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Manual machine gun “Gochkis“ (Hotchkiss Mle 1909). What was a machine gun which “was not pleasant to any army of the world“?

Well, are so considered by experts. Whimsical it was, unreliable. However this French manual machine gun officially served in the Indian army till 1930, in the British army - till 1939, in the French colonies and that longer.

the British militia used it as antiaircraft in the years of World War II. During World War I used it, except British and French, the American forwarding case.

History of creation of this original weapon reminds the detective novel.

Developed the scheme of automatic equipment retired avstro - the Hungarian captain baron Odkolek von Augesd. Automatic equipment of the weapon worked at energy of removal of powder gases through a cross opening of a trunk and the long course of the gas piston with a branch pipe. Just as on the majority of modern machine guns. However the system of giving of cartridges was main “headache“.

Food moved the tape twisted from ropes in which rifle cartridges were fixed. Running forward I will tell that this problem did not manage to be solved throughout release of this machine gun. For convenience of firing the baron Odkolek equipped the weapon with bipods and a shoulder rest. At first the baron tried to sell the development to military department of the Russian Empire, but failed. Then he sold the development to the French firm “Gochkis E Company“. To a prototype American Lawrence Ben (Benet), Frenchman Henri Mesye (Mercie) were engaged in completion of system. Later on surnames of developers one of modifications of a machine gun will be called. “The automatic mitralyeza of Gochkis“ appeared in 1895

In 1897 Hotchkiss Mle1897 machine gun under 8 mm the cartridge to the French rifle of Lebel was taken advantage of the French army. The tape from ropes was replaced with a rigid brass strip with dredging for cartridges. The trunk for fast cooling was equipped with a bronze radiator. Then bronze was replaced with steel. Then again returned to bronze and made the switch on single and automatic fire (modifications of Mle 1905 “Pyuto“ (Puteux) and Mle 1907 “Saint - Etienne“ (Sent - Etienne)). From - for unsuccessful designs of the mechanism of rate of firing (from 8 to 650 shots a minute) quickly withdrew modification of “Pyuto“ from field parts and put in fortress. To modification “Saint - Etienne“ was not lucky too: the machine gun from - for massive automatic equipment and the mechanism of fine tuning of a sight at an overheat of a trunk began to weigh more than 50 kg.

The machine gun obr became the most successful modification of the scheme of the baron Odkolek. 1909 (Hotchkiss Mle 1909). The weapon was facilitated so that one person, from 50 to 13 kg could carry it (with a full cartridge tape). Almost four times! It was already the most real manual machine gun - the long-range automatic weapon which was carried and used in fight by one person. This modification also began triumphal procession worldwide.

Other countries began to buy it actively: Russia, Greece, Spain, Norway, Brazil … In Great Britain license production Gochkisov under the British cartridge is arranged. 303 British which consisted on arms of armies of all British colonies. At first machine guns were applied generally by a cavalry. Then, with development of aircraft, their began to put on the first planes.

For the American forwarding case in World War I the option of a machine gun of Gochkis under the American cartridge was let out. 30 - 06 Springfield, modification “a rifle - a machine gun Ben - Mercier“ (Benet - Mercie Machine Rifle. 30 model 1909).


Ammunition, French boss of 8 mm. Lebel (8x50R of mm), British. 303 British (7,7x56R of mm), American. 30 - 06 Springfield (7,62õ63 mm).

Length, mm - 1187.

Length of a trunk, mm - 596.

Weight without cartridges, kg - 12,25.

Capacity of a tape, cartridges - 30 English or 24 French.

Rate of firing, vystr. / mines - 500.

Fighting rate of fire, vystr. / mines - to 250.

Initial speed of a bullet, m/s - 739.

Aim range, m - 2000.

Gochkis`s machine guns got to Russia in 1909. Deliveries continued up to revolution of 1917. At first “the Russian order“ was equipped with the tapes made of cloth similar to tapes for a machine gun of “Maxims“, but then refused them, having in addition ordered standard brass tapes. The machine gun already worked … not ays …, and jammings of the boss happened to a tape made of cloth too often. However it was so simple in service that shortcomings of a type of jamming of cartridges and a fast overheat of a trunk to it steadily said goodbye.

Practically all “Gochkisa`s Russians“ were transferred to aircraft. But also as an aviation machine gun “Gochkis“ proved … very much not really as it was very inconvenient to recharge it flexible brass holders on 30 cartridges in an open cabin of the airplane.

For needs of aircraft in 1912 in France release of option of a machine gun with the pistol handle, a special sight and a tourist`s fir-tree is begun. The tape was replaced with box-shaped shop, same as in the Danish manual machine gun of “Madsen“. It, by the way, was also put also, from above, and not sideways as a tape. The same machine guns were put then on the first British tanks.

After World War I the majority of machine guns “Gochkis“ of various modifications of the mother country transferred in a colony, Britain - in British, France - in French. The part was put in arsenals from where it is taken in connection with shortage of the weapon at the beginning of World War II.