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VollmerM35
Vollmer M35
Country of origin

Nazi Germany

Designer(s)

Heinrich Vollmer
GECO

Year(s) designed

1930s

Production began

1935

Production ended

1938

Number built

Estimated 3

Weapon type

Automatic rifle

Caliber

7.7×40.5mm
7.75×39.5mm
Possibly a 7.62mm variant

Action

Gas-operated with Bang gas trap system

Overall length

38 inches (96 centimeters)

Weight

9.5 pounds (4.2 kilograms)

Magazine/Cylinder capacity

20 round detachable box magazine

Cyclic rate

1000 RPM (early prototypes)
300-400 RPM (later prototypes)

The Vollmer M35 is a prototype Nazi automatic rifle.

HistoryEdit

The rifle was designed by Heinrich Vollmer. It was chambered in an intermediate cartridge that was co-developed by Gustav Genschow and Co., also known as GECO, under a Heereswaffenamt (German Army Weapons Agency) contract. The weapon was developed for both the Reichswehr and the Deutsches Heer, with the Deutsches Heer testing the weapon first. However, Nazi Germany decided to adopt a different intermediate cartridge and assault rifle, leading to the MkB 42 which would likewise lead to the StG 44; the reason as to why the M35 was not adopted was because it was regarded as being too expensive to mass produce.

Design DetailsEdit

The M35 was gas-operated, and its operation was very similar to an older weapon made by Vollmer, the SG 29. Trials with this weapon were conducted in Biberach as early as 1935, later moving to Kummersdorf. Early prototypes fed from a 20 round detachable box magazine, and fired at an astounding 1000 rounds per minute. Later prototypes had the rate of fire intentionally reduced to 300-400 RPM.

All of the weapons used a Bang gas trap system which would later be seen in the Gewehr 41 design.

AmmunitionEdit

KurzGECO

A 7.75×39.5mm round (left) compared with the 7.92x33mm Kurz bullet.

The weapon uses the unusual 7.7×40.5mm or the 7.75×39.5mm cartridges. However, the M35's actual caliber is apparently 7.9mm with a bullet 8.05mm in diameter. This boat-tailed bullet weighed 9 grams, or 140 grains. Oddly enough, the 7.62x39mm M43 cartridge used by the Soviets in their AK-47 bore more similarity to the Vollmer's cartridge than the German Kurz cartridge did.

ReferencesEdit