Experience WWII’s First True Combat Rifles through .22 Replicas

German Sport Guns' StG44 comes in an authentic looking pine box.

German Sport Guns’ StG44 comes in an authentic looking pine box.

German Sport Guns’ StG44

Now for the StG44 for GSG, a gun which takes the replica .22 world to even greater heights in terms of authenticity.There is no nod with this weapon to modern shooting-it is an absolute dead ringer for the original.

Now, since I have never held an original StG so my comparison is based on what I have seen in pictures, but is sure feels right, in terms of the hardwood stocks, use of metal in the construction, and the weight, which is significant compared to modern assault rifles.

The StG44 ships with one 25 round magazine, which does have a witness port down the sides. With that high a capacity, the port is needed to allow proper loading of the magazine by pushing down on the side loading levers as capacity rises. Otherwise there is too much pressure put on the relatively delicate .22 rounds as they are being stacked into the mag.

One of the most unique aspects of the StG44 is how it ships. It comes packed into a pine wood crate manufactured by Amish Craftsmen, with rope handle sides. The carbine is shipped with the wood buttstock removed in the crate which keeps the size compact. A simple captive pin system allows the stock to be mounted and kept securely in place. On the top of the box is an etched Nazi style condor, and the ATI name. The condor is a close enough style to add to the realism of the gun, but not so close as to offend.

The StG44/.22 metal portions are all finished in a matte black.There is a sling swivel at the front of the upper near the front sight,and a cut through the wood stock for rear attachment. There is no sling included, which there should be, as the StG44/.22 weighs in at substantial 8 ½ lbs, three pounds more than the Chiappa M1-22. A sling would come in handy.

Of course, the operation is blowback. The magazine port cover opens and functions much in the way that it does on the AR-15, an idea that didn’t carry over to the AK, but obviously did on the AR.

The thumb safety is on the left side, and is position like, hmm the AR15, although it operates in the opposite direction in terms of the placement of the raised thumb portion, as the Ar15. I’m beginning to think that Eugene Stoner may have borrowed as much from the original StG44 as Mikhail Kalishikov did.

The magazine release takes the form of a large checkered button on the left side of the frame directly behind the magazine well. It works positively and is best actuated with the thumb of the left hand (for right hand shooters).

The charging handle is also on the left side at the top of the receiver and can be used to lock the bolt back without the magazine in place. Below the adjustable rear sight which is adjustable for both windage and elevation. On the left side of the magazine well are the markings “Schmeisser” and “GSG-StG44”, followed by the American Tactical diamond logo.

5 thoughts on “Experience WWII’s First True Combat Rifles through .22 Replicas

  1. Gunguyohio

    My wife purchased the STG 44 for me last Spring. I have had a blast with it. I was concerned about it shooting very low . The rear sight is replicated so closely to the original that it isn’t set up for .22 rimfires . A simple fix is to take the rear sight apart., clear down to the screw pylons on the barrel. stack 3 small washers on each pylon and reassemble the rear sight . This puts the sight adjustments into alignment and I was impressed ,as is everyone else who has fired my rifle, with it’s accuracy. Can hardly wait for the MP-40 replica to hit the shelves.

  2. markpro

    I own an STG44 and it is one of the best .22s in my safe. I also own real M1 carbines and I don’t know where you get your ammo but right now I can get .30 carbine as low as $12 for 50 rounds of FMJ compared to .22 ammo (if you can find it) for as much and in most cases even more than the .30 carbine. I also own other Chiappa .22 replicas like the 1911/22 and yes there junk. But I really do enjoy the STG44. Its one of those guns that works better as a point and shoot than actually aiming. Plus at over 8lbs NO recoil at all. Every shot follows the first. But at over 5 bills one must really want the STG.

  3. Lt. Dan

    The STG44 is a blast to shoot. Companies producing new and interesting products is what’s keeping interest going in the firearms world. Some very early ones had a fit issue with the stock. Mine is tight. I love it! Puts the fun back in shooting.

  4. bhp0

    Like mostly everything else these days its a hunk of junk. The German .22 look alike assault rifle is made with a junk zinc frame as is the new Walther PP .22 pistol. Pure trash. The .22 rifle’s stock was also found to be attached in a very flimsy way which resulted In the stock wobbling when in use. What a piece of trash.

    O course when one looks at .22 rifles and pistols darn few were ever made of quality. The few that were are long gone except the old Browning bottom ejecting rifle that has been around since 1900. Buy one of those if you want quality, the balance of most .22 firearms today are just pure junk.

  5. whooziss

    FWIW, the Chiappa .22 LR M-1 Carbine replica was tested by the NRA, and written up in the American Rifleman some time ago, and was not highly thought of. Apparently the ignition/combustion/firing (whatever you want to call it) gasses tend to blow right back into the shooter’s face, which isn’t cool. I dunno if they do or not, that is just what the article said.

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