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Blank Firing 60mm Mortar


ChrisNZ
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With help from GI 44-45 group I've managed to get my 60mm mortar up and working as a blank firer, this is going to add to our spectator battles and I've already had some great feedback.

 

The system uses dummy rounds with blank shotgun rounds, I realise that its giving more blast off than a real mortar, I have my own reloading kit coming so I can load my own blank to the desired power.

 

 

Video

 

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I'm looking forward to the next spectator battle, should be a crowd pleaser.

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Very good Chris- I meant to ask, is this a remote device, or do you drop a round in, run and duck!????

 

 

Drop and run, pretty much the same as your one, its pretty safe unless you put a body part over the end of the barrel, in the videos its the first time the guys had a turn so they are bit nervous, there is no real need to move away from the mortar itself.

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Does the projectile actually fly out down range, or is that just for show and you take it out of the bottom side and drop it again?.... :think: .....very cool by the way!!...mike

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Does the projectile actually fly out down range, or is that just for show and you take it out of the bottom side and drop it again?.... :think: .....very cool by the way!!...mike

 

Yeah the round has a hole drilled all the way through it, all that comes out of the barrel is hot gases, nothing physical leaves the barrel, the barrel is also smaller in diameter so a real round won't fit and with a round sized hole in the bottom of the barrel if someone was silly enough to try and fire a launch able round they would do themselves a great deal of damage, its essentially a noise maker.

 

I'm pretty sure they use a similar system for film, except the have the benefit of takes, they can fire one round, tip out the spent round and fire another, see this screen shot from the pacific, the rounds have holes in the top just like mine.

 

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Pat_from_Brix

Excellent work mate !! I had the pleasure to fire the one we have at GI44-45 and it's just great !!

 

Cheers

 

Pat

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Excellent work mate !! I had the pleasure to fire the one we have at GI44-45 and it's just great !!

 

Cheers

 

Pat

 

 

I'll have to upload the youtube vid of ours in action... By the way, shouldnt you now be "Pat from Chicago"?

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Having been a "Mortar Forker" during my Military career I can say that the blast is about right. I worked M29 81mm mortars and the blast was pretty impressive. Keep in mind movie mortars are pretty inaccurate in the way they sound when fired. The main tube is called a cannon for a reason. The primer charge is pretty much equal to a shotgun shell, but remember that primer charge ignites the charge bags... which go off with a pretty good boom, not the "poomph" you hear in the movies like The Green Berets where you hear a four-deuce (4.2 inch/107mm mortar M30) sounding like someone blowing across the top of a pop bottle.

 

We had a sub caliber device for the 81's that used a shorter round that you would unscrew a knurled piece on the base, insert a subcaliber wound and screw the piece back on. You would then hang and drop the round normally. The whole thing would be launched from the tube. The sub caliber part would go down range a hundred maters or so, but the outer heavy steel part would only go maybe ten meters or so from the gun. These rounds look similar to the rounds being fired in the pictures from "The Pacific".

 

I have to say, good job on the mortar.

 

Wayne

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Thanks Wayne, It's good to know that, I guess with a real one you would have less of a blast exiting the barrel since thats whats used to push the round out, I found a few videos of WW2 mortars being fired but most have no sound or the camera equipment was unable to record the noise very well, I've been putting this together with the hope it will add a bit of 'wow' factor to out battles, its great to have something other than standard firearms on the field.

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Thanks Wayne, It's good to know that, I guess with a real one you would have less of a blast exiting the barrel since thats whats used to push the round out, I found a few videos of WW2 mortars being fired but most have no sound or the camera equipment was unable to record the noise very well, I've been putting this together with the hope it will add a bit of 'wow' factor to out battles, its great to have something other than standard firearms on the field.

