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Time Periods => WWII => Topic started by: Philonivs Maximvs on September 07, 2007, 10:52:30 PM
Group, I thought I'd start a general WW2 discussion about artillery safety. We have been talking about this on the Wehrmacht Yahoo list, and wanted to see if everyone else out there in the period might have some good ideas.
Basically, it all started when talking about the recent accident with the "SPR" Tiger (owned by 20th CTSG members) at the Indianapolis Air Show last month. In a nutshell, two crewmen were injured, one badly, but recovering. All info points to the fact that they were firing 1-lb black powder charges inside the Russian 85mm gun breech, and that a lit-fuse type of ignition was being used. I assumed it was the "light & toss" type of charges that I've seen others use.... you have a homemade black powder charge with a cannon fuse, you light it, throw it in the breech, then close the breech, and BOOM. To me, this is a very unsafe way to do it... I wouldn't dream of doing such a thing!
I am trying to get people to talk about their best methods of firing powder charges in a tank gun, artillery piece, etc. I have already heard good things, but I'd like to even get a ball rolling to make people painfully aware of the need for safety, even to the point that societies & event organizers start enforcing certain safety regulations with these big bores. I don't want to rain on parades out there, but I'd much rather piss someone off than see them in the hospital (or worse).
Specifically, how do you arty operators run your guns? (powder only..... I think it's safe to say that propane is it's own thing)
I agreed with what you're saying long before the incident with the TSG (Anyone else remember hearing about the homemade 88 at Camp Toccoa a few years back). I know some operators rig stripped down shotguns or 12ga flare guns somewhere in the assembly or rebulid the artillery piece to fire shotgun blanks. One thing that I've never heard of anyone trying is an electric match system like those used in model rocketry, where you'd have an electric trigger that could be tied into the pre-prepped charge before closing the breech. This way the breech is closed before any ingition stimuli occurs, limiting the chances of a premature charge detonation. Sure, the rate of fire may be effected by having to pop in the wires, but I would think it would be much safe than relying on hand lit fuses. This is especially true for armored vehicles where any accident could be worsened by the confined quarters while at the same time, the non-authentic actions are concealed by the armor itself.
No, didn't hear about the 88. What happened?