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Thread: The Sig 516 and the HK 416

  1. #11
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    The 416 by all all reputable accounts is a good robust system that's been field tested in punishing conditions. Competitors will always want to point out any deficiency and illustrate how their system is different.

    I will agree with 45C's comments about SIG USA. I hope they make a good rifle, because their 556 system hasnt exactly been met with rave reviews. As someone who was really looking forward to them, I was very disappointed by all the negative comments. I'm not worried about my Swiss made SIGs losing value because of them.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by M995 View Post
    I think the difference between the Sig 516 piston and HK416 piston is that HK's piston is self regulating and the Sig's piston is adjustable. I like the 416's piston better because the sig's adjustable piston has too many settings. You don't need an off setting (to cut off all the gases) in an assault rifle and I see that as a liability.

    Now in response to the HK416 problems. I remember someone posted on this forum that HK's President said that contrary to rumors, the HK416s has not run into major problems in USSOCOM use. Most of the problems with the HK416 was on very high round counts with suppressors (which is harmful to any gun). I think most of the problems you hear about the 416 are exaggerated by die hard Direct Impingement AR fan boys on the internet.

    Any new system will have some issues that will eventually be worked out later. For example, the IWI Tavor had problems with sand getting into the ejection port but IWI has fixed the problem and the Tavor is doing very well in Israeli service and is the standard future infantry weapon of the IDF. There were some people who used this incident to bash the Tavor and say that it is a horrible weapon, which is not true. I guess those kinds of people also bash the HK416 when they hear of some issues and try to exaggerate them. AS G3kurz said, HK has fixed the rare problems which the 416s suffered on high round counts with suppressed fire.
    "Self-regulation" has its limits. In hind sight HK should have had an AGR on the HK416 from day one for special purpose ammo and suppressor use, and one that works well unlike the crap they sent to Norway (all of which is being replaced). The SIG516when it is done in all variants will be exceptional IMO opinion.
    G3Kurz

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by G3Kurz View Post
    "Self-regulation" has its limits. In hind sight HK should have had an AGR on the HK416 from day one for special purpose ammo and suppressor use, and one that works well unlike the crap they sent to Norway (all of which is being replaced). The SIG516when it is done in all variants will be exceptional IMO opinion.
    G3Kurz
    G3kurz,

    I do agree that self regulation has its limits, for example it does not do well with suppressors and I don't think it will do well with belt fed machine guns. I said that personally I like the self regulating gas system because they allow for a wide variety of ammo and do not need any adjustment. I do agree with you that the Hk416 should have had a adjustable gas system because USSOCOM is running suppressors on them (mostly SBRs) and use special purpose ammo. For a standard issue rifle, I don't see the need for suppressors for most cases and that was why I personally prefer the self regulating gas system. I do like the Sig 516 and think it would be a great rifle, I just like the Hk416 better for general purpose. On SBRs and in the SPR role, I think the Sig 516 would shine and would be better than the Hk416 once it's fully developed and tested.

    I just realized that I made an error on my previous comment. Sig 516 has a 3 position gas system (suppressed, normal, adverse), the OFF setting is just an additional option that could be added by a customer's request, so the Sig 516 gas system is not a liability. I stand corrected on that.

    I guess comparing the self regulating gas system to adjustable gas system is sort of like comparing apples to oranges. The 2 gas system are better suited for different roles in my opinion. Self regulating: general purpose, adjustable: suppressed work and firing special purpose ammo.
    Last edited by M995; 12-18-2010 at 11:49 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TCBA_Joe View Post
    Now, I read this somewhere, but I was talking to some of the guys at the Sig Academy this week. One of the guys, one of their senior instructors, I was talking to told me the guy who designed the 416 designed the 516. He also told me that the units who were initially issued the 416 had a lot of issues with them.

    My question is what is the relationship between the 2 systems. What makes one better than the other, if anyones gotten to handle both and knows the technical differences.

    It seems the Sig has a more traditional carrier group, but what's different about the pistons?
    They have absolutely nothing in common.

    The only piston system out there that has some level of similarity to an HK416 is an LWRC, and even that is a stretch.

    Any attempt at drawing parallels between the two is a farce. Take 10 seconds to field strip both, and it becomes clear they have nothing in common.

    Also, at this point SIG USA can barely be trusted to make a slingshot, while HK continues to be perhaps the most consistent firearms maker, period.
    Last edited by variablebinary; 12-19-2010 at 01:49 AM.

  5. #15
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    Interesting info. Thanks guys.

    I am a DI fan boty, but I am interested in piston designs as I find them interesting.

