Crusader OOB

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dor1941
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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by dor1941 » 08 Oct 2011 05:29

Certain types of anti-aircraft artillery units which took part in Crusader seem to me to be poorly documented. For the Germans in particular I have read of at least three light Flak battalions-and elements of one other-that were present at that time. These would be:

Flak-Abteilung 606: arrived in NA in February 1941, part of D.A.K. and commanded by Hauptmann Briel during Crusader.
Flak-Abteilung 612: subordinated to D.A.K. in June, 1941.
Flak-Abteilung 617: its 3. Batterie is reported to be part of Kampfgruppe Menny in mid-December 1941.
1./Flak-Abteilung 613: reportedly this Batterie was attached to Division z.b.V. Afrika or Arko 104 in some capacity.

Is this information correct, and does anyone know of any others that should be included in an OOB for Panzergruppe Afrika in November 1941? Were any of the batteries equipped with the 3.7cm Flak during Crusader?

Also there appears to have been a name change for such units in the second half of 1941-each was initially known as a Heeres-Flak-M.G.-Bataillon, but changed by the end of the year to Flak-Abteilung. When and why did this occur?

David R

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by dor1941 » 08 Oct 2011 05:59

Some units of British anti-aircraft artillery in Crusader also have been difficult to identify. The "one heavy anti-aircraft regiment and one heavy battery" and "three light anti-aircraft batteries" in my listing of 13th Corps (Corps Troops) all remain unknown units.
In addition, the units composing the 12th Anti-Aircraft Brigade in my listing of 30th Corps are unidentified. I think the 88th and 94th Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiments R.A. were in the ME in November '41 and were later part of this Brigade at Alamein, but can't find any information that they took part in Crusader.

Anyone have any useful information on these units?

David R

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 08 Oct 2011 07:10

On the British, I am yet to be convinced that XIII Corps had a HAA Rgt assigned to it. I'll check when I go to the archives next, and will check with Richard Doherty.

On the Germans, none of these battalions would have had 3.7cm guns. Those were classed as mittlere not leichte Flak. They only had 2cm. Not sure how many, but maybe Christoph's site has a KStN for 1941 for these units.

The name change came as part of a nomenclature change, but would have had no other effects. The 2cm was seen as a heavy machine gun initially.

606. under Briel formed the core of KG Briel which defended Gambut airfield and after its loss the Panzergruppe supply installations close to it against the New Zealanders until the withdrawal. A very detailed report on this has survived.

I hope this helps a bit.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by dor1941 » 09 Oct 2011 15:12

JBond, thanks.

I suspected the source of the report of heavy and light AA batteries as Corps Troops (The Sidi Rezegh Battles 1941, the S.A. Official History) for 13th Corps may have been including units en route to Eighth Army, and not actually present or near the front on November 18th-the authors even noted that their Appendix 1 was not an Order of Battle, but rather merely a list of "Forces Engaged".
Whats really unfortunate about the book are the errors for the Axis forces-Divisione Trento is skipped altogether. This may have been an oversight due to Trento being transferred from the CAM to the XXI Corpo prior to Crusader, and the vagueness of the earlier Italian OH on some details.
I would certainly appreciate any information unearthed about those AA units.

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 10 Oct 2011 09:36

I have a thought as to which OOB data they used for the Axis, and that would explain why Trento is missing.

It's the dark hand of Rommel working from the grave to make his 'victory' in the winter battle appear more impressive. ;)
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 10 Oct 2011 10:08

dor1941 wrote:Some units of British anti-aircraft artillery in Crusader also have been difficult to identify. The "one heavy anti-aircraft regiment and one heavy battery" and "three light anti-aircraft batteries" in my listing of 13th Corps (Corps Troops) all remain unknown units.
In addition, the units composing the 12th Anti-Aircraft Brigade in my listing of 30th Corps are unidentified. I think the 88th and 94th Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiments R.A. were in the ME in November '41 and were later part of this Brigade at Alamein, but can't find any information that they took part in Crusader.

Anyone have any useful information on these units?

