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Back To Finnish Section Of Mosin Nagant Dot Net

Finnish Arms Listing

Brent Snodgrass

The Finns used a wide array of arms in their history, with some of arms being more important to Finnish defense than others.  Below are charts that will assist the collector/researcher by providing information on the arms seen in Finland from their Independence War to the end of the Lapland War.  This is not a complete list but does cover most of the arms in Finland during this time frame.  For more complete information please see Sotilaskasiaseet Suomessa 1918-1991 Volumes 1-3 by Markku Palokangas: Vammalan Kirijapaino Oy.

It should be noted that while many of these arms were in official Finnish depots many others were not official issue arms.  These did at times show up in various depots but were never meant to be an issue weapons.  Also recall that a great number of the arms here will not be SA (Finnish Army) property marked.  In many cases the handguns listed were the private weapon of the officer so never was Finnish Army property.  Also many of the arms listed were sold before the SA marking came into being in 1942, so of course these weapons will not bear the property marking.

The charts will not contain information on Finnish produced Mosin Nagants as these rifles-carbines will have their own section in the very near future.

Thanks and enjoy - Brent


Rifle Or Carbine
Nation of origin
Numbers in Finland



Mosin Nagant Model 1891





The exact totals are not known but it was in the many hundreds of thousands. In 1951 there were still over 160,000 in Finnish depots.





The most common rifle in Finland at the time of the Finnish War Of Independence.  These were so common it was decided the M91 would be the standard issue rifle of the new Finnish Army. The Finns also made purchases of M91 rifles from various nations in the 1920's-1930's and even to the 1940's, including but not limited to Poland, Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria, Italy, and Czechoslovakia.  The Finns sorted the Dragoon and Cossack version of the M91 from the standard Infantry model.  That is why there are two breakdowns of numbers in the Finnish totals.


Japanese Rifles And Carbines







Exact totals are not known

There were a great many Japanese rifles in Finland at the time of Finnish Independence as these arms saw service in the Imperial Russia garrisons serving inside Finnish borders  There were various models but the Type 30 was by far the most common, with the Type 38, Type 35, Type 30 and 38 carbines also in Finnish stocks but in lower numbers.  In many cases these were issued to members of the Finnish Civil Guard and when located today will have an S marking on the stock along with a Civil Guard district number.  Most of these were sold by 1930 to the Baltic States. The Finns also sent over 9,000 of the Japanese rifles to Estonia in 1918 to aid in the Estonian Civil War.  

Mauser Model 1896
77,000 of these were sold to Finland in 1940 and another 7,900 were in the hands of Swedish volunteers.  Most of these were sold back to Sweden after the war.
Mauser Model 1894 Carbine
These were left in Finland by Swedish volunteer forces that took part in the Winter War.
Carcano Model 1938 Carbine
Sent to Finland in the Spring of 1940.  These were in 7.35 caliber and had side folding bayonets.  Most were issued to rear line troops like troops due to the non standard caliber.

Mosin Nagant Model 1891/1930




91,000 -

100,000 +

These were captured in the Winter or Continuation Wars against the Soviet Union.  There were also 57,000 of these purchased from Germany in 1944 which were used for spare parts and are NOT a part of the 91,000-100,000 total given in the chart.  The exact number of these in Finland is not known and it might well be the 100,000+ number is even a bit low.

Mosin Nagant Model 1938 and 1944 Carbine





Also captured in the fighting against the Soviet Union from 1939-1944.  The Finns lumped M38 and M44 carbines together in their inventory system so there is no way to know just how many of each were in Finnish hands.  It is safe to say that almost all were Model 1938 carbines as few Model 1944 carbines were issued while Finland was still involved in the fighting (Finns left the war in 1944).

Winchester Model 1895

USA-Imperial Russia - USSR



Many of these were taken in the Finnish fight for Independence but smaller numbers were taken in 1939-44.  These were secondary rifles that were issued to artillery units in the early 1920's and did see some later use when Finland was in dire need of arms.  It was almost always seen in secondary duties.


