Pendraken Miniatures Forum
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
18 October 2021, 05:19:57 PM

Login with username, password and session length
Search:     Advanced search
Libertad!, our Spanish Civil War supplement is now available!
331857 Posts in 18926 Topics by 2334 Members
Latest Member: Jemima Fawr
* Home Help Search Calendar Login Register
+  Pendraken Miniatures Forum
|-+  Pendraken Rules!
| |-+  Blitzkrieg Commander IV
| | |-+  BKC-IV Rule Queries
| | | |-+  How to bet through bocage without the Cullen cutter?
« previous next »
Pages: [1] 2 Go Down Print
Author Topic: How to bet through bocage without the Cullen cutter?  (Read 1322 times)
holdfast
Captain
*
Posts: 331


« on: 12 April 2021, 10:20:03 AM »

Thinking about early days in Normandy when the difficulty of getting through the hedges was discovered.
What did they do until the Cullen prongs were cobbled together and how long did that process take?
Options seem to be:
Sherman with dozer blade, one per squadron I think but was it one per regiment? Certainly not enough.
Flail
AVRE Petard gun
Normal tank gun firing HE: but if that had worked well then the Cullen prongs would not have needed to be invented.
Armoured bulldozer
Looking forward to receiving the collective wisdom!



Logged
holdfast
Captain
*
Posts: 331


« Reply #1 on: 12 April 2021, 10:20:50 AM »

Or perhaps, how to get through bocage!
Logged
Orcs
Lieutenant General
*
Posts: 5444

Thread Derailment Specialist


« Reply #2 on: 12 April 2021, 11:02:01 AM »

They used explosives initially. Dozer tanks worked , but there were only four dozer tanks per US tank Battalion.

This is a very interesting read

https://www.armyupress.army.mil/Portals/7/combat-studies-institute/csi-books/Doubler-Bocage.PDF
Logged

The cynics are right nine times out of ten. -Mencken, H. L.
holdfast
Captain
*
Posts: 331


« Reply #3 on: 12 April 2021, 12:05:41 PM »

very good indeed. Very many thanks.
The irony is that the US units that were stationed in the West Country before D Day were in terrain that greatly resembled bocage but didn't use it for training in, due in part to sensitivity over damage.
Logged
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Playtester
Field Marshal
*
Posts: 10747



WWW
« Reply #4 on: 12 April 2021, 12:40:58 PM »

In most places a Sherman could climb the hedge, but it exposed the belly with minimal armour (10mm?) with the obvious consequence.
Logged

FOG IN CHANNEL - EUROPE CUT OFF HURRAY
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Muppet of the year 2019, 2020 and 2021
Orcs
Lieutenant General
*
Posts: 5444

Thread Derailment Specialist


« Reply #5 on: 12 April 2021, 02:56:07 PM »

In most places a Sherman could climb the hedge, but it exposed the belly with minimal armour (10mm?) with the obvious consequence.

Provided the lane/road was wide enough. Some of the roads were barely wide enough for a hose and cart, and no room for the tank to even swivel round on its tracks.

Another thing to remember is that a lot of the fields only had an entrance for a horse and small cart, nothing like what we consider to be a farm gate. Some only had pedestrian access
Logged

The cynics are right nine times out of ten. -Mencken, H. L.
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Playtester
Field Marshal
*
Posts: 10747



WWW
« Reply #6 on: 12 April 2021, 03:13:00 PM »

Provided the lane/road was wide enough. Some of the roads were barely wide enough for a hose and cart, and no room for the tank to even swivel round on its tracks.

Another thing to remember is that a lot of the fields only had an entrance for a horse and small cart, nothing like what we consider to be a farm gate. Some only had pedestrian access

Indeed, but if the lane was that narrow the Cullin device would be difficult to use. Any opoening would give you sumat to drive at.
Logged

FOG IN CHANNEL - EUROPE CUT OFF HURRAY
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Muppet of the year 2019, 2020 and 2021
Big Insect
Colonel
*
*
*
Posts: 1314


« Reply #7 on: 12 April 2021, 03:33:07 PM »

The Cullin was fine, but often (as stated above) even if you got through the hedging and dry-stone wall ok - the tank was faced with as much as a 10-12 foot drop onto the lane on the other side, and the lane was not wide enough for the tank to bridge it either.

