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Schweizerische Industrie Gesellschaft, abbreviated as SIG, is a Swiss industrial manufacturer that designed and produced firearms from 1864 to 2000. SIG was, at its peak, the largest manufacturer and exporter of small arms in Switzerland, rivaled only by the state-owned Waffenfabrik Bern. Their weapons are often renowned for their quality and reliability, and achieved sales both domestically and internationally.

Today, SIG no longer produces weapons and has shifted its focus to the manufacture of packaging for food and beverages; the company is currently known as SIG Combibloc AG. SIG's armaments division was bought out in 2000 by Lüke & Ortmeier Holdings and now operates under the trade name Swiss Arms.

History[]

The SIG company was originally established in January 1853 as the Swiss Railway Carriage Factory, located in Neuhausen am Rheinfall. The factory initially produced carriages for public transport, but in 1860 it established a small arms division, under the direction of Colonel Edouard Burnand, with the objective of developing an equivalent to the Prussian Dreyse needle gun. Col. Burnand hired the experienced gunsmith Joseph Prélaz to assist in the production of this rifle and the result was the company's first gun, the Prélaz-Burnand rifle.

With the addition of the armaments division, the company changed its name to Schweizerische Industrie Gesellschaft in 1863 and hired Freidrich Vetterli as director of small arms. Under his administration, SIG developed the famous Vetterli rifle, which was adopted by the Swiss Army in 1869 and exported to various other countries. In the later 19th century, SIG were contracted by the government to produce components for the military-issue Schmidt-Rubin rifle. In 1906 SIG expanded further, establishing a packaging division.

During the interwar era (1919 - 1938), under the direction of Gotthard End, SIG made greater strides in small arms design and employed talented engineers such as Jakob Gaetzi and Pál Király.

Notable personnel[]

  • Friedrich Peyer im Hof - Co-founder
  • Heinrich Moser - Co-founder
  • Conrad Neher - Co-founder
  • Edouard Burnand - Director (1860 - 1863)
  • Friedrich Vetterli - Director (1864 - 1882)
  • Gotthard End - Director
  • Rudolf Amsler - Director
  • Jakob Gaetzi - Designer
  • Pál de Király - Draftsman

Products[]

Handguns[]

Submachine guns[]

Rifles[]

SIG SG 540

  • Mondragón M1908 - Self-loading rifle, 1908
  • AM55 - Battle rifle
  • K31 - Bolt-action rifle, 1931
  • KE9 - Prototype self-loading rifle, 1929
  • KEG - Prototype self-loading rifle, 1930
  • SK46 - Prototype self-loading rifle, 1946
  • K53 - Prototype self-loading rifle, 1953
  • AK53 - Prototype assault rifle, 1953
  • StGw 57 - Assault rifle, 1957
  • SG 530 - Prototype assault rifle
  • SG 540 - Assault rifle
  • SG 550 - Assault rifle, 1990
  • SG 750 - Battle rifle, 2009

Machine guns[]

SIG MG 710

  • KE7 - Light machine gun, 1924
  • MG35 - Machine gun, 1935
  • MG710 - General purpose machine gun

Grenade Launchers[]

  • GL 5040
  • GL 5340
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