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Encyclopedia > Machine gun
A .50 caliber M2 machine gun surrounded by spent shell casings: John Browning's design has been one of the longest serving and successful machine gun designs
A .50 caliber M2 machine gun surrounded by spent shell casings: John Browning's design has been one of the longest serving and successful machine gun designs
An illustration of later model 19th century Gatling gun. It was a multi-barreled rotary machine gun fired via a manual crank, which mechanically loaded and primed cartridges from the hopper above the gun
A modern image of an 1895 tripod-mounted, .303 caliber Maxim machine gun. The original Maxim of the 1880s was the first fully automatic machine gun, as well as using a belt of linked ammunition rather than a hopper
A modern image of an 1895 tripod-mounted, .303 caliber Maxim machine gun. The original Maxim of the 1880s was the first fully automatic machine gun, as well as using a belt of linked ammunition rather than a hopper
For other uses of the phrase, see Machine gun (disambiguation).

A machine gun is a fully-automatic mounted or portable firearm, usually designed to fire rifle cartridges in quick succession from an ammunition belt or large-capacity magazine, typically at a rate of several hundred rounds per minute. The first machine guns were manually operated, for example, by turning a hand crank. Image File history File links An M2 machine gun, public domain photo from [1] File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links An M2 machine gun, public domain photo from [1] File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... .50 BMG rounds and 20MM Vulcan round, with a golf ball and a stick of RAM posed to provide scale. ... This article is about the . ... John Moses Browning (January 21[1] or January 23,[2] 1855 – November 26, 1926), born in Ogden, Utah, was an American firearms designer who developed myriad varieties of weapons, cartridges, and gun mechanics, many of which are still in use around the world. ... Gatling gun from an 1885 Swedish encyclopedia (http://www. ... Gatling gun from an 1885 Swedish encyclopedia (http://www. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1500x1225, 238 KB) A photograph of a British 1895 . ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1500x1225, 238 KB) A photograph of a British 1895 . ... .303 cartridge The . ... Machine gun could refer to: The weapon; see machine gun. ... M2 Browning machine gun An automatic firearm is a firearm that automatically extracts and ejects the fired cartridge case, and loads a new case, usually through the energy of the fired round. ... Firearms redirects here. ... Left to Right: .17 HM2, .17 HMR, .22LR, .22 WMR, .17 SMc, 5mm/35 SMc, .22 Hornet, .223 Remington, .223 WSSM, .243 Winchester, .243 Winchester Improved (Ackley), .25-06, .270 Winchester, .308, .30-06, .45-70 Govt, .50-90 Sharps From left to right: .50 BMG, 300 Win Mag, .308... A disintegrating belt feeding into an M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, from a United States Army training manual A non-disintegrating belt feeding into a . ... A 30-round STANAG magazine. ...


In United States law, machine gun is a term of art for any fully-automatic firearm, and also for any component or part that will modify an existing firearm into a fully-automatic firearm.[1] In the United States of America, the protection against infringement of the right to bear arms is addressed in the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. ... Technical terminology is the specialised vocabulary of a profession or of some other activity to which a group of people dedicate significant parts of their lives (for instance, hobbies or a particular segment of industry). ...

Contents

Operating Principles

There have been two main machine gun eras: the era of manual machine guns and the era of automatic machine guns. The technical development itself is marked by a series of developments of specific automatic features, as well as technical developments (such as linked ammunition). The era of manual multi-shot devices extends back hundreds of years (such as manual volley guns), but the development of manual and automatic machine guns takes place almost entirely in the latter half of the 1800s. Manual machine guns are manually-powered, e.g., a crank must be turned to power reloading and firing, as opposed to simply holding down a trigger, as with automatic machine guns. There are many other notable features, but this is one of the most significant to allowing higher rates of fire common to machine guns. A crank is a bent portion of an axle, or shaft, or an arm keyed at right angles to the end of a shaft, by which motion is imparted to or received from it; also used to change circular into reciprocating motion, or reciprocating into circular motion. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Manual machine guns, as well as manual volley guns, saw their first major use in the American Civil War. The Gatling gun and "coffee gun" both used manually-powered automatic loading, fed via a hopper filled with cartridges. The Gatling gun would be the major type of the late 19th century, though there were many other manual designs with varying degrees of use (e.g. the Nordenfelt machine gun). The first automatic machine gun was the recoil-operated Maxim gun, which used linked (belt) ammunition, as well as a single barrel and automatic loading. This concept of using bullet energy would also drive the development of nearly all other semi and fully automatic firearms of 20th century. Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... An 1865 Gatling gun. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Recoil operation is a type of locked-breech firearm actions used in automatic firearms. ... An early Maxim gun in operation with the Royal Navy 1895 . ... Walther P99, a semi-automatic pistol from the late 1990s A semi-automatic firearm is a gun that requires only a trigger pull for each round that is fired, unlike a single-action revolver, a pump-action firearm, a bolt-action firearm, or a lever-action firearm, which require the...


The two major operation systems of modern automatic machine guns are gas operation and recoil operation. As the name implies, the gas operated system uses the gas generated from the burning powder to cycle the action, whereas the recoil operated uses the recoil generated from the ejecting bullet. The first gas-operated machine gun was the Colt-Browning M1895.[2] The gas-operated system for implementing automatic reloading of a firearm is one of five such systems, the others being recoil-operated, gatling, chain, and blowback. ... Polish soldiers with the M1895/M1914 The Colt-Browning M1895 was one of the first successful gas operated machine guns designed by John Moses Browning. ...


Another (minor) type is the externally-powered machine gun. Rather than human manual power or energy generated by the cartridge, an external source such as an electric motor is used. These types are now called by more specific names such as Minigun and Chain gun. They are common on fighting aircraft and ground vehicles, where the externally powered mechanism allows for automatic clearing of many failure conditions that would otherwise disable the firearm. A helicopter-mounted minigun operating during the Vietnam War The Minigun is a multibarreled machine gun with a high rate of fire (several thousand rounds per minute), employing Gatling-style rotating barrels and employing an external power source. ... The M242 25mm Chain gun A chain gun is a type of machine gun or autocannon that uses an external source of power, rather than recoil, to cycle the weapon. ...


