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wulsten

Trench Mortar/Shell identification

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wulsten

Can anyone ID this dodgy looking lump, is this the infamous Rum Jar ???

any help appreciated, Geoff

post-9296-0-29808100-1356692452_thumb.jp

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centurion

Do you have any guide as to dimensions?

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centurion

These photos of 9.45 rum jars may help

post-9885-0-78329300-1356704932_thumb.jp post-9885-0-39370700-1356704954_thumb.jp

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auchonvillerssomme

Looks like a german 150mm, could be HE or gas.

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centurion

Looks like a german 150mm, could be HE or gas.

Mmm here is one http://militarymemen...823-500x500.jpg

But I think a 9.45 minus the tail cone fits better - there is no driving band.

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Michael Haselgrove

Unless I am competely out on the scale it is, I think, a German 18cm Smoothbore Minenwerfer.

Regards,

Michael H.

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centurion

Back to my question in post 2 - dimensions needed please.

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SiegeGunner

9.45 what, Centurion? If inches, then presumably 24cm.

Do (tube) Minenwerfer come in anything other than smoothbore, Michael H ...?

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Cnock

Hello,

seems to be the projectile of the smootbore Ladungswerfer Erhardt, came in 3 sizes, certainly not the shortest one, but the one of 30 kg or 40 kg

Cnock

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Cnock

6asj4oi.jpg

the 24,5 cm Erhardt Ladungswerfer projectiles (Rum Jar)

Cnock

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centurion

9.45 what, Centurion? If inches, then presumably 24cm.

Do (tube) Minenwerfer come in anything other than smoothbore, Michael H ...?

9.45 inch was the designation used by English speaking users (British, Australian, American etc etc) The French and Italians classed it as 240 mm. Some times nicknamed the "quarter to ten" mortar. Copies were used by German and KuK forces. When firing them English speaking troops refered to the round as a flying pig, when on the receiving end they classified the round as a rum jar along with other large similar rounds.

Some of the earlier German minenwerfers were rifled muzzle loaders, later versions were smooth bore. However I think that Michael is referring to the 17Cm mMW

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Michael Haselgrove

Siege Gunner,

Without getting into too much detail, the rifled minenwerfer used were the calibres 76mm, the 170mm and the 24.5mm. All three, in old and new models, were used throughout the war, the new models of the last two being introduced in 1916. The bombs are easily identifiable by the "pre-rifled" drive bands which are quite different to those seen on an unfired (or fired) artillery shell. The 76mm was also used on a flat-trajectory carriage for use against machine-gun positions, tanks, etc.

Previously I did intend to refer to the 18cm Smoothbore Minenwerfer (Glatter Minenwerfer).

Regards,

Michael H.

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SiegeGunner

Thanks, Michael — explanation much appreciated.

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Cnock

Hello,

in order to keep it simple:

The projectile in first post has nothing to do with the first picture of Centurion, because Eberhardt projectiles had no fins attached,

the same for the second picture of Centurion, this is a German 21 cm artillerie shell

regards,

Cnock

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Michael Haselgrove

I am attaching two photos of the (inert) 18cm Minenwerfer bomb in my collection together with the fuse used (again inert) which was the time and percussion Z.s.u.m. W.M. It is noted at page 106 para 12 of the German Army Handbook April 1918:-

"In reply to our gas projector bombardments, the 18-cm (7.1 inch) smooth-bore Minenwerfer has been employed as a gas projector. This Minenwerfer is an obsolete bronze muzzle-loading trench mortar....etc."

"The bomb employed.....is a thick-walled iron "rum jar" or "canister" 17.5cm in diameter. It weighs 66lbs and contains about 9 pints of liquid (phosgene) or a mixture of phosgene and chloro-picrin.......etc."

I will leave it to you to decide whether the bomb in Wulsten's photo is indeed the 18cm Minenwerfer. If anyone wants a photo of the mortar and ammunition there is a good one in the I.W.M. collection under reference "Q23649-German 18cm trench mortar and ammunition".

Siege Gunner - thanks for your acknowledgement of my last post. My explanation of the rifled minenwerfer was, perhaps, not very clear and in case it helps I am attaching a photo of the base of a 76mm bomb (inert). This is in fact a message carrying bomb the paintwork on which is not original but you will get a good idea of the pre-rifled drive band which has to be lined up with the grooves at the muzzle of the Minenwerfer when loading.

Regards,

Michael H.

post-53132-0-40007600-1356793179_thumb.j

post-53132-0-26696400-1356793189_thumb.j

post-53132-0-59678100-1356793196_thumb.j

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wulsten

Thanks for the replies and apologies for the slow response, the projectile was photographed in the Loos area earlier this year, the dimensions of which i am not sure, however it appeared to be larger in size to a Livens bomb, Geoff

I would say it was larger than 18cm diameter (certainly a nasty piece of kit)

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calibre792x57.y

Now it is not often we catch Cnock out, but the bomb he posted pictures of in Post 10 is not the bomb shown in Post 1, although correctly identified itself. These Ladungswerfer 24.5 cm bombs were very thin walled, only 1.5 mm thick and are not likely to survive so long a period in the soil, as may be seen by the deep rust visible in the original post. There was one c/w fuze and its wood base for sale at Farnham Militaria Fair not long ago. No 1 is the bomb posted in No 15 and correctly identified as the Glatte Wurf-Mine of 18 cm. by M. Haselgrove. These had much thicker walls and papier-mache wads attached to their base as a seal when launched. Happy New year to all readers! - SW

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