19 March 2012

Iron and Wood Comparison

This is Vanessa; she's a 1916 made SMLE #III* from the Royal Small Arms Factory, Enfield.  She mostly lives on my wall since ammo is expensive.

 Top is Svetlana, bottom is Catherine.  They were made only a year apart.  Both represent the last bolt action rifle issued to the infantry as a primary weapon in their respective nations.


Top is Svetlana, bottom is Rosie.  Made two years apart.  Both represent the main rifle issued to the infantry as a primary weapon in their respective nations during World War 2.  Also the main rifles issued to North Korea and China versus the United States in the Korean War.

I don't have a later pattern bayonet for the Garand; I accept donations.

I think the third photo is very interesting since in 1941, the M1 was technologically one of the most advanced infantry rifles in the world.  In 1950, however, it was no longer state of the art with the Soviet Union having replaced the Mosin with the SKS then AK-47.  The US replaced the Garand very shortly with a Garand derivative; the M14.

The histories of these specific guns are a bit shrouded.

Vanessa was made during The Great War and would almost certainly have seen action.  But I have no idea where or with whom.  With all the weapon shortages during WW2, it seems likely that she was either still in service or was returned to service.  My bayonet is an Indian pattern item, I keep meaning to get a proper British model.  She's been out with me as an impression of a Blackwatch soldier twice and once as a trooper from the 9th Queen's Royal Lancers.  I learned I am not so much into reenacting from those experiences; but at least WW1 reenacting will let you keep your beard!

Catherine was issued to a Marine in the Pacific Theater.  He was the best shot in his platoon, so he got the marksman's rifle.  He carried from issue in 1943 through the end of the war and took it home with him.  It sat in his closet for the next seventy years.  His son sold it to me.  I don't have a scrap of paperwork to verify that story.  I just have an old man on oxygen telling me about his experiences with a blurry globe and anchor tattoo.  And an astounded son who'd never heard his dad tell some of those tales.  I've bumped into this before, some stories are for "members of the club" only.

Rosie is a late 1944 gun.  She's really in too good of shape to have been issued in WW2.  She's marked with arsenal marks from Red River Army Depot indicating she'd be arsenal refinished in 1962.  She may have been to Korea, she may not have.  I tend to think she didn't since we gave the ROK army a lot of Garands I believe almost all of the guns we took over there for the conflict remained.

Svetlana is from 1942 and the Soviets weren't in the habit of letting useful materiel sit about unused.  She was almost certainly issued and was definitely arsenal refinished sometime after the war.

2 comments:

  1. Looks like you need a T38 Arisaka to round out your collection of milsurp bolt actions.

    ReplyDelete
  2. A 38 Shiki rifle would be cool; but if I did that I'd have to get rifles from the other two losing nations too. Need a Mannlicher-Carcano Mod 91/38 and a Mauser K.98k as well.

    Of course I'd have to settle on one World War or the other...

    Or I am short an M-1903, M-1917, Gew.98, Lebel, Berthier...

    IT NEVER ENDS!

    ReplyDelete

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