)

"Whichever rifle you choose, train with it.. Hard, and often"

22lr
September 7, 2008, 07:22 PM
Give me a M-4 any day of the week and 2 on sunday. Best dang battle weapon ever made (in my opinion). Small, light, reliable, great firepower, can put anything on it, ammo for it is everywhere, a 13 year old girl can field strip it put if back together and preform a function check in 56 seconds, what more could you want?


*disclaimer* the M-1 Garand was the best gun of world war 2 and in my humble opinion the best 30-06 weapon ever made.

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 07:27 PM
Of these 'top 10 lists' of battle rifles that were compiled, the beloved G3 is not mentioned. The FAL is awesome, but has it's lesser points. (Gas system, etc.) And Israelis had problems with sandy combat conditions and their FALs in wars past. Not an issue with a G3. Absolutely rugged, brute, practically indestructible and reliable. (And accurate)
It wasn't on mine because it's influence was relatively low.
It produced no other major tangential designs (with the exception of the MP5).
I could fight the FAL for the last spot, I suppose.
But, definitely, if there was an 11th place, the G3 would have had it on my list.
Almost made it, but then I remembered the Martini-Henry.

taprackbang
September 7, 2008, 07:37 PM
It wasn't on mine (list) because it's influence was relatively low.

"Not true..."


From Modern Firearms website..
Since that time and until the 1995 the G3 in various modifications served as a general issue shoulder weapon not only for German Armed forces, but also for many other countries. Those include Greece, Iran, Mexico, Norway, Pakistan, Portugal, Sweden, Turkey and many other countries. Total of more than 50 countries during the last 40 years issued the G3 to its forces. The G3 was or still is manufactured in countries like the Greece, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Portugal and others. The key reason of high popularity of the G3 is that it is much simpler and cheaper to manufacture, than its major contemporary rivals - Belgian FN FAL and US M14.

Come on up to DFW.. You can shoot mine, Nolo.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 07:59 PM
*disclaimer* the M-1 Garand was the best gun of world war 2 and in my humble opinion the best 30-06 weapon ever made.

Nah, my A-bolt .30-06 has it beat. Much prettier. More accurate.

Nolo
September 7, 2008, 08:06 PM
"Not true..."


From Modern Firearms website..
Since that time and until the 1995 the G3 in various modifications served as a general issue shoulder weapon not only for German Armed forces, but also for many other countries. Those include Greece, Iran, Mexico, Norway, Pakistan, Portugal, Sweden, Turkey and many other countries. Total of more than 50 countries during the last 40 years issued the G3 to its forces. The G3 was or still is manufactured in countries like the Greece, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Portugal and others. The key reason of high popularity of the G3 is that it is much simpler and cheaper to manufacture, than its major contemporary rivals - Belgian FN FAL and US M14.

Come on up to DFW.. You can shoot mine, Nolo.
Just ask Deer Hunter, I like the G3 more than the FAL.
However, it is my understanding that the FAL is, and has been, a more prominent firearm than the G3.
I could be wrong. It's certainly possible, if any two rifles are neck-and-neck, it'd be the G3 and FAL.
But I said relatively uninfluential.
Relative to all other rifles from number 7 on up on that list? Oh, yeah, it's impact has been kinda low.

JImbothefiveth
September 7, 2008, 08:32 PM
The G3 was or still is manufactured in countries like the Greece, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Portugal and others.

HK doesn't still do buisness with Iran, do they?

HorseSoldier
September 7, 2008, 08:40 PM
HK doesn't still do buisness with Iran, do they?

They had a production license back in the pre-Ayatollah days, and then the Islamic Revolution inherited the tooling and such and started making unlicensed copies.

JImbothefiveth
September 7, 2008, 08:46 PM
Ok thanks! No need to boycott them then.

RP88
September 7, 2008, 09:17 PM
AK and G3 are the best, given the standards to judge from. Both implement economics, cost-effectiveness, simplicity, and many other things into their designs. They also set the bar for their respective classes and platforms. The G3 is/was the epitome of the long-range battle rifle; the AK is what defined the term 'intermediate' in combat. Kinda hard to beat those without spending too much money.

But, going by what is today's best, in a world where the cost of an M14 isnt a big problem...things change.

TexasRifleman
September 7, 2008, 09:29 PM
The G3 was or still is manufactured in countries like the Greece, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Portugal and others.

The G3 and FAL are both still manufactured in the USA.

DSA and PTR :)

amprecon
September 7, 2008, 10:26 PM
The M1 Garand is not that far behind technologically than what we have offered to us today.

True, but the 8mm Lebel used the first smokeless round, does that make it revolutionary? The M1 is special to Americans, but it certainly isn't the best, most used, or most recognized rifle. Although the AK meets two of those requirements

What makes a modern "battle rifle/assault rife" a modern battle/assault rifle? A non-manual action? A full-auto switch? .308 caliber or less? Detachable magazines? If that's the case then the M1 Garand is one switch, about 24 oz.'s and 12 rounds away from being almost equal to today's modern "battle/assault rifles".
Like I said the M1 Garand is not that far behind technologically than what we have offered to us today.

The M1 is special to Americans

Whom else matters I think quietly to myself.

Everyone here has their reasons for picking their favorite battle rifle, there's no need to crap on those that didn't pick your rifle and nitpick their reasons to death.

4v50 Gary
September 7, 2008, 10:38 PM
For a full power cartridge rifle in WW II, the German FG-42. Selective fire, detachable box fed magazine.

For an intermediate cartridge WW II rifle, the German MP-44.

For post World War II, AK-47. Reliable and the Timex of guns.

Chuck Spears
September 7, 2008, 10:50 PM
Didn't an AK stovepipe in the North Hollywood shootout?

HB
September 7, 2008, 11:01 PM
I think that was the first time it ever happened though

HB

chriso
September 7, 2008, 11:05 PM
m14.

ftierson
September 7, 2008, 11:37 PM
Although the FAL and G3 are fine weapons, the greatest battle rifle ever is the M1 Garand.

It doesn't even require much discussion...

Oh, wait, did I already say that...?

Deja vu all over again...

:)

Forrest

Loomis
September 8, 2008, 12:05 AM
Horsesoldier says: M1A isn't a military rifle and never was.

Yeah, but it gets production numbers up a bit. Let's add the mini 14 too. Seems like I remember reading somewehre that singapore or macau, or someplace like that uses the mini 14 as their standard issue rifle. So now we can add mini14 production numbers to my number 7 as well.

Now does M14 make the cut?

No, I'm still not buying the vz 58, sorry.

HB
September 8, 2008, 12:09 AM
:confused:

That's like saying we should add a ton of hunting rifles because they are based off Mauser actions? Your essentially bending the rules to fit your choices

HB

Loomis
September 8, 2008, 01:34 AM
Really? Does singapore issue bolt action hunting rifles to their military?

Stevie-Ray
September 8, 2008, 01:40 AM
Anybody interested in what the Military Channel has to say about the Top Ten Battle Rifles? They are as follows:

1. AK-47
2. M-16
3. SMLE
4. M1 Garand
5. FN FAL
6. Mauser K98k
7. AUG
8. 03 Springfield
9. STG-44
10. M-14

I find it interesting that the G3 isn't even mentioned.

Ignition Override
September 8, 2008, 01:40 AM
How about length of service of a battle rifle and ammo, in two separate categories?

Would it be Mauser, Mosin Nagant and Lee Enfield? The Russian 7.62x54R might be the longest-serving combat round in history. Reportedly some Russkies with Mosins beat some Marine sharpshooters in a competition not long ago, but we can't include bolt-actions and semis in any one group.

Somebody mentioned aircraft. In WW2 the British used the .303 in their fighters and bombers' turrets etc.
But the US used .50 caliber in our Wildcats, P-47, 51 etc. Mostly machine guns instead of typical mg + cannon (Me-109, Fw-190, Japanese 'Zero' and 'George').

Loomis
September 8, 2008, 01:52 AM
"I find it interesting that the G3 isn't even mentioned."

I find it interesting that the AUG was. I think that list needs to have the AUG replaced by mosin-nagant, and STG44 replaced with G3/CETME. Then I'd go along with it. That list is actually not too far from my list in post #81

Oohrah
September 8, 2008, 02:37 AM
Way back in this thread age was brought up! Yep this old F..T votes
Garand. By the way it happens to be the parent of the M-14 still in
demand and being used in sand country with high success. Remains
remains a reliable with an adequit round in most cases:evil:

Ian
September 8, 2008, 02:53 AM
Other than being available on the US market and being associated with the HK hype, I'm not sure what distinction the G3 really has.

It's not a particularly breathtaking design; a delayed-blowback, stamped-receiver rifle. The roller system is neat, but that's about the only interesting aspect to the mechanism. It's definitely better suited to smaller calibers than 7.62 NATO.

The G3 may have been adopted by a bunch of countries, but what serious combat record does it have? How many big conflicts have Germany and Portugal and Norway and Greece been in since the G3 was developed? It seems to show up here and there across Africa, but only as second fiddle to AKs and FALs.

The M14 can at least be made into a decent precision rifle without having to weld big reinforcing bars to its receiver. :)

soulless80
September 8, 2008, 04:23 AM
m107

woodybrighton
September 8, 2008, 06:03 AM
Lee Enfield over 100 years active service still on duty with Canadian rangers plus Indian railway police police and numerous others.
Mosin Nagants were withdrawn in 1998.
ak47 most numerous assault rifle
m16 2nd most
fal most used full power battle rifle
mauser 98 the runners up choice for world domination your armys going to war with that you on the losing side:D

Garand was ahead of its time but outside of US shooting circles not as iconic as the Enfield and nowhere near as long on active duty.

M14 was the shortest lived front line service rifle of US history.
its used a sniper marksman rifle because its avialable

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 11:34 AM
If the Indian railway police use it then it must be the best.

Noxx
September 8, 2008, 12:52 PM
At 36 I hardly qualify for AARP, and I definitely vote for the M1 Garand.

