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The C7 Assault Rifle, M16, & AR15 family (C7A1, C7A2, C7 replacment, and C7 vs M16)

  • Thread starter Thread starter the patriot
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a) Diemaco says the Brits bought C8‘s, not C7‘s...
b) how is a C7 ideal for close quarters? SA80 (not that the guy that wrote the article could tell either apart) is shorter...
c) how the hell do you fit a silencer onto a C7/C8??
...and why would you want a silenced 5.56 sniper rifle?

The same column the day before was all about new noiseless overboats that special forces would wear over their boots to prevent noise.

In other news, Newsweeks in depth, fully researched special on special forces reports that Rangers carry bazookas and M60‘s...(they use Americanized GMPG‘s now)
Enfield, here are answers to your questions:
a) Diemaco says the Brits bought C8‘s, not C7‘s... (the Brits probably bought the CDN version of the M4 carbine, not the CDN issue C8)
b) how is a C7 ideal for close quarters? SA80 (not that the guy that wrote the article could tell either apart) is shorter... (actually, just about anything is better than the SA-80... in any situation, you don‘t only want a short weapon, you want a reliable one.)
c) how the hell do you fit a silencer onto a C7/C8??
...and why would you want a silenced 5.56 sniper rifle? (the flash suppressor is screwed in place... and how about using a silenced 5.56mm sniper rifle for close quarter -ie: built-up area- sniping or assassinations ?)
If there is one area where we are well equipped, it is definitely the small arms.
About the "Bazooka" thing...I know the Rangers are some of the only American soldiers to have the Carl Gustav organic to their platoons (so that is what he probably is talking about). I know when I‘m practicing helicopter drills the Air Force guys always call the Carl G. "the bazooka." I guess we can‘t blame the lay people for I don‘t think I know the intricacies of, say, aircraft.
The following I incorrectly posted on 28 Oct 2001 as a seperate message under Canadian Rifles.

Ladies and Gentlemen,
The weapon bought is not a C8, but, a variant which approximates with the US M4A1. Previously a number of standard C7 had been purchased.

Sound suppressed (not silencers) weapons have been a standard with special operations forces since the 2nd World War, these using such as the suppressed variants of the Sten gun in 9mm, the Browning Woodmaster .22 pistol.

22SAS used the Sterling suppressed SMG the L34A1 for many years until it was replaced by the suppressed variants of the HK MP5 SMG in varous calibres. The L34 was used by the US CIA in SVN, along with the Australian/NZ SAS and regular infantry battalions, USN SEALS, and other organisations. Sold in this form to many countries throughout the world.

Sound suppressors have been standard with the Armalite series of weapons ever since Eugene Stoner designed the AR-10. According to Jane‘s Infantry Weapons there are currently three different supressors for the US military M16A2 and M4A1. Others can be used if the appropriate adaptor is used.

Sound suppressed weapons have a major role to play in unconventional warfare, not just for the Hollywood favorite of killing sentries, but, far more important for fighting in a confinded spaces, ie. Afghan caves, hijacked airliners, hostage situation inside a buildings room. It stops the user from becoming deafened, and alleviates the need for total ear protection that would restrict the assaulters senses in such a situation.

In regard to military snipers, the use of a suppressor in a concealed hide in close proximety to the enemy enhances the survivability of the soldier. Also, especially at night it increases the terror factor on the enemy. A well know story from one of the US Army marksmen in SVN concerns a North Vietnamese patrol walking along a paddi bund in pitch black conditions, with the marksman progessively killing the NVA from the rear.

Accuracy International in its range of marksman weapons, now produce in 7.62mm and 5.556mm weapons with a completely suppressed barrel as part of the weapon.

Sound suppressor have only a limited life, and required frequent refurbishment.

Jock in Sydney
According to this site...


...I think they might be refering Diemaco‘s Special Forces Weapon (SFW) which is a member of the C7 family.
Another Rifle that could be used as a sniper is the C8CT, which can also be found on the Diemaco site. This weapon is almost the same C7CT however is slighly different.
I just came back from a tranining ex with the brits and used there SA80 and LSW (LMG) and they are incredibly unreliable. You shoot 10 rounds out of the rifle and your almost guaranteed you‘ll have a stoppage. Ofcourse our C7‘s are more reliable but definatly not better for CQB. The SA80 is almost half the size of the C7.
Give me a reliable weapon rather than a "cool looking" one every time.In CQB a short weapon is nice but not required and as stated earlier the SA-80 is JUNK how that piece of crap ever was selected I will never know.Now that H&K is part of the Royal Ordinance family they should get rid of that piece of crap and give the Brits G-36s.
The C-7 is fine for CQB it just take more training to use in confined spaces,things like instinctively switching from right to left shoulder and vice versa,etc... Not an issue with troops like the SAS.
One of the things that needs to be remembered about the selection of any arms system are the politics involved. The British have been working on developing bullpup rifles since the fifties - therefore the SA80 was likely someone‘s pet project. The French military also ended up adopting the FAMAS largely due to political reasons. They wanted a French designed and manufactured weapon instead of a foreign one.

