Bloke on the Range videos

I hear some amusing tales from older retired ex Mob types , one claim was they could shoot fig 11 size targets out to a mile with an iron sighted .303 and another told me how at Bisley a Bootneck Sergeant shot a 2" group at 1000 yards with an iron sighted .303 .
Another of that genre

1594235990891.png
 
In the UK I seem to remember the RAF Police using them in the "Supplementary Storage Area" (Nukes). Apart from that as @Drlligaf says mostly MT drivers where an SLR wasn't really practical. I only saw officers get issued a Browning 9mm.

ETA. Just realised I replied to something from a long time ago.
WRAF had to "Q" on them to get signed on early 80s when it was dcreed that they could do stag
 

HE117

LE
Yeasss! And in such ways are myths built and sustained...

At the end of the day, I mostly put this all down to a professional loss of interest in skill at arms by the Army from some point back in the 60s. The general absence of a "shooting champion" amongst the ranks of the VSOs was particularly noticeable, leading to a general attitude of disdain from the climbers of the greasy pole.

I can remember my Company Commander at Sandhurst dismissing my Acadamy Full Colours because they were for "shooting" and not a "real sport".. Excellent virtue signalling I thought!

The whole development of the SA 80 was a slow moving train crash almost from the outset. Neither Warminster nor Enfield had the talent nor the resources to field such an ambitious rifle. The widespread lack of interest in shooting across the army was palpable with almost no real interest in anything except regimental pot hunting by the usual suspects. The fact that the Gurhkas had almost nothing to do during the cold war years except change lead into brass meant there was never a realistic chance of winning most of the main events, so everyone else basically lost interest! You may be interested to know that one of the big issues with the NRA at the moment is that some bright spark in MoD told the charities commission that there was no defence value in target shooting or support from the NRA. The Charities Commission, on the back of this, is now actively trying to strip charitable status from the Association...!

but back to the thread...!

Designing a bullpup rifle is not a simple engineering exercise, and the fact that Enfield, despite having all the research evidence that went in to EM2, chose to ignore it and do a cut 'n shut on a cheap export version of the original AR15/M16, the AR18, which used the original AR15 rotating bolt but used a folded steel construction and a more conventional gas piston, and more importantly, a folded mainspring which did away with a butt mounted mainspring.

1. Enfield basically took the AR18 design, threw away the stock and moved the trigger forward of the magazine housing. All the main elements however remained in their original position behind the mag. This is why the change lever is where it is on the SA80, as this is where it was originally on the AR18. The trigger however had to be moved and has a long, thin wobbly strip taking the movement back past the magazine to where it was on the AR18. The safety was originally on the AR18, part of the change lever assembly, however it was also moved down to the trigger group. The cross bolt safety was a Warminster request..!

2. The "forward assist" issue goes back to Stoner's original AR15 bolt design and affects the AR15/M16, AR18 and SA80 families that all use the same bolt. Because of the shape and surface area of the bolt head the action has it's maximum resistance at the end of the stroke and had a habit of stopping just before closing. Actually this is easier to deal with on an AR18 or SA80 as they have reciprocating bolt handles which can be thumped, however the M16 does not and had to have another handle fitted...!

These issues should have been known about but do not appear to have been considered in the SA80 design. The EM2 was designed from the get go to operate as a bullpup.. the sear for example was at the front of the bolt carrier and did not need the trigger action rerouted around the magazine..

What is interesting of course is that we managed to develop a world beating sniper rifle in the AI at the same time, largely based on the work done by the paper punchers at ... Bisley!

The real issue was that Enfield was allowed to bimble along in a bubble with virtually nothing to do since the 50s. Apart from the odd riot gun and specialist bit of kit, they developed nothing in the interim period. I would have had them entering rifles at Bisley every year! You only get better by doing stuff, not talking about it!
 
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4(T)

LE
Yeasss! And in such ways are myths built and sustained...

