What the Hell is a Battle Rifle?

What the hell is a battle rifle? Featured image.

The named concept of the battle rifle existed after most battle rifles had fallen out of service. As far as I know, the term is seemingly one made up by firearms enthusiasts to describe rifles that fall outside of the realm of an assault rifle, or sniper rifle. In the firearms industry, we like to make shit up, but occasionally something sticks. Battle rifle was something that stuck. 

When most people say battle rifles, they are talking about semi-automatic rifles that fire a full-powered cartridge like the 308, 7.62x54R, and even the newer 6.5 Creedmoor would qualify. These rifles can be select-fire, but its not a requirement. As you’d expect, this includes guns like the AR-10, the FN FAL, the G3, the M14/M1A, and the most modern model on the market, the SCAR-H. These rifles define the contemporary battle rifle, even if most are not that modern. 

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Changing Stripes: a History of Tiger Stripe Camo

Iconic tiger stripe uniform Martin Sheen in the Vietnam War movie Apocalypse Now.

It has been said that just as a leopard can’t change his spots so too a tiger can’t change his stripes. Yet when it comes to military camouflage, the versatile tiger stripe camo pattern has changed and evolved over the years. The fact remains however that unlike the U.S. military’s Operational Camouflage Pattern (OCP) or Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP), the iconic tiger stripe camouflage pattern was never actually an “official” form of camouflage.

Tiger Stripe Camo

While it has been called “tiger stripe camo” unofficially, as the name derives from its resemblance to the stripes on the big cats, it is unique in that the pattern has no name. And unlike OCP, UCP, or the other official camouflage patterns, tigerstripe camouflage is also not really one specific pattern. Some experts have suggested that there were nearly two dozen different variants, so it really is the name of a group of camouflage patterns rather than one particular pattern.

Navy SEALS wearing tigerstrip camouflage in Vietnam.
U.S. Navy SEALs wore locally produced tiger stripe uniforms in Vietnam – and yes, blue jeans were also commonly worn by the frogmen. (Photo: U.S. Navy/Public Domain)

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You Wanna Be PALS with MOLLE?

Thyrm Now A Part of House Morningwood

A company has made it when people start using their brand name as a stand-in for any item in the same realm. For example, tissues being called Kleenex, Jacuzzis and hot tubs, and lest we forget Ping Pong and table tennis. Sometimes it happens even when it’s not an accurate term. This is what has happened with the terms MOLLE and PALS. MOLLE became the nearly synonymous name with modern webbing used on plate carriers, belts, backpacks, and more.

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