Bunkers of the Kriegsmarine
- Published: 12 February 2011 12 February 2011
- Last Updated: 07 April 2012 07 April 2012
The Kriegsmarine used the following types of bunkers:
Fire control post/peilstand
emplacement for coastal artillery
emplacement for naval turrets
The firecontrolpost was usually a very large bunker, often with several floors.
The artillery officers often had their education from warships. Thats why many of the kriegsmarine bunkers
are made as a reflection of a warship's interior, to make them "feel home".
Optical stereo rangefinders up to 6meters length was the standard equiment for these bunkers.
In order to triangulate the targets, each firecontol had 2 "Peilstande" each. These were smaller bunkers,
often placed several hundred meters out on each side of the controlpost.
Many of these firecontrolposts are "SK" structures. Several bunkers looks like a stranded warship,
often with loads of iron parts, ladders, corridors, hatches and doors. In some occations, it is rather unbelievable to
see how complexe these structures can be!
Emplacement for Coastal artillery
In most batteries the artillery were placed in open concrete emplacements.
In 1942, during the construction of the Atlantikwall, airraids became more frequent. In order to protect the
guns, huge concrete casemates were built over them. These casemates had no weapons for close defence, so
they would only be used until the enemy was on the beach.
The typical zig-zag shaped patterns in the front of these casemates are meant to stop schrapnell from
getting inside the bunker.
Emplacements for navalturrets
Navalturrets were popular within the navy coastal artillery. As mentioned above, these were the weapons they
had trained on durin their education. In addition the soldiers were not as exposed as on the regular guns.
The turrets had guns raging from 10 to 40,6 cm, in all kind of calibres. The turrets were taken from wrecked
ships, both German and from the enemy. The turrets from Gneisenau ended up as coastal artillery, and also the
40,6 cm turrets from the planned "H"battleship. When the B turret from Gneisenau was installed in Norway, the
interior of the bunker was made exactly like it was on Gneisenau, only in concrete! During the test fireing,
one of the roofs collapsed due to heavy vibrations, killing 6 men.
In some occations even these huge guns were protected by casemates. They were probably the largest bunkers made exept for the submarine bunkers.
The navy had their own flak units to protect their installations. They of course also wanted their own designs,
so several more standard constructions were made. They are pretty much the same as found within the Luftwaffe.
Much of the Flak used, was ex-warship equipment like SKc Guns.
In addition to the searchlights used on aircrafts, the Kriegsmarine also had searchlights to illuminate
targets on the sea. These were mounted near the shore, usually in open emplacements. A standard design for
a searchlight casemate was made, but only a few of these bunkers were built.
These bunkers were widely used within the Kriegsmarine. They housed large diesel engines which supplied
electricity to most of the equipment. In addition many of the large bunkers had their own back-up generator
or batteries in case the main supply was broken.
All bunkers had small "local" ammunition stores inside, but each battery also had a main ammunition store.
The main bunker was a bombproof very massive bunker, allways in "Baustärke B" which means the roof is atleast 3,5 meters thick.
It was divided in several rooms containing different types of ammunition.