IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

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andrus
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by andrus » 10 Sep 2009 10:32

One little known operator of IS tank is Pz.Jg.Abt.187 of 87.Infaterie-Division.
II.Armeekorps documents contain references to some kind of "Stalin Panzer" of this antitank battalion during second half of August/first half of September.
If soviet units operation in southeast Estonia during August 1944 didn't have IS-85 in their inventory then this tank is with great probability of type IS-122.

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Alejandro_
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Alejandro_ » 14 Sep 2009 08:21

I'm also thinking about all the IS-2 reported lost with thorough fire destruction
a fair guess is that as a Soviet Guard Tankist telling your commander you've lost your brand new super secret tank to the Germans is the kind of stuff which is getting you in front of a firing squad real quick ,
there could have been tanks reported burned out who were in fact abandoned
but it put a good IS-2 tank in German hands by mid May or around


IS-2 was not that revolutionary, quite similar to IS-1 except gun. There is an interesting topic on IS-2 (first combats?) in April 1944:

http://www.feldgrau.net/forum/viewtopic ... 35540db2ad
II.Armeekorps documents contain references to some kind of "Stalin Panzer" of this antitank battalion during second half of August/first half of September.


Can this be found in any book?

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Art » 15 Sep 2009 13:25

randwick wrote: the first use of the new tank seems to have been to the south
To give more details: in all there were 5 tank regiments equipped with IS-85 tanks: 1st, 8th, 13th, 29th and 58th Guards Tank Regiments. The number of IS-84 tanks produced was 107 (table), according to Zheltov&Pavlov of them one was sent to the Kubinka prooving ground and six - to the officer tank schools. So it seems that remaining 100 were issued to the aforementioned tank regiments, the authorized strength of one regiment was 21 tanks. 8th and 13th regiments were the first IS units which saw action, they participated in Korsun pocket battle in February 1944, an then took part in the spring offensive of the 2nd Ukrainian Front as a part of the 2nd Tank Army. 1st, 29th and 58th Guards Regiments were shipped to the 1st Ukrainian Front and saw action during the Proskurov-Chernovtzy operation in March 1944. As I undertand no other Soviet units were eqipped with IS-85(IS-1)
As concerns IS-2, on 29th March 1944 Stalin personnally ordered marshal Fedorenko (the chief of Soviet Tank and Mechnized Forces) to dispatch three IS regiments to the 1st Ukrainian and two - to the 2nd Ukrainian Front. As a result, 11th, 71st and 72nd Guards Tank Regiment were recieved by the 1st Ukrainian and 6th and 14th Guards Tank Regiments - by the 2nd Ukrainian in the month of April. All were equipped with IS-2s. As I understand these 10 regiments were the only IS units wich saw action before summer 1944, and all operated on the southern part of the front (in Ukraine/Romania). IS-2 captured at Targul-Frumos mentioned above were by all prbability from 6th or 14th Guards Regiment.

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by randwick » 16 Sep 2009 08:42

.

Excellent ,thanks for the details ,
typical of the Stavka ,their first use was authorized personally by J.S. himself
nobody else would dare !
does the Zaloga story of the first capture hold water ?

.

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Alejandro_
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Alejandro_ » 16 Sep 2009 22:45

Art, the informarion you give ties up well with battlefield.ru

The first verified engagement between JS-1's and Tigers I occurred on the 4th of March, 1944 near the Staro-Konstantinov (Ukraine). During the Proskurovsko-Chernovitsky offensive operation the [ib1st Guards Heavy Breakthrough Tank Regiment [/b](of Colonel N.I.Bulanov) was involved in a battle with a company of Tigers of the 503rd PzAbt. One of the JS-1's was destroyed from a range of between 1500 and 1800 metres and another two were damaged in various ways though were capable to move.
As I understand these 10 regiments were the only IS units wich saw action before summer 1944
Production of IS-1/2 up to April was 300, 10 regiments make sense as some tanks will be lost and others sent to schools and academies.

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Panzerspiel
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Panzerspiel » 18 Jan 2010 01:38

All,
Can anyone tell me when the first IS-2's were sent into battle? What Russian unit? Also, in Operation Bagration, what tank units were equipped with the IS-2. Thanks.
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Art » 18 Jan 2010 16:12

Repeating what I said earlier:
As a result, 11th, 71st and 72nd Guards Tank Regiment were recieved by the 1st Ukrainian and 6th and 14th Guards Tank Regiments - by the 2nd Ukrainian in the month of April. All were equipped with IS-2s
I don't have a day-by-day account on these units' operations, so I can't say which saw the action first, but from what I understand all of them took part in battles during the spring of 1944.

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Panzerspiel » 18 Jan 2010 19:21

Art,
Greetings from the United States of America to our Russian friends in Moscow! Thanks so much for your prompt and informative response to my question of the deployment of the IS-2's in Operation Bagration. I'm in final re-write of a history of the Operation and its impact on the war in the east.

Can you answer one more question for me? With the Guards Tank Regiments you mentioned that were issued the IS-2, how many tanks would each regiment be issued? Do you know how many total IS-2's participated in Bagration? Thanks again for your time and research.
Panserspiel
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by randwick » 18 Jan 2010 23:33

.

