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Skoda Heavy Artillery -Plate 3

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Plate three from the series. It shows the Austro-Daimler artillery tractors that were used to cart around the different pieces of artillery.
Over good quality roads one such tractor could haul the whole disassembled artillery piece, but since the fully laden trailers were around twenty tons each, once in the countryside they were each given their own tractor. Even so, the speed was an agonisingly slow twelve kilometres an hour.

Originally, the tractor as well as the trailer were painted the same OD green as all of the Austro-Hungarian artillery pieces, but from 1915 onwards the colour of all the support hardware (tractors, trailers, ammunition trolleys, etc.) was changed to a light leathery brown. Some of the field pieces were also painted in this colour, but the larger field guns remained green for the duration.

In 1917, a new, improved tractor was introduced, which had larger diameter wheels with wider tracks, to alleviate some of the problems with the M12 tractors (in mud the smaller front wheels had a tendency to sink into the ground, making progress along bad roads agonisingly slow). Also, to improve the grip on the real axle in muddy terrain, it was customary to load three heavy shells in the back of the tractor to provide some extra weight.

Also, from 1916 onwards, the M16 mortar, a simplification of the standard M11 mortar was introduced with three identical and interchangeable trailers replacing the purpose built ones of the M11.

Despite not being displayed in the museum and thus unavailable to the public, the Targoviste artillery storage unit of the military Museum of Bucharest holds a complete set of both the M11 and the M16 trailers, the latter the sole preserved examples in the world.

Other plates in the series:

The cover

Plate I

Plate II


Plate IV

Plate V

Plate VI


Plate VII


Plate VIII
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cullyferg2010's avatar
Makes sense in having the same style of trailer to haul the pieces around on.
wingsofwrath's avatar
Indeed it does. Anything that makes logistics easier is a good idea in war, and it's shocking on how much time it takes for such an obvious idea to occur* to the top military brass...

*Because, in the military, no idea actually exists until the top brass have thought of it, even if other people have thought of it first.
cullyferg2010's avatar
That's for damn sure!  Having been in the military myself I've come across it a couple of times.
wingsofwrath's avatar
When I started talking with people from different armies I was surprised just how universal some things about the military are, such as "hurry up and wait"...
cullyferg2010's avatar
That's for damn sure!:D (Big Grin) 
waltsland's avatar
VERY NICE, I LIKE IT, I LOVE OLD TECNOLOGYS, SPECILY FROM THE END OF THE 1800,S TO THE END OF THE WW1
a very interesting set of pics, done in an excellent illustration style !
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