7 Days to Die: How to Craft and Use the SMG-5

Learn how to craft and use the SMG-5

Sub-machine guns have long been used by special forces and police for close-quarters combat. In 7 Days to Die, there is only one SMG in the entire game, but the SMG-5 is the only one you’ll need. Based on the real-world H&K MP5, this powerful, rapid-fire weapon is perfect for mid-ranged and close combat situations.

This guide will walk you through crafting an SMG-5 in 7 Days to Die and offer advice on how to utilize it best.

How to craft an SMG-5 in 7 Days to Die

SMG-5 Crafting Recipe in 7 Days to Die
SMG-5 Crafting Recipe

The SMG-5 is an upper-tier weapon and a marvel of modern machining. You’ll need to reach the fourth tier in the Handguns crafting skill and have a Workbench before you can successfully assemble this weapon. The amount of crafting materials required will depend on the quality of the SMG being constructed:

MaterialQuality 1Quality 2Quality 3Quality 4Quality 5
Handgun Parts12345
Forged Steel1020304050
Duct Tape3691215
Scrap Polymers1020304050
Handguns Crafting Skill3946536067
  • Handgun Parts can be found by scrapping non-pipe handguns, searching weapon chests and gun safes, or may be purchased from traders.
  • Forged Steel can be crafted at a Forge or salvaged from advanced devices like vending machines and street lamps.
  • Duct Tape can be crafted by combining Glue and Cloth Fragments or found in parts containers.
  • Scrap Polymers may be obtained by salvaging appliances and plastic objects or scavenged.
  • Springs can be found in vehicle parts crates or salvaged from machinery and vehicles.
  • The Handguns crafting skill can only be improved by finding and reading issues of the Handguns Magazine skill magazine.

SMG-5 Overview

Inspecting the SMG-5 (Quality 6) in 7 Days to Die
Inspecting the SMG-5 (Quality 6)

Base Stats

SMG-5 Stats by Quality

PropertyQuality 1Quality 2Quality 3Quality 4Quality 5Quality 6
Magazine Size303030303030
Rounds / Minute480480480480480480
Effective Range273031332424
Max Durability310419500612754564
Mod Slots333444


The SMG-5 is chambered in small-caliber 9mm rounds, of which there are 3 kinds: Standard, HiPower (HP), and Armor Piercing (AP). The damage of each quality of weapon is determined by what ammo the player has loaded into it.

Damage By Ammo Type & Quality

Ammo TypeQuality 1Quality 2Quality 3Quality 4Quality 5Quality 6
HiPower 9mm53.156.359.16063.265.9
AP 9mm56.159.562.463.466.869.6
9mm Ammo Crafting Recipe in 7 Days to Die
9mm Ammo Crafting Recipe

Crafting 9mm Ammo will require a workbench and the following materials:

HiPower 9mm Ammo Crafting Recipe in 7 Days to Die
HiPower 9mm Ammo Crafting Recipe

Crafting HiPower 9mm Ammo will require a workbench, and the player has read the Pistol Pete Vol. 5 perk book, as well as the following materials:

  • 2 Bullet Tips
  • 1 Gunpowder
  • 1 Bullet Casing
AP 9mm Ammo Crafting Recipe in 7 Days to Die
AP 9mm Ammo Crafting Recipe

Crafting AP 9mm Ammo will require a workbench, and the player has read the Pistol Pete Vol. 6 perk book, as well as the following materials:

  • 2 Bullet Tips
  • 2 Gunpowder
  • 1 Bullet Casing


Wielding a Modded SMG-5 in 7 Days to Die
Wielding a Modded SMG-5

The SMG-5 accepts the following mods. Note that only one mod of any category may be attached at a time except accessory mods.

  • Barrel: Barrel Extender, Muzzle Brake, Silencer
  • Sights: Reflex, Scope x2
  • Accessory: Fore Grip, Cripple ‘Em
  • Tech: The Hunter, Rad Remover
  • Trigger Group: Semi, Burst, Full-Auto
  • Rail: Laser Sight, Weapon Flashlight
  • Magazine: Magazine Extender, Drum Magazine

Tips and tricks for using the SMG-5

Close-Range Headshot on a Zombie in 7 Days to Die
Close-Range Headshot on a Zombie

As a member of the Handguns weapon class, the SMG-5 scales in power with the player’s Agility attribute and the Gunslinger perk.

The SMG-5 functions much like a shorter-range machine gun, allowing the player to pick off ranged targets while also boasting an excellent close-range spread.

For players preferring to keep targets at a distance, we recommend players equip a barrel extender mod and at least one recoil-reducing modification. Additionally, players fighting at range should focus on firing single shots or short bursts to avoid suffering accuracy penalties from recoil.

The SMG-5 maintains excellent accuracy even while the player is moving. This makes it ideal for players specializing in mobility and speed. Equipping a foregrip and investing in the Run-and-Gun perk can further increase the accuracy of this weapon when fired from the hip.

Firing the SMG-5 From the Hip in 7 Days to Die
Firing the SMG-5 From the Hip

This weapon’s relatively high power and mobility make it perfect for close-range and indoor combat. We’d even recommend choosing this weapon over the more powerful .44 Desert Vulture for indoor combat due to its increased ammo capacity and higher fire rate.

We highly recommend equipping a magazine upgrade if available, as the high rate of fire this weapon boasts will quickly burn through its ammo. Laser sights and recoil reducers are excellent modification choices for players specializing in close-range combat. Players who want to focus on stealth while still carrying an effective gun can screw on a silencer mod to make this lead-spitter as quiet as the grave.

The rapid fire rate of the SMG-5 makes it easy to meet the Gunslinger perk’s critical damage condition several times in short order. This means that this weapon is excellent for fighting crowds on the move and can be used to rapidly stack up damage on harder targets.

Final thoughts on the SMG-5

Light, versatile, mobile, deadly. This gun might be an odd fit among the handguns The Fun Pimps included in the game, but it’s hard to deny how well it compliments the speed, stealth, and mobility of Agility-based characters.

Looking for some more pointers to help you survive Navezgane? Check out our 10 Tips for Getting Started or our in-depth Beginner’s Guide.

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About Aaron Van Dyck

Aaron Van Dyck is a thriller novelist with a passion for survival games and exploration. He started writing at the age of 13 and has always been drawn to the sense of self-reliance and freedom found in open worlds. An avid urban explorer and RPG enthusiast, he enjoys dungeon crawling and has a particular love for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Far Cry 5, and Cataclysm: DDA. He's also a fan of shooters and action games with immersive stories and unique monsters to encounter.

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