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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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?
 

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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?
Your account above is only partially accurate.

There is no one single designer of the HK416 first off. ANYONE who takes credit for that is either smoking dope or rewriting history. An entire team was involved in its development to include user reps, developers, sales staff, actual designers - a lead and his assistants, prototype makers and testers etc. One of the key folks involved now works at SIG Sauer in NH and is the lead on the development of the SIG516. For that reason it will likely be a VERY GOOD rifle and SIG has some surprises for it that I think give it an important leg up on the current known HK416 designs IF SIG can make it work as intended - All I can say on that.

As with ANY new weapon there will be issues, especially with those run hard like the HK416 has been since it was first fielded in 2004. The units that use them show them no mercy. A few isolated problems have occured but those are in guns with over 60,000 rounds thru them, most of it suppressed and using special ammo. HK has provided fixes to address these rare (< 2) issues out of 1000's fielded. Mostly you are hearing about rehashed internet rumor and comments from the competition wishing their rifle was serving where the HK416 is. They are not. The SIG516 is not. Even the M4 is mostly gone from these units having been replaced by HK416's.

The SIG516 will have a hard time replacing the HK416 but that will depend on many factors. Its AGR is well designed and SIG empoys a good CHF barrel, but it takes more than that. It takes a total package well executed and VERY WELL tested.

The US Army will test all avalable 5.56mm carbines beginning next year. I am sure the SIG and HK guns will be included. It will put up or shut up time and HK416 will be the gun all others are competing against because the very best are using it and they can choose what they want and have chosen the HK416. That makes it the high water mark.

G3Kurz
 

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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?
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.
 

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Regardless of of how good a design the SIG is, SIG USA will probably manage to screw it up.
What valid contribution does this comment provide to the OP's questions / statements ??? making a bold short statement like that provides nothing to this forum but make it look more like Ar15.com

please enlighten us, what in your experience with SIGUSA's products has led you to believe that they will screw up the SIG 516??? is it how they changed the 550 into the 556 ??? is there some quality issues you've run into?? customer service problems???

did a 556 blow up in your face??

or maby its the fact that they're products are ACTUALLY avail. for people to purchase, unlike HK or that they actually listen to civi customer input. what about their part availability??

dont get me wrong, im a HK man through and through but you have to admit that SigUSA has done things about 95% more correctly then HK usa.

sorry to be a **** but if your going to contribute an opinion to this forum, please by all means put an opinion in your posts here.
 

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Back in the 90's I had a Sig 220 and 228, German built, quality fit, finish, and function just as good as HK. Shortly after the election, I got a 556 pistol and a 556 Classic off of Gunbroker. They both came with the hooded front sight, "popsicle" stick rear sight and "Sig red dot" sight, oh and "Sig plastic AR mags". I also purchased a "Sig rotary diopter rear sight" seperately. Front sight on the pistol was loose, dove tail was milled out of spec. The fit between the upper and lower was kinda of loose. The rail was way under spec no matter how hard you tightened the diopter or red dot, they would loosen up after a few rounds. On the rifle the fit and finish was much better, the rail was still a little under spec but not as bad as the one on the pistol. The Chinese made "Sig red dot" ate a couple of batteries and then gave out completely. The Chinese made "Sig" rotary diopter rear sight had a loose fit to it and felt cheap {except for the price} pretty sure the front sights are Chinese also. Furniture is Chinese. The rails probably are too and no telling what else. On the good side I put several hundered rounds through each and they functioned fine, accuracy was about average. I initialy had hi hopes of eventually sbr-ing the pistol but the old Sig quality was just not there and I wonder how they would have held up in the long run. I sold-traded them off for a SCAR 16 and havent looked back.
 

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As far as the HK416s self-adjusting piston is going: self adjusting in what way? When using a suppressor?

If so, does the MR556 feature the same system?
 

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As far as the HK416s self-adjusting piston is going: self adjusting in what way? When using a suppressor?

If so, does the MR556 feature the same system?
No, the HK416 is not self adjusting when using a suppressor. It is self regulating for different types of ammo.
 

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Back in the 90's I had a Sig 220 and 228, German built, quality fit, finish, and function just as good as HK. Shortly after the election, I got a 556 pistol and a 556 Classic off of Gunbroker. They both came with the hooded front sight, "popsicle" stick rear sight and "Sig red dot" sight, oh and "Sig plastic AR mags". I also purchased a "Sig rotary diopter rear sight" seperately. Front sight on the pistol was loose, dove tail was milled out of spec. The fit between the upper and lower was kinda of loose. The rail was way under spec no matter how hard you tightened the diopter or red dot, they would loosen up after a few rounds. On the rifle the fit and finish was much better, the rail was still a little under spec but not as bad as the one on the pistol. The Chinese made "Sig red dot" ate a couple of batteries and then gave out completely. The Chinese made "Sig" rotary diopter rear sight had a loose fit to it and felt cheap {except for the price} pretty sure the front sights are Chinese also. Furniture is Chinese. The rails probably are too and no telling what else. On the good side I put several hundered rounds through each and they functioned fine, accuracy was about average. I initialy had hi hopes of eventually sbr-ing the pistol but the old Sig quality was just not there and I wonder how they would have held up in the long run. I sold-traded them off for a SCAR 16 and havent looked back.
Sir i stand corrected,

i apologize for flying off the handle but all to often on this forum as well as others, it gets filled with about 10% usefull posts and 90% extremely unhelpfull ones. i like HK pro and do not want to see it turn into some of those other ones.
 

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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.
 

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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
 

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"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.
 

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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.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
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.
 

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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.
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.
 

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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.
 

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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?
 

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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.
 

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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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