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Posted: 11/26/2003 6:02:35 AM EDT
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 6:12:56 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/26/2003 6:15:02 AM EDT by krinkfreak]


General Dynamics 12.7mm / .50 XM312 Machinegun (USA)

Caliber: 12.7x99mm (.50 Browning Machine Gun)
Weight: 19 kg on tripod
Length: no data
Length of barrel: no data
Feeding: belt
Rate of fire: 260 rounds/min


The original plans to replace obsolete, but numerous .50 caliber (12.7mm) Browning M2HB heavy machine guns in the US service listed the 25mm Xm307 OCSW weapon as a successor to the 80+ years old Browning. But the present delays in the development of the highly expensive and sophisticated OCSW led to the conclusion that the US Forces do need something new, and at least as effective as old "Ma Deuce" (M2HB) right now. So in 2000 US military requested for the lightweight, .50 caliber machine gun to supplement old M2HB until the arrival of the much more effective 25mm XM307 OCSW system, which will be capable of firing 25mm explosive shells with great accuracy and lethality. The described version of the XM312 "lightweight heavy machine gun" (sounds weird, huh?) is being developed by the General Dynamics, a huge US-based defense company. The XM312 is based on the 25mm XM307, but without its comprehensive and expensive explosive ammo and fire control it is much cheaper and could be finalized much faster. It is entirely possible that XM312 will enter limited service with US military before 2005, while XM307 OCSW is scheduled for much later date.

The XM312 will be one of the lightest (if not lightest of all) .50 caliber (12.7mm) machine guns on the market. This advantage, which will made it two-men portable, comes at the cost of decreased cyclic rate of fire, which is more than 2 times lower, than on other .50 caliber guns. This will made this gun strictly anti-ground weapon, because this low rate of fire will made it ineffective against fast-moving targets like helicopters and low-flying aircrafts. The practical rate of fire, however, is quoted to be no less than of M2HB, around 40 rounds per minute. XM312 also should be no less (if not more) accurate than the M2HB.

Technical description.
The design of the XM312 is based on the recoil-reducing action, developed for 25mm XM307 OCSW. The barrel is locked by the conventional rotating bolt, which is operated by more or less conventional gas system. The bolt group mover within the barrel extension, which, along with the barrel and gas system, can recoil inside the gun housing. The XM312 fires from the open bolt, and at the moment of fire the recoiling group (barrel, barrel extension, gas system and gas drive) is in its rearmost position. When gun is fired, special spring first begin to move recoiling group forward. Then, bolt is released, it strips the cartridge into the barrel, locks it and cartridge is fired, while recoiling group is still on the move forward. So, the recoil of the shot first had to overcome the inertia of the recoiling group, and only then group began to recoil back, compressing the return spring. At the same time gas drive unlocks the bolt, and retracts it within the barrel extension, extracting and ejecting a fired case. This somewhat complicated design results in significantly reduced recoil, and in conjunction with muzzle brake, in lightweight, but stable construction. The price of this reduction in recoil is complicated (and expensive) construction and low cyclic rate of fire. The feed is using same old metallic belts, and XM312 can be fed from either side, alternatively.

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Link Posted: 11/26/2003 8:14:38 AM EDT
*sigh* so goes another legend.. Let's hope it's for something that really IS superior this time..
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 1:33:34 PM EDT
Ma Duece should never ever be replaced by some techno piece of shit....
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 2:37:22 PM EDT
I'll belive this when I see it. Many have tried to replace the M2, none have stood the test of time. Browning was a god.
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 3:58:50 PM EDT
Well, at least to my knowledge, the good old B-52 is still running strong. It has gone through revisions but is still, IMO, the best US bomber we have.

Dunno what this has to do with the ma duce. Thought I'd bring up one piece of history that hasn't been retired yet.
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 7:42:42 PM EDT
Yeap I got to fire a M2 while in the ARMY. It was a blast.Got to hit some old M113 way out in a field. I thought she was a great weapon.Served us well.WarDawg
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 8:17:03 PM EDT
Well, it was never replaced because the replacements were grenade guns or cannons. Now that something firing .50 is going to be made...

Damn, the M2 is a piece of Americana.
Link Posted: 11/26/2003 8:48:05 PM EDT
The really sad part to this whole story is the fact that when and if the Ma Deuce is declared obsolete, our beloved United States government of , will destroy the weapons.

NO DAMN PARTS KITS!!!!!!!!!!!!!GRRRRRRRRRRRRR

Whereas if it was some eastern European country, or Israel, we would be in for an influx of parts kits!

I'm gonna write my Representative!

Chuck

Link Posted: 11/26/2003 10:08:46 PM EDT
I think the reason it hasn't been replaced is because there's little room for imrovement.

What more can you ask for then reliability, accuracy and power?
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