Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

SA-80.


This is coolbert:

Here, from an English source, a description of problems, deficiencies, difficulties, etc., as found with the SA80 assault rifle. Currently, and for over twenty years now, the basic personal weapon issued to the common British soldier.

IT IS NOT ONLY IN COMBAT THAT WEAPONS AND WEAPONS SYSTEMS CAN BE FOUND TO BE FLAWED TO A DEGREE THAT PUTS THE USER IN SERIOUS RISK!!

As originally issued [1985], the SA80 displayed an almost overwhelming number of deficiencies. To include:

* "couldn't be fired from the left shoulder (it still can't)" [let me explain. A soldier in a foxhole with a berm in front of him for protection needs in an instant to be able to fire from either side of the berm. Ability to fire either right or left handed a MUST!! In urban combat too, ability to fire from the left shoulder around a corner without exposing the torso is again a MUST!!]

* "The firing pins broke" [in MOST firearms, the firing pin is usually a delicate item??]

* "the magazine fell off"

* "the bolt-release button broke" [a cocked and ready to fire weapon has the bolt to the rear, a full mag is inserted, the bolt-release is pressed, the bolt goes home, strips out and chambers a cartridge]

* "the triggers got stuck" [this weapon is capable of auto or semi-auto selective fire!?]

* "the cleaning kit wouldn't clean" [this is a serious problem with a weapon for which constant cleaning is a MUST!]

* "the butt plate broke"

* "the cheek-pad fell off"

* "the cheek-pad melted" [in hot desert climates, the stock exposed to the direct rays of the sun, this can happen!]

* "the cartridge cases wouldn't eject properly"

* "the bolt carrier didn't fit properly" [in the M-16 too, bolt carriers have to be properly mated to the receiver for the life of the weapon?!]

* "the locking pins holding the gun together were inadequate"

* "the safety catch wasn't safe"

* "'it goes off when you drop it?'" [this particular deficiency is especially galling in that it was found by a foreign weapons manufacturer [Heckler & Koch], the problem hitherto not known to the English!!]

* "The magazine itself, . . . turned out to be a shoddy piece of equipment . . . the testing troops never used it, using a US-made magazine instead, because the British magazine caused the rifle to jam up to five times more often."

The reader will please note - - the number of times - - I have used the term - - "a MUST"!!

Elite British units [SAS & SBS] prefer the U.S. M-16 rifle and M-4 carbine??!!

How could this all possibly be? Protocols have not been worked out adequately to prevent design errors? Too many compromises must be made during the design, developmental and testing process that leaves too much room for error?

Maybe the entire world just needs to standardize on the basic AK-47? Hell, the price for an AK on the international market is $60 U.S.D. Ammunition also exists in abundance for a very reasonable price.

All problems with assault rifles for all nations would be solved more or less forever in one fell swoop?

I am being flippant here? Maybe NOT!!

"flip┬Ěpant - - adjective 1. frivolously disrespectful, shallow, or lacking in seriousness; characterized by levity"

I do find it interesting to note that the "original" assault rifle, generally recognized as being so, the German StG 44, COULD NOT BE FIRED FROM THE PRONE POSITION!!

NOBODY will ever get it 100 % right. But with the SA80, it is reasonable to ask some serious questions as to WHY?

coolbert.

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