Just Look At This Freakin' Rifle!
I'm an avid follower of The Firearm Blog as he gets to blog about some firearms that I've never heard about, made from some far-away land, or even some crazy gun projects that you might even think that are just impractical as real steel ones and sometimes they report about stuff that can be traced to Popular Airsoft. There was one blog entry that was posted a few weeks ago and I thought that it might interest you, since it's a rifle that made my jaw drop.
The rifle in question is a 14.9mm SOP Rifle and Cartridge. Just to give you an idea about this weapon system is for you to think about the 50 BMG cartridge and you know that's already one big ammo. The 14.9 SOP Cartridge is bigger and the length is more than twice the length of the 50. And you know the types of guns that can fire the 50 BMG cartridge, heavy machine guns and the Barrett Rifles which are already massive ones. This means that for the 14.9 SOP, a rifle that will be able to fire it that would have the length that would rival an NBA center player in height.
The Firearm Blog wrote that this is a collaborative project at Snipers Hide and has an accuracy of 0.5 MOA (Minute of Arc/Angle) at 3000 yards and still go supersonic up to 5 kilometers. According to those who have read about this rifle, this is a rifle and cartridge that started as concept for extreme target shooting and is not really done for commercial production. Extreme shooting are those made my snipers who can hit targets that are almost impossible in terms of distance. The bullet is also supersonic giving a faster time of flight and should have good accuracy.
There are debates in other forums such as throat erosion issues with this type of rifle and making jokes about what will happen to the eye of the shooter when aiming down the scope due to the potential recoil it can produce, perhaps getting a mean black eye every time the rifle is tested. Another thing is the cost of the ammo, which should be expensive to produce. What I think about this rifle will be more an anti-materiel one --- it will be a very good vehicle stopper. But if you think of it hitting a human target, you might not find enough proof of identity of the target if the head gets blown-off. If the target doesn't die of the shot, he might die of shock looking at the damage caused by just one bullet fired from an extreme range.
This is one project that I wouldn't even think about using a replica in airsoft. The size and weight of such a rifle would make be impractical to make an airsoft version, plus the cost of making one. Some might even joke that a BB fired with a barrel length the same as that shown in the photo, the BB won't even exit through the muzzle as it will lose energy just travelling through the barrel.
So just admire the photos, testaments of how humans will strive to make something bigger and better. It will also provide a lot of data of rifle manufacturers wanting to make the next "greatest" sniper rifle while testing is done as there will surely be issues that need to resolved or tamed. A video of it test fired below: