Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 16 Oct 2009 15:29

Other option was to use mobile (infantry type) tripod mounts, simply put onto the vehicle floor (some form of locking device probably existed). Idea was probaly to dismount the machine gun installation to ground when AA unit is not on the move (lower height make it less conspicuos & more easily to camouflage, etc.)
This was tested with Berliet VPR2 prototype in 1930. Like the VPM, it was a six-wheel chassis with twin wheels on the central axle. The prototype was well provided with ammunition storages, seats for the four-man crew, etc. Extensive tests were ran with both a twin (R3b) and a single (R1b) tripod mountings. Trials demonstrated the chassis needed to be strenghtened, and the VPR2 did not enter production.
Aparantly a single example saw the operational service as part of the anti-aircraft defense system around Toulon.


Characteristics:
weight: 4500 kg
length: 4.8 m
width: 1.94 m
height: 2.30 m
wheelbase:
- front: 1.82 m
- aft: 1.75 m

engine: Berliet
power: 40 hp (metric)
# of cylinders: 6
cubic capacity: 2736 cc

fuel capacity: 120 l
max speed: 53 km/h
endurance: 300 km
max slope: 60%
tyres: 36 x 8.25
crew: four men
- driver and rangefinder operator
- loader
- gunner
- sighting system operator
armament:
single or double 13.2 mm Hotchkiss Mle 1930
1440 rounds on storage boxes on platform
2500 rounds under platform
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Last edited by The Edge on 21 Oct 2009 08:17, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 16 Oct 2009 15:41

More readily option was to use existing Citroën-Kégresse P19 halftracks (1932), a vehicle already in service with French dragons portés units (this time only in pure SPG mode – non-detachable twin mounts), but foreign customers too. Again, nothing came of this proposed AA platform - at that time the rifle-caliber AAMGs were still regarded adequate for low-level AA defense.
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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 21 Oct 2009 08:27

Final attempt was Berliet VPH from 1932, as a response to issues with the VPR2. The chassis was strenghtened, the tyres larger and the platform could accomodate more ammunition. The twin mounting was again permanently fixed to the chassis (R4b type), indicating that problems with the removable infanty tripod mounts were not adequately solved. Two examples were built and accepted for service, but no further production took place.

Characteristics:
weight: 6200 kg
length: 5.07 m
width: 2.10 m
wheelbase (axle-to-axle): 1.90 m
engine make: Berliet
power: 62 hp (metric)
# of cylinders: 6
cubic capacity: 4085 cc
fuel capacity: 80 l
max speed: 44.5 km/h
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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 21 Oct 2009 08:40

Tests with quadruple naval mounting actually predated the more usual twins (singles). First ever SPG platform tried (1927) was at Citroën-Kégresse P4T half-track chassis - that was when the MG itself was still in prototype stage! A quadruple Le Prieur-type 13.2 mm mounting was fitted on a crude wooden platform with no provision for ammo storage. Twin wheels were fitted forward. Trials performed near Paris and in the Landes region demonstrated the vehicle was severly underpowered. Due to interest from the Chilean military, trials continued, but revealed also a serious lack of stability. The project was eventually abandoned in 1929.

Similar "quartet" mount was also tried on Renualt truck.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(Since I don't have Pierre Touzin's book, all credits for these SPG variants info to our member Pachy. :wink: )
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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 21 Oct 2009 08:50

As already mentioned, only other user in French land forces were DAT units:
La DAT (Defense Aerienne du Territoire) adopte cette arme sur affüt bitube ave correcteur Le Prieur-Ricordel (système de visée). L'arme esta lors alimentée de deux boitiers-chargeurs de 30 cartouches et dispose d'une cadence de tir instantannée de 900 coups/ minute. Les 2 mitrailleuses peuvent tirer en alternance ou ensemble.
Au total, 540 mitrailleuse de 13, é sont livrées à la DAT pour former 170 sections à 2 pièces.
(Sources: FRANCE 1940 LARMEMENT TERRESTRE Stephane Ferrard ETAI. 1998.)
Note: beside “heavy” 13.2mm platoons, “normal” 8mm AAMGs were also used – so, DAT companies were mixed structures of 8mm & 13.2mm AAMG platoons. (Again anybody who knows whom the DAT belonged: Army or Air Force? )

Version used by DAT were twin-Hotchkiss 13.2mm AAMG on tripod R3b mount. Beside France, such arrangement were also used by Romania and Japanese Navy (land) forces.
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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 21 Oct 2009 09:02

