The German 37-mm (1.46 in) AA gun (3.7-cm Flak 18 and 36) is the
smallest of the German medium AA artillery. In addition to the data published in
"German Antiaircraft Artillery," MID Special Series,
No. 10 (8 Feb 1943), the following information has become available.
|Muzzle velocity (HE)|| || 2,690 f/s|
| " " (AP)|| 2,625 f/s|
|Max horizontal range|| 7,200 yds|
|Effective ceiling|| 6,560 ft|
|Weight in action (Flak 18)|| 1.72 tons|
| " " " (Flak 36)|| 1.53 tons|
| " draught (Flak 18)|| 3.39 tons|
| " (Flak 36)|| 2.36 tons|
|Weight of complete round (HE)|| 3.3 lb|
| " " " " (AP)|| 3.5 lb|
| " " projectile (HE)|| 1.4 lb|
| " " " (AP)|| 1.5 lb|
A preliminary examination of this equipment has been made and the
following information obtained:
|Length of barrel, including flash hider|| ||128.75 in|
|Length of bore|| 71.2 in|
|Rifling||RH plain section, increasing 1 in 50 to 1 in 40|
|No. of grooves||20|
|Elevation||-8° to +85°|
|Rate of traverse, fast||35.5 turns = 360°|
| " " " slow||89 turns = 360°|
|Height of trunnions on ground||35.43 in|
b. The Gun
The gun has a monobloc barrel. The firing mechanism appears to be
operated by barrel recoil and residual pressure of gas in a manner essentially
similar in principle to the 2-cm Flak 38.
c. The Mount
The mount is of the trailer type and consists of two complete units -- the
chassis and the mounting.
The chassis appears to be identical with that of the 2-cm Flakvierling 38,
consisting of a U-shaped hollow rectangular steel frame mounted on 2 pneumatic
The mount is a complete unit which is detached from the chassis by
operating the 2 winches and dropping the front 2 pads; by depressing a locking
handle at the rear the remaining pad may be freed by withdrawing the chassis.
(1) The base consists of a triangular platform on 3 adjustable supports
by means of which the equipment may be levelled correctly. A spirit level is
provided on the righthand side. A circular plate is fitted to the base on which
the body rotates.
(2) The body is built up of a base and 2 roughly triangular side pieces
which have a raised portion on each side for the trunnion bearings. On the left
side is a lever by means of which the gun is pulled back. There are 3 adjustable
seats, one on the right for the gunner, one on the left rear for sight number 1,
and one on the left side for the loader. There is also a small folding platform
on the left side. At the rear is fitted a dust tray.
(3) The cradle is trough-shaped and has a bracket at the forward end
and a receiving slot at the rear to take the piece. The recoil mechanism is
inside the cradle, recoil cylinder above, recuperator below. The elevating rack
is in one piece with the cradle, and has fitted to it a scale reading
from -8° to 85°.
(4) Compensators are fitted, consisting of 2 spring-loaded cylinders,
one on each side.
(5) The traversing mechanism is operated by the left wheel of 2 parallel
mounted handwheels, situated at the upper right rear of the body.
(6) The elevating gear is operated by the right wheel of the 2 handwheels.
(7) The firing mechanism operates by means of a foot pedal to the right
of the layer's footrest connected by a system of levers to the trigger.
(8) The sight used on this equipment is known as
the Flakvisier 36 "KF". No complete specimen
was available for examination but it is a fairly simple
course-and-speed sight. Flakvisiers 33 and 35 are also used with the gun.