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Brandgranatpatrone 44


Well-Known Member
Morning Everyone!

I have been offered a Brandgranatpatrone 44 round, I understand that they were designed to explode in contact with fuel but I have very little other knowledge of them, if anyone has any background info that would be great.

Which 20mm guns were they loaded for?

How does the fuze work?


The example I have been offered is for the MG 151/20 cannon.

From my **limited** knowledge of german the diagram states that after leaving the barrel the fuze is armed by the rotation and this frees the firing pin, there looks to be 4 channels in the top of the fuze (Im guessing that the fuze cap must break when hitting the aircraft fuel tank wall to expose the channels) when the round passes through the fuel tank the pressure of the liquid must depress the pin to fire the gain and the main charge, I think this is correct from looking at the diagram.

And the point being???????!

If i was firing at something i'd still like my projectile to go bang if i missed it by a few inches...

See here!!! Greeting Harry


  • 2 cm mit Flssigkeitsznder 9501.jpg
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It does seem a very specialised innovation....

According to Flying Guns WW2 it had some successes, im guessing that prehaps AP could just puncture the tank rather than igniting the tank contents and HE/Mine shells could detonate before reaching the fuel tanks. I would have thought a incendary shell detonating within the tank would guarentee the destruction of the aircraft.

Cutaway model of a Brandgranatpatrone 44, fuzed with the AZ-9501 hydraulically activated fuze. The cartridge was used in the MG 151/20 machine cannons of the Luftwaffe fighter planes.
The cartridge was especially meant for attacking the fuel tanks of enemy planes*.
The projectile exists of a pressed steel M-geschoss body , relatively thick walled for a M-shell. I suppose it is filled with HA41 (Hexogen wit41% aluminium), as comparable projectiles have the same filler. It is fuzed withthe AZ-9501 nose fuze

The AZ-9501:
Translating the text in picture 03,it says:

“Functioning of the fuze:
After leaving the barrel the spiral (Spirale) opens under the influence of the centrifugal force, and releases the firing pin (Nadel). At first impact with the target, the nose cap (kappe) and the filler piece (fllstck) are ripped off. The channels for the liquid (einstrohmborungen 4 stck) are released. If the projectile hits a container filled with liquid (airplane fuel tank), the firing pin is pushed downward into the firing cap by the liquid rushing inward, so exploding the projectile, igniting the fuel.”

It must be noted that the filler piece (fllstuck) has four longitudal grooves machined , which act as a weakening over which the filler piece will rip apart upon impact.

*As attacking the fuel tanks of bombers is quite difficult –one has to take precise aim instead of sweeping fire over an enemy plane- , I think this cartridge may have been meant for night fighters using the “Schrage music” gun system. These guns, mounted in a fixed 70 degrees upward forward firing position allowed night fighters to approach a British bomber unseen from below (no gun cupola pointing downward) and to take aim at ease between engine1 and 2, firing a salvo upward into the main fuel tanks.
Attacking the hull of an incoming bomber was not smart as one could hit the bomb load -especially in belly attacks-, exploding the entire plane as well as the attacking plane. Therefore, only planes on the way back (bombs dropped) were shot in the hull. As I understand from literature most night fighter aces preferred to shoot off a wing between engine 1 and 2.

Regards, DJH


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