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Older, Odd, Offbeat And Forgotten Guns & Ammo

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Sudayev's PPS-43: Submachine Gun Simplicity Perfected
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Aug 31, 2017
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The PPS-43, designed by Alexei Sudayev based on a previous submachine gun design by I.K. Bezruchko-Vysotsky, was the Soviet replacement for the PPSh-41. The Shpagin submachine gun was a very effective combat weapon, but was time-consuming to produce and required specialized manufacturing tools. The Soviet military wanted a weapon that was cheaper and faster to make, and which could be produced at small shops not experienced in firearms production. The Sudayev design fit these criteria extremely well, being made almost entirely of simple bent mates components.

Production of the first prototype Sudayev submachine guns begin in 1942 in the besieged city of Leningrad, where guns were quite literally taken from the factory door to the front lines and put into service. A few minor flaws were discovered and corrected, and by the time the siege was broken the gun was suitable for mass production. It was designated the PPS-43, and while it was theoretically a replacement for the PPSh-41, it never did actually replace the former weapon. It was decided to continue PPSh-41 production in the factories already tooled up for it, while making use of the PPS-43’s simplicity to put it into production as a range of new factories that did not have the technical capacity to make more complex weapons.

Mechanically, the PPS-43 was a simple blowback gun, using basically the same conceptual operating system as the PPSH-41. However, Sudayev resolved the most significant practical problem with the PPSH-41 by abandoning its unreliable drums and developing his own new double stack, double feed 35-round box magazine. The PPS-43 magazine is simpler to load, more reliable in used, and much smoother to insert and remove from the weapon that then PPSh magazines. The improvement was substantial enough to justify the use of different and incompatible magazines in the two guns. In conjunction with the discarding of the drum magazine, Sudayev also designed his gun to have a lower rate of fire than the PPSh, to better manage ammunition supply. However, the roughly 600 rpm rate of the PPS-43 is actually relatively difficult to control in that light weapon, where the PPSh-41 was substantially smoother shooting despite (or perhaps because of) firing faster.
 

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Professional Ordnance Carbon-15: A Super-Light AWB AR-15
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 1, 2017
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The Professional Ordnance Carbon-15 was developed during the assault weapons ban in the United States as a way to market a pistol version of an AR15 action without exceeding the weight limit imposed by legislation. While Olympic Arms achieved this goal through extensive skeletonization, Professional Ordnance did it by using polymer (not woven carbon fiber, as the name implies) for the upper and lower receivers. What we are looking at today, however, is the full size rifle version of this weapon that was also produced.

With a very thin barrel and polymer upper, lower, and buttstock, the Carbon 15 is an exceptionally lightweight rifle - it weighs just 4 pounds unloaded. This could have made a compelling rifle were it not for the numerous reliability and durability problems that dogged the guns. In addition, the bolt and several other parts were made to proprietary designs and not interchangeable with standard parts. Professional Ordnance folded around the end of the assault weapons ban, and its assets were purchased by Bushmaster, who would continue to market guns under the Carbon-15 name but not in the proprietary and super-light configuration of the Professional Ordnance production.
 

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The Schmeisser MP41: A Hybrid Submachine Gun
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 2, 2017
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Most people think that the MP41 is simply an MP40 in a wooden stock, but this is actually not the case - and unlike the MP40, the MP41 can be accurately called a Schmeisser - because it was Hugo Schmeisser who designed it.

The MP41 is actually a combination of the upper assembly of an MP40 with the lower assembly of an MP28 - the gun which was Schmeisser's improved version of the MP18 from World War One. Where the MP40 fires only in fully automatic mode, the MP41 has a push-through selector switch located above the trigger which allows either semiauto or full auto function.

For the typical user, however, this mechanical distinction is not particularly important, as the MP41 handles very much like the MP40. It has the same relatively low 500 rpm rate of fire, and weighs about 8.2 pounds (3.7kg). It uses the same magazines as the MP40, although the magazines made and sold with the MP41 were marked "MP41". As with many other SMG designs, the MP41 was never formally adopted by the German military. In this case, the majority of MP41 production (26,000 guns in 1941 and another 1,800 or so in 1944) went to Romanian troops.
 

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Reising Model 60 - A Wartime Semiauto Carbine
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Published on Sep 3, 2017
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The Reising Model 60 was the semiautomatic-only variant of the Reising Model 50 submachine gun. Offered side by side with the submachine guns, the Model 60 was also chambered for .45ACP and used the same magazines and a closed-bolt operating system that was identical except for the lack of a full auto option on the safety/selector switch.

The Model 60 was made between 1943 and 1949, and only about 3250 were made in total. They were used by a variety of factory guards, railway guards, and police units during WWII - people who needed a firearm, but not necessarily the amount of firepower available from a fully automatic one. H&R promoted the Model 60 (with its 18.25 inch barrel) as a particularly accurate gun suitable for making precise shots at longer ranges that could be done with an SMG.
 

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Arsenal AF2011: A Double Barreled 1911 Monster Pistol
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Published on Sep 4, 2017
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The Arsenal 2011 began as a manufacturing proof of concept, to showcase the technical ability of the company making it (their prior experience was largely in exquisite miniature firearms). It was introduced to the public at SHOT Show a few years ago, and garnered more purchases than had been anticipated.

The gun itself is basically two 1911 frames and slides mated together into a single gun. It has two barrels, two magazines, and two hammers attached to make a single unit. The triggers are also connected together, and pulling either one will cause both barrels to fire simultaneously.

While this sort of firearm is fun to consider (and fantastic for use by movie villains), it is rather difficult to imagine a practical use for it. Most oversized handguns are made for hunting and target competition, but the two-shots-per-trigger-pull nature of the 2011 make it rather unsuited to these uses. It is impossible to shoot a truly small group, as the bullets will always be about an inch apart and they cannot be regulated by the shooter to group together. Not that this stops people from wanting this sort of over-the-top handgun, of course.
 

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Lanchester MkI: Britain's First Emergency SMG
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Published on Sep 5, 2017
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The Lanchester MkI was the first British effort to produce a domestic submachine gun during World War II. The British military had rejected these types of arms as "gangster guns" prior to the war, and did not see them as useful in a military context. Well, that opinion changed rather quickly as they watched the German blitzkrieg sail through continental Europe.

The very first solution was to purchase Thompson SMGs from the United States, but these were extremely expensive weapons, and not a suitable long term plan. The next solution was to reverse engineer a pair of German MP28 SMGs captured in Ethiopia. This was done by a Sterling company engineer named George Lanchester, and it was a successful project. Both the Navy and Air Force purchased the guns (although the air force would cancel its order later, and the guns would pretty much all go to the Royal Navy).

Mechanically, the Lanchester is a very close copy of the MP28, with a few stylistic changes. These include the use of an SMLE pattern stock, the addition of a bayonet lug for a 1907 pattern bayonet, and the use of brass or bronze for the magazine housing instead of steel. The original MkI Lanchesters were select-fire, with a lever to allow semi or full-auto fire. This was removed with the simplified MkI* pattern, however.

The Lanchester would be quickly followed by the Sten gun, which offered much cheaper and faster manufacture, and the British Army would use huge numbers of Stens. The Lanchester would stay in service for decades after the war, though, serving on many naval vessels in British service and with other nations when British ships were sold as surplus.
 

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Gebruder Rempt Four-Barrel Enormous Flare Pistol
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 6, 2017
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In 1917, the German military issued a contract for the construction of 2500 of these unique and impressive 4-barreled flare launchers. They were manufactured by 7 different companies (this example being from Gebruder Rempt), and were intended for the illumination of airfields. To this end, they did not just hold four 25mm flares, but actually used detachable barrel clusters (clips? magazines? The terminology does not apply well in this case…), with 8 such units being provided with each launcher. This would allow the launcher to maintain a high volume of fire; important if a large area needed to be kept illuminated. These launchers are quite scarce today, with the fewer than 2 dozen known surviving examples.
 

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Stendebach Model 1936: Rotary Mag Toggle Delayed Experiment
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Published on Sep 7, 2017
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There is very little documentation existing to explain the history of this rifle - all we really know is that per the receiver markings it is a Model 1936 Stendebach, and that it was brought back from Bavaria in 1945 by a US soldier who found it in a collection of confiscated firearms.

A number of German patents exist granted to one Friedrich Stendebach from 1913 to the mid 1920s, covering aspects of a toggle-locked rifle like this one. It is a delayed blowback system, with neither a recoiling barrel nor any sort of gas system. The rotary magazine can be fed by single rounds or 5-round stripper clips.

The aluminum elements of the gun raise some questions, and it seems most likely that the gun was incomplete when acquired in Germany. The firing mechanism does not appear to have been completed, which supports this suspicion. Even so, it is an interesting and unique combination of features. Hopefully more information will come out about Stendebach's other work and potential German military testing of his designs!
 

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Mechanics and Disassembly of the Norinco QBZ-97 / Type 97 NSR
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Published on Sep 8, 2017
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The Chinese military introduced a new 5.8x42mm cartridge in 1987, and then developed a new bullpup rifle to use it. The rifle was the QBZ Type 95, and it was a bullpup rifle with a rotating bolt and short-stroke gas piston operating system. Shortly thereafter, a commercial export version was released in 5.56mm NATO, designated the Type 97. While Norinco rifles are barred from importation into the United States, they have become available in Canada. The rifle we are looking at today is a Canadian import Type 97 NSR.

Thanks to Daniel and Colin for arranging this opportunity for me to take a look at the rifle!

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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Shooting the Norinco QBZ/Type 97 NSR
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 9, 2017
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Today it's time to take the Norinco QBZ-97 - aka Type 97 NSR - out to the range for some shooting! This is the Canadian semiautomatic-only legal version of China's new military rifle, and it is chambered for the 5.56mm NATO cartridge (the Chinese military models use their 5.8x42mm cartridge).

Overall, the Type 97 is an acceptable rifle in all ways, but an excellent rifle in none. Its controls are functional but slow, and its trigger leaves a lot to be desired. The sights in particular are begging for improvement, in my opinion - the rear apertures are just too small to use easily.

That said, the rifle did run just fine throughout the day, I was able to make most of my hits, and it is a remarkably low-cost option (especially in Canada).

Thanks to Daniel and Colin for arranging this opportunity for me to take a look at the rifle!

