I did the first part of my review on the new IWI Tavor a few weeks ago and was very impressed with its all around functionality, feel, and accuracy. However, this weekend’s test was to see how the Tavor handles rapid fire situations. As a Close Quarters Combat Rifle, the need for rapid fire can be critical in a forward engagement, or retreating scenario. Eager to test it again, I loaded up the Tavor and headed off to one of my favorite indoor ranges in NW Ohio. It should be noted that I have not cleaned the Tavor since my last test and 300+ rounds.
Upon entering the range, I set up my blue-human “Smurf” silhouette target, pulled out 4 thirty-round mags and much to the chagrin of my lane-neighbors I proceeded to dump all 4 mags as fast as I could pull the trigger. To answer your question, yes, I Smurfed the target. I was surprised with how easy it was to stay on target, even at 75 feet. The above picture was actually taken after several volleys downrange, pulling the trigger as fast as I could and only using iron sights. As would be expected, once I was done I could definitely feel the heat above the trigger where the four ventilation ports are located. The smoke was also pretty thick after launching 120 various rounds down range. It’s hard to tell if this was because of the ammo, the bullpup design (having ones face right next to the ejection port), or if the ventilation system in the range couldn’t keep up. I don’t think in a run-and-gun type environment that you’d really notice it that much. Another thing I noticed was that unlike other non-bullpup designs the heat is not centered around your support hand. This means that even if you are shooting rapid you can still hold your firearm steady without your support hand feeling like it was just placed on the hot coils of a stove. You should always be cautious when firing heavy successions of rapid fire as you have the potential to “cook off” a live round in the hot chamber. This leads to a very bad day.
Since I was writing this review for Joe’s website, I decided to spread the wealth around (at the range) and let some of my lane-neighbors give me their impressions of the Tavor. One young shooter, Brice, said that he was surprised how easy the recoil felt and how it was well-balanced and not too front-heavy (it’s like he read my article from last week). Everyone who shot it gave positive feedback. Several of them had never shot a bullpup rifle before. It always cracks me up how when someone is handed a bullpup for the first time they aren’t quite sure which hand goes where.
My closing thoughts on the IWI Tavor; I really like this rifle. It’s a very solid, well-built, platform and buying it to support Israel is a bonus for me. It’s not as sleek and sexy as a Steyr AUG, but much sleeker than the FN bullpups. I would like to try it out with a Holographic to see how it does, but I suspect it would only improve my opinion of the rifle. I really have no gripes about this gun. It handled every round I threw at it and over six different types of AR magazines with zero issues. If you’ve wanted a 223/5.56 bullpup, and you have $1,999, get one of these (if you can find one). I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. I’m looking forward to trying out the IWI Uzi later this month (hopefully).
Mr. Ags writes for Joe for America and welcomes your feedback: @blackswampradio & [email protected]