PDA

View Full Version : M-4 rifle only good for 535 rounds



Stonewall
01-22-2010, 12:51 AM
Quite interesting I thought .

Watch the two video's from Colt.

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/12/m4-and-m4a1-guns/



Glenn:D

RJM
01-22-2010, 07:11 AM
Glenn,
That was worth watching. I had to notice the guy was firing the M4 essentially as an open bolt full auto, mag after mag. If a round had stayed chambered for long, it would have cooked off after a few mags.

Also you have to consider the source - The New York Times. They're not the most objective bunch & will spin/distort anything to make the military look incompetent.

Regards, Ron

chino69
01-22-2010, 07:11 AM
Quite interesting I thought .

Watch the two video's from Colt.

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/12/m4-and-m4a1-guns/



Glenn:D

Glenn,
I've watched the video and my suspicion is that it did not come from Colt. The reason I say this is I don't believe a major manufacturer like Colt would have a human firing the weapon; changing magazines, yes. At the end of the video, the barrel droops and the upper self destructs. No responsible major manufacturing corporation's safety program would allow a human being to be subjected to possible injury as a result of destructive testing.

Additionally, the weapon was subjected to use beyond anything it would experience on the battlefield. The A2 version of the venerable M16 and variants, which has been in service for years, has a three round burst as opposed to fully automatic. It seems that after the Viet Nam War, when all the cost, rounds expended, etc. were tallied up by the GAO (General Accounting Office), the change to the three round burst was incorporated. As grim as this may sound, for each confirmed kill in Viet Nam over 200,000 rds. were expended. Analyists, accountants, along with a retuen to controlled rd. marksmanship replaced the 'spray and pray' methods used in Viet Nam during a firefight.

Lou Baccino

JonE
01-22-2010, 08:11 AM
Things like this bug me. Catastrophic breakdown is nothing new, everything has its limits. This is not the way you shoot in combat, with very very few exceptions. The 3 shot bust model went over 900 rounds. Yes the M-4's are breaking down in combat situations, many are past their useful life and should have been replaced or rebuilt long ago. My days go back to the Browning air and water cooled, the BAR and M-1. The water cooled was the only one that could withstand anything like this torture test. As soon as your tracers started to wander, you changed barrels (in the field). Your kit contained at least one extra barrel and asbestas gloves so you change them hot. With the BAR we were told that "IF" we restricted ourselves to 3 shot bursts we would never have a failure. When Browning demonstrated his water cooled he linked 20,000 rounds together and held the trigger, I am not aware of any other machine gun that could do it

Gerry
01-22-2010, 08:22 AM
first the M4 Rifle is set up for 3 shot burst. {not sustained auto fire}
Even a 30 browning would have a stoppage at those rates of fire.
I do have to admit that the M4 could use the slightly heavier barrel but it's not really a necessity.
It,s a fine fire arm combined with the new scopes and other sighting
devices of today. The 40mm launcher configuration is probably one of the best for an Urban combat Role.
Still it could use an upgrade to a larger caliber. It was fine for quite a while but i think cartridges like the 6.8 might be a better choice .
others would be the 30 br for urban combat.
So far it has proven itself many times over.
A new upper assembly would be cost efective.

Paul Fielder
01-22-2010, 11:35 AM
Good thing the average foot soldier only carries 534 rounds of ammo...;)

Asa Yam
01-22-2010, 12:32 PM
No, not all M4s are set up for 3 round burst. M4A1 Carbines (the M4 is not classified as a rifle) used by Special Operations Command units (and others) do not have the burst feature.

The M4's barrel profile has changed before. IIRC, prototype barrels ruptured in as little as 200 rounds of continuous fire. The barrel now in question (by NY Times and others) incorporated more material to prevent this.

Someone else summed up the M4's isues w/ sustained fire very well - IIRC, it goes "If you want a portable weapon that can fire in full auto for short periods of time, use an M4. If you want to shoot a lot of ammo in full auto, use a belt fed machine gun. Don't confuse the two weapons for one another."

Source:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M4_carbine

HovisKM
01-22-2010, 12:37 PM
Won't have to worry about it much longer.....the M16 Varients are on the way out. New rifle already accepted.

Hovis

Gerry
01-22-2010, 12:53 PM
It's up to the squad leader to pick and choose along with an ok
By the co for a mission. Long range recons etc require different equipment
They can pick and choose what they need for a mission.
the m4 gas proven it's self time and time again. still if it were Me
I like the 40mm version carbine. nothing makes a statement like a nice 40mm round'' Great for clearing out rooms

crb
01-22-2010, 01:35 PM
It would be interesting to know what the legal status of the rifle used in the video. Were those civilians destroying an expensive Class 3 rifle or was it a sales demo or was it military personel doing an unauthorized firing or what ?

