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 SLR / SA80 or M16!

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ciphers
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PostSubject: CertaCito   26/2/2009, 19:36

Its Bloody CIPHERS not Cipers ... NOW PAY ATTENTION TO DETAIL or you will never make Lance Jack. ..

Ciphers
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/2/2009, 07:53

Hi Ciphers - Woops! Sorry, Sorry and Thrice Sorry!javascript:emoticonp('Embarassed')

Seems like I am experiencing some sort of disconnect between brain and fingers.

Yes, I know - Sounds like an excuse right?

Well maybe that is just what it is - We both know how important both of the erroneous bits of information are. Corps and Trade. Can't explain it! Having made it - can't see it!

Think I will need to proof read like Sergeant Crabtree in future.

Ciphers please accept my apology - Slowing down helps, so will slow down until accuracy improves!!!
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wrinkles
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/2/2009, 12:23

CertaCito wrote:

Seems like I am experiencing some sort of disconnect between brain and fingers.


I wouldn't worry about trying to change the habits of a lifetime CC. I mean after all, anyone who has been subjected to long time exposure to Royal signals will know it just "situation normal". Rolling Eyes Laughing
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/2/2009, 16:20

Think you could be right - Lying down in a dark room seems not to help anymore!

What were we supposed to be discussing anyway? .....ah, Yes!

....I believe that H&K were responsible for developing the latest modifications to the SA80 and it has turned it into a grand weapon. Well it works without the stoppages that used to plague it.

No comparison to the SLR but neither is MK4 Lee Enfield and, as I think someone else said, I would rather carry the ammunition for the SA80 than the SLR.

Still love the smell of cordite in the morning!! javascript:emoticonp('bom')
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/2/2009, 22:32

Guess I'll jump into this little bit of old timer history. I got to qualify on the Bren .303 in 1960 in the Militia (Cdn Reserve) and the the FN C1 in 1959. The FN had just come into use in the Militia in 58. There were still few FN C2's replacing the Bren in the Militia system hence the reason for qualifying on it on a Jnr. NCO course that year. The Bren was a neat weapon to handle. 7 pieces if I remember correctly. Release the body locking pin, hold by the flash eliminator and shake and it came apart. Only 28 rounds in a 30 round mag. I remember being dragged forward while on automatic fire as we were taught to fire it with our bodes laying directly behind it, ( I was all of 95/100 pounds) very little kick back. As I remember I kind of warped a barrel as there had been plenty of people ahead of me and I held that trigger down. One very ticked of Black Watch Sgt. The FN C2 I got to know when I got into the Regular Army. Now that was a different kettle of fish. It's like they said, it was designed to spread all over on Auto and would travel up in the standing position like a fire hose. The FN C1 was good piece of equipment and was designed to stop what it hit. I always preferred it to the SMG when I had a choice.(If they are close enough to hit with an SMG they're to close in my book.) The only fatality suffered by the Army in the FLQ Crisis here in Canada was caused by an SMG catching it's cocking handle on a tail gate chain of a 2 I/2 ton truck. The breech block came back far enough to engage a round but not to lock. It put 3 rounds through the mans lower chin up wards. The fella was a Bdr in 3 RCHA but was an infantry veteran of Korea. Goes to show that time and experience can be forgotten. In the Canadian Prison Svc I got to know the Colt version of the M16. Nice little weapon and ideal for that role.
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Wilf
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/2/2009, 23:27

Being RAOC we didn't have the GPMG, but I did enjoy the LMG or Bren. Yes an old weapon but very satisfying to pull the butt into the shoulder and squirt rounds off (in bursts of three to five of course) down the range. One of the few weapons I've enjoyed firing more than the LMG was the .30 Browning, like the LMG an old weapon but it gave the firer bags of confidence...well I thought so anyway Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   2/3/2009, 11:50

My first time firing the old SMLE in shirt sleeve order I thought I had been kicked by a horse, then I fired a PIAT ... holy jesus I don't know what went further, the shell or me (backwards) .. but then having to reload it, I thought I would get a hernia ..

