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Flakzwilling 8.8cm auf E-100/Maus


Flakzwillling auf E-100

Model by Bob Lessels


In the latter stages of World War II, Allied air superiority on all fronts severely hampered German forces, especially armor. Aircraft like the Sturmovik, Typhoon, and P-47 wreaked havoc among the Panzer Divisions. With the late-war interest in superheavy panzer like the Maus and E-100 (and one could also include the Tiger II and Jagdtiger in this category), the need for complimentary air defense was clear. Towards the end of the war, Soviet forces discovered blueprints for a turret mounting twin 8.8cm flak guns which was to be mounted on either the Panzerkampfwagen Maus or the E-100. Later in 1945 a mild steel mock up of the turret was reportedly discovered. Because the flak vehicle would utilize the same chassis as the tanks it was protecting, maintenance and spare part inventories could be rationalized considerably.

It was envisioned that each Maus or E-100 battalion would include at least three of these vehicles. The Flakzwilling itself would be operated by a crew of eight: a driver, commander, gunner, mechanic, and four loaders for the rapid-firing flak cannons. For anti-aircraft operations, the three flak vehicles would be directed by a fourth vehicle. This command vehicle would have been equipped with a mobil range and altitude finder as well as a target tracking system. Unfortunately, no records as to the nature of this vehicle's systems, nor what chassis it would have been constructed upon, have surfaced.

Flakzwilling auf E100
Crew: 8 Armament: Two 8.8cm Flak 43 (?) + at least one 7.92mm MG34s
Weight: ~150 to 170 tons Traverse: 360o (power)
Length: >10 meters Elevation: unknown, vehicle may have been able to fire at near vertical
Width: 4.48 meters Engine: Maybach HL234
Height: ~3.3 Gearbox: 8 forward, 4 reverse (with provision for Mekydro transmission)
Radio: FuG5 Speed: unknown, probably <40 km/hr


Flakzwillling auf E-100

Model by Bob Lessels


Flakzwilling auf 'Maus'
Crew: 8 Armament: Two 8.8cm Flak 43 (?) + at least one 7.92mm MG34
Weight: >188 tons Traverse: 360o (power)
Length: >10.0 meters Elevation: unknown, vehicle may have been able to fire at near vertical
Width: 3.67 meters Engine: MB509 V12 1,080PS or MB517 Diesel
Height: ~ 3.7 Gearbox: 2 forward, 2 reverse (electric)
Radio: FuG5 Speed: unknown, probably ~20 km/hr


Sources:


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