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"If you're going to be crazy, you have to get paid for it, or else you're going to be locked up." Dr. Hunter S. Thompson

Monday, December 14, 2020

The M26 MASS System and Breaching Doors

Greetings Me Droogs and Droogettes!
Again, in keeping with the "we're running out of time", I present the M26 MASS Weapons System.
The MASS Stands for Modular Accessory Shotgun System.  Now I have more than a passing familiarity with even this oddball setup.  I was part of the very first initial fielding to an actual Army Unit.  Got to go to Rock Island to learn alllll aboot it too.  Nothing like TAD, temporary additional duty, or, as I like to call it, 'travelling around drunk' on the dot mil/gov dime.

Now, this's an oddball system, and is a bit rare, but, what the hell... I'll include it.
The M26 is a straight-pull 12 Gauge either standalone or underbarrel shotty.  It uses either a 3 round or 5 round mag.  It's primary design was to replace the M500 Mossberg pump action 12 gauge.  That being said, the Mossberg ain't going anywhere quick, mainly because the load/reload on this thing is s-l-o-w compared to a pump.  More on that in a minute.

It's designed primarily to be a 'breacher' more than anything else.  Meaning it's designed to take door locks out, and hinges utilizing specialize Powdered Zinc/Steel breech rounds.  It comes, much like the M320 40mm I went over a couple of days ago, with a modular kit to allow it to 'standalone' or to be mounted under a rifle like the M4 or m16 variants.  It mounts just like the old M203.
Out of focus selfie from back in the day when I issued the first round of them to the Army Reserve in 2013.  
It's a lightweight manually operated bolt action.  Which means each. round. has. to. be. manually. chambered.  Which takes a minute... no rapid fire with this thing... leastways not without a shit-ton of practice.  That giant assed muzzle guard?  That's a collapsible breacher guard to protect the end of the barrel.  The stand-off guard if you will.  Grasp it, turn to the left, and it collapses onto the barrel in stowed position.  If needed, extend it (spring loaded), and twist left to lock it in place.
Weighs in at 2.4 pounds in under barrel (no stock) mode
Tips in at 4 pounds with extraneous stock and bullshit.

Light and useful.
Think "super-short-sawed-off-shotty" mounted under yer M4.
The unit I issued them to is a Army Light Boat unit... yep... ocean going grunts... Got an LST or what passes for one here these days.  Apparently the powers that be figured they could use them to 'force' doors on boats and shit... mostly for the drug interdiction missions I guess...  I dunno... the guys I issued them to were like "Oh great, MORE bullshit to carry and sign for."

Gotta love the Grunts, even ocean going Grunts eh?

So, to continue:
Loading a mag, be it the 5 round or 3, is similar to the AK47 and the M107A1... 
Nose in first, then tip the ass in til it clips on the mag release (3)
As in the picture, the charging handle for the bolt is in the upright position, ready to load a round.  In the pic of my ugly mug, as blurry as it may be, you can see that the charging handle is in the stowed folded down position. The charging handle can be reversed to accommodate left-handed firers. It swaps back-and-forth.  Handy no?

Now, when chambering a round, there is a action lock release on the left side that releases the bolt, and allows you to chamber a round.  There is no springs... it's all manual.  Pull the bolt to the rear, then, once fully to the rear, slap it back forward, stripping a round off the magazine, and chambering the round.  Use enough force or it'll hang.

Ask me how I know.

Close the action, and as on all military weapons, check the safety.
If it's red, yer dead.
It's a push button with a red ring.  Red ring = Boom.
Not so good Mon... Jajaja?
So, Weapon on Safe, and ready to roll.

The dot mil has a few different rounds for this thing:
M162 00 Buckshot Rounds
M1030 Breeching Rounds
#7 and #9 Birdshot Rounds

It also has non-lethal options:
M1012 Rifled Baton Rubber Round
M1013 Rubber Buckshot "Stinger" Rounds

They've been using these quite a bit in Affy from what I heard... Lotsa doors and whatnot.
And for those who want to know more:
You, however, don't want to use Buckshot...
The dot mil and cops use either powdered steel and/or zinc in a wax matrix to blast the hinges.  
Birdshot is good for us civvies in worst case scenes...

Jes' Sayin'...
Now, To attack the hinges of a door:

1) Engage the top hinge first. Aim the shotgun to eliminate the maximum number of screws holding the hinge onto the door with one shot. 
2) Prepare to reengage the hinge and into the door jam. One round may not defeat a hinge; be prepared to fire follow-on shots. No more than two tho (this's experience talking.)
3) Once the top hinge is destroyed, move and engage the middle hinge. Utilize the same technique on the screws. 
4) Engage the bottom hinge last. In most cases of top-down breaching, the door collapses from its own weight, pulling the lower hinge out of the door jam. 

Once the hinges have been defeated, open the door by applying the same procedures and precautions used when performing the breach on the door's locking mechanism. 
I also have found, depending on the door, that ker-blasting the fuck outta the lock right off -can- be done... all depends... circumstances yadda yadda.