When considering greatness, one must consider not only the rifles effectiveness in combat, but it's impact in a given conflict, and that conflicts given impact on the world.

When all those things are considered, it is easily said that the Garand, as the dominating factor in the european theater, is the weapon that shaped the world as we know it today.

addendum Looking back I see the AK mentioned a few times. It is certainly arguable that it is one of, if not the most influential weapon in the world, however it is not a "battle rifle" hence it's exclusion from my consideration.

woodybrighton
September 8, 2008, 01:17 PM
In a word rubbish the enfield thought all the way through World War one and world war two 1939-1945 and Korea and was still killing the Queens enemies in 1982 as the L42.
Don't think the M1 was the dominating factor in the European war Hitlers inability to take the UK out of the fight and then turning on Russia was the dominating factor.
canadian rangers still use it as it functions at -(you have to be joking degrees:()
108 years on active duty beat that:D

GarandOwner
September 8, 2008, 01:54 PM
"The M1 garand is the greatest battle implement ever devised"

'nough said

I'll bet a twenty spot that everyone who votes Garand is old enough to qualify for AARP and Social Security.

Looks like you owe me $20, my vote goes for the M1 Garand, and I am 24 :neener:

But based on your responses, Chuck , Ill bet you back that 20 that you are LESS than 18 years of age. ;)

Ian
September 8, 2008, 02:06 PM
Look, just because you Brits can't figure out how to improve on a bolt action...:evil: (*ducks for cover*)

tinygnat219
September 8, 2008, 02:08 PM
Simple: AK-47

How many countries have an AR-15, or M-1 Garand in their flag? Total numbers produced should end all discussion right there. Estimates are said to be 150 million.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:24 PM
How many countries have an AR-15, or M-1 Garand in their flag?

And how many civilized countries have AK's in theirs?

Nolo
September 8, 2008, 02:25 PM
No, I'm still not buying the vz 58, sorry.
He wasn't selling you the Vz. 58, he was making a point about how the Vz. 58 is really a more accomplished rifle than the M14 and that no one here would consider putting the Vz. 58 on the list, so why the M14?
Anybody interested in what the Military Channel has to say about the Top Ten Battle Rifles?
Bunk.
So many holes.
AUG hasn't done anything (but popularize the bullpup layout).
1903, while beloved, IS a Mauser 98.
M16 doesn't belong at #2. Unless this is strictly a popularity contest (which it's not).
I GUESS the list is okay if you stick to the 20th Century, but if you've got the 1903 on there, it'd better be a Top 20, and the G3 better be on there, too.
(It's hard NOT to put the AK at number one, though. It just deserves that spot.)
And how many civilized countries have AK's in theirs?
Whoah!
Wait a second, dude...
Just...
Whoah.
Damn.
"AK" and "rifle" are synonymous to BILLIONS of people around the world.
IT WINS. PERIOD. (Unless you strictly adhere to the alternate definition of "Battle Rifle", which makes things less clear, not more clear)
I ain't gonna even get into how... stupid your remark was.
Look, just because you Brits can't figure out how to improve on a bolt action...
As funny as that comment is, I almost can't laugh at it, because the Enfield is such a damn good bolt-gun.
Owning one... It's a dream. It cycles as fast as a pump-action shotgun. I feel like I'm holding a machine gun sometimes, how quick it moves. Just amazing. Of course, it ain't British...
Other than being available on the US market and being associated with the HK hype, I'm not sure what distinction the G3 really has.
It has a really good record in Africa (used by big Zulu warriors who can actually control the monster). It has a simple, accurate, innovative action. It was produced in large quantities. I'd still put the FAL over it (in my opinion, any rifle that has fought itself in a [non-civil] war should be on the list...)
Which brings me to a travesty.
I left out the Mosin-Nagant.
Terrible, terrible.
I really don't know where I'd put it, though...

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:27 PM
Total numbers produced should end all discussion right there.

How many Kias were produced last year? How many Ferraris were produced? I guess you think the Kia Sephia is the best car ever too?

tinygnat219
September 8, 2008, 02:31 PM
Chuck Spears,

And how many civilized countries have AK's in theirs?

Does it really matter?

This is a simple rifle that was designed to be used by simple people. It's reliable, rugged, and Combat Proven. It's in use in well over 60 countries whether they are "civilized" or not is open to debate. It's a design that has been copied and indigenously manufactured to the point where it's estimated that 150 million are in circulation.

I think a lot of folks here just have a problem with seeing another non-American rifle proliferate so much. It's design is over 60 years old and shows no signs of being thrown away anytime soon. Its success is so much that it transcends firearms and enters into the realm of the printing press for having such an impact on mankind.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:32 PM
Looks like you owe me $20, my vote goes for the M1 Garand, and I am 24

But based on your responses, Chuck , Ill bet you back that 20 that you are LESS than 18 years of age.

Fine. If you guys were drafted into a hypothetical war where you could pick any rifle to use then go ahead and march into battle with your Garands. I'm sure you'll be the envy of the entire platoon with your "greatest battle rifle ever." The enemy is sure to surrender once their scouts overhear your tales of how great your weapons were a half century ago.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:33 PM
Does it really matter?

No, it doesn't. That's precisely why I was asking you about it. You gave two qualifications for your decision: 1) most widely produced, and 2) in a flag. I'm scratching my head trying to figure out how that makes a battle rifle the greatest ever.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:40 PM
I think a lot of folks here just have a problem with seeing another non-American rifle proliferate so much. It's design is over 60 years old and shows no signs of being thrown away anytime soon. Its success is so much that it transcends firearms and enters into the realm of the printing press for having such an impact on mankind.

Problems with seeing non-American rifles proliferate? Other than the Garand folks, practically every single other poster is listing European designs. It's obviously not an issue. And please elaborate on its impact on mankind. I'm not being a smart ass. I really am curious. Right now I can't think of a single decisive, historical war/battle in which the AK's existence was important or relevant to the outcome. USSR/Russia wasn't involved in any wars that were of historical significance since they implemented the AK. What else does that leave? Rebels in Africa and terrorists in the Middle East? I'm interested to know how them using AK's qualifies the weapon for some kind of recognition of historical relevance. They can't even aim the weapons properly. So it doesn't matter what they're using. Any battle rifle can land a blind luck shot on an opponent.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:46 PM
Just to clarify, I wouldn't eliminate the AK from the discussion of "greatest battle rifle ever." I think it's a fine weapon. I just don't think it should qualify as having historical significance. It has never won an important battle or given its users a tactical advantage over the opponents. If we are going on historical stuff then I could start stroking my Garand. But when I read the title saying "greatest ever" then I think of a rifle's actual performance and specs. Nostalgia doesn't win battles.

ilbob
September 8, 2008, 02:50 PM
the greatest battle rifle ever is the M1 Garand
I think Gen. Patton would agree. For its time, it was top notch.

Long since surpassed. The M14 is IMO better.

RP88
September 8, 2008, 02:51 PM
lolololol...civilized countries. England's colonial empire, Russia's Soviet union, us killing off most of the Indians, slavery, the A-bomb drops, and taking most of Mexico's land out of greed, German leaders and the holocaust... I guess the difference is that all of those countries can drink from a tea cup while extending the pinky, right? Oh! And because we made the Garand. Only civilized countries made and used the Garand...

If we're gonna go and say something like "that weapon is used only by evil countries", then I guess the FAL wins on the technicality that the Belgians are the only inventors on the list that havent massacred a entire group of people yet.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 02:59 PM
lolololol...civilized countries. England's colonial empire, Russia's Soviet union, us killing off most of the Indians, slavery, the A-bomb drops, and taking most of Mexico's land out of greed, German leaders and the holocaust... I guess the difference is that all of those countries can drink from a tea cup while extending the pinky, right? Oh! And because we made the Garand. Only civilized countries made and used the Garand...

If we're gonna go and say something like "that weapon is used only by evil countries", then I guess the FAL wins on the technicality that the Belgians are the only inventors on the list that havent massacred a entire group of people yet.

Hi, welcome to 2008.

ftierson
September 8, 2008, 03:45 PM
Originally posted by RP88
If we're gonna go and say something like "that weapon is used only by evil countries", then I guess the FAL wins on the technicality that the Belgians are the only inventors on the list that havent massacred a entire group of people yet.

Although perhaps not massacring an entire group of people, there was the Belgian Congo after all...

:)

Forrest

taprackbang
September 8, 2008, 04:23 PM
That 'Greatest Battle Rifle Top Ten' was kind of goofy and subjective anyway 'cause not only did it neglect to mention the G3, it put the M14 at number 10!! How silly is that? Just because 'service life' was low. That was a choice by the US Military and in no way suggests that the M14 was less of a rifle than the M16. I would put the Top as, "1. FN FAL, 2. M14, 3. G3, HK 91, 4. M1 Garand 5. Can't decide. The M16 is NOT a battle rifle.

I am not impressed with the M16 / M4 because it shoots the measly 5.56. Bad guys have taken head shots with a .223 and still stayed in the fight. (That's right; it did not kill them.) 7.62 shots keep the bad guys down for good!

Noxx
September 8, 2008, 04:27 PM
I have to say, look I'm with you guys on the AK, but it's not a battle rifle, it's an assault rifle. It's selective fire and more importantly fires an intermediate cartridge.

Most important firearm ever developed? Probably. Battle rifle, no.

Noxx
September 8, 2008, 04:32 PM
Just to clarify, I wouldn't eliminate the AK from the discussion of "greatest battle rifle ever."

You have to, it's not a battle rifle.

The common distinction between a battle rifle and an assault rifle is that the battle rifle fires a full-power cartridge, such as the .30-06 of the M1 Garand, the 7.62x54R of the Mosin Nagant, or the 7.62x51mm NATO for the M14 and the H&K G3, et cetera. Assault rifles fire smaller, intermediate size cartridges and bullets such as the 5.56x45mm, for the M16 rifles family, or the 7.62x39mm, for the AK47.

