20th century US military individually issued firearms (semi-auto) part 2
M1 Carbine .30 caliber rifle is a semi-auto magazine fed rifle made by several manufacturers (Mine is
Underwood.) This rifle was issued to some troops during WWII. I have several 15 and 30 round
magazines and the bayonet that goes with it.
The M1 carbine (formally the United States Carbine, Caliber .30, M1) is a lightweight semi-automatic carbine that became a standard firearm in the U.S. military during World War II and the Korean War, and was produced in several variants. It was widely used by U.S. and foreign military and paramilitary forces, and has also been a popular civilian firearm.
In selective fire versions capable of fully-automatic fire, the carbine is designated the M2 carbine. The M3 carbine was an M2 with an active infrared scope system.
Unlike conventional carbines, which are generally a version of a parent rifle with a shorter barrel (like the earlier .30-40 U.S. Krag rifle and carbine and the later M16A1 rifle and M4 carbine), the M1 carbine has one part in common with the M1 rifle (a short buttplate screw) and fires a different cartridge.
Savage British Enfield .303 rifle (US PROPERTY) marked was manufactured during WWII through the
US Army contract and lend/leased to its British allies. I purchased it from Gunbrokers.com for $250.00
Savage produced Lee-Enfield No. 4 Mk I*
In the late 1930’s, hordes of aggressors swarmed over Europe, South East Asia and the Pacific Rim. The land was plundered for raw materials such as oil, lumber, and the ore to produce steel, copper, aluminum etc. Businesses and private property was confiscated without due process. Outrages were directed against women & girls. By the millions, men, women & children were simply slaughtered out of hand. Slave labor camps & factories were set up. Many were subject to hideous medical experiments, or murdered by the testing of new biological and chemical weapons. The aggressors claimed religious, racial, ethnic, or national differences made their victims “less then human”.
Since the end of the Great Depression, Americans had been enjoying an era of prosperity. The news media of the day, radio and newspapers, dutifully covered the events transpiring across the world. (Note 1) While all agreed the intentions and actions of the axis powers were immoral & shameful, many in the U.S. felt we had neither a moral or legal right to interfere in the business of other nations. They, the isolationists, thought the problems of Europeans, Asians and those residing in the Pacific had no bearing on the lives of Americans. They flatly stated we had no business taking a pro-active role in such activities. They further said the stability, or lack of stability in other nations did not affect the livelihood or security of Americans.
They pointed out that Japan had always been an Imperialistic society. They reminded Americans that the German people lawfully elected Adolph Hitler to office. So, how could we justify more then a passing interest in such matters? Besides, they argued, wasn’t that the job of the League of Nations? (Note 2) Also, WWI had ushered in the era of modern warfare. Death could be brought in new & horrifying ways to soldiers, on a scale never even imagined. The trenches were frightening places. The last thing many wanted was for Americans to be dragged into this new fray. It was also pointed out, and quite truthfully, that the US forces had been drastically reduced by the Congress after WWI. Also the Senate Appropriations Committee had failed to provide funding for new, modern equipment. Most of the US Army Air Corps planes were WWI bi-planes.
Many in the US Military and US Government knew that sooner or later the US would be dragged into the war. They especially wanted the UK to remain free of the Nazi yolk. US Forces would need a base to operate from when it came time to launch an invasion of Western Europe. The British Isles were a perfect jumping off spot. The short trip across the English Channel would keep troops fresh for the battle that lay ahead. However, the US was not at war with either Germany or Japan at this point. Since the United States was officially “neutral”, the Neutrality Act of 1939 forbade “direct involvement” in the war; our allies were technically on their own. How could we help, but not violate the law?
Crafty politicians & lawyers in Washington read the law extensively, and wrote a bill to give the president the power to put the vast industrial base of the US at the disposal of our allies, but not have to declare war, or have war declared on us by the axis. Thus, the LEND LEASE ACT OF 1941 came into being. Because the war material supplied was “officially” US PROPERTY, and so marked, it managed to squeak past the benchmark of an outright violation of neutrality. Thus, the US managed to keep our allies supplied with war material, yet, still remain on the correct side of US and international law (though just barely).
Remington Model 11 12 Gauge semi-automatic shotgun. These guns were used throughout WWII, The Korean War and Viet Nam. The gun has the Military Ordnance flaming bomb and Military Finish, but has been re-blued and recoil pad added.
The Model 11 is the most common WWII shotgun encountered today. The long barrel version was commonly used for target practice in training aerial gunners and keeping officers occupied as clay sport shooting had become very popular during this time frame. It is worth noting that there are arsenal refurbished parkerized versions of the Model 11 Riot and Target versions out there but they are rare, most of them appear to have had the arsenal markings added to the left side of the receiver, these arsenal marked rebuilds are rarer than the factory originals and would be a great addition to any collection.
Model US44 Mossberg .22LR caliber 8 shot bolt action magazine fed target rifle.
This rifle is marked “US Property” and was used during the WWII Era as a US Army competition rifle.
I purchased it for $75.00 from the CMP (Civilian Marksmanship Program), formerly the DCM.
