Non Vi Sed Arte -- Not by Strength, by Guile
The LRDG -- AXIS WEAPONS

Numerous Enemy Weapons were used by the LRDG. They weapons were normally issued for a specific mission and returned once the mission was over. Of course, it was common for soldiers to sometimes keep captured weapons as a souvenier but this was not common or according to regulation.

Among the most commonly used enemy weapons were Italian and German Service pistols, German machinepistols, and occasionally German machineguns. Only one Italian machine gun was even considered worth using, that being the Model 35 Breda. And of course the Breda 20mm AT/AA gun was considered especially effective by just about every nation that encoutnered it. The following are examples of Enemy weapons that were found favorable by allied forces operating in the Desert Campaign. It is not a complete listing of all axis weapons. While the German Mauser rifle (98K) was an excellent rifle, it was not prefered over the SMLE. The less said about Italian rifles and machine guns, the better, but had a mission called for their use, they would have been issued..
The sleek Beretta M34 fired either 7.65mm or 9mm Short ammunition. It had about the same stopping power as the standard British revolver. Its only real advantage was its reliability, compact size and that it was automatic.

This pistol as well as the German PO8 Luger and P38 Walther were wonderful souveniers when a trooper managed to snag one.

Basic characteristics:
Ammunition: 7.65mm or 9mm short
Length: 6 inches
Barrel: 3.75 inches
Weight: 1 pound, 7.5 oz.
Magazine: 7
Muzzle velocity: 825 FPS



PO8, Luger (9mm Parabellum and sometimes 7.65mm )

C-96 Mauser (7.63mm Mauser or 9mm Parabellum)

P38 Walther (9mm Parabellum)
The Three most common German pistols during World War II were the (from top to bottom) Were the Luger, the Mauser and the Walther. The Mauser was never officially adopted by the German Army but was widely available throughout the Middle East as it was a very popular pistol. The Luger was obsolete by WWII but also very popular. The standard sidearm of the Werhmacht was the Walther P38. A relatively heavy pistol, by today's standards, it was robust and very reliable.


The MP38 and MP40 were the standard submachineguns for the German Army. Often called the Schmiesser because of a false beleif that Schmeisser had designed the weapon, the weapon was popular with all armies. It was the basis for the British Sten. Firing 9mm Parabellum and weighing a hefty 8.7 pounds it was an effective weapon out to about 100 meters.

The MP40 was a simplification of the MP38 relying on stamped metal for many of the earlier machined parts. Both weapons were reliable and prefered over the Sten.

Characteristics:
Operation: Fully automatic
Caliber: 9mm (.354 in)
Muzzle velocity: 380 mps (1247 fps)
Capacity: 32-round magazine
Weight: 3.97 kg (8.7 lbs)
Overall length: 83.2 cm (32.75 in with stock extended)
Rate of fire: 500 rounds per minute
Effective range: 100m (110 yds)



Due to restriction put upon Germany with the Versailles Treaty, they were limited to the number of heavy and medium MGs they could manufacture. In an effort to avoid the restrictions, the German, revolutionized the concept of the machinegun. Rather than manufacture different kinds of MGs the Germans developed what would later be known as a General Purpose Machinegun (GPMG) with the introduction of the MG34. The MG34 was later simplified by using stamped parts and new quick change method for its barrel and became the MG42. After the War the MG42 was rechambered and became the MG42/59 and still later the MG1. It is still in use today. The MG42 saw limited use in the Desert Campaign.



MG34 Characteristics
Operation: Recoil
Caliber: 7.92 mm (.31 in)
Muzzle velocity: 2500 ft/sec
Feed: 50-100 round belts
Weight: 26.7lb
Rate of fire: 850 rounds per minute
Effective range: 1,000m (1,100 yds)
MG42 Characteristics
Operation: Recoil, Fully Automatic
Caliber: 7.92 mm (.31 in)
Muzzle velocity: 820 m/sec (2,690 ft/sec)
Feed Type: 50 and 250 round continuous link metal belts
Weight: 11.6 kg (25.6 lb)
Overall length: 121.9 cm (48 in)
Rate of fire: 1,200- 1,500 rounds per minute
Effective range: 1,000m (1,100 yds)




The M37 Breda was one of the two reliable Italian MGs, the other being its vehicle mounted cousin the M38. The M37 was strip fed while the M38 was magazine fed from the top. The M37 had twin spade handles and the M38 a pistol grip.

Operation: Gas
Caliber: 8mm
Muzzle velocity: 2500 ft/sec
Feed: 30 Feed tray
Weight:
Rate of fire: 6-850 rounds per minute
Effective range: 1,000m (1,100 yds)