7.92 mm M.G. 34/41: Dual-Purpose Machine Gun

7.92 mm M.G. 34/41: Dual-Purpose Machine Gun

The German 7.92 mm machine gun, M.G. 34/41, represents one of the later developments of the M.G. 34. These developments occurred in the following order: the M.G. 34; M.G. 34 modified; M.G. 34s; M.G. 34/41. In the course of development, the original pattern of the weapon has been largely retained, but each stage has tended toward simplification and elimination of machined parts.

The M.G. 42 is a new design but has the same tactical employment. It is distinguished by a high cyclic rate of fire and fewer machined parts. The M.G. 42 is described on a separate page.

The M.G. 34 modified is used principally in armored vehicles and differs from the M.G. 34 in that it has a heavier barrel jacket adapted to fit ball-type tank hull mounts, a simplified firing-pin nut lock, and bipod clamps for attaching bipod in emergency use; it has no A.A. sight bracket. It can also be mounted on antiaircraft and heavy ground mounts.

The M.G. 34s and the M.G. 34/41 are identical in appearance, except for the barrel jackets, but are marked as distinct models. They differ from the M.G. 34 as follows: provision for full-automatic fire only; simplified trigger group; shorter barrel with enlarged muzzle end; elimination of firing-pin lock nut; large buffer group; heavier recoil spring; modified feed mechanism. These models can be used on antiaircraft mounts but appear designed for the heavy ground mount.


Caliber        7.92 mm (.312 in.)
Weight 24 1/2 lb. w/o bipod
Weight of barrel 3 3/4 lb.
Length 44 1/4 ins.
Length of barrel 19 3/4 ins.
Muzzle velocity* 2,500-3,000 f/s
Rate of fire 800-900 rds./min. cyclic
Operation Recoil, gas assisted
Ammunition All 7.92 mm Mauser ground types

*Muzzle velocity varies according to ammunition used.

German: p. 214

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