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Posted: 10/10/2007 10:29:36 AM EDT
So I don't know much about the SA-80 series of rifles but maybe someone could answer this for me. 1. Were any Manufactured Pre-86 and if yes 2. Did any make it into the US?
Link Posted: 10/10/2007 11:52:24 AM EDT
I've heard that they are two or three. I also heard that for a while they were looking at civilian/LEO sales in the US during the 80's, but the rifle was so well known as a piece of crap that the idea was dropped.
Link Posted: 10/10/2007 12:04:44 PM EDT
From what I understand and have been told a few SA-80s are in this country and were brought in for research purposes by US Firearms Manufacturers which is pretty common. There may be one or two floating around as dealer samples.

The British are extremely anti private ownership of firearms so they don't like to export them at all and even if they wanted to the 1992 import ban pretty much prevents that.

I hear we're better off though. Even after the HK fix there are much better bullpups out there available to us.

Link Posted: 10/10/2007 12:22:49 PM EDT
I'm sure there are a couple post-sample SA-80s in the country for research puproses. Also I've heard a couple times that there are two semi-auto SA-80s floating around this country that are prototypes for a canceled venture to produce them over here. How much truth there is to that is anyone guess.
Link Posted: 10/10/2007 7:50:31 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/10/2007 7:54:10 PM EDT by notOO7]
There was a guy is known as LarryG36 who tried to build a US semi version built on a US receiver, but when British Aerospace purchased the Royal Ord plant they refused to send him the part kits

The guns are known for their accuracy. Unfortunately they are also known for their lack of reliability.
Link Posted: 10/11/2007 8:03:41 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Armed_Scientist:
I'm sure there are a couple post-sample SA-80s in the country for research puproses. Also I've heard a couple times that there are two semi-auto SA-80s floating around this country that are prototypes for a canceled venture to produce them over here. How much truth there is to that is anyone guess.


I've seen the semis. They were real. The guy was shopping them around for a year or two at the big gunshows looking for funding to make them here in the USA. He had the two semis, and enough parts for two more rifles. He was trying to get production going, and when he failed at that, he tried to sell the whole package, including manufacturing rights, for something like $35,000. That was back in the day as well, before the big bans.

Given the market share bullpups had at the time, Styer, FAMAS and a couple odd-balls pretty much had serviced that market segment. The project simply didn't have any legs.

Later, during the ban, a bullpup might have had traction if it were quality. Bushmaster had the right idea with the M17s, but just didn't develop it enough.

Nowdays there's some good bullpups being made or on the horizon and again, there's really no segment that an SA-80 would do well in.

Considering the semis that I saw were the early type SA's, it would have probably given bullpups a bad name anyway. Sometimes "it would be cool" gives way to fate, and in the end that might have been better.
Link Posted: 10/11/2007 8:13:26 AM EDT
Why oh why did we not get AR's, politics really does ruin everything.
Link Posted: 10/11/2007 9:46:31 AM EDT
Least your SAS got the Canadian made ARs
Link Posted: 10/11/2007 11:50:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bodie:
Why oh why did we not get AR's, politics really does ruin everything.


Well, it is sad because the UK used to produce some of the finest firearms in the world.

I guess we're seeing what happens when a government kills private industry through practically banning private sales.

Will the UK politicians though ever admit that they made a mistake banning firearms and killing the industry there? Probably not.
Link Posted: 10/11/2007 11:52:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Ross:

Originally Posted By Armed_Scientist:
I'm sure there are a couple post-sample SA-80s in the country for research puproses. Also I've heard a couple times that there are two semi-auto SA-80s floating around this country that are prototypes for a canceled venture to produce them over here. How much truth there is to that is anyone guess.


I've seen the semis. They were real. The guy was shopping them around for a year or two at the big gunshows looking for funding to make them here in the USA. He had the two semis, and enough parts for two more rifles. He was trying to get production going, and when he failed at that, he tried to sell the whole package, including manufacturing rights, for something like $35,000. That was back in the day as well, before the big bans.

Given the market share bullpups had at the time, Styer, FAMAS and a couple odd-balls pretty much had serviced that market segment. The project simply didn't have any legs.

Later, during the ban, a bullpup might have had traction if it were quality. Bushmaster had the right idea with the M17s, but just didn't develop it enough.

Nowdays there's some good bullpups being made or on the horizon and again, there's really no segment that an SA-80 would do well in.

Considering the semis that I saw were the early type SA's, it would have probably given bullpups a bad name anyway. Sometimes "it would be cool" gives way to fate, and in the end that might have been better.


I agree, I just think that if the SA-80 did come to market it would have a lot to overcome in terms of the horrible reputation it has within the USA.
Link Posted: 10/12/2007 11:24:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/12/2007 11:54:47 AM EDT by Homeinvader]

Originally Posted By borat:

There are less than 100 true, British Aerospace SA80 semis here. I bought one NIB at a Texas gun show back in '89-'90 for $5000 and sold it about 10 years ago. Made a lot of money on it, but they're much more valuable now, about $20,000 was the price of the last one I saw sold.

They're all British Aerospace guns, rather than Enfield, and most if not all were import-marked "Golden State Arms", though Golden State Arms did not end up being the import entity. The ones here were imported through another company though they were marked "Golden State Arms."

There was a Nevada outfit, The Gun Room I think, that made a few semi-auto SA-80 receivers and built them up with SA-80 parts kits, though not sure of the numbers. This may be what you are talking about. The workmanship was pretty bad, but even one of these went for huge money several years ago when I saw it for sale in The Gun List.

This is THE gun I will regret letting go of for the rest of my life. Everything else Ive had I can get again, but this one I won't be able to find and could not afford if found anyway.


Those are my words above from a previous thread, still holds true.
To make emotional matters worse, SA80 A2 parts are for sale all over the Ebay UK site. Wouldn't take much for the current owner to upgrade to the A2.

But to add to the OP's question, the semi SA80 didn't exist in 1986, so there would be no transferable MG versions out there. Post Samples are easy to find though.
Link Posted: 10/12/2007 11:42:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bodie:
Why oh why did we not get AR's, politics really does ruin everything.


You guys do have AI. An AW in .338 Lapua is a way better bolt action than anything we produce "off the shelf".

I bet british bolt actions are so good because you guys are so limited in what you can have as civilians. Isn't it something weird like you can't have any rifled auto loaders? But you can have a smooth bore autoloading shotgun?
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