21 cm K 12 (E) file photo [10853]

21 cm K 12 (E) Railway Gun

Country of OriginGermany
TypeRailway Gun
Caliber211.000 mm
Length41,300.000 mm
Barrel Length33,300.000 mm
Weight302000.000 kg
Ammunition Weight107.50 kg
Range115,000 m
Muzzle Velocity1,500 m/s


ww2dbaseThe 21 cm Kanone 12 Eisenbahnlafette (21 cm K 12 (E) for short) railway guns were developed by the German armament firm Krupp, building on top of the knowledge learned by the WW1-era Paris Gun to drastically improve barrel life. They were tested between 1935 and 1938, and between 1938 and 1940 two guns were built. The guns were mounted on simple box-girder carriages, which were carried on two subframes sitting atop double bogies. During travel, the guns were disconnected with their recoiling systems and retracted 1.5 meters to reduce the overall length. In action, they could only be reloaded at a low elevation, thus they must be re-aimed for each shot. The first gun, K 12 N (E), was deployed into service in Mar 1939; the second, K 12 V (E), joined its sister as a part of the German Army Artillerie-Batterie 701 (E) on the coast of the English Channel. They were used as long-range bombardment guns against the English coast; fragments from their shells were recovered as far as Chatham, Kent, England in the United Kingdom, which was about 88 kilometers from the coast point on the French coast.

Source: Wikipedia.


Last Major Revision: Aug 2010


German 21 cm K 12 (E) railway gun in firing position, France, date unknown

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German 21 cm K 12 (E) railway gun in firing position, France, date unknown

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