The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

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ljadw
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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by ljadw » 13 Feb 2021 08:04

The mission of the PzD when Guderian returned was dictated by the military situation, not by Guderian's theories : it was DEFENSIVE. Nothing more .
Before the war Guderian claimed that tanks were a new and decisive weapon that would decide the outcome of a war/of a military campaign . If this was so in the beginning of the war ( and this is more than questionable ), it was no longer so in March 1943 .
In Panzerleader Guderian claimed that the only thing that counted in a tank division was the number of tanks,although the war had proven him to be wrong .
Thus there is no reason to believe what Guderian was saying .

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2021 08:59

ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 08:04
The mission of the PzD when Guderian returned was dictated by the military situation, not by Guderian's theories : it was DEFENSIVE. Nothing more .
Before the war Guderian claimed that tanks were a new and decisive weapon that would decide the outcome of a war/of a military campaign . If this was so in the beginning of the war ( and this is more than questionable ), it was no longer so in March 1943 .
In Panzerleader Guderian claimed that the only thing that counted in a tank division was the number of tanks,although the war had proven him to be wrong .
Thus there is no reason to believe what Guderian was saying .
WRONG. The mission of a Pz Div is never to be in the front and defend. Its mission is attack and counterattack. In any other role it is wasted. You mispresent what Guderian actually actually wrote as usual. The main asset of a Pz Div is tanks so it needs to be tank heavy and have sufficient other assets in support. Guderian knows far more about armoured warfare than you. :lol: So i will rather believe him.

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Peter89 » 13 Feb 2021 09:56

I still don't know why we are arguing about Guderian? He wasn't in the decision making position in 1940 and his suggestions were not tried out in 1943's reality. Actually, the opposite was done with abysmal results.
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2021 10:13

Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 09:56
I still don't know why we are arguing about Guderian? He wasn't in the decision making position in 1940 and his suggestions were not tried out in 1943's reality. Actually, the opposite was done with abysmal results.
Producing more tanks is in sync with the thinking of Guderian and others like him so it is relevant. He was certainly the best to be put in charge of the Panzertruppen.

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by ljadw » 13 Feb 2021 10:59

Peter89 wrote:
12 Feb 2021 16:25
ljadw wrote:
12 Feb 2021 13:10
Peter89 wrote:
12 Feb 2021 10:47
ljdaw, I think you phrase your opinion a bit roughly and it leads to a lot of misunderstandings.

Indeed, a panzer division was very much dependent on its "additional units", like recon sdkfz-s, signal equipment and units, the motorized and mechanized infantry regiments; and the lack of these could lead to abysmal performance, like in the case of the Battle of Arracourt, where neither the quality nor the quantity of the German armour didn't matter. Without recon and signal units, the tanks arrived piecemal in a series of disjointed assaults.

However, you are going into the extremes when you say the number of tanks was irrelevant and that a panzer division cannot move fast enough. Of course there were adverse effects like road quality, weather and such, but in general a panzer division took 95km of road without intervals between the units, and so approximately 100km in reality.

The march speed of tanks was 12kmph, but the infantry of the panzer divisions - a motorized infantry regiment on lorries and a mechanized infantry regiment on half-tracks - could march with 22kmph and 16kmph, respectively, so your statement when you said that
3 A tank batallion is a PART of a division and if it is advancing 100 km in one day, this does not mean that the whole division is advancing 100 km .
is not really true, because in an adequately motorized panzer division, it was actually the tanks that moved the slowest, and produced the most mechanical breakdowns; so if the panzer regiment of a panzer division could in reality move 100km in one day, then the rest of the division could follow.

Also, if you change one mechanized infantry regiment to a panzer regiment, then you change a 12,020m march section for a 19,500m march section, so the difference is not that big as you suggest here:
If a column of 100 tanks need 10 km of road, a column of 10 tanks will need less km of road .
So if you double the number of panzers in a panzer division, and half that of the motorized infantry, the division will take +7.5% of road and will travel with the same speed, theoretically. If you don't touch the motorized infantry units, but double the panzers, the division will take approximately +19.5% of road.

Back to the number of tanks.
Again, you are confusing campaign or battle results with effectiveness. If the task that was given to a panzer division was impossible to do, then it doesn't matter how effective was it compared to a battle where the task was possible to do. It's nonsense. It's not realistic to say that the Germans lost the Battle of Kursk, so their panzer divisions in mid-summer 1943 were worse than those in 1940, when they've won the Battle of France. The two were very much different operations.

So first we need to address the deployment, the overall situation, and then we can conclude which unit composition was the best suited for the task.

I agree in principle that the panzer divisions for Barbarossa were reorganized in a better fashion = more suited for the task at hand (with one panzer regiment) than the ones in 1940. Mostly because the plans of Barbarossa contained multiple encirclement operations, for which the Germans needed a lot of motorized or mechanized infantry.

But in 1940, the panzer divisions were organized in a good fashion, too - because then the concentration of armour mattered the most in their plan, and additional infantry units were not as much important as the unified command of large panzer formations.

Aside from that, Germany could not profit from much more tanks in the Fall Gelb; that plan was not built upon that. (It was problematic to cross the Ardennes and the Maas with that much units anyway.) Also, the campaign was over in a few weeks.

