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Historians and gun designers: a question about the M14

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by FOGeologist, Jul 11, 2016.

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  1. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    I strongly disagree with every one that says .308 Win/7.62mm NATO is "too powerful" for a light full-automatic rifle. Most people say this based on the M14 and to a lesser extent the FAL.

    The AR-10 in full auto is a very different beast. The same goes for the FG-42. Both of these are quite "controllable" at 9.5 to 10 pounds. And, other than barrel heating problems with both would be okay in the squad automatic rifle role.

    It also, to some degree, is based on unrealistic expectations. Are you expecting the same accuracy standing off-hand in full-auto as you get in semi-auto? Are you expecting all the bullets to hit a man-sized target at 300 yards?
     
  2. Float Pilot

    Float Pilot Member

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    Back when I was 6' 2' and 195 pounds I humped a selector equipped M14. I practiced shooting full auto A_LOT. I could do OK because I have a light trigger finger and could get two and three shot burst. I could hit man size silhouettes in the chest at 50 yards while I was standing and moving with two to three shot bursts. But there was no reason to do so....It had NO practical value as a fully automatic weapon, UNLESS I tied down the front end by wrapping the sling around something.

    ( You cannot kneel and wrap the sling under your forward combat boot. A long burst will roll you over on your back)

    The only reason we left the selectors on a few of our rifles was that we would cover the M60 PIG GUNNER while he was changing belts or barrels. We thought that maybe the sound of auto firing 7.62mm would hide the fact that the PIG was down for a few seconds.
     
  3. RecoilRob

    RecoilRob Member

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    Yes....I was thinking you probably COULD design a brake that would cancel out most of the recoil along with the muzzle rise....but I'd NOT want to be next to a fellow shooing it! Having an Armalite AR-50 with a very effective brake leads me to believe that any rifle cartridge could be tamed but the concussion delivered back to the shooter...and people near him...would be just terrible on the health of everyone.
     
  4. Gordon
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    Gordon Contributing Member

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    I guess nobody saw the video of the mag dump by La France in his m14K I put up ? No muzzle climb and subdued recoil impulse. Yes that was a modified M14 (with an m60 gas system) , Smith Enterprise still makes them for $7000 , they use a similiar to an M60 gas system tho these days.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDUmQQSCPtw
     
  5. Nature Boy
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    Nature Boy Contributing Member

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  6. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    The tighter the rifle butt stock is held into the shoulder, the more muzzle rise. Hold loose, let it bounce/vibrate on the shoulder. Easly done with an M16 carbine. Only got to shoot a guys M14 on full auto 1 time, not as easy. Lots of practice needed. http://www.photobucket.com/M16A1
     
  7. bfoosh006

    bfoosh006 Member

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  8. barnbwt

    barnbwt member

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    1) The audio makes it sound like an SMG (i.e. we're obviously not getting the full effect of boom and blast in that brief clip, which makes it seem more mild and controllable)
    2) The gun is bouncing against his shoulder (i.e. he is VERY firmly planted against its recoil, so much that it is rebounding off of him, again making a very violent event seem more mild)
    3) At around bullet number ten or so, and possibly earlier, the butt stock begins sliding & shifting around A LOT for such a 'controllable' rifle, nearly shoot out from under his shoulder (how far do you think the muzzle rose to allow the stock to drop +3"?)

    He did pretty good at controlling the thing for the full two seconds it takes to burn through a mag, much the same way a professional rider can control his position on a bull for eight seconds (and not an instant longer if he can help it). I've seen videos that make HK G3's and FAL's seem controllable as well. Doesn't mean I buy the argument they are easily controlled in practice ;)

    Letting a ~6lb 5.56 recoil into your shoulder is just a little different than letting a ~10lb 308 with a steel buttpad do the same ;)

    "Is that it?" at the end :D. Yup, the other issue with the whole M14 concept (and auto-rifles in general)

    TCB
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2016
  9. amlevin

    amlevin Member

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    If you want to predict how a rifle will behave in FA mode take a silhouette of the weapon and draw a line down the axis of the barrel. The farther above the center of the butt-plate this line falls, the greater the tendency for the muzzle to rise under FA.

    This is what made the M-16 more manageable as well as the AR-10, the straight line design.

    The rest is up to the ability of the shooter to absorb recoil without being put back on their heels.
     
  10. Happy Trails

    Happy Trails Member

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    "The .308 is, in my opinion, simply too powerful a cartridge for a hand-held full auto."

    That is my sentiment too. Shot the M60 Pig a lot. It was always a bad marriage, but it got the job done with what appeared to be control.

