Ballad about Maxim. The last song of the poem (part 7)

So, we finish a series of articles about a man and a machine gun, united by one name - Maxim. AT history Technology Hiram Stevens Maxim, born 5 February 1840, near Sangerville in Maine, entered as a completely uncommon personality, and, moreover, it must be emphasized, extraordinary in everything. At school, he did not graduate from five classes, and he learned all the skills of working with wood and metal from his father. He began to invent from childhood: he invented a chronometer, a rimmed wheel for a bicycle and, you just imagine, a mousetrap! Works, like every true American, has changed a great many. He mastered the profession of a carpenter, a carriage master, worked as a painter, contractor, was even a professional wrestler and ... bartender. The latter profession suited him in particular: he did not drink himself, and was physically strong enough to make drunken clients stand out from the bar. But the soldier did not, and according to the law. Since his two brothers were killed in the Civil War, he was not subject to conscription under American law.

And they just didn't put Maxim's machine guns on ...

All those who knew him noted that Hiram solved technical problems that arose before him very quickly, but often he “invented the bicycle”, and he was not at all interested in the issues of production and marketing. At the enterprise of his uncle Stevens, he was engaged only in this, that he invented various kinds of improvements and it ended up all with the fact that he was fired. No, it's not that they were bad. On the contrary, good and profitable. But my uncle did not have time to retool his production for them.

But losing his job, Maxim also found it easily. He especially loved steam engines. He invented improved pressure gauges, valves, flywheels, steam regulators and burners. To ride with his son on the Hudson River, he built a small boat with a “Flirt” steam engine with a length of seven meters, which is quite a lot for homemade. In the 1873 year, Maxim decided to take up business at last and began by persuading A.T. Stuart, the richest man at the time in America, to support him. His first success was the organization of the gas lighting post office in Manhattan, a resort in Saratoga and a hotel in Atlanta. He also designed a gas searchlight for the locomotive, which also found its use.

One of the options shield shield machine gun Maxim, completely covering the shooter.

However, gas was a thing of the past, so from the 1876 of the year, Maxim was already engaged in electricity. His designs made such a strong impression on the New York financiers that they gave him money for a new company, and Maxim, in turn, began working on an incandescent lamp. And it turned out that Thomas Edison himself became his main rival, who literally miraculously received a patent for an incandescent lamp before Hiram Maxim. And he did not forgive Edison for his victories, but he answered him the same and called him "a merchant death".

Nevertheless, his lamps also worked, so that in the fall of 1880 of the year, Maxim's company organized the electric lighting of the first building in New York. And yet, business is business. Seeing that they could not overcome Edison, Maxim's partners sent him on a tour of Europe, so that with his inventive passion he would not prevent them from making money using proven methods. However, his salary remained more than decent, but Maxim, who was wounded, left the United States in 1881, never returned there.

Ballad about Maxim. The last song of the poem (part 7)

Scottish Highlanders with a Maxim machine gun.

True, at the Paris World Exhibition he was expected to succeed, which he did not expect: the organizers of the exhibition devoted an entire issue of the exhibition magazine to his achievements in electrical engineering. And according to its results, he and Edison were awarded the Order of the Legion of Honor.

It was then that he came up with the idea of ​​creating a rapid-fire weapons. Already in the fall of 1882, his first drawings appeared, and 13 months later, and his first working model, most similar to a two-stroke steam engine. Here are just powder gases in it played the role of steam, the trigger - was an analogue of the valve actuator, and the shutter - its piston. As for the recoil energy, it accumulated in the spring, and then it sent the bolt, locking the breech and igniting the primer inserted into the barrel of the cartridge.

Projections airplane Maxim.

The production of Maxim's machine gun marked the beginning of a new stage in the industry. After all, it was required for him to make 280 interchangeable parts with high precision, so even in England, the “workshop of the world”, they had just learned to observe such quality standards. Maxim immediately telegraphed his brother Hudson to America and asked him to urgently hire and send several American mechanics to Europe by the first ship. And then, together with the Vickers brothers, he founded the company Maxim Gun, whose authorized capital was £ 50 000. Maxim did not repeat the previous mistakes in the Edison case and patented almost every detail of his machine gun, so it was almost impossible to bypass his patents. To further improve the efficiency of the novelty, Maxim and his brother also developed a recipe for smokeless powder based on cotton soaked in nitroglycerin and castor oil. Thus was born the famous cordite, also the creation of Maxim, although not of him alone.

