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Artillery Worth Mentioning - The Sig 33


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I'm currently in a "build 1:35 scale models of artillery" phase of my life - should have tried it much before :)

 

Like the other day when I finished a model of the German sIG 33 15 cm Infantry Gun. Putting a 15 cm shell on a target brings you an obvious advantage but until now I just thought (with the image of a "normal" 155 mm howitzer like the M1 in my mind) that this could rarely be done with the sIG 33.

 

But now seeing the model next to other 1:35 scale models - it is actually quite small and weighs 450 kg (1000 lbs) less than the 105 mm M101A1/M2A1 howitzer (1800 kg vs 2250 kg)! And that one I've manhandled myself - or at least with a few other fellows. Two could change direction of the howitzer, four would with hard work move it, and the entire crew of eight would bring it almost anywhere relatively fast. I haven't found data on the crew size for a sIG 33, but I suppose gathering eight men to push it into firing position wouldn't be a problem - either way. BTW the sIG 33 has a frontal profile smaller than that of a 6 pdr. ATG!

 

Too me that well explains why the Germans built more than 4000 of this gun - 1800 kg appear a very handy way to have heavy fire support well forward and available.

 

I still suppose that the ideal firing position of an infantry gun, be it the sIG 33 or the much smaller 7,5 cm lIG 18 would be in some suppression in the ground where you wouldn't have to worry about enemy direct fire (and benefitting from the curved trajectory of a howitzer), but at what range could an infantry gun expect to hit a point target like a pillbox? And to what degree was elevation 45 degrees plus used?

 

Usually WWII field artillery at normal combat ranges (several km/miles) would have a CEP of around 50m of the individual shell, which would make it meaningless to try hitting a point target, but does anybody know how close the infantry guns needed to go to expect to hit a point target? (sIG had a max range of 4,7 km). After all you only had two sIG 33 in the infantry gun company and two guns doesn't give much "area fire".

 

Next honorary mention will be on the Soviet 122 mm 1938 M-30.

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I'm currently in a "build 1:35 scale models of artillery" phase of my life - should have tried it much before :)

 

Like the other day when I finished a model of the German sIG 33 15 cm Infantry Gun. Putting a 15 cm shell on a target brings you an obvious advantage but until now I just thought (with the image of a "normal" 155 mm howitzer like the M1 in my mind) that this could rarely be done with the sIG 33.

 

But now seeing the model next to other 1:35 scale models - it is actually quite small and weighs 450 kg (1000 lbs) less than the 105 mm M101A1/M2A1 howitzer (1800 kg vs 2250 kg)! And that one I've manhandled myself - or at least with a few other fellows. Two could change direction of the howitzer, four would with hard work move it, and the entire crew of eight would bring it almost anywhere relatively fast. I haven't found data on the crew size for a sIG 33, but I suppose gathering eight men to push it into firing position wouldn't be a problem - either way. BTW the sIG 33 has a frontal profile smaller than that of a 6 pdr. ATG!

 

Too me that well explains why the Germans built more than 4000 of this gun - 1800 kg appear a very handy way to have heavy fire support well forward and available.

 

I still suppose that the ideal firing position of an infantry gun, be it the sIG 33 or the much smaller 7,5 cm lIG 18 would be in some suppression in the ground where you wouldn't have to worry about enemy direct fire (and benefitting from the curved trajectory of a howitzer), but at what range could an infantry gun expect to hit a point target like a pillbox? And to what degree was elevation 45 degrees plus used?

 

Usually WWII field artillery at normal combat ranges (several km/miles) would have a CEP of around 50m of the individual shell, which would make it meaningless to try hitting a point target, but does anybody know how close the infantry guns needed to go to expect to hit a point target? (sIG had a max range of 4,7 km). After all you only had two sIG 33 in the infantry gun company and two guns doesn't give much "area fire".

 

Next honorary mention will be on the Soviet 122 mm 1938 M-30.

 

Better than a 120mm mortar in the end?

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That was a good one and copied for this reason but are they completable? IGs were meant for direct fire both at pillboxes and the then very lightly protected tanks.

 

There must have been something right with them to stay in production in the end of the war. Guns for the various SP versions?

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I'm currently in a "build 1:35 scale models of artillery" phase of my life - should have tried it much before :)

 

Like the other day when I finished a model of the German sIG 33 15 cm Infantry Gun. Putting a 15 cm shell on a target brings you an obvious advantage but until now I just thought (with the image of a "normal" 155 mm howitzer like the M1 in my mind) that this could rarely be done with the sIG 33.

