why so high?

Futbol

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caught your attention huh? Well anyway I'm wondering why the CS of of the German Pz IIIF is a six. Is this generous, or based on a good tank design, good crew training etc?
 

Steven Pleva

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According to Chapter H the Pz IIIF has a CS 5. The Pz IIIH and Pz IIIJ have CS 6. These are judgement calls, but I don't think that any of the Pz III's or Pz IV's should have CS 6. Perhaps these values also consider the guns that are most likely to knock these tanks out...
Steve
 

Justiciar

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According to Chapter H the Pz IIIF has a CS 5. The Pz IIIH and Pz IIIJ have CS 6. These are judgement calls, but I don't think that any of the Pz III's or Pz IV's should have CS 6. Perhaps these values also consider the guns that are most likely to knock these tanks out...
Steve
Queue: Paul M. Weir in 3, 2, 1...

...but while we wait, I think a 'factor' in this is that PzIII and IV have the side hatches...

...also III and IVs have top hatches for the driver / co driver (though not 'spring' assisted best I understand)...

...and finally you are DFE on not the whole crew but the majority of the crew or maybe even half the crew...

...and now over to Paul....
 

Paul M. Weir

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Queue: Paul M. Weir in 3, 2, 1...

...but while we wait, I think a 'factor' in this is that PzIII and IV have the side hatches...

...also III and IVs have top hatches for the driver / co driver (though not 'spring' assisted best I understand)...

...and finally you are DFE on not the whole crew but the majority of the crew or maybe even half the crew...

...and now over to Paul....
It's a bit impressionistic, IE what the designer thought right.

There are a few patterns that I noticed:
(1) The CS# minimum is usually the number of crew, the T-35 with 10 crew only getting a CS8 being the most notable exception.
(2) Having at least 1 AF of 6 or more often gets you 1 extra, with some really heavily armoured like the IS series getting 2 extra (CS6 for 4 crew).
(3) A CS# of 6 is the usual limit.

Eg, going on the IS pattern the Tiger II should get a CS7 by (2) but gets CS6 by (3).

After that there is a lot of gut feel. The presence of armoured bins, how high is the ammo stored, petrol or diesel, number and placement of hatches might have pushed the designer to grant or deny an extra 1 to the CS#, but crew size and overall armour seems to dominate.

OK, Panzers as illustration:

Pz I to Pz 38(t), CS = Crew size. Nothing particularly good/bad about hatches compared to other most tanks.
Pz III: The Pz III E to very early III L had driver and BMG gunner hull side hatches but no hull top hatches. So Pz III A to G get CS5 with H & J getting CS6 due to thicker armour. Most L, N and all M had no hull side hatches. So the hull crew had to use the 3 turret hatches or the small transmission/brake access hatches in the hull front roof (in front of the driver's plate). So the CS goes back down to CS5.
Pz IV: Each crew member had his own hatch in all versions. So CS5 to Pz IV D and CS6 afterwards.
Panther to Tiger II: Hull crew had their own roof hatch. All had a turret rear emergency hatch but in the Tiger II that could be awkward to use. The commander had a hatch and in the Tigers the loader had a hatch. The gunner had none. However that was and is to this day the standard, 2 hatches for 3 turret crew.

Ammo armoured bins: With the possible exception of the Pz II, as far as I know, the Pz I to Pz 38(t) had mainly unarmoured stowage. From at least '40 the Pz III and Pz IV used lightly armoured bins for most ammo stowage. The Panther and Tigers had unarmoured ammo stowed in the side extensions above the tracks and the Tiger II had ammo in the turret rear.

While having armoured bins, no ammo above the tracks, diesel engines or even hatch numbers could in real life make a significant difference, these don't seem to have made much difference in ASL except for some Red CS# vs Black CS# cases. Crew size and heaviest armour seems to be the dominant factor.
 

Roy

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So, while I like the video, and I used to watch the Chieftan's videos a lot when I played WOT, fire wasn't the only reason a tank had to be abandoned, correct?

I (without any knowledge whatsoever) would assume that a holed tank probably lost a crew member just from the shot that caused the hole. Maybe more. So the CS number in ASL has a lot to cover I'm thinking, plus making it a game event. Sometimes I think we over-analyze Squad Leader stuff.

JMO
 

Paul M. Weir

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So, while I like the video, and I used to watch the Chieftan's videos a lot when I played WOT, fire wasn't the only reason a tank had to be abandoned, correct?

I (without any knowledge whatsoever) would assume that a holed tank probably lost a crew member just from the shot that caused the hole. Maybe more. So the CS number in ASL has a lot to cover I'm thinking, plus making it a game event. Sometimes I think we over-analyze Squad Leader stuff.

JMO
I do have to agree. Fire was a problem and in that case crew to hatch ratios did matter, but not all KOed tanks burned. A penetrating shot could decapitate the driver, disembowel the gunner and take a leg off the commander or could miss all crew and lodge in the radio/transmission/etc. That would be just half the story.

