The Austro-Hungarian Army was long known for its dashing and colourful uniforms, but in 1908, after studying recent conflicts, the people in charge reluctantly introduced a new field uniform, in a new and less conspicuous colour: hechtgrau, i.e. “pike-grey”, a grey-lightblue hue.
Austro-Hungarian army was mainly amred with Steyr-Mannlicher rifles , which used a refined version of revolutionary straight-pull action (causing the Landser-nickname "Ruck-Zuck" for this rifle).Shortages, combat experiences and the drive towards standardization prompted more changes to the uniforms of the Austro-Hungarian Army. Alternatives to the pike-grey uniform M1908 was tested and introduced, although they never totally replaced the hechtgrau variant. The most important was the M1916 tunic in woollen cloth of a “nettle green” or “feldgrün” shade.Another new item was the “Tyrolian” rucksack, which gradually replaced the old rigid hide knapsack from the year 1916 and on. It was a practical and comfortable item, with a large carrying capacity, and it was made in strong green or brown canvas.
Austro-Hungarian engineers -
Austro-Hungarian stormtroopers. One of the stormtroopers is realoading rifle with rifle grenade.
Kaiserjäger. Elite infantry of Austro-Hungarian army.
The Austro-Hungarian 37mm Infanteriegeschütz M.15 may have looked like a toy, but in reality it was a pretty potent trench gun. The gun itself was created out of the new and unforseen demands created by the trench warfare. In this type of combat there often araised the need to destroy targets that were very well protected against ordinary indirect artillery fire, regardless if by cannon or howitzer. The most common target of that kind was dug-in, well-protected, shield-equipped Machineguns: the only way to destroy them was to use direct artillery fire.
The most numerous, important and also best mountain gun of the Austro-Hungarian Army was the 7.5cm Gebirgskanone M15, made by Skoda. The M15 was pretty standard in design: a steel barrel mounted on and above the recoil cradle, the recoil system being of the hydro-pneumatic type, with the return of the barrel being aided by springs (what in german was called "Federvorholer"). The length of the barrel was 1.15m, i.e. L/15. The breech was of the semi-automatic sliding wedge type, and it was fired using a standard percussion device (with a catch, preventing accidental misfiring before properly closing the breech).
The 10 cm M. 14 Feldhaubitze was a dual-purpose field and mountain gun used by Austria-Hungary during World War I. It was a conventional design, although the first versions used an obsolescent wrought bronze barrel liner and a cast bronze jacket. Later versions used a standard steel barrel. The spade was in two pieces, one designed for use in icy ground and the other in normal soil.
The 7.5cm Kolben Minenwerfer M.17 is typical of the simple, small, lightweight mortars that virtually all the countries that participated in WW1 experimented with and used during the middle stages of the war. It was pretty heavy, though: 128kg emplaced, and could be elevated to a maximum of +85°. It could throw a 6kg heavy grenade some 860 meters (minimum 90 meters). It was aimed sideways by simply moving the whole lavette, and lengthways using a quadrant. The rate of fire was slow.
The 8cm Feldkanone M.5 was the standard Field Artillery piece of the Austro-Hungarian Army during WW1. At the outset of the war, three quarters of the Austro-Hungarian Field Artillery were equipped with this type of gun. The gun itself was of the new generation with modern recoil system, and had replaced the old Feldkanone M.75/96 with rigid lavette.
Romfell armoured car had a remarkably modern and even elegant design, with curved sides. It sported a low turret with all-around traverse, fourwheel-drive and solid rubber wheels. The armament was one Schwarzlose M07/12 HMG, with an ammo supply of 3.000 rounds. The Schwarzlose was primarily intended for land targets, but could be elevated very freely as well, also giving the vehicle Anti-Aircraft capablity. The range of the Romfell was between 100 and 150km's. The max speed 26km/h. Another modern feature was that it had a wireless, in form of a morse telegraph from the firm of Siemens & Halske. The armour was 6mm thick, and the overall weight of the Romfell was around 3 tons. It was 5.67m long, 2.48m high and 1.8m wideю