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What is the definition of a battle rifle?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Miss Debbie, Jul 12, 2010.

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  1. Miss Debbie

    Miss Debbie Member

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    I went shooting with one of my girlfriends and her husband who came back from the Middle East. I brought my AR rifle and he went on this tangent about the effectiveness on the ammo it uses and bluntly told me that I should sell my AR for a “real” rifle because the 223/556 is mainly a personal defense round and not a true battle round. So what would be a true battle rifle?
     
  2. DeepSouth

    DeepSouth Member

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    It would be rifle that is used in battle, I guess. The AR15 is the civilian version of the primary rifle our Military uses, I don't know how much more "battle" you can get than that, without joining the Military. Makes me wonder what he had when in the Middle East.

    You could have just told him a personal defense round was fine, because you weren't planning on going into battle.
     
  3. DustyVermonter

    DustyVermonter Member

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    The term battle rifle is defined as a rifle that shoots full power amunition such as the M14,M1 Garand,H&KG3,FN-FAL. When I think of the term battle rifle I associate it with the M1 garand and the M14, full power ammunition would be 7.62x51nato(.308) and 7.62x63(30-06) and 7.62x54r and so on. Do a Wiki-search as they have a pretty good definition of the term. Also do a wiki-search of the M14 and they have soething in there saying that the M14 was the last "so called battle rifle" made. In my eyes there is a difference between an assault rifle and a battle rifle but I'm sure this subject is debatable.
     
  4. Tirod

    Tirod Member

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    "Battle rifle" has been that class of .30 cal and bigger semi auto rifles in general military use before the adoption of the intermediate calibers. They started as bolt actions, moved into semi auto, became refined with magazine feed, and eventually gained pistol grips in a wayward attempt to merge assault rifles with high powered calibers.

    In a timeline sense, from Mauser 98k, Enfield, and Springfield, thru Garand and G43, to the FNFAL, HK, and M14. The entire class of weapons was dumped - cancelled - killed off - superceded - and made obsolete by the assault rifle. Real soldiers carry intermediate caliber burst/full auto lightweight weapons with almost double the ammo and inclination to shoot it. A few specialty positions tote the longer, heavier, bulkier, harder to shoot battle rifles, carrying much less ammo and suffering tactical restrictions where long ranges don't present themselves. They are Squad Designated Marksmen (not snipers.)

    Since 90% of soldiers carrying a rifle use a "Poodle Death-Ray Weapon," not a "battle rifle," I have to wonder what logistics and support unit in the Green Zone he served with, as the combat troops are traditionally outnumbered 10 to 1 in the force structure.

    I would expect the next gem of information to be how he threw down his jammomatic M4 and grabbed an AK every chance he got . . . :evil:
     
  5. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    "In a timeline sense, from Mauser 98k, Enfield, and Springfield, thru Garand and G43, to the FNFAL, HK, and M14."

    Yup. That's pretty much all in the past, nowadays. "Battle rifle" as based on cartridge capability is sorta out-the-window.

    Used to be, generalized infantry had battle rifles, backed up by artillery. Tuned-up battle rifles were used by a relatively few, as snipers. Relatively few full-auto weapons.

    That's changed. Changed a bunch. In the classic sense there's not really such a thing as a battle rifle. Some militaries use the FAL; others, mostly the AK or some variant of the M16. More sniper rifles, in several cartridge configurations. Lots of full-auto in intermediate-sized cartridges as well as full-sized. And a squad can have some sort of "all of the above" mix.

    Really, IMO, comparing a .223 and a .308 is pointless without comparing the intended use.
     
  6. Quentin

    Quentin Member

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    The definition of "battle rifle" has been addressed very well above. If you need a heavy rifle with a heavy bullet that can hit hard way out to 600+ meters then maybe a battle rifle is for you. If you're like many of us, the advantages of the smaller 5.56 make more sense.

    As far as this guy's behavior, it does happen - people fall in love with one thing or drink the kool-aid then preach to everyone else that anything else is junk. And no doubt a little MCP (male chauvinist pig) was involved as well. IE: "how could Miss Debbie know more than I do about rifles, after all I'm a guy and she..." (Something to that effect) :D

    Don't worry, you made a good choice with the AR and as long as you like it, who cares what he thinks. That's what really matters, use what YOU like and ignore criticism that is not constructive.
     
  7. happygeek

    happygeek Member

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    The last time I was in a library (about 4 months ago) I tried to find a definition in Janes. They seem to use the term for any standard issue infantry rifle. Wikipedia will tell you it's a military rifle firing a full size rifle round, as opposed to an intermediate round like the 5.56 NATO or 5.45x39mm, but that could have just been written by an AR hater like the person the OP mentioned.

