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TankyMacTanker #1 Posted 31 July 2020 - 11:02 AM

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This probably should be in off topic, but there’s a reason I put it here.  I recently read Tank Action which is David Render’s engaging account of his experience as a 19 year old British Tank Commander (in a Sherman) from a couple of days past D-Day onwards.  The reason I have put this in gameplay is because he says the primary tactic when engaging an enemy tank was to bombard it with HE as fast as possible and to just keep doing it, because this would gradually make it inoperable, damaging things like optics (etc), as well as disrupting the enemy crew’s attempts at retaliation.  By contrast, the emphasis in WOTB is on using AP.  I appreciate it is just a game, but I thought that was a very interesting comparison.
 

He also describes a tactic that another tank commander used to great effect (not possible in the game), which he thought was a little crazy.  This commander would regularly walk in front of his tank to find an enemy artillery or tank position, and then lead his tank - inevitably very slowly - to a concealed position to flank it.  Not the rush, blam, wham of WOTB!



Mjr_Eazy #2 Posted 31 July 2020 - 11:20 AM

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Interesting but I guess it makes sense, if you're in a Sherman against more heavily armoured German tanks, you're not going to pen them so the HE could at least do some damage if aimed well...

Sherman could pump out 20 rounds per minute compared to the Tiger in RL and if you've got 2 or 3 of them, 2 doing that might give the other a chance to get round the side or rear...

I'll add that to book to my list for Christmas pressies, cheers m8.


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Titus_Scato #3 Posted 31 July 2020 - 12:54 PM

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I think in real life, Shermans carried way more HE ammo than AP ammo.  That is another factor in favour of the HE bombardment tactic.

Mjr_Eazy #4 Posted 31 July 2020 - 04:36 PM

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View PostTitus_Scato, on 31 July 2020 - 12:54 PM, said:

I think in real life, Shermans carried way more HE ammo than AP ammo.  That is another factor in favour of the HE bombardment tactic.


yeah I remember reading something that they used to use the HE as a kind of artillery to support infantry...


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Just_merpug #5 Posted 31 July 2020 - 06:05 PM

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HE was perfectly effective anti tank ammunition. Spall is a thing, causes a lot more damage to the fighting efficiency of a vehicle than an AP round. "That one went right through" because it's a solid slug of metal that makes a hole.

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Col_Foster #6 Posted 31 July 2020 - 09:28 PM

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Impact of 3 rounds of 76mm HE on a German Panther, killing turret crew but no other damage.


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Just_merpug #7 Posted 31 July 2020 - 11:00 PM

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View PostCol_Foster, on 31 July 2020 - 09:28 PM, said:

Impact of 3 rounds of 76mm HE on a German Panther, killing turret crew but no other damage.

Quite useful, militarily, killing people. Much more valuable than machines, especially to the late-war Wehrmacht. 


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romsitsa #8 Posted 01 August 2020 - 04:51 PM

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Oh, reality vs. a game.

A Hungarian Pz IV J in 1945 ran into a "big" Soviet tank (most probably IS-2) and a T-34/85. The Pz IV retreated behind a building a few hundred meters away from the Soviets. Commander, radio op., loader left the tank, to minimize casualities, the driver and gunner took a "sniping" position and fired at both tanks, knowing that their chances of a pen are minimal. All their shots bounced, but the Soviet crew thought packing up and retreating would be a good idea.

Also Hungary, 1945, a German Stug III drove at full speed and the driver didn't notice there was a sharp curve, so it slid from the road. In that very moment an IS appeared in the curve, fired at the Stug, but missed it. The Stugs crew pumped two or three rounds in the side of IS, talk about luck.

Leaving the tank was not as rarely seen as one would think. The commander had much better view and could judge what is actually happening around the vehicle.

 

A



Mjr_Eazy #9 Posted 02 August 2020 - 09:12 AM

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This documentary is quite good, the interviews with the Sherman crews are interesting, especially the extended one tacked on the end...

https://archive.org/details/youtube-lbh-AYyEsrU


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romsitsa #10 Posted 02 August 2020 - 12:45 PM

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View PostCol_Foster, on 31 July 2020 - 09:28 PM, said:

Impact of 3 rounds of 76mm HE on a German Panther, killing turret crew but no other damage.

