All About Guns

Just Reach out & touch Someone!

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  Now when a Company Grade Officer  or Non Com is in a combat zone. And when they are asked on what could really make them happy. One way would be to give them a M2 Browning Heavy Machine gun.

  As usually this will make them smile almost as much as a bottle of good booze or a friendly lady with easy morals. I will now try to explain this phenomenon.
Image result for happy looking officer in a combat zone
  Ever since it came into service just after the First World War. Since then it has been in Harm’s way. In almost every war or campaign during the rest of the past 100 years soon.
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Nice haircut for a SNCO huh?
Today in the field
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 Now here is my brief experiences with it. The gun is a massive chunk of steel.  As it just it just seems to scream that it is a classic industrial revolution piece. So you do not just pick it up and move it easily.
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Seriously looking for a hernia huh Son?
  It is also willing & able to take a bite out of the distracted operator. Especially when you slam forward the bolt. As it will take off the finger of idiot that gets their hand in the way.
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  You also need some serious upper body strength to aim this beast. Because if you don’t. You are not going hit anything on purpose.
Especially when it mounted on a track or truck mount.
especially like here
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or here
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  Now for the good news. If you do your part right. The gun will more than keep up its end of the bargain. Since any target hit by one of these rounds that are on steroids. Is going to be in a world of hurt.
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  Also if you hear one. You will know it real fast as it has a very distinct and reassuring noise / roar of its own.
  So if you want to shoot up say a truck, plane or Radar Station. Then this is the round that should come to mind. Also it is an excellent really long range round. If you want to seriously annoy somebody say a mile away.
   My Dad told me of some guys at the Punchbowl in Korea. When they had mounted a civilian rifle scope on one.
  They then proceeded to shoot at the Chinese at over a mile away. He said that it was a huge surprise to them while they were eating their lunch in the open.
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Now here is ome more information about this Monster of a gun. Check out the list of who uses it. Its pretty impressive to say the least.

M2 Browning

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, HB
Browning M2 "Ma Deuce"

M2HB heavy machine gun
Type Heavy machine gun
Place of origin United States
Service history
In service 1933–present
Used by See Users
Wars World War II
Indonesian National Revolution
Korean War
First Indochina War
Suez Crisis
Portuguese Colonial War
Vietnam War
Six-Day War
Iran-Iraq war
Yom Kippur War
Lebanese Civil War
Colombian Internal Conflict
Cambodian Civil War
Cambodian-Vietnamese War
Falklands War
South African Border War
Invasion of Grenada
Bougainville Civil War[1]
Invasion of Panama
Persian Gulf War
Somali Civil War
Yugoslav Wars
Kosovo War
War in Afghanistan[2]
Iraq War
Mexican Drug War
Syrian Civil War[3]
Iraqi Civil War (2014-present)[4]
Yemeni Civil War (2015–present)[5]
Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen[6]
Conflict in Najran, Jizan and Asir
Production history
Designer John M. Browning
Designed 1918[7]
Manufacturer Current: General Dynamics, Fabrique Nationale, U.S. Ordnance, and Manroy Engineering (UK)
Former: Sabre Defence Industries, Colt’s Patent Fire Arms Company, High Standard Company, Savage Arms Corporation, Buffalo Arms Corporation, General Motors Corporation (Frigidaire, AC Spark Plug, Saginaw Steering, and Brown-Lipe-Chappin Divisions), Kelsey Hayes Wheel Company, Springfield Armory, Wayne Pump Company, ERMCO, and Ramo Manufacturing, Rock Island Arsenal
Produced 1921–present (M2HB)
No. built 3 million[8]
Weight 38 kg (83.78 lb)
58 kg (127.87 lb) with tripodand T&E
Length 1,654 mm (65.1 in)
Barrel length 1,143 mm (45.0 in)

Cartridge .50 BMG (12.7×99mm NATO)
Action Short recoil-operated
Rate of fire 450-600 rounds/min (M2HB)[9][10]
750–850 rounds/min (AN/M2)
1,200-1,300 rounds/min (AN/M3)
Muzzle velocity 2,910 ft/s (890 m/s) for M33 ball
Effective firing range 1,800 m (2,000 yd)[9]
Maximum firing range 2,500 m (2,700 yd)
Feed system Belt-fed (M2 or M9 links)

The M2 Machine Gun or Browning .50 Caliber Machine Gun is a heavy machine gun designed toward the end of World War I by John Browning. Its design is similar to Browning’s earlier M1919 Browning machine gun, which was chambered for the .30-06 cartridge. The M2 uses the much larger and much more powerful .50 BMG cartridge, which was developed alongside and takes its name from the gun itself (BMG standing for Browning Machine Gun). It has been referred to as “Ma Deuce”,[11] in reference to its M2 nomenclature. The design has had many specific designations; the official designation for the current infantry type is Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, HB, Flexible. It is effective against infantry, unarmored or lightly armored vehicles and boats, light fortifications and low-flying aircraft. The M2 has been produced longer than any other machine gun.
The Browning .50 caliber machine gun has been used extensively as a vehicle weapon and for aircraft armament by the United States from the 1930s to the present. It was heavily used during World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Falklands War, the Iraq War and the War in Afghanistan in the 2000s and 2010s. It is the primary heavy machine gun of NATO countries, and has been used by many other countries as well. The M2 has been in use longer than any other firearm in U.S. inventory except the .45 ACP M1911 pistol, also designed by John Browning.
The current M2HB is manufactured in the U.S. by General Dynamics[12] and U.S. Ordnance[13] for use by the U.S. government, and for allies via Foreign Military Sales, as well as foreign manufacturers such as FN Herstal.


Machine guns were heavily used in World War I, and weapons of larger than rifle caliber were appearing. Both the British and French had large caliber machine guns. The larger rounds were needed to defeat the armor that was being introduced to the battlefield. Armor was also appearing in the skies. During World War I, the Germans introduced a heavily armored airplane, the Junkers J.I. The armor made aircraft machine guns using conventional rifle ammunition (such as the .30-06) ineffective.[14]
Consequently, the American Expeditionary Force‘s commander General John J. Pershing asked for a larger caliber machine gun.[15]Pershing asked the Army Ordnance Department to develop a machine gun with a caliber of at least 0.50 inches (12.7 mm) and a muzzle velocity of at least 2,700 feet per second (820 m/s).[14] U.S. Col. John Henry Parker, commanding a machine gun school in France, observed the effectiveness of a French 11 mm (0.43 in) incendiary armor-piercing round. The Army Ordnance Department ordered eight experimental Colt machine guns rechambered for the French 11 mm cartridge.[16] The French 11 mm round was found to be unsuitable because its velocity was too low. Pershing wanted a bullet of at least 670 gr (43 g) and a muzzle velocity of 2,700 ft/s (820 m/s). Development with the French round was dropped.[16]
Around July 1917, John M. Browning started redesigning his .30-06 M1917 machine gun for a larger and more powerful round. Winchester worked on the cartridge, which was a scaled-up version of the .30-06. Winchester initially added a rim to the cartridge because the company wanted to use the cartridge in an anti-tank rifle, but Pershing insisted the cartridge be rimless.[16] The first .50 machine gun underwent trials on 15 October 1918. It fired at less than 500 rounds per minute, and the muzzle velocity was only 2,300 ft/s (700 m/s). Cartridge improvements were promised.[17] The gun was heavy, difficult to control, fired too slowly for anti-personnel, and was not powerful enough against armor.[18]
While the .50 was being developed, some German T Gewehr 1918 anti-tank rifles and ammunition were seized. The German rounds had a muzzle velocity of 2,700 ft/s (820 m/s), an 800 gr (52 g) bullet, and could pierce [clarification needed]1 in (25 mm) at 250 yd (230 m).[19] Winchester improved the .50 caliber round to have similar performance. Ultimately, the muzzle velocity was 2,750 ft/s (840 m/s).[20]
Efforts by John M. Browning and Fred T. Moore resulted in the water-cooled Browning machine gun, caliber .50, M1921. An aircraft version was termed the Browning aircraft machine gun, caliber .50, M1921. These guns were used experimentally from 1921 until 1937. They had light-weight barrels and the ammunition fed only from the left side. Service trials raised doubts whether the guns would be suitable for aircraft or for anti-aircraft use. A heavy barrel M1921 was considered for ground vehicles.[21]
John M. Browning died in 1926. Between 1927 and 1932, Dr. S.H. Green studied the design problems of the M1921 and the needs of the armed services. The result was a single receiver design that could be turned into seven types of .50 caliber machine guns by using different jackets, barrels, and other components. The new receiver allowed right or left side feed. In 1933, Colt manufactured several prototype Browning machine guns (including what would be known as the M1921A1 and M1921E2). With support from the Navy, Colt started manufacturing the M2 in 1933.[22] FN Herstal (Fabrique Nationale) has manufactured the M2 machine gun since the 1930s.[23] General Dynamics, U.S. Ordnance, and Manroy Engineering (UK) are other current manufacturers.[citation needed]
A variant without a water jacket, but with a thicker-walled, air-cooled barrel was designated the M2 HB (HB for Heavy Barrel). The added mass and surface area of the heavy barrel compensated somewhat for the loss of water-cooling, while reducing bulk and weight: the M2 weighs 121 lb (55 kg) with a water jacket, but the M2 HB weighs 84 lb (38 kg). Due to the long procedure for changing the barrel, an improved system was developed called QCB (quick change barrel). The lightweight “Army/Navy” prefixed AN/M2 “light-barrel” version of the Browning M2 weighing 60 pounds (27 kg) was also developed, and became the standard .50-caliber aviation machine gun of the World War II-era for American military aircraft of nearly every type,[24] readily replacing Browning’s own air-cooled .30 caliber machine gun design in nearly all American aircraft installations.

