Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Discussions on the small arms used by the Axis forces.
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stg 44
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Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Post by stg 44 » 27 Oct 2017 00:24

https://www.forgottenweapons.com/early- ... sh-wz-38m/
The wz.38M, designed by Józef Maroszek, was the winner of Poland’s 1934 self-loading rifle trials. Production began in 1938, but only about 150 examples had been produced when Germany invaded and production was halted (the Germans decided not to continue production).
Courtesy of the gun nerds I found out about the Polish Garand (but simpler and better), just about to enter production in 1939. Why did the Germans not adopt this rifle??? It appear to have been FAR better than the Gewehr 41, ready to enter production before the G41 was close to ready to enter production, part of the tooling was already there, and it was already in 7.92mm caliber. Is there any documentation about why the Germans did not continue with the production of the rifle or develop it further?

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Poot
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Re: Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Post by Poot » 28 Oct 2017 19:36

I doubt we'll be able to come up with the documents from the trials, but my guess is that it suffered from NMHS, 'Not Made Here Syndrome.' That could be said of many countries, but the Germans also captured hundreds of thousands of Polish Mauser rifles and used them, but copied none.
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Grzesio
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Re: Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Post by Grzesio » 30 Oct 2017 13:27

There's a tale about a group of German soldiers seen in Poland during the war, armed with wz. 38M rifles.
But the rifles could be misidentified, of course.

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Poot
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Re: Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Post by Poot » 30 Oct 2017 23:53

Grzesio wrote:There's a tale about a group of German soldiers seen in Poland during the war, armed with wz. 38M rifles.
But the rifles could be misidentified, of course.
I wouldn't doubt that at all, just like the many photos available showing Wehrmacht troops fielding Soviet SVT-40 rifles. Using your enemy's weapons is one thing, copying them directly is quite another.
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CroGer
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Re: Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Post by CroGer » 07 Nov 2017 22:28

"Not made here" couldn't have been a factor. Germany produced hundred thousands of foreign pistols (over 300k belgian Hi Power, over 300k polish radom, over half a million czech vz24 and vz 27, almost 400K FN 1910-22 and so on), and they did produce ZB vz 30- and ZB vz 37-MGs, albeit only in small numbers (russian souces claim that the germans produced 27.450 ZB vz30 [of a total of 62.000 used] and used 12.676 ZB vz 37).

The SS used several weapons from both czech stock, as well as their own development from czech prototypes. It was Albert Speer who told the SS to stop their prodction and research on guns, because they were a strain on the budget and slowed down the overall output.

The Wz M38M wasn't successful anywhere. It also wasn't reproduced after the war. It was probably too unreliable, expensive, and complicated to clean/repair. As far as I understand it, China also had bought some of them, but there was no desire in China to have any more of these guns.

It should be noted that Hitler tought that handguns would play only a minor factor in modern warfare. To understand hitler you have to understand him as a WW1 veteran. In WW1 rifles only caused 5% of the casualties. And now they had tanks, armoured cars, aircraft and multi-purpose machine guns. SMGs were originally only produced for Panzer-Troops, so using SMGs like the finns did in the winter war wasn't even part of this rationale.

If you buy the book "Sturmgewehr!" you'll get an exellent overview of all the german weapons programms from WW1-the end of WW2. If Hitler wanted to arm his army with semi-automatic, he could have.

I love Forgotten Weapons, but you have to accept that Ian like "funky guns" and does not test them for battlefield conditions (unless he does mudtesting on InRange-TV).
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Re: Wz. 38M: why did the Germans not adopt it?

Post by Gulo » 16 Jan 2018 22:26

CroGer wrote: The Wz M38M wasn't successful anywhere. It also wasn't reproduced after the war. It was probably too unreliable, expensive, and complicated to clean/repair.
As far as I remember Forgotten Weapons the guy said that the rifle was just a prototype. There was no production line, which is why the Germans could not mass-produced it like a Vis / Radom pistol. After the war, the communists used Soviet weapons and did not copy pre-war models. Besides, the semi-auto rifle with no detachable magazine was not great in 1945. The construction was also expensive in production, as far as I remember the statement of the Polish gun-expert, a little more expensive than Garand (although M38M had fewer parts).
CroGer wrote: In WW1 rifles only caused 5% of the casualties.
Yes, but remember morale. If you have an old bolt-action rifle and your enemy has a semi-automatic or assault rifle, you will probably be afraid.
Of course, if your friend rides a tank next to you, then maybe it's not a big problem. But, as I said in a conversation about pistols - theoretically they are not important, but in reality sometimes a soldier has to fight in a tight room and then suddenly the quality of small arms decides life or death. It is not important for him at this moment that his army has great tanks and planes.

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