Japanese 37mm Ho-203 Cannon

Photograph of Ho-203 cannon

U.S. Navy. Via Francillon (1979)


37 x 111 R with HE round
Projectile weight     
1.05 lb
475 g
Velocity 1890 feet per second
576 meters per second
Range 2950 feet
900 meters
Rate of fire     
120 rounds per minute
Gun weight
196 lbs
89 kg
Gun power

The Ho-203 cannon may also possibly have been known as the Type 3 37mm Machine Cannon. It seems to have been installed only on the Ki-45-KAIb "Nick", where it proved reasonably effective against large bombers.

The gun was derived from the Year 11 Type direct-fire infantry gun. It used a long recoil artillery-style falling block action and was fed from a 25-round magazine in flexible mountings or a 15-round "birdcage" endless belt in fixed mountings. The flexible version seems to have never seen combat. The rate of fire could be adjusted by changing the recoil buffer fluid, but 120 rounds per minute was typical.

Photo Gallery

Photograph of Ho-203

U.S. Navy

Photograph of Ho-203



Francillon (1979)

Mikesh (2004)

Williams and Gustin (2003)

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