Small Arms Survey Publish Free Guide to the Identification of Small Arms

Matthew Moss
by Matthew Moss
Front cover of the new An Introductory Guide to the Identification of Small Arms, Light Weapons, and Associated Ammunition from Small Arms Survey (Small Arms Survey)

The Geneva-based Small Arms Survey have published a free 352 page guide to help with the identification of small arms, light weapons and their ammunition. The new introductory identification guide was written by a raft of subject matter experts and edited by Nic Jenzen-Jones and Matt Schroeder.

The guide includes sections explaining how the international arms trade works before four chapters layout the identifying characteristics and features of small arms, small arms ammunition, light weapons and other improvised weapons.

The Small Arms Survey explain the aims of the new book on its download page:

Arms and ammunition are evidence. Many weapons carry marks that, combined with their physical characteristics, reveal important information about them, including their manufacturer, age, and origin. This information, in turn, provides vital clues about the sources and flows of weapons in the area in which they were found.

The goal of this Handbook is to provide the reader with a basic understanding of how to identify and analyse small arms and light weapons, and to track their proliferation. The process of identifying arms is complex, and no single guide can provide all of the information required to identify every weapon or round of ammunition that may be encountered at crime scenes or in conflict zones. Instead, this guide explains the process by which weapons and ammunition are identified and arms flows are tracked. Reference material on specific small arms, light weapons, and ammunition is included throughout the guide. This material will help readers to take the steps necessary to identify the make and model of the most commonly encountered weapons and ammunition.

The guide’s introduction explains that “Reference material on specific small arms, light weapons, and ammunition is included throughout the guide. This material will help readers to take the steps necessary to identify the make and model of the most commonly encountered weapons and ammunition.”

Here’s a look at some pages from the guide:

The guide does not assume prior knowledge and explains how various different weapons work (Small Arms Survey)
How to identify a musket (Small Arms Survey)
A flow chart explaining how to use the guide to identify firearms (Small Arms Survey)
A breakdown of a Bulgarian 40mm grenade (Small Arms Survey)
Detachable magazines 101 (Small Arms Survey)

The new identification handbook follows on from another Small Arms Survey publication helmed by Jenzen-Jones, a report on Improvised Weapons was published earlier this month.

Source

Matthew Moss
Matthew Moss

Managing Editor: TheFirearmBlog.com & Overt Defense.com. Matt is a British historian specialising in small arms development and military history. He has written several books and for a variety of publications in both the US and UK. Matt is also runs The Armourer's Bench, a video series on historically significant small arms. Here on TFB he covers product and current military small arms news. Reach Matt at: matt@thefirearmblog.com

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  • Richard kluesek Richard kluesek on Dec 08, 2018

    Liberals will still refer to magazine feeding devices as "clips" and the British will stubbornly describe all handguns including semiautomatic pistols as 'revolvers'. And they will remain ignorant of what '"heat shields'" are.

  • MW MW on Dec 12, 2018

    Brilliant resource. Thnks

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