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Subject: The Impossible Dream Continues
SYSOP    1/15/2013 5:07:57 AM
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Belisarius1234    John Moses Browning.   1/15/2013 8:27:04 AM
The XM806 tried to use a better recoil system and modern electronic sights so that gunners can get more out of fewer bullets. Most combat veterans prefer the current rate of fire (7-8 bullets per second) to the slower (4 per second) one of the XM806.
1. It wasn't a better recoil system.
2. Electronics don't like slow operating cyclics when mounted to machine guns. Neither does the HUMAN EYE, when it tries to deal with the jitter.  
JMB knew just about what was simplest at the time to do what was needed (including MASS of the weapon for a stable bullet launcher).
The more you try to over-think the plumbing, the easier it is to plug up the works.
Fix peripherally what needs fixing and quit monkeying with the central operating parameters.
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American God       1/15/2013 12:09:48 PM
I know the people behind the KRISS Vector Super V .45 cal weapon are looking at trying to adapt their system for recoil reduction to a .50 caliber weapon. The KRISS was well received by most people who have fired one. Perhaps in a few years we'll have more to talk about.
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Tucci78    A better HMG. Any nominations?   1/15/2013 4:41:50 PM
Is anyone reading here able to argue in support of a heavy machine gun design that might possibly be superior to that of John Moses Browning's Ma Deuce? 
Generally, the reason something sticks around as long as the M2 has managed to do - in the international markets especially - is that there simply isn't anything in the category that competes in terms of functionality, reliability, cost, or durability.  
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trenchsol       1/16/2013 4:10:29 AM
I've noticed that there are relatively few models of large caliber machine gun (.50 or more) in the world altogether. Even fewer of them are tested in real life situation. It seems that designing of successful one is a rather difficult task.
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Sty0pa       1/16/2013 12:22:03 PM
The first step in fixing something is defining the problem.  As nobody seems to have a really concrete idea of what on the M2 needs improvement, we're not going anywhere fast.
Is it too heavy?  Well, it fires 17 kilojoules of energy out the muzzle every round, 800 rounds/min.  That's about 250 kilojoules/second.  What sort of a mass of weapon are you going to need to handle that?
You can add a complex recoil system, of course, but then you run into problems of complexity, durability, and tolerances.
Is it too inaccurate?  It's a machinegun, not a sniper rifle.  Any gun firing 800r/min is going to be inherently unsteady; further it will wear the barrel enough that precise fire is difficult.  One can probably improve this with barrel coatings or other high tech solutions, cf. the earlier-mentioned problems of problems of complexity, durability, and tolerances.
Personally, this effort just needs to be killed.  There are some things that are pretty much intrinsically as good as they need to be.  Sure, when you have money to burn go ahead and waste it on trying to upgrade something that everyone already is happy with.  But when everything you do involves borrowing more $ from China, frivolous stuff like this HAS to be cut.
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Tucci78    ''It's a machinegun, not a sniper rifle. ''   1/16/2013 1:50:42 PM
From we read:
"[Gunnery Sergeant Carlos] Hathcock gained notoriety for his outstanding marksmanship shortly after joining the Marine Corps in May, 1959. The Vietnam veteran pioneered new methods of instruction and weapons for the Marine sniper. He helped establish the Marine Corps Scout/Sniper Instructor school at Quantico, Virginia. Hathcock once recorded a kill from two thousand five hundred meters using an M2 .50 caliber machinegun with a side-mounted scope-- one of his own innovations."
So Ma Deuce has been used as a sniper rifle, and with spectacular effect. 
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