POTD: The Nicest Bren Gun – Bren Mark I Light Machinegun
Here we have one of the most recognizable British light machineguns. During World War One the British had the Lewis Gun which was a “light machinegun” that uses air cooling and a pancake or pan style magazine. Its performance was admirable but it really was not light and it had some issues that could arise do to user error. The search was on for a new light machine gun. They looked at every one on the market at the time (they liked the BAR and the ZB28). In trials with the Madsen and ZB guns they found issues with the cycling of their 303 British ammunition. It is a rimmed cartridge and it fouled up the action. At the end of a long string of testing the ZB guns they created what we know as the Bren Mark I Light Machinegun in 1935. It was the first and arguably nicest of what would be a long line of Bren guns.
“This is a very desirable example of an original WWII British MK I Bren light machine gun as manufactured in 1943 that is a fully functional LMG. This was the standard British WWII Light Machine Gun used from 1939 through WWII and well into the late 1950s, not only by Great Britain but also numerous third world countries. They were very robust and extremely well-made that proved to be exceptionally reliable and highly accurate especially in the single shot mode. They are easily identified as they have a large 30 round curved magazine that is mounted on top of the receiver, which required the front and rear sights to be offset to the left. The rear sight is adjustable from 200-2000 meters. It used a quick change barrel system, and it has a heavy/robust folding bipod attached to the front end of the receiver.”
Lot 1578: Bren – Mk I Machine Gun – World War Ii British Bren Fully Automatic Class Iii/Nfa “Sales Sample” Light Machine Gun Complete with Tripod and Magazines. (n.d.). Rock Island Auction Company. photograph. Retrieved November 23, 2022, from https://www.rockislandauction.com/detail/76/1578/bren-mk-i-machine-gun.