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The first prototype of what will become the MP34 was designed by Louis Stange as a competitor to Bergmann's MP 18.1 but the project was finalized end of 1918.
As we know, Germany was prohibited to pursue works on this type of weapon after WW1.
Louis Stange will lead the team in charge of developing machine guns at Rheinmetall the MG 30 used in Switzerland and precursor of the MG34 one of the best GPMG ever made are his brainchilds despite the fact that he used a few designs that appeared the last two years of WW1.
He will be famous for the FG42, the german paratroopers automatic rifle. His 1945 belt fed FG 42 with its weak feeding mecanism will unfortunately be copied to produce the US M60
To avoid the Versailles Treaty limitations and produce the weapons secretly designed in Germany, Rheinmetall purchased the Swiss-company Waffenfabrik Solothurn.
The modernised design of the Rheinmetall SMG called Solothurn S1-100 will be produced on limited scale in Switzerland. In order to industrialize production on a large scale; Solothurn and Waffenfabrik Steyr, of Austria formed a trade company Steyr-Solothurn Waffen AG in Zurich, Switzerland
Austrian police adopted the S1-100 as MP.30, chambered for standard Austrian 9x23 Steyr. China bought a small quantity in 7,63x25 Mauser caliber. Portugal adopted it in 7,65x22 Parabellum in 1938, and in 1942 ordered more, this time in 9x19 Luger. South American customers bought a version in .45ACP
Austrian army adopted the S1-100 as Steyr MP.34, chambered for the powerful 9x25 Mauser ammunition. When Germany occupied Austria in 1938, the Austrian MP.30 and MP.34 were rebarrelled to use 9x19 and these weapons were issued to German troops as MP.34 ö
Except export production for Portugal and Venezuela in 1942, no MP 34 were produced after 1940 since the german administration had decided to use Steyr production capacity to manufacture the cheaper MP 40. The MP 34 was one of the best SMGs produced between 1930 and 1940 and the most expensive. Many of its innovative features will be used by others such as the mainspring located in the stock that will be used by Czech firearms manufacturers and later in the FAL
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