Jump to content

Satchel Range Question (Beef?)


Recommended Posts

This is for all the demolition fans out there.

I just lost a Tiger to a Polish satchel charge thrown by an engineer squad (sorry, don't know the year exactly but it was in Italy) from 35 meters. Now I know the contents of a satchel were variable and also varied over time. But how can you throw a ~10-pound bag 105 feet?

let alone the fact that it was, I guess, a lucky throw from the side/rear that hit the Tiger's deck and set the engine afire. A lucky, lucky throw!

I understand that the game doesn't always perfectly represent pure physical reality. But how typical is this occurrence? Naturally, I thought I was safe passing by these engineers such a distance away. Turns out I had less to fear from the PIATs peppering me from the front.

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's the longest I've ever heard of a satchel charge "thrown." They're much more commonly used at ranges under 30m. From what I've seen, a KO with a satchel charge at 30+ would qualify as an extremely rare event; kind of like a kill with a bazooka at 175m.

And no, I don't think such an event is meant to represent a soldier throwing a 10-pound charge 35m. First of all, the members of the infantry squad aren't actually all crammed into one point on the CM map. IRL, they'd be distributed in an area anywhere from 10-30m across, depending on terrain and situation. So a couple of the soldiers in that Polish engineer squad might have been much closer to your Tiger than 35m.

Second, a close assault on armor can actually represent a particularly brave squad member darting up from cover and placing a grenade/molotov/satchel charge in an especially vulnerable place, like on top of the engine deck, or directly under the chassis. The "throw" graphic, is a bit misleading.

I think that for the most part these abstractions work resonably well. The one big problem I see with them is that as far as I can tell they're not taken into account with ranged infantry AT weapons like Panzerfausts and Rifle Grenades. This creates some rather bizzare relative ranges with IAT weapons. For example, a Pz-30, which can fly 30m under its own power, has about the same range as a satchel charge, which can be hefted maybe about 3-5m. To make this system consistent, if a satchel charge is going to have a "range" of 35m, the Pz-30 should really have a range of somewhere around 40-50m to model the same squad dispersal/close assault factors as for thrown weapons. There's not reason why a soldier couldn't pop up, dash forward 10-15m or so to get a better shot, and pop off a Panzerfaust shot. Doesn't really seem any more difficult to me than doing the same with a satchel charge. (Which is to say, it sounds VERY difficult!)

Cheers,

YD

Cheers,

YD

Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree that the abstraction generally works well. And any range under 30m in CM counts as EXTREMELY close. Infantry small arms under 30m are quite lethal, so it's hard to get much closer than that. And at ranges under 15m the demo guys often won't throw their charges because of fear of bombing themselves. So I can live with the idea that this is an abstraction and that the demo guys are running out to hammer the tank.

At the same time, I have to wonder if killing a tank at 30m with a demo is really so unusual. My experience is that demo charges, if thrown within range, are almost always lethal. I find them much more reliable killers than zooks are in CMAK. They almost always score a "hit" and the hit is generally either lethal or disabling. If I can get a squad with a grenade bundle or demo within 30m of tank undetected and unsurpressed, I consider that I've got a virtually sure kill ahead of me.

It's possible that the demo charge is slightly overmodeled here--I'm not sure it should be superior to a panzerfaust or more lethal within it's range than a bazooka. Then again, I might be wrong. ;)

[ September 24, 2004, 12:03 PM: Message edited by: CombinedArms ]

Link to post
Share on other sites
Originally posted by Cthulhu Dreams:

In CM terms, the range of that sort of AT is 37.5 meters.

What it represents is one guy legging it out a bit and chucking it (Apparntly)

But for the future, say atleasy 40 meters away from the infantry.

-Demo/Grenade Bundles max range is 29.5 meters

-grenades/Tank hunter toys max range is 39.5 meters

Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting points.

I believe the squad occupies an area within a square of approx. 20 metres per side. measurement to the centrepoint therefore could put you into easy reach of a satchel charge toting member of the squad.

Getting any tank that close to a squad you should be very sure you have good suppressive fire from infantry - particularly engineers.

As to how far you could throw a charge - if it is only 5kg I would think 20 metres would be relatively easy - given the satchel to swing. The terrain may place the engineer on higher ground which would add distance.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for a set of excellent answers. Some notes:

1) At some point I googled "gammon bomb" and read that some 80% of tank kills by the Allies in Arnhem were by gammon bomb. (or was it PIAT?) Either way, in close urban fighting demos can be quite effective. This was a semi-urban locale.

2) I also googled "satchel charge" and read that the goal of such attacks was usually immobilizing the target, not killing it. Kills were not common, and the treads were in any case easier to damage.

3) In this case, the Tiger was buttoned and paused next to a small rubble patch; the Polish terrorist [FREEDOM FIGHTER] was positioned in a large rubble patch next to the smaller one, and could reasonably have dashed over using the available cover.

So to summarize, a lucky result but in retrospect not a surprising one. I will be more careful in the future!

[ September 25, 2004, 09:45 PM: Message edited by: Dave Stockhoff ]

Link to post
Share on other sites

Scheer is showing off : ) 10kg!!!

Seems 6kg was the biggest charge required against Soviet heavy tanks with 4kg being standard and good up to 30 tons of armoured vehicle. Could you redo the tests? : )

From this excellent site

web page

Re blast effective - the blast was not anti-infantry designed as it had no shrapnel - according to the Finns so being in the blast area was not necessarily fatal - I suppose they mean the thrower hit the dirt. I see a modern 10kg charge has a blast effect of 108 metres!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I put some weight in a bag and spinned like a hammerthrower around, then let fly.

I hope this makes sense.

Not very applicable, if your in front of a Panther , but maybe under cover from the side out of the wood ?

Hm, maybe not .... :confused:

[ September 27, 2004, 10:57 AM: Message edited by: Scheer ]

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...