Just adhering to the subject title removes the AK from consideration.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 05:33 PM
That's just semantics.

HB
September 8, 2008, 05:40 PM
Just to clarify, I wouldn't eliminate the AK from the discussion of "greatest battle rifle ever." I think it's a fine weapon. I just don't think it should qualify as having historical significance

I assume your being sarcastic, right :scrutiny: There are over 100 million of these guns in circulation. It is the assault rifle used by everyone from sheepherders to standing armies. It beat us in vietnam, beat the Russians out of Afghanistan, freed/ or imprisoned millions. Once again, it is possibly the most influential rifle in history. 10,000 years from now, they are going to be digging up AK's like they were arrowheads.


lolololol...civilized countries. England's colonial empire, Russia's Soviet union, us killing off most of the Indians, slavery, the A-bomb drops, and taking most of Mexico's land out of greed, German leaders and the holocaust... I guess the difference is that all of those countries can drink from a tea cup while extending the pinky, right? Oh! And because we made the Garand. Only civilized countries made and used the Garand...


Amen, the "civilized" among us killed nearly the entire population of the Americas in a few hundred years. And don't forget about the millions we took from Africa, or the time we destroyed Japan and the time we .......

I really don't understand the comments on the Garand, sure great gun, but not comparable to any more modern firearms as far as firepower and use. The M-14 has it beat as a rifle.

I also think people aren't giving the m16 enough credit, I hate .223, but it has been in service for 40 years and has a pretty good track record. Accurate, reliable, and relatively light.

PS, the AK wins


HB

HGUNHNTR
September 8, 2008, 05:40 PM
I love the PTR! Great Rifle, I don't understand the people that think it has a lot of recoil:confused:

HB
September 8, 2008, 05:45 PM
Horsesoldier says: M1A isn't a military rifle and never was.

Yeah, but it gets production numbers up a bit. Let's add the mini 14 too. Seems like I remember reading somewehre that singapore or macau, or someplace like that uses the mini 14 as their standard issue rifle. So now we can add mini14 production numbers to my number 7 as well.


That's like saying we should add a ton of hunting rifles because they are based off Mauser actions? Your essentially bending the rules to fit your choices

Really? Does singapore issue bolt action hunting rifles to their military?

No, but they don't issue M-14's either. The mini is just a little copy of the M-14, not a real m-14. The mini might as well be in another catagory, because it isn't even close to the same gun

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 05:58 PM
I assume your being sarcastic, right There are over 100 million of these guns in circulation. It is the assault rifle used by everyone from sheepherders to standing armies. It beat us in vietnam, beat the Russians out of Afghanistan, freed/ or imprisoned millions. Once again, it is possibly the most influential rifle in history. 10,000 years from now, they are going to be digging up AK's like they were arrowheads.

Not being sarcastic. I'm just disagreeing. I don't recognize sheer volume as being historically significant. What real impact does that make on global civilization? Vietnam and Afghanistan may have had a strong individual affect on some people, but it did nothing to change the course of humanity. And if the AK gave a tactical advantage to the NVA then the numbers really don't support it. American casualties in that war made up a couple percentage points in the overall number of lives lost in battle. So if you are going to use Vietnam stats then the M16 blew the AK out of the water there.

Kosh75287
September 8, 2008, 06:34 PM
How do we mean "BEST"? The one with the longest, most notable history? I'd think the m98 Mauser, the Lee-Enfield, the O3A3, or Moisin-Nagant would be in contention. If "best" means the one that inflicted the most casualties on the battlefields, then perhaps the Garand. If "best" means, "What do I want in a fight", then the answer is my M1-A or an STG-58.

HB
September 8, 2008, 06:37 PM
I don't recognize sheer volume as being historically significant.
This means they are used everywhere, impacting daily life in 6 continents, by millions of rebels, both good and bad. It is the rifle of the 20th century

HB

Noxx
September 8, 2008, 07:09 PM
That's just semantics.

....

If we can't agree on what the definition of a thing is, we can't have a productive discussion about said thing. Contrary to what the illiterate legions of the internet opine on other boards (and thankfully not often here on THR) semantics are actually important.

Nolo
September 8, 2008, 07:27 PM
If "best" means the one that inflicted the most casualties on the battlefields, then perhaps the Garand.
Either the AK or Mosin has that distinction.
By comparison, the Garand is a lightweight.

chuckles
September 8, 2008, 07:56 PM
HB wrote: It beat us in vietnam,
No, what beat us in Vietnam was Lyndon Johnson and Robert McNamara and their micro-management of a war that our military could have won in 3 months. The AK had nothing to do with it. Our government's mis-management
turned Vietnam into an on-the-job training experience for the NVA.

Nolo
September 8, 2008, 08:06 PM
No, what beat us in Vietnam was Lyndon Johnson and Robert McNamara and their micro-management of a war that our military could have won in 3 months. The AK had nothing to do with it. Our government's mis-management
turned Vietnam into an on-the-job training experience for the NVA.
I like how people will argue that, and then turn around and say the Garand won WWII.
We could have won WWII with Springfields, and people know it.
Either rifles win wars, or they do not.
Either you use the rifle to represent the man, or you don't.
Barring extremes, it will always be like this.
So arguing about whether a rifle "won" a war or not is stupid.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 08:26 PM
This means they are used everywhere, impacting daily life in 6 continents, by millions of rebels, both good and bad. It is the rifle of the 20th century

Impacting daily life in six continents? Do tell me how the existence of the AK affects the daily lives of people outside of Africa. I must be missing something here. It's not the rifle of the 20th century. The 20th century was shaped and ruled by Western Europe and North America. Neither of them used AK's. Again, I'm not bashing the rifle. I'm just saying that its fans like to blow its importance way out of proportion. The USSR lost the Cold War. Its stock piles of AK's were sold off to mostly unscrupulous characters. That's it. It has never been carried victoriously in any war/battle of any real historical significance. It has never given its users a tactical advantage. It's just a solid design that's cheap to produce. Great rifle. But I'm not exactly ready to deify it yet bc Nicholas Cage performed a witty movie sequence about it.

Chuck Spears
September 8, 2008, 08:39 PM
If we can't agree on what the definition of a thing is, we can't have a productive discussion about said thing. Contrary to what the illiterate legions of the internet opine on other boards (and thankfully not often here on THR) semantics are actually important.

If it's a serious topic then it might matter. But if it is a bunch of people giving subjective opinions on an internet gun forum then it's silly. Do you honestly believe the OP intended AK's and M4's to be excluded from the topic? If not, then it's not important. It's just a technicality that was lost in semantics. If that is what the OP did intend, then I change my vote from the SCAR to the SCAR-H long barrel in order to conform to the technical parameters.

TexasRifleman
September 8, 2008, 08:42 PM
But I'm not exactly ready to deify it yet bc Nicholas Cage performed a witty movie sequence about it.


This one:

You get rich by giving the poorest people on the planet the means to continue killing each other. Do you know why I do what I do? I mean, there are more prestigous assignments. Keeping track of nuclear arsenals. You'd think that more critical to world security. But, it's not. No. Nine out of ten war victims today are killed with assault rifles and small arms. Like yours. Those nuclear missiles, they're sitting in their silos. Your AK-47, that is the real weapon of mass destruction.

I prefer Sam Jacksons....

AK-47, the very best there is.... when you absolutely positively have to kill every mother f'er in the room.....accept no substitutes.

We're so far off of the intent of this thread it's not even funny.....

Nolo
September 8, 2008, 09:02 PM
AK-47, the very best there is.... when you absolutely positively have to kill every mother f'er in the room.....accept no substitutes.
Jackie Brown.
I knew I recognized that quote.
Wait, am I supposed to have not seen that movie?
:uhoh:
(Jackie Brown, the movie that came out in the late '90s, but makes you feel like you're livin' in the early '80s...)

KBintheSLC
September 8, 2008, 09:11 PM
Garand doesnt even have a box mag or a pistol grip.
Garand = Fail.

I disagree... though the M1 is not a current standard, it did help our boys win some of the greatest battles ever... therefore, if you consider it in the time frame it was used in, it is the best.

Granted, there are modern guns that beat it to death, but that is not an accurate way to gauge this question.

Of current issue weapons, I would take a good AK over just about anything else.

tinygnat219
September 8, 2008, 09:18 PM
Chuck Spears,

Man, are you all over the place. It's hard to keep up with you on this thread. :D
To answer the latest of your quotes (I don't have time to on the others, but they are interesting questions).
Impacting daily life in six continents? Do tell me how the existence of the AK affects the daily lives of people outside of Africa.
Well, there is the Chinese Military that uses them to keep its people in check in Asia. There's Venezuala cutting deals to get 100,000 more of them, this covers South America. There's Russia threatening neighboring countries with them that covers Europe. The Mexicans perceive access to them in this country is a problem that's impacting their LE efforts, that covers North America. Africa's a hellhole with everyone seemingly armed with them. Australia and Antarctica are just too bloody far to get to, although the Chinese strength in that area is a cause for alarm.

I must be missing something here. It's not the rifle of the 20th century. The 20th century was shaped and ruled by Western Europe and North America.
Partly I would agree. Don't forget about Communism that still rules a good part of Asia. It was shaped, but ruled by Western Europe? Nah...

The USSR lost the Cold War. Its stock piles of AK's were sold off to mostly unscrupulous characters. That's it. It has never been carried victoriously in any war/battle of any real historical significance.
Vietnam War, Iran-Iraq War, Soviet Union Invasion of Afghanistan. What scale of a war are you looking for? Were these too small?

It has never given its users a tactical advantage. It's just a solid design that's cheap to produce.
Are you kidding? It's great tactical advantage was in its simplicity of design where an illiterate peasant could immediately be trained to use the AK-47 in less than a day having never been around a firearm before. Having stockpiles of this weapon with a large, simple population is a HUGE advantage as it allows a very fast mobilization of troops with a minimum of training and expense. If that's not a tactical advantage, I don't know what is. We may have the best trained troops in the world, but it takes time, money and effort to get them to that training level.

wcwhitey
September 8, 2008, 09:38 PM
It's not my thread but for sake of argument lets consider this. Regardless of production numbers or distribution, longevity or anything else lets make it simple. What rifle would you choose to go into battle with. Some will argue availability as in the AK or AR. Effectiveness as in the M1, M14 or numerous others, which one would you trust your life too! My personal choice is the M14 for the following reasons.

