Bullpup design


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UKTN
February 5, 2007, 04:11 PM
Am I the only one who thinks the "Bullpup" design looks wrong.
I have never handled one but it looks as though the magazine would get in the way, and having my face over the firing mechanism would make me uneasy! What are your thoughts.

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fattsgalore
February 5, 2007, 04:20 PM
Bullpup just looks cool and from what is said( i have no personal experience handling them) they have better ergonomics then other rifles. And long barrel on a compact frame isn't to shabby either.
http://img224.imageshack.us/img224/2595/tavorctarzm0.jpg Come on! That looks awsome! The Tavor C

1 old 0311
February 5, 2007, 04:33 PM
You are putting a lot of leverage, and mechanics, into that. Bullpups are not a new idea. There is a reason the AK, M16, M14, and FAL's are NOT Bullpups. Ever seen one with a lot of mileage on it? Probably won't.

CypherNinja
February 5, 2007, 04:37 PM
Kel-Tec's new bullpup:

(PDF) http://www.kel-tec.com/images/downloads/RFB_Flyer_SHOT_2007_web.pdf

Justin
February 5, 2007, 04:48 PM
The newer crop of bullpup rifles seem to have made a lot of strides in the ergonomics department. Easier to handle, and fully ambidextrious in some cases.

I've not shot enough of them to fully form an opinion, but my general impressions are that they tend to be spendy, and the triggers are usually sub-par.

However, Kel-Tec claims to have a new bullpup with a 2 lb. trigger, so I assume that the reputation for bad triggers in bullpup rifles is something that just needs to be refined.

DoubleTapDrew
February 5, 2007, 04:56 PM
I think they are cool looking and it seems that a lot of the upcoming battle rifles are using that design. As long as the ejection port is away from the face (P90 ejects down, FS2000 and KelTec eject near the front) they should work for both left and right handed shooters (or switching shoulders if you are clearing a structure). Also it allows the gun to be more compact yet still retain a full length barrel.
On the downside, I've heard they usually have poor trigger pull due to the extended linkage necessary (which would also make me concerned about reliability) and the weight seems to be shifted toward the rear (which could cause balance problems?)
I just wish the dang things didn't cost as much as a pair of AR15s.

alucard0822
February 5, 2007, 05:01 PM
bullpup rifles are a love it or hate it kind of thing. On the good side they allow a full length barell to fit in something about the same size as a rifle with a folding stock, but there is no need to extend a stock to shoulder it. there is less exposed hot barell and because the weight is more to the rear the muzzle can be swung around quicker. The downside, the sights normally are mounted high and on a short radius, more of the body is exposed in firing, the trigger pull generally is long heavy and spongy. Magazine changes are more cumbersome, and shooting left handed ejects bounces brass off your chin. some of the problems have been solved by one manufacturer or another, but all in all tradeoffs can be worthwhile. This is my 10/22 with muzzlelite kit. more accurate than a pistol, lighter and more compact than with the wood stock. with these 30rd mags its about all the firepower you need for small stuff without lugging around a larger rifle http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=52653&stc=1&d=1170711744

CypherNinja
February 5, 2007, 05:02 PM
Traditionally, bullpups place the hammer and sear in the normal arrangement back by the bolt. They then use a trigger transfer bar to connect the trigger (which is far forward) to the sear. That long transfer bar is what creates the poor triggers.

Kel-Tec's new rifle uses a slightly different system which I am simultaneously happy and pissed about. Happy because the idea popped into my head nearly ten years ago and somebody is finally making one, and pissed because I didn't get off my ass and patent it. :mad: Anyway, the Kel-Tec uses a system that places the hammer in the normal spot, but uses a "hammer transfer bar" (with the hammer spring on it) to connect the hammer to the sear which is placed forward with the trigger. This way, the trigger and sear can interact in the same way as any other rifle, and any extra wobbles or friction from the transfer bar manifest themselves in the hammer movement.

You can see the layout in the PDF I linked.

SniperStraz
February 5, 2007, 05:08 PM
Well. They're smaller than traditional type combat rifles and yet retain the same length barrels. They're better balanced due to the mag being in the back and can therefore be fired more easily with one hand for say... shooting around corners. Also the ejection port is next to the shooters face as opposed to in front. This means less visible muzzle blast so as not to mess with a soldier's night vision. (Try following me on this one, I know it doesn't sound like it makes sense right away.) I have also heard that since the ejection port is closer to the side of the shooters face, when running forward in battle the shooter doesn't get a face full of gas from the spent round which supposedly has been known to give soldiers headaches if the have been in long firefights. Instead the gas is just left behind them as they run forward.
(sorry for the redundency)

Wes Janson
February 5, 2007, 05:19 PM
Kel-Tec's new rifle uses a slightly different system which I am simultaneously happy and pissed about. Happy because the idea popped into my head nearly ten years ago and somebody is finally making one, and pissed because I didn't get off my ass and patent it. Anyway, the Kel-Tec uses a system that places the hammer in the normal spot, but uses a "hammer transfer bar" (with the hammer spring on it) to connect the hammer to the sear which is placed forward with the trigger. This way, the trigger and sear can interact in the same way as any other rifle, and any extra wobbles or friction from the transfer bar manifest themselves in the hammer movement.

The only thing that annoys me about the Kel-Tec system is that the ~$1500 model won't have the adjustable trigger pack. I tried it, and it really does go down to about 2 pounds. I watched someone else take the detached, cocked, trigger pack and repeatedly bang it sharply into the table without dropping the hammer. Wasn't too good for the housing, but it proved that it could indeed be used as a hammer if necessary :D

As a leftie, I'm glad to finally see a good bullpup chambering a decent cartridge. The AUG is/was too pricey, the Bushmaster is unshootable (can we say "beard-induced stoppages"?), the PS90 is too small/ammo too pricey, and the FN2000 is far too bulky. Dunno on the Tavor or any of the other foreign models.

rockstar.esq
February 5, 2007, 05:25 PM
"The downside, the sights normally are mounted high and on a short radius, more of the body is exposed in firing..."

I guess if you're talking about shooting from the prone higher sights might make a big difference. That being said, the Kel-Tec has the pistol grip mounted nearly 1" higher in relation to the chamber than an AR so the higher sight radius should about balance out the weapons "prone height". Personally I think the biggest failing of Bullpup designers is that they insist on putting iron sights similar to the AR rear which has folks mounting optics like the Muzzle light. It's just as awkward as AR's with scopes mounted the same way. Personally I think the scout type scope would be vastly superior especially if mounted on a bullpup. Sadly nobody seems to think of things like this when they design the gun.

Although I can see how military opinion weighs in on decisions, I prefer to consider Bullpups as the modern hunting carbine. I for one think something that short and handy with full ballistic advantage will make a wonderful hunting gun.

Correia
February 5, 2007, 05:27 PM
I have never handled one but

And that lone quote sums up one of my biggest pet peeves about the internet in general, and gun forums in particular. :)

Zak Smith
February 5, 2007, 05:34 PM
There are a number of basic operations that the design and ergonomics of the rifle have to support.

* administrative, emergency, tactical, and speed reloads
* administrative loading and cycling action after seating new magazine
* malfunction/jam clearing: cycling action, locking action open, "hard-extract" actions (ie, stomp on charging handle), chamber/action visibility
* safety actuation

For example, the FS2000 (as reviewed recently in SWAT or something) fixes the ejection problem, but has limited visibility to the ejection port and no physical access to malf clearing.

Conventional non-bullpup designs tend to put the controls near to where the shooter's hands are anyway.

Kalashnikov
February 5, 2007, 05:41 PM
Combat wise, bullpups seem to be becoming the majority. Only Germany, Russia, And America use old fashioned rifles, all other modern antiosn ahve adopted a bullpup of some sorts. And even then, Russia is experimenting with them, with some success I've heard.

SniperStraz
February 5, 2007, 06:11 PM
Combat wise, bullpups seem to be becoming the majority. Only Germany, Russia, And America use old fashioned rifles, all other modern antiosn ahve adopted a bullpup of some sorts. And even then, Russia is experimenting with them, with some success I've heard.
The Israelis in general still use the M-16/M-4 although there are some units using the Tavor which I have heard is amazing.

Kalashnikov
February 5, 2007, 06:15 PM
From what I've heard they're doing a complete turnover to the Tavor.

SniperStraz
February 5, 2007, 06:18 PM
Eventually, yes. But that takes alot of time and money. I'd give it another 6-7 years atleast.

Shipwreck
February 5, 2007, 07:30 PM
I'll tell ya what mine is very comfortable...

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g320/mistershipwreck/PS90/ps90-7.jpg

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g320/mistershipwreck/PS90/ps90-9.jpg

jerkface11
February 5, 2007, 08:09 PM
The ONLY way to get at the chamber in the keltec is via the mag well. Which would prove annoying on a range trip and deadly if it were a battle rifle. Other than that i'd love to have one. Or an FAMAS or AUG or even an SA80 heck i'd take the tavor.

JWarren
February 5, 2007, 09:18 PM
I personally like the *IDEA* of a bullpup rife. But a great number of factors have dissuaded me.

For one, most have a crappy trigger due having a trigger cable. I think the new Kel-Tec is doing something different by having a hammer extension-type mechanism rather than trigger.

However, that doesn't change the fact that you have a right-handed only rifle. I know that some-- such as the Styr AUG-- is supposed to be able to be converted to left-handed. But I don't know if that can be done quickly and on the fly. Even if it is, that is one more step you have to do if you find yourself in a situation where you need to left-hand shoulder.

Believe it or not, I have found myself in that position several times. I deer hunt with my rifles. Even though I am left handed, I have always been right-handed in shooting-- mainly because that was the only rifles I had to learn on. Fortunately, shooting left-handed is just as easy and natural feeling as right-handed to me. That said, I was thinking through all the deer I've killed. I've actually killed more deer left-handed than I have right handed! It seems the deer don't often care to coorperate with me on my stand placement.

Whether it is deer hunting or a valid SHTF, or defense situation, you can't always predict or control your position and the position of your target. You may very well find yourself in a position to improvise quickly. I don't see your typical bullpup able to do that.

Of course that new Kel-Tec has a forward eject system that does address that issue. We'll see how that works. It may very well be a major improvement that makes bullpups more viable.


John

Dmack_901
February 5, 2007, 09:22 PM
However, that doesn't change the fact that you have a right-handed only rifle. At least with Kel-Tec's, forward ejection allows for full ambidextrity(spll?).

rockstar.esq
February 5, 2007, 10:47 PM
It truly never ceases to amaze me how whenever I post that the bullpup design would be great for hunting / sporting purposes, the only repeated monolithic slab of controversy is the "blacktical rifle nonsensory" of battle worthiness. Yet if you post about how a Savage bolt action groups nobody yammers on about how it isn't "battle proven". The same goes for Marlin lever actions, or Thompson Center single shots. On just about ANY other rifle type people can see the gun as serving different purposes without doggedly whining about things that wouldn't affect them either way. Mall ninja's, L.E.'s and in service military folks aside, the VAST majority have no "tactical" rifle needs that couldn't be readily answered by just about any repeating rifle made.

JWarren
February 5, 2007, 11:01 PM
I hear ya Rockstar, but I wasn't only talking about tactical limitations of the left-handed difficulty. I was talking about hunting as well. As I mentioned in my post, I've had MANY occasions where I had to switch shoulders to get the shot.

I like bullpups in theory, but those won't make that shoulder switch easily. (For the right buck, I'd try it and just eat the brass and gas LOL)

This year I am hunting with a semi-automatic so I very well may experience some difficulty with this even now. Add to that the fact that my scope is mounted off the center line of the rifle, and it pretty much means I better not have to switch shoulders. So its not just bullpups that have some issues in switching from shoulder to shoulder.

That's one reason I need to put another bolt-action in my arsenal. You may not be able to chamber another round easily, but at least you can fire the first shot fine-- and that's all I need. :D


All the best!

John

Wes Janson
February 6, 2007, 05:03 PM
However, that doesn't change the fact that you have a right-handed only rifle. I know that some-- such as the Styr AUG-- is supposed to be able to be converted to left-handed. But I don't know if that can be done quickly and on the fly. Even if it is, that is one more step you have to do if you find yourself in a situation where you need to left-hand shoulder.

I'm a leftie, and I really couldn't find anything on the Kel-Tec that would be an issue. Safety is symmetrical ambidextrous, the bolt release (which was just a temporary prototype at the show) is ambidextrous, the mag release is a central lever on the bottom, brass ejection is forward, and the only asymmetrical control, the cocking handle, can be popped off and put onto the other side in about twenty seconds.

I suspect that we'll be seeing more bullpups in the next few years that are naturally ambidextrous and don't require much effort, if any, to convert back and forth.

JWarren
February 6, 2007, 05:08 PM
Wes,

I understand what you are saying, but that quote was regarding bullpups in general. There's been plenty of bullpups mades out there. Some are strictly right hand rifles, some can be converted with a couple processes, and then there's ONE that is the Kel-Tec 308.

I agree that I can imagine that more bullpups will come on the scene mimicking the Kel-Tec, but at present, its the only one-- and it won't be in anyone's hands beforfe 2008 if I understand correctly. We still need to see what works and what bugs will need to be worked out of that one.


All the best!

John

Plink
February 6, 2007, 07:59 PM
My only experience with bullpups are from using the Muzzelite kits on my Marlin Camp 9 and a Mini-14. It's a strange feeling at first, but you get used to them very quickly. To me it's a great way to make a short, easy to handle and well balanced rifle without shortening the barrel. People always seem to want short carbines, as shown by all the shorty AR-15's being sold. To me, that just reduces velocity and sight radius and gains nothing in return.

The drawback to the bullpup kits, and from what I've heard, the factory models also, is the trigger linkage. It's pretty hard to get a smooth, precise trigger when everything is connected by linkage. Until they solve that problem, I don't think they'll ever be popular.

I can totally see a bullpup for hunting. The shortness and balance would be a bonus in heavy brush. Just cuz it looks tacti-cool doesn't mean you have to hang all the tacti-cool stuff on it and turn it into a rooney gun. My Muzzelites only have optics and that's just because the sights that come on the kits aren't all that precise.

Eleven Mike
February 6, 2007, 08:39 PM
Bull-pups offer no advantage in sight radius.

MrTuffPaws
February 6, 2007, 09:03 PM
Bull-pups offer no advantage in sight radius.

True, but neither does the M4 carbines. Maybe that is one of the reasons they issue red dots to our soldiers now.

Lobotomy Boy
February 6, 2007, 09:51 PM
I can see definite advantages to the bullpup design in hunting, especially when climbing up into a tree stand. I scratched the hell out of the barrel of my Tikka T3 a few years ago doing this. The woods gets pretty thick up north where I hunt and generally speaking, the shorter the gun, the better. I'm thinking about getting one of the Kel-Tecs when they come out.

Eleven Mike
February 6, 2007, 09:58 PM
True, but neither does the M4 carbines. Maybe that is one of the reasons they issue red dots to our soldiers now.

I know. I was responding to this: People always seem to want short carbines, as shown by all the shorty AR-15's being sold. To me, that just reduces velocity and sight radius and gains nothing in return.

Just pointing out that sight radius has to be sacrificed either way. I'm very much annoyed that the M4 has become so common in our military. Like the scopes, though.

Plink
February 7, 2007, 04:38 AM
Bull-pups offer no advantage in sight radius.

No, they don't, unfortunately, but at least there's no sacrifice in barrel length to get a shorter overall length. I use optics on mine for that very reason. Well, that and tired eyes that ain't gettin' any younger.

JShirley
February 7, 2007, 05:11 AM
I'm very much annoyed that the M4 has become so common in our military
I'm not sure why. 11Mikes, in particular, should be thankful for a more compact weapon when dismounting their vehicle.

Lobotomy Boy
February 7, 2007, 08:30 AM
My cousin is pretty damned grateful that he uses an M4 instead of an A2, but then he's not frequenting any Internet forums. He's jumping in and out of Bradleys in Fallujah and kicking down doors, so he probably has a different set of criteria for judging a gun's effectiveness.

JShirley
February 7, 2007, 08:32 AM
Heh. As a guy with short arms and who wears body armor, I know I'm damn thankful. :)

Eleven Mike
February 7, 2007, 09:51 AM
Most of my dismount time was spent with a SAW, with a solid buttstock thank you very much, so I really can't see how the M16 is too long. Even if it were, is it worth cutting the barrel down that short? Sure, shorten the buttstock a little bit or lop a couple of inches off the barrel, but don't the M4s have a 14" barrel? And this in the middle of desert flatland, meaning long ranges? I thought the military was having trouble with the reduced velocity, aren't they? Or am I misinformed?

John, I see what you're saying about the M4 being easier with body armor. I guess in some situations it's the best we have. We should have something better, though. Maybe an 18 or 16 inch barrel, with a shorter buttstock or a better collapsible stock.

Besides, when I was in, EVERYBODY wanted an M4. I'm sure there are guys in Iraq with M16A4's, who never leave the wire, and still want an M4. I think for most guys it's just for the looks of it.

JShirley
February 7, 2007, 10:08 AM
Well, hell with looks- I like the handiness of it. :)

It's my understanding that we actually have more city fighting than US troops (with their European tank battle orientation) have trained for during Cold War years. If you're in open terrain, you're going to be using support weapons.

We also have more "little troops"- women- in combat than ever before, especially in branches other than the Army. I had an Air Force officer complaining because his troops had A2's, and it was very difficult for his females to use them in body armor.

(The last time I used an A2 in body armor, I had to prop the buttstock attop my shoulder or put it out on my bicep. Neither worked well.)

Lobotomy Boy
February 7, 2007, 09:14 PM
My cousin has been doing almost nothing but city fighting in Fallujah for almost a year. He hasn't had any ballistic-related problems, but perhaps he might if he spent more time studying ballistic charts on the Internet and less time in the ***** in Iraq. Then it might become a more-important issue.

Eleven Mike
February 7, 2007, 10:53 PM
Yeesh. Sorry.

MatthewVanitas
February 8, 2007, 01:20 AM
And this in the middle of desert flatland, meaning long ranges?

Not many Iraqis are dumb enough to attack Americans in the open desert.

Unlike in past guerilla wars, where the guerillas held the rural areas, it's now far safer for them to stick to the cities. If you're out in the desert, and shoot at a convoy from Hill X, US forces will happily withdraw out of rifle range and use airpower (or arty, if near a battery) to turn the hill into a sinkhole.

A smart insurgent shoots at a convoy from the 15th floor of a 1000-unit apartment building in downtown Ramadi. The Americans either take hits and don't shoot back (+1 for insurgent), or fire back and get dead children from the neighboring apartment showing up on CNN (+50 for insurgent).


I'm pretty intrigued by the bullpup concept, just waiting for Dixie Consolidated to work through their backlog of 10/22 stock orders. I tried the Muzzelite and was totally underwhelmed, but have heard great things about Dixie.

-MV

antagonist22
February 8, 2007, 06:36 AM
I was fortunate enough to have had the chance to fire a Steyr AUG...all I say is that it was very comfortable and balanced,very natural to aim.

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