Kampfpistole is an unusual flare-pistol-gone-firearm designed by Walther in 1920s.
It was originally designed as a flare pistol and entered service in 1928 under designation "Leuchtpistole". Design was somewhat half-way between a pistol (general way it looks), a shotgun (break-open to load) and a revolver (shape). Smooth bore allowed shooting of flares.
Leuchtpistol (LP or LeuP) went through many changes. Around 1934 the original design was replaced by a lighter metal construction, which reduced weight (by half!). Around this time German engineers wanted to make it more useful than just a signal pistol, so they created a special grenade (Sprenggranate) and LP started to be used also for launching grenades and explosives. In 1938 design was simplified to make it cheaper, LP-38 was issued mainly to officers and pilots. In 1942 design was changed once again to a much simpler version which began to replace earlier models. Smooth bore was replaced with a rifled barrel to improve accuracy and range - this modified version was now called Kampfpistole, and it featured a large "Z" letter on the barrel to distinguish it from flare version. A variety of grenades (Wurfkörper) were devised for use in this firearm, many were muzzle-loaded due to diameter - barrel was 27mm.
Technically this is not a modelgun, but airsoft replica manufactured by CAW (Craft Apple Works). CAW specializes in airsoft grenades and this replica just fits their line of products.
My interest in Kampfpistole (and many other modelguns) came from its use in "Jin Roh" Japanese animated movie, where it was used in one of the scenes. It was such a strange pistol that it puzzled me for a long time until I found out first what it was, and later discovered that an airsoft version exists.
Original manufacturer page:http://www.caw.co.jp/caw/kampfpistole/index.html
Video review (note that cartridge is loaded incorrectly, gas should be loaded first):https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MmtJv8oSDYc
There are several versions available: ABS (pistol only, pistol with grenade, extended inner barrel) and HW (plain finish, matte black finish, deluxe and deluxe wood). They all use 27mm MiniMoscart grenades manufactured by CAW and sold under their Mosquite Molds brand, available in two versions: 18 bbs (less bbs, more range) and 36 bbs (opposite). Kampfpistole can be also equipped with several accessories available from the same manufacturer: leather and nylon pistol holsters, grenade holster, wooden grips, grip weights.
CAW Kampfpistole can be bought from the usual airsoft retailers in Asia (WGC, DenTrinity, UnCompany, Redwolf). This model is not very popular, so most European and US retailers do not carry it.
Version that I bought is ABS extended barrel set, the only available at the time. ABS unfortunately means that replica itself is very light (~360g), about half of HW variant. Extended barrel set means that inside barrel there are additional metal inner barrels that improves power and accuracy of gas-launched airsoft bbs.Box
This model came in a very flashy box - red, with yellow text. Top of the box has "Kampf Pistole" and nazi eagle logo, as well as a sticker from ASGK. Box is made of carton. After opening there was an instruction, additional sheet and a registration card(?). Right under them, on a bed of fabric there is a model itself and a single grenade (18 bb version).
Instructions are quite complete for a CAW model - they feature a history of Kampfpistole, detailed operation instruction (with pictures) including cleaning and takedown, exploded diagram and list of accessories. Additional sheet explains what is extended barrel.Modelgun
Modelgun is all black, slightly matte, and very very light. ABS version weighs just 360g, way below what we are used to with modelguns. This is a very unusual pistol with many interesting features.
Barrel is round, and very wide - typical for flare/grenade pistol, much different than what normal pistols have. Chamber section is not round - it is a regular polygon with 8 sides. Barrel with chamber are attached to the frame with a single axis. Barrel and chamber would be completely open, except that my version has "extender barrel set" mounted inside and very visible from the muzzle. Airsoft grenade has 6 chambers for bbs (3 bbs per chamber) that are launched using compressed gas. Extended barrel has six barrels that allow gas to expand further, giving bbs greater power. Of course this does not make any difference for a modelgun, except for visual change - see photos.
Chamber is marked with a letter "Z" on the left side and nazi eagle logo on the right side. The same logo is also seen on frame under chamber. Left side of frame has additional markings: "ac 41" Waffenamt which identifies Carl Walther Zella-Mehlis factory. Left side of frame under axis also has a serial(?) number: 0911.