The guard tank regiments were made of 4 companies of 5 tanks each plus a command tank

They were strictly equivalent to the Tiger battalions ,but while the Tiger battalions were under nominal local army control
as a counterattacking force , the IS-2 duty was strictly as breakthrough and were allocated from strategic reserves by the STAVKA to harden the offensive ,they would be returned to reserves after the offensives

They were assault units with their own integral infantry support , to be employed breaking the rear line of the German defense , the first line would be taken by artillery and infantry ,
the IS-2 would keep the momentum going at the critical point when the infantry ran out of artillery support and faced the German heavy weapons , this in the past , had been where offensive would flounder ,
the light and medium tank formations were engaged too often before the breakthrough had been achieved , leading to massive losses and too often failure .
now with the IS-2 available to silence the German guns during the initial phase of confusion by the fog of war ,
the armored units could bring fire power to bear, making the breach without crippling loses and opening the front for a tank race for their objectives of deep penetration

Bagration was the most clinical of success , utterly fooling the Germans before the battle , the initial attack was synchronized on the totality of the front , leaving the German in the dark of where they had to move their meager reserves
the artillery work was intense and quite complex involving double barrage , Katuscha mortars ( the artillery equivalent of a shotgun )and a stepping up rate of fire .
By the time the tactical situation became clearer for the 9th Army , deep ruptures had been achieved and a flood of tanks were making any decisions irrelevant by the time it was implemented , a default order to hold positions at all cost led to massive encirclements and rendered the situation rather worst for the Germans

The IS-2 performed very satisfactorily ,making quick and timely breakthrough , leaving the local commanders salivating for more of them and loath to give them back to reserves .

.

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Michael Kenny » 19 Jan 2010 05:32

randwick wrote:.

A company of Tiger I tanks from Panzer Grenadier Division Grossdeutchland openned fire at 3000 m ,and were shocked to see their 88mm rounds harmlessly ricochet off the thick frontal armor of the IS-2's .
A counter-attack by Hptm. B. Klemz's company knocked out three IS-2 heavy tanks , and resulted in Klemz's decoration with the Knight's Cross ."
This could be the scene depicted below

The photo has appeared with several captions as to location and number of IS II destroyed (up to 12 in one version) but usualy GD is mentioned.
The bottom pic is the original and the top the altered one with the rear 2 tanks 'photshopped' nearer the one in the foreground.

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Panzerspiel
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Panzerspiel » 19 Jan 2010 13:19

Mike,
An amazing demonstration of the power of the 88mm KwK43/L71 gun, even at a range of 3,000 meters. The unretouched photo showed the IS-2 main gun blown out of battery and the running gear badly damaged as well. Also, is that a penetration in the front left hull or part of the track mounting hardware?
Panzerspiel

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Michael Kenny » 19 Jan 2010 15:46

The track sag is indicitive of heat damage and it looks like a catastrophic internal explosion. There is a chunk of armour missing over the drivers visor which again suggest an internal explosion. There are no holes visible so it is impossible to say if it was caused by penetration or simple demoliion after capture.
In short your opinion is as good as anyone else!.

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Art » 19 Jan 2010 15:48

Panzerspiel wrote: Do you know how many total IS-2's participated in Bagration?
I don't know exactly. It seesm that not much, at least in the initial phase. Biryukov has left a record on a meeting between Fedorenko ans Stlain on 26 May 1944. According to this note, Stalin ordered the following allocations of tanks and SP guns from reserve for forthcoming "Bagration":
Petrov (2nd Belorussian Front) - two regiments of ISU-152, one regiment of SU-85, 42 SU-76, 50 T-34 from repair;
Rokossovsky (1st Belorussian Front) - three regiments of ISU-152, and one regiment of IS-122;
Chernyakhovsky (3rd Belorussian Front) - three regiments of ISU-152 and one regiment of IS-122;
Bagramyan (1st Baltic Front) - two regiemnts of ISU-152 and one regiemnt of IS-122

So the total is 3 regiments (62 IS-2). In addition 5 Guards Tank Army was transferred from Romania with 14th Guards Heavy Tank Regiment, equipped with IS-2s. I don't know how many tank were lost by that moment, whether they recieved any replacements etc.
By the start of "Bagration" four Soviet Fronts had the following heavy tank units:
1st Baltic Front - 2 Guards Heavy Tank Regiment, in addition 15th GHTR was asssigned to the front on 1 July
3rd Belorussian Front - 14th, 35th, 63rd GHTR
2nd Belorussian - none
1st Belorussian (right wing) - 30th GHTR
Of these units at least 14th, 15th, 30th and 35th regiemnts were equipped with IS-2s according to:
http://tankfront.ru/ussr/tp.html
Note that additional regiments arrived in the course of the summer offensive.

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Alejandro_
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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Alejandro_ » 13 Sep 2010 19:07

I was having a look at the book "Отечественные бронированные машины 1941-1945", as I do not speak Russian, I cannot understand most of the things. In page 216 there is a table showing production of IS-2. According to the data, 1130 IS-2 were produced by Chelyabinsk and 10 by Leningrad tank factory. However, no data are given for Uralmash (УЗТМ). Is it beacuase it only produced the hulls and then sent them to Chelyabinsk?

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Re: IS-2: performance, variants, cost, units.

Post by Paul_Atreides » 13 Sep 2010 19:24

Yes.
There is no waste, there are reserves (Slogan of German Army in World Wars)

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