Browning M2 .50 Caliber Machine Gun - MNVM - Perryville, MO
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member YoSam.
N 37° 45.389 W 089° 52.575
16S E 246613 N 4182692
There are several placards that make up this marker. Display inside the MNVM Museum. This weapon is called a "Ma Deuce" by Marines.
Waymark Code: WM16K19
Location: Missouri, United States
Date Posted: 08/18/2022
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member Geo Ferret
Views: 0

County of museum: Perry County
Location of museum: Veterans Memorial Parkway, Perryville
Phone: (573) 547-2035
Hours: 8am to 5pm weekdays; 10am to 2pm Sat; and 11am to 3pm Sun

Placard Text:
1. The Browning M2is an air-cooled, belt-fed machine gun weighing 84 pounds, with the tripod weighing and additional 44 pounds. The rounds fired per minute depend on the model: averaging 513 rpm for the M2HB (Heavy Barrel) air-cooled ground guns and up to 1200 rpm for the AN (Army Navy)/M2 aircraft guns. The M2HB has a maximum effective range of 2200 yards when mounted on the tripod.

2. The M2 machine gun has also been used as a long-ranged sniper rifle when equipped with a telescopic sight. Soldiers during the Korean War used scoped M2s in the role of a snipe rifle, but the practice was most notably used by a U.S. Marine Corps sniper during the Vietnam War. Using an Unertl telescopic sight and a mounting bracket of his own design, the Marine could quickly convert the M2 into a sniper rifle, using the traverse-and-elevation mechanism attached to the tripod.

3. In service from 1933 to present day, the M2 has been manufactured by various companies at times, including General Motors, AC Delco, and Rock Island Arsenal.

4. From World War II through the Vietnam War, the M2 was used with standard ball, armor-piercing, incendiary and armor-piercing incendiary tracer rounds. All .50 caliber ammunition designated "armor-piercing" was required to completely perforate 0.875 inches of hardened steel armor plate at a distance of 100 yards and 0.75 inches at 547 yards. The incendiary and tracer rounds left a flash, report, and smoke on contact, useful in detecting strikes on enemy targets. They were primarily intended to incapacitate thin-skinned and lightly armored vehicles and aircraft, while igniting their fuel tanks.

5. The M2 machine gun is a heavy machine gun designed toward the end of World War I by John Browning. Its design is similar to his 1919 Browning machine gun, which was chambered for the .30-06 cartridge. The M2 used the much larger and much more powerful .50 BMG (Brown Machine Gun) cartridge.
  It has been used extensively as a vehicle weapon and for aircraft armament by the United States from the 1930s to the present. It was heavily used during World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Falklands War, the Soviet-Afghan War, the Gulf War, the Iraq War, and the War in Afghanistan in the 2000s and the 2010s.

Web link: [Web Link]

History of Mark:
"Machine guns were heavily used in World War I, and weapons of larger than rifle caliber began appearing on both sides of the conflict. The larger rounds were needed to defeat the armor that was being introduced to the battlefield, both on the ground and in the air. During the war, the Germans introduced a heavily armored airplane, the Junkers J.I. The armor made aircraft machine guns using conventional rifle ammunition (such as the .30-06) ineffective. Consequently, the American Expeditionary Force's commander General John J. Pershing asked for a larger caliber machine gun. Pershing asked the Army Ordnance Department to develop a machine gun with a caliber of at least 0.50 inches (12.7 mm) and a muzzle velocity of at least 2,700 feet per second (820 m/s).

"Around July 1917, John M. Browning started redesigning his .30-06 M1917 machine gun for a larger and more powerful round. Winchester worked on the cartridge, which was a scaled-up version of the .30-06. Winchester initially added a rim to the cartridge because the company wanted to use the cartridge in an anti-tank rifle, but Pershing insisted the cartridge be rimless. The first .50 caliber machine gun underwent trials on 15 October 1918. It fired at less than 500 rounds per minute, and the muzzle velocity was only 2,300 ft/s (700 m/s). Cartridge improvements were promised. The gun was heavy, difficult to control, fired too slowly for the anti-personnel role, and was not powerful enough against armor.

"While the .50 caliber was being developed, some German T Gewehr 1918 anti-tank rifles and ammunition were seized. The German rounds had a muzzle velocity of 2,700 ft/s (820 m/s), an 800 gr bullet, and could penetrate armor 1 in (25 mm) thick at a range of 250 yd (230 m). Winchester improved the .50 caliber round to have similar performance. Ultimately, the muzzle velocity was 2,750 ft/s (840 m/s).

"Efforts by John M. Browning and Fred T. Moore resulted in the water-cooled, .50 caliber M1921 Browning machine gun and an aircraft version. These guns were used experimentally from 1921 until 1937. They had light-weight barrels and the ammunition fed only from the left side. Service trials raised doubts about whether the guns would be suitable for aircraft or for anti-aircraft use. A heavy barrel M1921 was considered for ground vehicles.

"John M. Browning died in 1926. Between 1927 and 1932, S.H. Green studied the design problems of the M1921 and the needs of the armed services. The result was a single receiver design that could be turned into seven types of .50 caliber machine guns by using different jackets, barrels, and other components. The new receiver allowed right or left side feed. In 1933, Colt manufactured several prototype Browning machine guns (including what would be known as the M1921A1 and M1921E2). With support from the Navy, Colt started manufacturing the M2 in 1933. FN Herstal has manufactured the M2 machine gun since the 1930s. General Dynamics, U.S. Ordnance and Ohio Ordnance Works Inc. are other current manufacturers.

"A variant without a water jacket, but with a thicker-walled, air-cooled barrel was designated the M2 HB (HB for Heavy Barrel). The added mass and surface area of the heavy barrel compensated somewhat for the loss of water-cooling, while reducing bulk and weight: the M2 weighs 121 lb (55 kg) with a water jacket, but the M2 HB weighs 84 lb (38 kg). Due to the long procedure for changing the barrel, an improved system was developed called QCB (quick change barrel). The lightweight "Army/Navy" prefixed AN/M2 "light-barrel" version of the Browning M2 weighing 60 pounds (27 kg) was also developed, and became the standard .50-caliber aviation machine gun of the World War II–era for American military aircraft of nearly every type,[better source needed] readily replacing Browning's own air-cooled .30 caliber machine gun design in nearly all American aircraft installations. ~ Wikipedia

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