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Cannone-Mitragliera da 37/54 (Breda)

Cannone-Mitragliera da 37/54 (Breda)
Breda 37-54 Mod. 38.jpg
A twin 37/54 Modello 1938.
Type Anti-aircraft gun
Place of origin Italy
Service history
Used by Kingdom of Italy
Nazi Germany
Wars World War II
Production history
Manufacturer Breda
Produced 1932–45
Variants Modello 32, Modello 38, Modello 39, Modello RM39
Specifications
Weight 277 kg (611 lb) (Modello 38 without mounting)
Length 3.28 m (10 ft 9 in)
Barrel length 1.998 m (6 ft 7 in) (L/54)

Shell Fixed QF 37 x 232mm SR[1]
Shell weight 1.25–1.63 kg (2 lb 12 oz–3 lb 9 oz) (High-explosive shell)
Caliber 37 mm (1.5 in)
Action Gas operated
Elevation −10° to +90° (single mounts); −10° to +80° (twin mounts)
Traverse 360°
Rate of fire 60-90-120 rpm
Muzzle velocity 800 m/s (2,600 ft/s)
Effective firing range 4,000 m (4,400 yd)
Maximum firing range 7,800 m (8,500 yd)
Feed system Automatic

The Cannone-Mitragliera da 37/54 (Breda) was a 37 mm (1.5 in) automatic anti-aircraft gun produced by the Breda company in Italy.

It was used by both the Regia Marina and the Regio Esercito during World War II, with the former using it as the standard light anti-aircraft weapon on its battleships and cruisers. Nazi Germany used captured weapons after the surrender of Italy in 1943 as the 3.7 cm Breda (i).

Design

The Model 1932 was water-cooled, but the subsequent Models 1938 and 1939 were air-cooled; the gun was fed by a flat magazine holding six rounds, but it was possible to load them one after another to maintain a high rate of fire. It was possible to select alternate rates of fire, from 60 to 90 to 120 rpm. The twin Models 1932 and 1938 mountings were very heavy and required a strong supporting structure; the single Model 1939 (fitted on the Andrea Doria-class and Littorio-class battleships) was instead a single collapsible mount, which also had much less vibrations than its predecessors thanks to the addition of an equilibrator, and for this reason it was possible to fit it on small warships.

Ship classes that carried the Breda 37/54 include:

Performance

Although appreciated in the Regia Marina, overall this gun was of limited efficacy because of its gas-operated action (which reduced its rate of fire) and its substantial vibrations (due to their non-recoiling mounting) which impaired accuracy; instead the single collapsible model, which largely obviated to the latter issue, was seen as a definite improvement, while still being rather heavy and with its production being insufficient to satisfy the needs.[2][3]

Comparison of anti-aircraft guns

Country Gun Model RPM Projectile Weight Weight of fire
 Italy Cannone-Mitragliera da 37/54 (Breda) 60-120 .82 kg (1.8 lb)[4] 49.2–98.4 kg (108–217 lb)
 Nazi Germany 3.7 cm SK C/30 30 .74 kg (1.6 lb)[5] 22.2 kg (49 lb)
 France Canon de 37 mm Modèle 1925 15-21 .72 kg (1.6 lb)[6] 10.8–15.12 kg (23.8–33.3 lb)
 United States 37 mm Gun M1 120 .87 kg (1.9 lb) 104.4 kg (230 lb)
 Nazi Germany 3.7 cm Flak 18/36/37/43 150 .64 kg (1.4 lb)[7] 96 kg (212 lb)
 Soviet Union 37 mm automatic air defense gun M1939 (61-K) 80[8] .73 kg (1.6 lb)[9] 58.4 kg (129 lb)
 United Kingdom QF 2-pounder naval gun 115 .91 kg (2.0 lb)[10] 104.6 kg (231 lb)
 Sweden Bofors 40 mm gun 120 .9 kg (2.0 lb)[11] 108 kg (238 lb)

References

  1. ^ "31-37 MM CALIBRE CARTRIDGES". www.quarryhs.co.uk. Retrieved 2017-09-09.
  2. ^ "Italy 37 mm/54 (1.5") Models 1932, 1938 and 1939". NavWeaps. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  3. ^ Bagnasco, p. 85
  4. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "Italy 37 mm/54 (1.5") Models 1932, 1938 and 1939 - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  5. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "Germany 3.7 cm/83 SK C/30 - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  6. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "France 37 mm/50 (1.46") Model 1925 and CAIL Model 1933 - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  7. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "Germany 3.7 cm/57 (1.5") Flak M43 - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  8. ^ Foss, Christopher (1977). Jane's pocket book of towed artillery. New York: Collier. p. 27. ISBN 0020806000. OCLC 911907988.
  9. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "Russia / USSR 37 mm/67 (1.5") 70-K - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  10. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "United Kingdom / Britain 2-pdr QF Mark VIII - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  11. ^ DiGiulian, Tony. "USA Bofors 40 mm/60 Model 1936 - NavWeaps". www.navweaps.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.

Bibliography

  • Bagnasco, Erminio. Le armi delle navi italiane nella Seconda Guerra Mondiale. Parma, Albertelli, 1978 (2007 ed.) ISBN 88-87372-40-3
  • Campbell, John (1985). Naval Weapons of World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-459-4.
  • Gander, Terry and Chamberlain, Peter. Weapons of the Third Reich: An Encyclopedic Survey of All Small Arms, Artillery and Special Weapons of the German Land Forces 1939-1945. New York: Doubleday, 1979 ISBN 0-385-15090-3