Clariont Ensign.
United Galaxies Council.
The REF Reconstruction Era.
Clariont Ensign.
United Galaxies Council.
There was no shortage of firearms after Kara Qalliph Diel'are Kah Yar ("Rain of Death"); In fact, the earth was awash with them. Moreso after the First Invid Evacuation.
But RELIABLE firearms was another matter; One region might have millions of guns, but little or no ammo, whereas another region might well have enough ammo to keep each and ever gun firing all day, everyday, for a YEAR- And not a single gun. Distances as little as 10 miles might mean the difference between having and NOT having effective weapons.
The Inter Planetary Alliance had a vested interest in re-starting the firearms market; Far too many bad actors had enough firepower to take over mid-sized countries with little difficulty, and the Regis' experiments on the genesis Pits had unleashed demons the like of which earth never saw- The Dinosaur pit was but one example (and those escaped as well, returning the Tyrannosaurus Rex to hunt with relatively gleeful abandon).
The REF was obliged to make whatever deals they COULD under the circumstances, and eventually signed a contract with two companies, Benson&Holmes of London and Smith Guns of Rzesz'ow. These 5 million credit contracts gave the companies a significant jump on their competitors (not that there were any to speak of at this point) to make and sell "basic hunting, farming, and subsistence firearms" along two patterns, a muzzle loading black powder rifle and a bolt action rifle. The specific details beyond this were largely left to the companies themselves, pending trials to ensure their "operational utility" (which both passed with flying colors, even the extreme mud test didn't slow them down for the most part).
Benson&Holmes BH-50 and -53 Musket:
Smith Guns R-95 Bolt Action Rifle:
The B&H-50 and -53 are black powder rifles primarily meant for hunting and farm defense; Both use the .50 caliber minie style ball. The real difference is that the B&H-50 is a muzzle loader, while the -53 is a breach loader using a metal casing- In fact, it was specifically designed to use re-loaded M-2 machinegun shells. Because it uses black powder, the shells can be reloaded at home. Each gun comes with 10 shots, a mold, and 500 caps (caps are sold in packets of 500 per box). B&H-53 and -53 Conversion Kits also come with 50 shells (more shells can be ordered at about 1credit each in boxes of 10).
The Smith R-95 is basically a carbine version of the ancient SMLE bolt action rifle, selected because of its reliability and detachable magazine. The gun can be loaded with 2 five-round stripper clips, or the magazines can be pre-loaded. There is a conversion kit out there that allows it to be a semi-automatic, but these kits do not sell well because they are illegal and not very reliable.
Purpose: Hunting/Defense.
Damage: 2D6SD
Rate Of Fire: Muzzle Loader: 3 to 5 rounds per minute; Breachloader: Up to 20 AIMED rounds per minute.
Range: 600 feet.
Weight: 3.5 lbs.
Payload: 1 (chambered).

Weapon Cost and Availability: 250credit; Always available.Ammo Availability: LOOSE POWDER (muzzleloader) ROUNDS: 2credit for a case of 1,000 round; Always available. SHELLS: 50credit for a case of 1,000 round; Commonly available.
B&H-50/53 Conversion Kit: 25credit; Always available.
Black Market Cost and Availability: Not available, since there's ZERO laws on the matter.

Purpose: Self-Defense.
Weight: 5 lbs.
Damage: SD: 2D6; MD: 1D4
Rate Of Fire: Standard
Effective Range: 700 feet.
Payload: Factory standard magazines hold 10 rounds; Magazines of up to 50 can be acquired (-2 strike every 5 additional rounds past 20).
Cost: 3,000credit.
Availability: Always.
Black Market Cost: 500 to 15,000credit, depending on the buyer and seller.
Black Market Availability: Always. Copies are being manufactured by many black market groups. Also, soldiers are known to buy them privately on the grey market from suppliers, then sell them on the black market.

Clariont Ensign.
United Galaxies Council.
The REF Reconstruction Era; Civilian Armor.
Clariont Ensign.
United Galaxies Council.
The REF really didn't want to support body armor for civilians; After all the same armor used by civilians might well be used by criminals and terrorists.
However, the real need for armor DID exist.
"Specifically designed to use re-loaded M-2 machinegun shells": Yes, that's been done. Amongst others was reproductions of the .50 BMG Hotchkiss Revolving Cannon VIDEO HERE.
"Conversion kit out there that allows (the Smith R-95) to be a semi-automatic": Yes, this was done; The New Zealanders did it as automatic only, most everyone else did various semi-auto conversions. Some were successful either, most were total failures. Go ahaed, call me a lair; Ask An Expert.