The Imperial Japanese Navy took air defense of its warships seriously before World War Two. For light anti-aircraft ordnance it chose a heavy 13.2 mm machine gun
and also chose a 25mm cannon. This was at a time when the USN light AA defense was the .50 machine gun and the RN had the .50 Vickers machine gun. The 25mm
gun was a development from a French Hotchkiss weapon developed in 1930. French models imported into Japan were named on June 19, 1935 as either Type 94 or
Type 95 25mm machine guns. The Japanese modified the design and added a German designed Rheinmetall flash suppressor and designated it the Type 96 25mm
Machine Gun Model 1 on August 6, 1936 and was to be the light AA gun of the IJN in World War Two. In theory the gun could fire 200 to 260 rounds per minute. In
reality rate of fire was seriously degraded by the fact that the gun was fed y a 15 round magazine and it took time to replace the magazine. It could fire four types of
rounds, explosive, common, incendiary and tracer. Usually a tracer round was every fourth or fifth round. War experience reflected that rate of fire was too slow
because of the need to frequently change the small capacity magazines and the blast was too strong decreasing crew effectiveness. At the start of the war the 25mm gun
was by far most common in the twin mount. Almost every battleship and cruiser had numerous twin mount 25mm anti-aircraft guns. It was only later in the war that
single 25mm guns proliferated and the triple 25mm gun mount made its appearance. However, the twin 25mm mount was found on Japanese warships brfore 1941
through 1945. As you can see from the photograph comparing the
3D Model Parts twin 25mm mount with the plastic versions from a 1:700 scale Aoshima Fuso. The
contrast is striking, emphasizing the value of
3D Model Parts set N702. 3D Model Parts provides great value in their set of Imperial Japanese Navy 25mm twin gun
mounts.
Steve Backer
_______________________________________________