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eight bullets on every square burns away whilst the shell is yard within this circle. At flying through the air, and 100 yards from the point of when the flame comes to a burst the diameter of the certain point, which is in this circle holding all the bullets instance a little pellet of powwould be 14 to 17 yards, and der, the position of which can there would be only about one be varied at pleasure, the flash bullet on each square yard. In ignites the powder and fires the the first case with the shell shell. By moving a ring on the bursting 50 yards short, a man fuse the position of the little standing up would be hit in powder pellet can be altered as three or four places; but if it desired, and thus the time of the burst 100 yards short, only burst of the shell is governed. about two men out of three But the train of composition is would be struck by one bullet only some four inches long, and each. If the target consisted whilst this is burning out the of one row of men standing a shell goes 4000 yards. So that yard apart, eight would be hit one inch of composition reprein the first case and eleven in sents 1000 yards, and one-tenth the second; but if the men of an inch 100 yards. were lying down, the shorter flurried gunner sets his fuse burst would be the best, as only one-tenth of an inch wrong some six men would

be hit,

the shell becomes useless : for against three or four at the good practice he ought not to greater distance. The best vary his setting more than onetarget for shrapnel is naturally thirtieth of an inch—and this a number of ranks of men, say with shells and bullets flying 20 yards apart: the bullets past him is not an easy thing which pass over the heads of to do. He may also set his those in front will strike those fuse correctly, but may alter the in rear.

A group of men offers setting in clamping the ring, or an excellent target, whilst, on he may leave the clamp slack. the other hand, a single line of The result of any of these skirmishers or single rank man- mistakes is that the shell bening a trench affords a very comes harmless. An immense poor target. Where the target deal also depends on the care is a small one, such as a group

and skill with which the little of men manning a gun, the 4-inch train of composition has shell should be burst fairly been prepared. As was the case close up; but when the enemy with the old wooden fuse, it is are scattered, as in a retreat, tightly pressed, but not into a the fuse may be set to burst hole, for a groove in the brass sooner with advantage.

body of the fuse takes the place A word or two is desirable as of the central hole in the woodto the fuse itself, on which so fuse, and the filling of this much depends. The principle groove is a delicate operation. is similar to that of the old- The weather at the time of fashioned wood-fuse : there is manufacture has a considerable a train of composition which effect on the uniformity of the



composition, and the shrouding and though the velocity may of Woolwich in a damp river- not be more than 500 to 600 fog may materially affect the f.s., this is quite enough to cause efficiency of a shell fired a year fatal injuries by piercing the afterwards at the Cape. The body, even though the energy accuracy attained by the time- of the blow be relatively small. fuses is also dependent on the The sphere of action of the rush of air past the head of the field - gun, with its shrapnel shell as the missile tears its way shell, extends from that range through the air. If the shell where the power of the riflegets unsteady and wobbles bullet is on the wane to the about like a badly spun top, as point where the shrapnel itself may sometimes be the case, the does little harm. What these fuse will not burn regularly, ranges are naturally depends and all the care of the fuse- on the power of the rifle that maker is obviated by some little propels the bullet and on the

the manufacture characteristics of the gun firing of the shell. As a matter of the shrapnel. All the magazinefact, the accuracy of our fuses is rifles with which the infantry now remarkable. It is seldomi are now armed are similar in that the time of burning of a throwing a light and extremely given length of composition, long bullet with a very high say, three inches, varies more velocity, which reaches in some than one fifth of a second, and it instances 2200 f.s.

