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View Full Version : Wait. What!? The Garand was Unreliable?


J_Rock
12-06-2009, 10:13 AM
I just want wanted to point out that debates about whether or not the current service rifle is 'good enough' are not new. Every few months or so, someone writes a "M16/M4 is unreliable" article. Ive even seen articles that complain about the M1 garands lack of stopping power against banzai charging japanese in the pacific theater though I cant find the article. Which is why I ask you to take these articles with a grain of salt.

Also it seems when a rifle reaches legendary status, the said rifle is infallible. Things like the AK with its legendary status have the myth that the weapon is unjammable. Most of us know its just that, a myth perpetuated because of its history and status.



ARMY: Report on the Garand
By Monday, Mar. 24, 1941

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,884292-1,00.html

Last week the U. S. Marine Corps released a report on the Garand rifle. Because the Marines know a lot about small arms, and had just adopted the Garand, the report was authoritative and timely. It was also:

> The only official, fully documented account of Garand performance ever published.

>A grave indictment of the Garand's dependability.

The Test. Until lately, the Marines' standard rifle was the 38-year-old war-tested Springfield, which was also the Army's rifle until 1936.* Since the Army adopted the Garand, the Marine Corps has been under pressure to do the same.

Although the Marines are part of the Navy, they get their small arms from the War Department, and wartime supply problems would be simplified if both services used the same rifle. Last winter the Marine Corps decided to have the rifle matter out once & for all. A board was appointed to test the bolt-action Springfield and three semi-automatic rifles (Garand, Winchester, Johnson). The board included such acknowledged experts as Lieut. Colonel William W. Ashurst, a crack rifleman, and Lieut. Colonel Merritt A. Edson, who had earned Marine Corps fame in Nicaragua, hunting down Sandinistas. The Winchester, barely out of the laboratory, was never in the running. The much-publicized Johnson did better than the Winchester, did not equal the Garand in over-all performance.

For practical purposes the tryout resolved into a contest between 1) the Garand and the Springfield, and 2) the different systems of combat fire which each represented. The old-fashioned Springfield puts down a sure but comparatively slow fire (12-15 aimed shots a minute, for an average rifleman), is therefore the darling of those who believe with Colonel William Prescott of Bunker Hill ("Don't fire until you see the white of their eyes") in deliberate, sharpshooting marksmanship. The Garand is three to three-and-a-half times faster, is therefore the logical choice of those who put high fire power above all else.

But, said the Marine board: "Two things stand out as essential in the shoulder weapon for the Marine Corps; one is 'dependability,' and the other 'volume of fire.' Bearing in mind the amphibious missions in the Marine Corps, the board places dependability first. . . ."

After boiling down results of all the tests for accuracy, ruggedness, general fitness for combat, the board rated the rifles: 1) Springfield; 2) Garand; 3) Johnson; 4) Winchester. Best that the board could say for the Garand was that it was "superior to the other semi-automatic rifles . . ."; "superior in the number of well-aimed shots that can be fired per minute"; could be quickly cleaned in the field. Sum & substance of the findings was that the Garand was a fair-weather rifle, excellent on the practice range but far from good enough for the Marines when the going got tough. The going in the test was very tough. Examples:

> The rifles were doused in mud "of light consistency." Results: "The M-1903 [Springfield] rifle can be operated. However, the bolt became harder to operate as the test progressed. . . . The M-I [Garand] rifles would not function and the longer an attempt was made to operate the bolt by hand the harder it became to open."
> The board assumed "that troops have landed through light surf [as Marines must often do] and that rifles were dropped or dragged over wet sand in reaching cover on the beach." The rifles were exposed to saltwater spray (but not actually soaked in water), dropped in wet sand. Results: the Springfields fired "in the normal manner." But "the bolts on the two [Garands] could not be opened by hand after the first and second shots respectively. The firer had to stand up and use his foot against the operating handle in order to open the actions. Both [Garand] rifles . . . failed this test."

> The board assumed "that troops have landed through heavy surf sufficient to break completely over men and equipment, and immediately engage in combat on a sandy beach." Results: both Garands failed to operate as semi-automatic rifles (i.e., reload automatically after each round). One failed completely and the firer had to hammer the bolt with a mallet; "the other operated by hand with extreme difficulty. ..." The Springfields continued to work, with slight difficulty. On these salt water tests, the Garand was rated last, the Springfield first.

