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Maadi Helwan

Semi-Automatic Service Pistol

Infantry / Small Arms

The Maadi Helwan became a local, license-produced Egyptian version of the well-liked Italian Beretta Modello 1951 semi-automatic pistol.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 8/1/2017 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com
The Egyptian Armed Forces contracted with Beretta for a version of its Model 1951 semi-automatic pistol. This was the first locked-breech pistol design by the company and favored by many of its shooters for its power and accuracy when firing the 9x19mm Parabellum pistol cartridge. Beretta agreed and sold the Model 1951 through a "second series" production run complete with Egyptian national markings. It gave good enough service, particularly in the conditions encountered across Egypt, that a "third series" run followed with a lengthened slide for improved accuracy and revised sights. The model emerged from Beretta in 1955.

In time, Maadi of Egypt was granted local licensed production of the design and this led to the "Helwan" form. It retained much of the form and function of the Italian model including the short-recoil, recoil-operated internal system with locked breech. Eight rounds were pulled from a spring-loaded detachable box magazine inserted into the grip's base and these consisted of 9x19mm Parabellum cartridges. Sights were identified fore and aft over the slide for accurized ranged fire.

Original forms incorporated light alloys in their construction but this was superseded by steel when it was found that the alloys were not robust enough under military abuse.

The Helwan is no longer in frontline service.


Maadi - Egypt
National flag of Egypt Egypt
- Close Quarters Battle (CQB) / Personal Security
- Sidearm
Overall Length:
203 mm (7.99 in)
Barrel Length:
115 mm (4.53 in)
Weight (Unloaded):
1.96 lb (0.89 kg)
Iron Front and Rear.
Semi-Automatic; Recoil-Operated; Short-Recoil
Muzzle Velocity:
1,200 feet-per-second (366 meters-per-second)
Effective Range:
165 ft (50 m; 55 yd)
Helwan - Base Series Name

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