Not much here yet.
I have been doing some reading about the Tiger tank and have been trying to understand. Understand what? Well, the combat history of the Tiger I is always interesting but that is not what picqued my interest. Instead I was struck by how little is available in English that explains how the production of the tank was organized. In one book Jentz mentions in an offhand way that there were eight takt stations at Kassel. When I tried to find out more about what exactly a takt station was I came up with little, very little. At one point all I could find were references to takt time as part of the lean manufacturing techniques developed by Japanese industry. Why would the Japanese use a German word to describe an industrial process that was developed in Japan? Eventually I found that it was a technique that the Japanese picked up from the Germans during their alliance during World War II. However, I still could not find anything on how the Germans came upon takt time, how it was used in German manufacturing during World War II and the particular instance of the use of takt at Henschel.
Everyone writes about the combat record of the Tiger I but no one seems interested in much else about it. There seems to be a real question how many of the tanks were produced which is a very strange situation from my standpoint. Production numbers are offered up but it is often the case that the source for those numbers is never given. They appear to have the same level of truthiness as the commonly heard stories known as urban legends. They are commonly accepted knowledge because they are commonly accepted and no one asks questions.
This section is subject to change whenever I work in this subject area.
The first essay is an attempt to understand some tables found in two books by Jentz that describe the number of Tigers that came out of the Henschel and Son assembly facility in Kassel.
How many did they build?
Dept of the Army Pamphlet No. 20-261a - The German Campaign in Russia: Planning and Operations (1940-1942)
Documents on German Foreign Policy 1918-1945, Series D (1937-1945) Vol. VIII The War Years