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Heckler & Koch HK MSG-90

Semi-Automatic Sniper Rifle / Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR) [ 1987 ]

The military service version of the German Heckler and Koch PSG-1 semi-automatic rifle is the MSG-90 Sniper Rifle.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 09/17/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

The original West German PSG-1 sniper rifle design of 1972 went on to be accepted by a few choice operators around the globe. From this precision weapon - mainly aimed at special military units and police forces - came a militarized version in the MSG-90. By and large, the MSG-90 retains much of the form and function of the original PSG-1 line but incorporates more "military minded" changes to better suit the rigors of military service.

Chief changes to the weapon include an all-new trigger group and threaded barrel, the latter supporting use of a suppressor (MSG-90A1). A flash suppressor also helps to reduce the visual imprint of the firer's position when firing. The MSG-90 has also been made more compact and lighter than its PSG-1 form which has improved transportation of the weapon when on-the-march. The shoulder stock is of composite construction and offers adjustability of the cheekpiece and length-of-pull. The MSG-90 also incorporates the same Weaver scope rail system featured on other HK rifle products and lacks any iron sights. A bipod supports the front end of the weapon and is foldable.

The weapon is chambered for 7.62x51mm NATO and fires from a 5-, 10- or 20-round detachable box magazine out to ranges of 2,600 feet. The action is the HK-standard roller-delayed blowback breech system with semi-automatic fire support - making the MSG-90 more akin to the modern Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR) than a traditional bolt-action type.

The MSG-90 has been taken into service by Danish special police, French airborne marines, Indonesian dive groups and commando elements, the Iraqi military, the Lithuanian Army, various special forces elements of Malaysia, the Mexican Army, Norwegian special police and security forces, various Filipino forces, South Korean special forces, the Turkish Army, United States FBI and Delta Force, and Uruguayan special forces. Some countries have since retired their stock as frontline weapons.©MilitaryFactory.com
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.


Service Year

Germany national flag graphic


Semi-Automatic Sniper Rifle / Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR)

Heckler & Koch GmbH - West Germany / Germany
(View other Arms-Related Manufacturers)
National flag of Denmark National flag of France National flag of India National flag of Indonesia National flag of Iraq National flag of Italy National flag of Lithuania National flag of Malaysia National flag of Mexico National flag of Norway National flag of the Philippines National flag of South Korea National flag of Thailand National flag of Turkey National flag of the United States National flag of Uruguay Denmark; France; India; Indonesia; Iraq; Italy; Lithuania; Malaysia; Mexico; Norway; Philippines; South Korea; Thailand; Turkey; United States; Uruguay
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Accuracy / Precision
Long-range accuracy / precision capable; suitable for sniping, particularly when equipped with sighting aids.

Overall Length
1,230 mm
48.43 in
Barrel Length
600 mm
23.62 in
Empty Wgt
15.87 lb
7.20 kg

Various Optics


Roller-Delayed Blowback; Semi-Automatic

One shot per trigger pull; self-loading or auto-loading action aided by internal mechanism; trigger management (and initial cocking) typically required by the operator; subsequent shots are aided by the unlocked / moved bolt.
Blowback Operation
Gas pressure from the rearward movement of the ignited cartridge case provides the needed bolt movement, ejecting the spent case and stripping a fresh case from the magazine.
(Material presented above is for historical and entertainment value and should not be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation - always consult official manufacturer sources for such information)


7.62x51mm NATO

Sample Visuals**

Graphical image of a 7.62x51mm / .308 Winchester rifle cartridge
Rounds / Feed

5-, 10- or 20-Round Detachable Box Magazine
Cartridge relative size chart
*May not represent an exhuastive list; calibers are model-specific dependent, always consult official manufacturer sources.
**Graphics not to actual size; not all cartridges may be represented visually; graphics intended for general reference only.
Max Eff.Range
2,625 ft
(800 m | 875 yd)
Muzzle Velocity
2,850 ft/sec
(869 m/sec)

MSG-90 - Base Series Designation; based on PSG-1 while dimensionally smaller with revised trigger group; threaded barrel for suppressor support, flash suppressor, composite shoulder stock (adjustable); Weaver rail system over receiver for optics support.
MSG-3 - German Army variant with iron sights as well as telescopic mounting hardware.

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