20mm flak ammo

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schwarzlose
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20mm flak ammo

Post by schwarzlose » 15 May 2005 19:04

Can somebody tell me more about the ammo on the picture? Is bullet explosive(could it be dangerous if it is dug from the ground) and such things?
Thank you.

Image

Matt L
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Re: 20mm flak ammo

Post by Matt L » 16 May 2005 13:57

Hi schwarzlose,

The answers to your questions are 'yes' and 'yes'. It's a 2cm Flak30/36 high-explosive round- yellow paint with black ink markings indicates that it is explosive, and this one has a yellow tracer. Ones with red ink markings were high-explosive incendiary rounds, so are even more dangerous. If you ever dig up such things, it's best not to touch them and especially don't try to empty them. The detonator attached to the fuze is the extremely dangerous part because it contains a sensitive explosive that wasn't extremely stable when the round was new. After 60 years they can be very unstable. I know of someone who was seriously injured while trying to disarm a round like this. He was actually lucky in that the detonator exploded after he removed it from the shell, so it did not set of the main explosive charge- but he still lost a couple of fingers and one eye. Remember, these things were intended to damage and destroy airplanes!


Matt

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schwarzlose
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Post by schwarzlose » 16 May 2005 16:04

Thanks for those information. A have dug 4 rounds and 4 bullets yesterday. I knew that they are dangerous but i did not known that are so sensitive. Now i will give them away.

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DetectorCollector
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Re: 20mm flak ammo

Post by DetectorCollector » 16 May 2005 20:04

Matt L wrote:I know of someone who was seriously injured while trying to disarm a round like this. He was actually lucky in that the detonator exploded after he removed it from the shell, so it did not set of the main explosive charge- but he still lost a couple of fingers and one eye. Remember, these things were intended to damage and destroy airplanes!
8O got only one word for this: Scary. I don't want to think that I would stick my shovel on one of those things! Those are serious injuries indeed. Did he knew that they were so highly explosive?

Bart

Pzgr40
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Post by Pzgr40 » 18 May 2005 17:52

@ Schwartzlose: You wrote
i did not known that are so sensitive. Now i will give them away.
.
I hope you give them to the propper authorities (EOD service), who will take care of safe destruction.
Here a picture with 3 types on a row, from left to right:
1. High explosive, Hexogen filled, no tracer, mechanical self destruct. (extremely dangerous as a dud)
2. High explosive with a screwed in pyrotechnic tracer self destruct, penthrite filled, impact only fuze
3. High explosive with a pressed in pyrotechnic tracer self destruct cap, hexogen filled, impact only fuze.
The one on your picture is either 2 or 3.

Length of the cartridge case is 139mm, the body diameter of the shell 20 mm.
Make a 1:1 scale print and you will shurely understand why this cartridge type deserves all due respect.
In a WW2 German Wehrmacht report from my town, one 20 mm Soloturm gun was placed overlooking the local coastline. According to this report (I will try to find it again and post a scan of it), a low over the water land inward flying Wellington was shot down with four hits. Pretty impressive!
With regards , Pzgr40

Ps; the detonator in the left cartridge is a fake. It is an Aluminium one piece replica!!
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schwarzlose
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Post by schwarzlose » 18 May 2005 18:07

The one on your picture is either 2 or 3.
The one on the picture doesnt belong to me. I will post picture of my ammo soon.

Pzgr40
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20mm

Post by Pzgr40 » 18 May 2005 18:25

Hi Swartzlose, that was obvious from the start I believe :) .
You make me curious, please post them . I'm always interested. :P
Regards , Pzgr40

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Douglas 5
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Post by Douglas 5 » 20 May 2005 05:57

Hi Schwarzlose:
They are right ... those things are very dangerous. Even more so the 3 and 5 cm ones . Digging around is quit a thrill , bin there , done that...BUT you do not know what you will hit ,(A mine) !!! I grew up in Europe, Germany-Austria, and found them and more in the 60's , .... 8.8 Flak round being the largest ! Class mates of mine got hurt and lost fingers too !
I surendered what I had and only kept the armor piercing ones and a few cartriges . Don't learn from a bad experience !
Life is too short !!
Douglas 5

mietek
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Post by mietek » 20 May 2005 16:41

HI.

AP can be dangerouse too, some AP had fuses on the bottom or phosphorus. Better not to take them home.

mietek

Pzgr40
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Post by Pzgr40 » 20 May 2005 17:07

AP can be dangerouse too, some AP had fuses on the bottom or phosphorus. Better not to take them home.
Normally, one can regognize these shells quite easilly. They have a threaded bottomplug that is screwed in the base of the shell, either an aluminium cap that is screwed in.
It gets more confusing with the type shown below; From the outside it looks like a massive steel AP-T. However, it is an Armour piercing High Explosive shell, with a self destruct tracer (APHE-T SD). The tracer is a pressed and rolled in place type. After placing, the base of the shell was machined completely smooth, and so it absolutely appears to be an AP-T. The only destinctive mark is the part below the drivingbelt, it is longer and different chamfered from the other 20x139 AP/AP-T/APHE-T or API-T shells, but one has to know this to recognize the details.

With regards , Pzgr40
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Douglas 5
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Shells

Post by Douglas 5 » 21 May 2005 13:26

The tips of these started out as all aluminum, later steel parts used as aluminum bcame scarce . The tips were right or clockwise threaded and all bottom plugs were left- counter clockwise threaded ...so when fired they would stay tight when going through the barrol that also had a right-clockwise riffling .
A lot of tracer self-destruct rounds were used . Bad enough having the shrapnel raining down over populated areas , but those falling full steel rounds did a fair bit of damage on impackt comming back down .
There are full tip and flat tip steel 20mm protectiles . Larger rounds had a copper ring on the lower part of the projectile that shows the rifling of the barrol if it was actually fired . The copper ring extended the life of the barrol .
Pzgr40 : Got one round I am not sure of , has an aluminum full tip painted blue that does not come off .
Douglas 5

Pzgr40
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Tips

Post by Pzgr40 » 21 May 2005 14:44

Hi Douglas,
The tips of these started out as all aluminum, later steel parts used as aluminum bcame scarce . The tips were right or clockwise threaded and all bottom plugs were left- counter clockwise threaded ...so when fired they would stay tight when going through the barrol that also had a right-clockwise riffling .
A lot of tracer self-destruct rounds were used . Bad enough having the shrapnel raining down over populated areas , but those falling full steel rounds did a fair bit of damage on impackt comming back down .
That is correct.
There are full tip and flat tip steel 20mm protectiles . Larger rounds had a copper ring on the lower part of the projectile that shows the rifling of the barrol if it was actually fired . The copper ring extended the life of the barrol .
What you refer to as full tip projectiles are without nearly any exeption Armour Piercing (AP) projectiles. I say nearly, because there will be some experimental models who might have. I think there are at least 100 different types made, not only by the Germans but also by Italy, finland, Switzerland, Austria. They are still produced in some of the former Yugoslav republics who still have this gun in their inventory.
What you refer to as flat tipped projectiles, are without nearly any exeption High explosive projectiles, or HE-target practice projectiles.

The copper ring you refer to is the driving belt. It has two functions, first to act as a gastight seal between projectile and barrel, and secondly, to give the projectile spin. This gives the projectile a great stability during flight and a predictable and repeatable flightpath.
The Germans used hardly any copper for drivingbelts as this was a scarce raw material. On small projectiles up to 40 mm it was used, but for larger projectiles they used very soft iron, either drivingbelts were made of cladded steel and copper (each 50 % of the drivingbelt thickness), the latter part being on the outside. The copper ring does not extend the life of the barrel, although soft iron drivingbelts wore the barrel down relatively faster.

Here a picture with te most common types;
1. He- practice -tracer
2. He- screwed in tracer self destruct
3. He- screwed in tracer self destruct (italian)
4. HE- pressed in tracer self destruct
5. HE-Incendiary-Mechchanical self destruct-tracer
6. HE-Incendiary-Mechchanical self destruct-tracer
7. HE-Mechchanical self destruct-tracer
8. Armour piercing high explosive tracer self destruct, impact fuze with safety
9. Armour piercing high explosive tracer self destruct, with threaded tracer self destruct element
10. Armour piercing high explosive tracer self destruct, with pressedin tracer self destruct element
11. AP-T, Massive steel projectile with tracer
12. Armour piercing Incendiary tracer. Holds an aluminium capsule with white phosporus.
13. Pzgr40, A tungsten core in an aluminium body
14. Holzgeschoss, a wooden blank round.

With regards, Pzgr40
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Douglas 5
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Grund dug ammo

Post by Douglas 5 » 22 May 2005 05:46

Hi Pzgr40:
Impressive pictures ....and I thought from your first reply your call name was chosen for a reason , this shows why and quit appropriate !!!
Correctly said.. there are plenty more different 20mm Flak rounds and most of what I found were AZ - Aufschlag Zünder ( Impact Detonator)or LZ =Leuchtspur Zünder(Tracer Ignitors) and the odd full steel projectile.
Have some knowledge about them , but that is all , ...stuck to rifle and pistol ammo and only larger shell casings that I was able to dig up. After the accident this stopped over night !
Went to the garage and quickly grabbed a few I have left, deposed of all the live and full rounds 38 years ago .
By number:no pictures of them just a quick scan. Corrections welcome .
1) 20mm Flak , date 42 , near Styer-Austria
2) 25mm Flak ? , fired full steel deformed tip from impact, near Vienna, Austria
3) and 4) Tracer and full steel proj. British aircraft heavy mashinegun cal , near Salzburg, Austria
5) German heavy machine amo ?, non rusting and super hard! near Nürnberg, Germany
To some of these I have casings and the odd loading belt rings .
Number 1 has a full iron bottom with a steel ring close to the outside . If as mentioned it should turn out to be an explosive shell have to dispose of it immediatly. Please advise !
Douglas 5
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Pzgr40
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types

Post by Pzgr40 » 22 May 2005 12:59

Hi Douglas,

Could you please fill in the missing dimensions , That would make it a lot easier to search for me.
No. 1 I suspect to be a target practice 20x139B. As the body seems to be one piece and there is no loose fuze placed.
No. 2 need Dimensions
No. 3 .50x99 Browning machine gun. Incendiary type. I marked mine and yours with a red arrow on the spot I see a hole in yours. Do you see a grey glittering substance?.
No. 4 Ball or AP, in fact both the same , exept for the fact that the AP steel core is hardened.
No. 5 Need dimensions

Could you also make a scan from the bases of the shells/ bullets.

With regards , Pzgr40
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Pzgr40
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.50

Post by Pzgr40 » 22 May 2005 13:01

.50
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