Talk:Sten

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Untitled[edit]

I've removed: although earlier versions of the STEN could be modified so as to hang the magazine vertically - ??! Only MP-3008 had vertical magazine Pibwl 12:29, 15 Aug 2004 (UTC)

The Sten mark I and IIs had a sprung-loaded catch in front of the magazine housing that allowed the magazine assembly to be rotated down 90 degrees so as to close the ejection port and prevent the ingress of dirt. Ian Dunster 16:51, 30 May 2005 (UTC)

Sten or STEN?[edit]

I realize that the name is an abbrevation, but I usually see it written in lowercase. Is the all uppercase the 'proper' name? Oberiko 13:00, 2 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Unless anyone objects, I'm going to change the name back from STEN to Sten. Oberiko 12:54, 7 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I think there's a need to exclude Sten-type firearms from the Sten entry, but include WWII-era partisan/resistance built/assemebled Stens. I also think there's a need to recognise that Stens were also known as "Tommy-guns" (referring to British personnel being known as "Tommies") despite the .45 Thompson M1928A1 being given the same name. GeoffAyres77 (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 08:36, 7 October 2013 (UTC)

STEN MK 3[edit]

I am seeking a source for blueprints of the STEN mk 3. Anyone that can point me in the right direction wqould be appricated. I have prints for all of the other STEN variants in my collection but am missing the MK 3. Thanks fred <fredandjulie@bellsouth.net>

See also section[edit]

Normally I would just correct the anaemic See also section, but my change (addition of Submachine gun) has been reverted. I said correct not expand, because even though See also sections don't seem to have concrete rules or guidelines it is described in the manual of style (Wikipedia:Guide_to_layout#See_also) as follows:

Mostly, topics related to an article should be included within the text of the article as free links. The "See also" section provides an additional list of internal links as a navigational aid.

This See also section clearly does not fulfil the only two basic purposes, because the two items listed aren't mentioned in the rest of the article (or explained with a description) and it's clearly not a ...list of internal links... (and therefore everything in a See also section is in a sense superfluous which was the reason given for removing my initial addition).

I think the following improvements would be prudent and more importantly useful:

  • Existing two entries could be explained (why are they related), e.g.
  • Adding additional related topics
Submachine gun appears within the intro. In a general article on submachine guns, a see also to (for instance) semi-automatic pistols wold be appropiate. In a specific item article I would think it should be to related items. For sten this might be the Sterling SMG, or the BSA submachine gun that was another contender to replace it.GraemeLeggett 08:47, 28 June 2006 (UTC)
I know submachine gun appears in the article itself, but it you read the italicised quote from the wiki manual of style, they describe a see also as a summary of all the important related topics (already in the main article). On a football players page you might list their club even though it's probably listed in the introductory paragraph. Once you've read a long article you come to the end and you can see all the related topics you might want to explore further, instead of going back and hunting for them. I would say for a firearm including articles like successors, predecessors and derivates would be important related topics (a short explanation helps a lot), but possibly also the company that manufactured it and the class it belongs to so that if one quickly glances at the see also section only, you can quickly establish what this thing is and where it fits into the world... come on, throw me a bone man :-) Deon Steyn 10:46, 28 June 2006 (UTC)

Carbine Calibres[edit]

The introduction describes how a Sten should not properly be described as a carbine. I agree with this but it goes on to characterise a carbine as having "full calibre". This is not the right phrase as the Sten's 9mm rounds are of larger calibre than the rifle rounds which would normally be found in a carbine. The rifle round is, of course, longer and higher velocity than the 9mm. Unfortunately I'm not sure what words to use. "Full power"? "Higher velocity"? Any suggestions? Epeeist smudge 10:53, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

