Vollmer M35

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The Vollmer M 35 (also known as Vollmer-Maschinenkarabiner or MKb 35) was a series of experimental automatic rifles developed by Heinrich Vollmer in the interwar years. They were chambered in an intermediate cartridge that was co-developed with Gustav Genschow and Co. (GECO) starting in 1934, under a Heereswaffenamt contract.[1][2]

The M 35 was a gas-operated design, reminiscent of an earlier semi-automatic design of Vollmer—the 7.92×57mm Selbstladegewehr 29 (SG 29). Trials with Vollmer's Maschinenkarabine were conducted as early as 1935 at Biberach and later at Kummersdorf. The early version had a 20-round detachable box magazine and could fire at a rate of about 1,000 rpm. Development continued with the improved versions M 35A, M 35/II (1937) and M 35/III until 1938. The later versions had purposefully reduced rate of fire to only about 300–400rpm.[3] It weighted about 9 and 1/2 pounds (4.2 kg) and was bout 38 inches long (96 cm). About 25 prototypes were manufactured for testing.[1] The gun was apparently very expensive to manufacture, costing apparently 4000 Reichsmarks,[2] although this was the unit cost for the prototype series.[4]

The cartridge developed also had several variants 7.75×40.5 mm, 7.75×39.5mm, and possibly a 7.62mm version as well, and had approximately 55 mm total length. (The actual calibre was apparently 7.9mm, with a bullet 8.05mm in diameter.[5]) Muzzle velocity was about 700 m/s (2,280 feet per second). The boat-tailed bullet weighted 140 grains (9 grams).[6]

Ultimately, Nazi Germany would adopt a different intermediate cartridge and service assault rifle—the MKb 42 series leading to the Sturmgewehr 44. The GECO M 35 cartridge bare more dimensional similarity to the Soviet 7.62x39mm M43 cartridge than with the German 7.92×33mm Kurz used in the Sturmgewehr.[1][2]

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References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c C. J. Chivers (2010). The Gun. Simon & Schuster. pp. 162–163 and 166. ISBN 978-1-4391-9653-3. 
  2. ^ a b c Chris McNab (2001). The AK-47. MBI Publishing Company. pp. 14–15. ISBN 978-0-7603-1025-0. 
  3. ^ Chris McNab (2013). German Automatic Rifles 1941-45: Gew 41, Gew 43, FG 42 and StG 44. Osprey Publishing. pp. 10–11. ISBN 978-1-78096-387-7. 
  4. ^ O. Janson, "Utvecklingen av stormkarbinen och de moderna automatkarbinerna", 2005-10-12, retrieved 2013-7-19
  5. ^ Anthony G Williams, ASSAULT RIFLES AND THEIR AMMUNITION: HISTORY AND PROSPECTS, retrieved 2013-7-19
  6. ^ P. Labbett, German Assault Rifle Ammunition Developments 1935-45, Guns Review, Volume 24, No. 4, April 1984.

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For photographs see: