Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 44

Thread: The Italian aircraft armament.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default The Italian aircraft armament.

    Probably the less know of all the aircraft armament of WW2. This is a topic that I had in my mind for a while, now after collecting some good info I think I am in the conditions to provide a good topic.

    And you know all my my topics are excellent so...


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    The FIAT M1928.

    The Fabrica Italiana Automobile Torino ( italian Torino car factory) is one of the Europes biggest car industries and it was in the ww1 one of Italy main suppliers of ground based and aviation machineguns, mostly the design of Revelli.

    After the great war the FIAT created in 1926 a subsidiary devoted exclusively to the machineguns, that was the Societa Anonima Fabrica Armi Torino, or anonymous society Torino guns factory, mostly know as its abreviated S.A.F.A.T designation.



    The first aircraft machinegun produced by the S.A.F.A.T was the M1928, this is a scaled up variant of the infantry light M1926, with a belt fed and increased rate of fire.

    However its main change was the adoption of the 8 mm Fiat cartrigde instead the usual M1891 6,5 mm ammunition.
    Worth to mention that the "8mm FIAT" designation was in fact a fancy name for the 7,7x56R, no other than the british .303 cartrigde, both types were completely interchangeable.

    The M1928 was installed in some biplane fighters of the late 1920s and early 1930s, but proven unrealible ( sometimes the case was fractured and parts remains left in the chamber !) and difficult to synchronizate so it was replaced by the better Breda designs.

    Fiat S.A.F.A.T M1928.

    Caliber: 8 mm Fiat.

    Type of action: mechanically delayed blowback.

    Charging: manually by wire.

    Rate of fire: no less than 720 rpm.

    Lenght: 1250 mm

    Weight: 16.5 kg unloded

    Muzzle velocity: 745 mps.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    FIAT light machinegun mechanism:

    This drawing of the internal components inside the infantry M1926 help to understand the delayed blowback mechanism in the M1928 MG, wich was basically the same.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Breda S.A.F.A.T 7,7 mm MG.



    The italian air force was by late 1920 clearly aware of the limitations of its late Fiat designed Mgs, in order to solve that problem it launched a specification for a new aircraft machinegun in 1929.

    Both Fiat and the Brescia based Breda factory responded the requeriments. but breda 7,7mm machinegun with Browning type of action proven more reliable and lighter.

    Disapointed with its failure to provide to the goverment the FIAT sold it weapons manufacture subsidiary to Breda. For that point and onwards the Breda aircrat machineguns were designated as Breda S.A.F.A.T guns.

    The Breda SAFAT 7,7 mm was a disintegable link belt fed, air cooled and recoil operated machinegun. After the trigger is depressed bolt and barrel recoiled togheters for 11 mm then the blot in disingaged by a cam milled in the receiver, opening the chamber, extracting, introducing a fresh cartrigde and repeating and the cycle again.

    The gun fired at closed bolt and with a lighter firing pin that the Brownings types, so it was very suitable for synchronizated mountings. Pneumatic charging was provided for wings mounting and some fuselage emplacements.
    It was also very popular as defensive machinegun in bombers and recce airplanes ip to 1942.

    Two views of the Breda S.A.F.A.T 7,7 mm side defensive emplacements in Fiat RS 14 recce seaplane. Note the neat layout wich included a roof mounted magazine and alluminium container for spent belt links.




  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Breda S.A.F.A.T 7,7mm, internal components, scans from the Spanish Air force handbook


























  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    In Savoia Marchetti S-79 bomber.




    Wing emplacement, Reggiane Re-2001.



    Breda S.A.F.A.T 7,7mm in defensive turret, Breda Ba 88.



    Characteristics Breda S.A.F.A.T cal 7,7 mm

    Caliber : 7,7 mm Breda ( 7,7 x 56R)

    Type of action: short recoil, mascheroni muzzle booster.

    Rate of fire: 800-820 rpm ( 650-680 rpm in synchronizated emplacements)

    Lenght: 1190 mm

    weight 12,5 kg.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Scotti M1932 cal 7,7 mm.

    The other rifle caliber machinegun used by the Regia Aeronautica was the Scotti gun. The designation is after its designer Alfredo Scotti, however the machinegun was actually manufactured by Isotta-Fraschini, an industrial consortium wich also made luxury cars and aero engines.



    Mechanism in the Scotti was operated by gas, with a rotating bolt head for breech operation. The gun fires at open bolt and with higher rate of fire than the Breda SAFAT of the same calibre.



    The open bolt system did not qualify for synchronizated mounting so the Scotti was almost exclusively used in flexible defensive emplacements.

    2 views of waist 7,7 mm defensive Scotti MG emplacements in Bomber CANT Z 1007.




