Rus Articles Journal

Than the French assault rifle FAMAS is unusual?

Before acceptance of uniform NATO caliber 5. 56 mm in France there was, purely French caliber of ammunition to individual small arms 7. 5 mm (for the rifles MAS Mle. 49 / 56). When all countries of NATO passed to a uniform cartridge, the Ministry of Defence of France began to buy the Swiss rifles SIG 540. However the parliament of France hastily adopted the law that “in army of France there has to be all French. Money of the French taxpayers has to work for France!“. Military hastily gave the order to the state arsenal where since 1967 there was the one and only “perspective development“, to quickly develop an assault rifle. “Operational development to the necessary standard“ dragged on for long three years (1973 - 1976) : the weapon was stupidly improved by a series of continuous tests, improvements and the subsequent tests. Foreign options were not even considered: “the French army has to have the French weapon“. And here, at last, the sixth option of an experimental rifle satisfied military and … Fusil d`Assaut de la Manufacture d`Armes de St - etienne“, that is an assault rifle of the weapon enterprise in Saint - Etienne, in abbreviated form FAMAS turned out “.

The first FAMAS F1 option was completely original, then the rifle was remade according to standards of NATO under shop of the American rifle M16 (modification of FAMAS G1 and G2 obr. 1990 and 1994 according to). Further, according to the program of development FELIN (“Fantassin an Equipement et Liaisons Integres“ - creation of an integrated complex of arms of the infantryman) the rifle received Pikanilli`s levels and electronically - computer “weather-cloth“ for data transmission on a helmet of the soldier and the computer of the commander of division.

Lyrical digression . “Pikatinni`s level (English Picatinny rail) (options: Pikatini, Pikkatini, Pikattini) - system of the rail interface, the arm used on different types of shooting arms for ensuring unification of fastenings of sights (optical, collimator) and other auxiliary accessories, including tactical lamps, laser tseleukazatel, bipods, etc.“ the Source: Wikipedia.

Probably, French did not expect that the rifle slapped “together“ will be late in armed forces of France almost for 40 years.

By what this is still interesting, unusual both in a form, and on a design small arms?

Well, in - the first, a design . The rifle is remade from the French machine gun of AAT - 52 (a sample of 1952) and uses quite difficult system of a perezaryazhaniye and emission of a shot sleeve by system of levers. In due time (1973) it was the shortest European assault automatic machine, thanks to configuration “bulls - fathers“ (the feeder of cartridges and production of a shot is located behind the pistol handle).

The trunk of the rifle FAMAS is unusual the fact that it has only 3 right lots in one turn that allows to use practically any cartridges of caliber 5. 56 mm: with an easy bullet, with a heavy bullet and even mnogopulny what the rifles M16 of early modifications are not able, for example. The lack of such trunk is that flying range of a bullet is a little reduced.

In - the second, a form. First of all, unusually long handle for carrying is evident. Usually the handle is deployed over the center of gravity of weapon that the rifle when carrying kept horizontally. However, the long handle on a rifle carries out also additional functions: carries out a role of the aim line, aim devices are hidden in it from pollution. The handle also protects the perezaryazhaniye lever (located under this handle) from blows and other external influences. The shop at first was an original form, but in modification of 1990 the rifle was remade under the unified shop for the rifle M16 - STANAG.

For the solution of special tasks on the basis of the rifle FAMAS G2 (obr. 1994) a number of the modifications including is created:

of Commando with the shortened trunk;

SMG (submachine gun) with shorter trunk and shortened tsevy;

of Sniper with the extended trunk and a riflescope.

TTH of the assault rifle GIAT Industries FAMAS F1 (G2) standard option.

Calibre: 5. 56 mm of NATO (. 223 rem.)

automatic equipment Type: a semi-free lock with lever delay.

weapon Length: 757 mm of FAMAS F1.

trunk Length: 488 mm of FAMAS F1.

Weight: 3. 61 kg with empty shop FAMAS F1, 3. 8 kg with empty shop FAMAS G2.

Capacity of shop: 25 cartridges for FAMAS F1, 30 cartridges of STANAG for FAMAS G2.

Initial speed of a bullet: 925 - 960 m/s.

Rate of firing: 900 - 1000 shots a minute.

Effective range of firing: 300 m of FAMAS F1, 450 m of FAMAS G2.

Source: Wikipedia.

of Advantage

1. High grouping of firing, small return.

2. Possibility of comfortable use of the weapon both right-handed persons, and lefthanders. For lefthanders the window of emission of a sleeve opens on the left side, and on right is closed by a plastic insert. The handle of a perezaryazhaniye is located from above, it is equally convenient to distort it both the right, and left hand.

3. The receiver of the last modification of the rifle FAMAS is rather compact, the most part of details of the case (a tsevya, the butt and the handle for carrying) are made of strong plastic. Aim devices are hidden in the handle for carrying. On the handle to fasten the guide for riflescopes, and on a tsevya there are folding easy bipods.

4. The protective bracket on the handle closes not only a trigger, and all handle and consequently, and all brush of the shooting hand.


1. The difficult system of automatic equipment demanding careful leaving.

2. The bayonet fastens not from below (as at “all“), and from above a trunk, closing aim devices. However, in bayonet fight a sight it is not strong and it is necessary.

3. Highly located aim devices, long bipods and the pistol handle with unusually big protective bracket increase a profile of the shooter shooting lying.

4. Configuration “bulls - fathers“ is very badly adapted for hand-to-hand fight.

The unusual form of a rifle continues to inspire film directors, designers and developers of computer games. The rifle FAMAS is practically in any “fancy“ computer “shooter game“.

The rifle successfully passed several local conflicts and is exported. The main buyers of these specific goods, the former French colonies - Djibouti, Gabon, Senegal. Regularly the United Arab Emirates and Lebanon buy the rifles FAMAS. About the civil version of this rifle I did not find a mention, but for certain it is. Speak, this rifle served as a prototype for creation in Singapore the most fashionable the army SAR submachine gun today - 21.

And in France modernization of the armed divisions according to the FELIN program continues, and so far nobody is going to replace the “pipe“ which served nearly 40 years.