Saturday, 16 Nov 2019

FN racks up $13m Army contract for work on M240 machine guns (PHOTOS)

FN racks up $13m Army contract for work on M240 machine guns (PHOTOS)

In its ground mount configuration, such as seen with the above paratrooper, the M240B/G has a 550 to 650 round-per-minute rate of fire when cyclic. (Photos: U.S. Army)

The U.S. Army last week gave FN America the news that the South Carolina-based gun maker will continue to crank out general purpose machine guns for the service.

The one year award, valued at $13.27 million, is for work on the M240 series machine gun. The new outlay comes as a modification to a Dec. 2014 indefinite delivery contract awarded FN for the purchase M240 machine gun variants and receivers worth up to $57 million.

The U.S. variant of FN’s iconic MAG 58 belt-fed machine gun, the U.S. Army adopted the model in 7.62x5mm NATO in 1977 to replace the Vietnam-era M60 machine gun. Since then, the design has been adopted throughout the Department of Defense as well as the Coast Guard in both pistol/trigger grip M240B/G and spade-gripped M240D/H variants for use by ground troops as well as on vehicles, ships, and aircraft.

CH-47 helicopter 3rd General Support Aviation Battalion, 82nd Aviation Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division Combat Aviation Brigade, fires an M240H machine gun from a CH-47 Chinook during a Combined Arms Live

When using spade grips and a thumb-activated trigger system, such as in the above Army CH-47 helicopter, the M240D/H series typically have a higher rate of fire, ranging from 650 to 950 rounds-per-minute. Also, note the rail-equipped feed cover.

Since 2011, the military has also been fielding smaller quantities of FN M240L variants which incorporate a redesigned collapsible buttstock assembly, polymer trigger guard and shorter barrel to produce a lighter, more compact GPMG.

1st Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, fires a M240L Medium Machine Gun Sept. 19, 2012

A shorter barrel and increased use of polymer drop 5~ pounds from the weight in the M240L series

This month’s award to FN complements a $7.19 million firm-fixed-price contract issued through the Defense Logistics Agency in September to provide machine gun barrels to the Army and Marine Corps.

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