Flakpanzer IV (3 cm Flakvierling) ‘Zerstörer 45’

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In the later stages of the Second World War, the Germans lost control over the skies and their ground forces had to endure extensive enemy air attacks. The use of self-propelled anti-aircraft guns (SPAAGs) based on half-track chassis offered some way to fight back, but these were themselves highly vulnerable, as they lacked proper armor protection.

A SPAAG based on a tank chassis was more desirable. Starting from 1944, the German focus was on producing such vehicles based on the Panzer IV chassis. This led to the development of the Flakpanzer IV 2 cm Flak 38 Vierling, better known today as the Wirbelwind (Eng. Whirlwind).

With its four 2 cm guns, it shot down many Allied aircraft, but by late 1944 standards, something with more firepower was desired and needed. Thus, the Germans developed a new version armed with four 3 cm anti-aircraft guns. The late start of this project meant that only a few prototypes were allegedly created by the war’s end.

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Specifications:
Length: 5.92m.
Width: 2.9m.
Height: 2.76 m.
Weight: 25 tonnes.
Engine: Maybach HL120 TRM 12-cylinder petrol engine 300 PS (296 hp, 220 kW).
Speed: 42 kmh.
Crew: 5 (guner, loader, commander, driver and radio operator) some documents sugest that there is a second loader making crew 6 in total.
Armor: Turret: 16mm all around, Hull: 80mm front, 30mm sides, 20mm rear.
Armament: 4 x 30 mm MK103/38 cannon (belt capacity 30-40 rounds)(ammunition 3200 rounds in total), one 7.92mm MG34 machine gun (600 rounds).

The Armarment:
Late into the war, a four-barreled version of the 3 cm MK 103, known as the 3 cm Flakvierling, was tested and possibly even built-in smaller numbers. Due to the late introduction, the overall characteristics of this four-barreled version are barely mentioned in the sources. Based on a few available photographs, it was provided with cylindrical-shaped magazines that were fixed to the gun but could be opened to place belt-fed ammunition inside of them. Another interesting feature was that these ammunition magazines were placed above (on the upper) and under (on the lower) guns, not on the side, like for the 2 cm four-barreled version.

Lastly, for self-defense, the crew could rely on the hull-mounted MG 34, retained from the Panzer IV design, and their personal weapons.

3 cm Flakvierling is able to use the same ammunition that the Kugelblitz use:

Pzbrgr.(Elektron) o.Zerl. (Ap-I) 0,5kg 800m/s 0g 58mm/10m

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Pzsprgr. L`Spur. o.Zerl. (Aphe-T) 0,5kg 800m/s 14g Pent (23,8g) 58mm/10m

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Pzbrsprgr. L`Spur. o.Zerl. (ApheIcbc-T) 0,455kg 800m/s 5,2g Pent (8,84g) 58mm/10m

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H-Pzgr. L`Spur. o.Zerl. (HVAP-T) 0,360kg 960m/s 0g 77mm/10m

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Sprgr. L`Spur. o.Zerl. (He-T) 0,44kg 800m/s 27g Pent (45,9g)

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M-Gesch. L`Spur. o.Zerl. 0,33kg 900-920m/s 70g HTA 5g Pent (92,5g)

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M-Gesch. o.Zerl.: 0,33kg 860-900m/s 85g HTA (102g)

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Big thanks to Ghostmaxi ammunitions and their informations are taken from his post:

Sources:

K. Hjermstad (2000), Panzer IV Squadron/Signal Publication.

Engelmann-Scheibert, H. A. Koch, O. W. v. (1978) Renz Flak Auf Dem Gefechtsfeld Podzun-Palla-Verlag
D. Nešić, (2008), Naoružanje Drugog Svetsko Rata-Nemačka, Beograd

P. Chamberlain and H. Doyle (1978) Encyclopedia of German Tanks of World War Two – Revised Edition, Arms and Armor press.

Walter J. Spielberger (1982). Gepard: The History of German Anti-Aircraft tanks, Bernard & Graefe
Ian V.Hogg (1975). German Artillery of World War Two, Purnell Book Services Ltd.

T. L.Jentz and H. L. Doyle (1998). Panzer Tracts No.12 Flak selbstfahrlafetten and Flakpanzer

T. L.Jentz and H. L. Doyle (2010). Panzer Tracts No.

12-1 – Flakpanzerkampfwagen IV and other Flakpanzer projects development and production from 1942 to 1945.

Walter J. Spielberger (1993). Panzer IV and its Variants, Schiffer Publishing Ltd.

D. Doyle (2005) German military Vehicles, Krause Publications.

H. F. Duske, T. Greenland and F. Schulz (2005) Flakpanzer IV Wirbelwind and Ostwind, Nuts and Bolts vol.13

7 Likes

I’d like to see this added as a premium, as Germany already has more than enough adequate SPAA at just about every BR in the normal tech tree.

2 Likes

1 Like

Absolutely no SPAAs mustn’t be a premium no matter the conditions SPAAs should always be obtainable by everyone not only for the ppl who pay plus this SPAA can fill the gap between 5.0 and 7.0 and can sit nicely in 6.0 or 6.3

6 Likes

The suggestion section of this forum exists for a reason.

2 Likes

I send it there too the, reason i send it here first is bc i didn’t want to lose all the work if it get rejected, second thing i wanted to see ppl opinions

1 Like

Appart that this isnt the place for suggestions, i feel honored that you used the ammo info from my 15-50mm German Flaks list, but you could at least have linked to it, i mean you even copied the source for the Ammo for the 2 cm Flaks and 5 cm Flak 41 L/67 which are completly unrelated to this.

3 Likes

The honer is mine sorry for not sending the link here but i never intended to send this as a suggestion i only send it here so i don’t lose the search if my suggestion get deleted the suggestion i made was on the 4th of September and still pending to this day.

Yee that was a stupid move on my part i removed them at some point but i kept it for soke reason

Im pretty shure its only around 40 rounds as they are stored in round boxes on the gun and even the bigger boxes as found on the normal mounted Mk 103/38 have 50+10 rounds. (Actual box 50 rounds and the feed extention on top can hold additional 10 rounds.)

They didn’t use ammo box for this one it’s not like the 30mm Mk 103/38 on the (3 cm Flak 103/38 auf Steyr 2000a) where the ammo box is directly attached to the gun the 3 cm Flakvierling have cylindrical-shaped magazines that were fixed to the gun but could be opened to place belt-fed ammunition inside of them

Thats what i wrote, round (as in shape) boxes (as in containment.)

Ooo yes at best these cylindrical-shaped magazines can’t even handle 20 rounds they are too small compared to ammo boxs use on the other Mk 103/38 but my idea is to use the same belts on the kugelblitz

Can we got Zerstörer 45?
Gaijin: we have Zerstörer 45 at home.
Zerstörer 45 at home:

3 Likes

This is just a worse Kugelblitz

2 Likes

Gaijin not making an kitbashed abomination challenge (impossible)

7 Likes

Yee i was really disappointed all the work wasted i thought we will end up with the wirbelwind configuration but we end up with this

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It’s just an over tiered flak panzer with no armour the only advantage it the quad 30mm

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They went with the one that was actually built.

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Kugelblitz is just better cause its not open topped too, open top AA will always be worse

1 Like

The Mobelwage was a testing bed it’s more likely that the wirbilwind configuration was actually built and tested

5 Likes