Military Guns and Ammunition

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This is intended for people interested in the subject of military guns and their ammunition, with emphasis on automatic weapons.

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Bofors like .50 light machine gun   Small Arms <20mm

Started 5-Nov by Refleks; 432 views.

From: Refleks


As a hypothetical, would it have been plausible (circa WW2) to have a man portable .50 BMG fed from the top with clips by an assistant gunner (like a 40mm bofors)?  Think Bren gun, M82, and Bofors had a baby, with a ROF similar to the Bofors (~120 RPM).

External appearance might look something like a Boys but with a bofors like hopper instead of magazine.  The hopper might be capable of handling say 12-16 rounds, such that inserting a 6-8 round double stacked clip into the top would release the rounds from the clip into the hopper, allowing the assistant to fetch the next one before the gun ran dry.

I don't know what purpose this would have served necessarily, but I'm just curious if it was technically possible.


From: schnuersi


Concidering that weapons that have some of the features and capabilities you describe existed at the time in 20 mm and smaller I think such a weapon would be plausible. Really the only thing that has not been used from your list ist the clip feeding.

The Frech had magazine fed HMG their full power 13,2 mm. That in theory could have been used from bipod. 20 mm ATRs routinely where used from bipod. As where the 14,5 ATRs. So a .50 ATR could be as well. The Solothurn S18-1000 used full Power 20 mm and is full auto. There are also full auto versions of the 20 mm Lathi. So this is doable at the time as well.


From: stancrist


If you're talking about a 40mm Bofors gun scaled down to .50 caliber, I am skeptical that such would be feasible.

The Bofors 40mm clip is a more complex design than say, the M1 Garand (double stack) clip, and is single stack.

Also, the Bofors feed mechanism appears to depend upon the mass of the 40mm round, which is far heavier than a .50 BMG cartridge.

Bofors 40mm L/60 Autocannon (Part 2)

The Swedish Bofors 40mm, an anti-aircraft autocannon, gun was adopted by many countries. It fired a 40mm shell at a rate of 120 rounds per minute. This ani...

It might be possible to adapt the design of the Japanese Type 11 machine gun feed mechanism to a top-loading .50 caliber LMG, but I'm not sure.

And as with the Bofors, the Type 11 used single-stack clips for feeding.  The mechanism looks like it's incompatible with double-stack clips design.

3D Animation: The Very Unconventional Type 11 Machine Gun

The Type 11 light machine gun was a machine gun used by the Imperial Japanese Army in the interwar period and during World War II. It was designed by Japanes...


  • Edited 06 November 2023 3:57  by  stancrist

From: smg762


surely this would be a pointless weapon because your clip could only hold 15 rounds at most and full auto would be useless