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15 cm Feldkanone L/40 i.R.L.
15 cm L40 Feldkanone iR monument.jpg
At the Memorial Tower, Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada
Type Heavy field gun
Place of origin German Empire
Service history
In service 1915-1918
Used by German Empire
Wars World War I
Production history
Designer Krupp
Manufacturer Krupp
Weight 11,820 pounds (5,360 kg)
Barrel length 5.96 metres (19 ft 7 in) L/40

Shell 44.2 kilograms (97 lb)
Caliber 149.1 millimetres (5.87 in)
Breech horizontal sliding wedge
Carriage box trail
Elevation -5° to +20°
Muzzle velocity 750 m/s (2,460 ft/s)
Maximum range 18,700 metres (20,500 yd)

The 15 cm Feldkanone L/40 in Räderlafette (40 caliber Field Gun on Wheeled Carriage) was a heavy field gun used by Germany in World War I. It was an ex-naval gun hastily adapted for land service by rigidly mounting it in a field carriage.


The Germans were desperate for long-range artillery by 1915 and were forced to adapt a number of ex-naval guns for Army use, details of which are often lacking. The SK L/40 (Schnellladungskanone or fast-loading cannon) was an obsolete gun that was used as the secondary armament by pre-dreadnought battleships. It seems that there were actually two versions of this gun, one with an L/40 and the other with an L/45 barrel. It is not known if the designation changed depending on the barrel. The gun could not traverse on the mount and had to be fixed on a firing platform that weighed 7,450 kilograms (16,420 lb) to give it 60° of traverse. For transport purposes, it was broken down into three loads; barrel, carriage and firing platform.

While details are unclear, it seems that this gun was also adapted for land use, complete with its armored gunhouse, as the 15 cm KiSL (Kanone in Schirmlafette). It was mounted on a central pivot, which was in turn mounted on a firing platform. It was transported by rail or by road to its firing location in one piece and then offloaded onto the firing platform by crane.

It retained the Navy's (Kaiserliche Marine) semi-fixed ammunition, where one bag of powder was loaded before the brass cartridge containing the rest of the propellant and the primer.

See also


  • Hogg, Ian. Twentieth-Century Artillery. New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 2000 ISBN 0-7607-1994-2
  • Jäger, Herbert. German Artillery of World War One. Ramsbury, Marlborough, Wiltshire: Crowood Press, 2001 ISBN 1-86126-403-8

External links

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