Design details[edit]

The Browning M2 is an air-cooledbelt-fed machine gun. The M2 fires from a closed bolt, operated on the short recoilprinciple. The M2 fires the .50 BMG cartridge, which offers long range, accuracy and immense stopping power. The closed bolt firing cycle made the M2 usable as a synchronized machine gun on aircraft before and during World War II, as on the early versions of the Curtiss P-40 fighter.
The M2 is a scaled-up version of John Browning’s M1917 .30 caliber machine gun, even using the same timing gauges.


The M2 has varying cyclic rates of fire, depending on the model. The M2HB (heavy barrel) air-cooled ground gun has a cyclical rate of 450-575 rounds per minute.[25] The early M2 water-cooled AA guns had a cyclical rate of around 450–600 rpm.[26] The AN/M2 aircraft gun has a cyclic rate of 750–850 rpm; this increases to 1,200 rpm or more for AN/M3 aircraft guns fitted with electric or mechanical feed boost mechanisms.[10] These maximum rates of fire are generally not achieved in use, as sustained fire at that rate will wear out the bore within a few thousand rounds, necessitating replacement. In addition to full automatic, the M2HB can be selected to fire single-shots or at less than 40 rounds per minute, or rapid fire for more than 40 rounds per minute. Slow and rapid firing modes use 5-7 round bursts with different lengths of pause between bursts.[27]

A U.S. Marine mans a .50 caliber machine gun as part of a security force during a training exercise with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit in November 2002.

The M2 has an effective range of 1,830 metres (2,000 yd) and a maximum effective range of 2,000 metres (2,200 yd) when fired from the M3 tripod. In its ground-portable, crew-served role as the M2HB, the gun itself weighs 84 pounds (38 kg) and the assembled M3 tripod another 44 pounds (20 kg). In this configuration, the V-shaped “butterfly” trigger is located at the very rear of the weapon with a “spade handle” hand-grip on either side of it and the bolt release in the center. The spade handles are gripped and the butterfly trigger is depressed with one or both thumbs. Recently, new rear buffer assemblies have used squeeze triggers mounted to the hand grips, doing away with the butterfly triggers.
When the bolt release is locked down by the bolt latch release lock on the buffer tube sleeve, the gun functions in fully automatic mode. Conversely, the bolt release can be unlocked into the up position resulting in single-shot firing (the gunner must press the bolt latch release to send the bolt forward). Unlike virtually all other modern machine guns, it has no safety (although a sliding safety switch has recently been fielded to USMC armorers for installation on their weapons and is standard-issue for the U.S. Army for all M2s). Troops in the field have been known to add an improvised safety measure against accidental firing by slipping an expended shell casing under the butterfly trigger.[28] The upgraded M2A1 has a manual trigger block safety.

Twin M2HB machine gun during a Pre-aimed Calibration Fire (PACFIRE) exercise in May 2005

Because the M2 was intentionally designed to operate in many configurations, it can be adapted to feed from the left or right side of the weapon by exchanging the belt-holding pawls, and the front and rear cartridge stops (three-piece set to include link stripper), then reversing the bolt switch. The operator must also convert the top-cover belt feed slide assembly from left to right hand feed as well as the spring and plunger in the feed arm. This will take a well trained individual less than two minutes to perform.
The charging assembly may be changed from left to right hand charge. A right hand charging handle spring, lock wire and a little know how are all that are required to accomplish this. The M2 can be battle ready and easily interchanged if it is preemptively fitted with a retracting slide assembly on both sides of the weapon system. This eliminates the need to have the weapon removed from service to accomplish this task.


M2 Browning on a Samson RCWSof the Israel Defense Forces

There are several different types of ammunition used in the M2HB and AN aircraft guns. From World War II through the Vietnam War, the big Browning was used with standard ball, armor-piercing (AP), armor-piercing incendiary (API), and armor-piercing incendiary tracer (APIT) rounds. All .50 ammunition designated “armor-piercing” was required to completely perforate 0.875 inches (22.2 mm) of hardened steel armor plate at a distance of 100 yards (91 m) and 0.75 inches (19 mm) at 547 yards (500 m).[29] The API and APIT rounds left a flash, report, and smoke on contact, useful in detecting strikes on enemy targets; they were primarily intended to incapacitate thin-skinned and lightly armored vehicles and aircraft, while igniting their fuel tanks.[30]
Current ammunition types include M33 Ball (706.7 grain) for personnel and light material targets, M17 tracer, M8 API (622.5 grain), M20 API-T (619 grain), and M962 SLAP-T. The latter ammunition along with the M903 SLAP (Saboted Light Armor Penetrator) round can perforate 1.34 inches (34 mm) of FHA (face-hardened steel plate) at 500 metres (550 yd), 0.91 inches (23 mm) at 1,200 metres (1,300 yd), and 0.75 inches (19 mm) at 1,500 metres (1,600 yd). This is achieved by using a 0.30-inch-diameter (7.6 mm) tungsten penetrator. The SLAP-T adds a tracer charge to the base of the ammunition. This ammunition was type classified in 1993.[31][32]
When firing blanks, a large blank-firing adapter (BFA) of a special type must be used to allow the recoil operated action to cycle. This functions on the principle of a recoil booster, to increase the recoil force acting on the short recoil action. This is the exact antithesis of a muzzle brake. Without this adaptor, the reduced-charge blank cartridge would develop too little recoil to cycle the action fully. The adapter is very distinctive, attaching to the muzzle with three rods extending back to the base. The BFA can often be seen on M2s during peacetime operations.


An M2 fired from a rigid-hulled inflatable boat.

B-25H “Barbie III” showing four M2 feeds and 75 mm M5 gun

The M2 .50 Browning machine gun has been used for various roles:

United States[edit]

A U.S. soldier in Normandy stands guard with the M2HB installed on a dual-purpose mounting.

At the outbreak of the Second World War the United States had versions of the M2 in service as fixed aircraft guns, anti-aircraft defensive guns (on aircraft, ships, or boats), infantry (tripod-mounted) guns, and as dual purpose anti-aircraft and anti-vehicular weapons on vehicles.[33][34]
The .50 AN/M2 light-barrel aircraft Browning used in planes had a rate of fire of approximately 800 rounds per minute, and was used singly or in groups of up to eight guns for aircraft ranging from the P-47 Thunderbolt to the B-25 Mitchellbomber, which in the last J-version of the Mitchell could have up to fourteen M2s firing forward for ground attack missions – eight in a solid metal-structure nose, four more mounted in a pair of conformal twin-gunned gun pods on the lower cockpit sides, and two more if the forward dorsal turret’s pair of M2 guns were also aimed straight forward.
In the dual-purpose vehicle mount, the M2HB (heavy barrel) proved extremely effective in U.S. service: the Browning’s .50 caliber AP and API rounds could easily penetrate the engine block or fuel tanks of a German Bf 109 fighter attacking at low altitude,[35] or perforate the hull plates and fuel tanks of a German half-track or light armored car.[29][36][37] While the dual-purpose mounting was undeniably useful, it did normally require the operator to stand when using the M2 in a ground role, exposing him to return fire.[38] Units in the field often modified the mountings on their vehicles, especially tanks and tank destroyers, to provide more operator protection in the anti-vehicular and anti-personnel role.[39] The weapon was particularly hated by the Germans, whose attacks and ambushes against otherwise helpless stalled motor convoys were frequently broken up by .50 caliber machine gun fire.[40][41] Vehicles would frequently “recon by fire” with the M2 Browning, i.e. they would fire continuously at suspected points of ambush while moving through areas still containing enemy forces. One vehicle would fire exclusively to the right, the following vehicle to the left, the next one to the right, and so on in order to cover both flanks of the advancing convoy.
Besides vehicle-mounted weapons, the heavy weapons companies in a World War II U.S. Army infantry battalion or regiment were each issued one M2 Browning with tripod (ground) mount.[42] Mounted on a heavily sandbagged tripod, the M2HB proved very useful in either a defensive role or to interdict or block road intersections from use by German infantry and motorized forces.[43] Hearing the sound of an M2 could often cause enemy infantry to take cover.[44] There are numerous instances of the M2 Browning being used against enemy personnel, particularly infantry assaults[45] or for interdiction or elimination of enemy artillery observers or snipers at distances too great for ordinary infantry weapons.[46][47][48]

An M2 overlooking the Korengal Valley at Firebase Phoenix, Afghanistan, in 2007

The M2HB was not widely used in the Pacific campaign for several reasons, including the weight of the gun, the nature of infantry jungle combat, and because road intersections were usually easily outflanked.[49] However, it was used by fast-moving motorized forces in the Philippines to destroy Japanese blocking units on the advance to Manila.[43] The quad mount .50 was also used to destroy Japanese emplacements.[50]
The M2HB was used in Korea and Vietnam, and later in both Operation Desert Storm, the Afghan theater of Operation Enduring Freedom and in Iraq. In 2003, U.S. Army SFC Paul Ray Smith used his M2HB mounted on an M113 armored personnel carrier to kill 20 to 50 enemies who were attacking a U.S. outpost, preventing an aid station from being overrun and allowing wounded soldiers to be evacuated,[51] SFC Smith was killed during the firefight and was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

M45 Quadmount[edit]

M45 .50 AA Quad aka the ‘Meat Chopper’

The M45 Quadmount was a mounting of four .50 M2HB guns with a single gunner situated behind an armored housing. This was used by U.S. AA battalions, fitted either on a towed trailer or mounted in a half-track carrier (M16 AA half-track). With 200 rounds per gun in a powered tracking mount, the guns proved very effective against low-flying aircraft. The use of four guns adequately compensated for the fact that the individual M2HB’s rate of fire (450-550 rounds per minute) was low for an effective anti–aircraft weapon.[52]
Towards the end of the war, as Luftwaffe attacks became less frequent, the quad .50 (nicknamed the Meat Chopper or Krautmower[52]) was increasingly used in an anti-personnel role, similarly to the earlier-introduced (1940) and more powerful — but much more difficult to keep well-fed with ammunition when in action — German 20 mm Flakvierling. Snipers firing from trees were engaged by the quad gunner at trunk level – the weapon would cut down and destroy the entire tree, and the sniper with it.[44][50]
The M45 Quadmount was still in use during the Vietnam War.

