NGSW Rifle (M4 Replacement)

Marcellogo

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Like with the former 7,62x51mm there is no obligation to ditch a caliber if the "leading" nation adopt a new one. As they kept it for decades after US adopted the M-16 they would do with 5,56x45mm if they want, maybe using the 6,8x51mm just for the MG/sniper rifle role (imho the correct choice).
 

jsport

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In 2019, then-Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley hailed the new squad weapon as “a weapon that could defeat any body armor, any planned body armor that we know of in the future,” according to Army Times. “This is a weapon that can go out at ranges that are unknown today. There is a target acquisition system built into this thing that is unlike anything that exists today. This is a very sophisticated weapon.”
 

aonestudio

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On January 3rd, the U.S. Army announced that it had awarded Winchester Ammunition a contract worth $20 million to develop the Next Generation Squad Weapon (NGSW) ammunition. These contracts will fund development on the 6.8mm cartridge for the NGSW project.

No matter which company wins the contract to produce the guns, Winchester will take a part in the ammo manufacturing. Winchester is the largest supplier of ammunition to the Army. As the operator of the Lake City Ammo Plant, Winchester would take point on any eventual standardized production of 6.8mm rounds. The Next Generation Squad Weapon’s ammo production is part of the $20 million contract. Furthermore, these contracts are part of the $8 billion contract that Winchester holds to operate Lake City.
 

jsport

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spending all this resource on firing rifle rd seems wasteful..every dismount should make every rd count in the form a direct fire high velocity 40mm like the Hellhound HEDP. Dismounts every rd disables or slows down a vehicle even armored ones is the ideal. Defense against other dismounts could be accomplished by a secondary close cmbt pistol/PDW.
 
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F119

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The current 5.56 rounds will only fragment out to 90m with the short 14.5 barrels
in use now greatly reducing their killing effect. So something else is needed for longer
range engagements.

The standard American round - M855A1 - fragments past 400 meters from a 14.5" barrel.
 

aonestudio

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View: https://vimeo.com/673961252

True Velocity have announced that thier NGSW prototype, the RM277, will be available commercially and that interested individuals can sign up “to reserve a place in line”.

The commercial version of the RM277 has been named the ‘Genesis’. Initially a General Dynamics-OTS design, True Velocity (and LoneStar Future Weapons) acquired the design when GD-OTS decided to divest from the NGSW.

The exact role of Beretta in the development of the Genesis is unknown but the announcement during SHOT Show said:

Beretta USA will also take a leading role in the development of a variant of the RM277 intended for sale to international allies of the United States, as well as a semi-automatic variant of the RM277 rifle intended for civilian sale in the U.S. commercial market.
 

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View: https://vimeo.com/673961252

True Velocity have announced that thier NGSW prototype, the RM277, will be available commercially and that interested individuals can sign up “to reserve a place in line”.

The commercial version of the RM277 has been named the ‘Genesis’. Initially a General Dynamics-OTS design, True Velocity (and LoneStar Future Weapons) acquired the design when GD-OTS decided to divest from the NGSW.

The exact role of Beretta in the development of the Genesis is unknown but the announcement during SHOT Show said:

Beretta USA will also take a leading role in the development of a variant of the RM277 intended for sale to international allies of the United States, as well as a semi-automatic variant of the RM277 rifle intended for civilian sale in the U.S. commercial market.
As a collector I want one!

But in a serious note, this is genius. Builds public knowledge and (hopefully), public praise of the platform. Also is a good way to proof the production line.
 

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As a collector I want one!

But in a serious note, this is genius. Builds public knowledge and (hopefully), public praise of the platform. Also is a good way to proof the production line.

A lot of folks are speculating that the companies would not be launching commercial sales if they thought they had a military customer in the offing. With True Velocity/LoneStar and SIG Sauer both going commercial, plus rumors that Textron's case-telescoped candidate got dropped, it really sounds like NGSW is going to be terminated without a winner. Which should surprise no one.
 

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As a collector I want one!

