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Could Germany have won on these conditions?

Discussion in 'Alternate History' started by DerGiLLster, Feb 14, 2016.

  1. Tamino

    Tamino Doc - The Deplorable

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    The trouble wasn't just different fuels - the trucks were gathered all over Europe; this means different quality. I wonder how a Peugeot (see a photo below) has managed to make 1000 km without a "general engine revamp". New better cars do need that but a couple of decades ago, European cars needed grinding of pistons, new set of rings, new water pump, belts and straps had to be replaced on regular basis, water leaked into oil etc. There was no anodic protection of chassis. A confiscated French truck could endure just enough to to be scrapped at the Russian border.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. DerGiLLster

    DerGiLLster Member

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    Then how is it that in 1942, Germany's production of the Bf 109 was 2657, then more than doubled to 6013 in 1943 and then doubled again in 1944 to 12807 when in the year they lost their primary oil supplies from Romania, had having bore the real brunt of the Allied bombers pounding on their cities than had been in 1943.
     
  3. GunSlinger86

    GunSlinger86 Well-Known Member

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    I still don't think the Germans quality was that much better than the Allies in terms of production. The P51, P47, British fighters, M18 hellcat, Were solid, quality machines. P47 was one of the toughest planes in the field. P51 was one of the best period. It wasn't just quantity of Allied war goods. There was quality there too.
     
  4. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    Manufacturing efficiency, including extensive sub-component production by multiple smaller organizations feeding larger assembly plants. Als, the expansion in 1943-1944 was partly supported by nearly halving bomber production...and yet still quite a few of those fighters built in late '44 and early '45 had no engines... :cool:
     
  5. GunSlinger86

    GunSlinger86 Well-Known Member

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    There were Allied fighters that were better than the BF109, so the quality argument loses that battle. I don't like that stigma, Germans made quality Allies made quantity. If the Allies made shit materiel it would have been that much harder for them to win.
     
  6. green slime

    green slime Member

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    Of course anyone will always find exceptions, as we are talking in general terms; but in order to actually understand, it is important to see and recognise these generalisations.

    Manufacturing quality, has little to no bearing with whether a weapon system is functional or perceived as "better" in the field. For the Germans, it had more to do with the craftsman ethos of excessive quality, for it's own sake, rather than if it is necessary or not. It was this ethos, that Germany had difficulty shaking off. It wasn't until things started to go badly, that they started to make compromises, which got more and more severe as they grew ever-desperate. While things are going well, there is less incentive to change.

    T-34's are a case in point. They were hardly shining examples of manufacturing quality. But they were definitely good enough to get the job done. The Soviet manufacturing suffered from sloppy governance, and many times inadequate designs, and enormous pressure of having lost a big chunk of European Russia.

    The US on the other hand, had excellent manufacturing processes and governance. (which in turn improves "quality", and quantity)

    With further regards to German manufacturing, their energy production was not oil-based (so losing Romania meant little for production), but mostly coal-based.

    So, in shorthand, production jumped in 1943, as the investments in new factories in 1938,started to pay off, as well as a reorganisation of effort, initiated already in the winter of '41/'42 (IIRC).
     
  7. GunSlinger86

    GunSlinger86 Well-Known Member

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    So when quality vs quantity is used in this instance, its talking about the quality of the manufacturing process, and not necessarily the product that comes out of it?
     
  8. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    As a measure of aircraft production engines are probably a better one than air frames. A twin engine bomber taking more than twice the resources in most cases require to make a single engine fighter. Oil wasn't the critical component in regards to production of aircraft either. It was critical to the "production" of well trained pilots though. Do you have figures for the number of people involved in the production of Bf 109s in those years?
     
  9. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    It can be even a bit more complex than that. As I believe I've mentioned before my Dad use a G41M as his deer rifle for many years. It was a real quality rifle as far as production qualities went and he never had problems with it. On the other hand it was on the heavy side and most of the parts were machined rather than cast or stamped. Furthermore there were complaints from the field as to it's reliability from some things I've read. So I'd rate the manufacturing process as quality in regards to the parts but not in terms of producability. Likewise as a rifle it was arguably of high quality but as an infantry weapon ... no so much.
     
  10. green slime

    green slime Member

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    When every piece is finished and polished to high degree, laquered and made all beautiful it doesn't add much to the actual function. Those activities do add a large amount of time to finish the product, and increase the user's peception of it being a "quality" product.

    Another strike against German manufacturing; during World War II the fluctuation of the German work force was extremely high. Junkers, for example, lost every accounting year between a fifth and a third of the employees recruited. Since this firm nevertheless tried to increase its work force, the number of newly recruited and mostly very inexperienced employees came to about 40 percent in every accounting year for which we have data. This observation suggests that many employees only worked a few months in German aircraft plants.
     
