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Posted: 5/10/2001 8:42:59 AM EDT
hey guys - anyone else a tank nut like me? i have always had a 'thing' for these big noisey metal boxes. so now the question is what is the most influential battle tank of all time- which tank had the most impact on history? my vote goes for the german pzkfw VI the tiger I. the panther was probably the better all-round tank (once the transmission was fixed) BUT the tiger I had the most kills and psychological impact on the enemy especially on the eastern front, and was relatively invincable until the heavy soviet tanks arrived. the halo effect of the tiger I also make the mk IV's seen more effective as they looked simular. what about you guys? steve
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 8:47:52 AM EDT
I have to go with the Tiger II. Bad .. bad machine. Wish I could get one...heheh.
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 12:27:59 PM EDT
You CAN get one - slightly scaled down, however. A fellow in England is making scaled down working models complete with a firing cannon. John (saw it in Military History magazine)
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 4:18:42 PM EDT
I am reading a book on Germany's final stand in the East, and it claims German Tigers scored about a 10 to one kill ratio. It seems that up to the very end, the Soviets couldn't match the Germans at a tactical level, and relied on mass. And they had the advantage of mass everywhere . . .
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 5:01:02 PM EDT
I think the T-34 was the most revolutionary and longest lasting. (They are still in service in Yugoslavia & Africa) My favourite design is the Panther. It was designed to be an improvement on the T-34. Looks menacing, yet nimble.
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 6:29:45 PM EDT
M1A1 Abrams
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 6:49:51 PM EDT
7 is DEAD on taget with that !!!!!! I was in units that had 48's, and also 60's. BUT before I finally became a free man, my unit at Ft Hood got the M1.... I saw the first hand the ULTIMATE Armor.... Soviet's and Nazi's can take one HE up the turret....And I know the machine that can do it!
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 7:00:35 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/10/2001 7:01:59 PM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 7:49:15 PM EDT
I'll take the Sherman and high tail it for cover like the rank coward I am. Nothing like mechanical semi-reliability. Besides, TigerII, T-34s and Abrams never earned the sobriquet "Ronson," or "One-shot lighter."
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 8:22:50 PM EDT
duffypoo - there was a near exact duplicate of the t34 that was proposed, a design by daimler/ mercedes, but the MAN design got the nod as the high command (hitler in particular) could not fathom the thought of copying something built by the russians. the MAN design became the pzkfw V of panther. the t34 to me is like the amc gremlin - you hate to look at them as they are so crude - but you know that little bastard with run forever. i too have a strong liking for the m1a1 - probably the best tank ever made. the top secret chubam (sp?) armour from what i understand is a composite laminate of relatively simple materials originally from the u.k. somekind of 'plastic' made from soyabeans (?) invented by that guy from england. steve
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 10:13:00 PM EDT
the germans never made anything simple. and never have! its an atitude thing. knd of like our pioneer attitude. everthing must have close tollerances and must fit and work perfectly. even their aircraft were over enginered. the soviets were the other extreem. every thing was dirt simple. we are somewere in the middle.
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 10:23:19 PM EDT
And another thing: First I should say that I am a big fan of Tigers. NOTHING looks cooler than German Tanks. But as far as WWII Tigers and Panthers and such, were they all that great as the sum of reliability, mobility and ease of production. Tiger II??? As in King Tiger???? Good God, look at the thing. It's a moving dugout. What was the topend speed of the thing? Around 8 mph? How many of these could the Germans produce compared to a cast hull design like the Sherman? How could they protect them against allied air superiority? The Tiger II seems kind of like moving a house around. Too bad the Germans didn't get a chance to build that "land monitor." We could have gone after it with a B-17 Aphrodite conversion or something. I think that the Tiger was overrated, although I wouldn't want it shooting at me. I'll take manouverability and flexibility (ie capacity for infantry support) over some behemoth that gets strafed after breaking down in a ditch. Let's face it, we outproduced the shit out the Germans even though they did kick our ass on a one-to-one basis. And I seem to recall reports that the Panthers were often broken down by the side of the road. "I fired three shots at the Tiger hoping to force it back. After the third shot, the German commander popped out of the hatch, produced a handkerchief, and smilingly wiped at the scratches in the armor. I would give my left arm to find that guy today." From "Patton's War." In the modern situation, aren't tanks rather large and easily found targets? I would be interested to see how tanks would do in a situation where air superiority was not guaranteed. I doubt any armor does very well against Mavericks....
