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Vks, (H) And (P), L/56 And Pzkpfw? German Tank Names Explained


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WhoopAss_McGue #21 Posted Dec 17 2010 - 16:41

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View Postgorbi, on Dec 17 2010 - 14:44, said:

Here are some sources for the 'Versuchskonstruktion'

Two sites on German:
http://mf-panzermode....de/Lexikon.htm
http://www.zweiter-w...Einfuhrung.html

And one site on English:
http://www.achtungpa...er-glossary.htm

Interestingly, the english site lists both meanings for 'VK', Versuchskonstruktion and Vollkettenfahrzeug. I think that Versuchskonstruktion makes more sense, as all these tanks were just prototypes. You could describe every tank as a Vollkettenfahrzeug, so a special designation besides PzKpfw would seem a bit unnecessary -even for the abbreviation-addicted Germans.

Excellent! I'll add Versuchskonstruktion as the primary translation, but shall still leave Vollkettenfahrzeug as an possible alerntate meaning, just to be safe. Thank you for correcting me.

WhoopAss_McGue #22 Posted Dec 17 2010 - 16:46

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View Postderkb, on Dec 17 2010 - 15:48, said:

First, nice post.

VK = Versuchskonstruktion, my sources confirm that too.

Vollkettenfahrzeug would be short VKFz,
Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug would be VKKfz

behind all this is a system and it works if you know it.

Thanks for the confirmation! All help is very appreciated.

View Postderkb, on Dec 17 2010 - 15:48, said:

The KwK 36 or KwK 43 is an easy thing to, the 36 or 43 are the years it was first seen/used/tested this also goes down for the StuH 42, were the 42 is the year.
But some guns have a 18 in there naming, but were later designs, this was to mask the weapon development cause it was not allowed and so these guns were given the last WW I year as there service date.

Even for the rounds used there was a difference in the naming, for example the PzGr 39 and the PzGr 39/43, this shows that the later one (43 is the year it came to service) is a modifcation of the original 39 design, the first was for the tigers gun, the secound for the Tiger II gun.

I honestly didn't know that! It'll be added to the OP, with the credit given to you.

Mocca #23 Posted Dec 17 2010 - 23:03

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hello
the name from the jagdpanzer "ferdinand" -> first name of the constructer ferdinand porsche
sorry i hope you understand me :) my english is not good enough

theta0123 #24 Posted Dec 18 2010 - 00:11

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So vk 3002 (db)

DB=daimler benz amiright?

derkb #25 Posted Dec 18 2010 - 00:25

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View Posttheta0123, on Dec 18 2010 - 00:11, said:

So vk 3002 (db)

DB=daimler benz amiright?
Yes it is Daimler Benz, was used to easy know wich company made the design.
P = Porsche
H = Henschel
etc.

And the Ferdinand is named after Ferdinand Porsche thats true.
It later got a modification (MG at the front on radio operator side) and became the Elefant, so we only have the Ferdinand cause we did not get that MG.

Crazzy how Ferdinand Porsche could design some never realy used tanks and turrets but so nice cars ...

theta0123 #26 Posted Dec 18 2010 - 00:40

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Ferdinands tanks where like its cars=far to expensive and overrated.

What germany needed, was a standardpanzer from day 1. A heavy ferdinand took the same amount of resources for 5! YES 5! STuG's

PzGrenKdr #27 Posted Dec 18 2010 - 01:17

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View Posttheta0123, on Dec 18 2010 - 00:40, said:

Ferdinands tanks where like its cars=far to expensive and overrated.

What germany needed, was a standardpanzer from day 1. A heavy ferdinand took the same amount of resources for 5! YES 5! STuG's
The Ferdiands were only build cause Ferdinadn Porsche thought his variant will win the competition for heavy break-though-tank and he pre-produced 90 chassis for his tank. But the Henschel-Tiger won the competition and the 90 were build up as 87 Ferdis(later the rest of them were improved to "Elephant") and 3 amroured recovery vehicle.

Conclusion, the Ferdinand was only the result of recyling of not needed chassis.

Also was germany need was: no war with the Sovjet union, no "Führer" from Austria and good allies.

theta0123 #28 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 13:16

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View PostPzGrenKdr, on Dec 18 2010 - 01:17, said:

The Ferdiands were only build cause Ferdinadn Porsche thought his variant will win the competition for heavy break-though-tank and he pre-produced 90 chassis for his tank. But the Henschel-Tiger won the competition and the 90 were build up as 87 Ferdis(later the rest of them were improved to "Elephant") and 3 amroured recovery vehicle.

Conclusion, the Ferdinand was only the result of recyling of not needed chassis.

Also was germany need was: no war with the Sovjet union, no "Führer" from Austria and good allies.
especialy the 2d

btw is the Vk4502 the same chassis as the Ferdinand elefant?

Djerin #29 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 14:23

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View Postgorbi, on Dec 17 2010 - 14:44, said:

Interestingly, the english site lists both meanings for 'VK', Versuchskonstruktion and Vollkettenfahrzeug. I think that Versuchskonstruktion makes more sense, as all these tanks were just prototypes.
Actually "Versuchskonstruktion" makes less sense. The VK numbers were not for a specific prototype. They were for the whole project. This is why there are often several different prototypes with the same VK number. To distinguish them they got the constructor's initial added in brackets.

If you read German books about the WW2 tank history you will never find the meaning "Versuchskonstruktion" in them either. Well at least I have never read it anywhere. This term seems to be used only on the internet. In Books they are called Vollkettenfahrzeug, Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug or sometimes Versuchswagen or Versuchsfahrzeug. To me "Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug" makes most sense.

Also people who have actually been working with those prototypes use the neuter article when talking about them. To explain for non-German speekers: Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug is a genderless word while Versuchskonstruktion is a female word. Nobody would accidentally mix the articles up.

By the way, the designation VK does not originate with the constructors. They used completely different designations internally. VK was the designtation used by the Heereswaffenamt. Maybe if you consider the VK numbers as requests for proposals this makes it easier to understand. As in the VK number is not meant to describe the prototype as a prototype, but rather only indicating what kind of project it is supposed to be. When the HWA asked for cranes, transport trucks, machine guns and other stuff, wouldn't you assume that they wanted to test a prototype too? Yet there is no VK number for anything else but tanks, which coincidentally are "Vollkettenkraftfahrzeuge".

Long story short: VK = Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug. ;)

PzGrenKdr #30 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 14:24

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View Posttheta0123, on Dec 20 2010 - 13:16, said:

especialy the 2d

btw is the Vk4502 the same chassis as the Ferdinand elefant?
VK4502 was never build and it was the Porsche prototype for the competition for the Tiger II, but again Henschel won this competition, but now no hulls of the Porsche varaiant was build.

WhoopAss_McGue #31 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 15:14

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View PostDjerin, on Dec 20 2010 - 14:23, said:

Actually "Versuchskonstruktion" makes less sense. The VK numbers were not for a specific prototype. They were for the whole project. This is why there are often several different prototypes with the same VK number. To distinguish them they got the constructor's initial added in brackets.

If you read German books about the WW2 tank history you will never find the meaning "Versuchskonstruktion" in them either. Well at least I have never read it anywhere. This term seems to be used only on the internet. In Books they are called Vollkettenfahrzeug, Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug or sometimes Versuchswagen or Versuchsfahrzeug. To me "Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug" makes most sense.

Also people who have actually been working with those prototypes use the neuter article when talking about them. To explain for non-German speekers: Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug is a genderless word while Versuchskonstruktion is a female word. Nobody would accidentally mix the articles up.

By the way, the designation VK does not originate with the constructors. They used completely different designations internally. VK was the designtation used by the Heereswaffenamt. Maybe if you consider the VK numbers as requests for proposals this makes it easier to understand. As in the VK number is not meant to describe the prototype as a prototype, but rather only indicating what kind of project it is supposed to be. When the HWA asked for cranes, transport trucks, machine guns and other stuff, wouldn't you assume that they wanted to test a prototype too? Yet there is no VK number for anything else but tanks, which coincidentally are "Vollkettenkraftfahrzeuge".

