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alt-hist c&rsenal pre-WW1

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#741 Markus Becker

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Posted 14 May 2020 - 1342 PM

Keeping the idea of a GPMG secret from us makes little sense considering we came up with it together when the MG13 was designed and we are known to keep secrets. The MG13 they(and us) are making are medium machine guns like the M1919. No tactical innovation to see here. Move on. What is rather surprising is that they still have decided against LMG and SLR with interchangeable magazines. Did you try to get them interested in an 8mm version of the M1933?

And we still got Lewis guns? How about selling them to the Spanish and buying M1930 LMG with the money? The are in 7mm, the Spanish would buy them in a heartbeat. The 08/15s probably too and we would not even have to import medium machine guns.

Edited by Markus Becker, 14 May 2020 - 1346 PM.

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#742 bojan

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Posted 14 May 2020 - 1654 PM

Danes came with idea of the GPMG before WW1 with Madsen which was used as both light on bipod and sustained fire MG on tripod.


Edited by bojan, 14 May 2020 - 1655 PM.

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#743 Markus Becker

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 1245 PM

1937 is the year of the machine carbine.

What was intended as a cheap substitute for bolt action rifles has come full circle. It is becoming the most numerous infantry weapon in both the Spanish government and rebel forces. Police and rear echelon units have their M1921 more often than not replaced with rifles that had been pulled out of frontline service. Even rifle production is being switched to machine carbines/-pistols.

Unlike during the Chaco War the role of the machine carbine and machine pistol has not been overlooked or discounted. A growing number of nations have trials scheduled(USA, Poland, Belgium, Italy, Yugoslavia) or purchase guns for evaluation(France, Great Britain, Sweden), while early users of the M1921/1922 generally adopt the Spanish approach and have rear echelon and frontline weapons switch places and convert M1921 into M1925.

All this means business is good. On top of the exports of various arms Spain has commissioned a design for an anti tank rifle with a magazine. That should be easy enough thanks to all the new employees that have joined the company recently. For example our new technical director Arthur Simsonov* and his brother Julius* the head of the legal department.

Back to Spain, among other things the Germans have deployed tanks in support of the Spanish rebel forces. The last few years have seen the introduction of numerous purpose made anti tank weapons, leaving Panzers I, II and even the Stug II more vulnerable than expected. However given that the opposing Soviet made tanks are also very lightly armored that's not a big concern and the Germans are working on a universal tank that can fulfill the roles of Panzer II and Stug II anyway. BTW, could we perhaps supply the Spanish with some of the new High Explosive Anti Tank ammunition to advertise its capabilities to the worldwide market?

And last but not least the Siamese have opened a restaurant and it is highly recommended. It's past the Abyssinian one in the second street to the left.


*recent immigrants from Germany.
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#744 Simon Tan

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Posted 28 May 2020 - 0123 AM

Simson was the only company permitted to make MGs under Versailles. 

 

Machine carbines are an excellent weapon for lightly trained conscripts. Fixed battle sights, volume of fire and light ammunition make them more effective than bolt actions. Of course against well trained riflemen, they have to close that distance under fire. Our Spanish business is being undercut by the Bolsheviks. 


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#745 Markus Becker

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Posted 31 May 2020 - 0926 AM

The limited range of the 9mm machine carbines/pistols is more of a technical than a tactical problem. Nowadays Spanish infantry squads are not armed with either bolt action rifles or machine carbines but some mix of both* and even rebel forces have enough of the latter to make crossing the last 150 to 100 meters a bigger problem than getting within that distance.

The Soviets are competitors when it comes to artillery, infantry mortars and handguns but that's it or has been it so far. Have they expanded their range of products?

Last but not least, our military continues to modernize it's inventory. Lewis guns are shipped to Spain as new M1930 (ZB vz.30) arrive from Czechoslovakia and they'd very much like to have our 08/15s too. Which the "domestic" M1931 MMG could replace.


