Welcome to the WWII Forums! Log in or Sign up to interact with the community.

Best Sub-machine gun or machine pistols of WWII?

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

  1. the_diego

    the_diego Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2016
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    23
    so this is not a sub-machine gun. it's an assault rifle in sub-machine gun configuration.

    [​IMG]

    and the BAR Monitor is...
     
  2. lwd

    lwd Ace

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    12,312
    Likes Received:
    1,230
    Location:
    Michigan
    What is it? Doesn't look much like something from WW2 to me. How is it relevant to the topic under discussion?
     
  3. George Patton

    George Patton Canadian Refugee

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Messages:
    3,101
    Likes Received:
    1,073
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Its a MP44
     
  4. lwd

    lwd Ace

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    12,312
    Likes Received:
    1,230
    Location:
    Michigan
    It doesn't look like the images I see when I google it. Was this configuration used during the war or is this an after the war mod?

    I don't think I'd consider that an assault rifle it does look like a submachine gun. an exception that fits the rule?
     
  5. George Patton

    George Patton Canadian Refugee

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Messages:
    3,101
    Likes Received:
    1,073
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    As everyone knows, Kalashnikov stole the design for the AK series of rifles from Hugo Schmeisser.... so you are looking at a Soviet MP44 chambered in 5.45x39, made in the 1980s, and titled the "AK74SU" because the Soviets couldn't bring themselves to admit that their greatest military small arm was simply a re-badged MP44. Despite having nothing to do with the design other than drinking vodka and singing "Katyusha" while Schmeisser worked 28 hour days, Kalashnikov had his name slapped on it to hide the Soviet technical mediocrity that made them unable to develop their own weapon.

    ....*sarcasm off*. Yes, I know that's completely full of shit. But saying the AK47/74 series is a a direct copy of the MP44 makes about as much sense as arguing that an AK74SU is a submachine gun ergo the Colt Monitor is a submachine gun. As for how an AK74SU is relevant to the thread? I have no idea.
     
    USMCPrice likes this.
  6. George Patton

    George Patton Canadian Refugee

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Messages:
    3,101
    Likes Received:
    1,073
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    The AK74SU is difficult to classify in a binary sense as either assault rifle or submachine gun because it is in fact neither. It is simply an AK74 with a short barrel and appropriate modifications to the operating mechanism. It was intended as a bridge between an assault rifle and a submachine gun (in short, the goal being to combine the firepower of an assault rifle with the portability of a submachine gun and this was achieved by simply reducing barrel length). The 1970s and 1980s saw a number of weapons of this type developed (though few emerged beyond the test phase). The American XM177 is an example.

    Perhaps the most applicable term would be Personal Defense Weapon (PDW), although the AK74SU design predates the term PDW by about 15 years. "Automatic carbine" or maybe "assault carbine" - similar to the automatic M2 Carbine of WW2 - would be good options and I believe the former is the original Soviet term for the project. I do not believe anyone with a detailed knowledge of military firearms would refer to an AK74SU as a submachine gun from a mechanical/ballistic perspective for a number of reasons.
     
  7. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    6,162
    Likes Received:
    1,596
    Location:
    The Arid Zone
    To cut to the chase, the "sub" in submachine gun refers to pistol rounds. If it shoots pistol rounds, it's a submachine gun, if it shoots rifle rounds, it's not a submachine gun. That thing above in post #61 would probably permanently deafen you if shot indoors where a submachine gun is supposedly at its best.

    Admittedly, the lines have always been blurry. The M1 Carbine was made full auto and used heavily in that configuration in Korea, but was still referred to as a rifle (or carbine) even though the round was a "lengthened pistol cartridge." Look at a picture of one, the slug is a round-nose not much different than a 9mm (or maybe a .32 considering the diameter).

    .
     
  8. harolds

    harolds Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2011
    Messages:
    1,496
    Likes Received:
    217
    That "thing" above has all the attributes of an abortion. Horrible! It's almost in the same class as "Pedersen Device" that turned a full sized 1903 Springfield (Mark 1) into a 32 caliber pistol with a 40 round magazine. KB is right in that the "32" auto cartridge is really about 30 caliber. The Pederson Device used a cartridge in the same class as the 32 auto which is usually derided by gun "experts" as a "mouse gun".
     
