10.5 cm leFH 18
The 10.5 cm leFH 18 is a light field howitzer developed by the Germans in the 1930s, which they used widely in World War II.
|Ammunition||Penetration in mm @ 90°|| Type of
Mass in kg
| Fuse delay
| Fuse sensitivity
| Explosive Mass in
| Normalization At 30°
|Gr.39 rot HI/B||105||105||105||105||105||105||HEAT||495||12||0.0||0.1||2,530||+0°||28°||21°||17°|
|Gr.39 rot HI/C||115||115||115||115||115||115||HEAT||495||12||0.0||0.1||2,550||+0°||28°||21°||17°|
History of creation and combat usage
The 10.5 cm leFH 18 howitzer was developed by Rheinmetall in 1929 and finished in 1930, though entered German service in 1935. The howitzer had a simple breech mechanism with a hydro-pneumatic recoil system. Though the howitzer initially did not have a muzzle brake, it was added later for using rounds with increased effective range. The muzzle brake version of the leFH was the leFH 18M. Another modification to the leFH was made when a lighter howitzer was requested, making the leFH 18/40 by mounting the gun onto a 7.5 cm PaK 40 carriage. The howitzer saw more widespread service among the independent artillery battalions after the German defeat in Stalingrad. Eventually, some were mounted on motor carriages for increased mobility, such as the StuH 42, a heavy assault version of the StuG III assault gun.
The leFH was also widely exported to German allies such as Hungary, Spain, Finland, and Bulgaria. Sweden also bought a few as well. Enough of the artillery piece was spread that even today, they could be seen in use on the battlefield; their most recent sightings being in the Syrian conflict.