Rifles have come a long way from the original 17th Century muzzleloading firearms, however, even today it is hard to get a definitive answer to what is and what isn’t a rifle. For example, most would consider a firearm that has a barrel with specific grooves cut into it to improve accuracy and velocity of the round to be a rifle. However, artillery guns often have rifled barrels, as do many machine guns. Some say to be a rifle it must have a stock that rests in the users’ shoulder, but shotguns have stocks, yet their barrels are not “rifled”. Either way, the rifles of today are vastly different from the old-school muzzle loaded rifles seen in action during the 17th and 18th centuries.
Despite the many advancements, the requirements of a rifle have remained constant – to fire a projectile accurately to target, and to be reliable.
While this sounds simple, it takes decades of experience and a team of qualified engineers, production trades persons, and highly trained test and evaluation staff to meet the changing demands of the modern customer.
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