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15cm schwere Feld Haubitze 93

Heavy artillery

Contributor :
Luc Malchair      http://www.fortiff.be/
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Location :
Fort Nr2
Coordinates : Lat : 51.20197 / Long : 4.49349
General comments on this surviving gun :

Identical items in the same location : 1
Items covered by this file : 1

This prehistoric kind of heavy gun was present at the side of much modern weapons in the German army during WW1

Markings : 'Nr 928 - Spandau 1901'

Side view on the breech mobile block

Historic and technical information
Denomination :     15cm sFH 93 Origin :       ( Krupp)          

Historic context :

Designed from 1888 to 1893, this 150 mm heavy field howitzer, named 15cm sFH 93 ('sFH' = schwere Feld Haubitze - Heavy field howitzer) was very close to the old guns used during the 1870 Franco-German war : breech loading and rifled bore, but no modern recoil recuperation system (only inclined wooden ramps were placed under the wheels to allow the piece to come back approximately to its firing position after each shot), slow-action breech mechanism.

The noticeable innovations compared to older such guns were mostly a consequence of the visionary demand of the German Army praising for a heavy field artillery weapons design, both powerful and modile. They included the use of Nickel alloyed steel of better performance than bronze for the barrel, allowing both a longer tube without weight increase, and the improved mobility given by a brand new field carriage. Therefore, the 15cm sFH 93 was indeed te be the very first German heavy field gun, concept in which this nation will soon become an expert.

This howitzer was anyway behind its main foreign competitor : in comparaison the French 155mm court Baquet designed earlier in 1890 was not better on the ballistic point of view, but was already equipped with a recoil recuperator that allowed higher firing rates.

In 1914, the old and obsolete 150 sFH 1893 howitzers, however replaced by the 15cm sFH 02 and the 15cm sFH 13 in the active units, were still used in combat as reserve artillery, as one can see on many ancient photographs.

A detailed story of German Heavy Field Artillery creation has been written by Ralph Lovett in this page that can be recommended : Development of the German 15cm.

Technical data :

  • Complete description : 15cm heavy field howitzer M 93
  • Design year : 1893
  • Calibre : 149.70 mm
  • Weight in firing position : 2188 kg
  • Weight for transportation : 2725 kg, one single load
  • Tube length in calibres : 10.80 (total tube length) - 8.1 for the grooved part only
  • Grooves : 36 progressive angle 4 to 12 degrees
  • Projectile weight : 29 à 42 kg
  • Initial speed : 280 m/s
  • Fire rate :
  • Range : 6050 m
  • Elevation range : 0 to +65 degrees
  • Direction range : none

  • German Artillery of World War One           Herbert Jager                   Crowood   2001  
  • Das Geraet der Schweren Artillerie vor, in und nach der Weltkrieg       Herman Schirmer                   Bernard und Graefe, Berlin   1937  
  • Deutsche FeldArtillerie 1864-1910 - Geschütze - Fahrzeuge, Waffen-Arsenal #152       Sonja Wetzig                   Waffen-Arsenal   1995