BG Counters 30: PT-34 M41, PT-34 M43, PT-KV1 M41 & PT-KV1 M42, T-34/57, & KV-150

Vinnie

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Thought I'd do this one in the general page. Most going in the DEsigner Section.
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15b PT-34 M41, PT-34 M43, PT-KV1 M41 & PT-KV1 M42:
After great difficulties caused by minefields in the Winter War against Finland, the Soviet Red Army assigned P.M. Mugalev at the Dormashina Factory in Nikolaev to design a mine-clearing vehicle. Prototypes were tested based on the T-28 medium tank in 1940. Development was interrupted by the start of World War II, but resumed in 1942. T-60 and KV tank chassis underwent trials, but only the T-34 was deemed to have a sufficiently robust transmission and clutch.
Experimental detachments of PT-34 mine roller tanks were formed in May 1942, and saw action at Voronezh in August. The first Independent Engineer Tank Regiment with eighteen mine rollers was fielded in October 1943. At least five regiments were formed during the war.
The PT-34's huge roller fork was semi-permanently mounted on a T-34 or T-34-85 tank. The rollers were usually removed for travel, and only installed for mine clearing operations. Adaptations for later tanks consisted of two lighter arms. The Mugalev system was adopted by U.S. and Israeli forces in the 1980s.
† MOVEMENT: The PT-34 may change its VCA only one hexside in a particular hex, and only immediately after entering that hex; i.e., when it expends MP to enter a new hex it may then expend another MP to change its VCA one hexside, but thereafter as long as it remains in that hex it cannot again change its VCA—nor can it change its VCA in a hex wherein it has just expended a Start MP. The PT-34 may not enter a building or woods, or rubble [EXC: via a TB], and my not ford a stream or river, conduct an OVR, or use VBM. Moreover, it may not move to a different elevation unless on a road. A PT-34 may cross a wall/hedge hexside; see "BOG:" below. A PT-34 may not cross a Bocage hexside, even via a Breach; nor may it create a Breach itself.
† BOG: A PT-34 crossing a wall/hedge hexside (not Bocage) in either forward or reverse mode must make a Bog DR; if it bogs it remains in the hex it was attempting to leave. It must also make a Bog DR when it enters a Trench hex. A bogged PT-34 can attempt to free itself as per D8.3 only if another fully-tracked AFV of ≥ 25 tons is in the PT-34's Location to help push it. Both AFV must have coinciding VCA, and the pushing AFV is subject to all the rules given in D8.3 for an assisting AFV (i.e., one that grants a -1 drm to the colored die of the Bog Removal DR); however, this -1 drm does not apply to the PT-34's unbogging attempt. Conversely, a PT-34 may not be used to grant such a -1 drm to another vehicle's unbogging attempt.
† CLEARANCE: A PT-34 clears mines like a flail tank (B28.7-.72), with the following exceptions: Each time a PT-34 enters a new hex, the player owning mines in that hex must announce their presence (but not type or strength). The PT-34's owner then makes his Mine Clearance DR, but there is a +2 DRM to that DR unless when entering that hex the PT-34 paid twice the normal MP cost and did not use the CE road movement cost. A Final Mine Clearance DR of 11 or ≥ 12 is treated as per B28.72 or B28.71 respectively. A PT-34 need not to be, or remain, in Motion in order to attempt Mine Clearance, even in the last hex it enters during the MPh. If the PT-34 reveals the presence of mines while CE it must immediately become BU (even if not normally allowed to do so).
† TO HIT: Due to the obstruction caused by the mine rollers, all attacks [EXC: mines, CC, Indirect Fire, those to/from at least a full-level higher elevation, and those whose LOS to/from the PT-34 coincides with the center hexspine of its VCA] vs/by a PT-34 within its VCA receive a +1 TH (or Effects for non-ordnance) DRM—as signified by "+1 for HH" on the counter unless the hit would have struck the turret.
See also Russian Vehicle Notes Note M.
 

