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"In CoC can Germans use the elefant?" Topic


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1,015 hits since 20 Oct 2017
©1994-2017 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Bravo Two Zero21 Oct 2017 1:54 p.m. PST

Cannot find the Elefant in an arsenal Table. Are there stats for this breakthrough tank and if so which add on do need<

Thank you

Jonathan H

Fred Cartwright21 Oct 2017 2:13 p.m. PST

No idea about CoC, but it wasn't a break through tank or assault gun. It was envisioned as a long range tank destroyer, in which role it was an adequate design. The 2 battalions used at Kursk, were misemployed. The crews weren't trained in the assault gun role and the vehicle was a poor design for that role. The 88L71 gun wasn't great for engaging the sort of targets assault guns need to deal with.

JimDuncanUK21 Oct 2017 2:39 p.m. PST

Am fairly sure the Chain of Command was never conceived with an Elefant in mind.

I'm sure a Lardy will be along shortly to help you out.

Neal Smith21 Oct 2017 4:24 p.m. PST

It's not in the "main rules" and I don't think any of the existing supplements, but…

I created, a few years ago, a Consolidated Arsenal where we (the community) gathered all of the existing vehicles and fixed the inconsistencies between the different places they were found.

Since then, we've also updated a lot of them for the newest version of the CoCulator (rules to determine stats…) and we've also been adding "missing" vehicles and guns, etc.

It can be found here:

link

PLease add comments if you find typos, errors, additions, etc. Thanks!

saltflats192921 Oct 2017 5:43 p.m. PST

Maybe the stats are in "They couldn't hit an Elefant"?

mwindsorfw Supporting Member of TMP21 Oct 2017 6:10 p.m. PST

I could imagine an episode where the Soviets are trying to capture or destroy one.

tyroflyer221 Oct 2017 8:18 p.m. PST

@ Neal Smith. I'm reluctant to change your spread sheet but I suggest the Polish tank 9TP didn't exist. You won't find it in the recent Osprey publication Polish Armor of the Blitzkrieg and I can't find it in Polish websites on the subject either.

Also the wz29 Ursus armoured car appears to have a turret mounting a cannon in one end and a machine gun in the other. Presumably the gunner would choose which weapon was best at the time with the machine gun not necessarily fired to the rear of the vehicle. An additional machine gun was mounted in the rear of the armoured car and fired independently of the turret weapons. I'm not sure the spread sheet reflects this.

Neal Smith21 Oct 2017 9:25 p.m. PST

@tyroflyer2 It's only editable by me. You can leave a "comment" on the item(s) that you find issues with.

tyroflyer221 Oct 2017 9:28 p.m. PST

Further to the above, derela.republika.pl indicates publications suggesting the eleven 7TP tanks delivered during September 1939 were 9TP's 'may only be regarded as ungrounded wishful thinking'.

PS thanks Neal. I hadn't seen your message when I posted this

Bravo Two Zero22 Oct 2017 6:07 a.m. PST

simple question spurred on some great conversation.

@Neal--That s a Gold Mine of information.

just started CoC and I see shelves full of models that I would love to use in some games.

Elefant will be used in retreat from Warsaw, crossing the Oder, Warthe Rivers. Then see were we are--Kustrin.

Thank you to everyone that took time to respond. That link from Neal is saved.

Jonathan

Garth in the Park22 Oct 2017 6:24 a.m. PST

For scenario scale accuracy, set up the Elefant model at the end of your street. Then walk back down the block to your house and set up the rest of the game.

Bravo Two Zero22 Oct 2017 6:37 a.m. PST

@Garth--This is what I use my carport for. Kidding of course.

with the way CoC has you spend the support points only a mad man would use them all on a Tiger or elefant. The base Platoon suffers if one of these are taken. The monsters only have select targets each turn. Where your platoon gets chwed up. will take my Pzr III and IVs to fill the role.

JH

Neal Smith22 Oct 2017 8:30 a.m. PST

We only bring out stuff like this when we do Big CoC games! :)

Bravo Two Zero22 Oct 2017 8:51 a.m. PST

I want to have the basics down. then maybe the first snow we bundle up and take about 5 german and 20 Soviet and play in fresh snow. Use Big CoC for that.

