I served for 16 years in SF, the vast majority on a “shooter” ODA.
I was chosen to represent my Group and USASFC in several Combat Research and Development weapons projects over the years.
I served two tours in Iraq with SF. (initial invasion & counter insurgency ops)
I am currently a PSD “contractor” in Iraq.
I have attended several shooting schools to include: Gunsite, Thunder Ranch, Chapman Academy, and Mid-South as well as a couple of military shooting/CQB schools.
I have been an avid shooter for most of my life and shoot as much as I can for work and enjoyment. I try to hit the range at least once a week and will usually put 400-600 rounds per pistol and carbine down range per range day doing drills.
I have shot more rounds through a M4/M16 weapon than I sometimes care to remember and have witnessed many times that many rounds put down range by Team Mates and students over the years.
Having laid out my experience I will say: I DO NOT PRETEND TO KNOW EVERYTHING.
I do have my opinion. (As does everybody)
I also have my observations.
Here are my observations of piston driven M4’s. (POF)
I have seen piston driven M4’s (POF) shoot an incredible amount of rounds without a fraction of the chamber fouling or chamber HEAT generated in the piston driven weapon. Less heat means longer part life and less part failure (especially to the bolt, cam pin, and bolt carrier). I have seen several M4 bolts, cam pins and bolt carriers break due to this heating and cooling effect. Also, due to hot carbon NOT being forced into the chamber to operate the weapon, cleaning on a piston operated M4 is less frequent for the same number of rounds fired as it would be for a conventional M4. PERIOD!! I have shot 4 mags through a piston gun as fast as I could pull the trigger and then pulled out the bolt and held it in my bare hand. I have also shot hard for several days of training and when the gun was finally broken down at the conclusion of training, it looked like it had maybe 2-3 mags worth shot through it instead of the 1,500-2,000 rounds it had actually fired.
Is this the perfect weapon that will always run, never jam, never break, shoot 1 inch groups at 1,000 yards and cure the Bird Flu, PMS and the common cold?
However, I do believe it is a vast improvement that is long overdue on the M4/M16 weapon system and if perfected could very well be the wave of the future for serious, hard use shooters.
If you are a serious M4 shooter I highly recommend giving the POF piston gun a try.
PS- There are POF uppers currently being used in Iraq and Asscrackistan. These are being used by individual shooters who have bought them with their own money. There is no greater statement than a guy using his own cash to buy a piece of kit.