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"British 15 pdr 7 cwt BL Gun" Topic

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19th Century

744 hits since 17 May 2019
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP18 May 2019 12:02 p.m. PST

"The Ordnance breech-loading 15 pounder field gun was the main British field gun during the last years of the 19th century, including for the Second Boer War of 1899 to 1902. It had first been introduced into service as a 12-pounder in the 1880s, but the replacement of gunpowder by cordite as a propellant meant a more powerful shell could now be used by the same gun, and so the gun was redesignated the 15-pdr from 1892. Of all the rounds fired by the British during the Boer War, the large majority were fired by this gun, but in the early part of the war the British suffered because of the superior French and German guns in the hands of the Boers, and because the available fuses did not give their gun long range, forcing them to site the guns closer to the enemy, where the crew could be picked off by rifle fire. New fuses (the ‘Blue' fuse) arrived and gave the gun its maximum range of about 5,400 metres, but the tactics needed revising in the face of an enemy that refused to obligingly stand close together in large formations, and the need for quick-firing guns became more obvious. Work began on such a new gun before the end of the war, but by then the war was one of rounding up small bands of bitter-enders, and artillery had little part to play. Within a few years this gun was obsolete as the new quick-firing 18-pdr was introduced, meaning the British had an excellent, modern gun by the outbreak of the First World War in 1914…."



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