POTD: Janson EM-2 – Experimental British assault rifle

    Today’s Picture Of The Day is the British “EM-2“, in the rain. It is also known under the names as the “Janson rifle (EM2)” or the “Rifle No.9 Mk1”, and almost looks like it has a pump action.

    The EM-2 was an experimental rifle, briefly adopted by British forces in 1951.

    Due to NATO standardization of small arms and ammunition this decision was overturned by Winston Churchill’s government, as the rifle could not easily be converted to 7.62×51 mm NATO.

    The caption describes the EM-2 as:

    …an innovative weapon with the compact bullpup layout and an optical sight, it used one of the early intermediate cartridges (a concept introduced by the Germans with the 7.92×33mm Kurz) as a result of combat experience and German advances in weapons design during World War II.

    It used the experimental, intermediate powered, but highly efficient .280 British round, which was designed to replace the venerable .303 round and Lee–Enfield rifle variants which had served since before the turn of the 20th century.

    The bullpup layout for a British service rifle was finally adopted some years later in form of the SA80 assault rifle, the EM-2’s spiritual successor, which remains in service today.

    Pictures and text sourced from Ministry of Defence, Defence Imagery, United Kingdom.

    Armament Research also has more information about the British Janson E.M.2.

    Also, please check TFB’s previous article on the old and new British bullpups.