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 11:08:26 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/10/2001 11:07:37 PM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/10/2001 11:53:17 PM EDT
As far as modern tanks, that's easy, M1 Abrams. One bad ass looking Tank. Tanks should look bad ass,besides the rumbling of the engine and tracks, evil looking tends to be very disconcerting to enemy infantry. As far as WW2, the Germans were way ahead on design for most of the war. The Russkies finally came up with one(T-34 I believe) with armor that could deflect incoming rounds sometimes(angles on the turret),but the Germans still killed them something like 10 to 1. The Panther is probably my favorite, to bad they rushed it into service before they got the bugs worked out, but by then they had no chance of winning the war. Once again I defer to the combat veterans interviewed on the History channel.They had a great show on WW2 armor in which they were interviewing US and German tank crewman veterans. Germany could never match the production of the soviets and didn't have a chance in hell of matching the US (one of the reasons they invaded Checkoslavakia, factories for arms). They had better guns and armor, but it doesn't matter if they are always breaking down and even if your killing allied tanks 10 to 1, it doesn't matter if they got a hundred more where they came from. A german vet said the great thing about the Sherman's were that they were very reliable(compared to thiers) and very quick and agile. They were'nt impressed by the soviet tanks, no radio's to talk to each other so they could not coordinate, they would just manuever and kill, couldn't keep up with the mass attack strategy though( too many russians, to few Germans). Somebody here(not this post though) said the movie "Kelly's Hero's" sucked, but I loved it because they used authentic WW2 Armor(Shermans and Tigers,very rare to see real German Armor).
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 10:16:15 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 10:40:19 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 11:42:17 AM EDT
IIRC, the Tiger was not clearly superior to the big KV and JS tanks. Of course, the Germans had much better doctrine and training so they still managed to do well against the heavy Russian tanks. It is not really fair to compare the Tiger heavy tank to MBTs like the M4/T-34/PzMkIV. King Tigers were twice the size of those tanks. The Panther was a little better than the T-34, but the T-34/85 was about as good, and the Russian tanks were much easier to produce and maintain. Again, the German doctrine and training gave them the edge. But I just do not think any of those tanks were as superior to their contemporaries as the M1A1 is to its competition. It is almost revolutionary. I wonder how the newer British and German tanks would compare to the M1A1? The German tank has the same gun. The M26 Pershing was a good heavy tank, on par with the Tiger, but only a few saw combat. That was due to faulty US doctrine, which ephasized mobility over firepower and armor. Patton had a lot to do with that mistake.
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 6:00:06 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 8:10:19 PM EDT
yeah - i remember the big hubbub when the m60a1's 105mm gun was being tested against the 120mm german smooth bore. if i remember correctly the first prototype abrams used the 105mm. for some reason i thought there already was a leopard IV? or am i mistaken. anyone know of any good websites for the leopard tank (again my german bias is showing!) as far as WW2 armour - had they been produeced in sufficient numbers - i would wager that the jadgpanther tank destroyer would of held a stonger place in history. the us built m36(?) was the best match gun wise (90mm?) to the germans - but as duffypoo pointed out - you need the armour to stay in the fight. i can't even imagine the pucker factor of being in one of the us tank destroyers when it came accross a konigstiger, sent one off, only to have the ktiger traverse it's turret!!!! yikes!! steve
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 10:19:45 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 11:02:50 PM EDT
Originally Posted By imposter: The M26 Pershing was a good heavy tank, on par with the Tiger, but only a few saw combat. That was due to faulty US doctrine, which ephasized mobility over firepower and armor. Patton had a lot to do with that mistake.
View Quote
From what I understood, this was due to transport issues. Transport accross the atlatic, that is. On Panther vs T-34/85, from an armor/gun perspective, the Panther has a slight edge (from the front, the most common area for hits). The Panther's superior optics would give it more of an edge, and of course training and tactics were excellent. Numbers, of course, favored the T-34.
