Rus Articles Journal

Sturmgewehr Stg. 44. How the first assault rifle was born?

Speak, this weapon also is real German “Shmayser“, and at all not that German MT submachine gun 40 which to us is shown in movies about the Great Patriotic War.

Speak, this weapon was a prototype of the well-known Kalashnikov and not less known Belgian assault rifle FN FAL.

Speak, on this weapon there was already a regular place for the subbarrelled grenade launcher, a riflescope and other “weather-cloth“.

Speak, from this weapon in a modern military lexicon the terms “assault rifle“ and “intermediate boss“ appeared.

And all this is an honest truth!

History of creation of this weapon began even before World War II with … developments in 30 - x years 20 - go centuries of “the intermediate boss“ 7. 92x33 mm (7. 92 mm Kurz). This boss was intermediate on power between pistol (9õ19 mm “parabellum“) and rifle (7,92õ57 mm for Mauser carbine - 98K).

This boss was developed not by request of military department, and in an initiative order by the German weapon firm Half-those (Polte). In 1942 the German management of arms of HWaA, the order for development of the weapon for this cartridge is transferred to two German firms - Henel (C. G. Haenel) and Walter (Karl Walther).

The automatic weapon, received the name MaschinenKarabiner (an automatic carbine) was as a result created. The sample created by firm Walter was designated by MKb. 42(W), sample of firm Henel, respectively, Mkb. 42(H).

By results of tests it was decided to develop a design of firm Henel whose development the legendary German armorer Hugo Shmayser directed, made essential changes to it, for example, the design with great dispatch - the trigger mechanism was taken from a sample of firm Walter.

Further development of an automatic carbine continued under MP 43 letter. Change of the name on MaschinenPistole (in a literal translation the submachine gun), is connected with the fact that Adolf Hitler strongly objected against mass production of automatic arms, motivating it with the fact that then millions of rifle cartridges in warehouses will not be used. Even demonstration of opportunities of an automatic carbine did not change negative attitude of the Fuhrer to new samples of the automatic weapon. Further development of this weapon was conducted secretly from the Fuhrer, under personal observation of a reyskhministr of arms of Albert Speer.

And still the new weapon was vital. Fire power of the German infantry to the middle of war is gradually significantly lower than fire power of the Soviet infantry armed generally with the PPSh submachine gun. It, in turn, demanded or production of a huge number of manual machine guns which were bulky and inconvenient, or to begin mass production of automatic carbines which effective range of firing made up to 500 m (at PPSh to 150 m)

The relation of the Fuhrer and all Supreme management of the Third Reich to the new weapon sharply changed, and at the beginning of 1944 mass release of a new sample of the weapon under the name MP 44 begins. This weapon first of all equipped elite parts of the German army. Also ammunition will at the same time be improved: the boss of a sample of 1943 “Pistolen - Part. 43 m. E“ it was already very similar to a modern automatic cartridge with the steel core in a bullet. In October, 1944 the sample received final (it was chosen personally as the Fuhrer) the designation StG. 44 (Sturmgewehr 44, “assault rifle obr. 1944“). The name “assault rifle“ so “stuck“ to this type of small arms that all small arms with similar indicators are called assault rifles today.

of Stg. 44 (assault rifle obr. 1944)

Automatic carbine of Stg. 44 represented the individual small arms constructed on the basis of automatic equipment with the gas engine with the long course of the gas piston located over a trunk. Locking of a trunk was carried out by means of a lock distortion down, for an insert in a receiver. The receiver consists of a steel sheet, the USM stamped block together with the pistol handle is attached to a receiver and it develops forward - down at incomplete dismantling. The butt is wooden, fastens to a receiver and when dismantling is removed. In a butt the returnable spring settles down. Though I saw photos and with the developing butt, but did not find the description of such model.

With great dispatch - the trigger mechanism allows to conduct single and automatic fire. The sight is sector, a safety lock and the translator of the modes of fire independent, the handle of a lock is located at the left and when firing moves together with a barrier frame. On dulny part of a trunk the carving for fastening of the rifle grenade launcher, and also Stg is executed. 44 it could be completed with the special krivostvolny Krummlauf Vorsatz J device intended for firing from tanks, entrenchments or other shelters. Taktiko`s

- technical characteristics

Calibre: 7,92õ33 (7,92 mm Kurz).

weapon Length: 940 mm.

trunk Length: 419 mm.

Weight: without cartridges of 4,1 kg, with full shop on 30 cartridges 5. 22 kg.

Rate of firing: 500 vystr. / min.

Capacity of shop: 15, 20, 30 cartridges.

Initial speed of a bullet: 650 m/s.

Advantages. Effective range of firing of Stg. 44: turns to 300 m, single shots to 600 m that more than twice above, than at the PPSh Soviet submachine gun. Especially for snipers automatic rifle MR - 43/1 (allowing a message aim firing to 800 meters), with the milled fastening for installation of a quadruple riflescope or a night infrared sight of ZG was created. 1229 “Vampire“. Return when firing is almost twice lower, than at Mauser carbine - 98K that increased comfort and accuracy of firing.

Shortcomings. First of all, big weight, honor one kilogram more carbine of Mauser - 98K. The butt often broke in hand-to-hand fight. The flame escaping from a trunk when firing strongly unmasked the shooter. High aim devices and long shop forced when firing lying highly to raise the head that significantly increased the shooter`s profile. To reduce weapon height, at the end of war shops on 15 and 20 cartridges were made.

For all the time of World War II more than 400 000 automatic carbines of MP43, MP 44, Stg were let out. 44.

The automatic machine was a desired trophy both at the Soviet troops, and at the western allies. There are documentary confirmations of use of this weapon by the Soviet soldiers at storm of Berlin.

After war the Stg submachine guns. 44 were used in police of GDR and army of Czechoslovakia. In Yugoslavia they held on on arms vozdushno - landing troops till 1970 - x years.

And there is more to come! The assault rifle of a design of Hugo Shmayser exerted a great influence on development of post-war samples of small arms. So, the design of the Kalashnikov and the Belgian assault rifle FN FAL were if “are not pinched“, then are made according to the scheme very similar to Stg. 44. The modern American automatic carbine of M4 on dimensions, ammunition and a scope is very close to “shturmgever“ of Stg too. 44.

Naturally, such peculiar weapon inspired and still continues to inspire film directors, designers, developers of computer games, producers of toys and models of the weapon.

The American TV channel “Militari“ which made a rating of ten best rifles 20 of a century allocated for the assault rifle Stg. 44 honourable ninth place. It is difficult to argue with its objectivity, first place in this rating is won by the Russian Kalashnikov.