  9. lwd

    lwd Ace

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    12,312
    Likes Received:
    1,230
    Location:
    Michigan
    I can see one area where the definition breaks down and the M1 carbine sort of illustrates it. What if the round is developed for the gun? I.e. not specifically for a pistol or rifle? If they hadn't developed a pistol along with the P-90 it might also be a case. Then there are the "hot" rounds some smgs use but I guess they do build some pistols that can handle them. I always wanted one of the Ruger Carbines in 44 magnum. Wonder what a submachine gun in that caliber would be like (were any ever built)?
     
  10. harolds

    harolds Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2011
    Messages:
    1,496
    Likes Received:
    217
    I think, lwd, that one would run into weight and controllability issues with a 44 mag smg. Every 44 carbine I've shot, including the Ruger, had a definite amount of recoil. I think there's a reason nobody has put one out. The ammo alone would be quite heavy. You'd need a heavy gun to handle the power of the cartridge too.
     
  11. George Patton

    George Patton Canadian Refugee

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Messages:
    3,101
    Likes Received:
    1,073
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    There have not been any automatic weapons in .44 Mag to my knowledge. In addition to the power involved which would make the gun uncontrollable on full auto (and also extremely overkill), there's also the issue of .44 Mag having a rim which makes reliable feeding from a box magazine difficult.

    But: there was a modified version of the Thompson made in 1923 ("M1923 Thompson) which fired .45 Remington-Thompson: a 250gr bullet at 1450 fps to give 1200ft-lbs of energy. This "exceeds any standard .44 Magnum factory loading" (source: Barnes, Cartridges of the World). Keep in mind that at the time, .45ACP packed a 230gr bullet at 830fps to give 360ft-lbs of energy. The idea was to extend the effective range of the Thompson to c.600 yards and provide increased stopping power. Cyclic ROF was in the 400-500 RPM range. What they ended up with was not much of an SMG -- heavy, extended barrel and bipod as shown in the photo below -- and would perhaps be better referred to as an early Squad Support Weapon (?). The M1923 was a flop and very few were made. I do not know of any confirmed surviving examples in existence, but I have heard rumours of one in the midwestern US and one in France.

    [​IMG]
     
    lwd likes this.
  12. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    6,162
    Likes Received:
    1,596
    Location:
    The Arid Zone
    I give you the Marlin (United Defense) UD-42 for your consideration. I won't say too much since the video recaps the history quite well, but consider a couple of things about this gun... First, it's a milled and machined piece of work, much nicer than most of the stamped metal submachine guns of the era. It has nice American walnut furniture, and very cleverly welds the mags together so that as you empty one, you merely detach, reverse and reinsert for another dose of 9mm.
    These were handed out all over Europe to resistance groups and surely they were liked much better than the usual Stens they were getting.

    [​IMG]





    .
     
    harolds likes this.
  13. harolds

    harolds Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2011
    Messages:
    1,496
    Likes Received:
    217
    Of all my reading on WW2 firearms, this is a new one for me!
     
  14. Aimway921

    Aimway921 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2019
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would have to nominate the PPS-43 for this spot. The reason was how dirty cheap and simple it was to produce it. One could say that the Sten can boldly take this position, but there is one important factor. The PPS was designed and mass-produced in the cut-off and besieged Leningrad, meaning they practically pulled off the impossible.
     
  15. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,445
    Likes Received:
    359
    Location:
    London UK
    Sten gun. Most cost effective weapon of the war. Cheap automatic firwpower for under trained masses...
     
  16. stivemorgan

    stivemorgan New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2019
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Detroit
    Hi there. I think PPsh41, MP40 and of course StG 44 were very popular in WWII.
     
  17. bronk7

    bronk7 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2013
    Messages:
    3,146
    Likes Received:
    118
    Location:
    MIDWEST
    ..maybe someone has mentioned it...I was reading about the Aussies--I think it was New Guinea/Kokoda Track ..they said they liked the Owen better than the Thompson
    upload_2019-11-1_17-32-2.jpeg
     

Share This Page