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Old 10-01-2008   #1
120mm
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Default XM25 "good enough"

http://www.military.com/news/article...l?ESRC=army.nl

In a shocking reversal, the OICW crowd simplified the XM25 and are going to release it in the "good enough" stage.

These are the same folks who sat on 120mm beehive round for 20 years because the fusing wasn't "quite" perfect. (Perfect? In a beehive round? Are you kidding me?)

Who was it that said "The perfect is the enemy of the good"?
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Old 10-01-2008   #2
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Default My perception is that someone way up the power

curve got hold of PEO Soldier and told 'em to shape up and get with the program. If so, it was a long overdue grab by the stacking swivel IMO.

That's just one of several reverses from them in the last couple of weeks...
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Old 10-01-2008   #3
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Looks like it could fill a nice nitch, especially in an urban environment.
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Old 10-01-2008   #4
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If they further this so that the warhead technology is useable by the M109 payload rifle, I will be very happy.
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Old 10-01-2008   #5
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How useful would this be? The internet is full of speculation, and I've seen a lot of guys complain that they don't want it.

But then, I don't see how different it could be from a 40MM like the MGL that the Marines are using. Actually, it probably is more effective, since the 40MM is half fuse and expends something 80% of what energy it has on the ground.
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Old 10-02-2008   #6
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Infantry weapons to date have permitted fighters to shoot at or through an obstacle concealing enemy threats, but the Army for years has been trying to come up with a weapon to engage targets behind barriers without resorting to mortars, rockets or grenades -- all of which risk collateral damage
So the XM-25 is to address that specific application? This is problematic to put it mildly. One per fireteam?
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Old 10-02-2008   #7
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Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
So the XM-25 is to address that specific application? This is problematic to put it mildly. One per fireteam?
That's what I was thinking, one per fire team. Still a lot more information to gather but its application within an Urban or rugged environment sounds very valid to me. The ability to put precision fires just around or over a barrier to kill a hostile without having to a) level the wall (which Mk19s are great for) b) blindly fire indirect in a restricted environement or c) use a 40mm with a larger bursting radius and far less accuracy.

This thing, however, needs to be soldier proof and have the training ammunition available for the owners to become proficient in its employment during the train up.
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Old 06-08-2009   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sullygoarmy View Post
That's what I was thinking, one per fire team. Still a lot more information to gather but its application within an Urban or rugged environment sounds very valid to me. The ability to put precision fires just around or over a barrier to kill a hostile without having to a) level the wall (which Mk19s are great for) b) blindly fire indirect in a restricted environement or c) use a 40mm with a larger bursting radius and far less accuracy.

This thing, however, needs to be soldier proof and have the training ammunition available for the owners to become proficient in its employment during the train up.
Just wondering with what you were describing above, would the XM25 be an fireteam member's primary weapon or would it be a secondary speciality weapon?
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Old 06-08-2009   #9
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Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
So the XM-25 is to address that specific application? This is problematic to put it mildly. One per fireteam?
700m and the high probability of 25mm round varients (AP?), I think that it could answere some of the HE projection hole left by the 203, even if that is not it's stated mission.
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Old 06-13-2009   #10
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Default I used to hate people

who made points like this...but are there not significant Positive ID issues with an munition like this? If you can't see behind the defilade, you can't tell if there are women, children, hostages or wounded littering the trench/ditch/behind the wall/in the room etc. Which leaves you open to legal questions of due diligence.

Back in the day I would have thought this was awesome. For fighting the Soviet, the North Korean or general conventional war, it is. But I don't think this is a COIN weapon system - especially in urban areas. In campaign terms (and this was a very bitter pill for me to swallow), you're better of bringing in smoke and extracting yourself than you are dropping JDAMs if you can't guarantee you won't kill a family or a wedding party. Because the vital ground remains legitimacy - upon which we will win or lose. The only exception is when you simple can't extract because the Dushka's have you in a crossfire. But again, smoke, or precision fires onto PID firing points. The Local Nationals don't give a toss if you accidentally killed their retarded nephew. You killed him. And now there's a blood feud. Better to lose the odd battle and win the war...as the American Revolution taught us.

Stick to double taps to the head with a decent round. The only interesting rifles are accurate ones.

Last edited by Coldstreamer; 06-13-2009 at 09:33 PM.
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Old 06-13-2009   #11
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Default Yes...