    Even the M16A1 seemed to just waste ammo on Full Auto. Or as my instructor pointed out, that meant "Ought to hit something."

    45 years later I shoot a bolt Mauser in .308 and a modern M1A in 308. I love the .308 cartridge and I prefer the skills of being a Marksman rather than a lead blaster.

    ...But full auto is sure fun. A few times, anyway. For serious full auto .308 use a machine gun that is made for it. IMHO.
     
  11. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    When somebody else is paying for the ammunition.:p
     
  12. barnbwt

    barnbwt member

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    This is where I am. Yeah, with brakes, bracing, technique, and controlled conditions, a practiced shooter can sort of control the gun. But that's asking a lot of anyone shooting the thing in anger; simply a bridge too far (or rather a bridge too lightweight). It simply wasn't a very practical feature*

    *The story mentioned about using it to mimic the automatic fire of an LMG during its reload was an interesting angle I hadn't heard before. Still though, it's not like it would be as useful for real suppression as the big gun due to controllability, so the sound really was the primary factor (maybe keep a magazine or two of blanks handy, and save some weight on lead :p)
     
  13. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    If you are expecting to hit a point target with more that the first round, you are expecting a bit too much from any fully automatic weapon.

    A sand bagged tripod with a good T&E device is required for that kind of control, or a rate of fire low enough the you can recover from the recoil and reaquire the target in the sight (approx 300 to 350 rpm), even with .22 LR.....

    MGs are for suppression and area denial.
     
  14. Swing

    Swing Member

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    Those are real beauties. It has been forever since I've seen one.
     
  15. barnbwt

    barnbwt member

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    It seems like most stocked guns at 30 Carbine and down are quite controllable. I think the issue is that 5.56 is "intermediate power" for semi weapons, and closer to the old overpowered "full power" rounds' drawbacks when talking full auto. P90s are stupidly controllable on full auto.
     
  16. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Which is why it's pointless to fire a hand-held weapon in full auto mode.

    Exactly.
     
  17. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    Unless the object is to suppress . . .
     
  18. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    It has been my experience that noise has little effect when it comes to suppressing the enemy. Suppressive fire, to be effective, must be killing fire.
     
  19. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    No, noise does not suppress.

    Suppressive fire must be accurate enough to hit the target and hit around the target with sufficient density to make the target seek cover. Putting all the round through the same hole is not a requirement.

    An M240 mounted as a coaxial machine gun has a circular dispersion of about 26 inches at 200 meters, it's not near that good off the bipod. By all accounts these, even off the bipod, are excellent at suppressive fire.
     
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    The point is, non-lethal fire is not suppressive fire.

    In combat, "working" a target is most effective in my experience -- that is, shooting at and around a known or suspected enemy location. I don't know where you got the idea about "Putting all the round through the same hole," but you have to put all of them (or almost all) in the target – which is the immediate area surrounding the suspected or known location.

    Putting them over the enemy’s head will have no effect at all. Putting them close, and by that I mean killing someone, will have an effect.
     
  21. RecoilRob

    RecoilRob Member

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    Mr Humphrey's comments remind me of the various newsreel video of troopers holding M16's over the log they're crouching behind and doing a mag-dump toward the VC. Have read many accounts from the VC on the receiving end of this fire and it seemed to actually HELP give them confidence rather than surpress or break their will to fight. Agree totally that unless rounds are striking very closely they in no way surpress and when they're all going into or over the trees well above you...the natural reaction is that 'these guys can't shoot!'
     
  22. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    A friend of mine won the Distinguished Service Cross -- his company was fighting in a Base Camp, and he noticed the VC would hold up AK 47s, spray off a magazine, and pull the gun back down again. My friend, who is a BIG guy, crawled toward the nearest place he'd seen them do this and waited. When a pair of hands came up holding an AK, he grabbed one wrist, pulled the VC half way out, and shot him with a .45. He kept crawling from spider hole to spider hole, and killed more than a dozen that way.
     
  23. Acera

    Acera Member

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    So for those that have so much disdain for the M-14, do you also use the same debate points against the BAR????
     
  24. HB

    HB Member

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the BAR weighs about twice as much. Also believe that some of them had a rate of fire option to slow them down.

    HB
     
  25. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    It stems from the question asked earlier as to what is considered "controllable"?

    I ventured that an M14 in full-auto is sufficiently "controllable" for the intended purpose of fire suppression off its bipod, but not necessarily "controllable" for multiple single point target hits with a single burst (unless the "point target" is a relatively large).
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2016
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