Unlike the campaign in the Soviet Union, where the campaign(s) lasted for years, and so maintenance and supply became insanely important. Until the summer of 1942, the collapse of the centralized maintenance system was not addressed sufficiently, and even later on, it wasn't addressed adequately. Repairing tanks became ever more difficult, especially when the long retreat began. So operational readiness rates - thus combat effectiveness - could be increased with increased amount of production; let it be the production of new vehicles, spare parts or whatever.
I stick to my point that it is not so that the more tanks a PzD had,the stronger it was , as Aida 1 is claiming : if it was so ,there would be PzD with 1000 tanks .
The speed (theoretical speed of a Mot.regiment ) is not very relevant as a mot. regiment would attack /advance only in second line ,as it was too vulnerable to the enemy : 10 men in a truck are more vulnerable than 10 men marching by foot .And the mot.infantry was also depending on roads,which was not the case for the not mot. infantry .
A unit (PzD/ID,etc ..) needed and firepower, manpower,speed/mobility /armoured protection .
But the Germans were unable to realize this .
Tanks had mobility/speed,but lacked manpower and firepower and protection
Infantry had manpower but lacked mobility/speed and firepower
Artillery had firepower,but lacked mobility and manpower .
If there were more tanks,they would need more artillery and infantry
If there was more infantry, speed would decrease
The same for the artillery
In the Middle Ages,the cavalry ( predecessor of the tanks ) needed protection by infantry ,because the more the man on the horse and the horse were armoured,the slower they could advance ,and the slower they advanced, the more vulnerable hey were .
It is the same for the tanks : the heavier and the more numerous they were the lower would be their mobility and their speed .And, as it was very easy to block a tank, and as tanks were primitive machines with more non combat losses than combat losses,tanks needed protection from infantry , from non motorized infantry .
Tanks could not act independently,even their advance was depending on the support/protection of the infantry .After Stalingrad, the Germans were on the defensive and the ID had less firepower and manpower than the Soviet divisions and needed the help of the PzD and the few mobile units that remained .The more tanks the PzD would have,the less PzD would be available and they would have to come from a bigger distance ,and would thus need more time .The arrival,without the infantry,of tanks,would not help the ID that was attacked, neither would the arrival of infantry without tanks .Both had to arrive at the same moment .And more tanks would arrive later.The same for infantry or artillery .
A year later, it was even worse : even the mobile divisions needed more time to arrive than before : it took weeks to bring Das Reich to the front in Normandy .
In the West the Allied Air Force blocked the transport of the mobile/PzD by road.
In the East, it was the lack on decent roads who blocked it .After the fall of Sevastopol,the divisions of Manstein that were transferred to the front of Leningrad,had to go ,by rail of course, through Poland .
???
Again, I don't understand what you are talking about.

Increased production, thus more tanks and / or spare parts meant higher operational availability, thus higher combat power of the unit. Don't forget that the panzer divisions with reduced tank park (200) never had more than 150 tanks, with 100 being the typical. It has nothing to do with "tanks unable to act independently". They wouldn't. The Germans were never able to meet their authorized unit strengths, let alone upkeep it. The same was true for the aircrafts; they were simply unable to do it. Let's say the Germans increase their panzer production by 25% - then it doesn't mean tanks roaming alone on a battlefield. It's just reaching the authorized strength in existing units.

Also on the unit level, there were heavy panzer battalions (Schwere Panzerabteilungen) which had virtually no support units in their OOB; but it did not mean that they were employed without infantry, artillery or air cover.

So if a unit contains more infantry or more tanks is irrelevant as long as the operational reality covers that up. You can send a tank-heavy division and a mechanized infantry division to carry out an operation in tandem; they don't have to be in the same unit, but in the same task force / Kampfgruppe.

Whether an extra regiment of panzers was a good or a bad thing in a panzer division - it depended on the task, it wasn't an iron law written in rock.
More tanks meaning higher operational availability is theory .
A higher tank production does not mean more trained crews.It does also not mean more tanks on the front ,to have more operational tanks you need more supplies,which means more trains and more trucks . But the available railway and road space was limited . And a tank unit with more tanks would advance slower .
Authorized unit strength is theory:no one had units with authorized strength .
A tank heavy unit would not do better than a tank light unit.
I agree ,partially, with the last sentence :weather an extra regiment of panzers was a good thing or a bad thing in a panzer division -it depended on the task,it wasn't an iron law written in rock .
Why partially ?
Because it did not only depend on the task, but also on the terrain, on the availability of this extra regiment, on the possibility to supply this extra regiment, on the need for this extra regiment .

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2021 12:31

ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
Peter89 wrote:
12 Feb 2021 16:25
ljadw wrote:
12 Feb 2021 13:10
Peter89 wrote:
12 Feb 2021 10:47
ljdaw, I think you phrase your opinion a bit roughly and it leads to a lot of misunderstandings.

Indeed, a panzer division was very much dependent on its "additional units", like recon sdkfz-s, signal equipment and units, the motorized and mechanized infantry regiments; and the lack of these could lead to abysmal performance, like in the case of the Battle of Arracourt, where neither the quality nor the quantity of the German armour didn't matter. Without recon and signal units, the tanks arrived piecemal in a series of disjointed assaults.

However, you are going into the extremes when you say the number of tanks was irrelevant and that a panzer division cannot move fast enough. Of course there were adverse effects like road quality, weather and such, but in general a panzer division took 95km of road without intervals between the units, and so approximately 100km in reality.

The march speed of tanks was 12kmph, but the infantry of the panzer divisions - a motorized infantry regiment on lorries and a mechanized infantry regiment on half-tracks - could march with 22kmph and 16kmph, respectively, so your statement when you said that
3 A tank batallion is a PART of a division and if it is advancing 100 km in one day, this does not mean that the whole division is advancing 100 km .
is not really true, because in an adequately motorized panzer division, it was actually the tanks that moved the slowest, and produced the most mechanical breakdowns; so if the panzer regiment of a panzer division could in reality move 100km in one day, then the rest of the division could follow.