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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Q&A #13: Cameras, Surplus SMGs, Modern Rocket Balls, and More!
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 11, 2017
Today's question topics::

0:00:24 - Belt-fed ARs
0:02:13 - US Army and the .276 vs 7.62 NATO
0:06:20 - Finnish cartridge choices
0:08:11 - Guns with built-in recoil absorbing mechanisms
0:10:45 - Deep dive on Krnka pistols
0:11:37 - Surviving Vampir night sight?
0:12:35 - Can countries equip armies using just surplus?
0:15:28 - Best French semiauto prototype in the 20s and 30s
0:17:52 - CCW handguns with historical significance
0:19:39 - Obsolete rounds that are viable today?
0:21:24 - Pedersen Device reproductions
0:26:58 - Best military bolt action rifle
0:29:10 - Lewis gun forced-air cooling mechanism
0:30:50 - Advantages of a Spencer over a Henry
0:31:40 - Push-through vs pull-out belts
0:34:35 - Getting recognized by fans while traveling
0:37:32 - Varieties of military rifle sights
0:40:08 - Polymer replacing stamped sheet metal?
0:41:59 - Blurred vs unblurred flags in German thumbnails
0:49:48 - My camera equipment
0:55:11 - Burst firing mechanisms and purpose
0:58:28 - Must-have reference books
1:00:50 - Bazookas vs rifle grenades
1:04:10 - Favorite little-known WWII rifle
1:05:36 - Surplussed US submachine guns
1:08:49 - Videos on cartridges
1:10:00 - Australian post-WWII domestic military gun designs
1:12:38 - Stripper clips for the Bergmann 1910/21
1:13:22 - What I would collect in the UK
1:14:16 - "The one that got away"
1:16:55 - Innovation and variation in revolvers
1:19:12 - What gun would I choose in WWI
 

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Ruger P90
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Published on Sep 11, 2017
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In this video we take an old school single stack 45 ACP we found at Moss Pawn and Guns out to play. The older "P" Series from Ruger represent a very good value today on the used market for a reliable and rugged handgun. Stay tuned, much more on the way.

Disclaimer: Our videos are for entertainment purposes only, imitation or the use of any instruction shown in the videos is solely AT YOUR OWN RISK. Iraqveteran8888 will not be held liable for any injury to yourself or damage to your firearms resulting from attempting anything shown in any our videos.

Copyright 2017, 88 Industries, LLC
 

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Suomi M31: Finland's Famous Submachine Gun
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 12, 2017
For some great firing footage and an assessment of the m/31 in practical terms, check out today's video on InRangeTV: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6HJMv...

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Designed by Finland's most notable arms inventor, Aimo Lahti, the m/31 Suomi submachine gun is an iconic weapon of the Winter War and the Continuation War. It is a first-generation submachine gun with a heavy milled receiver and very well-fitted parts - enough so that a series of vent holes were put in the end of the receiver tube to prevent air compression during the firing cycle. The gun is overall quite heavy (4.7kg / 10.4lb) and has a high rate of fire (~900 rounds/minute). It originally used 50-round quad-stack magazines and 71-round drum magazines, which allowed a shooter to exploit the high rate of fire without constantly having to change magazines.

The quad-stack magazines were eventually found to be insufficiently reliable, and were retired. The drum proved to be quite good in use, although quite awkward and bulky to carry (not that Finnish troops had no specialized pouches for these drums). The drum design would be taken by the Russians (handed over by a defecting Finnish officer, apparently) and copied for use in the Soviet PPD and PPSh submachine guns. In the 1950s, a simple double-stack 36 round magazine was developed and became most popular.
 

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Finnish M31 vs KP44 - SMG Live Fire Comparison
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Published on Sep 12, 2017
We were provided access to quite a few awesome Finnish firearms while in Finland and we jumped on that opportunity to do analyze the M31 Suomi, but then also to compare it against the later Finnish SMG, the KP44.

The M31 is frequently referred to as the best sub machine gun of WW2, and there's good reason fo this - the Finns used them with telling effect in the Winter War. So much so, in fact, that the Russians landed up relaunching renewed SMG programs in Soviet military (which they had previously shelved). So, via a few degrees of separation, you can make the argument that the Finnish success with the M31 ultimately culminated in the development of the Kalashnikov!

Live fire footage and experience with the M31 is a frequently requested topic, so hopefully you enjoy this discussion of the M31 and our comparison of it the KP44!

Don't forget to also check out Forgotten Weapon's video regarding the M31 SMG:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8F4bj...
 

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The Swedish Suomi M-37/39 Submachine Gun
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 13, 2017
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When the Swedish military decided that 1937 seemed like a pretty good time to be getting some new submachine guns, they arranged to purchase a version of the m/31 Suomi from their Finnish neighbors - which they called the M-37. Since the standard Swedish military pistol (the Husqvarna m/07) was chambered for the 9x20mm Browning Long cartridge, they got a version of the Suomi chambered for that round. It used a rearward-sloping (to prevent rimlock) quad-stack magazine that held 56 rounds.

Shortly after this purchase, however, Sweden bought a number of other foreign-made guns, including Walther HP pistols and German submachine guns in 9mm Parabellum. This was a more powerful and more modern cartridge than the 9x20, and so the followup licensing of Suomis reverted to 9mm Parabellum as well, with the designation M-37/39. While the basic mechanism of these is identical to the Finnish Suomi, they differ in some details, including barrel length, charging handle contour, and stock profile.
 

