Missing Counter Series: the Blacker Bombard

jrv

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The Blacker Bombard was a 29mm spigot mortar, something like a big PIAT but firing HE.



"It would appear that a number of Bombards saw action with the British Army, being used in an anti-personnel role in the Western Desert Campaign, although their use may have been limited due to their weight. The design of the Bombards was the basis for the Royal Navy anti-submarine weapon known as the Hedgehog." Anyone for a submarine scenario?

JR

previous in series
 
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Tuomo

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The Blacker Bombard was a 29mm spigot mortar
Didn't read the whole Wikipedia article, but I don't see how that thing was only 29mm? Unless WW2 British soldiers' heads were far smaller than today...

Edit - and what's that guy doing in the left of the picture? My guess is, "the leftenant double-dared him"
 
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Gordon

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Good point. 29 CM seems more likely.
 

jrv

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Didn't read the whole Wikipedia article, but I don't see how that thing was only 29mm? Unless WW2 British soldiers' heads were far smaller than today...
I noticed the odd size too. I am not sure what it measures. The article doesn't explain. My guess was that it measures the size of the spigot, i.e. the metal rod. This diagram doesn't explain either but it uses the same value:

10897

On the other hand for the Japanese 320mm spigot mortar it seems likely the size was the diameter of the shell and not the spigot, although the spigot was a tube and not a rod, so it's possible 320mm was the diameter of the spigot/tube.

JR
 

Paul M. Weir

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The Spigot was 29mm on the outside. The Spigot, though fairly solid, had a spring cocked firing pin running through it. The bomb had a hollow tail tube in which was a propellant charge and primer cap. The spigot, which was fixed to the traversing unit, fitted inside that bomb tube. When fired the tube (and bomb) moved up and off the spigot and continued onwards. Think of it like a rifle barrel with a cartridge, except the barrel gets projected but the cartridge stays. The firing principal is the same as what was used in the later PIAT.

According to the Wiki article the AT bomb was 20lb with an anti-personnel bomb of 14lb (9.01 and 6.35 kg respectively). Those 2 types had ranges of a bit over 100m and about 500m respectively (say 3 and 12 hexes).

Turning the BB into ASL terms is a bit of a guess. Due to its low velocity, the best comparison is with MTR rounds. The Soviet 107mm fired a 9.1 Kg bomb, the 82mm fired a 3.05 Kg bomb. Due to it's lower muzzle velocity compared to medium mortars (range only 100m or 500m), it wouldn't be outrageous to suggest that the shell casing would proportionally lighter than a MTR, IE higher HE content.

So for the
14lb APers round: Range 12, 100 mm HE equivalency. Definitely needs to be bigger than 82mm as twice the weight.
20lb AT round: Range 3, 120/150 mm HE equivalency. While the AT round at 9 Kg should match a 107mm, its likely higher HE content and reputation of its blast being quite dangerous to its crew even at 100m suggests at least 120mm, possibly even150mm. From what I gathered the AT round was not a HEAT type, just a great big blob of standard HE.

So what of the rest of its stats? I would rate it as INF, T, [0] RoF, B11, M12, R1/X6, No Tow, DMable to 5 pp DM. Alternative AT, T, [0] RoF, B10, M12, R2/X6, No Tow, DMable to 5pp. In either case it can fire only on the VTT or ITT, but not on the ATT. Leaves no residual. HE only, range 0-3, 120mm/150mm or 0-12, 100mm. It is not a MTR. Due to its muzzle loading, I am tempted with an NoIF, but given the low weight of it's round, I bet a crew could get off another round at a charging panzer.

I must warn that all the above is speculation, but should not be too far from the ASL truth. The BB is basically an earlier and oversized PIAT.
 

Gordon

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I must warn that all the above is speculation, but should not be too far from the ASL truth. The BB is basically an earlier and oversized PIAT.
In this case, "size matters."
 

Tuomo

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I'm also highly uncomfortable with the cross-section to incoming fire presented by the Part That Goes Boom.
 

Paul M. Weir

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I'm also highly uncomfortable with the cross-section to incoming fire presented by the Part That Goes Boom.
Now that you mention it a +1 (small size) TH DRM and though it has a shield, it's pathetic, so No Gun-shield.
 

Gordon

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There's no "reaction" score to truly cover the preceding ...

🤪o_O🧐🙄
 
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