 

Its always good to have the input and experience of someone who has been there... Even with hearing protection, the hearing in my right ear is shot from having fired those things... (always had my right side to the gun...) Watch news clips on Afghanistan and occasionally you'll see mortars being fired... They can raise a cloud of dust when they fire just from the shock so that should give you an idea of the energy imparted when these things fire. Glad I could help...

 

Wayne

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Years ago I read in The American Rifleman about a man that mistakenly put an 81mm mortar charge into his shotgun. Had a drawer full of loose ammo, grabbed a couple shotgun rounds and out he went. Blast knocked him out and ruined the gun, as I recall.

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Years ago I read in The American Rifleman about a man that mistakenly put an 81mm mortar charge into his shotgun. Had a drawer full of loose ammo, grabbed a couple shotgun rounds and out he went. Blast knocked him out and ruined the gun, as I recall.

 

If I recall, the primer charge for the 81mm round was said to be very similar to a 12 ga. round... but not quite...

 

Here is a website that shows a cut away of the primer charge as well as all of the rounds fired by the Mortar, 81mm M29:

 

http://www.inetres.com/gp/military/infantry/mortar/81mm.html

 

Note that from the fuse end, you have an ogive shaped body expanding out to 81mm then tailing down to the tube attachment for the primer charge. Though the drawings don't show it, this tube was a single width from the base of the projectile body to the back of the tail fins. This tube was perforated with holes to allow an equal distribution of the primer charge to the charge bags. Each round was equipped with 9 charge bags up to the M374A2 round. A single red colored bag was attached to one of the attachment points at the base of the fins, then spiraled up the tube to attach at another fitting at the base of the projectile body. This red bag was referred to as a charge 1 shot. For safety reasons, you never shot the round without at least the charge one bag present. There were also eight white colored bags of propellant arranged around the base of the round with the charge one bag underneath them. The proper way to fire the round was at the lowest elevation and the lowest charge (less flight time, less time to target, less chance for counterbattery radar to pick up the round and work out your firing position). Range for mortars is an expression of Charge and Elevation. Estimate the range, divide by 5 and you get the basic charge you should fire at. For example: The 81mm M29 mortar using the M374A2 round had a maximum range of 4737 meters. If your target is at a range of say, 1700 meters from the firing section, 1700 divided by 5 = Charge 3. Now, that is only a basis. The Fire Direction Center or FDC has firing tables for the ammunition used. Checking the firing tables, you might find that a charge 2 might reach that range at a lower elevation so you would always go with the lowest elevation and lowest charge. In this example, charge 2 extends to 1900 meters so you would fire the round at a charge two.

 

Your fire command would something like this:

 

SECTION! HE QUICK!!!

 

TWO ROUNDS!!!

 

CHARGE 2!!!

 

DEFLECTION!!! TWO EIGHT ZERO ZERO!!! (2800)

 

ELEVATION!!! ONE THREE TWO FIVE!!!!

 

AT MY COMMAND!!!

 

This tells the entire section they will fire two rounds at charge two, with a deflection set on the sight of 2800 mils (center of sector), and an elevation of 1325 mils and they will fire at the command of the FDC. After this command is given and the deflection and elevation set on the sight, the gun levelled up, and the charge confirmed, the gun squad leader will call, UP!!!

 

At this point the FDC gives the fire command.

 

HANG IT!!!! (The gunner will insert the fins of the round into the tube, his forefingers and thumbs holding the round at it's widest point, sliding the round down into the tube until his fingers touch the tube.

 

FIRE!!! At the command fire, the gunner will slide his hands downward to the outside of the tube to insure his hands are clear of the muzzle as the round drops into the tube, and upon striking the firing pin at the base of the tube, the primer charge fires... the resulting blast exiting the holes in the tube, igniting the charge bags on the round which propel the round out of the tube and towards the target.

 

I hope this helps you understand how a mortar operates. It takes a good knowledge of math and especially algebra to be really good at plotting where the rounds will land.

 

Makes me wish I had one of these things for a hip pocket Artillery impression!!!!

 

Wayne

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