But in a serious note, this is genius. Builds public knowledge and (hopefully), public praise of the platform. Also is a good way to proof the production line.

A lot of folks are speculating that the companies would not be launching commercial sales if they thought they had a military customer in the offing. With True Velocity/LoneStar and SIG Sauer both going commercial, plus rumors that Textron's case-telescoped candidate got dropped, it really sounds like NGSW is going to be terminated without a winner. Which should surprise no one.
Agreed, isn't this the 4th or 5th attempt at replacing the M4/16? I'd argue that this competition is different since it's a change of caliber, but I dont think the will is there to disturb the logistics of the established platforms. Perhaps if some NATO partners wanted in on the change it'd help with adoption, but theres no one that I know of is looking for or needing a similar platform, or have recently placed orders for other platforms.
 

icyplanetnhc (Steve)

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This is my take on the system, with the caveat that my specialty isn't combat arms. The NGSW seems to be an exercise of narrowly focusing on a single requirement at the expense of other combat factors. All of the 6.8 mm ammunition look to be substantially bulkier and heavier than the current 5.56, and your basic combat ammo load quantity affects your ability to maintain fire superiority. I can understand the desire for long range lethality against body armor, in conjunction with the new computerized optic, but perhaps in the designated marksman role. In kinetic conditions involving combined arms, I'm so far not seeing the benefit of equipping this weapon as a general issue rifle/carbine, given the tradeoffs in weight and recoil that we're seeing so far. Rounds downrange serve additional purposes such as suppression and fires in support of maneuver, consolidation, etc. and your ammo capacity here is key.

That said, I do wonder if the some of the technology can be applied to our current systems, such as a polymer-cased 5.56 (call it M855A2, maybe?). Marine Corps SysCom is already working on that for .50 BMG ammunition. Meanwhile, perhaps this new 6.8 mm ammunition can replace the 7.62 in the designated marksman and machinegun roles. Another possibility is to apply the polymer technology to the 6.5 Creedmoor as a 7.62 replacement.
 
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Colonial-Marine

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I've got to wonder why they didn't go with some sort of integral suppressor. It seems like it would provide the benefits they keep citing without the weight and balance issues. The True Velocity suppressor looks ridiculous, supposedly they went with it because they have to keep the weapon's overall length the same as the M4 carbine which seems a bit absurd considering the performance they want out of them. For the SiG design a few more inches of barrel length could probably allow them to make the ammo a bit less "hot" and reduce the very high pressures involved somewhat.

It may still not be suitable for the entire squad but as a DMR and LMG there is potential. Maybe one guy with a NGSW derived rifle per fireteam.

The cased telescoping layout from Textron is worth continued development even if it doesn't work out this time around. Then again with all the worries about plastic these days maybe it's doomed for that reason. Same would apply to the True Velocity ammo too.
 

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This is a serious decision that smacks of politics. Sig Sauer manufactures the US Army pistols, then wins the contract for his new rifle, with Textron's most technologically advanced rifle. I hope there is an appeal.
 

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Textron got bounced out of the program quite early -- indication seems to be that their gun/ammo combo was not considered sufficiently mature based on the testing.

The shocker to me is that the Army has selected the heaviest possible ammunition with the most recoil in the shortest barreled gun. Even with the suppressor, it's going to be a beast to handle. And all because they hate bullpup rifles.

This is perfect timing, too. We're about to adopt a rifle perfectly suited to Afghanistan right as the war in Ukraine is teaching us that the key weapon for infantry squads in fights against armored formations isn't the rifle but the HE projector (RPG/Carl Gustav/NLAW/PzF3, etc.)
 
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TomS

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The cased telescoping layout from Textron is worth continued development even if it doesn't work out this time around. Then again with all the worries about plastic these days maybe it's doomed for that reason. Same would apply to the True Velocity ammo too.

Problem is, "next time around" is likely to be 30 years from now. And by the time we are thinking about replacing NGSW and its bizarre bimetallic brass/steel case, CT for small arms will be an almost complete unknown. Any institutional knowledge of LSAT will be lost, along with the retired or deceased engineers who worked on it.

