1939-era Polish cavalry

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Errhile
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Errhile »

Contrarius wrote:
Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:52 pm
Also, IIRC the Polish cavalry fielded a much higher proportion of AT rifles than the infantry, as well as tachankas to transport their Vickers-type MMGs, mentioned in the excellent OP. These MMGs were intended to be dismounted but could be used in mounted mode. Both options seem a good way to beef up the rather lack lustre arsenal available to the standard Polish infantry platoon.
I guess if you take manpower (with a cavalry squadron being about half-sthrength of an infantry company), then yes - there are 3 AT rifles in each. So proportion of these weapons in the cavalry seems twice as much (or actually - just the as many AT rifles, but with half the men). The TO&E didn't, however, allow for more AT rifles, sadly (well, actually, it seems it was the trend in general - one AT weapon per platoon was apparently the norm in most armies. The Panzerfausts made a difference in practice, but not in organisation - AFAIK, being disposable, they were perceived more as munitions, than AT weapons - akin to what CoC perceives as "satchel charges").
In terms of organic AT firepower, I'd say a Polish platoon isn't any worse than a German platoon (with their Panzerbuche) and better off, actually, than a British platoon of the same era (who had a Boys AT rifle as a platoon asset, but no dedicated crew for it, AFAIK - they had t take 2 men off a section and make them into imrovised AT team).


An Uhlan regiment has its AT platoon of 4 guns, rigged for high mobility (3-horse team to pull it, and all the crew on horseback, including adequate number of horse handlers). From what I've read, they were trained to deploy and redeploy quickly.
An infantry battalion had no organic AT guns. An AT company was present at the infantry regiment level (i.e. comparable to cavalry brigade), and tended to have 9 guns (some sources say 12, but others point that while it was intended to do so, there was a shortage of guns, and thus 4th AT gun platoons were not formed). Those had only 2 horses to pull the limber, and the the crew were on foot. By no way it was equal in terms of mobility to an Uhlan AT gun.

So, Uhlan regimental commander had those 4 AT guns on hand. Infantry battalion commander had to hope his superior will assign him an AT gun or three. This could mean the cavalry was perceived as having better AT asstets available.
After all, the wz.36 Bofors was perfectly adequate AT weapon at that time.

Contrarius
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Contrarius »

Well, if the cav platoon has half the headcount (or less) of an inf platoon and still gets an AT rifle, that does imply a higher concentration of AT weapons per capita. How this translates to the CoC battlefield is a different matter. I suppose you might use the spare points to deploy a 37mm Bofors AT and to buy part of another support unit.

NickW
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by NickW »

Someone came up with Polish Cavalry and Mechanized Cavalry lists back in 2013. I've been using them for my Polish forces - now finished, but not fielded. http://anatolisgameroom.blogspot.com/20 ... oland.html

Nick W.


Errhile
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Errhile »

The http://wp39.struktury.net/pulk-kawaleri ... -1939.html was my source, it seems to be the most complete one on the topic.
I have the advantage that I don't have to rely on machine Google translations from Polish :)

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Seret
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Seret »

NickW wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 2:11 am
Someone came up with Polish Cavalry and Mechanized Cavalry lists back in 2013. I've been using them for my Polish forces - now finished, but not fielded. http://anatolisgameroom.blogspot.com/20 ... oland.html

Nick W.
Not sure I'd rate both the cavalry and the Black Brigade as elite.

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Truscott Trotter
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Truscott Trotter »

I agree I would tend to go with aggressive when mounted and give them 3 extra dice to represent tactical mobility plus maybe +1 or 2 moves on the Patrol markers

Errhile
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Errhile »

I agree. Th Uhlans were well-trained, but not as good to consider them equal to late-war paratroops and similar elite forces.
Not to mention the structure for cavalry omits the wachmistrz (2IC), but lists all the men as fighting force, leaving none to care for the mounts.

Not to mention - force rating at +5 vs. -4 we got here is... pretty a difference.

The armored cavalry's Uhlans structure seems to be acceptably represented, though whether the 4th Section had an AT rifle remains unknown. If the AT rifles were issued, then yes, it is likely. If not, it might have had other task - guarding the platoon's motor pool (2 trucks and a motorcycle with sidecar), resupplying the 3 sections with ammo, serving as immediate reserve, but in either case keeping out of the fight.
Some platoons were organized as 3 sections (since both WAB and the Black Brigade were somewhat experimental, commanders - even at the platoon level - were allowed a great deal of flexibility), apparently splitting the 4th section between the other three. This would allow boosting the number of men to 8 per section. Now 8 men per section, including an LMG and section leader, doesn't sound that unreasonable, compared to, say, British sections of the same era,I guess (even if the LMG was only the BAR).

Again, considering them to be "Elite" is too much. They were well-trained, but I'd say most of the 10th Armored Cavalry Brigade's success came from the fact it was not outclassed by their opponents, fought in favourable terrain, and had a good commander who knew what he was doing (after all, gen.Maczek had WW1 experience in mountain fighting - he served in Austro-Hungarian mountain rifles, and with mobile forces, having formed a mobile assault company in the Polish-Ukrainian conflict of 1919).

I have a feeling we lack a few characteristics we could attribute to a platoon to make it a notch or two above the average "Regulars", but without jumping right to the "Elite" status.

@ Truscott Trotter - I guess you're right, Uhlans would count as Aggressive only when mounted.
A free move on the Patrol phase, to represent their mobility and their affinity for scouting doesn't sound bad, either (and is not likely to break the game!).

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Seret
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by Seret »

Errhile wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:21 am
I have a feeling we lack a few characteristics we could attribute to a platoon to make it a notch or two above the average "Regulars", but without jumping right to the "Elite" status.
That's actually a discussion we've had a few times previously on here. There have been a few suggestions, such as allowing a better quality force a pool of extra command dice they can use at any point in the game (bumping them up from five to six dice temporarily), giving them a sixth dice where you only count 5s and 6s, and the solution Rich has used in some campaigns which is to allow a single 6 on the command dice to add a pip to the CoC dice.

gebhk
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Re: 1939-era Polish cavalry

Post by gebhk »

My first post here, so please be gentle :)

In terms of organic AT firepower, I'd say a Polish platoon isn't any worse than a German platoon (with their Panzerbuche)
In fact I would say better off because its anti-tank rifles were real whereas those of the German counterpart mainly on paper.

NickW
Sorry mate, I've looked at the 2013 TOEs you mention and the one I looked at first (Polish cavalry platoon and Polish motorised infantry platoon) were works of inspired fiction - I'm afraid I didn't look further.....

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