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NATO Survey, 1943


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MajorKey #21 Posted Jan 05 2015 - 00:00

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View PostThe_Chieftain, on Jan 04 2015 - 09:16, said:

 

M10 was an expedient stop-gap. M18 entered production a couple of months earlier, so there was little point in continuing to built M10.

 

Similar to the M3 Lee, then; something adequate to its "tier" for its time, but rapidly obsolesced.

 

One interesting bit I read was this: "The most decorated American soldier, Audie Murphy, earned his Medal of Honor at the Battle of the Colmar Pocket, when he used the heavy machine gun of an abandoned and burning M10 to repel German infantry."

 

Anyways, kudos, I always love it when you delve into the archives. Its interesting reading how Command tries to figure things out without the benefit of 20-20 hindsight.

 

mk

 

"In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is." Yogi Berra



stalkervision #22 Posted Jan 06 2015 - 12:06

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View PostWalter_Sobchak, on Jan 04 2015 - 17:06, said:

 

And therefore leaving it open for some other company to develop "World of Halftracks."

 

I wouldn't mind them modeled along with proper armored scout cars. The Germans had some wonderful armored and cannon equipped scout cars. One had a 75 mm I believe.

stalkervision #23 Posted Jan 06 2015 - 12:11

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Wish WOT would come up with something like this..  "Platoon " Small unit game tactics. Each side gets a platoon of soldiers from different nations armies.  One could be different positions in a army platoon..machine gunner,rifleman, bar operator.  THE world of warships thing IMO is a bit lame

 

of course they would probably turn it into "World of Guns" and have the very first hand cannons and fire lock guns facing off against people with M-16's and US army SAWS and ak -47 !

 

 I have to share this idea in a general post.. LOL


Edited by stalkervision, Jan 06 2015 - 13:27.


Mark2 #24 Posted Jan 08 2015 - 04:23

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It is interesting to see how many of the recommendations at the end (from the open-ended questions) were implemented:

 

>>>

7.  Are there any particular weaknesses in arms and equipment of armored forces that have come to your attention? If so, what are they?

The following weaknesses were reported by armored force unit commanders:

  1.       Our vehicles burn too easily. Additional protection for ammunition and fuel is required.

<<<

 

Done!  Up-armor kits for the M4 were produced for field retro-fitting, and for factory installation.  Later re-designs up-armored critical spots on the tank and improved ammo storage to greatly reduce the risks of fire.

 

>>>

      Lack of a good armored car for reconnaissance, observation and command purposes.

<<<

 

Done!  The M3 scout car was replaced in service by the M8 armored car (for combat reconnaissance) and the M20 utility car (for liaison and command).

 

>>>

      Lack of power in direct laying telescopic sights. Insufficient range lines and the lack of a vertical reference line on the reticles in the sights on the M4 tanks.

<<<

 

Hmmm.  Any help here?  I believe new sights were put on later M4 tanks.  But I don't know the details.

 

>>>

      Lack of means for bore sighting the 37mm gun on the light tank.

<<<

 

No idea on that one ...

 

>>>

     Lack of cover on scout cars for protection against air attack.

<<<

 

Not done.  Both M8 and M20 had open fighting compartments.  But the driver and co-driver had over-head armor!  So maybe half-done?  More seriously, I believe the open-topped fighting compartments were deliberate.  As with the TDs, it seems the design community felt that open-topped compartments made for better situational awareness, a key value in vehicles where the tactics emphasize situational awareness over heavy in-fighting.

 

>>>

      Low muzzle velocity of 75mm gun on M4 tank. Muzzle velocity should be souped up.[/quote]

<<<

 

Well, Ordnance at least seems to have gotten this message.  By the end of 1943 they had up-gunned the M4 with the higher velocity 76mm gun.  The Tank Board and AGF did not seem quite so sold on the idea, though.

 

>>>

     Insufficient range now provided by the radio sets of the 500 series.

<<<

 

Ah yes, upgrade the radios!  Not the first upgrade I pay for at any tier.  I know that there were many upgrades to radio equipment throughout the war ... but does anyone know if the M4 specifically got an upgraded radio between NATO and ETO operations?

 

>>>

    Poor electric switches in tanks and tank destroyers.

<<<

 

And ... anyone know on this issue?

 

>>>

      Lack of indirect sighting equipment. This equipment should be provided for all tank and tank destroyer units 75mm and larger.

<<<

 

I believe all late war M4s and all M10, M18 and M36 TDs had indirect sighting systems provided.  I had thought this was also a feature in earlier models.  Perhaps this was a deficiency in training rather than in kit?