>All the rifles got a thorough dousing in fresh water (assumption: heavy rain). Results: the Garands failed again.

> One of the toughest tests was for endurance in prolonged firing (9,000-10,000 rounds). On over-all efficiency and ruggedness, the Springfield was rated ahead of the Garand, which was second. On comparative accuracy at the end of 9,000 rounds, the Garand rated last of the four rifles, the Springfield first. But up to 3,000 rounds, the Garand was very accurate, earned the board's hearty praise at this stage.

>The Johnson hand-fired "with ease" through most of the mud, salt water and fresh water tests when the Garand failed, but had so much trouble (broken parts) in other phases that the board rated it well below the Garand.

Said the board: "In those tests which simulated adverse field conditions, such as exposure to dust, rain, mud, salt water, sand, etc., the [Springfield] could always be operated with some degree of proficiency. Whereas the semi-automatic weapons generally failed to function mechanically and, in most cases, the gas-operated rifles [Garand, Winchester] could not even be manually operated after a few shots had been fired. . . . The tests . . . were undoubtedly severe as it was believed that they had to approach the extreme in order to be all inclusive. . . . The board realizes that only a certain proportion of the rifles in any one operation . . . will be subjected to the severest conditions, and that the remainder will function normally." This proportion might work out all right for a large force carrying semiautomatics. But "it is ... doubtful if this is true for the Marine Corps, where small units are usually employed and thereby place a correspondingly greater value on reliability and efficiency of each individual rifle."

The Army's Side. A fair question was: Why, then, did the Marine Corps adopt the Garand? In an explanation last week, Marine Corps headquarters in Washington put more emphasis on the Garand's high fire power, less on the Springfield's dependability, than the testing board did.

That was the Army's case. After the Marines adopted the Garand, Under Secretary of War Robert Porter Patterson declared that the report completely vindicated the Garand. When the report first came out he showed only that portion which called the Garand the best of the semiautomatics. General Charles Macon Wesson, too, talked as though the report proved all that he and his Ordnance Department had claimed for their creation.

He also said that Ordnance tests had already and conclusively proved the Garand's efficiency.

Up to last week, $24,000,000 had been appropriated for Army Garands, and the Marines have $3,000,000 more to spend for them. Some 100,000 had been issued to troops, including a few to the Marine Corps.

Civilian Engineer John C. Garand and his co-workers at Springfield Armory had licked many of their worst production problems, still had a tough job, but were doing very well at it. Winchester Repeating Arms Co. has been trying to get into Garand production for 17 months, has a contract for 65,000 Garands, last week was edging into real production after 17 months of arduous effort. By next year the Army expects to have enough Garands (400,000) for its expanded force (not all soldiers are riflemen).

Wavell's Experience. In the light of the full report, released by the Marines last week, another general's experience with small arms was significant. The New York Times Magazine reprinted excerpts from three lectures which General Sir Archibald Wavell, British commander in the Middle East, delivered in 1939. In a discourse on good generals and how they are made, he had evoked the mud, the blood, the guns of World War I:

"Rifles and automatic weapons submitted to the [British] small arms committee are, I believe, buried in mud for 48 hours or so before being tested for their rapid firing qualities. The necessity for such a test was very aptly illustrated in the late war, when the original Canadian contingent arrived in France armed with the Ross rifle, a weapon which had shown its superior qualities in target shooting . . . in peace. In the mud of the trenches it was found to jam after a very few rounds ; and after a short experience of the weapon under active service conditions the Canadian soldier refused to have anything to do with it and insisted on being armed with [another] rifle."

*The Army last week, had about as many Springfields as Garands in service, but was substituting Garands as fast as production (about 700 a day) permitted.

eljBRD
12-06-2009, 10:41 AM
I don't consider a rifle "unreliable" until I shoot it myself,.. thats just my two cents

Noobert
12-06-2009, 11:13 AM
How does the M1 lack stopping power? Can banzai charges really repel a .30-06?

J_Rock
12-06-2009, 11:19 AM
I think you guys are missing the point of the my post.Im trying to point out that articles questioning the reliability of our service rifles arent new. We know that the garand was reliable weapon, and we know the .30-06 was powerful round. That still doesnt stop people from writing articles saying that its not the case. And how we see articles just like these ~70 years about our current weapon systems.

