The gun of World War II — a machine gun Lewis

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

The history of the machine gun

All litsezrev this machine gun, immediately find out it because very often this particular gun is shown in films about World War I, and even the second world war.
It is not in vain specifically his show in the film, because due to its simplicity and reliability, low weight features, the highest rate of gun quickly captured the hearts of many countries and the military at the time took advantage of great popularity. All modifications guns had success and fame only added to the machine gun.
Designer light machine gun is U.S. Army colonel Isaac Lewis. At one time, with a background in the "West Point" in 1911, he headed the school of artillery fort "Monroe." Directing the school and doing scientific research and development of weapons, receives extensive recognition as an expert on electrical engineering and mechanics. Before his retirement, Colonel Lewis chose the path of a consultant firm "AAS» — Automatic Arms Company.
As a consultant, Colonel Lewis continues to develop weapons and is working on his project of a lightweight machine gun, the mechanisms that lead to a motion by the use of force propellant gases used ammunition.
The company «Automatic Arms Company» acquires all the rights to a unique machine gun designer who was a doctor Semyuel McClean. Specifically, with this gun begins the story of a light machine gun, "Luce". Colonel Lewis was very interested in this gun, and many of the technical and design solutions he uses when developing his own gun. The company "AAS" Lewis passes controlling and managing the creation of the massive machine gun and its distribution for the right company to create his machine gun.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

The device is a machine gun

Only a few years Lewis has designed a machine gun, having the disc magazine and the air cooling of the barrel. Mechanics gun operation in automatic mode, thanks to the technical solution removal of powder gases. After firing the powder gases out through the stem hole and its pressure moved the piston to its initial state, vorachivayas, piston platoon revertible spring. Also, Rod rack slid the bolt, removing the lugs of the slide groove box. The upcoming action rifles and the piston pushed out empty cartridges, which is discarded as a result of the movement in the direction of the reflector. The shutter projection, acting on the feeder, open the store, and the subsequent cartridge was fed to the receiver box.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

After a full return to the initial state of the device, revertible spring unwinding, quickly shifted the valve stem forward. With all of this gate would pick up and be sent to the cartridge chamber. Suppressor shifted to the right and held subsequent projection store. Rod rack began to move along the slide groove, the bolt turns, and lugs included in the slots, the drummer, breaking the capsule, creating another shot.
The main problem of automatic weapons is very hot trunk in the management of saturated fire. Lewis developed his system of air cooling. The trunk he placed his own gun in a radiator made of aluminum, and closed his cylindrical housing.
The delivery of fire from a machine gun propellant gases coming out of the holes in the trunk of a solid speed dragged into the case ordinary air, and he vented radiator Dural away with their heat. But even this solution is not a panacea, the queue length of more than 25 shots still overheated machine gun, and I had to take small breaks while shooting. Store in the form of a disc has a capacity of 47 weapons that shoot the machine gun in 6 seconds. Store just changed, and so many patrons in the store there were sufficient.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

The road to recognition

While serving in the U.S. Armed Forces, many times Lewis filed an application for his military inventions, but the response from the command was not found. As in at least some other country, with the invention of the military command are not popular, and because Lewis decided to approach the difficulties with Drogo side.
He convinces his own companion, Captain Chandler, commander of the Air Intelligence Agency, to test the gun in the air. Chandler lures to test pilot a biplane "Wright" Lieutenant Milling.
On the test machine gun in the air Lewis reported a group of officers, and the press.
First, in June 1912 biplane conducts successful tests of a machine gun. But although the press and gave positive feedback about the Lewis machine gun and gave the command to fulfill the official test, do not take the gun because artupravlenie U.S. has previously approved the introduction of a French army machine gun, "Ben-Mercier." It is in many ways inferior to the Lewis gun and had ordinary clumsy tape cartridges. After that, Lewis leaves the army and moved to Europe.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