And he managed to get profitable orders and start earning big money on his machine gun, even if not immediately, but the business and the invention of things are so opposite to each other that Max finally chose the latter. A merger of his company and the company Nordenfeld was held, after which Maxim immediately returned to his usual way of life and completely immersed himself in invention.

One of the aircraft Maxim.

He was particularly interested in ... aircraft heavier than air! And once interested, it was quite possible for him to build such a device with his money, which was done in the 1894 year. And in the same year, financial losses in his experiments amounted to £ 21 000, in 1895, another £ 13 000. The following year, Vickers simply bought out the share of Maxim and other shareholders, which is why the company's profit immediately amounted to £ 138 000. By the way, in this way he acquired not only the rights to the machine gun, but also the airplane created by Maxim.

Through consistent improvements ...

31 July 1894, the first tests of the airplane of Maxim took place, on which he worked a lot and in which he invested a lot of money. The device weighed three tons and had a very impressive size. According to his plan, he was supposed to raise a pilot and two passengers into the sky.

As a propulsion system, specially designed and very light steam engines with a total horsepower 180 were mounted on it. The device was supposed to start, speeding up half a kilometer long on rails, however, it was never able to rise into the air. The reason was the absence of a wing profile, so its lift was negligible.

Pay attention to the huge propellers!

Maxim decided that it was all about the number of wings and put additional bearing surfaces, and on one of the variants there were three pairs. But all that his apparatus was able to achieve was to take to the air 30 centimeters and fly about 60 meters. In addition, as soon as the apparatus broke away from the rails, it immediately became clear that it was out of control in the air. He turned it to the side, he touched one of the screws on the ground and froze across the rails, breaking the chassis and the bottom plane.

The photo of the creator of this airplane in the circle of his assistants gives an idea of ​​the size of his brainchild.

Since Maxim had already spent more than 200 thousand dollars on this car by this time, but could not achieve a stable flight, he abandoned his hobby aviation, and remained in the history of technology "the father of a machine gun", but not an airplane.

But this photo clearly shows the propulsion system of the airplane and its transmission.

Interestingly, his work undoubtedly influenced HG Wells, who completed his novel “When the Sleeper Wakes Up” in 1899 and which describes the future airplanes and airplanes resembling Hiram Maxim's airplane in general terms.

One of the Percy Maxim patents on a vortex silencer with an axial channel.

Interestingly, Maxim's son Hiram Percy Maxim also followed the path of his father and invented a silencer for cars, and then a silencer for a firearm, patented in 1909 year. Maxim's design was very original: he used curved blades to make the muzzle gases rotate inside the muffler. At the same time they cooled, and their pressure dropped. It turned out the design is expensive to manufacture, and in addition, with such frequent firing, such a muffler quickly heated up. Therefore, in modern constructions, in order to slow down gases, partitions are used that do not absorb too much heat.

Advertising silencer P. Maxim.

Another feature of Maxim's silencer is its asymmetry. By placing the axial line of the muffler canal at the barrel of a firearm, he ensured that he did not close the front sight either on a rifle or on a pistol. He is also known as a pioneer and inventor of American radio, as a co-founder of the American Radio Relay League (ARRL). That is, if nature on the son of H. Maxim and “rested”, it is not so much, although he still did not succeed in surpassing his so famous father!

Well, Maxim himself became a British citizen in 1900 and received knighthood from Queen Victoria in recognition of his merits in the success of the campaign in Sudan (1896 − 1898) and in the battle of Omdurman (1898).

"The tube of the world" - H. Maxim inhaler.

In 1911, his companions were disappointed with Maxim's achievements in aviation, insisted on his retirement, and even changed the name of the company from Vickers, Sons and Maxim to Vickers Ltd. But even after his resignation, now Sir Hiram Maxim continued to pursue his favorite work. He invented a primitive sonar that used steam energy, and a steam inhaler that helped many millions of people around the world who suffered, like himself, from bronchitis.

