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wingsofwrath's avatar

Skoda Heavy Artillery -Plate 8



The final plate in the series is dedicated to the 42cm Autohaubitze / Belagerungshaubitze M16, the heaviest piece of artillery in the Austro-Hungarian arsenal.

As with the 38cm Howitzer in the collection of the Bucharest Military Museum, this piece was captured by the Romanian Army during the 1919 offensive against the Communist Hungarian Republic of Bela Kun, and represents the sole survivor of this type anywhere in the world.

Unfortunately the gun was captured incomplete, without it's base box components and documentation is scarce into that respect, but I'm confident that I managed a realistic illustration of what the gun must have looked like.
Even though there is enough material about the following iteration of this piece of artillery, the "M17" model used by Czechoslovakian forces in the interbellum period and by the Germans against Sevastopol during WW2, few if any details about the WW1 version survive, and, to my knowledge, this is the first time anyone has ever drawn this piece of artillery.

As such, details are mainly based on the 38cm base box, with some specific particularities of the 42cm M16 highlighted: this model got rid of the crane and roller tray used for shell handling on the 38cm Autohaubitze, and instead left a gap between the autoloader and the gun breech into which a special ammunition trolley fitted, helped by two side rails.
This particular trolley had three trays set at a right angle to the direction of travel, the two outer ones for cartridges, while the centre one, fitted with rollers, for the shell.
This then was pushed behind the breech and the shell rammed home into the chamber directly from the trolley.

A second type of trolley had a single tray set on a spindle that could be rotated. This particular type was also used by the Germans during WW2.

Unlike the 38cm, the 42cm Howitzer used a single explosive shell and two types of cartridge, a smaller one a and a taller one, used for longer ranges.

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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Dario2233's avatar
Well, now I know where the Bosnian word haubica comes from.