TM-E 30-451 Handbook on German Military Forces

[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the U.S. War Department Technical Manual, TM-E 30-451: Handbook on German Military Forces published in March 1945. — Figures and illustrations are not reproduced, see source details. — As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. — Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]



1. Hand Grenades

a. HIGH EXPLOSIVE STICK GRENADE (Stielhandgranate 24). (1) General description. This grenade consists of a hollow wooden handle and a thin sheet metal head containing the bursting charge. A double length of cord connects a porcelain bead at the lower end of the handle to a friction igniter and detonator assembly screwed on the head of the grenade. The wooden handle is closed at its lower end by a metal screw cap. A fragmentation sleeve is sometimes used with this grenade to improve the antipersonnel effect. This is a metal collar split longitudinally so it can be clipped around the head of the grenade. The surface of the sleeve may be either smooth or divided by serrations to assist fragmentation.

(2) Characteristics.

Weight of grenade   . . . . .   1.36 pounds.
Weight of bursting charge   . . . . .   0.365 pound.
Type of bursting charge   . . . . .   TNT.
Length over-all   . . . . .   14 inches.
Detonator   . . . . .   Standard German No. 8.
Igniter delay   . . . . .   4 to 5 seconds.
Igniter   . . . . .   B.Z.24

(3) Operation. To arm the grenade, unscrew the metal cap at the lower end of the handle and pull the porcelain bead. This initiates the friction igniter and the grenade will function at the end of the 4- to 5-second delay.

b. HIGH EXPLOSIVE STICK GRENADE (Stielhandgranate 43). (1) General description. This is a modified form of the Stielhandgranate 24. It has the same thin sheet metal head, but has a solid handle. A blue-capped pull igniter and detonator assembly screw into the top of the grenade head. Like the Model 24, this grenade is used with a smooth or serrated fragmentation sleeve.

(2) Characteristics.

Total weight   . . . . .   1 pound 6 ounces.
Weight of bursting charge   . . . . .   7 ounces.
Igniter   . . . . .   B.Z.f.Eihgr.
Detonator   . . . . .   No. 8.
Fuze delay   . . . . .   4 1/2 seconds.

(3) Operation. To arm the grenade unscrew and pull the blue metal cap on the top of the explosive head. This initiates the 4 1/2-second delay.

c. WOODEN IMPROVISED HAND GRENADE (Behelfshandgranate-Holz). (1) General description. This is an offensive-type grenade constructed entirely of wood. It consists of a cylindrical wooden head screwed on a hollow wooden handle. The head is bored to a depth of 4 7/8 inches, and specimens of this grenade have been found to contain half a Bohrpatrone (standard 100-gram (3.527 ounces) demolition cartridge). The extra space is filled by a wooden plug. A fuze and detonator assembly is located in the forward end of the handle with the detonator inserted into the center of the Bohrpatrone. A pull igniter is attached by cord to a button in the recess under the metal cap at the lower end of the handle. These grenades are packed in wooden boxes holding 14 grenades. They are prepared with charges and delay igniters. The detonators, with a short length of fuze, are carried in a separate container inside the box.

(2) Characteristics.

Length over-all   . . . . .   15 inches.
Length of head   . . . . .   5 1/4 inches.
Diameter of head   . . . . .   2 1/4 inches.
Diameter of handle   . . . . .   1 1/4 inches.
Total weight   . . . . .   12 ounces.
Weight of bursting charge   . . . . .   50 grams (1.763 ounces).
Detonator   . . . . .   No. 8.

(3) Operation. To arm the grenade, unscrew the head and break the paper seal on the Bohrpatrone. Screw the detonator and fuze assembly into the igniter and slip the detonator into the head of the Bohrpatrone. Replace the head and the grenade is ready for use. To use the grenade remove the metal cap on the lower end of the handle, pull the button attached to the friction igniter and throw. This grenade is designed to produce blast effect and may be used by troops advancing in the open.

d. CONCRETE IMPROVISED HAND GRENADE (Behelfshandgranate-Beton). (1) General description. This grenade is an offensive type grenade similar to the wooden improvised hand grenade, except the grenade head is made of concrete instead of wood and a full 100-gram Bohrpatrone is used as an explosive charge.

