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Posted: 3/28/2005 5:14:33 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/29/2005 11:06:17 AM EDT by Yojimbo]
I remember a long time ago on the Tactical forums there was discussion regarding the SPR and a SEAL chimed in and mentioned that the setup they really wanted was a 16" carbine with low power(4x) optics but somehow everything got screwed up and they ended up with the SPR.

Now it appears the Recce carbine config is being offerd by a lot of the manufacturers here and from what little I know it appears that the Recce can get the job done as good as the SPR while being a bit lighter and more handy and useful for CQB.

Personally, I liked both the SPR and Recce concepts but I tend to favor the Recce for reasons I mentioned above.

What do you guys think?

Here's a couple posts from Frogman regarding the Recon"Recce" Rifle.

Great question, and one that burns my ass, too! There really is no place for an SPR in NSW, at least no operators asked for one. But before I get into all that- the MK 11 is used both as a main sniper weapon and a spotter's weapon depending on the mission.
Now for the dirt:

A limited number of SPR's are coming to the Teams, however (want them or not). They are not there, as of yet. The Mk 11 is in use, though, and we desperately need to get more of them! Currently, there are not enough to assign one to each operational SEAL sniper.

The SPR is an abortion in my opinion (shared by every other SEAL sniper I know
and work with). It is the answer to a question that was never asked by us.

The Teams designed a 16 inch uper M4, dubbed the Recon rifle, and after working the bugs out of the components and ammunition turned the info over to the SOPMOD project managers at NSWC (Crane, IN) in order for Crane to make a specific quantity to outfit a wider number of SEAL snipers. The idea behind the "recon rifle" was to outfit SEAL snipers on recon missions with an M4 that had a little bit better reach and lethality in the event that your recon op suddenly turned into a "target of opportunity" mission.

Instead of using the recipe, as is, "someone" funnelled money and influence from Army SOF into the project. What came out was exactly what the Teams did not want- a 20", fully automatic 5.56mm "sniper(?)" weapon. Thus, the "SPR" was born(notice that Crane didn't give much credit to Mark Westrom of Armalite, here.). SEALs consider the Mk 11 (SR-25) to be the only 20" gun needed.

During joint testing the mixed SOF operators complained about the length and the final SPR is now suppose to be 18".

To this date, we (SEAL Team, that is) still do not have the gun we designed and asked for. What's the leson here? Apparently the tail can still wag the dog from time to time...and no one seems to get fired, fined or jailed when it does. As usual, the guys in the Teams just take it in the shorts and soldier on.

Hope this answers your question.

Frogman

***

Regarding the Recon rifle: I'm not sure why anyone cares so much about it. I'm going to go through this once and for all. It seems to me that I may only be pleasing AR-15 gadget-mongers out there who have some insatiable need to copy, clone, and comment on SOF weapons systems, but I'll try to get through this in order to make a point.
Well before 9/11 a new M4 upper was built "in-house" to allow certain SEAL snipers the ability to have a lightweight and portable weapon that was also more lethal. So, a few uppers were made with 16" barrels. The uppers had to fire any of the 5.56mm ammo in our inventory to include the (at that time "new") 77 gr. Sierra/Black Hills Match cartridge. The weapon retained the KAC QD Suppressor. The operator could decide for himself, basically, whether he wanted a collapsing or fixed stock (as SEALs have done for quite a long time).

When the "recipe" was turned over to Crane for them to make enough for the rest of the Teams' snipers the person who was handling the project got distracted. Instead he funneled Army money into the project and Army ideas. Basically, he shelved a simple construction project in favor of designing a whole new thing- and thus the Mk 12 (which the world loves to call the "SPR") was unfortunately born (perhaps stillborn). Mk 12's were issued to the Navy (myself included)and they were not what one might have expected once they got to the range.

Since the Teams considered the whole "SPR"/Mk 12 thing a waste of time, the project manager at Crane (finally) got his pee-pee slapped a little and construction of some more of the original Recon rifles is now progressing.

It is simply a 16" barrel (current manufacturer eludes me as I write but it is not that fancy) with the KAC flash-hider on a flattop upper. I believe it still has a fixed front sight post. SEALs have a host of BUIS options to choose from. The favorite, by far, is the KAC 600m BUIS. SEAL snipers have a wide range of optics to select for their weapons. My personal favorite(and that of my Teammates) is the 4X SOF ACOG. It has good optics, is waterproof and extremely durable. Many of us have recently shifted them onto A.R.M.S. throw lever bases for quick detach purposes.

