Replacement for SA80

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posted on Jun, 13 2007 @ 03:17 AM
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Thanks for the support lads.

I started using the LSW in 1990. In our platoon it was usually referred to as the 'crow cannon', as it was the newest members of the section who carried them. Back then it was not the most reliable weapon in the world, nor was the rifle. Even with regular cleaning it was still not the sort of weapon that you would have wanted to trust your life to. However it was and is an EXTREMELY accurate weapons system.

My platoon commander must have been very forward thinking, as he realised that it was about as useful as t1ts on a bull as a fire support weapon. However he knew that it could put down sniper level accuracy out to 400m, so he used it as a marksmans weapon. The rest of the army took about 14 years to realise this, and now this is how the LSW is used throughout the army. This was unfortunate for me, as I was about to move onto a rifle and pass the LSW onto the new NIG of the platoon (not racism, NIG means New In Green in the British Army). I was quite a decent marksman however, so I was stuck with the LSW for another 3 years until I transferred to the GS battalion.

Since then I used the A1 in N. Ireland, Sierra Leonne and Kosovo, as well as numerous exercises in all immaginable climates. The A1 was crap. Fact. The really bad rep came because of the major feed problems with loading blank ammunition (which is what most soldiers fire most). It was a bit more reliable with live rounds, but not sufficiently so. By this time I had spent a period with a unit that did not use SA80s, and that made me see the light. When I returned to my bn after this attachment, I would dream of HK53s and M16s. This was the case right up until the A2 was issued.

We took the A2 to Iraq during OP TELIC 1. My mind was changed forever. The A2 shot like a dream. It would continue firing as long as you kept putting rounds in it, and the rounds would go where you wanted them to. It was still heavy, but that didn't matter because I'd been carrying one my entire adult life so it was second nature to me. The cleaning routine had changed, and this added to the ease of maintainance. Since then I have used it on another tour of Iraq and one of Afghanistan. In the 'stan I fired more rounds than I ever thought possible, and my confidence in the weapon has increased even more.

TheSA80A2 will fire if looked after, and will be as accurate as any assault rifle anywhere. I now trust it as much as any other weapon and would be sad to see it go so soon after the MoD getting it right.

[edit on 13-6-2007 by PaddyInf]




posted on Jun, 13 2007 @ 12:40 PM
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No your right there the LSW was definitely the NIGS weapon. They thought they had been promoted when given a SA80 when the new NIGS turned up. LSW is a good weapon if only they could stop those bloody legs falling down and extending whilst you were running across the range.

On a differnent note Paddy i always though NIG stood for (New Intake Group) as thats what they were listed as on the Commanding Officers Monthly Memo on the company notice board. Maybe im wrong but i gotta admit New in Green sounds far better or "Sprogish"



posted on Jun, 13 2007 @ 01:19 PM
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I suppose that the CO had to call them something that didn't make the poor little souls feel bad about being new!! Still effin NIGs though.

As for the bipod legs, I found that an elastic band did the business.



posted on Jun, 13 2007 @ 01:35 PM
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Maybe it was a tongue in cheek jibe from the CO to the new NIGS


I remember a NIG demanding he have a rifle instead of the LSW. He said all through training he had only used a rifle and if he was now to be given a Long Silly Weapon he wouldnt be responsible for his actions whilst firing. Basically he was saying he might actually slot one of us as he was not used to it. He proper threw his toys out the pram. Put it this was he got a good slapping he was made to do 10 laps of the perimeter in Mess Tin Dress and the stupid get still ended up with the LSW

Gobby NIGS were the way forward!!!!!



posted on Jun, 14 2007 @ 02:14 AM
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And this guy was a Para?!?! Should have given the gobby git the 94 as well. It's hard to be mouthy when you can't breathe from carrying the sections heaviest weapons.

Any way, my whole point is there is no reason to replace the SA80A2. The cost would be in the region of £500 million (as opposed to the £92 million that the upgrade cost) and the weapon works well now. The infantry section has a diverse range of weapons available now, and most of them are on SA80 platforms. It's a good set up, so why change it?



posted on Jun, 14 2007 @ 04:19 AM
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a small point often overlooked is that at the time of the upgrade H & K were actually owned by Royal Ordinance (then also part of Bae systems), so they were always the logical choice to do the work. They have since been sold on to reform as a seperate company.



posted on Jun, 14 2007 @ 01:19 PM
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Originally posted by PaddyInf
And this guy was a Para?!?! Should have given the gobby git the 94 as well. It's hard to be mouthy when you can't breathe from carrying the sections heaviest weapons.

Any way, my whole point is there is no reason to replace the SA80A2. The cost would be in the region of £500 million (as opposed to the £92 million that the upgrade cost) and the weapon works well now. The infantry section has a diverse range of weapons available now, and most of them are on SA80 platforms. It's a good set up, so why change it?


