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Uzi 1.jpg
The IMI Uzi submachine gun.
Type Submachine Gun, Machine Pistol
Place of origin  Israel
Service history
Used by See Users
Wars Six-Day War, Yom Kippur War, Sri Lankan Civil War, Portuguese Colonial War, South African Border War, Rhodesian Bush War
Production history
Designer Uziel Gal[1]
Designed 1948
Manufacturer Israel Military Industries, FN Herstal, Norinco, Lyttleton Engineering Works (under Vektor Arms), RH-ALAN,
Produced 1950-present
Variants See Variants
Weight 3.5 kg (7.72 lb)[1]
  • 640 mm (25.2 in) stock extended[1]
  • 470 mm (18.5 in) stock collapsed
Barrel length 260 mm (10.2 in)[1]

Cartridge 9x19mm Parabellum, .22 LR, .45 ACP, .41 AE
Action Blowback[1]
Rate of fire 600 rounds/min[1]
Muzzle velocity 390 m/s (1,280 ft/s)[1]
Effective range 100 metres
Maximum range 200 m.
Feed system 10 (.22 and .41 AE), 16 (.45 ACP) 20, 32, 40 and 50-round box magazines
Sights Iron sights

The Uzi (Hebrew: עוזי‎, officially cased as UZI) is a related family of open bolt, blowback-operated submachine guns. Smaller variants are considered to be machine pistols. The Uzi was one of the first weapons to use a telescoping bolt design which allows for the magazine to be housed in the pistol grip for a shorter weapon.

The first Uzi submachine gun was designed by Major Uziel Gal in the late 1940s. The prototype was finished in 1950; first introduced to IDF special forces in 1954, the weapon was placed into general issue two years later. The Uzi has found use as a personal defense weapon by rear-echelon troops, officers, artillery troops and tankers, as well as a frontline weapon by elite light infantry assault forces.

Over its service lifetime, the Uzi was manufactured by Israel Military Industries, FN Herstal, and other manufacturers. From the 1960s through the 1980s, Uzi submachineguns were sold to more military and police markets than any other submachinegun ever made.[2]



The Uzi uses an open bolt, blowback-operated design. The open bolt design exposes the breech end of the barrel, and improves cooling during periods of continuous fire; however, it means that since the bolt is held to the rear when cocked, the receiver is more susceptible to contamination from sand and dirt ingress. It and the Czechoslovakian series 23 to 26 were the first weapons to use a telescoping bolt design, in which the bolt wraps around the breech end of the barrel.[3] This allows the barrel to be moved far back into the receiver and the magazine to be housed in the pistol grip, allowing for a heavier, slower-firing bolt in a shorter, better-balanced weapon.[2]

The weapon is constructed primarily from stamped sheet metal, making it less expensive per unit to manufacture than an equivalent design machined from forgings. With relatively few moving parts, the Uzi is easy to strip for maintenance or repair. The magazine is housed within the pistol grip, allowing for intuitive and easy reloading in dark or difficult conditions, under the principle of 'hand finds hand'. The pistol grip is fitted with a grip safety, making it difficult to fire accidentally. However, the protruding vertical magazine makes the gun awkward to fire when prone.[3]

When the gun is de-cocked, the ejector port closes, preventing entry of dust and dirt. Though the Uzi's stamped-metal receiver is equipped with pressed reinforcement slots to accept accumulated dirt and sand, the weapon can still jam with heavy accumulations of sand in desert combat conditions when not cleaned regularly.[4]

Operational use

The Uzi gun was designed by Major (Captain at the time) Uziel Gal of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) following the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. The weapon was submitted to the Israeli army for evaluation and won out over more conventional designs due to its simplicity and economy of manufacture. Gal did not want the weapon to be named after him, but his request was ignored. The Uzi was officially adopted in 1951. First introduced to IDF special forces in 1954, the weapon was placed into general issue two years later. The first Uzis were equipped with a short, fixed wooden buttstock, and this is the version that initially saw combat during the 1956 Suez campaign. Later models would be equipped with a folding metal stock.[4]

The Uzi was used as a personal defense weapon by rear-echelon troops, officers, artillery troops and tankers, as well as a frontline weapon by elite light infantry assault forces. The Uzi's compact size and firepower proved instrumental in clearing Syrian bunkers and Jordanian defensive positions during the 1967 Six-Day War. Though the weapon was phased out of frontline IDF service in the 1980s, some Uzis and Uzi variants were still used by a few IDF units until December 2003, when the IDF announced that it was retiring the Uzi from all IDF forces.[5]

In general, the Uzi was a reliable weapon in military service. However, even the Uzi fell victim to extreme conditions of sand and dust. During the Sinai campaign of the Yom Kippur War, IDF army units reaching the Suez reported that of all their small arms, only the 7.62 mm FN MAG machine gun was still in operation.[6]

