Royal Armouries

Type 94 Quick Fire Gun


Type 94 Quick Fire Gun, 1941 - XIX.949

Type 94 Quick Fire Gun, 1941 - XIX.949

  • Type 94 Quick Fire Gun, 1941 - XIX.949

    Type 94 Quick Fire Gun, 1941 - XIX.949

Date: 1941

Type 94 Quick Fire Gun


Collection no. XIX.949
Date 1941
Calibre (mm) 37
Barrel length (m) 1.68
Weight (kg) 324
Projectile weight (kg) 1.23
Range (m) 4,572
Crew 4
Fire rate 10-20

Size isn’t everything

Artillery is usually thought of as heavy guns, but the Japanese showed that sometimes ‘small is beautiful’ by producing a simple, quick-firing weapon that was easily taken apart and re-assembled.

This allowed them to carry this effective killing machine through or over terrain often thought impassable, giving them the element of surprise as well as the power of the gun despite thick jungle or steep mountains.

The large Japanese army was formidable in the Second World War. It had recent successful combat experience against the Chinese and used simple but effective weapons like this. From late 1941, highly mobile Japanese forces advanced through jungle previously considered impenetrable. They drove the British from Malaya and Burma, threatening British India.

The compact size and lightweight of the 37 mm gun made it highly suitable for jungle warfare. Using such weapons, taken apart when necessary, the Japanese attacked Singapore from the landward side. The British, prepared for an assault from the sea, were taken by surprise and forced to surrender.

Long trail legs gave stability when firing. These have been cut short after capture to make shipping easier. The display extensions indicate their length but do not carry the original fittings such as spades. ‘Type 94’ corresponds to 1934 CE, the year of the Japanese calendar when this gun was introduced.

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