Spanish Ameli LMG

One of the less well known firearms in the roller-locked family of designs is the Spanish Ameli (a contraction of “Ametralladora ligera”), or “Special Purpose Assault Machinegun”. Developed in the late 1970s by CETME, the Ameli was basically a scaled-down MG42 machine gun in 5.56x45mm. However, instead of using the MG42’s fully locked mechanism, the Ameli was designed with the roller-delayed blowback developed with the Gerat o6H/StG45 and most commonly seen on the HK91 series or rifles.

Ameli LMG

The Ameli was a particularly short and light weapon, and used a fluted chamber to aid extraction. It had good sights, an adjustable bipod, quick-change barrel with integrated handle, and several polymer parts to reduce weight. Like the MG42, it was designed with two different bolt weights to charge the rate of fire between 1250 rpm and about 850 rpm. Other than a few initial teething problems, it was an excellent weapon.

We have a copy of an English-language handbook for the Ameli now posted on the Original Manuals page of the vault. You can also download it here:

Ameli LMG Descriptive Handbook (English)


  1. Good post !
    Why they copied the MG42’s exterior design but changed the mechanism ? Or if they wanted their roller delayed blowback system, why didn’t they scale down their own CETME rifle to 5.56×45 and add belt feeding mechanism ?

    Thanks for the manual !!!

  2. IIRC, the MG42 locking system uses rollers for locking, so it is not much of a stretch to change the locking system to a delay system. Spain already used the MG3, a very close relative of the MG42, and was searching for a lighter gun. Downsizing that seems rather easier to me compared to trying to chop up a CETME to have a quick change barrel and belt feed.

  3. Dear Cyrus Freeman
    MG42’s rollers are just locking lugs. For cycling the mechanism MG42 uses short recoiling barrel, so I guess adapting roller delayed blowback is not as easy. Making a quick change barrel is not a big deal. Concerning the belt fed system, some manufacturers did add belt fed adapters to their firearms (for example check Forgotten Weapons’ video about RP46), and it is not too hard to do as well. So what I am talking about is a machine gun like the Heckler&Koch 23E . The advantage of having similar assault rifle and LMG is that most of parts are the same (I think at least 50% would be), which makes manufacturing much more easier and cheaper. Another advantage – if assault rifle and LMG are similar, it’s easier for soldiers to learn and become familiar with both (at least to become familiar with fire control mechanism).
    Best regards

  4. Oh,
    You want universal gun??
    Check stoner 63 system,it could be assoult rifle and machine gun in the mean time..
    Certain parts are replacable but automatics mostly same,only differance bolt group and barrel changed differantly mostly upside down..
    For instance if rifle mode barrel would be on bottom and if machine gun barrel will be always on top..

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