Bren light machine gun
The Bren gun called the Bren, are a series of light machine guns made by Britain in the 1930s and used in various roles until 1992. While best known for its role as the British and Commonwealth forces' primary infantry LMG in World War II, it was used in the Korean War and saw service throughout the latter half of the 20th century, including the 1982 Falklands War. Although fitted with a bipod, it could be mounted on a tripod or vehicle-mounted; the Bren was a licensed version of the Czechoslovak ZGB 33 light machine gun which, in turn, was a modified version of the ZB vz. 26, which British Army officials had tested during a firearms service competition in the 1930s. The Bren featured a distinctive top-mounted curved box magazine, conical flash hider, quick change barrel; the name Bren was derived from Brno, the Czechoslovak city in Moravia, where the Zb vz. 26 was designed and Enfield, site of the British Royal Small Arms Factory. The designer was a gun inventor and design engineer. In the 1950s, many Brens were re-barrelled to accept the 7.62×51mm NATO cartridge and modified to feed from the magazine for the L1 rifle as the L4 light machine gun.
It was replaced in the British Army as the section LMG by the L7 general-purpose machine gun, a heavier belt-fed weapon. This was supplemented in the 1980s by the L86 Light Support Weapon firing the 5.56×45mm NATO round, leaving the Bren in use only as a pintle mount on some vehicles. The Bren is still manufactured by Indian Ordnance Factories as the "Gun, Machine 7.62mm 1B". At the close of the First World War in 1918, the British Army was equipped with two main automatic weapons; the Vickers was heavy and required a supply of water to keep it in operation, which tended to relegate it to static defence and indirect fire support. The Lewis, although lighter, was prone to frequent stoppages. In 1922, the Small Arms Committee of the British Army ran competitive trials to find replacement for the Lewis, between the Madsen, the Browning Automatic Rifle, the Hotchkiss, the Beardmore-Farquhar and the Lewis itself. Although the BAR was recommended, the sheer number of Lewis guns available and the difficult financial conditions meant that nothing was done.
Various new models of light machine gun were tested as they became available, in 1930, a further set of extensive trials commenced, overseen by Frederick Hubert Vinden. This time the weapons tested included the SIG Neuhausen KE7, the Vickers-Berthier and the Czechoslovak ZB vz.26. The Vickers-Berthier was adopted by the Indian Army because it could be manufactured at once, rather than wait for the British Lewis production run to finish. Following these trials, the British Army adopted the Czechoslovak ZB vz.26 light machine gun manufactured in Brno in 1935, although a modified model, the ZB vz. 27, rather than the ZB vz. 26, submitted for the trials. The design was modified to British requirements under new designation ZGB 33, licensed for British manufacture under the Bren name; the major changes were in the magazine and barrel and the lower pistol grip assembly which went from a swiveling grip frame pivoted on the front of the trigger guard to a sliding grip frame which included the forward tripod mount and sliding ejection port cover.
The magazine was curved in order to feed the rimmed.303 SAA cartridge, a change from the various rimless Mauser-design cartridges such as the 8mm Mauser round used by Czech designs. These modifications were categorised in ZB vz. 27, ZB vz. 30, ZB vz. 32, the ZGB 33, licensed for manufacture under the Bren name. The Bren was a gas-operated weapon, which used the same.303 ammunition as the standard British bolt-action rifle, the Lee–Enfield, firing at a rate of between 480 and 540 rounds per minute, depending on the model. Propellant gases vented from a port towards the muzzle end of the barrel through a regulator with four quick-adjustment apertures of different sizes, intended to tailor the gas volume to different ambient temperatures; the vented gas drove a piston. Each gun came with a spare barrel that could be changed when the barrel became hot during sustained fire, though guns featured a chrome-lined barrel, which reduced the need for a spare. To change barrels, the release catch in front of the magazine was rotated to unlock the barrel.
