Austro-Hungarian Hand Grenades of the Great War Part Five – The Schwere Hand Grenade Part Two

This is a medium Schwere hand grenade, weighing in at about ten ounces, considerably heavier than the previous Schwere I showed you.

Another cast-iron grenade, this particular example was manufactured in Hungary,…

… and was used, or not used, in the fighting in the Alps.

Remarkably, it still retains its fuse protector and cap,…

…and if you look carefully you can see the fuse beneath the protector in this picture,…

…or I can remove the protector and you can see it much better in this one.

The grenade would originally have been filled with black powder and had a delay friction fuse.

These shots (above & below) clearly show the different shapes and sizes of the fragmentation pieces that make up the body of the grenade.

A size comparison between the Schwere that I showed you last post, and this medium version. Next: heavier stuff.

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2 Responses to Austro-Hungarian Hand Grenades of the Great War Part Five – The Schwere Hand Grenade Part Two

  1. Steve Oliver says:

    Aren’t the granades that are found in the former battlefields a 100 years later still capable of exploding? I bet their powder is dry. I suppose I don’t understand how the exploding mechanism works, what can trigger them as they are jiggled or taken apart. Perhaps you can enlighten us. Also are any exploding when found or opened? What about land mines.

    • Magicfingers says:

      Yes, absolutely they are still capable of exploding, and still people die from them. One of our regular readers (see Filip, I remember these things) told me a few years back that about 350 civilains had died in Belgian Flanders from shell explosions since the Great War. I would never ever pick one up off the battlefield, and I have come across them on my travels. These are all ‘professionally’ made inert, so no danger any more. Now there’s a question – land mines. And an interesting one, I think. Generally, although the technology was there, the British having used a type of anti-personnel mine during the Boer War, anti-personnel mines were not used during the Great War. I guess the static nature of the warfare in general wasn’t condusive to that type of weapon, although mining No Man’s Land would have been interesting!! The Germans were certainly making all sorts of anti-tank mines by the end of the war, but I don’t know how widespread their use was, or how effective they were.

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