This is an overview node of the German Fine-Caliber Rifles and Pistols, as well as Infantry-carried anti-tank weaponry used by the German Wehrmacht during World War II.
It should serve as a starting point for people who are interested in small-arms used by the Grenadier (infantryman).

Please! Please! don't spend your votes on this page - use it on the individual weapons pages instead - this is merely an overview. And if you decide to vote a negative on anything, could you please tell me why, so that i can improve the page - i won't hold a grudge :)
Also, i have not obtained ANY information in these nodes from my fellow noders. If it seems similar it's because it's pretty hard to find more info than reality :).. Im just trying to offer a more comprehensive view of the weapon.

Please note - I am NOT a nazi, i do NOT agree with the political desicions made in WWII Germany. I am but a gun-nut.

Weapons Covered:
Pistols - Sidearms:
Mauser C96 Pistol (Broomhandle).
Pistole 08 "The Luger" Pistol
Pistole 38 Improved Luger Pistol.

Submachine Guns:
Maschinenpistole 38 (MP 38) Submachine gun
Maschinenpistole 40 (MP 40) Submachine gun
Maschinenpistole 44 (MP 44) - Or Sturmgewehr 44 Submachine gun/Assault rifle.

Rifles (Bolt Action):
Gewehr 98 (G98) Rifle.
Karabiner 98 (K98) Carbine.

Rifles (Semi-Automatic):
Gewehr 41 - Semi-automatic rifle.
Gewehr 43 - Semi-automatic rifle.
Karabiner 43 - Semi-automatic carbine.

Assault Rifles.
Fallschirmsjägergewehr 42 Assault rifle.
Sturmgewehr 44 - Submachine gun/Assault rifle.

Machine Guns.
Maschinengewehr 34 - Machine gun.
Maschinengewehr 42 - Machine gun.

Anti-personell explosive weapons.
Stielhandgranate 24 - Stick Hand grenade.
Handgranate 43 - Hand grenade.
Eihandgranate 39 - Egg Hand grenade.
Volksturmgranate 43 - Can Hand grenade.

Anti-tank warhead-based weapons.
Faustpatrone - 30m range AT single-use.
Panzerfaust 30 - 30m range AT single-use.
Panzerfaust 60 - 60m range AT single-use.
Panzerfaust 100 - 100m range AT single-use.
Panzerfaust 150 - 150m range AT single-use.
Panzerfaust 250 - 250m range AT single-use. (Never produced)
Panzerschreck Raketenpanzerbüchse 43 - Reloadable rocket-propelled grenade launcher.
Panzerschreck Raketenpanzerbüchse 54 - Reloadable rocket-propelled grenade launcher.

Brief Overviews.
The Grenadier, or Rifleman, of the German Heer(Army), SS and Luftwaffe was equipped with many different weapons from the period covering the two world wars WWI and WWII.

The first modern rifle issued to German troops was the Gewehr 98, invented and developed during the dawn of the 20th century (1898). This rifle set a stencil for all modern rifles to come, but is probably obscured by its cousin Karabiner 98. The K98 was developed to create a lighter and more manageable weapon for the German Grenadier, and production started in 1935. The K98 formed the backbone of the German arsenal with about 10 million (!) produced until the end of the war. The major drawback of these rifles was that they were Bolt Action, and therefore slow to reload and fire. Later innovations would try and remedy this.
The following inventions on the German rifle market were suffering from the "too little, too late" syndrome, and could not really help the German war-machine to turn the tide set against them. In 1941, The Gewehr 41 was put in the hands of the infantry. It was created to counter the efficiency of the American M1 carbine, which was semi-automatic. The Gewehr 41 was built on a Norwegian semi-automatic design but it was severly flawed and ultimately unusuable for combat. It was superseded by the Gewehr 43, which was a combination of the Gewehr 41 and captured Russian rifles. The G43 was the perfect German semi-automatic rifle, and was furthermore developed into the Karabiner 43 to act as a lighter carbine - although it was only 50mm shorter.

Dawn of the Assault rifle
Almost everyone has heard of the AK-47 - Avtomat Kalashnikova model 1947. It is considered the father of all modern assault rifles - with all rights. But the design that was thought up by Kalashnikov, he derived from rifles captured by Russian troops from dead or retreating Germans on the east front. The rifle in question was the Sturmgewehr 44. The StG 44 was the worlds first attempt of an assault rifle, and it's history is an interesting one - please read more here!.

The main standard issue pistol was the Pistole 08 or Luger. The Luger was produced for a long time, but suffered from expensive production, complex trigger handling and a fairly sensetive mechanism. It was superseded by the Pistole 38 but remained in service all through the war. In parallel was used the Mauser C96 Pistol - a strange looking device, which suffered from an equally strange development history.

Submachine guns were used as short-distance high-firepower close-combat "Lead-spreaders". Used by Urban assault troopers, MPs and security officers alike. The first in the line was the Maschinenpistole 38, which eventually proved too expensive and slow to produce, and was therefore replaced by a machine stamped version, the Maschinenpistole 40. A later addition to the submachine gun family was the "unwanted child of Hitler" - the Maschinenpistole 44 actually the Sturmgewehr 44. Which was called a submachine gun to avoid having the project cancelled by Hitler.

General-Purpose Machine Guns:
The first GPMG to enter German service was the Maschinengewehr 34. It was first produced in secret to avoid regulations imposed by the Treaty of Versailles. The MG 34 was produced and used during the whole war, but the Maschinengewehr 42 offered a higher rate of fire ( aka "Hitlers buzz-saw" ), sturdier construction plus faster and cheaper production.

Hand grenades:
The (in)famous 'potato-masher', or Stielhandgranate, has left an impression as a well known symbol for the Third Reich. There were other interesting delevopments in the hand grenade arsenal of the Wehrmacht.

Anti-Tank Warheads:
The Faustpatrone was developed in the 40s to give the Grenadier a reasonable chance to kill an enemy tank. It went through many reincarnations as the Panzerfaust.

Thank you for reading :)
and remember - "Make Wargames, not War"

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