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Ballonabwehrkanonen. Fried. Krupp Aktiengesellschaft. I. 6,5 cm Ballonabwehrkanone L/35 in R├Ąderlafette; [AND:] II. 7,1 cm Ballonabwehrkanone L/30 in Kraftwagenlafette; [AND:] III. 10,5 cm Ballonabwehrkanone L/35 in Mittelpivotlafette in fester Aufstellung; [AND:] IV. Wirkung von Ballongranaten, erschossen in Meppen. (A.K.P. IVa. Nr. 172). [Ballon-Abwehr-Kanonen].
Essen, Fried. Krupp Aktiengesellschaft, (1910).. Four parts. Quarto. Pp. (2) main title-page, (1), plus 9 plates; (1), plus one plate; (1) plus 3 plates; (1), plus 5 plates. Total of 24 photographic illustrations. Loose as issued in original printed wrappers bit edge frayed, shelf ticket, old military institutional stamps, contemporary inscription on cover. In a very good condition. ~ First edition. Extremely rare. Inscription in neat contemporary hand at top of cover gives evidence to the fact that this publication was received from the representative of Krupps A.G., the retired Colonel DeFremery (?), on December 14, 1910, by the Commissie van Proefneming, responsible for testing, examining, and recommending artillery material for the Dutch government. With the Commission stamp next to it. The catalogue depicts in excellent photographs the 6.5cm L/35 towed anti-balloon gun, in rest and in full elevation, loaded on onto specially designed gun carrier with built-in folding metal steel ramps; the 7.1cm L/30, wagon-mounted with ammunition storage; and the giant 10.5cm L/35 central-pivot, fixed installation gun in various positions in a series of exquisite studio photographs. Special, extended part is dedicated to a photographic report on the effect of balloon grenades in proof-firing in Meppen. The history of the Ballonabwehrkanone ("Bak") is short and remarkable. At the siege of Paris in 1870/71 the Prussian Army practically failed to engage enemy balloons using conventional artillery which could not be aimed accurately at such high angle. There was a need in a special gun, specifically designed for the purpose, and the Krupp arms manufacturers accepted the challenge. The result were a 6.5cm L/35 gun on wheels and a 7.1cm L/30 car-mounted which could be elevated to fire directly overhead. This was the world's first anti-aircraft gun, a beginning of a field in which Krupp would dominate right into WW II. At the eve of the First World War only a handful guns in the whole German Army were designated as anti-balloon weapons. Almost all were horse-drawn guns that were assigned to protect strategically important locations along the axis of advance in the West. After the outbreak of the war individual weapons were consolidated into sections, and then into platoons and batteries. But few Allied dirigible balloons took to the skies over the front, and in 1916 the "Bak" was renamed "Flak" to represent its new role as anti-aircraft gun. ~ See also: M. Paris: "Winged Warfare: The Literature and Theory of Aerial Warfare in Britain, 1859-1917." (Manchester, 1992).
      [Bookseller: Librarium of The Hague]
Last Found On: 2017-12-21           Check availability:      Biblio    

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