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France's Ultimate WW1 Selfloading Rifle: The RSC-1918
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 14, 2017


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The French RSC-1917 semiauto rifle was a major step forward in arms technology during World War One, offering a reliable and effective self-loading rifle for issue to squad leaders, expert marksmen, and other particularly experienced and effective troops. No other military was able to field a semiauto combat shoulder rifle during this was in anything but very limited numbers. However, the RSC-1917 definitely had some shortcomings:

- It was just too long, at the same size as the Lebel
- The specialized clip was a logistical problem
- The gas system was fragile and difficult to clean or disassemble
- The magazine cover was easily damaged

These issues were all addressed in the Model 1918 upgrade of the rifle, although it was too late to see active service in the Great War. The new pattern was substantially shorter (both the stock and barrel), it used the standard Berthier 5-round clip, it had a substantially strengthened magazine cover, and a much improved gas system.

Today, we will compare the various features of the 1917 and 1918 rifles, and disassemble the 1918 gas system to show how it worked. Special thanks to Paul for letting me use his rifles! Check him out on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/canadiangun...
 

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Shooting the RSC-1918 and RSC-1917 French Autoloaders
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 15, 2017
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The day has come to do some shooting with an RSC-1918 - and an RSC-1917 as well! The 1917 was the first selfloading rifle to see substantial combat use, with just over 85,000 manufactured in 1917 and 1918 and used on the frontlines by French troops. The 1918 pattern is an improvement of the design, with a shorter barrel, improved gas system, and using the standard Berthier 5-round charger clip.

In practical terms, the 1917 is the more comfortable gun to shoot, because of its greater size and weight. The 1918 is substantially handier, but requires the shooter to keep a solid grip on it - as would any carbine this size firing a rifle round with a 200-grain projectile! We did find during the course of this range session that the clips were originally meant to be disposable for a reason - they become deformed to the point of causing malfunctions after just a few uses. So owners of original RSC clips, be aware!

Special thanks to Silverdale Gun Club in Ontario for use of their range, and to Paul for letting me use his rifles. Check him out on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/canadiangun...

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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The DeLisle: Britain's Silenced .45 ACP Commando Carbine
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 16, 2017
Armament Research Services (ARES) is a specialist technical intelligence consultancy, offering expertise and analysis to a range of government and non-government entities in the arms and munitions field. For detailed photos of the guns in this video, don't miss the ARES companion blog post:

http://armamentresearch.com/

The DeLisle carbine was a conversion of a standard SMLE rifle to the .45 ACP cartridge, feeding from modified 1911 pistol magazines. It was fitted with a 7" (175mm) barrel and a very large integral suppressor. The combination of the subsonic cartridge, the large suppressor volume, and even a sound-dampening pad on the bolt handle made for an extremely quiet firearm. Although often compared to the Welrod silenced pistol, the DeLisle was intended specifically for special forces (Commando) use, and not for dropping into occupied territories.

The conversions were done by the Sterling company, and an order of 550 was placed, with 500 of those using a fixed wooden stock and 50 using a folding metal stock. The contract was cancelled in 1943, however, with only about 130 having been made (and only a single prototype of the folding stock model).

Today we will take a look at one of the prototypes, two of the standard production models, and the only existing folding stock example. While a number of companies have made reproduction DeLisles of varying quality, originals are very rare, and none of the reproduction have duplicated them entirely correctly.
 

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Final Prices: RIA September 2017 Premier Auction (and what I bought!)
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 18, 2017
As usual, I have a recap today of the final prices of the guns I filmed form the most recent RIA auction (#71; September 2017). There were a bunch of machine guns in this one, although a variety of other things as well. I had gotten a lot of comments about the potential of my bidding on the Chatellerault light machine gun,...which I was quite tempted to do. However, I only had a budget to bid on one machine gun, and there was one that was more interesting and less common that I bid on instead. That was a Model 1918 Chauchat in .30-06 caliber, and I am quite happy to report that I won it. So once it goes through the NFA transfer process, we will have some very cool footage of it, including an analysis of the problems it originally had, how to fix them, and what the gun is like once fixed. Stay tuned!
 

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History and Disassembly of the Vickers-Berthier MkIII LMG
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 19, 2017
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The Vickers-Berthier was initially designed by Andre Berthier in France prior to World War One. It went through a number of substantial design changes before the war, and was actually ordered in quantity by the United States right at the end of WWI - but the order was cancelled with the armistice. In the 1920s, Berthier sold the design to the Vickers company in England, which wanted a light machine gun to market alongside its Vickers heavy machine gun.

When the British military decided to replace its Lewis and Hotchkiss light machine guns, the Vickers-Berthier was one of the leading contenders, although in the endurance trials it was edged out by the Czech ZB-33, which would ultimately be adopted as the Bren. However, the Indian Army opted to take the Vickers-Berthier, and it was put into production at the Ishapore Rifle Factory and saw substantial use in World War Two.

Mechanically, the Vickers-Berthier is a tilting bolt design with a long stroke gas piston. It has a thorough set of covers over the magazine well and ejection port, and a relatively slow rate of fire. The barrel is quick-changeable, and it feeds from top-mounted 30-round magazines, with an aperture type rear sight being offset to the left side of the gun to clear the magazine.

Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot their Vickers-Berthier! Visit them at: http://marstar.ca

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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Shooting the Ishapore MkIII Vickers-Berthier LMG
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 20, 2017
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The Vickers-Berthier MkIII was adopted by the Indian army in 1933, and served through World War Two and into the 1970s (at least). It is chambered for the standard .303 British cartridge, fires from an open bolt, and uses top-mounted 30-round magazines. I didn't know exactly what to expect when I had the chance to fire this one - and it turned out the be an excellent experience.

