In his case he is investigating how many tanks were destroyed, so it is important to know what the inventory was at certain points to see what the write offs were, what the replacements sent were and how they impacted the overall inventory, and what repairs were for whatever reason, as each day more were returned to operational status. As he says it is 'deep research' so you need all sorts of info to figure out what he was looking for.Tom from Cornwall wrote: ↑24 Dec 2021 16:36Because I would have thought the most important number would be that of tanks available for combat per day. Wheatley's "inventory" includes tanks which are in (or waiting for) short- and long-term repair and therefore not available for combat.
Of course. But he lists what is operational as well; it is helpful to note how the list of operational and non-operational AFVs changes over time and how quickly units get back into operational status, as an AFV taken out of action for 24 hours vs. 3 weeks is important especially if you want to investigate how many long term repairs there were and could later be written off.Tom from Cornwall wrote: ↑24 Dec 2021 16:36A panzer division's "inventory" could be large, but its fighting potential could nevertheless be small if a significant proportion of its tanks were not available for combat, i.e. operational.
Depends on what the Soviet repair system was. It is not a subject I've studied in detail given the lack of sources in English about it. I would assume it is possible they could rebuild units at factories once the front stabilized enough in 1943 for them to start recovering knocked out units for repair, since that was a 'luxury' not often available in 1941-42. As your Dupuy links mention though there were army and Front tank depots, so there was probably the ability to do more maintenance there that was impossible in the field, but it sounds like they would only have the capabilities that a German field repair unit would have; it doesn't tell us though if the knocked out AFV returned to the army or Front would be 'written off' though or if that would mean it could be counted as 'destroyed' by Krivosheev later on. The part 2 link does mention that replacement tanks were just as important as the repair services, but no mention of factory rebuilds.Tom from Cornwall wrote: ↑24 Dec 2021 16:36Isn't it possible, though, that a tank "written off" by the Guards Tank Army was subsequently repaired by a higher level formation? And subsequently issued to front-line troops again?
However a broader strategic view of the subject is probably helpful there, as Krivosheev list something like 96,600 AFVs (tanks+spgs) the Soviets fielded in WW2 as destroyed out of around 115,000 AFVs (not including L-L AFVs) produced/on hand from 1939-45. That tracks with the horrific losses of the Soviet tank service, as roughly 75% of everyone who fought in a Soviet tank died. 300,000 out of 400,000 men. Not casualties, died. Wounded were included in the 100,000 survivors. It then tracks that the vast majority of Soviet AFVs in WW2 were destroyed given the extreme death rate of Soviet tank crews. Walter Dunn's book on the Red Army is my source, but that info can also be found on this forum with a forum search.
So rather than rebuilding wrecks the Soviets simply built more tanks, hence their very high output of tanks during the war. It was probably cheaper than trying to salvage burned out units, since given the cramped conditions in side a penetrating shot would generally do pretty catastrophic damage, especially with 75mm and 88mm (or calibers above that) that the Germans used. Given the death rate of Soviet tank crews this bears out statistically.
This video has some info too and another source I haven't read yet, but will look up later today for more info: