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What do you know about the Soviet 8th Guard?

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We're trying to get as much cool info on the 8th Guard as we can.

Do you have a cool link, photo or story (or an idea for a cool list) please post a comment on this entry!

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bodders303
Member
300xp

I’m really happy to see your Soviets are getting started. I was worried it would never happen. Looking forward to more Bolt Action hobby action!

piers
Member
13483xp

Which 8th Guards?

8th Guards Army? 8th Guards Tank Corps? 8th Guards Mechanised? 8th Guard Cavalry?

theticky
Cult of Games Member
22xp

Waren you should check out the http://www.nafzigercollection.com/ I think its one of the best sights for information, the books he sells are direct translations from those country’s military collections and hes books on the soviets are really detail on there organization you might want to check them out

torros
Cult of Games Member
18275xp

A lot of them have been donated to the National Archive s in the US so are free. They are a pain to sort through though

sakuraboy91
Member
83xp

Here’s a link to a page about a general who eventually leads the 8th Guard: ww2db.com/person_bio.php?person_id=9

sakuraboy91
Member
83xp

In case the link doesn’t work, google: Vasily Chuikov

cha1nzz
Cult of Games Member
58xp

i will happily do the US Airborne for you as i am doing them myself so might as well do yours too if want….just hit me up

oriskany
Cult of Games Member
43537xp

Great topic, and a great PLOG! 😀 Sorry, put this on the wrong spot before and the “unit hierarchy” didn’t come out right, so trying again.

8th Guards (technically, Guards, not Guard) Army is indeed a great choice for an infantry-heavy Soviet army. As Warren says, these used to be the 62nd Army, which was the primary defensive army that held the streets, ruins, and sewers of Stalingrad. Absolutely brutal guys, life expectancy less than 24 hours, fighting chest-deep in human sewage with flamethrowers, that kind of thing. They were also at the worst part of Kursk, spearheaded the drive back across Russia and the Ukraine, took part in Bagration in 1944, and as Warren says, were definitely mixed up in Berlin. As John says, this is a huge force, 150,000 men or so. The winter battles of 1943-44 and 44-45 would be great battles for these guys. 

WHAT A “GUARDS” UNIT IS
When Stalingrad was won (Sept-Feb 1943), the 62nd Army was rewarded with an upgrade to “Guards” status. So technically, they weren’t “Guards” yet IN Stalingrad. This wasn’t just an honorary title bestowed on units that had done well. Guards units (first brigades in 1941, then divisions and corps in 42, and finally armies in early 1943) were given better equipment, better training, and even higher pay. Yes, even in a “Soviet” system. They also had beefed-up orders of battle and tables of organization and equipment. There were actually more guys and support units in a given guards units than its “regular” equivalent.

TANK “CORPS”
Now as far as subunits go, things with the Soviets get a little tricky. After September 1941 (when things were reeeeally going bad for them), the Soviets basically tossed the idea of a “tank division,” it just wasn’t working for them for a host of reasons I won’t go into here. So instead they went with a smaller, easier to handle tank BRIGADE, which were combined by three and fours into a tank CORPS which, unlike most corps, was NOT made up of divisions. Soviet infantry corps were (actually called rifle corps ) made up of divisions, but not their tanks. Weird, I know.

The Soviets are tough in this regard, they use a non-standard template for building their armoured forces and to make it worse, keep changing during the war. The basic idea is that there’s really no such thing as a Soviet “tank division,” in 1942-45, but they have the “tank corps” that basically the same thing. This is why in “World War 2.5”  the Soviet tank corps have similar values to Western armoured divisions.

11TH TANK CORPS
The 11th Tank Corps is another great choice. Some people might get them confused with the 11th GUARDS Tank Corps, which wasn’t part of the 8th Guards Army. I only know this because the 11th GUARDS Tank Corps was part of my personal favorite, Katukov’s 1st Guards Tank Army. So te-e-e-echnically, I don’t know if the 11th Tank Corps is an official guards unit, even though they belong to the 8th Guards Army.

Typical Soviet Army OOB 1942-45 (150,000+ men):
8th Guards Army
. . . Rifle Corps
. . . . . . Rifle Division
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Artillery Regiment
. . . . . . Rifle Division
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Artillery Regiment
. . . . . . Rifle Division
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Artillery Regiment
. . . Rifle Corps
. . . . . . Rifle Division
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Artillery Regiment
. . . . . . Rifle Division
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Artillery Regiment
. . . . . . Rifle Division
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Rifle Regiment
. . . . . . . . . Artillery Regiment
. . . Tank Corps
. . . . . . Tank Brigade (not division)
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . Tank Brigade (not division)
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . SP Artillery Brigade or Regiment (this is where your ISU-152s are)
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion
. . . . . . . . . Tank Battalion

A Soviet Tank Army of Guards Tank Army (there were only six of these) would have a similar makeup, just more tank corps and less rifle corps.

There would also be tons of artillery regiments, independent heavy tank regiments, air assault regiments and divisions (Il-2 Sturmoviks), engineers, and other assets assigned at army level.

Soviet tank markings are indeed quite difficult. I think I have some stuff I can send in, along with some more detailed OOB / ToE material for 8th Guards Army.

Please feel free to PM me if you want with any more specific questions. Eastern Front is my first and true love, and I hope there’s a lot I can offer by way of research and “realism” of this PLOG.

yavasa
Member
4740xp

You found these @warren?
http://wio.ru/tank/oz/9tk11tk-en.htm

oriskany
Cult of Games Member
43537xp

Holy crap, @yavasa . Awesome site. Bookmarked this, you can believe that. 😀

tibour
Member
1034xp

awesome site yavasa thanks again 🙂

yavasa
Member
4740xp

That’s the only one available guys @warren @oriskany I’ve been into the topic for a while. Sadly, most of my books are at my parent’s house which I will visit in more or less a week I can get in touch then.

oriskany
Cult of Games Member
43537xp

ERRATA for my long post above:

1) 8th Guards Army was not at “the worst part” of Kursk. They were involved, just not at the epicenter.

2) At the bottom of long hierarchy list, when you get to the Tank Corps, there should be two Tank Brigades and an SP artillery brigade or regiment . . . not a third tank brigade.

Apologies. Posted too fast and watching to make sure my boss wasn’t looking over my shoulder. Okay, enough from me, I’m back to work! 🙂

yavasa
Member
4740xp

The funny feeling when you read your posts and see that you @warren instead of @warzan I need to stop abusing coffee at work.

aresgow2000
Cult of Games Member
37xp

Glad to see the PVlog on this. I’m about to start my Germans.

oriskany
Cult of Games Member
43537xp

Indeed, @yavasa , and edit button would be great. Or maybe I should just slow down and watch what I am typing.

I’ve put together a little .pdf packet for Warren and the guys on the 8th Guards . . . origins, history, campaigns, OOBs, ToEs, etc. We’ll see what they think of it. If they like it, I’ll put it up on the forums in a day or two. 🙂

yavasa
Member
4740xp

Yes, @oriskany an edit button would be welcome.

tibour
Member
1034xp

Great timing on this topic as I have recently decided to expand my Soviets in BA for Tank War.

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