Explosive charges were often used to blow the hedges & walls into the lanes to allow the tanks to drive down and onto the lane, but to then go across the other hedge on the other side was another challenge. It could take hours to go a few 100 yards - longer if you were under fire. 
Logged
holdfast
Captain
*
Posts: 331


« Reply #8 on: 12 April 2021, 07:54:35 PM »

Did the Piat or the Bazooka work against stone walls? The Milan turned into a bunker buster much later.
Logged
Orcs
Lieutenant General
*
Posts: 5444

Thread Derailment Specialist


« Reply #9 on: 12 April 2021, 08:18:05 PM »

The Bazooka,PIAT and Milan all work on the 'hollow charge' principle that is designed to send a concentrated blat  through a hard surface to damage /injure anything soft on the inside. Hence why they work on Bunkers. penetration is measured in inches or a couple of 100mm

Boccage is several feet of earth  matted together with roots of the hedge and trees that would absorb most of the blast. You might blast a few bits of the stone wall off  but not much more.
Logged

The cynics are right nine times out of ten. -Mencken, H. L.
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Playtester
Field Marshal
*
Posts: 10747



WWW
« Reply #10 on: 13 April 2021, 06:49:24 AM »

Doubt that WWII IAT would have much effect on a bocage hedge since they lack specialist HE rounds. Modern stuff does have them but given the weight of the rounds few can be carried.
Logged

FOG IN CHANNEL - EUROPE CUT OFF HURRAY
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Muppet of the year 2019, 2020 and 2021
sultanbev
Playtester
Lieutenant Colonel
*
Posts: 815



« Reply #11 on: 13 April 2021, 11:41:10 AM »

Looking at combat footage it was common practice to use bazookas, PIAT, Panzershreck, Panzerfausts, etc against hard structures, even if it wasn't in the manuals or doctrine training. As long as the HEAT round hits something hard like a brick, wooden post, sandbag or steel plate, it would go off, make a fairly small hole, then blast out the other side, giving a chance of causing infantry casualties on the other side.

I did find out recently that PIATs and bazookas were also used against anti-tank guns, especially 88mm flak guns, either by hitting the gun shield and causing crew casualties and possibly gun damage on the other side of the shield, or hitting a hard object that the gun is hiding behind ( a barn door in one case), or hitting the gun directly, the resulting blast being sufficient to knock out the crew and/or damage the gun.

The Milan in the Falklands is a famous example of using HEAT rounds against bunkers. In Afghanistan and Iraq, 66mm LAWs have proven ideal for urban combat, such that they later invented thermobaric warheads variants for enhanced effect.

HEAT rounds however would have little effect on bocage hedge. If you fire at the hedge itself, it's unlikely to hit something hard enough to set off the warhead, and it will head off in a direction other than the one you aimed at, on the other side after deflecting off branches. If you fire at the earth berm underneath, it is far too thick to go through and you'll just get a clump of earth thrown up on your side of the hedge.

I did find a study online, Busting the Bocage - Army University Press, I have tried to attach it but it's too big; link here:
https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=&ved=2ahUKEwiIksWdgPvvAhXf_7sIHfldBY4QFjAFegQIChAD&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.armyupress.army.mil%2FPortals%2F7%2Fcombat-studies-institute%2Fcsi-books%2FDoubler-Bocage.PDF&usg=AOvVaw0EFWzlktoCkSGzn0Tbklg6

Logged
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Playtester
Field Marshal
*
Posts: 10747



WWW
« Reply #12 on: 13 April 2021, 12:15:48 PM »

That link works Mark
Logged

FOG IN CHANNEL - EUROPE CUT OFF HURRAY
Lord Kermit of Birkenhead
Muppet of the year 2019, 2020 and 2021
steve_holmes_11
Brigadier
*
Posts: 1638


« Reply #13 on: 13 April 2021, 01:52:52 PM »

The Bazooka,PIAT and Milan all work on the 'hollow charge' principle that is designed to send a concentrated blat  through a hard surface to damage /injure anything soft on the inside. Hence why they work on Bunkers. penetration is measured in inches or a couple of 100mm

Boccage is several feet of earth  matted together with roots of the hedge and trees that would absorb most of the blast. You might blast a few bits of the stone wall off  but not much more.

I once read a piece describing the effect of 105 Vs 155 shells on tough targets.
A lengthy list of mostly concrete buildings and the effect - generally:
   105: Same building with a few cracks.
   155: A crater filled with rubble.


The Bocage sounds like one of the candidates for 155, through this has a number of rather obvious problems.
1. Our American friends lacked Ivan's foresight in installing a 6 inch gun in an armoured vehicle, so you're limited by all sorts of safety clearances.
2. The difficulty of finding a sufficiently long sight line to plant the shell into the base of the mound.
3. The fact that the area is being contested, so likely to be swarming with friendlies.

I suspect the poor old engineers were required to make a small hole, pack it with explosives, retire and pull the string.


The British, of course had their "flying dustbin" which might have been useful against the earthworks on the far side of the field, but they were tied up around Caen.
The Germans also had some armoured bunker busters which might have done the job, but they were on the defensive.
Logged
holdfast
Captain
*
Posts: 331


« Reply #14 on: 13 April 2021, 09:09:18 PM »

So Follow the Sapper - again!
Logged
Pages: [1] 2 Go Up Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!