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Zen for the Gunner's Soul

Breech on HMS Belfast.  Well worth your time next time you are in London.

555013_10151354140137817_1152835082_n.jpgC'mon - she's just self-propelled artillery, no?

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I can hear it loud and clear. "Saint Barbara protect us! Loader, RAM projectile! Powderman stand to!"

Folk art from another age.

I miss it. Alot.
 
John,
It's been 45 years. Can you help me out with the terminology for that breech-block?
All I can recall is "Interrupted-step-threaded-breech-block.
Am I close?
Looks like the same system we had on the 155s...
 
 That's a "Welin" breech, the interrupted, stepped screw block being invented by Alexander Welin sometime in the late 1880s.  The brilliance was it allowed the breech to be opened and closed with a quarter turn.  When allied to the "DeBange" obturation system (the mushroom block face that compresses a fireproof flexible seal) is what made the fast-firing bag guns practical.
 
 The Belfast is a great visit, and it is a pity the visit to the Massachusetts isn't as well laid out.  But those little "sixes" vs the "sixteens" - there is no contest! 
 

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