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Posted: 1/10/2006 7:44:38 PM EDT
In spite of millions spent by the Penatagon on various R&D projects and years of invites to foreign and domestic firearms manufacurers to find an infantry rifle to replace the M-16 system, nobody has come up with anything markedly better than what we already have, and is cost vs benefit effective. Have we seen the "peak of firearm development as we know it? Have Stoner and Kalishnikov created the proverbial mousetraps? In all other times of war firearms changed quickly, except for this one. Any thoughts?
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 7:50:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By gewamser:
In spite of millions spent by the Penatagon on various R&D projects and years of invites to foreign and domestic firearms manufacurers to find an infantry rifle to replace the M-16 system, nobody has come up with anything markedly better than what we already have, and is cost vs benefit effective. Have we seen the "peak of firearm development as we know it? Have Stoner and Kalishnikov created the proverbial mousetraps? In all other times of war firearms changed quickly, except for this one. Any thoughts?



The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 7:56:32 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 7:58:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 8:08:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 8:11:08 PM EDT
I am glad I own one... again. I missed it.
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 8:20:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By michealj:

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3



+4
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 8:22:04 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/10/2006 8:22:19 PM EDT by ExParatrooper]

Originally Posted By AR-15User:

Originally Posted By michealj:

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3



+4



+5
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 8:41:11 PM EDT
I think the US military should always be looking for a replacement service rifle. It promotes technological growth and development. That said, the only reason I can see the US military moving away from the M16 series is if they decide on a caliber change, or if new technology appears that is leaps and bounds above existing firearm technology. If and when new technology comes to the market, I think that many will respectfully abandon the M16 family for the next step up.
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:04:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ExParatrooper:

Originally Posted By AR-15User:

Originally Posted By michealj:

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3



+4



+5



+6
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:25:35 PM EDT
Firearm development will continue, its only a matter of time before the m-16 platform is replaced. The real question is, how long until it is replaced?
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:33:27 PM EDT
I love my M4gery, don't get me wrong, but the "M-16" platform itself continues to develop.

I was reading about the development of the SOAR by the Ferfrans company, and saw that though they were retrofitting the Philipine government's M-16A1, the SOAR born from the A1 was completely different.

Rate reducing buffer systems, and more reliable gas systems are where I think the M-16/AR-15 platform is headed. The M-16 is a damn fine weapon, and +1 i will trust my life with it, but it is far from the pinnacle of firearms design. Asking this question on a AR forum is like asking Camaro fanatics if the Camaro is the pinnacle of firearms design, haha
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:38:23 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/10/2006 9:40:28 PM EDT by AKLover_91]
nope. the ar is a step sideways. Mr. Kalashnikov designed the pinnacle.

But the AR is second, especially once piston uppers are common/perfected.

And yeah, i think it'll be a long time till someone can come up with a weapon better than the AK and/or AR
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:39:23 PM EDT
there will soon be the phased plasma rifle in the 40 watt range

Link Posted: 1/11/2006 12:57:53 AM EDT
M2
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 1:01:18 AM EDT
AR-180 system....
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 1:04:30 AM EDT
Not even close.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 1:17:33 AM EDT
The musket was the pinnacle for quite a few years, too. Something better always comes along....


[survivalist] IF society is around long enough to invent it. [/survivalist]
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 2:16:22 AM EDT
Decreased emphasis on small arms in battle has created a decreased demand for improvements in this area. Our existing small arms (AK, AR, shotgun, Hi-Point) do a great job of launching lead projectiles a short range against unarmored targets. NASA could spend years and billions designing the ultimate dishwasher, but a Kmart model will do the job just as well. Until aliens that can deflect 556 invade the planet, there is no enemy on earth that requires invention of a new military rifle.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 2:25:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By STG77:
Not even close.



Finally, some sense. The M16 is the pinacle of smallarms design like the Ferrari 246 Dino is the pinnacle of automotive design. Both made in similar times, both gorgeous to look at, both great to play with, both too expensive to produce, both unreliable for daily use by untrained people, both difficult and expensive to maintain.

The AK is the Tpyota Corolla of guns, runs forever, anyone can use it, can be maintained by a closet-full of monkeys with sticks and rocks.