Commonwealth and other forces[edit]

Australian M113 with twin mounted M1919 Browning and M2 Browning Quick Change Barrel machine guns.

Commonwealth use of the M2 Browning .50 caliber machine gun (known as the .5 Browning in British and Commonwealth service) was limited in World War II, though from 1942 it was standard armament on US-built AFVs provided under lend-lease such as the M4 ShermanM7 PriestM8 Greyhound, or M10 tank destroyer variously used by BritishCanadianAustralianSouth African and New Zealand units. Nevertheless, the heavy Browning’s effectiveness was praised by many British and Commonwealth soldiers in infantry, armored, and ordnance branches.[53][54] Many commanders thought that the .50 Browning the best weapon in its class, certainly the best of the American weapons, including the M1 Garand and M1 Carbine.[54][55] In North Africa, after Commonwealth units began to obtain sufficient parts, manuals, gauges, and ammunition for the new weapon, the .50 Browning was increasingly used, eventually replacing the 15 mm Besa,[54]but in Italy it was often deleted from top turret mountings because the mount exposed the operator to low branches and enemy fire.[56] All LRDGs, and some SAS units used the aircraft (AN/M2) version of the gun, while beam/waist-mounted and turret-mounted Brownings were used later in the war in such aircraft as the Short Sunderland and Lancaster bomber.
After World War II, the .50 Browning continued to see action in Korea and other theaters, in aircraft, tripod (ground), ground AA (hip-ring), and vehicle mounts. One of its most notable actions in a ground role was in a fierce battle with a nine-man SAS team at the Battle of Mirbat in Oman in July 1972, where the heavy Browning and its API ammunition was used to help repulse an assault by 250 Yemeni Adoo guerrillas, though the more famous weapon from the battle is a 25 pounder gun.[57]
A .50 caliber Browning was installed along with a .30 caliber Browning machine gun in each compact one-man turret on M113 APCs used by the Royal Australian Armoured Corps in South Vietnam.
The M2HB has been in service with the Israel Defense Forces since its establishment and has served in all of Israel‘s wars, operations and conflicts. In 2012 the IDF upgraded its M2HB machine guns to the M2HQCB model, with heavy quick change barrel.[58] Today the M2 serves as an infantry crew-served heavy machine gun, as a remote-controlled external coaxial gun on Merkava main battle tanks, as the main weapon on the Samson RCWS and as a secondary weapons on Israeli Sea Corps gunboats and missile boats.
Nigerian troops have extensively deployed the 50 caliber Browning, mounted on Otokar Cobra APCs, Panhard VBL M11s and Landcruiser gun-trucks in counterinsurgency operations in the Niger Delta, N.E Nigeria, the Jos Plateau and in Mali

M2 as a sniper rifle[edit]

USMC M2 fitted with a Leupold CQBSS variable power scope.

The M2 machine gun has also been used as a long-range sniper rifle, when equipped with a telescopic sight. Soldiers during the Korean War used scoped M2s in the role of a sniper rifle, but the practice was most notably used by US Marine Corps sniper Carlos Hathcock during the Vietnam War. Using an Unertltelescopic sight and a mounting bracket of his own design, Hathcock could quickly convert the M2 into a sniper rifle, using the traversing-and-elevating (T&E) mechanism attached to the tripod. When firing semi-automatically, Hathcock hit man-size targets beyond 1,800 metres (2,000 yd)—twice the range of a standard-caliber sniper rifle of the time (a .30-06 Winchester Model 70). In fact, Hathcock set the record for the longest confirmed kill at 2,250 metres (2,460 yd), a recordwhich stood until 2002, when it was broken in Afghanistan by Canadian Army sniper Arron Perry.[59][60]

Geneva Convention use misconception[edit]

It is often stated,[61] sometimes even by military trainers,[62] that it is illegal under the Geneva Convention to use the M2 against enemy personnel since it would cause “unnecessary suffering”. As such, most gunners supposedly aim for enemy troops’ belt buckles, since those are technically equipment and thus permissible targets. However, there is no provision of the Geneva Convention that has ever been interpreted to forbid the use of the M2 on personnel. The misconception may have arisen during the Korean or Vietnam Wars when U.S. troops were told to use their M2s only on enemy equipment due to shortages of ammunition.[63] It is also possible that a restriction during the latter period limiting the use of the M40 recoilless rifle‘s .50-caliber spotting gun to equipment only, since the M40 was meant to be used against armor and firing the spotting gun at personnel would have given away the M40’s position before it could be used as intended, was mistakenly believed to apply to all weapons of that caliber and given legal justification.[62]

Variants and derivatives[edit]

M2 variants[edit]

An M2HB in the French Foreign Legion’s 2nd Infantry Regiment during an exercise.
Jungle Infantry soldier of the Brazilian Army mans an M2HB in the Amazon rainforest.

The basic M2 was deployed in U.S. service in a number of subvariants, all with separate complete designations as per the US Army system. The basic designation as mentioned in the introduction is Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, with others as described below.
The development of the M1921 water-cooled machine gun which led to the M2, meant that the initial M2s were, in fact, water-cooled. These weapons were designated Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, Water-Cooled, Flexible. There was no fixed water-cooled version.
Improved air-cooled heavy barrel versions came in three subtypes. The basic infantry model, Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, HB, Flexible, a fixed developed for use on the M6 Heavy Tank designated Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, HB, Fixed, and a “turret type” whereby “Flexible” M2s were modified slightly for use in tank turrets. The subvariant designation Browning Machine Gun, Cal. .50, M2, HB, TT was only used for manufacturing, supply, and administration identification and separation from flexible M2s.

M2HB heavy machine gun

A number of additional subvariants were developed after the end of World War II. The Caliber .50 Machine Gun, Browning, M2, Heavy Barrel, M48 Turret Type was developed for the commander’s cupola on the M48 Patton tank. The cupola mount on the M48A2 and M48A3 was thoroughly disliked by most tankers, as it proved unreliable in service.[64] An externally mounted M2 was later adopted for the commander’s position on the M1 Abrams tanks. Three subvariants were also developed for use by the U.S. Navy on a variety of ships and watercraft. These included the Caliber .50 Machine Gun, Browning, M2, Heavy Barrel, Soft Mount (Navy) and the Caliber .50 Machine Gun, Browning, M2, Heavy Barrel, Fixed Type (Navy). The fixed types fire from a solenoid trigger and come in left or right hand feed variants for use on the Mk 56 Mod 0 dual mount and other mounts.


M2E2 modification with quick-change barrel (QCB)

When the M2 was first being designed, John Browning faced two design challenges. With the machine tools available at that time, the dimensions that established the location of the bolt face and the depth of the chamber could not be held tightly enough to control the fit of the cartridge in the chamber. The round can be too tight in the chamber and the gun would not shoot, or be too loose in the chamber, resulting in a stoppage or ruptured cartridge. The other dimension that could not be held close enough was when the firing pin would fall. The solution to these problems was adjustable timing and headspace (“headspace” is the distance between the face of the bolt and the base of the cartridge case, fully seated in the chamber); the operator had to screw the barrel into the barrel extension, moving the barrel toward the bolt face to reach the proper headspace with simple gauges to allow the operator to adjust to the proper dimensions. By the late 20th century, the M2 was the only adjustable headspace weapon in the U.S. inventory. With rising reports of injuries from improperly headspaced weapons, the U.S. military held a competition for a quick change barrel conversion kit with fixed timing and headspace in 1997. Three companies offered kits and Saco Defense won the competition. However, funding was lost before the design could be fully evaluated and the program ended. In 2007, the military found money to start a new competition. Saco Defense had since been acquired by General Dynamics, which won the competition.[65]

U.S. Army Ranger Special Operations Vehicle (RSOV) armed with RAMO M2HB-QCB machine gun

On October 15, 2010, the M2A1 heavy machine gun was type classified by the U.S. Army. Formerly known as the M2E2, the M2A1 incorporates improvements to the design including a quick change barrel (QCB) with removable carrying handle, a new slotted flash suppressor that reduces muzzle flash by 95 percent, fixed headspace and timing, a modified bolt, and a manual trigger block safety. “Timing” is the adjustment of the gun so that firing takes place when the recoiling parts are in the correct position for firing. When a standard M2 had a barrel change, the headspace and timing had to be manually set. Improper adjustment could damage the weapon and cause serious injury to the user. Fixed headspace and timing reduces risk, and the carrying handle allows the barrel to be switched in seconds.[66][67] In June 2011, the Army began conversion of M2HB machine guns to M2A1s.[68] The M2A1 was named one of the greatest Army inventions of 2011.[69] As of November 30, 2012, 8,300 built or converted M2A1s had been fielded by the U.S. Army; the program will upgrade the Army’s entire M2 inventory of more than 54,000 guns.[70] The U.S. Marine Corps plans to upgrade all of their ground-mounted M2s to M2A1 standard from 2016 to 2018.[71] The first phase of conversions was completed in March 2017, with 3,600 M2A1s planned to be fielded by the Marines in total.[72] The Israel Defense Forces adopted the M2-HQCB (the commercial version of the M2A1) in 2012 as a replacement to the M2HB.[73]

Aircraft guns[edit]


P-47 firing its eight M2 .50 machine guns during night gunnery

The M2 machine gun was widely used during World War II, and in later postwar conflicts, as a remote or flexible aircraft gun. For fixed (offensive) or flexible (defensive) guns used in aircraft, a dedicated M2 version was developed called the .50 Browning AN/M2. The “AN” stands for “Army/Navy”, since the gun was developed jointly for use by both services (unusual for the time, when the delineations between the Army and Navy were much stricter, and relations between armed services were often cool, if not outright hostile[citation needed]). The AN/M2 had a cyclic rate of 750–850 rounds per minute, with the ability to be fired from an electrically operated remote-mount solenoid trigger when installed as a fixed gun. Cooled by the aircraft’s slip-stream, the air-cooled AN/M2 was fitted with a substantially lighter 36-inch (91 cm) length barrel, reducing the weight of the complete unit to 61 pounds (28 kg),[74] which also had the effect of increasing the rate of fire. The official designation for this weapon was Browning Machine Gun, Aircraft, Cal. .50, AN/M2 (Fixed) or (Flexible). The B-17G Flying Fortressheavy bomber was armed with up to 13 AN/M2 guns in both turreted and flexible positions, with only the later versions of the B-25J Mitchell medium bomber, field-fitted with solid metal noses carrying more AN/M2 guns. These could carry from 14 to 18 M2s, mostly aimed forward for attack duties, including two guns on the forward-located dorsal turret of the B-25H and J models.


