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Thread: South African R series of weapons information thread (lots of pictures)

  1. #1281
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    We had a discussion a while back on the forum about the symbol on your bipod picture and one of the South African members said it might stand for "Vektor Firearms" If you notice it looks like the letter "F" inside a letter "V". Cheers Lou

  2. #1282
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    Lou-

    In regards to the bayonet: It came out of South Africa and the seller knew what he had so I did not get a "deal" on it. I have seen plenty of R1 bayonets passed off as R4 on some of the common South African sites and from my contacts, the modified latch is the key for this part. I am in the middle of a move so it's packed away right now so I can't get any detailed pictures for a little bit. I do agree that the bipod is one of the hardest to find parts, although I don't think the wood handguard would be #2, a lot of people are looking for one right now, which makes it hard to find, but they are out there. I think the hardest part to find would be the South African issue night visions scope for the R4 followed by the R5/R6 gas block, and R6 gas tube!

    Interesting theory on the bipod foot size. I had assumed the "big foot" bipod was a later development for the IMI made rifles (better stability in loose or sandy soil) but I really have no idea. A few years ago everyone (including me) thought that the big foot bipod was a SA feature but due to the number of detailed pictures from our South African friends we know this is not true. Did any of the IMI import ARMs come with little foot bipods? (Jet? Mr Folgers?, Adipose?)

  3. #1283
    Registered User Mr Folgers's Avatar
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    Never seen an import with the oversized bipod.

    Mine came from a kit that saw much hard use in either Guatemala or Colombia.
    It may have perhaps been a contract sort of deal rather than developemental, as the later ARMs I can remember still have the standard small version.

    Two things to note: On mine, the spring is not a coiled-wire and is a much weaker generic spring; and that it is still a standard non-QD bipod.

  4. #1284
    Registered User ruski5181's Avatar
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    Dam, should have thought sooner, at the beginning or the weeka guy was selling a pack of about 5 R1 boyonets, Im sure one of you would have liked one

  5. #1285
    Registered User Mr Folgers's Avatar
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    Looks like the modified FAL bayonet was also tested by Israel.
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  6. #1286
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Big Foot bipod on R4?

    So with some speculation out there whether the "Big Foot" bipod came on the South African R4 or not. I agree with Mrf2 and Mr Folgers assessment that with all the wonderful pictures we are getting of R4 rifles. We have yet to see a "Bigfoot" or "Big claw" bi-pod legs pictured on South African R4's.

    I took some pictures of how my SA poly folding stock unseats the right side bi-pod leg when using a "Bigfoot" bi-pod on my R4. I hope this shows why I think also the "Bigfoot" bi-pod did not come on the R4. I believe that the "Bigfoot" bi-pods where issued only on Israeli Galil ARM's with the shorter length alloy folding stocks.

    This first picture illustrates how the folding stock comes in contact with the Bigfoot bi-pod leg not letting the stock completely rest in the folded position.
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  7. #1287
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Big Foot bipod on R4? Cont.

    This picture shows that when I try to push the folding stock to the fully closed position how the larger bi-pod claw pushes out the leg from its hook (the red line in the picture shows where the leg should be properly seated in retainer hook). Here you can see the folding stock touching the side of the receiver in the fully seated position.
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  8. #1288
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Big Foot bipod on R4? Cont.

    Here is another view which shows the folding stock not properly seated due to the Bigger claw bi-pod.
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  9. #1289
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Big Foot bipod on R4? Cont.

    This picture shows how Denel-engineered poly folding with its longer length closes right on top of the right side bi-pod leg base.
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  10. #1290
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Big Foot bipod on R4? Cont.

    Here in this picture I want to illustrate the length difference between the Denel made poly stock and the Izzy made alloy stock. With the help of "Frankengolanistein" you can see how the shorter alloy stock does not interfere with the "Bigfoot" bi-pod feet. For the purposes of these pictures I did replace the "Bigfoot" bi-pod with the smaller foot bi-pod on the R4.
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  11. #1291
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Big Foot bipod on R4? Cont.

    Here is a couple more pictures of R4 with small foot bi-pod and ARM with "Bigfoot" bi-pod. Lou
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  12. #1292
    Registered User Ady's Avatar
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    Lou, i hope this helps. The soldier sitting in the foreground has both his bipod and stock folded in on his R4. You can see the bipod feet quiet nicely. You can also see a soldier sitting at the chopper door on the right with a Para version of the R1 (FN-FAL) with his folding stock also folded in. The soldier in the background may have a FN MAG (LMG) machine gun.

    These soldiers look like parabats preparing to be dropped into a contact. No fancy battle armour, goggles and helmets. Shorts, shirts with the sleaves rolled up and a webbing belt with ammo and water, perhaps a grenade or two.

    They would typically be dropped into a contact, get the job done and go back to base and wait for the next call.

    Last edited by Ady; 08-12-2014 at 03:55 PM.

  13. #1293
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    Ady, I've heard that a lot of Israeli soldiers took the bipods and carry handles off of their ARMs and tried to get the plastic handguards instead of the wood. Any similar reports in the SADF?
    "I was rather hostile to a reduced calibre being used by us. Even now, I am still convinced that the 7.62 is the best" M. Kalashnikov

  14. #1294
    Registered User Ady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riderboy View Post
    Ady, I've heard that a lot of Israeli soldiers took the bipods and carry handles off of their ARMs and tried to get the plastic handguards instead of the wood. Any similar reports in the SADF?
    Not that i know of. We never had carry handles on the R4 or wooden handguards, except for the early R4's / Galil's that we got. Soldiers weren't allowed to fiddle with their rifles, that meant a hard PT session (opvok) if you did. The armourers cut the handles off the R1 rifles back in the day. Apparently they didn't want the soldiers to be lazy and carry the rifle around by the handle. Probably explains why the R4 didn't have a carry handle.

  15. #1295
    Registered User Mr Folgers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riderboy View Post
    Ady, I've heard that a lot of Israeli soldiers took the bipods and carry handles off of their ARMs and tried to get the plastic handguards instead of the wood. Any similar reports in the SADF?
    There is some truth here; the carry handles were removed on most if not all the IDF rifles in the 1980's (they had been in service for over 10 years now, so the handles had likely loosened by that time). The bipods are however a different story. My research indicates that the bipods were taken on and off at times, which led to the development of the quick-detach version we know today, so that the bipods could be easily removed on patrols/carry and replaced during operations.

    I haven't found any indication that plastic was preferred over wood. By the end of the Galils life in the IDF, most of the ones still had wood handguards and had the bipods removed. Plastic only accounted for a very marginal number, as it was introduced very late.

    After years of searching, I have finally located where the cache of surplus Galil rifles ended up from Israel, and of the hundreds/thousands that still survive, most have wood handguards and all appear to have lost their bipods, so I'm quite certain of this conclusion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ady View Post
    Not that i know of. We never had carry handles on the R4 or wooden handguards, except for the early R4's / Galil's that we got. Soldiers weren't allowed to fiddle with their rifles, that meant a hard PT session (opvok) if you did. The armourers cut the handles off the R1 rifles back in the day. Apparently they didn't want the soldiers to be lazy and carry the rifle around by the handle. Probably explains why the R4 didn't have a carry handle.
    I've found quite a few carry handles from SA and all are fairly new/refurbished. They certainly were not cut, nor were the retainers, so it looks the armourers just removed them and sent them to storage.
    The problem that hindered the carry-handles is that they do loosen over years of hard usage and become liabilities for the units operating with them due to the sound of them slapping the handguards. Weight may have been an additional factor, but it's a bit doubtful that laziness gave them enough reason to take them all off.

  16. #1296
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Ady, As always thank you for your contributions. That is a great picture and does a great job showing the smaller feet on the R4. As always when in a helo point your barrel down

  17. #1297
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    After years of searching, I have finally located where the cache of surplus Galil rifles ended up from Israel, and of the hundreds/thousands that still survive, most have wood handguards and all appear to have lost their bipods, so I'm quite certain of this conclusion.

    Mr Folgers I wonder if these rifles will ever make to the U.S. market? Would that not be awesome? Lou
    Last edited by lcastillo; 08-13-2014 at 08:26 PM.

  18. #1298
    Registered User Mr Folgers's Avatar
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    Those are some that made it out of the IDF.
    There are many early-models still in IDF storage in original configuration as well.

  19. #1299
    Registered User lcastillo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Folgers View Post
    Those are some that made it out of the IDF.
    There are many early-models still in IDF storage in original configuration as well.
    Do you have anything in the works to bring in any of these IMI Galil parts as you did with the R-Series parts? Did you see my post about swapping IMI hand guard for a R- series hand guard for R5?

  20. #1300
    Registered User Mr Folgers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lcastillo View Post
    Do you have anything in the works to bring in any of these IMI Galil parts as you did with the R-Series parts? Did you see my post about swapping IMI hand guard for a R- series hand guard for R5?
    Lou
    I've got plans in the works but nothing yet on paper. I know someone with the proper experience and license to import.

    I've got plenty of IMI handguards around but only 1 R5 for my reference collection. I am expecting more and will keep you in mind.

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