  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Hungary
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Hello there,
    Wonderful pictures and great information,although the photo of the SM 79's interior and the one showing the CANT Z.1007 interior looks like so similar to me,including the machine gun mount.Isn't it possible that the two photos show one type of aircraft?I'm really far from being an expert,actually this is the first time I see an Italian bomber's interior,but they just looks so similar.Thanks for any help or correction.
    Last edited by Géppuskás; 11-23-2008 at 03:52 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Hello there,
    Wonderful pictures and great information,
    Danke schön.

    although the photo of the SM 79's interior and the one showing the CANT Z.1007 interior looks like so similar to me,including the machine gun mount.
    Indeed, the articulated mount is the same, the ammunition belt "guide" and the accordeon like conduct for spent cartrigdes are the same, however the guns and the aircraft are different.

    Scotti ( Isotta Fraschini) M1932 cal 7,7 mm characteristics:

    Action: gas operated, air cooled.

    Rate of fire: 850-880 rpm

    Caliber: 7,7 x 56R

    Lenght: 1120 mm

    Weight: 11.5 kg.

    Muzzle velocity: 740 mps.

    Detail of the ammo supply and used ammunition collector.

    Last edited by Panzerknacker; 11-23-2008 at 07:11 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    7,7mm x 56R cartrigdes for Breda, Scotti and FIAT light MG.

    Perforante Incendiaria Speciale (al fosforo)

    API steel core bullet with phosphor, 12 grams projectile, muzzle velocity 750 mps. Armor penetration 7 mm at 150 meters.



    Perforante Incendiaria Speciale (alla termite)

    API ammunition with explosive filling . 11,8 grams projectile, muzzle velocity 755 mps.



    7,7 Breda da osservazione

    Observation round, actually an explosive with nose fuse, this is more or less a italian version of the B-patrone used by the Luftwaffe.



    7,7 Breda tracciante luminosa.

    A full metal jacket bullet with very bright tracer in base for day use. Muzzle velocity 760mps.


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Breda S.A.F.A.T cal 12,7 mm.

    One of the few achievements of the Regia Aeronautica in the interwar period was the hindsight for the need of a heavy caliber machinegun to deal with the increase size and durability of the new generation of combat aircrafts.

    While many Air Forces still struggled in 1939 and 1940 with a collection of rifle caliber machineguns like the RAF and the Luftwaffe ( and the fact that the british pilots had to defend its homeland with 7,7 mm peashooters is still a bonenchilling one, at list for me) the Italians already were enjoying the services of a reliable half inch caliber machinegun.

    Inside the nose turret, Fiat BR 20


    The Breda S.A.F.A.T 12,7 mm was a belt fed, short recoil operated weapon, essentially a italian modified Browning M1921 mechanism, but shorter and slightly less heavy than the US machinegun.

    It was mounted experimentally first in the biplane CR 30 and was introduced in large scale in the CR 32 fighter. There was available in fixed wing, fixed synchronizated and defensive turret emplacements. The rate a fire wasnt high as a MG 131 and its muzzle velocity didnt match the one of the US M2 50caliber, but the SAFAT was a well constructed, sturdy and sound design that rarely jammed in action.

    Above fuselage synchronizated, Fiat CR 32.


    Unfortunately for the italian fighter pilots their aeronautical designers had the depressing tendendy to emplace only a pair above the engine wich reduced the rate of fire. Probably with 4 or 6 Bredas in the wings, shooting outside the propeller arc the Macchis, Reggianes and Fiats would made a better oponents in WW2.

    Synchronizated, Fiat CR 42 Falco.


    Synchronizated, Reggiane Re 2001, note the San Giorgio Reflex gunsight.


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Hungary
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Panzerknacker View Post
    Breda S.A.F.A.T cal 12,7 mm.

    Inside the nose turret, Fiat BR 20
    You are surely right about the bombers.
    I always thought that noseturret of the Br.20 was equipped with 7,7mm Breda.Is it a later version of the plane or what?
    Anyway really good pictures again,waiting for more.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Good eye , it is a 7,7mm Breda, my mistake.

    Breda 12,7 in remote controlled G1 and Z2 turrets in Piaggio P-108 bomber






    Waist emplacement in the same bomber.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cordoba-Argentina
    Posts
    6,363

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    3 in Breda 88 nose.







    Characteristicas Breda S.A.F.A.T 12,7 mm

    Caliber: 12,7x81 mm semirimmed.

    Operation: Short recoil with muzzle booster.

    Refrigeration: air

    Weight: 26,5 kg

    Charging; manually charged in in flexible mounting plus CR-32, 42 and Re-2000/2001 fittings. The others pneumatically charged.

    Rate of fire: 700 rpm

    Muzzle velocity: 765 mps.
    Last edited by Panzerknacker; 11-28-2008 at 08:59 AM.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    90

    Default Re: The Italian aircraft armament.

    Wow, great post. I can't contribute at all, but I enjoyed the read and all the photos too. Thanks to all who posted!

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •