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Exercise Dracula


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SFC_Storm #41 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 07:18

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This is just further proof at he straight up dominance the US had in production of things like automobiles.

 

You had the biggest factory country in the world turn into a giant war machine.

 

This does shed light on why the US seemed to be so damned harsh on any new tank designs. When you have something that does its job this well, its very hard to replace if the new tank is only say 15% upgunned vs 40% less reliable.

The Sherman was just so battle tested it was rediculous.

 

I love how they kept harping on crew fatigue and rest and morale. Nerds like us who study only get bogged down in details like MM of Armor and Pen tables but in reality a tired crew= a bad one and this is why the US had advantages in longer attrition tyope wars IMO even throughout the coldwar.

 

Murican Comfort wins again.



SFC_Storm #42 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 07:26

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View PostJagdneko, on Jul 05 2014 - 13:43, said:

But they wouldn't be putting those silly guns on a bad platform. No one bothered using Panther chassis for anything notable after the war. Mexico still has a Sherman recovery vehicle in service as far as I know.

 

The tank which can actually make it to the fight is superior to the one that can't, regardless of armament.


If we gave US engineers the Panther hull I think they would have made a great tank.

 

US engineers were constantly focused on reliability because as I mentioned most were auto guys who knew the contracts in the end were about actual testing.

 

The Germans often paraded items to Hitler who got all hard over huge machines that he would fear the most seeing coming towards him.

 

So in many ways one country knew it had to be responsible while the other was like a kid with a crown.

 

Seriously though give the US a Panther to redo and in 6 months it may have seen less HP, less top speed, less Armor but it would have gained best reliability that design could handle and the ability to pump out 20 a day.

 

No one, not even the USSR in full swing could match Murica in making quality vehicles. I often wish we had T20`s and Pershings earlier but IMO the SHerman was by far the most effective. When I think what Germany would have done with all PZ4`s instead of anything bigger and its scary.



Major_1012 #43 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 08:16

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As a fellow history addict - who watches World at War (1972 Thames) each night to put himself to sleep - I have to say that according to interviews with former tankers within the series, the tankers were of the same opinion.  They complained of parts not fitted right and parts missing, and the general poor quality of the tanks they were receiving while in the desert campaign against Rommel.

 

However, even with that being said, I think an overview of the conditions in each country at the time would be rather enlightening as far as the cause for these failures in the UK and the doldrums the US was in.  First of all England was in a state of near panic.  Living through bombing by the Luftwaffe, rationing, anti-tank traps, barbwire all over the country, blackouts with wardens, and then trying to build quality tanks at the same time would have been tricky at best for any country.  

 

On the other hand, the US, with the exception of a few run ins with U boats was virtually untouched after Pearl Harbor.  Sure we had rubber and gas rationing, but the fact that gas rationing was by far the most hated of the two shows that America was nowhere near the tight spot that Britain was in.  Conversely, the Brits even applied pressure to the ladies to limit the pleats in their skirts to four.  Under these circumstances it seems almost impossible for the Brits assembly line quality to keep up with the Yanks

 

Also, I am reading Winston Churchill's book Hinge Of Fate right now.  And though the Prime Minister does not mention it as such it is clear as you read it that England's fate rested on what help America could give them.  Yes, the US was in the war, but it was also the lifeline in many ways for the UK at the same time.  As I read his book it is clear that he took great care in dealing with Roosevelt and making sure that Roosevelt knew that Churchill was his "ardent lieutenant".  Again, more pressure for England as they stood in hopes they would make it through this ordeal, and something the US had none of.

 

I did note with some curiosity that Churchill was quite eager for the first M3 Grants to arrive on the scene in Northern Africa, and unless the M3 Grant was a vast improvement over the M3 Lee, the only explanation which can be offered for this is either Churchill knew how poor their tanks were performing or that he was relieved that the Americans were finally arriving to do battle. 

 

All these factors lent to the national feeling of desperation in the UK and this would indeed make focusing on your work difficult at best.  This is not to excuse or dismiss any poor designs on the British side of the pond, but rather adds further explanation of added causes.


Edited by Major_1012, Jul 06 2014 - 08:45.


The_Chieftain #44 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 08:57

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You sure that was M3 lee it was to replace, not M3 Stuart? 

Anlushac11 #45 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 10:46

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Must be M3 Stuart, M3 Lee and Grant are almost identical with exception of the new low profile turret with bustle for extra radios on Grant

 

M3 Stuart was still a good fast tank but the 37mm gun was probably not cutting it in March 1942 when Gazala started.

