February 3rd, 2021

SIG Sauer’s Next Generation Squad Weapons Systems (NGSW)

Sig Sauer NGSW Weapons 277 Fury 6.8x51 hybrid system

The U.S. Military has a new machine gun and a new rifle in a new caliber. SIG Sauer has confirmed the final delivery of the Next Generation Squad Weapons (NGSW) systems to the U.S. Army, consisting of new 6.8x51mm Hybrid ammunition, the NGSW-AR lightweight belt-fed machine gun, the SIG NGSW-R rifle, and SIG suppressors. Ron Cohen, SIG Sauer President/CEO stated that work with U.S. soldiers has “led to rapid advancements over the current weapons systems and resulted in our delivery of the most innovative Next Generation Squad Weapons system to the U.S. Army.”

Sig Sauer NGSW Weapons 277 Fury 6.8x51 hybrid system

The new systems will shoot 6.8×51 Hybrid ammunition — a lightweight cartridge designed to handle higher pressures resulting in increased velocity and terminal performance. In civilian form, SIG Sauer calls this cartridge the 277 SIG FURY. The 277 SIG Fury and the military 6.8x51mm cartridges feature a conventional brass upper case body with a steel alloy bottom, case-head section. The hybrid design allows the ammo to run at significantly higher pressures than conventional ammunition. SIG Sauer states that “despite its revolutionary design, [this] hybrid ammunition can be manufactured on a widespread basis immediately.”

Sig Sauer NGSW Weapons 277 Fury 6.8x51 hybrid system

The SIG Sauer 6.8mm hybrid ammunition is designed for increased penetration at greater distances. Cohen continued, “using patent-pending technology the SIG Sauer Ammunition Division has engineered a completely new cartridge resulting in a more compact round, with increased velocity and accuracy, while delivering a substantial reduction in the weight of the ammunition.”

This video shows gun features and includes firing sequences with thermal cameras (1:50 time).

The new 6.8x51mm Hybrid ammo gives the new guns significant advantages: “The SIG Sauer Lightweight Belt-Fed Machine Gun (NGSW-AR) doubles the effective range and is 40% lighter than the current M249 while maintaining the preferred belt-fed operation, with reduced felt recoil to increase accuracy. The SIG SAUER Rifle (NGSW-R) is built on the foundation of the battle tested MCX platform with the added firepower of the 6.8×51 round; both the NGSW-AR and NGSW-R feature familiar AR-style ambidextrous ergonomics designed for a seamless transition from the legacy weapons to the SIG NGSW system.”

Sig Sauer NGSW Weapons 277 Fury 6.8x51 hybrid system

SIG SAUER Lightweight Machine Gun (NGSW-AR)
The SIG Sauer NGSW-AR is a light-weight (under 15-lb.), medium-caliber machine gun chambered for 6.8x51mm Hybrid ammunition. SIG Sauer designed the NGSW-AR to be 40% lighter than current systems, and dramatically reduce felt recoil while maintaining traditional belt-fed operation to increase downrange capability. This 6.8mm machine gun features ambidextrous AR-style ergonomics, quick detach magazines, increased M1913 rail space for optics, folding buttstock, and quick-detach suppressor. SIG Sauer claim this NGSW-AR “vastly improves upon the operation and function of the legacy M249.”

Sig Sauer NGSW Weapons 277 Fury 6.8x51 hybrid system

Sig Sauer NGSW Weapons 277 Fury 6.8x51 hybrid system

SIG SAUER Rifle (NGSW-R):
The NGSW-R lightweight rifle (aka MCX-Spear) is derived from existing SIG military rifles with the added firepower of the 6.8mm round. Features include a fully collapsible and folding stock, rear and side charging handle, free-floating reinforced M-LOK™ handguard, fully ambidextrous controls, and quick-detach suppressor.

