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RIA: Thompson T2 Submachine Gun Prototype

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The T2 submachine gun was Auto-Ordnance’s entry into the ongoing competition to replace the classic Thompson submachine gun with something more economical to produce. It was a closed-bolt, select-fire design using a progressive trigger and a tubular receiver, along with stand Thompson gun magazines. Examples were made in both 9mm and .45 ACP, but […]

James D. Julia: Czech ZK-383 Transferable Submachine Gun

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The Czech-made ZK-383 submachine gun is a bit of an oddball in the world of submachine guns. It has several design features typically associated with rifle-caliber light machine guns – an integral bipod and a quick-change barrel. In fact, the ZK-383 was designed to be a hybrid gun, usable as either a standard SMG or […]

RIA: MP3008 Sten Copy

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The MP 3008, aka Gerät Neumünster, was one of two German efforts to copy the British Sten gun. The first was the Gerät Potsdam (“gerät” meaning device or project; basically project code name), which was a direct copy of the Sten distinguishable only by a marking details and a few differences in manufacturing processes. While […]

Sidewinder SMG Photos

The Sidewinder is a rather unusual submachine gun designer by Sidney McQueen in the mid 1960s. His objective was to create a weapon which could be fired one-handed with the firepower of a submachine gun rather than a pistol. What McQueen came up with was a good example of the “arm pistol” concept, which can […]

Beretta M1918 SMG Photos

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The Beretta M1918 was one of two simultaneous efforts to turn the M1915 Villar-Perosa machine gun into a more practical weapon. The Officine Villar Perosa (who had manufactured the 1915 gun in the first place) did one version, and Beretta did the other. In fact, Beretta’s version was the work of none other than Tullio […]

Q&A Video #1: H&K G11, Owen, F1, Worst Gun Ever, and More!

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As part of my new fundraising system on Patreon, I am starting a monthly Q&A video series, answering questions from Patreon contributors. The support from you folks is a tremendous help to me in running the site, and I really appreciate it! This month I am addressing:

H&K G11 (and caseless rifles in general) Origins […]

Thompson Riot Ammo at James D Julia

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Did you know that the Peters company made ammunition specifically for riot control for the Thompson submachine gun in the 1920s? And it wasn’t rubber bullets, either – it was paper-wrapped snakeshot. The cartridges were actually longer than a standard magazine would accept, necessitating the production of a special longer magazine to fit them. […]

Reising M55 Submachine Gun at James D Julia

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When the US entered WWII, submachine guns were in short supply and high demand. Much of the production of Thompson guns was being purchased by the UK, and what guns were available to the US military went first to the Army. In accordance with long tradition, the Marine Corps were secondary to the Army […]

Vintage Saturday: Classi Alpini

Italian Alpini posing for a photograph

Very classy, with the pipes and feathered hats!

Italian Alpini posing for a photograph with a nice selection of Italian small arms – 1934 or 35 Beretta pistols, Beretta 38 submachine gun, and a 1935 model Fiat-Revelli machine gun.

Czech Sa vz. 26 SMG (Video)

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The Czech Samopal vz. 26 was one of a family of submachine guns (the vz 23-26) that pioneered the use of bolts telescoped out forward over the barrel, allowing guns to have much better ratios of barrel to receiver length than before. The guns actually have quite a few interesting mechanical details, although in my […]