Vinnie

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16a T-34/57:
T-34-57 - A very small number of T-34s were fitted with the ZiS-4 L/73 high-velocity 57 mm gun in 1941 and 1943 to be used as tank destroyers. This gun had better penetration than the 76.2 mm F-34 (140 mm of steel at 500 m, as opposed to 90 mm), but the small HE projectile was inadequate for use against unarmoured targets.
As far back as the summer of 1940, an attempt to improve the anti-tank gun inventory in Soviet service was undertaken. This was due to only having massive stocks of underpowered 45 mm anti-tank cannons available, which were becoming obsolete with the newer armour being used by the Soviet Union's adversaries. When the request for an improved anti-tank cannon was sent out, a design bureau headed by V. G. Grabin was already underway under the name 57 mm ZiS-2 anti-tank gun. The 57 mm was a very powerful anti-tank weapon due to its high penetration value with the high-velocity shells. The APCBC round available under the name BR-271 was able to penetrate 93 mm of armour when fired 100 meters away at a meet angle of 60 degrees. The first of the prototypes were created in the September of 1940, and it as later approved for production on June 1, 1941. However, this was stopped on December 1 due to beliefs that the high-velocity 57 mm shells would simply penetrate straight through tanks without causing damage or that it was a high-cost weapon. The production lines were then switched to produce the 76.2 mm ZiS-3 guns.
It was during its production life before being cancelled that the 57 mm gun was attached onto a T-34 as a main armament in April 1941. However, the trials on this armament showed a lack of accuracy and short barrel life. Then in July, an improved variant of the 57 mm called the ZiS-4 was installed onto the T-34 and tested again. This variant turned out to be successful and the gun was recommended for installation on certain T-34 units, despite the high cost of the ZiS-4. The T-34 with the 57 mm were redesignated the T-34-57 and had the purpose of being "tank-hunters" due to the higher penetration value of the 57 mm compared to the default T-34 76.2 mm armament. The 57 mm ZiS-4 gun was produced at the Artillery Factory #92 and were mounted on various T-34s. However, the stop of all 57 mm production on December 1941 also stopped the 57 mm ZiS-4 production, thus halting the T-34-57 production with only 133 ZiS-4 guns made in the production life. Revitalization
The 57 mm guns were revived in 1943 due to urgent needs for much better guns against the newer German tanks. The current 76.2 mm F-34 gun on the normal T-34s were unable to defeat the newer German Tiger I and Panther tanks. In a desperate attempt to upgrade the T-34 to compete against these tanks, the 57 mm was reinstated for production and began being issued in May 1943, these models being the T-34-57 mod. 1943 due to the upgraded armament. The ZiS-4 was upgraded to the ZiS-4M with simplified parts and standardization in parts from current existing artillery pieces such as the F-34 and the ZiS-2. These T-34-57s saw further action against the Axis until they were retired. In total, about less than 324 T-34-57s were made during its production life in 1941 and 1943.
The T-34-57 made in 1941 saw action during the Battle of Moscow in small quantities. The 21st Tank Brigade has 10 of such tanks in their units and were deployed on October 14. Though the brigade were able to cause massive damage to the German lines around Kalinin, but ended with all of the T-34-57 destroyed by November 25. Other units using the T-34-57 were the 8th Tank Brigade in October 19. Afterwards came the deactivation of the 57 mm from the production line in the end of 1941, but the T-34-57s were revitalized again in 1943 to counter the newer German tanks. These tanks were used as "tank-hunters" and formed "Special Tank Company 100" with three T-34-57 in its first platoon to deal with German tanks. Despite their role, the company would only meet German tanks once in its life, and the first platoon was never used. Thus, the T-34-57 was never really able to prove their efficiency against active German tanks, though the unit would praise the gun's performance in practices against pillboxes, bunkers, and knocked out German tanks. All the T-34-57s were disbanded with the retirement of the 57 mm as a tank gun. This was due to its small HE shell available that made it a inadequate tank armament against softer targets, and also the introduction of the much bigger and better 85 mm tank gun on the newer T-34-85.
See also Russian Vehicle Notes Note C, Note M.

89928993
 

Vinnie

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8994899523a KV-150:
The KV 150 was an Experimental tank, with more Armour some 90 mm, Weight - 51 tons. New 700 hp engine. The Turret had a cupola and a longer gun but was in all other ways identical to the turret of the KV-1. One prototype was constructed in 1941 and was destroyed while defending Leningrad. The sole existing T-150 fought until June 1943, when it was written-off as "unrecoverable losses". The cause is uncertain, and some weeks later the same "lost" tank was re-introduced in ranks of the same unit, with crew assigned, etc. What happened next is unknown, probably it was lost or scrapped at some point.
See also Russian Vehicle Notes Note M
 

olli

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Martin next time I am home I’ll look out the CH Dutch trucks for you to add 😉
 

xenovin

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6 of 10 T-34/57s in the 21st TB in 1941 had radios.

