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5cm SchnellFeuer Kanone in Kazematt Lafette / in Panzer Lafette

Panzer Lafette

Fortress artillery

Contributor :
(Panoramio) Siegfried Kremer      http://www.panoramio.com/
(Panoramio) calypso 96      http://www.panoramio.com/
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Location :
Mützig (67)
Feste Kaiser Wilhelm II
Coordinates : Lat : 48.55837 / Long : 7.45996
General comments on this surviving gun :
In 1914 this fortress shot some shells on the french troops coming from the Vosges in the direction of Strasburg, then was kept silent until 1918. In 1945, the same fortress was more brutally engaged against the US army

These guns are prefectly well preserved... and are still firing with blank ammunitions for tourists on important occasions

Identical items in the same location : 2
Items covered by this file : 2

This fortress seems to own 2 such turrets

Historic and technical information
Denomination :     5cm SchnellFeuer K Origin :       ( Gruson)          

Historic context :

AT the end of the years 1880, the Hotchkiss-Gruson 37 mm revolver guns used as a close defence weapon for the German forts were found not powerful enough, and making too much noise and too much smoke. The German manufacturer Gruson came with a new quick fire gun design, with a simpletube of bigger calibre (2 inches) that was adopted by the German army in 1890, the 5cm SchnellFeuer Kanone.

This gun earned the 'quick fire' qualification since it could reach the impressive rate of 25 rounds per minute thanks to pre-assembled ammunitions and the vertical sliding block Gruson breech. This rate was indeed slower than the one of the revolver guns (50 rounds per minute), but was still considerable and deadly in conjunction with the power increase given by the bigger calibre.

Mounted on 2 wheels surelevated casemate carriages, these guns were named 5cm SchnellFeuer Kanone in Kazematt Lafette and were placed in shelters in the fortresses, principally for the ditches defence.

The same barrels were also mounted inside ingenious small mobile steel turretsdesigned by Gruson and topped with a small Schumann steel cupola. In this configuration, these shielded guns could be placed inside shelters during the ennemy shelling, then brought back on concrete prepared positions before the ennemy assault.

Served by two men sheltered in the cylindre, these 5 cm SchnellFeuer Kanone in Panzer Lafette were widely used on the front line during the trench war. At this occasion, they were named 'FahrPanzer'.

Technical data :

  • Complete description : 5cm quick fire casemate gun / in shielded carriage
  • Design year : 1890
  • Calibre : 53.00 mm
  • Weight in firing position : 566 kg (casemate version) - 2383 kg (FahrPanzer)
  • Weight for transportation :
  • Tube length in calibres : 24.60 (total tube length) - 17.4 for the rifled part only
  • Grooves : 24 progressive angle 1 to 6 degrees
  • Projectile weight : 1.66 kg (explosif) - 2.38 kg (shrapnell)
  • Initial speed : 457 m/s
  • Fire rate : 25 to 35 rounds per minute
  • Range : 3000 m (high explosive) - 400 m (shrapnell)
  • Elevation range :
  • Direction range : 360 degrees for the FahrPanzer

  • German Artillery of World War One           Herbert Jager                   Crowood   2001  
  • Wikipedia http://fr.wikipedia.org/