Construction of Automatic Weapons

From our friend Hrachya, we have a very cool book for you today. Titled Construction of Automatic Weapons, it was printed in Russia in 1933, and consists of line drawings of all the major machine gun variants in use at that time. There are 140 pages of drawings, mostly cutaway and interior views, and lots of exploded parts drawings – it’s a very neat piece to page through. A few examples of the  more unusual specimens include:

Lewis light semiauto rifle line drawing
Lewis light semiauto rifle
Belt-fed Madsen gun line drawing
Belt-fed Madsen gun

Want to see more? You can download the whole book (78MB) in PDF format, right here:

Construction of Automatic Weapons (Russia, 1933)
Construction of Automatic Weapons (Russia, 1933)


  1. What a fantastic book! As a classically trained draftsman I can appreciate the hundreds of hours that have gone into those drawings. Thank you for putting this on the site.

  2. I found the Korovin submachine gun (listed on Plate 124, page 127 of the PDF document) especially interesting. Quite a forgotten weapon, that’s sure!

  3. Amazing resource! It would be very helpful if the book was scanned on a flatbed scanner to eliminate the distortion.

    Did you notice what is shown at the bottom on page 133? It appears to be a French-made Lewis Gun Model 1924, which utilized a bottom feeding box magazine.

    Lewis himself previously designed an amazing series of prototype automatic rifles of similar appearance. Take a look at an article on these firearms here:

    Lewis patents here (click “download pdf” to open/save full patent):

    This series of WWI-era and early 1920s “assault rifles” are discussed in the book “The Belgian Rattlesnake” by Easterly and Stevens:

    Lewis’ “assault rifle” designs also led to an interesting pistol:

    One wonders how the Soviets got the plans.

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