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Gun porn courtesy of Tracking Point

Back in January, the United States Army announced that it had procured six Tracking Point scopes for testing on their new .300 Winchester Magnum XM2010 sniper rifle platform. Cool? Oh yeah. Worthwhile? Hmmm…..

Kit Up! reported that these Tracking Point-equipped XM2010s cost between $22,000 and $27,000 each, and that the Army is playing with a half-dozen of them. Somewhere. Doing something.

“While we don’t know the depth to which the system will be tested, we can showcase the platform it is on, including our working in-house version,” Tracking Point officials said. “Our networked tracking scope and guided trigger are integrated with the XM 2010 enhanced sniper rifle for military testing purposes.”

While it seems natural to at least experiment with computer-guided rifles for military use, Tracking Point’s PR guys have always maintained that their wunderscope isn’t meant for professional snipers. It was designed to help ordinary riflemen and hunters score first-shot hits – “ethical kills” – beyond normal shooting distances.

Our snipers are already awfully good at ringing the gong out to 1,000 meters and beyond. Is it a good idea to weigh them down with several more pounds of TP hardware dependent on batteries and software? Or is it smarter to equip every infantry platoon with a Tracking Point XM2010, giving it the organic capability to neutralize enemy snipers and RPGs out past the one-klick mark. Of course, they could wait for the technology to gain reliability and shed weight. But where’s the fun in that?

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  1. I wonder what they are going to do to those scopes. I’ll admit I haven’t really done my homework on Tracking Point but I’m not very confident they would stand up to battlefield conditions. I’ve never been one for electronics, especially for things I would trust my life to. Reason why my SHTF guns don’t have any red dot sights on them. Iron sights for life!

  2. They’re probably thinking of putting them in vehicles and in bases so that anyone can reach out and smack someone right now rather than assigning them to people to walk with.

  3. I wouldn’t be surprised if one has been used in Afghanistan already–much like the F-35 Lightning II.

  4. My guess is they won’t make it through the testing process before breaking down. It’s fragile tech right now, very suseptible to damage and abuse. It works fine under ideal conditions, conditions you won’t find much on the battlefield.

    More than likely they just wanted to see how one works and what the future holds.
    The real question is why are they dropping 100+ grand on a gimmick. Personally it annoys me to know end to see GOV waste. They could have just bought one or two and run them through the paces and saved us all some money. Every little bit counts. No matter what the scale.

    • My guess is TP loaned them to the Army (probably through DARPA persuasion) for R&D. They’ll get a lifetime of abuse in six months. A GI can break a steel cube.

    • Who said the Gov bought these guns? They are testing them and would TrackingPoint be wise to let the Gov put these guns to the test? Personally, if we can terminate targets over 1,000 yards without an expert marksman pulling the trigger all troops will have the ability to be armed. Think of the lives saved and advantage we will have. I believe in TrackingPoint and I’m sure it will revolutionize warfare and hunting forever.

    • Not much of a “JK” … since the Army Sniper School trains virtually every sniper in every branch of the US Military, including special forces from every branch.

      • Really. You realize the Navy has its own course for the Seals, and the Marine Corps is well know for theirs. And the Army Sniper School is a joke. Now if you were talking about the SF sniper school, that would be different. But the regular 5 week course is not that great. I attended it. Can say from personal experience. The regular army has never taken sniping seriously. Look at how long it took them to field .300 win mag platform. Even though the original request for the M24 was suppose to be .300 win mag. Or how about the fact that the M24 was never given the proper twist rate for the barrel, even though the Marine Corp’s did get the right one. Or the fact that they still shoot the Barret 50 when much better 50 cal platforms exist. Army marksmanship is a joke until you start getting to Ranger Bat level.

  5. The Pentagon – “Our budget is being cut to ribbons! Quick, let’s
    find an expensive, unnecessary piece of equipment to blow it on!”

  6. Sheesh. You guys need to shoot long range sometime. The hard part (the only hard part) about long-range shooting is doping the wind. This helps not at all with that. Trained people can hold on target and squeeze. Newton and Bernoulli handle the drop– but the wind– well, that’s when it becomes art, skill, and lots of experience.

    My guess– it helps the hit percentage very little, but at high cost and high failure rate.

  7. All it does is take the squirmyness out of the shooter’s hold. And that’s the easiest variable to control. It takes lots of training, but it’s certainly controllable. Buying a half-MOA rifle– easy. Expensive, but easy. Making 1/2 MOA low SD ammo– a PITA, and expensive in time and money. But not difficult. Calcutating drop? Trivial, with modern chronographs and software. Calculating distance? Rangefinders are hardly new.

    Doping the wind at 1000 yards? Difficult.

    Wake me when they have adaptive optics, doppler radar, etc. and can deal with the wind…

  8. The expenditure for these “Shooting Systems” is so infinitesimal in relation to the total military budget, it couldn’t even be classified as a rounding error. But as an aside, yes, the Fedgov spends money like a meth-addicted, trust fund Millennial.

    I don’t see trained snipers using this, but I can see this as an external platform that can be remotely operated from a protected position. Like any FPS video game.

    • When you say external platforms do you mean like the CROWS and RWS systems that have been around for years now that are already doing the job now and provide much better weapons platform option then this?

  9. I am pretty sure everyone involved with this product had to figure the only large group who could afford them are the taxpayers. The sales to private individuals will likely never amount to enough to even pay for r&d let alone make a profit.

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