16a T-34/57:
T-34-57 - A very small number of T-34s were fitted with the ZiS-4 L/73 high-velocity 57 mm gun in 1941 and 1943 to be used as tank destroyers. This gun had better penetration than the 76.2 mm F-34 (140 mm of steel at 500 m, as opposed to 90 mm), but the small HE projectile was inadequate for use against unarmoured targets.
As far back as the summer of 1940, an attempt to improve the anti-tank gun inventory in Soviet service was undertaken. This was due to only having massive stocks of underpowered 45 mm anti-tank cannons available, which were becoming obsolete with the newer armour being used by the Soviet Union's adversaries. When the request for an improved anti-tank cannon was sent out, a design bureau headed by V. G. Grabin was already underway under the name 57 mm ZiS-2 anti-tank gun. The 57 mm was a very powerful anti-tank weapon due to its high penetration value with the high-velocity shells. The APCBC round available under the name BR-271 was able to penetrate 93 mm of armour when fired 100 meters away at a meet angle of 60 degrees. The first of the prototypes were created in the September of 1940, and it as later approved for production on June 1, 1941. However, this was stopped on December 1 due to beliefs that the high-velocity 57 mm shells would simply penetrate straight through tanks without causing damage or that it was a high-cost weapon. The production lines were then switched to produce the 76.2 mm ZiS-3 guns.
It was during its production life before being cancelled that the 57 mm gun was attached onto a T-34 as a main armament in April 1941. However, the trials on this armament showed a lack of accuracy and short barrel life. Then in July, an improved variant of the 57 mm called the ZiS-4 was installed onto the T-34 and tested again. This variant turned out to be successful and the gun was recommended for installation on certain T-34 units, despite the high cost of the ZiS-4. The T-34 with the 57 mm were redesignated the T-34-57 and had the purpose of being "tank-hunters" due to the higher penetration value of the 57 mm compared to the default T-34 76.2 mm armament. The 57 mm ZiS-4 gun was produced at the Artillery Factory #92 and were mounted on various T-34s. However, the stop of all 57 mm production on December 1941 also stopped the 57 mm ZiS-4 production, thus halting the T-34-57 production with only 133 ZiS-4 guns made in the production life. Revitalization
The 57 mm guns were revived in 1943 due to urgent needs for much better guns against the newer German tanks. The current 76.2 mm F-34 gun on the normal T-34s were unable to defeat the newer German Tiger I and Panther tanks. In a desperate attempt to upgrade the T-34 to compete against these tanks, the 57 mm was reinstated for production and began being issued in May 1943, these models being the T-34-57 mod. 1943 due to the upgraded armament. The ZiS-4 was upgraded to the ZiS-4M with simplified parts and standardization in parts from current existing artillery pieces such as the F-34 and the ZiS-2. These T-34-57s saw further action against the Axis until they were retired. In total, about less than 324 T-34-57s were made during its production life in 1941 and 1943.
The T-34-57 made in 1941 saw action during the Battle of Moscow in small quantities. The 21st Tank Brigade has 10 of such tanks in their units and were deployed on October 14. Though the brigade were able to cause massive damage to the German lines around Kalinin, but ended with all of the T-34-57 destroyed by November 25. Other units using the T-34-57 were the 8th Tank Brigade in October 19. Afterwards came the deactivation of the 57 mm from the production line in the end of 1941, but the T-34-57s were revitalized again in 1943 to counter the newer German tanks. These tanks were used as "tank-hunters" and formed "Special Tank Company 100" with three T-34-57 in its first platoon to deal with German tanks. Despite their role, the company would only meet German tanks once in its life, and the first platoon was never used. Thus, the T-34-57 was never really able to prove their efficiency against active German tanks, though the unit would praise the gun's performance in practices against pillboxes, bunkers, and knocked out German tanks. All the T-34-57s were disbanded with the retirement of the 57 mm as a tank gun. This was due to its small HE shell available that made it a inadequate tank armament against softer targets, and also the introduction of the much bigger and better 85 mm tank gun on the newer T-34-85.
See also Russian Vehicle Notes Note C, Note M.

