by David Crane
February 05, 2005
Looks like the U.S. Navy SEALs just got a brand new tool for the War on Terror. The boys at NSWC Crane (Crane Division, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane, Indiana) have apparently been busy little beavers over there. One of the projects they’ve been working on is this little .50 BMG badboy. It’s called the AS50 Semi-Automatic Rifle, and it’s the result of NSWC Crane’s teaming with Accuracy International (AI).
At approx. 27 pounds empty/dry weight (according to the AI representative at their booth), the AI AS50 is relatively lightweight. DefenseReview got a chance to handle it (and lift it) at its SHOT Show 2005 debut, and was surprised at how light it felt, for a semi-auto .50 caliber rifle. One of the pictures DefRev shot at SHOT (which we will be releasing soon) shows…
The Accuracy International (AI) AS50 Semi-Auto Rifle (.50 BMG) was designed specifically for U.S. military Special Operations (SPECOPS) personnel/snipers. More specifically, it was designed for the U.S. Navy SEALs to provide them with anti-materiel/long-range interdiction capability, combined with fast follow-up shot capability, in a combat-rugged, lightweight weapons package that can be assembled and broken down quickly and easily, and maintained easily. However, although the AS50 rifle was designed specifically for Naval SPECWAR end-users, DefenseReview has no doubt that other elements of SOCOM (USSOCOM) will be taking a good look at AI’s latest .50 caliber creation. And, we wouldn’t be surprised if U.S. NSWDG (U.S. Navy DevGroup) and certain U.S. Army Special Forces units out of Ft. Bragg, NC and Ft. Campbell, KY were already field testing the AS50 on enemy insurgents, in the Sandbox.
The following is from the AI AS50 Semi-Automatic Rifle brochure:
"For deployment and storage, the stock can be detached (and refitted) in seconds. It’s the ultimate semi-auto .50 Cal. to go!" AI goes on to write: "The entire system can be separated into its major components in under 3 minutes! All parts are fully interchangeable and the rifle can be field-serviced without so much as a screwdriver."
Sounds pretty good. As if that’s not enough, the AI rep at the booth told us that the AS50 semi-auto .50 BMG rifle creates less felt recoil than their AW50 bolt-action .50 BMG rifle. Back in July, 2003, DefenseReview wrote a quick blurb on the AI AW50 (33-35 lbs empty, depending on reports) and AW50FT (a reported 28 lbs, approx.) .50 BMG bolt-action rifles.
AI’s whole focus is to combine match-grade accuracy with military-application reliability and ruggedness, and it looks like it just might have succeeded with the AS50.
As we mentioned above, we will be releasing pics of the AS50 that we took at SHOT Show, soon. Most likely, we’ll be able to get them up on the site by Sunday (Monday, at the latest). In the meantime, we hope you enjoy the AS50 brochure pics that we scanned in for you. They get the job done. The brochure includes all the cool features and specs of the rifle.
If you or your organization would like to acquire an AI AS50 Semi-Automatic Rifle (.50 BMG anti-materiel rifle), you can contact the Accuracy International (AI) office by phone at 011 44 (0)23 9267 1225 for AS50 availability and pricing. If calling from the U.S., you probably won’t have to dial the "0" right before the "23". Tom Irwin is AI’s Sales and Marketing Manager, and can be contacted directly via email at [email protected].
Click on the links below to view scanned digital photos of the Accuracy International (AI) AS50 Semi-Automatic Rifle brochure that DefRev picked up at SHOT Show 2005:
AI AS50 Brochure Back Cover (Contains weapon specs.)