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Gun Discussion

Background Pony #679E
@Dex Stewart  
Not trying to be a wiseguy, but comic books have never been a very good source of information on technical topics, whether it’s firearms, law, nuclear physics, or anything else. The gun hobbyist magazines available in the US, to be truthful, aren’t always much better.
 
Here are three WWII training films about the mechanical principles of small arms design, for Ordnance troops whose job included, but was not limited to, examination and analysis of captured enemy weapons of new and previously unknown types:
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EAwnxFRdNb4  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ri4E7_dwe_c  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1D24KItiqb0
 
It’s far from encyclopedic, and there has been much innovation in the last 75 years or so, but it is a starting point.
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@Background Pony #679E  
I just thought it was worth stating I know nothing about guns because the letters pages usually had at least one person write in to congratulate them on getting some minute details right,or to say they got a detail wrong. Then there’s a few people who commented on the Armory books saying that these were their “grocery lists”. Apparently Punisher had a bit more care put into the weaponry. I learned that claymore mines actually really do say “front towards enemy”,which was used to hilarious effect in the 2004 movie
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Background Pony #679E
@Dex Stewart  
Ah, Claymores. Like the man says, everybody gangsta until the Roombas with Claymores duct-taped to them show up and the house’s sound system starts playing “Welcome to the Jungle.”
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Background Pony #3F6D
@Dex Stewart  
Ah, the P90. FN tried and failed to sell it to the US Army in the early-mid 1990s as a “PDW,” Personal Defense Weapon for people like truck drivers and combat engineers and armored vehicle crewmen who needed something a little less heavy and bulky than the M16. Lots of companies tried to get in on that action. My favorite of that era was Project MARS (Miniaturized Automatic Rifle System) from Colt, a very much shortened and lightened M16-ish weapon using a high-velocity 5.56x30mm cartridge. But the Big Army decided, with good reason, that they didn’t want to have an additional cartridge in the supply system, and they went with a different option from Colt, a much shortened and lightened M16 that they eventually decided to call the M4 Carbine, using the original 5.56x45mm NATO cartridge.
 
And then the guys with the green beanies got their hands on some M4s and decided they liked the handling qualities, which is logical enough, because a lot of the work they do involves getting in and out of helicopters and other vehicles a lot, kicking down doors and going down narrow hallways, and so on. So they got M4s too.
 
And this is where it went off the rails. The Big Army looked at this and said “We want M4s for everybody, because the Special Forces guys have them!” And the Marines said “the Army has these new elite special forces guns so we want them too!” When there was absolutely nothing wrong with the M16 for line infantry.
 
For that matter, lightweight automatic weapons much shorter, lighter, handier, and more compact than the M16 have existed for generations, if the US government had wanted to buy them. Like pistol-caliber submachineguns.
 
full
 
That one’s a Smith & Wesson Model 76, created for the US government in the early 1970s for the war in Vietnam in the first place. It’s much shorter and handier than the M16, much more maneuverable in narrow hallways. It’s got plenty of empty space on top of the receiver between the sights and it would be trivial to bolt on a length of Picatinny rail to mount an Eotech or an Aimpoint, and maybe a little stubby rail on the bottom of the barrel shroud to mount a light or a laser. No doubt someone would say “but it is less effective against body armor than an M16.” Well, how many Taliban or Fedayeen Saddam guys had body armor? Not many. I don’t think the problem ever came up. “It has a shorter range than an M16.” Well, yeah, ‘cos it’s a short handy pistol-caliber SMG, just the thing for guys who kick down doors, on missions when they are not going to be engaging from long range if everything goes according to plan. And because it’s a pistol-caliber SMG you can load it with subsonic ammo and use a suppressor pretty easily, and it’ll run a lot quieter than any suppressed intermediate-cartridge rifle.
 