The XM296/M296 is a further development of the AN/M2 machine gun for the OH-58 Kiowa Warrior helicopter. The M296 differs from previous remote firing variants in that it has adjustable firing rate (500–850 rpm), while lacking a bolt latch (allowing single-shot operation).[75] As an air-cooled gun used aboard a relatively slow rotary-wing aircraft, the M296 has a burst restriction rate of 50 rounds per minute sustained fire or 150 rounds per minute maximum while conducting peacetime training requirements; the combat firing rate is unrestricted but a ten-minute cooling period after prolonged firing is mandated to avoid stoppages due to overheating.[76]

XM213/M213, XM218, GAU-15/A, GAU-16/A, and GAU-18/A[edit]

The XM213/M213 was a modernization and adaptation of existing .50 caliber AN/M2s in inventory for use as a pintlemounted door gun on helicopters using the M59 armament subsystem.
The GAU-15/A, formerly identified as the XM218, is a lightweight member of the M2/M3 family. The GAU-16/A was an improved GAU-15/A with modified grip and sight assemblies for similar applications. Both of these weapons were used as a part of the A/A49E-11 armament subsystem (also known as the Defensive Armament System).
The GAU-18/A, is a lightweight variant of the M2/M3, and is used on the USAF’s MH-53 Pave Low and HH-60 Pave Hawkhelicopters. These weapons do not use the M2HB barrel, and are typically set up as left-hand feed, right-hand charging weapons, but on the HH-60 Pavehawks that use the EGMS (External Gun Mount System) the gun is isolated from the shooter by a recoil absorbing cradle and all weapons are set up as right hand charge but vary between left and right hand feed depending on what side of the aircraft it is on. A feed chute adapter is attached to the left or right hand feed pawl bracket allowing the weapon to receive ammunition through a feed chute system connected to externally mounted ammunition containers holding 600 rounds each.

AN/M3, GAU-21/A, and M3P[edit]

German Army ramp gunner mans an M3M on board a CH-53 helicopter

During World War II, a faster-firing Browning was developed for aircraft use. The AN/M3 features a mechanical or electrically boosted feed mechanism to increase the rate of fire to around 1,200 rounds per minute. The AN/M3 was used in Korea on the F-82 Twin Mustang (the XP-82 mounted a total of 14 AN/M3 machine guns), F-86 SabreF-84 Thunderjet and F-80 Shooting Star, and in Vietnam in the XM14/SUU-12/A gun pod. Today, it can be found on the Embraer EMB 314 Super Tucano.
The M3-series is used by the U.S. military in two versions; the M3M and M3P. The fixed, remote-firing version, the FN M3P, is employed on the Avenger Air Defense System, and is currently used on the OH-58D, augmenting the XM296 .50 cal. machine gun.[77] The M3M flexible machine gun has been adopted by USN under the designation GAU-21/A for use on helicopters. The GAU-21/A is also being used by the U.S. Marine Corps to upgrade from the XM-218/GAU-16 .50 cal. machine gun for the CH-53E,[78] on the UH-1Y Venom, and on the Canadian Forces’ CH-146 Griffon via the INGRESS upgrade.[citation needed] The Air Force is looking to replace the GAU-18 on the HH-60G Pave Hawk with the GAU-21 because of its higher 1,100 rpm rate of fire, longer 10,000-round barrel life, and lower recoil through use of a soft mount.[79]


The M2 family has been widely used abroad, primarily in its basic infantry configuration. A brief listing of designations for M2 family weapons follows:

Country NATOMember Designation Description
 Argentina[80] No M2HB 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 Australia[80] Global Partner M2HB-QCB[81]
 Austria[80] No üsMG M2
 Belgium[80] Yes
 Benin[80] No
 Brazil[80] Mtr .50 M2 HB “BROWNING”
 Bulgaria[80] Yes
 Burkina Faso[80] No
 Canada[80] Yes FN M2HB-QCB, GAU-21
 Chad[80] No
 Cote d’Ivoire[80]
 Croatia[80] Yes
 Democratic Republic of Congo[80] No
 Denmark[80] Yes M/50 TMG
M/2001 TMG 12.7 × 99 mm FNH M2HB-QCB[83]
? 12.7 × 99 mm FNH M3M machine gun[84]
 Czech Republic[80] Yes 12.7 × 99 mm FNH M2HB-QCB[85]
 Djibouti[80] No 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 Dominican Republic[80]
 El Salvador[80]
 Estonia[86] Yes Browning M2 sometimes as Raskekuulipilduja Browning M2 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB. Usually mounted on vehicles, such as the Pasi XA-180 and XA-188, but the tripod version is also in use.
 Ethiopia[80] No 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 France[80] Yes
 Finland[87] No 12,7 RSKK 2005 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun in Protector remote weapon stations in Patria AMVAPCs.[88]
 Gabon[80] 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 Germany[89] Yes M3M, MG50
 Guatemala[80] No
 Hungary[citation needed] Yes
 India[80] No
 Iraq No
 Ireland[80] .5 Heavy Machine Gun (HMG)[90]
 Israel[80] No מק”כ 0.5 12.7 × 99 mm M2HB-QCB, used by all ground forces (infantry, armored fighting vehicles and tanks) and naval forces
 Italy[80] Yes 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 Jamaica[80] No
 Japan[80] 12.7mm Heavy Machine Gun M2
 South Korea[80] K6 (standard HMG), MG50 (being phased out), M3M (used by Cheonghae Unit[91]) 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB with additional modification; licensed by Yeohwa Shotgun
 Kuwait[80] 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 Libya[citation needed] No
 Latvia[92] Yes M2HB-QCB
 Luxembourg[80] Mitrailleuse .50 M2 HB[94]
 Madagascar[80] No
 Namibia No
 Netherlands[80] Yes
 New Zealand[80] Global Partner
 Nicaragua[80] No
 Norway[80] Yes 12,7 mitraljøse
 Oman[80] No
 Portugal[80] Yes
 Qatar[80] No
 Romania[80] Yes
 Rwanda[80] No
 Saudi Arabia[80]
 South Africa[80] 50 Browning
 Soviet Union No M2 AA variant, Lend-Lease, 3100 pieces[95]
 Spain[80][96] Yes M2HB-QCB, M3M
 Sweden[97] No Kulspruta 88 (Ksp 88)
  Switzerland[80] MG 64
 Turkey[80] Yes
 Turkmenistan[98] No
 United Arab Emirates[80]
 United Kingdom[80] Yes L2A1
L6, L6A1 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun; ranging gun for the L7 105 mm tank gun on the Centurion tank
L11, L11A1 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun; ranging gun
L21A1 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun; ranging gun for the 120 mm tank gun on the Chieftain tank
L111A1[99] 12.7 × 99 mm M2QCB machine gun
M3M[100] 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun; Upgraded M2 for use on Commando Helicopter Force and other units as helicopter door guns.
 United States[80] Browning Caliber .50 M2, M2HB, XM218/GAU-16, GAU-21 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
 Uruguay[80] No 12.7 × 99 mm Browning M2HB machine gun
Other Stuff

Some Seriously British Bad Boys

** Trigger warning! The stuff below has some serious adult Conversations and Social Interactions. ***

Image result for the united kingdom
Now I am going to give out a few  pieces of serious advice for those folks thinking of going to the United Kingdom for a visit.
When it comes to our cousins across the the Pond. Do not be fooled by their accents or their manners.
So here is a few clues that you might want to remember.
They speak a language that is very similar to the Language we speak here in the USA.
Do not try and drink any of them under the Table! As partaking of spirits is almost a Religion over there!
(They invented Scotch Whiskey and other drinks over there)
Also You may be foolish enough to think that they are a bunch of Sissies.
Image result for men in kilts
Go ahead and tell him, That it’s a skirt!
But trust me on this one! As they have some real hard noses over there. Since one does not go out and conquer the Biggest Empire in History. By being a Poof!
As is shown here.
Related image
Image result for the British empire memes
Image result for the queen of england memes


So if you get a chance. By all means go! As I had the most fun with my clothes on out there.

Gear & Stuff

How to clean a Hand Gun safely & well

Now I hope that you just back from shooting your trusty side arm. I also hope that you had fun and hit the Bulls Eye a lot!
Image result for Trusty Side Army
Image result for hitting the pistol target Bullseye
Now come the less glamorous job of cleaning the weapon. But since you have spent a pile of jack on it. That and you want it to be able to work well in the future.
So you just get it done.  Now like all jobs. It is going to take some time, goodies and skill. But if you persist thru this. I think that I can help you out.
Here are some helpful hints.
Inline image 1
As a lot of folks have been shot by an”Unloaded” gun. So trust me on this one.
Image result for trust me harrison ford
As both the Cops and later on the Judge. As both of them are not going to be very understanding about things like this.
Inline image 1
Next is this gentle hint. Do not have anybody just horsing around you during this time. Again as both the Cops & the Judge are NOT going to be amused.
Image result for pissed off judge & cops
Image result for pissed off judge & cops
Now here is some stuff that I use on my guns. Hopefully they will do just a good a job as they do for me.
First off you need a place that has good ventilation. Since most of this stuff is mildly toxic and fatal if you drink it. (Please Don’t Okay?)

