Saturday, September 03, 2005

The New Military Pistol Spec...

is officially posted here. I've printed the whole thing off for leisurely reading in my spare time, but here's a quick summary, courtesy of MikeO at The Gun Zone:
45 ACP

DA/SA or DAO including SFA (striker fired action)

W and W/O safety

Std capacity/8 and and high capacity/10 magazines

MIL-STD-1913 accessory rail

2,000 MRBS/5,000 MRBF

20,000 round service life

Mean radius of 10 shot group at 50m no less than 3.15 inches

Suppressor attachment kit

Should fit hands from 5th - 95th percentile; modular grip adjustment is desired, not required

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

... no MORE than 3.15 inches...

What the heck is up with the 10 round high cap magazine? A Glcok 21 takes 13.

Michael Bane said...

I think they want to keep the basic gun single stack to avoid the problems with double stack/staggered stack magazines and sand. Not to mention short magazine spring life. A 10 round .45 ACP extended mag is a cakewalk.

mb

Anonymous said...

The Glock may take 13 rnds in the mag but it has to take 20K through the gun. The big G had a hard time with only 7K-10K of 40,357 and 9 when homeland security tested them. Sound like that grip size spec was written by H&K's own lobbyist.

Anonymous said...

No kidding!
sounds tailor made for a USP!
What say you, Michael?

Michael Bane said...

It's no secret HK thinks they've got this one wrapped up in a pretty box with a red ribbon.

HOWEVER — and this is one hell of a big however! — HK handguns have never been particularly popular with military sorts. I've quoted the insiders' joke about the SOCOM .45 ("It's only seen use in Bruce Willis movies"). Also note that the various and sundry SF groups who can have whatever they want have NOT flocked to the HK handguns...it's 1911 City all the way, bubba!

It's no secret that SIG has been kicking big time butt in the various Fed/LEO buy-a-handgun sweepstakes this year, despite brave HK press releases to the contrary. The SIG 220 remains quite literally the standard against which other DA .45s are measured. And, remember, SIG has successfully been through one set of military Trials already.

Keep in mind I'm prejudiced...the 220 is a sweet shooting gun in my hands; the USP is not. I was really excited about the USP until I shot one. I found the recoil to be disproportionately snappy compared to the size/weight of the gun. Now, let me qualify that by saying I taught a small class with a .40 USP and the thing shot like a house afire (as I am overly wont to say)...it may be the most fiercely accurate .40 blcak gun I've ever shot. But even after that, I didn't go out and buy one.

I don't think the Glock G-21 .45 has ever been the gun the G-17 9mm is, probably for exactly the same reason the 9mm 1911 is not the gun the .45 ACP 1911 is. Glock's fundamental design is around the 9mm cartridge (as the 1911 is around the .45), and I'm afraid the 21 won't go the distance. Now if Glock had been successful in the efforts to get the .45 GAP on the board, it would be a whole different ballgame. It's hard for me to take the XD as a serious player. Ive only shot one 9mm, and it shot great. However, you're looking at an eastern European design around the 9mm/.40-size cartridges. I don't think a .45 ACP version can make it through the Trials...

mb

Anonymous said...

re: Double vs. Single

Seems more likely to me that they think a double stack .45 won't meet the grip requirement...

Anonymous said...

Single stack mags are no more reliable than double stack in the sand and unlike MB the wanna be I've been there and done that. Extended 45 single stack mags aren't a good idea in a combat pistol. I will agree that the P220 is the one to beat here, except for the 10 round mag. But despite that HK will probably get it.

Anonymous said...

Well Anonymous, if that's really your name, those are pretty strong words. Have you done alot of shooting in the sand with both double stacks and single stacks? Tell us exactly how double stacks are just as reliable as single stacks from your extensive experience in the sand. Not supposition mind you but hard facts from the first person experience. Let us wannabe's know where it's at. We really want to know. And what specifically is wrong with extended magazines in combat? Mind you that these are magazines that probably neither you nor anyone else have ever seen before and may not even exist at the moment. But still, tell us how these theoretical extended mags are bad in combat. Enquiring minds want to know.

Michael Bane said...