The carrying handle above the barrel was used to grip and remove the hot barrel without burning the hands. The Bren was magazine-fed, which slowed its rate of fire and required more frequent reloading than British belt-fed machine guns such as the larger.303 Vickers machine gun. The slower rate of fire prevented more rapid overheating of the Bren's air-cooled barrel, the Bren was much lighter than belt-fed machine guns, which had cooling jackets liquid filled; the magazines prevented the ammunition from getting dirty, more of a problem with the Vickers with its 250-round canvas belts. The sights were offset to the left; the position of the sights meant. In the British and Commonwealth armies, the Bren was issued on a scale of
Heckler & Koch G36
The G36 is a 5.56×45mm assault rifle, designed in the early 1990s by Heckler & Koch in Germany as a replacement for the heavier 7.62mm G3 battle rifle. It was accepted into service with the Bundeswehr in 1997, replacing the G3; the G36 is gas-operated and feeds from a 30-round detachable box magazine or 100-round C-Mag drum magazine. Work on a successor for the venerable G3 rifle had been ongoing in Germany since the second half of the 1970s; these efforts resulted in the innovative 4.73 mm G11 assault rifle. It had been predicted that this weapon would replace the G3, therefore further development of H&K's series of firearms chambered for the 5.56×45mm NATO cartridge had been halted. Heckler & Koch, having no incentive to pursue a new 5.56 mm weapon system, was content with the export-oriented HK33 and G41 rifles. However, the G11 program came to an abrupt end when the Bundeswehr cancelled its procurement due to defence budget cuts after the unification of East and West Germany and H&K was acquired in 1991 by British Aerospace's Royal Ordnance division.
Increasing interest in Germany for a modern service rifle chambered for the NATO-standard 5.56 mm cartridge led H&K to offer the German armed forces the G41 rifle, too, was rejected. Design work was initiated from the ground up on a modern 5.56 mm assault rifle designated "Project 50" or HK50. The prototype was trialed, where it was rated higher than the rival Austrian Steyr AUG system; the final version of the G36 was completed in 1995. Production of the G36 began in 1996. On 22 April 2015, the German Minister of Defence announced that the G36 would be phased out of the German army due to concerns about overheating; the HK50 rifle was selected for service and an initial order was placed for 33,000 rifles under the Bundeswehr designation Gewehr G36. The order involved an option for a further 17,000 rifles. Deliveries were first made to the Bundeswehr's NATO Quick Reaction Force during the fourth quarter of 1997; the G36's production line began in early 1996. In July 1998, it was announced that the G36 had been selected as the standard rifle for the Spanish Armed Forces, replacing the 5.56 mm CETME Model L and LC rifles.
Deliveries first took place at the end of 1999. These rifles are manufactured in Spain under license by General Dynamics Santa Bárbara Sistemas at the FACOR facility, in Coruña, Galicia. In addition, the rifle has been licensed for local production in Saudi Arabia; the manufacturer in the country is the Military Industries Corporation. Technology transfer was granted by Germany to Saudi Arabia on 30 June 2008 The first Saudi-made G36 was produced at MIC's factory on 30 June 2009. However, some components of their own G36s are supplied by Koch; the G36 is firing from a closed rotary bolt. The G36 has a modular component design. Common to all variants of the G36 family are: the receiver and buttstock assembly, bolt carrier group with bolt and the return mechanism and guide rod; the receiver contains the barrel, carry handle with integrated sights, trigger group with pistol grip and magazine socket. The G36 employs a free-floating barrel; the barrel is fastened to the receiver with a special nut. The barrel is produced using a cold hammer forging process and features a chrome-lined bore with 6 right-hand grooves and a 1 in 178 mm rifling twist rate.
The barrel assembly consists of the gas block, a collar with a bayonet lug, used to launch rifle grenades and a slotted flash suppressor. The weapon can be stripped and re-assembled without tools through a system of cross-pins similar to that used on earlier HK designs. For cleaning purposes, the G36 dismantles into the following groups: receiver housing, return mechanism, bolt carrier group and trigger group; the fire and safety selector is ambidextrous and has controls on both sides of the receiver which took upon the design of the original G3 selector. Selector settings are described with letters: "S"—safe, "E"—semi-automatic fire and "F"—continuous fire. HK offers several other trigger options, including the so-called Navy trigger group, with settings analogous to the standard trigger, but the selector positions have been illustrated with pictograms. A semi-automatic only trigger unit is available. In the box magazine is room for 30 cartridges staggered on top of one another; the magazines are molded with shock resistant plastic, are translucent allowing the user to see the ammunition.
