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Weapons - hand grenade

60 second histories

This video covers:  A look at the development of hand grenades and the ingenuity of the soldiers who made their own.

At the beginning of the war hand grenades were still being developed, the British mark one, a sixteen inch stick grenade, detonated when the end cap struck the ground, but these were unreliable and dangerous to the soldiers. Because you had to throw it over arm, the grenade could easily strike the back of the trench, igniting the fuse and causing it to explode. By nineteen fifteen soldiers were making their own out of jam tins, filling them with explosives with a short fuse which they lit, then threw at the enemy. In May nineteen fifteen a new design of hand grenade was introduced called the Mills Bomb after its inventor William Mills, this was officially called the number five grenade. These were simple enough to use and required only a small amount of training, although there were still many accidents, to throw it you simply pull the pin and release the lever like so which in turn releases the striker inside which ignites the four second fuse. Oops…..
20th Century
WW1 British infantry soldier
Key words: 
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