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Subject: Appeal for information - Marder IIIH & SU-76M in combat rss

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beresford dickens
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These vehicles were used extensively during the war, but I am having difficulty finding any direct accounts of actions involving them (apart from 'World Of Tanks' recaps or 'Saving Private Ryan').

I have read that the Marder III:

1. Was used in the battles of Gazala.
2. Was issued to several SS Divisions, and at least one was lost at Prokhorovka.
3. Was used in the 1st Panzerjaeger company of 352nd Infanterie Division, this company being dispatched towards Vierville to resist the Omaha Beach landings.

The SU-76 is described on the 'I remember, I remember' site as participating in the defense of the (Russian) Dniester bridgehead, though a detailed account seems to have been removed, possibly because somebody has decided to turn it into a book at some future date.
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Stephen Harper
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beresford wrote:
These vehicles were used extensively during the war, but I am having difficulty finding any direct accounts of actions involving them (apart from 'World Of Tanks' recaps or 'Saving Private Ryan').

I have read that the Marder III:

1. Was used in the battles of Gazala.


If I remember correctly from my reading, an earlier mark of the Marder, Marder II, was present at Gazala. Marder IIs, at least those at Gazala, were armed with the Russian 76mm AT gun, and the fighting position was perched higher up on the superstructure than the Marder III and had a smaller gun shield, making it easy to distinguish between the two marks.

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Ron A
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beresford wrote:
These vehicles were used extensively during the war, but I am having difficulty finding any direct accounts of actions involving them (apart from 'World Of Tanks' recaps or 'Saving Private Ryan').

I have read that the Marder III:

1. Was used in the battles of Gazala.


There are Marder IIIs in Tobruk: Tank Battles in North Africa 1942 but I don't know of any actual battle reports mentioning them. They are also mentioned here: http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=56&t=104408 (look at p2), but that forum doesn't list sources and says that no Marders IIIs were in Africa until July.

Good luck with your hunt, these questions you are asking can only mean good things for BoB fans.
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Jason Cawley
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First some background on Marders.

There are Marder IIs, which means a Panzer II chassis, and Marder IIIs, which means a Panzer 38 (t), Czech tank chassis. The II or III designation does not designate a time period or successive models, it only designates which base tank supplied the chassis, and thus which factories they were built in, Panzer II factories or Czech Panzer 38 factories, etc.

Within the IIIs, there are early, H, and M models. The early models all used the Russian 76mm gun, rechambered to take a longer shell case like that used on the German 75mm PAK. So they did not have the ballistics of the original Russian gun. Like the difference between a 38 special and a 357 magnum, the German version had a lot more powder burning behind it and achieved a higher muzzle velocity, thus higher penetration etc.

The H model used the standard German 75mm PAK from the get-go. Otherwise it was similar to the early IIIs.

The M model changed the fighting compartment layout, moving the gun much farther to the rear, and giving a lower overall silhouette. Lots of people confuse the earlier IIIs for Marder IIs, thinking that only the rear fighting compartment marks the IIIs - that actually only appears on the III Ms, which are late model IIIs. They used the PAK 40.

Last, if I haven't confused you enough, there are other types of self propelled 75mm anti tank guns, some of them on French Lorraine chassis e.g., and some not even armored. The DAK had 9 "portee" 75mm PAK on unarmored halftracks, for example, in time for the early 1942 fighting, which are often assumed to be Marders because they are designated 75mm PAK (Sf) on the unit strength, but aren't armored or fully tracked.

DAK got 27 full Marders before Al Alamein, all of them model IIIs with the Russian 76mm gun. Some do appear to have been already available in the summer by the time of the Gazala fighting.
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Christopher O
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Summer grasses / All that remains / Of soldiers' dreams. - Basho.
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Are you familiar with this site?

http://www.achtungpanzer.com/marder-marten-series.htm
 
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