Caliber Overview

Machine guns are generally categorized machine guns and autocannons. The separation takes place by caliber at about 20mm, with the larger-caliber guns being referred to as autocannons. M242 Bushmaster autocannon on an M2 Bradley. ... Calibre redirects here. ...


Another factor is whether the gun fires conventional rounds or explosive rounds. Guns firing large-caliber explosive rounds are generally either autocannons or automatic grenade launchers ("grenade machine guns"). Machine guns tend to share a very high ratio of barrel length to caliber (a long barrel for a small caliber). This article is concerned solely with chemical explosives. ... M242 Bushmaster autocannon on an M2 Bradley. ... A grenade launcher is a weapon that fires, or launches a grenade. ...


Overview of modern automatic machine guns

Jędrusie Polish underground group firing a belt-fed water-cooled automatic machine gun- a Browning M1917 clone
Jędrusie Polish underground group firing a belt-fed water-cooled automatic machine gun- a Browning M1917 clone

Unlike semi-automatic firearms, which require one trigger pull per bullet fired, a machine gun is designed to fire bullets as long as the trigger is held down and ammunition is fed into the weapon. Although the term "machine gun" is often used by civilians to describe all fully automatic weapons, in military usage the term is restricted to relatively heavy weapons fired from some sort of support rather than hand-held, able to provide continuous or frequent bursts of automatic fire for as long as ammunition lasts. Machine guns are normally used against unprotected or lightly-protected personnel, or to provide suppressive fire. Image File history File links Jędrusie, an armed resistance unit formed by Władysław Jasiński in the area of Sandomierz File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Jędrusie, an armed resistance unit formed by Władysław Jasiński in the area of Sandomierz File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... A polish underground group during WW2. ... The Browning Model 1917 Machine Gun is a heavy machine gun used by the United States armed forces in World War I, World War II, Korea, and to a limited amount in Vietnam and by other nations. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution‎ (3,072 × 2,304 pixels, file size: 2. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution‎ (3,072 × 2,304 pixels, file size: 2. ... An 1865 Gatling gun. ... Seal of the Air Force. ... The A-10 Thunderbolt II is a single-seat, twin-engine jet aircraft developed by Fairchild-Republic for the United States Air Force to provide close air support (CAS) of ground forces by attacking tanks, armored vehicles, and other ground targets, also providing a limited air interdiction role. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Walther P99, a semi-automatic pistol from the late 1990s A semi-automatic firearm is a gun that requires only a trigger pull for each round that is fired, unlike a single-action revolver, a pump-action firearm, a bolt-action firearm, or a lever-action firearm, which require the... It has been suggested that Spray and pray be merged into this article or section. ...


Some machine guns have in practice maintained suppressive fire almost continuously for hours; other automatic weapons overheat after less than a minute of use. Because they become very hot, practically all machine guns fire from an open bolt, to permit air cooling from the breech between bursts. They also have either a barrel cooling system, or removable barrels which allow a hot barrel to be replaced. A semi or fully-automatic firearm which is said to fire from an open bolt is one where, when ready to fire, the bolt and working parts are held to the rear. ... Breech from Russian 122 mm M1910 howitzer, modified and combined with 105mm H37 howitzer barrel An interrupted screw style breech plug in the M109 howitzer An animation showing the loading cycle for a large naval breech-loader. ...


Although subdivided into "light", "medium", "heavy" or "general purpose", even the lightest machine guns tend to be substantially larger and heavier than other automatic weapons. Squad automatic weapons (SAWs) are a variation of light machine gun and only require one operator (sometimes with an assistant to carry ammunition). Medium and heavy machine guns are either mounted on a tripod or on a vehicle; when carried on foot, the machine gun and associated equipment (tripod, ammunition, spare barrels) require additional crew members. The M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, one of the most popular modern 5. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The M2 machine gun with a tripod weighs 58 kg (128 lb). ... The MG 34 - the first Universelles Maschinengewehr forerunner of the modern GPMG, shown here in two different mountings. ... A squad automatic weapon (SAW) is a light or general-purpose machine gun, usually equipped with a bipod and firing a 7. ... The M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, one of the most popular modern 5. ... Look up tripod in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


The majority of machine guns are belt-fed, although some light machine guns are fed from drum or box magazines, and some vehicle-mounted machine guns are hopper-fed. A disintegrating belt feeding into an M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, from a United States Army training manual A non-disintegrating belt feeding into a . ... A drum magazine. ... A 30-round STANAG magazine. ...


Other automatic weapons are subdivided into several categories based on the size of the bullet used, and whether the cartridge is fired from a positively locked closed bolt, or a non-positively locked open bolt. Fully automatic firearms using pistol-caliber ammunition are called machine pistols or submachine guns largely on the basis of size. Selective fire rifles firing a full-power rifle cartridge from a closed bolt are called automatic rifles, while those using a reduced-power rifle cartridge are called assault rifles. This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... A semi or fully_automatic firearm which is said to fire from a closed bolt is one where, when ready to fire, a round is in the chamber and the bolt and working parts are forward. ... A semi or fully-automatic firearm which is said to fire from an open bolt is one where, when ready to fire, the bolt and working parts are held to the rear. ... A machine pistol shares several properties of the semi-automatic handgun and the sub-machine gun. ... The MP5 is a third-generation submachine gun that is widely used by law enforcement tactical teams and military forces. ... A selective fire weapon can be fired in either of at least two modes, depending on the position of the selector switch. ... Heckler & Koch G41 automatic rifles are legal in asutralia an america with lisence An automatic rifle is a term generally used to describe a self-loading rifle capable of firing either semi or fully-automatically from a magazine or belt of ammunition. ... The AK-47 is the worlds most common assault rifle. ...


Assault rifles are a compromise between the pistol-caliber submachine gun and a traditional rifle firing a full-power cartridge, allowing semi-automatic, burst and full-automatic fire options (selective fire). The modern legal definition of "assault rifle" is of significance in states like California, where according to state law, certain short, small-caliber, semi-automatic weapons are categorized as "assault weapons", which were also made illegal by civilians to acquire or own. Supporters of gun rights generally consider the use of the phrase "assault weapon" to be pejorative when used to describe these civilian firearms, and this term is seldom used outside of the United States in this context. The AK-47 is the worlds most common assault rifle. ... This article is about the U.S. state. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ...


The machine gun's primary role in modern ground combat is to provide suppressive fire on an opposing force's position, forcing the enemy to take cover and reducing the effectiveness of his fire[citation needed]. This either halts an enemy attack or allows friendly forces to attack enemy positions with less risk. It has been suggested that Spray and pray be merged into this article or section. ...


Light machine guns usually have simple iron sights. A common aiming system is to alternate solid ("ball") rounds and tracer ammunition rounds (usually one tracer round for every four ball rounds), so shooters can see the trajectory and "walk" the fire into the target, and direct the fire of other soldiers. Tracers from M16 rifles on U.S. Army firing range Tracer ammunition (tracers) use special bullets that are modified to accept a small pyrotechnic charge in their base. ... This article is about a military rank. ...


Many heavy machine guns, such as the Browning M2 .50 caliber machine gun, are accurate enough to engage targets at great distances. During the Vietnam War, Carlos Hathcock set the record for a long-distance shot at 7382 ft (2250 m) with a .50 caliber heavy machine gun he had equipped with a telescopic sight[3]. This led to the introduction of .50 caliber anti-material sniper rifles, such as the Barrett M82. The M2 machine gun with a tripod weighs 58 kg (128 lb). ... This article is about the . ... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000... Gunnery Sergeant Carlos Norman Hathcock II (May 20, 1942 – February 23, 1999) was a United States Marine Corps sniper with a service record of 93 confirmed kills and more than 300 probable kills during the Vietnam War. ... View through a 4x rifle scope A telescopic sight, commonly referred to as a scope, is a device used to give an accurate point of aim for a firearm. ... The M40, United States Marine Corps standard-issue sniper rifle. ... For the assault rifle, see Valmet M82. ...


Components

All machine guns require the following components:

  1. A feed system to load the chamber. Cartridges can be fed into the chamber by a variety of methods, the most common being magazines or ammunition belts.
  2. A trigger mechanism to fire the round. This includes the actual trigger, a trigger sear to catch the bolt, a bolt and a firing pin, as well as other components. Typically, the act of pulling the trigger causes something to strike the primer on the round in the chamber and disengages the sears. This allows continual cycling of the bolt until the trigger is released. A sear then grabs the bolt or firing pins. This stops the machine gun at some point in its cycle.
  3. An extractor system to eject the spent or misfired cartridge. Usually this is fairly simple. A pin on the side of the bolt catches a ridge on the cartridge and flicks it out an ejection port.

These components form a mechanism which must be powered. If powered by absorbing the recoil of a cartridge, it is called recoil-operated. If powered by the expanding gases of a fired cartridge, it is called gas actuated. If powered by an external force, such as a motor, it is usually called a chain gun. In a firearm, the sear is the component of the trigger group which resists pressure on the trigger. ... An early naval cannon design, allowing the gun to roll backwards a small distance when firing The recoil when firing a gun is the backward momentum of a gun, which is equal to the forward momentum of the bullet or shell, due to conservation of momentum. ... The gas-actuated system for implementing automatic reloading of a firearm is one of three such systems, the others being recoil-actuated and blowback. ... The M242 25mm Chain gun A chain gun is a type of machine gun or autocannon that uses an external source of power, rather than recoil, to cycle the weapon. ...


Operation

An M60 machine gun aboard a Navy patrol craft. The USS Constellation (CV-64) in the distance; July 2002
An M60 machine gun aboard a Navy patrol craft. The USS Constellation (CV-64) in the distance; July 2002

All machine guns follow a cycle: Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2000x1312, 1176 KB)020725-N-5232L-002 San Diego, CA (Jul. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2000x1312, 1176 KB)020725-N-5232L-002 San Diego, CA (Jul. ... For other uses, see M60. ... USS Constellation (CV-64), a Kitty Hawk-class supercarrier, was the third ship of the United States Navy to be named in honor of the new constellation of stars on the flag of the United States. ...

  • Removing the spent cartridge through an ejection port.
  • Cocking the trigger mechanism so the weapon can be fired again.
  • Loading the next round into the firing chamber. Usually spring tension or a cam forces the new round and bolt back into the firing chamber.

A mechanism makes the firing pin fire the cartridge, activating the ejection and reloading steps. The cycle repeats. This full cycle takes a fraction of a second and can thus occur many times per second. The operation is basically the same, regardless of the means of activating these mechanisms. Some examples: For other uses, see Spring. ... For other uses, see CAM. Animation showing rotating cams and cam followers producing reciprocating motion. ...

  • Most assault rifles and squad automatic weapons are gas operated. Some weapons, such as the AR-15/M16, integrate the piston with the bolt. Others, such as the AR-18 and AK patterns, attach the piston to a bolt carrier that unlocks and operates the bolt.
  • A recoil actuated machine gun uses the recoil to first unlock and then operate the action. Heavy machine guns, such as the M2 .50 and Browning .50, are of this type. These can be recognized by a large cocking lever needed to feed the first round.
  • An externally actuated machine gun uses an external power source, such as an electric motor or even a hand crank to move its mechanism through the firing sequence. Most modern weapons of this type are called chain guns in reference to their driving mechanism. Gatling guns and revolver cannon have several barrels or chambers on a rotating carousel and a system of cams that load, cock, and fire each mechanism progressively as it rotates through the sequence. The continuous nature of the rotary action allows for an incredibly high cyclic rate of fire, often several thousand rounds per minute. Not all chain guns use multiple barrels or chambers, though. Chain guns are less prone to jamming than a gun operated by gas or recoil, as the external power source will eject misfired rounds with no further trouble. This is not possible if the force needed to eject the round comes from the round itself. Chain guns are generally used with large shells, 20 mm in diameter or more, though some, such as the M134 minigun, fire smaller cartridges. They offer benefits of reliability and firepower, though the weight and size of the power source and driving mechanism makes them impractical for use outside of a vehicle or aircraft mount.

Heavy machine guns are often water cooled or have interchangeable barrels, which must be changed periodically to avoid overheating. The higher the rate of fire, the more often barrels must be changed and allowed to cool. To minimize this, most air-cooled guns are fired only in short bursts or at a reduced rate of fire. The MP5 is a third-generation submachine gun that is widely used by law enforcement tactical teams and military forces. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... The M3 Grease Gun (more formally United States Submachine Gun, Cal. ... The Military Armament Corporation Model 10 or MAC-10 is a blowback-operated select-fire submachine gun (more specifically a machine pistol) developed by Gordon B. Ingram in 1964. ... Look up uzi in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Blowback is a system in which automatic or semi-automatic firearms operate through the energy created by combustion in the chamber and bore acting directly on the bolt face through the cartridge. ... The AK-47 is the worlds most common assault rifle. ... A squad automatic weapon (SAW) is a light or general-purpose machine gun, usually equipped with a bipod and firing a 7. ... Gas-operated firearm. ... The AR-15 is a lightweight, air-cooled, magazine fed, autoloading, centerfire rifle. ... M16 (more formally United States Rifle, Caliber 5. ... The AR-18 is an assault rifle chambered for 5. ... Avtomat Kalashnikova model 1947 g. ... Recoil operation is a type of locked-breech firearm actions used in automatic firearms. ... An early naval cannon design, allowing the gun to roll backwards a small distance when firing The recoil when firing a gun is the backward momentum of a gun, which is equal to the forward momentum of the bullet or shell, due to conservation of momentum. ... This article is about the . ... Browning Arms Company was founded in Utah in 1927. ... The M242 25mm Chain gun A chain gun is a type of machine gun or autocannon that uses an external source of power, rather than recoil, to cycle the weapon. ... An 1865 Gatling gun. ... A revolver cannon is a type of autocannon. ... A minigun The M134 is a minigun manufactured by General Electric. ... Watercooling is a method of heat removal from components. ...


Not all machine guns strike the primer in the same way. In blowback machine guns, the act of seating the round also fires the round. In gas operated and recoil-operated guns, a separate step in the firing sequence is needed to strike the round. In a progressive-fire gun, the firing pin is cycled by cams. In some automatic cannon, the primer is fired electrically.

U.S. Marines and their M240G at Camp Hansen, Okinawa
U.S. Marines and their M240G at Camp Hansen, Okinawa

In weapons where the round seats and fires at the same time, mechanical timing is essential for operator safety, to prevent the round from firing before it is seated properly. This is especially important in weapons like the 40 mm grenade launcher, where high explosives are present in the rounds being fired. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2000x1312, 1580 KB)PhotoID: 20044724929 Submitted by: MCB Camp Butler Caption: CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa, Japan - Lance Cpl. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2000x1312, 1580 KB)PhotoID: 20044724929 Submitted by: MCB Camp Butler Caption: CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa, Japan - Lance Cpl. ... The M240, formally United States Machine Gun, 7. ... The 40mm grenade is the calibre used by the US military for their M79, Colt XM148 and M203 grenade launchers. ... A grenade launcher is weapon that fires or launches a grenade to longer distances than a soldier could throw by hand. ...


Machine guns are controlled by one or more mechanical sears. When a sear is in place, it effectively stops the bolt at some point in its range of motion. Some sears stop the bolt when it is locked to the rear. Other sears stop the firing pin from going forward after the round is locked into the chamber.


Almost all weapons have a "safety" sear, which simply keeps the trigger from engaging.


