STEN Mk II 9mm machine carbine

01. Original name Sten Mark II 9mm Machine Carbine   
02. Other official names Machine Carbine, N.O.T. 40/1  
03. Popular names Sten Gun  
04. Chamberings 9mm Parabellum  
05. Designed by Major Reginald Shepherd and Harold Turpin  
06. Design date 1940-1941  
07. In service date(s) 1941  
08. Adopted by UK and Commonwealth but also used by resistance groups in Occupied Europe and even the Wehrmacht  
09. Production quantities Official figures indicate around 4.3 million were made, but given significant numbers were made in underground workshops and factories, the true number will never be known  
10. Mechanism Blowback with an open bolt, loaded with a thirty-two-round magazine  
11. Weight 7.1lbs (3.2kg)  
12. Mountings Sling, bayonet (Mk. V)  
13. Practicality in action Medium-to-High – a compact, lightweight, fully automatic weapon useful in close quarters combat, balanced by issues around the magazine’s ammunition feed  
14. Comments / Other information The Sten Gun was designed to fulfil an urgent requirement for a cheap, easy-to-produce submachine gun. The UK had already produced another design, known as the Lanchester (based on the German MP28 Bergmann) and ordered large numbers of Thompson submachine guns from the USA but demand for these sort of weapons was high, especially with the widespread use of the MP38 and MP40 by the Germans. There were four main production variants of the Sten: Mk. I / Mk. I*, Mk. II, Mk. III and Mk. V (the Mk. IV only achieved prototype status). The Mk. I, III and V were designed primarily for ground troops while the Mk. II was designed for use by the airborne forces. It’s ability to be partially disassembled and configured for air drops proved useful in supplying them to resistance groups all over Europe. Production standards quickly increased, with the Mk. V being the best of the series with a high standard of manufacture and finish. It became the standard British Army submachine gun after World War II. Even so, the problem wasn’t with the overall standard of production as they were manufactured to tight tolerances but with the ammunition feed. The magazines had a double column, single feed arrangement, whereas most other SMGs have a double column, double feed arrangement. Any ingress of dirt or debris could cause feeding problems or damage the magazine lips, which required an exact 8° angle to function properly. Captured examples were used by the Wehrmacht, where the Mk. I and Mk. I* were designated the MP 748(e) and the Mk. II as the MP 749(e). The Germans also made a direct copy of the Mk. II known as the Gerät Potsdam in late 1944 as well as the MP 3008 in early 1945, the main difference being the magazine was held vertically rather than horizontally. The Sten was involved in the assassinations of both Reinhard Heydrich and Indira Ghandi.. Sten Mark II 9mm Machine Carbine (UK) (WW2) Introduced 1941; chambered for the 9mm Parabellum round; cyclic rate about 550rpm: weight without magazine 6.65lb; 32-round box magazine (fitted horizontally on left hand side). Used by all British Commonwealth and Empire forces and also widely used by resistance groups.