Mauser KAR 98 A




Unknown but under 1,700

Most of these ended up in Finland as either rifles used by the German Baltic Divisions or were smuggled into the country by Finnish freedom fighters.  While never directly adopted by the Finnish Army there was used of these carbines to mounted troops in the 1920's.  These carbines also saw use in the Finnish Civil Guard. Almost all of these carbines had been sold or traded by the early 1930's.


Tokarev Model 1938 and 1940










Most of the SVT38's were taken during the Winter War but some were also captured in the 1941-44 fighting.  The Finns also captured sniper versions of both the SVT38 and SVT40 rifles.  These arms were well liked by the Finns and in most cases sent to direct front line issue. There were over 1,000 of the fully automatic AVT40's also taken by Finland 1941-44.

Simonov Automatic Rifle Model 1936




Unknown number

The Finns captured these automatic rifles in their wars against the Soviet Union but the totals taken were quite low.  As such the exact totals captured were not recorded. Most of these were taken in the Winter War as the Red Army was phasing out their use by the time of the Continuation War.

There were other rifles in Finland that are not listed as they were in such small numbers that adding them to the chart above was not warranted. A small listing of these: Swiss Vetterli, Russian Berdan II, Mosin Nagant Model 1907 Carbine, Mannlicher Model 1895 rifle and carbine, Model 1924 Mauser, Ross rifle, Lee Enfield, and Norwegian Krag. Even this listing is not complete but does cover most of the other rifles seen in Finland.  Also note since most of these lower numbered rifles did not appear in Finnish depots so will not be SA marked.  Even if some of these rifles did end up in Finnish depots most were sold before the SA marking became standard in 1942.


Nation of origin
Numbers in Finland



Model 1895 Nagant









but many thousands were captured.

A great many of these were captured by Finnish soldiers but in most cases the handguns were not turned over to the Finnish Army. As such the numbers in offical Finnish stocks was low, even if this was not really the case in regards to the number of pistols taken during the fighting.  There are still a great many of these in Finland in private hands, taken by the collector's relatives during the fighting. It is not common to find these with SA markings.


Model 1896 Mauser





9X19mm: 600+

7.63mm: ~ 500-600

These first appeared in Finland during the War Of Independence but saw issue into World War Two.  Although never accepted as a standard issue pistol many of these saw service as the personal handgun of Finnish officers.  The Civil Guard also made wide use of these handguns in the 1920’s and 1930’s. Exact totals in Finnish service is unknown.



Luger Model 1923

Other Luger Models






M23: 8,000-12,000 in 7.35mm

Lugers in 9X19mm:

Unknown but 9X19mm Lugers with orignal German barrels were not common in Finland.

The 7.35 caliber Lugers – designated the M23 in Finland- were the most widely issued pistol in Finland until the end of World War Two.  The exact number of these in Finland is not known as many were privately purchased so there are no records regarding these privately owned handguns.  The Finns did buy 8,000 in the early 1920’s and the handguns saw issue with both Army and Civil Guard troops.  A number of these handguns were converted to 9X19mm in later years. Many of these pistols stayed in service until the 1980's.  There were replacement barrels made by Tikka in both 7.35 and 9X19 calibers.


Tokarev TT33



Unknown but it is guessed that ~1,200 were captured.

Finnish depots showed almost 700 in stock after the war.

As with the M95 Nagant many of these pistols were never turned in to the Finnish Army but were kept by the Finnish soldier that captured the handgun in the field.


Ceska Zbrojovka Model 1924



Sold to Finland by Germany



A well liked pistol that arrived in Finland in 1940.  Many of these saw issue with front line infantry soldiers as well as seeing a lot of use by Finnish armored troops.


Ceska Zbrojovka Model 1927



Sold to Finland by Germany



It is not known how many of these arrived in Finland but there are a few known examples of these pistols with Finnish markings.  It is possible they were mixed in with the CZ24 shipments.