 

Take it with a pinch of salt, as this Panther was knocked out by a PIAT. Wether the turret shots happened during that encounter or later, wether it was HE and wether the crew was still inside are unclear.

https://www.iwm.org....bject/205094905

 

A

 



reekoiler #11 Posted 05 August 2020 - 06:57 PM

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View PostTankyMacTanker, on 31 July 2020 - 11:02 AM, said:

This probably should be in off topic, but there’s a reason I put it here.  I recently read Tank Action which is David Render’s engaging account of his experience as a 19 year old British Tank Commander (in a Sherman) from a couple of days past D-Day onwards.  The reason I have put this in gameplay is because he says the primary tactic when engaging an enemy tank was to bombard it with HE as fast as possible and to just keep doing it, because this would gradually make it inoperable, damaging things like optics (etc), as well as disrupting the enemy crew’s attempts at retaliation.  By contrast, the emphasis in WOTB is on using AP.  I appreciate it is just a game, but I thought that was a very interesting comparison.
 

He also describes a tactic that another tank commander used to great effect (not possible in the game), which he thought was a little crazy.  This commander would regularly walk in front of his tank to find an enemy artillery or tank position, and then lead his tank - inevitably very slowly - to a concealed position to flank it.  Not the rush, blam, wham of WOTB!


Good book. I remember the HE thing.



Velikiye_Luki #12 Posted 05 August 2020 - 09:51 PM

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That’s a great book by the Inevitable Mr Render.

“An Englishman at War – The Wartime Diaries of Stanley Christopherson” and the books by Ken Tout are also worth a read.

Pururut #13 Posted 05 August 2020 - 10:17 PM

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Couldnt find the pdf/mobi version of it. Such a shame. 

Titus_Scato #14 Posted 05 August 2020 - 11:03 PM

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View PostMjr_Eazy, on 31 July 2020 - 04:36 PM, said:


yeah I remember reading something that they used to use the HE as a kind of artillery to support infantry...

 

Supporting infantry was the Sherman's primary task.  Shooting enemy tanks was secondary.  Although it had to be done in self defence or defence of friendly infantry, it was rarely the main objective.  



Titus_Scato #15 Posted 05 August 2020 - 11:07 PM

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View PostJust_merpug, on 31 July 2020 - 06:05 PM, said:

HE was perfectly effective anti tank ammunition. Spall is a thing, causes a lot more damage to the fighting efficiency of a vehicle than an AP round. "That one went right through" because it's a solid slug of metal that makes a hole.

 

Absolutely.  The main difference is, the damaged enemy tank could often limp away and fight another day - unless a track was severed or a drive wheel or idler blown off.



Just_merpug #16 Posted 06 August 2020 - 05:12 AM

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View PostTitus_Scato, on 05 August 2020 - 11:07 PM, said:

 

Absolutely.  The main difference is, the damaged enemy tank could often limp away and fight another day - unless a track was severed or a drive wheel or idler blown off.

Indeed, but trained crew are a limited resource. Carius was flagging that as a problem in 44.


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jonty_2014 #17 Posted 06 August 2020 - 07:09 AM

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View Postromsitsa, on 02 August 2020 - 12:45 PM, said:

 

Take it with a pinch of salt, as this Panther was knocked out by a PIAT. Wether the turret shots happened during that encounter or later, wether it was HE and wether the crew was still inside are unclear.

https://www.iwm.org....bject/205094905

 

A

 


 

The PIAT fires a HEAT round - so I’d expect a hole from

that...


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romsitsa #18 Posted 06 August 2020 - 08:05 AM

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View Postjonty_2014, on 06 August 2020 - 07:09 AM, said:


 

The PIAT fires a HEAT round - so I’d expect a hole from

that...

 

It's ok that people quote the original photo caption over and over again, but "knocked out by can scottish piat gun" is actually written on the side of the tank. Problem is the left hand side is not visible in in situ photographs, so it can't be determined wether the turret hits were already there when the tank was taken out.

If you browse through a few NWE photos, already knocked out tanks were used for target pratice or were further shot by passing allied crews, just to make sure it's "dead".

 

A






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