Barreling Through

Posted 18 December 2012

Bill Walter, a program analyst with the US Air Force Special Operation Command Strike Requirements Branch at Eglin AFB, Florida, did some detective work and discovered a cache of replacement M2A1 40mm gun barrels in Greece. The M2A1 is used on US Air Force AC-130 gunships. The guns, originally delivered to Greece in the 1950s, were retired in 2005, and the spares stored in a warehouse. Walter discovered 139 barrels, five breech rings, and other usable parts. The import process took a year and the first barrels arrived at Eglin in mid December 2012. AFSOC now has enough barrels to last the remainder of the gun's lifecycle on the AC-130s. The value of the reclaimed parts is approximately $14 million.

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