Polymer might survive -- the Marines don't seen excited about NGSW and might end up taking over the 5.56mm family entirely, possibly thinking about a TV type polymer case down the road.
 

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Problem is, "next time around" is likely to be 30 years from now.
Nah, it would be entirely normal for this to fizzle out and have a new contest in 5 years or so. Just because SIG won doesn't mean they won won, until the army actually takes delivery and makes payments for all those weapons.

But yeah, there's a lot I don't like about this choice. Especially the 80000psi cartridge, exactly what kind of barrel life can be expected of that?
 

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Thankfully it was quite a few years ago now, but, NATO nations agreed on 7.62mm as a standard and I include the US in this. Well that worked out did it not? Ooops, actually the US went straight to 5.56mm but after denying the UK argument for 4.85 or whatever it was then because 7.62mm standard ammo would be easier on the logistics. I know but mind changing is an ever present thing throughout the decades. Now, where were we? I believe we were discussing the size and shape of projectiles for the new stealth catapult. Putty anyone?

Silly question perhaps but, has anyone, anywhere come up with a good reason for the odd sizes for weapons? For example, the 'new' suggestion is 6.9mm so why NOT 7mm? If you are doing that why NOT the old 7.62 etc. It's late so I am overthinking perhaps but as valid as any question this time of night.

Have a good one folks.
 

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The amazing thing isn't just that they picked the heaviest and hardest-recoiling option. It's that this process started with "the infantry's load is getting too high with armor, gear, weapon and ammo so let's try to reduce the last two's weight while preserving lethality" and at some point became "well we can reduce weight while preserving lethality OR....we can keep the weight the same while INCREASING lethality!" to " well now it weighs more, and you can't carry as much ammo, but under the right circumstances you can penetrate level III body armor at 1000 yards!"

Woof.
 

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Does this mean
That entire NATO must/will switch to 6.8mm?
Only after the US spends lots of Money and actually fields it.

Strictly speaking, 5.56x45 and 7.62x51 will remain NATO standard calibers. Even the US isn't planning to replace them completely. For the Army, 5.56 will remain the standard issue rifle for everyone who isn't a close combat soldier (infantry, scouts, and engineers). The Marines apparently aren't adopting 6.8 yet either, so 5.56 is going to remain their primary rifle for quite a while.
 

Ainen

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The amazing thing isn't just that they picked the heaviest and hardest-recoiling option. It's that this process started with "the infantry's load is getting too high with armor, gear, weapon and ammo so let's try to reduce the last two's weight while preserving lethality" and at some point became "well we can reduce weight while preserving lethality OR....we can keep the weight the same while INCREASING lethality!" to " well now it weighs more, and you can't carry as much ammo, but under the right circumstances you can penetrate level III body armor at 1000 yards!"

Woof.
Will be interesting to get to how they did this choice.
At least from outsiders' perspective, TV ammo appears to be just plain better.
 

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Does this mean
That entire NATO must/will switch to 6.8mm?
Only after the US spends lots of Money and actually fields it.
Given the US Army's long-standing insistence on being able to kill a horse at half a mile, there's a pretty good chance they'll make this work, whether it makes sense or not.

Yep, that's the requirement that .30-06 was designed around. 7.62x51 was designed to replicate that performance in a lighter-weight cartridge, despite reams of evidence saying that infantry didn't fight horses, or in fact anything, at half a mile. Something approximating good sense broke out when 5.56x45 was adopted, but the US Army's been sulking about merely being able to kill a man at a third of a mile ever since.

The new 6.8x51 continues the pattern as though the 5.56x51 didn't exist. It's got - surprise! - essentially the same energy level as .30-06, but with even more modern technology. And, with the modern, smaller-calibre bullet, maybe they'll be able to kill that horse at five-eighths of a mile!
 

Ainen

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Also, funny that XM5 was chosen precisely during a conflict where controllable automatic fire at extended ranges actually matters. For every infantryman:
either someone engages that small masterpiece of private aerospace or mortar nearby engages you.
 

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