*more and better one in government forces, except in elite units who have M1933 semi automatic rifles.
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#746 Markus Becker

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Posted 08 June 2020 - 1034 AM

BTW, it is time for one or two caliber conversion of the M1933. The Argentinians are getting nervous because of the trials rifles Chile and Brazil bought and with war between China and Japan having broken out recently, I see a market for an 8mm version too. Not just in China. Yugoslavia uses 8mm Mauser too and unlike Czechoslovakia they don’t have a semi automatic rifle program as far as I know.


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#747 Simon Tan

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Posted 10 June 2020 - 2248 PM

Let me show you why we have not moved forward with the M1933 rifle in other calibres despite having had tool room prototypes for several years. Here in Building C is the LMG production line. Although we bought the rights for local production of the ZB30 some time ago, we were in no position to make use of it because of the financial situation. Thanks in no small part to the Spanish windfall, we have been able to finally make use of it.

 

In the interim, we have continued to track developments at ZB and implement our own ideas and user feedback. It was decided NOT to adopt the shortened gas system of the ZGB-33 to ensure backwards compatibility with the M1930 for barrels but the lessons from the British trials was that the finned barrels were essentially not worth the additional machining. We also adopted many of the simplified machining processes and the hydraulic buffer. Finally the sights have been adapted to be similar to our rifles to simplify training. It is now ladder sight with a battle sight when flipped down and the front blades are now identical to the rifles.

 

Over here in the tool room you can see the FrankenMG our chaps are working on. It is essentially a Browning M1919 feed system mated to the ZB30 action. It looks clunky for now. Incidentally the Germans took the Browning system and refined it a bit.


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#748 Markus Becker

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Posted 11 June 2020 - 0741 AM

What is the M1919/ZB30 combination supposed to become? A light weight medium machine gun I presume? We could use the M1931/MG13 instead. It’s not as light as it could be but still lighter than an M1919 with a bipod and fairly easy to produce for a gun with a milled receiver. The 8mm version is currently in production for Germany. Switching some of that to 7mm could be done quickly. Than we could sell the 08/15 to Spain too. The only disadvantage it that we can not export it without German permission until 1941.

 

And I think Locomotive can indirectly help you with the caliber conversions of the M1933. We could produce the M1930 LMG for you. We had extensive experience with machine guns even before many of the Simson management joined our company. But we would have to reduce some other production to free the required production capacity or expand the facilities or do a combination of both. The M1931 and M1933 are high value products individually, the M1935 not so much but quantity makes them lucrative.

 

That is something the accountants need to look at closely.


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#749 Simon Tan

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Posted 11 June 2020 - 2353 PM

Unlike the Germans, we are not looking at a universal machinegun. Rather a belt-fed machinegun for platoon, company level and mounted use with shared components and logistics with the LMG.

 

We have tested the MG13 extensively alongside the ZB30 and it is considered substantially less satisfactory, particularly due to it's lack of a quick change barrel and the lower controllability. It has nothing to do with any prejudice against Lokomotiv, the Dreyse is just not as good. Also the license with ZB is only for Arsenal and not national, though there is no issue with having Lokomotiv as a sub-contractor.

 

Currently Kazanlak is only handling new manufacture of pistols(Tank-Hahn), self-loading rifles(M1933) and now LMG(M1930/37). Legacy systems and arsenal work is in Tankovina under Arsenal(Tankovina). This includes any 'new' production M1912/30 and all MG08/15.

 

There is a gap in the domestic market for vest and pocket pistols that are almost all imported. Also a 9mm Kurz police pistol. The Hahn is a bit chunky for this purpose.


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#750 Markus Becker

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Posted 15 June 2020 - 1159 AM

The MG13 is in service with the Wehrmacht as a belt-fed machine gun for platoon, company level and vehicles, though in the latter role it is superseded by the MG34. The MG13 you tested was an aircraft gun, the version for the infantry has a quick change barrel*. That leaves the lack of parts compatibility with the M1930 LMG. And I doubt ZB will care who makes the LMG as long as the royalties are paid. That will cut into our machine carbine production but Spanish production has increased very much over the last six months and with all the interest on so called sub machine guns we’ll see a lot more competition on the international market.

