Uncommon Valor

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Uncommon Valor (1983)
DVD cover for Uncommon Valor

Uncommon Valor is a 1983 action film starring Gene Hackman as a retired US Marine Colonel who leads a group of Vietnam veterans and a young former Marine (Patrick Swayze) back into the country on a mission to rescue American POW's left behind, one of whom may be his son.

The following weapons were used in the film Uncommon Valor:



Colt Sporter 1 Carbine (Mocked up as XM177E2)

Several members of the Long Range Reconnosance Patrol (LRRP) are also seen armed with what appear to be CAR-15 rifles in the 1972 Vietnam prologue. The rifles also are used when the men train in Galveston for the mission. The majority of these rifles appear to be converted Colt Sporter I Carbines with 16" barrels to resemble the XM177 series of short rifles with an aftermarket flash hider. These conversions were in popular use in productions of the 1980's including The Dogs of War.

Late 1970s model AR15 Sporter 1 Carbine - converted into an XM177 Lookalike for the film Dogs of War - 5.56x45mm
The LRRP member on the left is seen with the carbine during the 1972 Vietnam prologue.
Col. Rhodes (Gene Hackman) wakes the men up with his carbine.
Rhodes and Blaster fire their carbines during training.
Scott (Patrick Swayze) chews out Charts (Tim Thomerson) for not getting one in the kill zone with his carbine.
Blaster (Reb Brown) holds the carbine like a guitar.


In the opening Vietnam sequence, LRRP (Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol) members are seen running back to the helicopters, some (including Frank Rhodes) are carrying the MGC CAR-15 replica rifle. They are never seen firing. The CAR-15s by MGC were always sold with the replica 30 round magazines. Some of the CAR-15s in the film took 20 round magazines off of the MGC M16 replica rifles and used those. Others retained the stock 30 round magazine.

MGC CAR-15 replica assault rifle with 20 round MGC magazine.
The MGC CAR-15 Assault rifle with stock 30 round magazine.
Frank Rhodes (Todd Allen) carries his friend MacGregor on his back during the Vietnam sequence. Note the carbine is loaded with a 20 round magazine.
Frank and MacGregor are left behind. Note the CAR-15 now has a 30-round magazine.


Several LRRP members are seen running with M16A1's during the opening Vietnam sequence.

M16A1 with 20 round magazine - 5.56x45mm. What distinguishes it from the original M16 was the addition of a raised rib around the magazine release button, changing of the forward Receiver pins, and the addition of the forward assist button on the upper receiver.
The young MacGregor is hit in the leg carrying his M16A1 during the Vietnam sequence.
The LRRP member on the right is seen with a M16A1.
Rhodes hold an M16A1 before being told that the bargain basement weapons are in another area.
An NVA soldier who steps on one of Blaster's mines is seen holding an M16 replica.


During the opening Vietnam sequence, Blaster is seen firing an M16SP1 rifle with slab side receiver.

M16 aka SP1 (flat "slab side receiver") with an A1 "birdcage" Flash hider, used to imitate the M16A1 in many Vietnam era movies. This version has a 20 round magazine - 5.56x45mm
Blaster (at right) is seen firing an M16SP1.

Norinco Type 56

The Norinco Type 56 is a common assault rifle used in movies and television to stand-in for the AK-47. Seen carried by Laotian border patrol guards as well as Jiang (Kwai Hi Lim) and Lai Fun (Lau Nga Lai).

Type 56 assault rifle aka M22, early milled receiver model without under-folding ("pig sticker") bayonet - 7.62x39mm
Jiang carries a Norinco Type 56 as his primary weapon.
Laotian border patrol guards carry Norinco Type 56 rifles.
Lai Fun fires her Norinco. Note the closed front sight.
Uncommon Valor 2 ak4.jpg

Chinese Type 56 Carbine

Laotian Border Patrol and Prison Camp guards are seen firing the Chinese Type 56 carbine rifle.

Chinese Type 56 Carbine aka the Chinese SKS rifle - 7.62x39mm. The Chinese SKS has a stamped receiver and a spike bayonet (aka a "pig sticker") much like one of their AK47 copies - the Type 56 assault rifle. This version, like many imported SKS rifles, have the infamous 'orange cratewood' stocks, probably the lowest quality wood in any mass produced rifle, save for the last ditch Arisaka Type 99 rifles at the end of WW2. Many SKS rifles during the Vietnam War were issued with reddish plastic stocks, because of the incidents of 'wood rot' in the humid SE Asian jungles.
Wilkes fires the carbine with the bayonet extended.
Laotian Border guards open fire on the men.
An guard is seen firing an SKS at Sailor's position.


Scott (Patrick Swayze) uses an M14-E2 outfitted with a night vision scope as a sniper rifle during the training exercise.