Also, if you change one mechanized infantry regiment to a panzer regiment, then you change a 12,020m march section for a 19,500m march section, so the difference is not that big as you suggest here:
If a column of 100 tanks need 10 km of road, a column of 10 tanks will need less km of road .
So if you double the number of panzers in a panzer division, and half that of the motorized infantry, the division will take +7.5% of road and will travel with the same speed, theoretically. If you don't touch the motorized infantry units, but double the panzers, the division will take approximately +19.5% of road.

Back to the number of tanks.
Again, you are confusing campaign or battle results with effectiveness. If the task that was given to a panzer division was impossible to do, then it doesn't matter how effective was it compared to a battle where the task was possible to do. It's nonsense. It's not realistic to say that the Germans lost the Battle of Kursk, so their panzer divisions in mid-summer 1943 were worse than those in 1940, when they've won the Battle of France. The two were very much different operations.

So first we need to address the deployment, the overall situation, and then we can conclude which unit composition was the best suited for the task.

I agree in principle that the panzer divisions for Barbarossa were reorganized in a better fashion = more suited for the task at hand (with one panzer regiment) than the ones in 1940. Mostly because the plans of Barbarossa contained multiple encirclement operations, for which the Germans needed a lot of motorized or mechanized infantry.

But in 1940, the panzer divisions were organized in a good fashion, too - because then the concentration of armour mattered the most in their plan, and additional infantry units were not as much important as the unified command of large panzer formations.

Aside from that, Germany could not profit from much more tanks in the Fall Gelb; that plan was not built upon that. (It was problematic to cross the Ardennes and the Maas with that much units anyway.) Also, the campaign was over in a few weeks.

Unlike the campaign in the Soviet Union, where the campaign(s) lasted for years, and so maintenance and supply became insanely important. Until the summer of 1942, the collapse of the centralized maintenance system was not addressed sufficiently, and even later on, it wasn't addressed adequately. Repairing tanks became ever more difficult, especially when the long retreat began. So operational readiness rates - thus combat effectiveness - could be increased with increased amount of production; let it be the production of new vehicles, spare parts or whatever.
I stick to my point that it is not so that the more tanks a PzD had,the stronger it was , as Aida 1 is claiming : if it was so ,there would be PzD with 1000 tanks .
The speed (theoretical speed of a Mot.regiment ) is not very relevant as a mot. regiment would attack /advance only in second line ,as it was too vulnerable to the enemy : 10 men in a truck are more vulnerable than 10 men marching by foot .And the mot.infantry was also depending on roads,which was not the case for the not mot. infantry .
A unit (PzD/ID,etc ..) needed and firepower, manpower,speed/mobility /armoured protection .
But the Germans were unable to realize this .
Tanks had mobility/speed,but lacked manpower and firepower and protection
Infantry had manpower but lacked mobility/speed and firepower
Artillery had firepower,but lacked mobility and manpower .
If there were more tanks,they would need more artillery and infantry
If there was more infantry, speed would decrease
The same for the artillery
In the Middle Ages,the cavalry ( predecessor of the tanks ) needed protection by infantry ,because the more the man on the horse and the horse were armoured,the slower they could advance ,and the slower they advanced, the more vulnerable hey were .
It is the same for the tanks : the heavier and the more numerous they were the lower would be their mobility and their speed .And, as it was very easy to block a tank, and as tanks were primitive machines with more non combat losses than combat losses,tanks needed protection from infantry , from non motorized infantry .
Tanks could not act independently,even their advance was depending on the support/protection of the infantry .After Stalingrad, the Germans were on the defensive and the ID had less firepower and manpower than the Soviet divisions and needed the help of the PzD and the few mobile units that remained .The more tanks the PzD would have,the less PzD would be available and they would have to come from a bigger distance ,and would thus need more time .The arrival,without the infantry,of tanks,would not help the ID that was attacked, neither would the arrival of infantry without tanks .Both had to arrive at the same moment .And more tanks would arrive later.The same for infantry or artillery .
A year later, it was even worse : even the mobile divisions needed more time to arrive than before : it took weeks to bring Das Reich to the front in Normandy .
In the West the Allied Air Force blocked the transport of the mobile/PzD by road.
In the East, it was the lack on decent roads who blocked it .After the fall of Sevastopol,the divisions of Manstein that were transferred to the front of Leningrad,had to go ,by rail of course, through Poland .
???
Again, I don't understand what you are talking about.

Increased production, thus more tanks and / or spare parts meant higher operational availability, thus higher combat power of the unit. Don't forget that the panzer divisions with reduced tank park (200) never had more than 150 tanks, with 100 being the typical. It has nothing to do with "tanks unable to act independently". They wouldn't. The Germans were never able to meet their authorized unit strengths, let alone upkeep it. The same was true for the aircrafts; they were simply unable to do it. Let's say the Germans increase their panzer production by 25% - then it doesn't mean tanks roaming alone on a battlefield. It's just reaching the authorized strength in existing units.

Also on the unit level, there were heavy panzer battalions (Schwere Panzerabteilungen) which had virtually no support units in their OOB; but it did not mean that they were employed without infantry, artillery or air cover.

So if a unit contains more infantry or more tanks is irrelevant as long as the operational reality covers that up. You can send a tank-heavy division and a mechanized infantry division to carry out an operation in tandem; they don't have to be in the same unit, but in the same task force / Kampfgruppe.

