The Browning Automatic Rifle

Bloomsbury Publishing
Free sample

For nearly fifty years the hard-hitting, mobile Browning Automatic Rifle, or BAR, served in US infantry units as a light squad automatic “base of fire” weapon, providing quick bursts of concentrated fire. Designed in World War One, it didn't reach the front until September 1918. In the interwar years US forces used the BAR across the world, from China to Nicaragua. It also became a favorite of notorious gangsters like Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker, who prized its ability to punch through police armored cars. At the outset of World War II the US armed forces decided to adapt the BAR for a light machine gun role. The BAR was not without its flaws; it was heavy and difficult to dismantle and reassemble, and it didn't cope well with sustained fire. Nevertheless, the BAR saw action in every major theater of World War II and went on to be used in Korea and in the opening stages of the Vietnam War. Featuring arresting first-hand accounts, specially drawn full-color artwork and close-up photographs, many in color, this lively study offers a vivid portrait of this powerful, long-lived and innovative weapon that saw service with US and other forces across the world for much of the 20th century.
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About the author

Robert Hodges was born and raised in the historic Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. A lifelong student of military history, particularly World War II and the American Civil War, he is the author of Elite 171 American Civil War Railroad Tactics. Formally trained in history and philosophy, he has published historical articles in several well-known magazines. He also writes fiction and poetry.

Johnny Shumate works as a freelance illustrator living in Nashville, Tennessee. He began his career in 1987 after graduating from Austin Peay State University. Most of his work is rendered in Adobe Photoshop using a Cintiq monitor. His greatest influences are Angus McBride, Don Troiani, and Edouard Detaille. His interests include karate, running, Bible reading, history, and making English longbows.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Bloomsbury Publishing
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Published on
Apr 20, 2012
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Pages
80
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ISBN
9781780964102
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Language
English
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Genres
Antiques & Collectibles / Military
History / General
History / Military / United States
History / Military / Weapons
History / Military / World War II
Technology & Engineering / Military Science
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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This book traces the evolution of the Browning Automatic Rifle from the Model of 1918, first to face combat in World War I, through its various configurations in all arenas of combat all the way to the present-day1918 A3 SLR developed and manufactured by Ohio Ordnance Works.

The Browning Automatic Rifle, known simply as the BAR, was a shoulder-fired light machine gun fed by a twenty-round box magazine of 30-06, the same ammunition used by the 1903 Springfield. Weighing in at under twenty pounds, it could easily be carried by one soldier, who could drape a bandolier with twelve magazines over his shoulder, giving him a total of 260 rounds (counting those in the mounted magazine). Generally accompanied by at least one companion carrying an additional bandolier with twelve magazines, the BAR man could exercise some serious firepower. Used sparingly during World War I because of the United States’ late entry into the war, it played a major role during World War II and the Korean Conflict, offering a very reliable combination of rapid fire and penetration. Few weapons of war ever pressed into service have offered the romantic allure of the BAR.

Ohio Ordnance Works, Inc. manufactures a semi-automatic version of this rifle, the 1918 A3, keeping alive this icon of American military weaponry. The only one of its kind in production anywhere in the world, it is manufactured with some of the original USGI WWI and WWII parts. Only the highest quality Ohio Ordnance original and USGI standard parts are used in its production. The heart of the 1918 A3 is the receiver made from 8620 steel casting that has been carburized and induction heat treated. The castings are machined on state-of-the-art CNC machining centers. Every rifle is fully assembled, inspected, test-fired, and re-inspected under the direct supervision of a master armorer.
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