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Steampunk 1920 Weapons.

See here for the revised Small arms system.

See here for details of Steampunk 1920

All metallic cartridge weapons of this period use Smokeless Powders.

Light Machineguns

Britain mainly uses Lewis guns.

The USA is replacing its unsatisfactory Chauchat machine guns with the new BAR.

France, Belgium and Japan use the Hotchkiss M1909. Belgium also uses Lewis guns.

Germany uses a mix of Parabellum MG17, Maxim 08/15 and Bergmann MG15. Troops on Venus seem to have a supply of Danish Madsens.

Heavy Machineguns.

Many nations use some variant of the Maxim gun, and these weapons are the same as detailed in Space 1889.

Some nations are using air cooled machine guns, notably America with the Browning M1919 and the French with the Hotchkiss M1914. These have the same performance as the water cooled weapons but are a little lighter.

American forces also use the .50 calibre Browning Heavy Machine Gun. This fires a very powerful round, and American forces use it to attack landships instead of Anti-landship rifles.


Automatic pistols are in service with several armies, including those of America and Germany. Other armies, such as the British still mainly issue revolvers, although some automatics may be found.

Submachine Guns.

The first submachine gun was an unusual Italian weapon called the Villar Perosa M1915. This was a double barreled weapon with a bipod and spade grips. To fire the gun when walking it was attached to a board that was hung from the neck like a cigarette girl's tray. Villar Perosas may be encountered in the SteamPunk world. Various mountings were created for this weapon, including mounts for bicycles or gunshields. The latter are often found on the Gunwales of Italian Cloudships to repel boarders.

Submachine guns in the Steampunk world are generally well made weapons, not cheap mass produced items. The British Lancaster had walnut furniture and a brass magazine well.

Some American agencies are beginning to experiment with the Thompson SMG, but by far the most common sort of SMG resembles the Bergmann MP18 or MP28. The British army have adopted these under the name “Lancaster Machine Carbine”.

In military forces the SMG is usually found in the hands of the NCO, the rest of the unit being equipped with bolt action rifles.

German forces on Venus have found the SMG to be particularly suited to their guerilla jungle war.

The Japanese armed forces have shown little interest in SMGs.

Another unusual weapon is the Pedersen Device, an American invention that replaces the bolt of a bolt action rifle and converts it into a long submachine gun firing pistol type ammo.


Most nations of the SteamPunk world have magazine fed bolt action rifles. These are similar to the weapons of 1889, although most now use charger loading. Clip loading may also be encountered.

The heavy double rifle is still favored by many hunters. Smokeless powders have made these even more potent, allowing the same performance from slightly x-small; calibres. In game terms these have the same range and damage as the larger black powder weapons.

New weapons.

The use of the Landships means that most regiments now have a detachment of high velocity “anti-armour guns”, usually of about 37mm. These weigh around 400lbs and are constructed so a small crew can easily manhandle them. An APHE shell weighs 1 lb and effective range is 330 yds.

Many armies also issue Anti-armour or Anti-landship rifles to their infantry. These are heavy rifles firing a high velocity armoured piercing bullet. The USA does not issue these, preferring to use its .50 Browning machine guns.

Grenades have also been re-introduced to military service following their use in the Russo-Japanese war. These either have an impact fuse and use streamers to ensure that they land nose first, or have a timed fuse that detonates the charge after about 4 secs.

As well as being hand thrown, grenades can be rifle launched, either by a rod that is passed down the barrel or from a cup discharger. Such grenades may be impact fused or have a 7 sec time fuse.

Firing such grenades requires a blank cartridge, so grenade launching rifles must either have a magazine of blanks or have a blank round loaded into the breech by hand.

Another weapon that has been invented is the Stokes trench mortar. This did not see any service in the Great war, but was adopted by the British army afterwards. Several other nations have adopted this or built there own versions, and the Venusian Germans have made great use of captured examples.

Light Machine Guns.

HOTCHKISS M1909 France, others 1909-1918 8 x 50R Lebel 27lb30-round metal strip500 rds/min
BROWNING BAR USA 1917-1945 30-06 US Service 19lb 20-round box magazine 500 rds/min
CHAUCHATFrance/USA1915-1924 8 x 50R Lebel, .30-06 US Service 20lb 20-round box magazine 250 rds/min
LEWIS GUN US (used by GB / Belgium) 1912-1925 .303 British 26lb 47 or 97-round drum 550 rds/min
MADSEN Denmark 1897-1955 6.5 through 8 mm20lb 25, 30, 40-round box magazine 450 rds/min
MG 15NA BERGMANN Germany 1915-1918 7.92 x 57 mm Mauser 28.5lb 200 round belt 500 rds/min
PARABELLUM MG17Germany 1916-1918 7.92 x 57 mm Mauser21.5lb 250-round cloth belt 700 rds/min
MAXIM 08 / 15Germany1915-19187.92 x 57 mm Mauser31lb50 round cloth belt500 rds/min

Heavy Machine Guns
VICKERS GB 1912-1945 .303 British40lb 250 round cloth belt 450 rds/min
MAXIM MG-08 Germany 1908-1919 7.92 x 57 mm Mauser58lb 250-round cloth belt 450 rds/min
HOTCHKISS M1914 France and Japan. 1914-1930 8 x 50R Lebel 52lb 30-round metal strip 600 rds/min
BROWNING M1917 USA 1917-1945 .30-06 US Service 33lb 250-round cloth belt 500 rds/min
BROWNING M1919 USA 1919 .30-06 US Service 31lb 250-round cloth belt 500 rds/min
BROWNING M2HB .50 USA 1917 .50 Browning 84lb Belt feed 500 rds/min

Weights are approximate and refer to the guns only. Water and mounting systems will add extra weight.

Sub-Machine Guns.

BERGMANN MP18 Germany 1916-1945 9 mm Parabellum 9.2lb 32 (snail) 20 or 32 (box)450 rds/min
BERGMANN MP28 Germany 1928-1938* 9 mm Parabellum and others.9lb 20, 32 or 50 rounds box 500 rds/min
LANCHESTER GB 1940-1942*9 mm Parabellum 9.5lb 30rd box 600 rds/min
THOMPSON USA 1919-1942 .45 ACP 10.75lb 20 or 30 rounds box, 50 or 100 round drum 700 rds/min
VILLAR PEROSA Italy 1915 9mm Glisenti? about 9lb two 25rd boxes c 2000rpm per barrel

*Although some of these weapons were created after 1920 they can be used as typical weapons of the Steampunk worlds.

Stokes Mortar

The 3” Stokes Mk 1 mortar weights 112lb, but can be broken down into three roughly equal loads for transport. Maximum range is 1,600 yds and the weapon cannot fire at any ground target closer than 75 yds. Muzzle velocity is 650fps, and for game purposes it can be assumed the bomb has a constant velocity of 160 yds/sec. Each round weighs 10lb.

Space 1889 Main Page

By the Author of the Scrapboard :

Attack, Avoid, Survive: Essential Principles of Self Defence

Available in Handy A5 and US Trade Formats.

Crash Combat. Second Edition with additional content.
Epub edition. Second Edition with additional content.