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The Small Arms Thread, Part 8: 2018; ICSR to be replaced by US Army with interim 15mm Revolver Cannon.

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I thought I read that by Vietnam, troops were pretty dissatisfied with the worn out, long-in-the-tooth .45s they were provided?

 

It's always pretty annoying the 1911 fanbois since the .45 Automatic as issued was a perfectly serviceable military or civilian sidearm, anachronistic manual of arms aside and was up to the 1970s and even 1980s.

 

As for saving lives, I've wondered what the lives "saved" to getting killed/wounded by a negligent discharge with the 1911 across all four US service branches is?

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I'm aware of the sentiment that the 1911 is another over-glorified American wank gun, but what are the downsides of it (and .45 ACP I suppose) in comparison to more modern handguns like the Beretta 92?  Is the age thing with the design or the condition of the individual guns?

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1 hour ago, Scolopax said:

I'm aware of the sentiment that the 1911 is another over-glorified American wank gun, but what are the downsides of it (and .45 ACP I suppose) in comparison to more modern handguns like the Beretta 92?  Is the age thing with the design or the condition of the individual guns?

 

There's a lot that's subtly wrong with the 1911 that makes it a suboptimal issue gun.  Mind you, most military personnel could probably be armed with flintlocks or even hi-points and it would matter very little.  But there's still a lot that's less than ideal.

 

The 1911's barrel is tilted in and out of locking engagement with the slide by a little articulated, swinging link:

kv83JIE.png

This was a simplification by Browning from his previous design, the 1902 Military, which had two links.  It turned out that the locking system would work with two links, still work just fine with one link, and as Browning later discovered, work best of all with no links, like in a Hi-Power or Glock:

IBv9149.png

The older linked barrel system in the 1911 causes the locking surfaces to describe a relatively small arc of movement as they engage and disengage.  This is bad, because they're not arc-shaped, they're flat, and over time they tend to grind themselves into a shape conforming to the actual motion they are performing.  The linkless system of the Hi Power and almost all subsequent automatic pistols also describes an arc, but it's an arc with a way bigger radius so it's practically flat.  The slide and barrel locking surfaces last a lot longer, which is one less thing for the armorer to worry about.

 

Speaking of things the armorer needs to worry about, 1911s just have a lot of parts compared to modern pistols.  I want to emphasize that part; 1911s are dead simple compared to a lot of their contemporaries.  But pistol design has moved on, and modern pistol designs simply have more rugged, and fewer parts than a 1911.  Compared to other pistols, 1911s are significantly more maintenance-intensive to keep in action.

 

The manufacturing quality and tolerance of the 1911 is a bit of a mess.  Not Browning's fault, not Colt's fault (well, it might be there's a little, long story), but manufacturing technology has moved on since the thing was designed.  1911 parts aren't exactly interchangeable by modern standards.  It is, relative to modern designs, a pistolsmithing intensive design to keep going.

Now, all of these things are actually sort of good for the 1911 when it comes to competition.  The fact that it has lots of parts that do lots of things mean that there are plenty of places for the smiths to tinker to get those moving parts to hum along exactly how they want.  The feed angle and unlocking time can be adjusted by the link length.  The tightness of the barrel-to-slide lockup can be adjusted by fitting the barrel bushing.  Modern pistols don't have barrel bushings or links, so fine-tuning those aspects would require machining work on a much larger and more expensive part.  The fact that the 1911 was in service so long also meant that the AMU had a lot of time to figure out exactly how to turn them into competition guns, so there is a large body of knowledge on the minutiae of 1911 smithing.

 

Finally, 7 rounds of ammo per magazine and a single action trigger with a manual safety are just sort of archaic.

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37 minutes ago, Scolopax said:

I'm aware of the sentiment that the 1911 is another over-glorified American wank gun, but what are the downsides of it (and .45 ACP I suppose) in comparison to more modern handguns like the Beretta 92?  Is the age thing with the design or the condition of the individual guns?

 

Short answer: 15 rounds 9mm > 7 rounds .45 ACP.

 

Obviously there is a bit more nuance and I'm sure the more knowledgeable guys like Sturgeon or Colli or meplat or Khand-e (etc) will chip in if what I say is incorrect. 