At the end of the day, I mostly put this all down to a professional loss of interest in skill at arms by the Army from some point back in the 60s. The general absence of a "shooting champion" amongst the ranks of the VSOs was particularly noticeable, leading to a general attitude of disdain from the climbers of the greasy pole.

I can remember my Company Commander at Sandhurst dismissing my Acadamy Full Colours because they were for "shooting" and not a "real sport".. Excellent virtue signalling I thought!

The whole development of the SA 80 was a slow moving train crash almost from the outset. Neither Warminster nor Enfield had the talent nor the resources to field such an ambitious rifle. The widespread lack of interest in shooting across the army was palpable with almost no real interest in anything except regimental pot hunting by the usual suspects. The fact that the Gurhkas had almost nothing to do during the cold war years except change lead into brass meant there was never a realistic chance of winning most of the main events, so everyone else basically lost interest! You may be interested to know that one of the big issues with the NRA at the moment is that some bright spark in MoD told the charities commission that there was no defence value in target shooting or support from the NRA. The Charities Commission, on the back of this, is now actively trying to strip charitable status from the Association...!

but back to the thread...!

Designing a bullpup rifle is not a simple engineering exercise, and the fact that Enfield, despite having all the research evidence that went in to EM2, chose to ignore it and do a cut 'n shut on a cheap export version of the AR15.. this is why:

1. The controls are all over the place ( although famously the cross bolt safety "feature" was a Warminster injection..) and the trigger is never going to be that good because they basically have to reconnect back to where they were on the AR18!
2. It inherited the need for forward assist from the AR15.. thanks Gene!

What is interesting of course is that we managed to develop a world beating sniper rifle in the AI at the same time, largely based on the work done by the paper punchers at ... Bisley!

The real issue was that Enfield was allowed to bimble along in a bubble with virtually nothing to do since the 50s. Apart from the odd riot gun and specialist bit of kit, they developed nothing in the interim period. I would have had them entering rifles at Bisley every year! You only get better by doing stuff, not talking about it!



Right now they seem to have lost interest in having an actual Army, let alone target shooting or small arms development.
 
(...) Designing a bullpup rifle is not a simple engineering exercise, and the fact that Enfield, despite having all the research evidence that went in to EM2, chose to ignore it and do a cut 'n shut on a cheap export version of the AR15.. this is why:

1. The controls are all over the place ( although famously the cross bolt safety "feature" was a Warminster injection..) and the trigger is never going to be that good because they basically have to reconnect back to where they were on the AR18!
2. It inherited the need for forward assist from the AR15.. thanks Gene!
(...)
You seem to have an odd mix of AR15 and AR18 in your history. You may wish to sort out what you meant before someone starts citing it as proof whatever argument they want to make.

As for the location of the controls being less than optimal, that always seems to be the case for bullpups which are converted from conventional layouts. They really seem to need to be designed as a bullpup from the ground up.
 

HE117

LE
You seem to have an odd mix of AR15 and AR18 in your history. You may wish to sort out what you meant before someone starts citing it as proof whatever argument they want to make.

As for the location of the controls being less than optimal, that always seems to be the case for bullpups which are converted from conventional layouts. They really seem to need to be designed as a bullpup from the ground up.
Apologies... I have edited the text to hopefully clarify this...

It was a logical, although misunderstood set of consequences..

1. The "forward assist" issue of the AR15 should have been known about. Why inherit a characteristic that was known about..?

2. The AR18, by using telescoping return springs was a potential candidate for bull-pupping, but the consequences of "remote controlling" what was a conventional hammer action rifle were always going to cause issues.

As an aside..

We had an new member of our club who decided that he could, "as an engineer" and with no experience of gun design or shooting rebuild a cheap and nasty .22 AR lookey likey into a bullpup using a Dremel, body filler, rivits and strips of aluminium.

He managed to reproduce all the A1 characteristics (including dropping the mag). It was also capable of random selection to full auto! He is no longer a member, and he was told to hand the rifle in to the Police, who were also "not impressed"...!
 
