sexta-feira, 24 de setembro de 2010

Please release the Magpul Personal Defense Rifle (PDR) for Airsoft

Magpul PDR 01

Do you still remember the Magpul Personal Defense Rifle (PDR)? What we know about this is that it just went into the concept stage but never got into production. Thus, it's one of the concept guns that has great potential but not really taken to the next level. The concept is really great in my opinion, and if it does not get into actual real steel production, then why not release the design for airsoft manufacturers to work on? That way, that gun still lives on. Just like the Folding Pocket Gun (FPG)/Folding Machine Gun (FMG) which has taken more form in the airsoft market rather than its original intended market.

The PDR is a close-defense weapon intended for vehicle-mounted troops and close quarters combat using the 5.56x45 NATO round, which means that it can readily be used by NATO troops rather than using existing real steel weapons intended for the same purpose but use differentrounds. The PDR was meant to compete against the MP7, FN P90, Uzi, and even the PDWs. It is a bull-pup design as well that it can have a longer range while having a smaller profile for the user. This answers the logistical issues of having to store another caliber, NATO troops can immediately use the PDR without worrying about getting a different bullet size.


The PDR is comprised of two models: the PDR-D which is for CQB and Direct Action Missions while the PDR-C was designed for those operating in confined spaces, such as armored vehicles. HUMVEE operators can shoot with the PDR-C while maintaining one hand on the steering wheel. Both sport Picatinny flat-top rails for mounting optics, such as Holo-sights or quick reflex sights for snap shots. The charging handle is ambidextrous so left-handed shooters will not be at a disadvantage. Another thing for left-handed shooters is that the shell ejection system is reversible so that spent casings can be ejected away from the left-handed shooter.

Apart from using standard M16/M4 magazines, it maintains the same M16/M4 magazine release so familiarizing with its operations would be easy. For CQB, there's an optional light option which is a built-in tactical torch below the muzzle when operating in dark places. The cheek piece can be opened up by rotating it to check the chamber and also protects the cheek of the user from heat generated inside while firing.

At first glance, it is a close cousin of the P90 but its closest design competitor is the FN2000 and IWI Tavor. Both use the same NATO round, and are more versatile as they allow more accessories and launchers to be used with it. But then the FN2000 and the IWI Tavor are designed as an assault rifle rather than as a close-in defense weapon, that their main competitors are the Stery Aug, SA-80/L85. and FAMAS in the bullpup area. The PDR has more configurable ergonomics than the smaller Tavor models.

But then the PDR is a stillborn project as there are no plans for production. The other Magpul designed gun, the Masada ACR has been licensed to Bushmaster and also released to the Airsoft market. The FPG/FMG is well-received in the airsoft market as well. The PDR is a novel design that it would be such a bad thing to let it go to waste. We wouldn't be surprised if the Hong Kong-based Magpul PTS, the airsoft division of Magpul Industries, is looking into releasing it for the airsoft market.

The airsoft version will not necessarily contain all the features of the original design, since there's no need for the shell ejection system to be rotated as there's no shell to eject. They only need to maintain the easy disassembly feature as the PDR can be opened by pushing out only three pins.

So, here's to a wish that the PDR lives on, even if it's more for airsoft. Or else, we might just have to content ourselves with the PDR prop used by Col. Quaritch in the movie "Avatar" as shown in the action figure below. It looks like a melding of the PDR-D and the PDR-C features.

Release the PDR for airsoft please.

Photo: Mattel Action Figure Colonel Miles Quaritch, "Avatar" Movie.

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