Link Posted: 5/11/2001 11:35:28 PM EDT
The thing with the thin armor of the AMX-30 and the Leopard 1 was that the desstructive power of tank guns made heavy armor pointless. Speed and acceleration was what counted. They were designed to stop non-tank guns on the frontal arc - 20 mm? The tiger 2 had its share of problems. Germany was desparatly short of alloying elements needed for armor toughness and ductility, and non-piercing shots often shattered the armor. Compare pictures of shot up German and American armor. The mechanical reliability of the Tiger 2 was abysimal. In one combat move in the east, about 40 Tigers marched to the battle area past the railhead. About 37 broke down by the side of the road, adn the 3 that made it were ambushedby a lone T34/85 firing that "silver bullet" ammo.
Link Posted: 5/12/2001 12:28:52 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/12/2001 12:32:24 AM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/12/2001 12:54:14 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/12/2001 10:34:51 AM EDT
duffypoo - you da' man! great website! i've promptly book marked it for further late night pajama theatre! one point on the m60a3 - i thought this was the varient with the sheridan's 155mm(?) gun, the site shows it with what looks like the british 105mm - then which model does the marines use with the reactive armour? and are the marines going to or do they already have the m1a1? interesting point by pogo on the alloying metals. comparing the damage to tiger and panther hulls vs. ktiger - you are right, the ktiger hulls appear to me more shattered than 'gouged'. the early tiger hulls seemed to be more 'maliable' to the soviet guns, or it could be the soviet rounds became more powerful as the war dragged on. the ktigers were woefully underpowered and i can only imagine what the stresses were on the drivetrain. the tigers aufs 'a' had to gain speed to power up small hills, lord knows what a white knuckler it must of been in a aufs b. steve
Link Posted: 5/12/2001 12:29:03 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 6:14:47 AM EDT
i know the sherridan (sp?) saw service in vietnam - and the aluminum armour fiasco (also in the m113's)with heat rounds from prg7's. though i did hear the israeli's solved with is internal kevlar lining in the m113. i imagine the m60a3's were dropped with the advent of the abrams. good point on the m48-m60 being a ww2 progression, never really thought of it that way. now here is a brain teaser i never knew the answer to. the m48 was called the patton - was the m60a1 ever given a name? or was it still the patton? steve
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 7:08:23 AM EDT
Actually my favorite was the Panzer IV. It had a very interesting progression as the war went on, becoming better armed and armored. If I could buy one, it would be the Stuart. Totally outclassed during WWII, but it would be fun to use four wheeling.
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 7:43:42 AM EDT
Wasn't the shortlived M60A2 the one that mounted the Shillelagh gun/missile system? For detailed information on WWII German armor, look for these books: Germany's Panther Tank, by Tom L. Jentz, published by Schiffer Military History. Also by the same author: Germany's Tiger Tanks: Tiger I&II Combat Tactics Germany's Tiger Tanks: V.K.45.02 to Tiger II While Germany was beaten by superior numbers, the Allies sure traded a lot of blood for it. "Tiger I&II: Combat Tactics" has a section titled "American Tanker's Opinions of Tigers." It's interesting reading. I think the mocked up Tigers used in Kelly's Heroes are the same ones used in Saving Private Ryan. From the upper hull and upward, they look damn authentic. Even the exhaust manifolds and covers looked good. It's only when you see the idler wheel at the front that you realize it's fake.
