Panzerwrecks 16, pages 37, 39, 57 & 87/88 – updates

Rudi Schoeters dropped me a line a wee while back (March!) about some of the vehicles in Panzerwrecks 16: Bulge, and only now do I get the time to add his information to the blog. Over to Rudi:

Page 37
The Pz.Beob.Wg.III in Houffalize: the top left pic shows clearly that this vehicle has two different types of idlers the early closed one and the later spoked idler, 
the sprockets are both of the early design for 36 cm tracks but they were updated by adding spacer rings tot the sprocketrings to take the 40 cm tracks.

Page 39
Tiger 411: in the caption you’ve stated that the outer wheels have been removed  …….mmm the pic fooled you …. all the wheels are still there, only the hubcaps were removed.

Page 57
Pz.Kpfw.IV 322:  the hubcaps have been removed from all the roadwheel and even from the sprocket. 
btw: other pics of this panzer IV show the same knight insignia on the turretschürze as on the Panzer IV shown on page 86.

Page 87/88
Pz.Bef.Wg.IV: this vehicle still exist and is now part of the collection of the Brussels tank museum( now it resides in the Heinz barracks in Bastogne and will get some restoration). 
Initially it was put on display at APG  in Aberdeen,  with its turret pointed at 6 o’ clock. Later on ( possibly late 70’s )it was handed over to the BWB in Koblenz. In the early 80’s it came to the Brussels tank Museum. A matching recognition point is that the front part of the turretschürze was hit and misses a small chunk of metal. When, I inspected this vehicle several years ago I’ve  noticed that even the interior was still in a rather complete state but the elements did their part to sheet metal parts like treadplates etc. This vehicle must have been taken very soon after its capture to the collection point so there was no opportunity for looting it as was most often the case with Bulge relics that were left on site. 

Panzerwrecks 16, pages 5, 70 and 71 – a failed matchup

We try our best to pull together as many views of a tank as we can. Sometimes we pull it off, sometimes we don’t. And sometimes we only get it partially right. Randy Roy touched base to tell us that the ‘old hare’ Pz.Kpfw IV on page 5 of Panzerwrecks 16 is actually the same as that shown on pages 70 & 71. Read on: “Thanks for another welcome edition of Pz Wrks. A kaleidoscope of mechanized destruction! The high definition clarity of the photos is amazing! Again revealing the minute details of our valiant history from seventy years past. I hope to see the Bulge 2 in the near future. Lucky for uncle Adolph he didn’t win and take Antwerp, possibly winning the atom bomb sweepstakes!

Addition: The ” old hare” Pz IV hybrid Ausf. F2 ( Ausf. G) on page 70,71 also appears on Page 5. Compare the:
-Steel return rollers, ( rare on this Ausf.)
-The back folded 8mm turret schurtzen with AP round damage.
-Spare track lying across the side fender.
-Twisted rear side fender section.
-Turned up front fender.
-Main gun at maximum elevation.
-Open engine access hatch ( GI holding handle).

The page 5 photo was taken first, then later moved off the side of the road, to the page 70/71 location.”

Thanks Randy

Q&A with Hilary Doyle Regarding Motor Sounds of “Disguised” German AFVs.

Q: [to Hilary]: I have never been to a military vehicle
rally / museum opening where German tanks in running
condition were put through their paces alongside a
Sherman or two. Do German tank motors (StuG, Panther
in particular) have a distinct motor sound as opposed to
a Sherman or M10?

The reason I ask is that we are in the throes of yet
another PW, and this latest one is on the Bulge and I
was thinking that a Panther or StuG disguised as an
American tank would still sound like a German tank, even
at a distance. Thoughts?

A. This is a great question and I have to admit I never stopped to think about it.
  A Maybach HL 230 V12 creates an amazing sound, very high pitched and prone
  to violent back fires.  It is more like a racing car motor …. Makes my hair
  stand on end for sure.  As there is no silencing on the HL 230 they make a
  big noise compared to truck or halftrack motors.  The HL 120 in a StuG does
  have some silencing.
  But in my experience the motor sound is only part of the overall racket
  created by a tracked vehicle. The gear whine, the screech of track links on
  the sprocket and especially the impact of the tracks on the differing
  ground would constantly change and complicate the sound signature.
  A “very” experienced person would be able to pick out that Maybach sound
  from the sounds produced by the variety of Allied petrol engines let alone
  diesel motors.  If you are inside an armoured vehicle you can hear nothing
  other than the noise of you own vehicle – an intercom and hand signals are
  the only method of communication.  I could not believe the interior noise
  of the Tiger I at Bovington.
  I suppose I am just not sure where or what type of soldier would get the
  experience I mention above to be able to pick out different vehicles.
  Don’t forget that variants of vehicles are appearing all the time.
  Battle hardened troops might be able to say “those are kraut tanks starting
  up” as they themselves started to shake but I think they might be guided
  more by direction from where the sound came. I am not too sure the average
  soldier would be able to pick out the specific noise.

Our thanks to Hilary for sharing his observations with us!

Randy Roy Matches Up a Wreck or Two in “Panzerwrecks 16.”

Thanks for another welcome edition of Pz Wrks. The “old hare” Pz IV hybrid Ausf. F2 (Ausf.G) on page 70, 71 also appears on Page 5.
Compare the:
1. Steel return rollers, (rare on this Ausf.)
2. The back-folded 8mm turret schürzen with AP round damage.
3. Spare track lying across the side fender.
4. Twisted rear side fender section.
5. Turned up front fender.
6. Main gun at maximum elevation.
7. Open engine access hatch (GI holding handle).
The page 5 photo was taken first, then later moved off  the side of the road, to the page 70/71  location.

Our thanks to Randy for bringing this match-up to our attention. You’re hired, Randy!