 

When it comes to the 1911, I don't like to say it is a bad gun - especially the variant as issued to the troops - it's just overrated. Particularly $1,000 - $5,000 finicky, BBQ race guns produced by Kimber and other manufacturers in order to fleece divorced, middle-aged white guys with "small hands" of their money. 

 

As for the .45 ACP, it is much like the .38 Special in that it is around simply because it was - and is - a popular round and there is an inventory of weapons which use it. If a modern ammo maker today was to make a new fancy pistol round, they would never design the .45 ACP. Or maybe they would, gun buyers are stupid.

 

The perception is that the .45 ACP is a "man stopper". Forty-five is bigger than .38 or 9 mm or .32 ACP, right? Particularly when we're dealing with cartridge design of 106 years ago when designers didn't have access to all the wonderful technology, chemicals, computers, and alloys that we do today.

 

To me, as a World War 1 weapon, the Colt 1911 was about as good of a sidearm as you could get with the exception maybe being the .455 Webley revolver. And given that there actually was a tactical use of pistols in the Great War - trench raids being a main example - having a generally reliable handgun which was quick to reload firing - at the time - a generally potent round would be desirable. Corporal (later Sergeant) York is famous for using one in his medal of Honor winning exploit. It was also handy to use by cavalry and artillerymen in dispatching wounded horses. 

 

Unfortunately, as a weapon of modern war pistols kind of suck and .45 Automatic was no exception. Which is why the US military transitioned to m1 carbines as a personal defense weapon for officers and various rear echelon personnel like truck drivers, radio operators, and whatnot. I remember either Sturgeon or Colli brought up the topic about in World War 2 and you don't see too many photos of actual combat troops carrying a handgun. In fact - on paper - the 1911 wasn't even issued en masse to entire divisions. That's not saying that troops didn't get hold of some or that a medic or a chaplain didn't have one. You'd see military police armed with them though, for the same reason that civilian cops carry a handgun.

 

Reading medal of Honor citations, you don't see too many instances of the recipient using a handgun. There are tons of instances of an m1 carbine being used in World War 2 and Korea. 

 

Now in Vietnam, the 1911 again regains actual military use. And that is because a grenadier armed with an m79 grenade launcher (bloop gun) was assigned to each platoon/squad. And since this man was stuck with a single-shot, breach loading ranged weapon as his primary firearm, he was given a handgun as a backup. The 1911 was also used in various "tunnel rat" engagements. Also given that US soldiers were occupying territory again an asymmetrical enemy, having a handgun on your person while you were drinking and whoring while on leave in Saigon was seen as a plus should Charlie decide to bushwhack you there.

 

Which gets me to the manual of arms of the 1911. If you're used to a Glock or a DA/SA weapon like a Beretta 92 or even a revolver, the anachronistic cocked-and-locked nature of the weapon is kind of clunky. Jeff Cooper - who probably did more to romanticize the 1911 than any other person - came up with a masturbatory "condition" system to describe all the different ways it could be carried.

 

https://www.sightm1911.com/Care/1911_conditions.htm

 

So if you're carrying cocked-and-locked you're carrying a loaded weapon, with a round in the chamber, hammer back, with light single action trigger, with the weapon's safety on. That safety can be disengaged on "accident" in any number of ways. Combine that with a person putting his finger on the trigger too quickly, and you have the possibility of something like this happening.

 

 

You also have people who will chamber a round and then easy the hammer down. When drawing the weapon, they'll cock the hammer (like an old SA revolver). This is less than optimal compared to a Glock or a Beretta in that while easing the hammer down, it might slip, fire the weapon which will then cause the slide recoil back and break the shooter's thumb. This sort of negligent discharge was common - as I recall - in military and carrying it like this was "discouraged".

 

Finally, you could carry the weapon without a round in the chamber and when drawing, rack the slide. The "Israeli carry" as it's called and if you're a soldier, it isn't that bad since presumably you'll have enough time to draw and rack the slide of your pistol if you ever need to use it, otherwise the weapon is perfectly safe while you are operating your primary weapon (grenade launcher, machine gun, tank, whatever).

 

 

If you watch the series Longmire - which I'm doing as I type - it is humorous to watch all the different ways the main character carries his Colt 1911.

