MANUFACTURER(S): Fabrique Nationale (FN herstal) - Belgium
OPERATORS: Belgium; Germany; United Kingdom; United States
ACTION: Full-Automatic; Belt-Fed
CALIBER(S): 12.7x99mm NATO
LENGTH (OVERALL): 1,650 millimeters (64.96 inches)
LENGTH (BARREL): 1,150 millimeters (45.28 inches)
WEIGHT (UNLOADED): 77.16 pounds (35.00 kilograms)
MUZZLE VELOCITY: 2,900 feet-per-second (884 meters-per-second)
RATE-OF-FIRE: 1,025 rounds-per-minute
RANGE (EFFECTIVE): 6,000 feet (1,829 meters; 2,000 yards)
Detailing the development and operational history of the Fabrique Nationale FN M3P Belt-Fed Vehicle Heavy Machine Gun (HMG).
Entry last updated on 12/16/2016.
Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The Fabrique Nationale (FN Herstal) FN M3P is a vehicle machine gun based on the hugely successful Browning M2 .50 caliber heavy machine gun series. The M3P is simply a modernized form intended for use on trainable vehicle mountings or as a fixed vehicle/aircraft gun (podded or open-air). It can be manually-fired or remotely fired (via solenoid) which sufficiently broadens battlefield applications. In the former, it can be sat upon a trainable pintle mounting and used as a normal open-air, air-cooled machine gun (defensive application or on a vehicle/watercraft for offensive purposes). In the latter, it can serve through a remote weapons station installation, as a coaxial machine gun on a tank (or other wheeled/tracked armored vehicle) or in "podded" form and slung under the wing of an aircraft - light strike or helicopter - used in conjunction with the aircraft's existing weapons software suite.
The FN M3P showcases a design faithful to the original Browning with its rectangular receiver, large ejection port and feed units and perforated barrel for air cooling. A large, cylindrical muzzle brake is fitted. Belt-feeding is standard (from left or right of the receiver) as is full-automatic fire. The weapon is chambered for the proven 12.7x99mm NATO standard heavy cartridge and fires at a rate nearing 1,025 rounds per minute. its overall construction provides a weight-savings measure over the original Browning M2.
The FN M3P is marketed across several designated variants beyond the base open-air gun mounting. These include the podded FN HMP250 (250-rounds), the FN HMP400 (400-rounds) and FN RMP (250-rounds with 3 x 2.75" rockets underslung).
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