The M240 machine gun is a marvel of modern engineering. It will reliably lay down a massive weight of fire on the enemy. But there’s a problem: the thing weighs a ton. Lightweight compared to a M60, but still too heavy to be used to its full capability. FNH USA came up with the original lightweight M240 in their M240L or “Lima,” which used a titanium construction to make the parts lighter. But Barrett’s M240LW is what I call the Kim Kardashian solution; slice and dice until all you’re left with are the bare essentials for life. And a big butt. Superhuman shooter Jerry Miculek likes big butts (and he cannot lie).
The more weight that can be safely removed will benefit our military tremendously.
Thankfully, the LSAT LMG has already reached Tech Readiness Level 7 in 2012 in its cased telescoped ammo variant, and AAI was awarded money to work on a 7.62NATO variant of telescoped ammo.
It’s the M249 that uses M4 mags! and no where near reliably.
The 240s use belt only
My bad. Text amended.
Phew.. happy machine gunner again here
Metal mags are generally ok in the SAW, at least in my experience. The hardest part was getting them out again. Plastic mags are a huge no-no.
Good call, Keith. The M249 sucked with 30 round mags.
Coming to your local gun shot in… Oh wait, sigh.
Well, at least I don’t have to worry about another muzzle to feed…
“The M240 machine gun is a marvel of modern engineering. Feed it however you want — M4 magazines, linked cartridges, whatever”
The M249 SAW can take M4 mags. The M240 is a 7.62x51mm belt fed.
M240 eats M4 mags? M240 is chambered in 7.62x51mm. It is the M249 (often called the SAW) that fires the same round as an M4 – the 5.56x45mm, and can be fed with M4 mags.
I carried a Bravo for many years, it doesn’t need to be lighter you girls just need to be stronger
I carried an M-60.They had 240s in the M-60 tanks for a coax. After handling one, i wanted one so bad.
You must be one strong MF to carry an M-60 tank AND an M-240 at the same time!
240B is NOT lightweight compared to an M60…perhaps the lightweight version is, but regular version is 5lbs or so heavier. Feels like even more than that. That being said, the 240B is amazing…put the regulator on position 3 (I think they have since gotten rid of this) and you had a 1200rpm weapon that was my favorite machine gun to shoot…until I shot the M2 🙂
That was my recollection too – somewhat heavier, but much more capable and reliable. In Canada we went straight from the ol’ Browning .30 cal to the FN MAG (the M240 in the USA), but I got to carry the M-60 once while training with the US Army Reserves.
Nick or RF,
Check your facts. The M60 weighs in at 23.15 lbs; the M240B weighs in at 27.1 lbs and the M240G weighs in at 25.6 lbs. I don’t know how that makes the M240 lightweight compared to the M60. Personally, I prefer the M60 over the M240B. Mileage may vary, but I never had a problem with the M60. I dislike the M240B because they managed to make it heavier (ounces equal pounds, and pounds equal pain) and the fact the brass ejected from the bottom of the reciever.
The 240 is nice, but I’m in love with the M60…stupid rambo movies….
Rambo is now anti-gun. Just FYI.
Based on JMB’s (PBUH) BAR. The M240 just works, you could feel the M60 getting ready to fall apart. My feelings about the M2HB (another JMB product) vis a vis the M85 are the same. The first, masterpiece of design, the second, designed by technocrats with no love for their craft and apparently no responsibility to clean up their mess afterwards. Since the M60 ‘borrowed’ design features of the MG42 I’d have been happy if we’d just rechambered MG42’s or bought West German MG3’s.
1. All 240s are MEDIUM machine guns, not light machine guns.
2. The “light” version of this puppy is still absurdly heavy comparing to any SAW (M249 or others), not to mention eats 7.62x51NATO belts which are extra fun to hump for the rest of the unit.
3. I would still buy one in a heartbeat if they were commercially available.
Never put my hands on a S.A.W. or 240(except an M240C), humped a 60 halfway across Germany during ReForGer ’84…
The 240G is a sweet shooting MG. Mounted coaxial to the maingun on my M1 Tank and coupled to the stabilized fire control system allowed me to make head shots on the move from 500 meters. Just caress the trigger and 3 or 4 rounds burped out dead center. I never did it during qualification gunnery (table VIII-is all about speed), but I did do it during the work ups.
You know what makes a great intro soundtrack for a gun video? Gunfire!
I want to see something about guns but instead I get a washed-up-hair-band guitar riff intro that makes me feel less badass and more Top Gun volleyball scene. Well, I’m off to dig up my short shorts and mirrored aviators.
The 240B is lightweight compared to an M60 series tank, but the M60 machine gun is lighter and shorter than a 240B.
I still loved the 240B though. So well-crafted and ergonomic that from a bipod you can fire a single shot at a time and put them right where you want them. Hitting stuff with a 240B is almost too easy.
Just grab a MK48 if you need to shoulder fire a gun.
Nothing wrong with a big butt – “More Cushion for the Pushin”
My absolute favorite weapon. The ones we had at least – not a single problem, flawless functioning. It has always amazed me that the saw, while appearing to be exactly the same but smaller, could be such a piece of junk. If I could only have one gun, it would be a 240. CQB with an automatic is a dangerous policy as a rule, but I felt confident with one of these in a house. Worth every pound.
I would love to watch you try and clear a house with a M240. I thought assaultman were suppose to be smarter than the average 03 marine.
that thing only weighs 2 lbs less than a normal 240, he said? he picked it up like it was nothing. When i tried to pick up a suppressed 240 from some suppressor company booth at the NRA show, it was heavy as hell. Damn girly arms of mine.
This is becoming a worrying trend. I’ve been a long-time reader of this site, but I’m seeing more and more articles written by people who don’t know much about the guns they’re talking about. M240 that takes M4 mags? M240 lighter than the M60? Maybe the Lima, but the Bravo and Golf certainly aren’t. Frankly the only thing I think the M60 ever had going for it was the fact that it was a very light GPMG. Makes me wonder if you guys are real gun guys, and if not, just do a little homework. It’s okay to not know everything, the info is out there.
Wait are you saying Nick Leghorn doesn’t really know much about guns? Noooo. That can’t be right. He writes for the internet. I mean he was the guy who made fun Modern Service Weapons when they did the Colt extraction test.
You can look up the specs for both the 240B and the M-60 in about ten seconds to compare them.
Prefer the M-60 lighter then the M-240 and is more compact than a 240B or G. Waste of time replacing the PIG in Army/USMC service. Some said they M-60 felt like its “falling apart” that’s from years of poor mainteince and beating the weapon relentlessly in National Guard training exercises. SEALs said to still use M-60E3 its a good weapon. As for some who want LSAT SAW not happening soon while showing promise on the shooting range in test sights on a good day telescoping cased ammo has a lot a mechanical issues and has not been used in the field in test so I don’t trust it and say its a decade away from being considered for use, at best. Caseless would be better that’s just as far behind.
Seals use the MK46 and the MK48. And 240s for mounted purposes. The Mk43 got phased out a while ago. But the M60E4 is pretty sick. 850rounds with one trigger pull.
Any chance of seeing a correction to the article? multiple people (myself included) have pointed out the inaccuracy of this statement, “But there’s a problem: the thing weighs a ton. Lightweight compared to a M60, but still too heavy to be used to its full capability.” Not trying to “flame” the article.
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