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Use of Austrian-Hungarian Artillery


Italy assigned their 77mm and 100mm artillery to Libya, produced with bronze barrels. Yet there appears to have been adequate numbers of existing Italian made artillery to equip all divisions there. The performance of Italy's own guns (at least the 105/28 in range) is about 30% better. Thus, IMO, Libya had second rate artillery. Does anyone else agree with this? if so, why were these guns sent?
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The ex Austro-Hungarian 77/28 piece was already from 1938 intended for use only in the colony (AS and AOI). The reason had been dictated not only by the already considerable number that was present in the two war chessboards but also by the simplicity of use for the native and Libyan troops framed by the Italians and by the fact that by doing so the ammunition system would have been simplified. In addition, it was an easily transportable piece that made him choose for that too. as far as the 100/17 piece is concerned, however, it must be said that the production of the 105/28 would never have been able to satisfy the needs of all the infantry divisions and therefore only one Corps piece remained for the whole war Furthermore, the existing pieces with bronze barrels (which however were not the total) were mostly retubed or even in the years before the war the barrels were replaced as well as the towing carriages and sometimes wheels and pointing systems. However, the fact remains that the Italian divisional artillery was certainly inferior to the German and American artillery throughout the war and partially, at least for the first phase of the conflict, than the British.
all the best


Staff member
Yet there appears to have been adequate numbers of existing Italian made artillery to equip all divisions there.
No, there wasn't.

My reading has indicated that the major issue that led to the retention of these war booty (preda bellica) guns was money. Italy wasn't a wealthy country and the foreign sales of military hardware was a important source of revenue for the state. Even in the midst of rearmament, a portion of new weapons were being sold instead of being issued to the R.E. The war in Ethiopia and the support for the nationalists in Spain consumed money and material, contributing to the shortage. Italy had delayed developing new artillery pieces until the mid-30s and the limited production facilities meant it took time to put a new weapon into production. While the transition from the divisione ternaria to the divisione binaria reduced the number of artillery groups by 1, the increase of the number of divisions required more guns overall. Output of Italian heavy industry was never large, lacking the raw materials and skilled workmen. The rearmament plan was to be completed in 1942/43, so Italy entry into war in 1940 was a bit premature.

The 77/28 was a serviceable piece. Like all artillery retained from 1GM, its main shortfalls were range and mechanical towing. The French had retained the famous Soixante-Quinze, but had upgraded it for mechanical towing. It was repurposed by Germany as the Pak 97/38 (used by Italy as the 75/34 mod. 97/38). The point of this is that these older guns were still valuable weapons in their own right under certain conditions. The retention of older weapons in the colonies so the continental units can be equipped with the latest weapons was SOP to all European nations. Note that the 77/28 equipped Libyan units, but the 75/27 was issued to the continental units stationed in A.S.

Pista! Jeff
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New Member
i want add that the 75/27 Krupp and the 77/28 Boehler guns were weapons of same generation, there is no sensible difference in their capability