|This page is about the Soviet SPAA vehicle GAZ-AAA (DShK). For the version equipped with 7.62 mm Maxim's, see GAZ-AAA (4M).|
The big brother to the GAZ-AAA (4M), it presents a crude set-up of a 12.7 mm DShK mount to a 6x4 GAZ-AAA truck chassis. This soviet improvisation continues with the Soviet SPAA trend of attaching anti-aircraft weaponry to trucks, half-tracks, and cars in the game.
Although the GAZ-AAA (DShK) continues to use the same unarmoured but nimble platform that it's predecessor, the change in armament allows it to do more damage per shot against aircraft opponents as well as having a change at killing lightly armoured vehicles that are common at such BR. However the change in armament also represents a decrease volume of fire as well as an increase in reload and a smaller magazine, all of which makes it all the harder to hit enemy planes as well as requiring more rigorous aiming when it comes to attacking lightly armoured vehicles. While the GAZ-AAA (DShK) can penetrate targets, it still is not recommended to rush into battles due to the lack of protection of the vehicle and the mediocre penetration. The vehicle is better suited for ambushing unexpected targets and hit and run tactics. One must note however that unlike the GAZ-AAA (4M), the GAZ-AAA (DShK) cannot fully traverse its gun due to the ammo box located next to the driver's cabin.
Survivability and armour
This vehicle lacks almost any form of armour. Any light machine gun can penetrate and kill the gunner (who is completely exposed), driver, or commander easily. Artillery and rockets can cause critical damage even if they land far away from the vehicle. And bombs that detonate nearby will almost surely destroy it outright.
The only benefit of being so light is that enemies using APHE rounds will often overpenetrate and not detonate. However, it is possible to hullbreak this vehicle (although at this tier, not many guns are capable of this).
|Game Mode||Max Speed (km/h)||Weight (tons)||Engine power (horsepower)||Power-to-weight ratio (hp/ton)|
The mobility of the GAZ-AAA (DShK) is mediocre at best. Similar to the preceding GAZ-AAA (4M), the GAZ-AAA (DShK) does reach an impressive ~40 km/h on hard surfaces (eg. grass, dirt, concrete, etc), and is quite agile in turning. The acceleration on these surfaces is average. These pros, however, are outweighted by cons such as the poor brakes. It takes around a whopping 4 seconds to reach a complete stop which is a disadvantage in cramped conditions like urban environments, causing it to drive over desired cover or to bump into walls/teammates. It also has very poor reverse speed of only -5 km/h, putting the player at great risk when needing to retreat back to safety. Due to the low engine power, it is hard or impossible to crush obstacles like stone fences or light poles which further limits its mobility in an urban battlefield. Finally, just like most other wheeled vehicles, it shares the poor mobility on soft terrain like mud and sand, especially when accelerating, making itself an easy target for strafing aircraft.
Modifications and economy
|12.7 mm DShK||Turret rotation speed (°/s)||Reloading rate (seconds)|
|Mode||Capacity (Belt)||Fire rate||Vertical||Horizontal||Stabilizer||Stock||Upgraded||Full||Expert||Aced||Stock||Full||Expert||Aced|
- Default: · ·
- API: · · ·
- AP: · ·
- API-T: · ·
|Belt||Penetration @ 0° Angle of Attack (mm)|
|10 m||100 m||500 m||1,000 m||1,500 m||2,000 m|
Usage in battles
- Combat tactics
Potentially the most challenging SPAA to use in the game, due to the machine gun's low rate of fire making it relatively ineffective against aircraft, however, it can work in part as a basic tank destroyer and support vehicle.
For anti-air duties, the GAZ-AAA (DShK) is harder to use than the previous SPAA despite having a more powerful gun. The 12.7 mm MG traverses very slowly for an SPAA, has a limited elevation angle and cannot aim backwards. These limitations severely impact the anti-air capability since the player have to constantly adjust the hull position just to get the gun on target. The best way to use this SPAA is to lure enemy planes into head-ons since little to no lead is required, compensating your low fire density and fire rate. First find yourself a solid cover, hide the driving compartment behind it and expose only the gunner. As an enemy plane nears, fire single shots towards it to draw its attention. If it starts to dive on you, open fire immediately, aim slightly up between the top of its fuselage and the tip of the vertical stabiliser. If the gunner is not knocked out, unload the entire box of ammo to the target. As you reload it might just be turning back for another pass, try crippling it more with another box of bullets. A few hits from the DShK should badly damage a fighter (eg. He 112) around this BR, however a bomber/attacker (eg. Do 17 Z, Ju 87) is generally more durable and can take more hits. If you see or hear a bomb falling from the plane, immediately hide behind cover, as even the smallest fragment can easily kill your poorly protected crew, or damage your tires or your engine.
