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10/20/2017 1:01:18 AM
9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 8/27/2005 7:50:13 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/28/2005 3:57:10 AM EDT by mongo001]
Started here.

It sent me here, near the bottom, under GPM-02-007.


GPM-02-007, 15Nov01

Summary: A quantity of 2000 each commercially available 100-round double drum magazines (C-MAG) were purchased and provided free issue to some high priority units for use in the M249 SAW. More of these magazines may be purchased as test results, funding, and requirements become known.



Then here, where it mentions high stoppage rates when using blanks.


SUMMARY: THE C-MAG MAGAZINES WERE A FREE ISSUE TO FORT BRAGG,
FORT DRUM, FORT CAMPBELL, AND FORT HOOD FOR USE IN THE M249 SQUAD
AUTOMATIC WEAPON (SAW). THE C-MAG MAGAZINES ARE AN INTERIM,
ALTERNATIVE MEASURE TO MEET OUR NEEDS FOR TRAINING WHILE
CONSERVING LINKED 5.56 AMMUNITION. THE C-MAG HAS NOT BEEN ARMY TYPE


PAGE 08 RUEAWMA0035 UNCLAS
CLASSIFIED. THE NSN IS MANAGED BY DLA. DURING TESTING, ROUNDS WERE
SOMETIMES LEFT LOOSE IN THE C-MAG DRUMS. BLANK AMMUNITION SHOWED A VERY HIGH STOPPAGE RATE.



Here's a quote from the Gun Zone link:


July: Wexford Group International (on behalf of the Army's Rapid Equipping Force) conducts tests on the Beta C-Mag with the 82nd Airborne at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan. The field test is intended to evaluate the C-Mag as a back up for loose ammo, or when linked ammo is unavailable or in short supply. Its ultimate goal is to be an alternative to the link issue ammo. The results are once again negative. While loading the magazines, there are numerous jams, speed loaders break, and several magazines will not accept the full capacity of ammunition. Once live firing begins, there are repeated weapon malfunctions. Failures to chamber and double feeds are the most common problems.


FWIW. I thought it was interesting.
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 8:40:31 AM EDT
Ive posted this before, but if your going to seriously use Beta Mags, you need to have more than one, rotate them, keep a log/round count on them and do lots of PMCS on them. Now if your just going to load them up once in awhile for underwater bump firing you will probably be ok
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 9:30:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By PSYWAR1-0:
Ive posted this before.



Oops. Never saw it.
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 12:35:52 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 2:49:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mongo001:

Originally Posted By PSYWAR1-0:
Ive posted this before.



Oops. Never saw it.





is that a pun? never SAW it ??



Link Posted: 8/27/2005 3:04:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Troy:
I know of 4 tests of the C-Mag over the years by different Army infantry units. At the conclusion of the tests, the results were resoundingly negative. Fragility, feeding problems, loading problems, noise, and bulk were all sited as problems.

-Troy



Didn't they test the XM8 SAW rifle with the c-mag and come to the same conclusion last year sometime?

WIZZO
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 5:35:57 PM EDT
They are neat cool looking items, great for plinking, but thats about it.

And yes I have one, but I would never take it to combat with me.

FREE
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 6:23:41 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 6:34:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By FREEFALLE7:
They are neat cool looking items, great for plinking, but thats about it.

And yes I have one, but I would never take it to combat with me.

FREE


Damn skippy . We keep one on a rental for eye candy , but thats about it .
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 6:41:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By FREEFALLE7:
And yes I have one, but I would never take it to combat with me.



+1
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 10:01:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By RenegadeX:

Originally Posted By FREEFALLE7:
And yes I have one, but I would never take it to combat with me.



+1




+2 They work great at the range and for shooting prairie dogs.
Link Posted: 8/27/2005 10:26:24 PM EDT
Using magazinefed unlinked ammo in a SAW results in a malfunction like every 3rd round regardless. The mag well is there for emergency purposes only. IMHO, should just chop the fucker off and eliminate a few ounces off the weapons weight.
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 12:41:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By deadcat:
Using magazinefed unlinked ammo in a SAW results in a malfunction like every 3rd round regardless. The mag well is there for emergency purposes only. IMHO, should just chop the fucker off and eliminate a few ounces off the weapons weight.



Push the mag all the way in with the left hand while firing....you will see the stopages disappear.
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 1:16:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Jeremy2171:

Originally Posted By deadcat:
Using magazinefed unlinked ammo in a SAW results in a malfunction like every 3rd round regardless. The mag well is there for emergency purposes only. IMHO, should just chop the fucker off and eliminate a few ounces off the weapons weight.



