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David Crane coddles the Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) Tavor SAR (courtesy

The press release announcing the PA Capitol Police’s decision to tool-up with Israeli bullpup rifles [after the jump] neglects to mention how many weapons are involved. Or what the bullpups are gonna cost Quaker State taxpayers. FYI: the TAVOR SARs (semi-automatic rifles) don’t have a giggle switch. Which only seems right since The People of the Gun aren’t allowed to put their grubby little mitts on the full-auto version either. Hey, why should police have all the fun? It’s not because the po-po are so well-trained or so careful to keep track of their full-auto firearms. Nothing to do with the Constitution of the United States, either. Anyway, for all you buy-American types, the TAVORs are made right here in the good ol’ U.S. of A. (Harrisburg, Pa. in fact).

Harrisburg, PA (August 2013)IWI US, Inc.  a subsidiary of Israel Weapon Industries (IWI), is proud to announce that the Pennsylvania State Capitol Police have chosen to carry the IWI US TAVOR® SAR. The Pennsylvania Capitol Police are a section of the Pennsylvania Department of General Services. They provide law enforcement, security and parking enforcement services to the State Capitol Complex in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and at state government buildings in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Scranton.

“We are honored that the Pennsylvania State Capitol Police have chosen to be outfitted with the TAVOR® SAR,” Michael Kassnar, Vice President of Sales & Marketing at IWI US commented. “The State Capitol Police were looking for an extremely reliable rifle that was built specifically for close quarter battle and the design of the TAVOR® SAR bullpup was a perfect fit for their requirements.”

The TAVOR® SAR, specifically designed for the U.S. market, was developed in close cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Available in black and Flat Dark Earth, the TAVOR features fully ambidextrous controls with removable 16.5” or 18” chrome-lined barrels, a full-length top-mounted integral Picatinny rail and a short 45° rail for mounting accessories. Also available are a left-hand model with a 16.5” barrel and an IDF model with an integral MEPRO-21 reflex sight. The TAVOR® SAR uses standard AR-15/M16 magazines and is easily field-stripped into sub-assemblies for routine maintenance.

About IWI US, Inc.

IWI US, Inc. is a subsidiary of Israel Weapon Industries (IWI Ltd.), which for many years has operated in the global Defense and Law Enforcement markets. IWI US, Inc. was established in 2012 in order to offer the highest quality and most advanced products available, as well as to provide a high level of service and support, for American consumers. Located in a 21,000 sq. ft. facility in Harrisburg, PA, IWI US has appointed a very experienced team of senior managers to oversee its operations in the US market. The IWI US line of products includes several configurations of the TAVOR® SAR, and the UZI® PRO Pistol.

For more information, visit IWI US Inc at our website – , Facebook – or contact us via e-mail at: [email protected].


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  1. I’m pretty sure that the SAR trigger pack is not convertible to full auto. Installing a giggle switch would require major retooling. (It would be simpler to just import TAR-21s from Israel.) While I agree that the the NFA ban on machine guns is a total load, the abject hypocrisy here is not as bad as first reports indicate.

    • Good. I am glad to hear that. Being a former USAF SP, I can say without a doubt that there is no reason for any one in law enforcement to field a fully automatic weapon. SPs have both a peacetime law enforcement mission and a combat mission, so we are well aware of the differences. In combat, we had a full array of firearms including various machine guns. In combat, machine guns have a very specific purpose, but interesting to some, firing an M-16a1 in auto in combat was considered ineffective and it was strongly discouraged. For law enforcement engagements, firing a rifle toward a perp while switched to auto would have certainly led to charges of excessive force. As many know, throwing bullets while in auto from a rifle is usually messy, and accuracy is almost always questionable. In peacetime, at least back then, we were responsible for where our bullets traveled. We could not risk wildly throwing bullets toward a suspect like full auto was sure to do. All of our shots were expected to be on target. Again, there is absolutely no reason whatsoever for civilian law enforcement to field fully automatic weapons.

