Italian made .303 British?


Is it really Societa Metallurgica Italiana? This round is .303 British.


Actually, it is 7,7x56R (would a rose by any other name smell as sweet?). Both the Italian and Japanese forces used Hotchkiss type machine guns so chambered.



Is not 7.7x56R just a metric equivalent of .303 British? Another question, why did Hotchkiss, a French gun & car company, use (what I think) an English ammo design to power their machine gun?


I think both also used variations of the Lewis and Vickers guns.


Vickers and Lewis aircraft guns were very widely distributed after WW1, and while some users converted them to other calibres, others kept them in .303.

The Japanese Navy were still using modified versions of the Vickers and Lewis aircraft guns chambered in .303/7.7x56R into WW2.

The Italians developed their own aircraft machine guns around the .303 cartridge: the 7.7mm Breda-SAFAT and Scotti.

The British adapted the Hotchkiss to .303 and issued them in WW1. In WW2 they were brought out of reserve stocks and issued to the Home Guard. I’m not aware that anyone else converted Hotchkiss guns to this calibre, although the French might have - they used Lewis and Vickers aircraft guns in .303 during WW1.

#6 … efault.asp

By IAA forum member Giovanni.