More Stoner Documents

Thanks to reader Steven B, I have a couple additional documents on the Stoner 63 to post, and also a cleaner copy of the Stoner LMG manual. Thanks, Steven!

Stoner: Armament of the Post 70's Soldier (English)
Stoner: Armament of the Post 70’s Soldier (English)
Stoner Bayonet Manual (English)
Stoner Bayonet Manual (English)
Stoner 63 LMG Manual (English)
Stoner 63 LMG Manual (English)
US Patent 3,198,076 (Stoner LMG)
US Patent 3,198,076 (Stoner LMG)
Stoner 63 Weapons System Brochure (English)
Stoner 63 Weapons System Brochure (English)



  1. At SOME point in time a “Bayonet” is a knife that doubles as a wire cutter.
    When was the last time in combat that soldiers fixed them on a rifle to alter the outcome of a battle? 1863?

  2. The Dutch Future Soldier 1970 doc was cool. The fact that every man in the squad has some limited anti-armor capability (muzzle launched AT rifle grenade and/or separate mag of 10 rounds of 5.56 AP) shows the focus on the threat of a Soviet armored thrust into Western Europe.

    The “mini grenade” bandolier and hand held red phosphate flame launcher thing were also interesting.

    As the material states, it would have been a well-armed squad indeed.

  3. Regarding the usefulness of bayonets, there are at least 3 situations where I would use a bayonet:

    1) Advance to contact – running and having to dive down onto the ground can result in the barrel of the rifle being plugged with earth. The bayonet will help protect the muzzle on tis scenario.

    2) Street fighting – negotiating a corner, an enemy can grab th muzzle of the rifle. A bayonet can deter this and if the enemy DOES grab the rifle near the muzzle, the leverage can be used to stick him with the bayonet

    3) Crowd control – bullets are invisible, a bayonet isn’t and the sight of someone fixing bayonets and advancing towards you wit the intenton of sticking you concentrates the mind wonderfully.

    The British soldiers hated the spike bayonet issued with the Lee Enfield No. 4 for that reason and it was replaced by a blade type for the intimidation factor. It was useless as a substitute knife and the EM1 and EM2 and the FAL adopted by the UK reverted back to a knife type.

    • Bayonets have generally fallen out of favor these days because they’re a liability in the kind of close combat people actually get into – inside tight spaces. Try to pie a corner or do reflex shooting with a rifle with a bayonet on it and you’ll see what I mean.

      British practices notwithstanding, I think I’d have the advantage swinging my K-bar over someone trying to stab me with a bayoneted L85.

      • If you carry a Ka bar, you can carry a bayonet, a ka bar you can if you so wish stick on the end of your weapon.

        The L85 bayonets are thick, but they can be sharp, harder to penetrate with your arm behind it although it wouldn’t be healthy for the target even with a small arm behind it, but with it attached to the “brick” i.e. The L85 it will go in like a hot knife through butter, then you twist – Hence the angled thick part, holes etc.

        You can detach them you know.

      • During my time in service (with one of WP armies) we put on bayonet automatically even during range practice. It was good balancer as a matter of fact. Same with sentry duty – bayonet was on and full mag inserted.

  4. Speaking of cold steel, an uneducated viewer would likely think that the Japanese Type 30 bayonet (a sword bayonet, mind you) would be useless when fixed on the Type 38 Arisaka rifle. Considering that the Japanese did treat long rifles with sword bayonets as glaives rather than thrusting spears, you might not want to try any fancy spear limbo moves (especially if you are riding a horse while avoiding that 40 cm steel blade). The Type 30 bayonet handles like a short sword when not fixed so I would hate to get into a knife fight with a Japanese holdout…

    As for the Stoner M63, didn’t it flop due to issues with availability of parts and modules?

    • “As for the Stoner M63, didn’t it flop due to issues with availability of parts and modules?”
      As I recall, it was also heavy for the caliber… not to mention the fact that it was a late comer fighting a deluge of Kalashnikovs, M-16s, FALs and H&Ks. This was a situation which killed a bunch of post-WWII smgs that couldn’t compete against a mountain of WWII surplus smgs available at bargain prices or indeed sometimes free of charge.

  5. The Stoner was/is ridiculously light for a belt-fed machine gun. The M249 (winner of the SAW program) is much heaver, taller, and wider. I think the Stoner might actually have a heavier barrel than an M249 barrel of equal length. There were a bunch of technical problems with the 63, and I believe it was out of the running by the early 70s. Dan Shea has many, many documents relating to that weapon in the archives section of Small Arms Review.

    • Barrel was not only heavier but also longer. On Minimi is some 17in, on Stoner (according to first document) is 20in.

      On LSW/ SAW type of thing longer barrel makes lots of sense, see RPK74.

  6. “Modular” is a buzz word these days… The terms, definition has some uses but a 5.56mm LMG isn’t one – You need 7.62 Nato for a support weapon.

    A Bren would be more effective than a Mini me, less rounds, but different rounds, rounds with oomph.

      • Yes it’s good isn’t it…

        Did make me think about getting a hang fire in combat, on the range your supposed to wait ten seconds before doing anything incase it goes off during that time. Might seem a bit long in combat, it doesn’t happen much as far as I’m aware. A two chambered chamber, falling block might be of benefit drop it with the dud in then carry on with the top chamber – Obviously it would need to be clear to it’s front, of the fore stock you hand etc and have a solid portion of the frame to it’s rear.

        Cook offs also… What’s a heat exchanger, never mind. Anyway maybe you could keep the chamber cooler than the barrel if it was a separate piece. Most of the flames go forward of the chamber upon firing into the barrel, you can use floating chambers as a method of operation can’t you actually.

  7. One this I am noticing on 63 rifle: butt was folding left. I guess there was no other choice, if user wanted to fire when folded (assuming RH ejection).

    This was first time I was able to see ‘inside’ of Stoner 63 system. Closest one I can think of is FN CAL, which also did not make it. Much appreciate it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.