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Author Topic: How many PIATs  (Read 250 times)
T13A
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« on: 13 September 2020, 08:45:36 AM »

Hi

In fact what percentage of infantry platoons do you normally upgrade with hand held anti-tank weapons be they PIAT's, Bazooka's, Panzerfaust's etc?

I have normally gone for upgrading around one in three, but I have noticed that in the excellent lists I have from Mark Bevis (43rd Wessex Div, 1st Airborne Div, US 28th Infantry Div) every platoon in the infantry formations is upgraded with infantry anti-tank weapons.

Obviously thinking in the scale that BKC is normally played at (and I have stuck with BKC-II).

Grateful for any thoughts.

Cheers (pondering) Paul   :- 
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ianrs54
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« Reply #1 on: 13 September 2020, 10:01:58 AM »

This one is difficult. The PIAT was not issued at platoon level, rather the company had 3 teams avaliable for use as required. In general I'd use 1 per platoon for simplicity.
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Steve J
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« Reply #2 on: 13 September 2020, 10:10:15 AM »

I go for one platoon per company and have a figure on the base to denote it. Works for me.
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FierceKitty
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« Reply #3 on: 13 September 2020, 11:27:03 AM »

...would Pi-ank-eye putt, if Pi-anke-ye could putt PIATs?
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FierceKitty
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« Reply #4 on: 13 September 2020, 11:28:06 AM »

Hmmm, it's better with Putin, isn't it?
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sultanbev
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« Reply #5 on: 13 September 2020, 09:44:29 PM »

Official allocation was 1 per platoon in NW Europe, but there is anecdotal evidence that some units "acquired" or were issued more, allowing one per section at least in some companies of the battalion. Also, in any British battalion attack, some parts were Left Out of Battle (LoB), ie parts of each platoon and company were kept in the rear so that at least there was a cadre of experienced troops to rebuild the shattered platoons after the next failed or costly attack. Doubtless some battalion and company commanders would keep all the allocation of PIATs to the forward units, thereby increasing the number per platoon to 2-3, as the units LoB wouldn't need them. And/or the PIATs of the Carrier Platoon could be distributed to those same platoons, often when the Carriers were only used in medevac or ammo supply roles.

So, there is plenty of justification for a PIAT upgrade for every platoon model in BKC rules. But there is another motivation - why would you want to leave your infantry defencelss against enemy armour in your typical wargame?
Another motivation, not really covered by the rules, is that the PIAT was useful in BUA combat and against bunkers and the like - very often they were used against enemy infantry in buildings, a bit like a direct fire mortar. Being a HEAT round, as long as hit something hard like a house wall, there's a reasonable chance of it doing something nasty to the occupants of the room on the other side of that wall.

As I don't use points values, all my infantry have their allocated anti-tank weapons.

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Steve J
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« Reply #6 on: 13 September 2020, 10:05:16 PM »

I've read of cases in Normandy of the PIATS being left behind as the infantry advanced, to be brought up when on objectives, as need required etc. From memory it was due to their weight, with them coming up in a Carrier. IIRC in one case the carrier was knocked out on route leaving the Company sans PIATs.
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sultanbev
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« Reply #7 on: 13 September 2020, 10:19:56 PM »

Yes, this is true, the opposite also occured.
I suspect similar things were true in most infantry armies lumbered with anti-tank rifles and the like within their standard platoon organisation, as apposed to in dedicated anti-tank units. I guess infantry developed a love-hate relationship with such weapons, as you had to let enemy tanks get damned close if you were to have any effect. And typically most infantry units never saw enemy tanks most of the time, so get into the habit of leaving them behind, until that one bad day enemy armour turned up and you needed them....
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