Military Review

One of the rifles of the Spanish Civil War. "Swan Song" rifle Steyr-Kropachek ...

One of the rifles of the Spanish Civil War. "Swan Song" rifle Steyr-Kropachek ...

How many of them were exactly - these same foreign rifles that came to Spain from different countries, nobody knows for sure. You can, however, calculate yourself according to Wikipedia and then it turns out that the Spaniards got the 64 system rifles! Only from neighboring France to the Republicans got Chasspo needle rifles of the 1866 model of the year and 11 × 59 caliber with a paper cartridge (interestingly, really, from the warehouses of that time?), Long and also short Graf rifles 1874 / 80 of the same caliber, however already ammunition. Then the French helped the Republicans with Gra-Kropachek 1874 / 78 rifles under the welt cartridge of the 11 × 59 mm R caliber and with a barrel gantry. Then the Graf-Kropachek 1884 rifles of the year got there. And of all the different types of rifles Gras Republicans got 10 000 pieces! Then the republic’s arsenal was replenished with a Kropachek 1885 release of the year with a grenade launcher in the amount of 1700 pieces.

We will begin to consider the rifles used by Republicans from this photo. On it, the Republican fighter is armed, yes, with the German Gewehr 88 rifle, that is, the “commission rifle” with the Mannicher shop. But the second fighter, in a T-shirt and with a helmet on his head, in the hands of a Mosin rifle, is supplied from the USSR. The next, if you look closely, in the hands of the Spanish carbine Type 1 or 2.

Very revealing photo. Straight shot from a remake of the movie “Rich Bride”: Come on, go, happy friends / The country, like a mother, calls and loves us! / Everywhere need caring hands / And our master's, warm female eye.

Interestingly, all the ladies with the new Mauser German production! And they say, the fronts lacked modern weapons. And that's where it was!

Exhibition of captured weapons taken from the Republicans. Here they are - Gewehr 88 rifles.

Exhibition of captured weapons taken from the Republicans. Well, this is the Mauser, but during the period of the First World War.

Everything is there: rifles and pans - everything is ready for battle and everything is Spanish.

But the Spanish girls with rifles still shoot was clearly more interesting than men. More tellingly, I would say that. Therefore, there are a lot of pictures of them. For example, these ... Spanish girls, pretty girls in large numbers and all with Mauser. Spanish Seen very well!

But these Spaniards, I do not like. And they are now exactly the same, as soon as they enter a certain age. Nothing changed. Only these also with rifles!

Aragon front, Catalan militia, a girl in full uniform. 1936 year.

Another Spanish beauty with a Mauser ...

The girl shoots from a carbine "Spanish Mauser" M1916 Type 2.

Overalls mono, hat and mouser.

Lebel's rifles came in a variety of types: 1886 / 1893's, carbines of the 1892 type of the year, rifles of the 1916 type of the year. Cartridges - 8 × 50 mm R. Rifles and Lebel carbines of all types of Republicans got more - 10 900 pieces. Finally, quite a lot of Berthier rifles went there, beyond the Pyrenees: 1890 carbine of the year, short 1892 rifle of the year, Berthier 1907 / 15 rifle of the year, Rifle and again Berthier's short rifle 1916 of the year. And all of them were received by Republicans 37 400 pieces, that is, it is at least something.

Again a Mauser, but this time in the hands of an anarchist girl — that's such a horror!

How is all this known? Yes, it’s very simple: the winners got not only rifles, Tanks, machine guns and planes, but also archives, and in them heaps of invoices and who, when, where and from whom I received. In 1938, in the city of San Sebastian, nationalists opened a propaganda exhibition of weapons seized from the "Reds" during the war. Based on the materials of the exhibition, a catalog with photographs was prepared. And here's what’s interesting: according to estimates made by the organizers of the exhibition, the cost of all weapons repulsed from the Republicans amounted to 853,054.022 Spanish pesetas or 30,5 million pounds!

A republican girl with a winchester - this is necessary ... And where did she get it?

Well, and if we turn not to the dry statistics of figures, but look at the live pictures of the period of the Spanish Civil War, then ... what rifles can we see in the hands of her fighters and, first of all, the same Republicans? But it is interesting to see, because people usually take pictures of film and photo documents. Objects related to them, a secondary matter, no one pays attention to them, which means ... they convey what is, or rather what was. But ... so we looked through quite a few photos and did not see either Lebel’s rifles, or Gra ... neither, moreover, did Chausspo. However, not in warehouses, they lay all this time?

Seventeen-year-old Maria Hinestà, member of the Spanish Civil War. Behind it is clearly visible the Cathedral of Cascari Familia - the Cathedral of Antonio Gaudi, which is still being built and is being built today!

By the way, in fact, in the same Gra rifles almost all the achievements of their time were connected. Cartridge Gra had a brass bottle sleeve with a charge of black powder weighing 5,25 g, the bullet was cast from pure lead and wrapped in a paper wrapper, with which the weight of 25 g was weighed. A protrusion of four parts of wax and one part of ram's fat smeared the bore with each shot. The cartridge primer had a special cap outside; although it was then removed. The bullet developed the initial velocity in 450 m / s. Gra has designed the bolt for his rifle on the model of the 1871 Mauser shutter of the year and improved it in all respects, simplified and strengthened it. The barrel had four rifles and a length of 820 mm. The sight had divisions from 200 to 1800 m. At the same time, the rate of fire of his rifle was higher than that of Mauser, although the barrel locking was as strong as the Paul Mauser rifle! True, many cursed his fuse, but the French did not pay attention to it. That is, if you look at the whole, then the Gra rifle was better than the M1871 Mauser of the year, that’s how! On the model of Gras were converted and Chassopo rifles. Well, then they added to it an under-barrel cylindrical store designed by Austrian major Alfred Kropachek and they ended up with a very good rifle of the 1874 sample - 1878, and then the 1884 sample of the year.

Rifle Shtayer-Kropachek M1886

At first, its caliber remained the same - 11-mm, and its sub-barrel magazine contained seven cartridges, one could be on the feeder, and one more in the barrel, so that the total number of charges in it reached nine. The weight of the rifle without ammunition was 4,400 kg. The loading took place through a hole under the barrel, one cartridge each, which took at least 20 seconds. Then all nine rounds could be fired in 18 seconds, but without aiming. The lever of the store switch, so beloved by the military of all countries of the world, was also provided, which locked it “until better times,” so that soldiers without a command would often not burn.

Slide frame rifle M1886 with a shutter. The shutter is closed.

The shutter is open. To disassemble it, a screwdriver was required.

Reloading handle and store switch.

Well, and then, as soon as cartridges appeared under smokeless powder of the caliber 8-mm Lebel, as Kropachek immediately made a rifle of the model 1886 of the year right under them. True, it was only produced for one year at the Steyr factory in Austria, and the entire order went ... to Portugal! Now ten cartridges have been charged into it, and the weight has decreased by 250.

Feeder with a spoon-shaped recess.

This photo clearly shows the feeder, lowered to the store level, and the cartridges pusher.

So, maybe this rifle on 8-mm cartridges also had a chance to make war in Spain, but ... on the side of the nationalists, who could easily be sold or donated by the Portuguese to the stockpiles of old rifles to arm their African "allies"! After all, if France in such quantities alloyed old rifles to the Republicans, then ... why would not the Portuguese do the same? After all, they have long since replaced their old “styrs” with much more “productive” mausers! But do not disappear the same good ?! So it could well be!

Fly, mount the bayonet and protruding from the lodge shop. The bayonet was mounted horizontally to the right. Why horizontally? And that’s why: for the bayonet to enter the body between the ribs!

The aiming strip, alas, is not included.

Since the pages of the VO have already been told about this rifle, here it makes sense to cite only those photographs that were absent in the previous material, but they are interesting because they allow us to get a more detailed picture of this interesting piece of weapon thought.