Whether an extra regiment of panzers was a good or a bad thing in a panzer division - it depended on the task, it wasn't an iron law written in rock.
More tanks meaning higher operational availability is theory .
A higher tank production does not mean more trained crews.It does also not mean more tanks on the front ,to have more operational tanks you need more supplies,which means more trains and more trucks . But the available railway and road space was limited . And a tank unit with more tanks would advance slower .
Authorized unit strength is theory:no one had units with authorized strength .
A tank heavy unit would not do better than a tank light unit.
I agree ,partially, with the last sentence :weather an extra regiment of panzers was a good thing or a bad thing in a panzer division -it depended on the task,it wasn't an iron law written in rock .
Why partially ?
Because it did not only depend on the task, but also on the terrain, on the availability of this extra regiment, on the possibility to supply this extra regiment, on the need for this extra regiment .
You are in denial as always. One can make different decisions concerning allocation of resources to get you more tanks and/or spare parts so you can keep operational strength of tanks higher.The fact that new Pz divisions were set up all the time clearly proves that there was no problem in allocating trucks,manpower etc... for this.Actually It would have been better to not set up new Pz div and instead use the resources to keep the existing ones up to a higher operational strength.

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Peter89 » 13 Feb 2021 12:46

Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:13
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 09:56
I still don't know why we are arguing about Guderian? He wasn't in the decision making position in 1940 and his suggestions were not tried out in 1943's reality. Actually, the opposite was done with abysmal results.
Producing more tanks is in sync with the thinking of Guderian and others like him so it is relevant. He was certainly the best to be put in charge of the Panzertruppen.
I see.

When Guderian was appointed on 01/03/1943, the Germans were evacuating the Rhzev salient (just finished with evacuating the Demyansk pocket), retaking Kharkov and committing to Tunisia.

After the snow and dust settled, Guderian suggested that the German panzer forces should recuperate, train, conserve strength and reorganize. If necessary, conduct an orderly, fighting retreat to stronger defensive positions to the D-D line.

Instead, by May 1943 the Germans lost an army and an air fleet in Tunisia, for essentially nothing; including 2 Heavy Panzer Battalions (501st and 504th).

Then they've lost an insane amount of panzers in the battle of Kursk, and threw half-trained units at the Wallies in Italy.

So what actually happened in 1943 was entirely against Guderian's wishes.

For example, he reorganized the Heavy Panzer Battalions' (Schwere Panzer Abteilungen) OOB: from 29 Tigers and 35 Panzer IIIs he ordered the SchPzAbt to include 45 Tigers alone.

45 Tigers was almost a month's production back then, so replacing and upgrading the 2 battalions lost in Tunisia would take 1.5 months.

So what do we see on the unit level? The Germans never had enough Tigers / panzers to go around. They started with the 501-505 SchPzAbt; 501st and 504th committed to Tunisia, 502nd to AGN, and 503rd and 505th to the Battle of Kursk.

Then the 506th, 507th and 508th were started in May, followed by the 101st and 102nd SS SchPzAbt in July (the 103rd SS SchPzAbt was not equipped with Tigers then) and the 509th in September.

The 6 new battalions might have been established with the new Tiger I acceptances (270 in OOB and 320 produced), but the losses that occured in Africa and Kursk, could not be replaced.

The 510th and the 103rd SS SchPzAbt were equipped with Tigers in 1944; in June and October, respectively.

What I try to say here: Guderian understood that the Germans cannot replace lost tanks with an operational reality like that. Thus it was important to keep relatively combat-ready units with higher authorized panzer count, because that was important for the concentration of forces.

What ljdaw says is this: Guderian thought that units with 400 panzers are better than units with 200 panzers.

Keep in mind that the panzer divisions with 200 panzers had in reality 100 or 150 tops; a theoretical 400 panzer division would average around 200 and maxing around 300; also, there was no sense to maintain small forces and hope that the industry will fill them up; it won't.

It leads us back to the larger strategic picture: the Germans had to conserve their strength and pick battles with losses that the industry and training system can replace. They didn't so they were forced to fight with understrength units and curtailed crew training.
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2021 13:28

Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 12:46
Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:13
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 09:56
I still don't know why we are arguing about Guderian? He wasn't in the decision making position in 1940 and his suggestions were not tried out in 1943's reality. Actually, the opposite was done with abysmal results.
Producing more tanks is in sync with the thinking of Guderian and others like him so it is relevant. He was certainly the best to be put in charge of the Panzertruppen.
I see.

When Guderian was appointed on 01/03/1943, the Germans were evacuating the Rhzev salient (just finished with evacuating the Demyansk pocket), retaking Kharkov and committing to Tunisia.

After the snow and dust settled, Guderian suggested that the German panzer forces should recuperate, train, conserve strength and reorganize. If necessary, conduct an orderly, fighting retreat to stronger defensive positions to the D-D line.

Instead, by May 1943 the Germans lost an army and an air fleet in Tunisia, for essentially nothing; including 2 Heavy Panzer Battalions (501st and 504th).

Then they've lost an insane amount of panzers in the battle of Kursk, and threw half-trained units at the Wallies in Italy.

So what actually happened in 1943 was entirely against Guderian's wishes.

For example, he reorganized the Heavy Panzer Battalions' (Schwere Panzer Abteilungen) OOB: from 29 Tigers and 35 Panzer IIIs he ordered the SchPzAbt to include 45 Tigers alone.

45 Tigers was almost a month's production back then, so replacing and upgrading the 2 battalions lost in Tunisia would take 1.5 months.

So what do we see on the unit level? The Germans never had enough Tigers / panzers to go around. They started with the 501-505 SchPzAbt; 501st and 504th committed to Tunisia, 502nd to AGN, and 503rd and 505th to the Battle of Kursk.