On the sides are studs which allow the magazines to be attached next to each other, this way the operator can reload more easily. An empty G36 magazine filled with 30 rounds 483 grams. STANAG magazines cannot be used, but the G36 can use an adapter that will accept the STANAG. Certain types of Beta C-Mags can be used and are employed with the MG36 support variant; the stock too is multifunctional. The rifle can still fire with the stock collapsed, it incorporates holes where assembly pins can be placed during weapon cleaning and maintenance. The G36 employs a large number of lightweight, corrosion-resistant synthetic materials in its design.
The Vietnam War known as the Second Indochina War, in Vietnam as the Resistance War Against America or the American War, was an undeclared war in Vietnam and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. It was the second of the Indochina Wars and was fought between North Vietnam and South Vietnam. North Vietnam was supported by the Soviet Union and other communist allies; the war is considered a Cold War-era proxy war from some US perspectives. It lasted some 19 years with direct U. S. involvement ending in 1973 following the Paris Peace Accords, included the Laotian Civil War and the Cambodian Civil War, resulting in all three countries becoming communist states in 1975. American military advisors began arriving in what was French Indochina in 1950 to support the French in the First Indochina War against the communist-led Viet Minh. Most of the funding for the French war effort was provided by the U. S. After the French quit Indochina in 1954, the US assumed financial and military responsibility for the South Vietnamese state.
The Việt Cộng known as Front national de libération du Sud-Viêt Nam or NLF, a South Vietnamese communist common front aided by the North, initiated a guerrilla war against the South Vietnamese government in 1959. U. S. involvement escalated in 1960, continued in 1961 under President John F. Kennedy, with troop levels surging under the MAAG program from just under a thousand in 1959 to 16,000 in 1963. By 1964, there were 23,000 U. S. troops in Vietnam, but this escalated further following the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin incident, in which a U. S. destroyer was alleged to have clashed with North Vietnamese fast attack craft. In response, the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution gave President Lyndon B. Johnson broad authorization to increase U. S. military presence, deploying ground combat units for the first time and increasing troop levels to 184,000. Past this point, the People's Army of Vietnam known as the North Vietnamese Army engaged in more conventional warfare with US and South Vietnamese forces; every year onward there was significant build-up of US forces despite little progress, with Robert McNamara, one of the principal architects of the war, beginning to express doubts of victory by the end of 1966.
U. S. and South Vietnamese forces relied on air superiority and overwhelming firepower to conduct search and destroy operations, involving ground forces and airstrikes. The U. S. conducted a large-scale strategic bombing campaign against North Vietnam. The Tet Offensive of 1968, proved to be the turning point of the war; the Tet Offensive showed that the end of US involvement was not in sight, increasing domestic skepticism of the war. The unconventional and conventional capabilities of the Army of the Republic of Vietnam increased following a period of neglect and became modeled on heavy firepower-focused doctrines like US forces. Operations crossed international borders. S. forces. Gradual withdrawal of U. S. ground forces began as part of "Vietnamization", which aimed to end American involvement in the war while transferring the task of fighting the communists to the South Vietnamese themselves and began the task of modernizing their armed forces. Direct U. S. military involvement ended on 15 August 1973 as a result of the Case–Church Amendment passed by the U.
S. Congress; the capture of Saigon by the NVA in April 1975 marked the end of the war, North and South Vietnam were reunified the following year. The war exacted a huge human cost in terms of fatalities. Estimates of the number of Vietnamese soldiers and civilians killed vary from 966,000 to 3.8 million. Some 275,000–310,000 Cambodians, 20,000–62,000 Laotians, 58,220 U. S. service members died in the conflict, a further 1,626 remain missing in action. The Sino-Soviet split re-emerged following the lull during the Vietnam War and confllict between North Vietnam and its Cambodian allies in the Royal Government of the National Union of Kampuchea, the newly-formed Democratic Kampuchea begun immediately in a series of border raids by the Khmer Rouge and erupted into the Cambodian–Vietnamese War, with Chinese forces directly intervening in the Sino-Vietnamese War; the end of the war and resumption of the Third Indochina War would precipitate the Vietnamese boat people and the bigger Indochina refugee crisis, which saw an estimated 250,000 people perish at sea.
