Heckler & Koch’s Gray Room – 2017-2018 Edition

    Last time The Firearm Blog wrote about Heckler & Koch’s Gray Room we stated we cannot get enough.

    I for sure can’t either, yet I’ve never been there and probably never will see it, just like most mortals.

    I own a Heckler & Koch rifle (MR223), but that’s probably as close as I’ll ever get to my own Gray Room.

    When at Heckler & Koch, this is the room and sign you should be looking for. Possibly the best conference room ever!


    There have been many words written and photos taken of the HK Gray Room, but a lot of them are now several years old. And unfortunately, some of them are down, with dead links.

    Thanks to a SWAT Team we now have fresh images from HK’s Gray Room, giving us an updated view from late in 2017. One of them took a series of photos that he shared with us. I have blurred all faces for safety but kept the firearms.

    To my knowledge the “Gray Room” can only be toured by Federal and Governmental Contractors, so don’t expect to just show up and get the tour.

    Another thing I’ve noticed writing this article is that a lot of people seem to spell it the “Grey Room“, not the “Gray Room” as the sign to the room reads… The reason is simple, English versus American spelling.

    The Gray Room contains a unique collection of pistols, rifles, machine guns, grenade launchers from H&K’s history, including some invaluable prototypes and pre-production models. It’s a great place to see different developments of some of the firearms that are in production today, and how they came to life (or were stopped).

    Here we go:

    Below: Heckler & Koch sign

    Below: Size matters. The MP5 in a variety of creations.

    Below: A selection of HK PSG1s, G41s, and MG21s.

    The HK21E / HK11E is the one with the drum magazine. It introduced a 3-round burst firing mode and a long receiver.  The shooter can switch to and from a magazine or belt-feed with an adapter.

    Above that, with the wooden pistol grip, is the HK PSG1 Semi-Automatic Precision Marksman Rifle used in the movie “Lethal Weapon”. The caliber is 7.62 x 51mm NATO and overall length is 47.75″.

    Below: A happy crowd

    Below: The Heckler & Koch G36 with a sound suppressor.

    Below: I think this is the G11 K2, now in the hands of a SWAT member. Remember the “Magnetic Accelerator Gun” from Demolition Man in 1993?

    “Wait a minute, this is the future. Where are all the Phaser guns?” Quote from Demolition Man. Well, most of them are in the Gray Room.

    Below: HK XM8s. Second from the top is an XM8 Compact Carbine in 5.56 x 45mm, the prototype “Spiral 1“.  It has a dummy ITI ISM sight. Note the collapsible stock and blank firing adapter.

    Below: somewhere just left in the middle there is a transparent G36. The XM8s in the middle and some HK416 / M4 variants and developments to the right.

    It’s very small in the picture, but the only pistol with a C-More red dot scope is an SP40 Stainless Steel .40 S&W with a Quik-Comp, about 1/3 to the left bottom in the picture.

    Below: A whole lot of HK P7s. Somewhere down there you’ll find the VP70Z in 9x21mm, the first ever polymer pistol made. Around the middle, the P7M7 a prototype in  .45 ACP, serial number # 002. I wonder if it kicks?

    Below: 40 mm grenade launcher. Notice the shorty top right.

    Below: HK23E Machine gun and shotguns. The HK23E is on an anti-aircraft mount with a special sight for hunting aircraft. Various rifles to the far left. The bottom shotgun, with buttstock collapsed, is a US M1014 Joint Services Combat Shotgun.

    Which Heckler & Koch is on your wish list? I would think most of these with wooden stocks would be left last?

    Below: The Great Wall of G11. Notice the G11 mechanism at the bottom and the transparent UMP to the right. The G11 Prototype 14 from 1985 is in there, with a 50 round magazine in caseless 4.92 x 34mm. 

    The bottom UMP has a collapsible AR15 stock instead of the side-fold able original. Top right,  HK SL8-1 Cutaway/Transparent Training Aid and an HK SL8-1 in caliber: .223 Rem. 

    Below: Middle, in tan, a prototype of the HK XM8 Carbine with an XM320 40mm Grenade Launcher.

    Below: The Wall of HK MP5s. I think the middle MP5 with a suppressor is an MP5/40 A3 prototype in 10mm/.40.

    Far right, around the middle, you can see the HK SP89 semi-automatic pistol in 9×19 mm which was a civilian version of the MP5K. Look for the PSG1 grip and you’ll find it. It was banned from importation.

    Below: HKM4D Serial # 88-000007. Where it all began? HK had to rename and remake the model as the name “M4” was taken and Colt claimed there were patent infringements on the design. Read more about it at HKPro. The HK M4 was a prototype of the HK416 with a resemblance to the M4 Carbine. It has a short stroke proprietary piston system which later became the HK416.

    Below: Top is a VP70 (K?) and on the bottom is an HK VP70 M. Notice the selector on the VP70M, on the stock, for a 3 round burst. Only 400 units were produced.

    Below: P7A13 Prototype. Semi-automatic pistol in 9×19 mm NATO. US M9 Pistol candidate. Serial # 27844. The pistol grip has a large “XM9” inscription.

    Below: HK USP40 in Orange.

    Below: HK USP45 in Stainless Steel. Semi-automatic pistol in caliber .45 ACP. Variant I with sample gray frame. Serial # 25-028195. Not pictured, but there’s a USP9 Elite, 9×19 mm with a 30-round Magazine in there as well.

    Below: Top “Square MP5” looking firearm is a 9×19 mm SMG Prototype Sub-machine Gun, made for the JSSAP program in the 1980s. Serial Number #006. I think James Bond got the next one.

    Below: The top handgun has an inscription: “US-GOVT. Cal. 45”. Serial # 23-005.

    The top right text says OHWS Semi-automatic pistol caliber .45 ACP Phase I prototype.

    Top left sign says: OHWS Sound Suppressor Early phase II prototype, caliber .45 ACP “Pelican Bill” Designed by HK GmbH.

    The middle sign says: “OHWS Laser Aiming Module (LAM), Phase I Prototype. Designed by Insight Technology Inc.

    Lower handgun (the blacker one).

    The left sign says OHWS Sound Suppressor, Early Phase II “dummy” Prototype, Caliber .45 ACP, Designed by Knight’s Armament Co.

    Right bottom signs: OHWS Semi-automatic pistol Caliber .45 ACP, Phase II prototype. (Serial # 23-042)

    Below: At the shooting range with some HKs.

    Below: HK MP5

    Below: HK 416 in 5,56x45mm, serial 88-077168. EOTech sight.

    As you remember for sure, the HK 416 A7 will be the G95 for the German Special Forces.

    Below: “The top one is a 416 A5, prototype for the French Army” – “The bottom is 416 A5 with a Geissele hand guard. The bottom one is missing the ambi bolt catch though

    Many thanks to the person who helped us with these pictures.

    Can’t get enough? Still want more?

    You can check Heckler & Koch’s Facebook page for the Grey Room here. You will find some incredibly high-quality photos of rare and hard to find HK guns.

    You can also check HK Pro’s photo tour with a lot of descriptions as well as Tactical Excellence.

    On TFB we have Patrick R’s “More HK Grey Room Photos … We Can’t Get Enough!” and Miles’ “The Gray Room

    If you want to learn more about the modern Heckler & Koch nomenclature and product overview you can check this article.

    Eric B

    Ex-Arctic Ranger. Competitive practical shooter and hunter with a European focus. Always ready to increase my collection of modern semi-automatics, optics and sound suppressors. TCCC Certified medic.