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> Tank-versus-tank kill ratio
dead-cat
Posted: August 28, 2006 06:39 pm
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splitted from Dresden Bombing. Holocaust?

QUOTE

As for the German Military being the best maintained why did they place so much relience on horses?? Crap tanks, Kursk mean anything to ya???

Kursk was called of by Adolf when Husky started. i thought that's known by now.
as for the "crappy" tanks, well, the exchange ratio was 1:5 vs. the obviously "superior" allied hardware.
even the lowly Stug IIIs have at least a 2:1 kill ratio.

QUOTE

As for the German Military being the best maintained why did they place so much relience on horses??

maybe because they don't eat petrol?
but i guess that it was more than enough for "Fall Gelb", was it?

also i'd be curious to see what army kept 3.5 million combat troops completely motorized in the field. no the russians didn't either.

This post has been edited by dragos on September 20, 2006 01:12 pm
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Posted: August 28, 2006 07:05 pm
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At KURSK the so called Greatest Tank battle of the time or ever since that the world had seen, the germans lost more vehicles to malfunction, than to enemy action, it didnt also help that the ELEPHANTs had no machine guns to provide close infantry defence, another great short-coming that got the crew fried.

And for even 5 allied tanks knocked out, the Allies were well able to supply more.

As for the Germans, no spares due to manufacturing shortages, and the fact they were very complicated to build which cost even more time as the soviets were coming in from the east and the allies from the west.

Even with the Stug they still lost :P

At the end of the day its all about SUPPLY and DEMAND, the Germans just didnt have the supply to meet the demand Remember FAT hermans promise to der fuhrer with regards STALINGRAD, no problemo adolpie my flyboys will supply all from the air :roll: what a dreamer.

And the how could the Germans keep 3.5 million men completly motorised without enough fuel?? after the troops eat the horses all that was left were their feet, not counting the thousands of bycles they stole from Holland. To try and make the getaway back to the smoking ruin of DER FATHERLAND.

So at the end of the day the iii reich LOST so much for the SUPERMENCH :P

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dead-cat
Posted: August 28, 2006 07:29 pm
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QUOTE

At KURSK the so called Greatest Tank battle of the time or ever since that the world had seen, the germans lost more vehicles to malfunction, than to enemy action, it

as did eventually any army with any "new" tank.
i take you're talking about Panthers.
QUOTE

didnt also help that the ELEPHANTs had no machine guns to provide close infantry defence, another great short-coming that got the crew fried.

for exactly how many Elephants? do you think that the mounting of an MG on the few Elphants at kursk would have made the diffrence?
the purpose of the Elephant was anti-tank action and not anti-infantry.
QUOTE

And for even 5 allied tanks knocked out, the Allies were well able to supply more.

wern't just the german tanks the crappy ones?
QUOTE

As for the Germans, no spares due to manufacturing shortages, and the fact they were very complicated to build which cost even more time as the soviets were coming in from the east and the allies from the west.

Tigers maybe. all the other were mass-produced.
QUOTE

Even with the Stug they still lost

well i'd like to see, for example the UK "tankforce" vs. a comparable numerical oposition then it'd become quite clear who was fileding the crappy hardware.
QUOTE

At the end of the day its all about SUPPLY and DEMAND

well suddenly it's not quality anymore? wern't the axis tanks crap before?
why do you need to outnumber them 5:1 then?
QUOTE

Remember FAT hermans promise to der fuhrer with regards STALINGRAD, no problemo adolpie my flyboys will supply all from the air  what a dreamer.

not that i'd support Göring as he was a decent fighter pilot in his early years but a horrible commander, but didn't a distiguished Sir Douglas Haig tell his troops that July 1st 1916 will be like a walk in a park? incomptentece is found universally at every layer, oddly enough on a very comparable ratio.
QUOTE

And the how could the Germans keep 3.5 million men completly motorised without enough fuel??

where exactly did i claim that? i said that no army in WW2 could keep 3.5 million combat troops motorized in the field.
QUOTE

after the troops eat the horses all that was left were their feet, not counting the thousands of bycles they stole from Holland. To try and make the getaway back to the smoking ruin of DER FATHERLAND.

well, i guess you see by now how ridicoulous your statement above is.
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New Connaught Ranger
Posted: August 28, 2006 08:11 pm
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QUOTE (dead-cat @ August 28, 2006 07:29 pm)
QUOTE

At KURSK the so called Greatest Tank battle of the time or ever since that the world had seen, the germans lost more vehicles to malfunction, than to enemy action, it

as did eventually any army with any "new" tank.
i take you're talking about Panthers.
QUOTE

didnt also help that the ELEPHANTs had no machine guns to provide close infantry defence, another great short-coming that got the crew fried.

for exactly how many Elephants? do you think that the mounting of an MG on the few Elphants at kursk would have made the diffrence?
the purpose of the Elephant was anti-tank action and not anti-infantry.
QUOTE

And for even 5 allied tanks knocked out, the Allies were well able to supply more.

wern't just the german tanks the crappy ones?
QUOTE

As for the Germans, no spares due to manufacturing shortages, and the fact they were very complicated to build which cost even more time as the soviets were coming in from the east and the allies from the west.

