Pentagon Confirms Move to 6.8mm in the Future

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This topic contains 10 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Optimist 5 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #20457

    Crow Bar

    The artcile also mentions SOCOM is going with the 6.5CM for their percision marksmen.

  • #20597


    Excellent, cheaper 6.8 components and parts on the way!!!

  • #20598


    Have no confidence whatsoever of the pentagon making a correct decision . The 223 should never have been adopted for our military , at any time , for any reason . Considering we have not won a war sense 1945 , our judgment has gone steadily down hill ever sense .

  • #20603


    Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

    In this case, it is a good decision. Especially as it doesn’t require a complete revamp of the weapons systems.

  • #20607

    Crow Bar

    The main arguement was the troops could carry more rounds for the same weight when compared to 7.62×51. More fast misses.

    The Next Generation Squad Rifle is going to replace the M16/M4. About time IMO.

  • #20611


    Perhaps , the infantryman has to carry too much other crap , instead of bare bones fighting needs . Considering that most of our enemies have kept us tied up all over the world , without it . If thats the theory , they might as well issue a pump pellet gun , they can then carry thousands . Go back to the 30.06 . Not an expert by any stretch , but some things never change in history , one being , the more encumbered you are , the less effective you are . One thing not to skimp on is power of your weaponry . The US has by far , the best logistics , and support in the world . Ammo shouldn’t be one of our issues . I still am convinced that any flaws we have , come from our methods . It has to be , otherwise , we wouldn’t be able to be defeated , time , and time again , by people with low  , to no tech , little support , and not geared up like the Michelin man . Keep giving our guys lesser and lesser cal rounds , is not going to do anything but put them in danger . On the other hand , giving the cops lesser equipment would probably be a step in the right direction , but not the military .

    • #20618

      Dan the Old Guy

      Hi Tolik,

      I like the way you think.  The problem the small calibers are trying to solve is lack of shooting skills.  If you need 20 bullets to hit a bad guy, those better be small bullets and easy to carry.  OTOH, if you only need 1 bullet to hit the enemy, it doesn’t have to be that small.  The military has decided it is cheaper/easier to buy small, less effective bullets than to teach marksmanship at an effective level.  I remember my basic training back in 1984 and we really didn’t get any individual help at all.  We would march out to the range, there would be a 30 minute class on what we were supposed to practice that day, then we would have one or two turns shooting, then march home, next day repeat, for about 3 or 4 weeks.  I doubt we fired more than 500 rounds learning how to shoot, and no one gave us individual feedback, so the improvement wasn’t a lot.

      As for weight, that is just officers being stupid.  What the VA is finding out now is that lots of soldiers are having medical issues because 110 lbs being carried all day up and down mountains in 110-degree heat is surprisingly not good for your body.  We put too much cheap crap on our soldiers, and cheap crap is heavier than expensive equipment.  We can buy a 300 million dollar fighter plane that can’t fight in a dogfight, but give a soldier $2000 body armor instead of $200, God Forbid!

      There is some good news.  With the new optics like the ACOG and ballistically improved ammo like the M855, the M4 is becoming a better weapon system.  When I was in back in the 80’s, we were lucky to get a M16 that could shoot within 4 or 5 MOA.  I was not a line soldier, I was in signals intelligence/tactical electronic warfare, so truth be told, if I were firing, something was really wrong.

      Having said that, I could easily hit the 800-meter target every year at qualification time with the M60 machinegun that fired 7.62 NATO, so I know our 7.62 was a good round, even back then.  Instead of .30-06, which I do like, why not go to 7.62 NATO which we already have a stockpile of.  Switch the M4 to the AR-10 and then teach the soldiers and marines to actually hit what they aim at.  Buy them some lightweight level 4 body armor, and either find lightweight alternatives to their equipment or leave some of that crap behind.  If we want good infantry, we have to spend money to make them good.  The days of people coming into the service already crack shots is over.

  • #20620

    Crow Bar

    you are not wrong.
    We are fighting a war from the Vietnam era where fire fights were in the jungle, at short distances. Comparable to urban hostile environments.
    On paper, a 5.56 looks great.
    Reality is a different thing.
    While I was in Afghanistan, insurgents would attack from an elevated position, usually, but not always using an IED as the initial attack. Then, using PKMs (7.62x54R) and RPGs as the main effort to rain down rounds on the column usually from 500m (they knew the limitations of a 5.56 round at that range, up elevation and in Afghan winds, forget it. MG240s and M2 got the most effective use. M16/M4 were just wasting ammo). AKs closer in, in the supporting or harassment role.
    And they had no body armor. They did small team hit and run tactics, beating feet on small motorcycles on goat paths. Meanwhile, our MRAPs could not go up that hill, or could overturn. A rolled MRAP is like a turtle on its back.
    Bridges? Try taking a 13ton armored vehicle over a stone built bridge. All the insurgents had to do was get over the bridge. If a MRAP tired, it was going down into the ravine with a sudden stop at the bottom.
    Wearing full body armor and kit and try to do a 100yrd dash, or run up a hill? Try it once. There is a reason why maneuver warfare is so important.

  • #20621

    Crow Bar

    @dan the Old Guy,
    In the Marines, at my beloved Island, we spent 2 weeks on marksmanship. I have a Expert rating with a M16A2 service rifle using iron sights.

    And that, IMHO, is what we need to be focusing on: Marksmanship.
    New optics are great and have their place, but we need to emphasis the first round hit and not just from a high end sniper rifle, but the Main Battle Rifle.

    Ditch the “assault” rifle. If the rifle and the round is good out to the 800 line, you know it is going to be good at 200.
    Looking at the data, and real world application, a number of the 6.5s out does the 6.8 and wont leave the troops wanting.
    I am a fan of the 7.62×51 but recognize the advantages of some of the 6.5s and if they would apply them from the basic rifleman to the squad automatic rifle to the general purpose MG, then the logistics get that much simpler.

    The 5.56 performance was so poor, the Army had to spend a lot of money to produce the Enhanced Performance Round to over come all the short comings of the 62grn green tip 5.56.

  • #20627


    I personally like the venerable 7.62 x 54r . I also find it interesting that we sometimes use the PKM . Nothing wrong with that , make use of a good weapon . I just picked up a 91/44 with the folding bayonet to add to my  fun relic collection . Made in 1945 . Makes my 91/30 look and feel like a civil war musket lol .




  • #23812


    Let’s put the 5.56 and M.16 into historical perspective.  General LeMay wanted it for his ground personnel as a replacement for the M.1 Carbine.  There’s an apocryphal story that he lost a group of sentries at one of the missile sites to an irritated mama Grizzly when the M.2 carbines wouldn’t handle her outraged ursine self.


    At any rate, the M.16 got a look.  Congress was mightily ired at the makers of the M.14 at about the same time and demanded that if the arm was adopted, it had to be adopted for all the forces as the rifle….  It was adopted.


    And that’s how the M.16 came to be.  Congressional folly, due to bad rifle manufacture on the part of the M.14.  The cartridge is a considerable improvement over the .30 M.1 round, and the rifle as originally built is a much better arm than the M.1 or M.2 carbines were….


    To get back toward the topic, the 6.8 SPC is a considerably better round than most of the others than could be fielded through the AR15 platform.  I’ve shot it some, mostly out of a bolt action rifle, and it is considerably more authoritative in putting a deer down than is the 5.56.  It’s very close to the old 6.5 x 51 Arisaka or the .250 Savage in terms of performance on game.  As a choice for the AR platform, I’d heartily support it.

    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by  Optimist.
    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by  Optimist.
    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by  Optimist.

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