122-mm Howitzer Model 1910/30,Technical Details – USSR

122-mm Howitzer Specifications

  • Years of issue – 1930 – 1941
  • In total, 5900 units were produced.
  • Caliber – 122 mm
  • Weight in firing position – 1470 kg
  • Barrel length – 1560 mm
  • The length of the threaded part – 1140 mm
  • Calculation – 7 people
  • Travel speed – up to 12 km / h
  • Rate of fire – 5 – 6 rds / min
  • The greatest firing range – 8940 m
  • Direct shot range – 825 m
  • Shooting angles:
  • Horizontal – 5 °
  • Vertical -3 ° + 45 °

122-mm Howitzer Details

The 122-mm howitzer of the 1910 model was created by the French arms company “Schneider” taking into account the experience of the Russian-Japanese war and was the best field howitzer for its time. It was a classic short-barreled howitzer designed for shooting with elevation angles from + 20 ° to + 45 ° with a separate loading shot. Model 1910 howitzers were widely used by the Russian army during the First World War. The 1910 model howitzer entered service with the Red Army during the Civil War.

In the late 1920s, the Soviet military leadership decided to modernize the artillery systems in service from tsarist times. The main goal of the modernization was to increase the firing range.

In 1930, the Motovilikhinsky plant No. 172 (Perm) modernized howitzers of the 1910 model, in particular: the chamber was bored (lengthened) by one caliber; a normalized sight is installed; the carriage and the lifting mechanism have been strengthened, and a number of changes have been made to the design of the recoil devices. The howitzer had a piston bolt and a single-bar carriage with wooden spoked wheels with metal tires. The hydraulic recoil brake and the air-hydraulic knurler were assembled into skids mounted under the barrel and rolled back when fired together with it. The swinging part was mounted on a carriage without suspension of the wheel travel. Sighting devices in the form of a sight and a gun panorama were also installed on the carriage, as well as a shield cover to protect the crew from bullets and shell fragments.

The design of the gun carriage and lifting and turning mechanisms made it possible to fire with vertical aiming angles from -3 ° to + 45 °, and due to the fact that the howitzer had a single-beam gun carriage, the horizontal firing angle was only 5 °. The howitzer could be transported by both horse-drawn and mechanical traction. It took only 30-40 seconds to transfer the howitzer to the stowed position from the combat one, and the same amount – to transfer from the traveling position to the combat one. The permissible speed of the howitzer on wooden wheels was no more than 6 km / h.

The howitzer was fired by separate-loading shots. The presence of five variable charges and plus one more full powder charge and a large range of elevation angles provided her with ample opportunities for maneuvering fire. The ammunition consisted of separate loading shots, while the main shells were: long-range high-explosive fragmentation, fragmentation and high-explosive (old model). For firing from howitzers, shots with shrapnel and lighting shells were also used.A steel high-explosive fragmentation projectile created 1000 lethal fragments, hitting manpower within a radius of 30 m or leaving craters up to 1 m deep and up to 3 m in diameter. Depending on the installation of the fuse, the high-explosive fragmentation projectile could be designed for a delayed (shock), high-explosive or fragmentation action. When installing the fuse for high-explosive action, he made a funnel in the middle ground with a depth of about 0.8 m and a diameter of up to 3 m. The greatest firing range of this projectile was 8940 m. Firing a cumulative projectile from this gun was extremely ineffective. However, even after the modernization, the howitzer as a whole retained most of the shortcomings inherent in the guns of that period.

The main disadvantages are: unsprung wheel travel, significantly limiting the maneuverability of the gun, the outdated design of a single-bar carriage, which severely restricts guidance angles (especially horizontal) and guidance speed. The modernized gun was adopted by the Red Army under the official designation “122-mm howitzer model 1910/30”.

In addition to mastering the production of modernized guns, 762 howitzers of the 1910 model, which were available in the Red Army by that time, were also converted into howitzers of the 1910/30 model. In 1936, some of the 1910/30 model howitzers were equipped with metal wheels with cast rubber tires, which increased its towing speed to 12 km / h, and yet, by the beginning of World War II, this weapon was already outdated, although the howitzer was simple, durability and reliability. In addition, it was very light (the combat weight was one ton less than that of the new M-30 howitzer). Due to this, as well as the fact that over the long years of operation it was well mastered by the personnel of the artillery units, the 122-mm howitzer of the 1910/30 model was very popular in the Red Army.

Since 1940, the 1910/30 model howitzer has been replaced in serial production with the new M-30 122 mm howitzer of the 1938 model. On June 1, 1941, more than 5500 howitzers of the 1910/30 model were in service with the Red Army, and only 1667 new M-30 howitzers.

The 122-mm howitzer of the 1910/30 model was a divisional weapon, and was intended for: destruction or suppression of enemy personnel and fire resources located openly or located behind shelters; the fight against enemy artillery, as well as the destruction of the enemy’s motorized means in the areas of their concentration.According to the state of 1939, the rifle division had two artillery regiments – a light (a division of 76-mm cannons and two mixed battalions with two batteries of 122-mm howitzers and one battery of 76-mm cannons in each) and a howitzer (a division of 122-mm howitzers and a division 152 mm howitzers), a total of 28 pieces of 122 mm howitzers. In June 1940, another division of 122-mm howitzers was included in the howitzer artillery regiment (there are 32 in total in the division). In July 1941, the howitzer regiment was expelled, and the number of howitzers was reduced to 16. With this structure, Soviet rifle divisions went through the entire Great Patriotic War.

Since December 1942, the Guards rifle divisions had 3 divisions of
2 batteries of 76-mm cannons and one battery of 122-mm howitzers each (12 howitzers). Since December 1944, a howitzer artillery regiment, consisting of 5 batteries
(20 122 mm howitzers), was included in these divisions . Since June 1945, rifle divisions have also been transferred to this state.

The mountain rifle divisions in the state in 1939-1940 had one division of 122-mm howitzers (9 guns). Since 1941, a howitzer artillery regiment of two divisions (24 howitzers) was introduced instead. From the beginning of 1942, only one two-battery division remained (a total of 8 howitzers), excluded from their staff since 1944. The motorized division had 2 mixed divisions (a battery of 76-mm cannons and 2 batteries of 122-mm howitzers in each), a total of 12 howitzers. The tank division had one division of 122 mm howitzers (12 howitzers). The cavalry divisions had 2 batteries of 122 mm howitzers (8 guns), excluded from the state in August 1941. 122-mm howitzers were also part of the RVGK’s howitzer artillery brigades (72 – 84 howitzers).

The 122-mm howitzer of the 1910/30 model took an active part in all the pre-war conflicts of the USSR, including in the battles on the Khalkhin-Gol River and the Soviet-Finnish war of 1939-1940. Until 1942, it was one of the most widespread in the Red Army. Since 1942, its share in the troops began to decline both due to large losses and due to the massive arrival of new 122-mm M-30 howitzers in the active army.

The production of this gun was carried out at the Motovilikhinsky plant number 172 from 1930 to 1941. In total, 5,900 howitzers of the 1910/30 model were manufactured during this time, of which 3395 were produced in 1937-1941 alone.

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