Object Title

Centrefire automatic rifle - Experimental SA80 Enfield Weapon System Individual Weapon (EWS IW) 00 series

Centrefire automatic rifle - Experimental SA80 Enfield Weapon System Individual Weapon (EWS IW) 00 series

Date

about 1973

Object Number

PR.836

Provenance

Gifted with the Pattern Room by the Ministry of Defence, August 2005

Physical Description

IW (Individual Weapon) configuration. One of twelve developmental weapons (half of which were IW, half LSW). that would develop into the EWS L60 series. '00 series' is a retrospective name (see Steve Raw 'The Last Enfield') Cross bolt safety, AR18-style magazine catch located on the right (i.e. wrong for a right-hander) side of the weapon, perhaps to prevent the accidental magazine drop issue that plagued later versions. The cross bolt selector marked ‘R’ for Repetition in the centre position and ‘A’ (to the left, for Automatic) or ‘3’ (to the right, for three round burst). Adjustable gas plug is marked ‘E;, ‘R’ and ‘0’ for ‘Excessive’, ‘Regular’ and ‘Zero’. The weapon is easily disassembled for cleaning with the removal of one captive pin and a sprung retaining band on the handguard. However, the hammer must be manually depressed with a tool in order to reinstall the bolt and carrier.

Body and Trigger Mechanism Housing (upper and lower receiver) are of spot-welded pressed (stamped) steel construction with synthetic furniture. No dust cover is provided. Finish appears to be black paint over phosphate, with bluing for the optical sight and mount. The magazine catch, handguard retainer and buttplate are painted black. The grey polymer handguard and pistol grip are milled from solid, and on the outside have been hand carved to shape, the former having four widely-spaced finger grooves and the latter being similar in shape to the AR18 original. The buttplate is deeply grooved. There is no cheekpiece. The working parts are very close to those found in the AR18 but are slightly different in every detail, most notably a substantially enlarged extractor/weakened bolt. The barrel is of similar profile to the AR18 (and indeed contemporary AR15/M16), but that weapon’s pronged flash suppressor was abandoned in favour of a pseudo-cone shaped design reminiscent of the PKM device, but featuring three large ports. The weapon is fitted with prototype SUSAT sight (retrospectively designated XL9E1) serial number 001 (PR.8910). Like the SUIT, the pointer inside drops down from above rather than sticking up from below. There is no provision for iron or backup iron sights. A steel 20 round magazine is fitted, numbered by hand, and with a painted white stripe down the right side. Sling loop on top of gas block and another on base of buttplate.

Techniques

Machining, Phosphating, Casting, Stamping, Painting

Materials

Dimensions

Bolt carrier groupWeight0.315kg
Bolt carrier groupWeight0.694lb
GunWeight2.745kg
GunWeight6.05lb
Barrellength21in.
Barrellength533mm

Firearms/Artillery

Serial Number R006

Calibre

4.85 mm

Inscriptions and Marks

Proof mark
British military proof (crossed pennants)
Bolt carrier
Engraving (electropencil)
Serial number
No 006 [006 is marked on all major components]
Left side upper and lower receivers
stamping

Associations