Barrington Bond

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 4, 2007
Messages
938
Reaction score
182
From The Royal Air Force Review October 1951 Vol 7 No 1.
 

Attachments

  • scan0008 (2).jpg
    scan0008 (2).jpg
    298 KB · Views: 1,179

JFC Fuller

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2012
Messages
2,392
Reaction score
1,131
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Enfield EM-2, by all accounts an excellent weapon with an excellent cartridge. Basically got screwed by the US insistence that 7.62mm should be the standard NATO cartridge.

There was a belt fed MG chambered for the same round based on the Bren called the Taden, picture available here,

http://www.arrse.co.uk/wiki/index.php/Bren_and_L4_Light_machine_Gun
 

smurf

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
549
Reaction score
53
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

EDITED
For more details on the TADEN see:
Pictorial history of the machine gun FWA Hobart Ian Allan 1971 (very good, dirt cheap second hand as it seems to have just got to library throwouts reaching the second hand market.)
For more on the EM2 (accessibly) see Hogg & Weeks, Military small arms of the 20th century.
For the full story (if you can find one, and afford it when you have):
Dugelby, Thomas B EM-2 concept and design Collector Grade Pubns, 1980 the works including the competitive trial results.
 

JFC Fuller

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2012
Messages
2,392
Reaction score
1,131
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Indeed, a truly excellent weapon all round and a proper assault rifle of the sort that could never be produced using the 7.62mm NATO cartridge. At one point there was a video online including footage of it and the Tarden being fired.
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Always one of my favourites small arms, bu way ahead of it's time.
 

Shroud

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Oct 4, 2008
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

There is a section on this in one of the old Salamander books. Can dig it out and scan if anyone is interested? Assuming i am allowed to of course, not done that before so never considered it.
 

Lampshade111

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Oct 5, 2008
Messages
151
Reaction score
4
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

I am not a big fan of the rifle itself but the ammunition... that was a great missed opportunity.

I wonder how ammunition development would be different today if NATO had adopted the .280 British or if prior to WWII the U.S. had adopted the .276 Pedersen? Is there any listing showing how much recoil these two cartridges generated? It would be interesting to compare them with the modern 5.56x45mm or 6.8x43mm.
 

zen

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2007
Messages
2,800
Reaction score
1,520
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Or for that matter the Arisaka 6.5mm round?
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.280_British

Surprisingly, the calibre has a wiki page. As one could imagine: if the article in the original post is correct recoil would have been significantly less that a .308 NATO round. Wouldn't see a 3 shot burst in .308, no sir.

However, that could also have attributed to the bullpup design.
 

Shroud

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Oct 4, 2008
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Found the book, less info than i remembered, i'll see if there is more somewhere else in another book. I've scanned and the images anyway, as the EM2 is discussed along wth the Individual Weapon. Basically makes for the family tree of the SA80. Hope its of interest.
 

Attachments

  • EM2&IDW.jpg
    EM2&IDW.jpg
    640.8 KB · Views: 878
  • Text.jpg
    Text.jpg
    729.1 KB · Views: 736
  • Cover.JPG
    Cover.JPG
    689.5 KB · Views: 544

smurf

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
549
Reaction score
53
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Apart from being a bullpup, the EM2 is internally not much like the 4.85 and the SA80 developed from it to fire NATO 5.56mm. That, although your text says "mechanically more advanced" has had rather a chequered career, with a complete mid-life redesign to make it work.
I note your text also says "lighter" (but gives weights of 7.55lb for the 7mm EM2 and 8.5lb for the 4.85mm Individual Weapon, both with 20-round box magazines) and "smaller" but note that the extra length of the EM2 is barrel length, which makes for accuracy, though not so useful as a substitute for a sub-machine gun - though most of those are much smaller these days. But tactics change, and carrying the rifle inside an APC or IFV is more important now.
 

