The Heligun was developed by Hughes Aircraft as part of a complete package for the OV-6 recon helicopter. It offered a number of significant advantages over the Minigun – it was half the weight, self-powered (not electrically driven), and had a mind-boggling 6000RPM firing rate. Ultimately, it was note adopted because the reliability (mean time between stoppages) couldn’t quite be brought up to par, and Army officials decided that it didn’t offer enough improvement over the already adopted M134 Minigun to be worth the switch.


Hughes Heligun - salesman's sample

Click to enlarge – Photo courtesy of the LMO Working Reference Collection (


EX-17 Heligun Proposal & Evaluation, 1966[/caption]


  1. just looking for information on an .50 BMG rifle and machine gun that reduced recoil effect using a constant recoil principle I believe it was from Australia

      • on the robinson guns the best articles ive seen have been in russian publications, granted they have only period fotos but plenty ofdetailed infomration…, i have never seen anything of any use from australian publications , why there is detailed publications in russian im not sure.
        although it its more than likely they are were appropriated from old british articles from the era

    • I’ve been looking for a way to make that concept work myself and couldnt think of anything, so i went looking for designs that could help. I saw the name but no details.

  2. This beastie looks like a relative of the Gasst gun..1st ww german mg that was later developed by the soviets as an AA cannon.
    The gasst used twin barrels, the recoil of one used to load the other & eject the cases & achieved phenomal fire rates for ww1 standards. Anyone know if this is the same principle at work?

  3. Thank you.
    Very useful info, from an engineering point of view.
    With access to more modern materials and computer-modeled to determine and fix the thermally-induced expansion causing the stoppages in the original, one suspects this would make an excellent weapon for a low-cost american ‘technical’ in the coming civil war in the conus.

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