There are tons of gadgets for M-16 series weapons out there (just like M1911's). Most of the things that are out there do not belong on a SEAL rifle. Some equipment works well for a SWAT guy, or maybe at the range, but it just wouldn't survive getting to the target with a SEAL operator (i.e. hard boat rides, jumping, diving, etc). Our equipment/tools are simple, durable and applicable to the task. SEALs (myself included) do not have much patience for couch potatoes questioning why we do/or don't use this gadget vice that one.

BTW, the recon rifle has the same gas system as an M4.

Frogman



Link Posted: 3/28/2005 5:50:16 AM EDT
It's a great question Yojimbo. While the ARFcom community seems to have jumped on the Recce concept over the SPR, it would be interesting to hear what's actually going on on the .mil world.

The problem with Recce vs. SPR discussions is that both programs are deployed mainly by US SOFs, which makes real info. scarce...Adding to the mystery, at least for me, is that there have been a decent number of news photos documenting SPR use with US SOFS in the past couple of years (most recently of US SFs using Mark 12 Model 0 SPRs in Falluja), but none I know of for the Recce rifle. Of course that doesn't prove that the SPR concept is more "popular" with .mil, it may just prove that the guys with the Recce rifles don't get photographed

YMMV.

Will
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 5:58:26 AM EDT
I suppose the better concept is a function of application. With the 5.56 round being what it is, even with an SPR you are limited to 210 yards (using mk262) of reliable fragmentation. I see many SPR builds with beautiful Nightforce, etc. scopes on them, and can't help but think that such a setup really belongs on a .308 platform AR.

So, given the fragmentation restriction, I think the Reece is the way to go for accurate fire from an AR15 platform. With a 16" barrel you have 170 yards of reliable fragmentation. Seems like a perfect setup for a TA01NSN or a TA31f.



5.56mm Fragmentation Chart


Now, with all that having been said, let me get back to the application reference. I am primarily interested in a defensive carbine (as opposed to a rifle for sport). For my application, a 200 yard shot is very very small possibility, even in total SHTF. Shots under 50 yards are more likely, so I'm sticking with my Aimpoint. I can hit COM shots at 200 yards with an Aimpoint or irons - good enough for my application.

For recon applications, the Reece seems like a great concept. For sniping, stick with .308. The SASS is so sexy....

Link Posted: 3/28/2005 6:13:31 AM EDT
The same thing happened with the SOCOM .45. What they wanted and what they got was apples and oranges. They were looking for a replacement for the "Hush Puppy" a S&W 9mm designed to be used with a supressor. Viet Nam era. After it was all over, they got a pistol that was near the size of a supressed HK MP5PDW. The first hand info I was told... was the HK SOCOM .45 is too big to be practical. I agree. A neat idea, but it is almost a crew served pistol! ...and I like the thing!!


When things are spec'ed by a commitee, the original concept gets a major rebuild. The joke about this stuff in government circles goes something like this.


Do you know what an elephant is?

It is a mouse built by a commitee!


This knid of stuff is way too common in the government. I know from first hand experience.
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 6:14:38 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2005 6:47:37 AM EDT by Yojimbo]
WillMunny,

Good point, it'll probably be pretty difficult to get any actual field data or AAR's regarding the Recon Rifle due to the nature of the users.

FC,

I agree with what you said, for the role I need my carbine to play I'll also be sticking with my 1x EOTech. I do however want try the magnified EOTech when it becomes availble.

DasRonin,

Excellent point on the mouse and the elephant.


I also want to add a couple of things.

If you factor in the 6.8SPC the 16" Recce carbine looks even more attractive.

Also, the initial impression I got was that the Recon/Recce carbine was suppose to be more of a general purpose carbine with a 5.56 chamber and chrome lined barrel instead of a SS match barrels that seem to be the norm now when setting up a Recon/Recce carbine. Again, that's just the impression I got as I'm sure some of the dealer/manufacturers here probably have the correct specs.

Personally, I'd prefer the chrome lined barrel over SS match barrel for the hard use and ranges I'd expect the Recon/Recce carbine operating in.

Link Posted: 3/28/2005 6:19:21 AM EDT
i have never looke dtoo much into the 16 inchers, when i want a compact rifle a 14.5/phantom does it for me, when the need arises i will use the 20 incher, or even a bolt gun

i have to be careful or i would have 73 different configurations of an AR
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 6:20:08 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Yojimbo:
Regarding the Recon rifle: I'm not sure why anyone cares so much about it. I'm going to go through this once and for all. It seems to me that I may only be pleasing AR-15 gadget-mongers out there who have some insatiable need to copy, clone, and comment on SOF weapons systems



Heeheehee............................that's me.