Ciphers

Know the feeling,not with a PIAT but I once and only bloody once had the dubious pleasure of firing a 94 (Energa) grenade on Sennelager ranges,oh dear,thought I'd lost my right hand with the kick of yon Ballasite cartridge,no sympathy though,told I should have held it tighter,as I was white knuckled gripping the SLR I dont see how that would have been possible.
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wrinkles
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   2/3/2009, 13:22

Mmmm! I agree Nobby those 94's were wicked things to fire. The sights were a joke, if you got yourself at the twisted angle which allowed you to use them, the recoil would make you pay dearly. Being Regimental signals we used the Drill rounds to lay D10 telephone cable across "Obstacles" It, more often than not, fell on me as signals NCO to demonstrate to the trainees, not a job I enjoyed. Firing the 94 grenade is bad enough but a drill round with a pack of cable attached is a different animal, and a bloody dangerous one at that. I saw, too late to stop him, one pillock stand astride the cable as he fired, the resulting friction cut clean through his combats before I got him off it. Although he had a nasty burn he was lucky to escape with his jewels intact. Another time, on exercise, The Signal officer of all people was on the other side of a "River", in plain view, assessing accuracy of the shot whilst the shooters were vying with one another as to who could get the closest to him. I decided I should call a halt when one declared "get close %%$£%$" from here I can nail the twat". I suppose he was safe enough 'cos it was almost impossible to hit the target with the bloody things.
OH! happy days
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   2/3/2009, 16:00

Ah yes - the old PIAT - I remember it well and fired it quite a few times,but never in anger.And re-cocking that spring was definately a job for Charles Atlas.Brings back happy memories of the .303 rifle,of which I was a good shot and won the Regtl Rifle competition on the 3 occasions when we managed a small arms meeting.And drill with a rifle,then there is only one weapon - the good old Lee-Enfield!
-----
Don
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   3/3/2009, 00:09

The .303 was indestructible. Never been issued one, though I did own one and the carbine version to. All over the middle east I would see them being still used by various forces, police and security people.

The last one I owned now hangs on the wall at the Army Navy on Empress St in Winnipeg with appropiate spike bayonet. The bayonet came of a dead Greek-Cypriot soldier in 74.

Also saw my last Thompson SMG's in use with the Greek Cypriot forces. Mind Ellen in Ellen's bar on Regina St in Nic. had one to.
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/8/2009, 15:41

Big_Mike wrote:
I posted this comment on another forum, but it sums up my feelings.
'The SLR or L1A1 was truly a good weapon. First produced in Belgium by FN, went around the world in different flavours, ours being L1A1 and L1A2. The first SLR being introduced to the British Army by 1956. Some special units had the Australian L2A2, but for most we had the L1A2 mine being fitted with the SUIT sights. We got the 25/25 round (Back-to-Back) mag. To my mind this was the best British weapon with grouping at 600 yds. A lethal weapon in the hands of a British soldier. The SLR is not an assault weapon, so the SA80 was born. Being a shorter weapon, with smaller rounds makes it handy for the combat soldier to use. But, as Ex. weapons instructor, no one can tell me that the shorter barrel and the 5.56mm, and mostly automatic fire is better than my L1A2 with the 7.62 round. As weapons they both have a role to play. I will just say that I could kill at 1000+ Mtrs with my weapon.

I have met a lot of soldiers back from Afghanistan that would dearly love the L1A2 back in service as a bridge between SA80 and GPMG. The SA80 Doesn't have the range or the accuracy, and the sights were better on the L1A2.


Mike in Germany

SLR L1A1

The SLR was only ever issued as the L1A1 despite having several modifications over the years.

Heavy Barrel SLR v LMG

The Australians & New Zealand (L2A1) and the Canadians (C2A1) had a Heavy Barrel SLR with folding biped, issued as a support weapon at section/platoon level. The UK never adopted this version but opted for the 7.62mm converted BREN as the LMG L4A1 & variants (In fact the New Zealand Army prefered the LMG as well)

A few Australian Heavy Barrel SLR L2A1 were purchased by the British Army for Trails, but COD Donnington did not store or issue that many. They used a standard 20 round or a strengthened 30 round magazine designed to be used with it, and not the 30 round magazine issued with the LMG.

The British Army was in fact an early user of the M16 Rifle and ordered over 10,000 of them for use in Borneo, Malaya and later on by the Brigade of Gurkha's in Hong Kong. In fact we adopted it before the US Army did! Over the years many of these early M16 Models were traded in with Colt for more modern M16A1's and other models.