The rate of fire on the Vickers-Berthier is relatively low, and I found it to be an exceptionally stable and controllable gun to fire from its bipod. I don't know if it's the unusual muzzle brake design or other factors as well, but the sight picture remains stable and clear in a way that few other LMGs have matched in my experience.

Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot their Vickers-Berthier! Visit them at: http://marstar.ca

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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Fosbery's Pump Shotgun: An AR15 Bolt in 1891
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 21, 2017
Armament Research Services (ARES) is a specialist technical intelligence consultancy, offering expertise and analysis to a range of government and non-government entities in the arms and munitions field. For detailed photos of the guns in this video, don't miss the ARES companion blog post:

http://armamentresearch.com/

George Fosbery V.C. is best known in firearms circles for the Webley-Fosbery automatic revolver, but he experimented with several other firearms designs as well. This particular one never made it into commercial production, but it uses a bolt design very reminiscent of what Johnson and Stoner would use 50+ years later, with six independent locking lugs around the circumference of the bolt head.

This firearm actually began as a pump action rifle before being converted into a shotgun (using a Winchester barrel), which makes it all the more interesting. It was originally made circa 1891, and later converted from a rifle into a shotgun (hence the 1909 model barrel).

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Communist Heresy: Norinco's M305A M14 in 7.62x39mm
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 22, 2017
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Norinco is a huge consortium of manufacturing plants in China that make all manner of goods for export, including military hardware. One of Norinco's factories has been making copies of the American M14 rifle for export for some time, although they are not seen in the United States because Chinese rifle imports are prohibited. Canada has no such restriction, however, and because Canadian law specifically bans most other 7.62mm NATO semiauto rifles by name, the Norinco M14s (formally designated the M305) have become very popular there, in both original 22" and shortened 18.5" barrel lengths.

Just recently, the factory added another variation of the rifle - a conversion to 7.62x39mm, using AK magazines, called the M305A. This appears to have been a remarkably simply conversion, as the AK mag fits nicely into the receiver with only a minor change to the magazine support well in the stock. Sure, some might ask why one would want an M14 in 7.62x39...but those people are clearly not familiar with the firearms market. These smaller-caliber rifles are quite pleasant to shoot, and use much cheaper ammunition as well. They are substantially heavier than comparable rifles like the SKS, but have nicer aperture sights.

Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot one of the M305A rifles! Visit them at: http://marstar.ca

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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MP-40/I: The Dual-Magazine Experimental MP-40
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 23, 2017
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The MP40/I was an experimental modification of the MP-40 submachine gun developed by the Erma company (we think) in late 1942. It was presumably developed in response to complaints of Soviet fire superiority with SMGs because of their large drum magazines (and also the larger number of SMGs used by the Soviet forces compared to German units).

The concept is a pretty simple one - the regular magazine housing was replaced by a much wider housing with a sliding block that held two separate standard magazines. One of the two magazines would always be positioned where it could feed and fire, and when that magazine was empty the shooter could simply slide the block to one side and move the second (still full) magazine into position to fire. The prevented the need to fish around in a slow magazine pouch to find a new magazine when a reload was needed.

However, there were several disadvantages to the dual magazine system. For one thing, an MP-40 with two full magazines hanging off it becomes quite the heavy and poorly-balanced weapon to handle and carry. The additional open areas required for the sliding block were much more prone to gather dirt and foul than the standard gun, and the extra weight on the relatively thin receiver tube often contributed to creases or other damage to the magazine well and ejection port areas of the gun, rendering them unusable.

Only a small number of these guns were ever made (around the middle of 1943), and very very few survive today. They were originally matched to the serial number of the base gun, but this example is mismatched (although the magazine itself is authentic and original).

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Finnish Armor Parade - WW2 through to Today
InRangeTV


Published on Sep 23, 2017
We hope you enjoy this parade of Finnish military armor and vehicles from WW2 through to today.

We'd like to thank our friends at Varusteleka for bringing us out to this!

Check them out if you need any cool stuff, seriously, they have all the cool stuff:
https://www.varusteleka.com/en
 

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MAS-36: The Backup Rifle is Called to Action
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 25, 2017
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There is a common assumption that the MAS-36 was a fool's errand from the outset - why would a country develop a brand new bolt action rifle in the mid 1930s, when obviously semiautomatic combat rifles were just on the cusp of widespread adoption? Well, the answer is a simple one - the French were developing a semiautomatic rifle at the same time, and the MAS-36 was only intended to go to rear echelon and reserve troops. It would serve as a measure of economy, reducing the number of the more complex and expensive self-loaders necessary, while still providing sufficient arms to equip the whole reserve in case of a mobilization.

Well, the plan didn't quite work out that way, because Germany invaded France before the semiauto rifle was ready for production (it was, at that point, the MAS-40 and was in trials). Not until 1949 would the self-loader go into mass production with the MAS-49 (discounting the short-lived MAS-44). With this in mind, the MAS-36 suddenly makes much more sense. It is a simple, economical, and entirely adequate rifle without extraneous niceties. In a word, it is a Russian rifle rather than a Swiss one.

Production began in the fall of 1937, and by the time of the German invasion there were about 205,000 in French stockpiles. They saw extensive use in the Battle of France, along with M34 Berthiers in 7.5x54mm. Some would escape to serve the Free French forces worldwide through the war, and others would be captured and used by German garrisons in France and along the Atlantic Wall. Production resumed upon the liberation of St Etienne in 1944, and by 1957 about 1.1 million had been made. They basically fall into two varieties, with several pre-war milled components changed to more economical stamped designs after the war.
 

