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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Who has ever pushed the limit in weight reduction on the 14? I'M not talking Carbon Fiber stocks, but true mechanical redesigns?

ARMY1AIRASLT
 

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I think the problem becomes where to reduce weight. The parts are so integrated with each other that changing metals could result in major problems. Titanium is an option but the cost would be ridiculous. Aluminum isn't viable to replace the steel parts due to the abuse the steel takes.

Affordable/Lightweight/Durable - Pick any two.
 

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Well lets take a look at the trigger group. Why can't anyone make the housing out of aluminum that has got to be a few ounces there, what about a redesigned one piece gas lock / cylinder made of lighter material. I know this is a dwelled on topic, and I love the rifle the design the caliber and sex appeal etc. Some say why mess with perfection. But technology has come a long way since the rifles inception. I don't know maybe companies would rather put there ingenuity to completely new concepts like scar heavy, or others. All I know is a 7 pound socom 16 gets my juices flowing.
ARMY1AIRASLT
 

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Lighter M14

Harrington and Richardson produced a prototype light weight M14. I think is was about 1 1/2 pounds lighter. It wasn't successful and the military did not adopt it. It has a lot to do with recoil forces in a combat rifle. While it's nice to have less weight to carry around, no one wants to get beat to death with all the rounds shot in combat.
 

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Who has ever pushed the limit in weight reduction on the 14? I'M not talking Carbon Fiber stocks, but true mechanical redesigns?

ARMY1AIRASLT
Well, the stock really is the first place to look. Carbon fiber composites were not available, or at least not affordable, when these rifles were designed. Any rifle with a wood stock can drop a pound immediately by just replacing it with a good carbon fiber/Kevlar design.

H&R did some experimenting with a lightweight "jungle" version of the M14. They made the barrel skinnier and shorter. Someone got a few of those experimental barrels when H&R closed down and auctioned everything off, and the barrels have been on Gunbroker lately.

Other than that, I don't know what you would do. Every ounce of steel in an M14 has a purpose... FRG1
 

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.... But technology has come a long way since the rifles inception....
I like what you're thinking. I too have a few things that I think about all the time but I know the hardcore traditionalists would probably scoff and turn up their noses ...and I get it. But I can't help dreaming of a different stock and an optic(on the wishlist.) And I do catch myself and think that I should enjoy this thing as it is and stop trying to make it an FAL -- "...if I want a DS Arms SASS, I should just buy one." I don't think it's wrong to have 2 loves, eh?
 

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T44e6

The T44E6 (not the HR "Guerilla Gun") weighed in at 7.4 lbs.

  • Shorter barrel (20")
  • Thinner barrel profile
  • Shorter flash suppressor nut
  • No bayonet stud
  • Shorter flash suppressor
  • Modified front sight and screw
  • Narrower front band on gas cylinder
  • Lengthened accessory hole in stock
  • Slotted stock liner
  • Slotted trigger housing wall
  • Slotted operating spring guide
  • No rear sight wings
  • Additional machining cuts on receiver and gas cylinder plug
  • Aluminum butt plate assembly
  • Aluminum magazine tube
  • Aluminum magazine floor plate
  • Aluminum clip guide
See U.S. Rifle M14: From John Garand to the M21 pp. 192-195.

Edit: As to more modern technology--Check out the work that has been done on lightening the M240. Most of those techniques could be applied to the M14 if there was an economic/logistical reason to do so.
 

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Wasn`t the strive for a lighter rifle the invention of the 30.Carabine?
Wolf
 

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Harrington and Richardson produced a prototype light weight M14. I think is was about 1 1/2 pounds lighter. It wasn't successful and the military did not adopt it. It has a lot to do with recoil forces in a combat rifle. While it's nice to have less weight to carry around, no one wants to get beat to death with all the rounds shot in combat.
Best thing to do is an hour of rifle PT every day and after a month its not very heavyDI2. It will also assist in handling recoil. Probably the easiest thing to do would be to flute the barrel, I am not engineer but I think that is one of the few things you could do that would not require redesigning the entire system.
 

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the M14 to me is not heavy. i feel like i can carry one all day through and through........it's when it is loaded that makes it heavy. there is no way around the heaviness of that .308 ammo.

if you ask me how to make a M14 less heavy i will tell you to get a 5rd mag.
 

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The M14 is supposed to be heavy, it's a battle rifle. That means if your in a battle you'll be carrying about 7 mags. When you run out of rounds (and you will eventually) that's when all that weight comes into play. You can throw it and wherever it lands it will hurt whomever it hits. You can swing it, see previous sentence about whomever it hits it will hurt. You can use it to smash, hammer, blugeon, crush, and a few more things I can't think of right now. Excessive weight, it's God's gift to the American GI, never leave home without it. (and don't mess with mother nature)
 

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Rawnerves Excessive weight said:
that is so true! Besides that light weight 308s are not much fun to shoot anyways. The m14 just doesn't lend its self too well to aluminum or other light weight materials for action, other parts. Get a scout or socom, remove optic mounts, put in carbon/graphite stock. About as light as you're gonna get.
 

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For the elderly or infirm a lightweight rifle might be the way to go but in such a case I'd drop back into 5.56 range. After an afternoon of serious practice with the '14 pattern(or any battle rifle pattern I've used) that extra weight they exhibit is welcome. Interesting question tho, but even the Armalite pattern is a heavy compared to the same dressed rifle in 5.56. Guess I've used this so long I forgot it's weight. Now eight loaded 20's in a grab n go slung of my shoulder?.....THAT's heavy! GI2
 

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Who has ever pushed the limit in weight reduction on the 14? I'M not talking Carbon Fiber stocks, but true mechanical redesigns?
Harrington & Richardson Arms Co. made a lot of progress in this area in 1961 and 1962. From M14 Rifle History and Development Fifth Edition:

"The effort to develop a lighter and shorter version of the M14 began in the summer of 1961. Laotian government troops fighting the Pathet Lao in that nation’s civil war had difficulty handling full size U. S. made battle rifles. This military need was the impetus for Harrington & Richardson Arms to develop, build, and test several prototype M14 rifles known as "Guerilla guns." The project was headed by Donald L. Hennan at the company’s Worcester, MA plant.

The Guerilla gun had a combination perforated conical flash suppressor and gas cylinder secured to the rifle by the flash suppressor nut and setscrew. Its barrel was a USGI M14 chromium plated barrel shortened to 15.5 ". The flash suppressor reduced felt recoil by more than 12 percent. The exterior contour of the barrel chamber was turned down and the receiver was further machined to remove as much steel as possible. The Guerilla gun project had reached an intermediate stage of development by December 1962. By then, the Guerilla gun was 2 pounds lighter and 5.5 " shorter than the M14 rifle. The weight of the Guerilla barrel and flash suppressor assembly was 2.6 pounds and the overall length was 20.5 ". Earl N. Sample, head of research and development at Harrington & Richardson Arms, Donald Hennan, and David L. Hall, weapons designer at Harrington & Richardson Arms, were working on reducing overall weight of the Guerilla gun by an additional 1.5 pounds."
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Essayons nailed on the head with his information. It seems the trial rifle he mentioned was the ultimate evolution of the M14. So the question is why were they not adopted?

ARMY1AIRASLT
 
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