Then the 506th, 507th and 508th were started in May, followed by the 101st and 102nd SS SchPzAbt in July (the 103rd SS SchPzAbt was not equipped with Tigers then) and the 509th in September.

The 6 new battalions might have been established with the new Tiger I acceptances (270 in OOB and 320 produced), but the losses that occured in Africa and Kursk, could not be replaced.

The 510th and the 103rd SS SchPzAbt were equipped with Tigers in 1944; in June and October, respectively.

What I try to say here: Guderian understood that the Germans cannot replace lost tanks with an operational reality like that. Thus it was important to keep relatively combat-ready units with higher authorized panzer count, because that was important for the concentration of forces.

What ljdaw says is this: Guderian thought that units with 400 panzers are better than units with 200 panzers.

Keep in mind that the panzer divisions with 200 panzers had in reality 100 or 150 tops; a theoretical 400 panzer division would average around 200 and maxing around 300; also, there was no sense to maintain small forces and hope that the industry will fill them up; it won't.

It leads us back to the larger strategic picture: the Germans had to conserve their strength and pick battles with losses that the industry and training system can replace. They didn't so they were forced to fight with understrength units and curtailed crew training.
Setting up new divisions when you are unable to keep the existing experienced ones up to strength was always wrong. Guderian was correct when he wanted no new units set up. A waste of resources.

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Peter89 » 13 Feb 2021 13:37

ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
More tanks meaning higher operational availability is theory .
Theory???
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
A higher tank production does not mean more trained crews.
Who told that the Germans should spend 1943 with training and refitting? Guderian.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
It does also not mean more tanks on the front , [...]
Yes it does. The Germans never faced the problem that they had too many tanks at the factory yards, but they lacked the train capacity to get them to the front.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
to have more operational tanks you need more supplies,
It depends on what your tanks are doing. If your X*2 number of tanks do the same thing as your X number of tanks, then you need more supplies. If your X*2 number of tanks are recuperating, training, etc. then then don't necessarily need more supplies.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
And a tank unit with more tanks would advance slower .
I already told you that it's not true. Or please specify what do you mean by "advance".
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
Authorized unit strength is theory:no one had units with authorized strength .
You make me wonder whether Schopenhauer was sarcastic instead of serious.

Obviously; 100% in-commission rates were not typical, but it did matter whether a unit was up to 40% or 80% of its authorized strength.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
A tank heavy unit would not do better than a tank light unit.
So you think, for example, that the concentration of armor was not important?
“And while I am talking to you, mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before, but I shall say it again, and again and again. Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." - FDR, October 1940

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Byrden » 13 Feb 2021 13:42

Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 12:46
Instead, by May 1943 the Germans lost an army and an air fleet in Tunisia, for essentially nothing; including 2 Heavy Panzer Battalions (501st and 504th).
That was only thirty-one Tigers, however.

David

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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by ljadw » 13 Feb 2021 14:25

Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 13:28
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 12:46
Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:13
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 09:56
I still don't know why we are arguing about Guderian? He wasn't in the decision making position in 1940 and his suggestions were not tried out in 1943's reality. Actually, the opposite was done with abysmal results.
Producing more tanks is in sync with the thinking of Guderian and others like him so it is relevant. He was certainly the best to be put in charge of the Panzertruppen.
I see.

When Guderian was appointed on 01/03/1943, the Germans were evacuating the Rhzev salient (just finished with evacuating the Demyansk pocket), retaking Kharkov and committing to Tunisia.

After the snow and dust settled, Guderian suggested that the German panzer forces should recuperate, train, conserve strength and reorganize. If necessary, conduct an orderly, fighting retreat to stronger defensive positions to the D-D line.

Instead, by May 1943 the Germans lost an army and an air fleet in Tunisia, for essentially nothing; including 2 Heavy Panzer Battalions (501st and 504th).

Then they've lost an insane amount of panzers in the battle of Kursk, and threw half-trained units at the Wallies in Italy.

So what actually happened in 1943 was entirely against Guderian's wishes.

For example, he reorganized the Heavy Panzer Battalions' (Schwere Panzer Abteilungen) OOB: from 29 Tigers and 35 Panzer IIIs he ordered the SchPzAbt to include 45 Tigers alone.

45 Tigers was almost a month's production back then, so replacing and upgrading the 2 battalions lost in Tunisia would take 1.5 months.

So what do we see on the unit level? The Germans never had enough Tigers / panzers to go around. They started with the 501-505 SchPzAbt; 501st and 504th committed to Tunisia, 502nd to AGN, and 503rd and 505th to the Battle of Kursk.

Then the 506th, 507th and 508th were started in May, followed by the 101st and 102nd SS SchPzAbt in July (the 103rd SS SchPzAbt was not equipped with Tigers then) and the 509th in September.

The 6 new battalions might have been established with the new Tiger I acceptances (270 in OOB and 320 produced), but the losses that occured in Africa and Kursk, could not be replaced.

The 510th and the 103rd SS SchPzAbt were equipped with Tigers in 1944; in June and October, respectively.

What I try to say here: Guderian understood that the Germans cannot replace lost tanks with an operational reality like that. Thus it was important to keep relatively combat-ready units with higher authorized panzer count, because that was important for the concentration of forces.

What ljdaw says is this: Guderian thought that units with 400 panzers are better than units with 200 panzers.

Keep in mind that the panzer divisions with 200 panzers had in reality 100 or 150 tops; a theoretical 400 panzer division would average around 200 and maxing around 300; also, there was no sense to maintain small forces and hope that the industry will fill them up; it won't.

