AK-47 against M-16. Opinion of an american officer

AK-47 against M-16. Opinion of an american officer

Recently I (Mikhail Belov, The author of the article – note ed.) had a rather tense discussion with my pen-pal Dan Shani, a shooting instructor from San Jose, California. In the past, Dan was an officer in the US Airborne Forces, participated in an operation against Iraq in 1991.

So, we discussed the topic of a promising assault rifle of the US Army, more precisely, Dan explained to me what a view on this topic most of the American servicemen have. Whatever decision is made at the Pentagon, the most important thing is how the majority of soldiers and officers will perceive the innovations. In the last letter on this topic, Dan made his view on AK and M-16A2 and a vision of the future of American infantry weapons. Most of this letter is here, and I quote, in my own translation.

Dan Shani, a shooting instructor from California, shares his view on the AK-M-16A2 confrontation and the vision of the future of American infantry weapons.Dan Shani, a shooting instructor from California, shares his view on the AK-M-16A2 confrontation and the vision of the future of American infantry weapons.

M-16, advantages and disadvantages

When the M-16A2 began to appear in the troops, everyone was extremely pleased: the improvements that were implemented on it, we suggested ourselves, this was something that was noticeable when we first met Stoner’s weapon.

Finally, a weapon worthy of a man appeared, and the experienced sergeants of “Airbonn” sentenced them, having driven just one bullet into another for 300 yards.

The weapon could indeed be called “good”: thanks to the heavy barrel, it was finally possible to fire in bursts for quite a long time, which was unrealistic before, the return was perceived almost half the weaker than the old version – because of only a slightly wider back plate and greater mass.

Much has been said about the reliability of the AR-15 in general and army rifles in particular. I can only say that my M-16A2 never let me down in a difficult situation. But! In general, the reliability of the weapon is relatively low.Much has been said about the reliability of the AR-15 in general and army rifles in particular. I can only say that my M-16A2 never let me down in a difficult situation. But! In general, the reliability of the weapon is relatively low.

The sight has acquired normal adjustment screws, now any recruit could have shot down a weapon. Accuracy was usually about 2-3.5 inches by 100 yards, but individual trunks were knocked out and 1 12 at the same distance. Shooting for 300-400 yards was now capable of causing melander delusions of grandeur to an experienced shooter – it became so easy to tear the targets to shreds … The more durable and capacious nylon magazine for 30 rounds contributed to this. The bayonet, included in the A2 kit, looked cool, but the sense from it was already significantly less than from the long previous modification. The sight with two holes, too, was probably useless: even with a lot of shooting at dusk, it seemed like a bad joke, as was the mark of 800 yards. USM with a cut-off of three shots, too, can not be called correct: in Fort Bragg, each recruit on the second day of shooting was able to cut off three shots.

But the single shooting because of the details of the cutoff became much less convenient, the descent became uneven, more difficult and with a failure at the end. Therefore, now many rifles in the Army and the Navy do not have such a device. At 800 yards, you can hit the target with an elephant size, although the energy of the bullet is still quite sufficient. On the other hand, the supergrade effect of the bullet, which was previously equal to about zero, has noticeably improved.

True, then we had the opportunity to shoot for a change and from AK, mainly AK-47 of Soviet production.

This weapon seemed like something of a sling and a bow of primitive savages, so simple it was arranged and trimmed, but for 300 yards bullets 7.62 completely pierced the brickwork, and could easily kill the fighter hiding behind her. This could not fail to impress, but then seriously did not make anyone think.

When the M-16A2 began to appear in the troops, everyone was extremely pleased: the improvements that were implemented on it, we suggested ourselves, this was something that was noticeable when we first met Stoner’s weapon.When the M-16A2 began to appear in the troops, everyone was extremely pleased: the improvements that were implemented on it, we suggested ourselves, this was something that was noticeable when we first met Stoner’s weapon.

Were at M-16A2 and other shortcomings that immediately began to unnerve. The weapon was still not heavy, but the dimensions obviously made themselves felt. It was the dimensions of the rifles that made the ceilings M113 and M2A2 be so high, and the rifles M4 for a long time was not enough. Meanwhile, the experience of the very first clashes in the Gulf showed that real firing range with fire contacts does not exceed 300 yards. This brought to naught the concept of a “long infantry gun”, which occupied the minds of our commanding fathers from the 2nd World War, and partly supported by the experience of fighting in the mountainous regions of Vietnam.

Personally, I think that the “long” rifle with the .20 barrel should have become a “special” weapon of the mountain rifle units, and the main army-wide units: with a long barrel .14 12 and a folding butt, as on the M4 modification. Usually in favor of a long barrel they say that it makes the weapon more suitable for bayonet combat. I find it strange to hear, because no bayonet battle anymore.

Yes, we are teaching soldiers to stick a scarecrow with a bayonet, but it is necessary to somehow develop elementary aggressiveness in “asphalt boys”!