    Personally, I like to use the term the way Wikipedia does to differentiate between battle rifles and assault rifles, but that's just me. I don't think there is really any official definition of the battle rifle term.
     
  8. claiborne

    claiborne Member

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    M1 Garand = battle rifle
    BAR = battle rifle
    M-14 = battle rifle
    Ar-15 = one of most adaptive, effective and economical rifles in existance for having all-day fun, blasting stuff, self defense and going on the warpath after varmints and bad guys. It is the perfect auto-loading rifle for smaller people and bigger people that do not like packing lots of weight or extra recoil.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2010
  9. Hatterasguy

    Hatterasguy Member

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    The latest would be the FN SCAR heavy.
     
  10. gb0399

    gb0399 Member

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    From my experience, anyone who comes up to you and wants to talk about how they have "been in the s**t", has no idea about the "s**t"

    and if they want to talk about what rounds are good at killing people, they have probably never killed anyone.

    The guys that have truely "been there and done that" don't bring up those issues with ladies they meet on the range. Those stories are reserved for late night benders with other guys that were there with you.
     
  11. hammerklavier

    hammerklavier Member

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    It's a rifle you take into battle. Not to be confused with a battle carbine, which is probably what you would have (if you took it into battle).
     
  12. C-grunt

    C-grunt Member

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    +10

    I have had a few people tell me the 5.56/.223 is an ineffective round. When asked how it failed them in combat, they tell me how a brother of a coworkers cousin hates it and he is in "Spec Ops".

    Miss Debbie. Your AR15 is a fine rifle for defending yourself or even battle. The 5.56 is a very deadly round and will most likely work if shot placement is good.

    There are no absolutes in combat, so be prepared for things to happen that you dont think will.
     
  13. happygeek

    happygeek Member

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    The funny thing about that is, I have yet to hear anyone who is a member of the SOF community call themselves "Spec Ops".
     
  14. dom1104

    dom1104 Member

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    A Battle Rifle is a rifle that you cannot afford to practice with. :)
     
  15. C-grunt

    C-grunt Member

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    exactly!!!
     
  16. Rexster

    Rexster Member

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    "Battle rifle" is a relative term, that means what the the speaker/writer wants it to mean. "Main battle rifle" is a more precise term, referring to rifles using cartridges that were used in the era when men with such rifles won major battles on their own, using long-range rifle fire. The Anglo-Boer Wars to early WWI would be such an era, with some such battles extending into the mid-20th Century. Today, heavy weapons do most of the the heavy lifting. A main battle rifle still has its place in Iraq and Afghanistan, but not in the hands of every soldier.

    Those folks who complain about the performance of .223/5.56 are basing their complaints on the use of Hague Convention-compliant ammo, that the military is usually compelled to use. We civilians can use JSP ammo that causes tremendous damage, especially at the short range typical of civilian self-defense. Such ammo is not all that good at drilling through vehicles, compared to typical main battle rifle cartridges, but it is generally very good for private citizen defensive needs.

    While I do like having a rifle that uses MBR-class ammo, I don't consider it very good for go-to defensive purposes unless I am in a rural area.
     
  17. husker

    husker Member

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    something i can BASH YOUR SKULL IN works for me
     
  18. Hatterasguy

    Hatterasguy Member

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    Thats why I love the Mosin, if I run out of ammo its one heck of a war club.:D
     
  19. Maverick223

    Maverick223 Member

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    The term "battle rifle" has been well defined above, as well as in the past. Moving on to the important stuff...Do you like your AR? If you answered "yes" to this question, carry on and disregard the foolish comments by said friend's husband. Was he in the Marine Corp.?...that would explain a few things. :p If he continues to harass you about it (assuming you go shooting with him again), just kindly tell him "thank you for your service, but I like my rifle, it is good enough for me so I think i'll keep it"...if that doesn't work, resort to jarhead jokes. :evil:
     
  20. Joe Demko

    Joe Demko Member

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    Just two minutes from sanity.
    "Battle rifle" is a hobbyist's term having its origins with some gunwriter or another; many credit Chuck Taylor with coining the term. Unless things have changed since the last time this came up, no military uses the term. When I wore green, we were all issued plain old rifles...which we could also refer to as an M-16A1 or a weapon without getting screamed at over it.
    As a hobbyist's term, it has some limited usefulness.
     
  21. Maverick223

    Maverick223 Member

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    ...and I thought the only thing he came up with was a comfortable pair of shoes. :p
     
  22. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Googling for "Patton + Garand", the top of the list was this cite: "George S. Patton, Jr. proclaimed it, "the greatest single battle implement ever devised by man." That would have been around 1945.

    Rifle, implement, does it really matter?
     