MB the Wannabe...has a nice ring to it! It's actually incorrect, though...I'm exactly who I wanted to be. It might be more correct to say "MB the Dilettante." I probably wouldn't argue with that one. Reminds me of the time I was once called a "dilettante climber" by a very famous alpinist who later became a good friend and shooting buddy. When the reporter for the climbing rag asked my comment on his comment, I said, first, I was honored that perhaps the foremost mountaineer of my generation even knew my name, and that, second, he was absolutely right. I was a dilettante. But I was a FRIGGIN' good dilettante!

Since you came in late, let me restate what I have always stated — I am not nor have I ever been a cop, nor I do not play one on television. I have never been a SEAL, a member of any special forces, under contract to any secret goverment organization whose name I can't reveal, a member of an undercover drug task force or any other sort of stealthy ninja death warrior, nor have I ever presented myself as such. I am a shooter and a journalist, and I'm pretty good at both those things.

Ill say this again...my experience after firing probably half-a-million rounds in competition over almost 30 years is that double-stack magazines are inherently less reliable than single-stack magazines in inclement conditions.

I have personal experience with even Browning HP 9mm 15-round magazines, among the most reliable double-stack magazines ever made, failing after prolonged exposure to fine sand.

Moreover, I have access to the huge "knowledge base" of three decades of practical shooting competition. IPSC shooters have more experience and knowledge with high capacity magazines than any other group on the planet...their hi-caps are 100% reliable...with top quality aftermarket springs (thank you Mr. Wolff!), stainless steel or teflon'ed mag bodies and a cleaning regimen that makes my kitchen work look really lame!

There is also a wealth of after-action reports back from overseas, which is, of course, what the military is responding to.

Your experience is your experience, and you have paid dearly for it. And, hey, I've been wrong before!

mb

Anonymous said...

Single stack 45? Sounds like a SIG 220 for sure. They say the new DAK trigger is right waround the corner. Question is what about a single action only with external safety? Doubt they can do that but if they ever do sign me up for one.

Anonymous said...

I was reminded on the Beretta Forum of the Beretta 8045 Cougar. It has an 8 round magazine and comes in both DA/SA and DAO. Plus it has a slide mounted safety that M9 users should already be trained in using. The only thing going against it is the short 3.7 in. barrel. I'm sure that Beretta could lengthen the slide and barrel if they wanted to though. But would they want to?

BTW: I wonder if there would be a prejudice against any Beretta entry, maybe due to any perceived shortcomings in the M9? Whether those perceptions are deserved or not.

Anonymous said...

They'd be bias but only because the Beretta Cougar isn't regarded as a very good pistol to begin with. It takea distant back seat to other DA/SA 45 pistols with SIG's 220 seen as the best of the lot. The Beretta safety isn't going to be enough for them to get a head start on the rest of the pack.

Anonymous said...

I may be wrong here but I don't think that is the case. The Cougar just has a different market niche. I really think that the P220 is only more popular because it has the configuration that more people want in a .45 caliber pistol. That mainly being a 5 inch barrel. Besides, I don't think that Military procurement really cares too much about the sales performance of a pistol in the commercial market. I think that what may be more important is the perception of how the current Beretta service pistol has performed on duty. Since it looks like they are trying to spec a single stack mag to this .45 caliber pistol, two solutions to so-called short comings of the M9, namely gunked up double stack magazines and limited stopping power cartridge, will these perceived shortcomings be associated to and taint the brand name of the pistol or not? I hope not.

I've owned a P220ST and I liked it fine. The only reason I haven't owned a Cougar is because I would have prefered a full size barrel to go along with the full sized grip. If Beretta went ahead and reintroduced this pistol with a 4.5 - 5 inch barrel and a rail, I would still probably buy one.

Anonymous said...

As to single stacks being better in sand, I'm not too sure about that. While I haven't been in the competition game as long as MB (only since 1990), comparing the double stacks used by ISPC competitors is not a realistic comparison to current "duty" style mags. The mags used in competition are maximized for capacity over reliability and longevity. What this means is they are as wide as possible to create the greatest amount of stagger at the very edge of reliability. Also, there is not limiter at the bottom and they run very tiny followers. This allows the springs to be compressed as much as physically possible.

