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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

What is this Machine Gun?


gSpartan150
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I saw this MG on a documentary. I think it is an MG08 but I've never seen anything like the piece on the end of the barrell. Does anyone know what it is?

http://imgur.com/i9I54dH

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How about some elaborate muzzle gas-trap to eliminate flash and boost RoF?

Regards,

MikB

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Hi MikB

Do you think this is testing a similar device as the British Vickers muzzle attachment that's designed to get the additional recoil boost from the propellant gases exiting the muzzle?

John

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Its an MG08 fitted with a water cooled recoil booster. On page 138 of Central Powers Small Arms of WW1 (John Walters) there is a photo of a similar weapon belonging to the 129th Infantry Regiment

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It was called a Rűckstossverstärker S and adopted sometime during the war so yes John but I think they are using it rather than testing it

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It was hard to imagine what else it could be for. Even in the 1960s, chronographs were large affairs measuring bullet flight time over several feet, often by breaking wires, so only measuring one round between resets. It might *now* be practical to build a device that size that could calculate velocity mean and standard deviation over an input number of rounds, and adjust elevation to strike a designated target, but it wasn't then! :D

Regards,

MikB

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It was hard to imagine what else it could be for.

Not that hard it might have been a flash suppressor for example. The recoil booster was developed after the onset of trench warfare as it was believed that the 300 rpm standard rate of fire was too slow to repel mass attacks. It increased the rate to 450rpm. Vickers held a number of patents on devices of a similar nature but it was decided that a higher rate of fire tended "to kill the same man several times over" and wasted ammunition so never applied them. It would seem that the Germans soon realised this so that the booster was not much used and indeed I have seen text books that suggest that for ground defence they may have adjusted their Maxims to give a slightly slower rate than the possible 300 rpm. In WW2 the use of more powerful rounds in the Vickers increased the recoil and resulted in some speeding up of the rate of fire.

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I'd already thunk that thought, Cent - see my post #3.

Regards,

MikB

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