belt fed 223?
with the 7.62X39 beltfed tried and true, im wondering if a 223 beltfed would be plausible.
the reason being, i can reload 223 for far cheaper than i can get 7.62X39
so it would be more of a fun range toy. say take a 223 AK and possibly get the m240(or whatever the 5.56 cal one is called) top cover and feed tray?
is this even possible to get a hold of such parts? or is there an easier way to get a belt fed 223/5.56?
But I am really curious about the answers!!!!
I can see no reason why not. You can use the RPD top cover and feed tray. Price wise, use a 5.56 NATO caliber PAR-3 or WASR-3 barrel and bolt/bolt carrier assembly.
Belts in caliber 5.56 NATO are available, although not that easy to find.
the 223 is too long for the rpd feed tray. the m249 top covers are available but expensive. there is one on sturm if your interested not mine.
im very tempted to attempt this build as i have tons of blasting 223 rounds.
i wonder if i could do it the same style as the mg47ES just use a 223 AK instead of the 7.62X39 one?
edit: anyone know where i can get an AK74 for a fair price or any other 223/5.56 AK variant?
i figure i can use a mg42 grip stick to make it look more authentic grip wise, hell, to make it look like a m249 i figure building it from mostly custom or spare 249 parts would be the best route to go. and of course fabricate the receiver to match the 249 cosmetics, but use the internals of the mg47ES, all i really need is a 223 AK bolt and carrier and trunnion. anything other than that can be fabricated. im thinking a barrel that closer resembles the 249's would be ideal ,as ak barrels are pretty recognizable even if the gas block and other such things are removed and replaced with a different style.
i do believe i have my winter project now
Why not copy the XT74 beltfed. It uses the RPD feed cover, and is in caliber 5.45 x 39. It seems to me that it should work just as well for the .223 round.
I have MORE than enough 249 belts if you need some.
See my post on the MG47ES thread. I tried a M249 belt in my MG47BP which has a RPD top cover and it would advance a cartridge and almost feed except the stripping lug on my bolt head was to wide for the M249 links and get stuck. I see no reason that with a narrower stripping lug you could not use the MG47ES receiver, a RPD top cover and feed tray and an RPK front end but with a heavy 223 barrel and create a M249 look alike. Fit it with a MG42/53 grip stick with FAL or AR FCG like DTM's FCG or the one on my original MG47. I agree with Shadow Walkeron the RPD TC. It would be a good project.
The bullets I tried in the M249 belt were soft point so they fit in the feed tray. I haven't tried to see if a standard militay issue FMJ will fit in a RPD feed tray so 357MAG could be right. If required, you could always lengthen the FT a bit. I think you will have to modify the feed pawls abit to work well with the M249 disinigrating links.
I'd just be nervous about opening up the gas port on a 223 belt-fed gun... If the 7.62x39mm needs to be opened ~0.19" or so...
Wolf and many other low-cost ammo manufacturers (Winchester white box as well) have reduced their powder charge loads in the ammo they've put out in the last year or so! Their powder charges are now so incredibly 'WEAK' they cause many AR-15's to short stroke these days... :(
I'd be a bit worried about the ability to get them to cycle reliably in a gas-operated manner. I know the 7.62 Tokarev ammo version worked okay in a blowback/gas combo format, but the 5.56mm might have issues. If not issues of reliability in cycling, it might have issues with a gas port that's 85% the diameter of the bullet itself!!! YIKES!
That might seriously goof the accuracy or perhaps shave off some of the jacket unevenly to cause keyholing or who knows what...
How big is the gas port in a M249? You might have to do what I did on the originial MG47 prototype and make a bigger diameter gas piston and gas tube to get the shove you need from a smaller gas port. Doubletapme has built one in 5.54x39 using a RPD top cover, his XT74 and it works.