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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 11/26/2003 9:55:28 PM EDT
HK seems to have their eye on the prize of manufacturing the next US service rifle...why not perfect a G-11 type caseless weapon, instead of rehashing old technology? They were on the verge of introducing the G-11 in West Germany before it was scuttled due to re-unification costs, so it must be more advanced than the XM-8...and, being a "bullpup" type weapon, it is much shorter than an M-4 or XM-8, even with its 21 inch barrel!

Even if caseless tech is not perfected right now, surely some funds could help? I mean, we've got 87 billion bucks for Iraq (the Manhattan Project only cost $40 billion!), why should we be stuck with old technology?

What could we get if we only sent Iraq $86 billion, and kept $1 billion for rifle development? Or even better, keep all $87 billion for our scientists, and get a phased plasma weapon in the 40 gigawatt range!
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 10:03:25 PM EDT
The "reuinification costs" is HK propaganda. The G11 was scuttled for very real technical problems with the caseless cartridge. They were easily broken, heat caused them to crumble, they were not satisfactoraly water proof, and they caught fire easily.
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 10:05:10 PM EDT
Caseless is a nice concept. Until you look at how do you clear a misfire. Then there is the electronic ignition thing. [:/]
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 10:05:30 PM EDT
Caseless is a great idea... if they can get the cook off problem solved.
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 10:10:23 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Mach1: Caseless is a great idea... if they can get the cook off problem solved.
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And find a bonding agent that is strong enough that soldiers can fall on the cartridges without breaking them. And doesnt deteriorate when exposed to prolonged high heat or UV light so it falls to powder when shaken. And doesn't dissolve when exposed to petrolium products like diesel fuel or CLP. And somehow keep open flame from igniting the imbedded powder while still allowing the primer flash to ignite the powder reliably. And is water proof.
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 10:32:27 PM EDT
So, caseless hase its challenges...but nothing money can't cure! How much does the US spend on Infantry weapons design each year? Less than the cost of ONE JET FIGHTER I'll bet!
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 5:52:30 AM EDT
I've often wondered why they don't go with plastic-cased ammo.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 5:58:16 AM EDT
I've got a single shot "caseless" rifle that shoots fine, it's called a '63 Sharps.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 6:14:41 AM EDT
Pshhh! The G-11's I shoot in my Rogue Spear Add on pack have never misfired once!
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 6:28:08 AM EDT
Originally Posted By RikWriter: I've often wondered why they don't go with plastic-cased ammo.
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I believe Abrams main gun ammo has a "consumable or combustable" type case. I'd also bet it has "issues"
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 8:24:46 AM EDT
The base that seals the breech is the only part of the 120mm case that isn't consumed. That and the primer, of course. But artillery and tank rounds don't get stacked in spring-loaded magazines, don't get exposed to the handling that small-arms ammunition does, and the rate of fire (and thermal mass of the gun) is such that disposing of heat isn't as big a problem. I don't think successful caseless small-arms ammo is likely to be developed any time soon, no matter how much money you throw at the problems.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 2:57:14 PM EDT
I didn't just mean caseless, I think we should be pushing for some sort of revelutionary technology like that mentioned by natez above...what we have now is just improved World War II tech...If we can build a space station and electron microscopes, why do we have a weapon that a Civil War soldier could recognize?
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 4:36:55 PM EDT
Originally Posted By natez: The other problem with caseless is overheating. The brass cartirdge case serves as a big heat sink that is discarded after every shot, aiding the whole cooling process significantly. If you eliminate that element, it changes the heating/cooling equation enough that the designs are untenable in small arms. I bet that binary liquid propellants, like they are experimenting with for artillery, will probably be the next breakthrough in projectile-based small arms. I have also wondered why they haven't decided to ditch the "proven" but dirty methods of small arms, blowback or the various gas systems, and go with something flywheel driven, that would be independent of recoil forces to operate.
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Probably because if it's independent, then you need an external power system for it. Either a large battery or a slow and cumbersome hand crank.
Gas could be vented to "recharge" the flywheel, or you could always have a back-up hand crank. On-board electronics (including ignition) could also be driven by the flywheel, eliminating battery troubles, and you could operate with a "chain gun" type system of rotating chambers, slowing down heat build-up. The enitre mechanism could be bedded on shocks to control perceived and actual recoil; you could even float the entire mechanism in the stock and put an alignment laser (similar to the M1 main gun) on the end of the barrel calibrated with the sighting system to give the shooter accuracy.
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That whole mess would probably be really heavy, heavy enough to make it require vehicle mounting. Flywheels are generally heavy too, and for it to be a flywheel, it would take a while to spin up to speed. You might have to fire half a magazine before it got up to speed. And it it was gas-powered, it wouldn't be independent anymore.
I don't see any reason why they couldn't have a very, very sophisticated ballistics computer combined with a dual purpose reflex/magnified sighting system with bullet drop, windage and complicated ballistics in avery small package. Reflex sights are merely extensions of fighter technology from the 60s and 70s, shrunk down to rifle size; when are they going to do the same thing with the excellent fire control systems from our tanks?
