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Best Sub-machine gun or machine pistols of WWII?

Discussion in 'Weapons & Technology in WWII' started by mp38, Jun 18, 2002.

  1. Smoke286

    Smoke286 Member

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    I would choose the PPSH as number 1 and the Owen as number 2
    The Thompson was heavy and very expensive to manufacture, but very popular with the troops
    The MP 38/40 had a very poor saftey but otherwise was fairly trouble free
    The Sten was widely despised as being cheaply manufactured, and unreliable, in reality it was its magazine that was faulty, if that had been adressed the weapon would have been much more popular
     
  2. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Beretta 42 was also a nice toy! Beretta has always distinguished itself for its quality. If not, ask USA's armed forces why are they using it instead of a national pistol.
     
  3. mp38

    mp38 Member

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    I love the MP38 as well as the Erman EMP, but I would have to say the best SMG is probably the Russian PPsh41. This gun was impervious to the elements, and its large magazine made it have tremedous firepower!

    Matt :cool:
     
  4. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Hello Erich and sorry I didnt see this posting earlier. ANy and ALL chinese made guns are pieces of juk--ESPECIALLY anything from Norinco. I had a mint 1953 Russian SKS carbine and a chinese made SKS. Not only was the Russian rifle a very beautiful and well made piece (beautiful lamionated stock made of somekind of nice hardfwood), the chinese one was a piece of crap. Not only ugly in appearance but the wood the stock was made from reminded me of plastic. It was an orangy colored kind of wood and you can just tell the workmanship was shoddy at best. I took both to the rifle range and absolutely lover the Russian SKS, and it was extremely accurate and the feeds ares great and I had no problems with this at all even with cheap ammo. On the otherhand--the fragging chinese SKS I had (was also a brand new but earlier imported piece--the later imports were even shoddier)I had problems with it jamming on about every 1-3 firings. This was VERY irritable. The damn thing was not accurate at all.

    Same goes for AK-47s. I think the best ones of either weapon made were the East Germans or the Egyption made Maadis. I know that the best made Tokerov pistol is the East German made ones.
     
  5. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Of course, Karl.

    What can you expect from a thing which says: MADE IN CHINA...

    It is like in "The Simpsons" when nobody wants to buy anithing MADE IN USA... Mocking themselves. Hehe! :rolleyes: [​IMG]
     
  6. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    I haven't fired any of these, so I'm very willing to be corrected. But based on a lot of reading, and the fact that this thread has prompted me to once again study my collection : -

    1) Has to be the PPSh-41. Easy to manufacture, high rate of fire plus big magazine, heavy (crude) action which went on firing in heat, cold, dust, mud ... Also it looks and feels good. Eagerly used by the Germans ( like Steiner in Cross of Iron )

    2) Thompson M1/M1A1. Great image, fairly reliable, big calibre. Graphic description in Burgett's 'Currahee!' of effect at close range.
    Very heavy, though.

    3) MP38/40. Superb design,fairly lightweight, iconic image, universal calibre. Rather too well-engineered - prone to jam in poor conditions.

    I know 'image' sounds trivial but from many accounts, the morale factor of personal weapons was strong. Like the Sten, hated ( according to my Dad ) by everyone who used it. So out comes the Mk V in time for Arnhem with wooden furniture, pistol grip etc. They all seemed to jam in the sandy soil of Oosterbeek but became a highly-prized trophy for the Waffen-SS.

    My 'favourite'? Has to be the MP44. Historic, looks modern - and to me, always associated with the Ardennes '44.
     
  7. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Hello Friedrich--not much and I DO refuse to buy anything made in china--as well as Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh. Ill buy things made elsewhere but not from these listed places.
     
  8. chu42

    chu42 New Member

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    • This is a very old thread, I know.
      But it's full of crap, so I had to bump it

      1. It's an unfounded myth that Norinco AKs are bad. China makes a lot of trash but their Russian copies are actually some of the better AKs you can get for the price. Not as good as Czech or Romanian ones but definitely good weapons.

      2. Anyone who thinks the Thompson or the MP40 is the best SMG is sadly mistaken. The MP40 was accurate and mostly reliable, but it had the same magazine weakness as the Sten. The Sten worked as long as the magazine was taken care of. The Thompson was way heavy and way expensive. I'd love to own one but from a logistical standpoint it sucked.

      3. Saying that the Russians copied the STG43 is like saying the Americans copied the MG42. Sure, both the AK47 and the M60 use some of the Nazi weapon components but both are wholly separate weapons.
     
