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Posted: 1/25/2011 8:42:45 PM EDT
OK, most of you have seen "Before there were AR15's". Well, thanks to forum member "ar10stef", here's a new (old) variation...

Long before Colt started producing the SP1, someone at Armalite or Artillerie Inrichtingen sensed a market for civilian ownership of modern, military-style firearms and produced the "Armalite Sporter AR102".



(I believe that may be the design of my next rifle case––right down to the AI logo!)

According to one source online, there were 24 of these rifles produced "for the USA non-military market. However the US authorities saw this weapon unfit to sell it to civilians." (No citation given for that statement, no word why it would be unsuitable.)

According to Stef, these were a regular "Portuguese variant" AR10 lower, but with the sear pin holes welded closed and the mag well cut off at an angle to allow the easy use of a 5 or 10 round magazine.

Also, the flash hider was different than the standard military rifle. Looks like they simplified the design and eliminated the bayonet mount. (A politically-correct "civilian" flash hider, 30+ years before the US "Assault Weapons Ban"?? More proof that the Armalite designs were ahead of their time!)

Unfortunately, there aren't many photos on the Internet showing the complete rifle but I snagged a couple more…(notice how the roll mark has been rearranged to accommodate the angled mag well).





Incidentally, Stef has been an incredible source of AR10 info (I'll post info on additional models later) and he tells me there's a guy in Holland working on a new book about these rifles. The writer is a collector and a former employee of AI so I am really hoping for some new information. We just need to make sure it becomes available in an English translation!

Now, for those who want a closer look, here are some shots from a book showing the cycling of a cutaway AR102 (along with my best translation of the captions)...



Pic 1 shows the weapon closed and uncocked. The hammer is resting against the back of the "striker". The "clincher has been bolted" (the bolt is locked).



Pic 2 shows the "clincher bearer" (bolt carrier) having moved approximately two centimeters rearward. The bolt has turned and unlocked. The back of the bolt carrier has started to press the hammer back and downwards.



Pic 3 shows the mechanism in its fully-back position. The hammer has been pushed all the way down and is held by the "tuimelaar" (...which translates to "tumbler", "toggle" or "bottlenose dolphin"…you choose).



Pic 4 shows the bolt locked. The hammer is cocked and the weapon is ready for the next shot.

A lot more info about the early AR10 family will be forthcoming...Stand by!
Link Posted: 1/25/2011 9:21:23 PM EDT
That rifle is way too cool!

The hammer is as big as a tomahawk.
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 1:03:59 AM EDT
I suspect these were made around the time the 1968 GCA was put in place.

Anybody know for sure?
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 3:58:19 AM EDT
Originally Posted By OlGunner:
"tuimelaar" (...which translates to "tumbler", "toggle" or "bottlenose dolphin"…you choose).


Well there you go! They were banned in the US because of environmental concerns. "We can't import guns that require the killing of cute bottlenose dolphins!"

Nice pintures and info.

Thanks.

David
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 4:03:24 AM EDT
That is beautiful! Me want one.............
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 4:04:35 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2011 4:18:57 AM EDT by Carbinekid]
This is a very interesting gun, it has both early and late features. It appears the upper receiver and FSB are the Sudanese versions returning to the simpler and cleaner full length charging handle and micro gas adjust but the upper is marked nato and I'm not usre if any of the Sudan version were stamped as such. The barrel and handguards are the Portuguese type and the lower has the Portuguese re-enforcement around the butt stock mounting boss but the knob had to be milled orff to get the charging handle to work. it also has my personal preference the Sudanese grip. Too bad abount the magwell.
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 5:37:55 AM EDT
I love these AR-10 threads! Keep 'em coming OlGunner! Also, much thanks ar10stef and carbinekid! I love reading you guys' posts.

Standing by for the next installment!
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 9:56:41 AM EDT
Originally Posted By shrikefan:
I suspect these were made around the time the 1968 GCA was put in place.

Anybody know for sure?


1960-61. Before JFK was assassinated, so the fear of guns wasn't quite so widespread yet.
Still, I'm sure there were still some people in this country who would have been scared crapless by something like this!

It's interesting to remember that today we are used to fiberglass rifles with pistol grips and flash hiders and box mags...but place yourself in 1960. When you picture a US military rifle, you're probably thinking about an M1––either a Garand or a Carbine. Then along comes this.
...Talk about turning heads on the rifle range!
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 2:27:25 PM EDT
hmm I wonder if any of those 24 rifles still exist VERY interesting..
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 2:33:48 PM EDT
Originally Posted By xm177e2687:
hmm I wonder if any of those 24 rifles still exist VERY interesting..


If I understand what Stef said, the former AI employee who is working on the book is also a collector and has quite a few early Ar10s––including one of these.
I will be anxiously awaiting publication and hope it comes with lots of photos for those of us who don't read Dutch!
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 4:25:44 PM EDT
Originally Posted By xm177e2687:
hmm I wonder if any of those 24 rifles still exist VERY interesting..


The first one I ever saw pictures of is in the Netherlands, it didn't come with the spiffy wood case but did come with a canvas bag like an Korean era M1 canvas bag with the AI logo on it. We didn't understand why the mag well was butched.


Photo courtesy of Hhollow
Link Posted: 1/26/2011 4:51:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2011 5:01:37 PM EDT by HHollow]
You now know about the Holy Grail of AR10's. I was keeping them a secret until I got one. However, no Dutch guy would ever let one leave the country. I would settle for a clone.