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Probably possible, but would it actually help on an assault rifle? At the ranges and conditions they're meant to be used, an ordinary, stationary red dot is probably more accurate then the shooter is. Now for a sniper rifle, that might be helpful. Why shouldn't a sniper have a rangefinder integrated into the optics that automatically corrects for drop and all that other stuff? It would probably help him make faster, more accurate shots. The other thing about caseless, even without a misfire, how do you clear a loaded weapon? Yeah, it seems strange that weapons technology hasn't changed much since at least WWII. But we just can't think of anything that's really fundamentally better right now. Laser weapons sound cool, but there's still the power problem - if nothing else, you have to build a power source that compares to the weight of a normal rifle and is just as reliable while delivering a large amount of power.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 4:52:18 PM EDT
Why not go M-16/M-4 over the XM-8?
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 4:52:43 PM EDT
Hmmm, could you make a case instead out of a *lightly* oiled flash paper? maybe use flashpaper encased fulminate for a priming mixture? that way you could still use mechanical firing, and th eflashpaper woudl burn away to almost nothing, whatever severely limited ash would be less than Wolf leaves behind and would be spat out the bolt cycling....... Just a thought I have been tinkering with for awhile....... Still use mags though, maybe plastic... (Thermelt)
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 5:06:56 PM EDT
Why don't we take the standard WWII issue battle rifle, the M1 Garand, and modify it... Shorter barrel, magazine fed, maybe shorten the cartride a little, improve the gas system, make it select-fire, etc... That'd be tactical.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 5:19:40 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/27/2003 5:32:16 PM EDT by Dave_A]
1) Caseless: Few advantages, many disadvantages, plus the fatal cookoff (due to no metal case to cool the chamber) flaw... Brass works, and unless you're trying to be stealthly there is little disadvantage to using it... 2) 'Flywheel' Rotating mass, and it's gotta be rim-heavy to work right... Can you say 'Gyroscope Effect'? It would cause severe time-on-target issues, even if the possible ROF would be higher... The only reason this is not a problem with vehicle applications is that the mounting systems overcome the gyro-effect. In a man-portable weapon it would be fatal (p.s. The 'Jesse Ventura' gun from Predator does NOT exist. It's a movie prop, no more)... Besides, ROF is not an issue in assault-rifle applications... If anything, most mods SLOW the ROF, not increase it... 3) Flashpaper... Ok, back to the 1870s... Paper cartridges... The ash & oul would gum up the chamber, and paper isn't as lube-friendly as copper... Plus, the oil (and any external contaminants like gun lube) would seep thru and foul the charge.... And like caseless, paper does not conduct heat -> cookoff problem and cooling issues... There's a good reason why we use metal now... 4) Garand... What you suggested would be the very un-tactical M-14... Been there, done that, replaced by the AR... Sometimes things don't change because there isn't a good reason or enough advancement to warrant a change.... Think how many years swords, or muzzle loading muskets were used... Right now, we have the best of what's available, there's no reason to change (unless you eliminate moving parts, there will allways be jams (in any design - in case some of you missed it, Iraqi conditions jam AKs too. We just hear less complaining about it because no one cares weather a BG dies because his weapon jams or whatever, just as long as he's dead)...
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 5:41:10 PM EDT
Screw caseless ammo!!!! Too many things to worry about. What is to protect the propellant from dirt, any who has gone to the field as a Soldier or Marine can tell you how dirty everything gets. What if the propellant gets cracked, solid propellant that is cracked tends to explode. That is why solid propellant rocket and missiles that get accidently dropped don't get mounted. Electric primers, better hope they are HERO safe. Else nice things like static electricity, EMR from a nearby radio could set them off. I haven't even entered in the human factor yet, the are some dumb GI's out there who seem to invent new ways of screwing something up. I am a firm believer in the KISS principle, never give "Mr. Murphy" (Murphy's law) a chance to create mayhem!!!!
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 6:30:52 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Waldo:
Originally Posted By RikWriter: I've often wondered why they don't go with plastic-cased ammo.
