Vickers » Tripods

Vickers Mk. IV Tripods



The issued Vickers tripod was the Mk. IV. Vickers Mk IV tripods were manufactured in Britain, Australia, and the US.


The principal changes in the Mk. IV tripod between WWI and WWII were to the crosshead. The obvious difference is that the earlier production tripods have the nomenclature "Mounting, Tripod, Maxim .303-inch, Mk. IV" stamped on the top of the crosshead, while later production items have the nomenclature "Mount, Tripod, .303-inch, Mk. IV" cast into the side. The later tripod is generally the Mk. IV B. The other difference between the Mk. IV A and the Mk. IV B are the notches on the elevating wheel but practically all Mk. IV A tripods were converted to Mk. IV B tripods.




WWI British Vickers Crew

Note the design of the pads and the traverse lock in the front.



The obvious difference between the British and an Australian tripod legs is the spiked foot and notch in the pad.


Bottom of Rear Foot

Note the spike and the notch.


Top of Rear Foot

Note the notch.


Front Foot

Note the notch.


US Vickers

The front feet of the US manufactured tripod are similar to the British tripod. The obvious difference between with the US manufactured tripod is the larger rear spade.


Bottom of US Front Tripod Pad

Note the bar-like feature.


Rear "Spade" of US Tripod


Model 1915 Vickers on US Tripod Legs

Note the traverse lock is to the rear. The crosshead might be British.
Source: Long Mountain Outfitters


Pintle Holes in the Crosshead.

The US crosshead with 2 holes is at the left

and the Australian crosshead with

one elongated hole is at the right.



In the early 1940s, the British supplied a number of Vickers to the Turks. Some US Vickers tripods, which were transferrred to England as part of Lend-Lease, were subsequently transferred to Turkey as part of this transaction. The Turks made a number of innovative but not uniformly applied modifications to the tripod. The Turks frequently modified the legs by lengthening and adding an in-leg storage capability for an anti-aircraft (AA) extension that fits into a hole in the crosshead. For some reason, the Turks did modify the US manufactured tripod legs, perhaps because the large foot on the rear leg of the US tripod was considered desirable. The crosshead modifications by the Turks seem to vary. All Turkish crossheads appear to have the hole for the AA extension and all appear to have been fitted with a large azimuth dial utilizing a modified indicator which included traverse stops. Some TurkishVickers crossheads have a modified elevating gear mechanism with stops.



Turkish Vickers tripod with AA extension.


Large Turkish azimuth dial, indicator, and traverse stops


Rear leg with AA extension stowed


AA extension head


Elevating wheel with stops.
This crosshead was originally manufactured in the US.