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How much? War and Money

Discussion in 'General' started by Listy, Oct 6, 2019.

  1. Listy

    Listy Member

    Anyway you cut it, Wars are all won by cash. Obviously the Second World War was no different. but it does leave some problems in translating things to explain what something is worth.

    For example, I have a document that states a Sten gun cost £6-7. Great... But how much is that? What is it like when compared to say the cost of an anti-tank gun, or a SMLE?
    I also have a document that stats the amount of steel amounts to Y USD. Again it'd be useful to be able to translate that to a tonnage? Or how many Sherman's that could buy?

    So, does anyone have any useful tools for discussing financial values? Or any values for particular items, which people can use as a reference in their works? I keep coming across this in my writing, so I figured I'd try starting a thread on it to see what comes up. I suspect the data points would be useful for many across their projects.

    In a slightly more greedy way, it'd be really useful, personally, right now, to me if anyone who knew the following data points was able to respond:
    Cost of a 2-pounder anti-tank gun in GBP
    Cost of 1 ton of Steel in USD
    How much steel was needed for a Sherman tank
  2. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    I think this is slightly simplistic. Wars are won through economic means which means resources rather than simply money. For example Germany was desperately short of Nickle and prepared to pay through the nose for it but almost all the sources of the stuff were either in Allied hands or in countries that the Allies could pressurise so no matter how much dosh Germany was prepared to put up they weren't going to get anything like what they needed.

    Cost is also relative. For example it cost more to stop V1s than to build them but in 1944 Britain had the resources and Germany did not
  3. SteveDee

    SteveDee Well-Known Member

  4. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Listy likes this.
  5. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Also comparing costs between Allied and Axis is very difficult as there was no exchange rate
  6. Listy

    Listy Member

    All of those items all depend on money, and the question can you afford it? They didn't have resource X, but they could buy it.

    I've encountered this before in my first book, and I did my best, but it was a bit of a nightmare, and I wasn't entirely happy with the results. So next time round, I'm not even trying.

    Exchange rate? Doesn't that depend on the ROF of the weapon in question!
  7. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Where from? All the money in the world is useless if there is a blockade and there was
  8. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Especially when it doesn't exist. :)

  9. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Most money does not exist - it is a set of figures in a ledger (which today also does not exist being part of the cloud). For a significant part of the war Germany was existing on money created by Swiss banks
    timuk likes this.
  10. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    I was actually meaning that no amount of money will buy something that doesn't exist ie Nickle.

  11. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Well you could always buy futures - but you can't win wars on futures :rolleyes: although according to the philosophy of the late great Terry Pratchett (Diskworld) one could have a warehouse full of very cold misty tanks waiting to materialise. One could imagine the firm of Cryopause- Dibbler Arms dealers.
  12. Please guys, let's at least make this right. Whether available or not it's nickel, not nickle! :D
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2019
    Owen likes this.
  13. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Can we get back to the original query now chaps ?

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