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23.9.2021 : 19:51 : +0200

An Introductory Guide to the Identification of Small Arms, Light Weapons, and Associated Ammunition

Edited by N.R. Jenzen-Jones and Matt Schroeder, November 2018

Arms and ammunition are evidence. Many weapons carry marks that, combined with their physical characteristics, reveal important information about them, including their manufacturer, age, and origin. This information, in turn, provides vital clues about the sources and flows of weapons in the area in which they were found.

The goal of this Handbook is to provide the reader with a basic understanding of how to identify and analyse small arms and light weapons, and to track their proliferation. The process of identifying arms is complex, and no single guide can provide all of the information required to identify every weapon or round of ammunition that may be encountered at crime scenes or in conflict zones. Instead, this guide explains the process by which weapons and ammunition are identified and arms flows are tracked. Reference material on specific small arms, light weapons, and ammunition is included throughout the guide. This material will help readers to take the steps necessary to identify the make and model of the most commonly encountered weapons and ammunition.


Download the sections:

  • Preliminary pages: About the authors; Acknowledgements; Disclaimer; Table of contents; List of boxes, figures, maps, and tables; List of abbreviations and acronyms.
    Download (304.85 KB)
  • Chapter 1 Small Arms Identification: An Introduction
    Download (1.44 MB)
  • Chapter 2 Understanding the Trade in Small Arms: Key Concepts
    Download (356.33 KB)
  • Chapter 3 Weapons Identification: Small Arms
    Download (6.09 MB)
  • Chapter 4 Weapons Identification: Small-calibre Ammunition
    Download (2.95 MB)
  • Chapter 5 Weapons Identification: Light Weapons and their Ammunition
    Download (5.72 MB)
  • Chapter 6 Weapons Identification: Other Small Arms and Light Weapons
    Download (2.39 MB)
  • Chapter 7 Gathering Arms and Ammunition Data in the Field: Advice for Researchers
    Download (1.69 MB)
  • Chapter 8 Analysing Arms Flows: Authorized Transfers
    Download (1017.08 KB)
  • Chapter 9 Analysing Arms Flows: Illicit Weapons
    Download (654.06 KB)
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