DB2
12-06-2009, 11:43 AM
The problem with a bonzia charge, is the gun only holds eight rounds. A garand empties fast if your shooting quickly. The only issue I have ever found to make garand hicup is a loose gas plug.

30Cal
12-06-2009, 11:55 AM
The Marine Corp brass loved the Springfield and didn't want the M1 going into WWII. But they were required to test the rifles. And not surprisingly, the test they designed confirmed the fact that they liked the Springfield the most.

That's how weapons testing often goes. Usually, someone on top has already made a selection and then tests are conducted until they get their desired outcome. In this case, the USMC tried to use a test to refute that decision. Didn't work out though. They got the M1 and it really served them well.

Josh3239
12-06-2009, 1:53 PM
J Rock, I gave up on it. You can't fix stupid. It is extremely common for troops to want to loose their service rifle. In the Falklands the Brits were stealing the Argenteans auto FALs and the Argenteans were stealing the Brits semi FALs. If someone people want to believe that one system will never break then... well, you can't fix stupid. And that seems to be the thing about gun owners, they are either extreme one way or extreme the other. The rifle will either never go down or it can't function with the tiniest piece of dirt and their is no in between. There were people who were honestly shocked when they saw an AR fire with dirt on the carrier of an open ejection port and there were people who were shocked when an M14 stopped firing on YouTube after getting rolled around it and packed with mud (ironically to show how reliable it is). People just don't seem to get past what the experts say. Things like "sand in the chamber is sand in the chamber and it doesn't matter what chamber it is" seem to be simply dismissed.

dieselpower
12-06-2009, 2:13 PM
I just want wanted to point out that debates about whether or not the current service rifle is 'good enough' are not new. Every few months or so, someone writes a "M16/M4 is unreliable" article. Ive even seen articles that complain about the M1 garands lack of stopping power against banzai charging japanese in the pacific theater though I cant find the article. Which is why I ask you to take these articles with a grain of salt.

Also it seems when a rifle reaches legendary status, the said rifle is infallible. Things like the AK with its legendary status have the myth that the weapon is unjammable. Most of us know its just that, a myth perpetuated because of its history and status.

And the next rifle will be a POS compared to the M16...and the next will be a POS compared to that.... People don't like change.

Sailormilan2
12-06-2009, 2:26 PM
When the Marines went into Guadalcanal, they were offered the Garand. But that offer was turned down, they felt the Springfield was the way to go. After the Army got to Guadalcanal their with their Garands, many Garands turned up "missing" from the battlefield when their owners were incapacitated. Having been liberated by Marines.

J_Rock
12-06-2009, 2:31 PM
J Rock, I gave up on it. You can't fix stupid.

You got that right. Like how there are tons of people out there who believe the .30 carbine is a POS round because it "can't penetrate thick winter clothing." :rolleyes:

Bug Splat
12-06-2009, 2:40 PM
You can always find some who hates something. I see your point. Comparing a bolt action to a semi-auto in reliability is just stupid. Of course a bolt action is going to be more reliable. Of course its going to be more accurate. Might as well compare the load capacity of a F150 to a Civic.

Where the Germans got it right was adopting the tactic of fire superiority and blitzscreed (sp?). They changed the game and the battle field was never the same. There is no way we could have won WW2 with the springfield. The Germans would have rolled right over us. We needed a fast shooting rifle and the Garand was the answer.

Alaric
12-06-2009, 3:01 PM
You're right about the blitzkrieg tactics being revolutionary to some degree (much like Roman chariots and hoplights were some time before). However, the Soviets proved they could beat the Germans with a good bolt action rifle - the Mosin Nagant. To say we would've lost had we used the Springfield is probably not altogether accurate. For one thing we would've saved a ton of ammo...

Furthermore, blitzkrieg involved mainly armored forces and air power, not infantry. They came up in the rear. With our superior numbers of Shermans, the Germans weren't able to mass the superior armored forces necessary to launch successful blitzkrieg attacks against us for the most part.

Vanguard
12-06-2009, 3:36 PM
You can always find some who hates something. I see your point. Comparing a bolt action to a semi-auto in reliability is just stupid. Of course a bolt action is going to be more reliable. Of course its going to be more accurate. Might as well compare the load capacity of a F150 to a Civic.

