Dec 1, 2010

Hellenic Army MG 3

MG3 Front. Sight, recoil booster, bi-pod


The MG3 (an abbreviation for the German word Machinengewehr meaning "machine gun, model 3") is a direct descendent of the WWII era German machine gun, the MG42, which was in turn, an improvement the MG34, originally developed by Metall und Lackierwarenfabrik Johannes Grossfuss AG, which entered production in 1942. The MG42 was one of the most terrifying infantry weapons of its time (nicknamed "Hitler's chain saw" and "Hitler's zipper" because of its high ROF.)The original MG34/42 was chambered to fire 8mm (7.92x57mm) Mauser ammunition, the same rifle ammunition used in the Mauser K98 bolt-action rifle service rifle. In 1959 the MG42 was rechambered to fire 7.62x51mm NATO and redesignated the MG42/59. In 1968 the MG3 officially entered production.

The MG3 is still in production and in service world wide. It is one of the most popular MGs ever produced (it is one of the most reliable weapons in service today and has one of the highest ROFs for any single barreled machine gun.) The MG3 currently serves as the primary MG in the German army (Bundeswehr) where it serves as an infantry support weapon (it can either be carried and fired off of an attached bipod by an individual soldier, or tripod mounted and fired from a defensive position.) as well as a vehicular MG (the MG3 is used as an anti air/ GP MG on all German armored vehicles, such as the Leopard II and the Marder.)


The MG3 is air cooled, belt fed, short recoil operated, and capable of firing on full automatic only. It fires from the open bolt position to facilitate cooling. ROF exceeds 1200 rounds per minute. Barrels are changed every 150 rounds or so to extend barrel life and prevent thermal damage to the barrels. Barrels are replaced by pushing the barrel locking lever (located on the right hand side of the receiver) forward to unlock the barrel. Once unlocked, the barrel can be withdrawn and a cold barrel inserted and locked into place. This entire process can be accomplished in as few as 5 seconds. Since the weapon fires from the open bolt, the chamber remains empty, which helps facilitates these quick barrel changes. The bolt operates off of a dual roller principle, where by the bullet cartridge pushes out a pair of rollers when chambered to lock the bolt and barrel together. Once fired, the barrel/bolt group recoil a short distance whereupon the spent cartridge is extracted, unlocking the rollers, and allowing the bolt to travel freely to the rear, ejecting the spent casing.

Video with MG3 filmed in slow motion

Video with MG3 shooting
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