Having zero knowledge of their mission capabilities, I love to shoot both of them, though. Both my SPRish clone and RECCE clone shoot exceptionally well.

"Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 6:43:07 AM EDT
I think WAY too many people get wrapped around the axles about frag range. You want to stop threats as far out as possible! That said I dont see a need for an over 16" 5.56mm platform.


The 16" Recce is an excellent GP platform, I feel that the SPR role is better served by the 7.62 round - and as such the Mk11 style weapons. For ranges out to 500 the 16 does not give anything in accuracy - and the MV is not a significant drop.
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 7:12:08 AM EDT
I have no real world experience, but I recently read the SGN article on the SPR clone they built. Eleven pounds seems a bit heavy to me for a rifle you are going to be running around all day in the brush with. Also, it seems logical that the importance of fragmentation becomes greater as one gets closer to the target. If someone is charging you from 30 yards, you better hope that your bullet performs well and quickly even if you don't have time to get off a perfectly aimed shot. This is a very different situation than sniping at a target 300 yards away. In the latter situation you likely have more time to place your bullet, and it is less critical that you get an immediate stop, because the target is less of a threat to you.
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 8:16:28 AM EDT
Anytime you get different services together that do different tasks and have different needs even is SOF you get different requirements. We started on this route for the SPR because in the late 90s there was a shortage of semi-auto sniper guns. Some prefered the bolt M40/M24 and others the M21/SR-25 (before Crane classified it). Under SOPMOD we can change or add to the gun. We had an idea to just have another upper with a flat top and better barrel for target rich enviroments (sound familiar?). After the Rangers/SEALS/SF got together and with Crane the Special Purpose Reciever turned into the Special Purpose Rifle after Crane took some old M16A1 lowers and give us complete guns (that's why full auto, never a requirment). True, as Frogman stated SEALs did ask for 16" where we (SF) where looking for 14.5-18". Don't remember how we got 20" for I was off the project then. SF wanted our M1911s back and then the Mk 23 was bought but not for SF for we kept the M9 for some reason. (hint, Army SF is the largest SOF component)

CD
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 8:37:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2005 8:37:36 AM EDT by Stryfe]

Originally Posted By juslearnin:
I have no real world experience, but I recently read the SGN article on the SPR clone they built. Eleven pounds seems a bit heavy to me for a rifle you are going to be running around all day in the brush with.


Did that weight include a scope and a magazine?

How much does a loaded M14 weigh?
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 9:13:09 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2005 9:17:46 AM EDT by bigbore]
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 9:38:56 AM EDT
Bigbore,

Have you tested any 16" chrome lined 1/7 barrels against the the Recce barrel you offer? If so how much accuracy loss did you notice with the chrome lined barrels?

Link Posted: 3/28/2005 10:00:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2005 10:02:57 AM EDT by bigbore]
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 10:15:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2005 10:27:15 AM EDT by Yojimbo]
I see what you're saying but when did known distance firefights starting at 600 yards against basketball sized enemy become a requirement for the Recce carbine? That's about as bad as the guys who get who get hung up on fragmentation range and terminal ballistics...

As far as I'm concerned if the chrome lined barrel can hit a human sized target center of mass at those distances it's doing the job. After all, we know the Recce carbine like the SPR was never ment to be a SWS and that there are much better options for that role...
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 10:37:41 AM EDT
I like this topic...

I LOVE the upper Steve built for me...
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 2:37:33 PM EDT
Tag.
Link Posted: 3/28/2005 8:03:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/4/2005 1:13:06 PM EDT by KevinB]
Bigbore I agree with you 100%

For some small thoughts on the baseketball.


Haji is set back in a window at 400 or so with a PKM, unforunately he set up his nest around a bunch of nonhostiles that appeal to the CNN crew down the street - so unfortunately the M2 or M240 are not a good choice from the vehicle mounts.

While I'd like to use a Mk11 or AR10 for this sometimes all you got it what you brought...



I used to scoff at SS in using guns - but my URX gun has made me change my mind for 99% of the time you can have the cake and eat it too .

(editted today as I saw I wrote M204 instead of M240)
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:36:45 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:39:11 AM EDT
is the stupid "w00t" appropriate for this? I never did get it, but think it might fit. if not, let me know and i'll erase it.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 6:26:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/29/2005 6:43:35 AM EDT by Yojimbo]
Steve, Kevin and Denny,

Thanks for sharing your insight on the Recce carbine. You've all got me convinced and I'll be looking into setting up a Recce carbine with a SS barrel in the near future...

