Bagram: Building a Better Weapons Mount
Allied Trades Section engineers display their creativity and inventiveness by making new tools to help warfighters in the field. Michael Price, shop supervisor with Allied Trades at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, and a retired Army mechanic, is no exception. His shop’s creation is an improved vehicle weapon mount for 5.56mm M249 SAW or 7.62mm M240B machine guns that has gone a long way to provide better small-arms fire protection in Afghanistan.
“It was heavy, and they wanted to know if we could do something different for them; we came up with an idea to make them out of steel, but lighter. There are not as many supports in it, but it’s all welded together instead of bolted together. So it’s a lot better piece of equipment.”
Price’s shop has produced about 400 of them, out of about 700 requests so far. The new design apparently enables better protection for service members in vehicles, and they were able to save about $1,100 per mount by producing it on site. US DoD story.