Military Review

Folding submachine guns


Submachine guns have been used for almost a hundred years.

Firmly occupying a niche between pistols and assault rifles, submachine guns are widely used in police and military units, as well as a means of self-defense.

Today we will talk about submachine guns for secretive carrying or folding submachine guns.

ARES - Stealth Francis Warini

Folding submachine guns

Folding submachine gun Ares

In the middle of 1970, Francis Varin came up with an idea that he called "stealthweapon". A double submachine gun could turn an unarmed-looking man into an armed to the teeth. Francis Varin patented the idea and offered his brainchild to ARES.

At that time, ARES was headed by the father of the legendary M-16 rifle, Eugene Stoner. In this connection, he is sometimes mistakenly attributed to the development of these weapons. It is quite possible that Francis Varin himself would not mind if Stoner was the designer because his submachine gun did not go into series.

The reason was the constructive complexity of the submachine gun. The submachine gun weighed 1,8 kg, used the magazine from the German MP-28, had a total length of 523 mm and 269 mm when folded.

The rate of fire of the weapon was 650 shots per minute, the type of firing is semi-automatic and automatic.

Total was released two copies.

UC-9 and M-21

Folding submachine gun UC9-M21

In the middle of 1970, an intelligent guy named Utah Connor developed a folding submachine gun that looked very similar to ARES, disguised as a radio (there was even a telescopic antenna).

As conceived by the designer, the submachine gun had to be demanded by security officers and police officers who at the time of “relaxation” could listen to their favorite radio station, and if necessary, turn the radio into a submachine gun in 2-3 seconds.

Connor gave his weapon the name "Undercover 9" or UC-9. Folding submachine gun UC9-M21 had a built-in radio and was disguised under it.

Joining forces with Dave Boatman, Connor improved the design and made a small batch of submachine guns by assigning them the designation M-21. The submachine gun simplified the shutter, which became telescopic, similar to the Uzi shutter, but at the same time the rate of fire was higher and reached 895 minute shots, the type of fire was only automatic. Shop from Uzi is designed for 32 cartridge.

The weight of the weapon was 3,4 kg, length in the unfolded state 520 mm and 267 mm in the folded. For great attractiveness, the submachine gun was made in various colors.

In 1986, legislative amendments were adopted prohibiting the sale of certain types of weapons, with the result that the production of the M-21 submachine gun was completed.

Today, Connor's folding submachine gun is the subject of a hunt for collectors who are willing to lay out up to 10 thousands of dollars per copy. Recently, a company called M-6 discovered a batch of partially assembled UC-9, completed their final assembly, and now sells them at 12 for thousands of dollars per copy.

Probably, having decided to go with the times, the assembled submachine guns were equipped with a USB port. Now it is not clear that this is a submachine gun or flash drive.

PP-90 and Goblin

Folding submachine gun PP-90

Next on our list of folding submachine guns is a sample created by the Design Bureau of Instrument Engineering (KBP) from Tula at the beginning of the 1990-s. Under the impression of the ARES and M-21 submachine guns, a domestic model of a folding submachine gun chambered for the 9x18 mm cartridge was developed under the designation PP-90.

The relatively simple submachine gun was fully automatic with the rate of firing of 700 rounds per minute. The weight of the PP-90 was 1,8 kg empty, 2,26 kg equipped with the 30-and charging box magazine. Length in the folded state is about 254 mm, in unfolded 508 mm. The barrel had an external thread to install a silencer.

Ukrainian designer Igor Alekseenko creatively reworked the design of the PP-90 by adding a folding rear sight and replacing the caliber with 9х19 mm. The updated submachine gun was named Goblin, but did not go into production.

Russian designers also decided to release a version of a folding submachine gun chambered for 9x19 mm. The new version received the designation PP-92.

Magpul FMG-9

Folding submachine gun Magpul-FMG9

In 2008, Magpul Industries, a company well known for its accessories for AR rifles, stated that it works on a folding submachine gun. The new submachine gun FMG-9 weighed slightly more than 400 grams had a length of 254 mm in the folded state and 508 mm in unfolded (overall dimensions of the weapon of this class are very similar).