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Originally Posted by Coldstreamer View Post
Stick to double taps to the head with a decent round. The only interesting rifles are accurate ones.
We tend to forget that all too often in the rush to find an easier way...

Grenades -- 25mm, 30mm, 40mm, hand tossed or launched -- are indiscriminate weapons and often make more noise than they do actual damage. As you point out they often also do damage you'd be better off without. Time and a place for them, to be sure -- but those are rather limited. They are really defensive weapons with no place in the offense and of very little benefit in COIN, IW or UW operations.
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Old 06-14-2009   #12
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I share the concerns of Ken and Coldstreamer, but have a slightly different take. I think that we used 25mm and 40mm extremely effectively and could use something like the XM25 effectively, as well (though I see no pressing need for it and we could certainly make do without it).

In OIF III, my unit fought against a hodge-podge of various insurgent/terrorist factions that came and went in our AO. Lacking intelligence to do much more than fight them when they exposed themselves, that was about all that we did. In all of the firefights that we had over a year-long deployment (more than I can count), we had zero KIAs and all wounds were RTD. Nonetheless, the people in the city would complain that we "weren't fighting back." As they saw it, a few insurgents would dump multiple magazines of 7.62 at us, throw a few grenades, fire a few RPGs - all indiscriminately - and we would only return well-aimed fire. To the Iraqi citiizens, this looked like we were weak, because we were not firing nearly as many rounds, we were being cautious, and anything that got blown up was a result of enemy munitions. Even though we were killing the attackers and suffering no losses in the process and no collateral damage or civilian casualties, we somehow looked weak in the eyes of the folks in the neighborhood (didn't make sense then and still makes no sense). Explaining to them our rationale (avoiding civilian casualties) only earned us eye-rolls and disgust.

So here is how we fixed that perception problem. We started making copious use of 40mm. 40mm was actually far preferable to 7.62mm because it did not ricochet (in prior months, we accidentally hit some civilians with ricochets). On occasions when an OP spotted an IED emplacer and could have shot him with one round to the chest, we fired 40mm. We set up a free fire zone in which we told no civilians to travel. When we got attacked from that location, we peppered the place with so much 40mm, 25mm, and even hellfires, that rumors began to spread that we had surrounded and killed Zarquawi (when, in fact, we were simply making quick work of a few random combatants). In the first month of this new tact, we fired more AT-4s than in the prior six months combined. It actually caught the attention of the BDE S-4 who noticed an enormous amount of class V being pushed our way - he feared that we were stockpiling it or carelessly discarding ammo once it got dirty.

The result of these actions? We experienced no greater tactical success against the jerk-offs whom we were fighting against, but the populace had a far more favorable opinion of our efforts. Now, instead of more gunfire coming from the enemy, they saw more coming from us. It was reassuring to them and they actually thanked us for "finally" fighting back.

Now, this more liberal application of high explosives could have backfired, for the reasons cited by Ken and Coldstreamer. Had we used poor judgment as to when to fire 40mm instead of 5.56mm, or if the guys squeezing the trigger were poorly trained and misplaced their rounds, then our results would have been significantly worse. So the issue isn't the weapon system's risk for collateral damage. The issue is how well the guys who use it are trained. If they know their profession, then figuring out how to leverage the capability of yet another weapon should be no problem. A well-trained Soldier who understands the capability of a new weapon system will have no problem thinking through the repercussions of firing through a wall when he is uncertain what is behind it and his leaders should have no problem balancing the risks of doing that. So, long post short, I am not concerned about the issues cited with using the weapon. I am concerned with whether our Soldiers are properly trained and know the capabilities of the weapon. If they are properly trained, then they will not be misusing this weapon and causing collateral damage.
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Old 06-14-2009   #13
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Default This posting could go into multiple threads,

but I'll lay it out here. Many dicussions throughout the SWJ revolve around weapons. Everyone talks about the ideal round, ideal lethality, ideal caliber, firing rates, etc..... Finally someone brought up one of my biggest pet peeves (Thanks Coldstreamer). POSITIVE ID. At what distance with the naked eye can a soldier positively ID (PID) his threat in any environment? Yes, the environment makes a difference and I know all the associated factors. For arguements sake let's say open desert:

1. In local attire carrying an AK or RPG?

2. In local attire hiding an AK or RPG under his clothes?

3. In military uniform carrying an AK or RPG?

4. In military uniform with no weapon visable?

Aditionally lets use the same constraints with common current optics found within our force.

