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Cost Effective LOGMARS (Logistics Applications of Automated Marking and Reading Symbols) Marking of the M16 Rifle

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Laser-etched bar codes can dramatically reduce the costs of conducting small arms inventories. An Air Force technical study and a Marine Corps work measurement study have shown that such bar coding is both feasible and effective. To maximize savings, the Military Services mist etch the codes onto fielded small arms at the lowest possible cost. The M16 family of rifles is by far the largest component of most Service armories. Because the number and use of M16 rifles vary by Service, the most effective strategy for etching them varies by Service. For those stored in crates out of use, we recommend that weapons not be etched until crate opening and issuance. We recommend that the Army etch new M16A2s at Anniston Army Depot as they received from the factory. Since the Armys entire inventory of older M16A1s is scheduled for replacement we recommend that none of the currently fielded M16A1 inventory be etched. The Marine Corps and the Air Force should engage jointly in a program of etching M16As at installations with large inventories. They should use a truck-mounted mobile etcher. The M16s assigned to Edwards Air Force Base can be etched at a lower cost at Hill Air Force Bases small arms repair facility. The Navy has a relatively small number of M16 rifles, and most of them are stored in crates. Uncrated M16s are so few that they do not justify a laser etching program.

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies

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