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  1. #1
    Contributing Member mrclark303's Avatar
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    Rank Group NV Sight

    Morning all,

    A good friend of mine recently bought a Rank NV Sight, he's having trouble identifying the piece, but it does appear to be MOD purchase (limited purchase,UOR, trails ... maybe?)

    As you can see, it is a different pattern and shorter than either the standard early 1970s(+) UKicon-issued IWS, or the US-issued (shorter) version; also lighter. Appears to be Gen 1, manufactured in UK (1979) so perhaps emergency buy for Gulf War 1? It has a UK MoD Record Plate and a designation plate inscribed 'Sight Image Intensified R.P.I LTD. SS 41/Mk1 and serial 0353' (R.P.I. Ltd appears to be a Rank Group company).

    Can anyone help with any background, its currently mounted on his Lithgowicon L1A1.
    Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version

Name:	RPI Ltd IWS - Stanag mount L.JPG‎
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Size:	476.6 KB
ID:	96958   Click image for larger version

Name:	RPI Ltd IWS - Stanag mount R.JPG‎
Views:	42
Size:	481.7 KB
ID:	96959   Click image for larger version

Name:	RPI Ltd IWS - Mfr Plate.JPG‎
Views:	42
Size:	497.4 KB
ID:	96960   Click image for larger version

Name:	RPI Ltd IWS Case interior.JPG‎
Views:	41
Size:	510.8 KB
ID:	96961  
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  3. #2
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    Peter Laidler's Avatar
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    I was asked about one of these on this forum a couple of years ago and as I recall, it was developed to be a replacement for the old 2 version, known commercially as the SS2/0 version or just SS20. Not to be confused with the SS20 soviet ICBM!!!!! Mind you, they almost weighed the same....... It was still that heavy old cast sintered alloy casing and used a lot of the same internal guts. But Rank were struggling by then (didn't their tie-up with Phillips in Eindhoven and Ou-de-Delft go tits up?) Pilkington and PPE came up with something much better and the trusty lighter CWS came on stream slowly, on a batch by batch basis to replace the IIW/SS20's

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  6. #3
    Contributing Member mrclark303's Avatar
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    Thanks Peter, so a bit of a limited issue 'top up' buy...

    I'll pass that on...
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  7. #4
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    Peter,
    You are right, they had the Delft 3 stage cascade tubes made in the Netherlands in them, stunning design and always reliable especially in 74, but bloody heavy on an SLR.
    'Tonight my men and I have been through hell and back again, but the look on your faces when we let you out of the hall - we'd do it all again tomorrow.' Major Chris Keeble's words to Goose Green villagers on 29th May 1982 - 2 PARA

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    Do you remember the palaver they went to to accommodate the old IIW onto the L85/SA80. the sigh and extended bracket was almost longer than the rifle. It was then that it was discovered that while the barrel radial breeching up lines on the barrel and trunnion block were all nicely lased marked and set-up, there was a slight problem. Well...., not actually a slight problem...., but quite a big problem, because when everything was lined up and trrorqued etc etc, the foresight block could be canted over '...a bit'. Now, while you might be able to zero the rifle with the foresight canted over '...a bit...' (backsight well over to one side and all that...) there was no way that the IWS sight bracket would attach to a canted foresight block!!!!!

    Ho, ho, ho..., back to the drawing boards!

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  11. #6
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    Yes it was clearly to do with the bracket and what weight it was holding.
    Certainly in the Falklands many of the sights could'nt take continuos rounds being knocked out on the L1A1 as it shifted. It was a case of continuolly tightening it down, same in NI, not the best designs, when you see the new stuff and how secure it all is. I know its a different round, but had someone put their thinking caps on back then, the Delft tube could have solved all the issues in a smaller frame, and in Gen2.

    'Tonight my men and I have been through hell and back again, but the look on your faces when we let you out of the hall - we'd do it all again tomorrow.' Major Chris Keeble's words to Goose Green villagers on 29th May 1982 - 2 PARA

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