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> Austro Hungarian Railway Artillery used against us, in WW1 and 1919 war
ANDREAS
Posted: February 19, 2011 04:54 pm
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Hallo everyone,
Because I haven't found a clear evidence of the number of Railway Guns (or even armoured trains) employed by Austro-Hungarian Army (or later used by Hungarian Army in 1919 war), where and how they were used, I opened this Topic to find informations you might have about it. I am interested f.i. where were they used in Ist World War on the romanian front (I know of course that the superheavy siege howitzer of A-H were trucked by electric powered trailers), where were the two pieces exhibited at the National Military Museum captured, how many Railway Guns remained in possession of the Hungarian Army in 1918-1919, where they were used against our army, their effectiveness of the fights, their fate after the war ended, and any other informations about them.
Any contributions are welcome!
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21 inf
Posted: February 19, 2011 06:22 pm
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There were 9 armoured trains employed by hungarian red army in 1919 war with Romania and 2 armoured trains employed by Romania in the same war.

Before 16th of April 1919 at least one armoured train was used by hungarian army on the route Arad-Brad. From this train were shot rifle or artilery against some civilian romanian targets. It was atacked unsuccesfully in some times by romanian national guard from Hălmagiu, in order to stop it coming in the area. Just few days before 16th April 1919 the train was engaged by romanian artillery and had to withdraw to safety.

Between august 1919-january 1920 3 engines and 7 armored railcars, armed with cannons, were brought to Depozitul de armătură from Târgovişte, as war capture. Also as capture was bring in the same location, in september 1920, one barrel of a 420 mm Skoda howitzer, with no Werknumber, together with it's railway transport system, a C-Zug. In january 1920 at Târgovişte was already existing a captured Skoda howitzer, 380 mm caliber, complete, with a C-Zug train, consisting of 6 railcars.

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dead-cat
Posted: February 19, 2011 06:54 pm
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there was little interest in railroad artllery in A-H. throughout the war.
eventually, during 1918 A-H. was building 4 pieces of the so-called 35cm M 18 Eisenbahnkanone, using the 35cm M 16 Marinekanone from Skoda, originally build for the "Ersatz Monarch" class battleships. however, no piece was completed before the end of the war.
the barrels were used as stationary guns, mainly on the italian front but 1 might have been send to the romanian front to assist Mackensen's Danube crossing in november 1916.

from "Eisenbahngeschütze der Welt", by Franz Kosar, Motorbuch Verlag
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21 inf
Posted: February 19, 2011 07:16 pm
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Skoda mortar, Morser, 1911 md., 305 mm. No employment against Romania in WW1.

A total of 44 1911 md. mortars were built, Werknumber 1 to 44. One, Werknumber 25, it is nowadays in the custody of Museo Storico della Guerra, at Rovereto, Italy and one is at Military Museum from Belgrad, Serbia.

After the war (captured or as war reparations) 23 went Italy, 4 at Yugoslavia, 3 to Hungary and 2 to Austria. They were employed by Germany and Hungary in WW2, for more info see bellow, at 1916 md.

Skoda mortar, Morser, 1911/16 md, 305 mm, 1 piece is at MMN Bucureşti, captured, Werknumber 18 of Md 1911/16 series and Werknumber 62 of all series. It was employed in Romania, but I dont know where. It was captured in early August 1919 in Hungary.

A total of 28 1911/16 md. mortars were built, Werknumber 45 to 72. I have no info about their fate after the war.

Skoda mortar, 1916 md, 305 mm, Werknumber 87, 1 piece, is at MMN Bucureşti, captured. This 1916 md mortar, 305 mm, saw action in Romania in Carpathian Mountains and on Jiu and Olt Valley, at Titeşti and Turnu Roşu. It was captured in early August 1919 in Hungary.

A total of 29 1916 md. mortars were built, Werknumber 73 to 101. After the war (captured or as war reparations) 16 went to Italy, 6 to Yugoslavia, 17 to Czechoslovakia and 2 to Hungary. Those from Czechoslovakia were sold in 1938 to Germany, which employed them in WW2 against France, Poland and USSR. Germany organised this mortars (plus 305 mm 1911 md) in Schwere Artillerie Abteilung nr. 624, 641, 800 and 815 and in Schwere Artillerie Batterie nr. 230 and 779.

Hungarian army used in WW2 305 mm mortars against Yugoslavia and USSR, but I dont know which model: 1911, 1911/16 or 1916.

Skoda howitzer, baptised Gudrun, 1916 md, 380 mm caliber, 1 piece is at MMN Bucureşti, Werknumber 2. This kind of howitzer was not employed on Romanian front.

Only one more piece is existing in the world and it is exposed at Heeresgeschichtliches Museum in Wien.

Skoda self-propelled howitzer, 1916 md, 420 mm caliber, 1 piece is at MMN Bucureşti, Werknumber 7, captured in 1919 in Hungary, incomplete at the time of capture. This kind of howitzer was not employed on Romanian front. It was captured in Hungary, at Gyor factory.

7 420 mm howitzers and self-propelled howitzers went to Italy after WW1 as war reparation. Skoda md 1917, 420 mm self-propelled howitzer went to czechoslovak army until 1938, when it was sold to german army, which employed it in 1939 against Maginot line and in 1942 against Sevastopol.