Wanna go racing four weekends a year until next season or get to work six days a week for ten years?
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 3:03:53 AM EDT
ak makes noise ar hits targets.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 3:16:41 AM EDT
SIG 550/551? G36? Cost effectiveness is relative to how much money you have, for towelheads, an AK is cost effective. For the US its the M16. Europe has some mighty fine weapons.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 3:35:02 AM EDT

Originally Posted By UVvis:
I think the US military should always be looking for a replacement service rifle. It promotes technological growth and development. That said, the only reason I can see the US military moving away from the M16 series is if they decide on a caliber change, or if new technology appears that is leaps and bounds above existing firearm technology. If and when new technology comes to the market, I think that many will respectfully abandon the M16 family for the next step up.



AR-15 is a great design....but it is something like 50 years old.
ONe would think that someone could have come up with something better in the interim.
But they won't...ever.
You can thank NFA of 34, GCA of 68, and MG Ban of 86 for it.
Who have all the great firearms inventors been?
Tinkerers and individuals - most were not even involved in firearms.
They just got an idea in their head, and went out in the garage and started working on a design.
Do that now, without registering with the .gov, paying taxes, and getting a cavity search, and it is a felony.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 6:46:30 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/11/2006 6:49:09 AM EDT by boltcatch]

Have we seen the "peak of firearm development as we know it?


No. The modern AR with its free float rails and whatnot is heavier than it needs to be, if only because the AR was not originally designed to have all of those features. They're all retrofits, essentially. A rifle designed from the ground up to have those features will weigh less.

Until then, I don't think you'll see anything to surpass it.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 7:17:05 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/11/2006 8:28:43 AM EDT by DevL]

Originally Posted By boltcatch:

Have we seen the "peak of firearm development as we know it?


No. The modern AR with its free float rails and whatnot is heavier than it needs to be, if only because the AR was not originally designed to have all of those features. They're all retrofits, essentially. A rifle designed from the ground up to have those features will weigh less.

Until then, I don't think you'll see anything to surpass it.



Really? Is this why the SCAR-L which was designed form the ground up to have its rails weighs more than the AR platform?

The AR would be perfect if it had a better selector, ambi bolt release and a charging handle that did not require you to come off your sight picture. At least from an ergonomic perspective.

AK the pinnacle of firearms? What a joke. Horrible ergonomics, poor accuracy, bad charging handle location, Horible selector, reloads take forever, no bolt holdback, piss poor irons, the list goes on and on and on...
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 7:20:49 AM EDT
Great comments guys! What I see, even with all the improvements in sighting and furniture and gas systems, and ammo...is still simply a variation on a theme and the basic technology still rules.
Short of a "phazer" my imagination is wondering, where is this all going? Don't know.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 7:54:39 AM EDT
You clearly have little or no experience with Government procurement methods.

G
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 8:03:01 AM EDT

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:
You can thank NFA of 34, GCA of 68, and MG Ban of 86 for it.
Who have all the great firearms inventors been?
Tinkerers and individuals - most were not even involved in firearms.
They just got an idea in their head, and went out in the garage and started working on a design.
Do that now, without registering with the .gov, paying taxes, and getting a cavity search, and it is a felony.



Even to talk out loud about creating a new machine gun can get you a conspiracy charge from the BATFEs. If you want to design, you have to work for a major manufacturer.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 8:46:06 AM EDT
Or you could just invest in a type 07 FFL and have at it...

Anyone can do it. Just some paperwork, etc.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 8:56:48 AM EDT

Originally Posted By michealj:

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3



+4

Max
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 9:03:30 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/11/2006 9:05:39 AM EDT by SinistralRifleman]
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 9:09:00 AM EDT

Originally Posted By maxell27:

Originally Posted By michealj:

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3



+4

Max



+5

Nathan
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 9:21:43 AM EDT

Originally Posted By gewamser:
Have we seen the "peak of firearm development as we know it?



IMO, no, but we will only see incremental evolutionary change - not revolutionary improvements - until we see fundamental changes in ammo technology and/or weapon design.

IMO all the postwar intermediate power ammo is in the same ballpark. Some are better than others for one thing or another. They all strike different balances of recoil, range, penetration, lethality, etc., but then they were all designed around slightly different requirements. I'm a 6.5 Grendel fan, but I don't see any one system doing everything better any time soon.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 9:53:43 AM EDT

Originally Posted By BushmasterGuy77:

Originally Posted By maxell27:

Originally Posted By michealj:

Originally Posted By JE3146:

Originally Posted By jr1092:

Originally Posted By TylerM_8:

The M16 platform is one of the greatest weapon systems ever produced and I will trust my life with it in combat.