Ceska Zbrojovka Model 1938


Sold to Finland by Germany



These arrived in 1940 with the other shipments of CZ pistols.  They are very uncommon to see today.


Browning High Power Model 1935







The pistols arrived in Finland in 1940 and these did see limited use late in the Winter War.  These were rugged and reliable pistols that were well received by Finnish troops.  The pistols were quite popular with pilots and many of these handguns served in the Finnish Air Force.

Beretta Model 1934



Bought from Italy with 60 arriving during the Winter War, the others came to Finland in 1943. In most cases issued to Civil Guard.

Beretta Model 1935


~ 4,100

Bought from Italy arriving in Finland in 1941 and 1942.


Austra Model 300





Bought by the Finnish Civil Guards and issued to their soldiers.  Many of these served as guard's pistols in POW camps.


Ruby Izarra Pistol





Bought from France in 1919 these were the first issue pistols of the Finnish Defense Forces.  The pistols were not well liked and were replaced over the years with better handguns. The Finnish designation of these was M/19 or model 1919 Ruby.


FN Browning 1910 and 1910/22







Most of the larger caliber 1910/22’s were issued to the Finnish Army while the lighter caliber 1910’s were issued to the Civil Guard.  The numbers of pistols in this 1940 shipment were split with half each.


Lahti Model 1935




4,391 by 1945

The first Finnish produced pistol in any real numbers, which was well made but costly to manufacture.  They were to be the standard issue handgun of the Finnish Army but this never came to pass.

This is not a total or complete listing of handguns in Finland as the Finns had a great number of handguns that served their nation in one form or another.  Many officer’s and Civil Guard members had their own personal pistols so while serving Finland these handguns were not official issue.  Some other handguns seen in Finland: Browning Model 1903, Swedish Model 1907, Colt 1911, German Boholla, FN Browning 1900, 1911 and 1914 Mauser, and others.

Submachine, Machine,

Or Light Machine Gun


Nation of origin


Numbers in Finland






Suomi Model 1931

Submachine Gun










4,000 at the start of the Winter War and over 60,000 by June of 1944.

One of the most famous sub machine guns in the world. The Model 1931 submachine gun was developed by the talented Finnish gun designer Aimo Lahti, with Lahti work beginning in 1930 The K31’s were first bought by the Finnish Civil Guard as a replacement for their Swiss made Bergmann’s. The Suomi proved to be such an outstanding weapon that the Finnish Army placed orders by the end of 1931.  The submachine guns were in 9X19mm caliber and equipped originally with a 20 round box magazine and a 40 round drum.  The 40 round drums were replaced in 1937 as a 70 round drum became standard.  During the Continuation War a new two column “stick” magazine with a 50 round capacity was produced . Produced at the Tikka plant.
Model 1944 Submachine Gun



with most being produced in 1945.

A copy of the Soviet PPS43 but in 9X19mm.  A well made SMG that was cheap to produce.  Production was at Tikka.

PPD 1940

Submachine Gun


Low hundreds

Mainly taken in the early fighting in 1941 these SMG's were issued to rear line Finnish troops.


Submachine Gun


4,000 +

The main issue SMG of the Red Army as seen in the 1941-1944 fighint against Finland.

PPS 1943 Submachine Gun



Captured late in the fighting against the Soviet Union.  In most cases these were used until the ammo ran out, then were shipped to rear depots.

MKMS Neuhausen Submachine Gun





Bought from Switzerland in 1940.  Most of these were in 9X19mm but a small batch were in 7.65X21mm.  In most cases these saw use with coastal artillery, artillery, transport, or like troops.

Machine Pistol Model 1928



Bought in 1940 these arrived after the Winter War had ended. They did see use in the Continuation War in mixed units.,

Bergmann Model 1920 Submachine Gun


Switzerland (SIG)



First bought by the Finnish Civil Guard in the early 1920’s these  SMG’s were in 7.35mm. During the Winter War these were used as front line issue but due to a non standard caliber their importance was lessened during the Continuation War. A very few were chambered in 9X19mm in testing during the late 1930's.

