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Posted: 3/11/2001 10:01:26 AM EDT
It looks just the right size and weight.
Just wondering what they are like.
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 10:16:54 AM EDT
Ouch! Forgot the hearing protection , huh??
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 10:43:24 AM EDT
In my old section the SAW was always passed on to the new guy who was usually quite receptive to the idea of being the one who gets to carry the "cool machinegun". The true nature for his selection would not be known to him until about 5 miles into a 20 + mile forced march conditioning hike led by our 6' 7" First Sgt.   (38" of his total height being his legs)
That sucker gets heavy. Also, I always hated the bipod. They were a real joy to shoot especially if the gun belonged to another section in your unit and you didn't have to clean it.
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 11:55:42 AM EDT
I was an armorer, worked on lots of them. Like any FN design it is a good unit. With live rounds it feeds reliably from a belt, but some are kind of finiky about feeding from a 30 round magazine. The cyclic rate of fire is realy high, about 1100RPM. It is a machine-gun, and as such it's a little unweildy for CQB. I also wouldnt burden the point-man/RTO/team leader with it is not suited well for those roles. The gas system is adjustable, and maintinence is a snap as the the unit breaks down into key peices fairly easily and has no special cleaning issues. When they speak people listen, and in heavy contact there are few sounds as reasuring as hearing your SAW gunner open up whith 10-15 round bursts. When the bolt slams home on an empty chamber it makes a very distinct sound, and in very close fighting the SAW gunner needs to be disciplined and fast on the reload to keep from being overrun.
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 4:13:46 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 4:44:49 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 5:45:27 PM EDT
I carried one for about a year- heavy and unwieldy, but once you got into a good prone position look out.  Very controllable, fun to shoot, fairly easy to maintain.  A bitch to clean to military standards, but easy to maintain in the field.

And as an aside, I have to agree with ArmaLite- lose the name.  It says some very uncomplimentary things about you.
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 6:35:14 PM EDT
The M249 is basically a sound system, it does have a few problems though.  The first is the plastic 200rd. ammo drums these are pure shit, and how they ever passed the military's durability standard I'll never know, it is my understanding that they have come out with a 100rd. bag now, but that sounds like it would hang up on concertina and barb wire to me.  The second is'nt really a design problem as much as a maintaince problem, the cartridge guides and feeder pawls need to be replaced fairly often if not then reliability goes to hell.  The third is the bi-pod that thing is crap!  Wears out pretty quick where it is attached to the gun, pretty flimsy and the extension mechanism allows the legs to be pulled all the way out when they get tangled in brush.  Those are my major complaints on the weapon, it does need lots of CLP to run, yeah some are picky with magazines, and it's fairly heavy, but how many belt feds are'nt?  I have seen them Ka-Boom also, one blew the feed tray cover off and blew the guide rails out as well, but I've seen M-16's blow too.
Link Posted: 3/11/2001 6:49:24 PM EDT
i didnt carry it or anything cause i was a mechanic, but when i fired it in training i loved it, hell what did iknow, i only found out the m16 wasnt full auto when i was allready in MC bootcamp, what a depressing day. so to fire a machine gun was a rush. only regret, wish they werent so stingy on ammo! think i remember liking the m60 better though, seemed more potent.
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