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Prarie Gun Works Timberwolf: British Trials Sniper Rifle
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 26, 2017
Armament Research Services (ARES) is a specialist technical intelligence consultancy, offering expertise and analysis to a range of government and non-government entities in the arms and munitions field. For detailed photos of the guns in this video, don't miss the ARES companion blog post:

http://armamentresearch.com/

The Timberwolf is a bolt action precision rifle made by Prarie Gun Works of Manitoba, Canada. It was initially made as a commercial rifle in a number of different calibers, and in 2001 it won Canadian trials to become the C14 Timberwolf Medium Range Sniper Weapon System (replacing the C3A1 Parker-Hale 7.62 NATO rifle previously used in that role).

The Timberwolf was also tested by the British military, and the one we have in today's video (courtesy of the Shrivenham Defense Academy) is serial number UK001; the British trials rifle. It was not adopted, and the British opted to continue using Accuracy International bolt action rifles for its snipers.

In both the Canadian issue configuration and the British trials version, the rifle is chambered for the .338 Lapua Magnum cartridge, allowing a longer supersonic range than 7.62mm NATO.
 

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Prototype Gustloff MKb-42(G) aka Model 206
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 27, 2017
This is a reposting of a video from September 2016 with a new introduction. The recent publication of the new and expanded edition of Hans-Dieter Handrich's book "Sturmgewehr!" has revealed new information about the history of this rifle which I wanted to put into the video.

For the record, this rifle sold for $63,250 back in September 2016:
http://www.rockislandauction.com/view...

German arms development during World War II was quite the chaotic mess, in many ways. This Gustloff rifle program was initialed after a June 1942 meeting at which Hitler authorized continued development of the Maschinen Karabiner concept on the condition that it was done with the 8x57mm cartridge. Of course, this was doomed to failure, because the concept required easily controllable fully automatic fire from the shoulder, which was simply not possible with 8x57mm. However, the program to develop a stamped, select-fire MKb was contracted to the Gustloff firm anyway.

There were several reason why this was done. First, it would give cover to the continued 8x33 MKb-42(H) development since a rifle-caliber weapon was also now in development. Second, when it inevitably performed poorly at accuracy trials, it would make the 8x33 rifles look good by comparison. Third, by giving the well-connected Gustloff company a development contract, it would relieve some political pressure on the ordnance department. The expected trials never happened, though, because by January of 1943 it was clear that the rifle would take far too long to have ready for production, and the program was cancelled.

Two versions of the weapon were made by Gustloff, refered to by the company as the model 206 (semiauto only) and 208 (selective fire). they were largely sheet metal rifles with a gas piston operating systems and an unusual vertically traveling locking block, akin to the Type 94 Nambu and Bergmann 1910 (as well as the much more recent Arsenal Strike One). They were fed from MG-13 box magazines - cut down from 25 rounds to 10 rounds capacity on this example.

For more information on the development and context of the Sturmgewehr rifles, I highly recommend "Sturmgewehr! From Firepower to Striking Power" by Hans-Dieter Handrich: http://www.collectorgrade.com/bookshe...
 

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MAS-36 LG48: A Grenade Launcher for the Bolt Action Infantry
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 28, 2017
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Once it became apparent that the MAS-36 was going to be used in a substantial amount of frontline combat (to the contrary of its intended role as a reserve or secondary rifle), it became important to provide it with grenade launching capability. The French military really liked rifle grenades as a way to have explosive support firepower always available with the frontline infantry, without needing to call for specialized units like mortar crews.

After various experiments with clamp-on launchers (like and including the WW1 VB launcher), the LG48 (lance grenade, or grenade throwing) rifle was adopted in 1948. It used the same basic projectile as the Mle 1937 50mm light mortar, but with a new tail assembly fitted which allowed it to slide over the muzzle of a MAS-36 rifle. The LG48 rifle was essentially just a MAS-36 with a new nosecap assembly which included a simple grenade sight and a range-setting adjustable sleeve over the barrel.

The LG48 pattern rifles were made both brand new in the St Etienne factory and also supplied as conversion kits to be applied in the field. Neither type ever received new or special markings to identify their grenade launching status. The Mle 1948 grenades and the LG48 rifles were declared obsolete in 1968, as the French had switched to the NATO standard type of rifle grenades in the early 1950s. In 1968 the existing rifles were ordered to be retrofitted back to standard MAS-36 pattern, and their lack of special markings makes those retrofitted rifles virtually indistinguishable from original MAS-36 rifles. The surviving examples, like the one in this video, are almost all from nations which received the rifles as military aid from France and were not subject tot he French retrofitting order (this particular rifle was imported as part of a batch from Lebanon in the 1990s).
 

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SPAS-12 Overview and History
MarksmanTV


Published on Sep 28, 2017
This is a video overview and table-top review of the Franchi Spas-12. I move through a historical overview of the gun and then talk about different variations through different importation bans etc. Also, I will do a technical demonstration and disassembly of the shotgun. Enjoy!

www.spas-12.com
www.cheapgunsusa.com
 

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Sudayev's PPS-43: Submachine Gun Simplicity Perfected
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Aug 31, 2017
https://www.rockislandauction.com/det...

