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Volume 12 Issue 136 Moden ftlrbal Shotgus
Raides u.d f,::r,ed Merchanunen of World War II
Published by Modern Rio Co::c. Egt:pmer.t
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der of British Land Forces during the
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tlodern

Since the introd,uction of accurate long-range firearmsto the


battlefield, the sniper, or sharpshooter as he used to he called,
has had aninlluence uponthe conduct of war out of aII
The Yugoslav M76 semi-automatic rifle, seen here fitted with a passive
proportion to the nurnbers involved in his deadly trade, In op-tjcal night sight, has obvious design similarities to the Soviei Dragunov
that time his weapon has evolved enormously. SI/D. /t uses a ll-round magazine and is in sewice with the yugosliv armed
forces.
The modern sniping rifle is a ren-rarkable piece ol equiprnent that
:mbodies all the frner pornts of the gun desigrners, gun maker's and
-:nmunition specialist's skills Although it is very often based on an special care and handling, but some olthe more recent examples show
:xisting design it rs usually manufactured to high degrees of precision to every mark of being laboratory test tools rather than practical weapons
::sure that its user, the sniper, secures the all important first round hit Most of tire current crop of sniper's rifles are inctuded in this study.
:. he largct every im. They include stalwarrs such as the Soviet SVD and Britlsh L42Al magni-
Snrping rifles fall into two general categories T'he irrst has already ficient tools for the job such as the US Marines M4OA1 and the superla,
::en mentronedt the conversion of the existing weapon, usuaily a stan tive Mauser SP 66. No doubt less readily acceptable to the sntper in the
:ard service rifle These very often do not look all that drfferent liom the front line are designs such as the Walther WA2000 and the decidedly
:l:grnals and can often be handled and used in much the same manner odd-lookrng Iver Johnson rrfles. But one thing all these rifles have rn
,le second cateqory is very diiferent for its members are the specrally common is that they are extremely accurate, and in the hands of the right
;esrgned rrfles that often appear not to be nfles at all but some form of man they are lethal
:lace age' weaponry, There are several exarnples ol the latter in this
-. uCy and they will be easrly discerned, They seem to be (and often are) The Israelis have eschewed the radical design approach which has produced
:,arvels of the gun maker's art, but they are rarely weapons that the such over-complex and unreliable weapons as the Walther WA 200b in favour
..:--cer wrll want to use on the battlefleld. A11 sniper's nfles require of the studied development of their existing service rifle into the Galil sniper.

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AUSTR A

7.62-mm SSG 69
With this Austrian rifle the deslgnation them being the use of a lvliLnnlicher wrthin the receiver for added rtgndtty. r:' ;:-: -:: r-- - -:-:. ;s gel mdcn llqhlel
SSC 69 stands for Scharfschut- bolt actron with a iorm of rear locking A safety catch locks both the bolt and S:-:: :-: -:-l:dlcilon of the SSG 69
qtc /- -:-- - : .:i
instead of the far more common Maus- finng prn when enqaqied. The barrel ts , -o mOre adV-
zenqewehr 69 (sharp-shooter rifle 69),
1969 berng the year of the weaPon's er forwardluq iocking. The bolt action cold-forged usrng a machine hammer- anced smper r--i: r::cCels, but the SSG
acceptance for servrce by the Austrian is nowuncommon although it has been lng process rn which the barrel rtfling 69 remarns rn servlce wlth the Au-
army, It is manufactured by the Steyr- used on other recent Steyr rifles, and is .s hammereo tnlo the bore using a s rrans iorhe srmple reason lhat' isan
Daimler-Puch AG concern at Steyr so arranged tha the enttre acrion ts mandrel, Another odd feature is the excellent military snrper's rtfle and far
and was, rn 1969, the latest in a lonq irne very stronq and the chamber ls well use ol lhe Miinnhche" rolary magazine. inore practical than some ol the more
of rrfles produced by the concern, a design feature that dates back to well modern technical mawels now avail-
The 7.62-mm (0,3-in) SSG 69 has The Steyr SSG 69 rifle is the standard before World War I Thts rotary maqa- able. A target shooting version of the
some unusual desiqn features one of Austrian army sniper's rifle, and is zrne holds flve rounds, but a more SSG 69 with a heavier barrel and
used by mountain troops as if ls orthodox l0 rouno box magaz'ne can match sights has been produced
possible for a single sniPer to be fitted
virtually seal a mountain Pass The rifle stock is made of a synthetic Specification
against advancing trooPs for long material and rs adjustable in lenqth to SSG 69
periods. Tlre,SSG 69 ts robust enough suit the flrer, The flrer can also adjust Calibre: 7 62 mm (O 3 in)
to survive in such conditions and the double-pull trigger pressure It is Lengths: overali 1140 mm (44.9 in)
retainits accuracy. also possible to make various adjust- barrel650 mm (25 6 in)
ments to the standard Kahles ZF69 Weight: empty, wrthsight4.6 kg
telescopic sight which has a mag- (10 14 rb)
niflcation of x6. Other forms of siqht Muzzle velocity: 860 m (2,82 L ft) per
(includrng niqht srghts) can be used on second
the SSG 69, the receiver havinq an Magazine capacity: 5-round rotary or
overhead longitudrnal rib that can 10-round box
accommodate a wide ranqe of vision
devrces, 'lron' sights are provided ior The Steyr SSG 69 rifle uses a Kahles
emergency use only ZF69 telescopic sight graduated up
The SSG 69 rs very accurate, Trials to 800 m (875 yards) - this example is
have shown that rt is possible to fire not fitted with the usuaf ircn' sights.
l0-round groups no larger than Tlre SSG 69 uses an unusual five-
400 mm (15.75 in) at 800 m (875 yards), round rotary magazine, but can also
whrch rs the maximum graduated be fitted with a Ij-round box
range of the ZF69 sietht at shorter magazine.

s'
s

[ freretta Sniper
:i'/hen the market for htgth-prectston for rnternal securtty dutles the barrel vibrations produced on vrrtually any military sightrng system,
snlper's rtfles expanded ln the 1970s Compared wrth many of the latest flrrngr.At the front end ofthe forestock The normal telescoprc sight is the
'space aQIe' snlper rifle destqns, the is a locatron pornt for securinq a light wrdely-used Zeiss Divari Z with a zoom
..rrtually every maior small-arms
nanufactuter in Europe and else- Beretta offenng Ls almost completely adlLrstable bipod to assist aimrng. The capability from x 1,5 to x6, but other
',.;here started to desrgn weapons they orthodox but well up to the usual higth undersrde oi Lhe ioreslock conrains a lypes can be ftled.
-rought would meet tnternational re- standards of Beretta destqn and flntsh. slot for an adjustable forward hand
Jurrements Some of these designs The Sniper uses a manual rotary bolt stop for the firer, and this forestop can
have fared better than others on the action allied to the usual healry barrel, also be used as the arachm^nl polnl
market but one that does aPPear to and one of its most promtnent features for a flring sling if one is required The
lave been overlooked bY manY rs the is the iarqe and unusually-shaped hole butt and cheek pads are adjustable Specification
carved into the high-quality wooden and the muzzle has a flash hrder. Beretta Sniper
Beretta Sniper 7.62-mm (0.3 Ln) snipinqt
rifle. Thrs desrqn appears to have been stock that forms a prominent pistol grlp Unlike many of rts modern counter- Caiibre:7 62 mm (0 3 in)
Jlven no numertcal destgnation and lt for the triqger parts the Beretta Smper ts lully pro- lengrths:overall 1165 mm (45 87 in);
has only recently aPPeared on the Despite the overall conventtonal de- vided wrth a set of all-adjustable preci barrel 586 mm (23 in)
sign there are one or two advanced sion match sights, even though these Weights: empty 5 55 kq (12.23 1b);
scene, two factors that would normally
features on the Snrper, The wooden would not normally be used for the complete 7,2 kq (15,87 lb)
:ndicate that the rrfle is only just out of
forestock conceals a forward-pointing sniping role Over the 'ecp,ver is a Muzzle velocity: about 865 m (2,838 ft)
:he development stage, But there are per second
reports that Lt ls already ln use wlth counterweight under the free-floating standard NATO optical or night sight
barrel that acts as a damper to reduce mounting attachment to accommodate Magazine capacity: 5 rounds
srme ltalian paramihtary poiice units
FRANCE

FR-FI and FR-F2


.

When the French army requrred a In this photograph the French sniper
snrper's rrfle to replace the varied is using the telescopic sight of his
selection of weapons which rt had used FR-F I as an obsewation aid, resting
stnce World War II it decided that the the barrel on a tree branch. He would
eastest design course to follow was to never fire the weapon from such a
modify its existing service rifle the 7.5- stance, for accuracy would be
mm (0,295-in) modele 1936 Thrs rifle minimal.
had the dubious distinction of berng
one ol the very last bolt-action rifles to cheek rest ar^d lne boll act-or con-
be accepted as a standard service siderably altered.
weapon by any of the major European Even with all these alterations the
powers but it was not regarded as a mle FR-FI was not an immedlate inter-
very good design, even at the time, national success For a start, the rrfle
and was used mainly because of its frred the old French 7 S-mm standard
French origins, Using this weapon as a cartndge dl o time when other natrons flcuit to adjust. AIso the weapon was
startrng pornt the resultant sntper's were changing to the new 7 62-mm consrdered by many to be too healry.
rifle, the mle FR-FI emerged as not (0 3-in) NATC round This change to The mle FR-FI has now been re-
particularly brilliant, the new cartridqe was so pronounced placed by the mle FR-F2, Basically this
The number of mooificatrons rn- that eventually the French had to con- is much the same as the earher
volved in convertinq the moddle 1936 vert to it as well and later-production weapon, but the long barrel is now Specification
into the FR-Fl meant that very little of mle FR Fls were chambered for 7.62- encased in a thick black nylonrte FR-F'I
the origrnal remained; it was;ust about mm ammunition; many of the older 7 5- sleeve to reduce the heat haze from Calibre: 7.5 mm (0 295 in) c: - ii :::
discernible that the moddle 1936 had mm rifles are still rn use, however. The the barrel that miqht interfere with the (0 3 in)
been used as the origin but that was modele 1936 bolt action was also re performance of some nrght sights The Lengths:overall 1l39 mmi:=: :-
all. The main change was the introduc- tained, albeit rn a much altered form bipod has also been altered and relo- barrei552 mm(21.73 in)
tion of a bipod, the addrtion of a prstol This actron was regarded as an awk- cated so that rt is now secured directly Weight: emply 5.42 kq ( I . :: .< :
qrrip for the tngger, a longrer barrel ward one to use and even in its re- to the barrel, The forestock has been Muzzle velocity: 852 m (2 - :'- - ;: :
with a long flash hrder, and a telesco vised form was irttle rmproved The changed from all-wood to all-metal, second
pic sight The butt was provrded wtth a bipod was also rather flimsy and dif- covered rn a plastic coating The m1e Magazine capacity: I 0 r o --:.'^- .