This distinguished man died in 1916 at the height of the First World War. Obituaries at his death were short and appeared only in a few British and American newspapers. This is not surprising, because the newspaper workers were now much more interested in reports of hundreds of thousands of war victims who died on the battlefields, including from the fire of Hiram Maxim’s machine guns.
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  1. +5
    4 August 2018 06: 07
    Thank you author! Correctly said Lyon Feuchtwanger: “A man is talented, talented in all areas.”
    Quotes - This fully applies to Hiram Maxim. You can’t say better.
    1. Cat
      4 August 2018 07: 40
      Many thanks to Vyacheslav Olegovich for the series of articles!
      Sincerely ...., Vyacheslav Olegovich, can you tell us about your creative plans ..., well, at least for the little things, so that we "choke on our mouths!"
      Thanks again, Regards Kotische!
      1. +4
        4 August 2018 14: 59
        The namesake took off the tongue: a funky cycle. I would like to know that V. O will be near, but I’m not going to drown in saliva .. I want to get up to the level of the article, or sometimes you read the article and feel like a complete idiot: I didn’t know anything ..
        After the story about the Vikings, there was a desire to update that era in memory
      2. +1
        5 August 2018 11: 10
        Good afternoon, dear Vladislav! Sharing plans is always problematic. This imposes obligations, and then there is no mood, no health, no information. For example, soon there will be an article information to which I have been looking for exactly a year. I arrived from the Czech Republic last year, and the article will be just that! So there are problems. What will be exactly? A series of articles about the Vikings will continue. This is beyond doubt. The theme of small arms will continue. In particular, we will talk about weapons of the Czech Republic. The theme will continue EUROPE FROM WINDOW ... There will be a story about ... Rome and Croatia. In autumn, the cycle “Party documents tell” will begin based on the materials of the regional party archive of the CPSU OK Penza. Then my daughter will bring me interesting materials from ... Lydia, who is now Turkey. So that is a lot and I hope that they will be interesting. Castles will not go anywhere either. A lot of them...
        1. +2
          5 August 2018 11: 29
          Quote: kalibr
          Sharing plans is always problematic.
          Vyacheslav Olegovich, a lot of plans, God forbid that everything will be fulfilled. Agitation was already tired, and serious authors on the site ra-two and miscalculated. I wish you success.
          1. +2
            5 August 2018 13: 46
            Quote: Amurets
            Good luck to you.

            Thank! The plans are ordinary, used to work like that. Even when he was broadcasting on Penza and Samara TV, he always wrote scripts so that A - an article from the journal came out of it and B - a chapter to the book. It’s the same now, just the opposite - first an article, then a chapter. Otherwise, life is not interesting, and ... the pension is small - ha ha!
  2. +4
    4 August 2018 06: 27
    M-d-ah! This "Maxim’s last song ..." compels me again (repeatedly ...) to pose the question "that I already posed in the first articles of the Ballad of Maxim: why is Hiram Maxim called an American inventor in a number of reference books (encyclopedias) ?
    / 2. So "whose" is still the inventor of the machine gun .... "whose" machine gun: American or English? Born and lived in the USA ... the idea of ​​a machine gun appeared in the same place .... but the "light" machine gun "saw" in England, the production of weapons at the Maxim-Norfeld factory also started ... the British used the machine gun for the first time in battle Africa in 1893 In 1899, Maxim received British citizenship, but in many "sources" Hiram Maxim is called an American inventor ... So who is he "really"? (Ballad about Maxim. Part 1) /...
    But I never received a satisfying answer!
    Thanks for the answer! In 1899 Mr. Hyrum Maxim became a British citizen ...... died in 1916 in England as a British citizen. On Wikipedia (!!) the following is written about Maxim:
    Sir Hiram Stevens Maxim [1] (sometimes Maxim [2], Eng. Hiram Stevens Maxim, 5 February 1840— 24 November 1916) - British inventor and gunsmith American origin, creator of one of the most famous machine guns - Maxim machine gun.
    Maxim offered his invention to the US Army, but the military refused. Maxim began the production of his invention in England, the English army first used machine guns in battle, there is evidence that the inventor patented a machine gun in England. In 1901. the English queen knighted Hiram Maxim for "outstanding inventions" .... for "American" (!) inventions? belay Isn't it considered that Americans cling to a "freebie"?
    ....... (Ballad of Maxim. Part 1)
    1. Cat
      4 August 2018 07: 56
      Perhaps it is easier to invent H. Maxim began in the USA, and continued in the UK. That's all and plays from his patents, that is, where he received them. Plus, historians of both countries periodically pull the blanket over themselves. The main thing is another where he "Maxim machine gun" has become and still remains a symbol of victory. Gentlemen have long looked in the mirror!
      Regards Kotische!
    2. +5
      4 August 2018 08: 13
      I think this is a dilemma from the category: whose writer is Nabokov.
      1. +4
        4 August 2018 21: 21
        I don’t know where he wrote “Lolita”, but with the word “pedophile” several years ago they painted exactly the wall of the manor at Christmas, which I drove by two hours ago. what
        My friends, I'm back! hi
  3. +3
    4 August 2018 08: 20
    Yes, the Maxim machine gun is a whole era in the history of small arms. In Britain, it was bashfully renamed it “Vickers,” and in Germany, in MG-08. Only in Russia he was called by his name

    In the instructions of the tsarist army, for example, there was such a statement that while at least one machine gunner was alive, the machine gun was working and there were cartridges, it was inaccessible to enemy infantry in open battle.