Still the issue: Germans in winter kt are 2 Marders and 3 nashorn. Still the front t back yard kills.

CoC scales at everything is in range for AT. So does Big CoC have range.

Sorry for 90 questions. Will just go and DL it now.

JH

batesmotel3422 Oct 2017 10:07 a.m. PST

You could justify using the Ferdinand at Kursk for the northern front. There it seems they were used along with Sturmpanzer IVs (nee Brumbar) in fairly close support with the attacking infantry. The Ferdinand was a weird hybrid with a weapon at its best standing off at long range and with armour that made it relatively invulnerable to appropriate to use as a breakthrough vehicle. The biggest problems at Kursk with them were mechanical reliability.

Chris

Neal Smith22 Oct 2017 11:11 a.m. PST

No Big CoC uses the same rules, but puts a little more structure and "balance" around the multi-platoon battle.

christot22 Oct 2017 12:14 p.m. PST

Big Coc just plays on a somewhat larger table, but at a groundscale of 40 yards = 12" the ranges are all still very close for armour, it is still an infantry game. Armour is a supporting player, and, quite rightly, highly vulnerable.
If you want Elephants et all on table, that's fine, but you need to accept that once infantry (and ATGs) get that close, no AFV's are the all-powerful beasts they are when the enemy is 1,000 yards + away

blank frank23 Oct 2017 4:04 a.m. PST

I thought at Kursk some Elephants ended up stranded in a minefield surrounded by Russians. Who were attempting to sneak Infantry to climb on them with cans of petrol. Meanwhile Panzer Genadiers were trying to break through to save them. Sounds like a great scenario to me. With lots of shell holes, some of the Elephants being immobilised with limited traverse. I'm lead to believe the Elephants didn't have a MG. I think a battle with even one Elephant would work here.

Neal Smith23 Oct 2017 7:09 a.m. PST

Yep, the original Elefant did not have MGs. One was added to the Ferdinand version.

Mark 1 Supporting Member of TMP23 Oct 2017 10:29 a.m. PST

I can't hardly resist the opportunity to discuss the Elefant -- even if I can't offer any opinion / guidance on how to use it in CoC.

Yep, the original Elefant did not have MGs. One was added to the Ferdinand version.

I think you have the sequence backwards. It was called the Ferdinand when first introduced (1943). It was renamed Elefant in its revised format (1944), which included a ball-mounted hull machine gun.

And … I have read that even the original Ferdinands did have a machine gun. Typically an MG-34. The problem was how to mount it and fire it.

It seems that the crews (or designers?) came up with the concept of firing an MG-34 down the main gun barrel. There was a mount constructed that allowed the crew to insert the MG into the open breech of the gun, and then ratatat away.

(After reading how crews criticized the hull MGs on several tanks for being impossible to fire accurately, I gotta wonder about this scheme …)

My recollection is not clear about whether this novel concept was already in use by the time of the Kursk engagements, or whether it came about as a response to that experience. Truth is, given how slowing the beast moved, how big it was (limiting pivot capabilities in any of a variety of terrains), and how limited the side and rear visibility was, I don't see a ball-mounted hull MG as that big of an improvement. In either case, the primary utility seemed to have been "scratching the back" of platoon/battery -mates -- that is to say spraying bullets directly at friendly vehicles to prevent them being swamped by infantry. There is little to suggest the MGs were envisaged engaging enemy infantry targets deliberately as anything other than a last-ditch defense.

BTW – in Forczyk's recent book "Tank Warfare on the Eastern Front 1943-1945" (the second of his two-book sequence) he provides some interesting perspective on the cost of the 91 Ferdinands/Elefants that were produced. It seems that the one new mega-factory that the Germans built for tank construction during WW2, the Nibelungenwerke in Austria, was instructed to give priority to Ferdinand Porsche and his VK 4501 (P) (the losing Tiger tank concept, that Porsche put into production on speculation prior to losing the design competition, and that was thereafter modified to become the Ferdinand/Elefant).

Nibelungenwerke had been constructed to build Pz IVs. The factory had been scheduled to build 1,800 Pz IVs in 1942. But after being re-directed to prioritize Porsche's fantasies the factory instead built 91 Ferdinand / Elefants, and all of 186 Pz IVs, during 1942.