The Uzi proved especially useful for Mechanized infantry needing a compact weapon, and for infantry units clearing bunkers and other confined spaces. However, its limited range and accuracy in automatic fire (approximately 50 m) could be disconcerting when encountering enemy forces armed with longer-range small arms, and heavier support weapons could not always substitute for a longer-ranged individual weapon. These failings eventually caused the phaseout of the Uzi from IDF forces.[5]

The Uzi has been used in various conflicts outside Israel and the Middle East during the 1960s and 1970s. Quantities of 9 mm Uzi submachine guns were used by Portuguese cavalry, police, and security forces during the Portuguese Colonial Wars in Africa.[4]

Worldwide arms sales

Secret Service agents protect President Ronald Reagan during the assassination attempt by John Hinckley, Jr. on March 30, 1981

Total sales of the weapon to date (end 2001) has netted IMI over $2 billion (US), with over 90 countries using the weapons either for their armed forces or in law enforcement.[2]

  • The German Bundeswehr used the Uzi since 1959 under the name MP2 (especially for tank crews) and is now changing to the Heckler & Koch MP7.
  • The Irish Gardaí ERU are replacing the Uzi with the HK MP7.
  • In Rhodesia in the late 1970s the Uzi was produced under license, from Israeli-supplied, and later made in Rhodesia, components. It was commonly called the "Rhuzi" (although the title was applied to some indigenous submachine gun designs).
  • Sri Lanka ordered a few thousand Mini Uzi and Uzi Carbines in 1990s. Currently those are deployed with Sri Lanka Army special forces regiment and Sri Lanka Police Special Task Force as their primary weapon when providing security for VIPs.
  • The United States Secret Service, the agency that guards the President of the United States, have used the Uzi to provide covering fire while agents evacuated the President out of an area. When President Ronald Reagan was shot on March 30, 1981 outside of the Washington Hilton Hotel by John Hinckley Jr., a Secret Service Special Agent pulled an Uzi out of a briefcase and covered the rear of the presidential limousine as it sped to safety with the wounded president inside.[2]

Military variants

Uzi Submachine Gun

Standard Uzi with a 10-inch barrel. It has a rate of automatic fire of 600 rounds per minute(rpm) when chambered in 9mm Parabellum, the .45 ACP model's rate of fire is slower at 500 rpm.[4]


A scaled-down version of the regular Uzi, first introduced in 1980. The Mini-Uzi is 600 mm (23.62 inches) long or 360 mm (14.17 inches) long with the stock folded. Its barrel length is 197 mm (7.76 inches), its muzzle velocity is 375 m/s (1230 f/s) and its effective range is 100 m. It has a greater automatic rate of fire of 950 rounds per minute due to the shorter bolt.[4]


An even further scaled down version of the Uzi, introduced in 1986. The Micro-Uzi is 486 mm long, reduced to 282 mm with the stock folded and its barrel length is 134 mm. Its muzzle velocity is 350 m/s (1148 f/s) and its cyclic rate of fire is 1,200 rpm.[4]

Civilian variants

Uzi Carbine

Similar in appearance to the Uzi submachinegun, the Uzi carbine is fitted with a 16 inch barrel (400mm), to meet the minimum rifle barrel length requirement for civilian sales in the United States. It fires from a closed-bolt position in semiautomatic mode only and uses a floating firing pin as opposed to a fixed firing pin.[6]

The Uzi Carbine had two main variants, the Model A (imported from 1980 to 1983)and the Model B (imported from 1983 until 1989). These two variants were imported and distributed by Action arms.[6]

In the mid 1990s Norinco of China manufactured an unlicensed copy of the Uzi model B with modifications made to avoid the US Assault Weapon Import Ban. The folding stock was replaced with a wooden thumbhole stock, the barrel nut was welded in place, and the bayonet lug was removed. The gun had a gray parkerized finish and was sold as the M320.[7]

Mini-Uzi Carbine

Similar in appearance to the Mini-Uzi machine pistol, the Mini-Uzi carbine is fitted with a 19.8 inch barrel, to meet the minimum rifle overall length requirement for civilian sales in the United States. It fires from a closed-bolt position in semi-automatic mode only.[6]

Uzi Pistol

The Uzi Pistol is a semi-automatic, closed bolt, and blowback-operated pistol variant. Its muzzle velocity is 345 m/s. It is a Micro-Uzi with no shoulder stock or full-automatic firing capability. The intended users for the pistol were various security agencies in need of a high-capacity semi-automatic pistol, or civilian shooters that wanted a gun with those qualities and the familiarity of the Uzi style. It was introduced in 1984 and produced until 1993.[4]

Caliber variants

Most Uzis fire the 9x19mm Parabellum cartridge, though some fire .22 LR, .41 AE, or .45 ACP. Caliber conversions exist in .40 S&W and 10 mm auto.[8]

Available magazines include 20-, 25-, 32-, 40-, and 50-round magazines (9x19mm Parabellum), 10-round magazines (.41 and .22 LR), and 16-round magazines (.45 ACP). All of the above are manufactured by IMI. Other high-capacity magazines exist (e.g. 50-round magazines and 100-round drums in 9 mm) which were manufactured by companies such as Vector Arms.


