The Sterling

DaManBugs

LE
Book Reviewer
IIRC there was only ever one batch of 9mm that was divided by pistol/SMG and that was a lot purchased from Gevelot in 1974. The headstamps were identical, with just the pistol type having the box overstamped "for pistol use only".

Its unlikely that any Arrsers will have encountered this batch, so the broad answer is - no, there were no separate types for pistol and SMG.

IIRC#2, all other non-UK purchases of 9mm (and there were many) were approximately L2 spec and for use in both pistols and SMG. There were some non-standard types (ie training rounds).

Most of the subsequent "L" codes were to indicate the manufacturer of the ammunition, and not any difference in spec - it was all STANAG.

"L9" was a code allocated to batches from Dynamit Nobel, and was standard L2/ STANAG spec.
Thanks a lot for the clarifying info, 4(T). Very much appreciated.

MsG
 
The ammunition from India, as mentioned earlier,, wasn't a myth, as it had certainly occurred in a different decade, the early/mid 70s. The effects on the action and report were an anomaly that was puzzling on the range the first time it happened to me whilst firing. But walking up to the target at 20 yards, to find the rounds lodged half way through the ply was the real head scratcher.
Perhaps it was the earliest example of progress towards a new 'woke' army, the bullets strike with just sufficient force to to cause mild offence?
Manual subsequently amended to include IA for this form of stoppage. ISTR it went along the lines of 'a muffled report' 'low recoil' 'working parts not fully to the rear' and 'puff of black smoke' or somesuch, leading to dismantling the weapon to check for a barrel obstruction .
 
Something that's set me to thinking since this very interesting thread started is whether the loads for the Smudge were different to the loads for the Hi-Power. That is, were the L2 loads "hotter" to make sure the weapon cycled correctly, while the L9 loads were "normal", as it were? It's something that never entered my mind while firing them and during reloads I never checked whether the packs had different markings. Anyone any idea?

MsG
Not regards MoD 9mm, but some of the 9mm sold commercially is/was incapable of cycling an SMG properly. There used to be a video on Youtube (long gone) of, ISTR, a Malaysian police officer demonstrating unsuitable ammunition fired with a Sterling. It was a runaway gun, it kept going until the magazine was empty.
 
I did SMG during my 88 days RMP. The weapon I trained with was actually stamped L2A1, and Machine Carbine. I asked.my instructor. He reckoned it had come from Canada. It was indistinguishable from the L2A3.
The L2A1 was adopted and the alterations continued afterwards, producing L2A2 and the final L2A3 versions. I believe the existing L2A1 & -A2 models were amended to the L2A3 specification, but I've no idea what the differences were.

I remember the 'Machine Carbine' marked ones. I think they were early RSAF Fazackerly made-ones and it had something to do with Sterlings trying to extract payment for their SMG design in the courts after the MoD & RSAF shamelessly nicked it.
 
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Their efforts were junk and failures that's why I have a negative attitude.

The way they manufactured the SMG by induction brazing and all machined parts from solid while everyone one else was using sheet metal stampings at a fraction of the cost was so outdated they can't have made any money on them. Sterling was one of those lame duck British companies of that era trying to stave off bankruptcy.
Induction heated, but silver soldered, ISTR, but let's not argue about alloys.

You're hard to please, the L2A3/ Mk4 SMG was a WW2 gun, a pre-WW2 gun even, a modified Lanchester, made by pre-WW2 methods, but a good bit of kit. You may criticize the labour required to make it, but the S11 pressed-steel thing was the attempt to update it, you can't then complain about them trying.


When he says the Sterling sold to "...customers that the Uzi hadn't really appealed to...", that's a euphemism for Arabs. They wouldn't have been seen dead with a UZI (unless they'd just been shot with one and it appeared in the trophy pictures).

The S11 may have been a pile of pooh, but that is the nature, the function of prototypes. Further development decreases the pooh and increases the Ooooh factor. It was promising. The barrel was probably offset to get the right alignment with the magazine housing. That would probably have been sorted in later versions.

The UK had been half-covered with shitty factories with saw-tooth roofs making stuff. It's all gone in a generation or two. Labour governments taxed them to the hilt, Conservatives provided the justification with dodgy deals for their sort of chaps, far eastern imports ensured they couldn't compete. All we've got left are a few musical comedies about industries failing; Kinky Boots, Full Monty and Billy Elliot.

Sterlings were the exception, they didn't fold, they were sold off to BAe/ H&K and shut down to remove them from the market, some other dodgy deals.

PS Probably the only SMG to which you could fix bayonets, two at the same time. For when you want someone to be double dead. Worth every penny for that feature alone.
 
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maguire

LE
Book Reviewer
Induction heated, but silver soldered, ISTR, but let's not argue about alloys.

You're hard to please, the L2A3/ Mk4 SMG was a WW2 gun, a pre-WW2 gun even, a modified Lanchester, made by pre-WW2 methods, but a good bit of kit. You may criticize the labour required to make it, but the S11 pressed-steel thing was the attempt to update it, you can't then complain about them trying.


When he says the Sterling sold to "...customers that the Uzi hadn't really appealed to...", that's a euphemism for Arabs. They wouldn't have been seen dead with a UZI (unless they'd just been shot with one and it appeared in the trophy pictures).

The S11 may have been a pile of pooh, but that is the nature, the function of prototypes. Further development decreases the pooh and increases the Ooooh factor. It was promising. The barrel was probably offset to get the right alignment with the magazine housing. That would probably have been sorted in later versions.

