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Old December 23, 2000, 02:27 PM   #1
Jamie Young
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How good of a gun is the British Sterling? Are Sub-guns used for anything other than Assualting families and taking kids back to Cuba? I've seen Israeli Police with Uzi's but I don't think thats a very practical weapon for Policing?
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Old December 23, 2000, 02:59 PM   #2
Jeff White
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The Sterling was one of the better subguns. Used by British and Commonwealth forces until recently. There even was a semi auto 16" barrled version imported until the Bush import ban in '89.

It used a roller on the magazine follower that made feeding very reliable. There was also a suppressed version IIRC.

5.56mm Carbines have pretty much filled the role once held by the submachine gun in the military. Even police tactical units are replacing their subguns with 5.56mm carbines. I predict that within a few years the submachine gun will be pretty much a specialized tool in a unit's armory. There will still be a call for the very quiet suppressed versions and the very compact versions such as the MP5K in some roles, but the submachine gun's day as a primary weapon has passed.

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Old December 23, 2000, 04:35 PM   #3
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The disappearance of the subgun has been repeatedly predicted ever since assault rifles were developed. The subgun has faded as a general issue military weapon, but remains important for special operations military purposes and for civilian police applications. Where there is the requirement for maximum sound suppression, limited penetration, or close-quarters engagement, subguns will continue to have a role. Thomas Nelson has the third volume of his "World's Submachine Guns" series nearing completion for publication later this year, indicating that development has continued for this category of weapon. He says the Russians currently have nine different subguns in some stage of design or production.
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Old December 23, 2000, 05:21 PM   #4
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There are plenty of times when an assault rifle simply won't do. The miniature assault rifles, like the AR variants with 10" barrels and the like, spit hellfire out of the muzzle due to the short barrel. Also, a 5.56mm 55gr. ball round bullet will go right through a badguy. I've seen one go through an old steel pot helmet without slowing down. Overpenetration can be bad in an urban environment. Which makes me a little dubious about new subguns like the FN P90, and the HK PDW. Those smal bore high velocity rounds will go through an unarmored badguy, and to boot, lack the basic muzzle energy of even 9x19mm. The more muzzle energy, the more damage your bullet will do to your badguy.

As for russian subguns, head over to

You can see Izhmash line of Bizon-2 submachine guns. They have a groovy magazine like the Calico, and come in several different calibers. The 9x18mm version holds 64 rounds. There's also a 9x19 version, a 7.62x25mm version, a 9x17mm version, and a 9x18mm version with an integral suppressor.

Some other interesting subgun info. Most people don't know that the IMI Uzi comes in three flavors. Full size, with the stock that folds up under the rear of the weapon and with a fire rate of about 600rpm, mini, with a side folding stock and a fire rate of about 1000rpm, and the micro pistol sized version, which is smaller than a MAC-10 and has no stock, and has a rate of fire of about 1200rpm.
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Old December 23, 2000, 10:11 PM   #5
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An Army NCO, retired from SF, told me that the Sterling was 2nd only to the MP-5 series in overall quality. I've shot the H&Ks several times, and someday I would love the opportunity to wring out a Sterling.
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