For anti-tank duties, the key will be to stick to your team and take out the crew of an enemy tank and then let the dedicated tanks finish them off with their harder-hitting rounds. It is best to use the API or AP belts since they contain the highest percentage of armour-piercing cermet core bullets. The 29 mm penetration of these bullets at point blank range is enough to pierce through the front/sides of common tanks such as Pz.II, Pz.IV C, LVT(A), etc. Note that you cannot spray bullets, because one magazine only holds 50 rounds which is not a lot, so aim carefully and shoot 1-3 round bursts for taking out crew members. Just remember this only works on all but the most lightly armoured targets, such as other SPAA, early German tanks and the side of some American tanks, this works best when your vehicle is down-tiered and not the other way around.
- Enemies worth noting
- Ju 87 B2: this early Stuka is able to carry some very threatening bombs of up to 500kg. With the bombs it can easily destroy a GAZ-AAA (DShK) even if the bomb lands far away, due to the very thin armour protection of the SPAA. Its 2 x 7.92mm MG, although weak, are still more than enough to knock out the completely exposed and not protected gunner, making the GAZ defenceless. It is best to target the Stuka's nose, where the engine and cooling systems are located. With an overheating/damaged engine, a Stuka will experience significantly worse flight performance which makes it easy for you or a friendly plane to destroy it.
- M13 MGMC: this SPAA can wipe out the GAZ within a second as it has a pair of fast-firing and heavy-punching .50 cals. Fortunately your DShK is also able to penetrate through its armour with ease. In an encounter with an M13, try your best to get your shots off first. Aim for its gun mount and disable its ability to fire, then go for the driver compartment to destroy it.
Pros and cons
- Weapon has increased penetration and damage output compared to the preceding GAZ-AAA (4M)
- Quite fast on hard roads, topping at ~45 km/h
- Small profile from all angle, hard to get spotted
- Thin armour will not trigger most fused shells, causing over-penetration and thus little damage
- Limited magazine of 50 rounds means the armament has to frequently reload
- Russian 12.7 AP is still notably inferior to the American equivalent
- Vehicle armament consists of only a single 600 RPM machine gun
- No armour, can easily be destroyed by .30 cal machine guns
- Gunner can't swivel around 360 degrees horizontally
- Limited vertical traverse
- Will struggle to eliminate passing aircraft due to a low volume of fire
- Arguably worse as an SPAA than the GAZ-AAA (4M)
Around the late 1920s, the Soviet Union was undergoing a mechanization revolution and realized that no purpose-built motor vehicles were available for them to help move cargo and materiel back and forth. The result was the GAZ-AAA truck, which was a truck based on the Ford Model AAA 6 x 4 truck. These trucks entered production in 1932 and were used in multiple roles in the civilian world and in the military.
In the military, the GAZ trucks were used as tractors for gun systems, fuel tankers, radio systems, and even armoured cars. By 1931, an anti-aircraft version was created as well, in order to give the Soviet Union a mobile anti-aircraft system to work with. The design had one DShK heavy machine gun installed on a mount on the truck. This configuration was called the DShK GAZ-AAA and served as a low-altitude air defence system.
Old and reliable .50 cal proved to be good at harassing low flying planes, infantry, and German APCs, but it became apparent that a more powerful gun was needed.
DShK proved its worthiness on many occasions, but a new anti-aircraft system had to be devised for the role of a mobile anti-aircraft system. This led to the development of the GAZ-MM (72-K), which while still truck-mounted weaponry, had a noticeable increase in firepower with a 25 mm autocannon.
Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:
- reference to the series of the vehicles;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
|USSR anti-aircraft vehicles|
|Based on trucks||GAZ-AAA (4M) · GAZ-AAA (DShK) · BTR-152A · GAZ-MM (72-K) · ZiS-12 (94-KM) · ZiS-43|
|Other||ZUT-37 · ZSU-37 · ▂Phòng không T-34 · ZSU-57-2 · ZSU-23-4 · ZSU-37-2 · ZPRK 2S6|