Star Firearms : Sub-machine Guns

Star Firearms — Sub-machine guns

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Despite being known best in the commercial market for handguns, Star's primary business has been in many ways their military submachine guns. The fall of the SMG in the 1980s to the 5.56 mm carbine may even have been a contributing cause of their eventual demise.

From just before the Civil War, until the 1990s, one Star SMG model has replaced another in Spanish army service, as well numerous export countries. For more, read up on stocked- and machine-pistols or find your stocked SMG in the progression of Spanish service weapons:

Si35, RU35 & TN35Z-45Z-62 & Z-63Z-70 & Z-70/BZ-75 & Z-84

The Z-45 sub-machine gun

Z-45 SMG folding stock version

This is the first of the Star SMGs to reach widespread service. It was the standard Army weapon for several years before being largely replaced by the Z-62 weapons. It is almost identical to the German MP40 SMG, differing only in that the Z-45 has wooden grips, a barrel shroud, a quick-removable barrel, the bolt handle on the right, and the weapon is selective fire (by means of the dual-pulling trigger later seen on the Z62). Some were also made with a fixed wooden buttstock. Beside the Spanish Army service this weapon was sold to Chile, Cuba, Portugal and Saudi Arabia in quantity, and smaller volumes to numerous other locales. Due to the longevity of such overbuilt weapons, and spreading sales on the secondary market, they may be encountered almost anywhere in the world today.

First-hand Z-45 information:

Jesus Alvarez, who served in the Spanish Army some time back, tells us that he handled the Z-45 on a number of occasions. Every version he saw was equipped with the folding stock, and he notes that all the guns were blued, not black or parkerized. The ventillated handguard over the barrel is of very high quality, and they are always equipped with 30-round magazines.

This seems to have been a high quality, almost first-generation sub-machine gun, in the sense of the original Thompson. They are all well-finished, have decent sights with some adjustment, have excessive machining of parts that don't really need it, and all seem to be equipped with a muzzle compensator.

Firearms marked 9 mm / 38 are designed to fire .38 ACP and 9 mm Largo ammunition, but NEVER .38 Super. Read more detail on ammunition for older pistols.

First soldier at the right holds a Z45 in his right shoulder, in the Sidi Ifni war, 1957-58, northwest Africa First soldier at the right holds a Z45 in his right shoulder, in the Sidi Ifni war, 1957-58, northwest Africa. Comparison of the fixed and folding stock Z-45 models. Comparison of the fixed and folding stock Z-45 models. Cover of a contemporary Z-45 manual. Cover of a contemporary Z-45 manual. A Z-45 with the issued green canvas sling. Z-45 folding stock SMG with the issued green canvas sling.

Manuals & Disassembly Instructions

I do not have manuals for every pistol shown on this site. However, in many cases there is a related manual. Partly to make the series relationships clearer, and partly to assist with speed and accuracy of updating, all manuals can be found in one place, the manuals page. All manuals available are provided as downloadable PDFs, or you may purchase a printed copy of the entire set of handgun manuals.

I have no manuals for this series of SMGs.