>K iiin" z.Gz-mmL zAL


The Lee-Enfleld rrfle has had a long (875 yards) although thrs depends accommodate the new rrmless
career wrth the British army reachrng very much on the skill of the firer and ammunition. The often overlooked
back to the lB90s, and throuqhout that the type of ammunrtron used Normally weapon record books are also kept in
trme the basic Lee-Enfleld manual bolt the ammunrtion is selected from spe- the chest,
mechanism has remained lrttle cial 'Green Spot hiqh-accuracy The L42Al is not the onlv 7.62-mm
changed. It rs still in service wrth the ammunitron produced at the Royal Lee-Enfleld rifle stlll around. A special
army to this day rn the form of the Rifle Ordnance facility at Radway Green, match-shootrng version known as the
7.62-mm L42AI These weapons are The rifle itself rs also the subject of a L39Al rs s-il1 retarned Ior competruve
',rsed only for sniping, and are conver- great deal of care calibration and use, and there are two other models, Specification
sions of 0.303-in (7.7-mm) No 4 Mk 1(T) attention When not 1n use it is stowed the Envoy and the Enforcer The for- L42AI
cr Mk 1*(T) rrfles, as used during (and transported) in a specral wooden mer may be reqarded as a crvilian Calibre: 7 62 mm (0.3 in)
\A/orld War ll the crnverslons rn- chest that contains not oniy the rrfle but match version of the L39Al while the Lenqths: overall 1 lB I ru:- ii: :
'roLveo now oarrels, a new nagaz'-e the optical sight cleanrngr grear, flrrngt Enforcer is a custom-built variant of the barrel699 mm (27.5 in)
some changes to the trigger mechan- sirnEr and perhaps a few spares such as L42A1 with a heavier barrel and re- weisht: 4 43 ks (9.76 Ib)
ism and flxed sights and alterations to extra magazines: the L42Al retains the vised butt outline produced speci- Muzzlevelocity: B3Bm(2 -:- -'- :=-
ihe forestock, The World War II No. 32 lO-round magazine ofthe 0 303 rn ver- fically for police use. The L39Al and second
Mk 3 telescoprc siqht (renamed the sion but with a revised outline to Envoy are not normally fltted with Magazinecapacity: 1C r- ::.:-.
LlAl) and its mounting over the re-
ceiver have been retained, and the
result has for lonq been a good, rugr
qed and serviceable sniprngr riile,
used not only by the army but also by
the Royal Marrnes
In modern terms the L42Al is very
much -he Drocrucl ol a prev o-s ge-l-
eratron, but it can still qdve excellent
f,rst-shot results at ranqes over BO0 m

Below: The L42A I rifle is a 7.62-mm


(0.30-in) conversion of an earlier
0.303-in (7.70-mm) Lee-Enfield rifle,
and it has served the British Army
well over the years. I t was used by
the Army and the Royal Marines
during the F alklands war, usually in
the form shown here with the
weapon covered in camouflage Changes to the oldNo.4Lee-
scrim netting. Enfieldrifle for the 7.62-mm (03a-n-
sniping role involved a new heal-;
barrel, a new I 1-round box
magazine, and cutting back the
forestock over the baftel- A cheek
restwas added to the butt and the
rifle was virtually rebuilt. Chaages
were alsomade to the trigger. a:.:
=
scopemountwas added.
RmMmB
ffimwflne
ffixruapffitrs
Forniai:yyears, ffi e arm ies of the urarld
ftarepud fftcrrfajfft in firepawer, trcitk the
nofa.hJe e.xeeptlon of Britain. Ta the
Erifisi:, rmarksmansft ;i: ft as .rernalned
paranround, and f,he e;"" af,f of ffte srulre"a"
ftas surrrrec' - nfitnkere rnore than in the
.i?oSraJflfarlnes"
Elements of 3 Commando Brigade Royal
I4arines are landing 1n the Falklands although
-ire advance rnto the hrnterland rs progressing
-noothLy, the beach head is crowd-ed wrth
::en and materral Suddenly a soldier 1s jeiked
:i his fe-^t by a bullet smacking into his helmet.
.: more shots are flred at the British forces
, -.r.ng that aliernocn and ihe soldier ls more
.- .,ken and bruised than rnrounded. All avail-
.r: e intelltgence sho"rrs clearly that there are
Argeniines r'vlthin l0 miles of the beach
,:.:d But rhe possibility exisis thal some
: ere a sniper rs still lvithrn k111ing range. Wlth
. ., J,C.{/rtdr!/;bu!"-,1 t h" 5u11a|.,r1,!,..t.; ;
"7,
i trJairi undefetJeci'. Ta that end, a nLssf€r]l of
.'-: a llire trrtn o ufJagr e i.s essen liai - peri. i aps ::r ore
rla:i su;;rem e accuracy vrith al n/e;.po-n. The airn
j r. break ilF .re e:agnizahly hum.en oltiJjnes:rr-i i:n
-,:; i:!e rojn* of irare ;Tes,h.
: : *
::'.t : nce in pr:.sjiJ$n, m uc.h o f a srLi F e:t' :: .i r-; b i s
.r: " ;
i ii i'rJt f i*J': [4/,.h e,r s ucce.gs o r { a i l u t r; t: { nt n s : :: tt
. is Ltil}tl l&e re-rujis of e -s ingle :ihct. tlten a
.,,-j,..'1,(
.;:r .rr"r,,lessioraJrsryr is J"hc"besl Euayante-^ ai
. - ::'.: Li: i.hci'lgftf ,iliacr, aridprov,laes the abiirl'1 t'r
..,: r:r,ilirldge lJ'r e right fftoffient ta fi:(s.

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'l.J{:r': l--. +

:
Modern Sniping Rifles

Royal Marine snipers are currently equipped with The classic marksman's position is demonstrated mando operations. When the British arn:-. :=-
a modifiedversion of the venerableLee-Enfield, in the open field. While being a natural good shot is discovered the value oi sniping rt ioo<:: ---
the L42A 1 chambered to fire the 7.62-mm NATO less important than one might think-good Lympstone to train instruciors, and so cird :-=
round. While perhaps not as accurate as the latest shooting can be taught - the sniper must be able to
high-tech wizardry, the basic destgn ftas sfood up US Marine Corps.
hit a man-sized tatget at ranges up to 800 m, and a
to battlefield conditions for decades. head-sized target at 400 m. The course at Lympslonc remains one --- .:.:
most exactinq in the world, I:ess than ha,' :-:
such a threat hangrng over them, people flnd of World War III, Brltarn found herself frghttng a candrdates pass out as a sniper/first c:ss
themselves moving more cautiously, staying succession of small wars in Malaya, Oman, althougrh the Marines point out that, even:-.': *
under cover that little bit longer than before, Cyprus, Kenya, and Adenr limited conflicts fail to pass the course, you wlll be a j:e:.:l
and the beach-head slowly begins to clog up. It which General Kitson dubbed 'Low Intensity soldier for the experience and an ideal c::-::
takes nearly elght hours for life to return to Operations', They were all infantry wars in as a sniper's 'number two': the obseriter ::-j
normal. In fact the shot turned out to have been whrch all the o1d skrlls of the PBI (Poor Bloody bodyguard tasked with protecting the s:--;::
fired by a fleeing Argentine, and only in the Infantry) were needed, Snipers were especial- from immediate threats, leaving him iree .: ;=
general direction of the beach-head rather ly needed, and were eventually supplied, The on with his main job. Before looking a. :,=
ihan at any speciflc target; it was a fluke hlt, but US Army learned the same lesson during the course and discovering why it is so exac::-;: -
:he rncident demonstrates the importance of tortuous struggle in South Vietnam and alter is important to understand what makes a s::-:::
ihe sniper. If the Argentines had depioyed this unlortunate hiatus, sniper traininQr began and whal he is expected to do,
snipers in this case, the landrngs would not anew, But while most armies had abandoned In a conventional war, the sniper dcn:-:a,::
have gone so smoothly, and the irony would specialist training, the Royal Marines had re- the ground between opposing troops ---.
have been that it was the Royal Marines who solutely maintained their course in the belief targets are other snipers, forward pa:l--s
kept sniper training alive after 1945 A double that sniping is oiparticular importance in com- officers and NCOs, signaliers, runners a--j
rony rs that any Argentine sniper might well
have been trained in happrer trmes by the US
Marines who 'borrowed' their sniper trarning
course lrom the Royal Marines' own course at
lhe Commando Traininq Centre (CTC) at
Lympstone in Devon,
CivilWarorigins
The chref attributes of a sniper are fleldcraft,
long-range accuracy, patience, and a lively
intelligence, The value of sniprng has long
been appreclated; in the Enghsh Civil War
some officers brought the gamekeepers from
their estates and employed them for accurate
long-range fire specifically aimed at enemy
olf,cers and standard bearers, By the time of
the American Civil War optical assistance in
the shape of telescopic srghts had appeared,
and the lives of offlcers, and specialists like
gn-lnners, became markedly more dangerous.
General Sedgewick's last words were: "Don't
worry men, they couldn't hit an elephant at thrs
dist. . . ,'
Snipers were used to great effect tn both
world wars, but sniper training in the British
British army (and, indeed, throuqhout NATO)
was discontinued in the post-war years, Pian-
ners envisaged a massive armoured Soviet
advance being met by a massive NATO
armoured counter-attack, The battlefield
would belong to tanks, armoured personnel
carriers and, quite possrbly, nuclear weapons.
Individual rnlantry skt1ls paled into insigni- Much of the skill of a sniper lies in an ability to The art of concealment is f ar n.ore :i.ar..:.:::-:,r :
utilize cover effectively. By picking his hide convenient bush to htde behind. A sntper has :o ne
ficance against the prospect of bigger and bet- carefully, a sniper can merge into the background able fo see hrs target, so exce.ssjve cover in front.
ter hardware; all planning was devoted to a and from 50 m will be hard to see while he is although hiding the sniper, will also obscure the
possible major conflict rn which there seemed getting into position, let alone when he ftas self/ed potential tatget from view.
io be little scope for the lone snlper, But lnstead down.