The 9mm round is a pistol round. Nicht Nein! 13:51, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
A quick edit to simplify the sentence and "full calibre" question is not an issue. GraemeLeggett 15:00, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
This is a British Commonwealth designation. These weapons were carbines under that system. Veritas Panther 06:34, 13 May 2007 (UTC)
The Sten fires the normal 9mm Parabellum cartridge (produced in the UK as '9mm, SAA, Ball', however it has a longer barrel than most pistols, so the muzzle velocity is higher. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.40.253.120 (talk) 15:08, 9 October 2009 (UTC)
At the time (1930-50) the British used the term 'carbine' for any gun larger (i.e., weapon size) than a pistol, but shorter than a full rifle, such as the Lee-Enfield. The term 'Machine Carbine' therefore referred to a gun intermediate in physical size between the two, but firing fully-automatic, like a machine gun, and designed, like a rifle, to be fired from the shoulder, as opposed to hand-held like a pistol. That's why the term 'machine pistol' was not used in British terminology, as to them, a 'machine pistol' would correctly be something like a Mauser Broomhandle fired using one hand. Several gun companies manufactured fully-automatic versions of their automatic pistols, e.g., some versions of the Mauser referred-to, and some of the Browning Hi-Power, but the British Army regarded these as of little use, as after the first one or two rounds, the gun climbs and for an average soldier is uncontrollable, and so, unless the target is on a trampoline, wastes ammunition. These 'proper' machine pistols were very popular amongst the various warring factions in China in the 1920s and 1930s however.
That's also why the Patchett/Sterling SMG was also initially termed a 'Machine Carbine' by the British Army - the De Lisle carbine was termed a 'Carbine', as although shorter than a rifle, it was also intended to be fired from the shoulder. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.112.60.149 (talk) 21:27, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

Video overload?[edit]

I'm wondering if we REALLY need 10 youtube videos depicting the STEN? Can't somebody just do their own search if they're interested? The newest one is going to be reverted because it's 2 minutes of other guns.--Asams10 15:35, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

Youtube videos are often ephimeral sources, disappearing like mayflies, leaving broken links. Hardly encyclopedic sources, however entertaining they may be. Naaman Brown (talk) 20:16, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

Sten Change?[edit]

Hello, I too am a student of firearms and would like to start a dialog on this subject. This is why I instituted the change in the article.

The change as made to the Sten reference because of a transcript by the co-inventor Colonel Shepherd discussing how it was named when he received an Award from the Board of the Royal Commission Awards to inventors. Lord Cohen: " Why was it called the Sten?" Colonel Shepard" it was called the Sten by the then Director General of Artillery. The "S' was from my name, the "T" from Mr. Turpin who was my draughtsman and who did a very large amount of the design and the "EN" was for England. That is the origin of the name, for which I accept no responsibility."

I believe since he was the co-inventor that you would have to admit that his testimony carries considerable weight in this matter.In reference to the many other sources (including our own Ian Hogg)inthis country(as well as many others I'm sure)there is a saying that just because many people believe in something doesn't make it true. Father Christmas springs to mind. Any way I hope I've explained my change to your satisfaction. If you have any suggestions on how i might better cite this quote let me know I was considering attaching the actual quotions of the transcript to the reference ( Iwill have to muse over how to do that.

Actually, dozens of other references could be wrong, but you'll need to outweigh it with more than a snippet from a book. He could have been mixquoted, could have misspoke, or could have been misleading. The official word still stands. You don't challenge dozens of sources with one that claims to have transcribed an original speech by the co-inventor. If you plan on doing that, take it to discussion first. I'm reverting your dubious claim until you can support it here with a concensus.--Asams10 06:17, 25 July 2007 (UTC

