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Finnish Shoulder-Fired 47mm Mortar

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I recently found out about this thing from here; http://www.jaegerplatoon.net/ALMOST3.htm




Low trajectory mortar designed by Major Kahva for Finnish Army in year 1942 was designed for shooting vision slots of enemy bunkers and machinegun nests with 47-mm mortar shells. This shoulder fired weapon equipped with a folding adjustable bipod and used normal Mosin-Nagant rifle receiver and bolt for firing 47-mm mortar shells originally introduced for 47-mm Tampella mortar prototypes in 1930's. Hence availability of the ammunition was not too great and while the weapon was equipped with bipod it was quite heavy and must have had considerable recoil. This weapon has simple iron sights on left side of the weapon with the rear sight loaned from M/28-30 or M/39 rifle. Sako Oy manufactured three prototypes, which were field tested, but the weapon was never approved and did not see later production.

Even if the design had not suffered the handicaps mentioned above, it had very little chance of success. Looking at the design it is fairly obvious that it was intended to fill the notch that was soon covered by recoilless rifles. Hence unfortunately the design would have become obsolete almost immediately anyway.


There isn't much info about it available on the internet (the top 3 google search results are jaegerplatoon, axishistory, and ah dot com). It seems like a pretty interesting piece of equipment, sort of like a bolt-action predecessor to the M79. Also, it's pretty cool that it's at its core a really mutated Mosin. I do see how recoilless rifles fill the niche, but on the other hand, things like the M79 and M203 exist, so perhaps it wouldn't have been completely useless?



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Now that you know of this weapon's existence, you fully understand the Finnish people, and the principle of sisu.

But no, really, I recall reading somewhere someone saying that ~50mm was the limit for a conventional shoulder-fired mortar-velocity weapon. What's confusing to me about the Finnish 47mm mortars is that they don't appear to be set up to achieve maximum range, but maybe they had some specific tactics in mind when they designed the thing.

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