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M60E3 Rate Of Fire


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#1 Jack_Bauer

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 09:33 AM

What is the rate of fire for a M60E3 with a heavy barrel?
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#2 winbar

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 08:35 PM

Hello Jack,
My 1971 edition of Guidebook For Marines gives a rate of fire of 550rpm(approximate) for the original M60. There is an entry on Wikipedia that talks about the different models. The general spec sheet said 500-650rpm. The only other mention I saw of rate of fire was for the Seal's latest version. It was 500 to 600 rpm. (MK43) The author made mention of light and heavy barrels and the need to change out light barrels every 100 rounds as opposed to every 200 rounds for the heavy barrel as being a drawback. It doesn't look like rate of fire has changed much in the last 50 years. I've never been able to afford to feed a belt-fed, so I have not lusted after them. If the Seals were still using them in the last 10 years, they must have some unique advantages.
Doug
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#3 Sean M

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 03:14 AM

550 RPM for the Mk43. Barrel weight did not affect the RPM.

Barrel changes were non-existent with NSW Mk43's. As a single person system vs. crew served, it was not practical or feasible for the AW Gunner to carry spare barrels. He was usually already bogged down with over 50lbs of ammo alone. Add water, food, Op Gear, and that weight added up quickly. Not to mention that these are not sustained firefight weapons in a fixed position defense, they were carried by one dude. He would run out of ammo before the barrel shit the bed.

In training, the longer/heavier barrels were generally used as the short barrels for combat use were a bit of a commodity, and no one wanted to ruin them in training. Typical barrel life for a long barrel was about 15k rounds, 10k for the short barrels, give or take. When in a week of dedicated AW training, that would be about 2.5 days for the long barrels, and less than 2 days for short barrels. At the end of the week, there would be piles of shot out barrels that would be raped for gas pistons, and added to the top of the BIP pile.

A spare bolt and op rod were commonly carried lubed and vacuum sealed into a plastic bag, then carried in a "quiver" of sorts on his back for those times when the gun choked due to bolt lug wear, weak extractor, or a broken op rod which were much more common than a barrel overheating to the point it crapped out. Of course, it did happen on occasion, especially with barrels that were on their last legs. Bullets exiting the side just forward of the chamber and through the forward hand guard, while not common, weren't terribly rare either.

The unique advantage was that it was easily modified to a one person system. The Army and USMC went to the 240's in the early 90's, and are not suitable for a one person weapon, nor are they suitable for assaults, or small unit fire and maneuver where the AW must displace to stay with his element.

Due to the lack of repair parts, and SACO Defense no longer supplying the Army and Marines.........the financial incentive for them to continue to make repair parts and guns wasn't there. So began the search for a replacement system with the same basic attributes as a Mk43, but one that was logistically sustainable. Enter the FNH Mk48........
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#4 dalbert

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 08:29 AM

550 RPM for the Mk43. Barrel weight did not affect the RPM.

Barrel changes were non-existent with NSW Mk43's. As a single person system vs. crew served, it was not practical or feasible for the AW Gunner to carry spare barrels. He was usually already bogged down with over 50lbs of ammo alone. Add water, food, Op Gear, and that weight added up quickly. Not to mention that these are not sustained firefight weapons in a fixed position defense, they were carried by one dude. He would run out of ammo before the barrel shit the bed.

In training, the longer/heavier barrels were generally used as the short barrels for combat use were a bit of a commodity, and no one wanted to ruin them in training. Typical barrel life for a long barrel was about 15k rounds, 10k for the short barrels, give or take. When in a week of dedicated AW training, that would be about 2.5 days for the long barrels, and less than 2 days for short barrels. At the end of the week, there would be piles of shot out barrels that would be raped for gas pistons, and added to the top of the BIP pile.

A spare bolt and op rod were commonly carried lubed and vacuum sealed into a plastic bag, then carried in a "quiver" of sorts on his back for those times when the gun choked due to bolt lug wear, weak extractor, or a broken op rod which were much more common than a barrel overheating to the point it crapped out. Of course, it did happen on occasion, especially with barrels that were on their last legs. Bullets exiting the side just forward of the chamber and through the forward hand guard, while not common, weren't terribly rare either.

The unique advantage was that it was easily modified to a one person system. The Army and USMC went to the 240's in the early 90's, and are not suitable for a one person weapon, nor are they suitable for assaults, or small unit fire and maneuver where the AW must displace to stay with his element.

Due to the lack of repair parts, and SACO Defense no longer supplying the Army and Marines.........the financial incentive for them to continue to make repair parts and guns wasn't there. So began the search for a replacement system with the same basic attributes as a Mk43, but one that was logistically sustainable. Enter the FNH Mk48........


Sean M,

Very informative post. Thank you for sharing your insight, and thank you most of all for your service.

David Albert
dalbert@sturmgewehr.com
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#5 Sean M

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 06:02 PM

The least I can do........I have been lurking and learning from this site for a long time, and it was very helpful and informative as I entered my first Thompson purchase. The 60 is the only MG I know enough about to make intelligent comments on (my baby for 12 years)...... time to give a little back to the group.

Even though my position would no longer allow me to carry one if they were around.................................I still miss it.
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#6 winbar

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 06:25 PM

Sean,

Thanks for the input from someone with experience. Congratulations on your RKI status.

Former U.D.T. WANNABEE,
Doug

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#7 Sean M

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 02:39 AM

Attached File  60 3.jpg   62.07K   19 downloads

Nice photo taken early evening in the desert some years ago during high volume lightening of the gear. Timing worked out pretty nice to catch a tracer from flash to edge of the frame. This topic on this gun is sweet. I love everything to do with the pig.

Pardon my ignorance...........what is RKI status?

Edited by Sean M, 21 May 2012 - 02:39 AM.

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#8 winbar

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 12:26 PM

Sean,
As usual I can never find anything when I need it. There is a list of definitions posted here somewhere. I just wish I got mine they way you did - on the job.
Thanks for posting here,
Doug
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#9 dalbert

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 06:18 PM

RKI = Reasonably Knowledgable Individual

It also allows you to post items for sale on the boards.

David Albert
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#10 Sean M

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 09:05 PM

Ok, thanks for clearing that up.

But...............not sure I qualify. Hahahaha. I've been described as a lot of things, but RKI isn't one of them.

Thanks, I appreciate it.
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#11 hrt4me

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 05:06 PM

thanks for the good info!
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#12 MG08

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 03:25 PM

old posting- but I have several M60s, including an E4.  I also use some govt issue ones . The rated rate of fire is listed as the 500-600 RPM.  (noted by others) My experience with standard E1 type and my M60D is that the rate of fire is right about 600 RPM.  My personal E4 runs a little slower, mostly due I expect to the tight parts.Not broken in well yet.  the barrel type has no efect on the rate of fire.  Lubrication or lack of it, wear and tear on the gun and carbon buildup will have a much greater effect on the rate of fire.   ESS%20-%2013SEP05%20-%20DAY6%20_69_.JPG


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#13 mgdoc8307

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Posted 13 March 2015 - 11:12 PM

Thanks for the info- My RIA M60 E4 by DO at my class III dealer awaiting transfer since 12/14- can hardly wait!!!
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