Abraham Gubler

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
3,549
Reaction score
320
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Firefly said:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.280_British

Surprisingly, the calibre has a wiki page. As one could imagine: if the article in the original post is correct recoil would have been significantly less that a .308 NATO round. Wouldn't see a 3 shot burst in .308, no sir.

However, that could also have attributed to the bullpup design.

The 7mm/.280 round is influential and creates lots of debate to this day. the Barret 6.8mm is very much a modern version of the 7mm's stablemate the .270. Yes the 7mm round's recoil is much less, there are links and discussions in this forum looking at the original comparison tests between the EM-2, M14 and FAL (or at least what was to become them). And yes the 7mm round performed much better except in the all important US government cost to manufacture index. Which lead to its untimely demise.

The bullpup configuration has no effect on the recoil potential of the 7mm round. This is created by the mass of the bullet and gas and their velocities as they leave the barrel. Their is an advantage in the EM-2's straight line design with recoil forces being absorbed directly by the shoulder but this is not exclussive to a bullpup weapon (Stg-57, AR-15, etc).
 

Abraham Gubler

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
3,549
Reaction score
320
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

smurf said:
Apart from being a bullpup, the EM2 is internally not much like the 4.85 and the SA80 developed from it to fire NATO 5.56mm. That, although your text says "mechanically more advanced" has had rather a chequered career, with a complete mid-life redesign to make it work.

Just because its in print doesn't mean it isn't BS. The EM-2 and the SA80 are completely different only sharing a rough configuration. The EM-2 used an internal workings designed by Janson while the SA80 was just a bullpupisation of the AR18 and suffered for it.
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Abraham Gubler said:
smurf said:
Apart from being a bullpup, the EM2 is internally not much like the 4.85 and the SA80 developed from it to fire NATO 5.56mm. That, although your text says "mechanically more advanced" has had rather a chequered career, with a complete mid-life redesign to make it work.

Just because its in print doesn't mean it isn't BS. The EM-2 and the SA80 are completely different only sharing a rough configuration. The EM-2 used an internal workings designed by Janson while the SA80 was just a bullpupisation of the AR18 and suffered for it.

H&K turned the SA80A1 into the more reliable A2?
 

smurf

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
549
Reaction score
53
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

http://www.army.mod.uk/equipment/support-weapons/1458.aspx
http://www.arrse.co.uk/wiki/SA-80
as I said, a rather chequered career, which continues.
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Yeah, well at least the A2 works decently now.

Still, I wonder. Would FN have made a lighter FAL if the .280 Britisch had been accepted as nato standard round.
 

Petrus

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2006
Messages
647
Reaction score
404
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

They almost did so building a FAL version for Venezuela that was chambered for the 7x49 mm cartridge, a bit more powerful than the .280 one.

By the way, does anybody in the forum have any pictures of the Venezuelan rifle?

Piotr
 

Abraham Gubler

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
3,549
Reaction score
320
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Firefly said:
Still, I wonder. Would FN have made a lighter FAL if the .280 Britisch had been accepted as nato standard round.

The FAL was originally designed for the 7x43mm (.280 round) after the prototypes used the WW2 German 7.92x33mm. It was only after the US insisted on a modernised .30 (7.62x51mm) that it was re chambered.

These kind of questions can be answered on Wikipedia or using Google. This web forum has always been for posting new information not answering questions for people who can't do a simple web search.
 

Apophenia

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2007
Messages
2,894
Reaction score
1,569
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Perhaps not new info but the Canadian Army originally wanted the FAL in .280 intermediate. Of course, the C1 and C2 eventually entered service chambered for 7.62 NATO.

[That wasn't Canadian Army's first go around with a .280" cartridge -- the Mark II Ross rifle (original 1906 model, not the 1912 version) was in the big .280 x 2.59 (7mm x 66mm) 'magnum' round in a semi-rimmed case. Later Mk IIs and Mk IIIs were chambered for .303" British.]
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Abraham Gubler said:
Firefly said:
Still, I wonder. Would FN have made a lighter FAL if the .280 Britisch had been accepted as nato standard round.

