Weapons of the Schutztruppen

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Vuk
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Weapons of the Schutztruppen

Post by Vuk » 18 Aug 2006 03:48

Did they use the standard Gew. 98 or the older Gew. 88 (Gew. 88/05) in WW1?

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Post by Animal » 18 Aug 2006 06:26

I think the Askaris generally used the single-shot M1871 Mauser, certainly in East Africa. In fact, von Lettow-Vorbeck's troops often discarded those weapons or sent them back to the supply train- more likely the latter, given that they were cut off from resupply for most of the war, when they were able to capture British, Belgian, and Portuguese weapons- the Belgian and Portuguese weapons were especially valued as they were Mausers, even though the Portuguese used the smaller calibre of 6.5mm.

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 18 Aug 2006 07:21

Didn't the blockade runner Rubens deliver Gew 98s in 1915?

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Chris Dale
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Post by Chris Dale » 19 Aug 2006 03:03

As far as I know, the Mauser Jägerbüsche 71 was the main armament of the askaris in 1914 although some companies had recieved the Gewehr 98. As Peter pointed out the blockade runners brought more 98's and as Animal said captured weapons were in common usage.
Komissions Gewehr 88's may also have been used. I'm not sure on that one though. Hope that helps.
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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 19 Aug 2006 12:08

Rubens is said to have delivered:

2,000 K98s
4 field howitzers
2 mountain guns
4 Machine guns
3 million rifle cartridges
1500 egg grenades
2000 rifle grenades

The K98s usage is supported by the mounted force (raised with captured horses) being issued with them.

Lettow-Vorbeck's own ammunition holdings were down to around 600,000 rounds by early 1915 so the Rubens did boost his chances of carrying on.

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Cristiano de S.O Campos
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Post by Cristiano de S.O Campos » 19 Aug 2006 15:10

Peter H and friends.


The Rubens can´t delivered all these weapons, but how many weapons the crew and Schutztruppe recover?

"rifle granade",how it is this weapon?

The Schutztruppe used hand granade"smashing potatoes?"

These granade was delivered by Rubens?

look attachment


. The " Rubens," an English ship of 3,000 tons seized at Hamburg, had been loaded with arms and ammunition, had eluded the blockade of the North Sea, and on April 4 (its arrival was expected) was sighted by H.M.S. " Hyacinth " four m. off Mansa Bay, N. of Tanga. The " Rubens " got into the bay, severely damaged and on fire. The crew fled ashore; the ship was boarded by bluejackets, who found her timbered up and battened down; the party was recalled and more rounds having been fired into the vessel " the admiral . . . steamed away under the impression that she would burn herself out " (Brig.- Gen. J. H. V. Crowe). Subsequently the Germans salved at leisure nearly the whole of her cargo, though great part of the cartridges had been damaged by sea water. But there were enough Mauser '98 rifles to rearm the force, which previously, for the most part, used the MI 71 rifle. (A year later, at another critical period of the war, the Germans were again rearmed, by another blockade runner.)

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 19 Aug 2006 15:36

No,egg grenades.How long 2,000 grenades would last is a moot point--the Germans on the Western Front most likely used around 20,000 per day based on production figures.

http://www.inert-ord.net/gerimp/kugels/index.html

Rifle grenades were also used in DWSA--Oberstleutnant Joachim von Heydebreck was killed in November 1914 by one in an "accident".

http://www.inert-ord.net/rod02h/ger1914/index.html

Rubens cargo is detailed by Arne Schöfert here:

http://www.forumromanum.de/member/forum ... onsearch=1

Note also Karbine 98s were sent,not Gew 98s.

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Peter

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Post by Vuk » 19 Aug 2006 17:32

Thank you for your answers, a couple of new questions.

Why were the Askaris armed with M1871 rifles (surely there were plenty of M1871/84 and Gew.88 available)?

What kind of machineguns did the Rubens carry (8.8mm seems strange)?

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Post by Animal » 19 Aug 2006 23:14

Vuk wrote:Thank you for your answers, a couple of new questions.

Why were the Askaris armed with M1871 rifles (surely there were plenty of M1871/84 and Gew.88 available)?

What kind of machineguns did the Rubens carry (8.8mm seems strange)?
I would guess that the home forces had first priority on new weapons and equipment. It's quite common for colonial forces to hang onto obsolete items long after they've been superseded in the home forces. Also the main function of any colonial force is to maintain order in the colony- against tribesmen who would largely only have spears and flintlocks, a single-shot breechloader would be sufficient, so arming them with the latest weapons wouldn't be of a priority equal to the priority of so equipping the home forces who would face a Continental enemy which also had the latest weapons. Another reason for giving indigenous troops outdated weapons might well have been as a safeguard against potential mutiny and revolt by the native troops- the British followed the same pattern when arming the Indian Army after the 1857 Mutiny; the Sepoys got the rifle/carbine that the British Army had just superseded. The Indian Army continued using single-shot Snider and Martin-Henry rifles well after the British had switched to magazine rifles. The final reason no doubt would have been economic- to equip the entire home army and colonial army with the latest rifle at the same time would have been quite expensive- note that many Landwehr and Landsturn units continued using the 1888 rifle for the entire war.

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Post by Peter H » 20 Aug 2006 01:44

Actually only 8 of the 14 Field companies in East Africa were equipped with the M71 in 1914.The others used the M71/84.

The M71 version used was also the shorter M71 Jäger rifle.

M71s did remain in use until mid 1918--one third of men still carried it in July 1917.The blockade runners were helpful but as arriving 98 ammo was consumed the 98s were sometimes mothballed.

I dont think the machine guns brought in were 8.8cm(too big!) ---unless they were Pom Pom type weapons for use against aircraft.This would make them 3.7cm.The German 3.7cm Automatic Machine Gun(Pom Pom) was also encountered in DWSA.

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Post by Vuk » 20 Aug 2006 03:32

It says that the MGs were 8,8mm but the standard MG01 and MG08 were 7,92mm thats what I find strange.

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Post by Gew71 » 20 Aug 2006 18:45

In Walther Dobbertin's book"Die Soldaten Lettow-Vorbecks",there is a photograph of a machine gun crew where one of the askaris is quite clearly armed with a Kar 88.

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Post by lettow4beck » 28 Aug 2006 07:49

I believe artillery and machinegun troops in the colonies were all armed with Kar 88s as personal weapons.

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Chris Dale
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Post by Chris Dale » 29 Aug 2006 00:26

Peter H wrote:Actually only 8 of the 14 Field companies in East Africa were equipped with the M71 in 1914.The others used the M71/84.


According to R. Schneider in "Die Kaiserliche Schutz- and Polizeitruppe für Afrika" P68 of the 14 field companies at the outbreak of war the 1st, 4th, 8th, 10th and 13th had the Gewehr 98. The othes still had the Jägerbüsche 71 and the Gewehr 71/84.

By the way does anyone know where there's any good clear colour photos of a Jägerbüsche 71 and the Gewehr 71/84 to compare.

The British Army's Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Museum has photos of the G98 and variants here-
http://www.rememuseum.org.uk/arms/rifles/armmm98.htm
And the G88 variants here-
http://www.rememuseum.org.uk/arms/rifles/armgm88.htm
And loads of other rifles generally on its website here-
http://www.rememuseum.org.uk/index.htm

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Chris

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Post by Vuk » 29 Aug 2006 03:13

Somewhat OT, why was the Gew. 88 nicknamed "Judenflinte"?

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