|Been digging around...
Have we ever gotten into a PDW (Personal Defense Weapon) debate on here?
Some people are still old school and consider personal defense to be either pistols (clip-fed semiautomatics or revolver handguns) or submachine guns.
But most of us here have at some point heard of the two most commonly known, dedicated PDWs,
the H&K MP7 in its 4.6x30mm: ht*p://www.hkpro.com/pdw.htm
and the FN P90 in its 5.7x28mm: ht*p://world.guns.ru/smg/smg13-e.htm
(There are plenty more sites available with a proper search, many certainly biased toward one or the other depending on fanboydom,
but still it shouldn't be hard to compare the pluses and minuses of each.)
Recently, I also came across this one, the Knight's Armament Company 6x35mm PDW: ht*p://www.knightarmco.com/images/pdw1.html
(a random search thru SP's archives suggests we've never discussed this weapon before.)
What's interesting with this one is,
it's borderline on being a direct challenger to carbines in 5.56mm caliber, with a 10inch barrel giving it a 300m lethal range,
which certainly outranges the nominal 200m lethality ranges of which both the MP7 and P90 were developed with in mind.
What's interesting with the 6x35 is,
at least according to the article/ad from KAC,
is that it slightly outpaces (in ft/lbs) the 5.56 at 300m from a slightly shorter cartridge case.
One wonders what might come of it were it a "full length" case, equal overall to the 5.56 NATO standard.
But then again,
fanboys of the 5.56 would decree there's no phenomenal increase over 5.56, just as they have done with every other sub-7.62x51 contender,
so it warrants no further discussion.
What exactly warrants the ideal performance increase then,
if we want more oomph (range, penetrability, and lethality) over 5.56 but still refuse to accept the weight/bulk penalties of carrying heavier 7.62?
And what I'd like to know is,
how would the 6x35 from a longer barrel (12"? 14"?) compare to 5.56 from a similar-length barrel?
If the M4 is the wave of the future for the 5.56mm round, until someone comes up with that phenomenal replacement (rail gun, particle beam weapon, phaser gun,..?),
if 300m and shorter ranges (CQB) are to become the norm of the next few decades,
would we be further off pursuing a round more tailored to actually perform more ideally at these ranges (up to 300m), than a round which was,
at least when I went to Basic in 1990,
designed with a maximum effective range (from a 16&1/2" barrel) of 460m, (so we were told) ?
What's even more interesting there is, every US Army M16 qual range I've ever been to, no target was representative of an adversary farther away than the 300m mark.
If lighter and more compact carbines are the (supposedly) preferred choice of the latest generation of US infantry,
then is a purpose-built PDW-type weapon (more compact & lighter than an AR) the more logical course of action, as opposed to keeping with the status quo's current 5.56 who, regardless of credibilities on behalf of its naysayers,
obviously has been brought under scrutiny more times than a person can count, and certainly will be until its withdrawal from service ?