The 44US was designed exclusively for the war department as a target trainer, intended solely for use by U.S. troops. It was adapted from the pre-war 44B model, and included adaptations like those made to the 42MB -- made mostly to keep costs down. The war department wanted an accurate, dependable, heavy-barreled trainer, and was willing to sacrifice cosmetic detail to make it affordable. While the 44B featured a deluxe, genuine walnut stock with long beavertail and cheek piece, the 44US stock was plain, usually birch with walnut finish. The four-position (adjustable) front swivel plate was removed, and both front and rear swivels were fixed, on the 44US. The hooded front sight was replaced by a plain post, the rear sight was the S-100, originally adjustable forward and back through four sets of screw positions (later reduced to three and then two). The first batch was shipped with Lyman 57MS receiver peep hole sights.
M14 caliber .308 (7.62mm x 51) full or semi-auto magazine fed rifle.
This rifle was standard issue for the Viet Nam war soldiers. Mine was built by me as a semi-auto only
Civilian M1A version with a Sako national match barrel and a Springfield Armory receiver. It was glass
bedded into a military walnut stock by a NCNG Match armorer. I used it in many civilian National
Matches. Later, I topped it with an original Leatherwood ART II scope and an original bipod to use it in
the NCNG Sniper competitions as a M21 SWS (Sniper Weapon System). It shot well (1 minute of
angle), but did not hold its zero when the scope was taken off and re-attached ( mandatory for sniper
matches). I have the AN/PVS-2 Night Vision Scope that was used on this rifle during the Viet Nam
The M14 rifle, formally the United States Rifle, Caliber 7.62 mm, M14, is an American selective fire automatic rifle firing 7.62x51mm NATO (.308 Winchester) ammunition. It was the standard issue U.S. rifle from 1959 to 1970. The M14 was used for U.S. Army and Marine Corps basic and advanced individual training, and was the standard issue infantry rifle in CONUS, Europe, and South Korea, until replaced by the M16 rifle in 1970. It remains in limited front line service with the United States Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard, and remains in use as a ceremonial weapon. The M14 also provides the basis for the M21 and M25 sniper rifles. It was the last so-called "battle rifle" (a term applied to weapons firing full-power rifle ammunition) issued in quantity to U.S. troops.
The United States Army wanted an accurate sniper rifle during the Vietnam War. The M14 was selected because of its accuracy, reliability, and the ability for a quick second shot. As a result, in 1969, the Rock Island Arsenal converted 1,435 National Match (target grade) M14s by adding a Leatherwood 3–9x Adjustable Ranging Telescope and providing National Match grade ammunition. It was designated the M21 in 1975. The M21 remained the Army's primary sniper rifle until 1988, when it was replaced by the M24 Sniper Weapon System.
AN/PVS-2 NIGHT VIISION SIGHT
Development started in 1964 and by 1967 these were reaching units in the field, and by 1969 they were very widely used in Vietnam. Improvements included elimination of “blooming” where a bright light would temporarily “white out” the scope. Battery life increased to about 100 hours. It could be mounted quickly on any standard M14 or M16 rifle with no modifications required.
M16 caliber .223 (5.56mm) full or semi-auto magazine fed rifle.
The original issue was designated as the M16A1 and replaced the M14 during Viet Nam. It fired a 55
Grain FMJ (Full Metal Jacket) projectile (M193) in a standard weight 1 in 12 twist barrel select fire.
Later on after the war it was redesigned as the M16A2 which fired a heavier 62 grain projectile (M855)
For greater distance with a hardened steel insert (green tip) for greater penetration on harder targets.
The barrel was changed to a heavier 1 in 7 twist to stabilize the longer projectile. The sights were
Changed to allow adjustment of the rear sight by thumbscrews for windage and elevation marked
From 300 to 800 meters. Select fire was changed from semi-auto to burst (3 rounds). I built my gun on
the M16A2 configuration using GI parts and using a Bushmaster receiver (Semi-auto only). My barrel
has a 1 in 9 twist (Quality Parts). I also have the later M4 version that has a collapsible stock, made by
Smith & Wesson (M&P) I also have the current Army issued AN/PVS-4 Night Vision Scope for it.
The M16 (more formally Rifle, Caliber 5.56 mm, M16) is the United States military designation for the AR-15 rifle. Colt purchased the rights to the AR-15 from ArmaLite and currently uses that designation only for semi-automatic versions of the rifle. The M16 rifle fires the 5.56x45mm cartridge and can produce massive wounding and hydrostatic shock effects when the bullet impacts at high velocity and yaws in tissue leading to fragmentation and rapid transfer of energy. However, terminal effects can be unimpressive when the bullet fails to yaw or fragment in tissue.
The M16 entered United States Army service as the M16 and was put into action for jungle warfare in South Vietnam in 1963, becoming the standard U.S. rifle of the Vietnam War by 1969, replacing the M14 rifle in that role. The U.S. Army retained the M14 in CONUS, Europe, and South Korea until 1970. Since the Vietnam War, the M16 rifle family has been the primary infantry rifle of the U.S. military. With its variants, it has been in use by 15 NATO countries, and is the most produced firearm in its caliber.
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