2745
Royal Marine Snipers
By selecting the background to his hide as well as
the foreground, the trained sniper can merge into
the lands cape. F r om I 0 m, he is only visible to the
camera because hehas taken off his camouflaged
headgear.

the sole object of the exerclse rs to obtain a ktll,


and a sniper does not expect to be in position
for too 1ong, so any and every possible type of
hide rs used, In the past this has included the
crawl space between floors, with a single brtck
then removed from the outsrde wa1l. Imagine
the skill, dedication and patience necessary to
he prone, cramped into a 46-cm (18 tn) space
for hour upon hour, and then to have the abtlity
to loose off a single shot and so take out a
terrorist. This rises the question of what is it that
makes a sniper. What kind of man is a sniper,
and what are the rnherent military skills he
should possess?
A sniper's skills
A sniper does not need to be a natural shot,
for shooting can be learnt. But a sniper does
have to be a natural soldier: he really is an
infantryman par excellence, And, in the words
of one of the l:ympstone instructors, 'A snrper
should have qulte a lot of the poacher in his
make-up,'
A sniper does noi need vast military experi-
ence: the Royal Marines regard snipino as .
skill ol'ordinary' marines, Officers and NCOs
take exactly the same course, and are judgec
equally harshly The sniper tends to be slightl-';
more indivrdualistic than his fellows, but his
seif-discrpline and ablllty to carry out the mos:
exacting order is that much greater, The snipel
tends to enjoy pitting hrs wits agalnst the
enemy: but the moment he feels too superior
he is dead. Sniping requires a high degree c:
dedication and the good sniper flnally de
velops an almost sixth sense about his job. L
there is one quality snipers share before therr
training it is a natural awareness ol and the
abillty to be at one wtth, their surroundlngs; it is
probably for this reason that most snipers, ever-
those who operate well rn an urban envlron-
ment, have been brought up in the country, .F-
sniper has to have an innate patience and to be
mature enough to discover that during his trarn
-,veapons crew: in other words, anyone en- order, snipers also prove effective in iungle/ ing he must learn how to cope wrth his own
gaged on a special task whose loss would dense vegetation condltions, particuiarly when strengths and weaknessest one can lead tc
-aiise drsruption and confusion. A snrper is employed againsl an enemy strongpoin' overconfidence, the other to loss'ol morale
expected to lay down harassing flre at range-s Northern Ireland has proved just how useful The sniper is not a 'gung ho' cowboy: he is a
uqio 1000-m. But a sniper is more than a well- snrpers are in an internal security situation solLd professronal with a great deal of common
:rarned killing machrne; he is also requrred to Mott rnternal security situaitons require mrni- sense. Fina1ly, the sniper has to have that one
observe all enemy activtty and report back mum force to be used, and a sniper can brlng attribute possessed by all good soldiersl a
Trained to remain concealed lor days, some- discriminatrng flre to bear in urban areas, sense of humour,
irmes weeks, this task is as important as the Usually working tn two-man ieams, the snipers
are inserted into their OP,fttde during what
Lympstone course
more obvious sniping missions. When friendly
forces are retreating, a sntper can slow down passes for an ordinary patrol, usually at night. In The course at Lympstone trains Royai
the enemy advance quite considerably not by this sort of srtuation they will also use a wide Mannes, some army personnel and the occa-
infhctrng massive casualties but by ehminating range of sophisticated surveillance devices, sional policeman. The course teaches shoot-
the men necessary to control the advancing Thrs is not only because a trained sniper is also ing, camouflage and concealment, stalktng,
units, Few armies are blessed with soldiers a superb intelligence-gatherert rf a terrorlst is observation, distance judgrng and map read
suff,ciently trarned and motivated to take over shot, you must be able to show that you had rng, On average, oniy 45 per cent of all candr-
when their leaders are picked off. lndeed, with grood reason for shooting htm (or her), and a dates pass, although obviously any police
modern forces tending io disperse over wider photograph ofthe dead ierrorist carrying a gun trainee is less concerned with the purely milit-
areas, the value of the sniper has increased tends to convince all but the most fanatical or ary aspects of the training, e,g, air photo-
naive critic, The problem in Northern Ireland is graphrc interpretation, map reading and 'stay
considerably as most military untts are entrrely
dependent bn a small cadre of officers and that if a terrorist rs shot whrle carrying a gun, his behind techniques',
communications specialists, Knock them out, 'minders' will rush in to try to get the gun away Since the Royal Marines regard sniping as a
and the unit can no longer function effeciively so that the security forces can once again be natural extension of basic infantry skills each
Snipers are obvtously best suited to lhe typq accused of krlhng an unarmed (and therefore developed to a spectahst standard, they ex-
innocent) man, Hence the need for good, accu- pect that all candidates should be above aver-
of teirain in which therr abrlity to kill and
observe at long ranges can best be utillzed rate photography, age and (more importantly) be capabie of
(temperate, arctic and desert), At ihe same While most OPs are rooms (snrpers may adding to these skilis, On the first day the
trme, because their fi.eldcraft rs of such a htgh have to stay there for days or weeks on end), candidate is introduced io his weaponsl the

27A6
Modern Sniping Rifles

Britains New Sniping Rifle


After many years in service, the Lee-Enfield is to be replaced
as the British Army's standard sniping rifle by a purpose-
designed weapon manufactured by Accuracy International.
Unlike its predecessors, the new weapon is not a conversion of
a tried and trusted battle rifle but is more akin to the special
targetweapons used in the Olympic Games.
ln rts No. 4 N/k 1 (T) andL42Al forms, the Lee-Enfield No. 4 rifle has given British
army snipers sterling service over the years, but these two weapons were
origihally straightforward conversions of standard rif les with few innovations for
the"snipbr rolei. The L42A1 is still a good weapon, but time has marched on and
technological advances now meanlhat something better can be provided. For
some timie the British army was prevented f rom getting replacement weapons
for budgetary reasons, but'during 1 984 that chang-ed and the army could specify
to all concerned what it really wanted.
It was interesting to note that of the three weapons f inally selected for final
trals none are of the super-accuracy'space-age' type. All three were conven-
tional designs, brought up to date by the use of modern materials and design
niceties; tdey were ihe Parker-Hale Model 85, a design f rom lnterarms, and the
Accuracy lnternational Model PM. Allthree were subjected to extensive trials by
the staff of the Small Arms School Corps at Warminster in Wiltshire and
although there was apparently little to choose between the three, in the end the
Accuracy lnternational Model PM was selected. ln this the evaluation team was
probably influenced to some extent by experience gained from use of the Model
PM bv the SAS, which had already obtained a few of the type.
Olympicdesigner
The Accuracy lnternational Model PM was designed by Malcolm Cooper, an
Olympic gold medallist in rifle shooting and based at Portsmouth in Hampshire.
The Model PM appears to be an entirely orthoCox design but in this case the
appearances are deceptive. The Model PM is in effect little more than a heavy
stainless steel 7.62-mm (0.3 in) barrel secured to a bolted aluminium chassis.
The entire weapon consists of a bipod, stock, action and butt all enclosed in
plastic f urniture provided for little reason other than to hold everything together
and give it an acceptable appearance: for instance, although the forestock
appears to enclose the barrel it does not touch the free-floating barrel at any
point.
The Model PM uses a Tasco teescopic sight and has a forward-locking This version oI the Accuracy International rifle is known as the 'Counter
manual bolt action designed so that on withdrawal the bolt does not touch the Terrorist' model, and is fitted with a spiralmuzzle device thatwill not be fii.tec
f irer's face. The light alloy bipod can be allled with a retractable monopod
'spike' to theBritishArmyversion. TheArmymodel, known as the'lnfantry'. will ha','e
under the butt thal can be used to act as a holdi ng platform for prolonged periods a lj-round box magazine and'iron' sights plus extras such as slingsrires.
of use: i.e. the f irer can aim the rifle at a selected area with the weight taken on
the bipod and spike. An integral box magazine holds five rounds and the trigger
assembly can be removed entirely for adjustment (tt can even be lnterchanged Terrorist weapon lalready in army use) and the f irst of 'l ,212 lnfant^, -' 3,. ,,. ::
between rifles). delrvered during early 1986. The latter has a 6x42 scope and r::c^ ::--:
Few details of the Model PM have yet been released. The entire rif le weighs effective at ranges up to 900 m (984 yards). Smail-cal bre and :-:,-:-::
about 6 kg (13.23 lb) and there are at least four versions. One ls the Counter vaflants will also be available.

