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"Light" Machine gun in 338?

This is a discussion on "Light" Machine gun in 338? within the Full Automatics forums, part of the Gun Forum category; Yahoo News is reporting that the Army (Big Army) is again looking for a "light Machine gun" in a magnum Caliber. This time in .338 ...


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Old May 17th, 2017, 01:08 PM   #1
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"Light" Machine gun in 338?

Yahoo News is reporting that the Army (Big Army) is again looking for a "light Machine gun" in a magnum Caliber. This time in .338 Norma.

The requirement is for an MG that can engage area targets at 2,000 meters.

Is this real-world or just something driven by some arms company trying to bread a new cash-cow?

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Old May 17th, 2017, 01:52 PM   #2
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I would be surprised if there was a changeover due to the large numbers of .50 Caliber Machine Guns in stock as well as ammunition for them. I can not imagine that the .338 Norma Magnum (250 Grains) would have anywhere near as heavy a projectile (750 Grains) as the .50 Caliber.

As a replacement for the 7.62X51? You got me there, a MG squad member couldn't see 2000 meters without advanced optics so why not stay with what they have?

Then you would also loose ammunition compatibility with NATO partners.

But, if the bean counters get involved, if politics get involved, I would guess that all bets are off!

Interesting post!

HTH.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:05 PM   #3
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Logistically this will be a nightmare. Weight = less ammunition per lb of ammo carried. Spare parts will be (even harder) to obtain than regular bench stock. The Army has a hard enough time keeping its standard issues GPMG up and running properly in many cases.

The idea is cool, but not sound nor grounded in reality, IMHO.

I agree with M1AFL- our soldaten right now cant even fully exploit the capabilities of our current M240 MG's, even from a tripod. You can stretch your legs pretty far with that setup, I daresay 1500 meters for area targets with a good MG team...

I think that the military in-general should be more concerened about the rot, complacency and toxicity with its mid and upper tier ranks that threatens to undermine the entire institution as a whole, rather than trying to fix a moot problem.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:16 PM   #4
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Not Big Army but SOCOM and USMC.
It would be a replacement for the .50 cal. If you have ever fired a .50 mounted on a vehicle, including A/C, you know that a lot of energy is transferred to the vehicle. That means you are doing damage to the mount and vehicle. Also if you have ever had to hump .50 ammo you know that it's a lot of weight for not a lot of rounds.
Sometimes it's not about who can throw the biggest projectile down range but it's about who can throw the most ACCURATE projectile.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:26 PM   #5
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What I read sounded like they were not intending to replace the mounted 50BMG, but to up-gun the role of the 7.62 M-240 oln patrol! The emphases was on "light MG"

Any MG in a caliber larger that 7.62 NATO will be a beast to carry and feed.

Now I don't have experience with this, but the Barrett guns are at least man-portable. They even have a 338 Lapua series. Why not pring along a Barrett (choose a model and cartridge) and either use it in its designed sniper role, or have a special select fire model?

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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:29 PM   #6
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Read the article.

It is a replacement for the .50 M2HB (HMG), not a Light MG (LMG) but a light weight MEDIUM MG (LWMMG).


Last edited by ArmyPilot; May 17th, 2017 at 02:39 PM.
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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:47 PM   #7
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There gos the army thinking again... I swear there must be some idiots in charge over there...

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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:49 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ManxumFoe View Post
The requirement is for an MG that can engage area targets at 2,000 meters.
2,000 meters is 1.24 miles. I know that I would require some type of optics and a cheek rest! Or support from Field Artillery.



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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ManxumFoe View Post
What I read sounded like they were not intending to replace the mounted 50BMG, but to up-gun the role of the 7.62 M-240 oln patrol! The emphases was on "light MG"

Any MG in a caliber larger that 7.62 NATO will be a beast to carry and feed.

Now I don't have experience with this, but the Barrett guns are at least man-portable. They even have a 338 Lapua series. Why not pring along a Barrett (choose a model and cartridge) and either use it in its designed sniper role, or have a special select fire model?
The point is to get something portable, but give the punch of the .50 BMG.

The .50 is 84 pounds with another 50 pounds for the tripod, it ain't man-mobile. If you could get a MG that was at least the weight of a 60mm mortar but had the range and affect of a .50, you would be on to something.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 02:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XXIV Corps View Post
2,000 meters is 1.24 miles. I know that I would require some type of optics and a cheek rest! Or support from Field Artillery.


AREA targets . . .

EDIT: Special Operations are not known for toting around their own artillery, BTW.

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Last edited by lysander; May 17th, 2017 at 04:34 PM.
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Old May 17th, 2017, 03:06 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ManxumFoe View Post


Any MG in a caliber larger that 7.62 NATO will be a beast to carry and feed.

Now I don't have experience with this, but the Barrett guns are at least man-portable. They even have a 338 Lapua series. Why not pring along a Barrett (choose a model and cartridge) and either use it in its designed sniper role, or have a special select fire model?
Any thoughts on this ...is there any practicasl way to use these weapons in a limited role? Maybe a modfel with a side or top mounted magazine like an FG-42 or BREN gun.

Are the Barrett type firearms any more portable than a "light" medium MG?

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Old May 17th, 2017, 03:15 PM   #12
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The designations Light, Medium, and Heavy have nothing to do with weight. They refer to caliber.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 04:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ManxumFoe View Post
Any thoughts on this ...is there any practicasl way to use these weapons in a limited role? Maybe a modfel with a side or top mounted magazine like an FG-42 or BREN gun.

Are the Barrett type firearms any more portable than a "light" medium MG?
The Barrett weapons are semi-automatic weapons intended for point targets. You want a full-auto for area suppression.

What "light", "medium" and "heavy" have been covered.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 05:52 PM   #14
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I feel like this is a dumb idea. They're thinking to hard about this intermediate ammo stuff. But I'm not part of this nor know the whole story so I will wait and see.

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Old May 17th, 2017, 06:13 PM   #15
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I was in a heavy weapons company for five years, and I've had plenty time behind (and humping) the 240 and .50's. To be able to have a machine gun that is lighter than the 240, with the same range as the .50, and having good accuracy is an infantyman's wet dream. Yeah, maybe the chances of throwing lead downrange at 2000m in real life is a little on the slim side, but it is nice to have that capability without driving a humvee or toting a .50 on your back.

Just my humble .02

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