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Type 88 Large Artillery Fuze

Large Type 88 Instantaneous (Gun and Howitzer-Mortar) impact type artillery fuze.

Upon firing, the arming collar drops and the wedges are pushed out by centrifugal force, clearing the path for the striker.
Above are some rounds this fuze can be found on. (Left-to-Right):
 • 70mm Type 3 H.E.A.T. (Howitzer)
 • 57mm H.E. for the Type 90/97 Tank Gun
 • 47mm x 284 H.E. for the Type 1 Anti-Tank
   or Type 1/97 Tank

Here are two different marking schemes for this fuze.

At left are three Kanji symbols
Read top to bottom:
"Field" "Mountain" "Cannon"
An alternate marking scheme, shown right, has the "88 Type" designation as well.

This fuze was used on antitank, tank, field artillery and howitzer ammunition.

81mm mortar rounds (i.e. Type 100) often appear with this fuze attached.
While the term "Gun and Howitzer-Mortar" is used to describe this fuze in U.S. identification manuals, it requires centrifugal force (spin) to arm it, which a mortar does not provide. I think the term "Howitzer-Mortar" was not intended to imply a standard infantry mortar.
It isn't clear to me why so many 81mm mortar rounds show up with this fuze attached, as it seems an incorrect combination.

U.S. TM9-1985-5 indicates this fuze was made in two types, with differences in the strength of the internal latch spring safety inside, but outwardly identical. A strong spring version for gun use and a weaker spring (less set-back force required) for howitzer use. It would seem, if this were true, there would be markings on the fuze to identify the types.
Maybe this info was printed on the can label?

Date code & Arsenal Markings.
Showa 18.8 (Aug1943)
Tokyo Arsenal

Fuze bodies were also made of blackened steel.


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