Maps from Sledgehammers
As veterans, military historians, and history buffs ourselves, at the Aberjona Press, we know that plenty of photos and accurate, detailed maps are crucial to making military history make sense to readers. That's why we add so many high quality maps and graphics to all of our books.
Below are some samples of the maps and photos which appear in this title.
Note: click here for the collection of Sledgehammers printable maps.
Here, King Tigers conduct gunnery exercises. These are from the 3d Company,
Heavy Tank Battalion 503, which received new King Tigers in July 1944. The tank
in the foreground has the Porsche turret, as did 12 of the 14 initially issued
to the company; the other two had the more common Henschel turret.
(Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
The King Tiger tank, also called the "Tiger II" or the "Royal Tiger." Appearing in
1944, it was the successor to the Tiger in every way: its main gun was even more
lethal; its armor thicker and better designed; its motor and drive train more fragile;
and its fuel consumption greater. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
The legendary Tiger tank. Introduced in late 1942, its powerful main gun and thick,
resilient armor made it a threat to any Allied tank throughout the war. However,
its voracious fuel consumption, limited maneuverability, mechanical unreliability,
and limited operational or strategic mobility detracted from Tiger battalions' combat
potential. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
Two variations of the Josef Stalin (JS) heavy tank were built in assault gun versions.
These were armed with either a 122mm gun or a 152mm gun. (The one in this photo is a
JSU-122). These were more economical to manufacture than the tank versions because
they did not have a turret. When used in conjunction with JS-2s, the JSUs would provide
overwatch for the JS-2s during attacks. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
By the end of 1942, when the Soviets encountered the first German Tigers, they
realized that the 76mm main gun on the T-34 was inadequate. To improve armor
penetration, an 85mm gun in an improved and more heavily armored three-man
turret was mounted on the T-34 chassis. Production began on the first models in
December 1943. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
The T-34/76 first saw action against opposing German forces during Operation Barbarossa,
the invasion of the Soviet Union. the German invasion of the Soviet Union.
The combination of relatively thick, angled armor, a main gun with good armor
penetrating capability, and superb mobility placed it in a class above any German tank
available in 1941. This led the Germans to develop the Panther and to reinvigorate its
previously dormant heavy tank program. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
The tanks in the M4 Sherman series were those primarily used by U.S. armored forces
throughout WWII. Designed as a weapon of exploitation to be used in long-range thrusts
deep into the enemy's rear, it could attack his supply installations and communications.
This required great endurance, low consumption of gasoline, and ability to move long
distances without a breakdown. It was never intended to be used in direct combat against
heavy tanks such as the Tiger. As such, it was originally armed with a low-velocity 75mm
main gun (above). To deal with the superior German tanks like the Panther, Tiger, and
Tiger II, many Shermans (such as this M4A3E8, below) were ultimately armed with a
higher-velocity 76mm gun or with the much more effective British 17-pounder.
(US Army Signal Corps)
A Tiger advances during Operation Zitadelle in July 1943. After this massive
offensive, Tiger battalions were used almost exclusively in defensive missions,
a role for which they were not designed. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
King Tigers were employed in a few offensive operations in the last six months of the war.
Here, a King Tiger from Heavy Tank Battalion 501 carries forward paratroopers from
Parachute Regiment 9 during the Ardennes Offensive. This picture was reportedly taken
just south of Ligneuville, Belgium on 18 December 1944. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
The JS-2 was armed with a 122mm gun derived from the A-19 field gun. These vehicles
were issued to special Guards heavy tank regiments whose role was to assist in breaking
through German defenses. The JS-2's thicker frontal armor protected it against Tiger I
fire at ranges over 1,500 meters while the Tiger I was still vulnerable to the JS-2's fire.
Against the Tiger II, there was no clear advantage to either tank. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
Ninety /"Porsche Tiger" hulls were converted to heavy tank destroyers armed with the
88mm L/71 main gun. These were issued to Heavy Tank Destroyer Battalions 653 and 654,
which first saw action in the battle of Kursk in July 1943. (Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor)
Strengths and Flaws of Tiger Tank Battalions in World War II
by Christopher Wilbeck
- Prologue by Tiger Ace Otto Carius
- Epilogue by Tiger Killers Viktor Iskrov and Ray Holt
- 35 original maps
- 42 photos
- 272 pages; extensive chapter end notes
- Soft Cover, 6" x 9" format
- ISBN 10: 0-9717650-2-2
- ISBN 13: 978-0-9717650-2-3
+ shipping (see How to Order)