 

But now seeing the model next to other 1:35 scale models - it is actually quite small and weighs 450 kg (1000 lbs) less than the 105 mm M101A1/M2A1 howitzer (1800 kg vs 2250 kg)! And that one I've manhandled myself - or at least with a few other fellows. Two could change direction of the howitzer, four would with hard work move it, and the entire crew of eight would bring it almost anywhere relatively fast. I haven't found data on the crew size for a sIG 33, but I suppose gathering eight men to push it into firing position wouldn't be a problem - either way. BTW the sIG 33 has a frontal profile smaller than that of a 6 pdr. ATG!

 

Too me that well explains why the Germans built more than 4000 of this gun - 1800 kg appear a very handy way to have heavy fire support well forward and available.

 

I still suppose that the ideal firing position of an infantry gun, be it the sIG 33 or the much smaller 7,5 cm lIG 18 would be in some suppression in the ground where you wouldn't have to worry about enemy direct fire (and benefitting from the curved trajectory of a howitzer), but at what range could an infantry gun expect to hit a point target like a pillbox? And to what degree was elevation 45 degrees plus used?

 

Usually WWII field artillery at normal combat ranges (several km/miles) would have a CEP of around 50m of the individual shell, which would make it meaningless to try hitting a point target, but does anybody know how close the infantry guns needed to go to expect to hit a point target? (sIG had a max range of 4,7 km). After all you only had two sIG 33 in the infantry gun company and two guns doesn't give much "area fire".

 

Next honorary mention will be on the Soviet 122 mm 1938 M-30.

 

Better than a 120mm mortar in the end?

 

For surpressing fire, no. Mortars are second to none if you need to quickly hurl a lot of fire in the general direction of the enemy, but quite ill suited to produce direct hits on point targets (WWII artillery was too btw). But I take that both the 7,5 cm and the 15 cm infantry guns were so much more accurate that you with a single gun could engage point targets and destroy them with direct hits. That is a great asset, and the Wehrmacht kept mortars and infantry guns alongside. I would think this asset would be most valuable on the offensive however, and you can wonder how much the Wehrmacht needed offensive assets in the last years of the war - but I suppose they to the last hoped tomorrow would be better?

 

NB: I will not be on-line the next five days - go hunting roe-buck and wild boar in NE Germany. :)

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62pshJ.jpg

 

AaBHzH.jpg

 

 

Crew: 8 ROF: 4rpm

Pen 51mm [HEAT 185mm]

barrel is 11 calibers long

Had a 2m long periscope sight for direct fire from defilade

 

Thanks!

The 2 m periscope is very interesting. Clearly point to this gun utilising its curved trajectory for "direct fire from hidden position". I still wonder though how accurate it was, but considering its low velocity, short (stiff) barrel and heavy projectile I wouldn't be surprised if you inside a range of a km or two could hit the openings in a pillbox.

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That was a good one and copied for this reason but are they completable? IGs were meant for direct fire both at pillboxes and the then very lightly protected tanks.

 

There must have been something right with them to stay in production in the end of the war. Guns for the various SP versions?

 

Yes, I used to simply not understand why they bothered to field two such heavy guns so well forward - until I found out that they weren't that heavy at all and how they were deployed. You can wonder though, how useful it was in a defensive fight? But OK, it was there and crews were trained and a two gun barrage is better than a no gun barrage - and the Regimental commander had his hands on it.

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In many ways was this not the weapon mounted on the Sturmpanzer 43 or Sd.Kfz. 166 Brummbar ?

 

It used the same projectiles, but the Brummbar one was a Skoda design.

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62pshJ.jpg

 

AaBHzH.jpg

 

 

Crew: 8 ROF: 4rpm

Pen 51mm [HEAT 185mm]

barrel is 11 calibers long

Had a 2m long periscope sight for direct fire from defilade

 

 

The lower picture is of a captured French 220 mm howitzer in German service: "Matériel de 220 mm court modèle 1916". (a 5 ton beast)

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That was a good one and copied for this reason but are they completable? IGs were meant for direct fire both at pillboxes and the then very lightly protected tanks.

 

There must have been something right with them to stay in production in the end of the war. Guns for the various SP versions?

 

Here's the dynamic with large shell throwing things, and why they're popular: When you fire a shot on the battlefield, regardless of size, you attract all sorts of negative attention. So you'd best get effective results most ricky tic. This is why the "stowed kills" and other silly REMF metrics always pissed me off so greatly when used to rationalize all sorts of sub-par equipment. S/F....Ken M

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That was a good one and copied for this reason but are they completable? IGs were meant for direct fire both at pillboxes and the then very lightly protected tanks.

 

There must have been something right with them to stay in production in the end of the war. Guns for the various SP versions?

 

Here's the dynamic with large shell throwing things, and why they're popular: When you fire a shot on the battlefield, regardless of size, you attract all sorts of negative attention. So you'd best get effective results most ricky tic. This is why the "stowed kills" and other silly REMF metrics always pissed me off so greatly when used to rationalize all sorts of sub-par equipment. S/F....Ken M

 

 

That is a good point. One maybe two shot(s) and then scoot to another position.

