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Allied use of Captured German Armor in Action


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#1 Wolfy

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 04:59 AM

Were there any by the Western Allies? I know that the Soviets would deliver captured Panzer V Panthers to their Guards Armored units and use them until breakdown or destruction.

The Germans were known to use captured Sherman tanks in attacks (Normandy, Bulge) and paint crosses on them. In the East, captured T-34s were used as well. In the Ardennes offensive, the German Panzer spearheads were often led by captured Shermans.

#2 TiredOldSoldier

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 05:38 AM

In the Ardennes offensive, the German Panzer spearheads were often led by captured Shermans.

I'm curious about that, do you have any episodes apart from Skorzeny's 150 brigade that was equipped to look like a US unit?


As for the general use of captured armour you may look this one up though it's not just AFVs.
http://www.ww2f.com/...afvs-tanks.html

BTW: I think the most notable episode (if confirmed) was the capture of the key bridge at Kalach by a soviet column led by captured tanks during the Stalingrad campaign.

#3 Wolfy

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 05:44 AM

The 6th Army SS Panzer Korps units (1.SS/12.SS/2.SS) used small numbers of German Cross marked Shermans to spearhead attack columns. This was done to confuse the Americans. I believe that most were eventually lost in action.

#4 razin

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 09:27 AM

Australian 6th Armd used M11/39 and M13/40s in the western desert as conventional armoured unit not as a stealth or undercover unit.

This thread subject was heavily covered by Allied use of captured Axis AFVs and Tanks by JC FalkenbergIII and was closed on March 27th

~Steve

Edited by razin, 21 April 2009 - 09:55 AM.
addition italics


#5 Triple C

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 10:52 AM

Tired Old Soldier,

The Panthers of the Skorzeny Brigade were disguised to resemble M10 Tank Destroyers. It surprised and overran a battalion of the 30th ID (IIRC) but the Americans wisened up to the trick very quickly and brough TOT fire from several battalions with PROZIT rounds. The attack was, unsurprisingly, broken off.

The 2d SS Pz. Div. tore through the 7th AD in Manhay and then blasted to hell the green 75th ID with an infamous "turncoat" M4 leading point. They would have broke through the weak holding force of 3d AD if a nameless dough didn't put a bazooka round into one of the lead panzers, the husk of which blocked the only road. Then 3d AD counterattacked with the entire armored weight of the CCB; in the fighting a M36 dueled briefly with the German M4 Sherman and, to everyone's delight, knocked it out.

Wolfy,

Falkenberg has a post on a British Panther nicknamed "Cuckoo" used by a rifle unit for direct fire support. The soldiers liked the great accuracy of its high-velocity gun. It was put out of action finally by a German 75.

I have also attatched pictures captured German tanks. Pz III, V, and IV.

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#6 Triple C

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 10:57 AM

Also, in so far as I remembered, the Guards Mechanized Corps units were officially not permitted to keep the Panther tanks if they broke down. However the mechanics did their damned best to keep the cats in running order.

#7 razin

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 11:43 AM

Triple
Falkenberg has a post on a British Panther nicknamed "Cuckoo" used by a rifle unit for direct fire support.


The unit was 4th Bat. Coldstream Guards -Guards Army tank Brigade -not a rifle bat. Called cuckoo because tanks of the batalion were named after birds, they like word play, the inteligence officers mount was called Owlet. Incidently it was supposedly found in a barn. It is said they reviered it as it was about as different from a Churchill as a tank could be- a bit like getting a sports car after driving a mini van for years.

[ATTACH]5999[/ATTACH]
It also was painted white during fighting in South Holand.
[ATTACH]5998[/ATTACH]
The Panther can be seen bring up the rear. Churchills are so great:D

The Duke of Wellington Regiment (145th Regiment Royal Armoured Corps) captured a Ausf A in Italy as they called their tanks beginning D -for Duke the hapless Panther was caled Deserter.

~Steve

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#8 Miguel B.

