How many 88s did Rommel had?

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KarlvonRanger
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How many 88s did Rommel had?

Post by KarlvonRanger » Mon Jan 15, 2007 9:21 am

For the Crusader battles, when the British were being decimated against the defensive line of the Afrika Korps, how many 88's did he have? :roll:

David W
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Post by David W » Mon Jan 15, 2007 1:57 pm

The Crusader battles were very fluid, are you sure that you don't mean Battleaxe?
Thanks. Dave.

KarlvonRanger
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Re: How many 88s did Rommel had?

Post by KarlvonRanger » Tue Jan 16, 2007 5:08 am

KarlvonRanger wrote:For the Crusader battles, when the British were being decimated against the defensive line of the Afrika Korps, how many 88's did he have? :roll:
If you have info on Battleaxe. Just generally want to know the quantity. Were there 20 88s? 50, 100?

Rich
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Re: How many 88s did Rommel had?

Post by Rich » Tue Jan 16, 2007 7:57 am

KarlvonRanger wrote:
KarlvonRanger wrote:For the Crusader battles, when the British were being decimated against the defensive line of the Afrika Korps, how many 88's did he have? :roll:
If you have info on Battleaxe. Just generally want to know the quantity. Were there 20 88s? 50, 100?
20 September 1941 is the closest I have to hand.

Panzergruppe Afrika:
Heeres-Flak-M.G.-Btl. 612 (mot.)
1. Komp. (12 2cm)
2. Komp. (12 2cm)
3. Komp. (sunk)
DAK:
Heeres-Flak-M.G.-Btl. 606 (Sfl.)
1. Komp. (12 2cm)
2. Komp. (12 2cm) (not yet arrived)
3. Komp. (12 2cm)
I./LW-Flak-Regt. 18 (gem. mot.)
1. Battr. (4 8.8cm)
2. Battr. (4 8.8cm)
3. Battr. (4 8.8cm)
4. Battr. (12 2cm)
5. Battr. (12 2cm)
I./LW-Flak-Regt. 33 (gem. mot.)
1. Battr. (4 8.8cm)
2. Battr. (4 8.8cm)
3. Battr. (4 8.8cm)
4. Battr. (12 2cm)
5. Battr. (12 2cm)

Ron Klages
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Operation Battleaxe

Post by Ron Klages » Tue Jan 16, 2007 11:49 am

KarlvonRanger,

Here is some detail regarding Operation Battleaxe where the 88s gained fame.

Best regards,

Ron Klages

After recapturing the Halfaya Pass on 27 May 1941 the Germans established the following defensive positions stretching 25 kilometers inland from the Halfaya Pass.

• Sollum-Halfaya Pass Gruppe consisting of:
1./Schützen-Regiment 104
3./Schützen-Regiment 104
4./Schützen-Regiment 104
I./Flak-Regiment 33 with:
1 battery of [8] 2cm Flak guns
1 battery of [4] 8.8cm Flak guns

• Point 208 8 kilometers west of Capuzzo consisting of:
4..(MG)/Kradschützen-Bataillon 15
I./Flak-Regiment 33 with:
1 battery of [2] 2cm Flak guns
1 battery of [4] 8.8cm Flak guns
Panzerjager-Abteilung 33 with [1] 5cmPak and [3] 3.7cm Pak

• Point 206 8 kilometers south of Capuzzo consisting of:
Reinforced company from Kradschützen-Bataillon 15
I./Artillerie-Regiment 33 with 2 batteries with [8] 10.5cm leFH
Panzerjager-Abteilung 33 with [3] 5cmPak and [3] 3.7cm Pak
I./Flak-Regiment 33 with 1 battery of [2] 2cm Flak guns

• There were also several positions held by Italian forces, primarily artillery that I have not detailed.

In addition to the above positions the Germans also had the following mobile defensive forces.

• Mobile Infantry Reserve consisting of:
The remainder of Kradschützen-Bataillon 15
3./Artillerie-Regiment 33 with [4] 10.5cm leFH
I./Flak-Regiment 33 with [9] 2cm Flak guns

• Panzer Striking Force consisting of:
I./ and II./Panzer-Regiment 8
2./Schützen-Regiment 104
1 company from Kradschützen-Bataillon 15
1 company from Panzerjager-Abteilung 33
I./Flak-Regiment 33 with [8] 2cm Flak guns and [4] 8.8cm Flak guns


This data indicates that there were [12] 8.8cm Flak guns positioned on the line and here are the results:

On 15 June 1941 at Halfaya the [4] 88s knocked out 14 of the 20 British tanks that attacked in this area.

At Point 208 on 15 June 1941 the British attacked with 45 tanks and were able to silence one of the 88s but it was brought back to action before later attacks made that day in the area by the British. In all 19 British tanks were knocked out by the 88s in this area during the day.

At Point 206 the Paks knocked out 5 British tanks on 15 June 1941 but the position did fall to the British before the day was out. There were no 88s stationed here.

The Panzer-Striking force with its [4] 88s attached managed to destroy 12 British tanks during the attacks on 15 June 1941.

These attacks were to continue for two more days, 16 and 17 June, and the British lost an additional 37 tanks to the 88s from I./Flak-Regiment 33. This was a total of 82 tanks plus they also destroyed 12 other armored vehicles in these three days of fighting. In comparison, the German panzers from Panzer-Regiment 8 on;y claimed 65 kills over armored vehicles. Three British tanks were also credited to the units 2cm Flak guns..

I./Flak-Regiment 33 in these battles reported firing 1,680 rounds of 8.8cm ammo or for every 20 rounds fired they destroyed 1 British tank.

It appears that 3 or 4 of the 88s were damaged and/or destroyed in the fighting while Panzer-Regiment 8 lost [3] Panzer IIs, [4] Panzer IIIs and [1] Panzer IV in the three days of fighting in Operation Battleaxe.

Source of Data is:

Tank Combat in North Africa by Thomas L. Jentz
ISBN: 0-7643-0226-4
Ron Klages
Lynnwood, Washington USA

KarlvonRanger
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Many thanks

Post by KarlvonRanger » Tue Jan 16, 2007 2:17 pm

At best there were no more than 20 (if that) of 88cm anti-tank weapons. No wonder the 88 had such a high reputation.

Reb
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Post by Reb » Wed Jan 17, 2007 10:47 am

KarlvonRanger

The 88s were great but once the Brits learned to use their excellent artillery to shoot 'em up their importance declined immensely.

EG - Normandy. Vet accounts still go on about the deadly 88s but you'll find they often came out of a tank gun (75 / 88 made a similar hole) or PAK 40 with lower profile.

cheers
Reb

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