M16 v SA80

The Americans had as much problems with the early M16 as the British did with the L85 and it took a major re-build in the M16A1 and a re-education of troops in Vietnam on how to care for it after it was rumoured that the M16 did not require cleaning, and it was poorly maintained rifles that were a major problem in the early years.

One problem being that recruits were being trained with the M14 and being issued M16's in Theatre [A problem repeated with the L85A1 (SA80) in the British Army to start with]

If asked today what I would prefer? I would say a L85A2 as once you forget its early teething problems is a good weapon.

Pull up a sandbag

Being 'Old School' I liked the SLR, But being 'Rag & Oil' I prefered to carry a SMG or later a Browning Hi-Power [which I did in NI] becouse it was lighter. But give me an SLR if I had to use it.

.
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/8/2009, 17:07

Mike2817

Can I ask your opnion on gun cleaning fluids?. I had so many conflicting opinions when I was working.


Last edited by Chemist on 29/8/2009, 12:36; edited 2 times in total
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Mike_2817
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/8/2009, 18:00

In recent years

Oil, OX-24 for general small arms cleaning purposes

Oil, PX-11 for long term storage

http://www.hmvf.co.uk/pdf/POLcompact.pdf
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298HALL
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   27/8/2009, 22:28

I was leaving the army just as SA80 was entering service - and probably long before we Scalies were due to get our hands on it.

But I have to say from everything I've heard and read, I would have preferred to carry the good old SLR had I stayed in longer.

I've seen it described elsewhere as an "Elephant Gun" but it's one powerful rifle with a good range and plenty of stopping power. By comparison the SA80 just seems so, well plastic - and a bit of a pop gun !
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   31/8/2009, 10:22

The reference to oils for weapon cleaning made me smile - a recollection came to mind from many years ago.

While a very young Apprentice Tradesman in the AAC Harrogate we had a stint at Beckingham Ranges near Newark. The accomodation was old Nissen huts with an old fashioned stove to heat the place. As it was in the middle of winter and bloody freezing we were given permission to light the stoves. Of course all the bits of flanellette were simply thrown into the stove as we cleaned the SLR's and seemed to burn without any incident.

Cue some smart alec who concluded "Gun oil doesn't burn well" and as we had a large plastic mug full of it once the cleaning was completed, proceeded to throw the contents into the stove.

That led to one huge "explosion" as all the gun oil went up in a flash, sending 8 sqaddies flying in all directions and scorching the ceiling of the Nissen Hut !
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   31/8/2009, 10:56

Brasso did a good job of lighting coke stoves
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   17/9/2009, 06:38

We were issued with the SLR in Germany about 1954 for trials, unfortunately there was not much ammo available for it at that time but it was easier to handle than the heavier 303.

Lot's of changes since those days!!
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   12/11/2009, 15:43

SLR was my personal weapon while in BAOR,when I did my first tour of Northern Ireland I was issued with a Browning 9mm handgun,must admit I never got to use the SA80 as I was out when they were being introduced,I loved the SLR,simple but very powerfull,superb weapon
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   5/2/2010, 11:52

By the end of the 50's after the governments white paper on the armed forces the whole face of the British forces had to change. A complete new army with new kit and weapons. My dad served with the 'Kings Royal Rifle Corps' back in 38-46 and he had things like 303, bren Gun, BD and so on. Any of you remember the old 1 ton Austin, or the Ford or the Jeep, I don't, and I joined in the early 60's. For training we had a go on a brengun, but the 7.62 one. Our foe was another, less well trained than the WW2 German forces and less well equipt, but more of them. NATO decided to get its act together and have one native round, which could be used by all forces with the size being fixed to 7.62x51mm. The idea of a lighter portable 'Brenn' was produced. The Belgium national weapons factory (Fabrique Nationale) at Herstal, Belgium came up with the first FN automatic combat refile. The first army to be equipt with such a weapon was the German army with the new G1—FN FAL in the mid 50's. By the end of the 50's much of the world forces bought the FN. Britain, under licence produced a FN FAL-L1A1 and called it L1A1, but to most of us the SLR. The most prominent change from the original FAL, was that the British L1A1 operated only in semi-automatic mode. By the mid 60's some units in the British army was issued with the L2A1 which had a 30 round mag and legs and would fire in automatic mode. The 'Brenn' was replaced with the GPMG which is still in use today. Most of us who fired the L2A1 thought that this weapon was to stay on issue to the British army for a long time. All that was needed was something like the Trilux SUIT Sight, which came out later in the 70's, but it was a very good weapon. The factory in Belgium no longer belongs the the government, but was made into a private company, (how to try to save money Belgium style) and produce today some very good weapons together with Heckler & Koch as one group. Why the change? Well the 7.62mm was changed by the EU to 5.56mm small arms round after the report of how the new German/French/Niederland fast reaction group would work. They reported that 100 rounds of 7.62mm was sum 62% heaver than the 5.56, believe that if you will. I think that the new Heckler & Koch-FN group had this round as standard in their program and put pressure on the EU. The cost of the 7.62mm was also a factor, but the main factor during those talks was the amount of fire power you could lay down, it was truly awesome. No doubt the L85A2 or (SA80) as it is known is a good weapon, fast and easy to carry/use, but is it as accurate as the L2A1 and the answer is NO! The British government has burned tax money over the last 50 or so years. Why get rid of the FV620 Stalwart, or the FV601 Saladin. As for the Ferret or the Humber Pig, I thought them to be a danger to all who drove in them in conflict. Sorry folks, but this based just on my memory's, interest in the British Army and some research.

