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The Vault

Bethlehem Steel 37mm Cannon – Looking for Data

I recently got an email from a young man named Paul who is working on restoring a Bethlehem Steel 37mm cannon as an Eagle Scout project. The gun is sitting outside an American Legion post, where I expect it has been for many, many decades. It appears to be mostly complete with the major exception [...]

Vintage Saturday: Fire Support

US troops demonstrating use of an M1916 37mm gun

Everyone stare straight ahead and look serious!

One of the photos that didn’t make the cut for the 2015 Forgotten Weapons Calendar: US troops demonstrating use of an M1916 37mm gun. Note how the ammo is supplied on a cloth belt – it was made for use in 37mm Vickers Pompoms.

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Krupp 50mm Mountain Gun (Thai Model 1902)

We’re taking a look at another artillery piece today, a 50mm mountain gun made for Siam (now Thailand) by the German Krupp company. It is a relatively simple (and thus relatively inexpensive at the time) design, with no recoil mechanism or adjustable traverse:

Vintage Saturday: Shaped Charge

 

I got two warheads, one for each of ya’!

This contraption is a Hungarian M1944 (1944 Mintá = 44M) double AT Projector (dupla páncéltörövetö) aka the Buzogányvető (= the Mace). Only 700 units were made, and they served as HE/AT weapona. The warheads each hold 4.21 kg (9.27 lb) of high explosive, and [...]

Russian RG-6 Grenade Launcher and German Repair Depot Footage

RG-6 40mm grenade launcher

Something new and something old today…

RG-6 40mm grenade launcher

From long-time contributor Hrachya, we have a Russian manual for the RG-6 grenade launcher. This is a pretty recent design, having gone into production in the 1990s. It fires the same 40mm caseless grenades used by the older GP-25 underbarrel unit found mounted on [...]

37mm Gun, Bethlehem, Semi-Automatic (Video)

The 37mm gun was found in many guises during World War One – that caliber was the smallest allowed to use exploding projectiles by the 1899 Hague accords. Every nation in the world, it seems, used 37mm guns of one type or another. Well, one particular version I had the chance to look at was [...]

M6 Gun Motor Carriage 37mm (Video)

The M6 Gun Motor Carriage was the first American tank destroyer of WWII – a 37mm antitank gun (basically identical to the M3 gun) mounted on the back of a Dodge 3/4 ton weapons carrier. A large armor shield protected the gun crew from small arm fire, but the vehicle was otherwise highly exposed. The [...]

More Ammo Documents

Continuing with the stash of ammunition documents from Robert, we have two more today (this is making me feel a bit like WikiLeaks…).

First up is a German pamphlet on WWII airborne weapons ammo. This is a 250+ document with a ton of technical information on cartridges from 8mm up to 50mm (mostly 20mm and [...]

L’Arbalete la Sauterelle Type A D’Imphy

This post started as just a quickie, because I happened to find a vintage photo of a couple French WWI soldiers using a crossbow/ballista type device to throw grenades. I realized, looking at the photo, that I’d actually seen one of them in person, as the Paris Musée de l’Armée. The plan was to post [...]

Granatenwerfer 16

Developed from a weapon originally designed by a priest, of all people, in the Austro-Hungarian army, the Granatenwerfer 16 was a German WWI grenade thrower which bridged the gap between hand-thrown grenades and the light minenwerfers. Throwing a small grenade with a 400g (14oz) high explosive charge to a maximum range of about 300 meters [...]