Madre mía, este fusil contracarro finlandés era gigantesco
El descomunal fusil contracarro Lahti L-39, diseñado por Aimo Lahti ─el mayor diseñador de armas de Finlandia─, les prestó un buen servicio a los finlandeses durante los años 1940. Solo el cañón del fusil contracarro semiautomático de 20 milímetros ya medía 130 cm. de largo, y todo el arma... Read more
The XM174 Grenade-Launcher Was Too Fragile for Vietnam
In the early 1960s, American advisers in Vietnam asked the U.S. Army to supply them an automatic grenade launcher. In September 1963, the Army asked industry to submit designs for a low-velocity 40-millimeter automatic grenade launcher. The new launcher had to weight less than 12 pounds — half the... Read more
France’s FAMAS Rifle Is Simple and Compact
In 1967 the French army requested a new infantry weapon to replace both the MAS 49/56 rifle and MAT-49 submachine gun. Three years later, the French military standardized on the new 5.56-by-45-millimeter cartridge. With requirement and cartridge in hand, Paul Tellie, Manufacture d’Armes de Saint-Étienne — MAS — began... Read more
The Soviet DP-28 Was a Brute-Simple Machine Gun
In the mid-1920s the Soviet military realized it needed a new, locally-produced light machine gun. Vasily Degtyaryov had anticipated the demand. He began developing the DP-27 light machine gun in the early 1920s. Following trials and some modifications, the Soviet army adopted Degtyaryov’s gun in 1928 as the DP-28.... Read more
With the MP-57, Mauser Valiantly Tried to Best the Israeli Uzi
In November 1955, West Germany stood up its new, postwar military — in the process, creating the Bundeswehr. Almost immediately, the new ground-combat branch began looking for new small arms. Between 1956 and 1959, the Bundeswehr organized trials of nine-by-19-millimeter submachine guns. The trials spurred wide-ranging submachine-gun development in... Read more
La Edad de Oro de los Supresores para Armas de Fuego nació en 1909
Los primeros supresores viables para armas de fuego aparecieron a principios del siglo XX. Entre 1909 y 1920 se patentaron una amplia variedad de dispositivos de supresión de sonido. Hiram Percy Maxim, hijo de Sir Hiram Maxim, inventor de la ametralladora, fue uno de los primeros ingenieros en entrar... Read more
Armed With a Sten Gun and a PIAT, Stanley Hollis Was Fearless
In June 1944, during the Allies’ inland push following their successful landing in Normandy, British Army company sergeant-major Stanley Hollis — from the 6th Green Howards — won the Victoria Cross for two conspicuous acts of gallantry involving two iconic weapons. By the time he landed on Gold Beach... Read more
The Beretta Machine-Pistol Spits 1,000 Rounds per Minute
The machine-pistol was hardly a new concept when, in the 1970s, Italian gun-maker Beretta began developing the 93R, a sleek little weapon that practically spews bullets. Machine-pistols first appeared during World War I. In the 1920s and ’30s Spanish manufacturers Astra and Star produced fully automatic versions of the... Read more
With the M203, the U.S. Finally Got a Decent Grenade-Launcher
In May 1963, the U.S. military asked industry to supply an underslung grenade launcher to complement the new AR-15 assault rifle that was then in early testing. The grenade-launcher program had its roots in the ultimately unsuccessful Special Purpose Individual Weapon program that had begun in 1951. In May... Read more
The Golden Age of Firearm-Suppressors Dawned in 1909
The first viable firearm suppressors appeared at the turn of the 20th century. Between 1909 and 1920, designers patented a wide range of suppression devices Hiram Percy Maxim, the son of Sir Hiram Maxim — the inventor of the machine gun — was among the first engineers to get... Read more
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