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Posted 9/24/2007 Printable Fact Sheet
Pontiac M39A3 20mm Revolving Canon
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Pontiac M39A3 20mm Revolving Cannon

The United States developed the M39 series gun from the German Mauser MG213C design following World War II. The M39A3--originally known as the T160 when tested on modified F-86Fs in Korea--was a "revolver" type aircraft gun developed for the United States Air Force.

Various manufacturers produced over 35,500 copies of the cannon for use on versions of the F-100, F-101, and other American fighter aircraft. The Pontiac Motor Company in Michigan made this particular example.

In the M39A3, a five-chamber cylinder revolved about an axis parallel to the single gun bore. The weapon was gas-operated and fired from the six-o'clock position at a rate of 1,500 rounds per minute with a muzzle velocity of 3,300 feet per second.

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