 

After Dunkirk and the loss of so much heavy equipment Brits were critically low on tanks. They were willing to take almost anything we would give them.

 

 The Brits production capacity was no where remotely close to American production capability. It would have taken Brits too long to rebuild their losses.

 

Combat actions in near future in North Africa would inflict crippling tank losses on Brits who would not have been able to recover from without US production bolstering their numbers.


Edited by Anlushac11, Jul 06 2014 - 10:57.


TlGERACE #46 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 13:16

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I wish you can hear me count 

johnmadara #47 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 13:55

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View Post_NeLLy_, on Jul 05 2014 - 10:32, said:

Great post, read it all and it was a fun read, for me atleast.

 

Between WW1 and WW2  the British allowed their tanks to become obsolete and then they tried to do a lot of fast catching up which I don't think was successful for them at all. Britain thought that WarPlanes were the most important during any war, which they were but Germany proved during blitzkrieg with very well balanced good tanks combined with infantry and airpower (Lurftwaffe) was unstoppable and they showed that Battle tanks were very important.

 

 

The Israeli version of the Sherman (Super Sherman) would have been a beast on the WW2 battlefield. I wish America had mounted a bigger caliber gun on its shermans. I never understood why America didn't mount bigger guns on the Sherman. Going up against the german Tiger1, Panthers, Tiger2, Jagtigers, stug and jagpanzer ect., I guess they thought mass numbers and reliability and airpower was going to overwhelm Germany, which it did.

 

 

They did mount a 105mm to try and counter the Tigers... ETC... don't let WoTs wacko pen system make you think that the 75mm had more pen then the 105mm... its just to balance the game...

but they would of put a better gun in but they would have to make a new turret



Walter_Sobchak #48 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 15:06

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View PostDarthgunny, on Jul 05 2014 - 18:12, said:

if your intrested in british tank design during ww2, a good book to read is Death by design written by peter beale


The Beale book is good, but I prefer "The Great Tank Scandal" by David Fletcher.   However, the Beale book can be had at a reasonable price while the Fletcher book is stupid expensive. 



Will_Ace #49 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 15:21

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View Post_NeLLy_, on Jul 05 2014 - 04:32, said:

 I never understood why America didn't mount bigger guns on the Sherman. Going up against the german Tiger1, Panthers, Tiger2, Jagtigers, stug and jagpanzer ect., I guess they thought mass numbers and reliability and airpower was going to overwhelm Germany, which it did.

You wanted them to make it a KV-2?



Dominatus #50 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 16:29

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View Postjohnmadara, on Jul 06 2014 - 08:55, said:

They did mount a 105mm to try and counter the Tigers... ETC... don't let WoTs wacko pen system make you think that the 75mm had more pen then the 105mm... its just to balance the game...

but they would of put a better gun in but they would have to make a new turret

The 105 never had AP rounds. 105mm HE hitting a tank's going to give the crew a pretty dramatic experience though. That said, the purpose of the 105s was not AT work.



Major_1012 #51 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 17:03

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View PostThe_Chieftain, on Jul 06 2014 - 00:57, said:

You sure that was M3 lee it was to replace, not M3 Stuart? 


Never said that it replaced the M3 Lee.  I was referring to our experience with the M3 Lee in the game as probably the least popular tank we have, and wondering why Churchill was so excited by the Grant at all.  That was the basis of the comparison.  When the M3 Grants hit Northern Africa they were some of the first US tanks to see actual service there with US crews, at least according to Churchill's account.


Edited by Major_1012, Jul 06 2014 - 17:07.


Anlushac11 #52 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 18:56

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M4 Sherman 105mm was not a Tiger killer, it was made to standardize on one vehicle type and replaced the M7 Priest in arty battalions.

 

That said most M4-105's carried a few HEAT rounds for self defense.



Blackhorse_Nine_ #53 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 19:25

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View PostAnlushac11, on Jul 06 2014 - 13:56, said:

M4 Sherman 105mm was not a Tiger killer, it was made to standardize on one vehicle type and replaced the M7 Priest in arty battalions.

 

Replaced the M7 Priest in FA battalions?

 

The M37 began to replace the M7 sometime during or just after the Korean conflict.

 

M4/105s were deployed to provide HE direct-fire support when it had been amply demonstrated that the lower HE yields associated with the higher velocity guns replacing the M4's 75mm were not as effective as the HE yield of the basic 75.

 

The M37 program was shortened when the Army prioritized procurement of self-propelled 155s, beginning with the M41, which also was a short program.