Push the mag all the way in with the left hand while firing....you will see the stopages disappear.



How practical is that for a combat soldier?
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 3:58:33 PM EDT
First, the SAW is not intended to use magazines. Yes it has a magazine port for emergancy use, I carried the SAW for a few months without incident the linked ammunition functioned at about 99% (my estimate). When we did use standard 30 round magazines we always experienced high rates of double feeds and jams.
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 4:52:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mongo001:

Originally Posted By Jeremy2171:

Originally Posted By deadcat:
Using magazinefed unlinked ammo in a SAW results in a malfunction like every 3rd round regardless. The mag well is there for emergency purposes only. IMHO, should just chop the fucker off and eliminate a few ounces off the weapons weight.



Push the mag all the way in with the left hand while firing....you will see the stopages disappear.



How practical is that for a combat soldier?



Practical enough because you WILL have to do it if you run outta linked M855/M856. I taught my Marines to do it that way if they had to and it works...even with blanks.
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 5:09:35 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Jeremy2171:

Originally Posted By mongo001:

Originally Posted By Jeremy2171:

Originally Posted By deadcat:
Using magazinefed unlinked ammo in a SAW results in a malfunction like every 3rd round regardless. The mag well is there for emergency purposes only. IMHO, should just chop the fucker off and eliminate a few ounces off the weapons weight.



Push the mag all the way in with the left hand while firing....you will see the stopages disappear.



How practical is that for a combat soldier?



Practical enough because you WILL have to do it if you run outta linked M855/M856. I taught my Marines to do it that way if they had to and it works...even with blanks.



With this type of knowledge out there, are there loaded Beta mags floating around out there in the military world ready for use?
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 5:22:10 PM EDT
Don't know about the Beta's..I havent' seen any. I was referring to regular old 30rnd mags.
Link Posted: 8/28/2005 5:30:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Jeremy2171:
Don't know about the Beta's..I havent' seen any. I was referring to regular old 30rnd mags.



Oh, that would still be a tad awkward, I'm thinking. But if it gets lead downrange, you do what you have to do, I guess. You'd think that this could be resolved in the design at some point.
Link Posted: 8/29/2005 4:48:31 AM EDT
As stated above, the M249 has a magazine port, however it is primarily designed to use linked ammo. The magazine port was to be used in case of emergency, not for regular operation. When using standard USGI 30 round magazines in the Minimi or SAW failures are quite high. The gun is very hard on the magazines and they usually destroy the followers. The Cmag failures in the SAW I don't think are a reflection of the magazine, but the weapon itself. The SAW/Minimi just doesn't work well using magazines, it never has...and never will. Add this with a complex feeding device and you are asking for trouble. The Cmag has been performing well for the G36 and the L86A2 so its capable of replicating the performance a beltfed LMG. The main problem the Cmag was to

replace was the problems attaching the ammo to the weapon. This is definatly a weak point in the weapon and causes lots of problems in a weapon that has proved to have plenty already. The current M249 has the lowest confidence rate of all the weapons being used in the theatre and has seen a higher failure rate. This can partly be attributed to older weapons and poor maitnance. The newer "Para SAWs" seem to be performing well, but you still see lots of 100 MPH and flex cuffs or zip ties holding this things together or holding ammo pouches on the weapon. I personally still belive the Minimi to be the best LMG/SAW weapon around, but I think its definatly in need of some upgrades.
Link Posted: 8/29/2005 5:52:16 AM EDT
You hit on one of the keypoints.....maintenance. Or lack of it....

The mentality of most troops is the SAW is a big POS. This mentality spreads up to the inexperienced armorers and they in turn think it's a "POS". If it's a POS why should they spend so much effort on it if it's only going to jam on them no matter what.

THIS is what is wrong with the picture!

The majority of the SAWs out there (except paras) are nearly 15 or so years old. Most haven't had any sort of depot level maintenance done on them at all.

The majority of armorers don't have a clue as to how to properly LTI and repair a malfunction SAW. Many troops don't know how to properly clean a SAW or what a SAW scraper tool is. You would not believe how many SW pistons I have seen that were packed with carbon. I had to place them in a vice and chip them out....it was like a mining operation. No kidding! Combine that with weak/work extractors and worn ejectors and you will have the extraction issues that seem to plague this weapon.

