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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Gents.... I went to see "Black Hawk Down" last night. It was a very entertaining and informative to say the least. I did notice a single M1A being used in a sea and I mean sea of M16's.....At a point in an effort to protect a downed copter, 2 Delta force individuals were dropped into a bad situation to say the least. In any event, one of them was using an M1A while shooting about 40 "skinnies." I noticed the scope was on the rifle at this time. In a rapid target acquisition mode, would this be appropriate? I understand of course in a do or die situation, all is appropriate yet, would a scope not impede one's ability to shoot rapidly and effectively? Great film by the way.

Larry C.:ar15:
 

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I just finished the book. I believe that these two dudes were snipers and their job was to overwatch a crash sight. They would have 10 power and up scopes for this and a Rem 700 M24 gov sniper package or the M21 Gov M1A - M14 scoped package. (I hope I have the numbers in proper order) they will work real good If you can crank the scopes down to 3.5 power which would give you a wider field of view and make you a little quicker for close in shots. I plan on seeing the movie when the recession is over (just kidding) it is always nice to read the book before you go and see the movie.
ches
 

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In the book, one of the complaints of the rangers was the fact that they would hit a sammie 3 times and then they would get up and crawl off to tell the others where the rangers were shooting from. This was with the M16. One of the characters kept wishing that he had a M14 because when you hit them, they did not crawl off. This is certainly food for thought. I have heard for many years that the M16 and AK 47 rounds were meant to wound instead of kill. As far as morale, I would hate to hit a target 3 times and have it crawl off.
ches
 

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Many of the guys in the firefights were using 10.5"-11.5" CAR-15 variants, not M16s. I haven't seen the movie, so I don't know if it is portrayed accurately.

From what I've read, the M16s were stopping the bad guys, and the carbines were NOT. This is due to the velocity of the round.. a full 20" barrel will propel the .223 round to around 3250fps, where as a 10.5" barrel is going well under 2500fps.

The .223 literally breaks apart at over 2500-2700fps when it hits a soft body. That's where it does its damage. If it doesn't break up, it just goes straight through. And a .223 hole is a lot less damage than a .308 hole. Hell, my buddy (ex Vietnam vet) talked about lots of straight-throughs from Vietnamese AK47s (7.62x39) and unless they hit something vital, they weren't bad. But the M16 would devastate anything it hit at close range.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi Bill.... So, with the .223 round creating most of its damage from the fragmentation process, one would not want to use SS109 rounds in a situation in which personnel were just involved? I have read recently that these rounds (much to my surprise) were developed in the 1970's. Thr primary purpose was/is accuracy and penetration. This round I believe then, would be of a greater benefit going after vehicles/shelter etc? Obviously, you would not want to get hit by one of these, but if so, no fragmentation would occur in a soft tissue situation?

Larry C.
 

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The SS109 uses a steel core penetrator, not a steel skin. It is a slender steel rod that is surrounded by lead and the usual thin skin of other metal.

So it breaks up just the same in SOFT tissue. Against steel, the rod holds together and will penetrate light armor. In many cases only the steel penetrator makes it through.

See, the penetrator keeps the round from compressing lengthwise, gives it rigidity that way. But in soft tissue, most rounds start to tumble (due to the nature of the shape of the bullet, not due to under-stabilization). It is the super-fast, light bullets (with a thin skin!) that break up, and ony after going sideways/backwards. A large caliber bullet (7.62NATO) will have to go FURTHER to turn sideways (so it may have exited the target) PLUS it holds together due to heavier skin, higher mass, etc. I read an article testing various bullets, and the Germans made a 7.62NATO round for a while that broke up like USGI M193 and sS109 rounds.

The mild steel used by eastern european nations tends to hold the rounds together no matter what, even their .223-alike round used in the AK-74.
 

