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K5 (E) Ammunitions

Contents :

go  Original Manual - Greg Heuer
go  Types of Projectiles used
go  Types of Fuzes
go  Propelling Charges
go  Primer
go  Case Identification Number
go   Abbreviations

k5 ammo type

Charges and Projectiles :
(Extracted from the book : Leopold by Jan Coen WIjnstok / ISBN-83-920254-5-8)
Ammunition for K5 was of the separate loading type. The complete round consisted of : the Projectile with fuse, three separate charges in cloth bags and the main charge in a brass cartridge cade with a primer in the base. This was the maximum charge; fewer bags would be used for shorter ranges.Classic photo of men with charges and projectiles All of these charges were made up of a core that ignited the next charge, surrounded by rods of propellant. Apart from the main charge, they were capped and then contained in white cloth bags. These charges are called Vorkartusche (pre-charge) The large ones, 1. and 2. Vorkartusche, contained 50 kg  of propellant. The small one, 3. contained just 21kg. In the drawings the cloth bag look shaped to show the contours of the charge inside. In reality they were straight tubes with stiff top and bottom. The main charge of 60kg, in its cloth bag, was loaded into the cartridge and then capped to secure it. This is the Hauptkartusche.
Stenciled lettering appeared only on the cloth bags, including that of the main charge. The lettering runs across in the drawings, but in period photographs, it runs lengthwise, both practices may have been in use. The cartridge case may have had stenciled codes on the base, but none can be seen in period photographs. They would have been reused, only the percussion primer had to be replaced. May be only this item carried code. Codes for checking were on the cloth bag of the main charge.
K5 fired several types of ammunition, partly dictated by the different types of barrel, but also because special types were used for practice and calibration. Barrels with deep Rifling (T10,T7) used projectiles with rotating ribs. The height of these ribs was either 10 or 7mm; they were made of cast iron. The last projectile to be developed was the 31cm Spreng-granate 4861.
painting and color of Projectiles :
Per original drawings, the projectiles were painted Feldgrau (Field gray) with white lettering for type of fuse, type of projectile and weight of projectile. In period photographs some of the lettering is shown black and some white. Lettering between the ribs is white; the rest seems to be black; aprt from large numbers 15 or 16 on the cone of the projectile.
The cones appear very shiny sometimes. so they may have been painted gross. The copper rotating bands on the projectile would remain unpainted.

K5 ProjectilesK5 ProjectilesK5 Projectiles
From Left to right :
28cm Granate 35, 28cm R-Granate 4331, 28cm Granate 42, 28cm R-Granate 4341, 28cm Granate 39/42, 31cm Sprenggranate 4861
Courtesy from the Leopold by Jan Coen WIjnstok / ISBN-83-920254-5-8)

Charges for the K5
From Left to right :
Hauptkartusche, 1. and 2. Vorkartusche, 3.Vorkartusche
Courtesy from the Leopold by Jan Coen WIjnstok / ISBN-83-920254-5-8)

Summary - physical data :
Projectiles :
Type Height Width of Body Total Width Range
28cm Granate 35 1275 mm 280 mm 305 mm 62.4 km
28cm Granate 4331 1330 mm 280 mm 312 mm 86.5 km
28cm Granate 42 1275 mm 280 mm 310.4 mm 62.4 km
28cm R-Granate 4341 1330 mm 280 mm 310.4 mm 86.5 km
28cm Granate 39/42 1335 mm 280 mm 310.4 mm 62.4 km
31cm Sprenggranate 4861 2000 mm 120 mm 316 mm 127.5 km
Charges :
Hauptkartusche 860 mm - - -
Cartridge 800 mm 327 mm top
360 mm bottom
- -
1. and 2. Vorkartusche 865 mm 320 mm - -
3. Vorkartusche 340 mm 320 mm - -
Code Fuse weight