As noted in the previous material, the rifle is convenient to use, and it is surprisingly well in the hands, and does not seem heavy. But the protrusion of the elongated trigger bracket (an attempt to impart a certain “pistoliness” to the straight neck neck), seems to me superfluous. In addition, for example, in a strong cold to touch his bare hand, it must be just unpleasant.

Previous material on the Steyr-Kropachek rifle: “One of the heirs of the Henry rifle ...

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  1. svp67
    svp67 16 February 2017 15: 08
    How did the "Republicans" solve the issue of supplying their warheads with ammunition, with such a variety, it is not intelligible.
    THANKS to the author. It would be very interesting to compare this with the situation in the troops of Franco ...
    1. Mikado
      Mikado 16 February 2017 16: 02
      probably the same thing - just Franco had large batches of German "Mausers" and "Italians".
      The biggest problem in WW2 with the systematics of weapons and ammunition, I think, was experienced by the .. army of China! There was generally quiet horror + Japanese weapons.
      I join the "thank you"! good
      1. hohol95
        hohol95 16 February 2017 16: 38
        China began updating its army before the war with Japan of 1894-1895. And weapons bought a lot of just all the different types! good
        1. Mikado
          Mikado 16 February 2017 16: 54
          just like us during the WWII. Your next shot is especially interesting. good It turns out that we not only delivered new samples to the allies.
          1. your1970
            your1970 21 November 2017 08: 14
            I read to the tank crews how they “went on the attack, knocked out infantry from the trenches by the enemy, didn’t support their own infantry, returned, drove their own infantry out of the trenches, returned and again knocked out the enemy infantry from the trenches, this time successfully ...." and this on t-26 / BT boxes belay
  2. hohol95
    hohol95 16 February 2017 16: 14

    MT machine gun in Spain!
    1. svp67
      svp67 16 February 2017 17: 59
      Quote: hohol95
      MT machine gun in Spain!

      And others, already as trophies at the exhibition ...

      This is from
      1. Alexey RA
        Alexey RA 16 February 2017 18: 52
        The Curtiss fighter and the Martin bomber are five! smile
        1. kalibr
          16 February 2017 19: 26
          And the question is: why did they write like that, huh? I also saw this exhibition on this site and broke off my head - why? Meaning?
          1. svp67
            svp67 16 February 2017 21: 04
            Quote: kalibr
            I also saw this exhibition on this site and broke off my head - why? Meaning?

            This is what is called "intelligence." And according to them, our fighters and bombers were American-developed firms "Curtis", "Boeing" and "Martin", respectively.
  3. panther
    panther 16 February 2017 16: 41
    A republican girl with a winchester - this is necessary ... And where did she get it?

    Rifle Tiger (El Tigre) - a Spanish copy of Winchester Model 1892. Caliber .44-40 Winchester, manufactured by agreement with the Winchester company Eyrate Garate, Anitua y Cia from 1915 to 1938. These carbines were widely used by the Spanish police and civilian guards, were used during the Civil War in Spain, and were also exported, primarily to Latin America.
    1. Michael_Zverev
      Michael_Zverev 17 February 2017 03: 17
      Took off the tongue! smile
      By the way, in our Civil War and after, in the 30s, Winchester-1892 in large quantities supplied the British to the Basmachi in Central Asia, possibly also of Spanish production.
  4. hohol95
    hohol95 16 February 2017 17: 05

