Submachine Gun (SMG) / Machine Pistol
The Mini-UZI appeared after the base UZI and proved a more compact form of the original.
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The Israeli Military Industries (IMI) Mini-UZI is a smaller, more compact form of the base UZI submachine gun. Its smaller form offers advantages in both concealment and carrying as well as a shorter internal bolt allowing for a greater rate-of-fire (950 rounds per minute) over that of the original (600 rounds per minute). The Mini UZI saw deliveries begin in 1980.
The Mini-UZI was born out of an Israeli requirement specifying a more compact weapon. The resulting weapon system was nothing more than a scaled down version of the hugely successful, well-respected and easily identifiable UZI submachine gun in her 9mm form. Its compactness made it relatively easy to handle with one hand and portability was easier than ever. Despite its classification as a submachine gun, the Mini-UZI was something more akin to a "machine pistol" - a weapon class envisioned by warplanners as far back as World War 1, resulting in the submachine gun. Nevertheless, Israelis engineers delivered another winning automatic weapon design suitable for the rigors of the modern battlefield. One major difference was in the change of the 9mm ballistics.
At just 23.62 inches long, the Mini-UZI proved slightly shorter than the base UZI while also being slightly longer than the even more compact "Micro-UZI" to be introduced in 1986. Like the Mini-Uzi, the Micro-Uzi offered an even greater rate-of-fire at 1,200 rounds per minute.
Production and Variants
Production of the Mini-UZI centered on Israeli Military Industries out of Ramat Ha Sharon. The Mini-UZI was also manufacturer illegally in Croatia as the "Mini ERO". The "Mini-Uzi Carbine" proved a civilian variant fitting a 19.8-inch barrel and made available within the United States. Limitations to this model - brought about by restrictions in the American market - included a semi-automatic firing mode only.
Mini-UZI Physical Characteristics
The Mini-UZI essentially shared the same external appearance of her larger sister. She sported a 7.75-inch barrel buried deep within a handy frame. The pistol grip was straight and accepted the typical UZI-straight magazines through the grip base. The trigger sat in a boxy trigger guard under a rectangular receiver. The receiver itself was essentially the length of the entire weapon with the exception of the collapsible wire shoulder stock. The stock folded over to the side of the receiver when not in use. Like the base UZI, the Mini-UZI made use of the 9x19mm Parabellum cartridge. Magazine lengths varied based on the operator and mission type and ranged from a special 20-round capacity to the UZI-standard 25- and 32-round magazines. Unloaded weight was listed at just over 5lbs. Muzzle velocity was rated at 1,150 feet per second.
Notable known operators of the Mini-UZI included Brazil, Croatia, Estonia, Haiti, Honduras, India, Israel, Peru and Romania.