Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

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Seret
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Seret »

andysyk wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 8:02 am
Tactically the Schreck Tps fought as a whole. They were not used individually.
Yeah, this is something I've mentioned before about their use in CoC. In infantry divisions they were a regimental support, part of the AT company and controlled in a similar way to AT guns. They'd be used in units and deployed to blocking positions. They just weren't a weapon dished out to individual platoons for self-protection. They were part of the regiment's AT fire plan.

However, you could say the same about the lone AT guns we see in CoC. I think you have to assume that your little battle on the tabletop is part of a larger engagement, and that the AT gun or panzerschreck just happens to be in that sector with its mates somewhere off your flank. That's fairly believable for AT guns, which could easily be dispersed a few hundred metres apart, but I'm not sure what frontage a panzerschreck section would operate over. I suspect they tried to stay within voice and handwaving distance of the squad leader?

andysyk
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by andysyk »

In defence the 3 teams dug in 2 forward and one back. They had to be able to mutually support each other. So the maximum distance in open terrain was 150m between teams. Considerably reduced in close terrain.
Tanks would be engaged by all 3 RL.
Along roadsides they were often deployed in depth along one side of the road one after another.
In the attack they usually followed to the rear of the advancing unit they were attached to and bought forward together to counter armour.
Yes they were worked into the defense fire plans.
Of course sometimes they actively tank hunted.
Each 6 man Troop in addition to the 3 Panzerschreck had 5 Faust. 20 smoke pots RGL with AT and AP grenades along with smoke HG. These would also be utilised by the Infantry to which they were attached.
The tactical use is very much 3 together and not split up into individual teams.
(Actually the prescribed tactics are very similiar to soviet AT Rifle teams. )

Its interesting that the Soviets and Germans operated their IAT weapons in teams. Both advocated firing all available weapons at any AFV target.
Where as in US and British practice, unless formed into ad hoc tank hunting teams, they were treated as individual protection pieces generally attached to a platoon.

Of course there are myriad reasons for this. Higher supporting AT assets and responsibility. Etc.. And probably the Soviet and Germany Infantry were more likely to encounter enemy armour than the Western allies.

Levi the Ox
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Levi the Ox »

Seret wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 9:34 am
andysyk wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 8:02 am
Tactically the Schreck Tps fought as a whole. They were not used individually.
Yeah, this is something I've mentioned before about their use in CoC. In infantry divisions they were a regimental support, part of the AT company and controlled in a similar way to AT guns. They'd be used in units and deployed to blocking positions. They just weren't a weapon dished out to individual platoons for self-protection. They were part of the regiment's AT fire plan.
Very interesting to hear this! A sort of "Schreckfront" makes sense, given their initial development from a towed carriage before becoming man-packed, that they'd be doctrinally treated like a light AT gun.

Eclaireur
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Eclaireur »

Seret,
interesting post - and much that I would agree with. But going back to the original post I would not change my position, notably about the difference between penetration and destructive effect:

- we would agree that a panzerschrek can penetrate a lot more armour than a 75mm solid shot from a Pak40. I cannot see how you can reach any other conclusion then that a jet from a HEAT round is *more likely* to over-penetrate, ie go through, a target like the side of a Sherman turret than a solid shot is. I once spoke to an M48 commander who had an RPG bolt go through one side of his turret and out the other (going through one of his legs in the process) without putting the vehicle out of action (in Vietnam).
- your point about the velocity of the HEAT jet is well made. But in a strike in which the mass of the solid shot penetrator is 10-15 times that of the HEAT one, that more than cancels it out.
- I'm not suggesting the KE penetrator is designed to tumble, simply that if it does not go through the target it will deposit all of its kinetic energy into that target, whereas that HEAT jet will have less KE to start with, and will take some of that energy with it if it goes through the target.

This isn't the place for us to discuss whether the HEAT round ever came close to being the primary anti-armour choice for tanks post-WW2. As you probably know, the British, rightly or wrongly, did not provide their tanks with HEAT, preferring HESH instead. We agree though that with all nations the KE penetrator remained the first choice for tank on tank combat - and since we also agree that the HEAT round can penetrate more armour you have to ask why they stuck with KE in that role. Greater accuracy and shorter flight time come into it. But the main reason was a greater destructive effect.