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 10:39:48 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/13/2001 10:49:11 AM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 10:50:13 AM EDT
ss109- i too have a soft spot for the pzkfw IV also, the aufs 'j' with the 'schurzen' and 'ostketten'(? please forgive my poor german) looked pretty good. the outclassed award for me goes to the maitlda! (which fell like flies against the early IV's in 'nord afrika'). wadman - i think you are right on the m60a3 /a2. as far as the books i already have tigers in combat vol I and II and the panther book. there is apparently a new one out specifically on the action record of schwere pzabtl 503 that looks interesting and most likely the next purchase. the 'tiger fiebel' is also an interesting look on how to operate one of the beasts! when i 1st saw the promos for private ryan i just about pooped in my pants when i thought i saw a real tiger on the go. only upon seeing the movie, the size and dimmensions were off and the rollers of a t34 (blasphemy!) could be seen. though kudos to spielberg for trying to get it so close anyway. steve
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 2:47:20 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 3:54:42 PM EDT
interesting historical note on the 88's. never knew that was the first time they were set in horizontal position. always thought it was a given that they ruled the land and air. was it rommel's idea or something that just happened? the matilda was small cramped, heavily armoured with a whimpy main gun. i just always thought they looked 'funny' with 'personality' - in a good way. i heard that many were captured and put into use with the DAK. from what i have read and seen, the early campaign in nord afrika was really the last time chivalry was still intact in combat. the two opposing commanders were still gentlemen from another time. they would treat each others' wounded and would give quarter when able. there was that one story where rommel - stopped into a field hospital to see his men to give moral, and upon entering, realized it was a british unit! he still went thru saluting and shaking hands apparently and left, much to the stunned medical personnel and wounded 'tommies' inside!
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 4:01:09 PM EDT
Originally Posted By steve m: one point on the m60a3 - i thought this was the varient with the sheridan's 155mm(?) gun, the site shows it with what looks like the british 105mm - then which model does the marines use with the reactive armour? and are the marines going to or do they already have the m1a1?
View Quote
Actually the M60A2 was equipped with the 152mm gun/launcher system, and it was every bit as problematic on the '60 chassis as it was on the M551 Sheridan. The main gun had to be recalibrated every time to lauch the missle - not a good thing in a combat environment. Fortunately neither are still in the inventory, except perhaps for use as hard targets. [;)] The Marines are still using both the M60A1 [RISE] and the M60A3, which at the end of the day are pretty much the same thing, the M60A3 simply incorporating most of the [RISE] improvements.
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 4:05:02 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/13/2001 10:57:43 PM EDT
Ah, yes - the 88. Small units of 3-4 guns racked up huge scores of British armor. What is interesting is that the Russians were convinced of the inferiority of their new tanks (KV-1 and T-34) vs. the Germans. After the fall of France, they were to some extent convinced that German tank armor could not be penetrated by existing tank guns. In 1940, there was considerable effort to feild a high velocity 107 mm tank gun that could stand a chance against the Germans.
Link Posted: 5/14/2001 11:39:46 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/14/2001 5:09:04 PM EDT
duffypoo- interesting light on the british tactics and influence of tank design. very english! depressing the 88's would seem like an idea a 'rebel' like rommel would do with or without high commands concent. does anyone know of the highest scoring 88 crew. how many and where they served? they only stats i have are of the tiger schw/pzabtl units in the 'ostfront'. the percived inferiority of the soviets own t34/kv1 would go hand in hand with the lack of radios (!) and discipline. also goes with the soviet method of just throwing men and material at the enemy, regardless of casualties. i think the soviets only started to succeed when stalin relinquished control of the troops and at the same time supplies or re-supply to the forward units stopped. i read of one ostfront panzer veteren who spoke of the only reason they lost was they ran out of everything! all supplies were apparently being diverted south. steve
Link Posted: 5/14/2001 8:51:38 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/14/2001 9:42:40 PM EDT
M48 Beautiful....... [url]http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/land/m48.htm[/url]
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 8:55:29 AM EDT
yes the m48 does have the retro look going for it, and i know it saw service in vietnam - does anyone know why the m60a1 did not? i just noticed - we have done it lads! the largest post in 'history' in all of 'history section!' i am sure it will be beat one day. danke schon! steve
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 12:08:21 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 4:57:59 PM EDT
Duff, At the end of WWII, the Swedes persuaded the French to transfer an intact Tiger II for testing. The Swedes wound up developing the S-tank. Lessee, now. The French went with the wimpy AMX 30, ball bearing stabilized round and all. Even though they had access to perfectly good Tiger IIs. The Russians dragged back all manner of German crap at the end of the war, and used a lot of German technology in their jets such as the Mig 15. They loved to steal technology, as they so readily proved in copying our B-29 which they turned into the Tu4 Bull. The Russians had Tiger IIs at Kubinka. They in no manner decided to copy the Tiger II Enter the Americans. We dragged a Tiger II back to Aberdeen. We wound up with the M-48, which is admittedly not cool looking. OK, as of this tally the vaunted Tiger II is 0/4 In fact, WHAT POST WAR NATION ADOPTED THE TIGER II??????? Even the Israelis who used all manner of junk like overtorqued Jumo-211 powered Me109s did not rush out to get Tiger IIs. Perhaps the Tiger II is more deficient than one might guess. Perhaps??
