5"/38 Mark 38 Dual Purpose Gun


The twin dual purpose (DP) 5"38 cailber gun mount was used against both surface and air targets. On both Sumner and Gearing Class Destroyers as pictured above aboard the USS Newman K. Perry DD883, the twin 5 inch/38 Caliber Gun installed in the MK 38 mount was the most successful and widely used gun mount in the U.S. Navy during the 20th century. This gun allowed these Destroyers to project force miles away at sea by firing a 55 lb projectile over 9 miles.

Each of the two 5 inch MK 12 Mod 1 guns had separate ammunition and cartridge hoists that utilized some 26 personnel; 13 in the gun mount. This gun design earned its reputation on these Destroyer with shore bombardment and fire support missions in both the Korean and Vietnam War. With such great accuracy and ease of use, Destroyers with the 5"38 caliber gun were the gun shooter of choice in Vietnam.

Date Of Design: ~ 1932
Gun Weight: 3,990 lbs without breech
Gun Length oa: 223.8 in
Bore Length: 190 in
Number Of Grooves: 45
Length Of Rifling: 157.2 in
Chamber Volume: 654 in3
Rate Of Fire: 15 - 20 rounds per minute

Ammunition
Type: Semi-fixed
Projectile Types and Weights: AP - 54 lbs., AAC - 55.18 lbs., AAVT - 54.61 lbs., HC - 54.3 lbs., WP- 54.39 lbs., Common - 55.18 lbs.
Bursting Charge: AAC - 7.6 lbs., AAVT - 7.9 lbs., Common - 2 lbs., HC - 7.6 lbs.
Projectile Length: 20.75 in
Propellant Charge: Flashless:  15.5 lbs., non-flashless:  15.4 lbs.
Muzzle Velocity: New gun:  2,600 fps , Average gun:  2,500 fps
Working Pressure: 18.0 tons/in2
Approximate Barrel Life: 4,600 rounds
Ammunition stowage per gun: Gearing class=360

Mount / Turret Data
Twin Enclosed Mounts: Mark 38
Weight: 95,700 lbs.
Elevation: -15 /+85 degrees
Elevation Rate: 15 degrees per second
Train: ~ +120 / -120 degrees
Train Rate: 25 degrees per second
Loading Angle: Any
Gun recoil: 19in



ORLECK DD886 fires on Vietnamese positions with her 5" guns.