View attachment 8992View attachment 8993
 

Vinnie

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6 of 10 T-34/57s in the 21st TB in 1941 had radios.
When was this and were the crews trained in radios? It could easily be included with either a Dr (1-4 radio 5-6 none). Is it worth the additional complexity?
 

Paul M. Weir

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6 of 10 T-34/57s in the 21st TB in 1941 had radios.
When was this and were the crews trained in radios? It could easily be included with either a Dr (1-4 radio 5-6 none). Is it worth the additional complexity?
This brings back into focus as to what is the dividing line between being radioless and not in ASL terms.
If we take the Germans as the gold standard for early war, then let's look at what was standard for them. In a 17 tank company the 2 company command tanks would have had transceivers (IE could both send and receive). In a platoon the Platoon commander and both section leaders had transceivers while the remaining 2 tanks only had receivers. So out of 17, everyone could receive and all except 6 could transmit.

From the limited and occasionally confusing accounts the standard for Soviet tanks in the '41-'42 period was:
Light tanks, IE T37/38, T-40, T-60: could, at very best, have a radio in the platoon and company commander's tank, far more usually only in the company commanders or even none. 0 or 1 in 10 or 16.
Older light-mediums, IE T-26, BT-?: Usually the company commanders tank and had a decent chance of a radio in the platoon commander's tanks. 1 to 4 in 10.
Mediums, IE T-28, T-34: Nearly always company and platoonn commanders tanks, occasionally more. 4+ in 10.
Heavys, IE T-35, KV: All tanks had radios. so from 10 in 10 down to 5 in 5 (heavy tank companies went from 10 to 7 and finally 5 tanks).

That seemed to be the average, some could get lucky as the above 21st TB or get unlucky or the fitted radios break down. The early Soviet radios were temperamental but that appeared to improved from late '42 as the various transplanted factories sorted their shit out and the introduction of a new model. The Soviets also got large numbers of LL radios.

The later T-70 light tank usually tended towards the early medium level (4 of 10) whilst the T-34 gradually went towards 10/10 and more importantly greater reliability. As far as I can figure the T-80 light tank had radios in all, though given the paltry numbers produced that's not saying much.

Finally there is the question of usage. If you have a radio but the crew don't make enough use of them or use them appropriately then they don't add much.

Overall I think the ASL [(R), 43+] rules get as close as practical with regards to the effectiveness of Soviet usage. But that's just my take.

So what about this case? I'm inclined to treat the T-34/57 as printed as the general case, so no need to change. However if the particular unit involved had a good issue of radios or was noted to have had good coordination in manoeuvre, then SSR them to be treated as radio equipped. The 21st TB may be a suitable candidate, depending upon after action reports. Of course that could apply to any tank unit that displayed good coordination. Perceived battlefield performance should be the decider.
 

xenovin

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This was 16 October 1941 counterattack against Kalinin but 21st TB was a mixed bag of whatever was left around Moscow (T-34/57, T-34, T-26, BT-2, BT-5, BT-7, T-60 [first time in combat] and 4x ZIS-30s). The regiment and battalion commanders each received a T-34/57 with RAD. They did manage to advance 20 km right into Kalinin after the regimental commander was KIA vs a German 105mm ART battery, drove around town and left again so some kind of communications was going on. I'm working on a scenario for this and gave them RAD as they replaced the standard heavy KV Co. in the battalion.

When was this and were the crews trained in radios? It could easily be included with either a Dr (1-4 radio 5-6 none). Is it worth the additional complexity?
 

Vinnie

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I think it is better left as a SAD. Given the mixed nature of such a force, I'm not certain the use of radios would have been as effective tactically as it was operationally.
 

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As I said earlier, SSRs are the way to go where appropriate, whilst keeping the generalised notes/rules intact.

One example of an action that has been covered in a couple of scenarios was 4th TB (later 1st Guards TB) under Katukov at Mtsensk. It apparently had 7 KV-1, 22 T-34 and 21 mixed BTs including some BT-2. After that action the survivors undertook a quite long road march during which none broke down or at least for long enough to be left behind. If I ever find enough detail and more importantly the energy to do a Mtsensk scenario I would be inclined to treat all AFV as having Black MP or alternatively the KV and T-34 with Black MP and the BT with Red MP but reduced penalty of only stalling on a 12 and no bad effect on an 11. Both the KV and T-34 seem to have been brand new whilst the personnel, many of whom were survivors of other gutted units, appear to have been quite good or excellent.
 
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