Mike
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   6/2/2010, 01:42

Not sure I can agree with you Mike on the Soviets being "less well trained than the WW2 German forces and less well equipt, but more of them."

Having read the NATO report of 1954, I think we would have been done like a dogs dinner had the Soviets decided to move east. Our 80,000 (max) and down to 60,000 and even less would soon have been overrun. During the fifties we were still pretty much still equipped with war time gear.
I think many of those who thought they were on a beer and bratvurst holiday would have thought differently if they had known these facts.
Anyway have a read and see what you think.

Report on the Soviet armed forces (1954)
Title Report on the Soviet armed forces (1954)

Source LORD ISMAY, Hastings Lionel. NATO, The First Five Years. Brussels: NATO, 1954, pp. 112-113.
Keywords cold war, military equipment, NATO, USSR
Copyright © NATO
Caption In the midst of the Cold War, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) draws up a report on the development of the Soviet armed forces between 1947 and 1954 and highlights the threat of these forces to Western Europe.

Since 1947, the numerical strength of the Soviet ground forces has remained fairly constant at 175 divisions: but their mobility and fire-power have been greatly increased by mechanisation and modernisation of equipment. There are now 65 tank and mechanised divisions: the rifle divisions have been motorised and equipped with tanks and additional artillery. The Soviet potential in airborne troops has been considerably increased since World War II.

The number of satellite divisions has almost doubled since 1947, bringing their total to about 80 divisions.

The USSR, Eastern Germany and the East European satellites today have an aggregate of over six million men under arms. Approximately 4½ million of these are in the ground forces. A high state of preparedness is maintained by a rigorous training programme.

The USSR has a ready-made spearhead for a rapid advance into Western Europe. This is composed of 22 Soviet divisions in Eastern Germany. The bulk of these are armoured divisions with nearly a complete complement of tanks and self-propelled guns. Behind this spearhead there are an additional 60 Soviet divisions located in the Eastern European satellite countries and Western USSR. (This does not take into account satellite divisions).

The Soviet mobilisation system is tested periodically. It is estimated that, 30 days after mobilisation, the Soviet and satellite ground forces could number 400 divisions.

The numerical strength of the Soviet air forces in recent years has been constant at about 20,000 aircraft; but very considerable modernisation has taken place. In 1951, about 20 per cent of their fighters were jet types: by early 1954, almost all of their fighters were jet types. In early 1951, jet light bombers had not been introduced into operational units: by 1954, well over two-thirds of their light bomber force were jets. In the medium bomber category, the Soviets have, since 1951, doubled the number of Tu-4s (similar to the US B-29) in operational units. Still newer types of jet fighters have recently appeared. Newer types of medium and heavy bombers, including jet models, have also been observed.

The development of a comprehensive aviation training programme has substantially enhanced the capability of Soviet air power.

Up to 1951, the combat value of the satellite air forces was insignificant, and their aircraft were obsolete. By 1954, not only had their numerical strength been doubled, but nearly half of their fighters were jets. In addition their facilities have been improved, and training has reached a fairly satisfactory standard.

