Army equipment that should have seen service

Yet it served well in WW2 and Korea and even to some extent in Vietnam. In full automatic too.
Because the Americans never bought anything better. The thing was designed to provide walking fire while advancing slowly over no mans land in WWI, two years after the Battle of the Somme proved such a tactic was suicide. Adding a bipod did nothing to counter the fact that it was little more than a heavy rifle capable of fully automatic fire if needed in an emergency.
 
Because the Americans never bought anything better. The thing was designed to provide walking fire while advancing slowly over no mans land in WWI, two years after the Battle of the Somme proved such a tactic was suicide. Adding a bipod did nothing to counter the fact that it was little more than a heavy rifle capable of fully automatic fire if needed in an emergency.
I am well aware of what it was designed for, but the thing is I've yet to come across an account of anyone who served with it in combat who wanted something better or different.

Also I'm unaware of any sort of marching fire weapon used on the Somme in 1916. Might have helped if they had one.
 
Because the Americans never bought anything better. The thing was designed to provide walking fire while advancing slowly over no mans land in WWI, two years after the Battle of the Somme proved such a tactic was suicide. Adding a bipod did nothing to counter the fact that it was little more than a heavy rifle capable of fully automatic fire if needed in an emergency.
The US did try.

1585785990113.png


Basically Army Ord started in 1934 had a winner by 1942 and they ____ed it all up. This may be about the 8th time I have cited it.
 
I am well aware of what it was designed for, but the thing is I've yet to come across an account of anyone who served with it in combat who wanted something better or different.

Also I'm unaware of any sort of marching fire weapon used on the Somme in 1916. Might have helped if they had one.
Example: here.

1585788810571.png


(^^^) Battle of the Somme. Wrong blokes using it.
 
Peg Leg, the first one into the melt should have been the President of the UAW local.
Yeah: the guy who said that if any servicemen were killed or wounded because of the strike, it was worth it.....the UAW disowned the chapter, and the Feds took note. The IRS did some digging, and the guy went to Federal Prison for Tax Evasion. When the other cons found out who he was and what he did, he would've been just as popular in the Joint as child molesters are today....
 
Marching fire is completely ineffective anyway, and no substitution for a light machine gun. Marching fire also involves walking at a steady unhurried pace across no mans land, which is suicidal.
 
Marching fire is completely ineffective anyway, and no substitution for a light machine gun. Marching fire also involves walking at a steady unhurried pace across no mans land, which is suicidal.
Since you're providing covering fire for the rest of the unit advancing there is a point to walking slowly, especially when prone firing means you cannot see or reach the target considering obstacles in the way.
 
I doubt that any of the Accrington Pals would have anything good to say about the idea of walking slowly across no mans land. Not that many survived long doing it.
 
I doubt that any of the Accrington Pals would have anything good to say about the idea of walking slowly across no mans land. Not that many survived long doing it.
They didn't follow the bombardment or have marching fire suppressing enemy MGs.
British experiences though were quite a bit different on the 1st day:

BTW the Chauchat, when it worked, was used for marching fire and was quite effective in that role. To the point that German special flamethrower units used it:
 
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I'm not sure you can sort out the reliability issues with halftracks - it kind of comes with the territory on something that is neither fish nor fowl.

I'd be interested in just ripping the gun of the 30s light tanks and using them as an artillery tractor and ammo carrier - 1918 experience showed that getting ammo up to the guns was the important bit.

Honestly I think, in a WW2 context, halftracks and similar are excessively expensive overkill - something like a Bren Carrier was the right solution, in that it carries the ammo and support weapons, while the infantry go by lorry and then walk.

But the hard bit isn't weapons, it's doctrine - and the old RHA doctrine with Birch Guns married to 'dragoons ride to battle and fight on foot' works well enough.

Basically, my issue isnt that the RA had conniptions when people fired HE out of tank guns, it's that the RA and RAH werent running the entire tank force ...
US half tracks were cheaper and more reliable than carriers. By comparison, tracked carriers had limited cargo capacity and higher maintenance requirements than either the White or International Harvester halftracks.
 