Where the Germans got it right was adopting the tactic of fire superiority and blitzscreed (sp?). They changed the game and the battle field was never the same. There is no way we could have won WW2 with the springfield. The Germans would have rolled right over us. We needed a fast shooting rifle and the Garand was the answer.

We would have beat the Germans with the Springfield too.

And it's Blitzkrieg.

B Strong
12-06-2009, 3:53 PM
There's a general mindset for humans that the old, known *thing* is better than the new *thing* isn't limited to firearms.

When Eric Clapton left The Yardbirds fans booed his replacement...Jeff Beck.

And when Jeff Beck left The Yardbirds, fans booed his replacement...Jimmy Page.

The issue wrt firearms is a little more serious, but the general rule still applies - people prefer the familar over the new.

mls343
12-07-2009, 9:56 AM
My Grandfather was a career Marine and served from 1922 until 1954. Yup, he did the Banana wars through Korea (and that biggie from 1941 - 1945 too). I asked hom one day what his military rifle of choice was. Of course I predicated it with:

M1 Carbine - Nope, it's a cooks gun and not a rifle.

M1 Garand - Nope, uses too much ammo.

Well, what?

03 Springfield...

Why? Shoots straight, reliable, light enough and "makes you shoot like a Marine should - you gotta aim it..."

Pretty salty response.

Bug Splat
12-07-2009, 11:00 AM
M1 Carbine - Nope, it's a cooks gun and not a rifle.


:rofl2:
I ask my grandfather if he carried the M1 Car in WW2 and his reply was "Nope, I carried a real rifle, the Garand". From the Vets I have spoken with it seems everyone felt the M1 Car was better than nothing. The only Vet I know (my other grandfather) who loved his was a Bomber pilot and he never had to fire his in combat. Of course with him he said he would rather give up his firearms to add more bombs to drop on Germany. He was flying and bombing all the way from D-day till the end of WW2. Said every Airman he went in with was at some point shot down and killed. Some how he and his crew made it out every time and some times had to crash land with half a plane miles from the airfield but he and his guys always made it back alive. 25 bombers go out and only his plane would make it back. What a mind job that must have been.:(

Artery
12-07-2009, 11:11 AM
This thread deserves more attention. I think this is a great historical perspective.

paul0660
12-07-2009, 11:26 AM
What a mind job that must have been. Yes. I have always wondered why the US volunteered for the day bombing job after the Brits had given up on it.

As far as rifles go, the new guy on the block always gets criticized. That being said, lots of soldiers and Marines in Vietnam wasted their last breath cursing their stuck M16.

30Cal
12-07-2009, 11:42 AM
My Grandfather was a career Marine and served from 1922 until 1954. Yup, he did the Banana wars through Korea (and that biggie from 1941 - 1945 too). I asked hom one day what his military rifle of choice was. Of course I predicated it with:

M1 Carbine - Nope, it's a cooks gun and not a rifle.

M1 Garand - Nope, uses too much ammo.

Well, what?

03 Springfield...

Why? Shoots straight, reliable, light enough and "makes you shoot like a Marine should - you gotta aim it..."

Pretty salty response.

My grandfather probably knew yours (1936-1961). The Corps was pretty small before the war.

http://www.ww2gyrene.org/fighting_on_guadalcanal_1.htm
Edson (the guy that did the testing quoted in the OP) says they were carrying 25rds for a 2-3 day patrol.

Lots of interesting stuff in this pamphet. Incidentally, my grandfather is quoted.
http://www.ww2gyrene.org/fighting_on_guadalcanal_1.htm#aho

mls343
12-07-2009, 2:22 PM
Thanks, 30cal. Excellent stuff. I agree, our Grandfathers probably did know each other. Too bad they are not around to chat - although my Grandfather was sort of closed lipped about his combat experiences. He did, however talk about other aspects of his service.

Interesting, but my Grandfather was also on the Canal. He was with the first airwing to land on Henderson field. I think it was either VMF 214 or VMF222. Not sure as he flew in both. He said most of the planes that landed on Henderson Field initially ended up gettting pretty shot up. Most of the air crews were handed rifles and told to dug foxholes as everyone was short of men...

I'll see if I can dig up some additional stuff as my Father has tons of records and lots of other stuff Corps related.

Again, a great site! Thanks!