History

The Chinese had some success with creating a repeating crossbow; the most common model, the Zhuge Nu, better known in the West as the Chu-ko-nu, is typically attributed to 2nd and 3rd century strategist Zhuge Liang[citation needed], who developed it for the Kingdom of Shu during the Three Kingdoms period. However, a buried library in the ancient state of Chu indicates that some sort of repeating crossbow had at the very least been designed in the 3rd century BC. Multi-shot weapons have a long development, going as far back to the 1st century, with plans for a multi-shot arrow gun by Greek engineer Hero of Alexandria[citation needed]. Leonardo Da Vinci devised plans for one in the 1400s, and stretching back to some of the earliest firearms and attempts at higher rates of fire, and some machine-gun-like traits happened as early as the 1700s. However, it would not be until the mid-1800s that successful machine-gun designs came into existence. The key characteristic of modern machine guns, their relatively high rate of fire and more importantly machine (automatic) loading, came with the Model 1862 Gatling gun, which was adopted by the United States Navy. These weapons were still powered by hand; however, this changed with Hiram Maxim's idea of harnessing recoil energy to power reloading in his Maxim machine gun. Dr. Gatling also experimented with electric-motor-powered models; this externally powered machine reloading has seen use in modern weapons as well. The Vandenburg and Miltrailleuse volley (organ) gun concepts have been revived partially in the early 21st century in the form of electronically controlled, multibarreled volley guns. It is important to note that what exactly constitutes a machine gun, and whether volley guns are a type of machine gun, and to what extent some earlier types of devices are considered to be like machine guns, is a matter of debate in many cases and can vary depending which language and exact definition is used. Chinese repeating crossbow A repeating crossbow or Chu-ko-nu (Chinese: 連弩) is a crossbow where the separate actions of stringing the bow, placing the bolt and firing it can be accomplished with a simple one-handed movement, all the while keeping the crossbow stationary. ... The 2nd century is the period from 101 - 200 in accordance with the Julian calendar in the Christian Era. ... // Overview Events 212: Constitutio Antoniniana grants citizenship to all free Roman men 212-216: Baths of Caracalla 230-232: Sassanid dynasty of Persia launches a war to reconquer lost lands in the Roman east 235-284: Crisis of the Third Century shakes Roman Empire 250-538: Kofun era, the first... This is a Chinese name; the family name is Zhuge (諸葛) Zhuge Liang (181 - 234) was one of the greatest Chinese strategists of the Three Kingdoms period, as well as a statesman, engineer, scholar, and inventor. ... The Kingdom of Shu (蜀 shǔ) (221 – 263) was one of the Three Kingdoms competing for control of China after the fall of the Han Dynasty. ... The Three Kingdoms period (Traditional Chinese: ; Simplified Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a period in the history of China, part of an era of disunity called the Six Dynasties. ... State of Chu (small seal script, 220 BC) Chu (楚) was a kingdom in what is now southern China during the Spring and Autumn period (722-481 BCE) and Warring States Period (481-212 BCE). ... The 3rd century BC started the first day of 300 BC and ended the last day of 201 BC. It is considered part of the Classical era, epoch, or historical period. ... The 1st century was that century that lasted from 1 to 100 according the Gregorian calendar. ... Hero (or Heron) of Alexandria (Greek: Ήρων ο Αλεξανδρεύς) (c. ... “Da Vinci” redirects here. ... Events and trends The Bonneville Slide blocks the Columbia River near the site of present-day Cascade Locks, Oregon with a land bridge 200 feet (60 m) high. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... An 1865 Gatling gun. ... USN redirects here. ... Hiram S. Maxim Sir Hiram Stevens Maxim (February 4, 1840 - November 24, 1916) was the inventor of the Maxim Gun in 1884, the first portable, fully automatic machine gun. ... An early Maxim gun in operation with the Royal Navy The Maxim gun was the first self-acting machine gun. ... The mitrailleuse - a 19th century volley gun A volley gun or ribaldequin is a gun with several barrels for firing a number of shots simultaneously. ...


Early rapid-firing weapons

Among first known ancestor of multi-shot weapons was created by James Puckle, a London lawyer, who patented what he called "The Puckle Gun" on May 15, 1718. It was a design for a 1 in. (25.4 mm) caliber, flintlock revolver cannon able to fire 9 rounds before reloading, intended for use on ships[citation needed]. According to Puckle, it was able to fire round bullets at Christians and square bullets at Turks.[citation needed] While ahead of its time, foreshadowing the designs of revolvers, it was not adopted or produced. James Puckle (1667 - 1724) was an English inventor from London who developed what he called the Puckle Gun, a multi-shot rifle capable of firing 9 rounds before being reloaded. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... In 1718 in London, England, lawyer James Puckle demonstrated his new invention, the Puckle Gun, a tripod-mounted, single-barreled flintlock weapon using a revolving cylinder. ... is the 135th day of the year (136th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1718 (MDCCXVIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... Flintlock of an 18th Century hunting rifle, with piece of flint missing. ... For other uses, see Ship (disambiguation). ...


In the early and mid-19th century, a number of rapid-firing weapons appeared which offered multi-shot fire, and a number of semi-automatic weapons as well as volley guns. Volley guns (such as the Mitrailleuse) and double barreled pistols relied on duplicating all parts of the gun. Pepperbox pistols did away with needing multiple hammers but used multiple barrels. Revolvers further reduced this to only needing a pre-prepared magazine using the same barrel and ignitions. However, like the Puckle gun, they were still only semiautomatic. The mitrailleuse - a 19th century volley gun A volley gun or ribaldequin is a gun with several barrels for firing a number of shots simultaneously. ... The mitrailleuse was a manually-fired volley gun originally developed in Belgium in the 1850s. ...


The coffee-mill gun of the Civil War featured both automatic loading and single barrel, only separated functionally from the modern machine gun by being hand-powered rather than using cartridges.


The Gatling gun, patented in 1861 by Richard Jordan Gatling, was the first to offer controlled, sequential automatic fire with automatic loading. The design's key features were machine loading of prepared cartridges and a hand-operated crank for sequential high-speed firing. It first saw very limited action in the American Civil War and was subsequently improved. Many were sold to other armies in the late 1800s and continued to be used into the early 1900s, until they were gradually supplanted by Maxim guns. The Gatlings were the first widely used rapid-fire guns and, due to their multiple barrels, could offer more sustained fire than the first generation of air-cooled, recoil-operated machine guns. The weight, complexity, and resulting cost of the multibarrel design meant recoil-operated weapons, which could be made lighter and cheaper, would supplant them. It would be another 50 years before the concept was again used to allow extremely high rates of fire, such as in miniguns, and automatic aircraft cannons. An 1865 Gatling gun. ... Year 1861 (MDCCCLXI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... Dr. Richard Jordan Gatling (September 12, 1818 – February 26, 1903) was an American inventor best known for his invention of the Gatling gun, the first successful machine gun. ... Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... // Invention of the Jacquard loom in 1801. ... A helicopter-mounted minigun operating during the Vietnam War The Minigun is a multibarreled machine gun with a high rate of fire (several thousand rounds per minute), employing Gatling-style rotating barrels and employing an external power source. ...