By the comments towards the end of the vid it sounded a lot like a 'hold my beer' session.

Gerry
01-22-2010, 02:57 PM
Really that's just what it was a beer session.
The new platform Fn is ready but not battle proven yet FN scored a victory.
Rush in a new basic combat weapon for US forces made by a foreign company.
Baretta makes the M9 that's an Italian company . More profit to Europe. Questions arise about the 9mm also.
Marines like the old 1911 45 for stopping power .
The AR would be fine in a 7mm or 30 caliber.
The stopages troops are reporting are due to two things .
Dirty rifles and getting then way to hot.

Rick B
01-24-2010, 03:17 PM
It's up to the squad leader to pick and choose along with an ok
By the co for a mission. Long range recons etc require different equipment
They can pick and choose what they need for a mission.
the m4 gas proven it's self time and time again. still if it were Me
I like the 40mm version carbine. nothing makes a statement like a nice 40mm round'' Great for clearing out rooms

The direct impingement system of the M-16/M-4 system is badly in need of replacement. It is maintenance intensive, gets hot much too quickly, and wears barrels out much too quickly. That is why HK and others have piston actuated uppers they are trying to sell the government. They stay much cooler. The bolt assembly stays much cleaner and does not require cleaning as frequently. The barrel life is several times that of the M-16/M-4, even with the extended barrel life claimed by FN.

Spec Ops personnel are the very ones pushing the change from the old system. When they engage bad guys they are normally very outnumbered and need to supply massive firepower rapidly to either accomplish the objective or disengage and live to fight another day. They do not need to clean rifles in the middle of the engagements.

Gerry
01-24-2010, 07:37 PM
I can't see the reason in some people.
Depending on a foreign country supplying our troops.
We are best served depending on our self.
Or is it International trade first?.
The socum is in service and the M14 .
2nd infantry is rearmed with the M14.
Another proven platform.
Anything that Europe can make we can Make Better.
In any event we need to give our boys what they need ,plenty of it and on Time.

BottleBaby
01-25-2010, 10:47 AM
I saw this same thing done with an AK. The AK only lasted about 400 rounds and the handguards were openly burning.

Gerry
01-25-2010, 01:22 PM
Your absoluely correct anything can be abused.
One poster mentioned the heavy 30 cal machine gun.
The water cooled browning heavy.
Run out of water or mess up the tube and you can overheat that too.
so far it's one of the few .
If you really need lots of rounds then use the gatteling gun
The BAR was shot in 6 round or 3 round bursts.
The 30 air cooled 1919 A4 and A 6 was shot maximum 30 seconds .
That's about one belt of 250 before a new box of ammo.
That got hot really quickly also. That's why the asbestos glove and the new barrel
Headspacing was easy and quick.
The new Saw {squad automatic weapon] is for sustained auto shooting.
You can overheat that too.
The 16 is fine it just needs a face lift
I need the surplus ammo too. :D

Old Gunner
01-25-2010, 05:33 PM
A educational TV reinactment of a Medal of Honor Hero's actions in WW2 told of how he'd held off a German attack single handed using the weapons of a group of GI wounded he was protecting.
The first weapon he picked up was a BAR. He fired the BAR as fast as he could empty it and change out mags till the barrel turned red and drooped, then tossed it and began switching from one automatic weapon to another (Thompsons, BAR, etc)letting fired guns cool while using the others.

I have read that unless the BAR was fired in short bursts it would burn out the bore within one thousand rounds.

Water cooled Vickers MGs had the barrels switched out every ten thousand rounds with limits of ten thousand rounds fired in a one hour period. Barrels were still usable for several thousand more rounds but at longer ranges accuracy was usually compromised.
Earlier experiments by Hiram Maxim with unhardened bores showed bores worn out within 3,000 rounds. By 12,000 rnd bullets were simply dropping to the ground in front of the gun.
From those experiments a process for oil hardening the surface of the bore was developed.

The double base powders though now moderated to reduce operating temperatures , still erode bores faster than single base powders.
For awhile the US had brought back single base for 5.56, but now use a double base, the lessons learned apparently forgotten.

Those AR user countries who's ammunition uses only single base powders report much better performance, durability, and reliability.

Years ago experiments with the M60 LMG using a CO2 cylinder to inject cold gases into a cooling jacket promised to allow a high rate of fire and higher number of rnds between barrel changes. Don't know if that turned out well in the long run.
It might at least reduce the IR signature at night.

Gerry
01-25-2010, 08:40 PM
CORRECT Old Gunner