Eugene Stoner specifically did not include a forward assist into the AR15, he had included one on the Portuguese contract AR10 but he argued against it being included on the AR15 despite the insistence of the US military , his opinion was that it made all known stoppages worse not better, right or wrong that was his view on it.
 
Eugene Stoner specifically did not include a forward assist into the AR15, he had included one on the Portuguese contract AR10 but he argued against it being included on the AR15 despite the insistence of the US military , his opinion was that it made all known stoppages worse not better, right or wrong that was his view on it.
I have owned a Portuguese Contract AR10. There is no forward assist. Stoner was against them entirely.

I share Karl's view that the forward assist is a pointless waste of time that is more likely to make an easily-resolvable stoppage worse than to turn a stoppage into a firable round.

The forward assist drill became a standard thing on the L85A1 due to the springs being inadequate to fully close the breech if the rifle's dirty. Using the forward assist button is also a thing in both the US and C7/C8 drills though as a matter of course.
 

HE117

LE
Whether Gene Stoner agreed or disagreed with forward assist, my contention is that it was a known "issue" with that design that led to all sorts of modifications and bizarre drills..

So why MOD and Enfield took us down a path with a design that not only copied the characteristic, but in many cases made it worse is a continuing source of wonder...!

... but also let me state that having carried an A2 on a couple of recent Op tours, I have no issue with it as a military arm. Having lived with a semi auto rifle for most of my life, I did not see a need to ever switch to auto, and the cross bolt safety did not particularly bother me. It is an accurate rifle, and on reflection I was quite glad not to have had to swing an SLR in and around the various vehicles that were provided to move my increasingly elderly carcass about the battlefield. I think the presence of a man bag and twelve filled magazines a little over enthusiastic, but there it is.. I was always more of a believer in the Swiss "shoot twice" strategy...!

I would have preferred to have had a single, thumb operated safety/change lever and a left hand non reciprocating charging handle, but that is to some extent a function of my history. Having regularly used a range of small arms from a Brown Bess upward, I still find the presence of a safety catch "quaint"..!
 

JackSofty

War Hero
I did not see a need to ever switch to auto.
Unlike a certain Sjt. M.......... when acting as RS, would ask one to present weapon for inspection, switch the change lever and then tell one to crack on with hilarious consequences... My, how we laughed.


Sent from my karzi while losing several pounds
 
Whether Gene Stoner agreed or disagreed with forward assist, my contention is that it was a known "issue" with that design that led to all sorts of modifications and bizarre drills..

So why MOD and Enfield took us down a path with a design that not only copied the characteristic, but in many cases made it worse is a continuing source of wonder...!

... but also let me state that having carried an A2 on a couple of recent Op tours, I have no issue with it as a military arm. Having lived with a semi auto rifle for most of my life, I did not see a need to ever switch to auto, and the cross bolt safety did not particularly bother me. It is an accurate rifle, and on reflection I was quite glad not to have had to swing an SLR in and around the various vehicles that were provided to move my increasingly elderly carcass about the battlefield. I think the presence of a man bag and twelve filled magazines a little over enthusiastic, but there it is.. I was always more of a believer in the Swiss "shoot twice" strategy...!

I would have preferred to have had a single, thumb operated safety/change lever and a left hand non reciprocating charging handle, but that is to some extent a function of my history. Having regularly used a range of small arms from a Brown Bess upward, I still find the presence of a safety catch "quaint"..!
I don't think it's particularly inherent in the AR15/18 bolt design - Steyr AUG gets away without one, and there's probably other successful AR18-based designs that don't have the possibility either ("successful" so I'm not talking things like Leader / AAA, although I might subject mine to some mud one of these days...). And we tend not to think of other designs and forward assisting cos they've often got a reciprocating cocking handle anyway. Certainly you don't see the straight-pull AR CSR crowd forward assisting, although that's on a fairly clean range.