28cm Gr 35
28cm Gr35
Hbgr Z 35K 255.50kg
(563.38 lb.)
This was the standard shell and was fitted externally with 12 soft-metal ribs, curved at  5° inclination to match the rifling. At the rear of these ribs was a soft copper sealing band of thin section, and a deep groove into which an asbestos and graphite sealing ring ( Dichtungsring ) was tamped before firing. The shell had a ballistic cap with a light alloy tip and the nose fuze was beneath this cap. the original design had the base fuze Bd Z 35K fitted   in addition to the nose fuze, but this was later omitted and the base fuze cavity closed with a sealing plug. Time and percussion fuze Dopp Z 45K, which had a running time of 125sec, could be fitted as an alternative to the percussion fuze. The bursting charge was 30.50kg (67.25 lb.) of high explosive.
28cm Gr 35 (Ei) Hbgr Z 35K 255.50kg
(563.38 lb.)
This was the ranging shell ( Einschiessgeschoss ) used in conjunction with the Gr 35. It was of similar appearance and ballistic performance but had a special filling of 9.50 kg ( 20.95 lb. ) of high explosive together with an additional composition that gave a thick column of black smoke for observation at long-range
28cm  Gr 42 Hbgr Z 35K 255.50kg
(563.38 lb.)
This was a standard projectile for the multi-groove barrel K 5 Vz. It was of the same general construction and appearance as the Gr 35 but instead of the external splines it was fitted with a large soft-iron driving band.
28cm  Gr 42 (Ei) Hbgr Z 35K 255.50kg
(563.38 lb.)
The ranging shell for the K 5 Vz gun, similar to the Gr 35 (Ei) but conventionally banded.
28cm Sprgr L / 5.2 m Hb unknown 190.00kg
(418.95 lb.)
A new design of long -range shell was under development in 1944 by Krupp, It had a hollow tail section to give additional stabilization by drag and a high-efficiency driving band for use with the K 5 Vz gun. It was to contain 27.00 kg         ( 59.54 lb.) of high explosive, and was to be fitted with a nose fuze beneath a ballistic cap. A number of experimental models were fired in trials but the design was not completed before the war ended.
28cm R Gr 4331
28cm R Gr 4331
28cm R Gr4331 cut away
AZ 4331 248.00kg
(546.84 lb.)
This was a splined shell of similar appearance to Gr 35. It was fitted with a time fuze in the nose to initiate the rocket motor and two special internal graze fuzes to detonate the high explosive filling. The blast pipe exit in the base was sealed by a heavy plug the prevented the propellant flash igniting the rocket prematurely; the plug was blown clear by the rocket blast after ignition, landing about 13-15 km ( 8-9.5 miles) in front of the gun. The time fuze was always set to give ignition after 19 sec of flight, at which time the shell was almost at the vertex of its trajectory. The shell contained 19.50 kg (43.00 lb.) of rocket propellant and 14.00kg (30.87 lb.) of high explosive. Its accuracy was such that at the maximum range 50% of the shots fired fell into a longitudinal rectangle 3400m x 200m (3718 yd x 218 yd)
Zeit Z S/30
28cm R Gr 4341 AZ 4331 248.00kg
(546.84 lb.)
This was the rocket-assisted shell for the K 5 Vz gun. It was constructed exactly as the R Gr 4331 except that it was conventionally banded instead of splined, with the addition of two narrow centering bands at the shoulder; its operation was exactly the same.
Zeit Z S/30
28cm Gr 39/42
28cm Gr 39/44 (Ei)