The FMG-9 automatics worked similarly to the Glock 17 pistol, the magazines on the 17 and 33 cartridges were used with the caliber 9 mm. Magpul presented a prototype at the SHOT Show at 2008, but the sample didn’t reach the actual production. It is true to note that weapons that look like FMG-9 were seen in the hands of airsoft.


At the moment, there are various compact submachine guns such as the H&K MP5K, MAC-10 and Micro-Uzi. However, I'm sure to say that the time of compact folding submachine guns has finally passed, probably too early.
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  1. papik09
    papik09 19 October 2013 09: 48
    I put the article "+", but the question to the author remained. Why is it not mentioned in the article the fact that folding submachine guns "in full growth" are used by the security services of the first persons? It would be nice to cover this issue as well. In particular, the security guards of the first persons of the former USSR were successfully armed with the Ares folding submachine gun, described at the beginning of the article. Although it may have been a Soviet copy. hi
    APASUS 19 October 2013 10: 31
    In other matters, the protection of the first persons of the state always had new items, at least take the AKS74U-"VIP".
    1. maxvet
      maxvet 19 October 2013 18: 44
      This is not exactly PP (machine gun gun)
      1. APASUS
        APASUS 20 October 2013 16: 47
        Quote: maxvet
        This is not exactly PP (machine gun gun)

        And where did you read in my text about PP (submachine gun)? or don't read at all?
      2. the47th
        the47th 21 October 2013 09: 32
        In Europe and the Americas, they consider the AKS-74U a submachine gun.
  3. alex-cn
    alex-cn 19 October 2013 17: 21
    Of course, their time did not pass, weapons of hidden carrying will always be in demand.
  4. Marek Rozny
    Marek Rozny 20 October 2013 10: 23
    PP-90 (but not PP-90M) was manufactured in Kazakhstan at the Metallist plant (in the same place as the Utes machine gun and Cobalt revolver). Personally, I did not hold it in my hands, but my father, who served in the Internal Troops, said that this thing was "cool, but stupid." Only "Kuzetovs" (security service under the Ministry of Internal Affairs) and financial police (financial police) are in service now. There were also customs officers, but then they were sent to the warehouses of the Ministry of Defense.
    Now PP-90 is not produced in Kazakhstan, because: a) nobody needs it; b) already stamped dofig. By the way, "Utes" and "Cobalt" are also not produced, because they have packed all the warehouses of the Moscow region to the eyeballs. PP-shki and "cobalts" are gathering dust, and "cliffs" are even regularly removed from storage warehouses for installation on new boats and armored vehicles, which are regularly supplied to the armament of law enforcement agencies.
  5. sub307
    sub307 20 October 2013 11: 21
    Thank you for the information, but it would be nice to attach a table with the characteristics - for the convenience of comparing different models.
  6. Kir
    Kir 20 October 2013 16: 10
    Recently, a company called M-6 discovered a batch of partially assembled UC-9s, completed their final assembly and now sells them for $ 12 per copy.
    Well, they believed it, they found it, they knew it, but until a certain moment they kept it quiet, I believe, only the question of a suitable price was waiting for Ali or something else, if the price is not a fact that it's not a remake. And according to folding beds, I can say a purely subjective opinion that only that which is soundly fixed is functioning well.
  7. poquello
    poquello 20 October 2013 23: 57
    But is it even necessary? Dimensions PP-2000 350x46x190 (folded PP-90 270x90x32) is one of the best.
    1. Witold
      Witold 24 October 2013 16: 33
      Before issuing comments would look into the military encyclopedia. Firstly, this is not PP-90, but PP-19, the same Kalash with a screw store. It is long 530 mm. with folded stock, empty weight 3,0 kg. last modification.http: //

      Better Magpul-FMG9 have not yet been invented.
  8. Massik
    Massik 21 October 2013 00: 34
    I will never forget the moment when the "pencil case" fell out of the hands of the opera and fired by itself on the floor ... The concept itself is quite interesting, but very highly specialized, something made of ceramics, invisible to a metal detector, would look more attractive.
    1. Kir
      Kir 21 October 2013 03: 28
      So in fact, most of the ceramics are based on metals, this is one and the other, but what about the operation? As a military man, you should know that there are "invisibles" based on non-metallic composites, the same barrels of disposable grenade launchers, but still Not completely without the use of metals.