Tigers maybe. all the other were mass-produced.
QUOTE

Even with the Stug they still lost

well i'd like to see, for example the UK "tankforce" vs. a comparable numerical oposition then it'd become quite clear who was fileding the crappy hardware.
QUOTE

At the end of the day its all about SUPPLY and DEMAND

well suddenly it's not quality anymore? wern't the axis tanks crap before?
why do you need to outnumber them 5:1 then?
QUOTE

Remember FAT hermans promise to der fuhrer with regards STALINGRAD, no problemo adolpie my flyboys will supply all from the air  what a dreamer.

not that i'd support Göring as he was a decent fighter pilot in his early years but a horrible commander, but didn't a distiguished Sir Douglas Haig tell his troops that July 1st 1916 will be like a walk in a park? incomptentece is found universally at every layer, oddly enough on a very comparable ratio.
QUOTE

And the how could the Krauts keep 3.5 million men completly motorised without enough fuel??

where exactly did i claim that? i said that no army in WW2 could keep 3.5 million combat troops motorized in the field.
QUOTE

after the troops eat the horses all that was left were their feet, not counting the thousands of bycles they stole from Holland. To try and make the getaway back to the smoking ruin of DER FATHERLAND.


well, i guess you see by now how ridicoulous your statement above is.



Point 1. Not at the expense of their own trained crews with untested equipment.

Point 2. They were unable to protect the Elephant from infantry attack. I big Nazi
Tank taken out by a poor russian boy with a bottle of petrol, economic or
what!!

Point 3. 1 Dead German tank was not so easily replaceable, dead tank equels
dead or injured crew, both hard to replace when manpower is short and
materials are short.

Point 4. Germany was producing to many variants of tanks and armoured vehicles
instead of the ones really needed.

Point 5. The Brits were on the winning side regardless, German quality was worth
nothing when outnumbered by inferior Russian T34 or US Shermans.

Allied Kill ratio worked out you needed at least 4-5 shermans to take out a
tiger or Panther as the 88mm had a far bigger range than the Sherman
75mm, Shermans had to get closer, so you sacrifice 4 or so, number 5
gets the kill.

Point 6. The Krauts were retreating on all fronts (except the thousands who
gave up in Stalingrad
and were on the way to a nice holiday camp in
Siberia. (All except their commander Von P. who had a cushy POW room
at the "Moscow Ritz" :P ) to get back to the REICH, or is history wrong???

And the FINAL POINT is:

GERMANY LOST and no amount of wishful thinking will ever change that fact.

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sid guttridge
Posted: September 18, 2006 10:56 am
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Hi NCR,

It is worth pointing out that the Anglo-Americans reckoned that they lost "only" about 400 tanks in tank-versus-tank fighting in North-West Europe over 1944-45. This is is not only well under 20% of their total tank losses, but is probably of similar magnitude to the number of Tigers alone that the Germans lost in the same theatre at the same time.

While in theory it cost 4 or 5 Shermans to knock out a Tiger, Tigers probably only averaged about one Sherman each because they fell prey to numerous other weapons or had to to be abandoned for other reasons. (Indeed, Tigers only averaged about one Sherman each if one presumes that no Panthers, Pz.IVs or Stugs knocked out any Allied tanks at all!)

I would suggest that exclusive focus on particular weapons in particular circumstances tends to distort the wider all-arms picture.

I am no expert in this area, but it strikes me that a close study might well turn up some rather interesting results along the lines I sketch above.

Cheers,

Sid.
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New Connaught Ranger
Posted: September 18, 2006 11:15 am
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Hallo Sid, :D

thanks to your reply, my opinion on the numbers was based on what I have read and on a "Discovery" Channel programe which looked at the best tank in History (funny enough the Russian t-34 was picked as the winner) :blink: , in which, actual British Ww2 Tank veterans explained their tactics in Normanday, and in the push to Germany, being the 4 to 1 ratio.

