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French Army and the FAMAS

A guest post by someone who has been in the French Army detailing the issues surrounding the FAMAS and its eventual replacement. Personally, if I were calling the shots for the French Army, I’d go with the French made AR variant, rather than buying replacements from the Austrians or Germans. It’s kind of amazing how some of the world’s major militaries are fielding assault rifles that are less than stellar. I understand the SA-80 used by her Majesty’s armed forces is less than wonderful, the FAMAS has it’s set of known problems. The Italians field the AR70/90, which I don’t know much about function wise, but it’s a heavy beast at close to 9 lbs, not much lighter than an M1 Garand. The Styer AUG is popular, adopted by several armed forces around the world, but I just don’t think the ergonomics of it have ever looked that great to me (not really a huge fan of bullpups).

For all the faults the AR platform may have, compared to what some other NATO countries are fielding, I’m not sure I’d want to trade.

5 Responses to “French Army and the FAMAS”

  1. Harold says:

    As I recall, the bulk of the SA-80’s problems were traced to bad tooling: three sets were made and one or two were wrong.

  2. Andy says:

    I was chatting with an ex-SEAL friend about his new FN FS2000. He, too, wasn’t so hot on bullpups initially. But, his impression now is that it whips the llama’s ass in CQB. Magazine changes are, so far, the weak part, though perhaps with practice it can be improved.

  3. AndyN says:

    The Italians field the AR70/90, which I don’t know much about function wise, but it’s a heavy beast at close to 9 lbs, not much lighter than an M1 Garand.

    I had the pleasure of training with an Alpini unit a few years ago (ok, maybe a few more than a few years ago) and at least some of them were still using the M1 Garand re-chambered for 7.62 NATO, which was a joy to fire. I’d say if they’re carrying around the same weight anyway, they should go back to using those.

  4. Ian Argent says:

    Another benefit of a robust civilian firearms market. Someplace else for a firm to make back R&D.

  5. Bram says:

    No offense, but I always viewed my M16A2 as a complete piece of crap. Unreliable particularly in the sand – and fragile – it would lose zero with some rough treatment. An AR (without a piston) isn’t any improvement.

    I have used the AUG and loved it – the ergonomics didn’t “look” great. They felt great, however. It seemed to melt into my arm and aim itself. And it is a shorter rifle with a full-length barrel. (Not a fan of chopping down a barrel of a rifle to be carried on a battlefield)

    I bet the French go with the FNC2000 or the G36 – probably the 2 best out there now. They won’t look at the Israeli Tavor for political reasons. Or else they will pick something like the HK417 which is an AR on the outside and a G36 inside.

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