The Lewis gun was too heavy and unwieldy to use for marching fire.
You remember those WALLY hunter killer teams I wrote about earlier in this thread? The ones who compelled the Germans to develop the MG08/15?


And OBSERVE real tests.


Notice the results?


Walking Fire tests. The Lewis gun can be walk fired, but not especially well.


Look at the Lewis gun in walking fire from 4.30 on

I really recommend the CandR Arsenal/Forgotten Weapons series. It destroys a lot of myths and corrects a great many misperceptions about the small arms tech of WWI. AND I might add this archeology is quite recent and hands on for us for a across the board data set. Now I have a greater appreciation for the "idiots" who tried to solve brand new weapons (smokeless powder and high powered small bore bullet) tech of the late 19th century. They were not idiots after all.

For example, for me, among LMGs.

The Madsen after I've seen it in use, is horrible.

The Benet Mercie is worse than the Madsen.

The MG 08/15 was a kludge. It worked, but it was "weird".

The Lewis gun is phenomenal for the era.

The Chautchat for what it was supposed to do, is actually a lot better than I originally believed. That is one myth destroyed.

And the BAR is the BAR.

McP.
 
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Othais of CandR Arsenal. Refer to video on the Winchester M1907.
' Widowmaker' was tagged on the Winchester 1911, a long recoil shotgun using paper hulls, not blowback rifle using brass cartridges

Due to patent restrictions on the 1898 design, Winchester was unable to copy the Browning design they had rejected earlier, the only autoloading shotgun design at the time, so Winchester had to adapt the design for their own production without infringing on Browning's patents; T.C. Johnson, reportedly, joked that "it took him nearly ten years to design an automatic shotgun (the Winchester 1911) which would not be an infringement on the Browning gun."[2] One of Browning's patents was for the charging handle on the bolt of the 1905 shotgun; Winchester worked around this restriction by using the barrel as the mechanism to charge the weapon.[3] In order to use the 1911 SL, a user would place the gun on safe, point the firearm in a safe direction, load the tubular magazine, and then pull back on the barrel by the checkered section. After disengaging the safety, the weapon was ready to fire.

The stock can be laminated with 3 separate lengthwise pieces glued together.

Design and safety flaws
The novel method of charging the 1911 could be potentially lethal if done incorrectly. Shotgun cartridges of the time were often made of paper, which could make the cartridge body vulnerable to expansion when exposed to moisture in large quantities. If this happened in the 1911, the barrel would have to be cycled in order to open the chamber so that the swelled shotgun shell could be removed. Some users mistakenly cycled the barrel by placing the butt of the weapon against the ground and forcing the barrel down. In this position, the muzzle of the weapon would be pointing towards the face of the user, and the swelled shell could fire, injuring or killing the user. This safety issue led to the Model 1911 being nicknamed "the Widowmaker".[4] This situation could be avoided with adherence to safety procedures common to handling firearms, in particular, the practice of keeping the weapon pointed in a safe direction at all times.

The potential for slam fire when clearing jams was not the only flaw in the 1911's design. The system of buffer rings used to reduce the recoil (two fiber washers[5]) when the weapon was fired often failed. The breakdown of these rings greatly increased the recoil when a round was fired. The gun's "hammering recoil" caused many a stock to split.[3]

The sales of the "mechanically ill-fated" weapon lagged significantly behind those of Remington's and Browning's autoloaders,[3] and Winchester ceased its production in 1925, after producing almost 83,000 of them.[2] As recently as 2005, four people accidentally shot themselves with the 1911 while loading or clearing the weapon.[6]
 
I am not convinced that the m1 would have been a better rifle had it been fitted for BAR mags

Reloading an M1 with the enbloc clip takes just a few seconds - and ammo management is simpler as the ammo comes already packed into the en bloc clips which do not need to be retained after use unlike a magazine

With modern webbing for magazines and stuff (allowing for rapid magazine changes etc) it makes sense but back then not so much.

