Panzerbucshe 39 (PzB 39)
Pzb 39 is a German anti-tank rifle used in World War II. It was designed to be a lightweight, portable, and powerful weapon that could penetrate enemy tanks’ armor. The Pzb 39 could fire armor-piercing rounds that could penetrate up to 50mm of armor.
The German PzB 39 was a redesigned PzB 38 without most of the disadvantages of the PzB 38. It was a simple and light weapon that used the pistol grip to open and close the firing chamber. When it was pushed forward, the block slid down, expelling the 318 casings and opening the firing chamber to load a new cartridge. To facilitate the charge, two 5 rd. Ammunition boxes per side, with a capacity of 10 rds.
Parts of the Panzerbucshe 39
- Muzzle brake and sighting systems.
- Bipod of Mg-34
- Box with ten cartridges, one to each side.
- Trigger and grip of the pistol.
- folding Butt.
- Length: Extended Butt: 1.62m. Folded
- Butt: 1.28m
- The length of the barrel: 1.08m.
- Weight: 12.6kg.
- Muzzle Velocity: 1190-1210 meters per second.
Approximately 40,000 Pzb 39 were made by the time production ceased in mid-1941. The ammunition for this rifle was the Patrone 318 S.m.K(H) (Spitzer mit Kern, Pointed Hart = with armor-piercing core). It could penetrate (at angles up to 90º with respect>to the vertical), 30mm. at distances up to 100 meters and penetrate up to 25mm at distances out to 300 meters and also was able to chamber the tear gas load that had been problematic for the PzB 38.
Use of Pzb 39 in combat
The PzB39 was first combat-tested in France in 1940. (Approximately 300 in service). Although effective against light armor, particularly the armored cars, its’ shortcomings were evident when used against the Char B and the English tanks supporting the infantry. It also saw action in Crete and during the first months of the invasion of the USSR. It was used profusely by the Fallschirmjäger and Kavallerie due to the relatively lightweight and folding butt that made it suitable for such duties.
Pzb 39 in Invasion of Poland (1939)
The PzB 39 saw its first combat use during the German invasion of Poland in September 1939. It was used by German infantry and anti-tank units to destroy Polish tanks and other armored vehicles.
Pzb 39 in Battle of France (1940)
The PzB 39 was used extensively by German forces during the Battle of France. It was used to target French and British tanks and was effective against the lighter tanks of the Allied forces.
Pzb 39 in Operation Barbarossa (1941)
The PzB 39 was used by German forces during the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. It was used to target Soviet tanks and other armored vehicles and was effective against the lighter tanks and armored cars of the Red Army.
Pzb 39 in North African Campaign (1941-1943)
The PzB 39 was used by German and Italian forces in the North African Campaign. It was used to target British tanks but was less effective against the heavier armor of the last British tanks.
Pzb 39 in Eastern Front (1941-1945)
The PzB 39 was used extensively by German forces on the Eastern Front against the Soviet Union. It was used to target Soviet tanks and other armored vehicles. Still, it was gradually phased out in favor of more effective anti-tank weapons such as the Panzerfaust and Panzerschreck.