L42Al rlfle (basically a Lee-Enfleld recham- A simrlariy high standard is required in al1
bered for 7,62-mm/0,3-in ammunition, plus other subjects, In order to qualtfy the sniper
telescopic srghts), a pair of binoculars, the has five minutes to conceal himself 150 to 250 m
Scout Regiment telescope and a pair ofgarden ( I 65 to 275 yards) away from an observer usrng
secateurs, Contrary to popular opinion, snlpers binoculars. The observer must be unable to
are not encouraqed to have their own personal see the sniper even when a thtrd man actually
rrfles, if only because a man who places too touches the smper's head, At the same time, the
much larth in a particular rifle loses effective- sniper must be able to see the observer and
ness ri it becomes lost or damaged: he w jll have must have his srghts correctly set for range and
lorgotten that the rifle itself possesses no skills, wrnds.
only the man that uses it, The candldate learns The sniper also has to be able to stalk a
how to aim oif for wind and moving targets; how drstance between 800 and 1000 m (880 and
to use his 'scope sight properly, but also how to i, 100 yards) to within 150-250 m ( 165-275 yards)
use ihe'iron' sights properly. Telescopic sights of an observer, working from maps and air
can get damaged and that is a poor excuse for photographs. Agarn he must remain unde-
failure. The binoculars are standard army tected, and as beiore his sights must be cor-
issue, useful for searching a wide area quickly, rectly set at all times. But one ol the hardest
The Scout Regiment telescope gles x 20 mag- tests ls judqdng distances, Here, eight objects
nrfication, allowing detailed searching at long are placed at ranQres up to 1000 m (1, I0O yards)
distance, but requires very skilful handltng. In away: the sniper has to estimate to within 15 per
order to pass the candidate must identify a cent of their true ranges, getting a minimum of
minimum of eight oul of 12 mihtary objects that flve out ofeight correct, using oniy his rifle sight
are within 300 m (330 yards), These objects are and binoculars, The problem is that all objects
placed so as to be rnvisrble to the naked eye, appear smaller or larger dependrng on the
and all but invisrble using binoculars, There time of day, the quality oilight avarlable, the air
are 40 minutes only to locate and identify the temperature and even the observer's own state
objects, of health (not a test to do with a hangover),
ffi tarter-Hale Model 82
weiqhs kq (4.365 lb) and rs manu-
1.98 fitted with match sights only and there
factured from chrome molybdenum is no pronsion for a telescoprc sight, 1:
*? steel, An inteQ[al four-round magazine
is pronded. The trigger mechanism is
has been accepted by the British
Ministry of Defence as the Cadet
an entirely self-contained unit that can Trainingr Rifle L8lA1,
The Parker Hale Model 82 was be adjusted as required. The Model 82 has now been up-
selected by theCanadian Armed the Model 82 rs available rn a nLlm dated to the Model 85. This has a re-
Forces as their sniper fifle, and is ber of forms to suit any particular cus- vised butt outline compared with the
seen here inwinter camouflage' It tomer requirements. Thus an adjust- Model 82. a lO-round box magazire
uses a Mauser-type bolt action and is able cheek pad may be provided if and a bipod (optional on the Model 82)
fittedwith a four-round box wanted, and the butt lengrths can be is fltted as standard. This weapon was
magazine. altered by adding or taking away butt one of the rifles competitively tested
pads ofvarious thicknesses. The sights by the Brrtish army to determine its
loo are subject to several variations new sniper rifle, a competition won by
but the Model 82 is one weapon that is Accuracy lnternational,
normally supplied urth 'iron' match-
type sights. if an optical sight rs fitted Specification
the rear-siqhts have to be removed to Model32
Parker-Hale Limited of Birminqham allow the same mounting block to be Calibre: 7,62 mm (0,3 in)
has for many years been manufactur- used The forward mounting block is Lengrths: 1162 mm (45,75 in); barrel
ing match rifles and their associated machined into the recelvet, Various 660 mm (25,98 in)
sighrs, and also produces sntPlng types of iron' foresight or optical night Weight:unloaded 4,8 kq (10,58 lb)
rifles. The company's best-known pro- sigrhts can be fltted Muzzle velocity: about 840 m (2,756 ft)
duct to date rs the 7,62-mm (0.3-in) Par- The Australian army uses the Model persecond
ker-Hale Model 82, also known as the 82 fitted with a Kahles He[a ZF 69 tele- Magazine capacity: 4 rounds
Parker-Hale I200TX. The Model 82 has scopic sight. The Canadian army uses
been accepted for military and police a version of the Model B2/I200TX
service by several nattons. altered to meet local requirements;
In appearance and design terms the this servrce knows the Model 82 as the Below: In servicewiththe armed
Model 82 rs an entirely conventional Rifle 7.62-mm C3, New Zealand also forces ofAustralia, New Zealand and
sniping weapon. It uses a manual bolt uses the Model 82. Canada, the Parker Hale ModeL82 is
action very similar to that used on the Parker-Hale produces a specrai intended to hit point targets atup to
classic Mauser 98 rifle, allied to a training version of the Model 82 known 400 m in good light, or up to the
heavy free-floatrnQt barreli the barrel as the Model83. This srngle-shot rifle is maximum range of any sights fitted.

il

::
ffi'*"@-a
,€**'
P
'A

E
,:e
WESI GERMANY

Mauser SP 66 and sP 86
Mauser-Werke at Oberndorf in dingly longer for enhanced accuracy. directed out ofthe firer's vision, and it to be used when gloves have to be
Germany can lay claim to a lonQr
,-,-est This has been done on a custom-built also acts as a muzzle brake to reduce worn,
desiqn and produc- Mauser-Werke sniper's rifle known as recoil, Reducing both these factors en- The sights have been selected with
-i drstinguished for rts manual bolt- the Mauser SP 66. The revised bolt ables a user to fire second and subse- equal attention. There are no fixed
-::i backqround action is but one instance of the care quent shots more rapidly. sigrhts and the standard telescopic
=::cn rrlles that are now known under
re blanket name of Mauser, The com- lavished on thrs weapon, for it also has The standard of flnish and careful sight rs a Zeiss-Dlari ZA with zoom
:--vs forward-locking bolt action is a heavy barrel, a butt with a carefully desigm throughout the production of capability of from x1.5 to x6, Night
s:J'.,.ndely used by designers who re- conroured thumb apenure. pror,rsion the SP 66 is very high, Even such de- srghrs can be frlred, though it is recom-
;-:e maximum lockinqwith accuacy, for adjustable cheek and butt pads, tails as rougheningr al1 surfaces likely to mended that the manufacturer selects
a *: ihe masters of its use are now un- and a special muzzle attachment. Thts be handled to prevent slipping have and calibrates them to an exact match
i:ubtedly the Mauser-Werke, The last is so designed that on flring the been carried out with meticulous care, ior the rifle on which they are used. As
::npany has even introduced its own great bulk of the resultant flash is and the trigger is extra wrde to allow it is usual with such rifles the ammunition
;ar.ations to the action, one of them
.:-:r9r the relocation of the bolt handle
::n the rear of the bolt to the front.
Cn most rrfles this would be of little
=locl.lnt, but on a specialist sniper rrfle
-- means that the firer can operate the
c:li action without having to move his
::ad out ofthe way as the bolt itselfcan
:e made relatively short; it also means
:e barrei can be made cofiespon-

This version of the SP 66, known as


the Model 86 SR, is equiPPed with a
set of target sights and a biPod for
sup er - accu r a te c om P e tition
shooting: the service version is
basically the same weaqon fitted
with a telescopic sight butwithout
thebipod.
Mauser SP 66 and SP 86 (continued) Modern Sniping Rifles
flred from the SP 66 is taken from care-
fully-selected batches of 7,62-mm (0,3-
in) NATO rounds produced specifrcal-
ly for use by snipers.
The SP 66 has been a considerable
success even thougth tt is manufac-
tured virtually to order only, It is in
service with the West German armed
forces and more have been sold to a
further 12 or so nations, most of which
are unwilling to dil'ulqe their names for
security reasons.

Specification
SP 66
Calibre: 7 62 mm (0,3 in)
Lengths: overall not drl'ulged; barrel
380 mm (26.77 in) This Mauser SP 86 is fittedwith a Long-range accuracy depends on Aclose-up of the double-row.
Weight: not divulged nightvision device. It is good ammunition, and Mauset select detachable nine-round magazine o!
Muzzle velocity: about 860 m (2,821 ft) recommended that the manufacturer theirs from batches of NATO 7.62- the Mauser SP 86, one of the
per second selects and calibrates the sights of mm cartridges- This Mauser is fitted improvements incorpor ated into this
Magazine capacity: 3 rounds e ac h in div idu al w e ap on. with a laser rangefinder- development of the SP 66-

Walther WA2000
Vi/ith the Walther W42000 it would nally over lts entire lenqth. This not shorter and easier to handle without favoured 7 S-mm (0.295-tn) S'.'-s :--
''
appear that small-arms desrgtn is only provides more coolinq area but reducinq the barrel lenqth. It does trLdge can be accommodoL-o ,,.':.
aiready in the 'Star Wars' era, for this also reduces the vrbrations imparted mean that the ejection port is close to required alterations to the bcl: a:i r= -

','ieapon has an appearance all of tts on firinq1, vrbrations that can also cause the firer, so specral left- and right-hand mg
:-wn. The rifle was desigmed from the a bullet to stray. The designers also verslons have to be produced
rutset for the sniprng role and the decrded to qo for a gas-oPerated The overall standard of finish of the Specification
Walther approach has been to put mechamsm to reduce the need for bolt W42000 is all that one would expect. w42000
asrde all known small-arms design manipulation between shots, and to re- The butt pad and cheek rests are Calibre:see text
erecepts and start from scratch after duce recoil effects to a mintmum the adjustable, and there is a carefully- Lengrths: overall905 mm (35 63 -:-
alalysingT the requirements barrel is rn direct ltne wrth the shoul- shaped pistol grip for added aiming barrel 650 mm (25.59 in)
The most important part of any rifle der so that the muzzle will not be stabllity. The normal telescoptc sight is Weights: empty, no sights 6 3c k;
iesrqn is the barrel, for tt alone imparts thrown upwards after every shot. a Schmidt und Bender x25 to x10 (15.32 1b); loaded,wthststht t 3, k;
:ne required degree of accuracy. Thus the strange outhne of the zoom, but other types can be fltted. (18 32 lb)
Walther decided to clamp the barrel WA2000 beqdns to make sense, but Walther has decrded that the best Magazine capacity: 6'ou- d.
a. the fuont and rear to ensure that the there is more to come for the WA2O00 round for the sniprnq role rs now the
!que .mparted by a bullet passing is a 'bullpup desrqn with the gas-oper- 300 (7.62-mm) Wlnchester Magrnum Supplied with a Schmidt & Bender
:rough the bore would not lift the bar ated bolt mechanism behind the triq- cartridge, but while the WA200O is tetrescopic sight, the remarkabie
rel away from the intended point of qer group, Such an arranQtement chambered for this rcund others such Walther WA2000 fires the 0. 3A - in
: m. The barrel is also fluted longttudi- makes the overall design that much as the 7.62-mm (0 3-in) NATO or much- W inches ter m agnum c ar tr idge.
Heckler & I(och sniper rifles il
-
rr'n'1ssh'i
Heckler & Koch G3 SG/l Rifle
J*

bipod (closed) 7.62 mm round f r -.