(2) Characteristics.

Igniter   . . . . .   B.Z.4.5Sek.
Detonator   . . . . .   No. 8.

e. HIGH EXPLOSIVE HAND GRENADE (Eihandgranate 39). (1) General description. This is an egg-shaped hand grenade constructed of thin sheet metal with high explosive bursting charge. This grenade and the Stielhandgranate 24 are the standard German hand grenades and are used most. The explosive charge is initiated by a detonator and a friction igniter. The wire loop of the friction igniter is connected by a short cord to a blue metal cap screwed on the top of the grenade body. A model of this grenade containing chloracetophenone also exists. It may be recognized by a yellow ring painted around the grenade and four pear-shaped projections on the lower half of the body. It contains a 112-gram (3.95 ounces) TNT bursting charge and a small aluminum capsule containing 5 grams (0.176 ounce) of chloracetophenone.

(2) Characteristics.

Weight of grenade   . . . . .   8 ounces.
Weight of bursting charge   . . . . .   4 ounces.
Detonator   . . . . .   No. 8.
Igniter   . . . . .   B.Z.f.Eihgr.
Fuze delay   . . . . .   4 to 5 seconds.

(3) Operation. Unscrew the blue metal cap and pull the igniter. The grenade will explode after a delay of 4 to 5 seconds.

f. SMOKE STICK GRENADE (Nebelhandgranate 39). (1) General description. This grenade can he distinguished from the high explosive stick grenade (Stielhandgranate) by three grooves in the handle, which serve as recognition features in the dark, and by a white band painted around the center of the handle and an interrupted white band around the head, with the lettering "Nb. Hgr. 39", also in white. The head is made of thin metal and contains a filling of zinc-hexachlorethane. Instead of the detonator used in the high explosive grenade, an ignition tube is used. This is very similar in appearance to the No. 8 detonator, but may he distinguished by the closed end which is painted green. The smoke generated in the head escapes through holes around the handle socket. A pull igniter is located inside the handle.

(2) Characteristics.

Igniter   . . . . .   B.Z.39.
Ignition tube   . . . . .   N.4.
Fuze delay   . . . . .   7 seconds.

g. SMOKE STICK GRENADE (Nebelhandgranate 39B). This grenade is a later model of the Nebelhandgranate 39 and differs only in the composition of the smoke mixture. In the Model 39B more hexachlorethane and less zinc are used.

h. SMOKE HAND GRENADE (Nebelhandgranate 41). (1) General description. This grenade has a body which is very similar to that of the Nebelhandgranate 39 but has, instead of a stick handle, a pull igniter inserted into a plastic adapter in the top of the body. There are only two smoke emission holes. The grenade may be recognized by the letters "Nb. Hgr. 41" and a broken line stencilled in white on the body.

(2) Characteristics.

Igniter   . . . . .   B.Z.39.
Ignition tube   . . . . .   N.4.
Duration of smoke emission   . . . . .   100 to 120 seconds.
Filling   . . . . .   Berger mixture.
Fuze delay   . . . . .   3 seconds.

(3) Operation. The grenade is initiated by unscrewing the igniter cap and pulling the igniter. This initiates the ignition tube and the grenade begins to emit smoke after about 3 seconds.

i. SMOKE EGG GRENADE (Nebeleihandgranate 42). (1) General description. The elongated egg-shaped body of this grenade is made of thin metal. At the lower extremity a small metal loop is welded or riveted to the body and at the top there is a threaded socket for the igniter assembly. Three holes allow the smoke to escape. A standard German pull igniter is screwed into the top. The igniter has a brass body and a steel ring attached to the top. The grenade is marked "Nb. Eihgr. 42" in white and has three short white bands stencilled around the body. A label near the base warns that the fumes can be dangerous in an enclosed space.

