When we think of James Paris Lee, we usually think of the British family of Lee-Enfield rifles. However, the US Navy actually adopted an early version of Lee’s action before the British, in 1879. In addition, this rifle was the first use of the detachable box magazine, a patented invention of Lee’s.
Lee initially took […]
Pretty much every major military had an antitank rifle in service when WW2 kicked off, and the British example was the Boys AT rifle, named after the Captain Boys who designed it. It was a bolt action .55 caliber rifle with 5-round detachable magazines. If was obsolete by 1943 and replaced by the more effective […]
Germany was the first country to produce a purpose-built antitank rifle, in response to the major Entente tank attack at Cambrai. The design was pretty simple, basically a scaled-up Mauser 98 with 4 locking lugs chambered for the massive 13.2mm TuF cartridge. It would perforate about 20mm of armor plate at 100m, which was nicely […]
The Belgian Army held rifle trials in the late 1880s to choose a new infantry rifle, and the winner was the Model 1889 Belgian Mauser. Quite a few different guns were involved in the competition though, including this Engh-patent rifle made by Manufacture Liegeois D’Armes. It’s a pretty unusual bolt action that is definitely worth […]
French officer with a Lebel rifle converted to throw lines
In this month’s 2-Gun Action Challenge Match, we decided to both run World War I rifles – Karl with a 1914/1920 Kar 98AZ and I had a 1918 no1 MkIII* SMLE. In the previous enfield/Mauser matchup the outcome was a bit indistinct, because the match did not involve much repeat fire and the Enfield had […]
Father (grandfather?) and son in Afghanistan with a Martini and an SMLE. Photo from Modern Wars Old Guns
One day the boy will inherit the SMLE, and probably go on fighting whichever country has decided to occupy Afghanistan by that time. Maybe it will be China? They haven’t taken a turn yet. Having the […]
As far as I have been able to tell, the Canadian Rangers are the last formal, first-world military organization still using a WWII-era bolt action rifle as a standard-issue weapon (correction – the Danish Slædepatruljen Sirius, a similar type of unit in Greenland, still uses the M1917 Enfield in .30-06). Well, until now anyway.
Very pleased with his captured rifle! Source: Histoire de Couleurs
A Chasseur à pied of the 19e Battalion on the road between Breteuil and Flers, Somme. 10th of April 1918. This Battalion had been on foot after heavy fighting in order to occupy the village of Grivesnes, South of Moreuil in France. The rifle […]
Most people are familiar with the Type 38 Arisaka, which was one of the two very distinctive Japanese rifles of World War II (along with the Type 99). The Type 38 was an outstanding rifle in large part because it was the result of several years of experience and development which began in 1897 with […]