Original Item: Here we go again, another first, another unbelievable rarity. The United States adopted the Vickers gun in 1915 as the Vickers Machine Gun, Model of 1915. The American version fired the U.S. caliber .30-06 cartridge. Among the Allies, the Vickers was the favored machine gun for aircraft mounting because it could be synchronized to fire through the propeller better than other models, and the United States converted some of its M1915 ground Vickers to the aircraft configuration. Later, it began manufacture of a dedicated aircraft gun, the Vickers Aircraft Machine Gun Model of 1918.
One of the requirements for belt-fed aircraft guns was that the belt be made up of disintegrating links, so that the pilot does not have the empty side of the belts whip around in front of him and getting entangled in the guns and airplane fittings. The British started developing a disintegrating metal belt in the late spring of 1916, and in early 1917 settled on a design developed by a dentist named Prideaux. The link came to be named after its inventor, and proved very successful. When the United States entered the war, it faced the same requirement for a disintegrating metal belt for aircraft guns. It adopted the Prideaux link, modified to accommodate the .30-06 cartridge.
IMA has recently acquired a small quantity of U.S. caliber .30 Prideaux links for the M1915 and M1918 Vickers guns. But we donﾒt just have links; our links are new, unissued. They are in their original, beautifully labeled, ten-link cardboard boxes. Some boxes show ageing. Available in either of the two original finishes, phosphate or copper plated; this part number MUX1045P, is for the phosphate-finished links.
These links are discussed in several places in Dolf Goldsmith's great book, The Grand Old Lady of No Man's Land; see especially page 223.
Includes 10 links (connected) in a small cardboard box that is Marked 'Vickers Cal. .30'. Large cardboard box is shown for reference purposes and not available for sale (at this time).