+1



+2



+3



+4

Max



+5

Nathan



+6

The only system more flexible than the AR was the Stoner 63A weapons system....HOWEVER it wasn't as reliable ( though with a few years of developement it would have been ) as the AR and was DEFINITELY MORE COMPLEX. Had it had time to mature it would have been a hell of a system. That did not occur however....and I have no problem with that, the AR15 is probably one of the finest light rifles ever developed.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 10:33:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SinistralRifleman:

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:
AR-15 is a great design....but it is something like 50 years old.
ONe would think that someone could have come up with something better in the interim.
But they won't...ever.
You can thank NFA of 34, GCA of 68, and MG Ban of 86 for it.
Who have all the great firearms inventors been?
Tinkerers and individuals - most were not even involved in firearms.
They just got an idea in their head, and went out in the garage and started working on a design.
Do that now, without registering with the .gov, paying taxes, and getting a cavity search, and it is a felony.



If you are talking strictly about machine guns you are perhaps correct.

The AR15/M16 have become the multi-functional weapons systems they have because of the private sector. Go to any 3 Gun Match, High Power match, sniper rifle match, etc and you will see a bunch of tinkerers putting their creations through practical exercises and objective testing (if it doesn't work, it won't help their score). This is where advancement is coming from, and the companies that make all these widgets and enhancements that either are used by the military or may some day be used are funded by private individuals buying the products they make and offering feedback.



Speaking strictly of MGs.
I agree 100% with the thrust of your post.
The private sector has made the M-16 series the most versatile weapon on the market today, IMO.

As to where small arms development is going....I don't expect to see any great leaps forward until we perfect caseless ammunition.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 10:35:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Monkey-man:
The AK is the Tpyota Corolla of guns, runs forever, anyone can use it, can be maintained by a closet-full of monkeys with sticks and rocks.

Wanna go racing four weekends a year until next season or get to work six days a week for ten years?




Are you serious?

I'd much, much rather go racing four weekends a year.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 10:37:22 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Essayons:

Originally Posted By gewamser:
Have we seen the "peak of firearm development as we know it?



IMO, no, but we will only see incremental evolutionary change - not revolutionary improvements - until we see fundamental changes in ammo technology and/or weapon design.

IMO all the postwar intermediate power ammo is in the same ballpark. Some are better than others for one thing or another. They all strike different balances of recoil, range, penetration, lethality, etc., but then they were all designed around slightly different requirements. I'm a 6.5 Grendel fan, but I don't see any one system doing everything better any time soon.



I agree here. AR-15 does have some room for improvement, but likely evolutionary improvement along the lines of the SCAR and the HK 416. The one big change that might come relatively soon may be caseless ammo. If someone can get that concept to work that may be the next big step.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 11:14:07 AM EDT
I think Metal Storm Ltd's technology has some promise as well.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 4:19:22 PM EDT
Originally Posted By DaveM4P99:
"there will soon be the phased plasma rifle in the 40 watt range"

Sorry, just what you see pal.

Honestly now that they do have gas piston systems for the M16, modular rail systems, QD barrel systems, and even now saw a new concept of interchangeable mag well systems-then I truly believe once they elimate the needed buttstock recoil tube then they have it all figured out.

Or they simply go with the SIG 55x type, with HK style lower, M16 mag well, AK style gas piston, internal upper spring return system- etc. The M16 will evolve into an SIG 55x which is an upgraded AK style design but with hints of an FAL.

I think the SCAR and the ARMH whatever are just flashes in the pan, another XM8 type weapon. No need to fix what isn't broken, just improve what you got.

Link Posted: 1/11/2006 6:00:20 PM EDT

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:
As to where small arms development is going....I don't expect to see any great leaps forward until we perfect caseless ammunition.



I fully agree there. I thought about mentioning that as well. Caseless ammo is the next place to really look.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 6:14:58 PM EDT
I'd have to say no.

To be the pinnacle, it has to do everything better then the others. For that reason, the pinnacle of firearms design has not been reached yet.

Link Posted: 1/11/2006 6:32:38 PM EDT
To say we're currently at the pinnacle of firearms technology/design is, in my opinion, a pretty pessimistic view of the future.

Something better will come along, 100% assured. Although, it might take a paradigm shift for it to happen. The trick is seeing the next paradigm because it is often too difficult to see beyond our own.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 7:54:14 PM EDT
I honestly can't say... I've shot the SIG 552 which i loved, and heard great things about the G36.... I don't have enought time with the things to give an informed opionion.
Link Posted: 1/11/2006 9:42:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/11/2006 10:40:24 PM EDT by Variablebinary]
You dont realize how primitive the AR15 platform is until you see the level of advancement in something like the PS90. It's very clear the guns were designed 40 years apart.

