Video—I Have This Old Gun: Japanese Type 11 LMG

Designed in the 1920s, the Japanese Type 11 LMG was based on a modification of the French Hotchkiss machine gun. What made this machine gun unique was its detachable hopper which allowed the gun to be refilled while attached and did not require removal during operation. However, one disadvantage of the hopper was that the open feeder box allowed dirt to enter the gun causing it to jam. Another issue was that the weight of the rifle cartridges in the side-mounted hopper unbalanced the gun when fully loaded. To compensate, the buttstock was designed in a way that it bent to the right, leading to the Chinese nickname for the gun "bent buttstock." Used throughout the 1930s and into the early 40s, the Japanese Type 11 saw action at the Invasion of Manchuria and during World War II. For more on the Japanese Type 11 LMG, watch this "I Have This Old Gun" segment from a recent episode of American Rifleman TV.



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