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Bayonets - Do They Still Have a Use?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by CmdrSlander, Aug 6, 2012.

  1. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    As you probably know, the M16 and M4 rifles in use by the US military are capable of accommodating a bayonet (the M9 bayonet, I believe). My question is this: should the next generation of carbines and rifles issued to the military be able to mount a bayonet? Is there any need for one these days?
  2. Esoxchaser

    Esoxchaser Well-Known Member

    Yes. Warfare is tending towards close quarter urban ordeals.
  3. cyclopsshooter

    cyclopsshooter Well-Known Member

    They make a pretty darn good tent stake too
  4. fatcat4620

    fatcat4620 Well-Known Member

    As long as wars are fought there will still be a need for a pointy stick.
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Work great for herding prisoners.
    Nobody wants to get stuck on the end of a bayonet.
    I don't care who ya are.

  6. danweasel

    danweasel Well-Known Member

    Sure. I taped mine to the side of my tent to make sure I could cut my way out in the event of a fire.
  7. CmdrSlander

    CmdrSlander Well-Known Member

    So a combat knife would have served the same purpose just as well.

    My question is if bayonets - mounted on rifles - still have a use.
  8. Caliper_Mi

    Caliper_Mi Well-Known Member

    Have modern humans evolved a resistance to bayonet wounds? A bayonet gives you extra reach over a combat knife and lets you wield both a rifle and a short spear at the same time.
  9. desidog

    desidog Well-Known Member

    I'd say now, yes, just as ever.

    A Garand without a bayonet is a mean, heavy club. If you run out of ammo, you can bash someone with it. Then reload, and start shooting again.

    An empty M4 with modern optics on the top is not as effective a club; and if you used it as one, you very well may damage the receiver extension and kill the zero on the optic.
  10. Acera

    Acera Well-Known Member

    Heck Yes they are still useful, especially if you know how to use it. Want proof?

    As recently as 2004 in Basra Iraq, 20 British soldiers were ambushed by 100 insurgents, when ammo ran low, they fixed bayonets and took care of business winning the fight in hand to hand combat. 20+ enemy dead, no British deaths, 3 minor wounds. That was even after they charged over 200 yards of open ground and attacked the enemy in their trenches!!!

    There is a tremendous amount psychological advantage to bayonet training and the mindset to employ it.


    Like I said, you have to know what you are doing, and have the balls to pull it off.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2012
  11. 68wj

    68wj Well-Known Member

    An M4, and more so M16, works very well on the blunt end. Bayonet fighting is taught with use of both sides of the rifle, and they will withstand more impact than some think. Smash, slash, thrust, butt-stroke, move on.

    Continued use of bayonets is cheap insurance to stay in the fight, and a confidence builder to the individual.
  12. missouri dave

    missouri dave Well-Known Member

    Yes. I like them for defensive purposes. Nothing says you don't want to get to close to me like a big sharp piece of metal.
  13. One_Jackal

    One_Jackal member

    Bayonets are low cost. They have many uses, including a last line of defense. Lets find something expensive, that serves no use to the soldier on the ground to make obsolete.
  14. akodo

    akodo Well-Known Member

    you got it backwards.

    If you are going to have a knife, why not have a knife that you can put solidly on the barrel of your rifle.
  15. Texan Scott

    Texan Scott Well-Known Member

    Yes... they still get used. I've seen 'em used. When all else fails, low tech still works. You do NOT want to charge that line of soldiers or try to grab that rifle. Nothing says calm down and back the off, in any language, like a line of fixed bayonets on leveled rifles.
  16. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

    Bayonets discourage people from getting too close. It's that simple.

    Hand to hand combat with rifles involves both the bayonet and what military people like to refer to as "butt stroke". "Butt stroke" is the polite term for "Smashing someone's face in with the butt of a rifle". That and the bayonet are the two primary tools used to keep an enemy from gaining control of your weapon.
  17. EnglishmanInArizona

    EnglishmanInArizona Well-Known Member

    I've been curious about this for a while. I had a relative who led an entire company in a bayonet charge in WW2 because the enemy had excellent cover and had to be dislodged quickly to keep the momentum of the battalion's advance. It worked for the same reason that most bayonet charges have worked - the enemy lost their nerve.

    I don't think there is the slightest bit of doubt about the psychological effects of sharp steel, both on the wielder and the intended recipient.

    That said, today's soldier carries a huge load, and the modern knife bayonet tends to be a pretty heavy piece of kit. In addition, how many in a modern infantry squad can actually even fix bayonets to their weapon? Less than half in the US Army, I believe.

    In fighting in built up areas, the bayonet adds length that is problematic.

    There is a lot that needs to be done to reduce the load carried by the modern soldier, and the bayonet is a relatively easy thing to eliminate. The knife bayonet is a relatively awkward cutting tool, so most soldiers carry pocket knives and/or small fixed blades anyway.

    For the very rare occasion on which it might be useful in combat, striking with the butt would almost certainly suffice and doesn't weigh anything extra.

    While in civilian life we can say "It is better to have it and not need it", things are a little different when you are carrying half your own bodyweight in equipment already.

    Edit to add:

    Crowd control is a classic use, and one where they have enormous potential.
  18. Coop45

    Coop45 Well-Known Member

    I haven't humped with a rifle company since 1968, but I seriously doubt an M4 would survive many horizontal butt strokes. On the other hand a bayonet is still a handy tool when the ammo is running low. The entrenching tool has already been downsized to something that would have little use other than digging a cat hole. Of course, if you only believe in best case scenario, why even take a rifle. A grunt needs lots of weapons to survive on the battlefield and none of them carry themselves there. They are carried on the back of the 0311 or the 11B
  19. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    I hear some Mosins shoot more accurately, or rather, group tighter with the bayonet.
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Well-Known Member

    I recall a young lieutenant published an article in Infantry Magazine, proposing to replace the bayonet with a sealed 10-round magazine for emergency use. He closed the article by saying he would take on anyone with his system and with them using the bayonet.

    Several people replied, "You're on. Your rifle is the one with the broken extractor and the case stuck in the chamber.":D

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