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South African Galils: The R4, R5, R6, and LM Series

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When South Africa decided to replace the R1 rifle (a metric FAL), they chose to adopt the Israeli Galil. Both nations had similar environmental issues with blowing sand (in northwestern South Africa particularly), and Israel was one of the few nations willing to trade arms with South Africa in the 1970s. The Galil ARM was adopted as the R4 rifle, with the initial batch of guns purchased directly from IMI, and a licensing agreement put in place to follow those up with domestic South African production.

These would be followed later by the R5 carbine, and the abortive attempt at the R6 carbine. In addition, semiautomatic copies of these rifles were also available on the civilian market at the LM-4, LM-5, and LM-6. Today we will look at the differences between the South African and Israeli guns, the changes made through production, and the variation in the different types. Everything you wanted to know about the South African Galils!

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