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Russian WWII Mortars

Discussions on all aspects of the USSR, from the Russian Civil War till the end of the Great Patriotic War and the war against Japan.
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Russian WWII Mortars

Postby Robert Hurst on 12 Feb 2003 16:59

Hi

37 mm Spade Mortar

To this day little information exists on the Russian 37 mm Spade Mortar. It was a unique weapon that, when carried, resembled a conventional short-handled spade, but it could be quickly converted into a mortar by pulling a monpod stabilising leg out of the 'handle' which unlocked the 'spade' to form a base plate. It could function as a normal spade when folded so the basic idea may have been to give every soldier his own mortar, but the 37 mm mortar appears to have been little used.

The correct Russian designation for this oddity is unknown - even the Germans were unable to discover it for they gave the weapon the reporting designation of 3.7 cm Spatengranatwerfer 161(r).

Data

Calibre: 37 mm (1.45 in)
Barrel length: 520 mm (20.47 in)
Bore length: 375 mm (14.76 in)
Weight: 2.4 kg (5.3 lb)
Maximum range (approx): 300 m (328 yds)
Bomb weight (approx): 0.68 kg (1.5 lb)

50-PM 38

The 50 mm Model 38 was the result of a long series of Russian experiments to produce a light infantry mortar. For its task it turned out to be rather more complicated and expensive than the production requirements demanded and it was produced in small numbers only before being replaced by the Model 1939.

Its main design feature was that the barrel was clamped at two elevation angles only - 45 and 75 degrees. Range variations were made by altering a sleeve round the base of the barrel. This sleeve opened a series of gas ports which bled off exhaust gases and so determined the range.

Despite the small number produced, some fell into German hands in 1941 and they were taken over as the 5 cm Granatwerfer 205/1(r).

Data

Calibre: 50 (1.97 in)
Barrel length: 780 mm (30.7 in)
Bore length: 553 mm (21.77 in)
Weight in action: 12.1 kg (26.6 lb)
Elevation (fixed): 45 to 75 degrees plus 82 deghrees on some models
Traverse: 6 degrees
Muzzle velocity (max): 96 m/sec (315 ft/sec)
Maximum range (45 degrees): 800 m (875 yds)
Maximum range (75 degrees): 402 m (440 yds)
Maximum range (82 degrees): 100 m (109 yds)
Bomb weight: 0.85 kg (1.875 lb)

The above text and photos were taken from "WWII Fact Files", by Peter Chamberlain and Terry Gander.

Regards

Bob
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Re: Russian WWII Mortars

Postby Musashi on 12 Feb 2003 21:23

Robert Hurst wrote:Hi

37 mm Spade Mortar

To this day little information exists on the Russian 37 mm Spade Mortar. It was a unique weapon that, when carried, resembled a conventional short-handled spade, but it could be quickly converted into a mortar by pulling a monpod stabilising leg out of the 'handle' which unlocked the 'spade' to form a base plate. It could function as a normal spade when folded so the basic idea may have been to give every soldier his own mortar, but the 37 mm mortar appears to have been little used.

The correct Russian designation for this oddity is unknown - even the Germans were unable to discover it for they gave the weapon the reporting designation of 3.7 cm Spatengranatenwerfer 161(r).

Data

Calibre: 37 mm (1.45 in)
Barrel length: 520 mm (20.47 in)
Bore length: 375 mm (14.76 in)
Weight: 2.4 kg (5.3 lb)
Maximum range (approx): 300 m (328 yds)
Bomb weight (approx): 0.68 kg (1.5 lb)

50-PM 38

The 50 mm Model 38 was the result of a long series of Russian experiments to produce a light infantry mortar. For its task it turned out to be rather more complicated and expensive than the production requirements demanded and it was produced in small numbers only before being replaced by the Model 1939.

Its main design feature was that the barrel was clamped at two elevation angles only - 45 and 75 degrees. Range variations were made by altering a sleeve round the base of the barrel. This sleeve opened a series of gas ports which bled off exhaust gases and so determined the range.

Despite the small number produced, some fell into German hands in 1941 and they were taken over as the 5 cm Granatenwerfer 205/1(r).

