Skoda 75 mm Model 15

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7.5 cm Gebirgskanone M. 15
Skoda Gebirgsgesch.JPG
Type Mountain gun
Place of origin Austria-Hungary
Service history
In service 1915-1945
Used by  Austria-Hungary
 Austria
 Bulgaria
 Czechoslovakia
 German Empire
 Nazi Germany
 Hungary
 Italy
 Romania
 Turkey
Wars World War I
World War II
Production history
Designer Skoda
Designed 1911-1914
Manufacturer Skoda
Specifications
Weight 613 kg (1,351 lb)
Barrel length 1.15 m (3 ft 9 in) L/15.4
Crew 6

Shell 6.35 kg (14.0 lb)
Caliber 75 millimetres (3.0 in)
Breech horizontal semi-automatic sliding wedge
Recoil hydro-pneumatic
Carriage box trail
Elevation -10° to +50°
Traverse
Rate of fire 6-8 rpm
Muzzle velocity 349 m/s (1,150 ft/s)
Maximum firing range 8,250 m (9,020 yd)

The Skoda 7.5 cm Gebirgskanone M. 15 was a mountain gun used by Austria-Hungary in World War I. In German service it was known as the 7.5 cm GebK 15. The Italians designated them as the Obice da 75/13 and the Wehrmacht would designate captured guns as 7.5 cm GebK 259(i) after the surrender of Italy in 1943.

History[edit]

Its development was quite prolonged as the Austrians couldn't decide on the specifications that they wanted. Initially they wanted a gun that could be broken-down into no more than 5 pack-animal loads to replace the various 7 cm mountain guns in service, but prolonged trials proved that the 7.5 cm M. 12 prototype to be the best gun. However the commander-in-chief of Bosnia-Hercegovina believe it to be too heavy and demanded a reversion back to the old 7 cm caliber to save weight. Skoda dutifully built enough guns for a test battery in the smaller caliber and tested them during the spring of 1914 where they were judged inferior to the 7.5 cm guns. This cost the Austrians heavily as the 7.5 cm guns were delivered beginning in April 1915 instead of the planned date of April 1914.[1]

For transport, the gun could be dismantled into 6 parts, generally carried in 4 loads. In addition, there was a gun shield fitted on some (perhaps many) such guns. A revised version of this gun was released as the Skoda 75 mm Model 1928.

German anti-tank gunners and supporting infantry, October 1918

The Germans bought some guns during World War I, but used them as infantry guns in direct support of the infantry where their light weight would allow them to move with the infantry. They complained that the guns were too fragile and didn't have a high enough muzzle velocity to act as an anti-tank gun. Considering that the guns were designed to be disassembled it's not too surprising that they couldn't stand the abuse moving through the shell-pocketed front lines on the Western Front.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Ortner, pp. 332-335

References[edit]

  • Englemann, Joachim and Scheibert, Horst. Deutsche Artillerie 1934-1945: Eine Dokumentation in Text, Skizzen und Bildern: Ausrüstung, Gliderung, Ausbildung, Führung, Einsatz. Limburg/Lahn, Germany: C. A. Starke, 1974
  • Gander, Terry and Chamberlain, Peter. Weapons of the Third Reich: An Encyclopedic Survey of All Small Arms, Artillery and Special Weapons of the German Land Forces 1939-1945. New York: Doubleday, 1979 ISBN 0-385-15090-3
  • Hogg, Ian. Twentieth-Century Artillery. New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 2000 ISBN 0-7607-1994-2
  • Jäger, Herbert. German Artillery of World War One. Ramsbury, Marlborough, Wiltshire: Crowood Press, 2001 ISBN 1-86126-403-8
  • Ortner, M. Christian. The Austro-Hungarian Artillery From 1867 to 1918: Technology, Organization, and Tactics. Vienna, Verlag Militaria, 2007 ISBN 978-3-902526-13-7

External links[edit]