If in Kuwait I gave my guys an order to go to the bayonet on the Iraqi Guardsmen, they would have tied me up right away and put me to the medical unit. And for the “work” with a mannequin and a random short-term bout, a short barrel is enough.

In experienced hands, the M-16 will never dip into the dirt, even if the shooter finds himself in this very dirt by the very mouth, never takes a sip of water and will always be cleaned and oiled.In experienced hands, the M-16 will never dip into the dirt, even if the shooter finds himself in this very dirt by the very mouth, never takes a sip of water and will always be cleaned and oiled.

Another noticeable feature is the overall structural fragility. Not only from strikes on the ground in the fall (which is also not uncommon), but also when there were random shocks on the body of an armored vehicle, on the handrails of the ramps, on the rifles of other soldiers on the receiver there were cracks. Most often it was treated only by changing the receiver. This meant not only the loss of the true $ 200 by the state, but a week in the workshop, and a new adjustment. And this happens often, much more often than it should be with a normal military weapon. At first there was another bug with inversion of antabok while running, when the weapon is subjected to increased overloads. It stopped with the introduction of new untabok.

Much has been said about the reliability of the AR-15 in general and army rifles in particular. I can only say that my M-16A2 never let me down in a difficult situation. But! In general, the reliability of the weapon is relatively low.

In the experienced hands of the M-16 never dip into the dirt, even if the shooter will be in it by itself, never sip water and will always be cleaned and oiled. But an inexperienced fighter will always find a way to bring the weapon to complete disrepair. There were a lot of examples in the Persian Gulf … When sand got into the M-16A2 mechanism, it did not always stop firing, but very soon could be completely out of order due to a breakdown. There is a wonderful way to avoid this – do not disassemble the rifle except indoors. But since it was often necessary to do it right in HAMVEE or in a tent, the dust fell in the required amount. Hence the conclusion – the rifle is unsuitable for a long autonomous campaign … Another “nothing”: water when hit in the barrel of the M-16 is not always shaken out in one motion due to its small diameter, large length and a peculiar type of rifling.

The result – the trunk M-16 fails after several (two or three) shots, and requires replacement. Curious that AK-74, with exactly the same caliber, this lack is completely devoid of …

In Ehah often found the view that, they say M-16A2 are the weapons of professionals for whom accuracy is more important than the ability to tolerate pollution. This, to put it mildly, is not so. The war consists entirely of episodes, little falling under the statutes, which civilians call extreme. A professional during a battle must grow together with a weapon, it should be exactly that 100% reliable, and not one pros can be convinced that the main thing in war is to keep track of the condition of the rifle.

Most likely, the M-16 can be called a good sporting rifle, which with a certain convention can be used as an army rifle.

All these thoughts, combined with the solid price of an army rifle, make the military think about the future of this type of weapon.

Alternative M-16 – AK-47

The alternative to the M-16 from time immemorial was AK.

AK can not be called an ordinary weapon, it is probably the most reliable model of mass infantry weapons since Mauser-98.

The AK was actively tested in the US Army, and even used by separate special forces of the Navy in the course of some local conflicts. It is worth the AK of modern manufacturing almost the 10th part of the cost of the M-16A3. But, despite a lot of positive qualities that are not worth listing, AK has a number of features that limit the universality of its use.

Then we had the opportunity to shoot for a change and from AK, mainly AK-47 of Soviet production. This weapon seemed to all something of a sling and a bow of primitive savages, so simple it was arranged and trimmed.Then we had the opportunity to shoot for a change and from AK, mainly AK-47 of Soviet production. This weapon seemed to all something of a sling and a bow of primitive savages, so simple it was arranged and trimmed.

Thus, a fully steel structure improves the strength of the weapon, increases resource and maintainability, but deprives the weapon of the necessary mass reserve for increasing firepower. If M-16 after modernization, i.e. lengthening the butt and weighting of the barrel, began to weigh only 300 grams more, then similar improvements on the AK increase its weight to unacceptable for military weapons – more than 4 kg, as can be seen from the example of Saiga M3 carbines and PKK machine guns.

Removable receiver cover eliminates the possibility of mounting the telescopic sight on the weaver bar attached to it, and placing the diopter sight in a traditional place. This requires a more rigid receiver, like a rifle “Galil”, which immediately affects the weight and manufacturability.

I am sure that in the Soviet Union, Kalashnikov assault rifles with a light-alloy receiver were created, but of course they could not pass the tough tests that you, Russians, love to arrange your weapons …

Is that so, could you check it? In any case, besides reducing the service strength, they must also decrease their potential accuracy, because the barrel of the AK is rigidly fixed in the receiver. So, the current Russian designers will have to either look for other ways to improve accuracy or re-develop weapons.

