SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

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Kameraden
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SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

Post by Kameraden » 26 Oct 2015 11:42

Hi

I was watching a documentary last and Himmler was visiting Das Reich on the Eastern Front. I noticed him inspecting a row of tanks and nearest to the camera was a T-34/76. So I assume "DR" was using captured examples to supplement it’s German built panzers and if so how many?

Thanks

Art
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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by Art » 26 Oct 2015 12:03

It is pretty well known that in the summer of 1943 division "Das Reich" had several T-34 in its antitank battalion. The tanks were captured during the February-March campaign. See, for example:
http://www.achtungpanzer.com/panzerkamp ... ervice.htm

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Kameraden
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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by Kameraden » 26 Oct 2015 12:43

Thanks for the reply Art. Although Himmler was all smiles, it must have been sour tasting knowing 1 of your elite formations is having to use captured weapons from the "Untermenschen" because your arnaments industry can't replace losses quick enough.

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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by pintere » 26 Oct 2015 14:27

Kameraden wrote:Thanks for the reply Art. Although Himmler was all smiles, it must have been sour tasting knowing 1 of your elite formations is having to use captured weapons from the "Untermenschen" because your arnaments industry can't replace losses quick enough.
The Germans saw it differently. Any captured weapon that wasn't used was wasted. They actually had a system for classifying and naming captured enemy weapons, some of which (like the Pak 36(r) and Ppsh 41) actually eventually went into fairly widespread use. And of course, the atlantic wall has been compared to a museum of captured allied artillery.

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Kameraden
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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by Kameraden » 26 Oct 2015 16:31

A little screen cap from last nights show. Not sure who the panzer officer is? Tychsen??

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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by dshaday » 28 Oct 2015 00:38

Hi

This site has logs of pictures and information. It is also worth looking at:

http://beutepanzer.ru/Beutepanzer/su/t- ... eich1.html

Many photos and some interesting information. As mentioned in the site, these "German T-34s" as used by Das Reich could have been the best T-34s available at the time. Since each were carefully refurbished by the Germans and modified by them to German operating standards, eg turret hatch with periscopes, all had radios (not just the commander's tank), all had German internal communications for the crew.

Dennis

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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by Alanmccoubrey » 28 Oct 2015 09:52

The T34 in this photograph has not been fitted with German turret hatches, it still retains the large flap .

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Alan

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Kameraden
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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by Kameraden » 28 Oct 2015 11:36

Thanks again for all the replies. I didn't realise they upgraded the tanks with German Equipment apart from Radios. So who is the officer with Himmler? Tychsen?
Last edited by Dieter Zinke on 28 Oct 2015 17:49, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Tychsen - not Tyschen

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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by dshaday » 29 Oct 2015 00:59

Hi
Alanmccoubrey wrote:The T34 in this photograph has not been fitted with German turret hatches, it still retains the large flap .

Image
On pages 3 and 4 of the link I provided, are photos of T-34s with German turret hatch with the periscopes.

http://beutepanzer.ru/Beutepanzer/su/t- ... reich3.htm

Dennis

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Re: Das Reich using T-34's

Post by ML59 » 29 Oct 2015 18:31

dshaday wrote:Hi

This site has logs of pictures and information. It is also worth looking at:

http://beutepanzer.ru/Beutepanzer/su/t- ... eich1.html

Many photos and some interesting information. As mentioned in the site, these "German T-34s" as used by Das Reich could have been the best T-34s available at the time. Since each were carefully refurbished by the Germans and modified by them to German operating standards, eg turret hatch with periscopes, all had radios (not just the commander's tank), all had German internal communications for the crew.

Dennis
The tanks were refurbished in the Karkow tractor factory on an individual basis (there was no common pattern): some had German cupola added, some had not, some were fitted with metal skirts, others were not. Quite strangely, they even differed in insignia and decoration, in other words it seems they were the result of personal preferences of each crew more than anything else.

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Re: SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

Post by dshaday » 30 Oct 2015 13:59

Hi

It may be worth repeating a link to a book previously posted by Orwell1984, that covers the German T34's

http://www.tankograd.com/cms/website.ph ... 34-747.htm

Dennis

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Re: SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

Post by Howling Wolf » 13 Nov 2015 04:03

I have just finished reading Blood Steel and Myth by G.M.Nipe and many of these captured T-34's were used at the battle of Kursk

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Re: SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

Post by valentine III » 18 Mar 2021 19:04

Sorry to resurect this old topic.

As far as I know Das Reich T-34's were used in the Panzerjager abt. and at least in one ocasion were quite useful in destroying soviet tanks. I would like to know if they used soviet F-34 ammunition or german panzergranates (if this were really possible).

Many thanks

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Re: SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

Post by Pips » 19 Mar 2021 00:28

Does the book by Nipe contain any first hand accounts by Panzer crew on the use of the T-34? Did they like it, felt they were saddled with it due to lack of German tank availability? Competed to get one?

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Re: SS-Division "Das Reich" using T-34's

Post by EugE » 19 Mar 2021 13:29

valentine III wrote:
18 Mar 2021 19:04
I would like to know if they used soviet F-34 ammunition or german panzergranates (if this were really possible).
Many thanks
They are used original ammunition for russian tank gun. They are collected them from knoked out soviet tanks.
Look for it and you will find it...

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