It leads us back to the larger strategic picture: the Germans had to conserve their strength and pick battles with losses that the industry and training system can replace. They didn't so they were forced to fight with understrength units and curtailed crew training.
Setting up new divisions when you are unable to keep the existing experienced ones up to strength was always wrong. Guderian was correct when he wanted no new units set up. A waste of resources.
Ah: the myth of Hitler wasting resources by creating new PzD .
There were 21 PzD at the start of Barbarossa ;the new ones were not created for Barbarossa .Two of them were disbanded in 1943 .
Of the newcomers (22-27 ) 22 + 27 were also disbanded in 1943 and there were also 7 ( only 7 ) SS PzD
Germany ended the war with some 30 PzD ,which was not too much, because even more were needed ,as the Western Front needed more PzD .
It is also not so that the old ones were experienced : most of the men of the existing PzD were dead,wounded, missing or were transferred to the new divisions .The LSS was experienced in the Summer of 1944 ,but received as replacements men without experience from the LW .
With only 10 PzD not only would Germany have lost the war in 1941, but ,it could even not protect the conquered territories in 1940,even without war with the SU.
After winning the war in 1940,Hitler planned an army of 120 divisions ( this was too high ) ,but these 120 divisions could not occupy and defend the conquered territories AND at the same time protect the border with the USSR : more mot.and panzer divisions were needed .

ljadw
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Posts: 11582
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Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by ljadw » 13 Feb 2021 15:01

Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 13:37
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
More tanks meaning higher operational availability is theory .
Theory???
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
A higher tank production does not mean more trained crews.
Who told that the Germans should spend 1943 with training and refitting? Guderian.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
It does also not mean more tanks on the front , [...]
Yes it does. The Germans never faced the problem that they had too many tanks at the factory yards, but they lacked the train capacity to get them to the front.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
to have more operational tanks you need more supplies,
It depends on what your tanks are doing. If your X*2 number of tanks do the same thing as your X number of tanks, then you need more supplies. If your X*2 number of tanks are recuperating, training, etc. then then don't necessarily need more supplies.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
And a tank unit with more tanks would advance slower .
I already told you that it's not true. Or please specify what do you mean by "advance".

1 A tank production of 10000 tanks instead of 6000 tanks does not mean that there would be 4000 more operational tanks on the front .
2 If the Germans lacked the capacity to transport 4000 additional tanks to the front ,these tanks would remain behind the front and would not be operational .
3 About training and refitting : it took more time to train a tank crew than to build a tank .
4 If your X *2 number of tanks are training and refitting, they are not operational .On June 6 1944 the LSS was training and refitting but was not operational .
5 100 tanks will advance slower than 50 tanks, the same for 100 trucks : 100 tanks with 100 trucks need more supplies to advance than 50 tanks with 50 supplies .But as the road space is limited ,to supply 100 tanks and 100 trucks will result in jams and heavy traffic .
If a column of hundred tanks /trucks needs 10 km of road space and if the average speed is 10 km per hour ,after one hour the first tank/truck will have done 10 km while the last one will still be at the start point .
A column of 50 tanks/trucks will need less road space and less time .
The smaller the unit, the faster the advance .
A column of 50 tanks will need less time to cross a bridge than a column of 100 tanks .
Small convoys go faster than big convoys .

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Aida1
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Posts: 1284
Joined: 04 Aug 2019 08:46
Location: Brussels

Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2021 15:55

ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 14:25
Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 13:28
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 12:46
Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:13
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 09:56
I still don't know why we are arguing about Guderian? He wasn't in the decision making position in 1940 and his suggestions were not tried out in 1943's reality. Actually, the opposite was done with abysmal results.
Producing more tanks is in sync with the thinking of Guderian and others like him so it is relevant. He was certainly the best to be put in charge of the Panzertruppen.
I see.

When Guderian was appointed on 01/03/1943, the Germans were evacuating the Rhzev salient (just finished with evacuating the Demyansk pocket), retaking Kharkov and committing to Tunisia.

After the snow and dust settled, Guderian suggested that the German panzer forces should recuperate, train, conserve strength and reorganize. If necessary, conduct an orderly, fighting retreat to stronger defensive positions to the D-D line.

Instead, by May 1943 the Germans lost an army and an air fleet in Tunisia, for essentially nothing; including 2 Heavy Panzer Battalions (501st and 504th).

Then they've lost an insane amount of panzers in the battle of Kursk, and threw half-trained units at the Wallies in Italy.

So what actually happened in 1943 was entirely against Guderian's wishes.

For example, he reorganized the Heavy Panzer Battalions' (Schwere Panzer Abteilungen) OOB: from 29 Tigers and 35 Panzer IIIs he ordered the SchPzAbt to include 45 Tigers alone.

45 Tigers was almost a month's production back then, so replacing and upgrading the 2 battalions lost in Tunisia would take 1.5 months.

So what do we see on the unit level? The Germans never had enough Tigers / panzers to go around. They started with the 501-505 SchPzAbt; 501st and 504th committed to Tunisia, 502nd to AGN, and 503rd and 505th to the Battle of Kursk.

Then the 506th, 507th and 508th were started in May, followed by the 101st and 102nd SS SchPzAbt in July (the 103rd SS SchPzAbt was not equipped with Tigers then) and the 509th in September.

The 6 new battalions might have been established with the new Tiger I acceptances (270 in OOB and 320 produced), but the losses that occured in Africa and Kursk, could not be replaced.

