JETPILOT
Topic Author
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British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Wed Apr 02, 2003 6:49 pm

Anyone know the make and model of the British gov issue infantry assault rifle being used to kill axis of evilers?

Any info would be appreciated... rate of fire, caiber, etc....

It looks high tech. If I were to kill people I might want to use that.

JET
 
eg777er
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Wed Apr 02, 2003 8:39 pm

I doubt it. The SA-80s have a remarkable ability to jam just when you need it most.

Although apparently now they are mostly fixed, but it was a big scandal in the UK for a while.

 
trident3
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Wed Apr 02, 2003 8:44 pm

You probably wouldn't! It is accurate but unreliable, there was a lot of controversy in the press about how often the weapon jammed and bits fell of it etc. There was a strong possibility that the whole project was going to be cancelled and a replacement bought of the shelf. It is quite noticeable that the special forces use M16s
For more info try http://world.guns.ru/assault/as22-e.htm
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GDB
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Wed Apr 02, 2003 8:51 pm

It is the 5.56mm SA-80, and it has a long, troubled story.
Deployed in the mid 80's, it got a poor reputation for durability and reliability, plus points were it's great accuracy, particularly with the SUSAT optical sight issued to infantry, this caused a problem in that most troops were doing so well on the ranges that they were becoming eligible for sniper training.
In 1991, the SA-80's reputation sunk further, in the sandy conditions of the Gulf.
It was noticed that special forces were not using it.
The whole mess was mixed up with the privatisation of the makers, Enfield, part of Royal Ordnance, soon brought out by BAe, political pressure to enrich these companies seemed to override what the forces wanted.
Quality declined further when the Enfield factory was closed, and shifted to Nottingham.

In the end, much later than they should have, the Ministry Of Defence took action, the weapon was redesigned by Heckler and Koch, another company owned by British Aerospace, a £90 million contract to upgrade the weapons to SA-80A2 standard was awarded a couple of years ago, this is what is issued to the troops in the Gulf, and soon enough, the rest of the forces.
Given that the press are always running stories, mostly untrue, about the poor equipment of the army, if the SA-80A2 was still giving problems it would be all over the press by now.
So it seems that after a long soap opera, at last the SA-80 is working as advertised.
The weapon has had very extensive trials, which should have been carried out 15 years before, seemingly it passed with flying colours.
It is liked for it's accuracy, controllability in full auto, and ease of handling in confined areas, we will soon know if the trials really did vindicate the SA-80A2 now that it is very much in action.

 
 
L-188
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 3:58 am

I'll stick with my M-16 if I have too.

Most troops over there would be better served with Garands IMHO.
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GDB
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 8:31 am

Funny you should mention M-16's, when the SA-80A2 was tested in Afghanistan last year, the press was full of stuff about it still giving some problems, however that new M-16 version (M4?) apparently had similar problems too.
Nothing major in both cases though, the conditions out there were blamed, probably the usual teething problems in ultra-harsh environments away from extensive support.

 
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 8:46 am

The M-16 has some issues too, mostly from fouling of the system. Most of those problems are not Ed Stoners fault, but rather the Army's because right at the conclusion of development of the M-16 they changed the specifications for the gunpowder that was to be used in the 5.56 NATO shell. The new powder just didn't burn as cleanly or completely as the older stuff.

You have to remember that the 16 is a direct blowback rifle. That means you have barrel gases coming back into the chamber, those gases are really dirty, and not cleaning the rifle regularly doesn't help. On thing about the M16, in my opinion is that it is a much more closed rifle then compared to a 14 or a SKS. So the potential to build up deposits on the inside of the receiver is much greater.

That is one thing that I do like about SKS. The gases drive a separate piston that operates the rifle. There are no gases ending back in the receiver.

Hard to belive that the M-16 is really close to 40 years in US service.
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zeus01
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 8:47 am

Yes, GDB hit it right on the mark.

THe Styer Auger 80 model is great rifle, just not the best in long range fights. Its a urban designed weapon, not a field gun. IMO, that is its biggest downfall.
 
L-188
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 8:49 am

The Styer Aug.

That thing has more plastic then a Tupperware Party.
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GDB
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 9:52 am

That is a completely different gun to the SA-80, similar configuration that's all.

Oddly, many of the early M-16's were used in the Borneo campaign by the UK in the early/mid 1960's they were brought for jungle warfare and in use before most of the US forces had them.


 
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Thu Apr 03, 2003 10:41 am

The British seemed to be much less wary of going to the lighterweight 5.56 then the US was. That is one of the reasons the M14 stayed so long in service, particularly with the Marine Corps. Of course the Marines always have seemed less eager to look at new weapon systems. A lot of deaths on Guadacanal could probably have been avoided if the Garand had been in service with them instead of the Springfield. In fact the Army offered to loan the Marines the Garand but they refused.

In a way it is a shame that the Brits never concluded development of that bullpup rifle they where working on as a SMLE replacement. If memory serves it was supposed to be a .280. It was dropped after the US convinced everybody to accept .308 aka 7.62 as the standard NATO round.

But the L1A1 was a pretty fine replacement in that caliber.
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GDB
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Fri Apr 04, 2003 5:01 am

Judging by these pics from Iraq, the SA-80A2 now has a grenade launcher under the barrel:

http://www.operations.mod.uk/telic/images/ops/captured_wpns2.jpg

http://www.operations.mod.uk/telic/images/ops/3cdo_children.jpg
 
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Fri Apr 04, 2003 5:07 am

The M203 is a wonderful weapon.

That is about the only weapon that is either a direct or indirect fire weapon.

You can fire it directly or use it more in a mortar role.
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KLAX
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Fri Apr 04, 2003 5:54 am

I imagine an M203 would be difficult to fire accurately in a mortar role. Unless of course the goal was to "lob" the round over a nearby obstacle.

If I remember right, in "The Thin Red Line", which is supposed to show the battle for Guadalcanal, the soldiers are seen using the Garand. Is that a mistake, or was I actually seeing a Springfield? One movie I am sure a Springfield was used in is Saving Private Ryan, where the Sniper has one. It seems like a very accurate rifle from what I have read, but doesnt look like it has the stoping power of the Garand.

-Clovis
 
AFC_Ajax00
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Fri Apr 04, 2003 5:57 am

KLAX, during the Thin Red Line, those troops are Army, not Marines. The Marines initially captured and established a beachhead and the Airfield. Afterwards Army units moved in to secure the rest of the island. Someone correct me if i'm wrong but i don't think so.
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KLAX
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Fri Apr 04, 2003 5:58 am

That is waht I just realized, and was about to edit my post  Big thumbs up

-Clovis
 
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RE: British Infantry Assault Rifle....

Fri Apr 04, 2003 11:36 am

There is a sight that clips onto the side for that role. But at as short of ranges even a large error is still going to effect the target.

At least you don't have to stick your head out with it where you can be shot. That was one thing about the Garand, You could hug the ground much closer, there wasn't that magazine hanging below it.
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