Russian 406mm Heavy Cruiser Gun

These guns were designed at the "Bolshevik" factory and were a result of the energetic Russian efforts to get foreign assistance for the design and construction of their naval guns and turrets. Much of this assistance came from Italy, whose influence can also be seen in the design of Soviet cruisers as well as in naval guns.

As originally planned, this weapon would have had long range and good penetration power, but also would have had a very short barrel life, all characteristics of Italian large-caliber naval guns. A total of twelve guns were started from 1939 to 1940 and by June 41 all were either completed or nearly completed. However, work was halted shortly after the start of World War II. Only one gun was proof fired and gunnery trials with it had uneven results. The gun itself was considered to be a success, but the rounds and propellant were of low quality, resulting in large dispersion patterns. This gun was used in the defense of Leningrad and one of its shells is now on display at the Central Naval Museum in Petersburg.



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