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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Perth, Western Australia
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    11

    Default Berthier M16 carbine-3 round magazine?

    Hello-I have an M16 Continsouza carbine with all matching no.s AB42XX that has the various post WW1 modifications (removal of cleaning rod, A rear sights, D round rechambering, stacking rod etc) but it has the 3 round Mannlicher magazine-my question is how uncommon is it for an M16 model to have the 3 round mag to begin with and still have it after all the other mods have been done?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
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    2,298

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    Lithgow: It does happen sometimes, for unknown reasons....I have one or two like that..Perhaps the Armorer had some reason, or they only had a 3 shot mag on hand, I do not know...

    Dale
    "If those sweethearts won't face German bullets, Then they'll face French ones!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    San Antonio
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    7,507

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    The Turk Forestry carbines are a good example of that.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Washington State
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    964

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    Double down on Vonmazur's reply. By count, about 10% are as described. Obviously reworked, but left as three shooters. One is "N" marked, and will chamber the 1932 round. The exigencies of War, or the latitude of rework orders made these carbines into the fascinationS that they are. They are fun for light shooting, function very well, and launch a bullet close to point of aim. If you have a machinegun round that will touch-off, you might wish that it had not. But it is something not to be missed, as this was what was offered to men in the line. NOTE THAT NO "N" SHOULD BE ANYWHERE NEAR A RIFLE OR CARBINE THAT IS NOT SO MARKED !

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Brisbane, Australia
    Posts
    5,068

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    One must remeber that a lot of "M16"s with 3 round mags have come out of North Africa and the Middle East ex-French Possessions, where 3 round versions of the Berthier rifles and carbines were the common "Native" issue, even in the 1920s and 30s.

    So either a "local" conversion, or done in France prior to shipment to " France d'outre-mer". France also had its own "funny" policy directives as the the armament of its Native raised Troops and their armamament....nothing too modern, for purely internal security reasons.

    regards,
    Doc AV
    AV Ballistics.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    11

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    Thank you all for your replies.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    401

    Default

    When it has been decided in may 1917 to stop the production of the 3-shot 1892 model to replace it by the 5 shot-M16, it seem that the "1892" marked receivers have been the first spare part to be unavailable, explaining the 3 shot carbines with 07/15 marked receivers produced between april 1917 and october 1917 (coming from Châtellerault and Continsouza). These weapons have serial numbers between the end of the serial letter D and the end of the serial letter E. A little after and partially during the same time, Chatellerault M16 marked receivers have been used, but with three shot mags, probably simply because they were still available and couldn't be wasted. The weapons concerned have been made between may and october 1917. Some weapons with "weird" 5 shot mags have been produced in October 1917, at the end of the serial E and with Continsouza marked receivers most of the time. But during the same time and with higher serial numbers, some weapons still had 3 shot mags. In november 1917, it seems that the 5 shot mag was the only used for the carbines (AB 11XXX). In december, the wood of the "M16 type" was used (serial AB 20XXX). So your weapon is probably of october-november 1917. May be 140 000 to 160 000 "transitional" weapons have been produced, yours being one of the numerous variants. Of course, it can be a post war, non french(?) rebuild, but the serial number shows it is possible it was born like that (if we except the "A" sight and the removal of the cleaning rod, of course).
    Barrel probably proven in september 1917 (year 1917 stamped on the right side of the barrel and "9" stamped on the flat part under the barrel, close to the receiver if your weapon still has its original barrel).
    Last edited by Alamas; 11-24-2010 at 01:32 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    2,177

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    Here are some pics of one I picked up about 2 weeks ago....a real little beauty, all matching, walnut stock....it is a Continsouza, marked 1907-15 on the receiver, MA C 1917 barrel, cleaning rod cut-out filled in. A three shot mag....front sight is a blade, not the block with the groove...

    I am pretty sure it is all French, and not any sort of foriegn conversion, and I don't think it saw use in the Colonies. No import marks either....

    I needed a French Berthier carbine to add to my Berthier long rifle....I also picked up about 2 weeks before that an RC-35 Lebel to go with my long Lebel...I'll have to get some pics of that too...

    Anything else any of the real French afficianados can tell me about this little sweetie?
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    DSC01039.JPG   DSC01044.JPG   DSC01034.JPG   DSC01045.JPG   DSC01043.JPG   DSC01050.JPG  


  9. #9
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    Dec 1969
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    One more of the rear sight....
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DSC01048.JPG  

  10. #10
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    Dec 1969
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    Looks like a post 1927 gun, very nice condition...Sometimes we get a little jaded, but I still like the common guns in good shape...IIRC: a lot of the Ets Continsousa 07/15 receivers got used to make Mle M 16 Carbines, there might be one in my closet like that as well, now I have to go look!!

    Dale
    "If those sweethearts won't face German bullets, Then they'll face French ones!"

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Tennessee
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    6,802

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    Very nice



    fiveshot

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    401

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    Your weapon has the lowest serial number known with a "non regular" receiver (the next is more than 10 000 numbers higher). Your barrel is certainly proven in march 1917 (it is the case of weapons with higher and lower serial numbers than yours. Date of acceptance probably march or april 1917.

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