M14E2 Squad Automatic Weapon - 7.62x51mm NATO. This weapon is outfitted with a scope and used as a sniper rifle in the film.
Scott (Patrick Swayze) awaits his signal during training, while holding an M14-E2 - 7.62x51mm. His rifle doesn't have the slip on muzzle brake or the bipod of the E2 model.
Scott (Patrick Swayze) raises the M14-E2 to his shoulder during the night demonstration - 7.62x51mm. Here we get a clear view of his early generation Night Vision Scope and the E2 stock pistol grip.
Scott (Patrick Swayze) looks back at the approaching helicopters with the M14-E2 during the night demonstration for Mister MacGregor - 7.62x51mm
When Scott (Patrick Swayze) fires the M14-E2, he fires single shots, but the sound effect is that of a super fast three round burst of a submachine gun.

M1 Garand

When their weapons are confiscated before the rescue mission, the men are forced to use older WWII-era weapons including the M1 Garand. Used primarily by Col. Rhodes (Gene Hackman).

M1 Garand semiautomatic Rifle with leather M1917 sling - .30-06
Rhodes aims his M1 Garand as Scott sights for him.
Rhodes adjusts his sights.
Rhodes firing his M1 Garand at Laotian border guards.
Rhodes aims his M1 Garand at a sniper as Charts sights for him.

M1 Carbine

Jiang's associate in the bar is seen holding an M1 Carbine, however, he walks away when Rhodes begins his conversation with Jiang - .30 carbine.

World War Two Era M1 Carbine, with Dark Walnut Stock, 'L' peep sight and no bayonet lug - correct for most of WW2, shown with khaki sling and Magazine pouch for buttstock
Jiang's associate is carrying an M1 Carbine (late model) when Rhodes and Jiang sit at the table - .30 carbine

Mosin Nagant Rifle

A Mosin Nagant Rifle is one of the weapons glimpsed in the arms dealer's cache.

Full-length, Mosin Nagant M91/30 - 7.62x54R.
Uncommon Valor 1 mn.jpg

Lee-Enfield No.5 Jungle Carbine

Lee-Enfield No.5 Jungle Carbine - .303 British
To the left of the box are two bolt action rifles, the one in front is a Lee-Enfield No.5 Jungle Carbine - .303 British

Mauser 1935 Peruvian

Mauser 1935 Peruvian - 7.92x57mm
To the left of the box are two bolt action rifles, the one in back is a Mauser 1935 Peruvian - 7.92x57mm Mauser

Mauser Karabiner 98k

Karabiner 98k - German manufacture 1937 date - 7.92x57mm
At the head of the crate are three rifles, one is an M1 Garand and the other two are Karabiner 98K rifles - 7.92x57mm Mauser

Machine Guns

M60 machine gun

An authentic M60 is carried by Sailor (Randall "Tex" Cobb) during the Vietnam sequence and during the training and preparation and actual rescue mission.

M60 machine gun 7.62x51mm NATO
Sailor (Randall "Tex" Cobb) makes a run for the helicopters.
Sailor (Randall "Tex" Cobb) provides cover with the M60.


The "D" variant of the M60 is seen used by the Huey doorgunners during the Vietnam sequence. They are also mounted on a gunship near the end of the film.

M60D machine gun 7.62x51mm NATO
A doorgunner sits ready with the M60D.
Sailor reaches out his hand for Frank while a doorgunner fires the M60D.
Charts flies a Bell helicopter mounted with twin M60D machine guns.

"Fake" MG42

In the film, a fake barrel shroud is placed on a M60 machine gun to make it look like a MG42. You can notice in the photos there is no opening to remove the barrel on the right hand side. Also there is ammo bag hanger on the left side and the nut on the bottom of the gas cylinder is showing below the shroud. The stock was left off on the helicopter just like M60C gun and a fake rubber stock was add for the ground scene.

MG42 7.92 x 57mm Mauser (8mm Mauser)
Mock up MG42 using a M60 Machine Gun
Mock up MG42 using a M60 Machine Gun
Mock up MG42 using a M60 Machine Gun
Sailor carries the mocked-up M60.


An authentic MG42 machine gun on the wall of the arms cave. Sailor later uses an actual MG42 when he is bursting through the prisoner huts, but it is never fired (the only firing scenes of the "MG-42" utilize the mocked up M60).

MG42 7.92 x 57mm Mauser (8mm Mauser)

Browning M2 Heavy Barrel

A Browning M2HB (actually an acetylene gas firing mockup) is seen mounted on a Laotian patrol boat.

Browning M2 .50 BMG
The Laotian patrol boat fires an Acetylene gas mockup of the M2HB machine gun.
As the Laotian sailors prepare to abandon their boat after Charts throws a grenade into it, they were 'mime-firing' the 50 cal gun, further indicating that it was an Acetylene gas firing weapon.

Browning Automatic Rifle

When their weapons are confiscated before the rescue mission, the men are forced to use older WWII-era weapons including the Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR). Used primarily by Scott (Patrick Swayze).

Browning Automatic Rifle .30-06
Scott fires his BAR at the Laotian border patrol.
Uncommon Valor 2 b2.jpg


Smith & Wesson Model 10 Revolver

Thai Police hold Smith & Wesson Model 10 revolvers when they apprehend Rhodes and the men.