Hey, I'm just sharing.

Now, steel doors... special cases and such whatnot... Look for the frame.  If it's wood, attack the wood.  If not?  
Hit the concrete near or as close to the frame as possible.
Beware for 'bouncers' if'n you don't have proper breaching rounds.  Buckshot stings.

Again, YMMV.
But with all things, it's an "Odd Duck" weapons system I'm sure the majority of y'all have never heard of, never mind seen written up.  I originally was scheduled to do an article for Bob Owens on his site way back but he went and self-terminated.  Still upsets me as Bob was the raison-d'etre I originally got into blogging.  Phil just happened to re-start my ass by kicking it.

See, long/short, I was in Kuwait when Bob, poasting at "Confederate Yankee" started investigating that weaselly piece of shit Scott Thomas Beauchamp started doing his "Baghdad Diarist" bullshit for the New Republic, I, no bullshit was Bob's on-the-ground source in Kuwait for allllllll the shit that came to light.  We became friends, as much as this medium allows.  Great guy... still dunno what went sideways.  Which reminds me, I still owe that fucker Bo-chump a set of lumps... remind me at some point will y'all? 

I purely need to kick. his. fucking. worthless. lying. ass.

Why?  Because Bob self-terminated, and I hate Bo-Chump with the passion of a thousand burning suns.  The very fact he's still drawing O2 is an insult to Bob's memory.

He's on me permanent "to do" list.
And I'm behind in settling accounts.
Never, ever, ever piss off a man who can hold (not cradled, mind you...hold) a complete and barreled M2HB Browning .50 BMG Machine Gun and Grin like that.  NOT the person you want pissed at you.

Jes' Sayin'.
So, so much for the M26... hope you found it entertaining.
I'm sure the 'how to' on taking a door is going to be helpful.
Gonna need that to get them out of their holes when the time comes
To drag them to the gallows.
More Later I Remain The Intrepid Reporter
Big Country
Donny Uptake (F) T/wt 435.45566NW SBD
X-Dino Burlington Zappo F


  1. Thank God for wax loads with birdshot...

  2. Love my Mossberg 500. Tryin' ta dig up the article I read this story in, but again, Google can't find shit. Apparently shortly after the fall of Saddam, some Iraqis warned our boys that a buncha local yokels were planning to loot the fuck out of one of Saddam's weapons depots, so command sent a couple of Humvees full of Jarheads out there to stop 'em.

    Apparently the main weapons used in that riot control engagement were three Mossberg 500's... that had been left in the back of unsealed Hummers for three days in the middle of an Iraqi dust storm. Marines just brushed 'em the fuck off, loaded 'em up and ran with 'em. After running at least two hundred rounds of beanbags and other riot loads through 'em, not a single failure... while successfully holding off hundreds of rioters for hours and hours.

  3. Nothing like taking a light weapon system like the M16 series and turning it into a boat anchor.

  4. The action lock release is on the underside, behind the mag release.

  5. Remember your Reverse Engineering 101:

    If you want to make your doors a lot harder to breach:

    a) reinforce the frame, and the door edges, ideally with steel and looooong screws, all the way to solid wood, instead of just the jack studs around the frame.

    b) Four hinges beats three, and takes very little time.
    They sell steel plates that can go bolted through the door on both hinge and lock sides of doors at Homeless Depot, for a few bucks, and they'll stop anything but rifled slugs coming at them, and sting Herr Breacher in the process.

    c) Throwing a couple of gate slide bolts on the lock side is child's play. Putting them on all four corners ain't much harder, and renders shotgun breaches pretty much "not happening" events, for quite a bit longer.

    d) Inside crossbars dropped across the door are even better, as everyone since the Middle Ages has known.

    e) Tubular steel rectangular crossbars beet wooden ones, FTR.

    f) Skinning the door and frame with sheet steel, even AR500, is drug dealer level of protection from projectiles.
    But it's do-able, if you want to take the time and spend the money. Your house, your choice.

    g) Recognize that if they can't shoot it off the hinges, they're gonna blow a hole in it with explosives and shaped charges. best not to be on the other side if/when that happens.

    h) And if that isn't quick enough, they'll find somewhere else easier to come in, like windows, or even walls.
    Know this, and plan ahead.

    i) Master class is to put a solid structure as an outer door, with a second inner door.

    j) You're trying to buy time, not defeat all comers. unless you can build an actual castle. In which case, build a castle.

    k)If you can defend against breaching any point on the structural perimeter from reinforced corners, do that.

    l) Don't make it so hard to get in, you cannot get out. Always have a bolthole, somewhere. Or several. Even gophers and rabbits know this.

    Good talk.

    1. Actually HAVE the 2X4 reinforced cross bar for the front door... 'cattle gate' parts from Home Depot, and a 2x4 reinforced with steel banding. Makes one hell of a "Po-Po slower" on the off chance of unwanted intrusion... figger long enough for me and Sapper to get rigged the fuck up and die in place.

  6. Here's a video of it in use by Task and Purpose.