  23. Maverick223

    Maverick223 Member

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    Dunno...It might. Perhaps he had a taste for the spirits, and the rifle could be broken down and made into a emergency resupply liquor still. ;)
     
  24. dougw47

    dougw47 Member

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    Ballistics Table in Yards 5.56 ammo (remember .22 LR muzzle...1,400 fps)
    .224 68 gr., .355 B.C. www.hornady.com
    Range (yards) Muzzle 50 100 200 300 400 500
    Velocity (fps) 2800 2671 2546 2306 2079 1866 1668
    Energy (ft.-lb.) 1184 1077 979 803 653 526 420
    Trajectory (100 yd. zero)-1.5 -0.1 0.0 -3.9 -14.3 -32.8 -61.3
    Come Up in MOA -1.5 0.3 0.0 1.8 4.5 7.8 11.7

    Ballistics Table in Yards 7.62 ammo
    30 Cal .308 168 gr BTHP 168 gr., .450 B.C. www.hornady.com
    Range (yards) Muzzle 50 100 200 300 400 500
    Velocity (fps) 2700 2600 2503 2315 2134 1962 1799
    Energy (ft.-lb.) 2719 2522 2337 1998 1699 1436 1207
    Trajectory (100 yd. zero-1.5 -0.1 0.0 -4.0 -14.6 -32.8 -60.0
    Come Up in MOA -1.5 0.2 0.0 1.9 4.6 7.8 11.5

    A Battle Rifle is the rifle the majority of troops carry into battle, for 50+ yrs that has been the M16 and now the M4. It is not perfect and has certain limitations. The military has been searching for the "Perfect" 5.56/.224 bullet for some time...we keep hearing about the next "Miracle Bullet" that is going to make the 5.56 as good as or better than the 7.62. Scientifically, that would violate all the rules of physics.

    As you can see from the charts above, the 7.62 is three times better at 500 yds than the 5.56. Does that mean every soldier needs to carry an M14 or similar size rifle? No? And the military is no going to go back, because of many factors we have discussed...mostly money. Nobody wants to drop that cash when 90% of the troops are happy with the 5.56.

    The main problem as I see it is the 5.56's maximum effective range is realistically about 300 yds. I love my AR and I have shot it out to 600 yds and hit paper, but it probably has less power at that range than a .38. Very few people think the .38 is a good combat round.

    House to house in Iraq, the M4 was well received. The short-barrel rifle is a lot better at clearing houses than a full-sized 7.62, and there is less chance over-penetration with the 5.56 through flimsy walls...where civilians may be hiding. The 7.62 will shoot through vehicles, walls and people.

    Moving into Afghanistan...the insurgents have moved from house to house fights out into the fields and mountains. They learned against the Russians, in another 10 year war (the Russians gave up and quit) to hide in the hills and snipe. A recent video showed a platoon tied down and hiding from a single sniper that was shooting from beyond the maximum capability of the M4's. In a situation like that, all the troops can do is call in for back up! Which resulted in a missile strike that killed helpless civilians. Would a few 7.62's have helped in that situation..in my opinion - yes! Oh, well.

    The good news seems to be that the military is sending more 7.62's into the battle zone. And it appears that the upper brass has given in and admitted that different battle zones require different tools (Rifles). You can not win a war without good, well supplied soldiers. We have the best in the world! Let's all work together to keep them the best equipped force in the world.

    The predator drones are a nice gimmick, 50 cal sniper rifles have their place, but nothing takes the place of the men on the ground, occupying territory and bringing peace. The Russians put over 100,000 troops in country. They got their butts kicked, and reportedly lost more men than the 50,000+ we lost in Viet Nam. We have lost 5,000 in Afghanistan in 10 years...we lost more in some months in Viet Nam...and for what? The politicians changed their mind and decided to quit after spilling all our precious blood. It may happen again!

    I keep asking this question...we are invading the Afghan's homeland, have driven out one government and set up our own, do we wonder why they hate us? What will we have to do to convince their leaders, mullahs and imams, to give up and surrender? Will a "Magic Bullet" do that? Will bigger bullets do that? What are we going to have to do? Nuke every mountain?

    They have been fighting invaders for about 5,000 years, are we willing to exterminate them to the last soldier...to win? We see that if we kill one soldier...two take his place tomorrow...coming from Pakistan and what-is-it -stans all around the country...and even traitors have come from the US to fight against our troops. I feel like that reporter the other day, yelling to Obama..."Can we win?" America is still waiting for him to answer. Are you?

    No, I am not running for office, and am down off my soap-box for now!
     
  25. Maverick223

    Maverick223 Member

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    ^ Overall that was a pretty decent speech...I even read part of it. :p
     
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