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- Joined: 18 Dec 2016 12:29
- Location: Sydney Australia
Naturally I am very intrigued by the massive and very complicated Schwerer Gustav German 80 cm (31.5 in.) railway gun - the ultimate in "some assembly required". Then I came across the 35.5 cm Haubitze M1 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/35.5_cm_Haubitze_M).
What caught my attention was:
"It also disassembled into six loads for transport. The loads were cradle, barrel, top carriage, bottom carriage, front platform and turntable and the rear platform. Each piece on its trailer was towed by a 18 t (18 long tons; 20 short tons) Sd.Kfz. 9 half-track."
So it appears there was a smaller and far more practical version of a "components" cannon. I was curious about what was involved to go from the transport to firing mode and back again.
2) Gantry crane:
"A seventh half-track towed the gantry crane required to assemble the weapon. The gantry crane (powered by a generator on its towing vehicle) would be erected at the new firing position and would take about two hours to assemble the entire weapon."
An included image "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:35.5 ... sembly.jpg" shows what appears to be a smaller version of the two 110 T grantry cranes used to assemble the Schwerer Gustav and like them runs on rails. However it appears to not have a horizontal spreader bar connecting the bottom of the 'A frame' legs. Again I was curious about what was involved to go from the transport to assembled mode and back again.
I am hoping that understanding the Haubitze M1 will also give me insights into the Schwerer Gustav.
But then I ran into problems:
1) Cannon and the heavy gantry crane - finding source blueprints or even enough images to use to create plans and then 3d models.
2) Gantry crane - going from transport to assembled mode and back again.
3) Cannon - going from transport to firing mode and back again.
So you can imagine my joy when I came across the "35,5 cm Haubitze M 1", "Re: 35.5 cm Haubitze M 1" and especially the "Re: Rheinmetall 35,5 cm Haubitze M1 - 3D Printed" forum threads.
In particular I am very interested in two items mentioned by "EPOCH3" in the "Re: Rheinmetall 35,5 cm Haubitze M1 - 3D Printed" forum thread:
1) "the manual"
Post #44 Post 30 Oct 2016, 04:47
"These are just line drawings generated from my CAD file but are based on actual data from the manual."
Post #39 Post 18 May 2016, 06:50
"I will try and get the specific finding aid data info for the NARA record you are interested in. If you search on-line for Digital History Archive, I think Marc also has the specific roll of film on DVD you need and sells them for a fraction of what NARA changes (like $20 vs $120+)."
I did search through the catalog (http://www.digitalhistoryarchive.com/up ... _2018_.pdf) but I could not find an obvious "Haubitze M1" reference so would greatly appreciate a pointer to the "manual" and any other source material to produce plans from.
2) "transport mode"
Post #39 18 May 2016, 06:58
"I am working on all the transport wagons now and hopefully will be able to do another M1 broken into loads for transport (at least that is the plan)."
How is that endeavour progressing? Hopefully that will also lead to understanding how the gantry crane went from transport to assembled mode and back again as well.
Thanks in advance for any help that can be provided.
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Regarding Cranes: the cranes used for Gustav/Dora Geschutz type guns were very much larger than the standard work cranes used to assemble the 040/041 Karl, K3 and M1 equipments. If you are researching those types of industrial work cranes look into Krupp-Ardelt and Demag which both had quite a few models.
Regarding assembly sequence of M1 vs. Dora - these were very different types of weapons systems (Land vs. Railroad for one) and thus employed quite different steps to assemble.
The whole assembly process for the Dora type equipment is well documented in Deutsche Eisenbahngeschütze by the late Gerhard Taube:
Hardcover: 148 pages
Publisher: Motorbuch-Verlag; 1. Aufl edition (1979)
The assembly steps for the 35.5cm M1 is documented in the original Dienstvorschiften D344 manuals which can be located in the German Archives system as well as on microfilm. Microfilm copies of those manuals are available through both the German archives and the US National Archives. Though NARA, the specific finding aid info is Record Group T-283 Roll 50.
Hope that helps