Panzerkampfwagen III (Fl)

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The Panzerkampfwagen III (Fl) was a flamethrower equipped tank based on the Panzer III Ausf M. The idea of converting the Panzer III to carry a flamethrower had originated in November 1942, when it was intended to send them to Stalingrad to take part in the street fighting in the city, but none were ready in time.

One hundred Panzer III Ausf Ms built by MIAG in Braunschweig were delivered to Wegmann Waggonfabrik of Kassel, who carried out the conversions. The 5cm gun of the Ausf M was removed and replaced by a 14cm flame oil projector, with a barrel 1.5m long. 1,000 litres of flame oil was carried, which was enough for 80 bursts of two-three second duration. The flames had a maximum range of 60 yards, but an effective range of nearer to 40 yards. A 2-stroke auxiliary engine was installed in the hull to power the flame thrower.

Although the Panzerkampfwagen II (Fl) arrived too late for Stalingrad, forty one were involved in the battle of Kursk, split between the 6th and 11th Panzer Divisions and Panzer Division Grossdeutschland.

Names
Panzerkampfwagen III (Fl)
Flammpanzer
Sd Kfz 141/3

Stats
Number produced: 100
Produced: February-April 1943
Length: 6.41m
Hull Width: 2.95m/ 9ft 8in
Height: 2.50m/ 8ft 2in
Crew: 3 (Commander, driver, radio operator)
Weight: 23 tons
Engine: Maybach HL120TRM
Max Speed: 40km/hr/ 24mph
Max Range: 155km/ 96 miles
Armament: One 14mm Flammenwerfer, plus one 7.92mm MG 34 in turret and one in front of superstructure

Armour


Armour

Front

Side

Rear

Top/ Bottom

Turret

57mm/ 2.25in

30mm/ 1.2in

30mm/ 1.2in

10mm/ 0.4in

Superstructure

50mm/ 2in

30mm/ 1.2in

50mm/ 2 in

18mm/ 0.66in

Hull

50mm/ 2in

30mm/ 1.2in

50mm/ 2 in

16mm/ 0.62in

Gun mantlet

50mm/ 2 in

 

 

 

Panzerkampfwagen III Medium Tank 1936-44, Bryan Perrett. A good introduction for anyone interesting in the Panzer III, this book covers the development of the tank, the structure of the German panzer forces, and its military career, which saw the Panzer III go from being the Third Reich's main battle tank to being under-gunned and under-armoured [see more] cover cover cover

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (24 April 2008), Panzerkampfwagen III (Fl) , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_panzer_III_fl.html

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