First all from your strong defence I assume that you are the writer of the article and i mean no disrespect you seem quite emotional on the subject, may I say that the article is very well written and obviously a labor of love so please do not assume I am attacking you personally. I am not. I consider myself well read on the Sten and I have never run across anything that has mentioned a source this close to the project. What sources are you refering to. I have read Ian Hogg and Skennerton and Frank Iannamco. I would like to here of others not just because of this debate but because off my love for historical firearms. I think there is slight fault with your logic when you say that dozens of soures say this. You would neeed to look to see that not all the sources stem from a common root. For example Ian Hogg, which as you said does not always have the best track record. Since I have presented my source I would ask two things you and I will stop changing your article a sten gun truce if you will and please give me a list if some of the dozens of other sources to which you refer. I understand this may take time. Also if you take time to read this book and give it your opinion. In other words I'm trading my sources for yours. Maybe you will convince me. Also I'm perplexed by what you mean by the " official word" What officials are speaking of writers such as yourself or some British armory. I think rarely in this world is there an official source for much. I'm assuming that you are not saying that you are an official source since I'm assuming that you were not here at the creation of the firearm. I'm enjoying our discusion and again I apologize if I have in any way provoked you by the changin of your article. I do like having a good intellectual banter such as this. I do realize that probably 90% of the population of the planet does not give a wit about this discussion and this definition. Probably about 50% of the people don't even know what a Sten gun is and I think that is being generous. By the way I belive I am communicating with you in disscussion if I'm not please let me know and I will post this in the proper place. In a minute way I feel like Galilio trying to fight the church. So in closing I will say "It still moves" Also keep an open mind about the book, at PlEASE READ IT you may be pleasantly suprised, I will consider your sources as well. Peter Laidler The Sten Machine Carbine ISBN 0-88935-259-3

I've partially rewritten the article, however the sources I've read are generally in agreement that while people differ, it's accepted that the EN stands for Enfield. I've not personally interviewed but a handful of gun folks, but it's generally agreed that designers are at least as forgetful, boastful, and revisionist as their biographers often are. I believe that it makes sense to use EN to denote Enfield, and not England, as do the vast majority of other sources. --Asams10 09:59, 25 July 2007 (UTC)
If Laidler's Sten book is of the same quality as his Lanchester/Patchett/Sterling title, I would consider it authoritative. Collector Grade Publications' books are uniformly high quality. D.E. Watters 22:35, 25 July 2007 (UTC)

I consider your revision an elegant compromise. Thank you.I still encourage you to read the book as it is very extensive book, 350 pages, many, many primary documents and every bit authoritative as his Lanchester/Patchett/Sterling title as D.E. Watters suggests. Also its just a good read and covers almost every bit of Sten information you would want. If you read it you may decide to change the article as having both the Enfield and England definitions. Also if there are people out there that have read the book please chime in to this discussion and say what your opinion is on the quality of his book and the likelyhood that his transcript is correct. You have restored my faith in the Wikipedia concept. Polisheagle1939 7:06, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

The 'en' in all British arms designations was derived from the Royal Small Arms Factory, Enfield, which is where the technical, design and initial production work on British Army guns was carried out. That's also where 'Enfield' rifling - as opposed to Metford rifling - was devised. This 'en' derivation also applied to the ADEN and the RARDEN - all 'Enfield' - and to the Sten. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 80.7.147.13 (talk) 16:20, 4 June 2013 (UTC)

Accidental discharges[edit]

The comment about accidental discharges possibly understates the fact. My father was aware of several of these during/just after WW2 (national service 1943-47). One he witnessed was in a German cinema, where the gun was simply placed on the floor and self-discharged. The gun was grabbed by a USA soldier and the magazine somehow removed/blocked, but not before several people were killed. Another was where one self-discharged in the cab of an army lorry, killing or wounding all the occupants.81.86.230.16 (talk) 23:35, 29 December 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, I'm going to have to raise the BS flag on this one. An accidental discharge with the Sten involves a single shot at which time the bolt locks back. The stories your father heard were likely in the same category as other wartime lore that tends to get soldiers attention but is, in fact, false by design or for whatever reason. This type of information was often spread to scare soldiers into taking proper precautions. I can assure you unequivically that a Sten placed on a hard surface will not 'go wild' and kill multiple people unless they are lined up or some such freak situation. The same cannot be said of the Stoner 63, however. THAT gun will, indeed, go full-auto on its own but the Sten will not. --Asams10 (talk) 00:40, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

You just keep the BS flag flying and don some wading boots with that last sentence. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 74.46.22.212 (talk) 15:39, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

FWIW Stens are/were more dangerous than 'quality' firearms with a safety-catch one could trust; once one starts firing solo, it will continue to do so, so long as it has ammunition. Better weapons experts than me have had to hold onto a Sten when firing a burst has turned into emptying the magazine. Stens seem to have a well-earned reputation for being "all or nothing" weapons; either they jam, and won't fire at all, or they spray 30 9mm rounds while you try to hold them and point them at someone you'd prefer was dead.

You can get any simple blowback (or blowback with API like the Sten) submachine gun to do that. Place a loaded magazine in the gun and then bang its' butt on the floor (i.e., with the gun barrel upwards) HARD. The bolt will fly backwards due to inertia and then, if it hasn't moved back far enough to engage the sear, reverse direction, pushed forwards by the mainspring, chamber a round and fire it. It then, in effect, re-cocks itself, the recoil from the fired round pushing the bolt back far enough to engage the sear. It will only ever fire ONE shot though, for the reason I just mentioned.
This isn't a problem confined to the Sten, they will all do it, it just depends on how hard you bang it. This is the reason why the Sten has an aperture in the cocking handle slot for pulling the cocking handle up to lock it. This is safer than carrying the gun around uncocked and with a loaded magazine fitted.
The cocking handle safety slot is also one of the reasons for the 'unreliability' reputation of the Sten. Users might carry the gun around for several days in forward areas, a loaded magazine in the gun and the cocking handle in the slot. Then when they raised the gun to their shoulder and tried to fire the gun in the heat of action, found that it wouldn't, because the cocking handle was still in the safety slot. It's easier to blame the gun than to say that you forgot to move the handle out of the slot. The only part of the gun that could really be said to have an effect on reliability (apart from the ammunition used) was the magazine feed lips, which needed looking after as they could be become bent, disrupting the feed. It's possible that some magazines were made of the wrong grade steel, as many parts of the gun were manufactured in non gun-making workshops. The magazine was based on the MP38/MP40 one, and interchangeable with them IIRC. It's also as well to bear in mind that many Stens were used by people with little or no training in handling firearms, so the possibility of 'operator error' should be born in mind when criticising the gun—Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.40.253.120 (talk) 15:27, 9 October 2009 (UTC)
Shooters of submachineguns are warned to be aware of "runaway" situations. The first example given above appears to be a failure of the sear, which would cause a runaway situation. Also, the Beretta MP38 designed for use with heavily loaded 9mm M38 ammo would runaway if fired with the light 9mm Glisenti ammo: the gun would fire, recoil enough to eject the empty but not be caught by the sear and then return to feed and fire beyond trigger-sear control until the ammunition was exhausted. This sould happen with any open bolt SMG with weak ammo or a very dirty bolt/receiver. The Sten and Thompson were also criticised for firing if dropped on the buttstock with the bolt closed and a loaded magazine in place: the bolt could go back far enough to pick up a round from the magazine and fire it when the bolt slammed shut. These are not faults unique to the Sten, but are common to most submachineguns that fire from the open bolt position. Naaman Brown (talk) 18:09, 13 May 2010 (UTC)

My father was in the British army in WWII and described the Sten as a piece of (garbage). He told me that he had hung one on a tree, by its carrying strap, and walked away. The gun started firing by itself, narrowly missing one of his colleagues.67.170.238.175 (talk) 06:37, 14 March 2013 (UTC)

Still in service[edit]

I have seen the Stens to be in service with different Indian Police Forces as recently as 2007, i.e. last year. Can anybody throw some light on that?Shovon 18:31, 2 March 2008 (UTC)

Yes, they are still in service in more places than India. --Asams10 (talk) 21:46, 2 March 2008 (UTC)
There have been ads in Shotgun News selling Indian Police Sten magazines. They are unique in that they have wires welded to the inside such that cartridges feed more evenly and bits of dirt are less likely to cause a jam. If I remember correctly, they only hold 20 rounds however, and are made from old WWII type magazines. 69.239.23.60 (talk) 04:34, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

Users[edit]

http://fi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sten_(konepistooli)