Long story short: VK = Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug. ;)

Just as I'm satisfied that the true meaning of 'VK' has been established, this pops up <_< .  Thanks for the input though, it's things like this that improve the OP. However, I can see no end to this debate over the true meaning of 'VK', so I am going to put them both as possible meanings, at least until someone who actually made these things during WW2 comes along and settles this once and for all, which I don't think is all that likely.

MichaelWittman #32 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 17:25

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View Posttheta0123, on Dec 20 2010 - 13:16, said:

especialy the 2d

btw is the Vk4502 the same chassis as the Ferdinand elefant?

I heard somewhere that, vk4502 is not bulit and reject in favour of Henschel’s prototype. only wooden model is bulit. So, the hull that is use in ferdi is Panzerkampfwagen VI Tiger (P) VK4501(P) / Porsche Typ 101.

Quote

'On September 22nd of 1942, it was decided to convert 90 of the existing chassis into Ferdinand / Elephant, heavy assault gun and tank destroyers.'
The turret that is use for early KT turret is Porsche turret.

Quote

'Both turrets were mounted in the middle of the tank. The Porsche turret was originally developed for the VK4502(P) tank, which was based on the VK4501(P) chassis. This project was rejected, but the design of the turret was accepted and adapted for Henschel’s Tiger II (because the Henschel turret wasn’t ready yet). Porsche’s turret mounted a one-piece 88mm gun, while Henschel’s turret mounted a two-piece 88mm gun (from May 1944).'


Source : Acthung panzer

Djerin #33 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 17:33

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View PostWhoopAss_McGue, on Dec 20 2010 - 15:14, said:

Just as I'm satisfied that the true meaning of 'VK' has been established, this pops up <_< .  Thanks for the input though, it's things like this that improve the OP. However, I can see no end to this debate over the true meaning of 'VK', so I am going to put them both as possible meanings, at least until someone who actually made these things during WW2 comes along and settles this once and for all, which I don't think is all that likely.
Heh, yeah can't be sure unless someone pulls out some HWA document explaining it properly.

Btw I forgot to mention another possible meaning. I've also read the term "Versuchskraftfahrzeug" somewhere. That again would mean prototype of a motorized vehicle, roughly translated. Can't remember where I read it. But it would of course mean my interpretation was wrong. Just mentioning it, because it still sounds more reasonable than "Versuchskonstruktion".

Sorry for confusing you.  ;)

ARGO #34 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 20:40

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This is very informative, I think it deserves a "Pin"

steelers708 #35 Posted Dec 20 2010 - 21:13

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I hate to put a spanner in the works but regarding German armour, the designation VK just means Vollketten, 'Fully tracked'.  When they began looking for a replacement for the PzKpfw III & IV in 1938 the new series of tanks were designated as VK20.01.  The VK stood for 'fully tracked', the 20 was the weight class in tons, and the 01 was for the first model in the series.  The designs were made by Baurat Dipl.Ing Ernst Kniepkamp of Wa Preuf 6(automotive design office of the ordnance dept.), unlike the earlier PzKpfw I, II, III & IV whose design specification was controlled by 'In 6' (Inspektorate 6, responsible for tank and automotive procurement).  The reason for this was that there was no specific requirement or request from the army.  Kniekampf was interrogated after the war and these details amongst others were confirmed by him.

There is a lot of confusion surrounding the use of the Tiger II's so called Porsche and Henschel turrets.  The truth is that the sole designer of turrets for the VK45.02 and the VK45.03(eventual Tiger II) was Krupp.  The only differance between the  VK45.02(H) and VK45.02(P) was that the turret mounted on the Porsce chassis had electric traverse and that on the Henschel chassis had hydraulic traverse drives.  The 50 turrets built by Krupp for the VK45.02(P) were modified with hydraulic traverse drives and were fitted to the first 50 VK45.03 chassis from Henschel.  Krupp also designed the "Serien-Turm" that was mounted on all subsequent Henschel chassis starting with the 51st VK45.03 (Fgst.Nr280048).