        • The one and only time I heard full auto up close and personal was when our local boys in blue took down a young meth head hiding in the bushes near my house at 5 o’clock in the morning, after he had engaged in a running gun battle with them covering seven miles. He fired one more time and got a full mag for his trouble. I can’t say he didn’t deserve it.

        • Mark, the problem is not that he didn’t deserve it. The problem is what else they could have hit with that mag dump. Cops are not responsible enough to be trusted with automatic weapons. Can you imagine what the results of the Empire State Building incident would have been if those cops had been carrying UZIs? Until the cops are held criminally liable for every single round they send down range, they should be toting revolvers and shotguns.

  2. I’m on record as saying that citizens should be able to buy whatever gun the cops can have. I also don’t think it’s well advised for police departments to have full auto weapons or .50 cal sniper rifles. Built up urban areas are not the place for either.

    Now, if cops want to go on their own time and buy big fiddies and guns with giggle switches for use on their own time they should have the same rights to these as any other citizen.

    • I’m with you jwm. The .50 is an anti armor anti material weapon at its heart that is sometimes used for crazy long range anti personnel work. It’s hard to imagine cops trying to puncture rail cars or taking on IFVs. Full auto is for suppressive fire or target rich environments (from a rifle, dedicated machine guns usually are employed differently), for police, suppressive fire could also be called ‘collateral damage creation’ and target rich environments sounds too much like shoot everyone and sort out the results.

      Both are great for play or competition, dangerously unsuited to police work.

  3. If Pensylvania wasn’t boring as sh!t, I’d almost want to join up just so I could tool up in style. The SAR in FDE looks awesome. If the trigger kit can get the trigger pull down to 6 pounds or less, this rifle could be truly awesome.

    • Just dropping the extra trigger return spring made a huge difference for me. The trigger feels very nice. It’s crisp and solid and the weight is now fairly pleasant. I had no problems hitting the upper 1/3 and head of a steel torso silhouette (the rest of it was hidden behind a log) with an unmagnified red dot from 100 yards.

      Video on trigger mod:

      • I agree, the 2 minute trigger job made a big difference in how the Tavor trigger works. Its still a bit stiff but not hard to get used too. Now if I could only find a rail mount cupholder in baby poo brown,, I mean flat dark earth……

  4. It’s no surprise that our PA State Capitol Police went with the US version of the Tavor. It likely flows from the fact that IWI’s US facility is located in the PA state capitol. One good turn deserves another.

  5. What the heck happens in PA where they need something like that? How about a few cheap AR’s or Mini 14’s and save the taxpayers a couple of bucks if they want to sling 5.56.

      • This is for a special protection detail for Capital building protection Most standard Cops will use the AR/M-4 style for its better suited for outside fights while this detail is pure indoor protection.

      • Cheap is a relative thing. I believe wholesale on a TAVOR is $1,600-something. You can get an ‘optics ready’ AR-15 wholesale for about a third of that.

        • True, but I don’t hear about LE agencies buying $600 ARs unless it’s through a federal repurposing program, and those are used rifles. $1000-$1200 is more typical, then you add optic, sling, mags…

        • And I find myself wondering. Did Alpha Geek, living in the heartland of CA affluence, find Fairbairn’s descriptions of innovative training for the Shanghai Municipal Police on the cheap, ca. 1935, a source of perspective on pistol shooting, bullet budgetting, or….Chinatown?

        • RD — loved it. Passed it along to several friends, as well. Much appreciated.

          It’s not the sort of shooting one can overtly practice at the rigidly controlled local ranges, but I’ve started working practice of the techniques into back-country shooting sessions. It’s also interesting to play with that approach to shooting using the LaserLyte training system at home, though the standard target unit is a bit small for point-shooting practice.

    • A typical LE AR15/M4 bought new in small volumes will frequently cost $1500 with all the trimmings. I’d be shocked if Tavor sold SAR packages (rifle, optic, sling, mags) to the government of their US home state for more than that.

      • I dunno man… the SAR with one mag and no optic or sling is $1,999 MSRP and $1,6xx dealer wholesale. Talk about how it is more expensive than the AR-15/M4/M16 always cited the much higher cost as a reason it will be a hard sell to get militaries to switch to it. The IDF talked about the additional cost of them over the M16 platform when it made the switch. You’re right, though, that maybe PA got a special deal because it’s IWI US’ home state and because this is great press. The first LEA contract in the U.S. is certainly a big win for IWI U.S., and I wouldn’t be surprised if they got aggressive on pricing to make it happen — especially for PA.

        • If it makes anyone feel better, I’ve got a de-milled (no giggle switch) M16A1bolted next to me. Its old. Some of our guns saw action in ‘Nam – the stocks with the notches got replaced. We’re eventually getting Sig M400s.

    • There are a few organized-crime-induced war zones in PA. Also some local police departments crawling with KKK. Protecting yourself from a murderous and corrupt government doesn’t always have to be at the federal level, and in the most likely cases one bad local PD could require a whole lot of protecting from.

  6. Tavors for Parking Enforcement Officers? Just what sort of anger management issues are they expecting in the capitol parking lots? I expect that seeing meter maids with Tavors would pretty much eliminate the need for further parking enforcement. /s

  7. Well this s for the Capitol protection detail doubt this is for patrol man and other cops. The need for a smaller rifle for all indoor fighting is understandable.

    • Sorry, I have to ask this question – Just exactly what sort of assault on the State Capitol are these guys expecting? I think they are watching WAY too many Hollywood action movies. The last time I recall any news report of an “assault weapon” in a government building it was some dumb sh!t singing telegram guy dressed like Rambo and carryign a fake AK. This just sounds like more excess militarization of the police to me.

      • Right on Cliff. I think whatever works is what ought to be used but one certainly does have to wonder what the heck they’re expecting to happen. As I often say about home defense, at some point you have to wonder if someone is really worried about home invasion by burglars or by a dedicated squad sized or bigger element assaulting the house.

        The same applies here; lone gunman, sure. . . two guys trying to shoot each other? Possible. The sort of threat that calls for a squad armed with rifles? Absurd. I’m not even sure it would be advisable from a tactical and/or public safety position to fight that sort of battle in such a location.

        It strikes me that pistols would handle capital security just fine right up until you face the sort of threat that kicks off by . . .I’m not going to say how this is done, but the types of threats you actually need a rifle squad to deal with aren’t likely to present against a target as soft as a state capital in such a way that one can use rifles to deal with them.

        I think it’s a bizarre waste of tax payer money and yet another dangerous militarization of a police force. Such things tend to make them forget their purpose.

      • Guys, Harrisburg PA is broke. The state is serious about pursuing jobs. I really believe they’re just saying “thanks for the jobs, IWI.” If Colt wants the sale they can damned well move some jobs here. We do have Geiselle Automatics and Wolf Springs, so I suppose build-it-ourselves guns are a possibility.

  8. So what can we do to get our congress critters off the dime and repeal the firearms acts of 1934 and 1986? Think it would do any good with the dem/traitor/proglodytes controlling the senate?

    • Might as well ask them to repeal the Law of Gravity for all the good it would do.

      Feds don’t repeal laws, ever. Which is why every law should have a Sunset Clause. Every. Single. One.

  9. You’d think PA is getting ready to repulse a Citizen’s Uprising the way it’s militarizing it’s Police. I guess DHS is being stingy with their 1.6 billion rounds of ammo and armored vechicles

  10. Reminds me of a story I read before Hugo Chavez died, he bought a bunch of Beretta CX4 carbines for police units. It makes sense to me, a regular cop going full auto seems pretty unsafe.

  11. I’m sorry, but that weapon looks like it was designed by Nerf as a super soaker. I looks like it needs an orange tip. It has frivolous plastic doo hickeys all over. Does it have a button for sound effects too?

