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The Vault

Suomi m/31 and Underbarrel Flamethrower

A Finnish reader named Ossi sent us a photo and some information on a rather outlandish Finnish weapon developed at the tail end of the Continuation War with the USSR. It was a standard m/31 Suomi submachine gun, but with the addition of an underbarrel flamethrower(!). It is not particularly uncommon historically for flamethrowers to [...]

Madsen M50 SMG (Video)

The Madsen M50 was one of a series of submachine guns developed and marketed by the Danish Madsen company after World War II. The first was the M46 (1946), followed by M50 and the M53. Each version was progressively a bit better than the last, but they never sold particularly well because of the [...]

Vintage Saturday: (not) SNLF

Some of the very few Japanese troops to be issued submachine guns.

Japanese SNLF marines Chinese troops with SIG M1920 submachine guns. The SIG M1920 was a licensed copy of the German MP18/I, and SIG sold them to Japan in 7.63mm Mauser caliber. They were used by the Special Naval Landing Forces, as well [...]

PPS-43 Development Memo

Today, I’m swiping another document from the cool-but-stagnant Soviet Gun Archives. This time, it’s a memo requesting the development of what would become the PPS-43:

As I haven’t had time to learn Russian yet, I will defer to Soviet Gun Archives for the translation:

To the deputy commander of the Red Army GAU, Major-General of [...]

Vintage Saturday: Tonight’s Raid

And the target for tonight’s raid is… (photo from SA-Kuva)

Finnish soldiers with m/31 Suomi submachine guns (and a pinup photo).

Experimental German 08/18 Maxim SMG

Left side, with feed box door closed

From Max Popenker, we have a set of photos of a very funky German submachine gun from the first world war (presumably 1918). The weapon is currently in possession of the weapon design department at Tula State University in Russia, and that’s where these photos were taken. Until now, the only photo available of this [...]

Vintage Saturday: Mountaineer

Join the Army; see the world (photo from WarAlbum.ru)

Not sure which army exactly, but he has a PPSh-41 (or copy) and plenty of rope…

Andrews Machine Carbine

I’m flattered to say that we received another research question from the Pattern Room, and a bit dejected to say that once again it was something I couldn’t provide a good answer to. However, the information that is available is certainly interested by itself, and perhaps someone reading this will recognize the gun and be [...]

Book Review: Firearm Anatomy I – Thompson M1A1 Submachine Gun

One of the questions I have gotten quite a few times is what resource I would recommend for folks who are interested in the technical engineering aspects of firearms design. It’s always been a tough question, because apart from Chinn’s multi-volume work (which is crazy expensive to buy in print now, although it is available [...]

Vintage Saturday: Checkpoint Tommy

Welcome to guard duty. Shoot anyone unauthorized who tries to get through. Oh, and you can’t have your weapon loaded.

British soldier with a fancy new (unloaded) Sterling submachine gun manning a checkpoint in post-war occupied Germany.

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