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How could Germany have done better?


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LeoXiao #1941 Posted May 06 2013 - 18:35

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@_Freddy_

Good points, I knew I was probably making things too easy for the Germans. Still they could've done better if they didn't go around enraging every Slav they met by killing some of his/her family, and if resource sinks like the Tiger or V2 were avoided. The reason I said to replace the V2 with the Wasserfall is because Speer indicated in his memoirs that it would've been a better investment as something that might actually do damage to Allied bombing.

I guess that with Lend Lease still in play, the Soviets will still get enough trucks and supplies to pursue their mechanized operations on a large scale. If that's the case Germany is doomed to get crushed by Soviet armor, it's just a matter of when.

Edited by LeoXiao, May 06 2013 - 18:35.


Zinegata #1942 Posted May 07 2013 - 03:14

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View Post_Freddy_, on May 06 2013 - 11:03, said:

The late start was a German excuse for the failure of Barbarossa, the British had no claim to having any effect on Greece

I thought Churchill made the claim that his Greece misadventure delayed Barbarossa in his WW2 memoirs?

_Freddy_ #1943 Posted May 07 2013 - 14:32

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View PostZinegata, on May 07 2013 - 03:14, said:

I thought Churchill made the claim that his Greece misadventure delayed Barbarossa in his WW2 memoirs?

Churchill may have written it to justify his mistake there but no one else claimed that. The British did warn the Soviets that Hitler was going to invade, as did at least one German but Stalin of course chose to ignore them all.


Even though it was a mistake it served a useful purpose in bringing more countrys into the Allied fold

The Germans joined the attack on Greece with the Bulgarians possibly as a result of the Greeks beating the Italians (so weakening some of the Axis positions in the world order) or possibly as a result of the British Commonwealth sending troops to Greece.
Greece was not pro allied I believe until after the Italians attacked, there are claims that the Greeks wanted a decent amount of British Troops to defend Greece or none at all so as not to risk Germany joining in in the Balkans.

RoninMcGinnis #1944 Posted May 07 2013 - 17:25

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More in production and Hitler concentrating on Britain solely before taking on Russia. He lost it moment he decided to attack on two fronts and divide his forces.

Commander_to #1945 Posted May 08 2013 - 07:37

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It was actually quite dumb to invent the Tiger (many of you might be like 'WHAT?!'). It might've been a lot better than the PzIV, yes. But it was a lot harder to produce. Germany should've never made such chassis and other hard-to-make systems. They should've sticked to the basics, maybe better guns and stronger chassis, yes. But not such awkward Tiger/Panther chassis and other hard-to-make pieces. The PzIV was one of the most produced German tanks. If they did something similar like the American Shermans, or the British Cromwell and Churchill, they might've even had better vehicles. They just needed 2 basic models and improve them all the time.

------------------------------------------------------------------
- American example:

- The M3 Lee got improved into the M4 Sherman, which got mass produced and got variants like the 'Easy Eight' and the Jumbo Sherman, which could have great guns equipped or had great armor.

- British example:

- The old cruisers were not the best but did the job, untill the Crusader came. It was quite an improvement. But then the Cromwell came, it had better armor, the armament just didn't do it, untill the Comet came. It used a 76.2 mm gun, being able to defeat Tigers with that awesome gun. It had good speed too.

- The British also had the Churchill, being a good tank with the 6 pdr, later the 75 mm gun. But then the proposal for the Black Prince came, it had good armor, a good gun and whatever it needed. The 17 pdr was mounted on this beast.
------------------------------------------------------

If the Germans did something similar to this, this might've just been the key to better vehicles. Maybe they should've made the Tiger easier to build and easier to repair. In example, just a PzIV like chassis.  
Or another easy to produce chassis. It should've helped a lot. The armor should've been a bit more sloped too. The PzIV should've been improved to eventually put a Tiger gun on it, the Tiger II should still have the same type of chassis. And so on.

Edited by Commander_to, May 08 2013 - 07:38.


Toxn #1946 Posted May 08 2013 - 08:21

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View PostCommander_to, on May 08 2013 - 07:37, said:

It was actually quite dumb to invent the Tiger (many of you might be like 'WHAT?!'). It might've been a lot better than the PzIV, yes. But it was a lot harder to produce. Germany should've never made such chassis and other hard-to-make systems. They should've sticked to the basics, maybe better guns and stronger chassis, yes. But not such awkward Tiger/Panther chassis and other hard-to-make pieces. The PzIV was one of the most produced German tanks. If they did something similar like the American Shermans, or the British Cromwell and Churchill, they might've even had better vehicles. They just needed 2 basic models and improve them all the time.