1. Utter reliability
2. Accuracy
3. Great sights making it capable of accurate shots at distances that leave lesser rifles wanting.
4. IMHO one of the most balanced and ergonomic weapons of all time.
5. 7.62 nuff said!

It is just my opinion that if a situation was reduced to just men and their rifles and it was the only deciding factor the M14 would far outshine most if not all others. Bill

Noxx
September 8, 2008, 10:07 PM
Do you honestly believe the OP intended AK's and M4's to be excluded from the topic? If not, then it's not important. It's just a technicality that was lost in semantics. If that is what the OP did intend, then I change my vote from the SCAR to the SCAR-H long barrel in order to conform to the technical parameters.

In return, if the OP did indeed mean "military rifle" rather than strictly battle rifle, I would certainly have to side with the AK-47. "greatest" does not necessarily mean "best". In the current context I would say having the most impact suffices.

The Ak-47 is everywhere, ammo for it is everywhere, it can be operated and maintained, by idiots, with about 15 minutes of training. It will survive, and operate in, just about any environment imaginable. It is IMO, the definitive weapon of the 20th century.

HB
September 8, 2008, 10:14 PM
Impacting daily life in six continents? Do tell me how the existence of the AK affects the daily lives of people outside of Africa. I must be missing something here. It's not the rifle of the 20th century. The 20th century was shaped and ruled by Western Europe and North America. Neither of them used AK's. Again, I'm not bashing the rifle. I'm just saying that its fans like to blow its importance way out of proportion. The USSR lost the Cold War. Its stock piles of AK's were sold off to mostly unscrupulous characters. That's it. It has never been carried victoriously in any war/battle of any real historical significance. It has never given its users a tactical advantage. It's just a solid design that's cheap to produce. Great rifle. But I'm not exactly ready to deify it yet bc Nicholas Cage performed a witty movie sequence about it.


Gnat got that right on.

It has never been carried victoriously in any war/battle of any real historical significance.

By Americans..... Historical significance is in the eye of the beholder. Most people in Asia could care less who wins the American President is come November, but for you, it could/should be very important. Once again, the Afghans carried them when USSR got kick out of Afghanistan, which had lasting effects. Any good drug runner in South America has got himself an AK. Most of the Mid-east is equipped with AKs. China has AKs. What gun killed thousands in Bosnia.
Today most conflicts have a ripple effect across all nations.

PS, Africa isn't "broken". Most of Africa is a descent place to live compared to some places. Sub Saharran is the worst place due to a number of factors, but Americans Notions of Africa are warped slightly becuase of Media coverage and Disney. :barf:

HB

taprackbang
September 9, 2008, 12:14 AM
I love the PTR! Great Rifle, I don't understand the people that think it has a lot of recoil

+1 for taprackbang

Deer Hunter
September 9, 2008, 12:35 AM
For the love of everything sacred!

End it! Please!

Let that poor pony rest in peace!

Diamondback6
September 9, 2008, 02:18 AM
Greatest ever? M1 Garand, hands down. Do you doubt General Geo. S. Patton?
Think he'd have changed his mind if he coulda handled an M14... :D

Geronimo45
September 9, 2008, 02:48 AM
How about an Italian bolt-action? In, say, 6.5mm. Ordered by mail, fired three times from an upper story window in Dallas.
Possibly the most influential battle rifle of the 20th century.

Diamondback6
September 9, 2008, 02:50 AM
Geronimo, raise you with one, caliber and model escape me, that was on the streets of Sarajevo in oh, say 1914...

Geronimo45
September 9, 2008, 03:22 AM
Geronimo, raise you with one, caliber and model escape me, that was on the streets of Sarajevo in oh, say 1914...
Even I'm not willing to stretch the definition of 'battle rifle' to a .32 or .380 pistol. :p
Started a mighty bloody chain of events though, without a doubt... trouble far out of proportion to its caliber...

RP88
September 9, 2008, 04:08 AM
I really find it funny how people think that the Garand made that much of a difference. Here are a few things invented and used around WWII that were much more important than your M1 jam-o-matic thumb-breaking garand:

-radar/sonar
-long range rockets
-aircraft carriers
-more and more machine guns
-reliable tanks
-all sorts of fighter aircraft
-modern artillery
-long-range and high-altitude bombers
-rocket launchers
-U-boats/submarines
-the A-bomb

if you really think that the Garand and the US soldier won WWII while England and Russia sat on their asses with their Enfields and Mosins, then I can see how the Garand - a flawed and expensive rifle that was used for about 13 years before being replaced by a rifle that got replaced again ten years later - could possibly be the best gun in history. Just mu opinion, though. I'd sure love to have a garand or M14, but just not for when the Chinese make their move

Ash
September 9, 2008, 06:25 AM
Winning the war included the whole package and it is completely true that in the big picture, the Jeep and P47 had tremendous impacts. However, a platoon of soldiers armed with M1's was considerably better armed than a german squad with k98k's and better armed that the British allies with Enfields. Yes, they were.

I find it odd that you would consider a semi-auto rifle (which everyone went to after WWII in the West) not any better in combat than a bolt-action rifle. The Garand rifleman could keep his sights on target far better than the K98k rifleman could, and had three extra shots before reloading. He also had better sights than any other rifle in the war and a faster reload than anyone, including the BAR gunners.

The German philosophy, where the infantry supported the machine gun, was different than ours, where the machine gun supported the infantry. Yet the German soldiers prized every SVT-40 or M1 they could get their hands on as they were better in combat than the K98k. You did not hear stories of US troops dropping their M1's in favor of Enfields or Mausers.

Greatest has everything to do with context. Greatest has everything to do with what you are competing with at the time as it demonstrates the impact made. The M1 did that. Could we have won had our guys been armed with Krags? Sure, it was the whole package. But the battle ultimately turns on the actions of the dirty infantry along a muddied road.

Could we have held at the Battle of the Bulge without the Garand? What about Bloody Ridge at Guadalcanal? Could we have made it off the beach at Omaha? (and if not, then have had the weakened assault from Gold, Juno, and Utah which might have given the Germans enough time to bring tanks up?) Was it that much more firepower that gave us the decisive advantage? I think so, but even if it did not, we would have likely lost considerably more soldiers in bloodier battles with the Springfield 1903. If only for that, the lives saved, it gets the vote.

And that is why the Garand was the greatest.

Ash

Blakenzy
September 9, 2008, 07:18 AM
There are lots of rifles out there that have great appeal because they are accurate, ergonomic, beautiful, have historical military significance, magnificent engineering, etc.

But, what is the main purpose of the battle rifle? I would say that it's to slay people. Period. Taking that into account:

Which rifle has the most kills to it's name?

I would have to vote for the AK 47. Probably "changed" more people's lives than the venerable M1, the tacticool AR, or any flavor of 7.62NATO semiauto out there. There, that should settle it :D

Ash
September 9, 2008, 07:27 AM
The AK was used against troops equally, if not better, armed and in those instances, generally did not perform well. It has had a tremendous impact on the world. It was the most prolific small arm produced. But the AK-47's greatest impact is not on the standard battlefield where vast numbers of AK-armed conscripts died, but in the skirmish in the quasi-declared state of war caused by insurrection. In that condition, it is used to kill and intimidate civilians more than trained government troops.

Rarely has the AK marched onto the field of battle (and by that, I do not refer to some Napoleonic field). And when it did, the result was extremely high atrition rates for troops carrying it. It won in Vietnam, along with the SKS and Mosin (and others) not because of its greatness, but because the leaders were willing to expend vast numbers of soldiers armed with AK's. They won a war in which they lost every major battle and most skirmishes. Hardly an endorsement of the AK.

In Somalia, "peasants" armed with AK's attacked army rangers. They won, but at a dismal cost.

Nowhere in the world did the AK win on its own merits. Rather, it was a cheap weapon handed to a soldier who was equally cheap.

If the record were to be followed, then an AK is a death sentance in that a soldier armed with an AK is far more likely to be killed than one armed with an AR or other weapon.

The AK's success, and it has succeeded, has come not from facing equals in battle but in murder and ambush. After all, it has been carried by all sorts, including those who thought the rear sight was a power scale and so shooting it at level 10 was the most powerful setting.

Ash

Blakenzy
September 9, 2008, 07:53 AM
Well, the high casualty rate of troops wielding the AK you mention is most likely due to very poor training and zero support, not because the rifle itself is a bad weapon. Furthermore, I would dare say that the "extremely high attrition rates for troops carrying it" weren't brought about by their enemy's superior rifles, but by their air/artillery/armor.

And yes, you are right that a lot of the AK's kills are probably not in straight forward, "honorable" uniformed combat, but that doesn't make it any less of a weapon. It gets the killing done on a scale far greater than any other rifle out there.

woodybrighton
September 9, 2008, 08:19 AM
grenades shells and machine guns kill people on the battlefield aimed rifle fire is fairly low down on what kills.
The m1 was an interesting first step but far from ideal.
The enfield was the ultimate bolt gun there isn't a finer battle bolt action rifle. There are more accurate but not as tough or as fast firing or as reliable

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_William_Sayer

This cpl with a bolt action rifle stalled the German advance for 2hours so allowing his battalion to withdraw regroup and eventually force the German advance to stop.

Ash
September 9, 2008, 08:24 AM
It does have a tremendous impact on its status as the greatest. That is has been used everywhere does not make it the best in this case because where and how it was used is important. Otherwise, we could all agree as to the greatness of the machete given its brutal use against unarmed people in Ruwanda.

