Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Firepower 21cm GRW 69 Wefer Wurfmörser

 21cm GRW 69 Wurfmörser (Elephant)

My first post this year and nearly time to return to Europe after our three month holiday in Australia. It has been a very restful break with not much modelling at all occurring even though I had good intentions, I did manage to get a few games in though with my Aussie mates which was great.

Exciting news on the 20mm front for those who like unusual kit for their miniature armies SHQ miniatures have released a 21cm GRW 69 mortar. In 28mm I am not aware of any manufacturer... :( What is this beast you say,……

21cm GRW 69 Wefer Wurfmörser 

21cm GRW 69 Wefer Wurfmörser 

21cm GRW 69 Wefer Wurfmörser 

21cm GRW 69 Wefer Wurfmörser 

SHQ 21cm GRW69

Developed by Skoda in late 1943 originally in 22cm, it was changed to fit the 21cm round for production saving and use of the 21cm rounds already in production for the other wefers.  The idea of a breech loading mortar was not new, but a little ambitious with either a 85kg or 110kg projectile, making it a difficult man handling exercise for loading, harking back to a ww1 type round that required a platform or winch system to load. The mortar could deliver a 110kg 21cm round 5400m and a 85kg round 6400m......cleary the design had city or fixed defensive position fighting in mind as it weighed 2800kg the same as a 122mm howitzer. Elevation 40-70 degrees verticale and 60 degrees traverse using a track on which the wheels were mounted. It also had a slow rate of fire of 1-2 rounds per minute because of the cartridge weight and had to be brought back to level for the loading procedure. 

The following rounds could be fired:

- the 21 cm grenade 5004 HE demolition round
- the 21 cm grenade 5021 anti personnel with a high fragmentation 85kg
- the 21 cm grenade 5031 (cast iron) HE anti personnel and penetrating defensive positions 87kg.

By November 1944 the first 30 werfers were issued and by the end of the war 129 werfers were issued. The werfer was also planned to be mounted on the chassis of the Panzer III and on the chassis of the Hummel as close support weapons.

Like all my toys I like them to be assigned to units and I have found two units that were issued them. The 410th Volks artillery Corps who were issued 9 units in November 1944 and by December had 27 units and were used in the Ardennes offensive. SS Wefer battery 500, in March 1945, I am not 100% certain however I have read that SS Werfer group Kreischer were issued some to a training replacement group in Feb 45 on the eastern front, and issued with only 90 rounds. (all from Lexicon wehrmacht).

Images from Waffen magazine

A Russian Magazine 

I will be adding a unit to my 20mm Volksgrenadier units for the fall of the Reich scenarios, and using the Rapid Fire template and rules for nebelwerfers I think for firing and reload (every other turn). 

410th Volks Artillery Regiment Rapid Fire organisation

HQ Reg staff battery with supply, communications and administration zug
CO +7 VW car, RSO ammunition supply, horse drawn comms van, M/C combo, 

Observer +1 kubelwagen

1st battery 2 x wefers, 2 x sdkfz11 and 8 crew 

Next week we start the 30 kits in 30 days challenge come and join in the fun here!


No comments:

Post a Comment