    I recalled, by the way, the old song about two Maxims, a machine gun and a machine gunner: ... "So-and-so-so the machine-gunner spoke, so-and-so-the machine-gun spoke" ...
    1. +4
      4 August 2018 21: 25
      I recalled, by the way, the old song about two Maxims, a machine gun and a machine gunner: ... "So-and-so-so the machine-gunner spoke, so-and-so-the machine-gun spoke" ...

      rightly recalled, these words were made by the author in the epigraph of the first or second articles of the cycle! Yes
      1. Cat
        4 August 2018 23: 14
        Nikolay is back, and Anton and I have already ordered three boards and ordered a priest with a button accordion !!!
        Sincerely, sincerely rejoicing Kitty!
        1. +5
          4 August 2018 23: 55
          Nikolay is back, and Anton and I have already ordered three boards and ordered a priest with a button accordion !!!

          Why did you both order PopU with a button accordion ????? belay PopU need to order with Vaseline! fool Ugh, still a career officer, is called, the captain of a retired colonel teaches everything! laughing drinks
          As Mr. E. Hyde said: "A feeling of unknown power such, I became different, I became LIVING! .... from now on .... I will live forever!".

          but in general, there are interesting pictures on the forerunner of the "maxim". For example, Baranovsky’s card holder, Art Museum, why not!
          Sorry, shot without a flash request all that with a flash - in the first articles of the cycle came out .... Note to moderators WHO makes photos on the site.... so that they think with their head ..... And then let them do it themselves! am
          1. +3
            5 August 2018 05: 59
            Quote: Mikado
            WHO makes photos on the site .... so that they think .....

            Well you soaked! remember the old joke: "Why think? You need to jump." Welcome back, namesake.
            1. +4
              5 August 2018 11: 35
              Nikolay, hello! drinks I am sincerely glad to see everyone! Sometimes you begin to realize how important small, seemingly, details are in your life - just say “Hello” to your dear people. good Thank you all! drinks

              here is the front view of the card case. Trunks. Boxes on the sides - for shops, "I carry everything with me." fellow
            2. +2
              5 August 2018 12: 27

              here is a rear view. And her caliber was "reed" - 4,2 lines. It was created on the basis of the 10-barrel gambler Gatling in 1873. Magazine capacity - 25 rounds. The charging boxes are covered with glass so that people do not crawl with playful hands, but in fact are closed by covers (they are in the tilted position now, below).
  4. avt
    4 August 2018 09: 00
    Everyone whines about what they want to carry the short barrel covertly, and Az the sinner would like to remember his childhood and dissect on a tricycle, but with Maxim, as in the first photo! bully
  5. +5
    4 August 2018 10: 44
    And they just didn't put Maxim's machine guns on ...
    and why not cling ...

    1. +6
      4 August 2018 21: 19
      Sergei, but the feeling is that this is some kind of "eastern part" for the protection of the Atlantic coast. what "Maxim" is precisely our trophy ....
      1. +2
        5 August 2018 06: 35
        Quote: Mikado
        Sergei, but the feeling is that this is some kind of "eastern part" for the protection of the Atlantic coast. "Maxim" is precisely our trophy ....

        Another look at what they have behind them ...
        By the way, you will laugh for a long time, but many sources indicate that the photo was taken in Mariupol in 1942
        1. +3
          5 August 2018 11: 29
          I can’t make out behind my shoulders! request but, by the way, about Mariupol willingly believe. And they could have pinned - the picture was really “funny”, from their point of view hi
  6. +3
    4 August 2018 12: 58
    Education in 5 classes did not allow Maxim to understand the main problem of automatic small arms - ammunition and its supply to weapons.

    The manufacturing technology of unitary cartridges of the late 19 century could not ensure their safety during sharp movements inside the weapon during loading - the bullets flew out of the cartridges, the powder crumbled. In addition, cloth cartridge belts warped from moisture and heat, after which the weapon wedged.