-' - olHeckler & Koch rtfles has duced for the West German Police. the magazrne housinq is a new fore- weapon but rts lorm ts stLll un-
=noe The latter model has a ltght biPod stock and the long barrel, while the announced It may well emerqe that
-'.'.' r:ecome so larqe that a weapon
. -.:.+ tor us- dbou ary appttcatlon Good as these weapons are they are butt has been reconflgrured to the this trrpod wrll be an adaptation ol one
,..- a-oparently be selected from the basicaity only 'breathed on'versions of wrdeiy useo al'.adlustaole 'orm. of the Heckler & Koch machtne gun
.--='.' Snrper's rifles have not been standard weapons origrnally designed The PSG I uses a x 6 telescoprc sigrht mountrngs the butt used on the PSG I
:-;-::ied but gtenerally speakingt with mass production rather than spe adlustable up to 600 m (656 yards) It is a much modifled HK 2l machine
-- : :: these spectaltzed weapons are cialization in mrnd. Accordinqly Heck- has oeen s.a eo tna lne r/eapoils -x- Qun component
'- :. - )16 nan s-andard oesrgns pro- ler & Koch has turned its attentions to tremely accurate These clarms are
,: -:=i ',r,rith a lrttle extra care, a few production of a special design known drlflcult to confrrm rndependently as Specification
: r :=sscnes and a mounting for a tele- as the PSG 1 that continues to use the the weapon rs still rn the development PSG 1

. ::: : sicht. This doesnot detract ftom basic Heckler & Koch rotary lock staqe with the mrlrtary and paramrltr Calibre: 7 62 mm (0 3 in)
-=.: servrceabilrty or efflciency, many mecharrsm olt d l ed lo a samt-au-o- ary pohce market rn mind, It ts even Lengrths: overall 1208 mm (47 56 in);
::n being more suitable for fteld matic system and a prectston heavY possrble that the final form ofthe PSG l barrei 650 mm (25 59 in)
:::-:-:rcns than other designs that have barrel with a polyqonal rifled bore. G3 will alter the stamped recerver body Weight: less magaztne B. 1 kq (17 BS ]b)
.. , r , duc-o l,i -th enphasLs on suo- rnfluence can still be seen in the out- perhaps beinq replaced wrth some- Muzzle velocity: about 860 m (2 821 ft)
accuracY rather than ser- lines of the recerver and Ln the 5 or thinq purpose-built to ensure that the per second
. ::-:
::rbilrty Typical ofthese Heckler & 2O-round maqazine houstnq (tt is also srght mountinq rs more rigrd. For spe- Maqazine capacity:5 or 20 rounds
i--:: sniper weapons are the 7 62 mm possible to load sLngle rounds manual- cral purposes there has been mention
:- :-) H&K G3 A3ZF and G3 SG/l Pro- ly) but the rest ts all new. Forward of oi a precrsron aiming tripod for this

Yritr..:a.1.)l
bolt body re ease ever Zeisssight(j Sx6)

reco i Spt ng
Modern Snipingr R.:f . e s

rears ght
cheek pad

ejector pressure spr ng

settrgger/sets the md nt gaet


a5d rtd r tt tqqer )

SEAI

clector

catch spr ng

hammer catch firc se ector

magazine release iever trigger spr ng


mecha n lsm

tselow:TheWest German army recognizes the value of sniping, particularly


egains.t a potential Soviet opponent whose units are especiafy'dependent on
a small cadre of officers. Here, a Bundeswehr sniper 'ieutralizes,i ,Soyjel
)'iaval Infantry officer using thePriizisionsschiitzenqewehr (High-precision
;4arksman's Rifle) PSG-1. This latest Heckler & KoCh design iia dedicated
sniper weapon, rather than a developed service rifle, and is a single-shot,
s^emi-automatic weapon using the proven rotary lock system. I t i;fitted with a
e^t 42 teEscopic sightwith illuminated reticle with six iettings from I00 to
5 0 0 m. T he length and angle of the shou lder s tock can be
adjusted to suit the individual firer.

:::,*, :9
'.' :1'
,r7: .

+ry#i't:,'tt'
./::.1 ..., a;.:. ::
,:
^::it,i;,|:'::.
,.'t,t_.::.Pii
l:,.):.. .a:tat ) :,:,1
: ::,: ji.L
1.: jt tr:
::1
a.
Snipers in Action:
The Tangling l4ctchine
Clausewitz once described the many naturalfactors affecting the movement of
a" 'friction'. To the normal military headacftes su ch as rivet crossjngrt
"r-i""
mountains and theweather, the snipercanaddsuchproblems as dead
commanders, increasing the normAl friction to the point where the whole delicately-
balanced army machine seizes uP.
The poputar image of a sniper is one man firtng The short answer is that even in this era of
at a disiant enemy from a carefully-concealed highly-mechanized warfare there will be times
position, This may have been true in past con- w[en batt]es wrll settle down to aliow both
ilicts, but it ts anticipated that any major war of sides to regroup and supply themselves in pre-
the future will be a series of mobile battles in paration for the next round: tanks and all the
which the sniper will have little chance to exer- bther associated machines of mobile warfare
cise such traditronal skills, What role, there- will have to be resupplied wlth fuel and
ammunition, and casualties replaced. This The Steyr AUG assault rifle can be ptoduced in a
fore, is there for the sniper in such a war, and
great deal ofthought and money going takes time, and during thls time the sniper can sniper version fitted with a heavy barrel, a folding
why rs a
biiod and the usual telescopic sight' However. -the
into provldlng him wlth highly sophisticated return to his task, which is little changed from
5.i6-mm (0.2 l9-in) cartridge fired is designed for
equipment? thatof otd, i.e. beingthebiggamehunterof the relatively close ranges and lacks the power of the
battlefield, heavier 7.62-mm round, so its effecfiveness is
The sniper is not just a killer who can pick off limited.
AnFR-Fi sniper's rifle is showninuse somewhere his targets at long ranges, He rs also a highly-
in the French Alps. This rifle is based on a service trained observer who can move across country Right: The Galil sniper rifle is a first-rate weapon,
weaponfirstusedin 1936, although only afew in such a way as to avoid notice by an enemy
parts from the original are retained. Normally the eiternally similar to the standard assault rifle from
sniperwoulduse the bipod, butin snow this is not
and thus reach areas in which he is not ex- whichitwas developedbut in fact avery different
pected, Once there he does not simply frre at gun; each partis manufactured to avery high
always possibie. Note the unorthodox holding
wrll He has to save hts all-importanl fire for the standard and is capable of impressive accuracy'
method employed here.

oa 10
Snipers in Action
senior officers and NCOs will be prime targets
of opportunity, Even though most offlcers, even
senior ones, now wear the same uniforms and
carry the same weapons as their men in an
attempt to escape the attentions of enemy snip-
ers, their very actions and conduct generally
give them away to a trained observer.
Snlpers can also be used to knock out enemy
snipers, In many modern armies an advance
screen of snipers is often laid out in front of
defended positions for the sole purpose of dis-
ruptrng and slowinq enemy movements ln any
fulure battle these snipers wili still have to be
tackled, and using the otd maxim of settlnq a
poacher to catch a poacher, the sniper will still
be used to deal with his counterpart This will
be particularly true in wooded or close country
where the number of positions in which an
enemy can hlde are many.

The SSG 2000 is a target-


shooting ver sion of the service SS G
69. Seen here it rests on a small
bench tripod used for suPer-
accuracy bench shooting contests
popu I ar thr oughou t E uroPe but not
s oZommon elsewhere. T he S S G 20 00
has several differences from its
military version, including a heavier
barrel but is basically the same rifle'
It now seems certain that in a future conflict
the role of the sniper wil] thus be more that oia
scout than of a hunter. The training which pro-
duces snipers can also produce excellent
observers, men who can infiltrate and report
back enemy positions and activltles using the
latest miniature radios that transmit information
in short 'bursts' of coded data. Such information
rmportant target, For this to happen he acts not
as an lndependent agent but under strict con-
is in general invaluable to a commander who
trol after c-areful preparation and planning. also knows that his obsewer has the capabiiity
In any future conflict the sniper will rarely to knock out important enemy weapons and
operatsalone, In general, each infantry batta- men, Exactly how secondary this offensive
hbn in any army has a team of about eight capability wl]l be to the observing function ls
almost impossible to predict, but one thing that
snipers (sbmetimes more), and these often
does seem certarn is that the trained sniper wtll
-on The idea is that one man con-
operate in pairs,
rarely use his rifle to take out targets at ranqes
c-entrates observation and location of
grealer than 800 m (875 yards): there are usual-
targets, using a telescope or binoculars, while
the-other man sticks to the shooting This is not a
ly too many imponderables involved and the
sniper is aiways loth to give away hls position.
hard and fast rule, for there will be many occa-
Why then, one might ask, is so much effort
sions when the snipers will be operating pri-
battlefield hazards encountered by the foot sol- directed towards desrgning and producing the
marily as observers and wrli use their weapons^
diers of the past: machine-gnrn or other weapon super-accurate weapons that are featured in
only if absolutely necessary or- if a target.of this study? The short answer is that they are
importance is d-etected At other times the flre can then pln them down, often from unde-
tected fire positions. intended more for internal security and terror-
sniper may work alone,
Under such circumstances the sniper may isVhostaqe srtuations than overt military con-
Interval in warfare rnfiltrate enemy positions before an advance flict, Weapons such as the lver Johnson Model
gets under way. Using camouflage and stealth, 300 and Walther WA2000 would not last long on
In the static conditions produced by the in-
tervals in mobile warfare there is much the imalt teams of snipers can possible work their any battlefield. They are too demanding of
sniper can do. He can inflltrate enemy posi- way through the enemy lines to lie in wait until caie and are generally too fllmsy to withstand
their colleagnres make their move They can the unavoidable knocks and bumps ofstandard
trons to obsewe movements and strengths, and
he can disrupt and unsettle an enemy attemp- then smooth the advance by detecting and mrlitary sewice, even though they can theorqti-
ling to recuperate or carry out matntenance knocking out weapon positions from the rear, cally ensure a hit at 1000 m (1 094 yards) The
tasts AnO if he remalns wrthin his own de- probably with the old ploy of knocking out the miliiary sniper is far more likely to be carrying
weapon rather than its team. In past conflicts a a weapon resembling the SVD, the Galil snip-
iended area the sniper can keep watch for an
enemy carrying out exactly the same infiltra- heaw wea'oon such as a machtne-gnrn or mor- ing rifle, or the US Marines' M4941, a weapon-
tar was often taken out of action far more effec- that would not have looked too much out of
tron tactics in return. He can also prevent place on a World War I1 battlefield Whatever
enemy reconnaissance patrols from gettingtoo tively by a single well-placed armour-piercing
bullet than by the slower and more uncertain weapon he carries, the military sniper of any
close by skilful anticipation of the enemy s like-
method of knocking out every member of the future conflrct wil still have to know that when
ly apprbach paths and the establishment of an
ambush Point, weapon team: the same no doubt applies to he sees a target he wrll be able to hit lt, flrst
appropriate
' time and effectively, Even if the battle moves to
in more mobile conditlons the snrper can stlll modern weapons such as missile-launchers'
and some sniper teams will no doubt be de- and fro around him the snrper will still be there,
have an important battlefleld role lnfantry do
tailed to infiltrate as far tnto the enemy rear as watching and waiting, still carefu1ly concealed
not constantly operate from the armoured con-
the artiliery lines to create mayhem and gener- and wlth-a definite objective in mindr to use his
flnes of personnel carriers: to close with an
al disruption. Weapons wil] not be the only observation skills and his skill-at-arms for the
enemv thev have to leave their'battle taxis'and
targets to be engaged. As always the enemy maximum possible results
fight on fooi. They then become prone to all the

2714
USSR

SVD Modern Sniping Rifles


-::--;:ne who reads accounts ol the bat srghts are fltted for use rfthe optical The Soviets have always given
l::at Patriotic War (World War II to sight becomes defective, snipers a great deal of prominence ir
.---: rest of the world) cannot but help Perhaps the oddest feature for a the field and have always provided
,=-l.e the emphasis given to sniping by sniper rifle is that the SVD is provided them with good weapons. The
:: Sovret army. That emphasis re- with a bayonet, the rationale for this curre nt D r agunov SVD, al thou gh
::,:,ns undiminished, and to carry out remaining uncertain, A lo-round box Iong and bulky, is a reliableweapon
-:: sniping role the Soviets have de- magazine is fltted although not as accurate as, say. the
--:-3ped what is widely reqarded as Tests have demonstrated that the L42.ltuses a modifiedAK-47 gas-
::-: of the best snipers rifles around SVD can flre accurately to ranges of oper ate d semi- au tom a tic ac tio n
: jay; this is the SVD sometimes well over 800 m (875 yards). It is a allied to a largemagazine.
.:-:wn as the Dragn:nov. pleasant weapon to handle and flre
The SVD (Samozariyadnyia Vintokv- despite the lengthy barrel, SVDs have
:.: first appeared in 1963
Dragn-mova) been provrded to many Warsaw Pact
-,d ever since
prized
has been one of the and other nations and rt has been used
::-:st of infantry trophies. It rs a rn Afghanistan some endrng in the
::mi-automatic weapon that uses the hands of the gn-rerriilas, who are cer-
:,:re operatinq pnnciples as the AK- tainly no newcomers to snipinq. The
- assault rifle but allied to a revrsed Chinese produce a direct copy of the
;:s-operated system Unlike the AK- SVD and offer thrs version for export
-which uses the short 7.62-mm (0 3- quoting an effective ranqe of 1000 m
=-
-:r' x 39 cartridqe, the SVD fires the old- (1,094 yards),
=: 7.62-mmx54R rimmed cartridqe
::-3nnally introduced during the 1890s Specification
,:: the Mosin-Nagant rifles Thrs re- SVD
::ars a good round for the sniping Calibre: 7 62 mm (0,3 in)
::-e. and as it is still used on some Lengrths: overall less bayonet 1225 mm
S:-.ret machine-gmns availability rs no (48,23 in) barret547 mm(21,53 in)
;::blem. Weiqht: complete, unloaded 4 3BS kg
The SVD has a long barrel, but the
-r.'.apon is so balanced that it handles
(9 667 rb)
Muzzle velocity: 830 m (2,723 ft) per
i g
-,'.-:11
'-: and recoil is not excessive If the second
1 barrel rs rol a oec-s.ve recognr- Magazine capacity: l0 rounds
:i point then the cut-away butt cer-
- :ly is. The weapon rs normally flred
j 19 a shng rather than the bipod
---.-rured elsewhere, and to assist aim-
:-g a PSO-I telescopic sigrht is pro-
--ied. Thrs rs secured to the left-hand
-,je of the receiver and has a maq-
:-:ation of x 4. The PSO- I has an un-
'-::al feature in that it tncorporates an
-:-:a-red detector element to enable tt
-- be used as a passive nrght sight,
=--:cught it is normally used in con-
-::tron with an independent rnfra-red
.]lfet-lllumrnation source Basic com-

Right:The Dragunov uses a bolt


sJstem similar to that of the AK-47
and its derivatives, but it is modified
lo suit the different characteristics of
ie rimmed 7. 6 2 mm x 5 4 cartridge
originally produced in I908 for the
){oisin-Nagant rifle.

lhe Dragunov has an excellent sight which displays a graduated range-finding scale, based on the China produces a direl copy of Lhe s'!rD a-li :s::cm
seight of the average man. By fitting the target into the grid, the firer gets an accurate idea of the offering it for exp,].ft rjtft r'arious ertras lliii::rer
:ange and aims accordingly. Simple, but effective. thi s b ayone Uwire-cu tter.
ISRAEL

sl Galil Sniping Rifle


-:rrer since Israel was formed in 1948
-ae role of the smper within the Israeli
anned forces has been an important
cne, but over the years snipers have
usually been equipped with an array of
weapons from all around the world. At
one point attempts were made to pro-
duce sniper rifles locallY, so for a
period Israeli army snipers used an
indigenous 7.62-mm (0.3-in) design
known as the M26. This was virtually a
hand-made weapon using desrqn fea-
tures fuom both the Soviet AKM and
Belgran FAL rifles. But for various
reasons the M26 was deemed not fully
satsfactory, so work began on a snip-
inq rifle based on the Israel Military
Industries 7,62-mm Galil assault rifle,
the standard lsraeli service rifle.
The resultant Galil SniPing Rifle
bears a resemblance to the original
but it is virtually a new weapon. Almost
every component has been rede-
signed and manufactured to very close
tolerances. A new heavy barrel is The Galil Snipinq Rifle ts now tn pro- together with the telescoprc sight The design of the Galil sniper rifle
fitted, as is an adjustable bipod. The duction and has been offered for ex- optical frlters to reduce sun when
gTlare was shaped by the IDF's extensive
solid butt (which can be folded for- port. It is a very serviceable weapon using optical sights, a carrying and battlefield experience, and it is
ward to reduce carrytnQl and stowage ihat is far more suitable for the rigours firinq s[nq, two magazines and the al]- perhaps not surprising that the gun
bulk) has an adjustable butt pad and of military life than many of the current important cieaningr kit. is built more for reliability in combat
cheek rest, while a Nimrod x6 tele- crop of super-accuracy models. De- than exceptional accuracy in ideal
scopic sight is mounted on a bracket spite its basic design approach it can conditions.
offset to the lelt of the receiver. The siill place groupinqs of less than Specification
mechanism is now single-shot only the 300nim (11,Bin) at a range of 600m GalilSnipinsrRifle
original Galil 20-round magaztne (656 yards), which is more than adequ- Calibre: 7,62 mm (0.3 in)
being retained. The barrei is fltted ate for most smpinq purposes Careful Lenqths:overall I i 15 mm (43.9 in); The semi- automatic G alil is a gas'
with a muzzle brake/compensator to selectron of the ammunition and use ol barrel50B mm (20 in) operated weapon with a rotating bolt
reduce recoil and barrel jumP on the bipod ensures even better Per- Weights: rifle only 6.4 kg ( 14. I 1b); and a 2l-round magazine. Itfires
fLring A silencer can be fltted to the formances. complete 8.02 kq (17,68 ]b) standardNATO 7.62 mm xSl and r's
muzzle, but subsonic ammunition must The Galil SniPing Rifle retarns its Muzzlevelocity:815 m (2,674 ft) per built to hit the head at 300 m, half-
then be used, As would be expected, 'iron combat srghts When nol In use second body at 600 m and fuLL figure at 800-
various niqht sights can be fltted, the rifle is kept in a sPecial case Magazine capacity: 20 rounds 900 m.