In the past three years the Soviets have about tripled the number of major airfields in Eastern Europe which will accommodate jet fighters. This construction is still proceeding, especial attention being directed to the provision of very long runways.

The growing complex of airfields throughout Eastern Europe, the aircraft control and warning systems and anti-aircraft artillery dispositions of the Soviet bloc are rapidly becoming capable of providing an effective air defence belt along the western perimeter of the USSR.

The Soviet navy has over 300 submarines in service, of which about half are large or medium ocean-going types. The current large-scale naval construction programme lays emphasis on the continued production of large ocean-going submarines. Moreover, the surface forces include three battleships, 24 cruisers and 150 destroyers.

There are large stock-piles of sea mines, and the Soviet have considerable power of mine laying both by sea and air.

There have been remarkable developments in the fields of atomic, chemical and biological warfare, and of guided missiles.

The Soviet economy has maintained a level of military production which has proved sufficient not only to provide equipment and supplies for the Soviet and satellite forces, but also to increase their stockpiles. They have, for example, more than enough tanks, mortars, and anti-tank guns for some 300-odd Soviet divisions, and their stockpile of field artillery and anti-aircraft artillery is several times that required to supply those divisions. Production of these items is continuing apace.
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   6/2/2010, 13:01

I am not sure if could answer all that about the at that time UDSSR. NATO would blow up the situation and exaggerate on all aspects to get more men and kit from its members, whether this would present a true picture, who knows. We do know that the Russians are good fighters but their equipment was rubbish. If you want to find out how good the Russian tanks against the US, British and Canadians then look at the two Golf wars. The Canadians by the way use the German Leopard ll tank. Look at the British main battle tank the Chieftain. The tankies told us that there was not a shot that could get through it's hull (in the 60's that is). That maybe so but I wouldn't like to sit inside and be shot at. We have a lot of Russians in Germany at the moment, I think sum 2.6 million. So we do meet and have a glass of 'Vodka' and talk about our military days. The Russian's think of the British Forces with the highest esteem and would not be looking for a fight with us. They looked upon our forces like we look at a Swiss clock, 'A piece of well oiled machinery, that you don't mess around with'. These people are all in there late 50's and all have served, and they all say the same. By the way they look with great interest at our troops in Afghanistan. They say they are sadend buy the deaths of 'Our once allies', (They have a special name for this in Russian), British troops by the 'Cowardly use of road-side bombs'.

My after thoughts.
Our role as a fighting force is another. Our foe is no longer in Europe, so I can see all British bases in Germany being closed over the next 10 years or so. I would like to see NATO ask Russia join and help. We need the might of Russia to help.

Sorry, but these are only my thoughts.

Mike


Last edited by Big_Mike on 6/2/2010, 13:02; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : To add my name)
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   6/2/2010, 14:07

Blimey, no wonder the Soviet Union collapsed!
It was one thing to lose millions of people to beat the Germans, who's declared intent was to enslave or exterminate the "Slavic Races" but was taking over Europe worth the trouble. Apart from the casualty figures, let's face it, who'd want to try and govern France?
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   24/4/2010, 05:34

I always prefered the SLR. However as tank crew the personnal weapon was the SMG. The only advantage was it wasn't very heavy and folded up. Our Regiment had a big parade in Fallingbostel, some bright spark decided to issue bayonets for the SMGs for drill, lucky for me I was working in the medical centre at the time. However we did end up with several "stab victims" rolling up for business. I never knew up to that point that a bayonet even existed for the SMG.

In MT troop we had the L4 7.62 Bren, I always thought that was a superb gun and if you acquired a Bren mag you could make your SLR look more wary. We also had Charlie G recoiless rifles for AT but I never fired one and luckily we never knew about the T-72 at the time thinking we'd only be up against T-55/54 or T-62.

I hated the GPMG with a passion along with what seemed to be weekly changes in the stoppage procedures.
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   24/4/2010, 23:04

The big disadvantage of a SMG was that if you were close enough to shoot some one, you were to close, in my book. Now the FN (SLR to you UK lads) was the ideal knock'em down weapon and still have some distance from them to scamper off.
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PostSubject: Re: SLR / SA80 or M16!   24/5/2010, 15:06

Mk IV SMG was a good CQB weapon; used with great success in Sarawak and some years later in South Georgia: They fired beautifully from muddy immersion and in icing conditions,

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