Maxim gun

A Vickers machine gun with crew wearing gas masks during WWI
A Vickers machine gun with crew wearing gas masks during WWI
A model of a typical entrenched German machine gunner in World War I. He is operating an MG08, wearing a Stahlhelm and cuirass to protect him from shell fragments, and protected by rows of barbed wire and sandbags.
A model of a typical entrenched German machine gunner in World War I. He is operating an MG08, wearing a Stahlhelm and cuirass to protect him from shell fragments, and protected by rows of barbed wire and sandbags.

The first true machine gun was invented in 1881 by Hiram Maxim. The "Maxim gun" used the recoil power of the previously fired bullet to reload rather than being hand-powered, enabling a much higher rate of fire than was possible using earlier designs. Maxim's other great innovation was the use of water cooling (via a water jacket around the barrel) to reduce overheating. Maxim's gun was widely adopted and derivative designs were used on all sides during the First World War, most famously - during stalemate at The Battle of the Somme. The design required fewer crew, was lighter, and more usable than earlier Gatling guns. Download high resolution version (1243x773, 201 KB)A British Vickers machine gun crew on the Oise sector, Marne, 1916. ... Download high resolution version (1243x773, 201 KB)A British Vickers machine gun crew on the Oise sector, Marne, 1916. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2304x1728, 1614 KB) Summary A model of a World War I German machine gunner wearing a helmet and cuirass at the Auckland War Memorial Museum, photographed by DONeil. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2304x1728, 1614 KB) Summary A model of a World War I German machine gunner wearing a helmet and cuirass at the Auckland War Memorial Museum, photographed by DONeil. ... MG08 with optical sight. ... German Stahlhelme from the Second World War Stahlhelm (plural, Stahlhelme) is German for steel helmet. The Imperial German Army began to replace the traditional leather Pickelhaube (spiked helmet) with the Stahlhelm during the First World War in 1916. ... This article is devoted to the type of armour known as a cuirass. ... Typical modern agricultural barbed wire. ... Building a sandbag dike along the Skagit River in anticipation of a flood, October 2003. ... Year 1881 (MDCCCLXXXI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Thursday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... Hiram S. Maxim Sir Hiram Stevens Maxim (February 4, 1840 - November 24, 1916) was the inventor of the Maxim Gun in 1884, the first portable, fully automatic machine gun. ... An early Maxim gun in operation with the Royal Navy The Maxim gun was the first self-acting machine gun. ... For other battles known as Battle of the Somme, see Battle of the Somme (disambiguation). ...


Heavy guns based on the Maxim such as the Vickers machine gun were joined by many other machine weapons, which mostly had their start in the early 20th century. Submachine guns (e.g., the German MP18) as well as lighter machine guns (the Chauchat, for example) saw their first major use in World War I, along with heavy use of large-caliber machine guns. The biggest single cause of casualties in World War I was actually artillery, but combined with wire entanglements, machine guns earned a fearsome reputation. The automatic mechanisms of machine guns were applied to handguns, giving rise to automatic pistols (and eventually machine pistols) such as the Borchardt (1890s) and later submachine guns (such as the Beretta 1918). Machine guns were mounted in aircraft for the first time in World War I. Firing through a moving propeller was solved in a variety of ways, including the interrupter gear, metal reinforcement of the propeller, or simply avoiding the problem with wing-mounted guns or having a pusher propeller. The Vickers machine gun or Vickers gun is a name primarily used to refer to the water-cooled . ... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... The MP5 is a third-generation submachine gun that is widely used by law enforcement tactical teams and military forces. ... The MP18 was one of the first submachine guns. ... The Chauchat (pronounced show-shah) was a light machine gun used mainly by the French Army but also by seven other nations, including the USA, during and after World War I. Its formal designation in the French Army was Fusil-Mitrailleur Mle 1915 CSRG. It was also known as the... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... A casualty is a person who is the victim of an accident, injury, or trauma. ... A wire entanglement was one of the most elaborate types of military wire obstacles. ... A machine pistol shares several properties of the semi-automatic handgun and the sub-machine gun. ... Borchardt is a surname, and may refer to Alice Borchardt Carl Wilhelm Borchardt Curtis Borchardt Diane Borchardt Hugo Borchardt Ludwig Borchardt Mark Borchardt Rudolf Borchardt, German writer Susan King Borchardt Borchard Edwin Borchard Joe Borchard Leo Borchard See also Burckhardt Categories: | ... The Beretta Model 1918 was a submachine gun that entered service in 1918 with the Italian armed forces. ... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Damaged propeller from a Sopwith Baby aircraft circa 1916/17 with evidence of bulletholes from a machine gun fired behind the propeller without an Interruptor. ... A British WWI-era F.E.2b pusher. ...


Interwar era and World War II

During the interwar years, many new designs were developed, such as the Browning M2 .50 caliber (12.7 mm) in 1933, which, along with others, were used in World War II. The trend toward automatic rifles, lighter machine guns, and more powerful submachine guns resulted in a wide variety of firearms that combined characteristics of ordinary rifles and machine guns. The Cei-Rigotti (1900s), Fedorov Avtomat (1910s), AVS-36 Simonov (1930s), MP44, M2 Carbine, AK-47, and AR-15 have come to be known as assault rifles (after the German term sturmgewehr). Many aircraft were equipped with machine cannons, and similar cannon (nicknamed "Pom-pom guns") were used as antiaircraft weapons. The designs of Bofors of Sweden were widely used by both sides and have greatly influenced similar weapons developed since then. An M2 machine gun surrounded by spent shell casings The M2 . ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... Originally created by Amerigo Cei, an officer in the Italian army, in 1890, the Cei-Rigotti rifle was extensively modified by Rigotti in 1900, and is often regarded as the first assault rifle. ... Avtomat Fedorova model 1916 The Fedorov Avtomat was an early self-loading battle rifle[1][2][3] designed by Vladimir Grigoryevich Fedorov and made in Russia. ... The AVS-36 (from Avtomaticheskaya Vintovka Simonova 1936 model; Russian: Автоматическая винтовка Симонова образца 1936 года) was a Soviet automatic rifle which saw service in the early years of World War II. It was among the early select-fire infantry rifles (capable of both single and full-automatic fire) formally adopted for military service. ... Sturmgewehr 44 Nationality Germany Type Assault rifle Inventor Gustloff Date of design 1943 Service duration July 1944 - May 1945 Cartridge 7. ... The M1 Carbine (formally the United States Carbine, Caliber . ... Avtomat Kalashnikova model 1947 g. ... The AR-15 is a lightweight, air-cooled, magazine fed, autoloading, centerfire rifle. ... The AK-47 is the worlds most common assault rifle. ... 2-pounder multiple pom-pom Mark VIII on 8-barrel mounting Mark VI. A pom-pom is a large calibre machine-gun, used mostly famously as an anti-aircraft gun by the British Royal Navy. ... Bofors is an iron works, cannon maker, and defence industry located in Karlskoga, Sweden. ...