 

Which gets to the civilian use. Until the 1980s, there weren't that many reliable semiautomatic handguns which were widely available other than the 1911, many of which were "bring homes" by US troops after World War 1 and 2. It was used during the Roaring Twenties during Prohibition where the .45 ACP was found to be entirely suboptimal when it came to barrier penetration, shooting through windshields and car bodies in running gunfights chasing bootleggers and bank robbers. This actually led to a round called the .38 Super which - in my opinion - is a superior round. It also led to the invention of the .357 magnum which became the preferred round for most police departments up to the 1990s. 

 

Today the 1911 is a big, low capacity weapon firing a sub-optimal round that recoils more compared to 10mm and modern 9mm self defense loads. If you don't care about capacity, there are 5, 6, 7 and even 8 shot revolvers in .357 or .327 magnum that fire a more powerful round, especially if you go big bore like a .41 or .44 magnum, .45 Long (Colt) or .454 Casull. And ammo manufacturing has gotten to the point where even a .380 is a decent self defense round. Throw in exotic calibers like 5.7 or whatever and there just isn't any real reason - other than nostalgia or that you just like it - to use a .45 ACP. Which makes the 1911 fanbois who think it is this one-shot-murder-gun all the more ridiculous when we have ballistics testing and medical evidence of it being kind of a blah round. 

 

il_570xN.254501049.jpg

 

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9mm ball tumbles in ballistic gel:

 

45 ball does not:

 

Therefore, smaller boolit is more effective at damaging tissue than the bigger boolit. Factor in the sectional KE (which drives penetration) making it easier to get a 9mm penetrator through body armour, and 9mm is a more effective cartridge than .45 for military use

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13 hours ago, Scolopax said:

I'm aware of the sentiment that the 1911 is another over-glorified American wank gun, but what are the downsides of it (and .45 ACP I suppose) in comparison to more modern handguns like the Beretta 92?  Is the age thing with the design or the condition of the individual guns?

 

One of the first serious gun articles I ever wrote was on why the .45 ACP was not then and is not now a good idea.

 

If you don't want to take my word for it, try the Army Medical Department's perspective:

 

"From an analysis of these facts and the  requirements for penetration of skin and bone,  it can be readily appreciated that the .45  caliber bullet is of little value as a wound-producing agent except in the softer tissues  and at near ranges. The bullet often fails either  to penetrate or to fracture bone and practically  never shatters bone in the manner common to  the rifle bullet or fragment. The Japanese and  German sidearms with muzzle velocities of approximately 1,100 f.p.s. were much more  effective as antipersonnel weapons than the  .45 caliber weapon. While the same bullet with its characteristics was used in the submachinegun, multiple hits probably  compensated for the weaknesses, so apparent  in single shots. Of course, the carbine with its much higher muzzle velocity has largely replaced the .45 automatic pistol and is a more  effective antipersonnel weapon than any of the  sidearms."

 

Wound Ballistics in World War II, Medical Department of the US Army, page 140

 

 

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2 hours ago, Oedipus Wreckx-n-Effect said:

I love that 45 acp is so horribly inefficient for it's size. 45 super exists because that's what happens when you actually use the capacity of your round and Jack it up to modern pressures.

 

.45 Super is pretty rad. Most .45 ACP projectiles aren't designed to work at Super velocities, although I am not sure that's too big a deal. .45 Super is in the ~800 J energy level, too, which makes it suitable for shit like bear defense with hard cast bullets.. It's a pretty metal round.

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I modified the recoil spring weight/guide rod and added a nice robust buffer plat to my FNX-45 for when I'm not using it as a the subsonic loaded gun I originally bought it for to better handle .45 Super.

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The sole advantage of .45 ACP over the nominal .355"/.358" offerings is engagement surface. 

Recover some fired .45 ACP  ball, and note the area that actually engages the rifling. It's pretty damned large.

 

Made shooting the old marlin Camp45 quite amusing at range, as it behaved like a miniature artillery piece. 

very arched trajectory, but very predictable with decent ammo. 

 

As to 1911 (or 1911A1) interchangeability.. The big change as most of you know came with the A1 variant. 

Any "M1911A1" clone that is actually made to spec SHOULD be 100% interchangeable with any other clone made to said spec.

 

Sadly it's not always so, especially with the swarms of makers pushing deviations like belled/bushingless barrels, or full length guide rods. 

Or pushing (fudging) tolerances to "improve" the 1911. (Insert old 4Chan/K/  joke about "modifying the AK" here).

 

What I have noticed is that some of the cheaper clones (RIA, for example) still seem to stick to the old standard, so if you have a bunch of old USGI parts, they usually drop right in. Short of playing with NM bushings, ejectors and links, you should not have to do much fitting to get a 1911A1 to shoot reliably.

 

Accurately (as in "match" accuracy) that's another matter. 

 

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Lol I just got to burn off a shit ton of rounds from one of that Gun's cousins Saturday....

 

I don't even like hk's but damn is doing the HK slap as you step around the front of a truck and just shred a target fun!

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81350_Rem_870_DM_18.5_CYL_BS_beauty-660x

 

It only took until 2017 for companies to realize that tubes on shotguns suck. 

 

I wonder what took them so long. Perhaps because the Knoxx kits sullied the reputation of magazine fed pump action shotguns?

 

Regardless, it looks like Remington did this as cheaply as possible from a production standpoint. I wonder if there's any changes that's been made to the receiver. The barrel, trigger, stock, etc are all the same as a standard 870. 

 

It's the right direction to head, at least. Now give us the semi-auto version.

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1 hour ago, Sturgeon said:

From a mechanical standpoint, tubes are far easier than boxes on shotshells. The hulls are way stronger against compression front-to-back than side-to-side.

 

I'd like to see the stress tests with the Remingtons. This is a known issue. Hopefully, they thought about it. 

 

I wonder what spring tension they used.

 

 

50 minutes ago, Donward said:

Tubes are more ergonomic.

 

And a bitch to load quickly.

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34 minutes ago, Oedipus Wreckx-n-Effect said:

 

 

And a bitch to load quickly.

 

Ummm, not really. I have a mag fed shotgun, granted it's an old bolt action .410. And it is slower to detach the magazine, feed in the three shells, pop it back into the gun than it would be to just load 3 shells. 

 

That shotgun featured in Phil's TFB article has a six round, low capacity, proprietary magazine which Phil says in the comments section is going to cost $35. And those magazines look big and schlocky. And now you can't top off your shotgun. And now you have a heavier and more awkward gun because the pump tube is still there adding weight.  And now you're dropping extra dough to buy extra magazines on what is already an $800 weapon. If these mags were 10, 15 rounds or so, I'd agree with the time saving. But then you'd have an obnoxious amount of weight coming off the bottom.

 

And the purpose is to... what exactly? The number of self defense shoots where a civilian has had to continually reload their 870 is probably zilch. Other than the once a decade shootout with miami drug dealers or Hollywood bank robbers, I doubt the number of police shoots are too much higher. 

 

Well what about hunting? You're only going to get 2 or 3 shots off at the very most before whatever animals you're shooting at scatter. And what if you're hunting from a car? Well, in my home state of Washington, it is illegal to keep a loaded long gun - rifle or shotgun - in your vehicle. So in this case I suppose you can save some time if you road hunting, see a critter, hop out of your vehicle, pop in the mag, and shoot. Except you're also supposed to legally be 75 feet (as I recall) from a road before shooting so you have plenty of time to plop in one, two, three shotshells while you traverse that distance. And it's not like you're going to have to be doing multiple mag dumps in the duck or deer blind fending off hordes of ravenous mallards. 

 

So in terms of actual practical shooting, I don't see this doing much to improve the shotgun and now it adds another part of the shotgun that can fail. 

 

Yeah, I guess there are the LARPers who like to dress up in skull face masks and wear velcro when they play 3 gun. Whatevs.  

 

The big issue with the Remington 870s that you buy in the stores today is that somehow the morons at Freedumb Group that have been running Big Green into the ground have found a way to fuck up one of the most reliable, proven, and affordable shotguns available to the American public, a design that was perfected in the 1970s and they fucked it up. The cheap, evil corporate cocksuckers fucked it up to the point where a 1970s 870 that would eat any sort of ammo is now - today - some fiddly thing that the tubular magazine won't feed or cycle properly. Particularly when guys start adding on some gippo extendo mag that they bought at Walmart. 

