The 6.8

Discussion in 'AR-15 Discussion' started by MrWray, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. MrWray

    MrWray New Member

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    I have been wondering this cause in my neck of the woods i havent heard much about it in a while. I know tht at one time i heard tht the 6.8 was gonna replace the 5.56 in the military to keep them from changing the M16-M4 platform.. I know tht this hasnt happened but i dont know much about the caliber.. Is it a good solid caliber or has it kind of been left in the dark? Like i said im not trying to sound dumb, i just havent heard anything about it around here in a while
     
  2. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    Thats just a wishful thinking interweb rumor.
     

  3. Glockcurmudgeon

    Glockcurmudgeon New Member

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    Nope, sorry, it ain't gonna happen...

    The 6.8SPC came about through a collaboration of ideas with the US Army's 5th Special Forces Group, and Remington. Kills with the 5.56X45 were not being made with regularity in the mountains of Afghanistan, nor were they all that effective in Iraq. So, in order to field a rifle cartridge that could meet the needs of the Special Forces operatives, the 6.8SPC was developed.

    Out to 400m, this cartridge is as effective as a round from a M1A, with 40% less recoil. Remember that the 6.8SPC is a .270 bullet, NOT a .30 caliber. Still, and all, the 115 to 130gr bullet IS more effective than the 5.56X45- regardless of bullet weight... IF you need to hit a target, by no means guaranteeing a kill at 1000yds, the 5.56X45, in the single shot 90gr loading can make the distance, accurately. The 6.8SPC cannot... Remember too, that the 6.8SPC only needs a dedicated BCG, barrel, and magazines. The standard AR15/M16/M4 lower will work, though I highly recommend a better, more robust recoil buffer...

    How do I know about the 6.8SPC, or for that matter, the 5.56X45? Well for over 30 years, I owned different ARs, and had used M16s in the service. I owned two Match grade Armalite lowers, and had two complete sets of barrels (16" and 18") in chromed and non-chromed configurations, FA/BCGs for both calibers, in Lewis Machine & Tool MRP & CQB uppers... Both had Magpul sniper stocks, and the optics ranged from Aimpoint ML3 w/3X magnifiers, ATN night vision, or Leupold Mk 4 tactical scopes w/LaRue Tactical mounts and bases...

    I DON'T like the 5.56X45- never have, never will...

    I think that the 6.8SPC is a fine cartridge, for those that cannot handle the 7.62X51's recoil, though the proper rifle can easily mitigate/ameliorate that difficulty...

    For those whose AO, and physical limitations preclude using the 7.62X51, the 6.8SPC is a good alternative. However, neither the 6.8SPC, nor the Grendel 6.5 have been, nor will be, adopted by the military. In fact, you will see more weapons being accepted in 7.62X51, as this cartridge is the best MBR candidate, as all engineering is a compromise, and it has a proven track record for accuracy and terminal performance...

    Another thing to think about... Ammunition and magazines are NOT military standardized, and therefore cost and availability will be problematic... If you must go with the 6.8SPC, Silver State Armory is the best ammo vendor...

    Hope this helps...

    Glockcurmudgeon, out...
     
  4. Gloves

    Gloves New Member

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    Glockcurmudgeon, just want to say i read the whole thing and i am pleased.
     
  5. mjkeat

    mjkeat New Member

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    I have some pictures that might change your mind about 5.56 :)
     
  6. Gloves

    Gloves New Member

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    I have seen some pricing on the 6.8 that changed my mind. back to 5.56 =)
     
  7. mjkeat

    mjkeat New Member

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  8. Glockcurmudgeon

    Glockcurmudgeon New Member

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    Glad to share some light...

    Gentlemen, I've seen what the 5.56X45 can do. Small, fast, unstable at impact rounds can wreck extraordinary damage. Likewise, the round cannot be counted upon to perform equally well from shot to shot... It's a crap shoot, and that is something that should be unacceptable...

    In battle, you must have something besides your comrades to believe in- a weapon or weapons that will give you, and them, a better chance of staying alive. The 5.56X45 is suboptimal at best. It is a politicians solution to a non-question... It should have NEVER been adopted for military use- unless going after enemy gophers, squirrels, or rabbits...

    Like the 9mm, the 5.56X45 was not an improvement over the weapon it replaced... No, the 1911 is NOT perfect, though, I firmly believe, the .45acp IS the perfect self defense handgun caliber... The 5.56X45 is NOT superior, or even equal to the 7.62X51, nor it's predecessor, the .30-06... It is a varmint cartridge, pressed into service, and not performing as needed...

    IF there were people in authority in the Pentagon, that had the welfare of the troops, as well as the security of the United States first and foremost in their minds, the M4/M16 POS would be phased out as soon as possible, and replaced with 7.62X51 based weapons...

    Whether it be AR10, HK91, PTR, CETME, FALFN, or Knight's, makes no difference, as long as they're new, and have the full backing of the military... THEN, the combat arena is pushed back to where an enemy is not safe within a thousand yards of one's position... Heavy weapon's platoons once again come into employment, with greater security for our troops...

