L4 /bren

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by hammerlock848, Aug 9, 2005.

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  1. I'm new to this forum and have gone back a bit and didn't see this topic posted before, so if it has been I hope you'll still reply.

    My question is how was the L4 used sections and how does it comapre to the Fn mag. I know its a fav weapon from what i've read on ther posts. But coming from canada i don't hear much about the nato ver of Bren. We had the C-2 and now the C-9 and being an FSC tech we never really touch the small arms.

    Thanks. I moved this as maybe this will get more traffic thanks
  2. I used the LMG quite a bit in the '90s. Not on ops though. The two things that stick in my mind:

    1) vast majority of the pamphlets were identical (except for drawings and metrication) to my Grandad's from WW2

    2) whoever called it the 'light' machine gun should get done under the Trade Descriptions Act. And made to carry one round frickin' Otterburn all frickin' winter.
  3. It was indeed light when the gunner ran off with just the barrel.
  4. I used it a lot in the 80s and 90s (MoD saving money by not buying MAGs....). Quite popular, especially on range days - or the occasions when it might be required to give noduff real supporting fire to the section. Given the choice of carrying the L4 or the 84mm Charlie G, not too many complained about its weight - and it had more street cred than the steel drainpipe. Very reliable gun, and quite a serious tool in the hands of a slick gun team. In my opinion, a better light machine gun than any of the other section contenders - BAR, C2, etc - as the Bren/L4 had barrel-change, full SF capability on its tripod, a decent bipod and enough weight and low rate of fire to make it very controllable and accurate.
  5. i've always had a bit of a soft spot for the Bren gun, especially the Mk1, with the old original Drum sights and the silver fore section of the barrel.

    Whislt maybe not the most practicle of Light Machine guns, it was full of charachter and a pleasure to fire.

    I went inot a local gunsmiths a few days ago to top up on .22 and he had a Mk1 Deactivated Bren in the window for £180......... although tempted I can just see Mrs MDN jamming it in my backbox while I sleep for bring such a daft toy home with me :D
  6. Full SF capability? Er... I think not. Changing of the mag might just get in the way of that. The Bren/LMG was never seriously considered as an SF gun, there was always the Vickers for that, then the Gimpy & L4 Tripod. As a Light Machine Gun the LMG in my own experience was OK, good as a Gimpy for section work as long as you weren't in defence, and wanted belt fed insurance. Very accurate, very reliable, but the basic design had been beaten in the 40s by the MG34 & MG42. Rate of fire is important, and 30 rds followed by a mag change just isn't as effective as 200 in your own time go on. So IMHO, good, but not the best. Brilliant bipod, and a goodlooking gun to boot, though.
  7. The 7.62mm LMG was lighter than the 7.62mm GPMG with fire support tripod.
    L4 LMG's were re-worked WWII MkIII .303" Bren Guns with new 7.62mm barrels. No new manufactured guns were ever made!
    From about the mid 60's, only issued to support units. Infantry started getting the belt fed GPMG (FN Mag)
    I never saw a LMG tripod in use in all my years in the army.
  8. Fired both the LMG and Bren, excelent bit of kit very accurate tended to fire a curved group like a smile on the target at 100m you could easily group 100mm on auto

    I have never seen the LMG / Bren tripod either!

    GPMG on its tripod is hard to beat though even american SF use the GPMG and not the much heralded m60
  9. O.k. - by SF, I meant the "normal" rate, whatever it says in the training manual - isn't that a 3-second trigger squeeze, or about thirty rounds? Rare to fire belt of 200 in one burst, even on an SF shoot.

    In my experience, good LMG pairs could maintain an almost continuous rate of fire - the mag change was about one second gap. We had the Bren tripod sitting in the armouries gathering dust, but they were used in the AAAD role against the old MATS target.

    I'd demurr that MG34/42 were necessarily better as light section weapons - the Bren was also handy as a one-man weapon, especially in jungle/close country, and has better ammo protection than belted weapons in really filthy condition. I fired MG42 in both 7.92mm and 7.62mm, and its rate of ammo consumption is ridiculous - maybe ok in a defensive position, but excessive for a section out in the bindi.
  10. This is the badger:

  11. The Bren/LMG was always limited by its magazine capacity, in comparison to belt fed LMGs & GPMGs. The whole point of a machine gun is surely to deliver a weight of fire on to the enemy as rapidly as possible. This is not something that was new when the Bren was first adopted, and can be illustrated by the WW1 Inf Pl Lewis Gun section, which consisted of two gunners, and SIX ammo bearers! That was with 47 round drum mags not 30 rd bananas... Incidentally, ask any veteran of the 44/45 european campaign what they thought of the MG42 compared to the Bren. Earlier this year I was lucky enough to go on a Battlefield tour of Op Veritable, the clearing of the Reichswald. One of the the veterans attending, (a barking mad General, with a cornucopia of Rowley Birkin stories- but ALL TRUE), was in no doubt of the superior effects of the german MGs in comparison to ours. Once again, I'm not saying the Bren & LMG were bad, in fact IMHO they were very good, but the MG34/42 were better in the view of the poor buggers on the recieving end.

    Oh and I put an LMG once at Bordon on my Armr Basic course. Rattled like a widow's knees in a bus stop, and I wouldn't have dared fire from it. But I did fire the LMG from the 432 comd mount and that was not bad at all. Apart from the mag changes.
  12. My gat was the LMG for a few years in the late 80's during Live training abroad and for CFT's etc. I always remembered Bren stamped on the side with Lines scraped through it!!! obviously it was just the barrel and maybe the working parts? that had changed since WWII?!!! a bugger to carry as you could never get the thing balanced but a great weapon to fire! always felt for the N02 carrying the Ammo box full of magazines...
  13. Can any of the old and bold confirm that in 1982 the paras + marines begged, borrowed and stole as many brens as they could? i heard it somewhere... also that the 30 rd LMG mags were first used on SLR then? I know this worked, I've done it myself, but did it happen prior to the Falklands?
  14. Cutaway

    Cutaway LE Reviewer

    Which is why the Grand Old Lady is still the only real sustained fire weapon available.
    A week continuous fire ? That's sustained in anyone's language.

    But the LMG is just that, a Light Machine Gun, and fulfilled the job a damn site better than the LSW !

    Yes the LMG was carried on Corporate, also during Op Granby, but then officially for "anti-aircraft use," some excuse had to be found.
    The LMG mags had been carried on L1A1s long before the Falklands conflict, but it felt bloody weird as the whole balance of the SLR was changed.
  15. I agree that the L4 fulfilled the role of LMG better than the LSW, but the LSW is not a good LMG, to say the least. Setting aside weapons made by Palitoy, if you compare with GPMG L/R, or the Minimi, there is no contest. Belt fed - it's the way ahead!