Object Title

Centrefire automatic silenced submachine gun - M3A1 (Suppressed)

Centrefire automatic silenced submachine gun - M3A1 (Suppressed)

Date

about 1944-1945

Object Number

PR.9014 A

Provenance

Gifted with the Pattern Room by the Ministry of Defence, August 2005

Physical Description

Of all steel consrtuction and fitted with an integral suppressor. There is a wire frame telescoping stock. The M3A1 is an automatic, air-cooled blowback-operated weapon that fired from an open bolt. Constructed of plain .060 in. thick sheet steel, the M3 receiver is stamped in two halves that are then welded together. The M3 is striker-fired, with a fixed firing pin contained inside the bolt. The bolt is drilled longitudinally to support two parallel guide rods, upon which are mounted twin return (recoil) springs. The A1 version has a finger operated cocking action as opposed to the lever operated version of the M3.

Materials

Dimensions

BarrelLength13.75inches
BarrelLength350mm
OverallLength28.75inches
OverallLength730mm
OverallWeight4.69kg

Firearms/Artillery

Serial Number 669246

Calibre

.45 in

Inscriptions and Marks

Maker's mark
'Guide' over US Army ornance stamp over U.S. NO
magazine well
stamp
model designation
SUB-MACH GUN CAL 45 M3A1
magazine well
stamp

Associations

Notes

OSS ordered1,000 suppressors for the M3A1 submachine gun from the High Standard Manufacturing Company in May 1944. They were to be built on barrels supplied by General Motors Guide Lamp Division. Shipments of suppressed barrels commenced in August 1944.
The barrels were to be mated to standard issue M3A1 submachine guns to create the OSS M3A1 Suppressed. In December 1944 a further 4,000 suppressed barrels were ordered from High Standard. The order was completed by September 1945 and almost all were put into store and not issued.
Most suppressed M3A1s were issued to the Far East Theatre and China.