In 1922 there existed thirteen 35 cm SK L/45 guns, 15 naval gun carriages and 13 recoil mechanisms. Not all the series numbers of these guns were kept in the archives, but serial numbers 1 to 9 (the eight guns plus one spare intended for Mackensen) were destroyed at the Wilhelmshaven Arsenals as required by the terms of the Versailles Treaty.
The naval mountings for these guns were to use electric pumps to drive hydraulic elevation gear while the training was all electric. These guns also would have had hydraulically worked shell hoists, rammers and breeches.
Source note: Some sources claim that one of these guns was used at Flanders, but this seems to be a case of mistaken identity. Krupp built a special long-range 35.5 cm SK L/52.5 gun called "König August" which was completed in 1913. This gun was to be used at Calais if the Germans penetrated that far, but was instead used in semi-permanent fortress XII at Quéant in October 1916. It was later at Sancourt and fired at Doulles in 1918.
Model of Mackensen at the Museum for Marine
|Designation||35 cm/45 (13.78") SK L/45|
|Ship Class Used On||Mackensen Class|
|Date Of Design||1914|
|Date In Service||1917 (as Field Artillery)|
|about 162,000 lbs. (73,500 kg)|
|Gun Length oa||620.1 in (15.750 m)|
|Bore Length||584.25 in (14.840 m)|
|Rifling Length||487.0 in (12.369 m)|
(see Note 2)
|(88) 0.138 in D x 0.327 in W at start narrowing to 0.268 in W at muzzle (3.5 mm D x 8.3 mm W to 6.8 mm W)|
|Lands||0.165 in at start widening to 0.244 in at muzzle (4.2 mm to 5.7 mm)|
|Twist||Uniform RH 1 in 30|
|Chamber Volume||15,872 in3 (260 dm3)|
|Rate Of Fire||2.5 rounds per minute|
1) The often-seen figure of 216,273 lbs. (98,100 kg) for this weapon actually includes the weight of the Weige (gun cradle).
2) Land guns may have had 72 grooves.
|Type||Cartridge - Bag|
|Projectile Types and Weights||APC L/3,6 - 1,323 lbs. (600 kg)
HE L/4,2 base fuze - 1,323 lbs. (600 kg)
|Bursting Charge||APC - about 44 lbs. (20 kg)
HE - about 88 lbs. (40 kg)
|Projectile Length||APC - about 43 in (108 cm)
HE - about 56 in (144 cm)
|Propellant Charge||Main Charge: N/A
Fore Charge: N/A
Brass case for main charge: N/A
|Muzzle Velocity||2,674 fps (815 mps)|
|Working Pressure||20.0 tons/in2 (3,150 kg/cm2)|
|Approximate Barrel Life
(see Note 2)
|Ammunition stowage per gun||90 rounds|
1) These guns, like most large caliber German guns, used a "fore charge" which was propellant in a silk bag, and a "main charge" which was propellant in a brass case. The brass case helped to seal the breech of the gun.
2) Actual Naval Projectile designations
were as follows:
|Elevation||For 1,323 lbs. (600 kg) AP shell|
|Range @ 16 degrees||about 21,870 yards (20,000 m)|
|Range @ 20 degrees||about 25,480 yards (23,300 m)|
Mackensen (4): Drh LC/1914
|-8 / +16.0 degrees|
|Train||About +150 / -150 degrees|
1) Design discussions after Jutland (Skagerrak) included altering the elevation to -5 / +20 degrees, similar to changes made to other German capital ships.
2) Armor thickness given in "Naval Weapons of World War One" by Norman Friedman:
09 May 2006 - Benchmark
23 December 2009 - Added comments on turret powering, barrel life value and increased elevation note
26 August 2011 - Added information on HE projectile
19 May 2012 - Updated to latest template
20 November 2012 - Added gun details
01 November 2014 - Added projectile and armor information
08 January 2015 - Added information on "König August" gun