Caerleon Order Equipment

Defending Sovereign, Church, and Country from the Forces of Darkness

The Caerleon Order is both an intelligence agency and a paramilitary force. As such, its agents and soldiers need equipment to perform their duties. Though operating independently of any intelligence or military service, the Order is considered a member of the British Armed Forces and the intelligence corp. In fact, most of its field agents and troops are recruited from the British Army, the Royal Marines, the Special Air Service (SAS), the Special Boat Service (SBS), the Security Service (MI5), and the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6). With a few exceptions, most of its equipment is obtained from the armed forces, and while technically on loan, the loan is considered to be permanent.

The following pages describe the equipment currently in use by the Order:

Guns

At its most basic, a gun is a projectile weapon that uses a hollow, tubular barrel with a closed end as the means of directing the projectile; the closed end is called the breech. Beyond that, guns can be divided in two main ways: firearms versus crew-served weapons often refered to as cannons, and smoothbore versus rifled. Firearms generally fire bullets, which are generally solid, the major exception being shotguns which generally fire shot, though they can fire slugs. Cannons fire shells, which are generally hollow and filled with explosives or other material. A key major difference between bullets and shells is that shells have fuses to set off their fillings, whereas bullets do not. Rifled barrels contain curved grooves that spin the projectile for added stability; rifled barrels tend to have longer ranges than smoothbore barrels.

Bullets can come in a number of different types:

  • Standard Ball (FMJ) — Also known as full metal jacketed, this is essentially a lead core plated with a thin layer of harder metal. It allows for greater muzzle velocity.
  • Soft Point — The front of the lead core is left uncovered and is sometimes squared-off instead of pointed, allowing the lead to expand on impact.
  • Hollow Point — In addition to being uncovered, the point has a cavity behind it, allowing for greater expansion.
  • Armour Piercing — Instead of lead, the core is made of a very hard, high-density metal.
  • Exploding — The tip is hollowed out and filled with a small amount of a low explosive designed to detonate on impact with a hard surface.
  • Incendiary — Similar to Exploding, except the explosive is designed to create heat to ignite fuel or munitions.
  • Tracer — The back of the bullet is hollowed out and filled with flare material that ignites when the propellent in the cartridge is set off.
  • High Explosive Incendiary/Armour Piercing (HEIAP) — Found only in .50 caliber or larger rounds, this bullet is more like a shell, in that it is hollow and filled rather than solid. It consists of a steel cup containing a tungsten carbide penetrator. The cup is filled with a layer of high explosive and another of zirconium powder. It is topped with an incendiary mix and encased in a copper jacket. When the bullet strikes a target, friction ignites the incendiary mix, which detonates the explosive. This blows a hole in the outer covering of the target, making it possible for the penetrator to punch though. At the same time the explosive ignites the zirconium powder, which burns hotly and is drawn inside the target by the penetrator. An example of this kind of round is the Raufoss NM140 MP Mk 211 Mod 0 used with anti-material rifles.

Shells are more versatile, and their payloads can be found in other types of explosive ordinance.

  • Armour Piercing (AP) — A shell with a hardened nose designed to penetrate armour before detonating.
  • Semi-armour Piercing (SAP) — A shell essentially no different from a standard AP type, except it is most often used against light armoured vehicles, ships, or concrete bunkers, and it receives an assist from other types of fillings.
  • Armour Piercing, Discarding Sabot (APDS) — A shell that consists of a submunition called a kinetic energy penetrator surrounded by a sabot that is discarded in flight. The sabot allows the penetrator to be fired from standard caliber cannons. The penetrator is made of a very hard, high-density metal and uses its high kinetic energy and narrow shape to pierce armour. The penetrator can also be spin- or fin-stabilized.
  • High Explosive (HE) — A shell filled with a plastic bonded explosive. These kill by shock and shattering the case to scatter high-velocity fragments.
  • High Explosive Dual Purpose (HEDP) — A shell that contains a high explosive housed in a fragmentation casing. It can damage soft targets as well as hard.
  • High Explosive Anti-tank (HEAT) — A shell that uses a shaped charge to create a high-velocity jet of molten metal to burn through armour.
  • High Explosive, Squash-head (HESH) — A shell that contains a mass of plastic explosive. On impact the explosive flattens against the side of the target, then detonates. The shockwave spalls scabs of metal off the inside wall of the target, causing damage to people and equipment on the inside. Though defeated by certain types of modern armour, it is most effect against brick and concrete.
  • Incendiary (I) — A shell that contains thermate or some other filling that can generate sufficient heat to ignite flammable material, detonate explosives, or melt metals.
  • White Phosphorus (WP) — A shell that contains white phosphorus, which burns very hot on contact with the air. It can be used for smoke or incendiary purposes. Its use against civilians is banned by international treaty and its use against military personnel, while not banned, is considered immoral.
  • Cluster — A shell that contains multiple submunitions. Banned by international treaty.
  • Smoke — A shell that contains a filling that produces smoke on contact with the atmosphere. Used for screening and marking.
  • Illumination — A shell that contains a pyrotechnic flare.
  • Carrier — An empty shell that can contain anything that meets certain weight restrictions and is able to withstand the shock of firing.
  • Chemical — A shell that contains a toxic chemical, such as nerve gas. Banned by international treaty.
  • Biological — A shell that contains a toxic biological agent, such as ricin, or a pathogen, such as anthrax. Banned by international treaty.
  • Radiological — A shell that contains radioactive material for dispersal over a wide area. Banned by international treaty.
  • Nuclear — A shell that delivers a limited-yield nuclear device on target. Largely superceded by tactical ballistic missiles.
  • Combinations are possible, such as Armor Piercing Incendiary (API), High Explosive Incendiary (HEI), or Semi-armour Piercing High Explosive Incendiary (SAPHEI).

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We Hold the Line, and This Line Shall Not Be Crossed!