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Lebel 86 M 93 rifle Grenadier
 
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HHRgamer

 

Joined: 16 Feb 2008
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Post subject: Lebel 86 M 93 rifle Grenadier  Reply with quote   (Liked by:0)  Like this post
Here's a suggested unit to add to French infantry.  I have tried to note sources, but I'm sure I've left some out.  Suffice it to say I'm indebted to many others for their work.

Stats:
                   (0-1) (2-4) (5-8)
          AI:      9      6       0
          AV:      3      3       0

Indirect fire (rifle grenades only)
                 (1-2)
         AI         3
         AV         3

SAs:  
   Rifle Grenades:  Instead of using direct fire, this unit may target any enemy unit up to 2 hexes away if at least one friendly unit has line of sight to the target.  Roll three dice against each vehicle and soldier unit within the hex.

    Shrapnel:   A success against a soldier counts as 2 successes.
Vehicles are affected normally.

Historical notes (sources):
   Old Lebel Mle 1886/93 rifles were fitted to fire Vivien Bessiere grenades. (AAM rev. + HHR Cz)
    Although rifle grenades could provide infantry with immediate support, most armies preferred light mortars and  
machine guns. (AAM rev.)

    Every French infantry platoon had a group of Vivien-Bessiere grenade launchers.  These were valuable for their ability to engage and destroy entrenched machine guns. (HHR Cz rev.)

   The rifle grenadiers in each infantry platoon were dispatched by the VB Caporal at the platoon level, who would direct their fire as necessary.   http://www.mchome.net/dirk/weirdwars/organization/
france_organization.htm  

Technical specifications:
    The rifle:
Bolt Action.
Muzzle velocity 2,000 to 2,300 ft/s (610 to 700 m/s) Maximum range 3,500 to 4,500 yd (3,200 to 4,100 m) Feed system 8 round tube magazine
The unloaded grenade cup can be removed from the end of the rifle, thus allowing rifle to be used as normal.  http://wiki.wwiionline.com/index.php/Grenadier#French  

    The grenade:

  Range : (with 800 mm barrel rifle)
                               80-170 m with angle of 85°
                               or 175m with an angle of 50°
              (with 450mm barrel carbine) 145-215m  
    Rate of fire :
4-9 rpm (therefore usually a group of 3-4 VB launchers are firing together).  
Grenade explosive Mle1915 (VB de guerre) (explosive and fragmentation, dangerous in a 100m range).  http://theminiaturespage.com/boards/msg.mv?id=135319 (David Lehmann).
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HHRgamer
PostSat Mar 07, 2009 11:07 pm
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Sharpe

 I'm Sharpe, dammit.


Joined: 15 Jan 2008
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Post subject: Reply with quote   (Liked by:0)  Like this post
I read somewhere that the Greek platoon/company commanders would mass their rifle grenadiers and use them as ersatz light mortars before an infantry assault.  So, this is the the case with the French also?  How many were in a platoon?
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PostSun Mar 08, 2009 1:42 am
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HHRgamer

 

Joined: 16 Feb 2008
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Post subject: Reply with quote   (Liked by:0)  Like this post
Sharpe,
    Good questions.  I think the answer to your first question is that  both the Greeks and the French would mass their rifle grenades.  See post from http://theminiaturespage.com/boards/msg.mv?id=135319 (pasted below).

As to your second question, I think that in regular and motorized infantry divisions, there were four VBs per platoon, including a corporal who was in charge.  http://enpointe.chez-alice.fr/di.html  (visited 3.24.06).  The command squad and each of the three other squads had one VB launcher apiece.  

From the Miniatures Page:

BlackWidowPilot Supporting Member of TMP Fezian 26 Feb 2008 9:06 p.m. PST

About those French VB rifle grenades; the French always massed them at the platoon level as a matter of doctrine, with a fourth VB launcher as part of the platoon command section who directed the fire of the massed VB launchers during the fight.

While not perfect, my own experiences using VB launchers playing Disposable Heroes (among other rules) is that they can ruin some poor soldat's day if they're in a static defensive position. I managed to splatter a real pesky sniper quite handily in one game IIRC… evil grin


Leland R. Erickson
Metal Express
metal-express.net


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HHRgamer
PostSun Mar 08, 2009 2:58 pm
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