The caris common to fire fuse after fuse tridge, with charge and bullet where the error from the mean complete, only weighs about half is only one-tenth of a second. what the Martini or Snider car

With all its killing power tridge weighed. A soldier can under favourable conditions, the therefore carry double as many shrapnel shell has not a high rounds for the same weight, moral effect. The compara- and he can miss twice as often, tively feeble burst nearly 100 and still produce an equal effect. yards away is not startling, This encourages long - range and though the swish of the firing. Moreover, the high sheaf of bullets may not be velocity greatly improves the pleasant, it is not nearly as shooting at long ranges. The disconcerting as the roaring result is that at 1500 yards the rush of the comparatively magazine - rifle produces harmless common shell, whose effect which the earlier rifles explosion is also far more ter- of, say, thirty years ago only rifying. Although the shrap- produced at half that range. nel bullet has less energy when And it is only under the most striking at, say, 3000 yards' favourable conditions that fieldrange than even a pistol-bullet, guns can expect to remain in it inflicts a very nasty wound, position within less than 1500 distinctly more serious than yards of good infantry withthat inflicted by any modern out terrible loss. The extreme rifle, even including in this range of the modern rifle is term the Martini. This is well 3000 yards. But because the bullet is spherical,

weapon save a howitzer

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is ever effective at its extreme getting to the end of its tether range, because the difficulty and burns irregularly, added to of directing the fire is so which the gun begins to be great. And, as far as present inaccurate, so that when the experience extends, even the range has been obtained and latest rifle can do little at 2000 the gun correctly laid, the shell, yards. At 1500 to 2000 yards owing to the inaccuracy of the a field-gun can deliver an ex

gun, may after all go wide of tremely efficient shrapnel fire. the mark. Again, the velocity It is easy to get the range at of the bullets is small, and the this distance, because the fall shell having lost velocity but of each shell can be clearly retaining its spin, scatters the seen, and the accuracy being bullets widely. Finally, the excellent, the shell may be shell has such a steep angle of trusted to go very close to the descent that most of the bullets object laid for. The velocity of plunge down from the place of the bullets is high, and as the burst, which is some 30 feet shell approaches the ground high or more, and stick into the at a small angle, the bullets ground instead of sweeping sweep along the ground more along it. Our fuses burn up or less horizontally, covering a to about 4000 yards' range, and considerable depth. As the the trials that have been made range increases, the difficulty of at long ranges with field-guns hitting increases greatly. In show conclusively that the the first place, it is very diffi- effect obtained at ranges apcult to see the enemy. I re- proaching 4000 yards is so member an instance our unsatisfactory that very little practice - ground at Okehamp- is likely to be gained by having ton, when a battery of field- a special fuse to burn longer guns was being tested in com- still. The longer a fuse burns parison with battery of the more irregular it is, and our howitzers at a target repre- existing fuse would be spoilt senting a field-redoubt manned by trying to make it burn by dummies, who showed more longer. If long-range fire of of head and shoulders than the shrapnel is desired, a new fuse Boers ever do. The range was

is necessary. long, but much less than 4000 But could not greater range yards. Both batteries fired be obtained by giving more away all the rounds allowed velocity to the shell, just as the without sending a shell near magazine-rifle has extended its the “enemy." They both mis- effective range owing to its high took a row of stones or some velocity? Well, remember that such deceptive appearance for the Lee-Enfield bullet is only the heads of the “men

half the weight of the Martini ning the parapet. Even when bullet. If the field-gun shell is

the object is clearly seen, the to lose half its weight, it will difficulty of ranging is greatly have to part with more than enhanced, for it is much more half its bullets, which is out of difficult to locate the fall of the the question. The alternative shell. Then the time-fuse is would be to increase the weight