References to these shells have been seen but no confirmed details are known. It is believed that they were conversions of Gr 39 bodies to conventional banding by removing the splines.
31cm Sprgr 4861
31cm Sprgr 4861
AZ 41 136.00kg
(299.88 lb.)
This was the Peenumünde arrow shell - Peenemünder Pfeilgeschoss or Flugstabilisierte treibringgeschoss. It was of 12cm caliber and 1911mm (75.23 in) long, with a 31cm diameter three-piece discarding ring sabot at the waist and four fins at the rear. ( some early model had six fins ) On firing, from the K 5 Glatt smoothbore gun, the ring was discarded and fell about 2km ( 1.25 miles ) in front of the gun, leaving the fin-stabilized projectile to fly to the target. development began in February 1940 and the long-range trials, fired at the Rugenwalde range,gave a maximum range of 151 km ( 93.83 miles ). The high explosive content was 25.00kg ( 55.13 lb. ).
Bd Z 5121
more about the German Ammunition at Hillersleben Proving Ground
  Fuzes used for 28cm K 5 (E)
Fuze code Type Description
Hbgr Z 35 K
( Haubgranaten Zünder 35 Kurz)
Nose Percussion Fuze This was a shortened version of the AZ 35 K for used with an extension rod under a ballistic cap. The setting mechanism was a collar around the nose instead of the usual slotted screw, but the mechanism was otherwise the same. the optional delay was 0.05 sec.
Zeit Z S / 30
( Zeitzünder 30 Sekunden )
Time (Mechanical) Fuze
( Zeitzünder )
This was the standard German time fuze. made of aluminum, it was 112mm (4.40 in) long with a gauge of 50mm (1.96 in) and the dome was revolved to set the time of operation. The mechanism was a Krupp-Thiel clock and the maximum running time was 30 sec.
Other variants :
Zt Z S / 5 Zt Z S / 30 Zn Zt Z S / 30 K
Zt Z S / 30 Fg Zt Z S / 30 Kurz Zt Z S / 30 Fg Kurz
Zt  Z S / 30 CC Zt Z S / 45 Zt Z S / 60
Zt Z S / 60 nA Zt Z S / 120 Zt Z S / 28
Dopp Z S / 45 K
( Doppelzünder 45 Sekunden
mit Klappensicherung )
Time (Mechanical) and
percussion Fuze
This, of the same dimensions as the AZ 35 K, used a Krupp clock and a graze percussion element. The running time  was 125 sec with a minimum time of 45 sec.
Other variants :
M Dopp Z 28 K E Dopp Z S / 30 Fg E Dopp Z S / 30 CC
Dopp Z S / 60 S Dopp Z S / 60 V Dopp Z S / 60 Fg
Dopp Z S / 60 Geb Dopp Z S / 90 Dopp Z S / 90 St
Dopp Z S / 90 / 45 Dopp Z S / 100-200 Dopp Z S / 100 K

Propelling charges

The Propelling charge was of four separate units that could be combined to give two charge, the Kleine und Grosse ladungen :
Description Weight Fillings Marking
Hauptkartusche 60.5 kg / 133.4 lb. Dgl R P .....
Vorkart 1 46.25 kg / 101.98 lb. Dgl R P .....
Vorkart 2 46.25 kg / 101.98 lb. Dgl R P .....
Vorkart 3 21.00 kg / 46.31 lb. Dgl R P .....
The Charge composition was as follows :

Kleine Ladung : Hauptkart plus Vorkart 1 and 2 , total of 153.00 kg ( 336.6 lb. )
Grosse Ladung : Hauptkart plus all three vorkart, a total of 174.00 kg (382.8 lb.) 

The Hauptkart was carried in the cartridge case, the Vorkarten being separately supplied and loaded ahead of the case. These charges were used with the splined and conventional barrels. The smoothbore K 5 Glatt, less highly stressed than the rifled guns owing to the absence of resistance that was due to the rifling, fired a heavier charge - four parts adding up to a total weight of 250.00 kg (551.25 lb.)

Examples of marking :

Dgl R P 12.5 (400 5, 5 / 2, 5) : A Tubular diglycol powder containing 12.5% flash reducing salts, each tube being 400mm long with an         external diameter of 5.5mm and an internal diameter of 2.5mm

Primer : The percussion primer C/12 nA  was used with case identification number of 6309 ( Drawn brass )
  Abbreviations ( Abkürzungen)
Abbr. German English equivalent
Dopp Z Doppelzünder Time and Percussion Fuze
S Sekunden second
K Klappensicherung
Graze percussion
Hbgr Haubgranaten Shell with ballistic cap
Hbgr Z Haubgranaten zünder Fuze for use beneath ballistic cap
E Eisenbahn Railway
Bd Z Boden(zünder) Base Percussion (Fuze)
AZ Aufschlagzünder Nose Percussion Fuze
Kl Kleine small
Sprgr Sprenggranate High explosive shell
Gr Granate Shell
Ei Einschiessgeschoss Adjustment round
R Raketen Rocket
BZ Brennzünder Combustion time-fuze
FEW Führungweicheisen Soft-iron driving band


© one35th - Last updated on  :  Sunday, April 27, 2008