The PPS-43, designed by Alexei Sudayev based on a previous submachine gun design by I.K. Bezruchko-Vysotsky, was the Soviet replacement for the PPSh-41. The Shpagin submachine gun was a very effective combat weapon, but was time-consuming to produce and required specialized manufacturing tools. The Soviet military wanted a weapon that was cheaper and faster to make, and which could be produced at small shops not experienced in firearms production. The Sudayev design fit these criteria extremely well, being made almost entirely of simple bent mates components.

Production of the first prototype Sudayev submachine guns begin in 1942 in the besieged city of Leningrad, where guns were quite literally taken from the factory door to the front lines and put into service. A few minor flaws were discovered and corrected, and by the time the siege was broken the gun was suitable for mass production. It was designated the PPS-43, and while it was theoretically a replacement for the PPSh-41, it never did actually replace the former weapon. It was decided to continue PPSh-41 production in the factories already tooled up for it, while making use of the PPS-43’s simplicity to put it into production as a range of new factories that did not have the technical capacity to make more complex weapons.

Mechanically, the PPS-43 was a simple blowback gun, using basically the same conceptual operating system as the PPSH-41. However, Sudayev resolved the most significant practical problem with the PPSH-41 by abandoning its unreliable drums and developing his own new double stack, double feed 35-round box magazine. The PPS-43 magazine is simpler to load, more reliable in used, and much smoother to insert and remove from the weapon that then PPSh magazines. The improvement was substantial enough to justify the use of different and incompatible magazines in the two guns. In conjunction with the discarding of the drum magazine, Sudayev also designed his gun to have a lower rate of fire than the PPSh, to better manage ammunition supply. However, the roughly 600 rpm rate of the PPS-43 is actually relatively difficult to control in that light weapon, where the PPSh-41 was substantially smoother shooting despite (or perhaps because of) firing faster.
There was an importer that resold the semiauto version that still shot Tokarev and were using slightly thinner stock, but they had a reputation of jamming occasionally. The price was < $400 with several mags and cleaning kit and the stock was welded closed for ATF purposes. A 9mm was also offered for around $450.

I would love to buy a full-auto version. I like the durability and simplicity and do not need super smooth action which usually is not as reliable in battle.
 

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Yugoslav M84 PKM: History, Mechanics, and Disassembly
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 29, 2017
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The PK machine gun was developed by Mikhail Kalashnikov's engineering team right about the time they were putting the finishing touches on the AKM. The PK is in many ways an AK rifle action enlarged, flipped upside-down, and mated with a belt feed mechanism. It uses the same belt design as the previous Soviet 7.62x54R machine guns (the Maxim, SG43, and RP46).

The PK was improved in a few relatively minor ways to become the PKM, and the Yugoslav military put it into production in 1984. The weapon is rugged, reliable, relatively lightweight, and arguably the best universal machine gun design ever produced.

Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot their M84! Visit them at: http://marstar.ca
 

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Rare Weapons - Tipo Terni M1921 - First Italian Assault Rifle ?
jmantime


Published on Sep 29, 2017
Sources :
First Italian Assault Rifle – TIPO TERNI Model 1921
The TIPO TERNI Model 1921 also known as Moschetto Automatico per Fanteria Modelo 1921. Was an Italian Assault Rifle designed by in 1921,, it was chambered in 7.35x34mm Intermediate Ammunition.
http://iaaforum.org/forum3/viewtopic....
Terni Mod.21 from 1921 - http://iaaforum.org/forum3/viewtopic....
http://miles.forumcommunity.net/?t=55...
 

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Shooting the Yugoslav M84 PKM: Arguably the Best GPMG
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Sep 30, 2017
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If I could have any one machine gun (but only one), it would be a PKM - in my experience thus far, this is the best universal machine gun that has been designed. Kalashnikov's design team took the lessons of the MG42 and created a machine gun that does an excellent job of balancing the capabilities and costs of the concept.

The PKM is easily controllable despite being relatively light weight. It can fit optical sights, but has rugged and quite adequate iron sights. It uses a rugged and dependable belt design (although it might be nice to have the belt made in detachable segments). It is quick and easy to strip and clean, and it rugged and durable. It is pretty well sealed against ingress of dirt and grit. It has a sufficiently solid and dependable bipod. Designing a combat weapon is not a search for perfection in any single element, it is a search for balance among competing and mutually opposing characteristics, and the PKM is and excellent example of this.

One interesting thing to watch in the high speed footage is the sheer volume or flapping and wobbling bits - between the tangent leaf sight, the barrel, and three separate sheet metal dust covers, the gun looks like it is made of jello!

Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot their M84! Visit them at: http://marstar.ca

If you enjoy Forgotten Weapons, check out its sister channel, InRangeTV! http://www.youtube.com/InRangeTVShow
 

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Phillips & Rodgers M47 Medusa: Multicaliber Revolver for a Nonexistent Apocalypse
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Oct 2, 2017
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The Phillips & Rodgers M47 Medusa is a mechanically very interesting firearm; a revolver that can chamber basically any cartridge with a 9mm bullet diameter and an overall length no longer than a .357 Magnum. This is made possible because a revolver does not have the headspace requirements of a semiautomatic handgun, and the barrel doesn't know one type of bullet form another, so long as they are not larger than the bore diameter.

