Tag Archive for 'mine'

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Holzmine 42: Wooden Box Mine

Holzmine 42: Wooden Box Mine

The body of the German Holzmine 42 consists of a wooden box of 3/4-inch lumber divided into four compartments by removable partitions. The two side compartments contain the main explosive filling; the central compartment the 7-ounce primer charges; and the end compartment the operating mechanism.

The main filling consists of two charges of 50/50 Amatol covered with a bitumastic substance as a protection against water. While it is believed that several different types of primer charges are used, three Sprenngkorper 28 charges are presumed to be standard for the mine.

The end compartment contains a shearing flange secured to the outside wall by two 3/8-inch wooden dowels. It is provided with a central slot to receive the end of the striker. The igniter rest consists of a small block of wood with a U-shaped piece cut out at the top, and screwed to the base from the underside.

When the mine is armed, the feet of the pressure block rest on the shear flange, in which position the head of the pressure block projects about two inches above the lid. During transit, the pressure block is reversed so that the feet rest on blocks in the bottom of the box.

A pressure of approximately 200 pounds on the pressure block shears the dowels securing the shear flange to the outer wall of the mine and forces the flange down onto the igniter pin which is withdrawn freeing the spring-loaded striker. The fuze used is the standard German Z. Z. 42.

The Holzmine 42 has also been used as a booby trap by employing an anti-lifting device. This device which is fitted into a hole underneath the central compartment is believed to consist of a Z. Z. 35 fuze screwed into a 7-ounce charge.


Internal dimensions      11.4 x 10.7 x 3.2 ins.
Size of lid 13 x 12 x 3/4 ins.
Size of aperture in lid6.4 x 2.5 ins.
Pressure block (without feet) 6 x 2.4 x 2.4 ins.
Size of compartments:
   Main charges 4.5 x 7.7 ins.
   Priming charges1.7 x 6.8 ins.
Thickness of partitions.19 in.
Size of shearing flange 7.6 x 1.25 x .5 ins.
Size of slot in shearing flange.27 x .67 in.
Size of wooden blocks 3.1 x .78 x .86 ins. deep
Main explosiveAmatol 50/50
Total weight of explosive 11.9 lb.
Total weight of mine 18 lb.

German: p. 304.3

Riegel Mine 43 (R.-Mi. 43), Sprengriegel 43 (Spr. R. 43): Antitank Mine

Riegel Mine 43 (R.-Mi. 43), Sprengriegel 43 (Spr. R. 43): Antitank Mine

The Sprengriegel 43 or “high-explosive bar mine” is used in open country, on roads, and in minefields. It consists of three main parts: a metal encased charge of TNT, a sheet steel tray, and a lid which acts as a pressure plate on the charge.

The charge is provided with five igniter sockets: two for the main igniters (Type Z. Z. 42) are located in the ends of the charge and are recessed so that only the ends of the igniters show when they are fitted and laid; the other three are for the new tilt igniter 43 (Ki. Z. 43) or other antilifting or trip-wire igniters. One of the latter three sockets is located in the top center of the charge; the other two are in one side five inches from the ends. By reversing one of the main igniters with its wings below the end pressure plate, it will function as an antilifting device. The mine may also be fired electrically by remote control.

The tray is equipped with shear wires which are threaded through reinforcing strips welded to the inner sides of the tray. The ends of the tray are folded over on top to form slotted pressure plates to actuate the Z. Z. 42 igniters fitted to each end of the charge. Near each end are holes through which safety bars are threaded to keep the charge clear of the shear wires in the unarmed position. A thin red line painted along the sides of the tray one-half inch from the bottom indicates the correct position of the lid when the mine is armed.

The lid of spot welded sheet steel construction is equipped with a handle at one end. It, too, is fitted with holes to correspond with the sockets, shear wires, and safety bars.

A pressure of about 440 pounds at either end, or 880 pounds in the center of the mine forces the lid and charge down, shearing the wires and actuating the igniters which set off the main charge.


Overall length        31 1/2 ins.
Overall width 3 3/4 ins.
Height (laid) 3 1/2 ins.
Total weight (approx.) 20.5 lb.
Color Light khaki
Thickness of casing (approx.) .04 in.
Weight of charge 8.8 lb.
Main igniters Type Z. Z. 42
Firing pressure (ends) 440 lb.
Firing pressure (center) 880 lb.

German: p. 304.2

Anti-Vehicular Yardstick Mine

Japanese WWII Anti-Vehicular Yardstick Mine

This Japanese land mine, of Naval origin, is usually found buried in landing strips. Almost any vehicle will activate the mine, but its use as an anti-personnel device is limited since a pressure of approximately 336 pounds is necessary to set it off.

The mine consists of an oval shaped tube of sheet metal with a cap on both ends; an explosive charge comprising eight blocks of picric acid, each cast in a paper container and coated with paraffin; and four percussion type fuzes.

The picric acid blocks which are flattened on one side do not fill the mine completely. The space between the flat side of the blocks and the wall of the case accommodates the protruding heads of the fuzes which are inserted between blocks.

The percussion type fuze consists of a cylindrical body which houses the striker release plunger, a booster housing, and a striker housing. The two latter parts are identical in external appearance and screw into the sides of the main body diametrically opposite each other.

The striker release plunger, a split pin with an enlarged flat head, is positioned in the fuze body by a copper shear wire. A second hole 90 degrees from the shear wire hole accommodates a safety wire. The lower end of the plunger is split by a slot, the width of which is increased on the inner end.

The mine is held in an unarmed position by the safety wire which is inserted through a hole in one of the end caps, and extends the entire length of the mine. A spring clip on the cap holds the wire in place. When the mine is to be put into operation, the safety wire is removed and a burying plug is screwed into the hole in the cap to make the assembly waterproof. A thick tarry substance is applied to-the seams around the end caps probably for the same purpose.


Length (overall)        36 ins.
Diameter (oval) 3.35 x 1.8 ins.
Total weight 10.58 lbs.
Weight of mine 4.63 lbs.
Weight of filling 5.95 lbs.
Weight of each explosive block 3/4 lb.
Filling Picric acid
Weight of complete fuze .29 lb.
Color Brown outside; black lacquer inside

Japanese: p. 308.1 (March 1, 1945)