Sure was. I agree with the 94 but not so much heavy but just bloody awkward to carry therefore has you breathing out of your ass. Funny you should mention the 94 as i was always impressed by the rifle fitted underneath to fire the spotter rounds. My first shot was always to locate windage and accuracy the second shot always bang on target. I rarely fired more than 2 rounds before switching to main heat. Classic Weapon though



posted on Jun, 18 2007 @ 05:46 AM
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Originally posted by fritz
HowlrunnerIV - automatic weapons DO work in hot and dusty conditions.


Of course they do. They also fail. I'm not trying to say every weapon fails, I meant that ANY weapon CAN fail. Unless you...


strip the working parts out and place them on lint free cloths. The heat of the sun caused the gun oil to ooze from the working parts. We then washed them in hot soapy water, removing all bits of sand and grit, dried in the sun, then re-oiled. I personally used a gun oil called 009 which I believed was made by Parker Hale.


However, even properly cleaning the Chauchat would, according to legend, guarantee only five more rounds being fired before the next jam.

I am NOT a soldier and I have had limited exposure to automatic weapons. However, I have pretty decent access to soldiers and I read WAAYY too much. That being said, I've seen what a hard desert life can do to a rifle (both bolt-action and auto) and I've seen temperature-change induced metal fatigue.

From what I have been told the L86 LSW makes a pretty decent substitute for a proper sniper rifle if you need it to. Accurate, with a longer barrel and bipod, and with selective fire, not to mention the SUSAT.



posted on Jun, 18 2007 @ 06:58 AM
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Originally posted by weirdo
Westpoint

So every solider that shoots is gone wast 21,000 rounds.A few problems with that.

1)you would need to genetically modifiy your troops to be large enough to carry all that ammo
2)you taxes are going to go through the roof if you send the many thousands of troops that shoot that many rounds in twenty seconds.

So much crap from one person


[edit on 27-6-2004 by weirdo]

A gun is fired more than once maybe at shooting ranges... Now, in a war situation I think you would find that guns actually break significantly faster than that as they may be including practice rounds.

Just my 20 C...



posted on Jun, 18 2007 @ 10:08 AM
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Originally posted by HowlrunnerIV
From what I have been told the L86 LSW makes a pretty decent substitute for a proper sniper rifle if you need it to. Accurate, with a longer barrel and bipod, and with selective fire, not to mention the SUSAT.


Too true. The LSW is still used by the no.2 in many sniper pairs in the British Army, with the no1 using the L96/L115 and an SA80A2 as backup. It can provide a degree of firepower if the team gets bumped, and can also provide accurate fire at longer ranges in the unlikely event that the L96/L115 get damaged.

The LSW is also used in this role to take on targets at night. The weapon is scaled to provide sniper-level accuracy out to 400m (I would suggest 600 in good conditions). 400m is about the limit of the CWS (Night vision scope). Therefore the LSW is often fitted with this piece of kit to engage night time sniper targets, allowing the L96/L115 to stay fitted with daytime optics to engage day targets. In the infantry section it is now normal to use the LSW in the manner for which it is now suited - as a designated marksmans weapon.

Grossly underestimated weapon, the LSW. People who say it is useless are very short sighted.



posted on Jun, 18 2007 @ 10:08 AM
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HowlrunnerIV, your point is well made. However, we in the British Armed Forces do not run around with ancient WWI/II era weapons and that French weapon is pure pants.


As to the LSW being a good substitute low level sniper rifle well, I have to say that at 600 mtrs, I could just about give a target a nasty shock especially on a very windy day.

Other than that, I concur with both Paddy and Saint. They know what they're talking about, so let's leave it up to the experts.

All I know, is that my trusty L1A1 SLR - serial number 118501, never let me down on the Djebel in Oman. But that was 30 years ago.

To my mind, a 5.56mm round is not a good sniper round which is why, probably, they are usually 7.62 or .50.

I've just read Paddy's post which managed to slip in ahead of mine. Just goes to show how out of touch I am.

[edit on 18-6-2007 by fritz]



posted on Jul, 2 2007 @ 02:07 AM
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The F-2000 ejects the casing at the front of the gun. As a southpaw, it's extremely easy to shoot and the bolt doesn't break your jaw. (note, I've only fired the FS2000 semi-automatic civilian model). Still, it is a very comfortable rifle to shoot as a south paw. Some of the M4/M16 models still eject shells in my face occasionally. Hot brass in the face is not fun.

Now how durable the F2000 would be in the field, not sure, but it breaks down pretty easy into a few parts and is built around a similar system as the P90.

The G36 is also a good gun. No complaints, but I like the bullpulp concept better now that the design has matured.

But I'd take a look at the Tavor as well from IMI. Again, it's a bull pulp rifle, but can be configured for a right or left handed shooter.



posted on Jul, 2 2007 @ 02:10 AM
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Originally posted by weirdo
Westpoint

So every solider that shoots is gone wast 21,000 rounds.A few problems with that.

