Home   Video page                            Hudson Madsen M50 sub machine gun

 

 

A side view of the Hudson M50 firing a short burst 

 

The real Madsen M50:

The Madsen syndicate produced M50 is a very interesting design, it was a standard 2 generation sub-machine gun in general: forward mounted magazine, open-bolt firing etc. 

Except, for the construction technique, which is quite remarkable, as the receiver separates in the middle and pivots at the shoulder stock hinge points in a clamshell fashion when the barrel nut is un-screwed and the magazine catch is held out of the way. 

This design lent to a high speed manufacture and assembly design, in which the barrel, bolt, and very few small parts where in need of  rudimentary machining. 

The receiver was comprised of two(2) sheet steel pressings which included the "pistol" grip and the magazine well in it's construction, eliminating the need for separate assemblies which greatly simplified construction and lowered production costs. 

Also, the Madsen design featured excellent safeties, one that stopped the bolt if the proper grip on the magazine well was not provided, and one that locked the trigger/bolt .  

Unfortunately, the design (much like the later Smith&Wesson M76) was a victim of the times, the Madsen M50 was introduced at a time when the world was flooded with surplus WW2 sub-machine guns and although it was a superior design when compared to a good percentage of the sub-machine guns available at the time.

 Madsen syndicate sold comparatively few M50's, before  finally giving up on the firearms market in the 1960's. 

 

 

The Hudson Madsen:

The Hudson Madsen is a very good reproduction of the real M50, and other than being produced out of zinc, it's very faithful to the real gun, including the field striping procedure. 

 I believe the Hudson corporation produced their Madsen M50 modelgun in the 1980's, as my example is stamped 1981 6 ( June 1981) This example uses the old type Hudson PFC cartridge. 

The details are very nicely re-produced and it is a heavy modelgun, as it is produced of zinc and steel and no plastic is present! All of the safeties are functional, and the barrel is open so gasses can escape out the barrel due to a unique gas by-pass system. 

The finish is (nicely) blued just like the real M50 and it features a leather butt pad again, just like the original! All in all this is a very nice Hudson modelgun, nice solid and well built! It's too bad that Hudson doesn't make this modelgun anymore, as I think that it would sell well!

Hudson M50 stock folded right hand view         Hudson M50 stock folded left hand view      Hudson M50 reciever open for cleaning/matainance

 

The cartridges:

The Hudson M50 originally used the Hudson version of the PFC, my Hudson M50 did not have any of the original cartridges that where available for it at the time that I bought it. 

This of course, presented me with some challenges,(1. modify my existing MGC, KSC, or Marushin cartridges? or (2. somehow obtain the original Hudson cartridges for it? 

As the original "detonator" was still present in the "firing chamber", I thought that I could modify it to work with my Marushin mp40 cartridges, unfortunately, the detonator that Hudson used for their PFC cartridges is very short-too short for easy modification, due to the fact that their PFC cartridges have a unusually long piston assy. 

Also, in addition, the pictures of the original cartridges are fairly rare. 

These cartridges are shared with the Sten MK1 that Hudson still manufactures (or rather, has manufactured lately) although the new production of the Hudson Sten MK1 uses the CP type cartridges (a vast improvement!) which increases the reliability factor considerably!  

I wanted to buy the original pfc type Hudson cartridges for this modelgun, but Hudson has/had discontinued the older PFC type cartridges, all that they have available now, are the CP type! of course, this was excellent news! So, I asked my friend in Japan if he could obtain any of the new Hudson CP cartridges (Thanks Mr. M!) The new Hudson CP cartridges are just like the MGC CP's (or the KSC CP's for that matter) only the "bullet" and the extraction channelures seem to be slightly different in comparison.

The upper pin is the Hudson "detonator" and the lower pin is my home-made detonator. I used a 10mm bolt that I turned down on my lathe to make the new detonator and although it is made out of mild steel it seems to hold up well. (so far)

The cartridge on the left, has an new (CP type) Hudson "piston" (with a hole in the center) while the one on the right, has the (HW) MGC "piston" that features a solid center.

Hudson Sten MK2 cartridges with original short piston with hole (left) and MGC (HW) piston (right) and the chamber piece with the original PFC detonator (on top) and my homemade detonator on bottom.                                      

 

The firing chamber insert:

The "detonator" in this case, is threaded into a (removable) heavy duty zinc insert that has a hole cast into the left side, that acts as the gas bypass allowing the gasses to exit through this hole and down the groove in the LH side of the receiver and into the hollow zinc barrel which then exhausts from the muzzle. 

This is of course is considered safe, due to the low pressure of the gasses due to rapid cooling of the gasses.

 

The detonator: 

The detonator that Hudson designed for the original PFC cartridges, was too short ( 20.74mm OAL x 16.37mm (point length) x 4.56mm DIA) to reach the "pistons" in any of my cartridges, so I decided to see if I could substitute another detonator, but the original detonator featured a 4 x 1.0 mm thread.....

Nothing that I could find would work for the substitute ! so, I  made a new one on my lathe ( 24.44 OAL x 20.27mm (point length) x 5.14mm x 4.90 stepped DIA) which worked out just right for the new Hudson CP type cartridges! 

(I will work on the Marushin (mp40 cartridge) detonator soon!)

 

 

Firing the Hudson M50:

 I  tried, at first, to put one round into the chamber to see if the new detonator would work, it fired-but- it refused to eject! I wondered at first-why? but after investigating, it revealed that the hole in the Hudson piston allowed the cap to burst in the spot where high pressure was present, and the fact that my detonator did not have a perfectly shaped tip to match the chamfer in the pistons crown. 

So, it turns out that the high pressure gasses escaped through the hole in the piston. 

So, I substituted the solid MGC pistons for the Hudson's pistons: The first magazine (5 cartridges MGC caps) fired perfectly! It sounded great! actually, it sounded far more realistic than most of my modelguns! The hole in the piston might be nice for the noise and sparks, but there is too much of a gas leak for the proper operation of the action in this modelgun. 

The next magazine (12 cartridges MGC caps) 10 fired perfectly and 2 jammed ! maybe it was the magazine feed angle? The third magazine (12 cartridges MGC caps) fired all of them perfectly! ( Help Mr. M! I need more Hudson CP cartridges!) For the side angle shots, I used the Marushin brand of caps, they didn't seem to have the power to "blow-back" the action, so I ended up with a few misfires.

 

 

The video:

The video was shot using MGC and Marushin brand caps (gold and silver) about 50 shots in all (I would have fired more, but no other cartridges are useable at the moment and I am running low on caps) This modelgun will be great when I get it "dialed in" I am sure that it will be as reliable as the MGC  MP40! So, it fired 10,12,5 and 6 in a row! pretty cool !  

 

 

 Click here :To see the Hudson Madsen video

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