les Mousquetons (Carbines):

Although initially intended for the artillery, by 1915 carbines would be also be distributed to the infantry, including sappers, machine-gunners, alpine chasseurs, the engineers and the 37 mm crews. By 1918, they were also being distributed to hand grenadiers.

  • Berthier (Artillery Carbine) model 1892 (3-round clip)
  • Berthier model 1892/16 (5-round clip)

  • Artillery Carbine model 1892 (8 mm)

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003

    Initially intended for the artillery, the model 1892 carbine would later be distributed to the infantry, including sappers, machine-gunners, alpine chasseurs and the engineers.

    Basic stats:

  • Length: 37.2 in.
  • Length with bayonet: 53 in.
  • Length of barrel: 16.5 in.

  • Weight empty: 6.8 lbs.
  • Weight loaded: 7 lbs.
  • Weight loaded, with bayonet: 8 lbs.

  • Class: single-shot, bolt-action
  • Caliber: 8 mm
  • Magazine: 3-shot stripper clip
  • Magazine capacity: 3 rounds
  • Ammunition: 8x50R
  • Primary ammunition used: model 1886 'D bullet' (bullet: 12.8 gm, brass-tipped steel, 3 gm charge of powder)
  • Muzzle velocity: 'M bullet', 570 m/s (1,870 f/s); 'D bullet', 637 m/s (2,090 f/s)
  • Initial energy: 225 kg/m (495 lbs/m)

    *There were several variants of the model 1892 carbine, owing to the multiple modifications it underwent. The first was in 1898 with the adoption of the 'D bullet' which necessitated a change in the rear sight. In 1902 the half-cock safety trigger was suppressed; in 1909 a recoil tenon under the bolt-box was added; and in 1913 a quillon (bayonet catcher) is added to the embouchoir (top barrel ring). Additional modifications would take place in the inter-war years, including the suppression of the rifle cleaning rod and a reinforced firing chamber. The variant pictured above is a model 1892/32, explaining the absence of the cleaning rod.

  • Average rate of fire: 20-25 shots per min.
  • Practical range: 200 m (656 ft) with rear sight or non-sighted firing
  • Maximum effective range: 2,000 m (6,562 ft)
  • Penetration: 50 cm (20 in.) of earth and 40 cm (16 in.) of sapling at 400 m with 'D bullet'

    General Characteristics:

  • Sights: model 'D bullet': (Ladder) tiered rear sight (adjustable to 200-1000 m) and vertical sight w/ sliding level (adjustable to 1200-2400 m); rectangular front sight
  • Safety: half-cock trigger (until 1902 when it was suppressed)
  • Bayonet: model 1892 sabre-bayonet
  • Added firepower: None
  • Stamps: on the bolt-box (manufacturer and model), on the barrel (serial number, year of make)
  • Finishing: entirely bronzed save the bolt and butt plate
  • Arms manufacturers: Châtellerault, St.-Etienne, Tulle
  • Examples available in 1914:
  • Total examples produced: 890,459 from 1893 to 1918
  • Period of use: 1893 to 1985

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    The first variant model 1892 (without any modifications).

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    Detail of the bolt-box.

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    Diagram of the feeding mechanism for the model 1892, with the bolt open and a full stipper-clip in place ('M bullet').

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    Detail showing the rifle cleaning rod in its housing.

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    Detail of the embouchoir without quillon.

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    Detail of the embouchoir with bent quillon.

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    Detail of the embouchoir with straight quillon.

    © Frédéric Delvolte 2003
    The model 1892 with the model 1892 sabre-bayonet fixed.

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