This is my Idea of a real Man’s Garage by the way. (My day will come when I have one as good as this one)

Image result for a real mans garage
Next you are going to need some rags. I found that old beach towels or old diapers work best. Since they have leave little lint after their use.
Inline image 7
**WARNING** Do not even think of using your Brides wedding gear. Tempting as it may be at times!
Next you need some cleaning oil and solutions. Now I have been using Breakfree since I was a Rookie in Army Basic. It has never let me down so far. But it is up to you.
Inline image 5
Also some Gun Foam is a real time saver. Especially since it will get into the tiniest crevice of the gun. It is alo very useful to get rid of cosmoline and stubborn grease.
***Just do not get it on Wood Stocks or Grips. As it will take the varnish and stain away very quickly. Also not getting it in your eyes is a very good idea!**
I also found that getting a cheap apron is a good idea. Especially since I am a sloppy child as Mom has repeatedly told me.
Your Dry cleaner will also be happy with you too.
You can buy one usually for under Ten Bucks if you look around. Said the Cheapest Teacher in America.
Inline image 8
This “Q” Tip looking thing. I have found to be really useful also. Just do not put them in your ear. Okay? Amazon has them by the way.

RamRodz 0.22/0.223/5.56 Caliber Gun…
Inline image 4
They come in a variety of caliber sizes also.

Next item to get is some cleaning patches. The Good ones come in various sizes.
I myself usually buy a 22 , 243 size,308 caliber and some shotgun sized ones.  For they will last me for the better part of a year or two. Most gun shops and Sporting good stores have them
Or you can cut up some of your rags to get it done.
Inline image 6
Last but not least. Buy yourself a good brass cleaning  rod for pistols. If you can the US Army use to issue them for their side arms. They are very tough and durable. Mine is over 60 years old.
This is comparable to it.
Inline image 3
Also invest in a couple of patch holders. That & some good copper bore brushes and a toothbrush.  Now this seems a lot.
But I figured out the whole rig cost me un $50 & about a day or two to rustle them up. That & they really help me do a good job and save me also a lot of time to boot.
Which is all things considered. A very cheap & effective insurance policy that does pay off in the long run.
Here below also are some pretty good videos that can also help you in getting this detail done right.

All About Guns Other Stuff

Some stuff I found on Theodore Roosevelt & Guns

I have always found “The Good Roosevelt” to be a refreshing kind of guy. So I thought I would share some of the things that I found on the net I hope that you like this!
Inline image 11KerInline image 7Inline image 9
As you an see the Old Boy really got around.
Since he is the only American so far to have been awarded the Presidency of the United States, The Nobel Peace Prize and the Medal of Honor.
Image result for theodore roosevelt nobel peace prize
Image result for theodore roosevelt nobel peace prize
Image result for theodore roosevelt medal of honor
(His Son -Theodore Jr got his for his actions as a Brigadier General on D Day at Normandy. Generals do not usually get that medal at that rank by the way.)
Image result for theodore roosevelt jr medal of honor
Image result for theodore roosevelt jr medal of honor
Roosevelt’s 1903 Springfield Rifle – The later it belonged to Kermit Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt’s sonInline image 10
Image result for teddy roosevelt 1903 rifle
I just wish we had more like him around!
I will post some more stuff about him later on.
Thanks for your time on this!


Now you were saying something about the weaker sex?

Now this is what I call a Lady /REAl Woman. Who could probably easily take care of herself if need be.

Gear & Stuff

The Sherman Tank

Now I was assigned to a Armor Cavalry Regiment. When I was in the National Guard. So maybe I know a thing or two about Tanks.
As to the Sherman Tank. My hat is really off to those guys that rode in them during WWII & Korea. They really had a pair of solid brass Testicles.
Here are a few things that I learned about Armored Fighting Vehicles. They are hot, smelly, greasy, loud and blind.
Now by saying blind. When you are buttoned up inside of one. Really only the Driver and the Track Commander (The TC) can see out either by sticking their head out of the hatch*. Or by using his periscope. Yes tanks have periscopes.
Image result for tank periscope
*By the way a good Sniper will just loves this. He & his spotter will be looking mighty hard for you for this point.
Another thing that is mighty important to Tankers is that of TEAMWORK! As the crew thinks like a team or else.
Image result for sherman tank

Image result for sherman tank
Image result for sherman tank
How a tank is killed in Modern Combat.
Now everyone thinks that a Tank is invulnerable.
Image result for shot up sherman tank
Trust me it isn’t !
So here are some of the things that Track Folks just hate with a passion.
The Bad Guys Tank
Image result for modern russian tanks
Anti Tank Guns
Image result for anti tank guns
Close Air Support
Image result for the warthog
Hand held Anti Tank Weapons like the Russian RPG
Image result for rpg
Crazy Folks with Molotov Cocktails

Image result for molotov cocktail
Or just throwing a Track in combat.
Image result for throwing a tank track in combat             Does this look like fun or what!?! Especially when some pissed off at you folks are shooting at you.

Now if you want to see a fairly accurate film about the Sherman Tank in the ETO. You might want to see Fury.

Now is is some more Technical info about the Sherman

Sherman Tank Site: News Post 12, pictures and cleaning them up, a lot of them.

Sherman Tank Site: News Post 12, things have been changing, its all behind the scenes.

I’ve gotten my hands on a lot of manuals, and they are all great for gathering info on the Sherman, because you can almost always read them. The picture quality varies a huge amount depending on how it was created. There are some very common and easy to find  Sherman manuals with terrible pictures. For example the two I have on the M4A3, and the manual on the Ford GAA, both were probably photocopied multiple times, then scanned on a really early scanner.
This means, the pictures at best, are mostly black blobs, and even the text isn’t great. All isn’t lost with these, as the line drawings usually come through ok.  In some cases the manuals being sold online are these terrible photo copies printed into a cheap book with no improvements to the quality at all.
Some of these manuals have been scanned in by people with decent scanners, and these though much larger, have much nicer photo quality. Even if the scans are good, the original has to be good as well, and in some cases that’s really mixed.  I have several, scanned at very high resolution, making them restorable, to some degree.
I’ve done the most work on the Ford GAA imaged I have, and the tranny. Here is a selection of the ones I’ve done, but not all. Check out the power train and GAA pages for all of them. These are relaxing to do, and I have a ton to work with so keep checking around the site!

#68 The Chrysler Engine that could have been: The A-65 V12, Chrysler’s home designed tank motor.

The Chrysler Engine that could have been: The A-65 V12, if the war had gone on, there could have been some hotrod Shermans.

Chrysler Corporation had a big impact on the war, and US Tank production. They produced the first, and the model for the others, Tank Arsenal CDA.  They also came up with the A-57 multibank tank motor, that powered a significant number of Sherman tanks. They produced this fantastically complicated, but also reliable motor in a very quickly, and even though the US Army and Marine Corps thumbed their noses at it,  it was well liked by the British.

Chrysler on their own dime came up with a water cooled, V12, tank motor, and offered it to the Army.  It took them about a year to come up with three trial motors.  These 1568 cubic motors started out at 650 horsepower at 2600 RPM and 1485 pounds of torque at 1600 RPM on the test stand.  They came in around 3840 pounds, but there was a proposed all aluminum version that have dropped nearly 1000 pounds.  Designing and producing the prototypes, cost a grand total of 358,000 bucks, that’s over 5 million in today’s dollars. During the dyno testing period, they had a few problems with the fan drives, but these were solved with improved oiling and rolling bearings, and these seemed to have solved the problems.

They used an M4A4 as a test vehicle, and had to stretch it another 9 and 1/2 inches to fit the new motor. Installed and ready to roll the thing came in at 69,170 ponds, and a stock M4A4 came in at 69,640 pounds!  Installed, the early versions had 549 horsepower, but they upped the compression ratio and got it to 580, and it was improved even more with some carburetion changes. They made the compression change by swapping and a cam change during the in vehicle testing phase. Further testing led to the intake and carb changes.  All the while the motor was being swapped in and out, and driving tests done.
The automotive tests were very successful, and that was using the stock powertrain of the Sherman, though with so much power, they decided a gear change would help. By swapping the original 3:53:1 gears for 3:05:1 gears, they A65 was still able to beat an M4A43 in a drag race!  The engine was so promising, it’s an interesting mystery why the Army never developed it further.  Much like the GAA, there was much more performance potential in this motor, and the Army never took it any further.
I suspect what ultimately killed this motor, was the same thing that killed the GAA, the Army was looking at air cooled motors for the future, because you can save a lot of weight, if there is not liquid cooling system needed.
Special thanks goes out to Chris R, one of our readers and a source contributor, sent me a nice little history on the motor.  Thanks again Chris, sorry it took so long!!
Sources:  Sherman, by Hunnicutt, and 1943 A-65 Tank Engine History

News Post #10: Sherman Tank Site News!

Sherman Tank Site News, April of 2017 edition: Data Part II, Data Strikes again. 

The Sherman data sheets have been a very popular addition to the site, so I decided to gun and engine data sheets as well.  One motor Data Sheet is done, and the others are in the works. There are all kinds of new images and info in the various pages on the Shermans guns.
We also have a new layout to the website, instead of a lot of hard to find posts with an Index that was hard to find things in, we now have set pages,  of the main menu.

As you can see from this handy image, we have a page for the Shermans suspension and Track systems.  We have a Sherman Gun Data page. We also have a motor data page, but right now we only have the Ford GAA in it.  Now we also have pages for each tank model and a main page to find them.  There have also been minor image additions to many posts, and a few pages have received minor updates.
The Crew and their Stations post got a massive update as well. 
We also recently reviewed an inside the Hatch of the M4A1 tank.
Coming soon will be the Sherman Transmission, differential and final drive data sheet. I will also be filling out the individual Sherman model pages over the next few days. There is only so much I can do in a day!

Thanks for being interested in the site for all the guys who have commented and sent me interesting info. More great information on the Sherman tank is on the way.


Sherman Tank Site, News Post 9: DATA, DATA everywhere!