The Director
12-07-2009, 2:28 PM
This rifle

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carcano

is what my grandpa used in North Africa (Italian Army, Brescia division - He's still alive).

He said it was accurate but not very powerful. He had a chance to pick up a sub machine gun from a fallen German during an advance and he said he used it until he ran out of ammo sources for it as it was far more powerful.

dwa
12-07-2009, 3:52 PM
You're right about the blitzkrieg tactics being revolutionary to some degree (much like Roman chariots and hoplights were some time before). However, the Soviets proved they could beat the Germans with a good bolt action rifle - the Mosin Nagant. To say we would've lost had we used the Springfield is probably not altogether accurate. For one thing we would've saved a ton of ammo...

Furthermore, blitzkrieg involved mainly armored forces and air power, not infantry. They came up in the rear. With our superior numbers of Shermans, the Germans weren't able to mass the superior armored forces necessary to launch successful blitzkrieg attacks against us for the most part.

roman hoplites and chariots?

reidnez
12-07-2009, 3:55 PM
Whenever something becomes especially popular or acclaimed, some segment of people will always reflexively snub it because that is human nature. This applies to cars, guns, iPods, athletes...you name it. It makes us feel good about ourselves to have such discerning taste that we reject things which have mass appeal. "Everyone else likes that," we think, "but I know better."

It can be tough to make a rational distinction between something of poor quality, and something which we personally dislike. I'll never forget the shooter who told me "Glocks are fantastic pistols, but I'll never own one because I dont't shoot them well. The grip angle just doesn't work for me." That was probably one of the most honest, empirical statements I have ever heard. Most people would simply say "Glocks are junk." (They must be junk, because I don't shoot them well and I can shoot everything else well.)

Anecdotal evidence is no evidence at all. Everyone knows "someone's cousin who was in the Army and said the M4 carbine is a piece of junk." And yet, field surveys (empirical evidence) consistently show that roughly 80% of troops find it adequate. Funny discrepancy there, right? Now, I'm not nearly foolish enough to believe that statistics are conclusive, or can't be manipulated, but if the choice is between what Gary's cousin said, and some quantifiable data, I am going with the data--if only because it can be examined and proven false.

Also remember that "anecdotal evidence" is generally skewed toward the negative. Just visit Yelp.com if you have any doubt of this. If something works as designed most of the time, and most people who use it are satisfied with it, the negative reports will nonetheless tend to be more numerous and louder than the positive reports, which gives a false impression of a negative consensus among users. If I buy a wrench and it works, I'm probably not going to rave to all my buddies about what a great wrench it is. But if it snaps in two the first time I try to tighten a bolt, you'd better bet I am going to be ranting.

sevensix2x51
12-07-2009, 4:00 PM
roman hoplites and chariots?

http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:awySXKSmIhd-4M:http://www.thebbps.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/the-simpsons-d-oh-mini-posters-71133.jpg

rc50cal
12-07-2009, 4:10 PM
Chariots were essentially last used In combat by the Persians against Alexander the Great. Hoplites were Greek armored soldiers with long spears who fought as an armored unit- pretty revolutionary at the time, but not a formation favored by the Romans.

M1A Rifleman
12-07-2009, 5:47 PM
Look at the date, 1941. Your forgeting the garand had only been in theater for less than a year. There were several changes and mods made to the M1 based upon field issues clear up in to the 50's. So the report you cite does not mean there were problems with the M1.

The only issue I have heard about the M1 is that it could tend to freez in heavy rains. The M14 added a roller bolt to solve this problem.

The M1/M14 will always be a better rifle than the M16/M4. :D

J_Rock
12-07-2009, 6:07 PM
Look at the date, 1941. Your forgeting the garand had only been in theater for less than a year. There were several changes and mods made to the M1 based upon field issues clear up in to the 50's. So the report you cite does not mean there were problems with the M1.

The only issue I have heard about the M1 is that it could tend to freez in heavy rains. The M14 added a roller bolt to solve this problem.

The M1/M14 will always be a better rifle than the M16/M4. :D


Says the guy who named himself after an obsolete combat rifle ;)

Again, you miss the purpose of the thread. So what if it was improved. All Im trying to do is highlight the argument that the current weapon system always sucks during the time period they use them(troops constantly complained about the *ping* that told the enemy they were empty.) Then suddenly when it goes out of service gun rifle gains some sort of legdendary infallible status.

