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German Balkenkreuz

Germany's Gepanzerter Selbstfahrlafette für Sturmgeschütz 7.5 cm Kanone Ausf B; Sturmgeschütz III Ausf B, SdKfz 142

Design

Very similar to the StuG III Ausf A with some minor chassis variations. Was built on the PzKpfw III Ausf F chassis.

Had improvements in the drive train. Some had a 6 drive sprocket and an 8 spoke idler.

Usage

There were 7 Sturmartillerie batteries and 4 assault artillery detachments (each with 3 batteries) raised by the end of 1940. Two Sturmartillerie Abteilung were used in the Balkans and 6 were used in the invasion of Russia in June 1941.

Specifications

  StuG III Ausf B
Crew 4
Radio FuG15, FuG16
Physical Characteristics  
Weight 20.7 metric tons, 22 metric tons
20.2 tons
Length 5.4 m, 5.49 m
Height 1.95 m, 1.98 m
Width 2.92 m, 2.93 m
Width over tracks  
Ground clearance 0.36 m
Ground contact length 2.86 m
Ground pressure 0.9 kg/cm2, 0.96 kg/cm2
Armament (mm)  
Main 75 mm StuK37 L/24
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Quantity  
Main 44
Secondary  
MG  
Side arms  
Armor Thickness (mm)  
Hull Front, Upper 50@10°
Mantlet: 50@15°
Hull Front, Lower 50@21°
Hull Sides, Upper 30@0° + 9@30°
Hull Sides, Lower 30@0°
Hull Rear 30@30° + 10°
Hull Top 11@78-90° @ 17@85°
Hull Bottom 16@90°
Superstructure Front  
Superstructure Sides  
Superstructure Rear  
Superstructure Top  
Engine (Make / Model) Maybach HL 120 TRM
Bore / stroke  
Cooling  
Cylinders  
Capacity  
Net HP  
Power to weight ratio  
Compression ratio  
Transmission (Type) Pre-selective, 6 forward, 1 reverse.
Synchromesh, ZF SSG 77, 6 forward, 1 reverse.
6 forward, 1 reverse.
Aphon synchromesh gearbox
Steering  
Steering ratio  
Starter  
Electrical system  
Ignition  
Fuel (Type)  
Octane  
Quantity 320 liters
Road consumption 100 km/195 liters
Cross country consumption  
Performance  
Traverse 12° left, 12° right, hand.
Speed - Road 40 kph
Speed - Cross Country 10-12 kph, 24 kph
Range - Road 155 km, 160 km, 164 km
Range - Cross Country 95 km
Turning radius 5.8 m
Elevation limits -10° to +20°
Fording depth 0.8 m
Trench crossing 2.3 m
Vertical obstacle 0.6 m
Climbing ability  
Suspension (Type)  
Wheels each side  
Return rollers each side  
Tracks (Type)  
Length  
Width 40 cm
Diameter  
Number of links  
Pitch  
Tire tread  
Track centers/tread 2.5 m

Sources:

  1. Encyclopedia of German Tanks of World War Two, Peter Chamberlain and Hilary Doyle, 1999
  2. German Tanks of World War II, Dr. S. Hart & Dr. R. Hart, 1998
  3. Profile, AFV Weapons #55, German Self-Propelled Weapons, Peter Chamberlain, H.L. Doyle, 1973
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site