A squad of soldiers armed with the AK is generally less well-armed than troops armed with better weapons. And that is the point, there are better contemporaries. It's success does not come in fighting equals, as when that happens, it loses. That it is fielded by nearly untrained troops only magnifies its purpose, which is to provide a weapon for those incapable of maintaining and using something better. It works, and that is better than one that does not work as in the case of early M16's. But that alone does not make it the greatest because history shows that when employed against a force of equal size but different shoulder weapons, troops with AK's do poorly.

The same can be said for a company of Marines. Give one company AK's and the other currently produced AR's, and the AR-armed Marines will win, all things being equal.

Ash

almostfree
September 9, 2008, 08:25 AM
I agree with the enfield being the best bolt action battle rifle. The British army always had an excellent reputation for marksmanship and skill in the use of their arms as well. It began in the Napoleonic Wars when the British soldiers were one of the few armies to practice loading and firing with real ammunition (as it was expensive).

Not to get on a soapbox, but it is a shame that they have stricken firearms from their popular culture, because they really were good with them.

Blakenzy
September 9, 2008, 08:33 AM
The same can be said for a company of Marines. Give one company AK's and the other currently produced AR's, and the AR-armed Marines will win, all things being equal.


Now that would be a very interesting experiment...

woodybrighton
September 9, 2008, 09:13 AM
still are as terry and his mates are finding out to there cost:D

GarandOwner
September 9, 2008, 12:27 PM
M1 jam-o-matic thumb-breaking garand

Clearly you know nothing of the Garand, as they are far from being jam-o-matics :rolleyes:

RP88
September 9, 2008, 01:04 PM
The AK was used against troops equally, if not better, armed and in those instances, generally did not perform well.

it killed whatever it was properly aimed at, but that was the problem: most of the AK-wielders we fought against couldnt do anything properly at all.

Rarely has the AK marched onto the field of battle (and by that, I do not refer to some Napoleonic field). And when it did, the result was extremely high atrition rates for troops carrying it. It won in Vietnam, along with the SKS and Mosin (and others) not because of its greatness, but because the leaders were willing to expend vast numbers of soldiers armed with AK's. They won a war in which they lost every major battle and most skirmishes. Hardly an endorsement of the AK.

In Somalia, "peasants" armed with AK's attacked army rangers. They won, but at a dismal cost.

so, the AK is responsible for poor training of troops? I wonder what the highly-trained nations with AK variants would say to that. Instead of untrained, idiotic peasants, or NVA that learned how to fight as they went along, let's put some Israelis, Russians, etc. in those jungles and see how that turns out. Not saying that we'll lose, but you may notice that it will change the whole scheme of things.

Nowhere in the world did the AK win on its own merits. Rather, it was a cheap weapon handed to a soldier who was equally cheap.

If the record were to be followed, then an AK is a death sentance in that a soldier armed with an AK is far more likely to be killed than one armed with an AR or other weapon.

nowhere in the world did a G3, Garand, or M16 win on its own merits either. Training is everything. And once again, baseless claims about how an AK equals poor training is all I got out of that statement.

The AK's success, and it has succeeded, has come not from facing equals in battle but in murder and ambush. After all, it has been carried by all sorts, including those who thought the rear sight was a power scale and so shooting it at level 10 was the most powerful setting.

idiots, murderers, and guerillas use the AK. Big deal. If the AK was not invented, then the next step up (most likely the G3 nowadays) would have taken its place.

It does have a tremendous impact on its status as the greatest. That is has been used everywhere does not make it the best in this case because where and how it was used is important. Otherwise, we could all agree as to the greatness of the machete given its brutal use against unarmed people in Ruwanda.

once again, just because it is the prime weapon of choice for third-world monsters does not mean that it was made or designed for that purpose. Many other countries use the AK (or variants of) and they are well-respected, uniformed nations with well-trained and powerful militaries.

A squad of soldiers armed with the AK is generally less well-armed than troops armed with better weapons.

...and less-trained. And less-armored... And can't fight against bombers, choppers, and the like because the radio is the most expensive part of their army.

And that is the point, there are better contemporaries.

yes indeed. The M-xx platform is superior in accuracy, not to mention its ergonomics and other things. But the point here is that the AK is a great weapon. It is accurate enough, powerful, feels somewhat natural to hold to most people, and resistant to all sorts of problems that can happen to an M16 or M4 at any given time, even if said things happen rarely when the gun is maintained. But, let's also remember how we have many other things that give a marine the edge in combat. Namely, expensive body armor and training, along with a helicopter three miles away to assist him.

It's success does not come in fighting equals, as when that happens, it loses.

untrained, unarmored, unsupported troops and well-trained, well-armored, mobilized marines are not equal forces.


history shows that when employed against a force of equal size but different shoulder weapons, troops with AK's do poorly.

still don't see the equality in any example you could possibly cite...

The same can be said for a company of Marines. Give one company AK's and the other currently produced AR's, and the AR-armed Marines will win, all things being equal.

give them body armor as well. That may make it interesting. It would go with the 'all being equal' control after all. What would happen then? What would win between a gun that can pierce a 30" thick tree when it hits it and a gun that can hit a leaf at 300 yds but fail to penetrate? (exaggeration of both weapons, of course) :D

woodybrighton
September 9, 2008, 02:06 PM
The same can be said for a company of Marines. Give one company AK's and the other currently produced AR's, and the AR-armed Marines will win, all things being equal.

Give me a well trained platoon of British infantry with lee enfields and as long as i get to pick the terrain I'll happily take on a battalion of marines armed with ARs and win and win easily.
nice African plains ought to do.:D
marines get there body Armour but no support .
marines start out 3k from my platoon at 1.5k they start taking hits from platoon volley fire they have another 600 meters before they can start returning fire.
Proves nothing except if you go into a fair fight you haven't really been thinking:D

Chuck Spears
September 9, 2008, 02:32 PM
nevermind

sarduy
September 9, 2008, 02:51 PM
we can spend all week long trying to figure how good or bad the AK really is, but... if you give AR to the people in Somalia and the Russian Army need to go in, i'm sure the Russian army will win. Same with Haiti vs Irael... they don't have the training and support to win a war, it's all about the training/firepower.

lets give a Marines platoon their vest and m16 but no air/ground support fight against Russian Spetsnaz armed with AK and also using vest without air/ground support, now drop them in the snow of Siberia... who's going to win? what about in the streets of somalia? the picture change... just because the place changes... but i still favor the Spetsnaz in both scenario not because of training, the Marines training is very good too... but because the AK have more power and they DO know how to use them.

Nolo
September 9, 2008, 04:23 PM
Rarely has the AK marched onto the field of battle (and by that, I do not refer to some Napoleonic field). And when it did, the result was extremely high atrition rates for troops carrying it. It won in Vietnam, along with the SKS and Mosin (and others) not because of its greatness, but because the leaders were willing to expend vast numbers of soldiers armed with AK's. They won a war in which they lost every major battle and most skirmishes. Hardly an endorsement of the AK.
Actually, it's a huge endorsement for an AK.
Why?
Because the AK is the cheapest, easiest to make, most idiot-proof, easiest to feed, most rugged, long-lasting force multiplier out there.
Period.
Sure, they could have fought Vietnam and won without the AK. They could have won it armed with M16s
But if your strategy is to dish out as many soldiers as possible, sacrifice all the guys you have to, force multipliers still matter.
In fact, the economic benefits for using other rifles, like the Garand, M14 and M16 go down because the cost outweighs the force multiplication benefits.
The AK, in the hands of peasants, thugs, etc. gives you the same capability (roughly) as the M16 and M14, but at MUCH less price.
It is the most popular, most influential, most coveted force multiplication technology in the world.

scrat
September 9, 2008, 04:45 PM
m1 Garand


or

1919A4

Chuck Spears
September 9, 2008, 05:24 PM
Didn't an AK stovepipe in the North Hollywood shootout, leading to its user's immediate demise while he tried in vain to clear it? I thought they were supposed to be idiot proof and never malfunction.

HB
September 9, 2008, 05:43 PM
You already said that..... One instance proves nothing at all.

Remember when that rock cracked when I threw it at that mammoth and it didn't die :neener: Rocks are not reliable enough for me :scrutiny:

Chuck Spears
September 9, 2008, 05:57 PM
Just pointing out that the things are not inherently perfect as so many of its worshippers seem to imply. They can malfunction just like every other gun. Every time there's discussion about the rifle there's a few dozen folks who have to mention its reliability and how it's idiot proof and doesn't jam. I've seen plenty of them have problems at the shooting range just like I've seen plenty AR platforms have problems at the shooting range. There's no way to know exactly how many malfunctions occur with different weapons and at what rate. There's only personal experience, OR (most commonly seen on the interwebs) people parroting opinions of others and trying to pass it off as legitimate information.

theotherwaldo
September 9, 2008, 06:03 PM
One question that has not been asked is - WHICH BATTLE?

Mountain ridges? Open plains? Bare desert? Cityscapes? Jungles? Beaches? Heavy support? Long range recon? Shock troop assault? Holding fortifications?

I could go on indefinitely. In each case, the ideal battle rifle would probably be different, if a battle rifle were appropriate at all.

Just select the best tool for the job. Don't fall in love with it.

Chuck Spears
September 9, 2008, 06:45 PM
Just select the best tool for the job. Don't fall in love with it.

I couldn't agree more.

HorseSoldier
September 9, 2008, 06:54 PM
Didn't an AK stovepipe in the North Hollywood shootout, leading to its user's immediate demise while he tried in vain to clear it? I thought they were supposed to be idiot proof and never malfunction.

You already said that..... One instance proves nothing at all.

If you've never seen an AK have a stoppage, you've never seen AKs run very hard. It's a reliable and robust design, but it's nowhere near 100% reliable and won't keep running if totally neglected. Like a whole lot of other things, the internet echo chamber distorts and overstates this issue to a ridiculous degree.

Zangetsu
September 9, 2008, 06:56 PM
Didn't an AK stovepipe in the North Hollywood shootout, leading to its user's immediate demise while he tried in vain to clear it? I thought they were supposed to be idiot proof and never malfunction.

