WWII German Land Mine -
This is a German item from the World War Two period. Also known as the S-Mine.
The German S-mine was a steel cylinder less than 5.1 inches tall without its sensor and only 3.9 inches in
diameter. A steel rod protruding from the mine's top held the main fuse, where its trigger or sensor was attached.
The SMi-35 had a central fuse, while the SMi-44 had an offset fuse. It weighed approximately 8.8 lb, with the
weight depending on whether it was loaded with the lighter powdered or the heavier poured TNT.
This page provides information on how to identify German WWII items. It also provides
data outlining the woth of the collectible over the years, including the present time.
The main charge of the mine used TNT as its explosive; the propelling charge was black powder. The standard
pressure sensor used a percussion cap to ignite it.
This page is a recognition and identification guide for WWII German collectibles. Multiple
detailed photos of a specific sample are provided. Descriptions point out clearly defined points
that should be noted.
One of the most commonly asked questions is "How much is my WWII German collectible worth?". A price
guide is included here to address this question. The value of the collectibles is reviewed
over a period of several years. A trend can be observed. The present worth of the German
items in the collector's market is illustrated.
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a company dedicated to the preservation of military history and to providing quality military
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The main fuse was designed to delay the firing of the propelling charge for approximately four seconds after the
mine was triggered. The explosion of the propelling charge sent the mine upwards into the air and activated three
short-delay pellets between the propellant charge and the three detonators. These short-delay pellets delayed the
mine's detonation long enough for it to reach an appropriate height before exploding.
The standard pressure sensor was designed to activate if depressed by a weight of roughly 15 lb or greater. This
ensured the mine was not detonated by wildlife or natural impact of blowing leaves, branches, or other normally
The S-mine was normally triggered by a three-pronged pressure fuse. It could also be modified to be triggered by a
tripwire. A special tripwire adapter was provided by the German army. The steel tube that held the fuse was
threaded to accept any standard German ignition or trigger, allowing the sensor to be removed and the mine to be
deliberately triggered by a human operator. When triggered, the mine functioned in two stages.
1.First, the mine was fired 2 ft 10 inches to 4 ft 10 inches up into the air by a small
2.Second Approximately a half-second later, the main charge detonated at the optimum height to
kill or severely injure anyone in the immediate area.
3.Third The main charge of the mine was surrounded by roughly 360 steel balls, short steel rods,
or scrap metal pieces. These became metal shrapnel that sprayed horizontally from the mine at high velocity.
The time between triggering and ignition of the propelling charge varied between 3.9 and 4.5 seconds, depending
on the age and condition of the mine. According to German documentation, the S-mine was lethal within 66 ft and
could inflict casualties within 330 ft. American training manuals warned of casualties at up to 460 ft.
A common misconception prevailed that the S-mine would not detonate until its victim stepped off the trigger.
This fallacy was propagated by incorrect United States propaganda during World War II. The mine would detonate
whether the trigger was released or not. Standing still or attempting to run from the S-mine would be equally
dangerous. The most effective way to survive the mine's detonation would not be to flee but to fall to the ground
lying face down as quickly as possible, and even then, injuries were likely, barring exceptional circumstances.
S-mine dischargers, in the form of angled tubes attached via brackets to the hull, were also used for
anti-infantry defense by Wehrmacht armored vehicles. Early versions of the Tiger I were equipped with five such