Ssg 82

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Scharfschützengewehr 82
Type Sniper rifle
Place of origin  East Germany
Production history
Designed 1982
Weight 11lbs
Length 43ins
Barrel length 23ins

Cartridge 5.45x39mm
Caliber 5.45mm
Action Bolt-action
Sights 4x32mm German-style reticle

The Scharfschützengewehr 82 (SSG 82) or "Sharpshooter's Rifle, 82" is a rifle chambered in the 5.45x39 Soviet cartridge built in East Germany at the end of the Cold War.

Very little is known about this weapon and very few examples have been imported into the west, with famed importer Century International Arms having imported around 600 at the turn of the century. There has been much speculation as to why this rifle was built and which company built it. Many believed that it was possibly used by the Stasi as a sniper rifle to pick off people who tried to escape over the Berlin Wall in to the west. This seems doubtful since a machine gun would have been much more effective, and more powerful sniper rifles like the SVD Dragunov were already in service.

The design is reminiscent of a European-style biathlon rifle, but lacking sling attachment, it seems unlikely it would be used for this purpose. The shape of the stock makes it uncomfortable to use in the prone position, the small caliber would make the rifle a poor choice for most hunting scenarios, and its lack of shared design characteristics with any other military or police rifle used at that time in East Germany would make it a poor training tool. It is equipped with a 4-power scope made by Zeiss Jena (in the original Zeiss plant that was captured by the Soviets at the end of WWII) which is numbered to the rifle and mounted using a quick detachable base.

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