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The Gatling Gun is a type of weapon created in nineteenth century by Richard Jordan Gatling in United States during his Civil War. It was designed in 1861 and patented in 1862.

It is characterized by having multiple rotating barrels, which increase it's firepower. Can have three, four, six or even eight rotating barrels, and fires a high amount of shots (over 13 rounds per minute), proving to be highly efficient and deadly for the

Patents of the gatling gun

season. Each barrel fires a single shot until it reaches a certain stage in the cycle, when it ejects the spent ammunition and loads a new one, using this process takes time to cooldown. The system solves the problem of overheating of a single barrel guns, but affect the accuracy of the shot.

Depending on the definition of machine gun, the Gatling could be considered a world first since it was capable of performing continuous shooting. The original Gatling was based on a system of hand crank to drive the rotation of the pipes. In later systems the rotation of the barrels now being produced by devices with gas or electricity


The original Gatling gun was a weapon that used multiple rotating barrels, driven by a hand crank, firing ammunition loose (not attached by straps) that used a system of loading fall by gravity from a charger. Was used for the first time by Unionist army in the American Civil War. Unlike "guns" before, with limited capacity and long reloading times, the Gatling were more reliable, easy to carry and had a rate of fire higher

Modern weapons system GatlingEdit

After the Gatling guns were replaced by lighter and cheaper recoil system, weapons of multiple rotating barrels fell into prostitution. However they reapeared in the decades of 1940 and 1950 When it was necessary to create weapons with a high rate of fire for military aircraft. The new multi-barreled weapons used rotary power from an electric motor instead of manual force of the old Gatling.

One of the main reasons for the resurgence of Gatling guns in the system is its ability to tolerate the high continuous shooting cadence. For example, if 20 munitions were fired without a break, with a rate of fire of a gun of a conventional single barrel,
Gatling gun

Gatling Gun in Fort Laramie, Wyoming

this would certainly warm up or jam. Ultimately, the limiting factor is the speed at which the ammunition can be loaded and jackets worn extracted. In a single barrel gun, these actions have to switch. Already, a system of multiple pipes allows them to develop simultaneously with the different pipes in various stages of shooting. A five-barreled gun Gatling system could produce a rate of fire of 2000 tpm. But each of its pipes soar only 400 RPM, so a reduced cadence and acceptable.

The 20 mm cannon M60 Vulcan is the most common member of a family of weapons are designed for rotary General Electric and now constructed by General Dynamics. It is a six-barreled gun in the System Gatling capable of a volume of fire of 6,000 RPM, cadence unachievable with a conventional weapon. Similar systems are available with sizes of 5.56 x45 mm to 30x173 mm. The rate of fire is usually inversely proportional to the size of the ammunition and therefore the size of the pipes.

During the Vietnam War was created M134 Minigun, A Gatling gun system of 7.62 x51 mm for helicopters. Capable of firing 6 RPM and arm by a strap 400 ammunition, the Minigun proved to be one of the most effective weapons ever, firing non-explosive projectiles and is still used today. Vietnam earned him the nickname "Puff, the Magic Dragon", because of firing tracer ammunition that gave the appearance of the breath of a dragon. The Minigun also demonstrated its efficiency in gunships AC-47, AC-119 and AC-130, Converted to cargo aircraft guns were mounted on the side. With sophisticated navigation systems and target acquisition the Minigun can be used in a very effective against hidden targets.

Besides the benefits mentioned above, many modern Gatling systems have the advantage of being propelled by external sources and not by the outbreak of ammunition. This increases their level of confidence since the failure at the outbreak of a munition will not break the cycle of fire. Moreover, some other faults, such as feeding and ejection are substantially eliminated with an external source of energy.

It must however be noted that there are weapons of the Gatling system whose energy source is the very ammunition. The Gatling gun faster today, the Russian GSh-6-23 Capable of a rate of 10,000 tpm, uses a system of action on gas


Caliber 0:50-inch (12.7 mm)
Operation rotation of the pipe by manual operation
Rate of Fire 60 tpm
Weight 363 kg
Food gravity feed

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