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10cm Kanone 04

Light artillery

Contributor :
Jean-Marie Brams     
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Location :
Vierves sur Viroin
Monument aux Morts
Coordinates : Lat : 50.08240 / Long : 4.63550
General comments on this surviving gun :
There are two similar guns near that memorial. Both have been abandonned by Germans during their retreat after November 11th 1918 armistice, most probably because of the lack of towing equipments.

Identical items in the same location : 2
Items covered by this file : 1

View on both guns

The youngest gun is dated 1917 and marked K.3602 Li.3788. (Krupp Essen) on the breech. There are no engravings on its barrel.

Zoom on the tail end.

Historic and technical information
Denomination :     10cm K 04 Origin :       ( Krupp)          

Historic context :

Despite its interesting ballistic properties, the 10cm K 99 was quickly overcome by the absence of a modern recuperator mechanism. The German Army therefore asked Ehrardt to design a new gun of the same caliber and properties but equipped with this apparatus and not needing a platform.

The model proposed by Ehrardt in 1902 was not found convincing, but meanwhile the challenge was particularly well accepted by Krupp whose 10cm modern gun was adopted under the name '10 cm K 04' ('K' = Kanone = Canon), inheriting some of the developpments this company made for the modern 15cm sFH 02 howitzer.

The gun used fixed ammunitions and was equipped with a recoil system and a long tube quasi-identical to the one of the 10cm K 99, inclmuding the typical vertical sliding block breech mechanism. There was no shield, at the expenses of the servants safety.

Its precision, range and fire rate made this gun one of the best assets of the German Army, who will use it on all the battlefields for different types of missions, and will continuously manufacture new ones until the end of the war, despite the apparition of the newest versions 10cm K 14 and 10cm K 17. This gun was incorporated in the units of the Fuss Artillerie

Germany entered the war with 182 such guns. At the end of the war, it had 484 10cm K04.

Technical data :

  • Complete description : 10cm gun M 1904
  • Design year : 1904
  • Calibre : 105.20 mm
  • Weight in firing position : 2755 kg
  • Weight for transportation : 3509 kg in one single load
  • Tube length in calibres : 29.80 (total tube length) - 22 calibres grooved length
  • Grooves : 32
  • Projectile weight : 17.8 à 18.75 kg
  • Initial speed : 560 to 583 m/s
  • Fire rate :
  • Range : 9200 to 12700 m/s
  • Elevation range : -5 to +30 degrees
  • Direction range : 4 degrees total range

  • German Artillery of World War One           Herbert Jager                   Crowood   2001  
  • http://www.lovettartillery.com/      Ralph Lovett                      
  • Das Geraet der Schweren Artillerie vor, in und nach der Weltkrieg       Herman Schirmer                   Bernard und Graefe, Berlin   1937