The Sherman got knocked off the top spot because of the poor penetration performance 75mm cannon, the petrol engines nasty habit of catching fire very easily, hence the Germans referring to the Sherman as "Tommy Cookers", the light armour, compared to German Tigers and Panthers, alsothe devastationg firepower and long reach of the 88 armed German tanks, it was not till the Sherman Firefly with its 17 pounder gun was introduced in large numbers that the war began to go in favour of the Allied Tank tactics combined with poor replacement tanks for the Germans due to the bombing of the factories back home.

In Africa, all the British tanks performed poorly against the Germans, mainly due to the 88mm Flack being used in a tank-buster role, it was not until the U S Sherman started to arrive in large numbers, and the fact that German tank losses could not be replaced, because the re-supply lines from Europe were cut, that turned the tide in favour of the Allies.

Kevin in Deva. :D
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120mm
Posted: September 19, 2006 04:54 am
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It's important to note that most Tigers were "knocked out" due to maintenance issues. The well-agreed upon ratio is 2:5:10. For every 2 M4 Sherman maintenance failures, there were 5 T34 failures and 10 Tiger tank failures.

Tiger versus M4 Sherman was a very rare engagement, indeed. On a contrarian note, the M4 Sherman compared very well with the Pz Mk IV, esp. with the 76mm gun. Diesel M4A2s, as used by the Soviet forces in WWII were very good tanks.

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dead-cat
Posted: September 19, 2006 09:38 pm
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QUOTE (sid guttridge @ September 18, 2006 12:56 pm)
It is worth pointing out that the Anglo-Americans reckoned that they lost "only" about 400 tanks in tank-versus-tank fighting in North-West Europe over 1944-45. This is is not only well under 20% of their total tank losses, but is probably of similar magnitude to the number of Tigers alone that the Germans lost in the same theatre at the same time.


to other tanks?
there were 1350 (or 1355) Tiger I in total. add less than 500 Tiger II. that'd mean that at least 20% of all Tigers ever build *had* to have been at some point in France/NL/W Germany to be destroyed there.

does the statistic count Tigers destroyed on transit, abandoned, damaged but towed to workshop to never be repaired etc?

I wonder how the difference between a 88 round from an ATG, Tiger I or Tiger II is recoreded to establish wether a vehicle has been destroyed by a hidden tank or an ATG. :unsure:

because germans *did* have problems to differentiate between an AT round comming from a T34 or an ATG for example.

This post has been edited by dead-cat on September 19, 2006 09:38 pm
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sid guttridge
Posted: October 19, 2006 10:50 am
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Hi d-c,

I don't know the exact machanics by which these percentages were arrived at. However, Western Allied post-battle analysis was extensive and detailed, so I think these percentages may be accepted as representing the proportions lost to different weapons systems fairly accurately.

I have no statistics on Tiger losses in North-West Europe. However, it seems reasonable to assume that virtually all those deployed in Normany were lost and a good proportion of those used in the Ardennes. This seems likely to run into the hundreds, which is the order of magnitude of apparent Anglo-American tank losses to opposing tanks in the same theatre at the same time.

All those Tigers lost in transit, abandoned or damaged and not repaired count as victims of combined arms operations. This illustrates well why over concentration on the minority of tank v. tank kills can obscure the wider picture of armoured experience. For example, German mines were significantly more likely to knock out Allied tanks in north-west Europe in 1944-45 than German tanks were, but there is no glory or bankable book rights in digging holes and leaving delayed action, victim-operated traps, so we rarely hear about them.

In other words, German engineers not even any longer present on the field of battle were a bigger threat to Allied tanks than were German tanks that were present!

Cheers,

Sid.

This post has been edited by sid guttridge on October 19, 2006 02:50 pm
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mabadesc
Posted: October 19, 2006 02:00 pm
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QUOTE
For example, German mines were significantly more likely to knock out Allied tanks in north-west Europe in 1944-45 than German mines were...


Huh? :blink:
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mabadesc
Posted: October 19, 2006 02:36 pm
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QUOTE
The Sherman got knocked off the top spot because of the poor penetration performance 75mm cannon, the petrol engines nasty habit of catching fire very easily, hence the Germans referring to the Sherman as "Tommy Cookers", the light armour...


I see, this makes perfect sense.

So the Sherman was knocked off the top spot (ranking) *only* because it had a poorly performing gun, a bad engine with a tendency to catch fire, and a light-skinned armor.

Thank God it only had these problems...



This post has been edited by mabadesc on October 19, 2006 02:40 pm
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sid guttridge
Posted: October 19, 2006 02:52 pm
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Hi Mabadesc,

Thanks for the notification.

I have changed the habit of a lifetime and retrospectively edited the post, replacing "mines" with "tanks".