The 510th and the 103rd SS SchPzAbt were equipped with Tigers in 1944; in June and October, respectively.

What I try to say here: Guderian understood that the Germans cannot replace lost tanks with an operational reality like that. Thus it was important to keep relatively combat-ready units with higher authorized panzer count, because that was important for the concentration of forces.

What ljdaw says is this: Guderian thought that units with 400 panzers are better than units with 200 panzers.

Keep in mind that the panzer divisions with 200 panzers had in reality 100 or 150 tops; a theoretical 400 panzer division would average around 200 and maxing around 300; also, there was no sense to maintain small forces and hope that the industry will fill them up; it won't.

It leads us back to the larger strategic picture: the Germans had to conserve their strength and pick battles with losses that the industry and training system can replace. They didn't so they were forced to fight with understrength units and curtailed crew training.
Setting up new divisions when you are unable to keep the existing experienced ones up to strength was always wrong. Guderian was correct when he wanted no new units set up. A waste of resources.
Ah: the myth of Hitler wasting resources by creating new PzD .
There were 21 PzD at the start of Barbarossa ;the new ones were not created for Barbarossa .Two of them were disbanded in 1943 .
Of the newcomers (22-27 ) 22 + 27 were also disbanded in 1943 and there were also 7 ( only 7 ) SS PzD
Germany ended the war with some 30 PzD ,which was not too much, because even more were needed ,as the Western Front needed more PzD .
It is also not so that the old ones were experienced : most of the men of the existing PzD were dead,wounded, missing or were transferred to the new divisions .The LSS was experienced in the Summer of 1944 ,but received as replacements men without experience from the LW .
With only 10 PzD not only would Germany have lost the war in 1941, but ,it could even not protect the conquered territories in 1940,even without war with the SU.
After winning the war in 1940,Hitler planned an army of 120 divisions ( this was too high ) ,but these 120 divisions could not occupy and defend the conquered territories AND at the same time protect the border with the USSR : more mot.and panzer divisions were needed .
Here you contradict yourself as you stated that more tanks were not be possible as you needed other assets then which allegdedly were not :lol: :lol: available. :) But Germany did set up new Pz Div which implies that the assets were available.
It would have been better to use these resources to keep the existing ones up to strength. If you have difficulty keeping up to strength existing units, you should not create more. It is not about the number of divisions’ it is about how strong they are.
Pretty funny that you pretend Germany needed more divisions which implies pretending that you could set them up with resources you pretended were not available to strengthen existing divisions. :lol: Actually cheaper in resources to replace losse in existing divisions.

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Aida1
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Posts: 1284
Joined: 04 Aug 2019 08:46
Location: Brussels

Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by Aida1 » 13 Feb 2021 16:05

ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 15:01
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 13:37
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
More tanks meaning higher operational availability is theory .
Theory???
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
A higher tank production does not mean more trained crews.
Who told that the Germans should spend 1943 with training and refitting? Guderian.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
It does also not mean more tanks on the front , [...]
Yes it does. The Germans never faced the problem that they had too many tanks at the factory yards, but they lacked the train capacity to get them to the front.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
to have more operational tanks you need more supplies,
It depends on what your tanks are doing. If your X*2 number of tanks do the same thing as your X number of tanks, then you need more supplies. If your X*2 number of tanks are recuperating, training, etc. then then don't necessarily need more supplies.
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:59
And a tank unit with more tanks would advance slower .
I already told you that it's not true. Or please specify what do you mean by "advance".

1 A tank production of 10000 tanks instead of 6000 tanks does not mean that there would be 4000 more operational tanks on the front .
2 If the Germans lacked the capacity to transport 4000 additional tanks to the front ,these tanks would remain behind the front and would not be operational .
3 About training and refitting : it took more time to train a tank crew than to build a tank .
4 If your X *2 number of tanks are training and refitting, they are not operational .On June 6 1944 the LSS was training and refitting but was not operational .
5 100 tanks will advance slower than 50 tanks, the same for 100 trucks : 100 tanks with 100 trucks need more supplies to advance than 50 tanks with 50 supplies .But as the road space is limited ,to supply 100 tanks and 100 trucks will result in jams and heavy traffic .
If a column of hundred tanks /trucks needs 10 km of road space and if the average speed is 10 km per hour ,after one hour the first tank/truck will have done 10 km while the last one will still be at the start point .
A column of 50 tanks/trucks will need less road space and less time .
The smaller the unit, the faster the advance .
A column of 50 tanks will need less time to cross a bridge than a column of 100 tanks .
Small convoys go faster than big convoys .
But you pretend Germany needed more Pz Div and had the resources to set these up. :lol:
About the speed of a division you get it wrong too. Even if it advances in one column on one road, then the front of the column wil not get less far because the column is longer in a stronger division. the tail Will simply arrive later. You also conveniently forget that your 100 tanks do not need to drive in one column. Depends on terrain.
Specifically a stronger Pz Div would imply more tank batallions and these would not advance one behind the other.

ljadw
Member
Posts: 11582
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: The Germans increase Panzer production in the Summer of 1940

Post by ljadw » 13 Feb 2021 21:31

Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 15:55
ljadw wrote:
13 Feb 2021 14:25
Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 13:28
Peter89 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 12:46
Aida1 wrote:
13 Feb 2021 10:13


Producing more tanks is in sync with the thinking of Guderian and others like him so it is relevant. He was certainly the best to be put in charge of the Panzertruppen.
I see.

When Guderian was appointed on 01/03/1943, the Germans were evacuating the Rhzev salient (just finished with evacuating the Demyansk pocket), retaking Kharkov and committing to Tunisia.

