Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email.

Enjoy what you read here at Forgotten Weapons? Please consider supporting me on Patreon with $1/month! Thanks!

Vietnamese Guns for Algeria

Vietnamese soldier in French service working on his MAT-49 SMG.

Vietnamese soldier in French service working on his MAT-49 SMG.

I was pointed to this interesting snippet of a document about one particular shipment of arms to the Algerian rebels fighting French colonial occupation in the 1950s – from Vietnam. Can’t say I would have thought about the Vietnamese trying export supply military aid […]

Thompson SMG in 30 Carbine (Video)


When the US military released a request for what would become the M1 Carbine in 1940, the Auto-Ordnance Corporation offered up a Thompson submachine gun simply rechambered for the new .30 Carbine cartridge. This entailed a new magazine, a receiver modified for the longer magazine, and a new barrel and bolt face – but […]

Vintage Saturday: Short-Lived Nation

Biafran troops, circa 1968

Biafran troops, circa 1968

The Republic of Biafra was supported by Czechoslovakia during its brief existence, and the men here are equipped with a Czech ZB-53 machine gun and what appears to be a CZ-47 or CZ-247 submachine gun.

M1915 Villar Perosa Video

Screen Shot 2016-07-15 at 6.01.02 AM

The Villar Perosa is one of the first small machine guns developed and used by a military force. It was designed in Italy and introduced in 1915 as an aircraft weapon, to be used in a flexible mount by an airplane’s observer. The gun consists of two independent firing actions mounted together. Each fires […]

BSA 1926 & 1929 Thompson SMGs

In the early days of the Thompson Submachine Gun, the Auto-Ordnance Company was looking for customers globally. General John Thompson had personally run a demonstration of the gun in England in June of 1921, which was well received militarily, if not politically. Unfortunately for Thompson, just a few weeks before the trial a plot to […]

RIA: Thompson T2 Submachine Gun Prototype

Screen Shot 2016-04-23 at 1.01.55 PM

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

Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 1.18.59 PM

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


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


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 […]