Within the US the war gave rise to what was referred to as Vietnam Syndrome, a public aversion to American overseas military involvements, which together with Watergate contributed to the crisis of confidence that affected America throughout the 1970s. Various names have been applied to the conflict. Vietnam War is the most used name in English, it has been called the Second Indochina War and the Vietnam Conflict. As there have been several conflicts in Indochina, this particular conflict is known by the names of its primary protagonists to distinguish it from others. In Vietnamese, the war is known as Kháng chiến chống Mỹ, but less formally as'Cuộc chiến tranh Mỹ', it is called Chiến tranh Việt Nam. The primary military organizations involved in the war were as follows: One side consisted of th
Military logistics is the discipline of planning and carrying out the movement and maintenance of military forces. In its most comprehensive sense, it is those aspects or military operations that deal with: Design, acquisition, distribution, maintenance and disposition of materiel. Transport of personnel. Acquisition or construction, maintenance and disposition of facilities. Acquisition or furnishing of services. Medical and health service support; the word "logistics" is derived from the Greek adjective logistikos meaning "skilled in calculating". The first administrative use of the word was in Roman and Byzantine times when there was a military administrative official with the title Logista. At that time, the word implied a skill involved in numerical computations. Supplies for an army were first acquired by foraging or looting in the case of food and fodder, although if traveling through a desolated region or staying in one place for too long resources could be exhausted. A second method was for the army to bring along what was needed, whether by ships, pack animals, wagons or carried on the backs of the soldiers themselves.
This allowed the army some measure of self-sufficiency, up through to the 19th century most of the ammunition a soldier needed for an entire campaign could be carried on their person. However, this method led to an extensive baggage train which could slow down the army's advance and the development of faster-firing weapons soon outpaced an army's ability to supply itself. Starting with the Industrial Revolution new technological and administrative advances led to a third method, that of maintaining supplies in a rear area and transporting them to the front; this led to a "logistical revolution" which began in the 20th century and drastically improved the capabilities of modern armies while making them dependent on this new system. Through the medieval period, soldiers were responsible for supplying themselves, either through foraging, looting, or purchases. So, military commanders provided their troops with food and supplies, but this would be provided in lieu of the soldiers' wages, or soldiers would be expected to pay for it from their wages, either at cost or with a profit.
In 1294, the same year John II de Balliol of Scotland refused to support Edward I of England's planned invasion of France, Edward I implemented a system in Wales and Scotland where sheriffs would acquire foodstuffs and carts from merchants with compulsory sales at prices fixed below typical market prices under the Crown's rights of prise and purveyance. These goods would be transported to Royal Magazines in southern Scotland and along the Scottish border where English conscripts under his command could purchase them; this continued during the First War of Scottish Independence which began in 1296, though the system was unpopular and was ended with Edward I's death in 1307. Starting under the rule of Edward II in 1307 and ending under the rule of Edward III in 1337, the English instead used a system where merchants would be asked to meet armies with supplies for the conscripts to purchase; this led to discontent as the merchants saw an opportunity to profiteer, forcing conscripts to pay well above normal market prices for food.
As Edward III went to war with France in the Hundred Years' War, the English returned to a practice of foraging and looting to meet their logistical needs. This practice lasted throughout the course of war, extending through the remainder of Edward III's reign into the reign of Henry VI. Starting in the late sixteenth century armies in Europe increased in size, upwards of 100,000 or more in some cases; this increase in size came not just in the number of actual soldiers but camp followers—anywhere from half to one and a half the size of the army itself—and the size of the baggage train—averaging one wagon for every fifteen men. However little state support was provided to these massive armies, the vast majority of which consisted of mercenaries. Beyond being paid for their service by the state—an act which bankrupted the Spanish Empire on several occasions—these soldiers and their commanders were forced to provide everything for themselves. If permanently assigned to a town or city with a working marketplace, or traveling along a well-established military route, supplies could be bought locally with intendants overseeing the exchanges.
In other cases an army traveling in friendly territory could expect to be followed by sutlers—although their supply stocks were small and subject to price gouging—or a commissioner could be sent ahead to a town to make arraignments, including quartering if necessary. When operating in enemy territory an army was forced to plunder the local countryside for supplies, a historical tradition meant to allow war to be conducted at the enemy's expense. However, with the increase in army sizes this reliance on plunder became a major problem, as many decisions regarding where an army could move or fight were made based not on strategic objectives but whether a given area was capable of supporting the soldiers' needs. Sieges in particular were affected by this, both for any army attempting to lay siege to a location or coming to its relief. Unless a military commander was able to implement some sort of regular resupply, a fortress or town with a devastated countryside could be immune to either operation.
Conversely, armies of this time had little need to maintain lines of communication while on the move, except insofar as it was necessary to recruit more soldiers, thus could not be cut off from non-existent supply bases. Although this theoretically granted armies freedom of movement, the need for plunde
The SA80 is a British family of 5.56×45mm NATO small arms, all of which are selective fire, gas-operated assault rifles. The L85 Rifle variant has been the standard issue service rifle of the British Armed Forces since 1987, replacing the L1A1 variant of the FN FAL; the first prototypes were created in 1976, with production of the A1 variant starting in 1985 and ending in 1994. The A2 variant came to be as the result of a significant upgrade in the early 2000s by Heckler & Koch and remains in service as of 2018; the A3 variant was first issued in 2018 with several new improvements. The remainder of the SA80 family comprises the L86 Light Support Weapon, the short-barrelled L22 Carbine and the L98 Cadet rifle; the SA80 was the last in a long line of British weapons to come from the Royal Small Arms Factory, the national arms development and production facility at Enfield Lock. The idea dates back to the late 1940s, when an ambitious programme to develop a new cartridge and new class of rifle was launched in the United Kingdom based on combat experience drawn from World War II.
Two 7mm prototypes were built in a bullpup configuration, designated the EM-1 and EM-2. When NATO adopted the 7.62×51mm NATO rifle cartridge as the standard calibre for its service rifles, further development of these rifles was discontinued. In 1969, the Enfield factory began work on a brand new family of weapons, chambered in a newly designed British 4.85×49mm intermediate cartridge. While the experimental weapon family was different from the EM-2 in internal design and construction methods, its bullpup configuration with an optical sight was a clear influence on the design of what was to become the SA80; the system was to be composed of two weapons: the XL64E5 rifle and a light support weapon known as the XL65E4 light machine gun. The sheet metal construction, the design of the bolt, bolt carrier, guide rods, gas system and the weapon's disassembly showed strong similarities to the Armalite AR-18, manufactured under licence from 1975 to 1983 by the Sterling Armaments Company of Dagenham and, tested by the UK MoD in 1966 and 1969.
During the development of the SA80, a bullpup conversion was made of an AR-18 and a Stoner 63 at Enfield due to the fact they could be used with stocks folded/without stocks which allowed the bullpup conversion and were chambered in the experimental 4.85x49mm round. A bullpup conversion of the AR-15 was considered but the buffer tube in stock prevented the idea. Technically, in the mid-1970s, the 4.85×49mm round was seen as superior to the existing version of 5.56mm M193 round in use by the US and by other forces. It should be noted that development of small-arms munitions have a long and continuous life and it was estimated by the trials specialists from Enfield that this weapon would be superior in the 4.85mm configuration. For the 4.85 mm round, both propellant and projectile were at the beginning of their respective development curves. Weight for weight, more rounds of ammunition could be carried by an individual soldier – a considerable advantage on the battlefield, it was regarded as probable at the time that the argument for the 5.56 mm standard within NATO had more to do with the economics involved.
Over the lifetime of a small-arms weapon type, far more money is spent on the munitions than the weapons themselves. If the 5.56 mm supporters had lost the argument in favour of a British 4.85 mm round, the economic impact would have been large and political pressure undoubtedly played a part in the final decision. In 1976, the prototypes were ready to undergo trials. However, after NATO's decision to standardise ammunition among its members, Enfield engineers re-chambered the rifles to the American 5.56×45mm NATO M193 cartridge. The newly redesigned 5.56 mm version of the XL64E5 became known as the XL70E3. The left-handed XL68 was re-chambered in 5.56×45mm as the XL78. The 5.56mm light support weapon variant, the XL73E3, developed from the XL65E4, was noted for the full-length receiver extension with the bipod under the muzzle now indicative of the type. Further development out of the initial so-called "Phase A" pre-production series led to the XL85 and XL86. While the XL85E1 and XL86E1 were adopted as the L85 and L86 a number of additional test models were produced.