------------------------------------------------------------------
- American example:

- The M3 Lee got improved into the M4 Sherman, which got mass produced and got variants like the 'Easy Eight' and the Jumbo Sherman, which could have great guns equipped or had great armor.

- British example:

- The old cruisers were not the best but did the job, untill the Crusader came. It was quite an improvement. But then the Cromwell came, it had better armor, the armament just didn't do it, untill the Comet came. It used a 76.2 mm gun, being able to defeat Tigers with that awesome gun. It had good speed too.

- The British also had the Churchill, being a good tank with the 6 pdr, later the 75 mm gun. But then the proposal for the Black Prince came, it had good armor, a good gun and whatever it needed. The 17 pdr was mounted on this beast.
------------------------------------------------------

If the Germans did something similar to this, this might've just been the key to better vehicles. Maybe they should've made the Tiger easier to build and easier to repair. In example, just a PzIV like chassis.  
Or another easy to produce chassis. It should've helped a lot. The armor should've been a bit more sloped too. The PzIV should've been improved to eventually put a Tiger gun on it, the Tiger II should still have the same type of chassis. And so on.

Not to inject shades of grey (in more than one sense) into this argument, but Tiger was probably okay as a small-production/prestige item. The Germans were so locked into craft production that they probably wouldn't have been able to make enough PzIV's to fight the whole world anyway.
On your upgrade suggestions - the PzIV was probably about the best overall German design of the war in terms of being reliable and upgradeable, but I'm pretty sure that getting an 88mm onto it would have been impossible. And really, why would you want to?

As for the British - the Crusader was a dog (although I have a huge soft spot for it), the Cromwell had all the ability of a Sherman (with none of the upsides) and the Black Prince was never fielded. WWII was, for the British, a very steep learning curve that only paid off in the post-war era. Their wartime design and procurement policies verged on criminal; the results would generally be laughable were they not so tragic.

_Freddy_ #1947 Posted May 08 2013 - 09:51

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View PostToxn, on May 08 2013 - 08:21, said:

Not to inject shades of grey (in more than one sense) into this argument, but Tiger was probably okay as a small-production/prestige item. The Germans were so locked into craft production that they probably wouldn't have been able to make enough PzIV's to fight the whole world anyway.
On your upgrade suggestions - the PzIV was probably about the best overall German design of the war in terms of being reliable and upgradeable, but I'm pretty sure that getting an 88mm onto it would have been impossible. And really, why would you want to?

As for the British - the Crusader was a dog (although I have a huge soft spot for it), the Cromwell had all the ability of a Sherman (with none of the upsides) and the Black Prince was never fielded. WWII was, for the British, a very steep learning curve that only paid off in the post-war era. Their wartime design and procurement policies verged on criminal; the results would generally be laughable were they not so tragic.

The Cromwell was a average/good tank and would have been great if fielded when intentionally supposed to and with the gun it was supposed to have at the end (Vickers 75mm HV). It was not spectacular but it worked and was a far cry from the earlier British Cruisers.

In a few ways the Cromwell was better than the Sherman

Better cross country
Better speed
Lower height

Others not so

Gun selection not as good (6pdr better than 75mm MV at AP but worse HE, 75mm MV same as US 75mm, 95mm howitzer as opposed to 105mm and of course the US had the 76mm HV).

Toxn #1948 Posted May 08 2013 - 12:28

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View Post_Freddy_, on May 08 2013 - 09:51, said:

The Cromwell was a average/good tank and would have been great if fielded when intentionally supposed to and with the gun it was supposed to have at the end (Vickers 75mm HV). It was not spectacular but it worked and was a far cry from the earlier British Cruisers.

In a few ways the Cromwell was better than the Sherman

Better cross country
Better speed
Lower height

Others not so

Gun selection not as good (6pdr better than 75mm MV at AP but worse HE, 75mm MV same as US 75mm, 95mm howitzer as opposed to 105mm and of course the US had the 76mm HV).

The point is that producing something that had pretty much the same capabilities as the Sherman was about the best that the Brits did in WWII, tank-wise. When that's your best design and manufacturing effort as a great power...

EnsignExpendable #1949 Posted May 08 2013 - 13:48

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View PostCommander_to, on May 08 2013 - 07:37, said:

- The British also had the Churchill, being a good tank with the 6 pdr, later the 75 mm gun. But then the proposal for the Black Prince came, it had good armor, a good gun and whatever it needed. The 17 pdr was mounted on this beast.

The Churchill was awful, and the 17 pounder version was never mass produced.

lostwingman #1950 Posted May 08 2013 - 13:53

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View PostEnsignExpendable, on May 08 2013 - 13:48, said:

The Churchill was awful
Well....it was good in mountainous terrain...

EnsignExpendable #1951 Posted May 08 2013 - 13:59

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View Postlostwingman, on May 08 2013 - 13:53, said:

Well....it was good in mountainous terrain...

Good at throwing a track when tilted at more than 20 degrees, yeah.

_Freddy_ #1952 Posted May 08 2013 - 15:45

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View PostEnsignExpendable, on May 08 2013 - 13:48, said:

The Churchill was awful, and the 17 pounder version was never mass produced.

Lol hmmmmm served with distinction, had the highest crew survival rate of any tank in WW2, could go where any other tank could not (climbing un-surpassed and cross country ability especially boggy areas where shermans bogged in was very good, the Germans in Italy preferred the allied Shermans and Churchills to their own cats in interviews with Speer due to their better maneuverability in the terrain and roads).  

The Churchill had massively adaptable chassis, had several honours namely the first Tiger and Panthers knocked out by western tankers were by 6pdr armed Churchills.

It was not designed to take on tanks as its main role but to support and get the Infantry onto their objective then provide immediate support against counter attacks, jobs it did much better than nearly any other tank in the face of AT and artillery (arty from both sides might I add with the I tank doctrine at times).

By what criteria do you class it as awful.

Early models had problems but it was not committed to battle until the problems were ironed out (same reason the covenanter was not committed to battle despite the desperation for tanks, despite both tanks being more reliable than the Panther when it was committed to battle even the Crusader in its initial guise was more reliable than the Panther - lack of spares and crew training caused many of the Crusaders problems)

_Freddy_ #1953 Posted May 08 2013 - 15:48

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View PostEnsignExpendable, on May 08 2013 - 13:59, said:

Good at throwing a track when tilted at more than 20 degrees, yeah.

Really, even though it is famed for its ability and agility when climbing slopes, climbing in areas where no other tank could?

EnsignExpendable #1954 Posted May 08 2013 - 16:25

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View Post_Freddy_, on May 08 2013 - 15:48, said:

Really, even though it is famed for its ability and agility when climbing slopes, climbing in areas where no other tank could?

I guess it was climbing those hills straight on, then. Or they were less than 20 degrees. Or the USSR got some kind of especially bad Churchill.

_Freddy_ #1955 Posted May 08 2013 - 17:29

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View PostEnsignExpendable, on May 08 2013 - 16:25, said:

I guess it was climbing those hills straight on, then. Or they were less than 20 degrees. Or the USSR got some kind of especially bad Churchill.

Hmm would love to see those reports as I have not heard that claim,

Any tank traversing a slope side on runs a risk of throwing a track, you try not to traverse at steep angles (I have personally thrown a track on a 15 degree slope while driving beside a farm track. This was due to the mud being slippery and the track not being able to grip so causing me to slide sideways, mud built up on the inner edge until it caused the bolts on a road wheel to sheer and the track was thrown. On different soil conditions I have traversed 35 degree slopes - butt clenching).

The Germans referred to the Churchill as the mountain goat and Iron Mule on more than one occasion in Tunisia and Italy.

Some major battle involving Churchills showing their abilities -

Battle for Longstop - Tunisia

http://northirishhor...rticles/25.html

Operation Veritable - Reichswald Forest

http://www.royaltank...wald Report.htm

Edited by _Freddy_, May 08 2013 - 17:38.


EnsignExpendable #1956 Posted May 08 2013 - 17:57

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View Post_Freddy_, on May 08 2013 - 17:29, said:

Hmm would love to see those reports as I have not heard that claim,

I was saving the article for later, but here you go http://tankarchives....-churchill.html

As for other tanks doing poorly on inclines, that is absolutely correct. Soviet tests of some foreign tanks led to the following maximum angles:
M3 Lee: 25 degrees (track slips off)
M3 Stuart: 35 degrees (tank falls over)
Valentine: 26 degeres (track slips off)
PzIII: 32 degrees (track slips off)
Pz38(t): 25 degrees (track slips off)

Edited by EnsignExpendable, May 08 2013 - 17:57.