Ian with Forgotten Weapons takes a look at — and gets some trigger time on — a 1940-vintage Swiss anti-tank rifle with a little bit of a kick to it.
Designed to poke through the light armor of early tanks, the giant S18-1000 Tankbüchse rifle was an elephant gun meant to snipe at vehicles and murder pillboxes.
Made by the Rheinmetall-owned Solothurn company in Switzerland, the big (118-pound) semi-auto fired the 20x138mmB, a bottlenecked rebated rim cartridge also used by a few other guns such as the Italian Breda M35, the Finnish Lahti L-39, and German Flak 30/38 guns. And by most accounts, the Solothurn was the Cadillac of the bunch.
The example Ian has is a rare and transferable C&R Destructive Device that still has its serial numbered armorer’s toolkit and a cache of 1941-marked ammo — which they dutifully test fire.