Country of origin
7.62x51 mm NATO
1 092 mm
660 or 686
5 or 10 rounds
varies depending on the scope
Range of effective fire
the Remington Model 700 rifle, the M24 SWS (Sniper Weapon System) is
the primary sniper rifle of the US Army. It was developed in the
1980s to replace the Springfield Armory M21, and was first fielded
in 1988. The M24 was effectively the Army's first weapon developed
specially for sniping. It is designated as a "weapon system" rather
than simply a weapon, because a detachable telescopic sight and a
variety of tools and accessories are issued along with it as part of
a single package. It is also employed by the US Air Force.
The M24 is a bolt action rifle, feeding from a detachable box
magazine holding either 5 or 10 rounds, depending on the model. It
is tapped for either a Leupold Ultra M3A 10×42mm fixed power, or a
Leupold Mk 4 LR/T M3 10×40mm fixed power scope. Iron sights are
fitted as well, as backup for the scope.
The M24 is chambered for the 7.62x51mm NATO round. It is able
to fire machine gun grade ammunition, but this practice is usually
avoided, as the lackluster quality of these rounds results in poor
accuracy. Match grade ammunition includes the M118, M118LR, and MK
316 MOD 0 "Special Ball, Long Range", and many others. The "long
action" design of the M24 also allows it to be reconfigured to fire
larger rounds, and variants chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum and
.338 Lapua Magnum have been developed to exploit this capability.
The effective range of the M24 is 800 m, though shots have
successfully been made at beyond 1 000 m. As with its accuracy, the
range of the M24 also varies slightly with the ammunition used. From
a machine rest, the accuracy can be as low as .35 MOA.
The M24's barrel is made of 416R Stainless Steel. Its rifling
is highly unusual in having 5 grooves, rather than a more common
even number. The logic behind this decision is that with no grooves
or lands directly across from one another, deformation of the bullet
is greatly reduced, theoretically resulting in greater accuracy. The
actual accuracy of the M24 varies with the type of ammunition used,
but is close to 1 MOA with match-grade ammunition at most distances.
Though designed to maintain accuracy up to 10 000 rounds fired, the
barrel reportedly demonstrates increasing accuracy up to that mark,
which is retained even after 20 000 rounds are fired.
The furniture for the M24 is all composite, in the form of
the H-S Precision PST-024 stock, with a fixed cheek piece,
adjustable LOP and hinged floorplate. The cheekpiece is fixed, while
the buttplate is extendable up to 2 inches. The standard container
for the complete weapon is the M-1950 Weapon Container for Airborne
Over 15 000 M24s were manufactured. They are presently used
by the armed forces of Afghanistan, Brazil, Hungary, Iraq, Israel,
Georgia, Japan, Lebanon, the Philippines, and the United States.
Some law enforcement organizations also operate M24s. It is not
offered for sale to civilians, but several companies manufacture
similar or even nearly identical rifles for the civilian market.
a civilian hunting rifle, and the parent design of the M24.
There are tactical versions of this weapon similar to the M24, which
are also used by numerous police and military organizations around
is an original production model adopted by the US armed
forces. It is chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO ammunition;
is a cancelled variant re-chambered in .300 Winchester
is an improved M24 with many new features and accessories.
There is also a .300 Winchester Magnum version, which is peculiar as
reliability and availability problems with that round were the basis
for the XM24A1's cancellation;
is a long range version, re-chambered in .338 Lapua Magnum;
M2010 ESR is a radically reconfigured M24, with a wide range
of optional features;
The M40 series is another notable range of sniper rifles
derived from the Model 700, but they are otherwise unrelated.
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