Country of origin
1 126 mm
Cyclic rate of fire
700 - 750 rpm
Practical rate of fire
30 - 80 rpm
Range of effective fire
Range of effective fire (with optics)
In the late
1930s the M1 Garand was one of the most advanced infantry rifles.
However during the World War II attempts were made to improve its
overall performance. Since the mid 1940s a number of experimental
weapons, based on the M1 Garand were developed in the United States.
Eventually these developments resulted in the M14 battle rifle. Its
prototype competed against a locally-produced version of the Belgian
Both weapons scored well during trials, but the US design was
selected as a winner. The M14 was adopted in 1959 and gradually
replaced the M1 Garand in the US Army, US Marine Corps, and US Navy
service. Until 1964 it was a standard-issue service rifle. It was
the primary infantry rifle in Vietnam.
The M14 was
the last American battle rifle, chambered for a full-power rifle
ammunition. Last orders were made in 1963 and production finally
stopped in 1964. Nearly 1.4 million of these battle rifles were
produced by Springfield Armory, Winchester, Harrington & Richardson,
and later by Thompson-Ramo-Wooldridge. By 1970 the M14 was replaced
by the newer
assault rifle, chambered for intermediate 5.56x45 mm ammunition. The
M14 remains in limited use in all branches of the US military as a
ceremonial weapon. Its improved and upgraded versions are used as
designated marksman rifles.
report that during the recent US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan the
M14 rifles were re-issued to the troops from warehouses in order to
improve range and lethality of the infantry squads. Some M14 rifles
were issued in their original condition. Other were fitted with
optical sights and other accessories to serve as designated marksman
tooling for this battle rifle was sold to Taiwan. Since the early
1970s many of these battle rifles were given to several nations
under various military aid programs. A small number of M14s remain
in service worldwide as ceremonial weapons. Many were converted into
designated marksmen rifles.
The M14 is a
gas-operated weapon. It is chambered for a standard NATO 7.62x51 mm
ammunition. This ammunition is commercially known as .308
Winchester. Internally it shared many similarities with the M1
Garand, it was based on.
The M14 was
an accurate weapon. It had long range and superior penetration due
to its powerful ammunition. It could penetrate cover quite well.
Though there were several drawbacks of this battle rifle, including
its length and weight. However the M14 recommended itself as a
reliable and lethal weapon and was favored by its shooters.
The M14 has
a fire mode selector switch with settings for "semi-auto" and
"full-auto" firing modes. However this weapon was poorly
controllable in fully automatic mode due to violent recoil. Its
muzzle climbed excessively. The M14 was simply too light for the
powerful ammunition it fired. So most M14s were permanently set to
semi-automatic only mode to avoid wasting of ammunition in combat.
switch is located at the front of the triggerguard. It is similar to
that of the M1 Garand.
The M14 is
fed from detachable 20-round magazines. The weapon has strip clip
guides, so the magazine could be refilled while in place by using
standard stripper clips. However heavy ammunition of the M16 limited
the number of rounds carried by the solider. Eventually it was one
of the reasons why it was replaced by the M16.
rifle has got wooden furniture. A single-piece wooden stock has a
semi-pistol grip. During the Vietnam War this wooden stock had a
tendency to swell and expand in the heavy moisture, thus adversely
affecting accuracy. Fiberglas stocks were produced to resolve this
problem. However the M14 was retired before these fiberglass stocks
could be distributed for field use.
weapon has got iron sights with adjustable rear diopter. Range of
effective fire is 460 meters. Newer versions could be fitted with
optics. Once fitted with optics and bipod, the M14 is accurate to a
range of more than 800 meters.
M14 was a controversial weapon. It has a significant advantage of
accuracy, range and penetration. Also it was a reliable and lethal
weapon. However it was too long, too heavy and performed poorly in
fully automatic mode. As soon as drawbacks of the M14 became obvious
to the US Army Command, they started to search for a new weapon, and
finally settled on the Armalite AR-15, which was adopted as the
M14A1 is a
squad automatic weapon, fitted with different stock with a separate
pistol grip and folding forward grip. It also had a detachable
bipod. The M14A1 evolved from the M14E2 prototype. It was first
issued to troops in 1963 as a replacement for the M1918 Browning
Automatic Rifle (BAR). However it proved to be not suitable for its
role. The weapon was too light for the powerful ammunition that it
fired. Also 20-round magazine capacity limited its fire support
capabilities. The M14A1 was a selective fire weapon and could fire
in "semi-auto" and "full-auto" modes. Loaded M14A1 had a weight of
semi-automatic sniper rifle, based on the M14. Several thousands M14
automatic rifles were converted by Springfield Armory to the M21
sniper rifles. The M21 was a standard issue sniper rifle, until
adoption of the
semi-automatic sniper rifle, based on the M14. It was developed for
the US Army special forces and US Navy SEALs. It has been used since
the Gulf War and is still in service with the US military.
Designated Marksman Rife, is a version for the US Marine Corps. It
is fitted with an optical sight, bipod and cheek pad. This weapon
can be fitted with a quick-detachable silencer. It was eventually
replaced by the M39 Enhanced Marksman Rifle, which is similar to the
Mk.14 Enahnced Battle Rifle.
Enhanced Battle Rifle (EBR). It is a designated marksmen rifle. It
based on the M14, but heavily modified. This weapon was developed in
2000 to meet a US Navy SEAL requirement for a more compact version
of the M14. It was adopted in 2004 and was used by the SEALs, Delta
Force, and other special forces units. Since 2010 this weapon is
used by the US Army.
M1A is a
civilian version of the M14, developed by Springfield Armory in
another civilian version. However this one is heavily modified.
A number of
countries developed their designated marksman variants, based on the
M14, by simply fitting a bipod and various optical sights.
Type 57 is a
Taiwanese license-produced version. Tooling for this battle rifle
was sold to Taiwan in 1969.
is a Chinese direct copy of the M14.