8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl.

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Rank VI USSR | Premium | Golden Eagles
Su-25K Pack
8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl.
germ_sdkfz_9_flak37.png
GarageImage 8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl..jpg
ArtImage 8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl..png
8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl.
AB RB SB
4.7 4.0 3.7
Research:13 000 Specs-Card-Exp.png
Purchase:76 000 Specs-Card-Lion.png
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Description

The  8.8cm Flak 37 Selbstfahrlafette auf 18 ton Zugkraftwagen   (nicknamed the Famo) was the largest half-track fielded by Germany during World War II. The half-track itself was capable of towing an incredible 28 tonnes. It was produced between 1938 and 1944 with a total of 2500 units built. A few models of this half-track were adapted to mount the infamous 88mm FlaK 18 cannon in 1940. The vehicle was supposed to be used as a tank destroyer, picking enemies from the distance, behind the cover of allied units. Still, for a half-track, the crew were decently protected against small-arms fire.

It was introduced in Update 1.63 "Desert Hunters". It features the famous 8.8 cm FlaK 37 cannon on a half-track mount, presenting heavy firepower at the cost of armour and even mobility due to its heavy weight. It is the best definition of a crystal cannon, its 88mm gun can penetrate most if not all tanks around its BR. But this comes at the cost of survivability, artillery and all kinds of HE or HEAT shells will one-shot this vehicle. It is even more susceptible to strafing runs or even machinegun fire. With this in mind, it is recommended to stay away from combat, behind cover and camouflage (like bushes and surrounding foliage). Using this vehicle as a sniper is a good way to succeed, but this playstyle requires patience and good aim.

General info

Survivability and armour

Armourfront / side / back
Hull14 / 14 / 14
Turret15 / 0 / 0
Crew6 people
Visibility182 %

Armour type:

  • Rolled homogeneous armour (engine and driver compartment, gun shield, ammo box)
  • Structural steel (chassis, flatbed)
Armour Front Sides Rear Roof
Half-track 10 mm Grille
8 mm (85-86°) Front hood
14.5 mm (50°) Driver View
14.5 mm 14.5 mm 14.5 mm
Gun shield 14.5 mm (17-41°) 10 mm (14°) N/A N/A

Notes:

  • Tracks are 10 mm thick while suspension wheels are 15 mm thick.

If encountered in combat, attacking players can attempt to dispatch it at longer ranges. At slightly higher Battle-Ratings it is extremely unlikely that a player will use this vehicle to lead in the front line, but if he/she does, it can usually be easily dispatched from a concealed position. When the enemy is sniping, it is a difficult vehicle to destroy in a map with uneven and hilly terrain like Kuban where plentiful cover allows it to hide easily, but can be destroyed more easily on congested and more urban maps like Advance to the Rhine as there is increased difficulty for long ranged combat due to abundances of buildings and walls to use as cover for both sides.

Due to limited gun vertical traverse, smaller vehicles with lower chassis such as ASU-57 or similar can easily defeat it in extremely closer quarters engagement by simply driving up and make physical contact with the vehicle. The limited vertical traverse of the 88mm gun will mean the attacking vehicle cannot be damaged or destroyed in this situation.

There are multiple ways to destroy this vehicle. Users must take note that the design of the targeted vehicle has separated compartments for driving, gunnery and ammunition storage. Each one must be targeted best in accordance to different situations presented. Attacking forces unfamiliar with the vehicle may be confused as to which compartment to target first; the exposed ammunition storage, disable the gunnery or disable its movements; valuable time expended on this decision usually results in destruction of the unwitting user's vehicle. This does not become a problem if attacking vehicles are equipped with High-explosive shells, as even a glancing hit will completely disable or destroy it without the need to selectively target individual compartments. If not equipped with High-explosive shells and the user is unfamiliar with the target vehicle, they may opt do disable the gunnery controls first and buying more valuable time to target the remaining compartments. Alternatively, due to the vehicle being constructed of light armour, can be easily perforated with .50 cal or higher calibre shells to ensure quick destruction if the first shell misses or fails to deal critical damage. Artillery Strike can also easily and quickly disable or destroy the vehicle. Due to the exposed crew and light armour, a brief strafe from a fighter can also quickly disable or destroy it in a single pass. Most AP rounds, however, especially 75 and 88 mm rounds, if they hit the ammo rack from the front or rear, will not finish the Flak 37 off. The best chance to destroy a Flakbus with an Ammo rack detonation is to shoot the storage box that is mounted on the rear of the hull, from the side.

Mobility

Speedforward / back
AB44 / 11 km/h
RB and SB40 / 10 km/h
Number of gears8 forward
2 back
Weight24.3 t
Engine power
AB439 hp
RB and SB230 hp
Power-to-weight ratio
AB18.1 hp/t
RB and SB9.5 hp/t
Game Mode Max Speed (km/h) Weight (tons) Engine power (horsepower) Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)
Forward Reverse Stock Upgraded Stock Upgraded
Arcade 44 11 24.3 327 439 13.46 18.07
Realistic 40 10 203 230 8.35 9.47

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB1 234 → 1 557 Sl icon.png
RB1 389 → 1 752 Sl icon.png
SB1 672 → 2 110 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications25 100 Rp icon.png
45 400 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost1 100 Ge icon.png
Crew training22 000 Sl icon.png
Experts76 000 Sl icon.png
Aces400 Ge icon.png
Research Aces320 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
80 / 120 / 150 % Sl icon.png
142 / 142 / 142 % Rp icon.png
Modifications
Mobility Protection Firepower
Mods new tank traks.png
Tracks
Research:
1 700 Rp icon.png
Cost:
3 100 Sl icon.png
120 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank suspension.png
Suspension
Research:
1 400 Rp icon.png
Cost:
2 500 Sl icon.png
100 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank break.png
Brake System
Research:
1 400 Rp icon.png
Cost:
2 500 Sl icon.png
100 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank filter.png
Filters
Research:
2 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
3 800 Sl icon.png
150 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank transmission.png
Transmission
Research:
2 700 Rp icon.png
Cost:
4 900 Sl icon.png
190 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank engine.png
Engine
Research:
2 700 Rp icon.png
Cost:
4 900 Sl icon.png
190 Ge icon.png
Mods tank tool kit.png
Improved Parts
Research:
1 700 Rp icon.png
Cost:
3 100 Sl icon.png
120 Ge icon.png
Mods extinguisher.png
Improved FPE
Research:
1 400 Rp icon.png
Cost:
2 500 Sl icon.png
100 Ge icon.png
Mods tank reinforcement ger.png
Crew Replenishment
Research:
2 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
3 800 Sl icon.png
150 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank horizontal aiming.png
Horizontal Drive
Research:
1 700 Rp icon.png
Cost:
3 100 Sl icon.png
120 Ge icon.png
Mods aa cannon.png
Adjustment of Fire
Research:
1 400 Rp icon.png
Cost:
2 500 Sl icon.png
100 Ge icon.png
Mods new tank vertical aiming.png
Elevation Mechanism
Research:
2 100 Rp icon.png
Cost:
3 800 Sl icon.png
150 Ge icon.png
Mods tank rangefinder.png
Rangefinder
Research:
2 700 Rp icon.png
Cost:
4 900 Sl icon.png
190 Ge icon.png

Armaments

Rangefinder
Reduces the error and increases the maximum measurable distance of the rangefinder

Main armament

Ammunition40 rounds
Reloadbasic crew → aces
6.5 → 5.0 s
Vertical guidance-3° / 85°
Main article: Flak.37 (88 mm)
88 mm Flak.37 Turret rotation speed (°/s) Reloading rate (seconds)
Mode Capacity Vertical Horizontal Stabilizer Stock Upgraded Full Expert Aced Stock Full Expert Aced
Arcade 40 -3°/+85° ±180° N/A 9.69 13.41 16.28 18.00 19.15 6.50 5.75 5.30 5.00
Realistic 6.55 7.70 9.35 10.34 11.00

Ammunition

Penetration statistics
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)
10 m 100 m 500 m 1,000 m 1,500 m 2,000 m
Pzgr. APCBC 153 151 140 128 116 106
Sprgr. L/4.5 HE-TF* 18 18 17 15 14 12
Shell details
Ammunition Type of
warhead
Velocity
(m/s)
Projectile
mass (kg)
Fuse delay
(m)
Fuse sensitivity
(mm)
Explosive mass
(TNT equivalent) (g)
Ricochet
0% 50% 100%
Pzgr. APCBC 810 9.5 1.2 14 215.04 48° 63° 71°
Sprgr. L/4.5 HE-TF* 820 9 0.2 0.1 698 79° 80° 81°

Ammo racks

Ammo racks of the 8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl.
Full
ammo
1st
rack empty
2nd
rack empty
Visual
discrepancy
40 21 (+19) (+39) No

The ammo rack at the back of the halftrack can be reduced from two possible racks to one by reducing your total ammo count from 40 shells to 21, with the 21st shell will be loaded in the gun breech. This can reduce the possibility of an ammo rack explosion.

Usage in battles

Despite the presence of a whopping 88 mm gun on the back of this half-track, the complete lack of any armour, as well as the overpressure mechanic, give this vehicle a short lifespan on the front lines. Thus, the best course is to keep the half-track as far away from the battle as possible.

The gun has a slow gun traverse and a terrible depression when angled towards the front, so firing against targets at close range on level ground will leave the vulnerable and unable to return fire against targets of low-profile chassis. The gun however can be depressed further at a lower degree when pointed to the sides and rear of the vehicle as it provides more physical clearance. As such when engaging targets on level ground at close to medium ranges, it is recommended to turn the entire vehicle clockwise or counterclockwise for 45 degrees and the gun turret 45 degrees in opposition to the angle of the chassis for clearance. This should be accomplished only in areas with enough manoeuvring room to ingress and egress to guarantee clearance, or else the half-rack will find itself stuck (in some cases literally) between a rock and a hard place. Find cover behind rocks or other obstacles, inch out of cover only enough to show the gun, then race back into cover after firing to avoid being shot and losing valuable crew members.

