Rare: Asahi Firearms
WWII German MG34
Sourced to order
Rare Asahi (gas blowback) MG34 complete with anti-aircraft site.
Superb build and quality. Last produced in the 90's.
Sourced to order. Prices range from 1500 GBP+. Please contact for more info.
The Maschinengewehr 34, or MG34, was a German machine gun first issued in 1934, considered by many to be the first modern general-purpose machine gun. It was used as the primary infantry machine gun during the 1930s, and remained as the primary tank and aircraft defensive weapon. It was intended that it would be replaced in infantry service by the related MG42, but there were never enough of the new design to go around, and MG34s soldiered on in all roles until the end of World War II.
The MG34 was designed primarily by Heinrich Vollmer from Mauser Werke, based on the recently introduced Rheinmetall designed Solothurn 1930 (MG30) that was starting to enter service in Switzerland. The principle changes were to move the feed mechanism to a more convienient location on the left of the breech, and the addition of a shroud around the barrel. Changes to the operating mechanism improved the rate of fire to between 800 and 900 RPM.
The MG34 could use both magazine-fed and belt-fed 7.92mm ammunition. Belts were supplied in 50-round single strips or 250-round boxes. The drums held either 50 rounds in the standard version, or 75 in the "double drum" version. Early guns had to be modified to use the drums by replacing a part on the gun, but this modification was later supplied from the factory.
In the light machine gun role it was used with a bipod and weighed only 12.1 kg, considerably less than other machine guns of the era. In the medium machine gun role it could be mounted on one of two tripods, a smaller one weighing 6.75 kg, the larger 23.6 kg. The larger included a number of features making it useful for a number of roles. The legs could be extended to allow it to be used in the anti-aircraft role (and many were), and when lowered it could be placed to allow the gun to be fired "remotely" while it swept an arc in front of the mounting with fire, or aimed through a periscope attached to the tripod.
By the late 1930s an effort had started to simplify the MG34, leading to the MG42. The MG42's square barrel cover made it unsuitable for use in tank cupolas however, and the MG34 remained in production until the end of the war for this role.