Before there was the AR-15, there was the Armalite AR-10 in 7.62mm.


12 thoughts on “AR-10”

  1. Every time I watch one of these video documentaries, I’m amazed at how that one guy seemed to voice all of these.

  2. Just goes to show that the majority of the problem with the AR-15 platform has always been the cartridge. Fired many rounds from AR-10s, and would carry one in combat in a heartbeat. Weight of ammunition carried is a bit of a red herring. The M16A2 fully loaded is 8.79 pounds. The fully loaded AR-10 was just under 9.7 pounds. About 13 oz difference for all that additional hitting power, range, accuracy, and commonality of cartridge. *sigh*

    1. The 5.56 cartridge is about half the weight of the 7.62 NATO cartridge. You can carry 33 mags of 5.56 (660 rds) vs. 14 mags of 7.62 (280 rds.) for a 20 lb. load. Including the magazine, 5.56 is a little less than half the weight of 7.62.
      There is also the sheer bulk. I was issued 5 mags. for the M-14 and I cannot imagine carrying 14 mags. of 7.62. 20 mags. of 5.56 fits conveniently in a claymore bag, and was the minimum we carried in my unit. Occasionally even that much wasn’t enough.

    2. How much is “enough” is dictated, in some cases, by caliber. Soldiers from Mogadishu and Salman Pak tell some pretty hair-raising stories of bad guys getting hit multiple times without effect. In some cases because the cartridge didn’t transfer kinetic energy to the body, and in other cases because the 62gr round didn’t penetrate winter clothing at 350-400m. 147gr BT has no such problem. Standard load out in Iraq with guys carrying the M-14 was seventeen mags. The LBE had pockets for eight on a side, and one in the weapon. That was likely about 24 pounds. But their body armor was upwards of 80+. So if load was the problem, more effective and lighter body armor would be a priority.

      That said, I would love to see the AR-15 family with a 6.8 SPC at about 110 grains. Splits the difference between the 7.62×51 and the 5.56×45. A SAW designed for that cartridge would be a big plus, too.

    3. Yeah, I’ve heard those stories (among others) too, for about a half century. And I still take them with a grain of salt. Even if true they are rare, and certainly don’t affect the outcome of a battle. I know a machine gunner who swears he put a burst of 7.62 into an individual who just kept running. I would be willing to bet there were Civil War vets who claimed to have hit targets with a .58 cal. round with no effect, too.

  3. …and then there is the weight of the rounds carried in ones Load Bearing Equipment whichever variation. Carried 8 20 round magazines once with a 25 rounder in the weapon and hadn’t even yet saddled up the ruck. This was a civilian mode, and I was in my early 40’s so those are the qualifiers. Still heavy I believe but DO love the 7.62/308 calibre.

  4. The AR-10 was tested by the Army, but the barrel burst. Back when I had a copy of “Small Arms Of The World” I saw a picture of the post test weapon. The weapon was improved and I think the Dutch Army ordered some.

    You can buy your very own AR-10. Armalite still makes them.

    1. Fairchild insisted Armalite submit a composite steel/aluminum barrel weapon. That’s the one that failed. All production weapons had all steel barrels.

      The wiki entry is pretty interesting about how the licensee in Holland had to develop the weapon for mass production.

    2. Yeah, I remember the pic showing two layers in the barrel. I didn’t remember the two materials the original barrel was made of. Personally, I’m thinking of buying one when I win the lottery next week.

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