May 2, 2013
Y’all may have seen the last show to air, centered on a Solothurn 20mm anti-tank gun.
I just have to say, for the record, it is one of the most beautiful guns I’ve ever seen. It was made by the Swiss so that should tell you something right off the bat. Oh yeah, and it weighed a hundred and twenty pounds, making it the single heaviest man portable gun I’ve ever messed with.
Ira and I are pretty tight, both on and off the show, so I kind of had a heads up that he was coming by and what he was bringing, but I was still floored when I actually saw it. It’s a completely machined chunk of steel that fires a 20x138mm shell and does it in style. The actual name for the weapon is S18-1000, which I think is pretty damn fancy, but enough of that.
The gun came in and was not working. A previous owner had let the bolt fly home after assembling the gun incorrectly. This basically caused the gun to seize, which tore up some of the internals. You see, this particular weapon actually creates recoil WHEN CLOSING THE BOLT!
It is that powerful, it has a much more robust action than the Lahti—and that gun is no lightweight. Once the weapon was apart, it was a simple matter of filing, stoning, and polishing the affected parts. Pretty easy stuff, especially when it’s on a massive scale; it’s much easier to see what you’re doing.
Of course we did have the problem with the firing pin but y’all saw that on the show.
Once the pin was installed, it was off to the range. The first shot was a dud. We were using sixty year old ammo, so sometimes it just doesn’t go bang. There is basically no danger, unless you open the bolt too quickly, and it’s a hang fire as opposed to a misfire.
A misfire is when the round does not go off. You still need to sit cialis onset of action there and wait about thirty seconds because you never know.
A hang fire is when the primer is struck and after, usually, a second or two the round goes off. If you don’t know what you are doing here, it can be a scary thing—especially with a 20mm. In reality you just wait about thirty seconds and if it doesn’t go off, it’s a misfire and it won’t. None of the ammo we had was explosive, so that was never a factor. But we did have to collect the dud rounds and soak them in oil for a week. After that time, they could be taken apart and the components reused.
So anyway, it was finally my turn to fire the thing. I’m not gonna lie, I had been waiting for this chance since I saw it.
I shouldered up behind the gun and found a good eye relief on the scope. Once satisfied with my aiming point, I pulled the trigger. And damn was that cool!
The Lahti, while firing the same size ammo, had nothing on this. The way it fires you get a recoil force coming and going. It was really interesting. I had never felt anything like that. Of course, you get the recoil of the round going off but you also get the reverse recoil of the bolt slamming back into battery—a really interesting feeling.
So that was it, I had fired a S18-1000. Another marked off the list. I cannot recommend shooting this enough. It is singularly one of the most complex and interesting weapons I’ve ever messed with, and the way it shoots is just incredible.
Oh, and did I mention I hit the bull first shot and penetrated 1” of solid steel. That, my friends, is neat as hell.
I don’t really have much to say on this beyond, if you have a spare eighteen to twenty-grand lying around, you need one of these. Oh, and you should call me to come shoot it. You know, just to be safe.Click on one or more of the social media buttons above to share on your page.