In 1995, I had the opportunity to use the Cadet version of the SA80 as well as a training simulator for the SA80. The rifle leaves a lot to be desired as far as I am concerned. The short length of the rifle does make it very handy, especially for those of smaller and average build. Those on the taller end of things may find it awkward. The short length also reduces the sight radius with iron sights, making it less accurate (Only front line combat units get the SUSAT sights - on the upside I‘ve heard the rifle is quite accurate up to 300m with this sight). The overall length and lack of sturdiness of the SA80 make it less than ideal for CQB with a bayonet as well. Some of the British military folks I met also had some less than stellar opinions of the SA80‘s reliability in adverse conditions(ie: Persian Gulf). I‘ve heard some similar things about the Steyr AUG weapons family as well.
(still trying to save up for a Colt M4 from my gun club)

Having never fired any military arms, it would seem to me that the C8 would be the best choice for combat at close quarters.

The SA80, it has been said here and for years, is unreliable, even in the "new improved" version. The old FN‘s were far too heavy and long. The M16 is not quite as tuned as the C7. If the C8 is merely a collapsable-stock version of the C7, bringing with it the same firepower and reliability, then it would be the logical choice.

The adaptability of the C7/C8 platform (grenade launchers, sound suppressors, or bayonet, if I am not mistaken) seems to be superior to most, if not all, other NATO personal weapons.

Keep in mind, however, I have no personal experience to base my suppositions on.
A guy who formerly served in the British Army gives C7/8 thumbs up over most other NATO weapons.

At least we got something right, eh? :)
Something to keep in mind is that the basic design is around 40 years old. To me, that says quite a bit about the M16‘s design and subsequent modifications.
I‘ve never been told the full story and just curious to find out.
Here‘s an old article I had on it published in the UK Telegraph:

SAS carries ‘ultimate‘ weapon
By Thomas Harding
(Filed: 27/10/2001)

WHEN the SAS begins operations in earnest in Afghanistan, troopers will be armed with one of the most formidable weapons systems in the world.

In the past year, 22 Special Air Service Regiment has dropped its American-made M16 rifles in favour of the C7 weapon, which is manufactured in Canada.

The elite force began testing the weapon two years ago and, impressed by its reliability and heavy firepower, bought enough to equip the entire regiment. They did not come cheap.

A complete weapons system, including sights, laser targeting, grenade launcher and maintenance, costs £5,500 each - more than double the cost of the American equivalent.

The relatively lightweight weapon is based on the M16 design but with several modifications. It can be adapted to be used as a machinegun or sniper weapon.

A special forces source said: "This weapon is worth its weight in gold. You just don‘t want something that is ‘spray and pray‘ and you want a weapon you can absolutely rely on when you pull the trigger."

And from an old post at another board (long since gone - I saved this one from a Reservist:

"C7 I trust my life on it as I am a reservist in the Canadian army. Those opticle sights(not scopes) are on all our rifles which is better than just open sights. They are designed for 200m-800m the dnd page says upto 600m which is false and its in 100m incriments. It can fire fully automatic or semi. Its weight is 3.3kg unloaded and 3.8 loaded the page wrong again. Can be fitted with a bayonet for close quarter fighting. If kept in good condition and cleaned properly will never ever misfire. It has a 30 round magazine. The sight has iridium in it yes radioactive hense why there is a radioactive sign on it. This enables it to iluminate a nighting allowing you to see throught the sight at night. Sight can be submerged under water for 10 hours before the seals on it start to break down due to water pressure."

The main differences I can recall are the weight, the fact that the C7 uses plastic cartridges, and that the C7 gets rids of the M16 carry handle for a sight.
Errr, I‘m new to the Army, but I‘ve never seen a C7 with a plastic mag, only metal. Apparently much more robust and reliable...
Also The C7 can fire either fully automatic or semi, where as our M16A2 fires either a 3-round burst or semi.