ALFA 44 (Ametralladora ALFA Modelo 44) History

The ALFA Modelo 44 (or "ALFA 44") machine gun is a Spanish machine gun of indigenous design that emerged during World War II and the Cold War. Some variants reinforce the ALFA 44 legacy, with Egypt becoming the only significant foreign operator of the system.

The ALFA 44 is an air-cooled machine gun of a very traditional design. A gas-powered weapon limited to fully automatic fire, it used a locking system consisting of a sloping breech block to activate the receiver. It retains a barrel length of 1450mm with a barrel size of 750mm - with six grooves and a correct twist. Total weight with tripod is 13kg.

The operator trains the weapon by using a simple spade handle on the rear of the receiver. The trigger and safety lever are secured along the receiver backplate. The sights are mounted on the receiver and on the barrel, with the former fixed in front of the trigger group and the latter behind the muzzle.

The cylinder is mounted under the barrel and attached to the receiver's panel at the rear and to the barrel itself at the front. The charging handle is mounted on the right side of the gun body, while the horizontal carry handle is mounted on the left side of the barrel.

The weapon is operated by a 100 rounds metal chain link belt, originally for the 7.92x57mm Mauser Infinity Cartridge, with a rate of fire close to 780 rounds/min and a muzzle velocity of 760 m/min bot second. However, after the war and as NATO's importance increased, the ALFA 44 was redesigned to accept the NATO standard 7.62x51mm cartridge.

A new version of the gun appeared in 1955, called the ALFA Modelo 55 (or "ALFA 55"), with a shorter overall length of 1100 mm, a barrel of 610 mm, and an increased muzzle velocity of 860 meters per second.

Egypt received deliveries of a slightly redesigned ALFA 44, easily identifiable by a series of fins running almost the entire length of the barrel. Additionally, the weapon system has graduated sights with Arabic numerals and a slightly modified gas cylinder with larger cooling slots.

Machine guns entered inventory in the early 1950s.

ALFA 44 production continued until 1962.

ALFA 44 (Ametralladora ALFA Modelo 44) Specification

Roles

- Fire Support/Suppression/Defense

Dimensions

Total length:

1,450 mm (57.09 in)

Run Length:

750 mm (29.53 in)

Weight (not loaded):

40.00 kg

Attractions:

Tailgate; Front Post

Performance

Action:

Gas powered; auto fire only

Muzzle velocity:

2,493 feet per second (760 meters per second)

Rate of fire:

780 rounds per minute

Changes

ALFA Modelo 44 - Name of the base production version; for 7.92x57mm Mauser cartridges.

ALFA Modelo 44 (export) - Based on Modelo 44; shipped to Egypt in the 1950s; aluminum jacket on barrel fins; larger gas cylinder slot.

ALFA Modelo 55 - holds 7th 62x51 NATO standard cartridge; production started in 1955; overall length 1100mm, barrel 610mm; muzzle velocity 860 m/s.

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