    But Maxim did not catch the problem and solved the problem head on - he built a wild, heavyweight construction with a crank inside for the smooth movement of bullets and tape (the crank at the dead points of its rotation ensures zero shutter speed).

    After improving the technology of mounting bullets in sleeves and the invention of metal link tapes, Maxim's monster machine gun was sent to the museum.

    Morality - Higher education is irreplaceable.
    1. +3
      4 August 2018 15: 22
      “Higher education is no substitute” a somewhat controversial statement, but confirmed by history. Edison also did not have a higher education, but God forbid others.
      And about higher education: the famous DShK, Degtyarev came up with the basis, but Shpagin helped him calculate everything technically. Or the famous “daddy” - PPD, but Shpagin simplified the store, but still it was a bottleneck of the machine for a long time, cheaper production, otherwise we would not be able to establish mass production
      1. +2
        4 August 2018 16: 21
        It means that higher education would not hinder Maxim, Edison, Degtyarev and Shpagin.
        1. Cat
          4 August 2018 20: 33
          As a person who has worked at a university for 17 years, I’ll say “higher education is not a panacea for creativity,” and sometimes a lot of harm. Alas, they do not become great inventors, they are born!
          This was proved by almost all the great gunsmiths of the past and the century before last: H. Maxim, Fedorov, Degtyarev, Kalashnikov.
          The systematization of knowledge, skills, and experience is good, but if the goddess did not instill talent at birth, then all invention will end not with the birth of a new one, but with the processing of the old.
          Well, about the crank! Away Maxim left the card gamblers !!!?
          1. +2
            4 August 2018 21: 33
            Talent + University> Talent
            1. Cat
              4 August 2018 23: 11
              Quote: Operator
              Talent + University> Talent

              University - talent <talent !!!
              Moreover, 3 or more universities is a diagnosis !!! My opinion is that a person receiving an education can make a mistake only once. When a person receives a lot of crusts, this development is nowhere!
              1. +1
                4 August 2018 23: 36
                One university is absolutely enough.
        2. +4
          5 August 2018 06: 11
          Quote: Operator
          It means that higher education would not hinder Maxim, Edison, Degtyarev and Shpagin.

          Especially Marxist-Leninist philosophy, the history of the party and other crap. Without them you can not do without the production of complex products.
  7. +3
    4 August 2018 15: 04
    Quote: bistrov.
    Yes, the Maxim machine gun is a whole era in the history of small arms. In Britain, it was bashfully renamed it “Vickers,” and in Germany, in MG-08. Only in Russia he was called by his name

    In the instructions of the tsarist army, for example, there was such a statement that while at least one machine gunner was alive, the machine gun was working and there were cartridges, it was inaccessible to enemy infantry in open battle.

    I recalled, by the way, the old song about two Maxims, a machine gun and a machine gunner: ... "So-and-so-so the machine-gunner spoke, so-and-so-the machine-gun spoke" ...

    I remember, I remember, there was such a song, but apart from these words, I do not remember others. We must look into Vika
  8. +5
    4 August 2018 15: 33
    It seems that this was the period of the Great Technical Revolution: Browning (it would be nice if V. O talks about him and Edison), Mausers, Edison "king of inventions," Lumiere, Mozhaisky, Brelio, Foreman, and many others. They all worked in late 19th and early 20th century.
    1. +3
      5 August 2018 11: 44
      Quote: Royalist
      They all worked in late 19th and early 20th century.

      Svyatoslav, no matter how cynical it sounds, it was WWI and WWII that moved great new inventions, but also new branches of science: WWI aviation took to the wing and turned into weapons, chemistry, tank building and armored vehicles, this is me to vain. WWII before jet aircraft, rocket science, the first homing schemes, radar and much more.
  9. +1
    5 August 2018 06: 56
    To ride with his son on the Hudson River, he built a boat with a seven-meter-long Flirt steam engine, which is quite a lot for home-made work.

    In times were !!! Today I would be tormented with registration, certification, and other delights.
  10. +4
    5 August 2018 23: 34
    Quote: AID.S

    In times were !!! Today I would be tormented with registration, certification, and other delights.

    "There were worse times, but there was no meanness ..." This is about the harsh truth of Russian jih. laughing

    Many thanks to the author for the whole cycle about Maxim! I will look forward to a new cycle about Czechoslovak weapons, there is a rich field.

    Regards, Konstantin. hi