Heckler & Koch, the manufacturer of the G 36, did additional testing and issued a statement saying that the weapon fulfilled all the specifications that the German military had required. They also took legal steps to defend their reputation and a German court issued a verdict in their favor.

The problem is that the G 36 is incredibly accurate under normal shooting conditions. However, after it has fired many thousands of rounds, it loses a lot more of its accuracy than other weapons. But even then, it is still an exceptionally accurate rifle.

I carried it in the two round burst configuration (double tap) and in combat range testing it would place the rounds between 1/2 minute of angle and 1 minute of angle separation in the 25M to 40M range. What that means is that the two rounds, fired one, right after the other, created a much more significant wound channel than one round alone would have created.  Firing two round bursts of 5.56mm. We originally used the Federal XM855 62-Grain FMJ Green Tip. Then we used the Hornady 55-grain GMX. For our purposes, the performance of both rounds was equal.

The bitches and gripes from the German Army never translated to my use of the weapon in any situation, and I was sad when I had to turn it in when I retired and moved on to other work, where I carried the M-4 – a nice weapon, but not the G-36.


  1. I will take your word on it.

    I’ve never fired anything in full auto, or anything capable of more than one shot per trigger pull. I always liked the 3 round burst the M-16 and it’s variants could do, and having a weapon that could do a double tap with one pull of the trigger seems to me to be a very useful thing.

    • Are there any ranges in Colorado that allow you to pay to shoot fully automatic weapons for shits and giggles?

  2. Barrel trunion press molded into polymer was not really designed for the ridiculous heat of the sandbox. At the time of its conception the Bundeswehr was more concerned with hordes of Soviets racing across the steppes from the east. Latvia and Lithuania have had no issues reported as well as a lot of other countries and continue to use the G36.

    • It’s a very good rifle, Klaus. I think that the heating issues were over blown, and then reported to the press, who wrote an insane story without sufficient foundation. What else is new?

  3. M14, 16A1, the pig and Ma Deuce, were all of my full auto experience and it’s been a few years. The Germans generally make nice stuff though I never got to try any.

  4. Specifications for an item created by government/bureaucrats/office dwellers frequently fail to hold up to real world use. Add in the fact that some users invariably push equipment beyond intended levels of abuse and the results are predictable.

    • The Germans wanted a rifle with several variants. The G-36C (C for commando because of the 11″ barrel) is the smallest and most compact. And as everyone seems to demand, it should be all things to all people. Very high expectations of a perfect rifle. And it wasn’t to some people, but I never had cause to complain.

    • The Sten/Sterling was a very different firearm from the G-36, but I agree with you, fun. And it would be a hoot to shoot one the next time I’m at your compound…if you want to break out the good stuff…

  5. Pretty sure the main problem with Germany and the Bundeswehr is that both of them became little more than a welfare program.

    Judging by the reports of friends who served alongside them in Afghanistan, and the public reports of readiness and operability back in the homeland.


Comments are closed.