Wednesday 6 November 2019

Finnish Zimmerit

"Copy from a copy
For service use only
Translated from Finnish

Methods of combat against anti-tank magnetic charges

The British, Americans, and also the Russians use magnetic charges, especially against tanks and cars. They are supposed to stick to metal including painted metal or armour.

Report: this is likely a device of British origin, shaped like a half-cylinder 14 cm in length made of artificial materials and filled with explosives. The flat half has 4 magnetic poles. The curved half has an 8 cm deep slot for the fuse and detonator. The fuse is held in place with a cap that screws in.

The knife-shaped delayed fuse is 11 cm long and 1 cm in diameter. Two captured delayed fuses show that they cam go off in an hour or in 3 days. It is possible that other time settings exist.

The Ordnance Bureau of the Ministry of Defense deems the following methods effective in combating magnetic anti-tank mines:
  1. Application of a layer of cement or concrete 3-5 mm thick with mixed in fine sand.
  2. The armour is covered in sap or bitumen and then covered in sand. Parts that get hot should not be covered.
  3. As a temporary measure, cover the armour in oil based substances (bitumen, sap, oil). The same precautions should be taken as in #2.
  4. A thick layer of paint (2-3 mm) can be effective, but it is not reliable enough.
  5. In the winter, when it is very cold, the tank can be sprayed with water. The ice shell that forms will prevent the mine from sticking.
These methods can prevent magnetic charges from sticking. Trials showed that the first method was the most effective. 

The Russians use burlap or wooden lining to protect from German magnetic anti-tank charges.

The choice of method depends on available materials.

This information must be delivered to all forces, especially tank forces, tank-infantry forces, and tank destroyer forces.

Translated: Military Translator of the Intelligence Department of the Leningrad Front, Senior Lieutenant Yevseyev.
Confirmed: Senior Assistant to the Chief of the Intelligence Department of the Artillery Army, Captain Mokrinskiy

September 10th, 1944"

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