Issues concerning rifles, stopping power, compact design and firepower
have been discussed within the armed community for decades. Recently,
concerns have been expressed concerning the stopping ability of the
5.56X45 mm round. Some in the line of fire have opted for the 7.62X51
round as an answer to increase the chances of stopping an opponent.
Until now, the 7.62X51 round has only been available in larger and
heavier battle weapons. The usual choices are M14 (or commercial M1A
equivalent), FN/FAL, and the H&K G3 (HK91 commercial equivalent).
Recently, some manufacturers have worked on Shorties of these designs,
including the DSA OSW and HK G3K. Obvious issues include reliable
cycling as well as controllability in full automatic mode. One entry
which is just now becoming available is the M14K.
The m14K is essentially a standard M14 with an extensively modified
gas system permitting the use of a barrel as short as 13 inches.
In the K configuration, the weapon is reliable accurate, and easily
controllable in semiautomatic of full automatic fire. Functionally,
it is a small box magazine fed M60GPMG. Initial development efforts
centered on utilizing the gas system from the M60 GPMG. Smith soon
discovered that much better solution was to fabricate the gas system
The M14K has been around since the mid 1980s. Ron Smith (Smith
Enterprise, Inc.) built the systems originally sold by Tim LaFrance.
In Smith built several thousand of these rifles in the 1980s for
the Colombian government to use in drug interdiction. Smith has
also been involved in building and shooting M14 type rifles for
years. In addition to his military experience and duty on several
army marksmanship units, Smith is a 4th generation armorer who learned
his trade in his father’s shop at the hands of old Hungarian
and German master machinists. Smith was also invited to the Israeli
Sniper School (where) in (1986) based on his ability to build the
M14 sniper systems.
Development of the M14K system evolved into a custom designed system
which is extremely reliable, accurate and easy to shoot in full
automatic mode. Finally, because the gas system bleeds off the burned
gasses quickly, the gun generates less head under the handguard.
This means that it is much cooler to shoot, especially in full automatic
Other changes from the standard M14 configuration include a Douglas
medium weight air gauge barrel with a 1:10 four groove twist. This
faster twist fully stabilizes 168 gr. Match ammo while still permitting
F./A fire. In the hands of a capable shooter, it is not unusual
to hit rams on 500 meters silhouette range. The 16" version
produces a bullet with 2460 fps muzzle velocity using M80 ball ammunition.
The Douglas medium heavy air-gauge barrel has an M852 chamber and
1 in 10 four groove twist which fully stabilizes 168 gr bullets
while still working fine with the 147 gr. M80 ball ammunition. This
shifts the balance slightly towards the muzzle which every high-power
shooter know is preferable.
The rifle weights 9.5-10.0 lbs without magazine.
Standard sights are USGI, however, Smith recommends NM rear sights
because the ½ MOA adjustment works better with the shortened
sighting radius inherent on this weapon. Of course, full NM sights
Available with all match options including trigger and action improvements,
full bedding, rear or double lugged and improved sights, including
M1913 compliant rails for telescopic sights or supplementary lighting
and/or laser designators.
Currently working on a synthetic stock and for qualified agencies,
a folding stock version.
Cleaning is the same as for the standard M14 family of weapons.
Special instructions for M14K will be detailed in the future. If
you know how to take down and clean an M14, you already know most
of what is necessary for the cleaning of the M14K. The only difference
is the gas system. Because the piston is larger that the standard
M!4, cleaning of the gas system is easier.
Price for conversion of existing M1A or M14 is $3000. Everything
except the receiver, bolt, trigger and op rod are replaced. If you
desire a complete gun, the price is increased accordingly. The conversion
comes with a lifetime warranty on all of the Smith parts and workmanship.
Because conversions are being made to existing rifles, no warranty
is extended to the customer supplied parts. In addition, not all
M14 clones are the same. Smith recommends rifles built up from Smith,
Enterprise or LRB receivers. Other receivers may require additional
Cyclic rate ~550-600 RPM
Controllable under full automatic fire is simply great.
The gun very stiff so accuracy is enhanced. The gas system has a
sleeve which stiffens everything. This means it also shoots cool,
even under FA.