The FAL was originally designed for the 7x43mm (.280 round) after the prototypes used the WW2 German 7.92x33mm. It was only after the US insisted on a modernised .30 (7.62x51mm) that it was re chambered.

These kind of questions can be answered on Wikipedia or using Google. This web forum has always been for posting new information not answering questions for people who can't do a simple web search.

Supposedly, if one has the time, yes. In my case, no. Time is in short supply. Edit: I have none or very little trying to juggle two jobs and a budding career in music with keeping up with my various fields of interrest. My time is not more precious than anybody elses, it's just a simple fact that I have very little time to do any serious research, nor have I the funds to collect a vast library of resources. Hence my post. This is the only way I meant it.
I will not stand corrected on an honest question, sir, so please vent your frustration elsewhere. Merely dumping information in this forum defeats its purpose as an information platform for both the amateurs ( like me) and the zealous.

Back on topic:
Doing a little search on the Taden machinegun I stumbled on this video. The last three minutes or such are devoted to the EM2 and the Taden.
http://www.rifleman.org.uk/enfield_video_page.htm
 

smurf

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
549
Reaction score
53
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

I spent some 25 years providing technical information to a wide range of enquirers. Most of it was well known to experts, but few if any experts covered the wide range of enquiries addressed to me. Indeed, the experts I most respected in their narrow fields were among my best customers in fields other than their own. I was confident that my replies were helpful, and were received gratefully.
My 25 years experience show me that it is not always wise to trust Wikipedia, and that searching with Google can produce false information as well as true. It is also helpful to have an expert confirm which is which.
If this site is to fulfil one of its stated aims, to be an archive, then it must contain known information as well as new. But what is new to one may be well-known to another.
Ask away, Firefly. If I can help, I will. I have always been grateful to those who have helped me, when I had slipped and failed to do, or failed with, a "simple search".
If the information is already available on this site, the reply does not need to reproduce it - merely provide a link.
 

Abraham Gubler

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
3,549
Reaction score
320
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

overscan said:
Secret Forum Rules 5.0
  • Google is your friend. Try searching the internet to see if the information you seek is already out there.

Firefly said:
I will not stand corrected on an honest question, sir, so please vent your frustration elsewhere. Merely dumping information in this forum defeats its purpose as an information platform for both the amateurs ( like me) and the zealous.

If you wish to understand more about the EM-2 then there is a plentiful supply of already published information both online in print that covers such basic issues as the early history of the 7mm vs 7.62mm NATO trials.

This forum was designed to achieve aims that may not be what you want it to do. I suggest you read the rules and play along to them - I did when I got onboard - which is why I don't seek answers for things I can find elsewhere.

Firefly said:
Supposedly, if one has the time, yes. In my case, no. Time is in short supply.

So your time is so precious that you expect others to spend their time doing basic research for you? There is another forum rule against sponging but this your time versus my time valuation of yours is so offensive I'll just let it stand as is. If you think so highly of your own time you could at least have the decency to offer to pay others for their research for your benefit.

I've railed against it elsewhere within this forum and might be considered an extremist but when I first started visiting here the threads were just new information, after new information, interrupted only by people's heartfelt thanks to those who looked it up. It wasn't the kind of mental spamage one finds on so many other forums of people posting questions and opinions from ignorance.
 

Antonio

Moderator
Staff member
Senior Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2006
Messages
3,657
Reaction score
537
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Abraham Gubler and Firefly, gentlemen, please no more confrontation.

Thanks
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Yes sir, my apologies.

Back on topic:

In 1950, the United Kingdom presented the redesigned FN rifle and the British EM-2, both in .280 British calibre, to the United States for comparison testing against the favored United States Army design of the time - Earle Harvey's T25.

