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The Vault

Vintage Saturday: Strange Bedfellows

In Soviet Russia…you use whatever is at hand.

Soviet troops with M38 Mosin carbines and Breda Model 37 heavy machine guns (presumably captured from the ill-fated Italian ARMIR expedition in 1942/43). Thanks to Leszek for finding the photo at Waralbum.ru!

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FIAT Model 1924 Manual

My knowledge of Italian machine guns is rather lacking, so I was pretty excited when I received a copy of a FIAt Model 1924 manual from our friend Hrachya. However, it has really created more questions than it answered…as best I can tell, the Model 1924 was never accepted by any military service, but did [...]

Type I Carcano (Video)

One of the less common Japanese rifles of the WWII era is the Type I (pronounced “Type Eye”). The Japanese Imperial Army and Navy procured small arms independently of each other, and the Army received priority as the ground war in China escalated. This left the Navy short of rifles and unable to get them [...]

Vintage Saturday: You Sent Us What?

Ha ha, very funny. Now where are our REAL rifles?

Italy sent a bunch of surplus 7.35mm Carcano carbines to Finland as military aid against the USSR – these Finns are pulling them right out of the shipping crates (note the “KAL 7/35″ on the crate lid). The Finns took pride in their marksmanship, [...]

Quote of the Week: Vladimir Peniakoff

Speaking about his time leading a group of Arab soldiers in Libya prior to his involvement in the LRDG:

We also obtained captured Italian machine guns: these weapons of a new design of extreme ingenuity, light, pleasant to handle and of a good appearance, had only one fault: they wouldn’t fire. I tested many: under [...]

Getting That Last One…

No at matter how close you think you are, it seems that a proper gun collection can never really be complete. The closer you get to having a one of each necessary example of whatever theme you’re going for, the more rare and odd example you discover. There’s just always another variant or factory or [...]

Richard Wray Machine Gun Auction Followup

So, the auction of the late Richard Wray’s machine gun collection (see previous post) was yesterday, with the non-NFA guns being auctioned today. The final prices are interesting to look at, with some wallet-wrenchingly high and some great deals – at least for folks who are into the unusual.

Basically, the key was to be [...]

Vintage Saturday: Italians in the Snow

Bad news, Marino – you’re shipping out to the Eastern Front. And worse news; we’re giving you a Breda.

Italian soldiers on the Russian Front, with a Breda M30 machine gun and a Carcano carbine. Thanks to Max Popenker for the photo!

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Vintage Saturday: Unsure

This guy doesn’t look all that impressed with his Johnson LMG…

Forcemen of 5-2, First Special Service Force, with an M1941 Johnson light machine gun on the Anzio beachhead, Italy, April 1944. They are in the process of disassembling (or reassembling) the gun. Thanks to Michael G. for sending the photo!

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Additional Photos: Orita

I had a different post planned for today, but Michael Heidler sent me some additional photos of the recently-discussed Orita submachine guns that ought to be shared. They are both of the second model, but have slightly different grip safety styles:

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Thanks Michael!

Note: If you saw this [...]