MANUFACTURER(S): China NORth INdustries COrporation (NORINCO) - China
OPERATORS: Cambodia; China; Sri Lanka
ACTION: Gas-Operated; Rotating Bolt; Selective-Fire
CALIBER(S)*: 5.8x42mm DBP87; 5.56x45mm NATO
SIGHTS: Iron Front and Rear
Detailing the development and operational history of the NORINCO QBB-95 (Type 95) Light Support Weapon (LSW) / Light Machine Gun (LMG).
Entry last updated on 7/31/2017.
Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The QBZ-95 is currently (2017) the standard-issue assault rifle of the Chinese Army (People's Liberation Army = PLA) and its design forms the basis for a family of related weapons. Its Light Support Weapon (LSW) form is the QBB-95 and this system maintains the same bullpup-style arrangement with the feed and action centered along the aft section of the length. This allows a full-length barrel to be used without much added overall length. What this does is create a modular weapons family with high commonality of parts between them - one weapon designed to undertake a variety of battlefield roles.
Production of the QBB-95 began in 1995 though the gun was first observed in 1997.
The QBB-95 is chambered for the indigenous Chinese 5.8x42mm cartridge developed in the 1980s for the Chinese military. It is an intermediate rifle round comparable to the American 5.56x45mm NATO cartridge. A short-stroke, gas-operated system with rotating bolt makes up the firing action and feeding is by way of 30-round detachable box magazine through a 75-round drum is also supported. Due to its bullpup configuration, the feeding is aft of the pistol grip and trigger unit. Over the receiver of the weapon are standard fixtures such as a long-running carrying handle and sighting devices. The barrel protrudes a distance away from the forend and is capped by slotted flash hider / compensator. Muzzle velocity of the outgoing bullets is 3,180 feet-per-second with an effective firing range between 600 and 800 meters.
As a Light Support Weapon (LSW), the product is intended to be featured at the squad level, giving voluminous fire while promoting a compact footprint. The 5.8mm cartridge, a slightly heavier design compared to the 5.56mm, provides good penetrative power in instances where the older 5.56mm cartridge sees its effectiveness somewhat reduced at medium-to-long ranges. As such the QBB-95 fulfills a vital role in infantry actions, particularly in urban settings where ranges are more constrained but can expand to cover street blocks.
A variant of the QBB-95 family is the QBB-97 which is chambered for 5.56x45mm NATO and primarily aimed at export. Operators of the QBB-95 beyond China currently (2017) include Cambodia and Sri Lanka.