    6.8SPC? Should be used only by SpecOps personnel, in whatever capacity they deem necessary to their missions... Otherwise? Rich mans toy...

    Glockcurmudgeon, out...
     
  9. mjkeat

    mjkeat New Member

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    As a combat vet who has used his 5.56x45 in a defensive and offensive role I disagree that the 7.62x51 would be a better round for todays troops. We had plenty of faith in our weapons system in fact it built confidence. We were very comfortable, in that manner, w/ our gear.

    The x51 round itself has better ballistics but it's not all about ballistics. Most importantly you have to hump your gear and ammo. In todays battle field, the mountains of Afghanistan, weight is a huge factor. Making a soldier hump a load out heavier than they already do is setting them up for failure. Theres a reason 240B teams consist of two or more people, gunner, assistant gunner, and ammo barer.

    Recoil, weapons handling becomes an issue you don't have with the M4 and SAW like you do the 240B. The heavier round requires a more robust weapon system. This equates to heavier weapons that are not only harder to manipulate but much more noticeable when hanging from your neck.

    Do you think everyone should carry less ammo or have a ammo barer? Maybe the .mil can design some sort of wagon a soldier can pull behind them while on patrol.

    People can say "man-up" and soldiers would, it's their nature but humping your gear is just part of the job. You have to be able to fight once you're there. We're not just inserting soldiers into the fight. Sometimes they are walking 18+ clicks a day for a week up and down mountains at elevation and clearing entire towns as they go before taking contact. A fresher soldier can fight much better than an exhausted one.

    Though the x51 may be ballistically superior it's not the best fit for the way our guys fight.
     
  10. Sniper03

    Sniper03 Supporting Member Supporter

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    As stated the 6.8 SPC is a good round. We have also hunted deer with it and have yet to experienced the need for a second round when shot placement was anywhere close to the correct location. Several of the shots were in the 150-200 yard range. I do not dislike the 5.56 NATO Round, however from shooting it as well as the 6.5 Grendel which I prefer is a better round than the 5.56 NATO. However with the 6.8 the ammunition is certainly not as cost friendly as the 5.56 and the 6.5 Grendel ammunition is harder to come buy if you do not reload yourself. A couple of companies are beginning to produce the Grendel at this time. The military gave up on the change to the 6.8 SPC primarily due to cost of the transition. Even though I have been advised that there are still a couple of special ops teams that still have them, I do not belive you will ever see the change in the foreseeable future.

    03
     
  11. mjkeat

    mjkeat New Member

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    I wonder how economical/realistic it would be to purchase a replacement chambered in a "better" round every time an M16 or M4 was taken out of commission?

    What would the weight difference be b/w 6.8 and 5.56x45 in a 400 round load out?
     
  12. TacticalPrecision

    TacticalPrecision New Member

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    Weight difference is noticeable. We went out with the one I built awhile back and were hiking around with it out to the campsite and I brought a full loadout with me in my LBE 9 Mags and the weapon itself which had some heavier stuff on it, PRS stock and then the nice bi-pod was way out front too. now there are some other things to consider aswell like it was using standard metal box mags instead of Pmags, the barrel was heavier, plus the heavier rounds. I think the rounds themselves might not be so bad but for my use on this it was doing some personal long range testing between my 6.8 and my friends 6.5 Gren so it wasn't setup for light carry and might not have seemed like such a haul if it had a standard barrel and stock.
    Take that info as you will.
     
  13. mjkeat

    mjkeat New Member

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    Thank you, TP

    Glockcurmudgeon, I just saw something that would help w/ your x51 quest. It's the Lockheed Martin Mule.
     
  14. TacticalPrecision

    TacticalPrecision New Member

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    I wont say that I don't agree with glock that the 7.62x51 is a great round, but I also will agree with the sentiments that the 5.56 is also a good round.

    I think the biggest thing to consider is how well you can use each effectively. Recoil management and ammunition carry and capacity being the biggest downsides of the 7.62x51. You might only be able to carry 180 rounds or less of the 7.62x51 ammo compared to a good loadout of 300 rounds of 5.56. In a heavy geared war you might want the heavier round but lets face it..the terrorist aren't really sporting plate carrier vests and kevlar helmets at the moment.

    Also you have to consider with the probability of carrying a lower number of rounds you'd have to increase the average accuracy rate of every soldier by nearly double. Add in the expense of the rounds you'd need to knock it up another probably 15-20% to equal the same average cost per kill of the current system.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2011
  15. Quentin

    Quentin New Member

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    Curmudgeon, I enjoyed your posts and agree that the 7.62x51 is an excellent round for many applications. But we learned many lessons in Vietnam and one was, once the bugs were worked out, that the M16 in 5.56x45 made a great fighting rifle. And 40 years later not much has changed. Call it a varmint round if you like but I wouldn't care to see MJ's pictures of what it can do to a human. :eek: