Viva La FAMAS

The FAMAS G2 was the final iteration of the French Bullpup service rifle that is slated to be replaced by the H&K 416F and thanks to Ian we know far more now than we would about the FAMAS variants, including this G2.

The G2 is the “NATO” variant in so far as the French Navy wanted a rifle that could be supported NATO ammunition supplies. This gives the G2 STANAG compatibility for magazines and SS109/M855 ammunition, the receiver and 1:7 twist barrel reflect this change. The original FAMAS, like the M16A1, was designed to use the faster and more terminally effective 55gr ammunition out of a 1:12 barrel.

Belgian SS109 was chosen for semi-penetrative capability (SAE 1010/1020 Mild steel at 800m) but required a 1:9 twist rate for stability and M856 Tracer ammo needed a 1:7 twist. So if you’re wondering why most NATO nations use 1:7 twist barrels even through slower twist rates like 1:8 might be ideal for all loads 55-77gr, blame tracers. It’s all their fault. They still look cool fired en masse though.

But back to the FAMAS.

The G2 was set up as a variant that could be sold and exported but like the FAL, it was expensive to make… and unlike the FAL’s time the nations armed forces and LE organizations of the world were not looking for a new standard rifle. Most had one they saw no reason to give up like FALs and G3s or were Soviet supplied and running AKs. The NATO nations almost universally picked a domestic rifle solution, or at most a licensed one they could make domestically like Australia making a variant of the Austrian AUG.

In short, an interesting and rare rifle.

Keith Finch
Keith is the Editor-in-Chief of GAT Marketing Group editor@gatdaily.com A USMC Infantry Veteran and Small Arms and Artillery Technician, Keith covers the evolving training and technology from across the shooting industry. A Certified Instructor since 2009 he has taught concealed weapons courses in the West Michigan area in the years since and continues to pursue training and teaching opportunities as they arise.