Its not listed in the english article but finnish defence forces (PUOLUSTUSVOIMAT) swapped patch of "old and 'captured' ie soviet ww2" weapons with "interarms" which is / was some kind of CIA front for arms trafficing for 3rd world conflicts in "late 1950's" and got it return 75 000 Sten SMG's mostly of MK.3 type but also others each with 5 magazines, and the weapons in turn were completely overhauled in FDF arms depots and somewhat also modified to better suit local 9mm ammo. Most of them were stored for use in time of crisis, but some were used as service weapons, as the finnish language article tells, as practice weapons by combat divers, a special forces unit similar to USN SEALS. And that the weapons were issued with official army designations ie "9.00 kp Sten III" -> _9.00 (mm) "SMG" Sten III_.

Maybe somebody wants to check into it and integrate it into the article?

Cheers —Preceding unsigned comment added by 84.231.217.247 (talk) 06:17, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

True, I added such info before checking on this talk page. I possess several shots that my father took during his national service in the early 1960s as a combat swimmer, in these his squad is armed with Stens (he's unwilling to publish them as such, a black-rectangle-over-the-eyes-censoring or an OTRS-like arrangement might be possible. Other sources are this page: gibberish google translation and a price list for former FDF materiél that includes deactivated Stens. 88.148.217.107 (talk) 17:58, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Cheap, but far from the best[edit]

My last friend that was orld War II veteran, died last week.I went to his seventh day catholic mass.While in World War II(he became general decades later), he was trained in using this weapon.He told me, that this weapon even being easily used, didn't had good quality.Well, he used the M-1 Garand in war, an amazing weapon.Agre22 (talk) 00:28, 21 August 2008 (UTC)agre22

There are exposed welds still a bit rough, the fit is not precise, and some were spray painted black rather than parkerized olive green. The horizontal magazine was used because the springs of the day were not very good or were at least rare, not mentioned in the article. By the way, the magazine is not a true multi-column as mentioned in the article as it is barely wider than a single round. In the US, you can still buy cut-up parts for examination purposes. WonderWheeler (talk) 06:16, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

First parts are undisputable: rough construction and finish. However, horizontal magazine position was copied from the Lanchester submachine gun which was copied from the MP18/MP28 presumably because the horizontal position facilitates firing in the prone position. The Sten magazines I have handled had very stiff springs requiring assistance of a loading tool past five or six rounds and these were WWII surplus, so I doubt the "not very good" springs explanation. The body of the magazine is double-column narrowing to single colume feed at the top. Naaman Brown (talk) 18:23, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

IIRC, prior to the Sten in 1940 the British were buying Thompsons from the US at around £90 per-gun. The Sten OTOH was eventually brought down in price to around £2.7/6d. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 80.7.147.13 (talk) 13:06, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

Are there any objections to a section on homemade sten guns?[edit]

Specifically P A Luty seems to have built simple working models.Geo8rge (talk) 16:13, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

I think folks around here look down on illegal activities, we try to keep things legal. WonderWheeler (talk) 06:07, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

Semi auto builds are legal in the US as well as full auto versions built after May 1986 by those with a Class 7 FFL SOT. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 98.239.38.30 (talk) 00:01, 8 July 2010 (UTC)

The Sten was the British-designed insurgent 9mm machine-pistol, everything but its rifled-barrel and spring could be made in bicycle repair shops, under the noses of the Nazis, and was. It was used by the Polish Home Army in the 1944 Warsaw Uprising, and by resistance/partisan fighters across Europe. GeoffAyres77 (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 07:29, 7 October 2013 (UTC)

side issue: why Mark II outlasted Mark III[edit]

The Sten Mark II had seperate and distinct receiver, magazine housing and barrel shroud assemblies. The Sten Mark III had a unitized receiver-magazine housing-barrel shroud in one piece and was a lot cheaper to make. However, the Sten Mark II stayed in production after the Mark III was introduced and the Sten Mark V was based on the Mark II and not on the Mark III.

