Zastava M93 (Black Arrow)
Anti-Material Rifle (AMR)
The Zastava Arms M93 Black Arrow Anti-Material Rifle has proven popular with many fighting forces of the world today.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited:
The Zastava M93 "Black Arrow" is an all-modern 12.7mm Anti-Material Rifle (AMR) designed by Zastava Arms of Serbia (formerly Yugoslavia). The weapon type is intended for disabling armored vehicles or neutralizing dug-in enemy forces at range through precision. The 12.7mm cartridge is capable of defeating light-class armor and has been the stable of such weapons for decades. The M93 has seen combat service in the Yugoslav Wars (1991-2001), the 2nd Liberian Civil War (1999-2003), the Syrian Civil War 2011-Present, the Libyan Civil War (2014-Present), the Iraqi Civil War (2014-2017), and the Yemeni Civil War (2015-Present).
The M93 is a wholly-conventional AMR system operating from a proven Mauser-based ("Mauser 98") bolt-action arrangement that features a rotating bolt, long-action design. The rifle can be chambered to fire either the 12.7x108mm (Soviet/Russian DSHK) or the 12.7x99mm (NATO BMG) type heavy machine gun cartridges out to an effective range of 2,000 meters. An 8x32 telescopic sight is a standard fitting over the receiver for ranged work though other brands can be installed to suit the shooter's need. The weapon is fed through a 5- or 10-round detachable, spring-loaded box magazine inserted into the underside of the receiver. The shoulder stock is adjustable and of a telescoping design, sitting aft of the ergonomic pistol grip unit. The bolt-action handle rests over the right side of the gun body. A carrying handle is affixed to the forend and the barrel is capped by a multi-baffled brake to assist in handling the massive recoil action. A folding bipod rounds out the qualities of the rifle. Muzzle velocity is rated at 2,700/2,915 feet-per-second (DSHK/NATO chamberings respectively).
Depending on the model, the rifle runs a length of 1,510mm (NATO chambering) to 1,670mm (DSHK chambering). Its barrel can measure between 840mm and 1,000mm long, respectively. Weight reaches 35.27lb.
Design work on the rifle began in 1993 and the product entered serial production in 1998, associated brand labels becoming both Zastava Arms and Aspar Arms. Manufacture of the rifle continues today (2020).
To date (2020), the M93 has been accepted into the inventories of Algeria, Armenia, Georgia, Indonesia, Iraq (Peshmerga Kurdistan elements), Jordan, Liberia, Libya, North Macedonia, Philippines, Montenegro, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sri Lanka, and the People's Protection Units (YPG) militia group of Northern Syria. The M93 serves as the standard-issue AMR for Armenian Army marksmen and is favored by the Philippines Marines as well.