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 02:13 PM

Now, that last picture is probably the only occasion for the Allies when having a Panther in your rear was a good thing :D And by "your rear" I don't mean any obvious sexual innuendo! :) (bet most of you can't shake that of your heads right now).
How about some captured SPGs like the Nashorn or Marder? They fall in line with the American concept of an AT gun except for the lack of turret. They do provide a great deal of fire power and mobility for a low weight. I believe they were a better investment than the JagdPanther or JagdTiger.




Cheers...
Battles don't win wars, Logistics do!

#9 Wolfy

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Posted 21 April 2009 - 06:48 PM

Those open-topped Self-propelled guns (even the turreted allied ones like the M-36) were vulnerable to enemy infantry and artillery.

#10 Triple C

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 04:19 AM

True enough. Though on field, it seems that many top cover steel sheets were used. Most would be temporary, disposable plates but some were affixed permanently. I will see what I can find in Tank Killers, if I have the time.

The Americans had excellent success with their TDs in killing tanks. The troubles come when the GIs demanded their attatched TDs to do direct fire support in infantry assaults because it had tracks, armor and a good gun. This was not a case of undoctrinal use of the TD arm, but doing away with a misbegotten doctrine; while it is true TDs are vulnerable to close quarters assault by enemy infantry, the footsluggers had even less survivability and the need the firepower. As a TD commander said it in Normandy, he was in no position to tell the infantrymen that he was sorry he couldn't help because if he wants to save lives he'd need to give the infantry all the firepower he has got.

In his report, he recommends increased armored protection, which essentially means that he was demanding a tank (!).

#11 Wolfy

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 04:35 AM

How common was the hood thing for the M-36? It's basically a tank now, lol. Why not just build these vehicles, all with hoods?

Posted Image

#12 TiredOldSoldier

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 05:25 AM

Where was that picture taken ???? the tank in the background looks like a T 34/85 and I don't believe the soviets had M-18s so it looks more like a post war collection and then the "hood" could be just a mod to protect the exibit from the rain.

#13 Wolfy

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 05:58 AM

M36 tank destroyer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

It's an armored hood with vision blocks.

M36B290 mm gun turret on 3" GMC M10 hull (M4A2 chassis, diesel). (287 produced/converted)

#14 TiredOldSoldier

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 06:09 AM

[quote name='Triple C']Tired Old Soldier,

The Panthers of the Skorzeny Brigade were disguised to resemble M10 Tank Destroyers. It surprised and overran a battalion of the 30th ID (IIRC) but the Americans wisened up to the trick very quickly and brough TOT fire from several battalions with PROZIT rounds. The attack was, unsurprisingly, broken off.

QUOTE]
From my sources Skorzeny had two Shermans, one of which packed up for good just before the offensive, five disguised Panthers and five disguised Stugs. In the actual action reports the sherman is not mentioned so it may have broken before they reached the US lines. Also AFAIK the panthers were lost to bazooka treams and mines not arty thoug the attack was mostly stopped by arty.

#15 razin

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 09:37 AM

TiredOldSoldier

The Photo in #11 shows Yugoslavian equipment, hence M18 M36B2 and T34/85.

The lid on the M36 were common place on Post War Madp rebuilds received by many nations Yugoslavia is one. Both M36 and M10 in ETO had extemporised lids fitted which were similar to the standardised postwar type, it does not have vision blocks the slit is open.

~Steve

#16 aglooka

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 03:38 PM

AFAIK, I remember seeing a photo of a STUG III with the gun removed being used as an amunition vehcle by US forces.

Aglooka

#17 razin

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 05:33 PM

There was a StuG 3 munitions carrier with a allied star recovered to MVEE at Chertsey during 1944. Very low quality photo possibly blown up from a contact print
[ATTACH]6049[/ATTACH]
Photo of a StuG III late model with LMG replaced by what could be a SturmGewehr 44
[ATTACH]6050[/ATTACH]
couple of samples of 6th Australian ard. for further photos go to Australian War Memorial site (Anzac day on saturday)
M11/39
[ATTACH]6054[/ATTACH]
M13/40
[ATTACH]6055[/ATTACH]

Steve

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Edited by razin, 23 April 2009 - 10:11 PM.





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