I would really like to setup a 6.8SPC Recce carbine, if good factory ammo ever becomes available...

I hope my wife isn't reading this because I'm still not done with my mid-length project.

To continue the discussion, what optics do you guys favor for the Recce carbine. At first I was thinking a ACOG TA31F would be a good choice but then I started to think that a little more power would be nice to exploit the accuracy of the SS barrel.

I was thinking maybe the new Leupold 1.5-5x MR/T M2 with the new SPR reticle might be the ticket.



What are your thoughts on ACOG vs mid-range variables for use with the Recce?
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 6:33:09 AM EDT
Tag.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 7:38:36 AM EDT
what's that Leupy go for?

what type of reticle?

I bought a TA01 to use on my "recce" or DMM4 as Steve orignally called it. So basically I'm using a crosshair reticle and am not getting any advantage from the fiber optics like the others. So, if a Leupy like that is around the same price as what I could sell the TA01 for, maybe that's the route I should go? I don't want to "waste" any accuracy in the rifle.

Link Posted: 3/29/2005 7:52:32 AM EDT
Wow, Denny, what a beautiful weapon.




Let me get my MRP finished (scope, rings for the 18" barrel) and I'll be getting one of those "Recon profiled SS 16" uppers from you for sure.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 10:34:19 AM EDT

Originally Posted By JosephR:
what's that Leupy go for?

what type of reticle?




JosephR,
Leupold makes two versions of that scope. One has the illuminated reticle and one does not. It is also available with a standard mil-dot reticle.
http://www.leupold.com/products/tactical_products/images/Reticles/Reticle_Illum_SPR.gif

New! Special Purpose Reticle (SPR)
With the Special Purpose Reticle, you can engage targets with greater precision at longer ranges than generally possible with other reticle styles, yet also use it for instinctive, close-range/low magnification
engagements. It also features several methods of accurate range estimation, using the height or width of the target as a guide.


LINK to SPR reticle
LINK to mil dot version
The prices seem to be around $800 for the illuminated versions. I am sure we could work something out.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 10:38:38 AM EDT
... tagged for further review at a more convenient time and place ...

nty
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 10:57:23 AM EDT
.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 10:57:53 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/29/2005 11:02:08 AM EDT by Yojimbo]
The pic TalonArms_R posted is the SPR reticle I'm talking about.

To me it looks perfect for the Recce carbine but I'd have to try it in person before making the final call. I'm very curious to see how well that reticle works for the close in stuff.

I'd also be interested to know what street price these will be going for.

Here's a few more pics of it.







Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:01:06 AM EDT
Good thread.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:05:22 AM EDT
tag bump.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:05:54 AM EDT
TalonArms_R-

Are you a dealer here?

I've got a ~$700 "optic" and mount and don't think I'm ready to have to go shopping for very very expensive rings... I do have a FSB
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:07:23 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:14:24 AM EDT
taggerino
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:16:57 AM EDT

Originally Posted By bigbore:

Originally Posted By Yojimbo:
I'd also be interested to know what street price these will be going for.



Between $750-$800



I guess I better start saving...

Link Posted: 3/29/2005 11:32:00 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 2:19:58 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Yojimbo:
Steve, Kevin and Denny,

Thanks for sharing your insight on the Recce carbine. You've all got me convinced and I'll be looking into setting up a Recce carbine with a SS barrel in the near future...

I would really like to setup a 6.8SPC Recce carbine, if good factory ammo ever becomes available...

I hope my wife isn't reading this because I'm still not done with my mid-length project.

To continue the discussion, what optics do you guys favor for the Recce carbine. At first I was thinking a ACOG TA31F would be a good choice but then I started to think that a little more power would be nice to exploit the accuracy of the SS barrel.

I was thinking maybe the new Leupold 1.5-5x MR/T M2 with the new SPR reticle might be the ticket.

www.bigrivertactical.com/i//Mark4_1_5-5x20_MRT_M2_p.jpg

What are your thoughts on ACOG vs mid-range variables for use with the Recce?



Yojimbo,

I've spent the last 1 1/2 yrs converting almost all my weapons to (Sorry Denny), MSTN MOD1 Recce format. In fact my first two (twins) were in an SPR profile (5.56MM and 6.8SPC) with 16.5" midi-length barrel and Wes designated it as the MSTN MOD1. On my 6.8SPC RECCE, I use a TA11E and on the 5.56MM twin a TA31F, both now in a LaRue mounts. On two other I use both a Luepy MR/T and an NXS 2.5X10, with BUIS and BU Aimpoints.

