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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

WW1 Vickers Gun.


Chris P

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Hello all......I've been offered a Vickers gun, various 1917 & 18 dates on the various components.....Serial number B8697. What can I find out/look for before I buy a pile of doo dah!

All I know about these is that I want one.......any help appreciated..... Thankyou.

Chris P.

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Chris,

A wealth of info is available on the web. A good starting point is this site:

Vickers MG

Do be wary about tripods - all too often one sees WW2 era tripods and WW1 guns - and the tripods do look different. Almost all guns will have had replacement parts at some time so don't expect everything to match up 100% against the gun as new.

One little tip for "re-enactors" and the like. When firing a Vickers you would not wear shorts. I saw someone do this once. The ejected cartridges are likely to land on your legs and are very hot as the individual found out ........... I leave the scene to your imagination!!!!

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The serial number shows that it was manufactured circa August 1918, so a late WW1 gun, personally I doubt it saw much if any active service before the war ended. As Martin highlighted so many of these 'WW1' guns has many post war or Australian/Turkish manufactured/marked parts, and WW1 tripods are getting very hard to find. Saying that prices still seem to be rising on these guns, and good examples rarely stay on the market long. Personally I would wait for an earlier model to come along, but you may have to wait a long time !

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Thanks for the replies chaps........I'll see if I can find some more numbers!

Chris P.

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Chris,

A wealth of info is available on the web. A good starting point is this site:

Vickers MG

Do be wary about tripods - all too often one sees WW2 era tripods and WW1 guns - and the tripods do look different. Almost all guns will have had replacement parts at some time so don't expect everything to match up 100% against the gun as new.

One little tip for "re-enactors" and the like. When firing a Vickers you would not wear shorts. I saw someone do this once. The ejected cartridges are likely to land on your legs and are very hot as the individual found out ........... I leave the scene to your imagination!!!!

"Ejected cartridges" ? I thought that the rounds were replaced in the belt by the Vickers ?

Edward

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Was at the Australian Army Museum at Bandiana last week and was given a "look see" through their workshops and armoury. They had about 7 WW1 Vickers complete with CES in the armoury. .455 S&W and a .455 Webley were gifted to them last year because they were found under a house - and it was a way to avoid having them destroyed. They were in perfect "nick".

A pleasure to handle them all :)

(The Army handed over complete sheds "as is where is" in the last couple of years - they found a complete CES for a Machine Gun Carieer Local Pattern 2A (the local version of the Universal Carrier) still packed for long term storage including weapons !)

Edward

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Just out of curiosity Edward; were they still 'kosher' WW1 Vickers? In the UK a lot of guns were reconditioned and reissued with their original serials scored through (not obliterated) and restamped with the date of reissue. This could also happen with components.

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