March 2003: Soviet WW II M1910 Maxim Machine Gun

Ok ... time for my first major scratch built project.  I just got the bug to build a squad of Soviet infantry and cavalry.  Well, to go with this, I always wanted to have one of the Soviet M1910 Maxim machine guns.  It just looks so cool.  I figured this would have to do me until James DeSimone came out with his Soviet T34/76 tank.

You can see this machine gun in real life here, here, here, and here.

Here is a side view of the Maxim.  The construction was:

  • The machine gun is a Hasbro machine gun from one of their Pearl Harbor accessory sets.  The gun had a large bulb on the end of the barrel, which I cut off.  I then rebuilt the barrel to look more like the Maxim by using three pieces of plastic pipe all stuck into each other.  The gun site is from the DP (Degtyarev Pechotnyi, or Degtyarev Infantry) light machine gun included in the new 21st Century Toys carded Russian Weapons set (this is the same machine gun that Hasbro put out with the 1960s Soviet - the one with the ammo disc on the top of the weapon.)  The chains came with this gun .. I just cut the one long one to make two short ones.
  • The wheels are from a Lincoln Logs wild west wagon (creative, aren't I?  :-)
  • The curved side struts and the shrapnel shield are plastic stock.
  • The firing base is from a Ken record box that came with a DJ Ken
  • The round plate the machine gun mount is attached to is from the bottom of one of the German mines that came with the Hasbro D-Day Accessory boxed set.
  • The towing handle is made from plastic pipe
  • The axel is made of several plastic tubes and pipe.
  • The item was glued together using Goop (this stuff hardens like iron -get it at Home Depot or Target) and Super-Glue Gel (available at Home Depot)
Here you can see the shrapnel shield (yes, this machine gun was probably used in the Great Revolution.)  You can see the rebuilt gun barrel rather clearly here.  The paint is actually a little lighter than it appears in the photo.  I used Tamiya XF-71 Acryllic.  The color actually matches what you see on this web page.

After doing the base color (and I didn't spray it .. I wanted a brushed on appearance) - I then weathered using steel paint.  Then I did light Oily Black (train paint acryllic) dry brushing followed by a Dark Earth dry brushing.

The wheels were all metal in real life, so I painted them to look like the green paint had all worn off.

And yes, the pivot really works.  As does the handle (which you will see in another picture), the wheels, and the machine gun elevation.
Here is the bottom, completely weathered just like the top (that way, I can use this is photo shoots and show it knocked over without it looking bad.)

The two orange/red circles indicate the mounting prongs for the anti-aircraft legs (see following pictures.)

Here is the back of the gun - you can see the gun site from the DP (Degtyarev Pechotnyi, or Degtyarev Infantry) light machine gun.
Here is the machine gun ready to go.  I used to always wonder why Hasbro painted their machine gun bullet belts white. Well, after this project - I now know why.  The belt is actually a linen belt ... yes, that's right, made from CLOTH.  Not like the linked type of belts we have nowadays.

You can see the two anti-aircraft mounting legs at the bottom of the picture.  These are (along with the prongs on the bottom of the Maxim) are from the tripod that originally came with the machine gun.

Here is the machine gun in its anti-aircraft role  - mounted on its legs.  The machine gun was very low slung - so you either used it laying down on your stomach, ratcheted the towing handle up so it elevated the machine gun put it on top of something (like rocks or sandbags), or you sat in a trench and fired it (see here and here for examples)
Here is the Maxim in a more standard, elevated firing position with one of my Soviet heroes firing it (this should give you an idea of scale.)

So, that is it

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21st Century Toys