David R
I already identified 57 LAA Bty, which was attached to 1 Army Tank Brigade. I'll get back to you on the others at a later stage when I have been to Kew again. A pointer however, in Jan 42, LAA consisted of 6 (from E Force), 57, 61 LAA Btys, and 25 LAA Rgt with 81 and 82 Btys, and I believe 274 (NH) LAA Bty.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by David W » 11 Oct 2011 10:41

David R.

Sorry to be late to the party!
'puter problems & lack of time.

I hope to be able to contribute some.

Heeres Fla MG Battalion 606. 1st & 3rd Ko arrive by end March 1941. 12x SdKfz 10/4 each. 2nd Ko arrives somewhen in November 1941, not sure if in time for Crusader or not. Along with an extra 6x SdKfz 10/4 (presumably to make good losses incurred).
Sorry, don't know when or why re change in title.

612nd Heeres Fla (M.g) Bataillon. Ist Ko: 12x 20mm Towed. 2nd Ko: 12x 20mm Static.

617th Heeres Fla (M.g) Bataillon. I can't place the 3rd Ko in N.A before 12/03/42.
1/613 is a new one for me! Any extra info available ?

More form me later............

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by dor1941 » 12 Oct 2011 23:29

David W

Thanks for the input.
David W wrote: 617th Heeres Fla (M.g) Bataillon. I can't place the 3rd Ko in N.A before 12/03/42.
Bender and Law (Uniforms, Organization and History of the Afrikakorps, p. 114) state the "3./Flak-Abteilung 617" was part of Kampfgruppe Menny, an all-arms battlegroup formed for the defensive battles near Gazala, December 13-16, 1941. Source in footnote is Microfilm Publication T315, roll 666, frame 001272. However, no mention here of 1. and 2./Flak-Abt. 617 :( .
1/613 is a new one for me! Any extra info available ?
This one has me puzzled-Frank Chadwick (the research editor from the old GDW) had mentioned this batterie several times (thus apparently not a typo) in his published lists in connection with Division z.b.V.Afrika/90. leichte. It was initially associated with Artillerie-Abt. 361 in late '41 and later attached to Artillerie-Rgt. 190 in '42, but I couldn't find any other reference to it. Perhaps Chadwick was incorrectly interpreting some obscure schematisches kriegsgliederung for the Division (and the batterie not actually present in NA ?), but I've been surprised on other occasions by the accuracy of his lists.

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by David W » 12 Oct 2011 23:37

David R.

Thanks for the above.
As for 1. and 2./Flak-Abt. 617 I don't think they arrived in North Africa until April 1942. But if I am wrong about 3. Ko who knows?
Last edited by David W on 13 Oct 2011 10:35, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 13 Oct 2011 10:01

I have:

Fla Btl 606 with three batteries, 2nd battery possibly in Naples, all self-propelled
Fla Btl 612 with three batteries, all static
1/613 as artillerie staff with one batterie 20mm (12 guns) and two batteries mountain guns under IR361
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by David W » 13 Oct 2011 10:40

JBond.

I am intrigued by your reference to all three Ko (I think it is Ko, not Bttr as they are Heeres?) of 612.
I could only ever find shipping documents for I Ko & II Ko. A third Ko of SdKfz10/4 does arrive in the first half of 1942, but I thought that it was replacements for I Ko and not a seperate III Ko.

Your thoughts?
1/613 as artillerie staff with one batterie 20mm (12 guns) and two batteries mountain guns under IR361
Do you mean the staff & 20mm guns were from 1/613? Or just the staff?
Thanks.

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 13 Oct 2011 11:06

My thoughts are that the OOB I am looking at is somewhat further removed from reality than the last Transformers movie.

I believe this would be staff and guns for 1/613.

Regarding 606, I have a claim that 2/606 shot down two fighters and two bombers on 28 Nov. And you are right, Kompanien, not Batterien.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 04 Nov 2011 04:23

On the priority shipping list for North Africa of 30 Oct 41, there are two relevant items:

3) Remainder 2./Fla.Btl. 606
58) Remainder Fla.MG.Btl. 612
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by David W » 04 Nov 2011 08:20

What is a priority shipping list?

Is it a demand or an inventory?

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Re: Crusader OOB

Post by Urmel » 04 Nov 2011 11:40

It's the list by which units slated to go to North Africa were given priority in shipping. All of the units were scheduled to go to NA. It was drawn up by the German staff in Rome.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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