Germany developed during the interwar years the first widely-used and successful general-purpose machine gun, the Maschinengewehr 34, which inspired many modern machine gun developments. The later Maschinengewehr 42 was feared during WWII by Allied forces as it was capable of firing at a rate of 1200-1800 RPM with pauses of only a few seconds to replace the quick-change barrel when operated by experienced soldiers[citation needed]. The successor of the MG42, the MG3, is still today in use in the German army. Many modern machine guns are derived from the MG42. A general purpose machine gun or GPMG in concept is a compromise weapon, a machine gun intended to be capable of doing the tasks of a light machine gun, medium machine gun while at the same time being man-portable, but performance in either role may be inferior to a... MG34 The Maschinengewehr 34, or MG34, was a German machine gun that was first produced and accepted for service in 1934, and first issued to units in 1935. ... Maschinengewehr 42 Type Machine gun Nationality Germany Era WW2 Platform Individual Target personnel History Date of design 1942 Production period 1942 - 1945 Service duration 1942 - 1945 Operators Nazi Germany War service WW2 Specifications Type Calibre 7. ... The MG42 (shortened from German: Maschinengewehr 42, or Machine Gun 42) was a machine gun that was developed for and entered service with Nazi Germany in 1942, during World War II. The 7. ... The German MG3 is one of the most popular universal machine guns in the World. ...


Modern era

The Cold War era saw mostly a refinement of weapon types in the form of lower weight and higher reliability. The semi-automatic rifles of World War II vintage were almost totally replaced by lighter assault rifles such as the M16 and Soviet AK-47. Infantry adopted general-purpose machine guns like the American M60 for squad use, using air cooling for lighter weight. Heavy machine guns were retained for ground vehicles and fortifications. For aircraft use, even heavy machine guns proved to lack killing power in the air-to-air role, and by the late 1950s fighter aircraft armament had almost totally switched to automatic cannons. Machine guns, with lower recoil, remained popular for helicopters and for ground attack aircraft, supplemented by new Gatling-style, electric multibarrel weapons like the American Minigun. In police, special operations, and other paramilitary roles, smaller automatic weapons, including light submachine guns and machine pistols, proliferated, many relying on ubiquitous pistol rounds. For other uses, see Cold War (disambiguation). ... M16 (more formally United States Rifle, Caliber 5. ... Soviet redirects here. ... Avtomat Kalashnikova model 1947 g. ... A general purpose machine gun or GPMG in concept is a compromise weapon, a machine gun intended to be capable of doing the tasks of a light machine gun, medium machine gun while at the same time being man-portable, but performance in either role may be inferior to a... For other uses, see M60. ... The 1950s decade refers to the years 1950 to 1959 inclusive. ... An A-10 Thunderbolt II, F-86 Sabre, P-38 Lightning and P-51 Mustang fly in formation during an air show at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. ... M242 Bushmaster autocannon on an M2 Bradley. ... For other uses, see Helicopter (disambiguation). ... A helicopter-mounted minigun operating during the Vietnam War The Minigun is a multibarreled machine gun with a high rate of fire (several thousand rounds per minute), employing Gatling-style rotating barrels and employing an external power source. ... A machine pistol shares several properties of the semi-automatic handgun and the sub-machine gun. ...


The last major use of a manual machine gun, was a manual grenade machine gun during the 1970s used on river boats in the Vietnam Conflict. The manual type, the Mk 18 Mod 0 was replaced by fully automatic ones such as the Mk 19 grenade launcher. Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000... Mk19 40mm grenade launcher MK-19 40mm grenade launcher during MIL-EX 2003 Mk19 40mm grenade launcher with cover open and training ammunition loaded The Mk 19 Grenade Launcher is a belt-fed automatic 40mm grenade launcher or grenade machine gun entered U.S. military service during the Cold War...


Future

A 7.62 mm GAU-17 gatling gun of the U.S. Navy. It is an externally powered automatic machine gun. The electric motor that powers its loading, priming, and firing mechanics is on top. Also, note the spade grips and pintle mount.
A 7.62 mm GAU-17 gatling gun of the U.S. Navy. It is an externally powered automatic machine gun. The electric motor that powers its loading, priming, and firing mechanics is on top. Also, note the spade grips and pintle mount.

Conventional machine-gun development has been slowed by the fact that existing machine-gun designs are adequate for most purposes, although significant developments are taking place with regard to antiarmor and antimissile weapons. Image File history File links Navy photo of GAU-17 firing in Philippine sea. ... Image File history File links Navy photo of GAU-17 firing in Philippine sea. ... GAU-17 is the name of a 7. ...