    I would love to get a MR556, its a very sexy rifle. However, the 516s are out now, and I could get a 10.5" factory upper right now for~ $900. I'm not saving money for either right now however, so this was more from a technical interest standpoint.

    It'll be interesting to see how they stack up against each other in the Army tests. I'm curious how the remingtom RGP will do as well.

    The HK seems to have more total-rifle development as the bolt carrier has changes as well. Seems HK would have kept gas settings for SBRs and cans in mind seeing as who they developed the rifle for.

    As for the self-regulating vs adjustable, if only someone was able to come out with something that self adjusted for ammo types, but still had a selector setting for suppressed so there was no over gassing.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCBA_Joe View Post
    Interesting info. Thanks guys.

    I am a DI fan boty, but I am interested in piston designs as I find them interesting.

    I would love to get a MR556, its a very sexy rifle. However, the 516s are out now, and I could get a 10.5" factory upper right now for~ $900. I'm not saving money for either right now however, so this was more from a technical interest standpoint.

    It'll be interesting to see how they stack up against each other in the Army tests. I'm curious how the remingtom RGP will do as well.

    The HK seems to have more total-rifle development as the bolt carrier has changes as well. Seems HK would have kept gas settings for SBRs and cans in mind seeing as who they developed the rifle for.

    As for the self-regulating vs adjustable, if only someone was able to come out with something that self adjusted for ammo types, but still had a selector setting for suppressed so there was no over gassing.
    There is nothing wrong with being a DI fanboy and I don't see DI guns as obsolete for LE use (given the fact that they are not SBRs and that you are not running suppressors on them). A 16" barrel DI gun is fine for LE use and military use. I just think their time is up for military assault rifles as the M4 was based on old mil specs and well designed op rod guns have advantages over them. DI guns like the C7 and C8 are reliable but modern op rod guns have longer service life. I just don't like it when certain DI fan boys bash Hk416s and well designed op rod designs with rumors that are often exaggerated or not true. There are DI guns that are more reliable than some op rod designs. For example, I would not be surprised if a M16 outperformed a Ak-5/FN FNC. But the fact is that well designed modern op rod guns like the HK416 have proven to be more reliable than DI guns.
    Last edited by M995; 04-07-2012 at 08:20 PM.

  7. #17
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    The man you are speaking of is Robert Hirt. You have seen him in the HK416 over the beach testing video, HK P30 video, SIG 516 torture test video, and the SIG MPX Video.

  8. #18
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    The US Army will test all avalable 5.56mm carbines beginning next year. I am sure the SIG and HK guns will be included.
    G3Kurtz, what type of tests do they put the weapons through to determine the best weapon? I read the stoppages from the Extreme Dust Test way back when, and I would figure by now they should have replaced the M4 with 416s. So are they still looking for a replacement?

  9. #19
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    One thing is for certain, the HK416 is still with the units that were fielding it originally, which says something about how it ranks against it's competitors.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Om3ga9000 View Post
    G3Kurtz, what type of tests do they put the weapons through to determine the best weapon? I read the stoppages from the Extreme Dust Test way back when, and I would figure by now they should have replaced the M4 with 416s. So are they still looking for a replacement?
    For the US Army Individual Carbine testing ongoing now it will be a full range of DT (Developmental Testing). That includes but is not limited to physical dimensions, fit, and features, Targeting and Precision (Accuracy), function, rate of fire, drop and rough handling testing, interchangeability of parts, suppressor function, various (@ 9) types of ammo to include blanks and the M855A1 EPR round, firing on angles, function without lubrication, sustained rate of fire, durability, precision and reliability (to 10,000 rounds and greater), environmental testing (cold, hot, ice, sand/dust, salt/surf), obstructed bore, corrision, etc. Test to destruction should also be conducted. There are others I am surely forgetting. There will be some form of Operational Testing as well involving a selection of potential users though that comes later in the next phase as I recall, if the process lives that long, which is still in dispute. All these tests are conducted to established test protocol.

    What has to happen is the 800 lb brains then have to answer the big question. Does the technical performance of the "winning" IC candidate(s) combined with the unit cost and life cycle costs justify the additional costs to switch to a new carbine? Those costs include costs for new accessories, mounts, special tool, gages and parts, training aids, weapon racks, etc. We know that because all candidates submitted were 5.56mm NATO weapons there will be no additional performance improvement from the muzzle forward so the best anyone can expect is a more reliable and accurate system that may cost less but it will still be limited to the performance of the 5.56mm NATO round.

    G3Kurz

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