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 6:11:26 PM EDT
ustulina- very good point on the non-adoption of ktiger technologies by the allied nations. i think the main reason was the fruition of devestating air delivered and hand carried AT weapons made the battle use of a heavy tank expensive and obsolite. the ktiger really was the last of it's kind in terms of build. also the technologies needed to make such a concept of a invincible heavy tank (engines, armour, etc) were not available at the time. NOW we have the abrams which is everything the ktiger could of been had the technologies been present. so we do now have modern ktigers - abrams, challenger, and leopard 2-'S' (thanks duff) if there were a pitch battle between the m48 and a ktiger? if the ammo used by both were the same - the edge would go to type of terrain and how seasoned the crews were. it would be really really close. if it were open plain like in the ukraine - i'd go for the ktiger. marshy swamp or hilly and up close the m48 would have the edge..... steve
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 6:39:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/16/2001 7:01:18 PM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 6:51:16 PM EDT
1. Every combat system is a compromise. The King Tiger would have been relatively useless in a Blitzkrieg style offensive campaign. It is a defensive tank, unless your idea of offense is advancing a couple of miles per day. I think that as the war progressed, the Germans adopted weapons that were better suited to defensive engagements. Hence, the 2. I have never compared a Tiger II and M48 in field trials :) No idea how they'd compare, but considering that the armament seems similar, I'd take the increased mobility of the M48 2. From what little I know, the majority of tank destruction was not from tank on tank engagement. Stalin wasn't the best military genius, but he made a good point when he referred to artillery as the "King of weapons." 3. Any of you guys want to pit an Abrams against a Super Cobra lugging a Maverick? I think that you could make a strong case for MBTs being thoroughly obsolete. In an earlier post, I wondered how an Abrams would do against a Strix, Maverick, Hellfire, or any other type of weapon that can find the thin skin on a modern MBT. 45, 50, 70 mph, a tank ain't gonna outrun a functional anti-tank missile. A tank is a big target, and it is putting out a lot of signature. I think a modern MBTs life in a non-air secure environment is going to be measured in minutes. The weight of the Abrams system is *high.* this means gluttonous fuel consumption, a very limited number of bridges that can support the tank, and general transport problems. The military has made its share of mistakes in procurement, and I am keeping that in mind. Nevertheless, they are making a decision to go to a wheeled armored vehicle. This would indicate that they have concluded that MBTs have serious limitations. I think that modern MBTs are incredible machines. But all the wars in the future ain't gonna be like Iraq.
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 6:55:41 PM EDT
It's been a fun discussion. I agree with most of the stuff you guys have said, but I still dislike the Tiger II. It is Disney-like.
Link Posted: 5/16/2001 8:21:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/16/2001 8:23:54 PM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/17/2001 12:53:04 PM EDT
I have some doubts that Hellfire and the like would penetrate the frontal armor of the M1A1. In Iraq, the 125mm gun - which is no poodleshooter - of the T-72s could not penetrate the Arabrams frontal armor. The only losses were from rear hits. I have not heard of any ATGM losses of M1s in that war, and the Iraqis had plenty of BMPs. Of course, only the army knows how vulnerable the M1A1 is to ATGM, and they are certainly not going to tell anyone. I think their interest in a wheeled vehicle is another manifestation of the US Army's fetish with mobility over firepower. That is in part why we ended up with M4s instead of M26s in WWII.
Link Posted: 5/17/2001 1:33:53 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/17/2001 1:43:42 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/17/2001 1:47:09 PM EDT by imposter]
There were apparently at least 4 M1A1s from 1-37 Armd put out of action by enemy fire in the Gulf War. See the last post of the following thread: [url]http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?id=20680[/url] I can't remember if it was from the book mentioned or another I read recently, but some M1A1s were hit in the front by T-72 rounds. The projectiles actually stuck in the Arabam's armor.
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