And if you prefer the M16’s Star Trek aesthetic over the WWII style stamped sheet metal aesthetic, and want the M16 manual of arms and fieldstripping technique with your pistol-caliber SMG, there’s the Colt 635, which they have been making for almost forty years for Department of Energy SWAT and US Marine naval boarding parties:
 
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For that matter there have been very efficient, very effective ammunition types designed specifically for penetrating modern soft body armor since about ten seconds after it was invented, like the hollow high velocity brass THV bullets designed in France in the 1970s, or the teflon coated tungsten core KTW bullets designed in the US around the same time.
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Ebalosus
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Just slap a honey badger “pistol brace” on the back, an “oil filter” on the front, and a 89.999 degrees perpendicular foregrip, and you’re good to go.
 
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What’s different from the other FGC-9s I’ve posted is that this one has a progressively rifled barrel, which preliminary testing has resulted in a 10% higher muzzle velocity compared to regular rifling. Combine that with +p+ cartridges and Dagny Dagger bullets, it would be an extremely effective carbine, and chew through level 3a body armour.
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Background Pony #3F6D
@Background Pony #3F6D
Don’t assume the P90 is a failure, it passed all the NATO, but Germany rejected it. It still found some use amongst Police and Special Forces.
 
Well… it was designed, as most firearm designs are, to out-sell the competition. I believe the company introduced it with the intent of US military sales as a gun for truck drivers and such, but it lost out to the M4 from Colt. FN has had some luck selling it to militaries worldwide, and law enforcement agencies also, over the past three decades, but their major intended customer, the Pentagon, didn’t bite.
 
The P90 is, in my opinion, neither fish nor fowl. It uses a one-trick-pony cartridge that does one thing and one thing only, really really well–penetrate soft body armor. The stubby little aluminum-core projectiles are not especially prone to yaw or tumble in soft tissue. From a terminal ballistics standpoint, it’s not measurably better than 9mm FMJ from eighty years prior, if as good, at least in soft tissue. Against soft body armor, 9mm armor piercing ammo has existed since the early 1970s, and new developments in pistol caliber AP ammo like the Russian 7N31 and the Dagny Dagger continue to proliferate.
 
The fact that the P90’s complex magazine requires ammunition with lubricated cases in order to feed through it reliably is a red flag for me–that, as much as the bottleneck case, makes reloading very tricky–though of course I’m a hobbyist and I know most militaries couldn’t care less about that. I don’t know why they didn’t go with a conventional magazine stuck in the left side of the receiver, Sten-fashion, if they wanted not to interfere with the user taking a prone position. A conventional magazine wouldn’t have needed the lubricant and this would have made the ammunition less expensive.
 
I will say that the weapon is capable of delivering a very impressive volume of accurate fire, due to its big magazine capacity and low recoil. The high velocity cartridge has a longer effective range than most pistol-caliber SMGs and the high rate of fire has great advantages for close work in urban or forest environments, where targets will only be exposed for an instant and a higher cyclic rate of fire gives a greater chance to catch them when they’re exposed in the open for an instant.
 
The P90’s bullpup layout makes it short and compact, but it weighs six and a half pounds loaded. An M4 with a loaded thirty round mag only goes 7 pounds 12 ounces, and has greater power and effective range. I can see why the Army went with it–that, and not wanting to introduce a new cartridge into the logistical system.
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@MagpulPony
 
That’s because the EVO has a telescoping bolt, while the development of a telescoping bolt for the FGC-9 remains ongoing, with the consensus being that it would need a slightly taller receiver to clear the front mounts. It would simplify the HK-style charging handle design, however.
 
Funnily enough the Shuty, the FGC-9’s immediate predecessor, uses such a bolt design.
 
@Background Pony #3F6D
 
You think it would do better in the civilian market if its original configuration was much easier to get?
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Background Pony #3F6D
You think it would do better in the civilian market if its original configuration was much easier to get?
 
Full auto? I think a lot more people might go for it, if it were possible to buy such things over the counter in the US. Then again, I always thought that if I were ever going to get any Class III toys, the one that interests me the most is a S&W M76, just because of a 1970s zombie movie called “The Omega Man.”
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