The XL85E2 and XL86E2 were designed to an alternate build standard with 12 components different from E1 variants, including parts of the gas system and magazine catch. Three series of variants were created for "Environmental User Trials". XL85E3 and XL86E3 variants were developed with 24 modified parts, most notably a plastic safety plunger; the E4's had 21 modified parts, no modification to the pistol grip, an aluminium safety plunger, unlike the E3 variants. Lastly, the E5 variants had 9 modified parts in addition to those from the E3/E4 variants. SA80 development was complicated from the start. One complication was at least three project staffing changes at the Royal Small Arms Factory, which resulted in repetition of testing several times. One problem with the design of the gun itself was that the cases would be ejected at varying angles as it heated up and the rate of fire changed, resulting in a large ejection port; the conversion from 4.85 mm to 5.56 mm caused a complication, as the rate of fire dropped as the gas port was left in the same position, but the pressure and time curve of the rounds w
Heckler & Koch MP5
The MP5 is a 9x19mm Parabellum submachine gun, developed in the 1960s by a team of engineers from the German small arms manufacturer Heckler & Koch GmbH of Oberndorf am Neckar. There are over 100 variants including some semi-automatic versions; the MP5 is one of the most used submachine guns in the world, having been adopted by 40 nations and numerous military, law enforcement and security organizations. It was used by SWAT teams in North America, but has been supplanted by AR-15 variants in the 21st century. In 1999, Heckler & Koch developed the the MP5's successor. Heckler & Koch, encouraged by the success of the G3 automatic rifle, developed a family of small arms consisting of four types of firearms all based on a common G3 design layout and operating principle; the first type was chambered for 7.62×51mm NATO, the second for the 7.62×39mm M43 round, the third for the intermediate 5.56×45mm NATO caliber, the fourth type for the 9×19mm Parabellum pistol cartridge. The MP5 was created within the fourth group of firearms and was known as the HK54.
Work on the MP5 began in 1964 and two years it was adopted by the German Federal Police, border guard and army special forces. In 1980, the MP5 achieved iconic status as a result of its use on live television by SAS commandos in Operation Nimrod, where they stormed the Iranian Embassy in London, rescuing hostages and killing five terrorists; the MP5 has become a mainstay of SWAT units of law enforcement agencies in the United States since then. However, in the late 1990s, as a result of the North Hollywood shootout, police special response teams have supplanted most MP5s with AR-15-based rifles; the MP5 is manufactured under license in several nations including Greece, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and the United Kingdom. The primary version of the MP5 family is the MP5A2, a lightweight, air-cooled, selective fire delayed blowback operated 9×19mm Parabellum weapon with a roller-delayed bolt, it fires from a closed bolt position. The fixed, free floating, cold hammer-forged barrel has 6 right-hand grooves with a 1 in 250 mm rifling twist rate and is pressed and pinned into the receiver.
The first MP5 models used a double-column straight box magazine, but since 1977 curved, steel magazines are used with a 15-round capacity or a 30-round capacity. The adjustable iron sights consist of a rotating rear diopter drum and a front post installed in a hooded ring; the rear sight is mechanically adjustable for both windage and elevation with the use of a special tool, being adjusted at the factory for firing at 25 metres with standard 8 grams FMJ 9×19mm NATO ammunition. The rear sight drum provides four apertures of varying diameters used to adjust the diopter system, according to the user's preference and tactical situation. Changing between apertures does not change the point of impact down range. For accurate shooting the user should select the smallest aperture that still allows an equal circle of light between the rear sight aperture and the outside of the front sight hood ring; the MP5 has a hammer firing mechanism. The trigger group is housed inside an interchangeable polymer trigger module and equipped with a three-position fire mode selector that serves as the manual safety toggle.
The "S" or Sicher position in white denotes weapon safe, "E" or Einzelfeuer in red represents single fire, "F" or Feuerstoß designates continuous fire. The SEF symbols appear on both sides of the plastic trigger group; the selector lever is actuated with the thumb of the shooting hand and is located only on the left side of the original SEF trigger group or on both sides of the ambidextrous trigger groups. The safety/selector is rotated into the various firing settings or safety position by depressing the tail end of the lever. Tactile clicks are present at each position to provide a positive stop and prevent inadvertent rotation; the "safe" setting disables the trigger by blocking the hammer release with a solid section of the safety axle located inside the trigger housing. The non-reciprocating cocking handle is located above the handguard and protrudes from the cocking handle tube at a 45° angle; this rigid control is attached to a tubular piece within the cocking lever housing called the cocking lever support, which in turn makes contact with the forward extension of the bolt group.
