Italian infantry weapons World War II.
The distinctive feature of the Italian Army in World War II
was its poor and insufficient armament.
Even though weapons produced at the famous Italian arms factory
Beretta were of the highest quality
the rest were known for their very low quality and obsoleteness.
Since the Italian industry of the 1930s was
undermined by financial crisis and government bureaucracy.
the production of weapons did not meet Mussolini’s imperial aspirations.
The Glisenti M1910 was a standard pistol of the Italian Army in World War I.
but remained in service until the end of World War II.
It fired a unique 9x19mm Glisenti round.
It was quite unpopular in the army as it was considered a second-rate pistol.
However, since the army was in desperate need for pistols
the Glisenti was issued to Army Reserves and Carabinieri Units.
The Beretta M1934 was the most commonly used pistol
in the Italian Army during World War II.
The pistol was made in two versions.
The most common type was chambered for 9x17mm colt short rounds.
And the less common version was the M1935
which fired 7.65x17mm rounds and was for the Air Force and Navy.
The Beretta M1934 was a blowback action, relatively small, very light,
but had less power than most service pistols of the war.
Because of its good quality the Germans continued the production of the M1934
when they took over the Beretta factories in 1943.
As with all other armies in the war
the Italians also used the old designed, single-shot rifles
to arm infantry units.
In their case. It was one of the most outdated service rifles
the Carcano M1891.
Since it was introduced in 1891,not much had changed
about the rifle until the Second World War.
It’s main features were a modified Mauser design bolt
and Mannlicher magazine holding six rounds.
The magazine was loaded via loading a clip
that couldn’t be ejected until the last round was fired.
The Carcano fired old 6.5 by 52 millimeter rounds.
With a round nose bullet,
they were obsolete even during the First World War.
During the Ethiopian campaign of 1935-37,
Italian commanders realized all the weaknesses of the round.
So they decided to introduce a new, quite unusual
7.35×51 millimeter round.
Rifles manufactured or modified to fire the new round
were designated as M1891/38.
However, in 1940 it was realised that the Italian industry was not capable
of producing large quantities of new rounds.
So the Italians decided to switch back to
the old six point five millimeter rounds,
and production of the six point five millimeter chambered rifles.
During the War, the Italians used several different versions
of the Carcano rifle with two different calibers.
Thanks to the engineers at the Beretta Factory,
The Italians had one of the best submachine guns of World War II.
The Beretta M1938 submachine gun
resembled many contemporary submachine guns,
but it was its quality of materials and finishing that made it special.
The weapon consisted of a long polished wooden stock,
with a steel tubular body and long barrel protected by a perforated jacket.
The first variant, the M1938A,
had four slots cut into the muzzle compensator.
All parts were made from machined steel,
which added to the overall quality.
The Beretta M1938 fired a standard 9×19 millimeter parabellum round.
There were several sizes of magazines holding 10, 20, 30, or 40 rounds.
弹匣尺寸有10发 20发 30发或40发
A trademark of the Beretta M1938 as well as all other Beretta
submachine guns was the double trigger system.
The rear trigger was used to fire full auto,
and the one in front for semi-auto fire.
With quality parts and a well-balanced mechanism,
the M1938 was known as a weapon
that rarely jammed and was therefore very popular among soldiers.
It was also considered as a valuable war trophy.
As the war took its toll on the Italian weapons industry,
the high production cost of the M1938 had to be reduced.
This led to the Beretta M1938/42 and subsequent variants that followed
The wooden stock was shortened, its firing mechanism simplified
as perforated barrel jacket was removed.
The new machine gun still had the distinctive shape of the Beretta.
But it was a far lower quality.
However, it was also much cheaper.
So it was produced in much larger quantities.
The weakest category of the Italian arsenal
of small infantry weapons goes to its machineguns
The leader in machine gun production in Italy was the Breda company.
They begun producing machine guns during World War I
and continue to develop them after the war.
One of their weapons was the Beretta M1930 light machine gun.
It was a weapon of quite awkward appearance
and very poor quality with a number of flaws.
One important drawback was that
the weapon recoiled violently as did the barrel.
The rear and front sights were mounted to the body of the gun to compensate for this
had to be re-zeroed owed each time the barrel was changed.
Another awkward solution was a fixed folding magazine
that was fed with stripper clips containing 20
6.5by 52 millimeter rounds.
the problem with such a magazine was that if it was broken,
the entire weapon couldn’t be used
The biggest fault however was also connected to its rounds
Empty round cases were prone to jam inside the breech during firing.
In order to limit this problem,
the manufacturers provided the breda M1930 with a small oil reservoir
for greasing rounds before loading.
The problem was and it made the entire mechanism too greasy.
So it picked up a lot of debris and dirt.
This drawback was especially obvious in Africa
where sand regularly to oily parts causing frequent jams.
Being the only light machinegun in the italian army,
M1930 were deployed to every infantry squad.
Due to its numerous drawbacks,
it was the most unpopular weapon among Italian soldiers
And as soon as the war ended it was withdrawn from service.
因此 战争一结束 该枪就退役了
The Fiat revelli M1914/35.
This machine gun was a modified version of the reveille M1914.
Even though the weapon earned a bad reputation during the first world war,
the Italians had a narrow choice of machine guns in the 1930s
M1914 were taken out of warehouses and were modified
by replacing water cooled with air-cooled barrels and
and by introducing the new more powerful 8 by 59 millimeter round.
The ten rounds strip feed box magazine was updated to a belt feed.
Uno engineers did their best to evade potential problems via M1914/35
was no better than its predecessor.
It had a low rate of fire and it also had problems
with oil and dirt and was prone to malfunctions.
Despite all its drawbacks, it was still produced in great numbers
and used until the end of the war.
The Breda M1937 was the best Italian machine gun of the Second World War.
But it was still far from competing with other machine guns of the time.
Unlike the two other machine guns,
The M1937 was a gas-operated weapon
and was therefore reliable in action.
It also had problems with case extraction,
but it was not as serious as the M1930 and M1914/35.
Distinctive feature of the Breda M1937 was
that it was fed by ten tray cassettes or strips.
The interesting thing about these trays was that
after each round was shot,
the guns mechanism reinserted the empty case back into the tray.
The reason behind this was so that the cases could be recycled at factories.
While economical this design feature could slow down the gunners assistant
when reusing these trays in the heat of battle
Another drawback of the system was
that the trays only held 20 rounds.
Which meant that machine gun crews
had to reload the weapon after each short burst.
During World War two Italian soldiers used three hand grenade models,
all carrying the same designation
Even though they had the same principle of operation.
They were different in design and complexity of mechanism.
The simplest and the smallest was the OTO M35.
It was loaded with thirty six grams of TNT
and a lint ball filled with shrapnel.
More sophisticated and powerful design was the Breda M35
It was loaded with 63 grams of TNT and was larger.
The SRC M35 had the most complicated mechanism
It had a charge of 43 grams of TNT which was wrapped with wire
that dispersed into shrapnel after the explosion.
M35 hand grenades were offensive grenades
and had an explosive radius of 10 to 15 meters.
They were also distinctive for their red color,
which was the Italian official color code for the explosive.
The interesting feature of all three models was
that they had an impact fuse unlike standard hand grenades
of World War two that had a timed chemical fuse.
This meant that the Italian bombs were designed
to explode immediately on impact with.
A double safety system M35 grenades were very reliable
but misfires happened from time to time.
In such occasions they were still a threat
since they were prone to detonate once they were picked up.
It was because of this nasty habit
that British soldiers in North Africa nicknamed them
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Italian infantry weapons World War II.