Note I use shot above, the British used solid shot in the 2lbr and 6lbr and early US 75mm shell had the HE component not fitted (early fuses were unreliable) and thus were shot. Most nations used AP shell which had a small bursting charge which ideally exploded after penetration. That obviously sprayed everything inside with fragments and provided an ignition source for spilt ammo propellant and/or fuel fumes. Even shot could bounce around inside a bit.

Next is armour. Not just it's thickness but it's quality. Armour involves some degree of hardening compared to structural steel. Harden it too much and while it often could shatter the AP projectile, when overmatched it would likely shatter, providing additional shredding fragments. Italian armour was by far the brittlest. Japanese and Czech armour, though not as bad as Italian, were still a bit brittle. Given the thinness of most Japanese armour it's brittleness didn't really make much difference.

I remember a comment by some German tank ace about when his Pz 38(t) was hit, the whole plate split which would not have occurred with a Pz III/IV. The British did a test with a KOed British tank and an Italian tank during the desert campaign. They put filled sandbags in the crew positions and fired an AT gun at each. With the British tank there was a small hole and some damage from the shot bouncing around inside but the sandbags were mainly intact. With the Italian tank the armour shattered and the sandbags were all shredded. Your armour can kill you!

As an aside, most nations used the highest hardness for the thinnest plates and reduced hardness as thickness increased. Face hardening of armour was an attempt to get the best of both worlds. The outer few millimetres were extra hardened with the hope of shattering the AP projectile while the bulk of the plate was softer, more ductile armour that hopefully would stop the plate from shattering and reducing the fragments (spall) produced from penetration.
 

von Marwitz

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According to Chapter H the Pz IIIF has a CS 5. The Pz IIIH and Pz IIIJ have CS 6. These are judgement calls, but I don't think that any of the Pz III's or Pz IV's should have CS 6. Perhaps these values also consider the guns that are most likely to knock these tanks out...
Steve
Maybe the reason for the rather high CS is that those tanks had hatches at the side of the turret. That means while bailing out you'd have more cover against fire from some directions compared to leaving vs. a top-of-turret hatch which could be fired at from any direction.

The Pz IV also had hatches at the side of the turret and for many types of this tank, the CS is also 6.

von Marwitz
 

Eagle4ty

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Well there's a reason we practiced escape drills continually (and almost every day in a combat zone). ANY military vehicle offers challenges to exit safely and quickly (yes! even a "jeep"), but when you're trained repeatedly - muscle memory - you'd be surprised how efficiently it can be handled; now add proper motivation (i.e. hot stuff that'll make many thing around you go boom, bang or zing), and you can literally FLY out of them things!:eek::captainobvious:
 

pwashington

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Well there's a reason we practiced escape drills continually (and almost every day in a combat zone). ANY military vehicle offers challenges to exit safely and quickly (yes! even a "jeep"), but when you're trained repeatedly - muscle memory - you'd be surprised how efficiently it can be handled;
This, and I would think that a 5'7" 125 lb (or so) 18-year-old would probably have an easier time with the task. Still, a very educational video.
 

FourDeuceMF

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Love the caption in that first video for the Panther - the "Wehraboo's Poster Boy Tank"...

Nice play on 'Weeaboo' (an overly-obsessed with Japanese Anime Culture Westerner...) ;-)
 

daniel zucker

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This, and I would think that a 5'7" 125 lb (or so) 18-year-old would probably have an easier time with the task. Still, a very educational video.
Yes most defiantly the guy in the video is rather tall for a WWII tanker and had not trained (learned the what's; why's and how's) in any of those tanks. Interesting videos
 

Michael Dorosh

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Terrible video. As I noted in the comments there - the Army has drills for everything. Trained crews would have practiced those techniques. The video has a guy much bigger than a typical tanker, twice their average age, stumbling through procedures he's not even read the manual for much less practiced.
 

Mr Incredible

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Terrible video. As I noted in the comments there - the Army has drills for everything. Trained crews would have practiced those techniques. The video has a guy much bigger than a typical tanker, twice their average age, stumbling through procedures he's not even read the manual for much less practiced.
But still gives a very good idea of how easy it is to get out in a panicked situation. It's one thing to get out under a training situation and another in real life.

There have been tests done with passengers testing escape situations from aircraft. When there's no incentive to leave when under test situations and guided by hosties, there's no issue.

Put up a $1,000 prize to the first to get out and all hell breaks loose.

Easy to see why the M4 was streets ahead.
 
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Eagle4ty

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As Don Lazov can tell you, no matter how "relatively easy" it looks, getting in/out of those things in a hurry is just no fun; banged knees, scraped knuckles, bumped heads and wrenched back and all - and that's wearing proper gear! However, properly motivated you can MOVE! I remember as a young trooper sitting in the gunners position when an engine fire extinguisher acidently discharged. The bang from the explosion had barely finished reverberating through the tank (M60A1/A3) before I was standing tall outside that hunck of iron before the tank commander's legs had even cleared his hatch. I swear I used the buttons on his uniform as hand-holds un-assing that baby!:eek::D
 

dlazov

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The scariest part (even in training) as a driver is trusting the gunner to NOT traverse the turret, when exiting. However, death is a great motivatior...
 
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