The few discussions I know about claim that it was more economical to maintain the Mark II than to maintain the Mark III. If you had a pile of damaged Stens recovered after-action, an armourer could mate good receivers, magazine housings and barrel assemblies from Mark IIs to assemble useful weapons. If a Mark III unitized construction was damaged, there was not much that could be done to salvage it. Naaman Brown (talk) 01:57, 18 September 2009 (UTC)

Aside from the points mentioned above, the Mark II also had the advantage of being easily knock-downable, i.e., it could be dismantled without tools so that it would fit into a bag or holdall. The butt stock can be removed by pressing the button in the top of the main tube against the pressure of the mainspring, and sliding the stock downwards, and the barrel assembly can be unscrewed and removed using just the hand. This makes the Sten Mk II easily carried and concealed, a distinct advantage for many of its users. There were several Marks of Sten developed after the Mk II, but none bettered it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.40.254.32 (talk) 18:06, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

===I would also add (as a general advantage, not necessarily why it outlasted) that the MKII could be fitted with an integral suppressor while the MKIII could not. The MKII(s) suppressed version was used by US SOG forces in Vietnam, a testament to the effectiveness of this configuration.MFM 2000 (talk) 14:12, 22 May 2010 (UTC)

A Sten Mk II being fired and stripped on YouTube here: [1] — Preceding unsigned comment added by 80.7.147.13 (talk) 19:58, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

The Correct name of the sten gun.[edit]

Dear Sirs.

I have a correction on the name of the Sten gun name.

The name Sheperd Turpin ENfield.. Is not correct.

The correct name is (according to Mr. Sheperd)

Sheperd Turpin ENgland.

Major Reginald Shepherd and Harold Turpin is the names of the designers. The general presumption that EN as in Royal Small Arms Factory In Enfield Were the producers is incorrect. There was 8 different factories producing the sten gun and app. 250 sub contractors.

There is No reason that the Enfield factory should have anything to do with the name As stated by Colonel R. V. Shephard on the 17. June 1949.


Sincerely

Lars Buch

File:Reginald-shepherd-sten-1.jpg File:Reginald-shepherd-sten-2.jpg —Preceding unsigned comment added by Lars-Buch (talkcontribs) 11:23, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

The Sten used Enfield pattern rifling, which is also why the Lee-Enfield was so-called. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 80.7.147.13 (talk) 20:11, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

Place of origin[edit]

It says place of origin as Britain? Did Scotland or Wales have any input in the design and development or was it just in England? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 81.138.8.42 (talk) 23:44, 21 May 2010 (UTC)

General corrections[edit]

1. Magazine - It's an exact copy of the MP28 magazine, not a copy of the MP40. The MP28 is a few mm thicker, but with a polishing wheel one can get one to fit in a Sten magwell. This is not true of the MP40 mag. (I can supply a photo of the two mags side by side for comparison)

2. The primary photo should be corrected to include a whole gun, not one missing the lower cover and trigger spring so that the trigger is falling forward. MFM 2000 (talk) 14:12, 22 May 2010 (UTC)

Massive flag on article[edit]

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Can someone sort out the massive flag that's near the foot of the article please? Jon

Removed, no need for it. Ta for pointing it out. Geoff B (talk) 23:38, 28 September 2010 (UTC)
Deleted the broken redirect template thing too. :) [stwalkerster|talk] 23:48, 28 September 2010 (UTC)
It used to be in there w/ no flag; someone apparently tried to add one here but did it wrong. I've reinstated the 'no flag' version. The broken thing was Template:Country_data_Commonwealth_of_Nations by the way (thanks for deleting, Stwalkerster).  Chzz  ►  23:55, 28 September 2010 (UTC)
P.S. Geoff B / whoever, if it really doesn't belong in the list at all, feel free to remove it again, of course; I was just going back to the 'working' version, as it were.  Chzz  ►  23:56, 28 September 2010 (UTC)

Stens were not used by Philippine resistance in WW II[edit]

The Sten was a British weapon that was also produced in Canada.

Neither Britain nor Canada supplied weapons to the Philippine resistance. Nor did the US acquire Stens for any such purpose.

No reputable sources are presented for the claim that the Filipinos used Stens. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 63.152.99.241 (talk) 05:54, 9 June 2013 (UTC)