In the ways of modification purchases, try to obtain the spare parts and FPE first. From there, research Horizontal Drive, Adjustment of Fire, and Elevation Mechanism to increase your total combat effectiveness. The stock halftrack's turn rate is rather poor and needs improvement if you want to be able to quickly react to a changing battlefield. One thing that cannot be stressed enough is the fact that this vehicle is the definition of a Glass Cannon. Most of the time, your TD will be destroyed by either an ammo rack explosion or most commonly a tank burn-down. Since the Flak.37 does not have armour, HEAT and HE shells can destroy you with one well placed shot.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Has a high potency of destroying tanks it encounters in just one shot
  • Short reload time
  • Six crew members
  • Gun elevation maxed at 85°, some may use it to fight larger aircraft
  • Paper-thin armour makes AP shell more likely to pass through
  • More than adequate ammo for prolonged combat

Cons:

  • Very little armour, a heavy machine gun or strafing aircraft, and ramming planes will knock out of this vehicle easily
  • Crew exposed to overpressure, any nearby explosion can be lethal
  • Boxes near the rear are ammo racks, smart players will just take out your gunner and shoot there
  • Heavy half-track and gun gives low and sluggish speed
  • With a gun depression of -3 degrees and the gun being high off the ground, you will have a near impossible chance of hitting short tanks that are really close to you on level ground

History

The half-track

The Sd.Kfz. 9 (nicknamed the Famo) was Germany's heaviest half-track seeing service in World War II. The first model was made in 1936 and entered service with the Wehrmacht in 1938. Its primary purposes was as an artillery tractor and a tank recovery vehicle. The vehicle was able to tow about 28 tonnes, which was more than capable of towing the 24 cm Kanone 3 siege gun and the Panzer IV, but required two to four to tow the heavier Panther, Tiger I, and Tiger II. It was produced between 1938 to 1944 with 2,500 units produced.

The gun

The 8.8 cm FlaK is a German anti-aircraft artillery and one of their mainstay anti-air and anti-tank weapons in World War II. The 8.8 cm calibre was developed in 1917 during the times of World War I from available naval calibre to effectively combat Allied aircraft. The first of the FlaK series, the FlaK 18, was mounted on a easily deployable and traversable gun platform, has a semi-automatic loading system, and had a wide variety of ammunition available from high-explosives and armour-piercing. The guns first saw service in the Spanish Civil War and it proved as one of the most effective anti-aircraft guns of the period. Improvements to the Flak led to the FlaK 36 and FlaK 37 with new features such as a two-piece barrel and ability to fire without deploying the gun platform. Though the set-up time for the platform was quick at two and a half minutes, the weight of the gun required a half-track such as the Sd.Kfz 7 to quickly move it to a new position. The gun proved effective on ground targets as well, much of an impact that it was adapted as a tank armament on the Tiger I heavy tank. The FlaK series ended up being produced in the thousands from 1933 to 1945, with up to 21,000 units produced in that time period.

8.8 cm Flak.37 sfl

In 1940, fifteen examples of Sd.Kfz.9 were adapted to be mounted with the 8.8 cm FlaK 18 guns. These were officially known as 8.8 cm Flak 18 (Sfl.) auf Zugkraftwagen 18t. Its primary purpose was to serve in an anti-tank role, with the half-track needed to provide much-needed mobility to the gun. Aside from these 15 units produced, not much is known of its combat performance on the battlefield, but its existence inspired some American tank destroyer designs in 1943 to mount an anti-aircraft gun on a mobile vehicle, but these proved unsuccessful.

Media

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Videos

See also

Vehicles of a similar configuration or role:

Vehicles with similar weapon systems:

External links


Germany tank destroyers
Pz. I Derivatives  Panzerjäger I
Pz. II Derivatives  15cm sIG 33 B Sfl
Pz. 38(t) Derivatives  Marder III · Marder III H · Jagdpanzer 38(t)
Pz. III Derivatives  StuG III A · StuG III F · StuG III G · StuH 42 G
Pz. IV Derivatives  Jagdpanzer IV · Panzer IV/70(A) · Panzer IV/70(V) · Dicker Max · Nashorn · Brummbär · VFW
Pz. V Derivatives  Jagdpanther G1 · Bfw. Jagdpanther G1
Pz. VI Derivatives  Sturer Emil · Elefant · Ferdinand · 38 cm Sturmmörser · Jagdtiger
Wheeled/Half-track  8,8 cm Flak 37 Sfl. · Sd.Kfz.251/9 · Sd.Kfz.251/10 · Sd.Kfz.251/22 · Sd.Kfz.234/3 · Sd.Kfz.234/4 · 15 cm Pz.W.42
ATGM Carrier  RakJPz 2 · RakJPz 2 (HOT) · Wiesel 1A2
Other  Waffenträger · M109G · JPz 4-5 · Raketenautomat · VT1-2