Monday, September 25, 2017
Artillery Counter Battery Fire
Designate target during spotting rounds impact phase. Use the D chart the first time the guns are fired. Sound and flash ranging detection equipment or artillery radars are used to improve the chance to hit the target. If the target does not move and fires from the same location the chance to hit is increased. Target does not have to be visible to the battery forward observer. An on target result is a hit on one gun.
Designating the target begins direct fire high explosive. Then roll the arrow die. Use the normal direct fire anti-tank chance to hit. Arrow results move the impact point in the direction of the arrow the numbers of inches shown on the arrow die.
Observed Indirect Fire
Placing three blue cotton balls per firing battery in the Artillery Spotting Rounds Impact Phase to simulate spotting rounds begins artillery indirect fire. All three of these spotting rounds must be within 1250m of each other. Two of these cotton balls will be dummies. The third will be the intended point of impact of the number one round of the salvo. All three of these cotton balls must be placed where a friendly observer can see them. The identity of the two dummy rounds remains undisclosed until the Artillery Indirect Fire Phase. Roll both dice and if the result is equal to or less than the on target percentage than the salvo is a hit. Orient the artillery template in the direction of the arrow, with the 1st round at the intended point of impact. If the salvo was not on target move the template in the direction of the arrow die the number of inches determined by the indirect fire table.
Troops with signaling devices including signal flags, field telephones, or radios, may call for artillery. Artillery observers firing for the first time and observing for their assigned battery use the B chart. Once an ON target result has been obtained, subsequent shots at the same target, will be on the A chart.
Artillery spotters can observe artillery fire exclusively for their assigned battery or batteries. Each artillery battery is assigned one artillery observer. Each artillery battalion is assigned an additional observer who may spot artillery for any of the batteries in his battalion. Each additional higher level unit is assigned an additional artillery observer who may spot for all artillery within his organization.
An observer firing artillery for any other battery will begin on the C chart and move to the B chart for second and subsequent shots at the same target until an ON result has been obtained. Any subsequent shots at the same target will use the A chart. A non-artillery observer calling for fire will begin on the D chart and move to the C chart for second and subsequent shots at the same target. If the observer changes the point of impact then it is considered a first shot at a new target and begins again on the appropriate chart for a first shot.
Pre-planned fires are designated before the battle. They are specific locations, named and marked on the map, which may be called in at any time by any artillery observer, or any unit commander. Pre-planned fires do not require a smoke puff to be laid down, but must be told to the Bunkermeister during the artillery spotting phase. These fires are placed using the B chart.
They are registered on target before a battle. They are laid out like a minefield on various size cards according to the size of the gun. They are named and called for during the Artillery Impact Phase.
To conduct a rolling barrage the observer must first obtain an ON target result on the A chart. The observer may then adjust fire in five-inch increments without losing the second and subsequent shot advantage. Artillery range may be adjusted plus/minus 50m if it is observed fire that is ON target and on the A chart. Place one artillery spotting round on target and the others no more that 50m away.
To determine damage, select the artillery template for the weapon firing. For conventional artillery, there will be a red blast marker the diameter of which is equal to the diameter of the gun tube. Within the red blast marker will be an orange blast marker one half of the diameter of the gun tube. Inside the orange blast marker will be a yellow blast marker one quarter of the diameter of the gun tube. For example, a 200mm howitzer would have a red blast marker 200mm across and an inner orange blast marker 100mm across and a second inner yellow blast marker 50mm across. Within the red blast marker infantry and soft skin targets in the open are destroyed. Within the orange blast marker all but closed topped, fully tracked armored vehicles are destroyed. Within the yellow blast marker all targets are destroyed unless the armor penetration of the weapon is not sufficient to penetrate the targets armor.