After the snow and dust settled, Guderian suggested that the German panzer forces should recuperate, train, conserve strength and reorganize. If necessary, conduct an orderly, fighting retreat to stronger defensive positions to the D-D line.

Instead, by May 1943 the Germans lost an army and an air fleet in Tunisia, for essentially nothing; including 2 Heavy Panzer Battalions (501st and 504th).

Then they've lost an insane amount of panzers in the battle of Kursk, and threw half-trained units at the Wallies in Italy.

So what actually happened in 1943 was entirely against Guderian's wishes.

For example, he reorganized the Heavy Panzer Battalions' (Schwere Panzer Abteilungen) OOB: from 29 Tigers and 35 Panzer IIIs he ordered the SchPzAbt to include 45 Tigers alone.

45 Tigers was almost a month's production back then, so replacing and upgrading the 2 battalions lost in Tunisia would take 1.5 months.

So what do we see on the unit level? The Germans never had enough Tigers / panzers to go around. They started with the 501-505 SchPzAbt; 501st and 504th committed to Tunisia, 502nd to AGN, and 503rd and 505th to the Battle of Kursk.

Then the 506th, 507th and 508th were started in May, followed by the 101st and 102nd SS SchPzAbt in July (the 103rd SS SchPzAbt was not equipped with Tigers then) and the 509th in September.

The 6 new battalions might have been established with the new Tiger I acceptances (270 in OOB and 320 produced), but the losses that occured in Africa and Kursk, could not be replaced.

The 510th and the 103rd SS SchPzAbt were equipped with Tigers in 1944; in June and October, respectively.

What I try to say here: Guderian understood that the Germans cannot replace lost tanks with an operational reality like that. Thus it was important to keep relatively combat-ready units with higher authorized panzer count, because that was important for the concentration of forces.

What ljdaw says is this: Guderian thought that units with 400 panzers are better than units with 200 panzers.

Keep in mind that the panzer divisions with 200 panzers had in reality 100 or 150 tops; a theoretical 400 panzer division would average around 200 and maxing around 300; also, there was no sense to maintain small forces and hope that the industry will fill them up; it won't.

It leads us back to the larger strategic picture: the Germans had to conserve their strength and pick battles with losses that the industry and training system can replace. They didn't so they were forced to fight with understrength units and curtailed crew training.
Setting up new divisions when you are unable to keep the existing experienced ones up to strength was always wrong. Guderian was correct when he wanted no new units set up. A waste of resources.
Ah: the myth of Hitler wasting resources by creating new PzD .
There were 21 PzD at the start of Barbarossa ;the new ones were not created for Barbarossa .Two of them were disbanded in 1943 .
Of the newcomers (22-27 ) 22 + 27 were also disbanded in 1943 and there were also 7 ( only 7 ) SS PzD
Germany ended the war with some 30 PzD ,which was not too much, because even more were needed ,as the Western Front needed more PzD .
It is also not so that the old ones were experienced : most of the men of the existing PzD were dead,wounded, missing or were transferred to the new divisions .The LSS was experienced in the Summer of 1944 ,but received as replacements men without experience from the LW .
With only 10 PzD not only would Germany have lost the war in 1941, but ,it could even not protect the conquered territories in 1940,even without war with the SU.
After winning the war in 1940,Hitler planned an army of 120 divisions ( this was too high ) ,but these 120 divisions could not occupy and defend the conquered territories AND at the same time protect the border with the USSR : more mot.and panzer divisions were needed .
Here you contradict yourself as you stated that more tanks were not be possible as you needed other assets then which allegdedly were not :lol: :lol: available. :) But Germany did set up new Pz Div which implies that the assets were available.
It would have been better to use these resources to keep the existing ones up to strength. If you have difficulty keeping up to strength existing units, you should not create more. It is not about the number of divisions’ it is about how strong they are.
Pretty funny that you pretend Germany needed more divisions which implies pretending that you could set them up with resources you pretended were not available to strengthen existing divisions. :lol: Actually cheaper in resources to replace losse in existing divisions.
It is NOT about how strong they are ( and more tanks per division would not make them stronger ) : it is about the number of divisions .The number of units : Rommel wanted to disband the existing PzD in Normandy and to use them as non mobile artillery ,divided over the coast ,because 20 tanks with one infantry batallion would be better at StMére LÉglise on June 6 1944 ,than a PzD of 400 tanks arriving on June 16 .
Rommel was right, Guderian, as usual,was wrong .
Germany needed some 20 PzD in Normandy/Pas de Calais ,each with some 100 tanks,to stop the allies : not 5 PzD with 400 tanks.
Guderian lived in the past : Germany could not afford big tank battles,and thus not PzD of 400 tanks who would fail to arrive, to operate, t win .
Because : the Allies had air superiority and because Germany was on the defensive .
Even in 1941 the Ostheer was better of with 17 PzD of 200 tanks than with 8 PzD of 400 tanks .Divisions with 400 tanks could not operate in the USSR . The Soviets tried,but failed .
All German PzD had in June 1941 each less tanks than the 1 Mechanised Corps,which had 2 tank divisions and one Mechanised division :
1 and 3 tank division and 168 mechanised division .
Manpower of this MC (3 divisions! ) was 31,439 men and its 2 tank divisions (each some 10000 men ) had together 1037 tanks ,thus each more than 500 tanks .
The result of all this was that 1 MC was disbanded on August 41 ,after 6 weeks of fighting !
And this was what Guderian wanted to parrot . And his 400 tank PzD would have suffered the same fate as the Soviet tank divisions .
Thus : under the bus with Guderian .

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