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I have read that M2 carbines were fielded late in WW2. One poster said the parts were available and a few were converted by unit armors. I can not recall the source, but does anyone know the correct answer? I may have got it off milsurps.com, which is not the best but on US it is pretty good. On Soviet and Japanese weapons, it is fair to poor.

TIA.
 

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In the middle to late 43 I see field reports in the Ordnance docs that Carbines were being converted to full auto in the field and it made the carbine a more effective rifle. That is what got Ordnance on the path to make the m2 a factory built rifle.

The first actual factory m2 that I can document in combat, was tested in the Philippines in 1944. I forget which month, but it was towards the end of 1944. The user had used it in combat for several weeks and wrote up a report of what he thought of it.

If I get time I will go back and find out his name and what month it was.
 

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There is video footage evidence of M2 combat use on Okinawa. Army troops hosing down some Japanese coming out of a bunker. It’s pretty good clear footage I forget where on YouTube but I’ve seen it. 30 round magazines and high rate of fire. Looked like it got the task accomplished.
 

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I haven't found the field report yet but did find the history of the M2. 1945, Army Ordnance wrote the history of every weapon system. So I went back and looked on the history of the M2.

It looks like they started to develop the M2 in May of 1944. It looks like the first 12 were finished in Sept 1944, and 4 of the 12 were submitted to the Infantry Board for testing. Which they put them thru a grueling test of around 6,000 rounds each.

The test results were satisfactory and they recommended the the M2 was to replace the M1 in Sept 1944. This is basically approved in Sept 1944, but they state it officially in October 1944. They detail that they want the M2 to fully replace the M1 carbine. This is approved and the M2 is designated the new standard rifle, and the M1 was declared the limited standard, which meant backup.

In Sept 1944, the first official contract is written for the M2. The first contract was for 500 M2's to be made, plus 8500 30rd Magazines that they were also developing at the time. But they ran into a hiccup on the magazines and the Magazines weren't completed till April 1945. So all the 500 M2's were shipped with 15rd magazines. But the first 500 M2's were completed in what looks like late Sept 1944, possibly early Oct 1944 and shipped to several Army units for further testing, and also some to the Marine Corps at Quantico. Some of these were shipped to combat theaters.

Hence why that field report of the one used in the Philippines was written. Which I was thinking it was late 1944. I'm still looking for that and when I find it, I will report back
 

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Ok I found the report. I was thinking it was Dec 1944 when it took place but it looks more like the first actual field report of a factory M2 in combat began on Feb 4, 1945. It was carried by Corporal Paul C Nolan and he volunteered to carry it in the battle for Manilla, and all the fighting took place in the city.

It says in the report that they had 125 of the M2 carbines with them in the field at this time, but no one had volunteered to carry one into combat as of yet. Corp Nolan was the first to volunteer to stake his life on it. It's interesting to note, it details they didn't have any of the factory built 30rd magazines, but they had made some 30rd magazines in theater out of two 15 round magazines and those 30rd magazines were what Cpl Nolan used.

So it looks like officially the first use of the M2 in combat was Feb 4th, 1945 in the city of Manilla in the Philippines.
 

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Supposedly the M3 Carbine accounted for 1/3rd of all Japanese casualties on Okinawa because it was good enough at night to shoot infiltration of the Japanese at close range.
The M3 Carbine was adopted in late Aug - early Sep 1945, so it would have been a good trick for them to be in the Okinawa campaign. In fact, zero of its predecessor, the M2 Sniperscope, were produced before V-J Day, so it's not a close call. The nomenclature is a bit confused, but unquestioningly passing along internet crapola is perilous.

There were about 100k Japanese dead on Okinawa. Could you show the math on your claim that 1/3 of those were from the M3?
 

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Supposedly the M3 Carbine accounted for 1/3rd of all Japanese casualties on Okinawa because it was good enough at night to shoot infiltration of the Japanese at close range.
I have seen this quoted online as well, I forget where. But I imagine you saw it at the same place.

I can tell you wherever you saw this though, I know 100% it does not say this in the docs from the National Archives. At the Archives it details in the Marine & Army docs for the Pacific that very few Japanese died by rifle fire of any type. It actually details that almost all Japanese in the Pacific, for every island, died by either explosives (i.e. grenades, satchel charges), flame throwers, bombs & artillery, and Naval guns.

Basically the actual documents written for the Pacific at the time said they either burnt or blew up the vast majority of every Japanese killed in the Pacific. It says rifle fire was mostly for suppression to move up close enough to use grenades, satchel charges, or flame throwers.

But no I've seen that 1/3 quote, but I can't remember where.

But yeah that source is wrong on that. I don't remember seeing any mentions of M3's in the Okinawa after action reports, or in any of the weapon counts.
 

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Ok I found the report. I was thinking it was Dec 1944 when it took place but it looks more like the first actual field report of a factory M2 in combat began on Feb 4, 1945. It was carried by Corporal Paul C Nolan and he volunteered to carry it in the battle for Manilla, and all the fighting took place in the city.

It says in the report that they had 125 of the M2 carbines with them in the field at this time, but no one had volunteered to carry one into combat as of yet. Corp Nolan was the first to volunteer to stake his life on it. It's interesting to note, it details they didn't have any of the factory built 30rd magazines, but they had made some 30rd magazines in theater out of two 15 round magazines and those 30rd magazines were what Cpl Nolan used.

So it looks like officially the first use of the M2 in combat was Feb 4th, 1945 in the city of Manilla in the Philippines.
thank you for the research
 

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I think the trouble with m3 Carbines being referenced in articles about its use in WW II is that so may writers get confused with the fact that we are talking about the T3 series of Carbines.

And a whole alot of changes where happening in a short amount of time with the snooperscopes.

A great little read and timeline.


Another nice read

 

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I have seen this quoted online as well, I forget where. But I imagine you saw it at the same place.

I can tell you wherever you saw this though, I know 100% it does not say this in the docs from the National Archives. At the Archives it details in the Marine & Army docs for the Pacific that very few Japanese died by rifle fire of any type. It actually details that almost all Japanese in the Pacific, for every island, died by either explosives (i.e. grenades, satchel charges), flame throwers, bombs & artillery, and Naval guns.

Basically the actual documents written for the Pacific at the time said they either burnt or blew up the vast majority of every Japanese killed in the Pacific. It says rifle fire was mostly for suppression to move up close enough to use grenades, satchel charges, or flame throwers.

But no I've seen that 1/3 quote, but I can't remember where.

But yeah that source is wrong on that. I don't remember seeing any mentions of M3's in the Okinawa after action reports, or in any of the weapon counts.
Perhaps they meant 1/3rd of all small arms kills.
 
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