45-mm M-6 Anti-tank Gun Details
Despite the fact that by the beginning of the Great Patriotic War, the Red Army was armed with fairly advanced models of artillery guns, including the powerful and perfect at that time 45-mm anti-tank gun of the 1937 model with armor penetration at a range of 500 m at a meeting angle of 90° – 43 mm, and at a meeting angle of 60° – 40 mm, at a range of 1000 m – respectively 32 and 28 mm, already in 1942, the situation at the front changed dramatically with the appearance of tanks and assault guns with reinforced armor (especially frontal) in the Wehrmacht, which led to a sharp decrease in the effectiveness of 45-mm guns.
In this situation, there was a need for a powerful anti-tank gun, which was the main reason for the restoration of the design of new 45-mm guns. Before the war, the Soviet Union was developing more powerful anti-tank guns, but with the outbreak of war, all work was suspended for several months. Only at the very end of 1941, Soviet designers again returned to these works. In 1942, the Design Bureau of the Motovilikha Artillery Plant
Molotov No. 172 (Perm) has developed a project for a new 45-mm M-6 anti-tank gun. The factory produced its prototype. This was a completely new system that did not have interchangeability with the standard 45-mm anti-tank gun
53-K of the 1937 model of the year.
The M-6 cannon was a long-barreled anti-tank gun, classic for the artillery of the Great Patriotic War period, with sliding frames, a semi-automatic vertical wedge bolt and a sprung wheel travel. The M-6 gun had a semi-automatic design and wheels similar to the standard 45-mm 53-K gun.
The 45-mm M-6 anti-tank gun consisted of two main parts: barrel monoblock design with breech and carriage. The carriage had sliding tubular frames and a shield cover, designed to protect the calculation and mechanisms of the gun from bullets and shrapnel. The shield consisted of an upper (main) and lower folding shield. The upper shield was attached to the upper machine by means of rods, the shield had cutouts for the swinging part of the gun and for observation through the sight during direct fire. The upper part of the shield was made folding to reduce the height in order to disguise on the battlefield. The lower folding shield was lowered when the gun was transferred to the combat position, in the stowed position it was raised and attached to the brackets of the combat axis.
Springing the wheel travel (which was automatically turned off when the legs were raised) made it possible to transport a gun with mechanical traction at speeds of up to 50 km / h-on the highway, up to 30 km/h – on country roads and up to 10 km / h – off-road. The gun could also be carried by horse traction – six horses. Ballistics and ammunition were similar to the M-42 cannon.
At the end of 1942, the 45-mm M-6 gun passed factory tests at the Ural test site, and on February 19, 1943, four M-6 guns arrived for field testing at the Gorokhovets test site (near Gorky). In March 1943, these guns passed military tests in the Moscow Military District. Based on the results of field and military tests, the M-6 gun was recommended for adoption. However, the choice fell on the 45-mm M-42 anti-tank gun of another OKB-172, which was adopted by the Red Army under the name “45-mm anti-tank gun of the 1942 model”.