Diferent pieces of all mentioned mortars and howitzers were also captured by romanian army, including barrels and special railcars for transporting them.
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21 inf
Posted: February 19, 2011 07:32 pm
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Skoda mortar, 1911 md., caliber 305 mm, had a maximum range of 9600 meters firing a heavy shell (380 kg) and 11300 meters when fired a light shell (287 kg). It can penetrate concrete as thick as 2 meters. The rate of fire was 15 shells per hour.

Skoda mortar, 1911/16 md., caliber 305 mm had the same performance as the 1911 md.

Skoda mortat, 1916 md., caliber 305 mm had a maximum range increased with 1500 meters in comparison with previous models. The rate of fire was increased to 20 shells per hour.

Skoda howitzer, 1916 md., 380 mm caliber had a maximum range of 15000 meters. The rate of fire was 1 shell at every 5 minutes.

Skoda howitzer, 1916 md., 420 mm caliber had a maximum range of 14600 meters at the highest elevation. The rate of fire was 1 shell at every 7 minutes.
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ANDREAS
Posted: February 19, 2011 07:49 pm
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Thank you 21 inf and dead-cat,
I also was a a bit surprised about seeing the 380mm and 420mm from MMN Bucuresti on railway cars since I read that all of the heavy or super-heavy A-H howitzers were carried by a motor tractor but I soon discovered that on long distances they used used railway transport. Therefore these two super heavy artillery pieces were not railway guns but (sometimes) railway transported guns (to say so :P).
On the other hand the armoured trains were build and used for what purpose, since they were not intended for artillery support of the ground forces?
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21 inf
Posted: February 19, 2011 07:52 pm
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QUOTE (ANDREAS @ February 19, 2011 09:49 pm)
...On the other hand the armoured trains were build and used for what purpose, since they were not intended for artillery support of the ground forces?

Harrasing the enemy or protection of railway comunications? Safer troop transports?
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ANDREAS
Posted: February 19, 2011 08:01 pm
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Indeed 21 inf, since in WWII the germans used ex-soviet or polish armoured trains in the occupied regions of SU, and also in Yougoslavia. It makes sense!
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ANDREAS
Posted: February 19, 2011 08:14 pm
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I found some informations about the A-H armored trains searching the web, here
http://railwaygun.freeservers.com/armtrain...ary/hungary.htm
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Florin
Posted: February 20, 2011 06:10 am
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QUOTE (21 inf @ February 19, 2011 01:22 pm)
...................
Before 16th of April 1919 at least one armoured train was used by hungarian army on the route Arad-Brad. From this train were shot rifle or artilery against some civilian romanian targets. It was atacked unsuccesfully in some times by romanian national guard from Hălmagiu, in order to stop it coming in the area. Just few days before 16th April 1919 the train was engaged by romanian artillery and had to withdraw to safety.
............................

My dumb question: when you know that an enemy train travels daily between points A and B to make your life miserable, why not reaching the railroad during night with some wrenches or levers and take out few rails?
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21 inf
Posted: February 20, 2011 06:39 am
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Your question is not dumb. Romanian national guards tried to do so. Sometimes they failed because lack of proper tools, sometimes because romanian civilians asked them not to remove lines near their village because they feared hungarian revenge. Sometimes RNG's removed a number of lines, but the armoured train caried spare lines and hungarians repaired the railroad in no time. In one time RNG tried to blow up a railroad bridge near Vârfurile, Arad county, to stop the hungarian armoured train, but they had not enough explosibles so they failed to blow it up. It ocured just a skirmish between hungarian army and RNG, with 1 or 2 hungarian troopers KIA, no romanian losses.
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ANDREAS
Posted: February 20, 2011 01:09 pm
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QUOTE
În 30 Martie blindatul înaintase iarasi pâna la Vata si tragea asupra comunei Târnava, ocupata de Români. O baterie mascata lânga sosea, în fata comunei, a primit ordin sa raspunda. Întâia împuscatura ce a tras armata româna pe Valea Crisului Alb dupa o expectativa de 34 zile, s-a întâmplat în 30 Martie 1919 pe la orele 3 dupa amiazi. Tunul fiind bine mânuit de brigadierul Brâncus, proiectilul a lovit în plin. O izbitura bine calculata si plina de mânie. Fara sa mai riposteze, blindatul luându-si plina viteza, s-a întors la Halmagiu, bagând panica în trupele maghiare. -Tinutul Halmagiului, VOL 4 -from the site http://www.darnick.com/halmagiu/tinutul_halmagiului.html

It is obviously that we talk about an armoured train, probably nr. I (ex-nr.IV) Armd. Train, used to harass romanian military units, actions carried out in several other areas of the demarcation line between Hungary and Romania in early 1919. I remember I read somewhere about such a train used in Oradea -Beius -Vascau region, in january or february 1919.
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dead-cat
Posted: February 20, 2011 01:18 pm
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rails are relatively easy to repair. damaging the track will not cause a huge delay.
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contras
Posted: March 02, 2011 08:28 am
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QUOTE
There were 9 armoured trains employed by hungarian red army in 1919 war with Romania and 2 armoured trains employed by Romania in the same war.


As I know, Romanians have just one armored train in this war, used at Tokaj bridgehead in May 1919.
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21 inf
Posted: March 13, 2011 05:24 am
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"Starting with 17/30 January 1919 romanian troops from Transylvania received another armoured train, armed with 2 cannons of 53 mm caliber, 6 machine-guns and 4 light machine-guns."

source> În apărarea României Mari. Campania armatei române din 1918-1918 ISBN 973-45-0094-5
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