Azov units use C7A1 rifles: 2-3 times longer barrel life over M16

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KYIV, UKRAINE — The Ukrainian Armed Forces of Azov units use Colt Canadian C7 rifles. Photos shared on social networks show Azov soldiers training with this rifle. According to the source, the rifles are the C7A1 version and were delivered from the Netherlands.

Photo credit: Twitter

The C7A1 has a distinguishing feature. The barrel of the assault rifle has an extended life of at least 2-3 times more compared to the American M16. This is in stark contrast to the war in Ukraine, as we have seen excessive barrel loading in Ukraine over the past 12 months. Of course, we have mostly talked about the intensive use of artillery guns. But the same goes for ground manpower.

The Canadian assault rifle was developed in the 1980s. It is still in production and still in service in some parts of the world, including Canada. To date, over 200,000 units have been produced. The rifle has four variants: C7, C7A1, C7A2, and C8.

According to the official specification, the C7A1 can fire between 700-900 rounds per minute. The maximum range is up to 550 meters. C7A1 is the first modernization of C7. The difference between the two is primarily in the scope rails.

On the C7A1, the scope rails differ from Picatinny’s MIL-STD-1913 standard. For example, there are 14 slots instead of the usual 13, and each slot is narrower than the next. Also, the C7A1 rail itself is higher than the standard. This allows the use of a normal height scope. According to Canadian soldiers, the use of a non-optical sight [collimator type sight – red or green dot] and the maximum range of up to 550 meters give the Canadian rifle a great advantage in close combat.

Photo credit: Twitter

Over the years, C7 manufacturer Colt Canada [formerly Diemaco] made hundreds of modifications and developments to the rifle’s barrel. Some versions include a heavier barrel, but the Azov S7A1 does not. Currently, C7 has a current version: C7A3, which is much more suitable for modern combat conditions.

Unlike many American weapons that have their equivalent for the civilian market, the C7A1 does not. However, it can be found in the “shop around the corner”. But this rifle can only be purchased if the owner holds a valid Restricted Possession and Acquisition License [RPAL].

Combat experience

The Canadian assault rifle has a lot of combat experience. The proven weapon is undoubtedly in use in the Ukrainian parts of Azov. Historically, C7 has participated in several UN peacekeeping missions, the war in Iraq, the civil wars in Iraq and Syria, the war in Afghanistan, and British military intervention in the Sierra Leone Civil War. With the use of Azov C7 recorded participation in the war between Ukraine and Russia in Europe.


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