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Old 06-11-2019, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by obbn View Post
Feeble? The .30 carbine has more energy at 100 yards then a .357 has at the muzzle.
The .30 carbine is something like 1/3 the energy as the .30-06 that the Garand fired, and roughly half the energy of today's 5.56 NATO round or the 7.62x39 intermediate round.

So yeah, feeble when compared to full-bore or intermediate rifle rounds, but pretty good for a pistol round.

I guess the question really comes down to what the point was- in close, you'd almost certainly prefer a Thompson to fire lots of wide, heavy bullets. At a longer range, a rifle would be better. The M1 Carbine seems to have been a sort of a compromise- lighter weight than either a Thompson or M1 Garand, and easier to handle, but not really good at either job.

Not incidentally, that question is a lot of why intermediate cartridges and smaller cartridges became so popular post-war. Research during the war and from WW1 indicated that the vast, vast majority of infantry combat takes place under 300 meters, and that the full-bore rifle rounds used in WW2 (.30-06, 8mm Mauser, .303 British) are drastic overkill, considering they're effective and accurate at 2-3x that distance. So they scaled back the cartridge and came up with something still effective at 300 meters, but that allowed for shorter and lighter rifles, and significantly lighter ammunition. This essentially obviated the need for a carbine of a different caliber- if anything, armies reverted to the original carbine concept- a shorter version of the standard rifle (M4 vs M16, for example).

As for me? Of all the US WWII weapons I've fired (all of them, including the BAR and the M1919A4, believe it or not), I'd want a Garand if my hide was on the line. (that said, I think I'd prefer a AR-15/M16 overall if era was no consideration, with the M14 coming in second, mostly due to the weight)