The Uzi Submachine Gun (Full Auto)

    The famous Uzi 9mm SMG was introduced to the world in the 1950s, and was a huge hit that made its way into military and police armories around the world. With millions sold, the gun has been engaged in numerous conflicts and famously helped protect the life of President Reagan. The gun’s proliferation is a result of the low cost, ease of manufacture, and merits as a fine submachine gun. In this episode of TFBTV, we take a look at what makes the Uzi deserving of its reputation as a great gun.

    Transcript …

    (magazine clicks) (bolt sliding) (Uzi firing) (bolt sliding) (metal clanging) – [Voiceover] What a great way to start the Uzi video, a full-auto mag dump where I knocked over the target.

    Anyways, today we’re going to be looking at a full-auto variant of the famous IWI Uzi, a gun that was designed and implemented in service in the 1950s in Israel, and while it didn’t invent the telescoping bolt, it certainly popularized it.

    Suddenly, you had SMGs that were almost half the size of the previous generation’s guns, and they were just very well received, fielded in large numbers and adopted by many nations, including the Germans, as the MP2.

    The folding stock makes them extremely compact and easy to put in tight spaces.

    For example, tanks crews loved them.

    A famous saying on Dutch tankers, though, is that if you want to hit anything beyond 25 meters, it’s easier to throw the gun.

    They are select-fire with S, meaning safe, R, meaning repetition, and A, meaning auto.

    The cocking knob is on the top and it does feature a ratcheting mechanism that makes them very drop-safe.

    And this is a brilliant feature from a safety perspective, as well.

    If the user doesn’t bring it all the way back, the bolt won’t jump forward and set a round off.

    The folding stock is deployed by a simple slap and you collapse it by pinching it, pressing this button, and folding it back under the gun.

    The sights are very simple.

    There’s one setting for 100 meters and another for 200.

    Although, my experience says that the 200 meter setting is pretty optimistic.

    So let’s go back to shooting it a little bit.

    (magazine clicks) (Uzi firing) (bolt sliding) So the best improvement you can make to an Uzi is by ditching that metal stock.

    Not only is it uncomfortable and provides a crummy cheek weld, but if you’re shooting in the summer and the sun heats that sucker up and you go to shoulder it, it really isn’t very fun.

    So let’s give it a shot with a solid stock.

    (Uzi firing) (bolt sliding) So the Uzi’s fixed stock is not like an M16’s fixed stock.

    You’re not married to it once it’s put on there.

    Obviously, you can tuck it under your shoulder and fire it one-handed, if you have to.

    The folding stock would be better for this, obviously.

    But you can just toss it off there, if you really need to, and you can shoot it one-handed just fine.

    Although I did go full-tilt 80s action hero here, and just blast away for fun.

    I’m allowed to shoot for fun every once in a while.

    (bolt sliding) (Uzi firing) So to try and test the Uzi’s accuracy, now obviously the gun’s open-bolt nature makes it very difficult to shoot it for long distance.

    Whenever you pull the trigger, the huge clunk of that bolt mass moving forward is a detriment to accuracy.

    I step back to about 100 meters and try to land my hits on an IDPA metal silhouette to actually reasonable success.

    As you saw earlier, putting the gun on full-auto is a lot easier than putting it on semi.

    To put it on full-auto, you just naturally push your thumb all the way forward, but finding that semi-auto setting is kind of awkward.

    You have to apply just the right amount of pressure.

    That is a bit strange.

    Nonetheless, I actually did pretty well here.

    I landed 12 out of 25 hits on the silhouette from 100 meters away, which is pretty decent for an open-bolt weapon primarily designed to be fired in full-auto.

    (magazine clicks) (Uzi firing) (bolt sliding) So one of the major complaints I hear about the Uzi is its low rate of fire that hovers around 600 to 650 rounds per minute, depending on what type of ammo you use.

    To accelerate the rate of fire, just pop the bolt group out of there.

    We have done a field trip video on the Uzi, if you’d like to see that, but I basically did it here.

    You just pop the top cover off and pull the bolt and recoil spring out of there.

    But you get one of these rubber buffers here.

    This is a pretty simple solution to a fairly complex problem, I suppose.

    Just pop your buffer in there and it does ride at the back of the receiver, so there is a recess so that the recoil spring fits right on top of there, as you can see.

    Make sure the spring nestles right in there, kind of put it towards the back of the receiver, and voila, you reduce your bolt travel and increase your rate of fire with a very, very cheap, very easy option.

    So let’s go ahead and try that out.

    (bolt sliding) (magazine clicks) (Uzi firing) (bolt sliding) So that was the medium-sized buffer.

    Let’s go ahead and put the largest buffer in there to see how much speed we can get out of the Uzi.

    (Uzi firing) So that brings the rate of fire up pretty good.

    But for good measure, I do an engagement drill, starting with the bolt closed.

    (bolt sliding) (Uzi firing) So the Uzi really is a fantastic submachine gun, and while it was phased out of military service, beginning in the 1980s, they are still technically in production with the Uzi Pro, so a variant is still going reasonably strong for special ops commandos, things like that.

    Big thanks to Ventura Munitions, guys.

    I really hope you appreciated this video.

    This was a lot of fun to make and I hope you enjoyed watching it.

    Until next time.

    Alex C.

    Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.