AZ PCC Championship: 10 Stages of Hotchkiss Universal!

Every year, the Rio Salado Sportsman’s Club host’s the Arizona PCC (Pistol-Caliber Carbine) Championships. I signed up initially planning to use my Calico carbine, but my travel schedule kept me form getting the gun in shape to use in time. Instead, I polled my Patrons to choose a replacement, and they picked the Hotchkiss Universal (it won overwhelmingly over all the more modern alternatives I offered). Note that this match does not allow machine guns, but my Hotchkiss is a semiauto model and thus suitable. Of course, if I was going to shoot a historic French carbine, I would need to pair it with French lizard camo, double-buckle ranger boots, and a kepi.

The match consisted of 10 stages, with round counts of 30-60 rounds each. They were generally split between a lot of close range (7 yards max) paper and steel and a small number of smaller steel targets at 100-200 yards. Unfortunately, the Hotchkiss sights are not adjustable, and mine does not shoot to point of aim. I needed to aim substantially low and left at range, and I would have substantial trouble hitting the long range targets in the match. The gun itself is quite accurate, but the sights made it difficult for me to exploit that mechanical accuracy.

There were 202 competitors in the match, of whom 2 did not shoot all the stages and 7 were disqualified for various reasons. Among the 193 people who completed the match, I placed 191st. Ha! Not quite dead last! In my division (Iron Sight), I was 6th of 7, but the 7th place guy was disqualified.

Next year, I hope to compete again, with an equally interesting historical gun – but one that I can properly zero. Thanks to my Patrons for the support and feedback!


  1. How did the French military deal with sights on these when they were so far out of zero? Was there some armorers’ procedure for swapping out a sight? filing or bending? etc.

    • Doubtless you’d simply numerous and indeed furious emit “in the heat of battle” gallic profanities, on full auto; so it didn’t matter.

      A bit like a kraut battering someone to death with a stick grenade, which then explodes. Can’t be replicated on a range.

    • Matisse, Don’t forget, a SMG is supposed to be a short range bullet sprayer. When we shot our M3A1’s, the targets were at 25, 50 and 90 meters, with the majority at the shorter ranges. We had no way to adjust the sights which were a post and peep welded in place. Fire a burst, then adjust from that. I put down some francs that’s the same way the Armee de la Terre treated its SMG’s

  2. Thank you for letting us decide what firearm to shoot. I am glad you enjoyed yourself despite the imposed handicap.

  3. As one of the Patrons who voted for the Hotchkiss, I feel I need to apologize to you Ian, but also, it was the only “forgotten weapon” that you listed on the poll, did you really expect us not to vote for it?

  4. Excellent effort, and a very credible showing with a near 70 yo firearm!
    Nowhere else will we see this kind of content, so thanks!
    Hope the MP-40 magazines actually prove workable, it’d be nice to see this
    Hotchkiss keep springing into action for years to come. Nice kepi.

  5. Seems like a fun adventure in a low-stress match with a less than perfect weapon; which was the idea.
    BTW, Ian, those are cool boots. French military surplus in keeping with the theme I presume?


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