Friday 11 December 2020

Panzerfaust Manual

 "To Chiefs of Staff

Copy only for the 37th Tank Brigade

I attach the German instructions for using the Panzerfaust translated from German. Study these instructions with your personnel.

Attachment: instructions on two pages.

Chief of Staff of the 1st Mechanized Krasnograd Corps
Colonel Yershov
April 11th, 1945

Panzerfaust (small)

The Panzerfaust is your anti-tank weapon. With it, you can destroy any tank from up to 30 meters.

Read these instructions carefully.

The part in the front is the warhead. It contains the charge that can penetrate the thickest armour of any known type of tank. Behind it inside the tube is a propellant charge that shoots out the warhead. There is also a finned rod that flies out with the warhead.

Attention: the propellant charge is stored in the tube even when the warhead is screwed out. Do not press the trigger if the warhead is not present, or the rod will fly out.

When firing, a jet of flame shoots out of the back of the tube. Take care that no one is standing within 10 meters behind you. If firing from a slit trench, keep the back of the pipe above the ground if possible, otherwise your clothing can catch fire.
If the flame hits your comrades within 2 meters, it can be lethal.

How to prepare the Panzerfaust to fire:

Screw out the warhead and carefully place it aside. Keep the tube vertical (sight up). Remove the wooden ring, install the fuse face up, replace the wooden ring, insert primer charge #34 with the paper side down (the paper liner must be facing downwards towards the primer head). All of these are placed inside the wooden ring. Screw the warhead back on.
The fuse and primer operate like the stick grenade, the openings must coincide.

How to fire:

First of all, be calm.
Remove the safety pin. Raise the sight to the upper position. With the thumb, move the catch forward until you hear the characteristic click and the red trigger button pops up. The catch will return backwards. In this position, the safety is on. Take the safety off by jerking the lever to the left. The Panzerfaust is ready to fire.

Now if you press the red button the weapon will fire. To fire, hold the tube with the right hand or on your right shoulder, depending on the position you are firing from. You can fire from nearly any position (prone, kneeling, standing) but remember that the end of the tube must be free. Know that the Panzerfaust fires without any recoil (that is because of the flame exhaust).

How to aim:

Your eye, the opening in the sight, and the upper part of the warhead must align with the target.

Remember that when firing up or against the wind the weapon needs to be aimed higher, if firing down or with the wind it needs to be aimed lower.

If you didn't fire, replace the safety. To do this, place the lever in the upright position precisely, send the catch forward as far as possible, push the red button, and allow the catch to slowly retreat to the rear position. The safety is now on.

Pay special attention to the following:

  • Do not pick up duds. Leave them, blow them up if possible.
  • If the weapon did not fire and the propellant didn't go off, do not try to correct the fault. The Panzerfaust is dangerous. Put it aside and destroy it later.
Translation from German: Guards Senior Lieutenant I. Zilverman"

1 comment:

  1. In terms of requirement of empty space located behind shooter- I have found opinion that in old Soviet movie about battle of Berlin (movie from 40ties?) Soviet filmmakers used real Panzerfaust. In film we have scene of shooting from trench. Generally, I have found opinion that this film suggest that maybe distance between end of tube and trench wall can be smaller that some people think. But of course, old Soviet movies that's suboptimal source.