1. So you go from three to ten rounds on the Berthier-Lee ? (Enfield referred to the rifling. not the action). What’s not to like?

  2. Hmmm. Some Berthiers were converted to 7.5, I suppose the action could handle .308? I could do w/ an antique bolt action .308 running from Indian 2A1 mags…

  3. The French Mle. 1907/15/34 was an arsenal revision of the Berthier 07/15 to 7.5 x 54 MAS, with a five-shot Mauser-type internal magazine fed by stripper clip;


    It was probably a better rifle overall than the MAS36, certainly better than the cutdown Lebel 1886/93 R35.

    As for 8 x 50R Lebel in the 0.303in SMLE magazine, considering that the OAL of 8 x 50R is less than that of the 0.303in (2.75in vs 3.05in), I would expect that an unmodified SMLE 10-round magazine would hold eight rounds of 8 x 50R with no feeding problems.

    As such, the rifle(s) using SMLE magazines were probably not rechambered or etc. At most, the feed lips of the SMLE “box” might have needed a bit of work with a file and a pair of pliers.



    • Eon:

      I agree that the Berthier 07/15/34 was an elegant weapon, moreso than the utilitarian MAS36 certainly.

      Also, I agree that the Berthiers fitted with an Enfield magazine would most likely have been kept in 8mm, no point changing calibre if the 8mm rounds fitted a .303 magazine.

      I have to say that one has to admire these Ethiopian gunsmiths. They seem to have done their best to keep these old guns going no matter what. But I would just ask, how hard could it have been to fabricate Berthier clips?

      • Given the wide variety of rifles in use with the Ethiopian they may have thought it uneconomical to produce disposable(!) Berthier clips for one specific rifle, especially when many mauser style stripper clips will work with multiple calibers anyways.

        • Troy:

          Given the insane diversity of rifles in the Ethiopian army, I doubt they did a cost/benefit analysis of the cost of fabricating Berthier clips, which would not have been more than a fraction of the cost of a bullet.

    • “(…)7.5 x 54 MAS(…)”
      There are existed earlier rimless cartridge linked with Berthier, it is today know as 7,65 x 53,7 Berthier xpl https://naboje.org/node/20219
      It is described by SFM drawing dated 1891 and described as Turkish cartridge [of] mister Berthier, I do not know ballistic.

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