 

The shortage of domestically produced pocket pistols is a result of the war in Spain. We stopped making the Liberator**. It never sold well here and the makers of the simpler singe action, single stack magazine pistols more often than not made their guns with some parts purchased from us. We can no longer keep them supplied to the usual levels and of course they too sell to Spain what they can. That being said, the Liberator will be back should the police choose to buy it. 

 

 

*Quick recap of the MG13 development descibed here and there pages back. The Germans initially intended to design an aircraft only gun but with both German and Tankovian infantry using the 08/15 as a ‘light’ machine gun the joint design team decided an open bolt, belt fed gun made more sense, with the aircraft version not needing a quick change barrel. The Tankovian engineers also kept their German counterpart’s tendency for over-elegance in check giving the gun a blocky appearance because straight lines and flat surfaces are easier to machine. The ‘crude’ looks however offended the tender sensibilities of the German ordnance department who contracted a design for a more elegant version. The MG34, which to no Tankovian’s surprise turned out to be too elegant for mass production. Something even the German ordnance department had to admit, so they went back to the MG 13 and kept the MG 34 only for the next generation of AFV as it’s barrel change is easier to hande in a vehicle.

 

**Liberator pistol: Hammer fired double action Savage Model 1917 in .32 ACP and 9mm kurz(see page 36).


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#751 Simon Tan

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Posted 16 June 2020 - 0840 AM

 

The Dreyse system is poorly suited to a QD barrel application because the tilting locking piece that is located at the aft end the barrel extension. Like the Browning MG, there is no way to remove the barrel without pulling out the whole assembly. This is why we decided to go with the ZB-30. The MG34 avoids this by using a rotary bolt that locks into a extension of the trunnion. This is how it can have the pivoting rear assembly to give access to the barrel for changing. With the Dreyse you need to remove the ventilated barrel jacket before trying to remove the hot barrel from the extension. This is going to be an utter mess in the field and anything but quick.

 

It is no wonder the Germans went with the MG34. The Portuguese, Spanish and Chinese are quite happy to buy the MG13 so just keep cranking them out for export. The technical data package for the variant that accepts our standard 7mm magazines is complete and several pre-production examples have been trialled. We can rapidly convert production in an emergency if needed but the troops prefer the ZB.


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#752 Markus Becker

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Posted 23 June 2020 - 1136 AM

That is the actual MG13 that was never intended for the infantry. If it had been redesigned from an aircraft to an infantry gun what are the odds they would not have included a quick change barrel?

How about we leave it at: The "alternate" MG13 is a proto GPMG. It is better than an M1919A6 but inferior to an MG34 in any regard but ease of production?
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#753 Simon Tan

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Posted 25 June 2020 - 1050 AM

The MG33 is the belt-fed development of the MG13 LMG that was developed to meet the Einheitsmaschinengwehr requirement of the new German Army. It would eventually lose out to the Vollmer designed MG34 because of the difficulty in changing barrels. Indeed the barrel change is really very similar to the M1919 series. I think we can procure them for AFV usage as they don't need a water jacket and the extra weight of the heavy barrel is not an issue. They are lighter than the MG08/15 but the ZB based universal will almost certainly be even lighter. We can probably procure some in the interim to give exports the legitimacy of a military contract. It does commit us to the Gurt 34 belt.


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#754 Simon Tan

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Posted 25 June 2020 - 2206 PM


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#755 bojan

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 0602 AM

All for the lack of the universal MG :)


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#756 Markus Becker

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 1149 AM

All for the lack of the universal MG :)


Or an up to date LMG.
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#757 bojan

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 1215 PM

LMG is not an American thing, they were clinging to a French WW1 doctrine of "automatic rifle" use. Hell, even decades later Minimi is employed that way, not as a "German school" LMG.


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#758 Markus Becker

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 1408 PM

Or different priorities(Garand, M2) and not enough funds for a modern LMG or at least a modernized BAR? Other nations got it the other way around, new (L)MG but no semi auto rifle.
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#759 bojan

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 1732 PM

Mix of "riflemen will hit at 500+yards in combat" myth and not wanting to "burden" squad with a LMG.


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#760 Markus Becker

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 1913 PM

Any chance not having a shit LMG helped? If the US had come out of WW1 with nothing but the Chauchat they would have probably had a much better one going into WW2.
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