  11. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Perhaps OT but I have a reproduction Walker Dragoon. After firing a couple of dozen rounds it usually became fowled to the point where it had a hard time "popping a cap: I thought maybe polishing the interior parts would help with this so I took them to the buffer. Not sure if it helped with the original problem or not because the trigger is now so light that I would think twice about looking at it hard when loaded and cocked. Probably not all that much of a problem with original equipment but ...
     
  12. RichTO90

    RichTO90 Well-Known Member

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    Good point. The capital investment in plants 1935-1938 was yet another factor in the production "miracle" 1942-1944. However, even there it was dwarfed by the expansion of U.S. plant, partly because the U.S. had suffered so badly from the double-whammy of the 1929-1935 depression and then 1937-1938 recession that so much existing plant was simply idle.

    Nevertheless, the example of the tank industry is illustrative. In September 1939, there was one Federal arsenal and one private manufacturer producing tanks in the U.S. In comparison, there were six German and two German-controlled Czech plants. By the end of 1942 though, there were two newly constructed Federal arsenals in the U.S. manufacturing tanks, plus twelve other private manufacturing plants. Germany added a single newly-built factory and two converted plants, but a single American plant, the Detroit Tank Arsenal, had nearly as much capacity as all of the German plants.
     
  13. Terry D

    Terry D Well-Known Member

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    Slave labor, that's how.
     
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  14. LJAd

    LJAd Well-Known Member

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    No :because before 1942 the needed investments were done to increase the Bf 109 production;slave labor only would not suffice.
     
  15. OhneGewehr

    OhneGewehr New Member

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    Peugeot is the oldest car-manufacturer in the world but did never produce army trucks or even trucks at all.
    And the Peugeot 403 is known for many things, but for sure not for unreliability:
    http://classics.honestjohn.co.uk/reviews/peugeot/403/
    "the 403 was a very conventional machine, but rugged build and its solidity meant that was successfully exported around the globe"
    The main problem with all the foreign vehicles was logistics. Too much different spare-parts (if available at all) and no one had experience in servicing these vehicles.
    There are a few positive examples like the french 75mm gun or the Skoda tanks, but there weren't many more.
     
  16. DerGiLLster

    DerGiLLster Member

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    What do you mean by this? Do you think that had Hitler entered the Soviet Union as a liberator and enlist the people Stalin had ruthlessly dictated would the additional men have made a difference?
     
  17. knightdepaix

    knightdepaix Member

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    I do not want to enter this thread of discussion but the US entering the war on either side is a very huge boost for winning. Shall the US factor be eliminated ? Or in more realistic terms, how can a nation -- the Axis' and their co-belligerent -- dodge the effect of US.

    Thank you for reading this. I am still not entering this thread.
     
  18. DerGiLLster

    DerGiLLster Member

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    This is coming out a conversation me and lwd had via PM:

    lwd: "I believe that the USSR could have been defeated even without Germany taking on the role of liberator although that would have made it easier. What IMO needed to happen was that Germany needed to clearly asses what had happened in the first phases during the lull in August. At that point the chance of a quick victory was obviously declining so preparations for a longer war were required. At that point rather than pushing hard for Moscow they should have taken every opportunity to pocket Soviet troops while establishing a line that would make for a strong defense with good opportunities of counter attacks. By the end of the war the Soviets were running out of manpower. If the Germans could have kept the loss exchange ratio favorable enough in late 41 and 42 the Soviets may well have collapsed. I don't think that would be enough to win the war for the Germans though nor would it have been the end of their troubles in the East."

    DerGiLLster(me): "What do you mean not enough to win the war? I am not in disagreement but what would the US/UK would have been able to do to Germany had they not have the USSR? Wouldn't the only troubles in the east be frequent guerilla warfare with Soviet partisans/saboteurs? Dealing with guerilla warfare would be a huge issue for Germany to deal with?"

    lwd: "If such a strategy worked for the Germans I'd see outright conquest of the USSR as the least likely event. Another possibility is a series of coups that simply see the USSR falling apart. The most likely however is some sort of negotiated peace with the German occupation zone pretty much coinciding with what they hold at the time. All of these likely result in significant partisan activity in the German occupied zone. The latter two may also leave one or more nations on the border of the German zone that are simply biding their time before they renew hostilities. Both require significant German military resources to remain in place in the East. Furthermore none of these results are at all likely until after mid 42 and probably not until 43 or later.


    As for the western allies the fall of the USSR or a German Soviet cease fire really doesn't have much impact on the bombing campaign. It does mean that after Sicily the allies are more likely to attack peripheral targets such as Norway and Crete although depending on the timing Italy is still a possibility. Denmark, southern France, and the Balkans are other possibilities. Then if the war last past the summer of 45 which it probably will the atomic bombs will be used in Europe as originally planned."


    Alright end of conversation, just added this for information to the thread.
     
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