Can L96A1 be used as a hunting weapon?
I am writing a fiction book and there is a moment where four ex SAS snipers hunt animals together. The story is passing in the 1990's in England. Therefore the weapon needs to be one used by UK snipers at that time. The thing is that I think that the damage made by this rifle L96A1 is maybe too much for hunting foxes. Does the L96A1 in the 1990"s have different type of ammo that could kill without extreme damage?
Also, can someone tell me what are the distance accuracy for this weapon at this period? I've read something about it, but I've got confused. Thank you!
- augustLv 78 years agoFavorite Answer
In theory, you could use any firearm as a hunting TOOL (not weapon- weapons are used to kill people). The point hinges upon legality, though.
The firearm doesn't need to be one used by UK military snipers, either. They would not take their gun with them after they left the service, so they would simply have to apply for a firearms license and be approved, then purchase a firearm that is legal.
An Accuracy International Precision Marksman, the rifle on which the L96 series is based, would potentially be an excellent big game rifle. It could be used for any animal from the size of a deer on up. The AI Arctic Warfare (the current design name) does come chambered in .243 Winchester, which is much less powerful than the 7.62x51mm NATO round that is standard in the L96, or the .300 Winchester Magnum or .338 Lapua Magnum rounds that are available in the line of rifles. .243 Winchester is still more powerful than necessary for fox, though.
Your fictional hunters would probably do better with a .22LR, .22 WMR, .17 HMR, or similar rifle if thy're only hunting fox. A Savage Mark II or Savage 93R17 are examples. That would be much more believable than using an extremely powerful anti-personnel round against relatively small canines that might be less than 30 pounds, at most. It would be possible to hit a fox at 100 or more yards with a .17 HMR or .22 WMR, and a .22LR would be capable of doing it to about 100 yards, at most.
The Accuracy International rifles, such as the L96A1, are accurate enough that they can be used against man-sized targets at ranges exceeding 1,000 yards. With the correct ammunition, they are capable of 0.5 MOA or less, which means that for every 100 yards away from the target, the group of shots from a shooting rest should be 1/2" or less. At 1,000 yards, a 5" group would be expected.
The limiting factor would not be accuracy, but energy and the effects of gravity. As any object on a ballistic path (i.e. unpowered movement through the atmosphere), a bullet begins to drop immediately upon leaving whatever is launching it. In the case of the Accuracy International rifles in question, the bullet leaves the muzzle of the gun with anywhere from about 2,700 foot-pounds of energy, on up to about 5,000 foot-pounds of energy, depending on which cartridge the gun is designed to fire. As the bullet leaves the gun, its trajectory begins to be affected by gravity. It takes a path that looks like a very stretched-out rainbow. As the bullet travels, the energy it began with is used up to push the bullet through the atmosphere. Try throwing a rock in a field sometime. Throwing it as hard as you can, you still have a maximum distance you can throw the rock, even if you throw it at about a 45 degree angle- that's because the energy you exerted upon the rock has been expended by the point it stops moving.
At about 300 yards, the bullet has dropped significantly- as much as a foot or more, depending on the cartridge the rifle uses. At ranges over 500 yards, the bullet will have dropped as much as 40 inches, and potentially much more more. At 500 yards and beyond, the shooter will have a much more difficult time hitting a human-sized target due to atmospheric conditions. A crossbreeze could put the bullet off-target by a dozen inches or more.
According to most militaries, .338 Lapua Magnum (the largest cartridge that the AI AW-series rifles is generally chambered for) has a maximum range of 1,640 yards on a calm summer day. During the winter, it will be a shorter range. Of course, at that range, you probably couldn't even SEE a fox-sized target, much less hit it.
- Mr.357Lv 78 years ago
Why are they hunting foxes? If they want the fur or to eat them (not as good of tasting as rabbits) and they don't mind foregoing the head, a head shot would remove the head but leave the rest of the body unharmed. If they were just killing foxes, a body shot would be fine too. I would imagine a sniper worth his salt would be able to make head shots out to at least 400 yds on foxes. If they were hunting rabbits to about 300 yds.
- John de WittLv 78 years ago
It's just too strained for a story line. Ex-SAS would be able to obtain something more appropriate. They tend to be resourceful people.
- Anonymous8 years ago
The l96a1 is made in 308 (standard hunting bullet) also. It is fine to hunt deer with 130 grain bullets up to 300 yards. EDIT: there hunting fox? Lol srry august gave a very good answer.
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