 

Rather than come out with another gimmick gun, I'd rather Remington focus on actually nailing down the quality control of their flagship shotgun. Not that that's ever going to happen.

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2 minutes ago, Donward said:

Ummm, not really. I have a mag fed shotgun, granted it's an old bolt action .410. And it is slower to detach the magazine, feed in the three shells, pop it back into the gun than it would be to just load 3 shells. 

 

 

Wow.


Just...


Wow.

 

Maybe buy a second magazine? Crazy idea, I know.

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3 minutes ago, Donward said:

Rather than come out with another gimmick gun, I'd rather Remington focus on actually nailing down the quality control of their flagship shotgun. Not that that's ever going to happen

 

:agree:

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12 minutes ago, Donward said:

 

Ummm, not really.

Yes really.

 

I've competed with and against both. Magazine fed is faster, unless you're quad loading or have special speed sticks. 

 

Magazines are better than tubes for safety, unloading the gun, etc. 

 

Yes, I wish Remington would get their QC back to spec. That would be fantastic, but I'm excite to see something new from the 870.

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Furthermore, arguing against magazines is sooo 80 years ago. The same arguments are roughly applied to going from a bolt action to a detachable magazine fed rifle. 

 

As far as balance is concerned, I know that with longer tubes your balance changes as you unload the gun, so your swing is affected. That's less of an issue with this detachable magazine version.

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1 hour ago, Sturgeon said:

 

Wow.


Just...


Wow.

 

Maybe buy a second magazine? Crazy idea, I know.

And then what?

 

Guy with the Remington 870DuMb and a Guy with a standard 870 pump start off with fully loaded guns, and they empty them at the same rate. Assuming the guy with the standard 870 doesn't get to top off along the way, they both reload and - congrats - even with detaching the mag, depositing the $35 proprietary mag someplace safe and reloading the new one, he is still a bit faster than the tubular fed guy. 

 

Until he empties the second mag. Now he's fumbling with an empty gun, and a two empty mags trying to thumbload shells into 'em. OK, I guess that means you gotta buy a 3rd magazine. Or a 4th. Or a 5th $35 mag. Which hold a grand total of 30 shells. In addition to carrying the extra weight and bulk and buying a mag carrier for it. 

 

Congrats. You've just spent a thousand dollars on a Remington 870. Which you can pick up, standard tubular fed 870 anywhere in America for $150 to $300. You can spend the rest of the $700 on shells and practice with the money you save. 

 

1 hour ago, Oedipus Wreckx-n-Effect said:

Yes really.

 

I've competed with and against both. Magazine fed is faster, unless you're quad loading or have special speed sticks. 

 

Magazines are better than tubes for safety, unloading the gun, etc. 

 

Yes, I wish Remington would get their QC back to spec. That would be fantastic, but I'm excite to see something new from the 870.

 

In 3 gun LARPing. Dudes will spend thousands of dollars to shave off a few fraction of a second. But that's the 3 gun LARPing world. And there's all sorts of weird shit out there. 

 

As for unloading, people have been unloading tubular fed magazines for over a hundred years. It's not some magical elvish rite. A tubular fed gun is as safe as any other weapon. Work the pump 4, 5, 6, 7 times, keep you finger off the trigger and on the unloading button thingie (action lock disconnect whatever it's called?). Visually inspect chamber when empty. You're just as likely to have some numbnut detaching the magazine and forgetting he has a live round in the chamber as you are someone blowing their face off forgetting how many times they've pumped the shotgun. It'll take you 10 seconds more to unload a tubular fed shotgun as it does to detach the mag, clear the chamber, and thumb out each shell from the magazine. *finger twirl*

 

1 hour ago, Oedipus Wreckx-n-Effect said:

Furthermore, arguing against magazines is sooo 80 years ago. The same arguments are roughly applied to going from a bolt action to a detachable magazine fed rifle. 

 

As far as balance is concerned, I know that with longer tubes your balance changes as you unload the gun, so your swing is affected. That's less of an issue with this detachable magazine version.