Data

Calibre: 50 (1.97 in)
Barrel length: 780 mm (30.7 in)
Bore length: 553 mm (21.77 in)
Weight in action: 12.1 kg (26.6 lb)
Elevation (fixed): 45 to 75 degrees plus 82 deghrees on some models
Traverse: 6 degrees
Muzzle velocity (max): 96 m/sec (315 ft/sec)
Maximum range (45 degrees): 800 m (875 yds)
Maximum range (75 degrees): 402 m (440 yds)
Maximum range (82 degrees): 100 m (109 yds)
Bomb weight: 0.85 kg (1.875 lb)

Very interesting. I have never heard about the mortar.
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Postby Robert Hurst on 13 Feb 2003 12:09

Hi

50-PM 39

The 50 mm Model 1939 was intended to replace the Model 1938 as it had proved expensive to produce. As things turned out the Model 1939 was itself replaced very quickly by an even cheaper version, the Model 1940.

The Model 1939 at first glance seemed identical to the Model 1938 but the gas vents were omitted in favour of the usual elevation controls on the bipod. The Model 1939 retained the Model 1938 base plate and sight.

In German use the Model 1939 became the 5 cm Granatwerfer 205/2(r).

Data

Calibre: 50 mm (1.97 in)
Barrel length: 775 mm (30.5 in)
Bore length: 545 mm (21.46 in)
Weight in action: 16.98 kg (37.4 lb)
Elevation: 45 to 85 degrees
Traverse: 7 degrees
Muzzle velocity: 96 m/sec (315 ft/sec)
Maximim range: 800 m (875 yds)
Bomb weight: 0.85 kg (1.875 lb)

50-PM 40

The 50 mm Model 1940 was produced in large numbers and it was a popular and effective weapon that could be easily and cheaply produced as its base plate and bipod were simple steel stampings. The barrel reverted to the two fixed elevation angles as on the Model 1938 and again range variation was brought about by gas vents. The bipod was further simplified by incorporating a novel and simple method of cross-levelling for laying which was so successful it was used on later and heavier mortars.

Trials were carried out using three barrels on one Model 1940 base plate and bipod which were intended to be fired together but the experiment was not a success. The Model 1940 was used widely and any that fell into German hands were turned against their former owners as the 5 cm Granatwerfer 205/3(r).

Data

Calibre: 50 mm (1.97 in)
Barrel length: 630 mm (24.8 in)
Bore length: 533 mm (20.98 in)
Weight in action: 9.3 kg (20.5 lb)
Elevation (fixed): 45 & 75 degrees
Traverse: 9 degrees at 45 degrees, 16 degrees at 75 degrees
Maximum range (45 degrees): 800 m (875 yds)
Maximum range (75 degrees): 402 m (440 yds)
Bomb weight: 0.85 kg (1.875 lb)

50-PM 41

With the 50 mm Model 1941 the Russian light mortars went one stage further in the search for simplicity and cheap manufacture. The Model 1941 dispensed with a bipod and used a barrel yoke which incorporated all the traverse and cross-levelling controls. Elevation angles remained fixed at 45 and 75 degrees but exhaust gases were vented forward through a tube under the muzzle. The sight was simplified also.

Ammunition remained the same as for the earlier models and continued to be propelled by a single charge with no increments. Oddly enough, no records exist of this mortar being used by the Germans, but they gave it the reporting designation of 5 cm Granatwerfer 200(r).

Data

Calibre: 50 mm (1.97 in)
Barrel Length: 610 mm (24 in)
Bore length: 559 mm (22 in)
Weight in action: 10.05 kg (22.2 lb)
Elevation (fixed): 45 & 75 degrees
Traverse: 9 degrees at 45 degrees, 16 degrees at 75 degrees
Muzzle velocity (Max): 86 m/sec (315 ft/sec)
Maximum range (45 degrees): 800 m (875 yds)
Maximum range (75 degrees): 402 m (440 yds)
Bomb weight: 0.85 kg (1.875 lb)

The above text and photos were taken from "WWII Fact Files: Mortars", by Peter Chamberlain and Terry Gander.

Regards

Bob
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Postby Robert Hurst on 13 Feb 2003 13:15

Hi

82-pm 36

The 82 mm Model 1936 was a Russian copy of the French Brandt 81 mm mortar, and apart from the slight increase in calibre was identical to it in all respects. Having said that there is little else to remark on the Model 1936 except that it was in wide-spread use in 1941.

As usual, the Germans used as much captured equipment as they could and so the Model 1936 became the 8.2 cm Granatwerfer 274/1(r). German 8.1 cm ammunition could be fired from the Russian 82 mm mortars but accuracy suffered as a result.