1)you would need to genetically modifiy your troops to be large enough to carry all that ammo
2)you taxes are going to go through the roof if you send the many thousands of troops that shoot that many rounds in twenty seconds.

So much crap from one person


[edit on 27-6-2004 by weirdo]


Metal storm has potential as a vehicle mounted anti-warhead weapon or to place a lot of firepower downrange quickly. That's what the US is exploring it for.



posted on Jul, 2 2007 @ 02:37 AM
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As far as I'm aware they are going to phase out the SA80 A2 and replace them with G36s. I think (please correct me if I'm wrong) that the main issue with the SA80 A2 is that in the modern battlefield its Bullpup design (magazine located behind the trigger) is harder to customise?

I know that this design has made the SA80 one of the more accurate rifles but compared with the variety of G36s it doesn't compare. As far as I know the G36 not only comes as a regular combat rifle but also has many variants: Light, heavy and sniper form.

Personally, I like the look of the XM8, but no doubt that's just a stylised version of the OICW - which in turn is an overly complex G36


I say just give em all PPSh-41s, can't beat old school Russian!



posted on Jul, 3 2007 @ 04:45 AM
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I say replace it with a bullpup design. British soldiers are already using one so why not replace it with a more reliable rifle like the Steyr AUG.



posted on Jul, 3 2007 @ 09:38 AM
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Originally posted by Chupa101
As far as I'm aware they are going to phase out the SA80 A2 and replace them with G36s. I think (please correct me if I'm wrong) that the main issue with the SA80 A2 is that in the modern battlefield its Bullpup design (magazine located behind the trigger) is harder to customise?


Where exactly is your source for this? There are currently no plans to replace the A2. There are still some units that have not been issued with the SA80A2 yet and there are no plans to even trial a new weapon until at least 2012, which (knowing the British Army) will probably mean nearer 2020. Even then no-one knows what the selection process will be, so it is impossible to say what weapon will be accepted.

The main issue with the SA80 was the reliability issue which has been ironed out in the A2. There are one or two other issues (only fire right handed, quite heavy etc), but in real life these are fairly minor and are easily overcome with training.

There are now no reasons to replace the SA80A2. It is the weapon we should have gotten in the first place.



posted on Jul, 4 2007 @ 02:23 AM
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As I have said many. many times before, the main problem with the SA80 when it was first issued, was the mindset of the troops using it.

Those of my generation who relied on their trusty L1A1 SLR's, The General and LMG, not forgetting the 7.62mm Lee Enfield sniper rifle were, to say the least, very very unhappy with the introduction of what to all intents and purposes, was a metal stamped and plastic toy.

On live and blank fire exercises, troops went loopy on full auto which led to barrel burnouts in quite a few cases.

On ops in NI and other places, the Mag would suddenly go for a walkabout - unless you attached a bit of string to it.

God I could go on, but it's been done to death.

Then, at long last, somebody took notice of what the end user wanted - they actually listened to the guys on the ground.

The result was the L85A2 and there is no doubt that, with a SUSAT, once again the British Tommy is a force to be reckoned with.

Now the only problem with this weapon, as Paddy has so rightly pointed out, is that it can only be fired from the right should which, in an urban envirnonment, is a distinct disadvantage.

If BAe/H&K could manufacture the wpn with bolt carrier assy and cam stud on the right, with cam stud rail on the right, we'd have a winner.

As to assumptions that the L85A2 is due for replacement, well there was a grain of truth in that rumour BUT, it referred to the L85A1. In the end, as I previously posted, the MoD coughed up £95.5M to fix the problems.



posted on Jul, 4 2007 @ 04:08 PM
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I have been very impressed by the HK416, at least with what I have seen of it.

From my experience, the weapons malfunctions related to environment are often if not always from laziness or inexperience. Speaking on the M4/M16, I have not seen many problems with them in actual combat situations. The problems seem more prevalent with people who are lugging them around in these environments for long periods of time without use, figure that since they haven't fired the weapon, it does not need maintenence, and then cursing the thing when it fails on them.

From what I have seen the HK416 may be the best alternative, but all weapons need to be cared for.



posted on Jul, 6 2007 @ 04:29 AM
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It is my personal belief that the assaut rifle has been taken to the limits of its'capability. The basic idea of an assault rifle is as developed as far as it goes. Modern weapons will generally fire an intermediate cartridge at high velocity to ranges at the maximum of the average firers capability (500-600m) with a degree of reliability. They tend to have a standard capacity and fire on semi-automatic and automatic at about the same rate.

There is only so far you can push these design perameters without re-inventing the wheel. Take a look at the most recent designs. Apart from reliability aspects and some different asthetic and ergonomic changes they don't differ alot from weapons designed over half a century ago.

The next era of infantry weapon systems need to incorporate something radical if we want them to have the edge.



posted on Jul, 14 2007 @ 01:12 AM
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HK fixed the SA80s in service by the Brits. They will work until they wise up and choose the HK 416.






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