Cheers,

Sid.
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dead-cat
Posted: October 19, 2006 03:09 pm
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i'll double check when i get home, but from "Kraftfahrzeuge und Panzer der Reichswehr, Wehrmacht und Bundeswehr" i get the total of about 1250 Tigers of both type written off as permanent losses for the entire war. i take, the number excludes tanks recovered, categorized at repair beyond 14 days and then never repaired, cannibalized for spares etc.


about the King Tiger i remember having read somewhere that about 120 were lost in west of which about 30 or so in the Ardennes.out of about 200 fielded.
i'll need to dig up figures for Tiger Is but until sept. '44 about 50 Tiger Is were lost in france. during the same time, about 30 King Tigers were lost there. keeping that proportion about 200 Tigers Is were lost in the west, which is a grand total of about 320 if my specualtion is somewhere close to reality.
since figures are from the top of my head i'm not claiming them to be 100% reliable, as i said, i need to double check.
so i assume 320 Tigers were lost to all causes from june'44 to may '45 out of about 1850 build, excluding jadpanthers and jagdtigers. of which of course most were not lost to enemy tank/TD fire.

QUOTE

This seems likely to run into the hundreds, which is the order of magnitude of apparent Anglo-American tank losses to opposing tanks in the same theatre at the same time.

since it is above 300, "into hundreds" is correct.
but why should compare the number of tigers lost from all causes to the number of tanks lost by the allies to german tanks only?

i don't think many will disagree that most tanks were lost to other causes than enemy armor. they'd indeedbe prone to fall rather to things like AT guns, mines, air attacks, accidents, mechanical breakdowns and such.

does anyone know the total allied losses in the west from june '44 to may '45 in terms of tanks?
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sid guttridge
Posted: October 20, 2006 04:57 pm
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Hi d-c,

Some interesting numbers there. Thanks.

I am not proposing to just compare Tiger losses to Western Allied losses to tanks only. It is just that the order of magnitude of Tiger losses was similar to the magnitude of Allied tank losses to all German tanks, which makes for a convenient comparison. Therefore the fixation on Tiger aces is a side issue as even under the most optimistic calculations (which discount the possibility of any other type of German tank knocking out a Western Allied tank) the Tiger averaged about one tank kill for every loss to all arms.

There are two sets of statistics I have seen. I was quoting from "Taming the Land Mine" by Mike Croll whose figures give something over 2,000 Allied tank losses. He compares percentage losses of Western Allied tanks to mines and to other tanks. He does not give percentages for other causes of loss, but he does give his source. I will get back to you with it.

There is a second set you will find quoted on Feldgrau that gives a higher total (over 3,000) of Western Allied tank losses but does not break them down by cause of loss.

In either event, the basic proposition that Tiger losses alone in North-West Europe were of a similar order of magnitude to total Western Allied tank losses to all German tanks (not just Tigers) remains unaltered.

The fact would appear to be that the Tiger tank was not itself a great tank killer in North-west Europe in 1944-45.

Cheers,

Sid.




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dead-cat
Posted: October 22, 2006 03:42 pm
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from "Tiger I Heavy Tank 1942-45" by Osprey Publishing i counted 174 Tiger Is employed at some moment on the western front.

i also found a posting where the author was claiming that during 1944, 2579 US tanks have been lost in NW Europe (and 1003 UK + 473 canadian) of which 30% were to enemy tanks (which would be about 850 US tanks).
the source given for this claim is "Tank Tactics From Normandy to Lorraine", Roman Johann Jarymowycz, pg. 266 and 271, quoting AGF Study No. 798 BRL MR-798 Data on WWII Tank Engagements Involving the US 3rd and 4th Arm Divs, Ballistic Research Research Laboratories, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md 1 April 1947.

Now if my pervious number of 120 KT lost in the west is true (i cannot crosscheck as i have no book on KTs yet), it's be a maximum of 294 Tigers of both types if we assume that all 174 Tiger Is were total losses.

taking the number of UK and canadian tanks into account and applying the 30% for tank losses, we get 1246 allied tanks lost to german tanks. still we'd compare german losses from '44&45 to allied from '44.

the only way to establish a tank vs. tank kill ratio by type would be to take the claims of all the units involved and cross-check them.

i don't know if the 50% reduction has been applied to claims published on sites like this one: http://www.alanhamby.com/losses.html
anyhow, while the 50% has been proved to be quite close to reality by Zetterling in his book about Kursk, i don't know how accurate it might prove in other situation, on other theatres etc.
so unless someone will do a detailed statistic we'll have to live with the claims. :blink:

This post has been edited by dead-cat on October 22, 2006 03:44 pm
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