The HanstHolm project pag 1-1

In the summer of 2008 we visited France, to be exactly the northern coast region.
Driving around along the coast we found several german coastal defence bunkers. One of them was very big and was just next to the road. So we made an unplanned visit:

Strolling through the dark rooms I was trying to explain to five women, what would have happend where...
Still amazed by the hugh size, at home, I tried to find some historical background information about this site as well as the artillery the once housed.
Efin, after some time I found the site of the Hanstholm museum in Danmark. Since they had a nice picture of the big cannon. Combined whith the fact that I wanted to test the Skethup 3D modelling software, I asked for a copy of this picture and some background information.

From one thing came an other thing and before I knew I had promised to draw a complete 3D model of one of the biggest coastal defence fortresses of the german westwall....
So starting around october 2008, Jens Andersson, the curator, got at least one email from me a day whith questions about dimensions as well as pictures, and I started to draw....

We started for some reason whith the model "Regelbau 501" bunker. And although it was called regelbau not much was conform the regelbau drawings that where available via the museum:

Regelbau 501
Model 501.

Then a model regelbau 96 mortar bunker was drawn:

Regelbau 96 Regelbau 96 section cut A

Regelbau 96 section cut B Regelbau 96 section cut C

And at last the hugh SK38C cannon came in sight. This 380mm cannon was in fact a ship cannon and could fire 750kg (1500 pound) shells over 32000 meters. This cannon was almost the same size as the one that was installed at the french coast and esspecialy the way the shells where loaded and stored made the connection to our trip to france.

The complete bunker was cut into three parts for "easy" drawing:
- the crew quarters
- the gunpit
- the ammunition part
- both train entries
- the cannon itself

Although two original drawings where available it was soon obvious that the builders didn't exactly build what was drawn. So a lot of photographs must be taken as well as measurements done.

SK38 C4 - Hanstholm
- the crew quarters, +/- 38x30 meter

SK38 C4 - Hanstholm - Inside
The inside is drawn too, including the pipes. This way I helped the museum to get more insight about how the bunker was operated.

SK38 C4 - Hanstholm - Inside the muniton chambers
The other half of the complex: the munition storages and entrances of the train.
SK38 C4 - Hanstholm - Barrel
Here is the big 380mm "SchiffsKanonne" on its mounting.

The story goes on with the "Leitstand" or main fire control, a two floor hugh bunker with a 10.5 meter "Entfernungsmesser" , rangefinder and a small cast steel dome with "Zielfernrohr", target binoculars.
And silly enough in the front was a small garden...

Regelbau Marine Leitstand

Regelbau Marine Leitstand garden Regelbau Marine Beobachtungsglocke

Credits go to Anders J. for building the range finder v 1.0 and the target binoculars.

There was also a reserve fire control. Much more simple.
Small bunker; it was supposed to be in command of the 38 cm battery if the large fire control bunker should cease to function in consquence of combat.
Reserve Leitstand - reserve fire control

The whole terrain was off coarse guarded. During 1943-44 20 bunkers of the type 58C was built to protect the perimeter of the battery.
Regelbau 58C Regelbau 58C
and the bigger 58 which includes a stove and three beds:
Regelbau 58C long version

Credits go to Mart S. for the beds and Jean P. for the Wt80 stove.

Other bunkers turend up: Electricity plant
Electricity bunker Hanstholm

Side steps where made:
A hugh round tower for the fire control with range finder as still can be seen and visited in Hel Poland :

Range finder tower Hel Poland

This tower looks familiar with the one that stood at Rozenburg in Holland. Which, sadly, is demolished.

Range finder tower Rozenburg Holland

To be continued ...