Walter_Sobchak #54 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 22:31

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View PostAnlushac11, on Jul 06 2014 - 13:56, said:

M4 Sherman 105mm was not a Tiger killer, it was made to standardize on one vehicle type and replaced the M7 Priest in arty battalions.

 

That said most M4-105's carried a few HEAT rounds for self defense.


105mm Sherman tanks were issued to Armor battalions, not arty batteries.  Generally a platoon of six vehicles were allocated to each Armor battalion as an "Assault gun platoon." 



Winterpwner #55 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 23:09

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I've always thought of the 105 mm Shermans as anti-fortification and anti-building meant to supplement an armour force's anti-infantry ability.

 

That being said, what were the reactions of crews between the normal 75 mm Sherman and the 105?



Sad_But_Drew #56 Posted Jul 06 2014 - 23:22

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In the separate battalions (infantry divisions, attached) at least, they wanted 105s with power traverse (early models lacked it) and some 90mm guns for when they had to fight tanks.

 

I always heard the "leaking oil" joke about British Computers (they did start out decently, but the infrastructure and demand wasn't there).

 

The standard joke about fridges was

Q.  "Why do the Brits drink their beer warm?"

A.  "Lucas makes their refrigerators too."

 

Lucas being Lord Lucas of Lucas Electric, known to Brit car owners post-war as "The Prince of Darkness".  Who, apparently managed to make himself thoroughly disliked on his one wartime tank board visit to America (according to "The Universal tank").  A rare event, usually British industrialists were at worst politely ignored (one reason the US was so slow about adopting British advice, so much of it was BAD).  Would love to know exactly WHAT he did to make himself so disliked.



SFC_Storm #57 Posted Jul 07 2014 - 01:30

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View PostAnlushac11, on Jul 06 2014 - 10:56, said:

M4 Sherman 105mm was not a Tiger killer, it was made to standardize on one vehicle type and replaced the M7 Priest in arty battalions.

 

That said most M4-105's carried a few HEAT rounds for self defense.


Derping in RL is devastating even to a Tiger. Penning is not the primary goal as much as cracking the armor and killing the crew or rattling there brains loose.

 

In RL combat the tank who didnt get hit usually was the one to be in. True some tanks took punishment over and over but as a whole I thin ka 105 HE round would render almost any enemy useless.

 

Also this whole obsession with some guys asking for the M4 to fight Kt`s is so stupid. Why in the world would we make our main line tank whos job was to kill Pillboxes and buildings into a specialized tank to kill a tank that only .3% of tankers ever even saw?

 

KT`s or big cats in the over all scheme of things were completely negligible. They were slow enough to trap easily with ARty bombardment or ambush easily with infantry, and if you were in a sherman you simply could just ru naway from them.

 

The coolest part of this article IMO was the reinforcement that a working tank was way better than an advanced one that couldnt be rellied upon. And with that said the M4 was also no slouch as far as tech at the time. It was a match for the PZ4 and Stug`s it often saw.

 

Its so amazing to see a tank that can do the job at 3k mile mark just as well as hour 1.

 

Now when we add the fact the Tiger was much more unreliable than the UK tanks it becomes clear. Also look at spec man hours and its half of what Uk is. Now imagine platoons of spec mechanics who just followed Tigers and Panthers and al lthey did was DMG COntrol.


The BigCat myth gets worse and worse as we learn more about history and myself being in the military and leading men, trusting equipment was a major issue. Its hard for guys who never where in the field to understand how important reliable gear is, even if its 2 generations old. There is a reason why the AK is still in use with modern SF units.


Edited by SFC_Storm, Jul 07 2014 - 01:36.


Anlushac11 #58 Posted Jul 07 2014 - 01:34

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I knew the M4-105's operated with Sherman Battalions but I thought they were arty units assigned to the Sherman battalions as fire support.

 

My bad.



SFC_Storm #59 Posted Jul 07 2014 - 01:37

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View PostAnlushac11, on Jul 06 2014 - 17:34, said:

I knew the M4-105's operated with Sherman Battalions but I thought they were arty units assigned to the Sherman battalions as fire support.

 

My bad.


Sry I responded to you but was talking at a ton of other guys in the post :)



Walter_Sobchak #60 Posted Jul 07 2014 - 01:59

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It should also be noted that toward the end of the war, the Marine corps was informed that they would no longer be able to get Sherman tanks with 75mm guns or with diesel engines (A2 variant.)  They decided to forgo the 76mm gun entirely and go with M4A3 tanks with the 105mm gun since they were not happy with the 76mm gun HE performance.  However, the marines wanted power traverse and gun stabilization on these vehicles.  The war ended before these issues were resolved, making the point moot. 




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