ammo belts

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9 years 7 months ago #1 by Glenn
ammo belts was created by Glenn
The other day I was chatting to a work mate that done a couple of tours in vietnam,
He was telling me that every soldier on patrol had to carry ammo belts for the machine gunner.

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9 years 7 months ago #2 by olive drab
Replied by olive drab on topic Re: ammo belts
That would be right. An M60 uses a lot of rounds, interesting that the Bren gun has never really been replaced and the GPMG such a high rate of fire requiring extra rounds.
More concerning is the review of the the death in Afganistan that the soldiers were under trained in the use of a vehicle mounted MG or rocket launchers and the ability to call in fast air training was lacking would question also why LAVs were not sent earlier.

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9 years 6 months ago #3 by Phil
Replied by Phil on topic Re: ammo belts
Well the M60 was the sections main firepower, so it was everyone's responsibility to carry the ammunition for it. 7.62mm 4B1T belted is actually very heavy, even 1000 rounds in ammo cans is more than I can comfortably carry any distance (weighing a bit over 35kgs). We use a heavy canvas bag to carry four M61 cans (holding up to 250 rounds each) and we normally use two people to carry that out to the flightline if the mule isn't available.

While the Bren is a lovely weapon to fire and maintain, it's limitation is it's 30 rnd magazine. When the standard service rifle was bolt action and only held 10 rounds it was a big increase in firepower, but now every rifle in the section has a 30 round magazine it's a bit of a limitation for supplying sustained firepower. It's also inneficient way to carry ammo, if 250 rounds one ammo can is heavy, imagine 250 rounds (well 270) in 9 magazines. That's a lot of bulk and weight for not much firepower.

The M60 was a pretty decent Bren replacement in it's day, it doesn't weight much more than the Bren. The MAG58 is a far more capable weapon than either the Bren or the M60, but it is very heavy. Everyone attempted to replace the Bren or BAR (in the case of the US) with the Minimi, but this has proved an average weapon at best. It's a bit too flimsey (all our army's ones are flogged out) and isn't accurate enough. Also with the type of combat in Afghanistan with the longer engagement ranges it has been found to lack the legs to effectively engage the enemy. The answer to this isprobably going to be the 7.62mm Minimi which combines the hitting power and range of 7.62mm with the lighter weight of the Minimi.

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9 years 6 months ago - 9 years 6 months ago #4 by Dean
Replied by Dean on topic Re: ammo belts
I notice the yanks these days seem to be using the Minimi mostly in the para/SPW version with the shorter barrel, telescoping stock and the 200rd box mag. It's like going back to the Stoner.

My wife calls me a curmudgeon. I haven't looked it up but I assume it means "fun loving and free spirited" or some such twaddle. I inform and perform over at www.militarymodels.co.nz and stick my oar in here as well. My passion is WWII 1/35 armour but I'm coming around to liking the odd 1/32 thing...
Last edit: 9 years 6 months ago by Dean.

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9 years 6 months ago #5 by Phil
Replied by Phil on topic Re: ammo belts
The Para mimimi is handy enough in a MOUT/FIBUA situation or when getting in an out of Vehicles all day, but the Brits have also identified it's shortcomings in Afghanistan.

The NZDF has been trialing the 7.62 Minimi, along with a 7.62 section marksman rifle and various different configurations of optics and supressors for the Steyr and Minimi.

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9 years 6 months ago #6 by Dean
Replied by Dean on topic Re: ammo belts
Yeah I can see where the SPW Minimi would have it's uses but personally I never saw the 5.56 as being suitable in a fire suppression role. Really all the Minim gives you over the M16/M4 is more sustained fire and barrel changing abilityIf they ever manage to perfect caseless ammo it would negate the whole weight factor for carrying bulk 7.62 in the field.

My wife calls me a curmudgeon. I haven't looked it up but I assume it means "fun loving and free spirited" or some such twaddle. I inform and perform over at www.militarymodels.co.nz and stick my oar in here as well. My passion is WWII 1/35 armour but I'm coming around to liking the odd 1/32 thing...

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