With the advent of aircraft, marksmanship instruction gained a huge new element of complexity. Now there were gunners firing at rapidly moving aerial targets from the ground and worse, gunners in moving aircraft shooting at other moving aircraft! Classic shotgun sports were often used to train gunners to lead flying targets, but that wasn’t […]
I recently had a chance to do some shooting with a friend’s luftgekühltes maschinen gewehr 08/15 – the air cooled, lightened version of the German MG08 Maxim gun. These were one of the standard armaments for German aircraft in WWI (mounted in fixed positions on the fuselage or cowling and fitted with synchronizer gears), and […]
Today we’re looking at a luftgekühlt maschinengewehr 08/15 in slow motion – a lightened and mair-cooled version of the Maxim used on German WWI aircraft. This particular example is set up as a Zeppelin gun, with a buttstock and pistol grip (guns mounted on fixed-wing aircraft had different fire-control mechanisms). It is also missing the […]
Plane’s broken, but the Maxim guns will still work! (photo from SA-Kuva)
Finnish troops salvaging Maxim guns from a downed Russian Polikarpov R5 bomber shot down near Suistamo, Finland.
by Tom Laemlein
As World War II progressed, the Luftwaffe looked to increase firepower wherever possible, from deploying large-caliber air weapons or increasing the rate of fire with smaller, rifle-caliber weapons. Such is the case with the MG81, chambered in 7.92 x 57mm, belt-fed and firing at up to 1,600 rounds […]
First up, you may recall that a while back we had some photos of an MG17 belt-feed adapter salvaged from the wreck of an Me-109. The fellow who owned that piece was hoping to restore it to functionality, and use it on his MG15 ground gun. Well, he did finally get it completely disassembled and […]
Parabellum 1914 MG in gunnery school, Belgium, 1918 (photo from Drake Goodman)
About a year ago, I wrote a post about some Browning 1919 feeding devices that were patented but never went into production. Well, reader Alex found photos of one of them in the Springfield Armory archives. Thanks, Alex!
It’s a belt box designed to be clipped onto the top cover of a slightly modified Browning […]
One would think that Germany, of all places, would have a logical and consistent system for identifying service machine guns. Any yet we see things like the WWI MG08/15 and the WWII MG15. What gives?
The answer is that Germany didn’t have one logical naming system – they had several in sequence. So in order […]
The MG17 is one of the lesser-known German machine guns used in WWII, used for aircraft armament. Mechanically, the MG17 is basically the same as the MG15 ground gun, but with some aircraft-specific features like propeller synchronization, belt feed, pneumatic charging, and of course no grip or shoulder stock.
MG17 with ammo (photo from […]