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Bill, thanks for correcting me. I figured the D boys were probably using car's but I was wondering if the Rangers would have been using the full length M16's. I certainly agree with you about velocity. That is what is so great about a 24 pounder carronade. You get a lot of mass on target whether it is going fast or not. LOL. I would not under any circumstances want to shorten the barrel of a round that depends on velocity to do its damage. Also accuracy can be hurt out of a carbine length barrel.
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Hell, my buddy (ex Vietnam vet) talked about lots of straight-throughs from Vietnamese AK47s (7.62x39) and unless they hit something vital, they weren't bad. But the M16 would devastate anything it hit at close range.
My neighbor was also a Vietnam vet. He said that the Vietnamese called the m-16's "black monsters" because they left an exit wound the size of a grapefruit.
 

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M 14 rifle in movie was wearing Aimpoint Comp M XD sight. Standard issue for spec ops types. Basically a red dot sight with 10 intensity settings, 2 so low that cannot be seen with naked eye at night, but can be used with NVGs.
 

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I was a Ranger, not during Somalia but shortly before. I carried a CAR15 with an aimpoint (3000 if I remember correctly). But most carried M16A2s, the M16A2 is a fine weapon. It is amazingly accurate for a mass produced assault weapon and pretty reliable when clean. The 5.56 is a good round but it will never equal the 7.62 for killing power. If you doubt just put a .223 next to a .308 and figure witch you would least like to be hit by. What we need in the Army is something without the recoil of the .308, which scares kids who did not grow up shooting, but with more stopping power than the .223. Someone needs to invent an M16 type weapon in a 6.5mm. We must use FMJ ammo because of The Hague convention witch prohibits ammunition designed specifically to cause more suffering. None of the US ammunition intentionally breaks up, Since the ammo does not break up, energy and diameter are key. You will notice also that special Ops folks went back to the .45 over the 9mm (.355 cal, shades of the Morros). We have good weapons in the Army but if we are going to have more effective ones we need more money for Ammo (Rangers have a lot but need to face standardization issuers). It is not just the cost of the ammo per round but louder, higher recoil stuff requires more training thus more ammo. That is a budget issue, which falls on you voters. You need to understand that outside of line (platoon level) Infantry we shoot once a year. However we do have consideration of others training four times a year. Write your congressman and tell him we need more COMBAT training. Sorry about the politics it kind of squeaks in occasionally.
Jeff:usa:
 

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Oh and I mean 7.62 NATO (the .308) not the pipsqeak 7.62 X 39
 

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While serving our great country in my beloved Marine Corps I was issued a brand new M16A2 service rifle. I was mildly impressed with it until I shot it for qualification. I could not believe the accuracy of that service rifle. I could and did consistantly hit the 8 inch spotter at 550 meters. This with issue ammo. I was also very impressed with the fact that it would continue to shoot reliably and accurately after many hundreds of rounds between cleanings. I carried this ifle on 3 combat missions and it performed beautifully. The M16A2 is a fine battle rifle and if I had to go back, I would carry it with confidence.
 

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I just read Blackhawk down. Apparently Shughart carried an m21 (the sniper version of the M14) In the book one of the Delta soldiers thinks he was on to somthing and says he will not go into battle again without a 7.62
Jeff :usa:
 

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This (7.62NATO vs 5.56x45) was hashed out many times on the AR-15 list.

The M193 and SS109 rounds to great when they are fired out of 20" barrels out through a couple hundred yards.

14.5" barrels (M4, which wasn't around in Somalia) are OK through, if I recall correctly, 175 yards before they lose their critical damaging effects.

Many delta force guys carried 10.5" and 11.5" CAR-15 and XM-117(?) carbines that don't have enough velocity to cause crap for damage.

Yes, a 7.62NATO round does it right, the first time, out many hundreds of yards.
 

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Folks,

Alot has been said about the stopping power of the 5.56 verses the 7.62 in Somalia and more recently in Afganistan. While both are good rounds the 7.62 wins the day. As for the 5.56 it's really effective out of a 20 inch barrel, the M4 versions with the short barrel are doing a disservice to the round.
While not talked about much is the fact the skinnies would chew "Kat" (a local plant with narcatic properties) all day and about 1-3 in the afternoon the bastards would go ballistic on our folks and each other. Same principle as our law enforcement folks fight on a daily basis - bad guy on drugs, hit several times, wont go down.
Just my two cents worth.

Mark
 
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