Question: A beltfed .22LR Machinegun 'trainer'???


July 6, 2003, 11:49 PM
my 85yr old neighbor was a ballturret gunner on an 8th Air Force B17. He's got the usual recollections about bombing missions, but he came up recently with a story of gunnery training with a .22rimfire beltfed version of a 1919 30cal machinegun. From what I could get out of his tale the MG's were adapted for .22LRs' that were loaded into some kind of belt adapter. He said one of the 'chores' after a training session was to reload the adapters in the belts. Never heard of machinegun 'trainers' before... Anyone got any data on these?:confused: :confused: :confused:

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July 7, 2003, 12:06 AM
I've heard of a Mac Glashan .177 bb trainer for the 1919.

Jim Watson
July 7, 2003, 12:36 PM
No real data, but I did read once of "Carbine" Williams designing and prototyping a .22 floating chamber conversion for a BMG. Don't know if it was the one your vet saw, but it was done.

July 7, 2003, 01:00 PM
I've seen .30-06 adaptors that were supposed to work with a sub-calibre MG like this once; the "neck" of the adaptor stayed in the links, while the base of the adaptor (with the .22 cartridge), was withrawn from the belt then fed through in the normal manner. If I can find any more info, I'll post it here for you.

I KNEW I'd seen these in one of my books; P.226 of Vol 2, "History of U.S. Small Arms Ammunition", Hackley, Woodin, & Scranton, shows these adaptors as being used in the "M3, M4, and M5" sub-calibre training MGs. Not much to go on, but I hope it helps.

July 8, 2003, 04:52 PM
IIRC, there were complete conversion kits made for the 1919A4, utilizing the subcaliber inserts for .22. This was followed by frangabile ammo, to be fired against real (armored) aircarft. Legend goes that after the first test flight, the pilot refused to go up again. The ammo, gray, with white over4 green bands, was used against tanks.

March 25, 2009, 09:47 AM
I know this is an old thread but currently I have all the parts available either NOS or new manufacture for these guns. The .22 conversions were made for the 1917a1, 1919a4 and the AN-M2 .30 cal aircraft guns. They are really a hoot to shoot! There have been several postings on U-Tube of these conversions in action.

March 25, 2009, 12:24 PM
The "cartridges" shown are the floating chambers.
The .22 MG barrel was chambered to accept them, and the floating chamber ejected like an empty case every shot.

We had two complete "kits" in the KNG arms vault in 1964 when I entered the service. They came in a huge chest and included the different barrel, bolt, spare parts, and about a gazillion of the belt/chamber adapters.
I never did get to try one out though. By the time I could have, we turned in the Browning MG's & BAR's and got M-60's.



August 9, 2009, 12:16 AM
Check my website for a complete listing of parts for the M4 Conversion for the 1919a4 Browning and the M5 Conversion for the 1917a1, both in .22 caliber. There is also a video of one of my units running full auto.

Best Regards,
Tom Heim

August 10, 2009, 08:14 PM
numrich has the adapters I have 10.we never had them in Memphis when I went to ordance school.

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