7.62 Cm Pak 36(r) - Employment

Employment

The FK36(r) and PaK 36(r) saw combat on the Eastern Front and in North Africa. The first employment of the FK36(r) was noted as early as March 1942 at Bir Hacheim in Libya, and by May 1942, 117 are recorded as being in use by the Afrika Korps. The gun was well proven in combat, as demonstrated by Gunner Günter Halm (Knights Cross), who destroyed 9 Valentine Tanks in a single action. The Pak 36(r) was used in North Africa later in the campaign. The gun was actively used in both anti-tank and field artillery roles until the end of the war. As late as March 1945 Wehrmacht still possessed 165 Pak 36(r) and Pak 39(r). The scale of use can be illustrated by the amount of ammunition consumed: 49,000 AP and 8,170 subcaliber AP shells in 1942, and 151,390 in 1943. For the sake of comparison, in 1942 the aforementioned Pak 40 fired 42,430 AP and 13,380 HEAT shells; in 1943 the numbers grew significantly to 401,100 AP and 374,000 HEAT.

The modernized barrels were also mounted in the below types of self-propelled guns:

  • 7.62 cm Pak 36(r) auf Pz.IID Marder II (Sd.Kfz.132) - lightly armoured tank destroyer on Panzer II light tank chassis.
  • 7.62 cm Pak 36(r) auf Pz.38(t) Marder III (Sd.Kfz.139) - lightly armoured tank destroyer on Panzer 38(t) light tank chassis.

A number of Pak 36(r) guns were captured by the Red Army (e.g. in the Battle of Stalingrad) and were adopted by anti-tank battalions.

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