The AK certainly has positive qualities and will long be suitable for arming the armies of many countries of the world.The AK certainly has positive qualities and will long be suitable for arming the armies of many countries of the world.

However, the accuracy of the AK is not so bad at all, as inflated turkeys like to talk about it, who believe that east and east of Germany there is wildness and misery in Europe.

AK-47 was not just accurate enough, namely that precision weapons. For 100 yards, most AKs that came across to me with a milled receiver confidently knocked out 2-2.5-3.5, which is enough for a military weapon.

The results could be better, be the AK sight more comfortable, and even better – be in addition to it a 1.5 fold collimator. It is quite accurate to fire from AK 7.62 up to 400 yards, at this distance the holes from AK-47 bullets are scattered around a 7 inch circle (clone AK-47 made in Bulgaria in its original configuration, without optics). In my opinion, this is not bad at all. Even better is a 5.45 caliber weapon. From it (a Bulgarian-made autoloading clone AK-74 with a stamped-on receiver, TPZ cartridges with a lead core, butt plastic “SVD-style”, without optics) I can easily hit targets up to 600 yards, and accurate shooting with optics is real for 400 yards , at the same time dispersion does not exceed 4-5 inches. We must assume that the AK-74M shooting with an enhanced receiver will give even better results, not to mention the modification of the .223 caliber.

Other “flaws” attributed to AK by even such experienced specialists as Pee-Jay (obviously, we are talking about Kokalis – author’s note): the difficulty of adjoining the store, the lack of a bolt lag, an inconvenient sight, a fuse, a short butt are not flaws rather, features.

The store may not adjoin as naturally as the M-16A2 or HK G33 store, but it ALWAYS adjoins, even when a soldier with a weapon crawled through the mud 500 meters, and then lay down in a ditch in a rice field filled with put these fields, water …

This is a real example, and if you ever had to pick out the dirt from the receiving window of the M-16 box to push through the damn store, you would understand that, probably, it is possible and somehow otherwise … For adjoining the AK store, no the effort or skill is no more difficult than inserting a film into a camera-soap box, and there is nothing to invent.

There is no need to switch on the AK fuse if there is even the slightest possibility of instant opening fire. The weapon does not shoot, even if it is applied on a concrete floor, the descent is sufficiently reliable and will not fail without need. This serves as a known difficulty for exacting fire — but it is also corrected by a simple skill.

From the AK, you can accurately shoot and with such a descent, and the sight, less convenient than the diopter, for long-range accurate shot, allows you to instantly carry fire at small and medium distances. Diopter in such situations obstructs the whole world, and it can hardly be called convenient …

Gate latch is generally an amateur item. On M-16A2 she quickly fails from a simple nastrala. In my opinion, no delay is better than one from which the first cartridge can be bent so that it will have to be pushed out.

Butt AK and really short, but when you have to shoot in a tight jacket and gear, it feels noticeably less, as well as the “slimness” of the forearm and handles. In the summer, the rubber back-pad slip-on will fix it, but didn’t you say that you have winter 5 months a year, and only take off your jacket?

Other Other “flaws” attributed to AK by even such experienced specialists as Pee-Jay (obviously, we are talking about Kokalis – author’s note): the difficulty of adjoining the store, the lack of a bolt lag, an inconvenient sight, a fuse, a short butt are not flaws rather, features.

I mean this AK It certainly has positive qualities and will long be suitable for armaments of the armies of countries where people are used to it, but it is not an ideal weapon. It seems that the future is still for more modern materials, allowing to produce durable, but light weapons with good accuracy.

What about other weapons?

Recently, the views of a number of military have fallen on some foreign models, primarily on the G36 and FN FNC. Interest in the first arose in the course of testing under the OICW program, where one of the modules of the advanced weapon is nothing more than a modified G36. The weapon showed high accuracy of fire, durability and reliability. This will be especially true if the new complex will be adopted. Other samples of weapons from this company, many years successfully used by various US security records, speak in his favor.

FNC logically drew the attention of the military after a dozen years of operation of the M249 machine gun. Some claims were made to the weapon, but they concerned mainly the insufficient impact of bullets .223 for the machine gun found in Somalia, but by no means reliability and durability. The accuracy of the battle at the FNC at the level of the best samples of AK, but much more stable from sample to sample. Of greatest interest is the Swedish AK-5 rifle and a machine gun based on it, which have increased reliability and durability of the whole structure, more convenient controls and improved sights.

It is difficult to say how things will go further, but on the whole the opinion of the majority of the military is such that the Army and Navy should consist of an unquestionably reliable weapon weighing no more than M-16A23 and at a cost of one and a half to two times cheaper, simpler and giving accuracy that is acceptable to its tactical purpose, as well as having a reserve for modernization. Today, there is nothing fantastic in these requirements, which means that sooner or later such weapons will be found.

The author – Mikhail Belov

Firearms

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