Talking about the Romania, according to http://www.worldwar2.ro/arme/?article=329 Romania used both single R1b and twin R3b tripod ground mountings. I found no single mount photo as used (that would be interesting, because no other country used R1b mount in combat AFIK), but twin mount is fairly well documented (note the French Adrian helmets of Romanian AA crews).
Romanians labelled it:
Mitraliera antiaeriana Hotchkiss, cal. 13,2 mm, md. 1931
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 21 Oct 2009 09:08

Romanian Navy also used this weapon:
- all four destroyers (two twin-mounts),
- SRD Aurora (http://www.worldwar2.ro/arme/?article=255 ) two single mounts
- NMS Constanta (http://www.worldwar2.ro/arme/?article=354 ) and NMS Amiral Murgescu (two twin-mounts),
- gunboat Dumitrescu (two single mounts),
- all seven river monitors (one twin mount),
- No4 to No9 torpedo-boats (i.e. “Power” class - one single mount),
- tugs Locotenent Stoicescu & Sublocotenent Vârtosu (one twin mount), etc.
(Some of these ships later replaced them with 20mm AA weapons)
Naval data from:

http://www.geocities.com/dangrecu/VaseArm.html
http://www.geocities.com/dangrecu/VaseArmF.html
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Last edited by The Edge on 26 Oct 2009 11:58, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by PT Dockyard » 25 Oct 2009 07:52

Hey, That is my model of the monitor! :)

The gun you are pointing to is a 37mm, not a 13.2mm. I did not do the 13.2mm on this kit as they were a little too small, too complex and it is not clear where these monitors mounted MGs in the mid-war, at least from my sources.

Dave G.
The PT Dockyard
http://www.ptdockyard.com

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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 26 Oct 2009 11:40

PT Dockyard wrote:The gun you are pointing to is a 37mm, not a 13.2mm. I did not do the 13.2mm on this kit as they were a little too small, too complex and it is not clear where these monitors mounted MGs in the mid-war, at least from my sources.

Thanks for clearing this issue - it was a guesswork from my side (rationale was "put the lightest weapon on the highest abovewater level" - and all other weapons on the photo look both too big & they are in placed pairs).

Since you made the model, can you tell what are the other light guns? (On edited photo) Data from the link I posted is obviously not "the latest update", i.e. 1943-44)
position 1 - 37mm AA
position 2 - 47mm (?)
position 3 - twin-20mm AA (?)
position 4 - ??? (47mm?)

Could the 37mm AA gun (position 1), placed on monitor in 1937, be a Hotchkiss one? (Allegedly Romania purchased them also)

Thanks in advance,
Edge / Antic
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Sturm78
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by Sturm78 » 29 Oct 2009 17:24

Hi all,

I found in my files this image of a 13.2mm Hotchkiss machine gun with a different mount. Have anyone any information about this mount?

Regards Sturm78
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MarkoZ
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by MarkoZ » 29 Oct 2009 18:37

Sturm78 wrote:Hi all,

I found in my files this image of a 13.2mm Hotchkiss machine gun with a different mount. Have anyone any information about this mount?

Regards Sturm78


There you go :D viewtopic.php?f=12&t=158435&start=30

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The Edge
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 30 Oct 2009 10:52

Thanks Marko for posting a link :) (I planned to do the same after finnishing the "French use" part of topic) :wink:

Interesting stuff about Greek 13.2 mm Hotchkiss guns: :idea:
- Greece was the earlier and rather famous user of Hotchkiss PM (Mle 22-26), of MMG variant (Mle 14 - small number only) and even the LMG variant (British 1941 aid in .303 caliber)
- Greece was the only user of the specific "dual purpose mount"
- Greece was the only user of strip-feed variant (AFIK)
- Total number bought: 32 pcs
- Caliber: 13.2x99mm; it seems that the AP ammo was ordered at much later date (after failing to purchase of enough AT-guns).
- Quite surprisingly, no guns were bought for the Hellenic Navy!
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 05 Nov 2009 10:27

The main domestic user of Hotchkiss 13.2mm HMG was French Navy. It adopted the design in 1929 (thus „Mle 1929“ is common designation for guns in Naval use) as the „lower end“ of ships air defense. The machine gun itself was only „the kill“ part of rather elaborate system, consisting also of state-of-art single-, twin- or quadruple- mountings and then very advanced Le Prieur mechanical lead computing sights.
Most impressive was, of course, was the CAQ (Contre Avions Quadruples) - a quadruple installation intended for use on larger ships), with combined 1800 rpm rate of fire (i.e. one 30-round magazine every second). This was a “Phalanx CIWS” of its time, capable of blasting away any aircraft daring to came close to ship (in late 1920s, the only way to hit anything).
Unfortunately for Marine Nationale, the aviation in 1930s made such advances that such approach soon became obsolete – 13.2mm Hotchkiss HMG lacked range to engage attacking aircraft (new dive- or torpedo-bombers) at distances before they could deliver its deadly cargo – so the whole idea lost its raison d'être. (Even worse, the “higher end” of ships close AA defense – 37mm Schneider rapid fire guns – were close to useless).
Nevertheless, French Navy continued to employ these guns until the final dismay in late 1942, simply because there was nothing better available (few 25mm Hotchkiss guns only, maybe seized guns made for export).
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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 05 Nov 2009 10:32

Beside the service on various ships, 13.2mm Hotchkiss HMGs were also deployed for air defense of Naval bases. I found info that “32 mitrailleuses de 13.2mm Hotchkiss modèle 1929 en huit affûts quadruples” (HLP4 mount) were used in such role (probably backed by more appropriate number of twin-gun ones).
Special submarine versions also existed (single- or twin-mounts), but I haven’t found any decent photo of them.
One example of successful use of Hotchkiss HMGs were La bataille de Koh Chang:

“la vigueur de la défense anti-aérienne de tous les bâtiments, 75 et mitrailleuses de 13.2, les décourage et les force à s'éloigner rapidement ou à renoncer à leur piqué, parfois en se débarrassant de leurs bombes à plusieurs milliers de mètres de nos bateaux.” ( http://www.netmarine.net/bat/croiseur/l ... /index.htm )
(Note also that Thai airplanes were not particularly modern and they nevertheless scored the two hits - such performance was obviously not adequate against the Luftwaffe in 1940, where French destroyers at Dunkerque were an “easy meat” for Stukas).
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Last edited by The Edge on 05 Nov 2009 10:41, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Hotchkiss 13.2mm Mle 1930

Post by The Edge » 05 Nov 2009 10:37

List of French Navy vessels that used “mitrailleuse de 13.2mm Hotchkiss modèle 1929”
(Note: first number is the total of “tubes”; their arrangement is in parentheses – for example, 3x4 means three four-gun mounts; “later” means after 1941/42 AA upgrades)

Aircraft carriers: (PORTE-AVIONS LEGER)
Béarn – 16 (16x1)
Joffre (planned) – 24 (6x4)

Seaplane carrier (PORTE-HYDROAVIONS)
Commandant Teste - 12 (6×2)

Battleships: (BATIMENTS DE LIGNE)
Bretagne class – 12 (3x4_?)
Richelieu – 16 (4x4)

Battle-cruisers (CROISEURS DE BATAILLE)
Dunkerque class – 32 (8x4)

Heavy cruisers: (CROISEURS LOURD)
Duquesne class – 12 (3x4)
Suffren class – 12 (3x4), later 36 (8x4 + 2x2)
Algérie – 16 (4x4), later 36 (9x4)

Light cruisers: (CROISEURS LEGER)
Duguay-Trouin class – 4 (2x2), later 10 (5x2)
Pluton – 12 (3x4)
Emile Bertin – 8 (4x2)
La Galissonnière class – 12 (3x4), later 16 (3x4 + 2x2)

Large destroyers: (CONTRE TORPILLEURS)
Jaguar class – 8 (8x1_?)
Guépard class – 4 (4x1_?)
Aigle class – 4 (2x2), later 10 (5x2)
Vauquelin class - 4 (2x2), later 10 (5x2)
Le Fantasque class - 4 (2x2), later 6 (3x2)
Mogador class - 4 (2x2), later 12 (2x2 + 8x1)

Destroyers: (TORPILLEURS)
Bourrasque class - 2 (2x1), later 4 (4x1)
L'Alcyon class – 2 (2x1), later 4 (4x1)
Le Hardi class - 4 (2x2), later 8 (4x2)
La Melpoméne class – 4 (4x1_?)

Colonial sloops: (AVISOS COLONIAUX)
Bougainville class – 6 (6x1_?)

Minesweepers: (AVISO-DRAGUEURS DE MINES)
Elan & Chamois classes – 8 (2x2 + 4x1)

Submarines: (SUBMERSIBLES)
Agosta class – 1 (1x1)
Argonaute class – 1 (1x1)
Ariane class – 2 (1x2)
Circé class – 2 (1x2)
Diane class – 1 (1x1)
L'Espoire class – 1 (1x1)
Minerve class – 2 (1x2)
Orion class – 1 (1x1)
Redoutable class – 1 (1x1)
Requin class – 1 (1x1)
Sirene class – 2 (1x2)
Saphir class – 2 (1x2)
Surcouf – 4 (2x2)

(Note that this is not a complete list, since I haven’t data for various auxiliary ships)
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