Japan’s new rifle.

It has been said that one of Japan’s weaknesses was the age and design of the SDF’s rifles. They were rapidly falling behind and the rifle was being increasingly outperformed by recent upgraded /newer designs fielded by other armies. The issue has now been addressed by the new Howa 5.56 which it was revealed late last year will now probably be replacing the Type 89 in present use.

The type 89 was based on the American AR-18 introduced in 1989. This was an improved AR-15 design, cheaper to manufacture and avoided some of the problems the AR-15 had. The Howa recently 5.56 won a competition involving the HK 416 and SCAR-L.

It uses the extruded aluminium uppers and polymer lowers as seen in other recent designs, a simple and cost-efficient production method with foldable stock similar to SCAR-L or HK 433. The controls look identical to other AR-15 style rifle and foldable iron sights mounted on a full length 12 o’clock Picatinny rail.

Japan has ordered 3,283 Howa assault rifles for $2,800 each for the first batch. The SDF currently has around 151,000 active personnel who use assault rifles.

 
Interesting that it's not a bullpup design. Do you know any reasons for that?
 
Interesting that it's not a bullpup design. Do you know any reasons for that?
Not as useful as some think? there's a reason few other nations use them
 

civvy

Old-Salt
In what way do you find it interesting? There is no evidence to show that bullpup is better than conventional layout.

I think dark nit can speak for himself. But I think that was the point. British humour and all that.
 
I think dark nit can speak for himself. But I think that was the point. British humour and all that.
I'm genuinely interested to know why he found it a point of interest. Bullpups were mooted back in the days when rifles were like unwieldy broomsticks. The Colt Commando and to some extent the Klatch showed that you didn't necessarily need bullpup configuration in order to have a weapon suitable for work in APCs or for FIBUA. Bullpups are ergonomically inferior while giving scant, if any advantage.
 
As a left hander, I'm not a fan of bullpups other than the Steyr AUG which has a conversion kit and can easily be swapped.

The obvious advantage is a shorter overall length for the same length of barrel, and possibly a small reduction in weight.
 
There's nothing new in any military rifles now, the technology has been played out and everyone is settling on an AR15 / 18 in some form or another , until caseless ammo comes in not much will change I think.

The first AR15's / M16's in the early 1960's aren't much different to today's versions, which just goes to show how good it was, an M16a1 would still be a very capable service rifle today.
 
I'm genuinely interested to know why he found it a point of interest. Bullpups were mooted back in the days when rifles were like unwieldy broomsticks. The Colt Commando and to some extent the Klatch showed that you didn't necessarily need bullpup configuration in order to have a weapon suitable for work in APCs or for FIBUA. Bullpups are ergonomically inferior while giving scant, if any advantage.
Where does that leave the Tavor 21?
 
There's nothing new in any military rifles now, the technology has been played out and everyone is settling on an AR15 / 18 in some form or another , until caseless ammo comes in not much will change I think.

The first AR15's / M16's in the early 1960's aren't much different to today's versions, which just goes to show how good it was, an M16a1 would still be a very capable service rifle today.
Correct. As long as we use cased ammo and rotating bolts there can be nothing new. Just mutton dressed up as lamb.
 
Where does that leave the Tavor 21?
My nipper's infantry brigade was equipped with M4s. Although I got him range time on the X95 when he was still in high school, when he eventually got to NCO's course and had plenty of opportunity to use Tavors - he was appalled by how inferior they were from the ergonomic aspect.
 
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