A Trench Weapon

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As the Great War wore on the Granatenwerfer (grenade thrower)16 light spigot mortar appeared and proved to be  successful trench weapon.

It used a spigot design where the projectile fit over a rod that contained a firing pin. Most mortars used a barrel but not this one. It was easier and less expensive to produce in small factories and didn’t need to be produced to tight tolerances.
The troops also called it a  Priester -priest- because of the Hungarian chaplain who allegedly designed it, or Taube -dove- for the noise its projectiles made in flight. 
The German army had it in inventory through World War One. It fired Wurfgranaten M15 and M16 finned percussion grenades, each weighing 1.8 Kg of which 400g was high explosive. It had a range of about 300 meters and a range of up to 5 shots per minute. The weapon was propelled by a blank 7mm Mauser cartridge inside the grenade. 
The launcher weighed 35 kg including the base plate.

20 thoughts on “A Trench Weapon

  1. I would like one or two. Like a clean handkerchief and a knife, it's something a guy could use.

  2. 300M range (not too accurate, but against massed troop concentrations) works as well. And as accurate as a 'knee mortar".

  3. Indirect fire weapons such as that one are very useful for infantry. Two or three, with a supply of grenades and a little support infantry would make for an effective platoon.

  4. Years ago we were on the range doing a weapons familiarization. I was given an M79, and noting a large boulder on a hillside at extreme range, started lobbing rounds towards it. I had it dialed in and had scored a couple hits when the LT made me stop. Killjoy. I bet the Granatenwerfer would be as much fun.

  5. What's not to love about something that shoots exploding corncobs?
    -Kle.

  6. As effective as the Japanese Type 89 was, it was still a crew serviced weapon and fairly heavy. This looks easier to pack around.

  7. You could even do better with it from a design perspective than they did in 1917, but we have a lot of new toys that do the job better like the new Carl Gustav recoilless rifle. It's a direct fire weapon, but the laser sight allows you to customize the warhead to explode wherever you want to and air burst it over the target specifically. It's more expensive than this little beast, built on the cheap, but times have changed.

  8. There's nothing not to love about the thumper. I love the flechette direct fire rounds too. The M-203 unit is the same thing (commonly mounted under an M-16). I'd argue that it's not as sexy as the M-79, but it's more effective as an over/under combo.

  9. Handy little beast. Unlike, say, a Mini-Mike, which is hugely expensive and always off target.

  10. Mini-Mike is very accustomed to people kissing his ass and giving him his way. I don't think that he's comfortable in his present role. Except that he can buy the press and they'll fall over themselves to smooch his ring.

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