Military Wiki

Heckler & Koch G3

The G3 is an assault rifle chambered in 7.62.51mm developed in the 1950s by the German armament manufacturer Heck & Koch GmbH (H&K.) The G3A3 (A4) is a Selective-fire automatic weapon that employs a roller-delayd blowback perating system. The two-piece bolt assembly consists of a breech (bolt head) and bolt carrier. The bolt is held in battery by two sliding cylindrical rollers that engage locking recesses in the barrel extension. The breech is opened when both rollers are compressed inward against camming surfaces driven by the rearward pressure of the expanding gases upon the bolt head. As the rollers move inward, recoil energy is transferred to the locking piece and bolt carrier which begin to withdraw while the bolt head slowly moves rearward in relation to the bolt carrier. As the bolt carrier clears the rollers, pressure in the bore drops to a safe level, the bolt head is caught by the bolt carrier and moves to the rear as one unit, continuing the operating cycle. The bolt also features an anti-bounce mechanism that prevents the bolt from bouncing off the barrel's breech surface. The spring-powered claw extractor is also contained inside the bolt while the lever ejector is located inside the trigger housing (actuated by the recoiling bolt).


During the early to mid-1950 to RFA (West Germany) as well as other countries of NATO had need of rearming their armies with the standard 7.62 x51mm cartridge. Initially Germans preferred the FN FAL Belgian, they approved the appointment G1 in 1956. Due to obvious reasons Germany wanted to manufacture them in its own territory and tried to buy a manufacturing license from the SCA, but Belgium refused the application, so Germany turned to another project, derived from the Spanish CETME. Germany bought the manufacturing license and transferred the project to the company Heckler & Koch, located in Oberndorf, with some modifications. The draft was approved by the Bundeswehr rifle under the designation of G-3 (Gewehr 3) in 1959, which is used from that date until 1995 by the German army, and beyond. The G-3 and its various versions are the main weapon of more than 50 countries including: Greece, Iran, Mexico, Norway, Pakistan, Portugal, Sweden, Turkey. Over the past 40 years it has been produced in Greece, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey and Portugal. The major reason for the popularity of G-3 rifle is that it is the construction and maintenance simpler and cheaper than its main rivals contemporaries, FN FAL and the American M-14. HK continued its production until the Ides of 2000-2001, when she disappeared from the catalogs of the company. However, HK also produces a range of weapons that is based on the G-3, as the submachine HK MP-5 Size 9mm NATO the HK33 5.56mm caliber, the HK-23 and HK-21, 7.62 caliber machine guns, besides the PSG-1 sniper rifle (also in caliber 7.62), among others. In general, the G-3 rifle is one of the best 7.62 assault rifles in the world, he is versatile, reliable, controllable and inexpensive, and is also very popular in the civilian market, and was only produced to operate in semiautomatic known initially as HK-41 and later as HK-91. The G-3 works with the system simple delayed recoil action also known as delayed blowback, And there are two rollers that delay the opening of the breech. This system was developed at the Mauser at the end of the 2nd World War and refined in Spain. The rifle has most of its components made in pressed steel so its construction is less complicated than its contemporaries. The G-3 is made of pressed steel almost entirely, the case of breech is made in steel plates, the grip, the trigger unit and its housing are either steel, the guard is also made in pressed steel, and in 1960 there was an update and went to make some parts of the weapon as the polymer trigger guard and trigger of the dwelling unit, these updates are called G-G-3A3 and 3A4. HK in 2000 through its subsidiary in Luxembourg made a version of the G3 rifle for hunting called HSG1.


  • G3: Original version with wooden handle and shaft;
  • G3A1: G3 variant with folding stock;
  • G3A2: Development of the G3 with a new tube slide;
  • G3A3: Improving the G3A2 with new flame suppressor, and new rear sight, plastic handle and shaft;
  • G3A4: Variant of the G3A3 with retractable buttstock;
  • G3A5: Description of G3A3 manufactured under license in Denmark;
  • G3A6: Description of G3A3 manufactured under license in Iran;
  • G3A7: Description of G3A3 manufactured under license in Turkey;
  • HSG1: Description of HSG1 manufactured under license in Luxembourg.
  • AK-4: Description of Ak4 manufactured under license in Sweden.


  • Caliber: 7.62mm NATO (.308 win)
  • Action: Roller-delayed blowback
  • Weight: 4.5 kg
  • Overall length: 1023 mm
  • Barrel length: 450 mm (315 mm on G3KA4 model)
  • Magazine capacity: 20 rounds

See also

This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).