The crater will be equal in diameter to 50% of the caliber of the gun, so the crater will be the same size as the orange blast marker for ground burst artillery. Airburst artillery will create a crater equal in diameter to 25% of the diameter of the shell. Airburst artillery blasts have only a light HE effect equal to that of the red blast diameter. HE direct fire has only a 45-degree arc to each side of forward 90 degrees total that is one half size of the AT fire total. No indirect fire at less than 50 meters.
During regular artillery fire, dust will obscure the impact area until the end of the turn for an area the same size as the template, until the beginning of the Artillery Spotting Rounds phase.
Smoke fired from artillery and direct fire weapons is 25mm long per 25mm of gun caliber, per tube. Smoke grows by that same amount each turn in the direction of the wind. Smoke will grow for three turns. Smoke pots/generators produce 50m of smoke per turn for up to 250m length. Smoke is too high to see over except for an aircraft at medium level or above. Illumination rounds light up the outside ring area for one turn, and are removed at the beginning of the next Artillery Rounds Impact phase.
All artillery to be considered a battery must have three or more guns; have an FDC, and an ammo dump. Ammo dump must be within 100m of the guns. An ammo dump can be a fixed position or a truck or armored vehicle for self propelled artillery. If the ammo dump is destroyed, then guns only fire once every other turn due to low ammunition. All guns must be within 10m of each other if there is only voice communication between guns, 50m of each other if wire or radio is used. A six-gun battery could be as much as 1250m across if wire or radio is used.
The artillery template shows the locations for artillery fire from batteries of up to eight-guns. If fewer guns are firing, use the locations for the guns that are firing, unless only one gun is shooting indirect fire; then shot lands on the #3 position. If only two guns are shooting indirect fire, the shots land on the #2 and #3 positions.
A fire direction center must be located within 1250m of the center of the battery if radio or wire is used for communication. The FDC must be within 50m if only voice is used. If there is no FDC available then artillery may only fire over open sights as separate guns, or on the D chart with the battery observer only, or map fire.
Surface to surface missile fire is conducted as map fire, or a spotter may call it in. No spotting rounds are fired the missile is simply launched. Spotted missile fire is fired like map fire, except it is written only three turns in advance.
Wire communications require a thread strung along the route. This allows communications without interruptions by jamming or interception. Wire may be broken by artillery fire. Wire may be on the surface or underground. The orange blast marker will break surface wires; the ring will break buried wire.
To repair wire, a signal team must start at one terminal of the line and follow the wire to the break. The repair team may not drive directly to the break. It takes one turn to repair a surface break, two turns to repair an underground break. Wire on a pole counts as surface wire. Tracked vehicles driving over it will cut wire lying on the ground automatically. There will be a 50% chance that wires laying on the surface of the ground will be cut by wheeled vehicles driving over it.
Sunday, September 24, 2017
Another opportunity to use the excellent Zvezda 15mm katyusha rocket launcher.
This little tank is a T60 from Mir in HO scale.
A robust little model perfect for the rough handling of wargaming.
These tanks were obsolete very early on in the war.
So the Soviets mounted rocket launchers on some of them; here you can see the actual loaded rockets.
I built a few of them to support my Soviet WWII troops.
A quick, simple conversion.
A full battery is eight and these are the first four.
Saturday, September 23, 2017
Roco HO scale US Army 2.5 ton truck.
Many of them were shipped to the Soviet Union in World War Two.
Some were converted to rocket launchers, by adding the Russian Katyusha rocket system.
Roco did not make the Katyusha rocket system.
So I took this one from the Zvezda 15mm rocket truck and grafted it onto the Roco.
The Zvezda model only gives rockets for either the top or the bottom.
So half of mine have rockets on top and bottom and the other half have no rockets.
Battery of four rocket trucks.
Friday, September 22, 2017
Flak Suppression Runs
Aircraft may make flak suppression runs against anti-aircraft artillery weapons or their fire direction equipment. These attacks must be designated in advance of their occurrence. Aircraft making flak suppression runs will take fire from the ground, and then if the aircraft survives, the aircraft will make the ground attack and any damage inflicted will take effect immediately.