Virginia-based FN America has kicked off an interesting new version of their MK 48 light machine gun chambered in (wait for it) 6.5mm Creedmoor. The new chambering comes just after USSOCOM’s qualified the caliber last year. Developed from the now-classic FN Minimi, the standard 7.62x51mm version of the MK 48 was adopted by SOCOM in 2013.
The 6.5 CM model of the gun, which is in the prototype stage, features an adjustable stock for length of pull and cheek height as well as an improved, locking charging handle. The gun has also been updated with an improved, double-notched sear; improved handguard with 3-, 6- and 9-o’clock positions with a new style bipod; and a more robust feed tray latch.
Why Creedmoor? Why not? I mean, its a cartridge with a 140-grain bullet that has light recoil and a much better long-range capability– better than a 7.62x51mm.
Anyways, more on this interesting new machine gun and the reasons behind why companies like FN are burning R&D on new belt-fed weapons it in my column at Guns.com.
The Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) is a descendant of the old British West India Regiment which dates to 1795 and the Jamaica Regiment consists of two light infantry battalions (1JR and 2JR) with a 3rd battalion made up of reservists.
While the force is constituted on a British Army model, their standard infantry arm is the M16A2 (and wear a MARPAT field uniform) though there are some second line units with the 1980s SA80 (L85) Enfield rifles.
You will note, however, that the honor guard (and 3JR as a whole) still uses the old L1A1 Self-Loading Rifle (SLR), the standard semi-auto inch pattern FAL adopted by the Brits in 1954. When the British replaced theirs in frontline use in the mid-1980s, they were forwarded over to Kingston– where they replaced even older WWII-era No. 4 SMLE .303s.
The SMLE’s did not go to waste, however, as they were passed on to the constabulary.
John Moses Browning’s first semi-auto handgun was one of the best ever made and, regardless of whether you call it the Browning No.1, the FN Mle. 1900 or the M1900, it has a very interesting (some would say infamous) story to tell.
Why was it born?
When Mr. Browning began to market his low-wall M1885 rifle, firearms giant Winchester stood up and noticed then promptly sent a lawyer to the inventor’s Utah shop with a contract to put him on the payroll with an exclusive contract. Throughout the next decade and change, Browning came up with the idea for some of the best lever action rifles and shotguns that Winchester ever sold, but by 1897 made a break from the company.
This put the Thomas Edison of American small arms into play and he branched out into designing not only lever action and pump action long arms but also semiautomatics, machineguns, and handguns– but needed someone to make them.
Going first to Remington, things didn’t work out, so Browning packed a steamer trunk and headed to the Belgian manufacturing town of Herstal to speak to the good folks at Fabrique Nationale (FN). Formed from the best gun minds in nearby Liege, renowned for firearms manufacture, FN was churning out Mauser bolt-action rifles by the thousands under contract for the Royal Belgian Army but was looking to expand.
Browning brought them his first semi-auto shotgun, which became famous as the Browning Auto 5, and a compact semi-auto pistol, which became best known as the 1900.