Frame has as back wall behind chamber, with a hammer assembly. Hammer can be cocked, it stays in backward position until trigger is pressed. In this model you can decock by holding hammer and releasing it slowly when trigger is pulled.
Trigger and trigger guard are right under the chamber. Trigger guard also has an unusually looking spur on the bottom. This spur is actually a lever that unlocks barrel and allows it to pivot around attachment axis. You need to push it forward to unlock, and break the pistol when it's in frontmost position.
Grips in this model are made of black plastic, with wood as an extra option. They are held by a single screw going through both grips and hole in the frame. Original Kampfpistole grips were made of various materials, including bakelite. However I discovered that original grips do not fit this replica - please refer to this thread:https://mp40modelguns.forumotion.net/modelgun-accessories-f9/fitting-bakelite-grips-to-kampfpistol-t2064.htm
At the bottom, under grip, there is a metal ring for attaching a leash.Magazine
This is a single-shot, manual reloading only weapon, so there is no detachable magazine. The only "magazine" is the chamber itself.Cartridges
CAW Kampfpistole uses 27mm MiniMoscart airsoft grenades. These are a smaller version of 40mm Moscart grenades commonly used in normal-size airsoft launchers. Manufacturer is Moquito Molds, one of brands used by CAW.
Two versions are available. One of them houses 18 airsoft 6mm bbs, the other 36. As you can guess there is a tradeoff - either you get more balls, but less space for gas, and less power, or less balls but more gas/power/range. In airsoft this comes to personal preference, for use as modelgun it does not really matter much.
Cartridge features 6 sets of holes and a gas filling valve at the front, and a button for release valve at the back.
Loading is a bit complicated. First need to reset valve (and close internal gas reservoir) by pushing it, so it comes back flush with rear surface. Then load your gas through the fill valve at the front. Finally push bbs inside their holes - they will stay there, held by rubber o-ring. Note - you do not need bbs to fire this model! You can just load gas for fun shooting without any projectiles :-)
Why load gas first? If something goes wrong (you didn't reset valve correctly), the only risk is gas going out, not bbs. It's safer that way.Firing
Load cartridge with gas (and bbs if you wish so). Open pistol, insert cartridge into the chamber. In version with extended barrel you might need to rotate cartridge so it aligns properly with extended barrels. If you do not do it, cartridge does not fully go inside and it will not be possible to close the pistol.
Now close the pistol, pushing cartridge slightly inside so it does not interfere.
Cock the hammer and...
Trigger operation is confusing. When you press trigger, hammer falls but gun will not fire. Hammer has a decorative function here, firing happens after trigger is pulled harder and further, activating a real hidden hammer.
Point pistol in safe direction and pull the trigger hard, pulling it even after external hammer falls.
There is a satisfying effect, as the gas expands there is a white "cloud" coming out of the barrel, accompanied by a proper bang. If you have loaded bbs, they have left barrel more or less where you were pointing ;-)
That's it, no cleaning!!! :-DProblems
For me there are two slight problems with this version of Kampfpistole.
ABS is way too light. Effect is much worse than on Marushin Browning (unloaded), this is an extremely light model. I hope HW is better in this regard. The second problem is that "matte" surface finish scratches just from looking at it. It is just too fine, especially as it is just a plastic. HW version has much better matte look that does not depend so much on surface finish.
Other than that I guess that whole "reset the valve" process of loading cartridges with gas is maybe complicated, but it's nothing compared to care that cap-firing modelgun cartridges require ;-DOverall
If you are sure that you want a Kampfpistole model in your collection, this is an option for you. You might want to try finding HW version for better handling effect, though ABS looks just as good on display.
On the other hand I think this is not a very interesting replica by itself - it's not cap-firing and there is no action to speak of. This is more of an interest item than a usable replica. For airsoft larger grenade launchers are probably a better option.
I am satisfied as I wanted to get a Kampfpistol, and gas bang effect is good enough for me :-)