It did stovepipe, but he didn't try and clear it, he just looked at the rifle, ditched it, and continued on with one of the other weapons he was carrying. By doing that though, he lost a lot of the fire superiority he had, giving law enforcement a better chance to close in. If he racked the bolt it would have cleared the jam and the rifle would still have been good to go...my guess is he was so freaked out already that when it jammed, he looked at it for .2 seconds before chucking it, not really thinking about fixing it.

Anyway...my vote is for the FN FAL :D

Chuck Spears
September 9, 2008, 07:22 PM
If you've never seen an AK have a stoppage, you've never seen AKs run very hard. It's a reliable and robust design, but it's nowhere near 100% reliable and won't keep running if totally neglected. Like a whole lot of other things, the internet echo chamber distorts and overstates this issue to a ridiculous degree.

I'm relieved to see some validation. I don't have a problem with AK's, they're great rifles. But people make them out to be indestructible on the internet. They read about the problems our soldiers have with M16's and M4's (normal problems that happen with all firearms) and then automatically assume that the AK is indestructible bc they don't read about military forces having problems with them. The problem lies in that the forces who typically use AK's don't necessarily document and publish information to the same degree that we do. I'm sure the Viet Cong had plenty of problems with them malfunctioning in Vietnam. I'm sure African rebels have problems with them. And so on. But just bc they don't get on the internet boards or write books and magazine articles about it, everyone gets the false feeling that they don't malfunction. Then Nicholas Cage comes along and reinforces that. I've seen plenty of AK's have problems just like every other type of rifle and handgun. I've even seen (*gasp*) Glocks and Kimbers malfunction. Guns are mechanical tools. Tools fail from time to time. I don't think it is fair to make claims of superior reliability when there isn't a proper set of data to base the comparison on. There is no magical database that records gun malfunctions. There is just personal experience and people echoing others' personal experiences. Just realized I've been rambling. Sorry. I'll stop now.

Ash
September 9, 2008, 08:34 PM
The point is greatest. The AK, no matter how many have been produced, is not so much greater than anything currently out there that it can be considered greatest. The Garand was vastly better than what was fielded by everyone else. That it was not used for three generations is irrelevant.

Woodybrighton, take your platoon of Brits with their SMLE's against a platoon of GI's with Garands and see who comes out on top, volley fire or no.

Ash

elmerfudd
September 9, 2008, 08:42 PM
The point is greatest. The AK, no matter how many have been produced, is not so much greater than anything currently out there that it can be considered greatest. The Garand was vastly better than what was fielded by everyone else. That it was not used for three generations is irrelevant.

Maybe not today, but in 1947 the AK was by far the best rifle out there. Even today it's still fighting on virtually everywhere in the world and it probably still will be when our grandchildren are using phased plasma rifles in the 40W range. The Garand however was quickly replaced by more modern rifles and had a very short service life.

Ash
September 9, 2008, 08:45 PM
But not by any kind of the wide margin as the Garand.

Ash

HB
September 9, 2008, 09:01 PM
Maybe not today, but in 1947 the AK was by far the best rifle out there. Even today it's still fighting on virtually everywhere in the world and it probably still will be when our grandchildren are using phased plasma rifles in the 40W range. The Garand however was quickly replaced by more modern rifles and had a very short service life.


Very good point

RP88
September 9, 2008, 09:39 PM
the thing that makes the AK as great as it is/I think it is has to deal with what it is. It is and was the pioneer of the modern combat rifle. It implemented select-fire, intermediate rounds, mass production, and legendary reliability all into a cost-effective, successful, and simple package, unlike the expensive German weapons that it was arguably ripped from.

Sure, the Garand was ahead of its time...for about eight years. Sure, the use of the garand by US forces showed our industrial strength.

But, the point here is: out of all of our modern arms - from M16 to M4 to G36 - how much of the Garand do you see in them, compared to how much of the AK you see in them?

Mr_Pale_Horse
September 9, 2008, 09:48 PM
One objective measure of greatness is longevity.

For 200 years, one firearm technology dominated the battlefield of the Western world, the Flintlock musket.

I do not distinguish between the crunchen-ticker rifles. Over a their ~65 year span of intense use, self loading breech fed cartridge battle rifles of any sort are just one offs, derivative technology, each copying/incorporating/tweaking a handful of operating systems, materials, methods or manufacture.

Moreover, I doubt cartridge firearms will have 200 years of dominance.

Zangetsu
September 9, 2008, 10:15 PM
Moreover, I doubt cartridge firearms will have 200 years of dominance.

I think that's kinda a skewed way to look at it, since today there is probably somewhere around 500 times as much spending and development of new weapons as there was back in the days of the flintlock rifle. Also, information gets out at near the speed of light now so not only are more people working faster than ever before, but they can share information almost instantly. This is why the old world technology sat around for so long; not many people were actively trying to improve upon it, and those that did had no way of sharing their information. If we started fresh with firearms today, with the flintlock rifle being invented last week, people would probably already be working on AK prototypes this morning.

I also don't hold much hope for case-less ammunition coming out any time soon, and wouldn't feel comfortable saving my money for a plasma rifle either. I think we're more or less stuck with what we have for at least another 30-50 years.

Ash
September 9, 2008, 10:20 PM
Greatness and longevity mean nothing. The flintlock lasted so long because technology had not introduced the percussion primer. The self-contained cartridge came only after the ability to produce it came. Semi-auto operation only came when powders were able to provide reliable operation. Longevity has less to do with the weapon and more to do with technological advancement.

The AK is certainly among the greatest, but it has never been the giant leap that the Garand was over contemporaries (or the Spencer over muzzle-loading rifles).

Ash

Loomis
September 9, 2008, 10:31 PM
Jeeze, this thread needs it's own website!

Nolo
September 9, 2008, 10:56 PM
The AK is certainly among the greatest, but it has never been the giant leap that the Garand was over contemporaries (or the Spencer over muzzle-loading rifles).
I really think the AK was as great, or greater, a leap as the Garand.
Put an army armed with Mausers against one armed with Garands.
What happens?
Put an army armed with Garands against one armed with Kalashnikovs.
What happens?
The result is largely the same.

Mr_Pale_Horse
September 9, 2008, 11:15 PM
Can there be one MG-42 for every 10 guys with a Mauser ;) ?

elmerfudd
September 9, 2008, 11:58 PM
The Garand really wasn't that far ahead. The Russians had the SVT and the Germans the G43 and then later on the Stgw44, (a rifle that was really head and shoulders above everything else). The major thing that set the Garand apart from those was simple production numbers. We made about 5.5 million M1's, while the Germans made about 400,000 G43s and 430,000 Sturmgewehrs and the Russians cranked out about 1.6 million SVT40's. So, even when it comes to production numbers the Garand wasn't quite as far ahead as is commonly believed.

evan price
September 10, 2008, 01:08 AM
Steyr Aug..

(runs away)

GarandOwner
September 10, 2008, 01:27 AM
the thing that makes the AK as great as it is/I think it is has to deal with what it is. It is and was the pioneer of the modern combat rifle. It implemented select-fire, intermediate rounds, mass production, and legendary reliability all into a cost-effective, successful, and simple package, unlike the expensive German weapons that it was arguably ripped from.

The MP-43 was the very first "assault rifle" (Then "modified" to the MP-44 but was basically the same gun) and THAT is what the modern assault rifle is based off of. Im afraid that you are mistaken that they were expensive,The MP-43/44 used a stamped receiver it was very cheap to build......One of the reasons it wasn't seen more in the war was because Hitler didnt approve of the weapon because he said that it looked "cheap" and he didnt want his army fighting with "cheap" weapons.

But, the point here is: out of all of our modern arms - from M16 to M4 to G36 - how much of the Garand do you see in them, compared to how much of the AK you see in them?

Um I don't see any of the AK-47 in those rifles you mentioned.... those three are completely different from the AK, for one thing each has a milled receiver not stamped. None of them were based upon the AK-47, patterned after, or have design components that were modeled after the AK-47.....I do however see alot of the Garand in the M14 which is still used in a limited capacity today ;) :D :evil:


***It should also be noted that while the M14 holds the record for shortest time as a standard infantry rifle, it has remained in service longer than almost any other US rifle, the only rifle to be used longer was the Springfield 1903 and its varients


Im not trying to pick on you RP88, but some of your posts look like you need to do some fact checking before you click "post reply"

RP88
September 10, 2008, 02:41 AM
my point on the features that modern guns got from the AK include things like the idea of a select-fire, intermediate catridges, shortening and lightening of the rifle, etc. Although the internals and modularity advanced significantly with our current guns, the AK is still the first rifle to successfully embrace those concepts that are now commonplace in any rifle made after it. That was what I was getting at; your AR, M4, etc. etc. etc. all followed and improved on those concepts and ideologies. Sure, other rifles beat it to the punch (all the way back before WWI if I recall correctly), but the AK was the one that was successful and eventually time-proven, so it gets my vote.

DeadHorrorFan
September 10, 2008, 05:01 AM
I'll choose 3 because I can never choose 1. But to me these are the absolute TOP 3....

FN FAL
AK-47
Mosin Nagant

If you can't tell I'm a fan of .30 caliber ruggedness!

MountainWalk
September 10, 2008, 05:52 AM
Hey fellas, new here, but I shall add my one cent, as I'm short a penny.

The Garand as good as it is, isn't the greatest.
To me, its a tossup between the Mauser 98k or the AK and its many variants.

Ash
September 10, 2008, 06:18 AM
NOLO, the AK was never fielded against the Garand in any meaningful way. The Garand, by the way, was issued half a decade before the SVT-38, and was a general issue weapon unlike the SVT-38 or SVT-40 or any of the German weapons.

Also, the AK excelled in one area only, high fire-power at medium/short distance, compromised my mediocre accuracy. As brighton noted, at long distances, men armed only with AK's would be at a severe disadvantage to men armed with Garands. So, the AK works in some scenarios, like building clearing, but not so well in others, like across a field where the Garand's accuracy will more than make up for merely 8 shots.