of the gun. We have an instance “quick-firing ”naval guns and in the naval 12-pounders which their slow-firing fellows in the were used at Ladysmith and Field Artillery. The fact is, Colenso. They weigh 12 cwt., that the naval gun is only a as against 7 cwt. for the field- quick-firer on its rigid ship’s gun, and, in order to get a high pedestal. Directly it is put on velocity, fire a shell 2 lb. lighter, a field-carriage the comparative with some thirty fewer bullets. clumsiness of the carriage and The accuracy, remaining velo- the violent recoil makes rapid city, and angle of descent ob- fire out of the question, because tained with these guns at 5000 so much time is taken up in yards is about the same as that running the gun up and relayfor the field-gun at 4000 yards: ing it after recoil. The lack of thus the common shell of the mobility due to the great weight naval gun has about 1000 yards makes it impossible to take up longer range than that of the many positions that would be field-gun. But shrapnel is far otherwise desirable, and there the best projectile in the field, seems no indication whatever and the fuse of the shrapnel that higher velocity is likely to for the naval gun only burns be adopted for our field-guns. to 4500 yards, as the increase of One lesson of the war in South velocity from 1580 f.s. to 2200 Africa is the value of the magaf.s. causes such an increase in zine-rifle to men in intrenchthe rate of burning that the ments. The magazine can be fuse burns out sooner. More- charged by a man in absolute over, the regularity of the fuse security. He then bobs his head is not so good, when thus fired up, blazes off his eight or ten with very high velocity. The rounds, and bobs down again difficulty of seeing the object below ground. What is urgently and of locating the graze of the required is a projectile which shell remain. Thus the enormous will strike a man whilst under sacrifice in mobility entailed by cover. the great increase in the weight There is nothing new under of the gun may be taken as the sun, and the sort of proextending the effective range of jectile which is now coming in shrapnel no

than 500 for the attack of trenches is yards, and this at some con- essentially on the lines of the siderable sacrifice of efficiency original shell which our foreat shorter ranges, owing to fathers used--that is, a shell irregularity of the fuse and which is lobbed into a trench the reduced number of bullets. or other sheltered position, where

. Moreover, to obtain the high it bursts. The ordinary common velocity the charge has to be shell from a gun when fired doubled, and there is conse- against a trench is deflected quently a great increase of upwards as it strikes the pararecoil, which makes quick firing pet. The burst may either be out of the question. It is smothered by the earth of the a curious thing that many parapet, or if the shell bursts newspapers have drawn invid- on or near the surface, the pieces ious comparisons between the fly upwards, or at least horizon




tally : very few take down- mum of exposure.

As is well wards, and none of these have known, some of the guns now sufficient downward angle to being used at the Cape fire cause the least apprehension to lyddite shells. These are simply a man in the trench. I may common shells filled with lydquote a case in which some dite in lieu of powder. Lyddite, 10,000 shells-mostly from field. in common with other high exguns, but many from guns of plosives -- such as gun-cotton, position were fired against melinite, ecrasite, dynamite, trenches held by the dervishes &c.—is far more violent in its before Suakim in 1888. The action than gunpowder. The range was generally very short, fact is, that a shell filled with 1000 yards or so, though a lyddite not only gives off much good deal of firing was done more gas than if it was filled at 2000 and 3000 yards, and with powder, but this gas is some with reduced charges, developed in a much shorter to get a plunging fire. Com- time and at a higher temperamon shell, shrapnel, and ring- ture. Such a shell bursts the shell (the latter a

moment the fuse acts; there is shell built up from rings, to none of the delay which exists facilitate its breaking up) were in a powder shell. The great all tried, but with very little energy developed is first maniresult. If a man showed his fested by the way in which the head he might be dropped by a body of the shell is crushed shrapnel bullet ; but the der- and torn, some of the pieces vishes soon got sharp enough being no bigger than a parto duck to the flash of the gun, ing from a finger - nail. The when they were quite safe. pieces are also more numerous, Some ancient smooth-bore mor- and they are projected with tars were then mounted, and higher velocity than those from much better results obtained, a a powder shell. The proportion of the shells falling formed by the fragments of a into the trenches and exploding lyddite shell

, instead of having there with considerable effect. an angle of only 45°, which is

If a parapet is manned to that of the ordinary powder resist an infantry attack, the shell, may have an angle of guns get some chance; but 160° to 180°, many of the preparatory artillery - fire does pieces going nearly at right very little harm against well- angles to the former path. The designed trenches, for the defen- gas is also very destructive ders quietly sit at the bottom of close to the place of burst; but their trenches, where they can- in the open its effect is very local, not be hurt. As soon

as the

so that if we take the case of infantry get within effective such a shell as that thrown by range they bob up, and by the 4:7-inch gun, the fatal effect firing a large number of rounds of the gas might not extend for in a very short time from their more than a dozen feet or magazine - rifles, produce the from the place of burst. The maximum effect with the mini- gas, too, takes the same direc






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