I guarantee I can get any SAW up and running or diagnose the problems with it. Once corrected it'll run like a scalded dog.... period.

I had a Marine turn in a SAW to me that was "jamming"....I had just reapaired that one the week before and I called BS. I went through it and found nothing wrong. Found out they were out at a live fire range (we were at 29 Palms) so I grabbed two drums of ammo out of the "Amnesty Box" and drove out to the range to give it a test fire since nothing was visibly wrong. Told his Plt Sgt what was up and they called him over.......after I put a 100 burst through it and finished off the drum in short bursts and look at him and asked what the problem was???? Operater headspace most of the time.

He got to carry that SAW and the spare M16 he drew for the rest of the training...
Link Posted: 9/7/2005 9:04:04 AM EDT
I was once handed a C9 (CDN Minimi) and told to clean it so it could be taken down to the weapon techs (I think I'd rather see a weapon in the conditions that it's malfunctioning under). I went to take the gas plug out and whadyaknow? It was so completely encrusted in carbon that it took me about 15 minutes to get the damn thing off using a hammer to drive it out of it's housing. I'm not saying that their wasn't something wrong with the weapon but I can guarantee that he has having stoppages due to carbon buildup in the gas assembly. I humped one of those badboys for almost 2 years and I can tell you they work great with regular maintance. I never did try to feed mags into it using ball ammo but it definately won't feed blanks properly.
Link Posted: 9/7/2005 9:34:18 AM EDT
Buddy of mine was a SAW gunner out of basic. He was lucky to get to his first posting in time for an arrival of new in crate Paras. He said it ran perfectly out of the box.

Until they made him utilize WD40 in the cleaning process. At this point, it became a doorstop.

I don't know how wide spread this type of thing is, but he said his unit was all about the WD40. It was only when he managed to procure some other things on his own to clean and lube with that the gun started running right again.
Link Posted: 9/7/2005 9:53:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mattimeo:
Buddy of mine was a SAW gunner out of basic. He was lucky to get to his first posting in time for an arrival of new in crate Paras. He said it ran perfectly out of the box.

Until they made him utilize WD40 in the cleaning process. At this point, it became a doorstop.

I don't know how wide spread this type of thing is, but he said his unit was all about the WD40. It was only when he managed to procure some other things on his own to clean and lube with that the gun started running right again.



I thought they were dry graphite lubricated? Maybe that's why it's a doorstop now.
Link Posted: 9/7/2005 10:30:32 AM EDT
Yup, I've heard from several folks in the military that the the Beta Mags were POS's.

Link Posted: 9/7/2005 5:32:24 PM EDT
WD40 is great for cleaning but NOT to be used as a lubricant. The SAW should be able to run dry with no problems....if not you are getting back to not enough gas problems. Things to look for are heavy carbon deposits on the piston and plug and plugged gas port holes in the plug.

A lot of times just sticking a new "clean" plug in it for testing will make it run fine...then you can hand the old one back to the gunner and tell him to clean it again the right way if it's not out of spec..or replace it if it's worn.
Link Posted: 9/9/2005 11:47:22 AM EDT
The FN Minimi, L110, C9, M249 etc are all amazing weapons and IMO the best LMG's in existance. Our standard 249s are getting old and they are staring to show thier age. Constant fully automatic fire coupled with institutional abuse and you have one serious problem. The Minimi can be difficult to maintain because of small parts and such, but it is certainly not any worse than cleaning a filthy M16. The biggest flaw in the 249 besides its age is the apathy of some of the users. The newer Para models seem to be functioning much better. This is likely because they are newer and haven't suffered the years of abuse and are implemented by higher trained and disciplined troops. I am not knocking every SAW gunner in the military, but I am knocking you if you think every single soldier cleans his weapon twice daily. I have talked to some who cleaned thier weapons monthly...and its these people who are the first to complain when there is a failure.
Nonetheless, the Cmag isn't going to be the solution the DoD hoped it would be...and this is mostly because the Minimi is designed to use a magazine in an emergency, not as a matter of practice. If the DOD wants complete ammo commonality, the Colt M16 machine gun coupled with a Cmag would be a better solution. This could be implemented as an upper only replacement on M4 lowers.
Link Posted: 9/9/2005 11:51:56 AM EDT
So would the C-mag be more durable if it was made out of aluminum versus the polymer it is? i've also often wondered why the feed tower is not made out of aluminum. Looks like it would be easy enough to do....
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