Flak 36 (left), Flak 18 (right) captured in Tunisia:
United States Army in World War II, Pictorial Record, The War Against Germany and Italy: Mediterranean and Adjacent Areas, 1951, pg 62
In 1932, Krupp demonstrated a secretly built prototype to the German Army. Orders were placed, after field trials were completed, and it entered service in 1933.
The barrel was in two parts so if one wore out it could be replaced.
When fired, the recoil of the gun tensioned a spring, which operated the sliding breech mechanism.
For travel the carriage was fitted with two pairs of bogies. These were pneumatic tires which could be removed before setting up in a fixed position.
The platform had four legs which formed a cross shape (kreuzlafette).
A crew could fire up to 15 rounds a minute, if they were well trained.
The Kondor Legion was supplied with 8.8-cm FlaK 18 guns to be used primarily in defense.
However, in 1937, the FlaK 18 was used in an anti-tank role. Deutsche Kampfen in Spanien described the role the FlaK 18 could be used as an anti-tank weapon.
Reports said that in the final offensive in Catalonia, the FlaK 18s fired 7 percent of their ammunition at air targets and 93 percent at ground targets.
|8.8-cm FlaK 18|
|Front width||2.19 m|
|Rear width||2.3 m|
|Outrigger arms width||5.14 m|
|Length of gun||4.7 m|
|Length of bore|
|Rifling||4m with 32 grooves right hand twist|
|Length of rifling|
|Weight in action||4,986 kg|
|Elevation||-3° to +85°|
|Muzzle Velocity||820 m/sec|
|Rate of fire||15 rpm|
|Range of shell horizontal||14,813 m|
|Ceiling at 70°||7,620m|
|Length of wheelbase||4.19 m|
|Ground clearance||34.7 cm|