Biathlon rifle: types and features

Biathlon rifle: types and features

Among winter sports the biathlon concedes in popularity, perhaps, only to hockey. This type of sports meets includes ski race and shooting. The result of competitions in many respects is defined by quality of stock. The biathlon rifle represents the difficult technical device therefore experienced athletes pay special attention to the choice of the concrete type of weapon.

Requirements to the biathlon rifle

The regulations of sports meets impose the number of serious requirements to the biathlon rifle. The weight of weapon shouldn't be less than 3.5 kg. Standard caliber – 5.6 mm. Transition to small-caliber weapon took place in 1977; before biathlonists used rifles with caliber of 7.62 mm. Changes were brought to life by need to ensure safety at weapon handling.

Introduction of the rifle with the reduced caliber led to change of the distance for shooting. Athletes had to adapt to new conditions. The reduced caliber reduced return by production of the shot. However influence of wind on the accuracy of hits increased. Requirements to safety became tougher: the rifle had to fasten reliably behind the back of the athlete; during shooting the biathlonist wasn't allowed to leave the special rubber rug. For foul of tough rules the sanction followed – up to disqualification.

On the received standards the rifle for biathlon shooting has to be equipped with shop on 5 cartridges. Also the place for the binding of three additional ammunition is provided – they are allowed to be used if the main cartridge is faulty and also in case of misses duringduring relay competitions.

The athletes participating in competitions of the highest level use the weapon which is specially adjusted for them. Each detail of the rifle is produced taking into account anatomic features of the athlete. Special attention is paid to convenience of applying of the rifle to the cheek. Designers should consider at the same time the general requirements to weapon from party of regulations, before each race the special referees meticulously check all equipment of biathlonists.

Even the most reliable and checked rifle can bring. When falling the belt can tear, the refusal of weapon when using the low-quality cartridge isn't excluded. During the race the athlete gives to safety of weapon paramount value: biathlonists even learn to fall "correctly" that in the maximum degree to protect the rifle from damages.

Biathlon rifle: it is a little history

The modern biathlon conducts the history with races of the military patrols which became popular after the end of World War II. In these competitions in the Soviet Union well proved army Mosin-Nagant was used. Subsequently specialists of Izhevsk Machine-Building Plant designed the experimental sample of the biathlon rifle which received the name "Biathlon-59". In it more exact dioptric rear sight found application. Weapon was supplied with belts and the protective cover. At that time the regulations didn't limit rifle weight.

The designer-armorer Sherstyakov took part in further development of the biathlon rifle. Two types of weapon became result of its developments: "Biathlon of Bi-7.62" and "Biathlon of Bi-6.5". In the name the value of caliber of weapon is used. These rifles brought to domestic biathlonists serious Olympic progress.

In the early seventies the last century athletes received advanced weapon. The Biathlon of Bi-4 rifle intended for use of cartridges with the rimfire became it. The weight of weapon was significantly lost. Later short time the Biathlon of Bi-5 rifle adapted for the cartridge of caliber of 5.6 mm was mass-produced.

Producers of biathlon rifles

The most famous foreign producers of biathlon rifles:

  • Anschutz (Germany);
  • Walter (Germany);
  • Sako (Finland");
  • "Stayer Manlikher" (Austria).

The greatest popularity in world biathlon was received by weapon of the Anschutz brand. When developing rifles the designers of this firm sought to meet requirements of athletes of German national team fully. Main criteria: force of return and usability. Anschutz in the late seventies became the initiator of the transfer of biathlon weapon to small caliber. Such transition made biathlon the popular sport available to broad masses of fans.

The German armorers set the main standards of the biathlon rifle:

  • weight is not less than 3.5 kg;
  • caliber of 5.6 mm;
  • cartridges with the rimfire.

The answer of domestic armorers followed very quickly. The Izhevsk rifle "Biathlon of Bi-6" which was completely conforming to new requirements became it. This weapon was option of deep modernization of ready "Ural" models.

Device of the biathlon rifle and its feature

Weapon of all producers is approximately identical. Distinctions concern only constructive registration of separate knots and positions.

The rifle for biathlon includes:

  • trunk;
  • bed;
  • breech block;
  • trigger mechanism;
  • aim adaptation;
  • shop for cartridges.

The difficult design of the butt gives the chance if necessary to change its linear sizes; the system of laying is for this purpose provided. All biathlon rifles are supplied with zaplechny belts which design allows to hold reliably weapon behind the back at movement on the track, but doesn't disturb at the time of shooting.

Aim adaptation of the rifle – dioptric. Use of riflescopes isn't allowed.

Almost all elements of the rifle can be adjusted and adjusted under features of the specific athlete. It is possible to change also the center of mass of the rifle, for this purpose special balance weights are used.

The recharge of the rifle can be made very quickly. The krivoshipno-conrod mechanism which reliably locks the barrel bore by means of vertical axes of spin is for this purpose designed.

For protection of the barrel bore, the rear sight and the front sight against pollution convenient covers are thought up.

Designers of weapon pay special attention to the design of the trigger mechanism. It is arranged so that it was possible to adjust effort of pressing descent in the most optimum way. It isn't necessary to sort weapon for such control.

Each weapon firm develops the designs of breech blocks. Well proved the breech block of Anschutz. It differs in the compact sizes, has no fighting ledges. It is very simple to recharge the rifle – it becomes the movements of two fingers: index the athlete pulls for the handle and cocks the breech block; for the back run it is necessary to press the thumb the back part of the mechanism. The extractor and the ejector capable facilitate the recharge it is reliable to work at the lowest air temperatures.

For cross of the boss in the trunk the removable shop with a capacity at 5 cartridges is used. In addition the rifle is equipped with adaptation where three more boss are located. To the rifle the special cartridge where place four shops – on number of shooting stages of the majority of types of races also fastens.

The main criterion of shooting in this sport – rifle recharge speed without change of position of the athlete.

Important stage of preparation of biathlon weapon – its adjustment. The rifle carefully balance, adding or removing the balance weight. Then adjust the working course of descent and its effort. Individually under each biathlonist perform tuning of the butt to the cheek: hit accuracy in the purpose depends on it directly.

Author: «MirrorInfo» Dream Team