It is not however connected to the bolt carrier and therefore cannot be used as a forward assist to seat the bolt group. The cocking handle is held in a forward position by a spring detent located in the front end of the cocking lever support which engages in the cocking lever housing; the lever is locked back by pulling it to the rear and rotating it clockwise where it can be hooked into an indent in the cocking lever tube. The bolt rigidly engages the barrel extension—a cylindrical component welded to the receiver into which the barrel is pinned; the delay mechanism is of the same design as that used in the G3 rifle. The two-part bolt consists of a bolt head with a bolt carrier; the heavier bolt carrier lies up against the bolt head when the weapon is ready to fire and inclined planes on the front locking piece lie between the rollers and force them out into recesses in the barrel extension. When fired, expanding propellant
A cartridge is a type of pre-assembled firearm ammunition packaging a projectile, a propellant substance and an ignition device within a metallic, paper or plastic case, made to fit within the barrel chamber of a breechloading gun, for the practical purpose of convenient transportation and handling during shooting. Although in popular usage the term "bullet" is used to refer to a complete cartridge, it is used only to refer to the projectile. Cartridges can be categorized by the type of their primers — a small charge of an impact- or electric-sensitive chemical mixture, located at the center of the case head, inside the rim of the case base, in a sideway projection, shaped like a pin or a lip, or in a small nipple-like bulge at the case base. Military and commercial producers continue to pursue the goal of caseless ammunition; some artillery ammunition uses the same cartridge concept. In other cases, the artillery shell is separate from the propellant charge. A cartridge without a projectile is called a blank.
One, inert is called a dummy. One that failed to ignite and shoot off the projectile is called a dud, one that ignited but failed to sufficiently push the projectile out of the barrel is called a squib; the primary purpose is to be a handy all-in-one for a shot. In modern, automatic weapons, it provides the energy to move the parts of the gun which make it fire repeatedly. Many weapons were designed to make use of a available cartridge, or a new one with new qualities; the cartridge case seals a firing chamber in all directions excepting the bore. A firing pin ignites it; the primer compound deflagrates, it does not detonate. A jet of burning gas from the primer ignites the propellant. Gases from the burning powder expand the case to seal it against the chamber wall; these propellant gases push on the bullet base. In response to this pressure, the bullet will move in the path of least resistance, down the bore of the barrel. After the bullet leaves the barrel, the chamber pressure drops to atmospheric pressure.
The case, elastically expanded by chamber pressure, contracts slightly. This eases removal of the case from the chamber. To manufacture brass for cartidges, a sheet of brass is punched into disks; these disks go through a series of punches and dies and are annealed and washed before moving to the next series of dies. Making bullets involves simular type of maching as for making brass cases; the projectile can be made of anything. Lead is a material of choice because of high density, ductility; the propellant was long gunpowder, still in use, but superseded by better compositions, generically called Smokeless powder. Early primer was fine gunpowder poured into a pan or tube where it could be ignited by some external source of ignition such as a fuse or a spark. Modern primers are shock sensitive chemicals enclosed in a small capsule, ignited by percussion. In some instance ignition is electricity-primed, there may be no primer at all in such design; the case is made of brass because it is resistant to corrosion.
A brass case head can be work-hardened to withstand the high pressures of cartridges, allow for manipulation via extraction and ejection without tearing the metal. The neck and body portion of a brass case is annealed to make the case ductile enough to allow reforming so that it can be reloaded many times. Steel is used in some plinking ammunition, as well as in some military ammunition. Steel is less expensive than brass. Military forces consider small arms cartridge cases to be disposable, one-time-use devices. However, case weight affects how much ammunition a soldier can carry, so the lighter steel cases do have a military advantage. Conversely, steel is more susceptible to contamination and damage so all such cases are varnished or otherwise sealed against the elements. One downside caused by the increased strength of steel in the neck of these cases is that propellant gas can blow back past the neck and into the chamber. Constituents of these gases condense on the chamber wall; this solid propellant residue can make extraction of fired cases difficult.
This is less of a problem for small arms of the former Warsaw Pact nations, which were designed with much larger chamber tolerances than NATO weapons. Aluminum cased; these are not reloaded as aluminum fatigues during firing and resizing. Some calibers have non-standard primer sizes to discourage reloaders from attempting to reuse these cases. Plastic cases are used in shotgun shells and some manufacturers offer polymer centerfire cartridges. Paper had been used in the earliest cartridges. Critical cartridge specifications include neck size, bullet weight and caliber, maximum pressure, overall length, case body diameter and taper, shoulder design, rim type, etc. Ever