 

Again, these are six round magazines in a shotgun. We're not comparing 30-40 Krags where you're dropping in each round going up against 20 and 30-round mag AR-15s.

 

Six rounds. If this had a 10 or 15 round mag, I'd be agreeing with you. But it's six. 

 

As for the 80 year old magazine debate, the British had detachable magazines for their Smle's in two different World Wars. Cost of the magazines aside (which we know was the major factor) you didn't have guys toting around multiple magazines for them even though they had ten rounds because it was more efficient just two just load two stripper clips which were far less bulky.

 

I don't really see that much savings of time in real world application (3 gun LARPing aside) when you start adding up the drawbacks. 

 

...

 

Now, if Remington incorporated this into their branch of semiautomatic guns (mag fed 1100s?), then we're talking. 

 

Assuming QC (Hahahahahaha). But $800 for any 870 shotgun, especially with the QC of Remington today is asinine. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Donward said:

And then what?

 

Guy with the Remington 870DuMb and a Guy with a standard 870 pump start off with fully loaded guns, and they empty them at the same rate. Assuming the guy with the standard 870 doesn't get to top off along the way, they both reload and - congrats - even with detaching the mag, depositing the $35 proprietary mag someplace safe and reloading the new one, he is still a bit faster than the tubular fed guy. 

 

Until he empties the second mag. Now he's fumbling with an empty gun, and a two empty mags trying to thumbload shells into 'em. OK, I guess that means you gotta buy a 3rd magazine. Or a 4th. Or a 5th $35 mag. Which hold a grand total of 30 shells. In addition to carrying the extra weight and bulk and buying a mag carrier for it. 

 

Congrats. You've just spent a thousand dollars on a Remington 870. Which you can pick up, standard tubular fed 870 anywhere in America for $150 to $300. You can spend the rest of the $700 on shells and practice with the money you save. 

 

Wait, weren't you just saying that IN DA STREETZ you'll never have to reload your gun? Be consistent, please.

 

1 hour ago, Donward said:

In 3 gun LARPing. Dudes will spend thousands of dollars to shave off a few fraction of a second. But that's the 3 gun LARPing world. And there's all sorts of weird shit out there. 

 

 

NANANANANANA I CAN'T HEAR YOU GAMING DOESN'T COUNT NEVER MIND THE FACT THAT MOST MODERN INNOVATIONS COME FROM GAMING SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UUUUUUP

 

Cooooome on.

 

1 hour ago, Donward said:

As for unloading, people have been unloading tubular fed magazines for over a hundred years. It's not some magical elvish rite. A tubular fed gun is as safe as any other weapon. Work the pump 4, 5, 6, 7 times, keep you finger off the trigger and on the unloading button thingie (action lock disconnect whatever it's called?). Visually inspect chamber when empty. You're just as likely to have some numbnut detaching the magazine and forgetting he has a live round in the chamber as you are someone blowing their face off forgetting how many times they've pumped the shotgun. It'll take you 10 seconds more to unload a tubular fed shotgun as it does to detach the mag, clear the chamber, and thumb out each shell from the magazine. *finger twirl*

 

Hey dude, maybe I just don't want my gun to slowly chew my ammo to pieces every time I unload it for the night, eh?

 

1 hour ago, Donward said:

Again, these are six round magazines in a shotgun. We're not comparing 30-40 Krags where you're dropping in each round going up against 20 and 30-round mag AR-15s.

 

Six rounds. If this had a 10 or 15 round mag, I'd be agreeing with you. But it's six. 

 

So the fact that you have to reload more negates the disadvantage of having a long reload? What kinda logic is that?

 

1 hour ago, Donward said:

the British had detachable magazines for their Smle's in two different World Wars. Cost of the magazines aside (which we know was the major factor) you didn't have guys toting around multiple magazines for them even though they had ten rounds because it was more efficient just two just load two stripper clips which were far less bulky.

 

So, the entire reason they didn't have multiple magazines aside, the reason they didn't have multiple magazines is because mumble mumble mumble something something bulk

 

Puuuuuh-leeze. Have you ever tried reloading an Enfield with stripper clips? I'd MUUUUUUCH rather use mags. Keep in mind I've run these things in matches before, so I can out-Fudd you there, buddy.

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