The M16 is old, which gives it maturity, and there is a lot to be said for the experiance that comes with maturity, but it doesnt do all things better than all other guns.

Truth be told, I would dump every AR15 I own (except the RRA) for one SG551. It's not like Americans have lots of choices, so by default we are driven to the AR15. The choice was made for most of us by import and other regulations...

Make no mistake, the AR15 has no real competition in the 5.56 military style rifle market, and that gives it the illusion of being the end all be all. If Steyr, SIG, and FN really start hitting the civvy market like rumor says they will AR15 companies like Armalite, BM, RRA and Colt are going to feel it big time.
Even so, the AR15 will always be america's #1 5.56 weapon
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 8:00:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/12/2006 8:26:51 AM EDT by Snaps]
^^^

I think that man has it right there.. It's the best we're allowed to buy. I don't ever expect to be able to buy a civi Sig or HK...

I'd have a semi 552 if there was a way i could.......... now if they just bring it to the market and put it out in a 6.8 But as I said... I don't expect to be able to buy one at all
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 8:29:48 AM EDT
and oh yea.. I am in no way insaulting the ARs but everything has it's run end. New designs and new technology end everthing's run..

The shelby cobra was the top of the heap for awhile there... Now does anybody think it's a better all around car than say the Ferrari430? No, due to advances it's just not possible.

Here's hoping the thing that knocks the AR out of its' spot is something we can all buy.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 8:46:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DaveM4P99:
there will soon be the phased plasma rifle in the 40 watt range



I second this. I would think Lasers and Phasers Baby, silent but deadly!! Or Smart bullets for our AR's.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 9:06:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Snaps:
I honestly can't say... I've shot the SIG 552 which i loved, and heard great things about the G36.... I don't have enought time with the things to give an informed opionion.



I shot a 552 once too...it was incredible.

I agree hugely with the posts about how the AR is the best we CAN OBTAIN. The AR is a great platform, I've owned/built tons of them...but there is other stuff out there we never get to play with.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 9:13:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Gimme_A_Carbine:

I shot a 552 once too...it was incredible.

I agree hugely with the posts about how the AR is the best we CAN OBTAIN. The AR is a great platform, I've owned/built tons of them...but there is other stuff out there we never get to play with.



Somebody told me a couple months ago that we would be able to buy sigs by the end of 06, I have no idea where this came from and just wrote it off... THen somebody in this thread mentioned rumors too.. I'm wondering where poeple get this kinda thing...

I'd buy one the day they were availiable on credit if need be.... But I won't hold my breath.. I personally think that the US Govt. has decided teh AR is the last military platform we lowly civilians can be trusted to own
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 9:16:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/12/2006 9:17:00 AM EDT by Essayons]
I read The Black Rifle, Black Rifle II, SPIW: The Deadliest Weapon that Never Was recently and am reading Collector's Grade Publications' M14 and FAL books now. One thing that is clear to me is the failure of the Lightweight Rifle and SPIW projects (not to mention the OICW) was unrealistic requirements. They wanted one weapon to replace everything from the M3 SMG to the BAR. In the case of the SPIW, they wanted to add a grenade launcher to boot!

The relatice success of the M16, IMO, is a result of it's modularity. You can slap on a short-barreled upper for the SMG role or a SPR upper for the designated marksman role. There are SAW derivatives as well, and you can add an M203. MGI Military is making the basic M16 platform even more modular and adaptable with a quick change barrel system and a lower with interchangeable mag wells. That will add even more flexibility to the system.

Is it the be all and end all? No. Clearly not. But at this point, anything that replaces it should be at least as versatile.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 9:28:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Snaps:

Originally Posted By Gimme_A_Carbine:

I shot a 552 once too...it was incredible.

I agree hugely with the posts about how the AR is the best we CAN OBTAIN. The AR is a great platform, I've owned/built tons of them...but there is other stuff out there we never get to play with.



Somebody told me a couple months ago that we would be able to buy sigs by the end of 06, I have no idea where this came from and just wrote it off... THen somebody in this thread mentioned rumors too.. I'm wondering where poeple get this kinda thing...

I'd buy one the day they were availiable on credit if need be.... But I won't hold my breath.. I personally think that the US Govt. has decided teh AR is the last military platform we lowly civilians can be trusted to own



People that I know at Sig have told me that the US 55X is in production and will be at SHOT 06, that was a couple of months ago... maybe you could call Sig and check on it?
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