277 SIG FURY (6.8x51mm) from SIG Sauer
The 6.8x51mm cartridge will be offered by SIG Sauer in a civilian version called the 277 SIG FURY. This boasts a SAAMI maximum average pressure of 80,000 psi, driving a 135-grain bullet to 3,000+ fps. That 80K PSI pressure is WAY higher than almost all other cartridge types. To achieve these high pressures, the 277 FURY uses a hybrid case with a brass body and harder alloy metal case head. This design allows the cartridge to run very high pressures. Dan Horner of SIG Sauer told us: “When the handloaders get hold of this brass, it will be a game-changer for sure”. We envision this cartridge could be necked down to 6.5 mm and it would dramatically out-perform the 6.5 Creedmoor. And yes the official name of the cartridge is all caps “277 SIG FURY”.

6.8x51 277 SIG Fury

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February 2nd, 2018

No More M4 — USMC Adopts H&K M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle

USMC Marine Corps M27 IAR heckler koch
Photo by USMC, public domain.

The U.S. Marine Corps will be adopting a new rifle to replace the M4 select-fire carbine. Designated the M27 IAR (Infantry Automatic Rifle), the new rifle is based on Heckler & Koch’s HK416, which looks like an AR, but runs with an internal gas piston system. The HK416 has been used by the German Army and some USA Special Operations units. This change-over has been in the works for some time, but the “protest period” has concluded, so now it is official.

The adoption of the M27 was announced at SHOT Show 2018. GunsAmerica reports: “H&K has officially received the contract for the USMC to replace the M4 carbines. The H&K model selected is the M27 Infantry Automatic Rifle, a derivative of the famous H&K 416″. The U.S. Marine Corps initially planned to purchase 6,500 M27s to replace a portion of the M249 light machine guns employed by automatic riflemen within Infantry and Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalions. In December 2017, the Marine Corps revealed a decision to equip every Marine in an infantry squad with the M27, so this is a major change. (Source: Wikipedia.com.)

According to Wikipedia: “The M27 is a lightweight, magazine-fed 5.56mm, select-fire weapon based on the Heckler & Koch HK416. It features a gas-operated, short-stroke piston action with a rotating bolt and a free-floating barrel. The handguard has four MIL-STD-1913 Picatinny rails for use with accessories and optics. The simpler gas-piston rifle system reduces the amount of time it takes to resolve malfunctions on the IAR compared with the M249 light machine gun.”

USMC Marine Corps M27 IAR heckler koch
CLICK HERE for full-screen M27 Photo by Heckler & Koch.

As deployed, early versions of the IAR have done well in combat: “The IAR was initially fielded in December 2010. 1st Battalion 3rd Marines were deployed to Afghanistan in April 2011 with 84 IARs. Former SAW gunners initially did not like the M27, but appreciated it as time went on. It weighed 9 lb. loaded, compared to 22 lb. for an M249 — a significant difference when on 5-hour long missions. It also blended in with standard M16-style service rifles, making it difficult for enemy forces to identify the machine gunner. Marines issued with the M27 [report] it is friendlier to troops [than the M249] due to its cleaner, lightweight system having fewer moving parts and jams. IAR gunners consider the rifle-grade accuracy to be a huge improvement over the SAW, despite the loss of sustained firing.” (Source: Wikipedia.com.)

Heckler & Koch Expands American Production Center in Georgia
Heckler & Koch operates a production center in the state of Georgia, not far from Fort Benning. A $28.5 million expansion, started in 2017, is adding a new 50,000-square-foot factory in the Corporate Ridge Business Park. “HK’s new U.S. factory will make use of advanced manufacturing technologies and will be staffed by German and American engineers and technicians,” said Francisco Hidalgo, CEO of HK USA. GunsAmerica notes: “H&K USA will be designing and building guns directly for the U.S. market in the USA now. Now, we can look forward to weapons built specific to the U.S. market. [We] can’t wait to see the first one stamped ‘Made in Georgia’.” It is unknown when H&K will start delivering American-made M27s to the USMC.

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