I suspect the early VN M16 experience and the L85A1 experience overblow it somewhat - there were plenty of pre-forward-assist AR's in British and USAF service, and photos of the latter keep cropping up in modern combat zones seemingly without complaint.
 

tiv

LE
I don't think it's particularly inherent in the AR15/18 bolt design - Steyr AUG gets away without one, and there's probably other successful AR18-based designs that don't have the possibility either ("successful" so I'm not talking things like Leader / AAA, although I might subject mine to some mud one of these days...). And we tend not to think of other designs and forward assisting cos they've often got a reciprocating cocking handle anyway. Certainly you don't see the straight-pull AR CSR crowd forward assisting, although that's on a fairly clean range.

I suspect the early VN M16 experience and the L85A1 experience overblow it somewhat - there were plenty of pre-forward-assist AR's in British and USAF service, and photos of the latter keep cropping up in modern combat zones seemingly without complaint.
The AUG did originally have one. I recall a button on the cocking handle you could push that connected the handle to the guide rod.

Like this in fact:

1594293062518.jpeg
 
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Oh, for some ingenious, forward thinking and skilled engineer to make one that was UK legal.

But then again I had the pleasure of firing one of these back in the mid 1980's which had been put together by a very talented REME 'tiffy SSGT K** P******.

ISTR that it was some type of sub-calibre set up using a modified breech block and return spring.
 

4(T)

LE

Perhaps the Sterling factory zeroed for 2z with a bayonet fitted, or to place the centre of a five-rnd group at the point of aim, ie a spread low left to high right.

Shame it has to be single shot; theres a real art to shooting these effectively in full-auto - anticipating the bolt clunk, the muzzle climb, etc.

If you have a lot of ammo to burn, theres an interesting close-quarter technique that involves putting the left hand over the top of the barrel jacket (ie reverse grip; thumb underneath and facing to the rear) and firing from the waist. Right hand and stock clamped against your gut.

Obviously you can't use the sights and so are aiming by instinct - later, muscle memory. However the reverse grip cancels out the usual muzzle climb on auto, and gives a very tight group. With practice (and lots of ammo) you get tight target centre mass groups comparable to those of - say - an MP5, but with faster reaction times (no aiming involved).

I gather the technique originated in WW2 with commando use of the Sten and was subsequently much favoured by RN boarding parties because of its utility in the companionways and tight spaces of a ship or submarine.
 
I've shot a Sterling full auto. Never understood where these allegations of significant climb come from... It moves about a bit more than a STEN Mk.V (probably cos that's heavier), but this "tendency to climb" thing everyone talks about?

This chap demonstrates it rather well:

 

Themanwho

LE
Book Reviewer
I've shot a Sterling full auto. Never understood where these allegations of significant climb come from... It moves about a bit more than a STEN Mk.V (probably cos that's heavier), but this "tendency to climb" thing everyone talks about?

This chap demonstrates it rather well:

Spot on.

As I've already boresplained on this thread, in my first posting I shot a shedload of SMGs for two years, and they're extremely controllable on ratatat; there's a knack, but it's not exactly difficult to get the hang of.

And lots of fun.
 

4(T)

LE
I've shot a Sterling full auto. Never understood where these allegations of significant climb come from... It moves about a bit more than a STEN Mk.V (probably cos that's heavier), but this "tendency to climb" thing everyone talks about?

This chap demonstrates it rather well:


Not so much "climb" as a tendency to track a group bottom left to top right (@25m), depending upon the ammo. At least in military full-auto practices it usually meant taking a 7 o'clock poa on the white patch, firing a short burst to 1 o'clock and the resetting the poa.

I suppose some types gives a small residual recoil impulse or slight change in the timing of the firing cycle and the way it changes the gun balance. Perhaps good old 2z has a slight primer delay cf. civvie types?


No, nothing like a 7.62x51 rifle on full auto.
 

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