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62pshJ.jpg

 

AaBHzH.jpg

 

 

Crew: 8 ROF: 4rpm

Pen 51mm [HEAT 185mm]

barrel is 11 calibers long

Had a 2m long periscope sight for direct fire from defilade

 

 

The lower picture is of a captured French 220 mm howitzer in German service: "Matériel de 220 mm court modèle 1916". (a 5 ton beast)

 

 

I was afraid of that, because the 250th (Spanish) Inf Div of the Wehrmacht was armed with an assortment weapons, some captured foreign, especially when in the siege lines of Leningrad. In this case, I thought the mount and recoil system was the same as the 15 cm IG.

 

 

220mm%20TR%201916%2006.jpg

Edited by Ken Estes
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62pshJ.jpg

 

AaBHzH.jpg

 

 

Crew: 8 ROF: 4rpm

Pen 51mm [HEAT 185mm]

barrel is 11 calibers long

Had a 2m long periscope sight for direct fire from defilade

 

 

The lower picture is of a captured French 220 mm howitzer in German service: "Matériel de 220 mm court modèle 1916". (a 5 ton beast)

 

 

I was afraid of that, because the 250th (Spanish) Inf Div of the Wehrmacht was armed with an assortment weapons, some captured foreign, especially when in the siege lines of Leningrad. In this case, I thought the mount and recoil system was the same as the 15 cm IG.

 

 

220mm%20TR%201916%2006.jpg

 

 

Looks almost antediluvian

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62pshJ.jpg

 

AaBHzH.jpg

 

 

Crew: 8 ROF: 4rpm

Pen 51mm [HEAT 185mm]

barrel is 11 calibers long

Had a 2m long periscope sight for direct fire from defilade

 

 

The lower picture is of a captured French 220 mm howitzer in German service: "Matériel de 220 mm court modèle 1916". (a 5 ton beast)

 

 

I was afraid of that, because the 250th (Spanish) Inf Div of the Wehrmacht was armed with an assortment weapons, some captured foreign, especially when in the siege lines of Leningrad. In this case, I thought the mount and recoil system was the same as the 15 cm IG.

 

 

220mm%20TR%201916%2006.jpg

 

 

Looks almost antediluvian

 

 

But with a good punch :-)

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It seems that the German heavy/superheavy artillery went to the siege ofSebastopol (80cm, 60 cm, 42 cm, 25 cm, 28 cm etc)

 

And that captured material (mostly French and Chech (or ex- Austro hungarian) ended up on the Leningrad front:

 

22 cm, 28 cm, 40 cm French howitzers, 155, 194, 240 mm, 274 mm, 305 mm, 320 mm, 340 mm French guns (and as lighter guns fo: the first battery of self propelled artillery guns in German service: 105 mm 1916 guns on captured British mk VI light tanks.

 

42 cm, 38 cm, 24 cm Cech-ex Astrohungarian) howitzers and 24 cm long range guns....

 

so there was SOME organisation in this mess of different artillery types....

Edited by Inhapi
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After Sebastopol, the 11th Army HQ and the siege arty [not the 80cm] went to Leningrad for Operation Northern Light, the final assault on that city, which was effectively turned off by Russian spoiling offensives.

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After Sebastopol, the 11th Army HQ and the siege arty [not the 80cm] went to Leningrad for Operation Northern Light, the final assault on that city, which was effectively turned off by Russian spoiling offensives.

 

I know that that was planned, but given the long preparation time to bring most of these guns into action (eg the 42 cm gamma and 28 cm howitzers needed to have a massive concrete base poured, which took about a week for the gamma howitzer/mortar) did any of these guns ever go into action against Leningrad ?

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Perhaps not as intended. The great bombardment was scheduled to begin 23 Aug 42, but the Russians began their spoiling offensive at Sinyavino - Mga on 19 August. After defeating the various Russian attacks, Manstein's 11th Army units were too depleted to execute Operation Northern Light.

 

I doubt that the siege guns were fired before 19 August, as it would only reveal their positions. So I doubt they did anything other than firing in general support for the Leningrad Front.

 

There are certainly records of the guns in the Captured German Documents of WWII collections in most national archives and on microfilm. But I studied the Leningrad front records only for the foreign volunteer units that happened to be there. Manstein's memoir makes mention but it is not normally to be relied upon.

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I know that the lang range guns (i.e. the French 155mm, 194 mm ad several types of RR guns + the Chzech 24 cm were used in support operations. in fact they fired so often that the 24 cm long range guns did have barrel/cradle/base box replacements several times.

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