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Birth of a Big Gun

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Birth of a Big Gun

The manufacture of a new weapon in the pre-WWI naval arms race.

Non-Fiction 1908 8 mins

Overview

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A new weapon is launched in the pre-WWI naval arms race. This striking film illustrates the processes in the casting and manufacture of a 12-inch, 50-calibre naval gun - the kind of gun that would be used on battleships between 1914 and 1918. It was filmed in early 1908 at the factory of Armstrong Whitworth & Co., based in Newcastle-on-Tyne. The scale of the operation from 85,000 kilos of molten steel to the massive form of the finished gun is nicely filmed to showcase its impressiveness.