3.7-cm Pak 36

The 3.7 cm Pak 36 was a 37-mm anti-tank gun used by the German Army’s infantry during the first two years of World War II. Although it had been in service with the Wehrmacht since 1934, it was designated 3.7-cm Panzerabwehrkanone 35/36 in 1936. It first saw combat action in the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939), being part of the armament used by the Condor Legion. Effective against light tanks, the 3.7cm Pak 36 was widely used during the Polish Campaign (1939), the Battle of France (1940), and Operation Barbarossa (1941). However, in late 1941, the Battle of Moscow saw the emergence of the Soviet T-34 tank, which proved to be immune to this German anti-tank gun. Thus, by 1942, it had been replaced from frontline service by the 5 cm Pak 38 and the 7.5 cm Pak 40; nevertheless, some German paratroop units re-activated it in late 1942 and continued to employ it until 1945, thanks to the availability of the Stielgranate 41, which was a new shaped-charge shell that could defeat any armor. All in all, it was a modern weapon when it came out in 1934 and was exported to several countries before the war broke out, being used as a model from which other anti-tank guns were developed.


Technical Characteristics

Mounted on a two-weeled carriage, it was fitted with tubular split trail legs and a sloping steel shield. The 3.7 cm Pak 36 featured a 1.66m-long rifled barrel, which fired 0.680-kg shells, with an effective range of 300 m. The maximum armor thickness it could punch through was 64mm at 100 m. With a total weight of 440 kg and an elevation of -8º to + 25º, it was operated by a crew of 3.

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Thor is Carlos Benito Camacho, the manager and writer of this blog.