A year ago TFB reported about German Gunworks’ exceptional G29 Viper project, and some of us saw it in real life at the German EnforceTac exhibition this spring. Neither of the times was it fully finished, but I kept in contact with the owner of the company Mr. Leitermann to make sure that we could see the end result.
The purpose of the G29 Viper project was for German GunWorks to put together a “State of the Art” weapon, which has a relation to the current precision rifle of the German Bundeswehr.
The basis of the project is the Haenel RS9, chambered in the mighty .338 Lapua Magnum as the Bundeswehr’s G29. The scope was given as well, in the form of the Steiner M5Xi 5-25×56 with the Tremor3 reticle.
Below: The state of the G29 Viper at EnforceTac 2018. I was wondering will it ever be finished?
Imagine the amount of work to plan all these stencils for the paint work!
To attach the rifle scope to the rifle, German Gunworks turned to Spuhr of Sweden, which they consider to be best manufacturers of rifle scope mounts. From a European standpoint there are also issues with ITAR from potential US suppliers. Spuhr helped the project with a QDP-4602 quick-detach mount (details here, as you can hardly see the mount in its disguise).
Once all the pieces were put together they did some testing to make sure the system worked as planned.
The looks – on the basis of Cerakote
It was time to plan the look of the rifle, so PBN Coatings GmbH were contacted for a co-operation to Cerakote the whole thing.
Time to disassemble everything again! German Gunworks catalogued all the parts and accessories preparing them for priming in Cerakote H-30118 FS Field Drab (brown).
The color was deliberately chosen because ultimately the basic color was predetermined by the Steiner riflescope. The M5Xi is the original military version with laser protection filters and lockable towers – all in brown. Since you can not repaint the scales of the towers in other colors the basic color was determined.
Imagine that each screw, each lever and pin were also sanded or blasted to be painted then you can imagine the effort alone for the primer. After about a month, the extensive parts set came back to German GunWorks.
Finding a pattern based on that particular brown color was not as easy as you might think. One is therefore faced with the choice of either inventing a camouflage pattern or choosing from the few available ones with that kind of hue.
Fortunately, the newly introduced multitarn of the Bundeswehr has a very similar hue. With a bit of luck they could use the same multitarn, a perfect fit for the sniper rifle which is also used by the Special Forces. The only problem was that the new Bundeswehr Multitarn is so new that hardly anyone knows of it, and using it was a risk as patterns that are not yet rooted in the minds of people are first perceived as “funny”.
Water transfer print type of camouflage was ruled out as a solution. Although this can be a good solution for “wrapping” a firearm in a camouflage pattern relatively inexpensively, they decided that the technology will never come close to the finish they wanted.
A company called Ergo was called in to design the Flecktarn stencils, and a lot of time on the computer was spent. The advantage of this is that now the pattern actually exists and anyone who comes up with an idea to use it can purchase ready-to-use stencils in the shop of German GunWorks.
But be warned! The effort to properly paint a weapon in Flecktarnarn is immense!
First, you have to reassembled the primed gun to look for errors in the paint job and to check its functionality. This time the primed parts from PBN Coatings were painted perfectly, and the firearm worked without issues.
400 Working Hours
Nearly 400 working hours were needed to realize the G29 Viper project. If you want to see the parts list you can check TFB’s original article.
Overall, the RS9 sniper rifle was completely disassembled and reassembled by German GunWorks in Heuberg no less than 7 times!
The rifle was completely stenciled 5 times, with a lot of time-consuming manual work. At last the rifle could be “weatherproofed” and sealed with a coat of clear paint.
According to GermanGunWorks‘ calculations, if they were to charge an hourly rate of €80 (92 USD), one could value the price for the painting alone at €32,000 (37,000 USD).
If you add the price of the firearm, all the attachments and other consumables (coffee I presume!) the total price comes to about €48,000 (55,500 USD).
That is absolutely insane – but I have to say that I’m very happy to show the end result here on TFB, and congratulate German GunWorks and the sponsors of this project to a job very well done.
It’s obvious that a project like this is not intended for the regular market, but rather a “show of force” of the companies involved.
From German GunWorks, Mr. Leitermann makes it very clear: “For the time being, we will not do such a mammoth project again“.
As I have followed this project close during the past year I can fully understand this.
But, one can say from experience that it might not be long before the boys will feel a tingling sensation again and a new project will be launched. What do you think they should build?