How heavy was the 3"/50?

Ahh the HS404 saga - Col Chinn USMC does a masterful job of explaining what happened - basically they started with the Headspace being 1/8th to much - 20mm weapons tipping over into Artillery weapons and not machine guns per se with a corresponding greater tolerances - and despite people like he, the UK and the US Ammo manufactures telling BuOrd what the problem was and the weapons being unreliable due to light strikes in operation they did not listen until eventually meeting them all halfway and reducing it to 1/16th.

People like the good Col were obliged to pack them with grease and add washers etc where they shouldn't have had to in order to make them work for the navy and of course in the USAAF Lightning there was an electric motor driven re-cocking device for its single 20mm cannon.
You make good points about the 20 round magazine, but I still think it would have been a good idea. A soldier g7*
With the corporate officers of Brewster strapped into the cockpits. Let them swim for it to see how aircrew liked the crap birds they pumped off of their crap assembly lines. (Could say the same thing about Curtiss, too.)
Your a tough guy. Brewster did their part by producing other companies aircraft on license. Why would you say that about Curtiss? The engine scandal? Curtiss built the P-40 Warhawk, which was the workhorse fighter for the USAAF till 1943. I don't think the RAF wanted to dump their P-40's into the ocean in 1942. The P-40 was a match for the Hawker Hurricane, and was the mainstay of the RAF Desert Airforce during the critical battles in 1941/42. The P-40's did a great job under Claire Chennault in China. Using the right tactics the P-40 could handle the Zero. It should have been replace earlier by more advanced, and capable fighters, but to call it a crap warbird is grossly unfair.

Curtiss also built the C-46 Commando, the workhorse transport of the Hump Route into China. The C-46 had a longer range, and higher altitude then the C-47, making it the right aircraft for the job. It also supplemented the C-47 in the other theaters of war. The SB2C Helldiver is more of a mixed bag. It was too delayed, and had too many development problems, but it did have a payload, and speed advantage over the much loved SBD-Dauntless, and did credible war service. Post war they designed, and built the X planes that explored supersonic flight. Curtiss was no crap company, they made many great contributions to winning WWII, and the History of American Aviation.
 

Nick P

Donor
Brewster did their part by producing other companies aircraft on license.
You can only mean the Vought Corsair? The USN demanded Brewsters build a machine to turn each aircraft over to shake out all the loose parts before it left the factory.
The Corsair was a carrierborne combat aircraft. Brewster built versions were restricted to land based trainer use only. The wings were known to fall off mid-air. The British refused to use their Brewster built Corsair Mk IIIs in combat.


I agree with your comments about Curtiss-Wright. They had other troubles. They were stuck on the downward curve of their fighter development cycle and locked themselves into constantly improving their old designs when they really needed to try something new.
There was the scandal Curtiss-Wright had with the defective engines and bribery of inspection staff. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curtiss-Wright#Defective_engines_sold_to_U.S._military_in_World_War_II
 
I am well aware of what it was designed for, but the thing is I've yet to come across an account of anyone who served with it in combat who wanted something better or different.
Quoting from the Home Guard official document of the time: (Commander-in-Chief Home Forces issued Instruction No. 60. 1943)
This rifle is not designed to fire bursts. Firstly no degree of accuracy can be maintained and secondly the gun will overheat. It is interesting that the U.S. Forces armed with this weapon had great effect on Guadalcanal. A trained man can fired 40 well-aimed shots a minute using single shots. All references in Home Guard Instructions to firing bursts with this weapon should therefore be deleted. Home Guard will not fire bursts, even in emergency, but will rely upon a high degree of training in firing single shots.
(earlier instructions limited 'burst fire' to 'emergencies'.)