These semi-auto rifles are considered to be Transitional. In sort, Portuguese furniture with Sudanese guts. The Transitionals appears to use a Sudan upper and lower but really there is a slight difference in the pivot pin hole location.

Reed Knight has two. I have corresponded with the gentleman who sold one (unfired) to Reed many moons ago.

Now count down from the top. Fifth and sixth rifles down. You can barely make out the selector stop.



The magwell is cut for a good reason. Look at the Reed Knight collection and you will notice a short magazine in the bottom AR102. The cut magwell allowed the convenient use of these short mags (one shown below). One additional "feature" of the AR102 magwell was the installation of a block that would not allow a regular military magazine to be inserted. The short mag has someone custome profile that is copmpatible with the block.



There are some look-alikes as well. The rifle shown below was sold by a Dutch dealer as a valuable prototype of some sort. However the lower receiver is of normal manufacture except someone cut the magwell at a slant. The serial number was conveniently lost during the cutting. A new prototype serial number was engraved.


Link Posted: 1/26/2011 5:05:19 PM EDT
Good stuff in here.
Thanks fellas.
Link Posted: 1/27/2011 3:51:22 AM EDT
Great thread! If only there were parts kits and lowers more readily available. That would get me off the roller-lock kick I've been on again lately.
Link Posted: 1/27/2011 4:52:18 AM EDT
Thanks Olgunner. Nice thread.
What's next The heavy barrel ?
I will try to find a pic of the 7.62x39 and send it to you.
And yes . If only there were partskits.......
Link Posted: 1/27/2011 4:45:17 PM EDT
Originally Posted By xm177e2687:
hmm I wonder if any of those 24 rifles still exist VERY interesting..


It has many times been said that there is one AR-10 in Canada that is not restricted or prohibited, because it left AI as a semi-auto. I always figured it was either a BS rumour or the result of a bureaucratic screw-up in the rifles classification, because none of the several books I own that discuss production of the AR-10 ever mentioned a semi-auto version. Now, I wonder.
Link Posted: 1/27/2011 5:53:38 PM EDT
It is mentioned in Sam Pikula's book. He suspects that one original factory semi-auto AR10 is in some scabbard on some snowmobile somewhere in the great white north.

It was no big deal because back in the day the Canadian government allowed it citizens to own AR10's with the original uncut lower receiver, so long as 1) sear is gone, 2) hammer/trigger neutered. These were classed as "CA" rifles, converted automatics.

Are these CA's still legal in Canada? I know of one that was imported into Montana with good paperwork. Only later did the owner leave the rifle with a gunsmith, who delared "eez a masheen gone". (Itallian gunsmith) He felt obligated to call ATF who felt obligated to hacksaw the lower.

And who said there are no more kits?
Link Posted: 1/27/2011 11:57:45 PM EDT
Hi Hhollow.
It is me who is looking for a kit but can't find one.
Most likely I wil hear about your parts this coming week.
I will give you an e-mail when I know more.

Maybe a nice touch to this thread.
Serialnumber 33 was a gift from Artillerie-Inrichtingen to Prince Bernard.
He was the husband of the former Dutch queen Juliana.
It was sold in the mid 90's at a price between 4500-6000 Dutch guilders.
Link Posted: 1/28/2011 8:22:26 AM EDT
Hey Stef,

You missed my little joke. Everytime our government confiscates an old AR10 another kit is sadly produced.

If there were a whole kit for sale in the US it would probably fetch $2000 on gunbroker if all the parts and furniture were decent. As a Dutchman, you occassionally see entire Dutch AR10 rifles for sale for 900-1500 euros with the really unfired ones selling for 1800-2000 euros. By US standards these lower priced rifles would be a great source for parts kits.

So the ARE kits in the Netherlands. Those kits just happen to come with a full-auto lower receiver.
Link Posted: 1/29/2011 7:36:48 AM EDT
Originally Posted By HHollow:
It is mentioned in Sam Pikula's book. He suspects that one original factory semi-auto AR10 is in some scabbard on some snowmobile somewhere in the great white north.

It was no big deal because back in the day the Canadian government allowed it citizens to own AR10's with the original uncut lower receiver, so long as 1) sear is gone, 2) hammer/trigger neutered. These were classed as "CA" rifles, converted automatics.

Are these CA's still legal in Canada? I know of one that was imported into Montana with good paperwork. Only later did the owner leave the rifle with a gunsmith, who delared "eez a masheen gone". (Itallian gunsmith) He felt obligated to call ATF who felt obligated to hacksaw the lower.

And who said there are no more kits?


That original is probably better taken care of than that. The reason its existence is fairly well known is that the powers that be tried to declare it prohibited, but the owner knew what he had, and knew the letter of the law well enough that, with some help from the National Firearms Association, he took the system to court and won. So my guess is he remembers to bring it in off the ski-doo at night.

Converted autos were declared prohibited, with grandfathering, in 1992. The registered owners are allowed to keep the registered guns, but no more guns and no more owners may be registered. In 2004 they added insult to injury by prohibiting issuance of a transportation permit for the purpose of shooting, so they are all safe queens, now.
Link Posted: 1/29/2011 6:11:41 PM EDT
Ol'Gunner brings up a point, the absolute lack of reference materal on the AR-10. I would love a copy of this new book, or of Sam Piklua's book (I wish someone would reprint it) or the AR-10'er.... maybe some day...

mrf2
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 1:06:03 PM EDT
I just notised that the second picture shows a hammer for semi only and the pic from the opened up rifle has an auto hammer.
stupid me. never saw that and I have those pic's for a long time already.
It showes that not only Colt used parts they still had laying around.
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