Yet, the Garand excelled in every way over contemporaries. It was faster to fire, faster to reload, and maintained the same if not better accuracy. While the Enfield carried 2 more rounds and so allowed more shots between reloads, it was still slower to fire for the average Brit and slower to reload with a two-step operation (two chargers to get to 10 rounds, one charger only getting you 5 rounds).

The Garand was in general use for 20 years. Consider the Soviets replaced the AKM after 25 years with the AK-74, you realize that terms of use, the AK-74 has had a longer general issue with its mother country than the close cousin. Semantics? Probably, as they are both very certainly the children of Kalashnikov. But the M14 is the child of Garand, then we can add those two together, too, and you get a service life about as long as any other standard shoulder arm in US service.

Is the Garand obsolete today? Sure. Is the AK? Not at all. That is not the point nor has it been. But the limited issue of self-loaders by the Germans and Soviets (and even Japanese) does not equate with the fact that, beyond snipers, every single soldier in the US Army in WWII, whether infantry or cook, began the war with a self-loading weapon. The infantry carried a Garand, and while it alone could not win a war without subguns, grenades, artillery, air support, rapid mobile transport, and the tank, as a general-issue infantry weapon, it stood alone against all the competition in WWII, throughout the entire war because no other nation reached half self-loader issue, much less 100% (beyond snipers, of course). And in any case, in places like Normandy, the Sigfried line, the Battle of the Bulge or Italy, there were many places where the action was settled by man-on-man. In that instance, the Garand was vastly better.

But the Mauser was certainly not so significantly better than the Enfield or Mosin to be much of a difference. The Mosin and Mauser have roughly the same rate of fire and magazine capacity, the Enfield having twice as much capacity and a somewhat quicker bolt-throw but slower reloading to return to the ten rounds (same reloading to keep 5, though). Bolt actions compared with bolt actions you still have bolt actions, with bolt-action speed and bolt-action capacity.

Ash

HorseSoldier
September 10, 2008, 08:16 AM
Also, the AK excelled in one area only, high fire-power at medium/short distance, compromised my mediocre accuracy. As brighton noted, at long distances, men armed only with AK's would be at a severe disadvantage to men armed with Garands. So, the AK works in some scenarios, like building clearing, but not so well in others, like across a field where the Garand's accuracy will more than make up for merely 8 shots.

In the real world, the guys with Garands (or SMLEs or whatever else) couldn't acquire the enemy at long range and even if they could, they then could not make hits beyond 300 meters with any degree of consistency. It bears noting that the soldiers whose performance was the data set for the study finding that hits beyond 300 were rare and that most successful engagements were within 100 meters were guys armed with the Garand.

Now if the enemy is obliging enough to walk across clear terrain in open order taking hits and keeping on coming, then the Garand's range advantage has limited relevance in that particular scenario. If they use terrain and operate on a post-WW1 "empty battlefield" then the AK can hold its own very well against the Garand -- which is exactly what it did when the Garand's M14 offspring went head to head against the AK in SE Asia.

H2O MAN
September 10, 2008, 08:54 AM
Greatest Battle Rifle Ever

Either of these two.

http://www.athenswater.com/images/Illuminating.jpg

C-grunt
September 10, 2008, 09:35 AM
My vote goes to the M16A2 and its children. Its accurate, reliable, light weight, ergonomic and holds lots of ammo.

The big thing people gripe about the M16 is the chambering. I here lots of stories and 9th hand accounts of the 5.56 not putting people down. In my experience and other recent combat vets on this site, those stories are false. Sure maybe at 600 yards the 5.56 isnt as good as a 7.62, but really, who shoots combat shots at that range. I made a shot with my M16 DMR at around 400 yards once and it worked just fine. All other engagements were at about 150 yards or less. Show me a bad guy that wasnt dropped by a 5.56 shot and Ill wager it wouldnt have made a difference if it was a 7.62.

In fact, I've said it here before, the only bad guy I have seen survive a GOOD COM hit was with a 7.62 fired from an M1 coax. He definitely wasnt fighting anymore though and it still amazes me that he lived as we didnt find him for a while after the shooting stopped.

My only gripe with the 5.56 is lack of close range penetration. I believe the military switching to a heavier grain bullet would improve penetration and long range performance.

ftierson
September 10, 2008, 12:49 PM
Originally posted by C-grunt
My vote goes to the M16A2 and its children. Its accurate, reliable, light weight, ergonomic and holds lots of ammo.

I keep hearing people say that the M16A2 is lightweight...

Has anyone ever carried an M16A2 and a Garand (perhaps not at the same time, of course :))...

The M16A2 weighs almost as much as the Garand, or at least close eneough that there's not a very noticeable difference...

The M16A1 was light, but that's not the M16A2...

(And please, no hate mail. I actually like the M16A2, although I like the M16A1 better).

Forrest

Nolo
September 10, 2008, 01:05 PM
NOLO, the AK was never fielded against the Garand in any meaningful way. The Garand, by the way, was issued half a decade before the SVT-38, and was a general issue weapon unlike the SVT-38 or SVT-40 or any of the German weapons.
I know. Half a decade? No... The SVT-38 was issued in '38, the Garand was issued in '36, if I recall correctly. That's a half of a half of a decade.
My point was, the Garand was the next logical step up from the Mauser and respective bolt guns. The AK was the next logical step up from the Garand (and was largely based off that rifle).
They are roughly equal in innovation.

Ash, I'm not exactly sure what the point of your post is, but all the info and analysis is sound...

Geronimo45
September 10, 2008, 03:35 PM
But the limited issue of self-loaders by the Germans and Soviets (and even Japanese) does not equate with the fact that, beyond snipers, every single soldier in the US Army in WWII, whether infantry or cook, began the war with a self-loading weapon.
I believe the USMC was slow to get Garands - and started out the war with 1903 Springfields.
Just nitpicking. :p

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 03:41 PM
Let's not forget that the Garands have the tactical advantage of letting your opponent know the exact moment your clip is empty and you will be temporarily unarmed while reloading. Ping. Best ever.

elmerfudd
September 10, 2008, 03:43 PM
NOLO, the AK was never fielded against the Garand in any meaningful way. The Garand, by the way, was issued half a decade before the SVT-38, and was a general issue weapon unlike the SVT-38 or SVT-40 or any of the German weapons.

Wasn't the ARVN armed with M1's? That was a big army in a big war up against AK47's.

Semmerling
September 10, 2008, 04:03 PM
The greates battle rifle ever? The one that gets you safely home....just ask any soldier at any time in the history of firearms.

ftierson
September 10, 2008, 04:10 PM
Originally posted by Chuck Spears
Let's not forget that the Garands have the tactical advantage of letting your opponent know the exact moment your clip is empty and you will be temporarily unarmed while reloading. Ping. Best ever.

That one's just like the Energizer bunny, it keeps going and going...

:)

Forrest

32 Magnum
September 10, 2008, 05:29 PM
In a combat situation - the weapon that does the most damage to your enemy is the "best" weapon. AK-47s are basically bullet launchers - and were/are used for mass fire. M-1/M-14 platforms in semi-auto forced aimed fire for effectiveness. M-16/M-4 in full-auto are wasteful of ammo and require fire discipline to be effective. The worst thing that can happen in combat is to expend all of your ammo, futiley, and still have enemy forces in the field WITH ammo. The best thing that happened to the M-16 system was the burst select setting. 9th Inf Div issued an AR (Army regulation for you non-grunts) in Spring of '69 stating that ONE man per rifle squad would be designated as the squad auto rifleman - the rest would be required to fire on semi-auto only, or face an Article 15. There was way too much ammo being burned with too few hits - helicopters on resupply missions were too valuable to risk because of poor fire discipline. I trained with M1 Garands, M-14s and used M-16s in combat. I respect the AK as a massed fire weapon - but when the VC/NVA ran out of ammo - they had a rather ineffective club and no helicopters to resupply - they then just melted away into the jungle. The bolt action rifles required FIRE DISCIPLINE and aimed fire - same as the M1. I saw too many scared NUGS firing full mags on full auto - 19 rounds in a little over a second, yeah we only had 20 round mags and only loaded those to 19 rounds to help feeding reliability - and not hitting anything but shrubbery - not an effective use of expensive ammo and not a life sustaining practice - the M16 is a very poor bayonet fighting platform - they break rather easily - plastic stocks. When you fired your field load (usually 400 to 600 rounds of 5.56) you had nothing left to defend yourself. I've fired the FAL, CETME/G-3, SKS, Daewo, AK, MN series, AR-15/M-16, Mausers, SMLE/Enfields, '03s, Galil, etc, so I'm not completely without some experience with a wide variety of military style rifles.
Of all of these, my favorite and the first one I would choose in a domestic disturbance situation/forest or plain or desert (not jungle) - the M-14 (that's why I own one) - in a guerilla type situation - the AK or Mini-14 (that's why I own these also). As for the finest of the bolt action rifles for function and accuracy I'd choose the Danish made M/G-1 Madsen in .30-06 - look this one up if you're not familiar - I have one of these also and practice with it regularly - just about the best bolt action .30-06 rifles I've ever shot.
But then, this is just my opinion based upon personal and in some cases practical experiences encompasing over 40 years of shooting these gems.

Ash
September 10, 2008, 05:31 PM
The Garand was 1932. The USMC did have 1903's, which is why I said US Army.

It's all about perspective. Titanic made more movie than any other movie in history. That is true. But when adjusted for inflation, Gone with the Wind is still tops. My point? It's relative to the time. There is little doubt that there are better rifles these days than the Garand. But greatest that does not make. Comparison should be made with what was contemporary to what ever it was.

Ash

Nolo
September 10, 2008, 05:41 PM
The Garand was 1932. The USMC did have 1903's, which is why I said US Army.