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I believe Abrams main gun ammo has a "consumable or combustable" type case. I'd also bet it has "issues"
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As a "de-tanked" Tanker training as a door-busting Hummer rider, I can offer at least a little insight on both the new rifle and why not casless: The M1 ammo is actually pretty reliable, as reliable as the old cased stuff, and the tradeoff for what fragility it does have, is definitly overshadowed by the fact the interior of an M1 is very, VERY finite, and you are far more combat effective with only the little aft cap and its weird, elongated protrusion that ensures a good even burn, than with a huge bit of steel or brass hanging about. Yes, the shells get wet, and sometimes rip, and get damaged, but they're not overly sensitive, and are stored in very very effective storage areas and magazines. Here's the difference between an M1 and a rifle round- how many main-gun rounds does an infantryman have to carry to be effective? How many of them does a Tanker have to carry? See what I'm getting at? If one in ten of our rounds is unservicable, its no big deal, with an infantryman it'd be a nightmare. As for the XM-8? Look, I'm a long time .22 cal hater, but I've qualified expert with my M4, and after shooting the M16 yesterday on tactical drills, I'd take my M4 any day over a full sized weapon. Chief complaints about the M4 is: Reliability/maintenance access: The M4 has all the nooks and crannies in the M16's fire control system and guts, and in Iraq we'll have to clean them on the hour to keep them combat-effective when we need them, our six combat vets in our platoon are adamant about that. Will the XM8 be easier to clean and take more crud than the M4? Will the curse of the AR handguard be lifted? Taking those things off in a hurry is a F'ing curse...especially on new weapons like ours.... Range/punch- for CQB its fine, but even in CQB a double-tap is a near must to effectivly disable a target, I believe in trying to drop one target per round, but hey, its just me. In a city with a tactical scope, its probably just fine for accuracy, so I've got no issues there for Iraq. Something needs to be done to talor a new cartridge for short barreled infantry weapons so that it'll be more effective- faster burning poweder, tighter rifling, I dunno, something necessairy. I wouldnt cry if we went to a 6mm or 6.5mm cartridge 'round the same size as the 5.56x45mm, mebby like a 6mm PPC (6x40mm)....gotta be a way to make these compact weapons more effective. 5.56 has had its day, and it was certainly no .30-06...time to let the whiz-bang boys cook us up something new.... Just my $.02
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 6:43:32 PM EDT
Another problem with caseless is the lack of an ejection port contributes greatly to the heat and cook-off issue.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 7:42:39 PM EDT
Caseless is coming, however, it's not in the next generation, it's probably 5 or so generations down the line. It isn't feasible now. Heat is not an isurmountable problem, just dificult. Ceramics may be in line too. If I was to be in the design world, what I'ld be trying to do is figure out a way to convince the powers that be that one model arm is probably not be the way to go, too many compromises to do too many things. However, a ceramic receiver with interchangeable barrels (or equivalents to uppers) shorter barrels for "mounted" troops, longer for grunts, longer for designated marksmen. Probably a horizontal magazine to assist in lowering the height overall. Whatever comes along in a few generations will look no more like the M-16 than the M-16 looks like a Krag or Trapdoor.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 8:11:45 PM EDT
[img]http://aliens.humlak.cz/aliens/Aliens_papirove_modely/papercraft/papermodel/m41model07.jpg[/img] 10mm caseless M41A Pulse Rifle with grenade launcher...been available for a while [;)]
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 8:37:03 PM EDT
What is the point to caseless? Ability to carry a few more rounds? Faster cyclic? "Crickets Churping".......
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 8:52:09 PM EDT
Originally Posted By TheFNG: What is the point to caseless? Ability to carry a few more rounds? Faster cyclic? "Crickets Churping".......
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It was more than a "few" rounds. A G11 9 loaded magazines-450 rounds- weighed less than M16A2 with 210. Magazines were 50 rounds a piece, and there were channels in the stock that allowed three of them to be carried on the weapon itself. And the cyclic on 3rnd burst was supposidly outrageous-2100 rounds per minute, full auto was only 700rpm. But the 4.85mm bullet would not fragment at any speed, like the SS190 and GP90 rounds built at the same time.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 9:03:24 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Phil_A_Steen: Another problem with caseless is the lack of an ejection port contributes greatly to the heat and cook-off issue.
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G11's had a ejection port, on the underside, for clearing rounds during range firing and for misfires. All rifles have to have a clearing port so the weapon can be made safe at the end of a shoot- a real world issue that has always undercut the theoretical advantages of caseless or combustible case repeating firearms. Since you cannot, in practice, do away with the extractor and ejector and the ejection opening even though they may not be needed for the weapon to fire.
Link Posted: 11/27/2003 9:43:43 PM EDT
Originally Posted By PaDanby: Caseless is coming, however, it's not in the next generation, it's probably 5 or so generations down the line. It isn't feasible now. Heat is not an isurmountable problem, just dificult. Ceramics may be in line too. If I was to be in the design world, what I'ld be trying to do is figure out a way to convince the powers that be that one model arm is probably not be the way to go, too many compromises to do too many things. However, a ceramic receiver with interchangeable barrels (or equivalents to uppers) shorter barrels for "mounted" troops, longer for grunts, longer for designated marksmen. Probably a horizontal magazine to assist in lowering the height overall. Whatever comes along in a few generations will look no more like the M-16 than the M-16 looks like a Krag or Trapdoor.
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Only problem is that most of the weight of a gun is the barrel, ammo & furnature, and a ceramic barrel is gonna be a hard sell anywhere you go... As for horizonatal mags, they're much more complex to load, and are also often physically longer (harder to pack) than the traditional double-stack vertical box mag...
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