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Howitzer query


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#1 Alan Tucker

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 08:55 AM

I have been asked by someone to find out whether we had a 18 inch wheeled howitzer during the Great War!

#2 auchonvillerssomme

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 10:21 AM

No we didn't not on wheels as in puuled by horses or lorry. Railway gun had an 18-inch Howitzer barrel. Well for the pedantic it was on wheels.

#3 khaki

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 11:41 AM

No we didn't not on wheels as in puuled by horses or lorry. Railway gun had an 18-inch Howitzer barrel. Well for the pedantic it was on wheels.


Would it be fair to say that wheeled artillery would be considered 'mobile' regardless of caliber and that the oher heavies are fixed position or static, or am I stating the obvious?
khaki

#4 Lancashire Fusilier

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 01:33 PM

I have been asked by someone to find out whether we had a 18 inch wheeled howitzer during the Great War!


Alan,

An 18 inch 85 ton Howitzer was developed for use during WW1, although it was not finished in time. 5 of the 18 inch Howitzers were made by The Elswick Ordnance Company ( Newcastle ).
Initially, they were mounted on a wheeled 164 ton railway mounting, the one in the attached 3 photographs, is mounted on a 95 ton wheeled carriage made by the Royal Carriage Department in 1886.
The 18 inch Howitzer was the largest built for British Land Services, and was used to fire a 1000 lb shell/bomb.
This Howitzer may be the Howitzer your questioner had in mind.

LF

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#5 Op-Ack

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 02:01 PM

The Howitzer in the photographs is mounted on a proofing sled, this isn't the carriage it would have used in action. It stood for many years outside the Rotunda in woolwich, but is now located adjacent to the rugby pitches at RSA Larkhill.

Phil

#6 Lancashire Fusilier

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 02:16 PM

The Howitzer in the photographs is mounted on a proofing sled, this isn't the carriage it would have used in action. It stood for many years outside the Rotunda in woolwich, but is now located adjacent to the rugby pitches at RSA Larkhill.

Phil


Phil,

The service carriage is quoted as being 164 tons, whereas the one in the photograph is only 95 tons.
I understand these 18 inch Howitzers saw service in WW2 ?
Do you have any other photographs ?
LF

#7 Alan Tucker

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 03:20 PM

Good stuff guys. Keep it coming.

#8 CharlieBris

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 06:02 AM

The article in Wikipedia on the 18 inch BL howitzer has some information of the use of the 18in howitzer in WW2.

I'm puzzled why the 18 inch was developed in the first place - perhaps it was "because we can and the French have a 20inch howitzer
under development".

Regards,

Charlie





#9 nigelfe

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 08:59 AM

The usual reason, they wanted to throw a big projectile a long way. For the same muzzle velocity a heavier projectile goes further.

The RAF wasn't capable of delivering 1000lb bombs. When they got that capability super heavy artillery became rendundant.

#10 MikB

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 10:53 AM

The usual reason, they wanted to throw a big projectile a long way. For the same muzzle velocity a heavier projectile goes further.
The RAF wasn't capable of delivering 1000lb bombs. When they got that capability super heavy artillery became rendundant.


...And penetrates more concrete when it arrives. Germany used the 'Dicke Berthas' to crack the Liege forts early in the war, and maybe some of the German redoubts on the western front were seen as suitable targets for a similar piece on the Allied side - in which case it could have been the relative cheapness and quick availability of mining, rather than increasing aviation capability, that made it redundant.

In the 1950s-60s, Britains Ltd. produced a toy '18" Howitzer' that used a spring-loaded cartridge case to throw soft plastic shells. I wondered for a long time as a lad whether there'd ever been a real original. The toy looked a great deal more like the 8" howitzer than anything else I'd seen pictures of.

Regards,
MikB

Regards,
MikB

#11 RodB

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 02:02 AM

The article in Wikipedia on the 18 inch BL howitzer has some information of the use of the 18in howitzer in WW2.

I'm puzzled why the 18 inch was developed in the first place - perhaps it was "because we can and the French have a 20inch howitzer
under development".

Regards,

Charlie

I think the Allies were expecting to stage the final attack on the German lines in 1919, and were building up super-heavy artillery, tanks etc. to support the push and avoid massive casualties. In fact the war ended before most of the new heavy weapons were ready, with the exception of a few British and US 14-inch railway guns that were deployed from mid-1918 onwards.
Rod