Identification of a shell

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by Mobile_Infantry, Sep 19, 2005.

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  1. Hi,
    last weekend my reserve army unit visited the battlefield of the 1864 war between Prussia, Austria and Denmark near the Dannewerk in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany.
    Afterwards we went to a pub where the landlord showed us an old shell he found decades ago. He was curious to find out what kind of ammo this is. We didn´t knew either but maybe one of you is better in EOR than me:

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/6079/pic00632co.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/8721/pic00647qt.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/8026/pic00652su.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/411/pic00673of.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/1356/pic00694du.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/566/pic00703qm.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/3293/pic00711zi.th.jpg]

    [img=http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/9105/pic00721eb.th.jpg]

    Thanks in advance
    M.I.
     
  2. I have no live rounds, pyrotechnics or empty cases in my possession, sir... nuff said
     
  3. Looks quite phallic to me. Maybe its some kind of Fertility Symbol and not EO at all :)
     
  4. RTFQ

    RTFQ RIP

    It certainly resembles the Hotchkiss type shells in use at that time, possibly a 14 pdr. The deformation of the driving band at the base indicates that it has been fired.

    In summary:

    Although i cannot identify it definitively, i'd bet my arms below the elbow and the use of my eyes that it an HE Shell

    It is Angry.

    Get your numpty mate to give the local police a bell and let EOD identify it, and if necessary, deal with it safely.

    Explosives do not get friendlier over time. If it is inert (ie isn't going to kill any small children in the vicinity of the bar) they may FFE it and let your mate keep it.

    Edited because I spell like I fcuk
     
  5. @ RTFQ: Thanks for the quick help.
     
  6. Hard to tell without something to scale it against (Top Tip: If you photograph it against a Leatherman - 10cm - that usually gives EOD something to work with).

    As a SWAG, and if it's about 90mm calibre and weighs about 7Kg, it's probably an explosive shell fired from a Prussian 6 Pdr gun. Maybe someone at EODTIC or School of Ammo could correct me on that one. Normally fitted with a percussion fuze, although it looks as though the top half of this has sheared off, which is why it hasn't gone bnag (yet).

    In any event, as RTFQ says, it's a job for the Deutschie EOD team.

    .
     
  7. definitely condition "D" Belongs in the "hole" off Barrow in Furness. Would certainly make a mess of the pub and anybody in it.
     
  8. Looks rather like an armstrong type projectile, minus most of its lead coating. Before driving bands came into use hey used to coat the whole shell in lead to allow it to engage the rifling, give a a gas tight seal and impart spin. That would explain the 'phallic' shape. The lead coating would sit flush with the mushroom shaped ogive. You can see remanants of the lead at the base which, as RTFQ correctly states, is engraved by the rifling indicating it has been fired.

    If it is one of these, or of 1860s vintage, it will be filled with gunpowder, rather than HE. Not that that makes it any nicer. I concur with the advice that the Kartenkopf EOD should have a look.
     
  9. RTFQ

    RTFQ RIP

    Once again, RTFQ's knowledge gaps are highlighted by the AT WO (I'm guessing). Am I right in saying that some of these shells had wooden sabots? Didn't know that the obturation and spin were provided by lead coating, it's quite interesting to see how arty ammo design developed through the ages. Well it is if you're a geek like me.
     
  10. Another good reason for not duisturbing old ammuniton finds is to allow the battlefield archeologists to gather useful information. Knowing exactly where something is found can tell quite a lot new about what happened. Even a musket ball can provide quite a lot of information -as long as youknow exactly where it was found. There is a lot going on with the USA battles of the C18th and 19th and in the UK with Naesby and Edgehill.
     
  11. Check me out. King of the spotters!