Ringstand MG

The ringstand or tobruk is a small but versitile one to two man bunker. The ringstand was initially used by the German army in an attempt to quickly fortify Tobruk in North Africa when it was captured. The British adopted the title tobruk for the ringstand when they assaulted and recaptured Tobruk. After his defeat in North Africa and his reassignment to the Atlantic Wall, Rommel used this simple fortification to extend and to reinforce the western defensive line. The ringstand was the most numerous fortification along the Atlantic Wall and served as both machine gun nest and observation post. The ringstand offered significant advantage due to its minimal silhouette and concrete armor.

The ringstand basically consists of two rooms, the firing position and the magazine. The firing position is a reinforced concrete dome with a portal the size of a man, the ring, at the apex. A machine gun covering any direction or an armored cupola with a periscope could be mounted on the ring. The magazine was a small room adjacent to the firing position and featured a door which allowed direct access to the trenchworks. The magazine was sometimes equipped with a stove to keep the crew warm or to prepare food. Above the door, is a reinforced curb which would protect the trench from direct fire. The ringstand would be emplaced so that the expected line of advance would be from the side opposite the trench.

The emplacement of the ringstand is explored further on this page.

A network of trenches and ringstands could form a complex and effective defensive line as shown on this page.

The ringstand was so useful that forms of it were incorporated into other larger bunkers such as this pillbox.

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