Trendkill
12-07-2009, 6:26 PM
Says the guy who named himself after an obsolete combat rifle ;)

Again, you miss the purpose of the thread. So what if it was improved. All Im trying to do is highlight the argument that the current weapon system always sucks during the time period they use them(troops constantly complained about the *ping* that told the enemy they were empty.) Then suddenly when it goes out of service gun rifle gains some sort of legdendary infallible status.


Anything that is truly top dog will always be held to a very high level of scrutiny..... Regardless of how ridiculously false some of that scrutiny is.

People are always looking for fault in our best athletes...cars...movies...etc etc etc.


M1 = Bada**

M14 = Bada**

M4 = Bada**

The Director
12-07-2009, 7:21 PM
Chariots were essentially last used In combat by the Persians against Alexander the Great. Hoplites were Greek armored soldiers with long spears who fought as an armored unit- pretty revolutionary at the time, but not a formation favored by the Romans.

Chariots were actually used later than Alexander the Great's time. Quite a bit later.

As to Hoplites, the formation they used is a pretty common term....phalanx. When Alexander conquered Greece (he was a macedonian himself) he integrated the hoplite army into his and improved it...namely by making the spears longer.

510dat
12-07-2009, 7:39 PM
Yes. I have always wondered why the US volunteered for the day bombing job after the Brits had given up on it.

Because at night the British were usually within 5 or 10 miles of their target when they dropped. They couldn't hit crap, and everybody knew it.

Their bombers used .30 cal machine guns, and not many of those, for defense. (The Lancaster carried eight .303 machineguns) When they went on day raids, they got slaughtered, when they did night raids, they all usually came back, but they were lucky to bomb the right city (no joke).

American bombers were basically designed as porcupines; lots of guns, and .50's, instead of .30s (after the B-17A, that is). The number of machine guns consistently increased throughout the war, because more machine guns = better survival rate. The trade-off was bomb capacity; the Lancasters could carry 8,000 to 12,000lb payloads, while the Americal bombers had a max load between 4,000 and 5,000 lbs when flying into Germany.

Also, our bomb sights really only worked during the day. We could have used whatever the British used, but the bomber was designed as a daytime bomber.

M1A Rifleman
12-07-2009, 8:01 PM
Says the guy who named himself after an obsolete combat rifle ;)

Again, you miss the purpose of the thread. So what if it was improved. All Im trying to do is highlight the argument that the current weapon system always sucks during the time period they use them(troops constantly complained about the *ping* that told the enemy they were empty.) Then suddenly when it goes out of service gun rifle gains some sort of legdendary infallible status.

It can't be that obsolete since 1) They called them back in service for use by std GI's since they do have a reach and they do give a punch, and 2) the Seals have had them in their armory since the 60's, and they still deploy them.

Regardless of this, any problems with the M1 and the M14 were resolved in short order - unless you think weight and recoil are also a problem. :rolleyes:
However, 40+ years later the same complaints and problems with the 16 platform are still being discussed.
I had one once, no thanks, I keep a true battle rifle of wood and steel.

J_Rock
12-07-2009, 8:04 PM
It can't be that obsolete since 1) They called them back in service for use by std GI's since they do have a reach and they do give a punch, and 2) the Seals have had them in their armory since the 60's, and they still deploy them.

Regardless of this, any problems with the M1 and the M14 were resolved in short order - unless you think weight and recoil are also a problem. :rolleyes:
However, 40+ years later the same complaints and problems with the 16 platform are still being discussed.
I had one once, no thanks, I keep a true battle rifle of wood and steel.

Replaced by the SR-25/M110. Whats your excuse? :D

Seriously man, I didnt start this thread to have a pissing contest. The M14 is a great rifle, but the battle rifle as the standard service rifle has long past.

E. Fudd
12-07-2009, 10:10 PM
Anyone else remember reading battle accounts in books by historian S.L.A. Marshall (e.g. "Pork Chop Hill", WWII, etc.) where more than one attacking Japanese, North Korean, Chicom took multiple .30 Carbine, .30-06, even .50 BMG rounds before going down? It's been many decades since I read those books, but was amazed some would get back up even after one or more torso hits from a .30 or .50 cal hit and still try to lob a grenade or fire off one more burst before they bled out...