    And Winchester and Hotchkiss !!!
  5. parusnik
    parusnik 16 February 2017 17: 18
    In 1938, in the city of San Sebastian, nationalists opened a propaganda exhibition of weapons seized from the Reds during the war.
    ... Republicans would have won ... they opened their arms exhibition .. Probably just as much they learned interesting ... But alas ..
  6. demiurg
    demiurg 16 February 2017 18: 07
    This is a karamultuk. Interestingly, after hitting a slow, 11mm shellless bullet, the wounded remained?
    1. kalibr
      16 February 2017 19: 23
      Well, if on a tangent to the skin of the arms, legs, shoulder, side, about no deeper than a centimeter, then ... yes! It will hurt, a trace of a bullet with a rupture of skin and soft tissues, blood will go. But not fatal. If already two centimeters, then ... here I would not envy this person!
      1. Medium
        Medium 16 February 2017 20: 18
        Soft (lead) shellless bullets have high ductility and, in contact with biological tissues, spend part of their kinetic energy on their own deformation, thereby increasing the time of interaction with the damaged object, transferring to it all or almost all of their energy, which leads to high efficiency of the lesion.
    2. Michael_Zverev
      Michael_Zverev 17 February 2017 03: 07
      Quote: demiurg
      This is a karamultuk. Interestingly, after hitting a slow, 11mm shellless bullet, the wounded remained?

      Even from earlier muzzle-loading rifles and fusees with a caliber of 20 mm, they remained and survived, although this was not easy with that medicine.
      1. Comrade Stalin
        Comrade Stalin 17 February 2017 03: 40
        If the hit was in the arm or leg and touched the bone, then the wound ended in amputation, and then it is not a fact that the gangrene will not end. And if the hit was in the body or in the head, then the survivors after such a wound were literally one. I can only remember Kutuzov, whose bullet hit the left temple and went out through the right eye. But even kill, I can’t understand how he survived!
        1. alex-cn
          alex-cn 17 February 2017 07: 42
          And not only you - the best European doctors have stated that they do not survive with such injuries.
          And he had THREE head wounds, and then Napoleon dunked in the mud ....
  7. Medium
    Medium 16 February 2017 18: 08
    I will allow myself a few clarifications. Not all order went to Portugal. Part went to the Austrian colonies. It was produced in four versions.
    In Portugal, adopted as a rifle of the Gedes-Kropachek system, 8 mm caliber.
    The differences of the Portuguese rifle. The Gedes-Kropachek rifle has a Mauser type bolt, but the ejector is located on top; secondly, behind the trigger guard there is a catch for the fingers to rest and, thirdly, the rifle has a bayonet with a towing blade; such a bayonet is more perfect than a Lebel needle bayonet. Judging by the photo, this is it.
    The Gedes-Kropachek rifle in 1904 was replaced by a more advanced Mauser-Verguero rifle of the 1904 model, 6,5 mm caliber.
    1. Michael_Zverev
      Michael_Zverev 19 February 2017 17: 20
      Quote: Medium
      Part went to the Austrian colonies.

      Uh, Austrian colonies, excuse me?
      1. Medium
        Medium 19 February 2017 20: 29
        Thanks for the tip. Slip of the pen. German colonies. This refers to the German colonies in Africa.
  8. The leader of the Redskins
    The leader of the Redskins 16 February 2017 19: 22
    Thank you for a very interesting and informative article)))
  9. Nikolaevich I
    Nikolaevich I 17 February 2017 02: 34
    they didn’t see Lebel’s rifles or Gra ... nor even Shosspo. However, they were not in the warehouses all this time?
    Well, Duc .... and who said that "cut" and "kickbacks" is the invention of a "newly democratic" Russia? bully
  10. alex-cn
    alex-cn 17 February 2017 07: 48
    Vyacheslav! Perhaps the protrusion behind the brace is a tribute to fashion, at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century there was a trend in the hunting weapon for the "cock comb", though more often from the horn. It seems that it was a desire to eat fish too ... Noble "English box" with hints of greater convenience pistol.
    1. Medium
      Medium 17 February 2017 09: 33
      You're right. A finger grip behind the trigger guard is a kind of compromise between the English and the pistol box.
    2. kalibr
      18 February 2017 17: 40
      Yes, that could very well be. But when you hold it in your hands, tangible amenities are not visible. That's it - a tribute to fashion! No wonder then they refused!