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"What on earth is this artillery piece" Topic

26 Posts

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1,480 hits since 11 Aug 2017
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Sir Able Brush11 Aug 2017 8:13 a.m. PST

and what are the things sticking our from the wheel rims for?

(it isn't mine – I'm not trying to sell it)

LtJBSz Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 8:27 a.m. PST

leFH18 German 105mm howitzer, no clue what is sticking out of the wheels

Sir Able Brush11 Aug 2017 8:31 a.m. PST
bhall389 Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 9:12 a.m. PST

I believe those "things" on the wheel rims are for the attachment of ropes for prolonging the piece.


deephorse11 Aug 2017 9:18 a.m. PST

Really? Surely those attachment points would be on the wheel hubs, not sticking out of the tyres (which is what I understand the OP to be asking about).

Marc at work11 Aug 2017 9:30 a.m. PST

Bike inner tube valves…

Very odd

Tommy2011 Aug 2017 9:48 a.m. PST

Bits of sprue?

Phrodon11 Aug 2017 10:20 a.m. PST

There are to secure the gun while firing. They slide into holes into a firing platform. Or, um, I'm not really sure.

Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 10:30 a.m. PST

I'm thinking tommy20 is right – molding taps.

Personal logo StoneMtnMinis Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 10:37 a.m. PST

From what I can locate the wheels were solid rubber, not inflated rubber, so those could be insertable clogs for transporting via flatcar or to secure in a firing position.

Garand11 Aug 2017 10:38 a.m. PST

Pretty sure those are sprues. I built a scale model of one of these & it did not have those…


Mark 111 Aug 2017 10:42 a.m. PST

Pure conjecture here … never seen such a rig before. But if we assume it is not just left over casting sprue, and try to assess what it actually is (or might have been), I can see one potential answer.

I believe those "things" on the wheel rims are for the attachment of ropes for prolonging the piece.

To my thinking this is close, but not quite on.

Whether for attachment of ropes or not, I would see them as a mechanism for getting a piece un-stuck. Say prolonging if you like, as that may have been a part of it, but more particularly for un-sticking, in my thinking.

Key issues to me are: if you want to "extend" a piece, you may want a tool/attachment that allows for more than a fraction of one turn of the wheel; whereas if you want to "unstick" a piece, you want a tool/attachement that adds leverage for a fraction of one turn of the wheel.

Surely those attachment points would be on the wheel hubs…

If you attach or grip and push at the hubs, you do not add leverage. In fact attachments at the hub have substantially less leverage than the wheel to begin with. If you want to add leverage, you don't apply force to the object, but rather to the rim of the wheel.

If you attach or place handles to grip and push on the rim of the wheel you get the leverage of the radius of the wheel (which is substantial). If those handles project out to the sides from the wheel you don't add leverage, but at least you use the leverage of the wheel.

If you place handles project outwards from the wheel surface itself, as illustrated, then you add leverage. Any extension to the radius adds leverage. That means you get more result from applying less force. Pretty important when you are applying manpower to move multi-ton objects.

So if we assume this is an accurately modeled piece, and ask what those projections could be, I would venture to guess that they are handles, inserted to help un-stick a gun which is either mired in mud or frozen into place. Both of these potentials were significant concerns on the eastern front in WW2.

The leFH18 was built with several different wheels over the course of the war. Many (most?) had un-inflated rubber tires. I have seen numerous examples of such tires with holes along the tread path -- I always assumed those holes were just to reduce the amount of rubber used in making the tires without reducing the depth of rubber used. But it is not too great of a stretch to imagine some mid-war version with holes continuing through the rim of the wheel, and an available rod to fit into those holes as needed to allow extra leverage when man-handling a piece out of mire or ice.

Again, purely conjecture. Never actually seen pics or descriptions of such attachments.

(aka: Mk 1)

Ed Mohrmann Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 10:43 a.m. PST

While I really don't know, I think StoneMtn and Phrodon
are correct. Looking closely at the items, they seem
to have, even in miniature, the appearance of being
machined, not random metal bits such as would be
expected from mold vents, etc.

Don Manser11 Aug 2017 11:35 a.m. PST

Either flash or possibly another part.

dwight shrute11 Aug 2017 11:49 a.m. PST

looks like the old Hinchcliffe 1/72 German 105mm gun ?

spontoon11 Aug 2017 12:12 p.m. PST

Sprue bits, almost certainly, as they're not identical.

Personal logo The Beast Rampant Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 12:46 p.m. PST

they seem to have, even in miniature, the appearance of being machined, not random metal bits such as would be
expected from mold vents, etc.

Yep, those are the most deliberately-formed bits of flash or sprue I have ever seen.

goragrad11 Aug 2017 1:30 p.m. PST

The gun had 56 degrees of traverse in the carriage, but if more was needed the entire piece would have to be relaid.

My thought on looking at the model is that those handles would be useful in doing so without having to attach a team or hook up a prime mover.

Personal logo Miniatureships Sponsoring Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 1:49 p.m. PST

Not being identical does not make them sprues. I would venture to say that this model might have been intended for a static display and those could have been pins for putting the gun into a base to hold it in place.

It is hard to tell, but it looks like the tires were drilled for those pins to be inserted.

Having cast metal for years now, I would not call it flash as both pieces are round and have a machined design to them, possibly making them a some spare parts used as pins.

Trierarch11 Aug 2017 2:38 p.m. PST

Concur with Miniatureships, they definitely look like pins to mount the model to a base.

Bunkermeister Supporting Member of TMP11 Aug 2017 9:11 p.m. PST

Hinchcliffe 1/72 German 105mm gun is what it is. They did that with all their artillery, it was a little hub to keep the wheels on the wire axle.

Mike Bunkermeister Creek
Bunker Talk blog

Andy ONeill12 Aug 2017 2:30 a.m. PST

If you mean the thing sticking out the tyre.
It's probably not sprue.
Maybe its' a handle used whilst undercoating.
The real thing did not have those.


deephorse12 Aug 2017 7:19 a.m. PST

The kit in the OP's link is the 1/35 Hinchliffe 10.5cm leFH 18


In the link above you can see the pin on the righthand wheel. Interestingly it appears to be unpainted whilst the rest of the model is painted. I have yet to find a photo of a real leFH 18 with either these pins or holes for them in the wheels/tyres. My belief, until someone can produce such a photo, is that they are casting artifacts/runners

LORDGHEE12 Aug 2017 9:59 a.m. PST

My friends owned a casting company, those are flash. It is where the metal flows into the mold as the mold is spun.

Walking Sailor12 Aug 2017 10:00 a.m. PST

Brian (bhall389) wins. They are used as attachment points for pull ropes, probably meant as tie downs. They are mounted on the axle stubs and may help as wheel hub retainers.

see YouTube link at 0:20

see also YouTube link at 1:22 right and 2:44 left

deephorse12 Aug 2017 11:03 a.m. PST

No he doesn't. You're looking at something entirely different. The rings on the axle hubs are for doing what you say, and what the video illustrates (and which Mark 1 pooh-poohed). The OP (and most everyone else) was talking about the pin-like projection from the circumference of the tyre.

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