A visit, board, search and seizure team attached to the Brazilian Navy frigate Independencia (F 44) rappel onto their ship from a Brazilian Navy Lynx helicopter during an exercise in 2007.
A Nigerien soldier with an Uzi.


See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Miller, David (2001). The Illustrated Directory of 20th Century Guns. Salamander Books Ltd. ISBN 1-84065-245-4.
  2. ^ a b c d Hackathorn, Ken (1995). "Using the Uzi". Fighting Firearms (Soldier of Fortune) 3 (1): 18-23. 
  3. ^ a b Hogg, Ian V (1979). Guns and How They Work. New York: Everest House. pp. 157–158. ISBN 0-89696-023-4. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Dockery, Kevin (2007). Future Weapons. Berkley Trade. pp. 227-229. ISBN 978-0425217504. 
  5. ^ a b "Israel's army phases out country's iconic Uzi submachine gun". Usatoday.Com. 2003-12-18. Retrieved 2009-06-09. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Long, Duncan (1989). Terrifying Three: Uzi, Ingram And Intratec Weapons Families. Boulder, Colorado: Paladin Press. pp. 25-31. ISBN 978-0873645232. 
  7. ^ Department oF the Treasury Study on the Sporting Suitability oF ModiFied Semiautomatic Assault RiFles (4-98)
  8. ^ "UZI Talk — Caliber Conversions". Retrieved 2009-06-09. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f Cadiou, Yves L. (1977). Modern Firearms. Routledge & Kegan Paul PLC. pp. 86-93. ISBN 978-0710084248. 
  10. ^ Uzi Submachine Gun. Retrieved on October 28, 2008.
  11. ^ a b c d e f Diez, Octavio (2000). Armament and Technology. Lema Publications, S.L. ISBN 84-8463-013-7.
  12. ^ "Submachine Gun Type "Ero" cal. 9x19mm > Alan Agency > Product Catalogue". Retrieved 2009-10-22. 
  13. ^ "Eesti Kaitsevägi — Tehnika — Püstolkuulipilduja Mini UZI". Retrieved 2009-06-09. 
  14. ^ "Commuter-belt garda squad to carry new armour-piercing submachine gun". Irish Independent. 2009-08-30. Retrieved 2010-01-31. 
  15. ^ Meyr, Eitan (January 06, 1999). "Special Weapons for Counter-terrorist Units". Jane's — Law Enforcement. Retrieved 2009-09-26. 
  16. ^ Jones, Richard (2009). Jane's Infantry Weapons 2009-2010. Jane's Information Group. p. 901. ISBN 0710628692. 
  17. ^ "Politia Militara". Ministerul Apararii Nationale. Retrieved 2010-02-15. 

External links


Up to date as of January 15, 2010
(Redirected to uzi article)

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary




From Uziel Gal, the Israeli army officer who designed it.




uzi (plural uzis)

  1. A type of compact submachine gun, having a caliber of 9 millimeters.



From English use, Italian usare.


  • IPA: /ˈuzi/
  • Hyphenation: u‧zi


uzi (present uzas, past uzis, future uzos, conditional uzus, jussive uzu)

  1. to use


Derived terms





  1. masculine plural nominative form of ud.
  2. masculine plural accusative form of ud.




  1. string (long, thin structure)

This Swahili entry was created from the translations listed at string. It may be less reliable than other entries, and may be missing parts of speech or additional senses. Please also see uzi in the Swahili Wiktionary. This notice will be removed when the entry is checked. (more information) July 2009

Simple English

An Uzi is a type of submachine gun. There are many different kinds of Uzis: Mini Uzi, which is a smaller version of the Uzi, Micro Uzi; which is only slightly larger than a standard pistol, Para Micro Uzi; which was made for counter terrorist units, and the Uzi Pistol; which is semi-automatic (meaning it fires 1 bullet every time you pull the trigger). All of these kinds of Uzis are still in use by the special forces today. It is being replaced by the MP-5 slowly.


Uzis were invented by Uziel Gal. This gun was first used in 1956. Uzis were used in the 1967 Six Day War by Israel.

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