    • “Does it have a button for sound effects too?”

      Yes. If you pull the trigger it makes a loud boom noise. Every time. More reliably than an M16, by all accounts.

      The body is plastic, but the internals are all business. Ordnance grade steel chassis, cold hammer forged chrome lined barrel, all the forged tool steel blah blah stuff you would expect in the bolt and carrier and trigger pack and gas piston system, etc. It’s a pretty legit, heavy duty weapon there despite the extremely compact size and the futuristic appearance.

      You sound like the guys who said the plastic M16 would never amount to anything or the tupperware Glock was a ridiculous idea that would fail when they melted on your dashboard 😉

  12. Ok Can I jump up and down and yell yyeeehaaa now!
    You all know my love of the Tavor, and how living in California, I am seriously considering moving just so I can own one.
    I for one am HAPPY HAPPY that they are going for the Tavor. 🙂

    • There are plenty in CA now. I think on page 6 people are starting to receive theirs:

      Long muzzle devices to meet CA’s minimum OAL requirement, and either removing the factory mag release lever (which means a tool is needed to lift up on the metal tab on the left side of the gun to drop the mag) or installing various types of bullet button block plate things. With those two things done, you’re good to go in CA. Also, of course, you can’t take delivery of the 30-round mag unless it’s taken apart and sent as a rebuild kit for a mag you already own.

      • Well hot dang!
        Not so sure about the whole mag lock.. I really liked the lever on the real TAR.
        I guess I will have to just deal with 10 rounds until I can flee the slavery of California.
        Modifying the trigger makes it way better, and well, a bi pod and a scope, I start to feel right at home lol

  13. Made right in the same city as the state capital, in fact, which didn’t get mentioned. I smell a sweetheart deal.

    How many ragtag demonstrators are they planning on having to…. er……..

  14. I bought a (LH) Tavor several months ago and, despite its unconventional appearance, it is an excellent shooter and ergonomically very sound. Getting into and out of a vehicle with gun in firing position is easy, and I’ve been able to shoot tiny groups at 50 yards with an EOTech sight. My only complaint is the caliber: several options are available… .223, 9mm and 5.45mm. I’d prefer .308, but that ain’t gonna happen!

  15. I ain’t buying that good ole foreign business is doing us a favor by manufacturing in the good old US of A. The profits still exit stage left.

    • Yeah, it’s the worst of both worlds — American labor and foreign profits. It should be the other way around, like so many Remington products.

      Uh, let me reconsider . . . .

    • Them good ole paychecks them good ole American employees hired by that good ole furrin company get cashed and spent in good ole American towns.

      • Given the global economy of today, the fact they produce it all in the US is kind of nice. Yes the actual company IWI is foreign. Having said that, they opened a sub company in the US which works as a separate entity, pays taxes and everything else. It is complex, but still, I am happy they came to the US to produce firearms.

        • Seems to me that we provide enough cash, cooperation and materiel aid to Israel every year that the profits would better be described as going to a US protectorate than a foreign country. It’s not like the money is flowing to Pakistan or something.

  16. Why do the capital police need rifles? Seriously. Do they think a hit squad is going to target the legislature or something?

    I am all in favor of the individual officers using any firearm they want as long as every other citizen can do the same without the threat of prosecution for merely possessing such a device.

  17. That really is one ugly gun. . . just. . . stunningly ugly in every detail. From what I understand it beats an AR in just about every way (I’m not so sure about that but I’m not saying it aint so either). All I can say is that a rifle that looks like that had better be a performer because it’s not going to make much off it’s good looks! If I were trying to sell them based on appearance I’d give away a free Star Wars storm trooper mask with each one (then again, that would be hilarious anyway).

    I’m sure I’ll end up with my hands on one before too long and maybe I’ll be back to tell you how much I love it. . . but I think I can safely say right now that I’ll never take back what I’ve said about it’s looks.


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