Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The russian 152 mm ML20 gun

Original idea behind the 152 mm ML20

I chose to build the 152 mm ML 20 for Petite Infanterie Red army.  Ours was poorly equipped compare to its German counterpart.

Considering that the historical Red army artillery was a powerful one (it actually contributed a lot to Russian victory), we cannot live with the status quo.

The choice of that model is based on a simple thing: it’s both aggressive and slender.

152mm ml 20

152 mm ml20

History of the 152 mm ML20

The original designation of the 152 mm ML was 152 mm gun-howitzer model 1937.

This gun was design to replace the old 152 mm Pushka obr. 1910 which was unsuited for mobile warfare because of its weight.  Like many other Russian guns, the 152 mm ML20 was the result of continuous improvements, baby steps by baby steps and not any kind of quantum leap revolution.  

Source: The Encyclopedia of weapons of World War II. Metrobooks Publishing, 2002.


152 mm ml20


The best way to describe the 152 mm ML20 can be found in this Wikipedia quotation:

"The ML-20 was one of the most successful Soviet artillery pieces of World War II. Its characteristics positioned it between classical short-range howitzers and special long-range guns. Compared to the former, the ML-20 has better range (e.g. the German 15 cm sFH 18 had range of 13.3 km), which often allowed it to shell positions of enemy artillery while remaining immune to enemy fire. Its advantage over the latter was in weight and cost, and therefore in mobility and production rate. For example, the German 15 cm K 39 with range of 24.7 km weighed 12.2 tons and only 61 pieces were built; of the excellent 17 cm K 18 (23.4 t, 29.6 km) 338 pieces were manufactured; lighter 10.5 cm sK 18 (5.6 t, 19.1 km) was more common (2,135 pieces) but its 15 kg shell was much less powerful than a 44 kg shell of ML-20. German attempts to produce an analogue to the ML-20 were unsuccessful. The 15 cm sFH 40 was never produced due to construction defects; the 15 сm sFH 42 had insufficient range and only 46 pieces were built. In 1943 and 1944 Wehrmacht announced requirements for a 15 cm howitzer with a range of 18 km, but none reached production."



Source of pictures of the  152 mm ML20

Original drawing of the gun can be found here

I strongly recommend that Engine of the Red Army for any scratch builders.  Even though, the drawing is not at scale, you have everything else.   


Building of the 152 mm ML 20 Fact sheets

Made of wood, plastic and rubber


  • Barrel made with a birch wood rod.

  • Muzzle brake made of a plastic tube

  • Offsets  in the barrel made with heat shrink tubing (the ones use for electrical wiring)
152 mm ml20




  • Wheel of the carriage made of pills cap container

  • Rubber band of the wheel made of hair elastic (the flat model)

  • Shield made of thin veneer (the one use to make furniture)


152 mm ml20




  • Wheel of the carriage made of pills cap container

  • Rubber band of the wheel made of hair elastic (the round model)
152 mm ml20152 mm ml20

That's all folks!  
We are ready to do wargaming with our brand new 152 mm ML20.





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