This demonstrates that the BAR was a perfectly adequate(heavy and bulky) automatic rifle. Not a Light Machine Gun. Many of the Home Guard were experienced Lewis Gunners from WW1 and/or trained for the Lewis or Bren in their Home Guard service so they knew what a light machine was and what it should do. The document is quite clear. There are no circumstances where automatic fire should be used. Aimed semi automatic fire was mandatory. This with well maintained weapons kept and used in easy conditions.

The BAR was not a bad weapon. Quite the contrary. But it was not a light machine gun. I assure you on behalf of my grandfather (Staff Sergeant in the Suffolk Regiment Home Guard after decorated infantry fighting in two previous wars) that they wanted a Lewis or a Bren if they had a BAR. To be fair they wanted a BAR if they had a Pattern1917. No, by the Grace of God, he saw no combat with it but he well knew what combat involved and his fate in a coastal platoon should an invasion come.
 
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US half tracks were cheaper and more reliable than carriers. By comparison, tracked carriers had limited cargo capacity and higher maintenance requirements than either the White or International Harvester halftracks.
The US half tracks and the Universal Carriers had entirely different roles. The US half track was a bulk carrier. In effect a tracked lorry. The Carrier was to go right up to the front line and all it's loads had to be man portable thereafter. Hence the load areas were for boxes no larger than could be carried across difficult terrain by two men. They complemented each other rather than competed. the Carriers were backed up by normal lorries which carried the bulk loads to be cross loaded onto the Carriers.
 
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The US half tracks and the Universal Carriers had entirely different roles. The US half track was a bulk carrier. In effect a tracked lorry. The Carrier was to go right up to the front line and all it's loads had to be man portable thereafter. Hence the load areas were for boxes no larger than could be carried across difficult terrain by two men. They complemented each other rather than competed. the Carriers were backed up by normal lorries which carried the bulk loads to be cross loaded onto the Carriers.
Compare with the M29 Weasel
M29Carrier
Power70hp85hp
Empty weight4300lbs7000lbs
Payload1740 lbs1230 lbs
Speed36mph30 mph
Weasel had no armor, but had absurdly low ground pressure(1.9psi), would not bog on anything, and could be overloaded to 2 tons of cargo. Only 15k made, vs 113k for the carrier. Normany not armed, but some crews added a .30 or .50, and late in the Pacific, a recoilless rifle
 
Quoting from the Home Guard official document of the time: (Commander-in-Chief Home Forces issued Instruction No. 60. 1943)
This rifle is not designed to fire bursts. Firstly no degree of accuracy can be maintained and secondly the gun will overheat. It is interesting that the U.S. Forces armed with this weapon had great effect on Guadalcanal. A trained man can fired 40 well-aimed shots a minute using single shots. All references in Home Guard Instructions to firing bursts with this weapon should therefore be deleted. Home Guard will not fire bursts, even in emergency, but will rely upon a high degree of training in firing single shots.
(earlier instructions limited 'burst fire' to 'emergencies'.)

This demonstrates that the BAR was a perfectly adequate(heavy and bulky) automatic rifle. Not a Light Machine Gun. Many of the Home Guard were experienced Lewis Gunners from WW1 and/or trained for the Lewis or Bren in their Home Guard service so they knew what a light machine was and what it should do. The document is quite clear. There are no circumstances where automatic fire should be used. Aimed semi automatic fire was mandatory. This with well maintained weapons kept and used in easy conditions.

The BAR was not a bad weapon. Quite the contrary. But it was not a light machine gun. I assure you on behalf of my grandfather (Staff Sergeant in the Suffolk Regiment Home Guard after decorated infantry fighting in two previous wars) that they wanted a Lewis or a Bren if they had a BAR. To be fair they wanted a BAR if they had a Pattern1917. No, by the Grace of God, he saw no combat with it but he well knew what combat involved and his fate in a coastal platoon should an invasion come.
To be fair the HG tended to be very finicky about non British weapons. Look at all the endless complaints about the M1917 Enfield which was a perfectly good rifle. Its only flaw was that it wasn't " British".
 
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