SOCOM– which earlier this year for up to $5 million worth of “Reduced Signature” PDW weapons in the form of modified commercial SIG MCX Rattlers in both 5.56 NATO and .300 Blackout– posted the notice for 7.62x39mm uppers for the platform in late October.
“Due to developing requirements,” explains the notice, the force at the tip of the spear is seeking conversion kits to include all “required hardware and ammunition magazines that will fit with the SIG Sauer Rattler and RSAR/PDW converted M4A1 lower receiver groups.”
SOCOM may be in luck as SIG recently debuted their first 7.62×39-chambered offerings in the MCX Spear-LT series. One of the options in that series is a factory SBR with an 11-inch barrel and an overall length of 29.75 inches, something that puts the company within striking distance of the RFI notice.
More in my column at Guns.com.
The U.S. Special Operations Command signaled the end of a five-year search for a personal defense weapon platform last week, opting to run Sig Sauer’s MCX Rattler.
The Commercial PDW contract, by its nature, needed to be filled by an off-the-shelf gun that was in current production. Sig introduced the .300 BLK-chambered Rattler in 2017 “at the request of elite military units” after a Request for Information was filed by SOCOM. The company then supplied a few to the country’s elite commandos for testing in February 2018. In a notice of intent to award published on May 19, 2022, it would appear those tests went very well.
“USSOCOM HQ has been researching and reviewing different systems since 2017,” said the notice. “We have meticulously reviewed each system for technical acceptance and whether it fits the commercial definition. Except for Sig Sauer, the vendors did not meet the technical requirements and/or the weapons do not meet the commercial definition.”
The SOCOM notice this month stressed, “The PDW system will allow Operators to have maximum firepower in a concealable weapon.” (Photos: Sig Sauer)
More in my column at Guns.com.
Missouri-based CMMG on Tuesday announced the first firearm made for the American consumer market chambered in 4.6×30– the FourSix.
Designed originally by Heckler & Koch in the 1990s for a low-recoiling NATO Personal Defense Weapon program– competing against FN’s 5.7×28 for the same purpose– the 4.6x30mm is a rimless bottlenecked cartridge that performs well under 150 yards whose small size allows guns chambered for it to carry a lot of rounds.
Who doesn’t like a legit HK MP7? The thing is, they are unobtainium.
Fast forward 20+ years and, while both cartridges have been adopted by NATO and standardized, only the 5.7×28 has been utilized by other firearms makers (e.g., Ruger 57, Diamondback DBX57) outside of its original designer. In short, the 4.6 NATO has only been used by the select-fire (and very Post-1986) HK MP7, putting it off-limits for those without a SOT or a CAC card.
CMMG’s FourSix, offered as a short-barreled rifle with NFA strings attached as well as a pistol format– both with 8-inch barrels– are developed from the company’s Banshee Mk4 platform.
Tweaks to the Banshee needed to run the 4.6 include a patent-pending Micro Gas Block and a proprietary 40-round magazine that fits an AR-style magwell and standard mag pouches. The latter part is key as it means users can also choose to pair their existing AR15 lower receiver with a CMMG FourSix upper, when they become available.
One of the places I stopped at on my trip to Minnesota last month– in the 91-degree heat just a couple hours south of Canada?!– was Maxim Defense. For a company that didn’t exist seven years ago, they have really come out of nowhere and made a name for themselves.
They specialize in the “short space” so to speak, with products like the PDX.
The PDX had its origin in a PDW project for Tier 1 operators which specified a gun that, above all, was extremely compact for close quarter encounters– but still able to fire 5.56mm rounds. Crafted with that use in mind, Maxim’s result was a gun that is as sweet as it gets– just 18.75-inches long overall with a 5.5-inch barrel that ends in a Hatebrake muzzle booster while the collapsible stock is Maxim’s in-house SCW stock system. The PDX includes an integrated BCG with interchangeable buffer weights to maximize performance. (Photo: Chris Eger/Guns.com)
Check out the video tour and interviews in my column at Guns.com.
“The National Firearms Act (NFA) was enacted in 1934 in an attempt to control weapons popular in Prohibition era gang warfare. After eighty years its implementation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) has become rather strange, and its controls on items like short barrels and suppressors seem archaic.
The following infographic shows a variant of the XCR with a 10″ barrel. This is a piston-operated autoloading firearm that can chamber a variety of light rifle cartridges. Under federal law the top three configurations are considered pistols, and no special controls apply to their construction, sale, or possession. (State laws can vary widely on these matters, so those are not addressed here.)
Something weird happens in the fourth configuration: Adding a second vertical grip turns it into an NFA-regulated firearm called an “Any Other Weapon” (AOW), and would be a felony if the receiver were not already registered as an AOW.
To comply with the NFA I had to use a different receiver registered as a Short-Barreled Rifle (SBR) for the last picture.”