FN Model 30-II
Fabrique Nationale (FN) has lor long ammunition, The manual bolt action ls
kept an astute eye on the arms market the frequentiy used Mauser forward-
lom its Herstal headquarters, so when locking action but manufactured using
.t noted an increased demand over re- a very nrgh standaro of cral smansh-p.
cent years for highly accurate rifles for The same can be said of the heav-Y
'ise against point targets the company barrel which is connected to the re-
oame up with the FN Model 30-IL At celer wrth qreat care, A five-round
irst sight the Model 30-11 appears to
be a hlghly conventional design And TheBelgianFN Model30-l I riflewas
so rt is though in order to make the originally produced for police and
-;yeapon as accuate as possible it has para-military use, but manv ate in
been desiqned and manufactured with military hands. The example seen
grreat care to obtatn the best possible here is fittedwith target sights. The
results. odd butt shape is due to the degree
The Model 30-11 fires carefuilY of individual adjustment that can be
selected 7 62 mm (0 3 rn) NATO incorporated.
:li Model 30- I I (continued) Modern Sniping Rifles
: ,,, :ragazine is used, but normally
.,--,=:.: rounds only are loaded by hand
::::: into the chamber The butt is
. : ;rable in two planes (up and down/
,- :,',-ard and back) to suit the individual
-::s comfort. Swivels are provided
:.: i shooling sling. and there rs provr-
--, ior mountinqt a brpod under the
--::s1ock, the same bipod is used on
-= FN MAG machrne-gun,
- ils bipod rs recommended for use
-::-:n the Model 30-11 is employed
- -- any of the larger sighting devices
---: can be fltted Unhke many other
. -per rifles the Modei 30-ll can be
.:i with precision-adjustable match-
-l: ron' sights, but there rs also a
' ,i: ranqe of telescopic sights avarl-
.: -: For use at night or rn poor vrsibrl-
.-.- ::nditrons image tntensifler or ther-
-,. -maQfing sights can be used, The
, .1: s selected are normally kept in a
-'al proIecTIl,e carry,ng case on producrnq the Model 30-l I means Specification
;:.rer with the rifle when they are that the weapon is not cheap Thrs has Model30-11
:..- : ransPor-Qd or stored. apparently prevented the usual Calibre: 7,62 mm (0,3 in)
, r: Model 30 I I is used by the Bel- appearance of high-class target-shoot- Lengths: overall 1117 mm (43,97 1n);
..:r :rmy, although most have been ingt versrons for commercial sales, barrel 502 mm (19 76 in)
..,- -:i to Belgran paramilitary police although anyone fortunate enouqrh to Weight: rrfle oniy 4.85 kq ( 10 69 lb)
,-.. . Some sales have been made to obtain a standard Model 30-11 with Muzzlevelocity: 850 m (2,788 ft) per
, ..=: rations, but only in small num- iron' sigrhts will find themselves the second
,= . ,:r the degree of care lavished owner of a superlative match rifle Magazine capacity: 5 rounds

: USA

Rifle MzI

fltted to the M21 is a sound suppressor Specification This M14 is from the cojiec'::: :: :.:
Thrs rs not a srlencer in the usually M2r Weapons Museum af tie ^Sc.hc\r- .i
accepted sense of the word but a Calibre: 7.62 mm (0.3 in) Infantry, Warminster. The l,! 2 - - :
senes ofbaffles that reduces the veloc- lengths: overall L 120 mm (44.09 in); specialversion of the Ml1. z=: "'-
ity of the qases produced on flnngr to barrel559 mm (22 in) parts manufactured to Lhe cr'o-.es:
below the speed of sound. This pro- weight:loaded 5,55 kg (12.24 ]b) tolerances and with a muzzle
duces a muffled report wlth none of the Muzzle velocity: 853 m (2,798 ft) per supp-ressor ard x 3 scope.itttej.
usual flring srqnatures and its use second
makes the source ofthe sound (and the Magazine capacity: 20 rounds
firer) difflcult to detect.

.'s.-

Although many Israeli snipers use the Gali|


sniping rifle some still retain the American M21 ,
the accurized version oI the M14 rifle. They were
obserued in use during the early stages of the
invasion of Lebanon, and many were used against
the PLO in Beirut in August 1982.
€ Hnioins Rifle M40A

The US Marrne Corps has alwaYs been M14/M21 sntper nfles theY decided TheMarines adopted the Remington
allowed its own equipment procure- they wanted something better, They 700 in 1966 and have had the weaPon
ment system as it has lonq been could not find exactly what theY modified to meet their requirements.
accepted that its particular amphi- wanted on the open market but the The M40A 1 rifle differs from the M40
bious role requlres equipment to design that came closesl to tneir re- in having a heavy stainless steel
match, Thus when the selection of a quirements was a commercial rifle barrel, a fibreglass stock and a
new snipinq rtfle to rePlace the MlC known as the Remington Model 700, pow erful te Ie s copic s ig ht.
and MtD weapons based on the Ml This became the M40 in 1966
Garand rrfles came about this servlce The M40 has a Mauser-tYPe manual
went tts own way. bolt action and a hearry barrel. It is produced. ahhough exact hgrures are
For the US Martnes the sniPer has normally fitted with a Redfleld tele- not avaiiable to confirm -hts assenion.
always had a speciai role, often operal soprc sight with a zoom magnification The main reasons for this are the heavy
ing in advance of other supporting un- of from x3to xg Afive-roundmaga- stainless steel barrel and the superb
its to gain informatton as well as acting zrne is fltted, and the M40 is an entirely optical sight, The magniflcation of thts
as a long-range killer, So when they conventional but high-quality desiqn sight is much more than usuai on such
contemplated weapons such as the in service with the US Marines the M40 devtces, but it produces a bright and
proved to be pedectly satlsfactory, but clear image for the firer. All the usual
When theUS MarineCorPs decided experience qarned with the basic de- windage and other adjustments can be
to select their own sniping rifle they sign showed them that something bet- rntroduced to the sight,
ordered numbers of commercial ter could be produced. TheY accor- As always wrth a weaPon of this
Reming ton M odel 7 00 r ifle s, s ome dingly asked the Remington Arms type, the degree ofaccuracy is depen-
sights, as seen ftere.
stillwith'iron' Company to introduce a few modiflca- dent on the skill of the user (the US
These became the M40 sniPing rifle tions. These included the replacement Marines spend a great deal of time
and many are stillin use, despite the of the barrel by a new stainless steel trainrng their snipers) and the per-
introduction of the later M40Al, but component, the replacement of the formance of the ammunition selected,
they are used only bY the Marines. wooden furniture by flbreglass and the but by all accounts the M40Al is the
introductron of a new sight This new rifle 'everyone else wants'.
telescopic sight has been produced
entirely to demanding US Marine spe- Specification
ciflcatrons and empioys a fixed x l0 M4OAI
magniflcation. No iron sights are fltted Calibre: 7.62 mm (0,3 in)
1n addittion to this optrcal sight. Lengths: overall I I 17 mm (43,97 in);
With all these chanqes embodied barrel 610 mm (24 tn)
the M40 ts now the M40A1, and it is weiqht: 6 57 ks (14,48 Ib)
':d,bx*1.1. produced by Reminqton onlY for the Muzzle velocity: 777 m (2,549 ft) Per
US Marrnes By all accouns i'is one ol second
the most accurate snipinqT rifles ever Magazine capacity: 5 rounds

iu"r Johnson Model 300 Multi-Caliber Rifle


=
This weapon has undergone a few ment lndustries and has a cahbre of this cartridge apparently ensured that
the Modei 500 was not a great success
Lengrth: barrel only, both caltbres
610 mm (24 in)
changes in name since it first emerged B,58 mm (0.338 in). Tables supplied to
demonstrate the efficiency of this car- with the US Marines, and one feature of Weisht: 5,67 kq (12.5lb)
some years back from the drawlnqt Muzzlevelocity: B S8-mm915 m
boards of the Research Armament In- tridge show that it has a much hiqher the Model 500 they did not accePt is
the fact that on this larger version the (3,002 ft) per second; 7.62-mm 800 m
dustries concern tn Rogters, Arizona muz2le velocity than most comparable
bolt has to be removed to load every (2,625 ft) per second
Its full current title is the Iver Johnson rounds and a considerablY higher
muzzle energy, giving the bullela flat- round After a few rounds the bolt often Magazine capacity: B.S8-mm 4 roundsi
Model 300 Multi-Caliber Long-Range 7.62-mm 5 rounds
fufle and it is marketed by Napco In- ter balhstic path over longler ranges, lammed and could not be removed
rernational Inc. However, the designers also realized without force, i.e. kicking it out,
that the acceptance of this new car- The'space age' Iver Johnson rifles
The Model 300 is another of the are intended for suPer-long range
attempts to produce the perfect snip- tridge might be an uphill task, so they Specification
have also produced barrel and bolt Model300 us e. The M odel 300 (foreground) can
.ng rifle capable of being effective at
ranges up to 1500 m (1,640 Yards), On head to enable existing 7 62-mm (0 3- Calibre: B,58 mm (0.338 in) or 7,62 mm fire either a7.62-mm (0'30-in) or a
in) NATO cartridges to be used; the (0,3 in) special 8.58-mm cartridge.
:he Model 300 everythtng that can eli-
minate technical error has been in- cahbres can be switched from one to
aorporated these leatures rargrng the other as required, This provides
fooma fluted barrel with a counter- the Model 300 with its 'Multi-Caliber
'ilerght beneath,to reduce vtbrattons designation.
ald whip in the free-floating barrel, to To date the Model 300 has had a
an all-adjustable butt with a cheek mixed reception, It has attracted much
pad. A x9 Leupold telescopic slght is attentlon by its very appearance but
the only means of aiming the weaPon apparently hard orders have been
:rd a brpod is provided tor maxlmum slow in coming, Unconfirmed reports
aiming stability. A manual bolt action is soeak of some being used bY US SPe-
used. cial Forces, but that is all The US
The designers also decided to Pro- Marines have procured trial numbers
vide what they regard as the optlmum of the Model 500, a much larqer and
ca:tridqe for long-ranqe sniping This heavier version of the Model 300 that
was developed from an existing Rigtby fires the 127-mm (0,S-in) machine-gnrn
hunting cartridqe by Research Arma- cartridge. The ballistic limitations of

27t8
BigFifts Snipins
:nthusiasm in the USA for monstrous
::fle bullets has paralleled thatfor man-
::opping pistols. After experiments with
:onverted anti-tank guns, some
:hooters have turned to the .50-ca|
nachine-gun bullet. This may seem
:urprising, as the bullet was designed in
',rtorldWar
I and shows its age
aallistically.
.-- ..i'n somany thrngs'nesedays rhe rdea ora
.:- re-ccrl;bre long range snlprng rille hod -ts
-:,gins in the USA. There has always been a
.=:tor of the Amerlcan populace that has
' :.ried to
Qto one staqe further and be there
..:stest with the mostest', and so it has been
' -:r long-range sniping rrfles. Not conlenl with
.::epiing, cr appreciating, that most modern
.---.,iary sniper's rifles are already more than
._r:quate lor thelr task, there has been for Soviet weapon onginally fired a 14,S-mm (0,57- The lver J ohnson Model |Aa r rear .i : . :.-_r:.-
- -:::e time a iaction within the American shoot- rn) sohd projectile, but by f,ttinq a new barrel versionof theModel300.firinqC.it-::. -. -,: -
-: iraternity which dreams of the ideal lonq and some extras such as a powerful telescopic ammunitiontorangesof overZalj::. .:: :: _