Data

Calibre: (3.228 in)
Barrel length: 1,320 mm (51.97 in)
Bore length: 1,225 mm (48.23 in)
Weight in action: 62 kg (136.7 lb)
Elevation: 45 to 85 degrees
Traverse: 6 to 11 degrees-variable with elevation
Muzzle velocity: 202 m/sec (663 ft/sec)
Maximum range: 3,000 m (3,282 yds)
Bomb weight: 3.4 kg (7.5 lb)
3.35 kg (7.4 lb)
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Postby Robert Hurst on 14 Feb 2003 11:55

Hi

82-PM 37

The basic French design of the 82 mm Model 1936 was revised in 1937 to produce the 82 mm Model 1937. Several changes were made, one of which was the addition of recoil springs between the barrel and bipod to reduce stress on the bipod and reduce the amount of re-laying during a long 'shoot'.

The traverse controls were altered slightly but the main change was made to the base plate which became circular - however a small rectangular plate was used by mountain units. This circular base plate became one of the main recognition points of Russian mortars.

In German hands the Model 1937 became the 8.2 cm Granatwerfer 274/2(r).

Data

Calibre: 82 mm (3,228 in)
Barrel length: 1,320 mm (51.97 in)
Bore length: 1,225 mm (48.23 in)
Weight in action: 57.34 kg (126.3 lb)
Elevation: 45 to 85 degrees
Traverse: 6 to 11 degrees-variable with elevation
Muzzle velocity: 202 m/sec (663 ft/sec)
Maximum range: 3,100 m (3,391 yds)
Bomb weight: 3.4 kg (7.5 lb)
3.35 kg (7.4 lb)

82-PM 41

In 1941 the Russians produced their 82 mm Model 1941 mortar which differed from earlier models in having a new bipod design. This new bipod was produced to increase the tactical mobility of the 82 mm mortar. In 1941 transport vehicles were in short supply in Russia so the new model was designed for hand-towing. Stamped steel wheels could be fitted over stub axles on the bipod legs after the bipod had been secured against the base plate. A handle attachment was fitted over the muzzle and the mortar could then be towed by one or two men. This version was used by the Germans as the 8.2 cm Granatwerfer 274/3(r).

In 1943 the idea was taken a stage further by making the wheels a permanent fixyure on the bipod. In action they were above the bipod feet and only became effective when the bipod was folded back. This version was the 82 mm Model 1943 or 82-PM 43, and it remained in use for many years.

Data (Model 1941)

Calibre: 82 mm (3.228 in)
Barrel length: 1.320 mm (51.97 in)
Bore length: 1,225 mm (48.25 in)
Weight in action: 45 kg (99.2 lb)
Elevation: 45 to 85 degrees
Traverse: 5 to 10 degrees-variable with elevation
Muzzle velocity: 202 m/sec (663 ft/sec
Maximum range: 3,100 m (3,391 yds)
Bomb weight: 3.4 kg (7.5 lb)
3.35 kg (7.4 lb)

The above text and photos to be added were taken from "WWII Fact Files: Mortars", by Peter Chamberlain and Terry Gander

Regards

Bob
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Postby Robert Hurst on 14 Feb 2003 12:34

Hi

107-PM 38

The 107 mm Model 1938 Mountain Mortar was a scaled-up version of the 82 mm Model 1937 produced especially for Russian mountain units. It featured a light tubular steel limber onto which the mortar could be folded for horse or vehicle towing - this limber was incorporated into the 120 mm Model 1938 Mortar. For transport over rough ground the mortar could be broken down for pack carrying.

Firing could be by either gravity percussion or by trigger. The ammunition was fired by a single primary cartridge and up to four increments - the rounds could be one of two types of HE, smoke, incendiary or chemical.

Any that were captured by the Germans were used by them as the 10.7 cm Gebirgsgranatwerfer 328(r).

Data

Calibre: 107 mm (4.21 in)
Barrel length: 1,570 mm (61.8 in)
Bore length: 1,400 mm (55.12 in)
Weight in action: 170.7 kg (376 lb)
Weight travelling: 850 kg (1,874 lb)
Elevation: 45 to 80 degrees
Traverse: 6 degrees
Muzzle velocity: 302 m/sec (990 ft/sec)
Maximum range: 6,314 m (6,900 yds)
Bomb weight: 8 kg (17.64 lb

120-HM 38

Like the 107 mm Model 1938, the 120 mm Model 1938 Regimental Mortar was a scaled-up version of the 82 mm Model 1937. It used the same two-wheeled limber as the 107 mm Model 1938 but this was usually allied to a two-wheeled ammunition cart to which it was attached for towing - this cart carried 20 rounds.