It is ashame that the inferior Checkmate mags being issued in the golf gave the Beretta and the double stack magazine a bad reputation. As I understand it, they are having MUCH better results with factory magazines.

As for the Cougar, despite it's short barrel IMO this gun shoots much better than the Sig P220. I attribute this to very high bore axis of the Sig P220 vs the very low bore axis of the 8045. My Cougar (9mm L) is my everyday carry gun. The rotating barrel does a lot to dampin recoil. I am very much looking forward to the release of the new Beretta PX4. Having shot one in .40, I was very impressed at its ability to control full power ammo in a polymer gun.

Anonymous said...

Beretta's rotating barrel lock-up system didn't do so well in the department of homland security testing. Beretta is rumored to have shown up, shot for one day, and picked up stakes and left after several, several failures. The amount of testing down could not have been done in one day so the big B seems to have had a big problem. But maybe they Army won't test them as much.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm. Wonder if any of the 1980 guns would do well? Wasn't the Colt Double Eagle designed for this?

Anonymous said...

Does Colt still make guns? Aren't they up for sale but can't find anybody to buy them?

Anonymous said...

All you need to know about how much the G21 can take:

http://ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=5&f=4&t=13658

Looks to me that the Glock mag does just fine in the sand. The only issue I could forsee is the spring life, as stock Glock springs tend to easily get weak with slight use. Though, if they were to use something along the lines of the Wolf +10% spring in a standard cap mag, it would be a MAJOR improvement to the stock mags in terms of spring life.

And, another nice thing with the 21 is that the majority of people can shoot it easily. The trigger pull is shorter and lighter than the M9, and it balances in the hand differently. I have not met a person who can not handle the size of the G21 for shooting. And since concealed carry is not an issue, and the G21 is light, overal it's a winner in .45 Auto.

Factor in another selling point: Glock is simple. It will be simple to train armorers, and it will be cheap to keep in stock spare parts. Can't say the same for HK, SIG, S&W, Beretta, or others.

jonathon

Anonymous said...

As for the comment of the Beretta doing poorly in DHS tests with the rotating barrel: It is my understanding from two Beretta reps that Beretta didn't submit a Cougar, but rather a 96 variant. This does not feature the rotating barrel.

As for the user who thinks the Glock 21 can be easily handled by all, this is flat out wrong. I have worked with three police departments who issue the Glock 21. Eventually each department had to authorize a gun with a smaller grip because the gun's grip is too big for officers with smaller hands. One authorized the G30 (though I'm not sure how much better that is) and the other two authorized the G22.

Anonymous said...

I hate to tell you this Mike, but there are NOT looking for an extended 10rd single stack mag.

They specifically as for a standard capacity mag of greater than 8 (objective)rounds and a high capacity mag of 15 (objective) rounds.

Also, your theory about the single stack mags not working in sand is also full of holes. EVERY rifle magazine from EVERY army in the world is double stack.

And sand is not a magazine issue if proper regular maintenance is performed before going out on missions.

I know this because I was deployed to Iraq for a year and never had an issue with a properly maintained double stack magazine or weapon.

Anonymous said...

Take a look at Sigs new P220 Combat and P220 Combat TB.

http://www.sigarms.com/Products/ShowCatalogProductDetails.aspx?categoryid=6&productid=155


http://www.sigarms.com/Products/ShowCatalogProductDetails.aspx?categoryid=6&productid=156

Anonymous said...

Been in the sand box (Afghanistan)
Went to the range every week (was training afghani troops)
fired numerous rounds through M9 with both factory and after market mags, never had a problem and my gun hygene was not the best.
I would rather have a 45 of any type or even (lets get crazy for a sec) a 10mm.
my current carry is a ten, i can do more with it.

Anonymous said...

So when are the evaluations supposed to take place?

Anonymous said...

Michael, or anyone, I realize "mean radius" cannot be exactly converted to our more familiar method of measuring the extreme spread of a group but in terms of "probablity" what would a 3.15" mean radius look like in group size? Surely it would be nothing to brag about.

Anonymous said...

Since posting the above I've learned that "mean radius" only indicates that 50% of the shots are within that radius. They don't consider the other 50% at all so the "group size" as measured across the widest shots could be over 16". I have a smoothbore that would qualify.

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