The UK had been half-covered with shitty factories with saw-tooth roofs making stuff. It's all gone in a generation or two. Labour governments taxed them to the hilt, Conservatives provided the justification with dodgy deals for their sort of chaps, far eastern imports ensured they couldn't compete. All we've got left are a few musical comedies about industries failing; Kinky Boots, Full Monty and Billy Elliot.

Sterlings were the exception, they didn't fold, they were sold off to BAe/ H&K and shut down to remove them from the market, some other dodgy deals.

PS Probably the only SMG to which you could fix bayonets, two at the same time. For when you want someone to be double dead. Worth every penny for that feature alone.
watching that, if this was intended to compete with the more modern post ww2 smg designs, was there any reason particularly why Sterling continued to use the side-mounted magazine design, or was this just a holdover from the mp18/lanchester/sten lineage?
 
watching that, if this was intended to compete with the more modern post ww2 smg designs, was there any reason particularly why Sterling continued to use the side-mounted magazine design, or was this just a holdover from the mp18/lanchester/sten lineage?
There's a good tactical reason for the side mounted magazine when shooting prone or from a trench but obviously carrying it with a magazine on is a major PINTA if you're a tank crew, engineer or mobile bath unit which most SMG's were issued to postwar.
 
It was my personal weapon(in the signals) and for personal defence, cheap and reliable is all you really need. Then handed the pile of crap 80 and you wonder about the IQ of those in authority.
Me too, must admit when I first got trained on it I was afraid as my uncle also exSigs told me how it would go off if dropped on the floor and the round could be stopped by a wet blanket etc.

Getting onto the Regi shooting team and spending weeks on the range got really used to it.

We used to offset the zero so the sights had to just get onto the gap between the legs of the “old” fig 8 target.

1AACC44D-49CE-4975-8B17-A3ECD6065334.jpeg


So easy to see and sight in but the rounds hit the middle. Still got beaten by 2 Para in Bisley though.
 

maguire

LE
Book Reviewer
There's a good tactical reason for the side mounted magazine when shooting prone or from a trench but obviously carrying it with a magazine on is a major PINTA if you're a tank crew, engineer or mobile bath unit which most SMG's were issued to postwar.
Has anyone used a side mounted magazine design since however?
 
Homeopathic ammo?
You could always tell homeopathic ammo; the boxes were always marked thus, "Warning! These rounds may damage your health."

Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
 
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I fear a blanket would have gathered its hurt feelings and hurled the bullets back, the fig 11s of the time had few emotions, almost wooden really.
Targets Lives Matter!

Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
 
Has anyone used a side mounted magazine design since however?
Fashion is often very important and back in the 80s it was all Armoured Infantry or Jungle warfare, both of which aren't great for a side mounted magazine.. Top magazines like the P90, or even north korean copy of a nambu/bren are still around though and probably better weapons than anything been carried by service personnel who need something compact.
 

DaManBugs

LE
Book Reviewer
Induction heated, but silver soldered, ISTR, but let's not argue about alloys.

You're hard to please, the L2A3/ Mk4 SMG was a WW2 gun, a pre-WW2 gun even, a modified Lanchester, made by pre-WW2 methods, but a good bit of kit. You may criticize the labour required to make it, but the S11 pressed-steel thing was the attempt to update it, you can't then complain about them trying.


When he says the Sterling sold to "...customers that the Uzi hadn't really appealed to...", that's a euphemism for Arabs. They wouldn't have been seen dead with a UZI (unless they'd just been shot with one and it appeared in the trophy pictures).

The S11 may have been a pile of pooh, but that is the nature, the function of prototypes. Further development decreases the pooh and increases the Ooooh factor. It was promising. The barrel was probably offset to get the right alignment with the magazine housing. That would probably have been sorted in later versions.

The UK had been half-covered with shitty factories with saw-tooth roofs making stuff. It's all gone in a generation or two. Labour governments taxed them to the hilt, Conservatives provided the justification with dodgy deals for their sort of chaps, far eastern imports ensured they couldn't compete. All we've got left are a few musical comedies about industries failing; Kinky Boots, Full Monty and Billy Elliot.

Sterlings were the exception, they didn't fold, they were sold off to BAe/ H&K and shut down to remove them from the market, some other dodgy deals.

PS Probably the only SMG to which you could fix bayonets, two at the same time. For when you want someone to be double dead. Worth every penny for that feature alone.
Thanks very much for posting that interesting and highly informative vid, Onetap. I never knew that they were gearing up to produce a successor, nor had I ever heard of the S11.

You seem to know an awful lot about the Smudge, so I'd appreciate it if you could clear up another point for me. I mind reading yonks ago that there was a problem in production. Whenever they soldered the mag housing on, the "tube" bent the other way to the right. Apparently, they got around that by bending the "tube" in the opposite direction first and soldering on the mag housing brought it back to true. Is that just a myth, or did it really happen?

MsG
 
Fashion is often very important and back in the 80s it was all Armoured Infantry or Jungle warfare, both of which aren't great for a side mounted magazine.. Top magazines like the P90, or even north korean copy of a nambu/bren are still around though and probably better weapons than anything been carried by service personnel who need something compact.
This never made it to service..

Top mag lying flat...

 
The ammunition from India, as mentioned earlier,, wasn't a myth, as it had certainly occurred in a different decade, the early/mid 70s. The effects on the action and report were an anomaly that was puzzling on the range the first time it happened to me whilst firing. But walking up to the target at 20 yards, to find the rounds lodged half way through the ply was the real head scratcher.
Perhaps it was the earliest example of progress towards a new 'woke' army, the bullets strike with just sufficient force to to cause mild offence?
and the acquisition of this ammunition was allegedly corrupted by a senior civil servant, who colluded with the contractor to ensure their bid was lower and therefore competative.
 
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