For a RECCE as described, either an ACOG (TA11/TA31) or mid-range variable will work well. All my scoped (non-ACOG) have an Aimpiont BU. I guess I'm paranoid.

I'm looking for a similar platform flexiblilty for the AR10.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 2:40:15 PM EDT
tag.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 2:52:29 PM EDT
Why such an extreme spread between the optics you recommend? You mention the two ACOGS with the big bright daytime reticles and then this leupy with crosshairs as narrow as a fly's dick. Wouldn't my TA01 fall right in the middle? -Not that I feel left out or anything...

Or, is it that the way you've built the rifles for different functions? I guess there'd be no compromise...
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 3:11:29 PM EDT
Is 3.5 - 4.3 " eye relief a good thing or a bad thing?
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 3:24:23 PM EDT
Tag
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 3:30:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By JosephR:
Why such an extreme spread between the optics you recommend? You mention the two ACOGS with the big bright daytime reticles and then this leupy with crosshairs as narrow as a fly's dick. Wouldn't my TA01 fall right in the middle? -Not that I feel left out or anything...

Or, is it that the way you've built the rifles for different functions? I guess there'd be no compromise...



JosephR,

First, I'm not reccomending any optics as one size fits all. It does not exist. If your TA01 works for you in field conditions, then use it. There are individuals that cannot use the BAC capabilties of the ACOGs. For those, its a total waste. I would say "maybe" an Aimpoint and the 3X magnifier.

Each of the weapons I have has a specifc application. The two ACOGs have the same reticle (Chevron, because it works best for ME and best matchs the BDC of the calibers - TA11 7.62N/6.8SPC, TA31 5.56MM). The Leupy IS going to be replaced by an NXS scope, must likely another 2.5-10X.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:04:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By jmart:
Is 3.5 - 4.3 " eye relief a good thing or a bad thing?



In an AR platform? If so, then it's a bad thing.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:35:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Corporal_Chaos:

Originally Posted By jmart:
Is 3.5 - 4.3 " eye relief a good thing or a bad thing?



In an AR platform? If so, then it's a bad thing.



Spec sheet actually said 3.6" (5x) to 4.4" (1x) IIRC.

If NTCH is the technique, I smell a Larue SPR Mount. Add another $200 or whatever they cost.
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:38:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/29/2005 5:40:13 PM EDT by ar-jedi]

Originally Posted By JosephR:
You mention the two ACOGS with the big bright daytime reticles and then this leupy with crosshairs as narrow as a fly's dick.


i guess i have to be the one to say it....

GET BOTH!!!

ar-jedi
ps: i followed my own advice:
#1: M4-ish, 16" bushy upper, bushy lower, KISS w/ aimpoint M2 in ARMS canti-mount
#2: Recce-ish, 16" denny's SS, lots of Larue shit, bushy lower, mccormick trigger, leupy MR/T 3x9 in LT SPR mount


Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:50:57 PM EDT
Anything beyond 250 yards should be left to a gun and caliber that are up to the challenge



Link Posted: 3/29/2005 5:56:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Variablebinary:
Anything beyond 250 yards should be left to a gun and caliber that are up to the challenge



And then what about ~15 meters?
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 6:10:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/29/2005 6:10:49 PM EDT by WIZZO_ARAKM14]
Alright guys, I hate to do it, but I claim total ignorance when it somes to this niche in the AR market. So here's what I ask, can someone post pics or descriptions, of Recce carbines and SMR's and SAM-R's. I know that the carbine has a 16" barrel, and one of the others has a 20"er, but I'm not exactly up on this area of AR lingo.

Thanks,

WIZZO
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 6:19:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/29/2005 6:19:52 PM EDT by mongo001]
RECCEish



16" Heavy barrel
Free floated
Low magnification optics


East Coast SAM-Rish



20" Heavy barrel
Free floated
Optics
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 6:21:49 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 6:54:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mongo001:
RECCEish

img207.exs.cx/img207/2623/dsc015652us.jpg

16" Heavy barrel
Free floated
Low magnification optics


East Coast SAM-Rish

img66.exs.cx/img66/8559/dsc015759au.jpg

20" Heavy barrel
Free floated
Optics



Thanks for the clarification mongo001.



Now I won't feel so when people start throwing these terms around.



WIZZO
Link Posted: 3/29/2005 7:01:05 PM EDT
I'm wondering about the optics myself.

The Leupold 1.5-5x MR/T looked good at first, but only goes to 4.5X magnification. Plus it is probably not as rugged as the ACOG.

The SEALs wanted the ACOG on their Recces. That says something.
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