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Thread: Flak 18 8.8 cm Xmas

  1. #11
    EOD - bombs and bullets pzjgr's Avatar
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    This one was very light on stencilling, only the weight zone marking.

    If Hambone doesn't object I will post more detailed info on the projectile, and do some pics of my later type controlled fragmentation projectile...which, Andrew, is pretty much identical to yours, stampings and all...

    Also think I found how they pulled the projos from the cases...

  2. #12
    Community Organizer Hambone's Avatar
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    Look forward to info on all this Pzjgr.
    “Not every item of news should be published. Rather must those who control news policies endeavor to make every item of news serve a certain purpose.” - Dr. Joseph Goebbels, Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, 1933-1945

  3. #13
    Community Organizer Hambone's Avatar
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    Also, I think it would be good to merge this into the other 88 shell thread I stickied and make it a 8.8 cm Flak info thread. I've learned all kinds of things I didn't know about these from Pzjgr and other posts.
    “Not every item of news should be published. Rather must those who control news policies endeavor to make every item of news serve a certain purpose.” - Dr. Joseph Goebbels, Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, 1933-1945

  4. #14
    EOD - bombs and bullets pzjgr's Avatar
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    OK, my first post will illustrate some of the stamping and stenciling that goes onto a WWII German projectile...the reference I am using is fantastic, but isn't all encompassing, and doesn't cover larger Naval projectiles very well, mainly it seems to be Army type ordnance. Strange since it is a US Navy publication. There are two volumes, the second volume (the one I am using now) covers German projectiles and fuzes...the first (which I also have) covers bombs, torpedoes, rockets....

    The first image I'll post covers actual stampings in the metal of the projectile...now again, this doesn't necessarily cover everything, and not everything shown may be stamped into a particular shell body....

    The second covers what stencils you may find on a shell....German stenciling tended to be somewhat cryptic compared to the way we stenciled ordnance. So you typically need a table to decipher what the stencils actually mean, which is partially what the third image covers.

    Finally I posted the two pages that covers the particular projectile pictured in Hambones round.

    If you look to the end, you'll see some notes...there were two types of these projectiles, a one piece, and one with an open threaded bottom into which a base plate screws into. This particular projectile is of the second type.

    In the one piece shell, the filling (amatol) was heated until molten and poured in through the fuze hole, a plug with the shape of the fuze with gaine was inserted to allow the amatol to cool and solidify with the proper cavity to accept the fuze later.

    The two piece design, cardboard containers were used to hold the amatol, then these were inserted through the base of the projectile, and the base plate screwed in.

    There is no provision for a tracer in this projectile.

    A word on Gaines....normally the fuze itself should provide enough oomph to detonate the explosive filling. But in larger shells with higher capacities, or exceptionally long projectiles (deep cavity) you needed some extra punch in order to ensure a clean high order detonation. I could get into a lot of nitty gritty here, but HE usually needs a combination of heat and pressure to detonate (which is why you can burn C-4 and it won't detonate)...the fuze has a small explosive charge essentially to set off the large charge. When the fuze goes off a combination of heat and shockwave detonates the main charge.

    A gaine is a supplemental detonator that screws into the fuze body, the fuze sets it off, and the larger explosive charge in the gaine provides the extra power to ensure the entire filler payload high order detonates. A low order det is kind of like a squib, it is not initiated with enough oomph, and it sort of fizzles.

    This projectile has a lot of stampings in the metal, but the only stenciling on it is a weight zone marking.

    This is important, and is a roman number from I to V....III being "standard" weight, I and II are incrementally lighter, and IV and V incrementally heavier. Lighter, and you may need more powder increments to achieve proper trajectory, or different ballistic calcs to ensure accuracy, the same with heavier than normal shells. The increment changes only effect separate loading ammo, the 88 is a fixed round.

    Also importantly, big guns depend on various hydraulic systems for recoil attenuation, and to return the barrel to proper position after recoil. These systems require specified maintenance typically after a set mean number of rounds....the gunners would (try) to keep track of the number and types of rounds fired....shooting lots of heavy rounds will narrow the maintenance interval, and lots of light shells will extend it.

    I will cover fuzing in the next post....
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  5. #15
    Moderator Peter U's Avatar
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    Iconic piece of WW2 ordenance.

  6. #16
    Member 20PZGR's Avatar
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    Here's my small collection
    1 x KwK 36 L56 HE
    2 x KwK43 8.8cm
    2 x KwK 40 7.5cm HE & AP L43/48
    1 x Pak 36 3.7cm
    1 x Flak 37 3.7cm
    1 x KwK 40 7.5cm L24
    1 X KwK 39 5cm L42 AP
    1 X KwK 39 5cm L60 HE

    20181206_113303 (1).jpg
    Last edited by 20PZGR; 12-06-2018 at 09:43 PM.

  7. #17
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    Cool item for certain! I can add about why the Navy has info on it- the US EOD community worked (at least when I was there with the foreign materiel exploitation) a lot with NAVEODTECHDIV. They keep files on all encountered ordnance and function as a central repository, so as not to replicate the learning process risking unneeded attempts. Newly encountered items are reported up to them. These are also made available to certified LE agencies who operate bomb squads, and as items age out of currency, you may find them available elsewhere as well. There have even been times when such documents were released because they had to be entered as court documents!

  8. #18
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    Awesome looking shell and thanks for the pics. Am sure many a tank fell victim. Great addition to the collector's den.

  9. #19
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    Congratulations Hambone it looks awesome

  10. #20
    Community Organizer Hambone's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. Pzjgr, that's outstanding information, thank you
    “Not every item of news should be published. Rather must those who control news policies endeavor to make every item of news serve a certain purpose.” - Dr. Joseph Goebbels, Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, 1933-1945

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