Things you see at 4:00 am

Like many of my friends I work nights and thus I have the misfortune of being awake for a lot more hours than most people and get time to think and write accodingly. These are just reflections on the curent state of everything I have an opinion about.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Insomnia can do strange things to a man

From time to time I suffer from a touch of insomnia, whenever it happens I always have certain random thoughts that get into my head and I can't get rid of them. The first thought is one that has been driving me mad for weeks, how does the M-1 Garand feed? I have tried looking at them online but for the life of me I just can't figure out how the little clip pops out and bullets get fed. Thought number two, how is it possible for me to forget where I placed my house keys but be able to remember almost the whole Black Eyed Peas song "My Hump" when I don't even listen to or particularly care for their music. Oh well just some random thoughts before a larger post.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:19 AM  
Blogger Steven Den Beste said...

Maybe this isn't what you want, but maybe it will answer your question.

The clip isn't a box attached on the bottom. There's a box there but it's built into the rifle. The clip is open bullets held together by a stiff linkage in a wedge shape.

The rifleman pushes the clip into the rifle from above, against a spring. It goes through the rifle into that built-in box (which is where the spring is), leaving the top bullet (the one the rifleman was pushing against) in line with the barrel.

Each time a round is fired, the casing is ejected out of the top, along with the pieces of the linkage which had held that round together in the clip. When the last round is fired, then like many automatic hand guns the bolt stays back, making way to permit the rifleman to insert another clip from above.

One complaint by riflemen in WWII was that as a result the rifle made a different sound when it fired its last round, which told enemies that the rifle was empty and needed to be reloaded.

12:34 PM  
Anonymous Kristopher said...

The entire clip goes into the fixed magazine from the top.

The magazine spring and follower press up on the front half of the rounds from below, missing the clip itself. A latch keeps the clip in place so it doesn't move.

The rounds are fed upwards while inside the clip ... the clip itself does not move.

When the last round is chambered, the latch that earlier prevented the clip from being ejected releases, so the clip will eject on the last round.

1:39 PM  
Blogger Sailorcurt said...

OK, lets see if I can do this descriptively enough. I'll assume you know basic terms.

The clip has a gap at top and bottom that the follower fits through. With the clip loaded, the bullets force the follower down. The follower has nothing to do with the clip.

When inserted, the clip compresses a spring dedicated solely to ejecting the empty clip. When the follower reaches the bottom of it's travel, it activates mechanisms that release the bolt and lock the clip in place. The bolt moves forward and strips the top cartridge into the chamber just like any semi-auto or bolt action rifle.

I don't know if you are asking for a description of how the gas system works to cycle the action, I'll assume you don't need that info unless you tell me otherwise.

As the rounds are fired, spring tension moves the follower up through the clip, placing each successive round in position to be fed into the chamber.

After the last round is fed into the chamber by the bolt, the follower is at it's uppermost position, this engages mechanisms that set the operating rod catch and release the clip latch.

After the last cartridge is fired, the bolt is forced back by the operating rod, when it clears the breech, the clip is no longer being held by the clip latch so it is forced out of the breech by the clip ejector spring (and makes that really cool musical "Ching!" sound). The operating rod catch locks the bolt back so that the breech is open for insertion of the next clip.

If that's not descriptive enough email me and I'll send you a word document with pretty pictures and everything.

2:03 PM  
Blogger Christopher A. Lee said...

Ok Thanks for the response I Get the picture now.

4:58 PM  
Blogger Sailorcurt said...

I hope you can sleep tonight. Can't help you with the Black Eyed Peas thing though. I've only heard parts of the song but the parts I've heard reinforce the idea that I have no desire to hear the rest. Is there a grammy for the stupidest song? If so, they are a shoe-in.

I have forced myself into the habit of ALWAYS placing my keyring onto a hook by the door when I come home. It has become a habit and I never have to worry about where my keys are...even if I don't specifically remember putting them there.

5:26 PM  
Blogger Sailorcurt said...

Hey, I just checked out the link from anonymous. That is some great animation and explains it perfectly.

Thanks for the link.

Who was that masked man?

5:36 PM  
Anonymous Bob Hawkins said...

Just to make things worse, the ejected clip rings like a bell if it lands on something hard. In frozen, rocky Korea, this was often a signal for a human-wave attack by Chinese troops who like Americans trying to reload.

I hang my keys on the latch knob, so I have to put my hand on my keys to open the door. Works great for me.

8:13 PM  
Anonymous Kristopher said...

That works both ways ...

My Uncle had fought in Korea. He found that he could provoke a charge by deliberately throwing an empty clip against a rock.

3:19 PM  
Anonymous T. Potter said...

I believe that your brain has to push out certain memories to retain others. Unfortunately, brain gnomes aren't very selective on what they clean out.
I do know, however, that music tends to worm it's way into your head mostly when you're not paying attention to it.
I get music from some random radio station stuck in my head when I'm focused on my art. It's amazing what that will do to a painting.

7:56 AM  

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