Machine gun with a disc-shaped shop intrigued Belgians. After the successful demonstration and testing Lewis signed an agreement with the Belgians, which makes the latest company «Armes Automatic Lewis» for Lewis machine guns. But it soon becomes clear that this gun will be able to create only the English company «BSA», with which both make an agreement on the establishment of the main components of a machine gun.
With the help of «BSA» Lewis holds a demonstration of the introduction of the machine gun from the air. Biplane specially Retrofit additional seat for the Heavy. At the end of November 1913 applied from the air gun hits the target from a height of 120 meters. More than half of the disc successfully hit the target.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

After demonstrating the abilities of a machine gun, the company «BSA» is small trial orders from the military of the Russian Federation, Belgium a
nd the UK. Despite the significant heating of the barrel when saturated shooting, gun spices valued positively. Belgium in 1913, takes gun into service of its own army.
Although the Air Force and showed enthusiasm for the machine gun, but showed a classic English caution and ordered a machine gun in a hurry. Because the first batch received Belgium and our homeland. In anticipation of the war in Europe, the company «BSA» perceives the decision to increment the production capacity and orders a lot of machines in the United States.
Just before the war, in the middle of 1914 UK orders in the first batch of 10 pieces in a couple of weeks and about 50 machine guns. After the fighting, the company received an order for 200 units of machine guns.
But after the Belgian military forces, armed infantry machine gun models Lewis, successfully repelled the attacks of superior German forces, the demand for the machine gun was growing exponentially.
The company «BSA» could not cope with the flow of orders, and then they ordered 12 thousand machine guns from an American company, "Savage Arms Company". In late 1915, eventually earned a factory in Birmingham, which has managed to create about 300 guns per week.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

Modifications to the machine gun.

First modification of the backlog of aircraft machine gun. It changed the butt of the handle of the "Maxim". Further upgraded barrel machine gun, however, it only hurt the radiator shroud, which made it difficult to create a fire. Due to a decent blow gun on top, cover with a clean aviapulemeta. Bursiform add capacity to capture the empty cartridges that are damaged with the release of the aircraft skin.
Also in 1916 increasing capacity magazine for the convenience of the firing in the air, disc store has become massive and could accommodate 97 ammunition. The shop itself is supplied with a handle, for frolicsome substitution of one hand.
In 1916, taking into account the different improvement, the company «BSA» is launching an upgraded version of Lewis Mk.II.
Around the same time in the UK make the fixture for mounting a machine gun on the plane. "Lafet Fortier" are produced in the form of an arcuate rail, where gun moved to a position back and down. Data gun carriages were equipped with British «RAF SE.5a».
In Russia, too, there is a carriage for mounting a machine gun on the plane, it was different in that the move was made to reverse the hinge.
From 1915, the gun becomes a de-facto standard for military aircraft.
In operation, it became clear that gun had acquired a number of shortcomings, such as the freezing of the lubricant at low temperatures required of mandatory cleaning the barrel after shooting 600 munitions in the management of air combat is often forgotten about overheating machine gun, this has led to damage to the frisky guns.
At 17, he was completed yet Lewis machine gun bunker that led to the mass production of machine gun Lewis Mk.III. In this modification reduced the weight of the machine gun and the increased rate of fire. 3rd Lewis became the vserasprostranennym weapon to arm combat aircraft and remained so until the beginning of the second world war.
The United States and our home for shooting machine gun ammunition used 7.62 mm, and Italy, France and Japan used a 0.383-caliber ammunition 7.7 mm.
Because the rate of gun increased to 850 rounds per minute, with no improvement of design solutions and highly increased damage waivers machine gun, and overcoming great heights aircraft increment unsolved problem of freezing lubricant.
The machine gun is rapidly losing appeal and by the end of the 30s was considered obsolete weaponry.
But no matter what, a machine gun very often used on the fronts of the second world war. German troops were often used this gun in their own divisions, although had a new gun.

Weapons of World War II - a machine gun "Lewis"

The main features:
— embodiment Lewis Mk I-II and Lewis Mk III;
— length of 1.3 meters 1.1 meters;
— trunk 0.61 meters 0.61 meters;
— rate of up to 550 V / m to 850 V / m;
— weight 11.5 kg 7.7 kg;

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