17 cm Kanone 18

The 17 cm Kanone 18 in Mörserlafette (German: 17 cm Cannon 18 on Heavy Howitzer Carriage) (17 cm K 18 in MrsLaf) was a German heavy gun used in the Second World War.

17 cm Kanone 18
Class Vehicle
Type Towed Artillery
Manufacturer Krupp
Production Period 1941 - 1945
Origin Germany
Country Name Origin Year
Germany 1941
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Germany 1941 1945 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Krupp 1941 1945 338 View

In 1939 the 21 cm Mörser 18 began appearing in the German Army Corps level Artillery Regiments, replacing the obsolescent World War I-era 21 cm Mörser 16. The gun was able to send a 113 kg (249 lb) HE shell out to a range of 14.5 km (15,857 yds), however by 1941 the German Army was seeking a longer range weapon and Krupp responded by producing a smaller 173 mm caliber increased velocity weapon utilising the same carriage, which became the Kanone 18.

The Kanone 18 quickly impressed German Artillery officers, firing a 68 kg (149 lb) HE shell out to a range of 29.6 km (18.4 mi), the real surprise was the explosive power of the shell, which was little different from the 113 kg shell of the 21 cm Mörser 18. Production commenced in 1941, in 1942 production of the 21 cm Mörser 18 was halted for almost two years so as to allow maximum production of the Kanone 18.

The 17 cm Kanone 18 was employed at the Corps level in order to provide long-range counter-battery support, as well as filling the same basic role as the 21 cm Mörser 18.

In 1944 some Allied batteries used captured 17 cm K 18s when ammunition supplies for their usual guns were disrupted by the long logistical chain from Normandy to the German border.

Type Heavy gun
Place of origin Germany
Service history
In service 1941–45
Used by Nazi Germany
Wars World War II
Production history
Manufacturer Krupp (until 1942), Hanomag
Produced 1941–45
Number built +/- 338
Specifications
Weight combat: 17,520 kg
(38,625 lbs)
travel: 23,375 kg
(51,533 lbs)
Length 8.53 m (28 ft 0 in)
Crew 10
Shell HE shell: 68 kg (150 lb)
Caliber 173 mm (6.8 in)
Breech horizontal block
Recoil dual-recoil hydropneumatic
Elevation -6°to +50°
Traverse 16° on wheels
360° on platform
Muzzle velocity 925 m/s (3,035 ft/s)
Maximum firing range 29.6 km (18.4 mi)

End notes