Debut: November 2016

 




   

.: Ervin Torok's Stug III F/8

Brand:

Dragon
#6620

Scale:

1/35

Modelling Time:

~ hrs

PE/Resin Detail:

none

Comments:

"out of the box,
scratchbuilt stowage. "

Sturmgeschütz III

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sturmgeschütz III
StuGIII.jpg
StuG III Ausf. F/8 (Sd.Kfz.142/1) at Belgrade Military Museum, Serbia
Type Assault gun
Place of origin Nazi Germany
Service history
In service 1940–1945 (German service)
Syrian StuG IIIs were in use until the Six-Day War (1967), possibly later
Used by See Operators
Wars World War II (Continuation War)
Six-Day War
Production history
Unit cost 82,500 RM
Number built
  • c. 10,086 StuG III
  • c. 1,299 StuH 42[1]
Specifications
Weight 23.9 tonnes (52,690 lbs)
Length 6.85 m (22 ft 6 in)
Width 2.95 m (9 ft 8 in)
Height 2.16 m (7 ft 1 in)
Crew 4

Armour 16 – 80 mm (.62 - 3.15 in)
Main
armament
Secondary
armament
Engine Maybach HL 120 TRM V-12 gasoline engine driving six-speed transmission[3]
300 PS (296 hp, 221 kW)
Power/weight 12 PS (9.2 kW) / tonne
Suspension torsion bar
Operational
range
155 km (96 mi) (.9 mpg‑US(1.1 mpg‑imp; 260 L/100 km) at 22 mph (35 km/h), 71 US gal (59 imp gal; 270 l) fuel)[3]
Speed 40 km/h (25 mph)

The Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) assault gun was Germany's most produced armoured fighting vehicle during World War II. It was built on the chassis of the proven Panzer III tank, replacing the turret with a fixed superstructure mounting a more powerful gun. Initially intended as a mobile, armoured light gun for direct-fire support for infantry, the StuG III was continually modified, and much like the later Jagdpanzer, was widely employed as a tank destroyer.

Development

The Sturmgeschütz originated from German experiences in World War I when it was discovered that, during the offensives on the western front, the infantry lacked the means to effectively engage fortifications. The artillery of the time was heavy and not mobile enough to keep up with the advancing infantry to destroy bunkers, pillboxes, and other minor fortifications with direct fire. Although the problem was well known in the German army, it was General Erich von Manstein who is considered the father of the Sturmartillerie ("assault artillery"). This is because the initial proposal was from (then) Colonel Erich von Manstein and submitted to General Ludwig Beck in 1935, suggesting that Sturmartillerie units should be used in a direct-fire support role for infantry divisions. On 15 June 1936, Daimler-Benz AG received an order to develop an armoured infantry support vehicle capable of mounting a 75 mm (2.95 in) calibre artillery piece. The gun mount's fixed, fully integrated casemate superstructure was to allow a limited traverse of a minimum of 25°[4] and provide overhead protection for the crew. The height of the vehicle was not to exceed that of the average soldier.

Daimler-Benz AG used the chassis and running gear of its recently designed Panzer III medium tank as a basis for the new vehicle. Prototype manufacture was passed over to Alkett, which produced five prototypes in 1937 on Panzer III Ausf. B chassis. These prototypes featured a mild steel superstructure and Krupp’s short-barrelled, howitzer-like in appearance, 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 cannon. Production vehicles with this gun were known as Gepanzerter Selbstfahrlafette für Sturmgeschütz 7.5cm Kanone Ausführung A to D (Sd.Kfz.142).

While the StuG was considered self-propelled artillery, it was not initially clear which land combat arm of the German Army would handle the new weapon. The Panzerwaffe (armoured corps), the natural user of tracked fighting vehicles, had no resources to spare for the formation of StuG units, and neither did the infantry branch. It was agreed, after a discussion, it would best be employed as part of the artillery arm.

The StuGs were organized into battalions (later renamed "brigades" for disinformation purposes) and followed their own specific doctrine. Infantry support using direct-fire was its intended role. Later there was also a strong emphasis on destroying enemy armour whenever encountered.

As the StuG was designed to fill an infantry close support combat role, early models were fitted with a low-velocity 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 gun. Low-velocity shells are lightly built of thin steel and carry a large charge of explosive to destroy soft-skin targets and blast fortifications. Such shells do not penetrate armour well. After the Germans encountered the Soviet KV-1 and T-34 tanks, the StuG was first equipped with a high-velocity 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/43 main gun (Spring 1942) and in Autumn 1942 with the slightly longer 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun. These high-velocity guns were the same guns that were mounted on the Panzer IV for anti-tank use; however the heavy steel wall high-velocity shells carried much less explosive and had a lower blast effect for use against infantry or field fortification. These versions were known as the 7.5 cm Sturmgeschütz 40 Ausf.FAusf. F/8 and Ausf. G (Sd.Kfz.142/1).