Regading the designation(name) of the Tiger II that depends on who was referring to it and when,as follows:

Wa Preuf 6:
VK45.02 (H) by 16 April 1942
Tiger II for the VK45.02 H) by 18 sept 1942
Tiger III(VK45.03) by 12th Oct 1942
Henschel Tiger II on 8 Jan 1943
Pz.Kpfw. Tiger Ausf.B on 2 June 1943

In 6 (Inspektorate 6):
Pz.Kpfw.Tiger(8.8cm KwK. L/71)(Sd.kfz.182) by March 1944

Reichsministerium fuer Bewaffnung und Munitions:
Koenigstiger by 11 Dec 1944

Henschel designations:
VK 45.03 by 28 Oct 1942
Tiger III by 10 Dec 1942
Tiger 3 by 2 Feb 1943
Tiger II on 5 March 1943
Tiger 2 by 8 March 1943


Regarding the Ferdinand becoming the Elefant.

After their first operations in Russia the surviving Ferdiands were sent back to the Nibelungen Works at St Valentin in Austria for maintenance and whilst there they had many modifications done of which the most well known is the hull MG.  This work was carried out from January to March 1944.  Even after having these modifications done they were still called Ferdinands, it wasn't until May 1944 that the name was changed to Elefant upon orders from the Fuehrer himself.

WhoopAss_McGue #36 Posted Dec 21 2010 - 21:00

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I have added the name definitions of some of the vehicles.

Gorbi #37 Posted Dec 23 2010 - 10:36

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View PostDjerin, on Dec 20 2010 - 14:23, said:

Actually "Versuchskonstruktion" makes less sense. The VK numbers were not for a specific prototype. They were for the whole project. This is why there are often several different prototypes with the same VK number. To distinguish them they got the constructor's initial added in brackets.

If you read German books about the WW2 tank history you will never find the meaning "Versuchskonstruktion" in them either. Well at least I have never read it anywhere. This term seems to be used only on the internet. In Books they are called Vollkettenfahrzeug, Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug or sometimes Versuchswagen or Versuchsfahrzeug. To me "Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug" makes most sense.

Also people who have actually been working with those prototypes use the neuter article when talking about them. To explain for non-German speekers: Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug is a genderless word while Versuchskonstruktion is a female word. Nobody would accidentally mix the articles up.

By the way, the designation VK does not originate with the constructors. They used completely different designations internally. VK was the designtation used by the Heereswaffenamt. Maybe if you consider the VK numbers as requests for proposals this makes it easier to understand. As in the VK number is not meant to describe the prototype as a prototype, but rather only indicating what kind of project it is supposed to be. When the HWA asked for cranes, transport trucks, machine guns and other stuff, wouldn't you assume that they wanted to test a prototype too? Yet there is no VK number for anything else but tanks, which coincidentally are "Vollkettenkraftfahrzeuge".

Long story short: VK = Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug. ;)

I have to admit that you are probably right.
I dug a bit deeper in the web and found another abbreviation from the HWA: DW, standing for 'Durchbruchswagen' (Breakthrough vehicle), which would correspond well to VK as 'Vollkettenkraftfahrzeug'.

Furthermore I found a site that lists all the VK numbers and that site is titled with 'Vollketten-Kraftfahrzeuge'
http://www.waffenhq..../vknummern.html

hipcanuck #38 Posted Dec 27 2010 - 19:42

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Dont forget the armoured cars, the SPW's (crap..is it PSW instead??). Both 6 and 8 wheeled :)

theta0123 #39 Posted Dec 27 2010 - 21:22

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SDKFZ

my god it is so difficult

SONDERKRAFSZEUG or something

seraph013 #40 Posted Dec 28 2010 - 07:20

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yep confirming jagd is referring to the hunt or pursuit of tanks.

I think Hetzer as hetze, to bother or agitate, or Hetzer as an agitator. Never took it as Baiter, especially in its context since it is one to prey on other tanks rather than bait being a tank destroyer (otherwise it would be incorrectly classified).




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