(2) Characteristics.

Length over-all   . . . . .   5.3 inches.
Diameter over-all   . . . . .   1.96 inches.
Body length   . . . . .   4.1 inches.
Body diameter   . . . . .   1.7 inches.
igniter   . . . . .   Zd. Schn. Anz. 29.

(3) Operation. Pull the ring on the igniter before throwing the grenade.

j. GLASS SMOKE GRENADE (Blendkörper 1H). (1) General description. This grenade consists of a sealed glass bulb in a hexagonal carton of corrugated cardboard. The glass is shaped like a somewhat elongated electric light bulb and is about the same size, but of thicker glass. The bulb contains 260 grams (9.17 ounces) of titanium tetrachloride. This grenade is intended for use against the crews of pillboxes and vehicles.

(2) Operation. The grenade is carried in the cardboard container and when required for use it can be withdrawn by a tape attached to the lid of the box; the lid is cemented to the neck of the bulb. Remove the lid and throw the grenade against the target. When the bulb bursts, the mixture will give off a dense smoke.

k. GLASS SMOKE GRENADE (Blendkörper 2H). (1) General description. The glass bulb of this grenade contains 250 grams (8.8175 ounces) of a yellowish liquid. The bulb is sealed at the neck with a sulphur plug which also holds in position a glass tube, orientated along the axis of the bulb. This tube contains 25 grams (0.882 ounce) of a calcium chloride solution. The smoke liquid consists of titanium tetrachloride with silicon tetrachloride added to lower its freezing point. The calcium chloride is used to lower the freezing point of the water which is included to increase the effectiveness of the smoke under conditions of low humidity.

(2) Operation. Throw the grenade at the target in the same way as the Model 1H. A notice on the side of the container, which holds four grenades, states that they are suitable for use at temperatures down to -40° centigrade.

l. HOLLOW-CHARGE ANTITANK HAND GRENADE (Panzerwurfmine 1 (L)). (1) General description. This is a recent type antitank grenade. It is of hollow-charge design and is thrown by hand at tanks from a distance of 20 to 30 yards. The grenade body is in the form of a metal cone with a hemispherical, thin, sheet-metal head. The cone contains an explosive charge, with a concave metal retaining plate at the forward end. An air space is formed between this plate and the sheet metal head of the grenade. The narrow end of the cone is located by setting screws around the circumference of a hollow wooden tailpiece containing picric rings and serving as a throwing handle. Around the outside of the tailpiece are four, cloth, triangular shaped fins. Along the outer end of each fin is a steel spring which retains the fins in the open position when the grenade is thrown. When the grenade is being carried, and up to the moment of throwing, these fins are wrapped around the tailpiece and retained in position by a cap. Located in the tail of the grenade is a striker mechanism fitted with a safety pin which has a cloth tab attached. The safety pin is retained in position by a metal clip attached to one of the fins.

(2) Operation. The grenade is held for throwing by the tailpiece, and immediately before throwing the metal cap is removed from the end of the tailpiece. When the grenade is thrown the fins fly outward and the clip attached to one of them comes away from the striker mechanism and releases the safety pin. Upon impact the striker mechanism functions and initiates the bomb.

m. HOLLOW-CHARGE STICKY GRENADE. The tapering steel body of this grenade contains the hollow-charge. A flat sticky pad at the nose is covered by a press-on lid with a small handle. A tapering fuze adapter terminating in a socket, threaded internally to receive an igniter, is attached to the base of the grenade. The igniter socket is closed during transit by a black plastic plug. Specimens of the igniter and detonator have not been received, but it is believed that a No. 8 detonator is used in combination with a standard 4 1/2-second egg grenade igniter. It is not clear whether it is necessary to place the grenade on the tank or whether it may be thrown from short ranges.


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