So one can make the case that those 91 beasts cost the Werhmacht something more than 1,600 Pz IVs. That would be enough Pz IVs to build 10 new Panzer Divisions, or perhaps bring 15 to 20 beaten-up Panzer Divisions up to something like full strength, in the second half of 1942 and the first half of 1943. Which was the critical period in time in which the war turned, in which the Germans transitioned from being the winningest army in history to the losingest army in history.

Puts an interesting perspective on the costs of the Nazi leadership's "big and scary" fetish.

-Mark
(aka: Mk 1)

Neal Smith23 Oct 2017 11:42 a.m. PST

Yes, I'm sorry… I'm getting old.

Mark 1 Supporting Member of TMP23 Oct 2017 11:49 a.m. PST

I'm getting old.

Well, I fear there are many of us who might need to use that rational from time to time…

But really, I have trouble keeping the sequence straight too. So I kind of play it by reputation … after their showing at Kursk, who would WANT their name associated with it? Yeah, maybe we should just rename it "big slow lumbering beast". Too long? OK, find a big slow lumbering beast to name it after…

(See, now you will never forget the sequence of the names. Provided, of course, that I got it right in the first place, which, as my first comment should demonstrate, is anything but a sure bet.)

;)

-Mark
(aka: Mk 1)

kabrank24 Oct 2017 5:38 a.m. PST

Currently, until April 2019, An Elephant [on loan from USA] is on display at Bovington Tank Museum [UK] as part of the new Tigers display

Well worth a visit and interesting to see in the actual Metal rather than at 1/72 etc [visited twice so far!!]

deephorse24 Oct 2017 6:51 a.m. PST

A suggestion that a machine gun be carried that could be inserted into the gun tube was made in a report by the Armour Officer of the Chief of Army General Staff following a visit to the Ferdinand and Sturmpanzer battalions, dated 1 September 1943. This was one of many critical modifications recommended.

Combat History of s.Pz.Jg.Abt.653 by Munch

Murvihill24 Oct 2017 8:45 a.m. PST

"Nibelungenwerke had been constructed to build Pz IVs. The factory had been scheduled to build 1,800 Pz IVs in 1942. But after being re-directed to prioritize Porsche's fantasies the factory instead built 91 Ferdinand / Elefants, and all of 186 Pz IVs, during 1942.

So one can make the case that those 91 beasts cost the Werhmacht something more than 1,600 Pz IVs. That would be enough Pz IVs to build 10 new Panzer Divisions, or perhaps bring 15 to 20 beaten-up Panzer Divisions up to something like full strength, in the second half of 1942 and the first half of 1943. Which was the critical period in time in which the war turned, in which the Germans transitioned from being the winningest army in history to the losingest army in history."

Somebody (can't remember where I read it but didn't want anyone to think I'm taking credit) pointed out that by the end of the war the Germans were running out of exotic metals (like nickel) and their tanks, guns and ammunition suffered for it. Then they said if the Germans had built more tanks earlier they would have run out of exotic metals faster. Interesting to try to process that.

christot24 Oct 2017 9:55 a.m. PST

The figure of 1600 PIV's in place of 91 Ferdinand is pretty speculative. it relies on the dubious assumption that the factory would have hit its target in the first place, whether they had the raw materials or indeed fuel and logistic support for 1600 more lesser panzers, I wonder how many more trucks could have been built instead of 91 Elefant?

Nonetheless, it's an old point that is worth repeating, German ( well, hitter's) numerous vanity projects , in tank, naval and aviation production cost Germany overall, but the wrong decisions were taken long before the advent of the Elefant.

Mobius24 Oct 2017 9:58 a.m. PST

The Ferdinands did well enough at Kursk. There were just too many mines and too many enemy guns and tanks to deal with. The Russians targeted the slow moving Ferdinands with all their heavy artillery so their friends avoided being close to them. If the Germans had developed some effective mine clearing vehicles the tanks might not have been bogged down in minefields.

1600 Panzer IV?
Does anyone check these numbers?
1600 x 115,962 = 185,539,200 / 91 = 2,038,892.
A tiger II is only 321,500. If you believe a Ferdinand costs more than 6 times a Tiger Ii I have a Bridge in Brooklyn that I want to sell you.

christot24 Oct 2017 10:30 a.m. PST

"with the way CoC has you spend the support points only a mad man would use them all on a Tiger or elefant. The base Platoon suffers if one of these are taken. The monsters only have select targets each turn. Where your platoon gets chwed up. will take my Pzr III and IVs to fill the role."

