View Full Version : The Italian advanced assault smg: the OG 44 Armaguerra Cremona

10-13-2011, 03:29 PM
In 1943, in the desperate research of modern weapons, the Italian army was looking for (among maaany other things) a very modern assault smg for infantry, like the contemporary German MP 43.
Responding to this request, the ingeneer Giovanni Oliani created an interesting "moschetto automatico" (automatic rifle), with a caliber of 9x19mm Parabellum. The prototype was produced by the company ARMAGUERRA of Cremona.
The prototypes and the tests were completed in 1944, so the new assault rifle received the name O(liani) G(iovanni) 44. This was the defintive assault smg that followed a previous prototype called OG43 (the OG43 vaguely inspired the Israelian UZI of 5 years later...).
The RSI war ministry asked the company to start a mass production, that, like many other Italian military productions of WW2, never started. However, a few specimens were produced towards the end of the war, and the foreplay for a larger production by the famous "Fabbrica d'Armi Beretta" had just started when the war finished.
This weapon, however, was an important "step forward" compared with s.machine-guns of the second World War; in fact the OG44 introduced a "slim frame" technology: that is, a configuration that has approximate a "L" shape influencing the weapon ballistics.
During the shot, the weight of the longest part of the weapon "moves" toward the bar, so as to balance the weapon during the burst. This great technique was later copied by famous sub-machine guns such as the Franchi LF57 and the WALTHER MP-L.
The OG44 was a blowback weapon with Selective Fire (with a cycle of 500 rounds per minute), and had ventilation holes along the barrel with a diameter of 1.5 mm.
It could be set with a fixed wooden stock or a retractile metallic one.
It used loaders of 25 shots, but to accelerate the use by the RSI armed forces it was also equipped with the common loaders for Beretta MAB 38, with 20, 30 and 40 shots.
The OG44 had a barrel 292 mm long, was 788 mm long itself, and had a weight of 3.5 kg with the wooden stock and without loader.

10-13-2011, 03:58 PM
If anyone would like to post pics with RSI soldiers managing the OG44... he's welcome :D

10-13-2011, 06:18 PM
Because I've started this discussion about the Italian assault smg, I'd like to add some information about another Italian smg almost unknown, more than the OG44, the Isotta Fraschini smg. The MAB 38 is very well known, the TZ 45 and the FNAB 43 are quite-a bit known (for people interested, see the thread "Italian infantry weapons"), the OG44 is very little known and the Isotta Fraschini smg is almost unknown.
Also the name of this smg is simply "Isotta Fraschini" smg.
During the war IF company built, about military equipment, first of all aircraft engines, then AA mgs, and finally trucks.
The production of this smg, as often, in small numbers, started late in the war, a few months before the war was over. Surely this project was supervised directly by engineer Albertini, whose name appears on the breech of the few specimens survived (survived among an already low number of specimens producted).
The IF studied, since the second half of 1943 a new submachine gun that, as its main feature, should have very low times and costs of production: especially using techniques known in the aereonautical constructions, with sheet metal instead of milled one.
The IF factory of small firearms was in Cavaria, near Varese. When (following the fall of the front of the Po river and the subsequent rout of the Italo-German troops) the insurrection of the partisan forces erupted in Milan and Varese since april 25 1945, the IF factory was occupied by the insurgents and the production was stopped. The few IF smgs found at Cavaria on the production-line were taken by the local partisans. Before, thanks to company's registers, we know that the smgs had been delivered to the RSI Nembo paratroopers of the near ANR base of Tradate, and to the Xa MAS garrison in Sesto Calende; apparently no IF smgs were delivered to the XVI Black Brigade “Dante Gervasini” of Varese, or to other units of the Republican Army.
The IF smg size is 83 cm with the crutch explained, only 61 if that piece is folded. The weight is 3.5 kg including the empty loader, while the length of the barrel is 27 cm in total. About the rate of fire, it is assumed a value of six hundred and fifty or seven hundred shots per minute; more than a good value, however, for such a weapon, based on the premise of simplicity and speed of construction.

10-13-2011, 06:25 PM
I add other pics

10-29-2011, 05:12 AM
My dear DVX, it may be really hard to find pictures, given the limited number of copies of this weapon produced. I look around but unless you come across pictures of a private collector, it may well be impossible to find.
friendships Fred

10-31-2011, 08:55 PM
My dear DVX, it may be really hard to find pictures, given the limited number of copies of this weapon produced. friendships Fred

Perhaps I've found something, anyway not the OG44.
Fred, what do you think? In your opinion this Xa marņ (he seems an older NCO) inspected by the German officer, what kind of smg is taking on the shoulders?

Or it's a Fnab 43, but doesn't seem, or it's a IF smg... apparently the second more than the first. Unfortunatly the pic is of low quality in general and the smg appears very dark, too...
For me an IF possibly.

12-30-2011, 03:46 PM
It had some similarities with the german "Volkskarabiner" designs, very nice topic, grazie DVX

12-31-2011, 07:55 AM
Hello DVX, I asked the question to one of the members of Italy 1939 45 and the weapon that the sailors carry, look like the TZ45, but it is not on.
Friendly Fred