Study of soldier's thoughts on their guns

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by Adam5, May 26, 2007.

  1. Adam5

    Adam5 Atlanta Overwatch

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    http://www.military.com/NewsContent/0,13319,136938,00.html?ESRC=eb.nl

    Study: Soldiers Want Deadlier Guns

    Military.com | By Christian Lowe | May 25, 2007
    Nearly 80 percent of Soldiers said in a recent survey they are satisfied with their weapons, though almost half recommended a replacement for the standard-issued M9 pistol or ammunition with more stopping power.
    Additionally, nearly 30 percent of Soldiers in the December 2006 survey, conducted on behalf of the Army by the Center for Naval Analyses, said the M4 carbine should be replaced or more deadly ammunition fielded.

    "Across weapons, Soldiers have requested weapons and ammunition with more stopping power/lethality," the report said.

    The study was commissioned by the Army's Project Manager for Soldier Weapons to address concerns raised by Soldiers returning from combat about the dependability and effectiveness of their small arms.

    "This study assessed Soldier perspectives on the reliability and durability of their weapons systems in combat to aid in decisions regarding current and future small arms needs of the Army," said the study, which was obtained by Military.com.

    CNA surveyors conducted over 2,600 interviews with Soldiers returning from combat duty, asking them a variety of questions about accessories, weapons training, maintenance and recommended changes to their small arms.

    "The U.S. Army Infantry Center is conducting a study to refine the Army's Small Arms Strategy, which focuses on the employment of rifles, carbines, ammunition caliber, and future technologies," said Army spokesman, Lt. Col. William Wiggins, in a statement. "All Services are participating in this study, which is expected in the July/August 2007 timeframe."

    The survey lends weight to Army claims that current-issued weapons are effective despite growing criticism from Soldiers and lawmakers on Capitol Hill that the service should re-assess the standard M4 - as well as the M9 pistol.


    In April, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) sent a letter to acting Army secretary Pete Geren taking issue with the service's sole-source contract to buy about 500,000 M4 carbines despite evidence that new rifle technologies could provide more reliable weapons.

    The study found the most stoppage problems with the M249 machine gun and M9 pistol, with an average of about 30 percent of respondents saying they experienced stoppages with each weapon in firefights. About four in ten Soldiers who said they experienced jams during combat with their pistols or machine guns claimed it took them out of the fight.

    Though vocal critics of the M4 say it's prone to jamming in the talcum-like sand environments of Iraq and Afghanistan, only 19 percent of M4 users said they experienced stoppages in combat.

    But of those with malfunctioning M4s, nearly 20 percent said they were "unable to engage the target with that weapon during a significant portion of or the entire firefight after performing immediate or remedial action to clear the stoppage," the report said.

    Soldiers who attach accessories to their weapons experienced a disproportionate number of malfunctions, with M249 users nine times more likely to experience a stoppage "if accessories were attached via zip cord, four times more likely if attached with duct tape and three times more likely if attached with dummy cords or rails."

    "Accessory attachments had a significant impact on reported stoppages," the report said. "Those who attached accessories to their weapon were more likely to experience stoppages, regardless of how the accessories were attached."

    The CNA surveyors also asked Soldiers for their opinions on possible improvements to their small arms. The top request from Soldiers was for more knock-down power, reigniting the debate over America's small arms caliber choices.

    "When speaking to experts and Soldiers on site, many commented on the limited ability to effectively stop targets, saying that those personnel targets who were shot multiple times were still able to continue pursuit," the report said.

    A full 20 percent of M9 users said they wanted a new weapon, and "some were more specific and requested a return to the Colt .45 for standard issue pistols," including others who asked for hollow-point ammo.

    Hollow point rounds have been deemed illegal for military use.

    Additionally, M16 users were "consistent and adamant" in asking to be re-issued the more compact M4.
     
  2. Macktee

    Macktee New Member

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    Interesting. Thanks.

    I think the best rifle we ever used was the M-14. Had the reliability of the M-1 plus magazine loading capability. Somewhat heavy, as was the ammo, but a very good combat rifle.

    For fun shooting, I loved the M-16. I trained on the M-1, had a "familiarization" on the M-14 and then was issued the M-16. I liked it much better. Light and easy to shoot.

    I never used the M-9 but was issued the M-1911A1 and loved it! Throws a big ol' hunka lead and is a lot more accurate than some people would have you believe. I couldn't understand why the Army discontinued it. But, the army has don't lots and lots of things I couldn't understand...
     

  3. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

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    When are people going to realize that stopping power in a pistol is a myth?
     
  4. foshizzle

    foshizzle New Member

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    Funny how the military won't use hollowpoints to kill terrorists but the police will use them to kill Americans.
     
  5. Dan H

    Dan H New Member

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    How so? I agree that shot placement is more important but in the heat of battle I would rather take my chances with a .45 than a .22. If I hit someone in the leg in battle with a .22, chances are he will still be able to walk, however with a .45 its doubtful. Sometimes you dont always have the luxury of placing shots perfectly in a hectic situation and you must trust that if you hit a bad guy anywhere on the body, that they will in fact not be going far... :2cents:
     
  6. Dan H

    Dan H New Member

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    Ah, the Irony....
     
  7. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

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    The current standard US military rifle fires a .223 round. I am sure that if shot in the foot this round would be more than capable of stopping someone.

    The size of a bullet is not necessarily what causes the cessation of action or "stops" the person. There is a video floating around where a guy took two .40 shots to the chest and walked to the ambulance. Except for the blood, it was not obvious that this person was shot.

    Shot placement is everything.
     
  8. USMC - Retired

    USMC - Retired New Member

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    That's because the police are not bound by the Hague Convention of 1899.
     
  9. Macktee

    Macktee New Member

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    Damn Guns! He knew that, he was just making a point.

    However, if he combs his hair verrry carefully, it doesn't show...


    The whole thing does seem sorta silly though. Yep, dum-dums be outlawed. They be "inhumane", while war itself is OK. It's just as humane as baseball, apple pie and all that other crap.......... :puke:
     
  10. tace

    tace New Member

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    Yeah, if I was going to war, I would probably prefer the HK G3 (like some of our allies use, what my other brother and father used) to M16/M4. I wouldn't care if I had a M9 for backup since for its purpose it can do what it needs to granted the user is capable of doing their part.

    About the M4 and the .223 , I remember my brother telling me that the .223 would put a small hole in the front and the back of the bg but they would keep on going. VS he said that one of his teammates got hit in the arm with an AK round and was down.
     
  11. asbrand

    asbrand Active Member

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    Main reason I prefer .308 over .223 is it turns most cover into mere concealment.

    Walls that stop the .223 don't even faze the .308 round.

    Doesn't mean I want to be shot by either one... 8)