When the StuG IV entered production in late 1943 and early 1944, the "III" was added colloquially to the name to separate it from the Panzer IV-based assault guns.[citation needed][original research?]

Beginning with the StuG III Ausf. G from December 1942, a 7.92 mm MG34 machine gun could be mounted on a shield on top of the superstructure for added anti-infantry protection. Some of the F/8 models were retrofitted with a shield as well. Many of the later StuG III Ausf. G models were equipped with an additional coaxial 7.92 mm MG34.

The vehicles of the Sturmgeschütz series were cheaper and faster to build than contemporary German tanks; at 82,500 RM, a StuG III Ausf G was cheaper than a Panzer III Ausf. M, which cost 103,163 RM. This was due to the omission of the turret, which greatly simplified manufacture and allowed the chassis to carry a larger gun than it could otherwise. By the end of the war, ~11,300 StuG IIIs and StuH 42s had been built.[5]

------//--------

Operational history

Overall, the Sturmgeschütz III series assault guns proved very successful and served on all fronts as assault guns and tank destroyers. Because of their low silhouette, StuG IIIs were easy to camouflage and a difficult target. As of April 10, 1945, there were 1,053 StuG IIIs and 277 StuH 42s in service.

The StuG assault guns were cost-effective compared to the heavier German tanks, though in the anti-tank role they were best used defensively, as the lack of a traversable turret was a severe disadvantage in the assault role. As the German military situation deteriorated later in the war, more StuG guns were built compared to tanks, to replace losses and bolster defences against the Allied forces.

In 1943 and 1944, the Finnish Army received 59 StuG III Ausf. Gs from Germany and used them against the Soviet Union. Thirty of the vehicles were received in 1943 and twenty nine in 1944. The 1943 batch destroyed at least 87 enemy tanks for a loss of only 8 StuGs[7] (some of which were destroyed by their crews to avoid capture). The 1944 batch saw no real action. After the war, the StuGs were the main combat vehicles of the Finnish Army until the early 1960s. These StuGs gained the nickname "Sturmi", which can be found in some plastic kit models.

100 StuG III Ausf. G were delivered to Romania in the autumn of 1943. They were officially known as TAs (or TAs T3 to avoid confusion with TAs T4) in the army inventory. By February 1945, 13 units were still in use with the 2nd Armoured Regiment. None of this initial batch survived the end of the war.[8] 31 TAs were on the army inventory in November 1947. Most of them were probably StuG III Ausf. G and a small number of Panzer IV/70 (V), known as TAs T4. These TAs were supplied by the Red Army or were damaged units repaired by the Romanian Army.[9] All German equipment was scrapped in 1954 due to the Army's decision to use only Soviet armour.

StuG IIIs were also exported to other nations, such as Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, and Spain.

Many German StuG IIIs were captured in Yugoslavia by Yugoslav partisans. These were used by the Yugoslav People's Army until the 1950s.

After the Second World War, the Soviet Union donated some of their captured German vehicles to Syria, which continued to use them along with other war surplus armoured fighting vehicles (like long-barrelled Panzer IVs and T-34-85s) during the 1950s and up until the War over Water against Israel in the mid-1960s. By the time of the Six Days War, all of them had been either destroyed, stripped for spare parts, or emplaced on the Golan Heights as static pillboxes.

Variants

Production numbers from Panzer Tracts 23[1]

Stug III Dresden 1.jpg
  • StuG III prototypes (1937, 5 produced on Panzer III Ausf. B chassis): By December 1937, two vehicles were in service with Panzer Regiment 1 in Erfurt. Vehicles had eight road wheels per side with 360-millimetre (14 in) wide tracks, 14.5 mm thick soft steel superstructure and the 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 gun. Although not suitable for combat, they were used for training purposes as late as 1941.

WANT MORE INFO? - GO TO WIKIPEDIA!

Thanks Wikipedia!

Click on each image for a closer look

Box Art:

StuG III Ausf. F/8: (Sd.Kfz 142/1; September–December 1942, 250 produced) Introduction of an improved hull design similar to that used for the Panzer III Ausf. J / L with increased rear armour. This was 8th version of the Panzer III hull, thus the designation "F/8". This hull has towing hook holes extending from side walls. From October 1942, 30 mm thick plates of additional armour were bolted on to speed up the production line. From F/8, the 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun was standard until the very last of the Ausf. G. Due to the lack of double baffle muzzle brakes, a few L/48 guns mounted on F/8s were fitted with the single baffle ball type muzzle brake found in Panzer IV Ausf. F2/G.

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