 

>>>

 8.  Is there any requirement for any additional weapons or items of equipment? If so please list them and give reasons.

 The following additional items of equipment were considered desirable by armored force unit commanders 

  1.       A more effective recovery vehicle to retrieve our tanks before the Germans do.
  2.       Tank trailers like the British ones to save engine hours and track mileage.
  3.       A good fast armored car for reconnaissance, observation and command functions.

<<<

 

Done, done and done. 

US M31 and M32 ARVs (based on M3 and M4 tank chassis) had pretty good reputations for forward area recovery.  The M26 tank transporter served for many years even after the war. And as mentioned the M8 and M20 armored / scout cars were quite efficient.

 

>>>

     A vehicular mine detector and destroyer to avoid striking land mines. This detector should be able to detect mines far enough ahead of a vehicle moving at 15mph to give time to stop the vehicle before it strikes the mine.

<<<

 

Hmmm.  Well there were several mine rollers produced for the M4.  But even though produced, they were never issued in any large numbers.

 

And I'm not sure if this is what is being suggested here. It seems this is a suggestion for a technology that did not exist.  A mine detector for tanks....

 

>>>

Smoke projector or mortar on tank for signaling with coloured smokes and for self concealment with screening smokes.

<<<

 

The M4 had a through-the-turret-roof 2-inch projector for smoke rounds.  I think this was present in the early production M4 and M4A1 tanks used in NA, so I'm not sure what is being suggested here.  Perhaps the suggestion is that the existing projector (adequate for signaling but rather in-adequate for concealment) should have been upgraded?  I don't think that the smoke projectors used on many German and British tanks for concealment were useful for signalling.

 

>>>

  1.      A 155mm self-propelled howitzer battalion in each armored division.

<<<

 

The 155mm SPHs were produced and heavy SPH battalions were deployed in ETO.  I'm not sure if they were attached to each armored division, though.

 

As to the towed ATGs ... well, others have made comment on that, but it should be noted that the TOEs called for a battery of 57mm ATGs for each Armored Infantry Company.  Even these were often left behind, and the gun crews used as additional riflemen in ETO.

 

All in all a fascinating read.  Great stuff, Chief!  It puts further real information on the table to debunk the whole "They didn't do this ONE obvious thing!" mentality.  A very deliberate effort was made to gather inputs from the field.  There was no one obvious thing.  There were a lot of inputs, and many of them were implemented.  Some of them turned out to be useful, and some did not.

 

-Mark

(aka: Mark2)



Walter_Sobchak #25 Posted Jan 08 2015 - 04:28

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Is it just me or did something go cablooey with the formatting of the above post?

Mark2 #26 Posted Jan 08 2015 - 04:43

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View PostWalter_Sobchak, on Jan 08 2015 - 04:28, said:

Is it just me or did something go cablooey with the formatting of the above post?

 

Yes it did.  And it took me the longest time to un-cablooey it!

 

Hope it is readable now.

 

-Mark

(aka: Mark2)



coolathlon #27 Posted Jan 09 2015 - 10:43

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Did the western Allies eventually get the indirect fire sights and how valuable have they prooved to be in the end?

I've seen Iwo Jima footage (in The World at War) with M10/M36 (can't remember) shelling the mountain. Well, not haven't seen any russian use, but that's from a very far off archives point of view.



coolathlon #28 Posted Jan 11 2015 - 12:58

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Found some from German Army artillery guide film (from ~ 1:10 min):

 



ConcreteDonkey #29 Posted Jan 11 2015 - 22:18

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View Postcoolathlon, on Jan 09 2015 - 09:43, said:

Did the western Allies eventually get the indirect fire sights and how valuable have they prooved to be in the end?

I've seen Iwo Jima footage (in The World at War) with M10/M36 (can't remember) shelling the mountain. Well, not haven't seen any russian use, but that's from a very far off archives point of view.

 

Here is a picture of a M10 with indirect fire sights a Anzio.

 

from this site http://www.warhistor...d-fighting.html


Edited by ConcreteDonkey, Jan 11 2015 - 22:46.


Redwing6 #30 Posted Jan 12 2015 - 01:31

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View PostMark2, on Jan 08 2015 - 03:23, said:

It is interesting to see how many of the recommendations at the end (from the open-ended questions) were implemented:

 

>>>

7.  Are there any particular weaknesses in arms and equipment of armored forces that have come to your attention? If so, what are they?

The following weaknesses were reported by armored force unit commanders:

  1.       Our vehicles burn too easily. Additional protection for ammunition and fuel is required.

<<<

 

Done!  Up-armor kits for the M4 were produced for field retro-fitting, and for factory installation.  Later re-designs up-armored critical spots on the tank and improved ammo storage to greatly reduce the risks of fire.

 

>>>

      Lack of a good armored car for reconnaissance, observation and command purposes.

<<<

 

Done!  The M3 scout car was replaced in service by the M8 armored car (for combat reconnaissance) and the M20 utility car (for liaison and command).

 

>>>

      Lack of power in direct laying telescopic sights. Insufficient range lines and the lack of a vertical reference line on the reticles in the sights on the M4 tanks.

<<<

 

Hmmm.  Any help here?  I believe new sights were put on later M4 tanks.  But I don't know the details.

 

>>>

      Lack of means for bore sighting the 37mm gun on the light tank.

<<<

 

No idea on that one ...

 

>>>

     Lack of cover on scout cars for protection against air attack.

<<<

 

Not done.  Both M8 and M20 had open fighting compartments.  But the driver and co-driver had over-head armor!  So maybe half-done?  More seriously, I believe the open-topped fighting compartments were deliberate.  As with the TDs, it seems the design community felt that open-topped compartments made for better situational awareness, a key value in vehicles where the tactics emphasize situational awareness over heavy in-fighting.

 

>>>

      Low muzzle velocity of 75mm gun on M4 tank. Muzzle velocity should be souped up.[/quote]

<<<

 

Well, Ordnance at least seems to have gotten this message.  By the end of 1943 they had up-gunned the M4 with the higher velocity 76mm gun.  The Tank Board and AGF did not seem quite so sold on the idea, though.

 

>>>

     Insufficient range now provided by the radio sets of the 500 series.

<<<

 

Ah yes, upgrade the radios!  Not the first upgrade I pay for at any tier.  I know that there were many upgrades to radio equipment throughout the war ... but does anyone know if the M4 specifically got an upgraded radio between NATO and ETO operations?

 

>>>

    Poor electric switches in tanks and tank destroyers.

<<<

 

And ... anyone know on this issue?

 

>>>

      Lack of indirect sighting equipment. This equipment should be provided for all tank and tank destroyer units 75mm and larger.

<<<

 

I believe all late war M4s and all M10, M18 and M36 TDs had indirect sighting systems provided.  I had thought this was also a feature in earlier models.  Perhaps this was a deficiency in training rather than in kit?

 

>>>

 8.  Is there any requirement for any additional weapons or items of equipment? If so please list them and give reasons.

 The following additional items of equipment were considered desirable by armored force unit commanders 

  1.       A more effective recovery vehicle to retrieve our tanks before the Germans do.
  2.       Tank trailers like the British ones to save engine hours and track mileage.
  3.       A good fast armored car for reconnaissance, observation and command functions.

<<<

 

Done, done and done. 

US M31 and M32 ARVs (based on M3 and M4 tank chassis) had pretty good reputations for forward area recovery.  The M26 tank transporter served for many years even after the war. And as mentioned the M8 and M20 armored / scout cars were quite efficient.

 

>>>

     A vehicular mine detector and destroyer to avoid striking land mines. This detector should be able to detect mines far enough ahead of a vehicle moving at 15mph to give time to stop the vehicle before it strikes the mine.

<<<

 

Hmmm.  Well there were several mine rollers produced for the M4.  But even though produced, they were never issued in any large numbers.

 

And I'm not sure if this is what is being suggested here. It seems this is a suggestion for a technology that did not exist.  A mine detector for tanks....

 

>>>

Smoke projector or mortar on tank for signaling with coloured smokes and for self concealment with screening smokes.

<<<

 

The M4 had a through-the-turret-roof 2-inch projector for smoke rounds.  I think this was present in the early production M4 and M4A1 tanks used in NA, so I'm not sure what is being suggested here.  Perhaps the suggestion is that the existing projector (adequate for signaling but rather in-adequate for concealment) should have been upgraded?  I don't think that the smoke projectors used on many German and British tanks for concealment were useful for signalling.

 

>>>

  1.      A 155mm self-propelled howitzer battalion in each armored division.

<<<

 

The 155mm SPHs were produced and heavy SPH battalions were deployed in ETO.  I'm not sure if they were attached to each armored division, though.

 

As to the towed ATGs ... well, others have made comment on that, but it should be noted that the TOEs called for a battery of 57mm ATGs for each Armored Infantry Company.  Even these were often left behind, and the gun crews used as additional riflemen in ETO.

 

All in all a fascinating read.  Great stuff, Chief!  It puts further real information on the table to debunk the whole "They didn't do this ONE obvious thing!" mentality.  A very deliberate effort was made to gather inputs from the field.  There was no one obvious thing.  There were a lot of inputs, and many of them were implemented.  Some of them turned out to be useful, and some did not.

 

-Mark

(aka: Mark2)

 

+1 for taking the time to look into all the info TheChieftain provided.




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