Quoted from the FN FAL wiki page at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FN_FAL

There is one thing I don't understand:why would the UK submit a ( admittedly redesigned) Belgian design along with a groundbreaking design boasted to be the best thing since toasted bread? Does anybody have information wether this was based on political or technical grounds?Was the reliability of the EM2 ever in doubt? The film in the link I posted would prove the opposite, but that was propaganda.
 

smurf

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
549
Reaction score
53
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Also from Overscan's post
General Conduct

* Always be polite, especially to new users, even if they ask questions you find irritating. Nobody was born an expert.
* New users in return should respect that some of the forum's "grumpy old men" do have years of industry experience. Be respectful and appreciative where appropriate.
Selective quotes can give different impressions.
From experience moderating another board, I think it is inevitable that as a board matures, and as the user base grows, there will be repeated questions about topics that have appeared before, or can be found elsewhere, or even appear irrelevant to old hands. Why should you not ask your friends, rather than do solitary searches? It is unrealistic to expect rigorous obedience to the rules (which many will probably not read before they start.) This board does seem to have its fair share of 'spats'.
But this sort of discussion probably belongs in the Bar, or Site Feedback.
 

overscan (PaulMM)

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Dec 27, 2005
Messages
13,690
Reaction score
8,008
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Everyone is free to ask questions, so long as they are also willing to contribute themselves. Sometimes a seemingly simple question can lead to an interesting discussion.

There are many avenues to acquiring knowledge and the forum is only one, so it is sensible to refer someone to a relevant book or website where appropriate. I think Abe was annoyed by the apparent implication that his time was less valuable than Firefly's time, which I am sure was never Firefly's intention, but his message could be read in that way.

Hopefully this discussion can return to the original subject now.
 

Abraham Gubler

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
3,549
Reaction score
320
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

If you want to know more about the 1950 EM-2 7mm vs FAL 7mm vs T25 (XM14) 7.62mm trial then here is a link to the original US Army report. It’s a 15 MB .pdf (so no downloading on dialup) and a pretty rough copy (photocopy) of the original report but is fantastic reading.

A Comparison Test of United Kingdom and United States Lightweight Rifles

To obtain information on the characteristics and performance of 3 models of lightweight rifles, two models of which (EM2 and FAL) were furnished by the United Kingdom and one (T25) by the United States.

handle.dtic.mil/100.2/AD896858
 

SteveO

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 24, 2007
Messages
436
Reaction score
150
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Anthony G. Williams website has some excellent articles on firearms and ammunition http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/index.htm

Here's one about the SA80 http://www.quarry.nildram.co.uk/SA80.htm
 

Firefly 2

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Jun 30, 2009
Messages
461
Reaction score
15
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Abraham Gubler said:
If you want to know more about the 1950 EM-2 7mm vs FAL 7mm vs T25 (XM14) 7.62mm trial then here is a link to the original US Army report. It’s a 15 MB .pdf (so no downloading on dialup) and a pretty rough copy (photocopy) of the original report but is fantastic reading.

A Comparison Test of United Kingdom and United States Lightweight Rifles

To obtain information on the characteristics and performance of 3 models of lightweight rifles, two models of which (EM2 and FAL) were furnished by the United Kingdom and one (T25) by the United States.

handle.dtic.mil/100.2/AD896858

This everything I hoped to find. Thank you so much!
 

Lampshade111

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Oct 5, 2008
Messages
151
Reaction score
4
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

One of you mentioned that the 6.8x43mm was nearly indentical to "the .280's stablemate the .270" What is this .270 cartridge, I have never heard of it before.
 

Apophenia

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2007
Messages
2,894
Reaction score
1,569
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Abraham Gubler was referring to the first of two intermediate rounds specified by Britain's 1945 Ideal Cartridge Panel -- the .270" (originally 130 gr).

From Wiki:

".270: Designed at the same time as the .280. It has a slightly smaller bullet diameter of .279 inches (versus .284 for the .280) but a lighter bullet (93 to 100 grains (6.5 g)) with a greater muzzle velocity (2750-2800 ft/s), longer case (1.8 inches) and shorter OAL (2.45 inches). Research was abandoned in 1948."
 

