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View Full Version : Fine Article on Germany Heavy Tanks in WW2



Blutarski2004
06-29-2005, 12:30 PM
Go here -

http://cgsc.cdm.oclc.org/cgi-bin/browseresults.exe?CISO...E=grid&CISOSTART=241 (http://cgsc.cdm.oclc.org/cgi-bin/browseresults.exe?CISOROOT1=/coll2&CISORESTMP=/site-templates/browse_results.html&CISOVIEWTMP=/site-templates/item_viewer.html&CISOGRID=thumbnail,A,1;title,A,1;creato,A,1;descri ,200,0;0,A,0;%2020&CISOBIB=title,A,1,N;creato,A,1,N;descri,K,0,N;iden ti,A,0,N;0,A,0,N;20&CISOTHUMB=4,5&CISOTITLE=2%200&CISOMODE=grid&CISOSTART=241)


and scroll down to article 249. "Swinging the sledgehammer: the combat effectiveness of German heavy tank battalions during World War II".

Blutarski2004
06-29-2005, 12:30 PM
Go here -

http://cgsc.cdm.oclc.org/cgi-bin/browseresults.exe?CISO...E=grid&CISOSTART=241 (http://cgsc.cdm.oclc.org/cgi-bin/browseresults.exe?CISOROOT1=/coll2&CISORESTMP=/site-templates/browse_results.html&CISOVIEWTMP=/site-templates/item_viewer.html&CISOGRID=thumbnail,A,1;title,A,1; creato,A,1;descri,200,0;0,A,0;%2020&CISOBIB=title, A,1,N;creato,A,1,N;descri,K,0,N;identi,A,0,N;0,A,0 ,N;20&CISOTHUMB=4,5&CISOTITLE=2%200&CISOMODE=grid& CISOSTART=241)


and scroll down to article 249. "Swinging the sledgehammer: the combat effectiveness of German heavy tank battalions during World War II".

Zeus-cat
06-29-2005, 04:08 PM
Downloaded it and will read it later. 149 pages, hmmm...

Zeus-cat

Blackdog5555
06-29-2005, 04:52 PM
good reading...Interesting about the Germans complaining about Russians firing their guns at the vision slots running gear and main gun to disable the Tiger. I sure they were talking about HMG. also only 25mm armour on top deck of Tiger. One hour of service = 8 hours maintenance. Also comments on losses from airial attacks.. Im sure mostly from bombing..I would still chosse a tiger over a sherman.. I read 6 shermans lost to one tiger just to maneuver to the rear of the tiger for a kill shot. TY

Waldo.Pepper
06-29-2005, 05:25 PM
Thank you for bringing it to my/our attention. I read the whole thing and while I found it interesting for some of its historical detail - I find it near valueless in analyzing Heavy Panzer unit combat effectiveness.

There is no battlefield 'pure enough' devoid of outside influences like, aviation/morale/production quality, logistics etc etc etc... for example, that you can ever judge the relative merits or opposing tank units.

I may have missed it in my reading of the article.. but I am not even sure the author defined combat effectiveness.

Is blunting an attack effectiveness for example. As the Panzer units analyzed in the article were largely on the defensive during the time period analyzed, mobility is negated. Many combat veterans who were Western Allied repeated report that the smaller armored vehicles the Nazi's had were the greater threat as they could more effectively be concealed. Vehicles like the Hetzer, Jadgpanzer IV... (armored vehicles that could hope to cross a typical bridge rather than ford it with a schnorkel) and that could actually hide under a tree.

In my opinion the best work on analyzing combat effectiveness is the fabulous Numbers, Predition, War. By Trevor N Dupuy.

In that book he looks at combat effectiveness or organic or entire units... and comes to the following conclusions about divisions in the ETO.

http://www3.telus.net/public/a5a03316/vickmaster/npw1.jpg

And this conclusion about the relative combat effectiveness of NAzi Germany vs Soviet Russia.

http://www3.telus.net/public/a5a03316/vickmaster/npw2.jpg

faustnik
06-29-2005, 05:45 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">As the Panzer units analyzed in the article were largely on the defensive during the time period analyzed, mobility is negated. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I'm not sure what you are saying here? The standard German defense was through counterattack. Mobility was still a critical factor.

