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qthorp

Vickers Machine Gun DIY build (Pic heavy)

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Howdy all,

I'll say from the start that this build is not 100% historically accurate. I'm attempting to make light/medium version of the Vickers Maxim Machine Gun, however some compromises have had to be made to allow for airsoft internals to be fitted and for the materials being used (which are in the most part MDF). This project is not finished as of yet, and I will be adding to it over the coming weeks, but I wanted to share my progress thus far. I have to apologize for some of the picture quality, my phone camera isn't fantastic and occasionally decides to go full potato quality.

 

Anyway, here's the project;

 

So I saw a picture of this, the Vickers C/T gun see more at (https://www.forgottenweapons.com/so-many-machine-guns/)

VFVKtpD.jpg

With the pistol grip, I thought that I could probably fit an M4 inside it with a bit of professional bodging. So I went on the search for blueprints and I came across (http://www.replicaplans.com/) who do a fantastic set of plans for a reproduction Vickers. So plans in hand I started the build.

 

First laser cut of the sides of the receiver:

mvxU1f5l.jpg

After that I laser cut most of the remaining pieces for the receiver and started to assemble them;

ZeNP25rl.jpg

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Then I started work on the spring cover, as i dont actually need it to cover anything, I used 4 sections of 6mm MDF and bonded them together;

y8QGJcEl.jpg

 

Then used an orbital sander to round the edges out. I'm really happy with how well this section came out, I was a bit apprehensive about using bonded layer, but the results are seamless;

PHaV9x9l.jpg

 

Next, I cut out the cocking handle, again using multiple bonded layers, this time in 3mm. The advantages of using a thinner piece on the laser cutter is that there is less of a camber on the cut edge (due to the laser being in contact for less time and thus removing less material). This means less sanding to get a flat finish.

lfLGzyxl.jpg

 

I used a bathroom pull cord for the knob on the cocking handle. Much easier than manufacturing it myself.
ARemLRel.jpg

 

Added to the rest of the working parts on the side;

mA4itYIl.jpg

 

I managed to source some 110 mm waste pipe for the barrel cooling jacket;

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This thing is huge;

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The receiver next to the barrel;

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I manufactured two end caps for the tube which had hole for the inner barrel to go through (Christmas slippers in march, I'm an anarchist at heart);

JDvA7Nyl.jpg

 

Time for the feed section. This is a complex shape to make from 2D sections, but the plans I got were for a layered approach;

RHqEzFxl.jpg

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Then I used P39 easy sand epoxy filler;

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And carefully sanded it to size. Top tip, dont do what I did and do this at your kitchen table. I have effectively no sense of smell after years of working with stuff like this and even I was struggling with the fumes/dust. My poor asthmatic girlfriend didnt thank me for it when she got back from work that evening either.

rnRBsB0l.jpg

aw1vuxyl.jpg

 

Next up is the wood work.

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Really good so far, being made out of wood how do you think it will fare say in i.e. snow?

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I started on the woodwork next, using pine as it was easily available. I cut and shaped the foregrip to match the profile of the barrel shroud;

3y8DU52l.jpg

 

Then the stock. For the design I wanted a wrap around shoulder stock as it would be easier to shoulder while in prone. I marked out the template and cut it out on the band saw;

 

 

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Test fit;

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For shaping I used a pillar drill with sanding head;

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Placed all the pieces together to get an idea of size;

L0O4vTcl.jpg

 

 

Time for staining, I did this completely wrong. Being an engineer, I decided I didn't need to read the instructions and used a paintbrush to apply the stain. So I added WAY too much stain, this then resulted in dark blotches all over the wood piece as the open cellulose structure of soft woods like pine means that irregularly absorb stain. So make sure you apply sparingly with a cloth till you get your desired finish.

 

 

 

 

 

JPtO2Aal.jpg

 

To seal the wood, I used Danish oil. this acted as a solvent and lifted out some of the excess stain from the blotches giving a more consistent stain. The finial result of the slight blotchyness gave a unintentional aged effect which was a good result;

yPPek3cl.jpg

 

 

For the ammo box, I got lucky on eBay and got a real Vickers MG belt, Ammo box, and 20 deactivated .303 rounds for the belt;

LGx0mkFl.jpg

 

Next, I spotted a bargain on eBay, a unidentified WW2 Bipod of some sort and another mount which I wont be using (possibly a vehicle mount?). If anyone has any idea what these are off, please share, I cant track down their identity for the life of me.

 

Banana for scale.

 

Bipod;

o3RRdb4l.jpg

 

 

Other piece;

D0ZhwbLl.jpg

 

 

Had a hack at making my own barrel cover, pretty happy, but I want to redo it to make it just right;

G8poMkNl.jpg

 

So I did a dry fit with the ammo box and bipod;

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Thats it for now, I'll post updates when the donor gun arrives this week. I'm using a G&G Combat machine raider as it has a decent gearbox and good reliability.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Really good so far, being made out of wood how do you think it will fare say in i.e. snow?

I'm going to be applying MDF sealer before priming and finishing it with a layer of satin varnish after painting. So it should be ok, I think I'll just have to be sensible and not take it out if there is really bad weather forecast.

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Looks awesome mate well done will be watching this.

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Thats fantastic mate. cant wait to see this complete.

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Thats absolutely brilliant mate. Will be watching this like a hawk yo see the finished result!

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May I ask a (probably silly) question?

 

If you have a bandsaw and accessories to decent woodworking tools, why would you chose to laser cut the wood?

 

Surely that is going to take much more work to finish than it saves in time?

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Laser cutting is far more accurate & leaves cleaner lines

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Righty ho, bit of an update. I've got all of the internals mounted (the donor gun was a G&G M4 Combat machine). The build is pretty near completion, all I need to do is make the foresight and the bipod mount then I'm done.

 

Heres the new M4, before and after a diet.

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I then had to remove these as they made to rifle too wide to fit in the receiver. When cutting anything like this, dont forget eye protection, its nasty stuff to get in your eye.

M5b12bil.jpg

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Then I mounted it in the receiver

dxZt0hEl.jpg

 

 

To prevent the barrel from moving inside the outer barrel (and possibly shooting it) I made a spacer from a pipe reducer.

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I mounted the foregrip to the ammo tin to give some more structural rigidity. Also (not pictured), I cut a slot for the trigger guard to fit through so the receiver could sit flush with the ammo box while the mag was inside it. The picture of the magazine is terrible, I only took it after I had put it all together, so sorry about that.

DJf36EYl.jpg

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For the ammo box, I put a long bolt through the end which goes through one of the empty holes in the ammo belt. This keeps the belt taught across the entire length of the box, giving the impression of a full ammo crate.

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And a few assembled pics

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Thats all for now folks!

 

 

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I did wonder what you were going to do about internals. Good idea stashing the cut down m4 inside. What kind of finish are you aiming for on the main body and reciever

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Looks awesome mate well done.

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:wub:

Fwoor

That's really nice & I am liking this more than I expected

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Very Nice, It'd be nice to see some more British WWI/II Airsoft guns on the market for those of us who really don't have the patience for wood work :)

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