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  9. chu42

    chu42 New Member

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    Top 3 SMG list from a military perspective:
    1. Owen: Reliable, accurate, cheap. Pretty heavy but so were other SMGs. Godly to hipfire.
    2. PPS43: The PPSH41 had more firepower but the 43 was more accurate and much easier to make.
    3. M3: Cheapo, sturdy, and accurate. It could also be easily converted to take 9mm ammo.
    SMGs known for general quality/firepower (notwithstanding cost to manufacture):
    Not in order.
    1. Lanchester: A dream to shoot. Just don't drop it. Essentially a better MP28.
    2. Thompson M1928: Heavy, in both cost, weight, and firepower.
    3. Suomi: Superb accuracy, but a bit unwieldy.
    4. Beretta MP38: Quality pieces of engineering.
    5. MP28/34: Predecessor to the Lanchester and the Suomi.
    6. Late mark Stens were very reliable and accurate weapons, not to mention expensive as the Allies gained the advantage in late war. Definitely some of the best silenced weapons ever made.
    7. Mas 38: Little known French submachinegun of extremely high quality and accuracy. It's only weakness was the lack of power.
    8. PPD40: Predecessor to the PPSh, but much too expensive to manufacture. High firepower and overall quality.
     
  10. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    Colonel Jeff Cooper often remarked that shooting a Thompson is a lost art, thus modern commentators who do get an opportunity to shoot and review one usually get it wrong. People (who don't know better) complain that the muzzle rise in not controllable, thus they are inaccurate. In fact, because of the weight, one tends to put too much upward pressure on the forearm, unconsciously lifting the muzzle when the recoil adds additional lift. The trick is to just hold the forearm as if your left arm is a platform, whereupon the weapon will just "ride" on its own recoil and stay right on target. He liked to demonstrate this at his famous shooting school in Arizona, putting entire magazines into a group the size of a teacup.
    Heavy? Yes, but if you knew what you were doing (and one hopes that most soldiers of that era did) you could lay down very accurate fire with far more lethal bullets than any other SMG of the era.
     
  11. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large

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    I second what KB said, never knew anyone that used the Thompson in combat that didn't laud it's capabilities, and have read very few written accounts where it wasn't liked. As to the weight it is really not an legitimate issue; the M1 Garand with sling weighed 10.2 lbs. with bayonet 11.2, the M1, the Thompson is a mere 4/10ths of a pound heavier at 10.6 lbs. (4/10ths is only 6.4 ounces). It is also an extremely accurate weapon.
     
  12. the_diego

    the_diego Member

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    What's with all those dinky pistol cartridges? This is the best sub-gun, assuming it did find use during the war:

    [​IMG]
     
  13. USMCPrice

    USMCPrice Idiot at Large

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    Well the thread is "Best Submachine Gun" and by definition a submachine gun fires a pistol cartridge. Soooo.......
     
  14. the_diego

    the_diego Member

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    As I understand it, the definition is not fixed on the type of cartridge but on the configuration. A standard shoulder weapon can be chopped down into a sub-gun configuration. You have AR-15 sub guns, as well as AK equivalents. The colt monitor shown in my post was meant to penetrate those tank-like getaway cars used by gangsters in the 1930's (where the thompson .45 failed), with modifications from the standard 1919 BAR.
     
  15. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    No, the sub in sub-machine gun is for sub-caliber; pistol rounds. The definition of AR, AK and other similar weapons is based on the "intermediate" cartridge concept; cartridges in between full powered rifle rounds and pistol rounds. You can shorten the barrel and get more muzzle blast and less velocity, but it's still an intermediate cartridge.

    In short, it's pistol rounds (subguns) stepping up to intermediate rounds such as 7.62x39 (AK), .556x45 (AR), stepping up to full powered rifle rounds like 7.62x51, 30.06, etc.

    This becomes confused by media and popular culture always referring to intermediate rounds as "high powered" or "high caliber" (pick your own superlative). If you were to believe the media, the intermediate rounds fired by AK and ARs are somehow more deadly than the rounds fired by the deer rifle in Gramps gun cabinet, which is a wholly mistaken notion.
     
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  16. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget all those dangerous clips they fire too...
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
  17. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    Don't forget all those dangerous clips they fire too...[/QUOTE]

    Right! Nobody needs a gun that fires thirty clips a second to hunt deer!

    But, back to subguns, there's so many interesting designs that it's hard to pick just one. There is a site called guns.ru that has gun classes by nation, and if you run through the submachine gun portion of that, it can get bewildering. Small nations tend to buy their rifles and heavier arms from larger nations, but anyone can slap together a blowback submachine gun made of stamped metal, and it seems like everyone has at one time or another.
     
  18. hyusu

    hyusu New Member

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    I haven't fired any so I don't know how valuable my opinion is, but based on what I've read/heard I would probably go for a Japanese Model 2 smg. Light weight and 8mm round (meaning low recoil and easy to control), compact design, 30 round magazine, and decent rate of fire (about 600 rpm).
    Japanese Model II Type A
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  19. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    B.A.R. /thread
     
  20. hyusu

    hyusu New Member

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    But the B.A.R wasn't an smg. It was an automatic rifle used in an lmg role during WW2...
     

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