Waldo.Pepper
06-29-2005, 06:09 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I'm not sure what you are saying here? The standard German defense was through counterattack. Mobility was still a critical factor. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Exactly, which they could not do effectively pinned down by poor/serviceability/stocks of POL/no command of the air etc etc etc.

Furthermore the design of what were considered heavy tanks of the time period made them poor candidated for maneouver. They collapsed the bridges they tried to cross, they used more POL that a contemporary smaller tank etc etc.

It is impossible to say anything usefull about a single weapon system. Thats's like saying the P-51 won the war. That's my biggest beef with the article. It is selective and anecdotal in nature. However, some other ones at that site look pretty interesting.

p1ngu666
06-29-2005, 07:05 PM
tigers would often be used as "fortresses"
ie key points of defense.

germans feared typhoon (and it does look **** scary tbh http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/59.gif) but not only did it blow a huge amount of stuff up, it changed the morale, and slowed down movement.

ud get moving forests aprently http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

BBB_Hyperion
06-30-2005, 03:15 AM
You will find some more details about tiger tanks here http://www.fprado.com/armorsite/main.html.

What i think the pdf file is entirely missing is tactical doctrin of tank employment . Heavy Tanks are only 1 part of it and judging success on only this part is little one sided cause as mentioned before other factors are involved.

iirc
-Fast Tankgroups form the Main Force
-Tankgroups operate independent , fast and dont worry own flanks
-Fieldari task is taken over by LW with Stukas etc
-Tanks get direct support by LW
-Tankdivisions got own Tank,Ari,Pioneer,Communication, Infantry and Supply Units to ensure they can operate independently.
-LW Tasks were stop Enemy Supply and moving in of reservers and ensure own supply
-Main Lines of Defence never to engage directly but first block sides and then attacked by the flank or from behind.
-Fast Movements that surprised the enemy need to be exploited .
-Mass up of Main Forces should be done to knock out most of the enemy forces at start.
-Infantry and Support Units were mobilized

VF-29_Sandman
06-30-2005, 06:36 AM
a tank that loses it's mobility could very well wind up being a dead tank. granted the tiger/panzer tank had much larger guns and longer effective firing range than the sherman's, the sherman's key to survival was mobility. if it lost that, it was a gonner. same with the german tanks.

Cajun76
06-30-2005, 08:09 AM
Isn't it a bit apples and oranges to compare Shermans and Tigers? Wasn't the Sherman designed for infantry support, and the Tiger for armored spearheading? They fought each other, but the Sherman was in a role that was more necessity, not design, right? I'm in awe of the Sherman crews to do what they did. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/11.gif

ImpStarDuece
06-30-2005, 08:47 AM
Personally I have always thought the later Marks of the Cromwell were better tanks than the Shermans, with the notable exception of their main armament, which stuck with the very average (for 1943-45) 75mm.

The Cromwell had a lower profile, better frontal and side armour, was much faster and had reasonable mechanical reliability. With basic frontal armour of 80mm and applique armour (as fitted or refitted as standard to all tanks to see service after Overlord had begun) it could mount anywhere from 101-118mm of frontal armour, which is very good for a tank in the 30 tons class.

With a 17 pounder, 3 inch, US 76.2mm or the bastardized 17lbr that the Comet mounted (they put the gun on its side or something and called it a 77mm!) it could of been the most effective tank in the Allied arsenel until the arrival of the M-26 and Challenger.

Then again, the "Black Prince" modification of the Churchill was what really should of gone ahead as well. In fact I'd say that it was the one armour project that the Allies really needed in 1943 and never got. It's a shame and a tragedy that a lot of the lessons from Italy weren't passed along as well as could be expected. The Black Princes continually protracted gestation was also a very costly one for Allied tankers in Normandy, who found that even at short range they couldn't defeat Tigers with frontal shots. Despite the Churchills slug-like speed, with a 17lbr and 153mm of frontal armour it would of been the only thing in the western Allied arsenel in 1944 that could of stood up in a toe to toe match with the German heavies.