Steyr SSG 69
|Steyr SSG 69|
Steyr SSG 69 PI
|Place of origin||Austria|
|Used by||see Users|
|Wars||Lebanese Civil War|
Syrian Civil War
Yemeni Civil War (2015–present)
Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen
Saudi–Yemeni border conflict (2015–present)
|Variants||SSG 69 PI, SSG 69 PII, SSG 69 PIV|
|Mass||4 kg (8.82 lb) (SSG 69 PI)|
4.2 kg (9.3 lb) (SSG 69 PII)
3.8 kg (8.4 lb) (SSG 69 PIV)
|Length||1,140 mm (44.9 in) (SSG 69 PI)|
1,190 mm (46.8 in) (SSG 69 PII)
1,003 mm (39.5 in) (SSG 69 PIV)
|Barrel length||650 mm (25.6 in) (SSG 69 PI, SSG 69 PII)|
409 mm (16.1 in) (SSG 69 PIV)
|Cartridge||7.62×51mm NATO, .243 Winchester, .22-250 Remington (SSG 69 PII)|
|Muzzle velocity||varies by type of round used|
|Effective firing range||800 m (875 yd)|
|Maximum firing range||3,700 m (4,046 yd)|
|Feed system||5-round rotary magazine|
|Sights||iron sights on SSG 69 PI|
Adopted in 1969 (hence the designation), it was ahead of its time with the use of synthetics and cold hammer-forged barrels for durability. Aside from being the Austrian Army's standard issue sniper rifle, it is also used by several law enforcement organizations. It is extremely accurate and several international competitions have been won using an SSG-69 with accuracy being sub 0.15 mrad (0.5 moa).
There are several variants made with mostly cosmetic differences, the only anomaly being the SSG-PIV using a 409 mm barrel with a 1:250 mm (1:10 inches) twist designed to handle heavy subsonic ammunition in conjunction with a suppressor.
The bolt action uses rear-locking lugs (in common with the SMLE), rather than the more common front-locking lugs. This, and the fact that it is only produced in the 'short action' length, limits the chambering to non-magnum calibres, a legacy of a military weapon designed only to fire the 7.62×51mm NATO cartridge. It is essentially a target/police/military weapon, but with its caliber and inherent accuracy, it lends itself to hunting that requires longer distance shots.
The standard magazine features an unusual 5-round rotary design, although a 10-round staggered box is available as an accessory. Both are transparent-backed, immediately showing remaining capacity.
Argentina: Used by the Argentine Army. Austria: In use by the Austrian Army and EKO Cobra. Chile China: Limited use in Sino-Vietnamese War. El Salvador Germany: German Police Units. Available to the Munich Police during the 1972 Munich Summer Olympics terror attack, but not used. Lebanon: Lebanese Armed Forces Greece India: Used by the BSF and COBRA(CRPF). Indonesia: Used by the Kopaska. Ireland: Garda Emergency Response Unit Israel:Used by YAMAM in 1980s. Jordan South Korea Netherlands: Marine Corps Pakistan: Used by the Pakistan Army. Peru Poland Russia: Special forces use a small number. Singapore Used to be used by Singapore Armed Forces, currently being phased out and replaced by the TRG-22 and relegated to Reserve units. Saudi Arabia Slovenia: Used by special forces of the Slovenian Army. South Africa: Used by Special Forces Syria Free Syrian Army: Fighters have acquired SSG 69 Snipers. Tunisia: Used by the Tunisian Land Army and USGN. Turkey: Used by Polis Özel Harekat. Togo United States: In use with BORTAC (United States Border Patrol).
In popular culture
A Steyr-Mannlicher SSG PII with double-set triggers is the main weapon of Jacques LaFleur (David Suchet), the main antagonist in the movie Harry and the Hendersons. Strangely, at one point in the film, he purchases .458 Winchester Magnum ammunition for the rifle, even though the SSG is chambered in the 7.62×51mm NATO ammunition. Due to a continuity error, the SSG repeatedly goes from having a standard 5-round magazine to a 10-round box magazine in the final scene of the film when LaFleur is hunting Harry in the woods.
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