Aircraft / Aviation Vehicles & Artillery Small Arms Warships & Submarines Military Ranks Military Pay Chart (2024) Special Forces
Land Systems / Battlefield

Ordnance BL 9.2-inch

234mm Railway Gun [ 1915 ]

A World War 1 veteran, the British Ordnance BL 9.2-inch railway gun was still on hand for home defense during World War 2.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 08/17/2021 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

Quantitative availability of various 9.2" British Royal Navy warship guns allowed for some experimentation in the field of railway gun usage. These weapon systems provided tactical, long-range heavy firepower with their mobility restricted to an established railway network. The weapons proved a common sight during World War 1 (1914-1918) and remained en vogue throughout World War 2 (1939-1945). All major powers of the two World Wars deployed some form of railway gun, armored train or armored train car for action.

When World War 1 came to Europe in July of 1914, Mk III and Mk VI versions of the storied 9.2" naval gun were in supply and the Elswick Ordnance Company was commissioned to add these to railway cars to produce a new series of railway guns for service in Mainland Europe. The work occurred in the early part of 1915 just as the war had settled into the slugfest known as "Trench Warfare" when any-and-all artillery pieces available were thrown into the mix to help unseat stubborn defenders from their holdings.

The early-form guns were limited in their tactical capabilities, namely because of their basic mountings which restricted elevation and traversal. This changed some in mid-1916 when Elswick produced newer railway gun systems with more advanced mountings which, in turn, improved on the weaknesses of the earlier designs. Various large-caliber naval guns were used to finalize their construction - including the massive Mk X series form.©MilitaryFactory.com
The Mk I guns held an elevation of 28 degrees against the 40 degrees offered in the Mk IV gun versions. Similarly traversal was improved from 10 degrees left-and-right of centerline to a full 360 degrees in the Mk III-gunned versions.

The Mk III and Mk VI guns could reach out to target areas 17,000 yards away. Mk V guns had a range out to 21,000 yards and the Mk XIII gun followed with a 22,600 yard reach. Each gun fired a 380lb 233.7mm High-Explosive (HE) shell.

About sixteen of the large railway guns were available at the end of World War 1 in November of 1918. These remained in active circulation into the fighting of World War 2 and were mainly held back for homeland defense. They survived the Second World War of Europe only to be scrapped soon thereafter.©MilitaryFactory.com
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.


Elswick Ordnance Company - UK
United Kingdom
Operators National flag of the United Kingdom
Service Year
United Kingdom
National Origin

Support allied forces through direct / in-direct fire, assault forward positions, and / or breach fortified areas of the battlefield.
Special purpose design developed to accomplish an equally-special battlefield role or roles.

1 x Locomotive for drive power.
Drive System
10 miles
(16 km)
Road Range

1 x 233.7mm (9.2") gun barrel
Dependent upon ammunition carrier.

Ordnance BL 9.2-inch Gun on Truck, Railway - Base Series Designation.

Military lapel ribbon for the American Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of the Bulge
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Kursk
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Ukranian-Russian War
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental military vehicles


1 / 1
Image of the Ordnance BL 9.2-inch
Image from the Public Domain.

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2024 Military Pay Chart Military Ranks DoD Dictionary Conversion Calculators Military Alphabet Code Military Map Symbols

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content; site is 100% curated by humans.

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, WDMMA.org (World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft), WDMMW.org (World Directory of Modern Military Warships), SR71blackbird.org, detailing the history of the world's most iconic spyplane, and MilitaryRibbons.info, cataloguing military medals and ribbons. Special Interest: RailRoad Junction, the locomotive encyclopedia.

©2023 www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-2023 (20yrs)