News Post 9: New Years News

I decided I needed more hard numbers, the kind of data that makes non tank nerds eyes roll up in their heads, stuff like how many spare periscopes were issued with an early war M4A1! One of the best way to do this is through tank Data sheets, as found in the back of many books on tanks. I used Hunnicutt’s Sherman book for some, but others I’ve made using the Hunnicutt ones as a template and then using data from the Technical Manual for the tank.
We had four, now have spec sheets for 15 different models of Sherman, and 3 Lees! You can find them all on this page. Shermom Model specification sheets. 

90mm GMC M36B1 Spec Sheet PDF
That’s not all though, I decided the gun Data sheets in Hunnicut were really interesting, so I started replicating those, but with an improved format, and slightly more data.  These gun Data Sheets can be found here, Main Guns: THings that go  BOOM!  All the guns the Sherman tank used are covered, and more are coming.

m1-M1A1-M1A2 guns 76.2 Sherman tanks
In the works are Data Sheets for each Sherman tank motor, and several experimental models. These Data sheets will have much more detailed info on the motor, and will include interesting images from the manuals for the motors.
Also in the works as dedicated pages for these data sheets, the beta test of the gun version is up and can be found here.  Next up will be ones for each tank model and then motor.
Also note the latest post on the Ram tank, The Ram: The Shermans awkward Canadian Cousin. This post covers the Canadian and British attempt to come up with a better Sherman before the Sherman design and prototype was done. I’ve been sent some very interesting documents, some are included in the post.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more Sherman information!

#30 Sherman Model Specifications: Data, and Lots of It.

Sherman Model Specification Sheets: Detailed Data Sheets For Each Model.

These were a pain in the rear to make, the ones in the back of my copy of Hunnicutt are very bad, so I have reproduced some in Word, and then print them out as PDFs, then take a screen shot of the PDF for this post. I have now hosted all the PDF files, if you want something with copy and pasteable text. I’ve got a system not for these and it’s semi easy to do, so I will keep adding them. I also added at least one, and up to five images with each spec sheet, of the Sherman the spec sheet is for. You can click to enlarge all these images, the sizes very.

M3 Lee spec Sheet

M3 Lee spec sheet in PDF

M3A2 Spec Sheet

M3A2 Lee Spec Sheet in PDF

Early Production M4 75

M4 Early spec sheet

M4 Mid Production

Early M4A1 75

M4A1 Early Spec Sheet

Mid Production M4A1 75

M4A1 75 mid war spec sheet

Mid production M4A2 75

M4A2 75 mid production spec sheet

Mid production M4A3 75

M4A3 75d mid spec sheet

M4A3 75 wet large hatch VVSS

M4A3 75w spec sheet

Early M4A4 75 

Early M4A1 75

M4A1 Early Spec Sheet

Mid Production M4A1 75

M4A1 75 mid war spec sheet

Mid production M4A2 75

M4A2 75 mid production spec sheet

Mid production M4A3 75

M4A3 75d mid spec sheet

M4A3 75 wet large hatch VVSS

M4A3 75w spec sheet

Early M4A4 75 

Early M4A1 75

M4A1 Early Spec Sheet

Mid Production M4A1 75

M4A1 75 mid war spec sheet

Mid production M4A2 75

M4A2 75 mid production spec sheet

Mid production M4A3 75

M4A3 75d mid spec sheet

M4A3 75 wet large hatch VVSS

M4A3 75w spec sheet

Early M4A4 75 

M4A1 76 wet VVSS

M4A1 76w specsheet

M4A2 76 wet VVSS

 M4A2 76w spec sheet

M4A2 76 wet HVSS


M4A2 76w HVSS Easy 8 Spec Sheet

M4A3 76 wet HVSS, or Sherman Easy 8

The M4A3E2 Jumbo 75

M4A3e2 Jumbo spec sheet

Sherman Firefly VC


Firefly Vc Spec Sheet


M10 GMC 3inch spec sheet


M36B1 90mm GMC


Other Stuff

Old School Brit

All About Guns

What Every Gun Lover needs!

The Howdah Gun

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Now back in the Glory Days of the British Empire and the Raj. If you were very rich or had gotten in trouble at home.
The Thing to do was to escape Blighty and head out to one of the Colonies. Especially if you were greedy & or Blood thirsty. Even more especially after the Sepoy Mutiny.

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So as you went East of Suez. You would of course be invited to a Tiger Hunt. If you were of the right sort of chap naturally.
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Yeah right, uh moving on.
How the Howah was usually used. Now back in the day. They way one properly hunted Tigers in India was on top of an Elephant.
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If a Tiger decided to come join you in your basket. Then you had your handy dandy Howdah guns to greet him with. So as you can guess by now. These guns packed quite a punch.
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The Howdah Pistol can also be very useful in Labor Negotiations with the locals at times. (Film The Ghost & The Darkness. Great Film by the way)
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Anyways here is some other videos and other information about these heavy hitters.

Howdah pistol

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Double barrel .50 caliber (13mm) howdah pistol made in Germany

Breech of the same pistol open for loading. This particular weapon was made for a left-handed user

The howdah pistol was a large-calibre handgun, often with two or four barrels, used in India and Africa from the beginning of the nineteenth century, and into the early twentieth century, during the period of British Colonial rule. It was typically intended for defence against tigerslions, and other dangerous animals that might be encountered in remote areas. Multi-barreled breech-loading designs were later favoured over the original muzzle-loading designs for Howdah pistols, because they offered faster reloading than was possible with contemporary revolvers,[1]which had to be loaded and unloaded through a gate in the side of the frame.
The term “howdah pistol” comes from the howdah, a large platform mounted on the back of an elephant. Hunters, especially during the period of the British Raj in India, used howdahs as a platform for hunting wild animals and needed large-calibre side-arms for protection from animal attacks.[2] The practice of hunting from the howdah basket on top of an Asian elephant was first made popular by the joint Anglo-Indian East India Company during the 1790s. These earliest howdah pistols were flintlock designs, and it was not until about 60 years later percussion models in single or double barrel configuration were seen. By the 1890s and early 1900s cartridge-firing and fully rifled howdah pistols were in normal, everyday use.
The first breech-loading howdah pistols were little more than sawn-off rifles,[2]typically in .577 Snider[3] or .577/450 Martini–Henry calibre. Later English firearms makers manufactured specially-designed howdah pistols[3] in both rifle calibres and more conventional handgun calibres such as .455 Webley and .476 Enfield.[2]As a result, the term “howdah pistol” is often applied to a number of English multi-barrelled handguns such as the Lancaster pistol (available in a variety of calibres from .380″ to .577″),[4] and various .577 calibre revolvers produced in England and Europe for a brief time in the mid-late 19th century.[5]
Even though howdah pistols were designed for emergency defense from dangerous animals in Africa and India, British officers adopted them for personal protection in other far-flung outposts of the British Empire.[3] By the late 19th century, top-break revolvers in more practical calibres (such as .455 Webley) had become widespread,[3] removing much of the traditional market for howdah pistols.
Modern reproductions are available from Italian gun maker Pedersoli in .577 and .50 calibers, as well as in 20 bore.


Now for something completely different

Now you are probably saying right now.”WTF is this Grumpy?” And I would have to agree that this is not your average semi auto pistol.
So here is what I found out about it.

Somebody else wrote this one. AS you can guess. Since it is a whole lot better written than I could.
The model 1898 Schwarzlose was a self loading pistol definitely ahead of its time. It was simple, powerful (for the period; it was chambered for 7.63mm Mauser), and remarkably ergonomic. It used a short recoil, rotating bolt mechanism to operate, and very cleverly had one single spring which did the duties of primary recoil spring, striker spring, trigger spring, and extractor spring. Why it failed to become a commercial success is a question I have not been able to definitively answer – I suspect it must have been due to cost. Edward Ezell theorizes that it was unable to compete with the Borchardt/Luger and Mauser pistols because those were able to be made with much more economy of scale. It is really a shame, because the Schwarzlose 1898 is the best of all the pre-1900 handguns I have encountered.

All About Guns

The British Army Rifle The 303 SMLE or "Smelly"

      The Last Real Rifle of the British Empire

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  Now the Brits have made some interesting guns in their lives, Like the 100 Ton Gun in Gibraltar.
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 That and some others that  I will try and cover later on.
My own Personal Experience with it.
  I have owned a couple of them over the years. Sadly I sold them either because of $$ needs at the time. Or just because of Massive stupidity on my part. MEA CULPA!
  Now these rifles  are a very sturdy but heavy rifle. That fires the caliber 303 rifle round.
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  Which is an interesting rimmed round. It seems that I heard from somebody or other told me this.
  In that when it hits some poor soul. The round had a tendency to become a mini bad saw. That inflicted some really bad / terminal wounds. Take it for what’s worth.
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  But back to the Rimmed round. As it seems that  almost everyone else had switched over basically by 1930. But I am sure that the British Army had several acres of warehouses filled with the stuff.
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  Couple the fact that the British Parliament has always tried to keep the Army’s Budget down. (The Royal Navy always got the Lion’s Share of it Defense Budget)
  So I can see why they stuck with this round as long as they did. So really it’s a matter of. If something works, why mess with it?
He thinks the same thoughts I bet!
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  I also have been told that this round is in the same neighborhood as the 30-30 for effectiveness.
  Right moving right along. I was also able to get some so-so results from them at the range. But there where nothing really to write home to.
  But then it was not designed to be a super accurate sniper rifle. Instead if it could hit a soup plate at 200 yards. Then the Army was happy.
(If one gets hit in the chest with a round. The chances are that you are either going to be dead or badly wounded. So so what more do you want?)
  Now before some Tommy comes to the door to punch me in the nose. I really want to emphasis this .
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  I really liked it as a rifle. It was a lot of fun to shoot. The only problem really with it was finding ammo for it. Which would not put me in a monetary pinch.
  All I know is this, if I see another one in good shape and is not outrageously expensive. I will most definitely buy it.
Here is some other folks opinion about this fine battle Rifle!
Here is its complete & Technical story that is better told than I can do.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about the early twentieth-century British rifle. For other uses, see Lee rifle and Enfield rifle (disambiguation).
Short Magazine Lee-Enfield Mk 1 (1903) - UK - cal 303 British - Armémuseum.jpg

Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk I (1903), Swedish Army Museum, Stockholm.
Type Bolt-action rifle
Place of origin United Kingdom
Service history
In service MLE: 1895–1926
SMLE: 1904–present
Used by See Users
Wars Second Boer War
World War I
Easter Rising
Various Colonial conflicts
Irish War of Independence
Irish Civil War
World War II
Indonesian National Revolution
Indo-Pakistani Wars
Greek Civil War
Malayan Emergency
French Indochina War
Korean War
Arab-Israeli War
Suez Crisis
Border Campaign (Irish Republican Army)
Mau Mau Uprising
Vietnam War
The Troubles
Sino-Indian War
Bangladesh Liberation War
Soviet invasion of Afghanistan
Nepalese Civil War
Afghanistan conflict
Production history
Designer James Paris LeeRSAF Enfield
Produced MLE: 1895–1904
SMLE: 1904–present
No. built 17,000,000+[1]
Variants See Models/marks
Weight 4.19 kg (9.24 lb) (Mk I)
3.96 kg (8.73 lb) (Mk III)
4.11 kg (9.06 lb) (No. 4)
Length MLE: 49.6 in (1,260 mm)
SMLE No. 1 Mk III: 44.57 in (1,132 mm)
SMLE No. 4 Mk I: 44.45 in (1,129 mm)
LEC: 40.6 in (1,030 mm)
SMLE No. 5 Mk I: 39.5 in (1,003 mm)
Barrel length MLE: 30.2 in (767 mm)
SMLE No. 1 Mk III: 25.2 in (640 mm)
SMLE No. 4 Mk I: 25.2 in (640 mm)
LEC: 21.2 in (540 mm)
SMLE No. 5 Mk I: 18.8 in (480 mm)

Cartridge .303 Mk VII SAA Ball
Action Bolt-action
Rate of fire 20–30 aimed shots per minute
Muzzle velocity 744 m/s (2,441 ft/s)
Effective firing range 550 yd (503 m)[2]
Maximum firing range 3,000 yd (2,743 m)[2]
Feed system 10-round magazine, loaded with 5-round charger clips
Sights Sliding ramp rear sights, fixed-post front sights, “dial” long-range volley; telescopic sights on sniper models. Fixed and adjustable aperture sights incorporated onto later variants.

The Lee–Enfield is a bolt-actionmagazine-fed, repeating rifle that was the main firearm used by the military forces of the British Empireand Commonwealth during the first half of the 20th century. It was the British Army‘s standard rifle from its official adoption in 1895 until 1957.[3][4]. It is often referred to as the “SMLE,” which is short for “Short Magazine Lee-Enfield”.
A redesign of the Lee–Metford (adopted by the British Army in 1888), the Lee–Enfield superseded the earlier Martini–HenryMartini–Enfield, and Lee–Metford rifles. It featured a ten-round box magazine which was loaded with the .303 Britishcartridge manually from the top, either one round at a time or by means of five-round chargers. The Lee–Enfield was the standard issue weapon to rifle companies of the British Army and other Commonwealth nations in both the Firstand Second World Wars (these Commonwealth nations included Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India and South Africa, among others).[5] Although officially replaced in the UK with the L1A1 SLR in 1957, it remained in widespread British service until the early/mid-1960s and the 7.62 mm L42 sniper variant remained in service until the 1990s. As a standard-issue infantry rifle, it is still found in service in the armed forces of some Commonwealth nations,[6] notably with the Bangladesh Police, which makes it the second longest-serving military bolt-action rifle still in official service, after the Mosin–Nagant.[7] The Canadian Rangers reserve unit still use Enfield rifles, with plans to replace the weapons sometime in 2017–2018 with the new Sako-designed Colt C-19.[8] Total production of all Lee–Enfields is estimated at over 17 million rifles.[1]
The Lee–Enfield takes its name from the designer of the rifle’s bolt system—James Paris Lee—and the factory in which it was designed—the Royal Small Arms Factory in Enfield. In Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Southern Africa and India the rifle became known simply as the “three-oh-three[9] or the “three-naught-three“.

Design and history

The Lee–Enfield rifle was derived from the earlier Lee–Metford, a mechanically similar black-powder rifle, which combined James Paris Lee‘s rear-locking bolt system with a barrel featuring rifling designed by William Ellis Metford. The Lee action cocked the striker on the closing stroke of the bolt, making the initial opening much faster and easier compared to the “cock on opening” (i.e., the firing pin cocks upon opening the bolt) of the Mauser Gewehr 98 design. The rear-mounted lugs place the bolt operating handle much closer to the operator, over the trigger, making it quicker to operate than traditional designs like the Mauser.[4] The action features helical locking surfaces (the technical term is interrupted threading). This means that final head space is not achieved until the bolt handle is turned down all the way. The British probably used helical locking lugs to allow for chambering imperfect or dirty ammunition and that the closing cam action is distributed over the entire mating faces of both bolt and receiver lugs. This is one reason the bolt closure feels smooth. The rifle was also equipped with a detachable sheet-steel, 10-round, double-column magazine, a very modern development in its day. Originally, the concept of a detachable magazine was opposed in some British Army circles, as some feared that the private soldier might be likely to lose the magazine during field campaigns. Early models of the Lee–Metford and Lee–Enfield even used a short length of chain to secure the magazine to the rifle.[10]
The fast-operating Lee bolt-action and 10-round magazine capacity enabled a well-trained rifleman to perform the “mad minute” firing 20 to 30 aimed rounds in 60 seconds, making the Lee–Enfield the fastest military bolt-action rifle of the day. The current world record for aimed bolt-action fire was set in 1914 by a musketry instructor in the British Army—Sergeant Instructor Snoxall—who placed 38 rounds into a 12-inch-wide (300 mm) target at 300 yards (270 m) in one minute.[11]Some straight-pull bolt-action rifles were thought faster, but lacked the simplicity, reliability, and generous magazine capacity of the Lee–Enfield. Several First World War accounts tell of British troops repelling German attackers who subsequently reported that they had encountered machine guns, when in fact it was simply a group of well-trained riflemen armed with SMLE Mk III rifles.[12][13]

Standard Mk VII .303 inch cartridgefor Lee–Enfield rifle

The Lee–Enfield was adapted to fire the .303 British service cartridge, a rimmed, high-powered rifle round. Experiments with smokeless powder in the existing Lee–Metford cartridge seemed at first to be a simple upgrade, but the greater heat and pressure generated by the new smokeless powder wore away the shallow, rounded, Metford rifling after approximately 6000 rounds.[3] Replacing this with a new square-shaped rifling system designed at the Royal Small Arms Factory (RSAF) Enfield solved the problem, and the Lee–Enfield was born.[3]

Models/marks of Lee–Enfield Rifle and service periods

Model/Mark In Service
Magazine Lee–Enfield 1895–1926
Charger Loading Lee–Enfield 1906–1926
Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk I 1904–1926
Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk II 1906–1927
Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk III/III* 1907–present
Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk V 1922–1924 (trials only; 20,000 produced)
Rifle No. 1 Mk VI 1930–1933 (trials only; 1,025 produced)
Rifle No. 4 Mk I 1931–present (2,500 trials examples produced in the 1930s, then mass production from mid-1941 onwards)
Rifle No. 4 Mk I* 1942–present
Rifle No 5 Mk I “Jungle Carbine” 1944–present (produced 1944–1947) BSA-Shirley produced 81,329 rifles and ROF Fazakerley 169,807 rifles.
Rifle No. 4 Mk 2 1949–present
Rifle 7.62mm 2A 1964–present
Rifle 7.62mm 2A1 1965–present

Magazine Lee–Enfield

The Lee–Enfield rifle was introduced in November 1895 as the .303 calibre, Rifle, Magazine, Lee–Enfield,[3] or more commonly Magazine Lee–Enfield, or MLE (sometimes spoken as “emily” instead of M, L, E). The next year, a shorter version was introduced as the Lee–Enfield Cavalry Carbine Mk I, or LEC, with a 21.2-inch (540 mm) barrel as opposed to the 30.2-inch (770 mm) one in the “long” version.[3] Both underwent a minor upgrade series in 1899 (the omission of the cleaning / clearing rod), becoming the Mk I*.[14] Many LECs (and LMCs in smaller numbers) were converted to special patterns, namely the New Zealand Carbine and the Royal Irish Constabulary Carbine, or NZ and RIC carbines, respectively.[15] Some of the MLEs (and MLMs) were converted to load from chargers, and designated Charger Loading Lee–Enfields, or CLLEs.[16]

Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk I

A shorter and lighter version of the original MLE—the famous Rifle, Short, Magazine, Lee–Enfield, or SMLE (sometimes spoken as “Smelly”, rather than S, M, L, E)[7]—was introduced on 1 January 1904.[17] The barrel was now halfway in length between the original long rifle and the carbine, at 25.2 inches (640 mm).[17]
The SMLE’s visual trademark was its blunt nose, with only the bayonet boss protruding a small fraction of an inch beyond the nosecap, being modeled on the Swedish Model 1894 Cavalry Carbine. The new rifle also incorporated a charger loading system,[18] another innovation borrowed from the Mauser rifle’[19] and is notably different from the fixed “bridge” that later became the standard, being a charger clip (stripper clip) guide on the face of the bolt head. The shorter length was controversial at the time: many Rifle Association members and gunsmiths were concerned that the shorter barrel would not be as accurate as the longer MLE barrels, that the recoil would be much greater, and the sighting radius would be too short.[20]

Short Magazine Lee–Enfield Mk III

Short Magazine Lee–Enfield No. 1 Mk. III

Israeli female soldiers equipped with the SMLE Mk III during the 1948 Arab Israeli War.