What makes it difficult, is finding a way to hold a variety of different cartridges properly in position for reliable firing and extraction. Jonathan Phillips solved this problem with his 1995 patent for the extractor mechanism that is the fundamental heart of the Medusa revolver. It uses long flexible fingers which snap into the extractor grooves on rimless cartridges or can be depressed down away from the cases of rimmed cartridges. These fingers allow proper indexing of virtually any cartridge that will physically fit. They are, however, also the weak point of the gun, as they are pretty much the only fragile component, and since the company quickly went out of business, replacements are completely unavailable.

In my shooting, I used .357 Magnum, .38 S&W, .380 Automatic, 9x20mm Browning Long, 9x19 Parabellum, 9mm Largo, 7.62mm Tokarev , and .32ACP. The last two obviously did not engage the rifleing as they are substantially smaller than the bore, but the fire safely regardless.

For a more detailed look at the history of the Medusa, I recommend this article by AirborneCombatEngineer: http://airbornecombatengineer.typepad...
 

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British "Life Buoy" WWII Flamethrower
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Oct 3, 2017
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One of the the flamethrower design styles to come out of experimentation late in World War One was the toroid type, with a donut-shaped fuel tank and a central spherical pressure bottle. The British continued development on this type of weapon between the wars, and used it in World War Two. While the early models used a hydrogen spark ignition system, this was replaced in 1942 by a cartridge flare system like the US and Japanese models.

The tank on this example is a fiberglass one, and very lightweight. This was introduced after World War Two, and this one is an experimental model.

Armament Research Services (ARES) is a specialist technical intelligence consultancy, offering expertise and analysis to a range of government and non-government entities in the arms and munitions field. For detailed photos of the guns in this video, don't miss the ARES companion blog post:

http://armamentresearch.com/
 

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Kurdish 12.7mm Zagros and 14.5mm Şer Anti-Materiel Rifles
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Oct 4, 2017
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Thanks to correspondent Ed Nash (he gave me permission to use his name after I had recorded the video), I have a number of really interesting photos and video clips of YPG (Kurdish) locally-produced anti-materiel rifles. Specifically, the Zagros 12.7mm rifle and the Şer Portative 14.5mm rifle. Both are made on a small serial production scale by the YPG using barrels from DShK and KPV machine guns. Tubular receivers and bolts are fitted to them, making effective single-shot rifles.

These photos are from the fall of 2015 and the summer of 2016. I am told that both types of gun were reliable and effective, and used substantially in combat against ISIS/Daesh, with their necessity decreasing after the YPG began receiving more air support from United States forces. These were not sniping rifles so much as anti-material rifle, used against walls, light armored vehicles (including VBIEDs), and other sorts of cover.

For more information on craft-built anti-materiel rifles, check these two posts:

http://armamentresearch.com/craft-pro...

http://armamentresearch.com/syrian-re...

When the full ARES report on craft-produced and improvised weapons is published, it will be linked here.
 

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Colt Monitor: The First Official FBI Fighting Rifle
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Oct 5, 2017
https://jamesdjulia.com/item/52517-6-...

The Colt Monitor was Colt’s improved version os the Browning Automatic Rifle intended for the law enforcement market. Colt had the sales rights to the BAR in North and South American (as well as a few other specific countries), and they worked on improving the design after World War One. In 1925 they introduced the R75, which was a military version of the gun with a bipod, pistol grip, dust covers, and a few other improvements. This was joined in 1931 by the R80, a law enforcement version also called the Monitor.

The Monitor featured a shortened (18”) and lightened barrel, no dust covers, a pistol grip, and a large Cutts Compensator muzzle brake. It was targeted at police agencies which had experienced problems with Thompson submachine guns failing to penetrate the heavy steel panels of large automobiles - the .30-06 cartridge had no problem at all dealing with cars in the 1930s.

In 1933 the gun was formally designated the FBI’s official Fighting Rifle, but the agency only purchased about 90 of the guns in total. Another 20 or so were sold to other police agencies, but at $300 (roughly $5500 in 2017 dollars) the Monitor was simply too expensive for most depression-era agencies to justify or afford. Less than 125 were made in total.

This particular example was owned by the late Jim Ballou, author of the Collector Grade book “Rock in a Hard Place” about the BAR, and has a couple non-original markings added by him. It is, however, one of very few fully transferrable Colt Monitors on the NFA registry.
 

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Really Not an M16 at All: Colt's M231 Port Firing Weapon
Forgotten Weapons


Published on Oct 6, 2017
https://jamesdjulia.com/item/52608-1-...

The M231 Port Firing Weapons was developed in the 1970s as a part of the M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicle Project. A modern relative of the WW2 Krummlauf, the weapon was intended to provide close-in firepower against infantry that might attempt to overrun the M2. It has no sights or buttstock, and fires from an open bolt only as 1100-1200 rounds/minute. It is intended to be used with M196 tracer ammunition to aim. Early versions were issued with rudimentary sights and a wire collapsing stock (akin to that of an M3A1 Grease Gun), but the weapon proved so difficult to control from the shoulder that the stocks were discarded and policy changed to dictate that the guns never be removed form the Bradleys.

The unique fitting on the front of the hand guard is a coarse thread to screw the gun into the Bradley’s firing port sockets. The fire control system is entirely different form a standard M16, with the hammer being removed entirely in favor of a submachine gun like dropping sear. The recoil system was also completely changed, and in the M231 consists of simply three separate recoil springs nested inside one another.
 

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Remington Rolling Block Range 2
hickok45


Published on Oct 5, 2017
Enjoying the single shot Rolling Block over on Range 2.