Cookie Consent by Privacy Policies Generator

FN CAL



Overview


FN CAL

Right side view of FN CAL assault rifle.

Source: Unknown author - © Copyright lies with original owner

Origin
Belgium
Type
Assault rifle
Entered service
1967
Status
Obsolete
Development
1963 - 1966
Developer
Belgium - Ernest Vervier for Fabrique Nationale
Production
1966 - 1975 or 1977
Producer
Belgium - Fabrique Nationale
Number produced
About 12.000, although some sources indicate 30.000
Designations
CAL / Carabine Automatique Légèr
Acronym, French for "light automatic carbine"

Description


Introduction

The FN CAL is an assault rifle of Belgian origin. It was the first 5.56mm rifle produced by FN, introduced shortly after the USA started to use the M16 rifle in Vietnam.

Design

The CAL is based on the earlier FN FAL battle rifle and both rifles look very similar at first sight. The gas system of the CAL is quite similar to the FAL, but instead of a tilting bolt a rotating bolt is used. The design of the CAL is optimized to use less expensive castings and stampings in order to keep prices low. On the other hand more complex features were introduced, such as the three round burst option. Except for the option for a folding stock there were no variants of the CAL.

Firepower

The CAL is a select-fire rifle that fires the 5.56x45mm M193 round. The trigger group allows for semi-automatic, 3 round burst and automatic fire. Proprietary 20 and 30 round detachable box magazines are used. Apparently 25 round magazines were produced as well. The cyclic rate of fire is rather high at about 850 rpm. Maximum effective range is about 400 meters. The CAL can launch NATO standard rifle grenades. Reportely the M203 under barrel grenade launcher can be fitted.

Users

The CAL did not prove to be a major export success. Various nations in South America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East acquired relatively small quantities. Nowadays the CAL can be considered obsolete. The CAL was replaced on the production line in the late 1970's by the FNC. The newer FN FNC proved to be a far more capable and reliable firearm. It was produced in much larger numbers than the CAL.

Media


Details


Facts CAL
General
Origin
Belgium
Type
Assault rifle
Caliber
Caliber
5.56x45mm M193
Magazine capacity
20 or 30 round detachable box
Barrel length
467 mm
Action
Operation
Gas operated, short stroke gas piston
Locking
Rotating bolt
Trigger group
0 - 1 - 3 - F
Rate of fire
850 rpm cyclic
Dimensions
Type of stock
Fixed
Length
926 mm
Weight
3.0 kg empty
Sights
Type of sights
Iron sights, post front and L-shaped aperture rear
Gradations
250 and 400 m gradations
Optical sight
A proprietary type of low power optical sight was available
Accessories
Rifle grenades
Muzzle allows use of NATO standard rifle grenades

Related articles


FN FAL

The FN CAL is based on the design of the very successful FN FAL. Internally there are some differences. For instance, the CAL uses a rotating bolt instead of the tilting bolt on the FAL.