Magazine Cut-Off on an SMLE Mk III rifle—this feature was removed on the Mk III* rifle.

The iconic Lee–Enfield rifle, the SMLE Mk III, was introduced on 26 January 1907, along with a Pattern 1907 (P’07) sword bayonet and featured a simplified rear sight arrangement and a fixed, rather than a bolt-head-mounted sliding, charger guide.[7] The design of the handguards and the magazine were also improved, and the chamber was adapted to fire the new Mk VII High Velocity spitzer .303 ammunition. Many early model rifles, of Magazine Lee–Enfield (MLE), Magazine Lee–Metford (MLM), and SMLE type, were upgraded to the Mk III standard. These are designated Mk IV Cond., with various asterisks denoting subtypes.[21]
During the First World War, the SMLE Mk III was found to be too complicated to manufacture (an SMLE Mk III rifle cost the British Government £3/15/-) and demand was outstripping supply, so in late 1915 the Mk III* was introduced, which incorporated several changes, the most prominent of which were the deletion of the magazine cut-off mechanism, which when engaged permits the feeding and extraction of single cartridges only while keeping the cartridges in the magazine in reserve, and the long-range volley sights.[19][21][22][23] The windage adjustment of the rear sight was also dispensed with, and the cocking piece was changed from a round knob to a serrated slab.[23] Rifles with some or all of these features present are found, as the changes were implemented at different times in different factories and as stocks of existing parts were used.[24] The magazine cut-off was reinstated after the First World War ended and not entirely dispensed with until 1942.[23]
The inability of the principal manufacturers (RSAF EnfieldThe Birmingham Small Arms Company Limited and London Small Arms Co. Ltd) to meet military production demands, led to the development of the “peddled scheme”, which contracted out the production of whole rifles and rifle components to several shell companies.[25]
The SMLE Mk III* (renamed Rifle No.1 Mk III* in 1926) saw extensive service throughout the Second World War as well, especially in the North African, Italian, Pacific and Burmese theatres in the hands of British and Commonwealth forces. Australia and India retained and manufactured the SMLE Mk III* as their standard-issue rifle during the conflict and the rifle remained in Australian military service through the Korean War, until it was replaced by the L1A1 SLR in the late 1950s.[26] The Lithgow Small Arms Factory finally ceased production of the SMLE Mk III* in 1953.[21]
The Rifle Factory at Ishapore, West Bengal, India produced the MkIII* in .303 British and then upgraded the manufactured strength by heat treatment of the receiver and bolt to fire 7.62×51mm NATO ammunition, the model 2A, which retained the 2000 yard rear sight as the metric conversion of distance was very close to the flatter trajectory of the new ammunition nature, then changed the rear sight to 800m with a re-designation to model 2A1. Manufactured until at least the 1980s and continues to produce a sporting rifle based on the MkIII* action.

Pattern 1913 Enfield

Main article: Pattern 1913 Enfield

Due to the poor performance of the .303 British cartridge during the Second Boer War from 1899–1902, the British attempted to replace the round and the Lee–Enfield rifle that fired it. The main deficiency of the rounds at the time was that they used heavy, round-nosed bullets that had low muzzle velocities and poor ballistic performance. The 7mm Mauserrounds fired from the Mauser Model 1895 rifle had a higher velocity, flatter trajectory and longer range, making them superior on the open country of the South African plains. Work on a long-range replacement cartridge began in 1910 and resulted in the .276 Enfield in 1912. A new rifle based on the Mauser design was created to fire the round, called the Pattern 1913 Enfield. Although the .276 Enfield had better ballistics, troop trials in 1913 revealed problems including excessive recoil, muzzle flash, barrel wear and overheating. Attempts were made to find a cooler-burning propellant but further trials were halted in 1914 by the onset of World War I. This proved fortunate for the Lee–Enfield, as wartime demand and the improved Mk VII loading of the .303 round, caused it to be retained for service.[27]

Pattern 1914/US M1917

Main articles: Pattern 1914 Enfield and M1917 Enfield

The Pattern 1914 Enfield and M1917 Enfield rifles are based on the Enfield-designed P1913, itself a Mauser 98 derivative and not based on the Lee action, and are not part of the Lee–Enfield family of rifles, although they are frequently assumed to be.[28]

Inter-war period

Lee–Enfield No. 4 Mk I Longbranch aperture sights

In 1926, the British Army changed their nomenclature; the SMLE became known as the Rifle No. 1 Mk III or III*, with the original MLE and LEC becoming obsolete along with the earlier SMLE models.[29] Many Mk III and III* rifles were converted to .22 rimfire calibre training rifles, and designated Rifle No. 2, of varying marks. (The Pattern 1914 became the Rifle No. 3.)[29]
The SMLE design was a relatively expensive long arm to manufacture, because of the many forging and machiningoperations required. In the 1920s, a series of experiments resulting in design changes were carried out to help with these problems, reducing the number of complex parts and refining manufacturing processes. The SMLE Mk V (later Rifle No. 1 Mk V), adopted a new receiver-mounted aperture sighting system, which moved the rear sight from its former position on the barrel.[30] The increased gap resulted in an improved sighting radius, improving sighting accuracy and the aperture improved speed of sighting over various distances. In the stowed position, a fixed distance aperture battle sight calibrated for 300 yd (274 m) protruded saving further precious seconds when laying the sight to a target. An alternative developed during this period was to be used on the No. 4 variant, a “battle sight” was developed that allowed for two set distances of 300 yards and 600 yards to be quickly deployed and was cheaper to produce than the “ladder sight”. The magazine cutoff was also reintroduced and an additional band was added near the muzzle for additional strength during bayonet use.[30] The design was found to be even more complicated and expensive to manufacture than the Mk III and was not developed or issued, beyond a trial production of about 20,000 rifles between 1922 and 1924 at RSAF Enfield.[30] The No. 1 Mk VI also introduced a heavier “floating barrel” that was independent of the forearm, allowing the barrel to expand and contract without contacting the forearm and interfering with the ‘zero’, the correlation between the alignment of the barrel and the sights. The floating barrel increased the accuracy of the rifle by allowing it to vibrate freely and consistently, whereas wooden forends in contact with barrels, if not properly fitted, affected the harmonic vibrations of the barrel. The receiver-mounted rear sights and magazine cutoff were also present and 1,025 units were produced between 1930 and 1933.[31]

Lee–Enfield No. 1 Mk V

Long before the No. 4 Mk I, Britain had obviously settled on the rear aperture sight prior to WWI, with modifications to the SMLE being tested as early as 1911, as well as later on the No. 1 Mk III pattern rifle. These unusual rifles have something of a mysterious service history, but represent a missing link in SMLE development. The primary distinguishing feature of the No. 1 Mk V is the rear aperture sight. Like the No. 1 Mk III* it lacked a volley sight and had the wire loop in place of the sling swivel at the front of magazine well along with the simplified cocking piece. The Mk V did retain a magazine cut-off, but without a spotting hole, the piling swivel was kept attached to a forward barrel band, which was wrapped over and attached to the rear of the nose cap to reinforce the rifle for use with the standard Pattern 1907 bayonet. Other distinctive features include a nose cap screw was slotted for the width of a coin for easy removal, a safety lever on the left side of the receiver was slightly modified with a unique angular groove pattern, and the two-piece hand guard being extended from the nose cap to the receiver, omitting the barrel mounted leaf sight. No. 1 Mk V rifles were manufactured solely by R.S.A.F. Enfield from 1922–1924, with a total production of roughly 20,000 rifles, all of which marked with a “V”.

Rifle No. 4

Lee–Enfield No. 4 Mk I

Lee–Enfield No. 4 Mk 2 with the ladder aperture sight flipped up and 5-round charger

By the late 1930s, the need for new rifles grew and the Rifle, No. 4 Mk I was officially adopted in 1941.[32] The No. 4 action was similar to the Mk VI, but stronger and most importantly, easier to mass-produce.[33] Unlike the SMLE, that had a nose cap, the No 4 Lee–Enfield barrel protruded from the end of the forestock. The charger bridge was no longer rounded for easier machining. The iron sightline was redesigned and featured a rear receiver aperture battle sight calibrated for 300 yd (274 m) with an additional ladder aperture sight that could be flipped up and was calibrated for 200–1,300 yd (183–1,189 m) in 100 yd (91 m) increments. This sight line like other aperture sight lines proved to be faster and more accurate than the typical mid-barrel rear sight elements sight lines offered by Mauser, previous Lee–Enfields or the Buffington battle sight of the 1903 Springfield.
The No. 4 rifle was heavier than the No. 1 Mk. III, largely due to its heavier barrel and a new bayonet was designed to go with the rifle: a spike bayonet, which was essentially a steel rod with a sharp point and was nicknamed “pigsticker” by soldiers.[33] Towards the end of the Second World War, a bladed bayonet was developed, originally intended for use with the Sten gun—but sharing the same mount as the No. 4’s spike bayonet—and subsequently the No. 7 and No. 9 blade bayonets were issued for use with the No. 4 rifle as well.[34]However, in McAuslan in the Rough, George MacDonald Fraser alleges that the Pattern 1907 bladed bayonet used with the SMLE was also compatible with the No. 4 rifle.[35]
During the course of the Second World War, the No. 4 rifle was further simplified for mass-production with the creation of the No. 4 Mk I* in 1942, with the bolt release catch replaced by a simpler notch on the bolt track of the rifle’s receiver.[36] It was produced only in North America, by Long Branch Arsenal in Canada and Savage-Stevens Firearms in the USA.[36]The No.4 Mk I rifle was primarily produced for the United Kingdom.[37]
In the years after the Second World War, the British produced the No. 4 Mk 2 (

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Attachments area
Preview YouTube video Firing of the 100-ton gun at Fort Rinella. 5th May 2013

Preview YouTube video Lee Enfield SMLE MKIII

Preview YouTube video Lee Enfield Rifle vs M1903 Springfield Rifle and M1 Garand – With R. Lee Ermey