While the original Mendoza C-1934 light machine gun was already in circulation with the Mexican Army prior to and during World War 2, the Mexican Army found itself with large stores of American .30-06 cartridges. The two nations held something of a close relationship in terms of military sales and the global war boosted all sorts of defense-minded military production, often leading to excesses throughout. While the original C-1934 series made use of the 7x57mm Spanish Mauser cartridge, this cartridge had certainly passed its prime by now and opened the Mexican military to a move that proved to be logistically well-minded - chambering an existing weapon to fire the American cartridge.
Raphael Mendoza and his Productos Mendoza concern went to work on a refined form of his C-1934 in an effort to produce a new light machine gun chambered for the full-power American .30-60 (30-caliber M1906) rifle cartridge. The barrel assembly was shorter in length for a more compact form and further capped by a perforated muzzle brake to help offset recoil. The receiver was cleaned up for the better while all of the inherently good qualities of the C-1934 remained: ease-of-production, cheap manufacture and light weight. The weapon also fired from a similar 20-round capacity magazine inserted into the top of the receiver and, because of this placement, the iron sights were offset to work around the vertical magazine. The new light machine gun became the "Mendoza Model 45" of 1945.
The Model 45 sported an overall length of 45 inches with a barrel length of 24.5 inches. The weapon weighed in at 18lb and operated at a rate-of-fire of 500 rounds per minute, retaining its gas-operated function with its open bolt nature. Muzzle velocity was raised to 2,750 feet per second.
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Capable of suppressing enemy elements at range through direct or in-direct fire.
1,142 mm 44.96 in
622 mm 24.49 in
17.97 lb 8.15 kg
Offset Iron Front and Rear
Gas-Operated; Open Bolt
System utilizes internal mechanism where bolt and associated working components are set to the rear of the receiver with no cartridge chambered; trigger actuation moves bolt forward, chambers cartridge, and fires bullet in single action - ultimately resetting during the complete cycle by way of the generated energy.
Gas-operated system is featured, typically involving a gas cylinder and rear-driven piston directing energy to the bolt component.
(Material presented above is for historical and entertainment value and should not be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation - always consult official manufacturer sources for such information)
.30-06 Springfield (30-caliber M1906)
Rounds / Feed
20-round detachable box magazine
*May not represent an exhuastive list; calibers are model-specific dependent, always consult official manufacturer sources. **Graphics not to actual size; not all cartridges may be represented visually; graphics intended for general reference only.
1,968 ft (600 m | 656 yd)
2,750 ft/sec (838 m/sec)
Model 45 - Base Series Designation based on the C-1934 Light Machine Gun of 1934.
Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns / operations.
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Left side view of the Mendoza Model 45 Light Machine Gun
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