,,::i3e polrlt target weapon and so does its best srght the desrgner lound he had produced a is inhibited by rhe limitations a,'.':-..:: _-.:.:;.
' lcnveri these dreams into reality. rifle that coulci be fired to a range of well over cartridge, and it has to be loadeC b',' :=::.: . ..
bolt. I t h a s bee n tes te d by th e Uj.'..'. ::-: : I : .-
lie movement ioward a 'super iifle' was no 1000 m (1,094 yards). The same thingwas disc,
whowere not greatly impressec
- ;bt elled by the arrival on lhe American overed by an enterprising gun salesman vrho
.,:-:ll-arms market of numbers of old Ftnnish hand on his hands a sizeable stock of British
..:.ir Model 39 20-mm (0,787-in) anti-tankrifles, World War 1l Boys anti-tank rifles OrigLnally tnLo a 660-mm (2t-i.-. __:
-.,:g -,r,rith scme ammunttion. At that time, dur- chambered fbr a special 0 55-rn (13,97-mm) yards) ra<inqstrna-. . .--
; :he late l950s, one of these massrve rifles cartridge, these were relatively easily con- yards) a very dillereni c,:.-.:=
, :C be purchased for as little as $99,95 and a veried lor the Browning M2 round and are range attempting to hil a .:.::_ :
.:= of 100 rounds cost S84,95 - all via mail currently berng sold with the boid advertisrng a srngle round ts \-r -:..- _...:
::r=r. Knockrng over oil drums with one of slogan '1 reach out and touch someone'. smoll iruck rs a r.t.= -. : .

=se powerfiil weapons was qurte the thing for interesting though these latter two weapons dorbt a skrlled mor.- 1-:-. .: .
. : :rrod, but some shr:oters realized the lonq. are, the 12.7-mm concept gained full respecta- Model 500 coLrid d_ :. :....
.:,je potential ol the weapon and started bility wrth the appearance of the Research evon the oVe rdo- .l;---: - --
-,<rngr
in terms of real1y long-ranete snipino. Armament Industries/lver Johnson Model 500 using a Modei 5;1i = :: -: .. .=
: =,,re that avenue could be fully explored the long-range rifle, Deslgned upon much the fdnges SOlllq'lllfl . .' . .

. :<s of available ammunitton ran out, leaving same lines as the Model 300 Multr-Calibre
-,:-..i shooters with larqe and inanrmate (but Rifle, the Model 500 was intended from the Marinestesting
':restinq) anti-lank whlte elephants. outset for the Browning cartridge. The Model The LS Mor-ne I :,
l,ewregulations 500 also carries over the dramatic and unusual the weapon and re;e:.:J - -
appearance oi the Model 300 and many of its apart frcm tne aac,-ir::-.- t - _ ., -=:
::: the seed had been sown There was llttle advanced design features, but these are waslound .- L. -. : :--... " . ...
. '.r:ce of lollowrng the 20-mm calibre line emphasized by rts long (840 mm/33 in) and even w:thcu: : s,-i... r - :
(30 1b), :
.:i iuriher, however, lor by the late 1960s heavy barrel, The barrel is fluted longiiudrnally removriq:nei6- r"' :.
-. . dera.l regulal.ons rerattng
'o rhe rype of io rrllplJr e barrt-l coo,rng and al he sarre Llme loaded soon losi ils c:.:.:::, :-:: : :
-r.l'-olts with which Joe Pubhc' could arm assrst in removrng ihe barrel vibrations pro- bo- rended to-o:- -. - . :
.--: v,ere being ngcrously onotaoo und duceo on nr,ng. These r.brairons ore furrher frred
--:r anti tank rifles were out (following a dampened by a counterweight, described as Ihrs :he l- I:
- ,'=: of spectaculat bank-bustrnq ratds), an adjustable tunrng rod (in a tube under the appears to hate l:e::,'.: .:
-, - ::: calibre shooters started to turn to the barrel) and by a large and heavy metal block desrgn c. r j =-- '; '. : -'
-.'=:: readily-avariable calibre, and that was around the barrel. The metal block 1s just be- that
- : I'mm (0 5 rn) Ball M2 and its derivatives hind the much-needed muzzle brake fitted to
. . :-.Iy designed for use wrth the Brownrng reduce, in part at least, the considerable flring
.- :-,:avy macnlne-guns, recoll The Model 500 has the usual all-adlust-
-,.-
''. -2.7 mmcartridge dates backto the end abie butt and a telecopic sight mount,
- r-i. War I, but it 1s a widelv used and
. . d desron tha -s sLrllreoardeo as one o' Accurate aiming
= :-=s.'nan-stoppers'around, Jt is now tech- One ol the teiescopic srghts that can be used
'- -. <no-wn as the 12,7-mmx99 and the com- on the Model 500 has sraticules tirat can allow
: : ::.1no
:nd 1s
is 137,8
rJl,u mm (c.4zb lonq The
(5.425 in) 1ong. lne the firer to judge,range quite accurately by
=:.:j muzzle velocity (Ball M2) is 854 m placing a man-size target between spaced
r -.) per second flring a solrd bullet markers Using such a srght the manulacturer
.-'-.a
46 grams, II/La-.,onn.",irL
.-::g AA When used with rl-,^the claims that the rrlle will place a round into a
:-:g machine-qun
-.-:c machine-crun this round can deliver cucle 872.7 mm (34.36rn) in drameter at a
--- . .o rangres of over 3500 m (3 828 yards), range of 1500 m (1 640 yards). The manufaciur
.:ra: distance accuracv is minimal. er also states that the rifle is 'extremely accu-
:-:,:t paying too much attention to the bal- rale at ranges in excess of 2000 metres' (2, 187
:::perties of thrs cartrrdge, several en- yards) Thrs is aill very laudable, but other sta-
.-: staried to converl' existing weapons to tistrcs mdy ploce suJh c.la,ms i: lo perspec'-. e
.= rcundt some even decided to scratch- rlnlcss one is iring spec.Lar.y prcpor+J
',: .:eir o-wn designs using war-surplus amnun.lion, The ordinary M2 corrr l-- .
- I -'10Cflifl€ gun bdrrels. or e oi the ear designed to be fired in bursts lrom a machle
, , - .:e conversions was a one-off design gUn. SO Oln pornl aCCUIdCy \Ao- Fe .:I -
' . . +{i-cL a SovLe- PTRD 4 anLr- an!, pected of 1t All that is asked ol the a',-:la-l:
' .. -.-: red lorhe Brownrng rourd - hr. cartridge is ihar it should place l:s 'crc e: ,,=
z:gT:h* M76
=E= ofthe
Yugoslavia is not one
automatically sprinqs to mrnd
nations that
when
tie international arms marke'is const-
dered, but it is currently one of the
naiions most involved in the selltng of
arms to the Third World. Its small-arms
Lndustry is not particularly innovative,
preferrinq to adapt or develop existtnqt
designs rather than branch out into
startlinq new ventures, Thus when a
requirement came to replace all the
elderly World War II snipinq weapons
still in use by the Yugoslav armed
forces lt was again decided to adapt an
exrsting desiqn, in thrs case the M70B1
assault rifle, the Yugoslav derivative of
the Soviet AKM,
Not surprisinqly the resultant
weapon, the M76 semr-automatic snip-
ing rrfle, has much in common wrth the
Sovret SVD. The marn difference is the
choice of cartrtdge, which on the M76
Ls a 7,92-mm (0.312-in) type, a left-over
foom the German World War II stan-
dard rifle calibre, Yugroslavia sttll uses
thrs cartridge for some machine-gtuns
so its retention for the sniping role ts PSO-1, includlng the rubber eye- tical weapon than many of the 'super- TheYugoslav M76 sniping rifle can
underslandable. For marketing pur- piece, and is stated to make the M76 accuracy' designs now likely to be en- be found chambered for 7.92-mm
poses the Yugoslavs also offer the M76 effective at rangres of BOO m (875 yards) countered. The M76 is already in ser- (0.3 I 2 -in) and both S oviet and NATO
chambered for the 7,62-mm (0 3-in) or more, A variety of night vision de- yice with the Yugoslav armed forces, 7.6 2 -mm (0. 30 -in) ammunition. I t is
NATO cafiridge and the elderly Soviet vrces, usually passive infra-red siqhts, but rt is difflcult to determrne exactiy basically a specially produced
7 62-mm (0 3-in) rimmed cartridge, can be fltted rn its place, The normal how export sales have fared. variant of theYugoslav M70 assault
Having said that, the M76 resembles combat sights of the M70Bl are re- riflebased on the AKM andfitted
lhe origdnal AKM design much more tained, but the bayonet feature of the Specification with a longer barrel and an optical
than does the Soviet SVD, The M76 is a SVD rs not. M76 sightmounting.
seml-automatic weapon with a longt Although the M76 may be regarded Calibre: 7 92 mm (0,312 in)
barrel but much of the original M70Bl/ as a derivative ofa Soviet design there Lenqths: overall 1 135 mm (44,69 in); The concealing face netting used by
KM outline survives includinq the is nothing derrvative rn its production barrel550 mm (21,65 in) thisY'.'.goslav army sniper is
solid wooden butt The M76 uses a IO- standards, In common with most other Weight: empty complete 5.08 kg standard equipment for most
:or.md box magazine and a teiescopic Yugoslav weapons, the M76 is weli- (1i 2 ]b) snipers. In use here is an M76 rifle,
srght wrth a x4 maqnification is made and rugged enouqth to withstand Muzzie velocity: 720 m (2,362 ft) per noticeable by its long barrel, fitted
noulted over the receiver. This sight the hard knocks of service life, From second with a standard x 4 magmification
ras much in common with the Soviet this point of view it ts a far more prac- Magazine capacity: l0 rounds telescopic sight.

7.