Electronically controlled machine guns with ultrahigh rates of fire, like Metal Storm's weapons may see use in some applications, although current small-caliber weapons of this type have found little use: they are too light for anti-vehicle use, but too heavy (especially with the need to carry a tactically useful amount of ammunition) for individual soldiers. The trend towards higher reliability and lower mass for a given power will likely continue. Another example is the six barreled, 4000 round per minute, XM214 minigun "six pack" developed by General Electric. It has a complex power train and weighs 85 pounds, factors which may, in some circumstances, mitigate against its deployment.. Metal Storm Limited is a research and development company that specializes in electronically initiated stacked projectile weapons technology. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... “GE” redirects here. ...


Human interface

The most common interface on machine guns is a pistol grip and trigger. On earlier manual machine guns, the most common type was a hand crank. On externally powered machine guns, such as miniguns, an electronic button or trigger on a joystick is commonly used. Light machine guns often have a butt stock attached, while vehicle and tripod mounted machine guns usually have spade grips. In the late 20th century, scopes and other complex optics became more common as opposed to the more basic iron sights. On a firearm, a pistol grip is a portion of the gun which is held by the hand that orients the hand in a manner similar to the position one would take with a conventional pistol such as a Colt 1911. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Looking down the iron sight of an M15A4 Carbine (a civilian copy of the M4 carbine) The term iron sights refers to the open, unmagnified aiming system used to assist the aiming of a variety of devices, usually those intended to launch projectiles, such as firearms, airguns, and crossbows; they...


Loading systems in early manual machine guns were often from a hopper of loose (un-linked) cartridges. Manual-operated volley guns usually had to be reloaded manually all at once (each barrel reloaded by hand). With hoppers, the rounds could often be added while the weapon was firing. This gradually changed to belt-fed types. Belts were either held in the open by the person, or in a bag or box. Some modern vehicle machine guns used linkless feed systems however.

Closeup of M2 - This machine gun is part complex armament subsystem; it is aimed and fired from the aircraft rather than directly
Closeup of M2 - This machine gun is part complex armament subsystem; it is aimed and fired from the aircraft rather than directly

Modern machine guns are usually mounted in one of four ways. The first is a bipod - often these are integrated with the weapon. This is common on light machine guns and also medium machine guns. Another major way is with a larger tripod, where the person holding it does not form a 'leg' of support. Medium and heavy machine guns usually use tripods. On ships and aircraft machine guns are usually mounted on a pintle mount - basically a steel post that is connected to the frame. Tripod and pintle mounts are usually used with spade grips. The last major mounting type is one that is disconnected from humans, as part of an armament system, such as a tank coaxial or part of aircraft's armament. These are usually electrically-fired and have complex sighting systems. (For examples see US Helicopter Armament Subsystems). Image File history File links M2m60c2. ... Image File history File links M2m60c2. ... A Romanian soldier aids a U.S. Marine in clearing a RPK during the weapons familiarization phase of Exercise Rescue Eagle 2000 at Babadag Range, Romania, on July 15, 2000 A light machine gun (LMG) is a categorization type, or class of machine guns that are generally lighter than other... Marines and their M240G at Camp Hansen, Okinawa A Medium Machine Gun or MMG in modern terms, usually refers to a belt-fed, full-power rifle caliber (such as 7. ... Used with light machine guns, the pintle is the mounting hardware that mates the machine gun to a tripod. ... UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters eqipped with M60D machine guns near Najaf, Iraq in May 2005 The helicopter itself has added much to the modern battlefield, changing land warfare tactics across the board. ...


Notes

  1. ^ In United States law, a Machine Gun is defined (in part) by The National Firearms Act of 1934, 26 U.S.C. § 5845 as “... any weapon which shoots ... automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.
  2. ^ Famous Historical Gun Manufacturers
  3. ^ Henderson, Charles. Marine Sniper Berkley Caliber. (2005) ISBN 0-425-10355-2.

The National Firearms Act (NFA), cited as the Act of June 26, 1934, Ch. ... The Internal Revenue Code (or IRC) (more formally, the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended) is the main body of domestic statutory tax law of the United States organized topically, including laws covering the income tax (see Income tax in the United States), payroll taxes, gift taxes, estate taxes...

See also

The M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, one of the most popular modern 5. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The M2 machine gun with a tripod weighs 58 kg (128 lb). ... In firearms terminology, an action is the system of operation that the firearm employs to seal the breech (in a breech-loading firearm), and to load consecutive rounds. ... Metal Storm Limited is a research and development company that specializes in electronically initiated stacked projectile weapons technology. ... A squad automatic weapon (SAW) is a light or general-purpose machine gun, usually equipped with a bipod and firing a 7. ... Breda is a hardware factory located in Brescia, Italy. ... For other uses, see Weapon (disambiguation). ... The MG 34 - the first Universelles Maschinengewehr forerunner of the modern GPMG, shown here in two different mountings. ... This is an extensive list of small arms — pistol, machine gun, grenade launcher, anti-tank rifle — that includes variants. ... The mitrailleuse was a manually-fired volley gun originally developed in Belgium in the 1850s. ... The MP5 is a third-generation submachine gun that is widely used by law enforcement tactical teams and military forces. ...

External links

  • subguns.com - US site with discussion on the topic and controlling US laws, and many machine guns for sale under US regulations
  • MachineGun.com - Machineguns available for law enforcement, military and civilian sales.
  • How Stuff Works - Very well written article with animated diagrams
  • Gun history
  • U.S. Patent 15,315  -- A patent for an early automatic cannon
  • Vickers Machine gun site
  • The REME Museum of Technology - machine guns

  Results from FactBites:
 
First World War.com - Weapons of War - Machine Guns (1049 words)
Machine guns of all armies were largely of the heavy variety and decidedly ill-suited to portability for use by rapidly advancing infantry troops.
As the war developed machine guns were adapted for use on tanks on broken ground, particularly on the Western Front (where the majority of machine guns were deployed).
Light machine guns were adopted too for incorporation into aircraft from 1915 onwards, for example the Vickers, particularly with the German adoption of interrupter equipment, which enabled the pilot to fire the gun through the aircraft's propeller blades.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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