David Mack wrote:
As pointed out to me in other threads, replicators don't quite work that way. They require some reservoir of raw matter that is reshaped using energy from a remote power plant. One would have to carry a significant mass of raw base material from which to fabricate ammunition, and one would also need a lot of energy — more than is normally used to operate an ordinary phaser rifle.
On the other hand: if these weapons can be equipped with microtransporters that can beam their bullets through solid walls to targets hundreds of meters away, they surely they could also beam ammunition into
their magazines from some separate container stored nearby. Although that would require the fighters to stay within transporter range of the ammo reservoir, which might limit their mobility, depending on what that range is.
The problem with Trek tech is that it's easy to take it into such hyper-advanced territory that it can accomplish virtually anything, which is bad for storytelling. One keeps having to either devise arbitrary limits or just gloss over the potential applications.