1. ACOG 4x power

2. M68 or EOTECH 0x power

3. Binos (showing my age by allowing the old M22) 7x50

4. Thermals (lightweight)

5. ELCAN M145 3.4x power

Staying in the daylight only realm, night becomes a completely different story.

I'm not talking capabilities with sniper teams and other specialties. Most discussions center around the "force" in general.

Additionally this changes based on the fight your in. Yes one can PID someone shooting from a much further distance or can they?

Based on being able to PID your target then what becomes the ideal weapon systems?

As far as anything 25mm, 40 mm or whatever the hell the next great idea fairy dreams up, maybe they should look at an effective way to train Soldiers on the weapon system. M203/M79 (yes they are still around) is the most underutilized weapon in the inventory. No one gets ammo to train with it and since this has been the case for too many years no one knows how to use it. I love seeing the deer in the headlight look when I ask why they do not have "hold off" markings taped onto their sling. Before we keep throwing new weapons, ammo, technology at the "force", we need to be able to ensure it can be effectively trained and therefore utilized to it's full capability.
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Old 06-14-2009   #14
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Default Every weepon has its place and most have several...

Both y'all have good points -- and I'll add that the 40mm is really great for bringing a car that tries to speed through a checkpoint to a screeching halt if you drop one about 15m ahead of him or her.

And nothing beats a .50 cal for deterring people inside buildings in most of the world.

Hadn't considered the noise angle with Arabs but I can definitely visualize it -- and the eye rolls at us being nice.

While all the HE grenades are essentially defensive weapons, the launchers do have uses in the offense and they need to be available because one never knows when an offensive move will get turned into a hasty or temporary defense; same reason we carry frags in the attack and Offensive Grenades are rare beasts.

Same old stuff, though -- Training and METT-TC. Always gets back to those two...
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Old 11-27-2009   #15
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Some very interesting posts. I like the way the counterintuitive but yet logical consequence of a controlled demostration of loud and messy firepower can help to fulfill the objectives.

Any news about the performance of the XM25?


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Old 11-27-2009   #16
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Quote:
I love seeing the deer in the headlight look when I ask why they do not have "hold off" markings taped onto their sling.
I've never heard of that technique either. What does it involve?
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Old 11-27-2009   #17
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Default Hey Jon, let me guess ...

so ODB or Ken can shell both of us - windage and elevation clicks + ?

from a target shooter only. According to a Marine friend (Vnam vintage), you also get into the target's speed and angular attitude with respect to the shooter (1/2 body width, full body width, etc., leads).

Regards

Mike

Last edited by jmm99; 11-27-2009 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 11-27-2009   #18
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Talking When all else fails, RTFI...

From the book:

f. Marked-Sling Method. To use this method, the grenadier must--

(1) Loosen the sling, assume a kneeling position, and place the forward foot in the sling.

(2) Ensure the sling is taut and vertical between the front sling swivel and the boot. If not, the rounds will impact at a greater range than desired. To check this, tie one end of a string or thread to a weight, such as a cartridge case, and tie the other to the sling swivel. Let it hang freely, and align the edge of the sling with it to ensure the sling is vertical.

(3) Fire several rounds to determine the desired range.

(4) Where the sling is held to the ground by the foot, mark the sling with colored tape, paint, ink, or whatever is available. Mark the position of the buckles so that, if either is moved, the grenadier can return them to their original positions and be assured of constant range accuracy.

(5) If the sling gets wet, it may stretch or shrink, indirectly causing the rounds to impact closer or farther than desired.


LINK.
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Old 11-28-2009   #19
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Actually, hold offs refers to the point of aim for that weapon at a given distance. The idea is to know what your point of aim is so that you don't have to adjust the sites.

SFC W
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Old 11-28-2009   #20
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Cool True on hold offs, you and Mike are correct on that

and I read what ODB said, hold offs. However, the tape and the reference just prior to the M79/M203 to me implied he was talking the sling marking with respect to shooting grenades and said 'hold offs' instead of 'expedient elevation markers for specific ranges' (handy for FPF and several other things, not least a channeling barrage from two or three launchers...).

Proper hold offs, as those you mention, IMO need to be known and remembered -- carried in the mind, not (written?) on tape on the sling. I'd ask what good they are there, particularly at night or in low vis or when one is in a terrible big hurry -- or else...

Or are we all missing something?

Only ODB knows and he must be out and about, having fun somewhere...

You really want to get a deer in the headlights look, ask even experienced people about fire tunnels.
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