I would like to thank Joug Jardine for these photos of the artillery positions near Umtali.
Some comments from members of RhA during this period.
David Alan Townsend Agree one of.the guns at the front facing Moz. Maybe No.1? If.so had.it in 1976 when Umtali got revved the first time. Had just changed guard when mortars and rockets came in from Moz. Guys were waiting for orders to retaliate.
David Townsend Looks like guns had own ghillie suits with the hessian tyre covers. Must have been winter “zut” green grass. Maybe still No.1 gun Impala. Early days sleeping bunker from where pic was taken. Blue gum poles covered with sand bags.
Doug Jardine Impala; No 1 Gun; The Verge Inn bunker.
Two fire missions I remember.
Steve Pearsoni was on both those fire missions – the one time we fired into Moz and the other time we had to do a 180 and fire over Umtali. cannot remember which gun i was on certainly not the one in the pic
Mike Peterson Were they not more like diamond or zig-zag?
John Boulter Mike that correct zig zag is like that but the guns at the rear not to deep, we were in a square, but not that a gun fired over the gun in front. The one ofthe gun , you can see the ammo bay to the right rear of the gun.
I believe these photographs are from Eric Bird so thanks Eric for these interesting photos of the Rhodesian Artillery 25pdrs on ops. Comments below by ex RhA members Dave McIntosh and John Boulter.
A good photo, QF as said by Dave but classed into two classes, Fixed and semi fixed, Some semi fixed are matched before loading, in other words the projectile and cart are pushed together before loading, no ramming required.
- “The 25-pounder fired “separate”or two-part ammunition—the projectile and the propelling charge in its (usually brass) cartridge case with its integral primer were loaded separately. Typically for a quick-firing gun, the cartridge case provided obturation.
There were two types of cartridge. The “normal” cartridge contained three cloth charge bags (coloured red, white and blue). White or blue bags would be removed from the cartridge to give “charge one” or “charge two”, leaving all three bags in the cartridge case gave “charge three”. The cartridge case was closed at the top with a leatherboard cup. The second type of cartridge was “super”, which provided one charge only. The cup could not be removed from the cartridge case. In 1943, an incremental charge of 5.5 oz (160 g) of cordite (“super-plus”) was introduced to raise the muzzle velocity when firing AP shot with charge super; this required a muzzle brake to be fitted.”