It's all about perspective. Titanic made more movie than any other movie in history. That is true. But when adjusted for inflation, Gone with the Wind is still tops. My point? It's relative to the time. There is little doubt that there are better rifles these days than the Garand. But greatest that does not make. Comparison should be made with what was contemporary to what ever it was.

Ash
Nope, Garand was 1936:
He filed a patent for his semiautomatic, gas operated, clip-fed rifle in 1930, and received an US patent for his design late in 1932. This rifle was built around then-experimental .276 caliber (7mm) cartridge. At the same time, his rifle was tested by the US Military against its main competitor, a .276 caliber Pedersen rifle, and was eventually recommended for adoption by US Army early in the 1932. But a little bit later an US general MacArthur stated that the US Military should stick to the old .30-06 cartridge. Foreseeing that, Garand already had a variation of his design chambered for 30-06. Finally, at the 6th January, 1936, the Garands' rifle was adopted by the US Army as an "rifle, .30 caliber, M1".
The SVT-38 (Samozaryadnaya Vintovka Tokareva - Tokarev Self-loading rifle) was originally adopted in the 1938 after more than 20 years of the research and development, done by famous Russian arms designer Fedor Tokarev.
The two were within 2 years of each other.
As for the AK, it was, in my opinion, just as revolutionary as the Garand.
Sure, the StG-44 was issued earlier, but only in limited numbers.
Like the Garand bringing the concept of the semi-auto to validity, the AK brought to concept of the assault rifle to the forefront of military technology.
I think they are equal for innovation, but if I had to rate one higher, it'd be the Garand.
(It is also important to remember that the Kalashnikov is based largely on the Garand. Mikhail studied the American rifle intently, and his earlier works show just how much of an influence it had on him.)

rcmodel
September 10, 2008, 05:48 PM
and you will be temporarily unarmed while reloading. Ping.I don't recall ever hearing a whole squad or fire team "pinging" at exactly the same time.

It's not just one Garand against the howling masses you know!

rcmodel

32 Magnum
September 10, 2008, 06:15 PM
With experience, you can reload a Garand faster than changing a magazine in an M-16 or AK-47 - and the sustained rate of fire on semi-auto is nearly as high and with a more powerful round.

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 06:18 PM
You're not always surrounded by a whole squad. Ask veterans who served in the Pacific Theater (if you can find one) how much of a pain in the ass that sounds was. It let the Japanese troops know precisely when the best time for a bayonet charge was. So much so that the American troops had to imitate the sound to falsely lure the Japanese in while they were fully loaded. Point being, that aspect of the Garand cost an untold number of soldiers their lives, or at least put them at a disadvantage. Hardly a design characteristic of something that is given the label "greatest ever."

H2O MAN
September 10, 2008, 06:24 PM
I like being able to top off the mag in my M14 with stripper clips ~ No mag changes :evil:

Zangetsu
September 10, 2008, 06:34 PM
Let's not forget that the Garands have the tactical advantage of letting your opponent know the exact moment your clip is empty and you will be temporarily unarmed while reloading. Ping. Best ever.

That's why many of our guys would take an empty clip and whip it against a rock, and watch as the enemy popped out, never expecting what was about to happen to them. For those who used that ping to their advantage, I'm sure they didn't mind it too much; how many other rifles have the ability to make the enemy drop their guard and come try and get you? :rolleyes:

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 06:55 PM
Does that somehow bring back the lives lost from that design flaw?

TexasRifleman
September 10, 2008, 07:01 PM
Does that somehow bring back the lives lost from that design flaw?

Please show some historical data backing up your claim that this has cost lives.

Other than a rather boring thread going on at TFL currently there's not much out there. This one seems to crop up every once in a while but no one ever has any historical documentation to back it up other than things that start with "I knew this guy once......"

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 07:09 PM
The *ping* was noted by the military and actions were taken to stop or at least minimize it. What does that mean? A lot. Keep things in perspective. Consider the sheer number of complaints soldiers had in the war. Then consider the lack of time (or care) that the upper echelons devoted to addressing those problems. So if they took drastic steps to address that problem during wartime, then it was obviously a problem and it was serious.

TexasRifleman
September 10, 2008, 07:13 PM
So in other words you have no documentation at all supporting this claim of lives lost.

That's what I figured. This story shows up every once in a while and it's always the same, not a single historical document. Even though WWII has been pretty much documented in every way imaginable.

I don't mean any offense, this is a popular story, but with all the writings on that war if it was something that actually cost lives you'd think it would be written down somewhere.

I'm sure someone along the way asked the question, that doesn't mean it was a legitimate concern.

rbernie
September 10, 2008, 07:16 PM
So we went from: Does that somehow bring back the lives lost from that design flaw?

to:

The *ping* was noted by the military and actions were taken to stop or at least minimize it. Claiming that lives were lost as a result is quite a stretch of logic from 'noting it'. Hyperbole is fine for presidential politics, but not convincing in rational debate.

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 07:18 PM
Dunlap, Roy F. (1948). Ordnance Went Up Front. The Samworth Press. ISBN 1-88484-909-1

It discusses how officials at the Aberdeen Proving Ground took the issue seriously enough to develop ways to stop or minimize the sound. Do you honestly think they would waste the effort (during wartime no less) to investigate an unsubstantiated claim?

TexasRifleman
September 10, 2008, 07:20 PM
It discusses how officials at the Aberdeen Proving Ground took the issue seriously enough to develop ways to stop or minimize the sound. Do you honestly think they would waste the effort (during wartime no less) to investigate an unsubstantiated claim?

And again, I'm sure there were many things thought of, conceptualized, and wondered about during that great war.

None of that shows that there were lives lost from this "design flaw". If in fact there were you'd see more than a page from one book about the Aberdeen Proving Grounds.

I have a 50 page document from North American Aviation about modifications to the exhaust systems on B25 aircraft.

Does that mean the original design cost lives?

Just because it occurred to someone along the way that it might be a problem does not prove that it actually was.

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 07:25 PM
So what do you want? A cell phone video of a GI getting a bayonet in a banzai charge after his clip pinged? I'll search YouTube real quick. Not every little aspect of war is going to have official documentation. The status of the dead soldier is "KIA." There wasn't a category for "KIA bc of Garand ping." So you have to rely on the stories that come back from battle. And if the military is going to spend the time and effort to fix a problem that would cost lots of money to fix, then those stories should be taken seriously.

TexasRifleman
September 10, 2008, 07:30 PM
Not every little aspect of war is going to have official documentation.

Again, WWII is the most heavily documented conflict in history. More books have been written about that, more vets interviewed, more government documents preserved.....

Nowhere, ever, has there been any credible evidence in any of that; GI diaries, combat reports, nothing, to show that what you describe actually happened.

This has been coming up on gun boards for many years and the Garand guys have spent untold hours scouring the records for any kind of proof and there simply hasn't been any.

If you find some it would be a huge historical discovery to be honest. It's entirely likely that it happened at least once, but there are lots of things that happen once. That does not make a design flaw.

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 07:30 PM
I'm assuming that if you guys had the ability to design your dream combat rifle that you'd make sure it broadcasted when the clip is empty. Especially with today's CQB. Awesome characteristic.

TexasRifleman
September 10, 2008, 07:31 PM
I'm assuming that if you guys had the ability to design your dream combat rifle that you'd make sure it broadcasted when the clip is empty. Especially with today's CQB. Awesome characteristic

Again, no one said it was a good idea. You said it was a design flaw that cost lives and that is not true.

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 07:34 PM
Nowhere, ever, has there been any credible evidence in any of that; GI diaries, combat reports, nothing, to show that what you describe actually happened.

So you've taken the time to read every document related to WWII and interviewed all the vets? You have too much time on your hands. Now you are going to tell me that you heard from somebody else that there isn't any documentation from it (obviously you haven't read/interviewed everything). At that point I would ask you to live up to the same standards that you hold me to: prove it. You heard from someone else that there isn't documentation. So prove it.

Chuck Spears
September 10, 2008, 07:37 PM
It's a widely told story, whether you believe it or not, and the military took steps to address it. Logically, I would assume that it was a real problem given that information. That's just where I'm coming from. If that's not acceptable then I'll strike the point from the debate and withdraw the statement. Still doesn't change the fact that nobody in their right mind would march into battle right now with a Garand if given the option to choose their battle rifle.

TexasRifleman
September 10, 2008, 07:43 PM
You heard from someone else that there isn't documentation. So prove it.

That's not how the world works my friend. You made a claim and cannot in any way prove it. Garand collectors have been looking for that same information for a long time.

The combined knowledge of many many Garand collectors that have written about this outweighs your claims of "it's a design flaw that took lives".

Don't get mad about it, I mean no offense.

On the face it does make sense which is why it keeps coming up in discussions of the Garand. It's common sense to think that a noise like that could be used by the enemy, but if it was an actual problem someone, somewhere would have written it down.

But people who live and breathe the Garand haven't found any proof and that's good enough for me. How many books have been written about just that rifle? I can't begin to imagine. And still nothing.

If you want to continue to believe it happened that's fine. If records turn up someday to show that it did happen it will be very interesting. It very well may have happened, it stands to reason that it did in fact. But, that's not any kind of evidence at all, that's all I'm saying.

It's a widely told story, whether you believe it or not, and the military took steps to address it.

It's a widely told story that aliens landed here, and the military took steps to address it with Project Blue Book. Doesn't mean ET is hiding in New Mexico.

Still doesn't change the fact that nobody in their right mind would march into battle right now with a Garand if given the option to choose their battle rifle.

I won't argue that at all, it would be crazy.

ftierson
September 10, 2008, 07:46 PM
Actually, how do you know when your rifle is empty?

With the M14 and M16, it's when you pull the trigger and nothing happens and you then notice that the action is locked back on an empty magazine...

With the AK-47/AKM/AK-74, it's when your rifle goes 'click' and you don't even have the action locked back on an empty magazine...

With the Garand and it's tacticool clip ping, you know immediately when to reload...

And, with the Garand, that reload is super fast...

Clip ping is cool...

Not bad...

:)

Forrest

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