Smith & Wesson Model 10 Revolver - .38 Special
Thailand law enforcement carry S&W Model 10 revolvers in a police raid - .38 Special
Thai Cops frisk Colonel Rhodes and Johnson, carrying S&W Model 10 revolvers - .38 Special

Smith & Wesson Model 686 Revolver

One of the Thai Cops carries a Smith & Wesson Model 686 Revolver in the raid. Since the revolver was introduced in 1980 and as the scene takes place in 1983 Bangkok, this is possible.

Smith & Wesson Model 686 4" Barrel - .357 Magnum.
One Thai Cop carries a S&W Model 686 Revolver - .357 Magnum

M1911 pistol series

The M1911 is carried by several characters including Col. Rhodes (Gene Hackman), Wilkes (Fred Ward), and Blaster (Reb Brown).

Colt M1911A1 Pistol - .45 ACP.
Rhodes checks out a dusty M1911 in an old arms locker
Wilkes checks out a POW cell with his M1911 drawn.
Closeup of Wilkes' M1911.
Blaster guards a sewage tunnel with his M1911.

Submachine Guns

M1928A1 Thompson

When their weapons are confiscated before the rescue mission, the men are forced to use older WWII-era weapons including the M1928A1 Thompson. Wilkes, Blaster and Charts (Tim Thomerson) are armed with Thompsons that lack the compensator. You can tell they're M1928A1's because of the location of the actuators, although it appears the rear sights have been removed.

M1928A1 Thompson with 30-round magazine - .45 ACP, with Cutts compensator
A Thompson is seen on a pack mule.
Blaster aims his Thompson as Johnson readies the recoilless rifle.
Wilkes opens up with his Thompson.
Charts (Tim Thomerson) fires his M1928A1 Thompson at the Laotian Border guards - .45 acp
Blaster fires his Thompson at an oncoming patrol boat.

Uzi Submachine gun

A bodyguard of the 'new' arms dealer who confronts Johnson and Rhodes is seen holding a standard Uzi 9mm.

IMI Uzi 9mm
A bodyguard of the 'new' arms dealer carries an Uzi as he greets visitors at the gate - 9x19mm


Remington 870 Slug Gun

When Rhodes visits Sailor in prison, a guard is seen with a Remington 870 shotgun. Later, an arms dealer's guard in Bangkok is seen holding an 870.

Remington 870 Slug Shotgun - 12 gauge
When Rhodes visits Sailor in prison, a guard is seen with a Remington 870 shotgun.
The bodyguard to the left, at an arms dealer's Bangkok villa, is armed with a Remington 870.


M79 Grenade Launcher

Seen briefly during the opening Vietnam sequence.

M79 grenade launcher - 40mm
A LRRP member turns back with his M79 grenade launcher.


An RPG-7 is briefly seen being loaded near the end of the film, but not fired.

RPG-7 70mm
A box of RPG rockets seen to the right of Sailor.
Uncommon Valor 2 20090111-16481631.jpg
Uncommon Valor 2 rpg7.jpg

M18 57mm Recoilless Rifle

Used by Scott during the training exercise as well as Jiang and Johnson (Harold Sylvester).

M18 Recoilless Rifle - 57mm
Uncommon Valor 1 rpg.jpg

Mk II Hand Grenade

Seen among other WWII weapons and worn around the neck of Sailor. Also all members of the team during the rescue mission wear them on their web gear.

Mk 2 High-Explosive Fragmentation hand grenade
MKII Grenades are seen on the table as the team unloads their weapons stockpile.
Wilkes, Blaster, Jiang and Scott stand ready with their MK II Hand Grenades on their gear.
Sailor prepares to make the ultimate sacrifice with the MKII hung around his neck.

M18 Smoke Grenade

Seen amongst the ordnance on the table.

M18 smoke grenade
In piles, mostly to the left, we see M18 smoke grenades.

M18A1 Claymore

  • Seen amongst the ordnance on the table. These have the obvious blue painted stripe on them, indicating that they are inert trainers and not the real thing.
There are at least two M18A1 Claymore mines on the table, however, these are obvious trainers.

Weapons Cache

Rhodes and his team are seen going to an arms dealer's weapons cache, which houses several modern weapons, a trunk full of World War II-era weapons, and the following:

M2 Mortar

An M2 Mortar is also found in the cache.

When arms dealer Gericault (Jan Triska) pauses in the tunnel, we see an M2 Mortar to the left - 4.2 Inch (107mm)

Oerlikon 20mm AA Cannon

Among the weapons in the cache is an Oerlikon 20mm AA Cannon.

The Oerlikon 20mm AA Cannon is seen in the center. Also seen are MG42 and M60 machine guns.

Modern Weapons

A cache of modern weapons including M16A1 rifles are briefly seen before Rhodes goes to the "bargain basement".

Rhodes hold an M16A1 before being told that the bargain basement weapons are in another area.

"Bargain Basement" Cache

The "Bargain Basement" lot of weapons Rhodes purchases for $4000 consists mostly of World War II vintage weapons including M1 Garands, M1928A1 Thompsons, and M1911A1 pistols.

Rhodes checks out a dusty M1911 in an old arms locker

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