Full Units

World War Two German units were never at fill strength.  I read that quite often.  It is also not true.

Most German units were at full strength on the day they were formed. 

And then things happen to them that are common to all military units in war.  They begin a process of slow destruction, that sometimes can happen quickly.

Units are formed at a training area, at a replacement depot, or even at the factory where their vehicles are manufactured.  Then in the process of moving towards the front, maneuvering into position, or participating in active combat, and reconstituting afterwards their strength will diminish.  Vehicles break down.  This is very common, even in peacetime.  It is especially true of new designs, heavyweight vehicles, vehicles made quickly, and vehicles operating in extreme conditions of road or climate.  So you may start off your march with 60 halftracks but 30 miles of frozen, muddy road later you may be down to 40.  The others are stuck in the mud, slipped off the road, or fell off the side of the bridge.

Then in their haste to avoid an Allied air attack, more vehicles will crash into each other, flip upside down as they drive into a ditch, or overtax their transmissions as they try to back up too quickly.  Allied aircraft did not actually hit and destroy that many tanks on the ground, but their effects were still felt in other ways.

So when building up a unit of armored infantry, tanks, artillery, don't worry that you are a few vehicles short.  Conversely, it's okay to have all of the vehicles the standard unit organization calls for.  Often such units would hold off before engaging the enemy until everyone had been pulled out of the ditch, or got flipped right side up.

These are HO scale vehicles from Roco Minitanks, Trident, Paul Heiser Models and probably a few others.

Mike Bunkermeister Creek

HalftrackPaul heiserRocoTridentUnit organizationWwii german

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