By all accounts, the 120 mm Model 1938 can be assessed as one of the best mortar designs of the war. It fired a heavy bomb with a good warhead, it was highly mobile and could be taken in and out of action very quickly, and it had a most useful range.

The Germans paid the design the compliment of not only taking it into service as the 12 cm Granatwerfer 378(r) but of copying the design and manufacturing it as the 12 cm Granatwerfer 42.

The later 120-HM 43 was essentially similar to the Model 1938 but used a single shock absorber on the barrel-bipod mounting.

Data

Calibre: 120 mm (4.72 in)
Barrel length (L/15.5): 1,862 mm (73.3 in)
Bore length: 1,536 mm (60.47 in)
Weight in action: 280.1 kg (617 lb)
Weight travelling: 477.6 kg (1.052 lb)
Elevation: 45 to 80 degrees
Traverse: 6 degrees
Muzzle velocity: 272 m/sec (892 ft/sec)
Maximum range: 6,000 m (6,564 yds)
Bomb weight (HE): 16 kg (35.3 lb)

The text and photos were taken from "WWII Fact Files: Mortars", by Peter Chamberlain and Terry Gander.


Regards

Bob
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Postby Robert Hurst on 14 Feb 2003 15:39

Hi

160 mm Model 1943

The effectiveness of the Russian 120 mm mortar was such that the Russians went one step upwards in calibre and produced a 160 mm mortar in 1943. This became the 160 mm Model 1943 although it more closely resembled a light artillery piece than a mortar.

It did use a smooth-bored barrel but it was breech-loaded and trigger-fired. Used by divisional artillery units it was a powerful and useful weapon.

Data

Calibre: 160 mm (6.3 in)
Barrel length: 2,896 mm (114 in)
Weight in action: 1,080.5 kg (2,380 lb)
Elevation (max): 50 degrees
Traverse: 17 degrees
Muzzle velocity 305 m/sec (1,000 ft/sec)
Maximum range:
Minimum range: 750 m (820 yds)
Bomb weight (HE): 41.4 kg (90.17 lb)

The above text and phot was taken from WWII Fact Files: Mortars", by Peter Chamberlain and Terry Gander.

Regards

Bob
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Postby Mattias Rönnblom on 11 Aug 2006 08:35

Did the Russians produce WP rounds for any of their mortars?
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Postby Dima on 11 Aug 2006 17:51

37mm,50mm were called RM = Rotniy Minomet (Company Mortar).
82mm was called BM = Batalionniy Minomet (Battalion Mortar).
120mm was called PM = Polkovoi Minomet (Regimental Mortar).
160mm was called DM = Divisionniy Minomet (Divisional Mortar).

u forgot:
120mm UPM-41.
82mm BM-43.

Did the Russians produce WP rounds for any of their mortars?

AFAIK no.

I have copy of manual for 82mm BM-37 mortar and range scale starts from 105m, guess that's the minimum range. Does anyone has minimul range data for other countries mortars?
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Postby CyirlSh on 11 Aug 2006 20:09

Calibre: 107 mm (4.21 in)

At this mortar calibre 106.7mm
At others too not свосем are truly specified, especially in inches

Best regards
Cyril Shishkin
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Postby The Edge on 15 Aug 2006 15:05

For 82mm BM-43 only: http://www.secondeguerre.net/articles/a ... m1943.html :?

I found listed "107mm M.1930" (MC-107) and "107mm M.1931" (MH-107) mortars.
http://translate.google.com/translate?h ... D%26sa%3DG
Any info about them? :roll:
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Postby maschinengewehr42 on 15 Aug 2006 18:04

So what do the experts make of this (supposedly) German mortar then? Is it a captured Russian piece. It's not exactly like any of the weapons in the photos in this thread, but I'd love to ID it. (No, I didn't buy it, by the way!)

http://www.germanmilitaria.com/Heer/photos/H47554.html
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Postby Befehl227 on 29 Aug 2006 01:34

Amazing! I´ve never heared about the Spade mortar before!
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Postby Befehl227 on 29 Aug 2006 02:39

Can somebody please identify the two soviet mortars below? I believe the first one is a 82--mm--mortar 1937 and the second one a is a 120--mm--mortar 1938 (?)

Image

Image

Both mortars were used by yugoslav troops/partisans.(1945)

[´Photos are from my private collection]
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Mortars

Postby Asjemenou on 31 Aug 2006 13:32

Interesting topic. I also had never heard of the Russian 37 mm. spade mortar. They really had a large offer of different mortars.
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