Getting vaguely back on track:
Yes, and no.
There is quite a good argument to have 1 powerful support option over 2 or 3 weaker ones given that you will rarely have sufficient command dice if you have lots of different supports, of course, it all depends on the scenario and the number of support points available. It's particularly different in big CoC games.
On the whole, I would agree with you, but sometimes, having 1 big beast you can keep constantly in action is preferable to having a couple of lesser ones you can't.
One of the many beauties of CoC

Mark 1 Supporting Member of TMP24 Oct 2017 10:38 a.m. PST

The figure of 1600 PIV's in place of 91 Ferdinand is pretty speculative. … whether they had the raw materials or indeed fuel and logistic support for 1600 more lesser panzers, I wonder how many more trucks could have been built …?

Nonetheless, it's an old point that is worth repeating… the wrong decisions were taken long before the advent of the Elefant.


Agree that the figure of 1,600 more Pz IVs is not a locked-in deal.

But agree even more with the closing perspective. Whether 1,600 is the right number or not is less to the point. It was a dot in a pattern … a pretty big dot, but the overall pattern is the more important issue.

U.S. and Soviet leadership focused on building mega-factories. They both made decisions, which we second-guess daily, always with the priority of keeping the production lines running to meet aggressive production quotas. Germany managed to build all of one significant new tank factory during the war, and then made a sequence of decisions that prevented the use of that factory for mass production of tanks. From mid-1942 onward the Panzer Divisions were seldom at more than 1/2 to 2/3rds strength.

The U.S. and the Soviet Union had leadership that understood the nature of warfare in the industrial age. Germany did not. Warfare was an assembly line for the Americans and the Russians. It was a craft for the Germans.

And so Germany, a nation that was the world's 2nd largest industrial economy, a nation that led the world in the theory of operational-level warfare, tank design, and tank tactical combat skills, was a distant 4th in terms of tank production.

The Ferdinands did well enough at Kursk.

They did about as well as Char-Bs and Mathildas in France, and KVs in the Ukraine. That is to say they lumbered about, made small tactical gains that endured for periods of time measured in hours at best but made for interesting anecdotes, and achieved nothing operationally before they were overwhelmed or bypassed.

Put 3 or 4 fully equipped Panzer Divisions in their place and consider the likely results.

-Mark
(aka: Mk 1)

deephorse24 Oct 2017 10:54 a.m. PST

Does anyone check these numbers?
1600 x 115,962 = 185,539,200 / 91 = 2,038,892.
A tiger II is only 321,500. If you believe a Ferdinand costs more than 6 times a Tiger Ii I have a Bridge in Brooklyn that I want to sell you.

What are these numbers? Reichmarks or CoC support points? It would help to know.

christot24 Oct 2017 11:01 a.m. PST

321,500 CoC support points… I think that might be pushing the envelope beyond what the lardies had in mind. …..

deephorse24 Oct 2017 11:51 a.m. PST

It's not a game I play!

Mobius25 Oct 2017 5:42 a.m. PST

The price in Reichsmarks (RM)


Stug III Ausf G 82500 with armament & radio
PzKpfw IV Ausf F2 115962 with armament & radio
75mm KwK 37 L/24 8000
75mm StuK 37 L/24 9150
75mm StuK 40 L/43 12500
75mm KwK 42 L/70 12000
PzKpfw VI Tiger 250800 w/o armament & radio / 299800 with armament & radio
PzKpfw VI Tiger II 321500 with armament & radio

I haven't found the price for the Ferdinand. As this was built in two goes. 100 Tiger chassis were built in an initial order. But the Krupp turret would not fit. So instead of scrapping the chassis 91 were converted to SP vehicles.

Fred Cartwright25 Oct 2017 8:04 a.m. PST

Put 3 or 4 fully equipped Panzer Divisions in their place and consider the likely results.

Probably not much difference at Kursk. What the Germans lacked was good infantry in sufficient quantities. Not that they should have attacked at all at Kursk, but that's a whole different discussion.

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