If we go back to our tapletop and panzerschrek versus something like a Pak40, with AP value of 13 and 9 respectively, we need not worry too much about a hit on lightly armoured vehicle - that Bren carrier is likely to be toast either way. But against a tank, I still think those values aren't right.
EC

andysyk
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by andysyk »

The Panzerschreck has a greater penetration than the Pak 40 therefore it has a greater AP rating in game. To disable a tank all you have to do is put the crew out of action. RL caused more crew casualties in NWE than other means comparatively. Your man in Vietnam was lucky. And he was probably hit by a spall fragment a Rpg molten bolt is devasting to the the human anatomy.
I think you are really underestimating the effect of a HEAT round.
Your ignoring the energy dump/ overpressure and heat and its effect on crew and anything inflammable.
I dont think anybody here is arguing that large calibre kinetic rounds arnt tank killers but so is HEAT.

Peter
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Peter »

But is it costed to cheaply?

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Truscott Trotter
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Truscott Trotter »

Peter wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 6:25 pm
But is it costed to cheaply?
Possibly :roll: :lol:

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Seret
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Seret »

Eclaireur wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 1:54 pm
I cannot see how you can reach any other conclusion then that a jet from a HEAT round is *more likely* to over-penetrate, ie go through, a target like the side of a Sherman turret than a solid shot is.
Because the jet from a shaped charge is only effective over a fairly short distance (usually under about 1m-ish). To be fully effective a shaped charge has to detonate at the correct standoff distance. Too close and the jet doesn't form properly and doesn't penetrate. Too far and the jet loses cohesion and again doesn't penetrate. Indeed, many methods of defeating shaped charges such as ERA rely on this fact, they cause the warhead to detonate too far from the armour, which severely reduces its effectiveness. The Munroe Effect really only works properly within a critical distance, beyond that the jet breaks up and becomes ineffective.

Generally speaking, the jet from a shaped charge will disperse on the inside of the armour after penetrating. I'm not going to cast doubt on your conversation with the M48 guy because I'd need more info to understand the situation, but even if it did happen like that (and it may well have) then that would be a highly unusual event and you it's not something I would cite as evidence of the typical behaviour of shaped charges.

In short, shaped charges do not typically penetrate any further that one side of the vehicle, even when you've got a severe overmatch. Not saying it never happens because weird stuff does happen in the real world. But normally, no. I'm not just shooting from the hip on this. I've made my own shaped charges, and to do that I've had to study how they work. I've seen how they work.

KE rounds do very often go through both sides. Which is exactly why you don't shoot them at light vehicles. You shoot your HEAT at them, because it works much better. It goes in one side and annihilates everything in there.
But the main reason was a greater destructive effect.
It really isn't. The reasons KE tank guns are still around are those you mention: faster time of flight leading to shorter engagement times and higher rate of fire. Tankers know that whoever hits first generally wins, so they don't want to be lobbing slow large diameter rounds when the other guy could be returning fire at Mach 5. This Americans flirted with the idea of a missile tank with the M60A2 (using the system from the M551), which was a bit of a flop, one of the several critical flaws being the slow engagement time. Lack of lethality of the warhead was never an issue.

I think CoC's AFV damage mechanism actually works ok. Any severe overmatch of armour is likely to be catastrophic (in-game this means significantly more strikes than saves, 3 or more and you're dead). What it doesn't actually try to do is accurately model impact and penetration in any realistic fashion. It assumes that all penetrations are somewhat equally deadly, which I think is a very reasonable simplification. The reason for that is that the mechanism the round uses to penetrate probably isn't as important as you're suggesting. Any time an incoming round has enough smash to get through a steel plate (especially on late war vehicles) then the energy released in that interaction is going to be extremely dangerous for any flimsy bags of spam wearing uniforms on the other side. Much of what does the damage is metal from the armour itself and the thermal effects of dumping all that kinetic energy into it. Human bodies really are pathetically frail when you're looking at events that energetic.

There's really no way you can knock a hole in a tank that isn't going to be bloody lethal to the crew. Heck, sometimes you don't even need to penetrate, just expend enough energy on the other side of the armour and they'll all be turned to jam anyway.

So I'm fine with equating penetration distance to the likelihood of knocking out an AFV myself. You don't want to start getting into any more accurate modelling than that in a game IMO.

Munin
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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Munin »

Eclaireur wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 1:54 pm
- your point about the velocity of the HEAT jet is well made. But in a strike in which the mass of the solid shot penetrator is 10-15 times that of the HEAT one, that more than cancels it out.
Not even close. The HEAT jet is travelling ~6x (or higher!) faster than the solid penetrator. Since the velocity term is squared, that's ~36x higher in terms of kinetic energy for the same mass. Even with a solid penetrator that's 10-15x heavier, the KE math still works out to somewhere between 2x-4x greater for the explosively-formed projectile over the solid penetrator.

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Re: Are Panzerschrecks too powerful?

Post by Truscott Trotter »

That would explain the results in the videos I posted
Warhead hits tank - tank blows up in flames.😂

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