Longshaor

ACCESS: Restricted
Joined
Oct 1, 2006
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

Out of curiosity, do either of these calibers have any relation to the .276 round that the British Army tried to develop before WWI?
 

Petrus

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2006
Messages
647
Reaction score
404
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

I've just found some info on another, lesser known British assault rifle chambered for the .280 British (or 7x43mm) cartridge: the BSE P-28 or Model 28-P. It was developed by Claude Perry and Roger Wackrow in 1949-50 to compete with the EM-2. The rifle was tested in the summer of 1950, but wasn't particularly accurate. It also suffered breech explosion during testing. Thought a revised version had its breech modified and performed adecquately, the project was cancelled. No more than fifteen rifles of the type were ever made.

Specifications:

Length: 42 in (1068 mm)
Weight: 9.4 lb (4.26 kg) with empty magazine
Barrel length: 20 in (508 mm) (5 groove rifling)
Magazine capacity: 15 rounds (the source says "apparently 15 rounds", it seems likely however that the magazine could have had a capacity of 20 rounds)

Best regards,
Piotr

*The data according to "Rifles of the World" by John Walter, photo below from "Modern Small Arms" by Ian V. Hogg
 

Attachments

  • BSA_P-28_sm.jpg
    BSA_P-28_sm.jpg
    47.1 KB · Views: 602

uk 75

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2006
Messages
3,823
Reaction score
2,868
British early postwar rifles and mgs (not EM1 and EM2!)

Does anyone have any information about two projects using the
.280 calibre ammo in the late 1940s which are not the famous
EM 1 and EM2 rifles covered in another thread.

BSA apparently offered a rifle using the usual configuration
similar to the FN SLR with a pistol grip.

At the same time a new machine gun based on the Bren with
belt feed was proposed to replace British Army machine guns.

Because EM2 was so expensive it was proposed to equip second line units
with the Danish Madsen machine gun (This weapon often featured in
1960s films and TV series) and looked like a cross between a Schmeiser
and a Greasegun.

UK 75

ps I was amazed and depressed to find out how much better the EM2
was than the SA 80 despite over twenty years gap.
 

smurf

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
Sep 6, 2006
Messages
549
Reaction score
53
Re: British early postwar rifles and mgs (not EM1 and EM2!)

For the BSA rifle see Petrus last post on http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,3736.30.html

For .280 machine guns, see Pictorial history of the machine gun FWA Hobart, Ian Allan 1971
 

hs1216

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Oct 5, 2006
Messages
110
Reaction score
9
Re: British .280 Rifle Circa 1951

How did the EM-2 fair in terms of simplicity of production?
 

Petrus

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2006
Messages
647
Reaction score
404
Re: British early postwar rifles and mgs (not EM1 and EM2!)

Here is a film showing some of British rifles of the early 1950s as well as the TADEN machine-gun, which was to be a companion to the EM-2 assault rifle:

http://www.youtube.com/v/QT7kEMxSdZU

As for the machine-gun, there is an entry in Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taden_gun, where however the specifications seem incorrect, as they resemble too much those for the EM-2. Below you've got a handful of the Taden's photos.

Best regards,
Piotr
 

Attachments

  • 1469_29_100.jpg
    1469_29_100.jpg
    208.1 KB · Views: 335
  • TADEN.jpg
    TADEN.jpg
    29.7 KB · Views: 333
  • X16E4_MG.jpg
    X16E4_MG.jpg
    51.3 KB · Views: 351
  • X11E2_MG.jpg
    X11E2_MG.jpg
    28.3 KB · Views: 366
  • 1469_29_105.jpg
    1469_29_105.jpg
    222.3 KB · Views: 113

uk 75

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2006
Messages
3,823
Reaction score
2,868
Many thanks to the moderator for getting my question in the
right place. The info here is truly awesome.

The machine gun looks a real winner and again has me wondering
how the British Army would have fared in the years since with
these weapons.

UK 75
 

Similar threads

Top