German tank and anti-tank gunners could typically choose between several types of ammunition, according to the type of target. Not all types of ammunition were developed for each gun. Except for small arms and anti-tank guns, all guns had armor-piercing and a high-explosive ammunition. For a detailed description of the ammunition types mentioned below, see the anti-tank ammunition type article.

The standard armor-piercing ammunition for most guns was a solid-body steel shot (AP, ABC, APCBC). For some guns, the standard armor-piercing ammunition was HEAT. This was typically the case for guns that could not handle high-pressure ammunition, such as the 7,5 cm Pak 97/38, or weapons that were designed to be recoilless, such as the Panzerschreck.

To defeat targets with armor too thick for the standard armor-piercing ammunition, many guns had one or several supplemental ammunition types. This ammunition was either APCR or HEAT. Due to raw material shortages, German APCR ammunition was often in short supply, and for many guns only a small number of test rounds were ever manufactures.

In addition to the armor-piercing ammunition, most guns had high-explosive and smoke ammunition for unarmored targets and support fire.

Each gun had an officially number of each type of round. The number of each type actually carried depended on front-line availability. In addition, the official guidelines would likely have been deviated from for specific missions. Even so, the official loadouts are helpful in determining which ratio of different types targets the guns were expected to encounter.

Tank Destroyers

1 February 1944 training manual

These are the number of rounds specified for a tank destroyer company following Kriegsstärkenachweisung (K St N) (Table of organization and equipment) 1149, equipped with either Sturmgeschütz III, Jagdpanzer 38, or Jagdpanzer IV. The company had two versions, with either 10 or 14 vehicles.

Ammunition compliment

These numbers are the number of rounds authorized for the entire company.

Vehicle Round Ammunition type Quantity
10 vehicles
Jagdpanzer IV or
Jagdpanzer 38
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 39 Kw K 40 APCBC 400
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 40 Kw K 40 APCR 100
7,5 cm Sprgr Patr 34 Kw K 40 HE 400
Sturmgeschütz III 7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 39 Kw K 40 APCBC 510
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 40 Kw K 40 APCR 190
7,5 cm Sprgr Patr 34 Kw K 40 HE 700
14 vehicles
Jagdpanzer IV or
Jagdpanzer 38
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 39 Kw K 40 APCBC 510
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 40 Kw K 40 APCR 190
7,5 cm Sprgr Patr 34 Kw K 40 HE 700
Sturmgeschütz III 7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 39 Kw K 40 APCBC 714
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 40 Kw K 40 APCR 266
7,5 cm Sprgr Patr 34 Kw K 40 HE 980

Carrying capacity

These numbers are the maximum number of rounds that could be carried by the company.

Section Carrying vehicle Number of vehicles Rounds per vehicle Rounds in total
10 Jagdpanzer IV
Combat section Jagdpanzer IV 10 79 790
Maultier 3 120 360
Combat supply section 3 ton truck 2 180 360
1½ ton truck 1 90 90
Total 1600
14 Jagdpanzer IV
Combat section Jagdpanzer IV 14 79 1106
Maultier 3 120 360
Combat supply section 4½ ton truck 1 240 240
3 ton truck 2 180 360
1½ ton truck 1 90 90
Total 2156
10 Jagdpanzer 38
Combat section Jagdpanzer 38 10 55 550
Maultier 3 120 360
Combat supply section 3 ton truck 2 180 360
1½ ton truck 1 90 90
Total 1360
14 Jagdpanzer 38
Combat section Jagdpanzer 38 14 41 574
Maultier 3 120 360
Combat supply section 4½ ton truck 1 240 240
3 ton truck 2 180 360
1½ ton truck 1 90 90
Total 1624
10 Sturmgeschütz III
Combat section Sturmgeschütz III 10 54 540
Maultier 3 120 360
Combat supply section 4½ ton truck 1 240 240
3 ton truck 2 180 360
1½ ton truck 1 90 90
Total 1590
14 Sturmgeschütz III
Combat section Sturmgeschütz III 14 54 756
Maultier 3 120 360
Combat supply section 4½ ton truck 2 480 480
3 ton truck 2 180 360
1½ ton truck 1 90 90
Total 2046

Assault Guns

These numbers describe how many of each type of round should be given to a assault gun battalion per gun, not the number of rounds carried in each vehicle at a time.

27 April 1942 manual

Ammunition type Quantity
HE 224
APCBC 46
Smoke 30

15 January 1943 order

Weapon Round Ammunition type Quantity
7,5 cm Stu K (L/24) 7,5 cm Gr Patr 38 HL Kw K HEAT 270
7,5 cm Nbgr Patr Kw K Smoke 30
7,5 cm Stu K 40 (L/48) 7,5 cm Sprgr Patr 38 Kw K 40 HE 150
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 39 Kw K 40 APCBC 108
7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 40 Kw K 401 APCR 30
7,5 cm Nbgr Patr Kw K 40 Smoke 12
10,5 cm Stu H 42 F H Gr (impact detonation) HE 162
F H Gr (delayed detonation) HE 9
10 cm Gr 39 rot Hl/A or
10 cm Gr 39 rot Hl/B
HEAT 36
F H Gr Nb Smoke 18
8,8 cm Stu K 43/1 8,8 cm Sprgr Patr Kw K 43 HE 120
8,8 cm Gr Patr 39 Hl Kw K 432 HEAT 72
8,8 cm Pzgr Patr 39/43 Kw K 43 APCBC 24
8,8 cm Pzgr Patr 40/43 Kw K 432 APCR 24

Notes

  1. In case no rounds were available, 7,5 cm Pzgr Patr 39 Kw K 40 or 7,5 cm Gr. Patr 38 Hl/A Kw K 40 could be used instead. Back
  2. In case no rounds were available, 8,8 cm Pzgr Patr 39/43 Kw K 43 could be used instead. Back

Sources

  1. Aufstellung von leichten und schweren Sturmgeschütz-Abteilungen. Berlin : Der Chef der Heeresrüstung und Befehlshaber des Ersatzheeres, 1943. 9 p. AHA (IaII) 170/43 g.Kdos.. NARA T78 R866 H37/101.
  2. Einsatz der Versorgungskompanie einer Abteilung (Btl.) " Freie Gliederung " vom 15.4.1944. Mielau : Panzerjäger-Lehrgang Mielau, 1944. 12 p. NARA T78 R620 H16/213.
  3. Brand. Merkblätter für Artillerie Nr. 34 : Richtlinien für den Einsatz der Sturmgeschütz-Einheiten. Berlin : General der Artillerie, 1942. 15 p. General der Artillerie Nr. 1600/42 (I b). NARA T78 R269.