Lahti-Saloranta Model 1926 Light Machine Gun





Designed by Aimo Lahti and A.E. Saloranta in 1925-1926 the LS26 LMG was ahead of its time in many ways.  It did however suffer in battle as its parts were too finely fitted which caused issues with function.  While meant to be the standard issue LMG of the Finnish Army this did not take place as the Soviet made DP27 proved to be a much more reliable weapon.


Degtyarev Model 1927 (1928) Light Machine Gun






Over 9,000

One of the best LMG’s of the World War Two period it quickly became the most important to the Finnish Army.  These saw wide issue on all Finnish fronts and it was a popular weapon with the troops. Rugged, reliable, and accurate the DP was the favored

LMG of the era.

Degtyarev Model 1929 Tank Version Light Machine Gun





Another Soviet design that met with great favor in Finland.  The DT became the main LMG seen in Finnish tanks as well as being used by Infantry forces.

Madsen Model 1920 Light Machine Gun





The LMG of the Army and Civil Guard for most of the 1920's. Most were sold to Estonia in the 1930's but a small number remained in Finnish depots.

FN Model 1930 Light Machine Gun





Ordered in 1940 to assist in the dire need for better arms.  In most cases these were issued to coastal fortification troops and almost never seen in front line issue.

Chauchat Model 1915 Light Machine Gun



1918: 15-20

1940: 5,000

Donated by France and arriving in Finland after the Winter War.  Their performance was rather poor and in general these were quite disliked by the Finns.


Lewis Model 1914 Machine Gun


England - Russia



The Finns took possession of these Lewis guns in the War Of Independence.  The Finns tested the Lewis for consideration but the Madsen Model 1920 was deemed the better weapon.  Most of the Lewis guns the Finns had in stock were 7.62X54R caliber, which was a conversion done for Imperial Russia.



Maxim Model 1905/1910 Machine Gun






M1905: ~100

M1910: Over 3,800 in various form

The Finns did capture a small number of the M1905 Maxims in the War Of Independence but these were quickly regulated to a secondary role.  The brass fittings on the M1905 were nearly impossible to replace and the weapons were quite heavy. The Finns also captured a number of 1910 Maxims in the same time frame, and these became the bases for the heavy machine gun in Finland.  In the Winter and Continuation Wars the Finns added more 1910’s to their stockpiles, including various variations such as the quad version used in an anti-aircraft role.

Maxim Model 1909/1921 and 1932/33



09/21: ~1000

32/33:  ~1200

These were Finnish conversions of M1910 Maxims.  For more information please see the Finnish Maxim section of the site, as these models are explained in some detail there.


Model 1914


Machine Gun







Finland bought 12 of these machine guns during the Winter War and more of these came into Finland with the Swedish volunteer units taking part in the fighting against the Soviet Union.  The Finns purchased a small number of these in the Continuation War as well but due to its caliber these machine guns saw little front line issue but for the use by the Swedes.

Vickers Machine Gun MK I




1918: ~10

1940: ~100

A very small number of these were left in Finland by Imperial Russian troops.  As Winter War aid England donated 100 Vickers to Finland.


Maxim Model 1908 Machine Gun




1918-1919: ~120

1941: ~1000

The Finns were left a few of these German machine guns by the German troops that fought against the Reds in the Finnish Independence War and in 1919 100 were bought from France.  In 1941 Germany sold a futher 900+ to the Finns.


Stankovyj Model 1939



The Finns captured about 200 of these in the 1941-44 fighting.

There were other submachine, light, and heavy machine guns that saw service in Finland but totals of these various arms were low.  A partial listing of other arms would include: The Model 1924-1929 Chatellerault, the German Model 1908-1915 and 1908-1918, the German MG34 (these mainly came with the sale of STUG’s to Finland), the Model 1895 Colt/Browning, the Soviet PPD34, and a few others in extremely low numbers.



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