I also remember reading about Garands getting so hot from continuous firing for hours and hours in those Korean human wave attacks, that the stocks caught on fire and our guys had to put out the fire with snow, then fight on... :eek:

dwa
12-07-2009, 11:02 PM
Chariots were actually used later than Alexander the Great's time. Quite a bit later.

As to Hoplites, the formation they used is a pretty common term....phalanx. When Alexander conquered Greece (he was a macedonian himself) he integrated the hoplite army into his and improved it...namely by making the spears longer.

correct about the chariots and they were never that i know of used in a military capacity by Rome

However if i may disagree i believe Philip Alexanders father started the use of the pike in Macedonia which was an extension of Iphikrates military reforms.

KaTooM
12-08-2009, 12:29 AM
Great thread, enjoyed reading it.

Artery
12-08-2009, 12:57 AM
Anyone else remember reading battle accounts in books by historian S.L.A. Marshall (e.g. "Pork Chop Hill", WWII, etc.) where more than one attacking Japanese, North Korean, Chicom took multiple .30 Carbine, .30-06, even .50 BMG rounds before going down? It's been many decades since I read those books, but was amazed some would get back up even after one or more torso hits from a .30 or .50 cal hit and still try to lob a grenade or fire off one more burst before they bled out...



Really? I guess if someone really has the determination to keep going...

ChrisO
12-08-2009, 2:20 AM
There are reports of koreans getting arms ripped off by a .50 and still have enough fight to warrant another round of big .50 :) .

charliedontsurf334
12-08-2009, 11:39 AM
Drugs probably had something to do with that like in Somalia.

M1A Rifleman
12-08-2009, 11:48 AM
Replaced by the SR-25/M110. Whats your excuse? :D

Seriously man, I didnt start this thread to have a pissing contest. The M14 is a great rifle, but the battle rifle as the standard service rifle has long past.

Ehh, I felt like being a troll and causing trouble to see where it would go - it was one of those Mondays :43:.

I don't care for the M16's personally, just my opinion after owning both rifles side by side, however for others they may be fine with the M16 type and thats fine.

By the way, the SR-25/M110 also has its own problems with reliability in the field, however the ammunition being weak is not one of them. ;)

dfletcher
12-08-2009, 1:25 PM
For lack of better terms, I think there is also a quantification or statistical aspect of war that the US addressed in WWII that other nations did not. If one enemy soldier is killed per 20,000 rounds of small arms ammo expended and the Garand allows soldiers to put out more rounds, the theory is more of the enemy will be killed - fine, so long as the ratio remains unchanged.

If high altitude night time bombing yields poor measured results and day time bombing yields much better - but the price is high aircraft & crew loss - can the crew and materiel be replaced quickly enough to make it feasible or can another solution (long range fighter escorts) be found?

I think the business of war is often at odds with the poor SOB on the ground with his rifle trying to save his butt and his pal's butt.

Group B
12-08-2009, 1:36 PM
I scanned this thread, has anyone mentioned about the history of how target shooting is so important to the Marines??

This explains why they were so partial to the Springer, for quite some time.

M1A Rifleman
12-08-2009, 1:37 PM
For lack of better terms, I think there is also a quantification or statistical aspect of war that the US addressed in WWII that other nations did not. If one enemy soldier is killed per 20,000 rounds of small arms ammo expended and the Garand allows soldiers to put out more rounds, the theory is more of the enemy will be killed - fine, so long as the ratio remains unchanged.

If high altitude night time bombing yields poor measured results and day time bombing yields much better - but the price is high aircraft & crew loss - can the crew and materiel be replaced quickly enough to make it feasible or can another solution (long range fighter escorts) be found?

I think the business of war is often at odds with the poor SOB on the ground with his rifle trying to save his butt and his pal's butt.

That is what was ment when it was said "by the numbers" ;)

30Cal
12-08-2009, 3:25 PM
I scanned this thread, has anyone mentioned about the history of how target shooting is so important to the Marines??

This explains why they were so partial to the Springer, for quite some time.

Quite true. Even still, I'd argue that the M1 is a better target rifle. More or less the same accuracy. Better target sight (better combat sight too).

Also, prior to the war, the Corps was only about 20k strong, and funds were tight. Nobody was getting promoted--guys with 12+ years of service wearing one or two stripes. Buying a new rifle to replace the one they had wasn't high on their list.