This light mortar was developed by Rheinmetal-Borsig and in service from 1936. Use of these small light mortars is in the range beyond a hand grenade, throwing distance, and before the range of the medium mortar. It was operated by a three man firing team. But the 5 cm Granatwerfer 36 was too complex to handle and its shell was not effective, it just was to light. Even though almost 32000 of the 5 cm Granatwerfer 36 were made until 1941 and 22.122.000 shells were produced. The German designation was 5 cm LeGrW, LeGrW is an abbreviation for Leichte GranatWerfer (light mortar).