QBZ 95-1 Enters the Picatinny Age

Recent screen grabs from Chinese television have indicated that the 5.8x42mm QBZ 95-1 service rifle is being fielded among PLA soldiers with picatinny rails and assorted optics. Specifically, the unit shown is an Airborne unit preparing for an Airborne Platoon 2017 competition among the armed forces. Earlier we’ve covered the development of the QBZ 95-1 with some experimentation with picatinny and even keymod, in addition to the overall development of the QBZ 95-1. Chinese Military Review has an excellent article on this development, although much of that information appears to have been early designs that haven’t entered full service among PLA troops.

Currently, the picatinny rails are being outfitted for the carrying handle and as a short 3 o’clock accessory rail, but we are only seeing optics being outfitted to the rails. Back up iron sights are being retained, integral to the carrying handle, however it appears that with the current optics set up being used by these paratroopers, they are effectively useless as the holographic sight is blocking the BUIS entirely. Troopers currently appear to have holographic sights and magnifiers for their service rifles, while the light machine gunners only have holographic sights and no magnifiers. Specifications and nomenclature of these optics is unknown at the current time, but they appear to be of indigenous Chinese manufacture.

Original QBZ 95


Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

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  • Petto

    That sight in those top pictures is Sightmark Ultra shot with 3x Tactical Magnifier PRO

    so weird to see on QBZ-95 tho

    • Petto

      *Sightmark Ultra shot M-Spec

      • Twilight sparkle

        Any idea what the one at the bottom that looks like an eotech 553 is?

        • Petto

          that looks looks like the eotech 551 or some clone of it , you can also sometimes see them with 552 – not sure if that’s legit one or a clone

          • Friend of Tibet

            3rd party legit ones, they are not hard to get and pretty common in China among LE. Aimpoint comp M4 and holosun optic can also be seen sometimes.

          • mig1nc

            Airsoft LOL

  • Urker53

    Wait till they learn the scorpion grip!!!

  • Raginzerker

    Well, china went full wal mart tactical

    • FlyingGrunt28

      Dont they make all the Walmart tactical gear line?

      • Raginzerker

        Oh they do, procurement must have been easy for them

  • Friend of Tibet
  • Anonymoose

    Not even a chin-weld…more like a sternum-weld…

  • You think they would upgrade to the rail configuration used in the Norico 97 export version, which has a much lower/better optics mount.


    • Paul Epstein

      Maybe the lack of iron sights built into the gun killed it? But even then it seems like you could hybridize and come up with essentially an export type optics mounting with built in flip up irons, there are plenty of guns that incorporate those.

  • Wojciech Kapeliński

    LOL “BullPoop”… this is wrong on soooo many levels…..

  • CJS

    But… But… Bullpups are the work of the devil. How can they be upgrading them!?!

  • John


    Ironically, I suspect this development will help India choose IWI for their military small-arms supplier, and the Tavor/X95 as the standard issue rifle. China’s on their border too, and India’s got to match up with both them and Pakistan.

    Unless IWI goes WAY down on the price of a Galil ACE. But even then.

  • 22winmag

    When all else fails you can still blindfold these Red commie bastards with dental floss.

    • SimpleJack

      Truly intellectual stuff going on in these comments right now…

  • Terence

    Just a little more offset and they could do accurate hip-firing!

  • Indiana Finney

    There’s a gen2 of the Type97 export which incorporates a factory built version of this rail system. Saw it in stores about a month back. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3ab39c446cda7404299574001dc8c432c780d5e755556fd65cf6432d01e6a39a.jpg

    • iksnilol

      Maybe because they don’t want to hack or scrap the guns with the carry handles that they’ve already got?