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    The Soviet T34 Best Tank of WW2 Myth or Fact?

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    Myth or Fact?

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    [ 4 ]
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    Total Votes: 10
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    lockie
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    Re: The Soviet T34 Best Tank of WW2 Myth or Fact?

    Post by lockie on Thu Nov 05, 2015 11:14 pm

    kapulA wrote:its catastrophic debut at Kursk, when they were still very prone to engine fires after a plain road march.
    U forgot to mention the wheels Wink
    After ~60-80km the wheels became out of order. It was a serious problem, coz took off rubber bandage from the wheels, because of the overheating and wheels deformation itself.
    It does: we went 50 km, then coffee-break ~30 minutes to cool the wheels them move ahead. Or move more than 50 km then stop and change all wheels on the new ones. This time the stop will take more than half an hour. Perhaps two hours under field conditions.
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    frinik
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    Re: The Soviet T34 Best Tank of WW2 Myth or Fact?

    Post by frinik on Fri Nov 06, 2015 9:46 am

    Uh is this worse than the so-called best tank of the war?in a period of 1942 80% ( 326 out of 400)(of operational T34s lost in 6 days to mechanical problems......

    ‘Our armored forces and their units frequently suffer greater losses through mechanical breakdowns than they do in battle. For example, at Stalingrad Front in six days twelve of our tank brigades lost 326 out of their 400 tanks. Of those about 260 owed to mechanical problems. Many of the tanks were abandoned on the battlefield.
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    Re: The Soviet T34 Best Tank of WW2 Myth or Fact?

    Post by lockie on Fri Nov 06, 2015 10:08 am

    frinik wrote:Uh is this worse than the so-called best tank of the war?in a period of 1942 80% ( 326 out of 400)(of operational T34s lost in 6 days to mechanical problems.......
    Don't forget abt. human factor. Soviet soldiers didn't want to fight "For Stalin" for "Communism". They just took off the weapon and surrendered. That's why Stalin told: RKKA doesn't has surrenders, it has the traitors.
    BTW
    According to this logic, Jakov Dzhugashvily was the traitor also, coz was captured by Wehrmacht.

    There is a very good fact abt. reliability of the Soviet tanks. In August 1945 The 6 Guard Tank Army went approximately ~800km without a terrible number of the mechanical issues, inspite it had BT-5, T-34.
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    Re: The Soviet T34 Best Tank of WW2 Myth or Fact?

    Post by frinik on Sat Nov 07, 2015 5:00 am

    This was posted by a Russian on the War Thunder forum about the results of the Aberdeen trials of the T-34 and KV-1 in the US( not Aberdeen in Scotland).



    Footnote 1 -- reads, "The full name of the document is, "An Evaluation of the T-34 and KV tanks by workers of the Aberdeen Testing Grounds of the U.S., submitted by firms, officers and members of military commissions responsible for testing tanks." The tanks were given to the U.S. by the Soviets at the end of 1942 for familiarization.")



    The condition of the tanks



    The medium tank T-34, after driving 343 km, became disabled and could not be fixed. The reason: owing to the extremely poor air cleaner on the diesel, a large quantity of dirt got into the engine and a breakdown occurred, as a result of which the pistons and cylinders were damaged to such a degree that they were impossible to fix. The tank was withdrawn from tests and was to be shelled by the KV and its "Z/ 3" (?) -- by the cannon of the M-10 tank. After this it would be sent to Aberdeen, where it would be analyzed and kept as an exhibit.



    The heavy tank KV is still functional. Tests are continuing, although it has many mechanical defects.



    The silhouette/configuration of the tanks



    Everyone, without exception, approves of the shape of the hull of our tanks. The T-34's is particularly good. All are of the opinion that the shape of the T-34's hull is better than that of any American tank. The KV's is worse than on any current American tank.

    Armor



    A chemical analysis of the armour showed that on both tanks the armour plating has a shallow surface tempering, whereas the main mass of the armoured plating is made of soft steel.



    In this regard, the Americans consider that, by changing the technology used to temper the armoured plating, it would be possible to significantly reduce its thickness while preserving its protective capacities. As a result the weight of the tank could be decreased by 8-10%, with all the resulting benefits (an increase in speed, reduction in ground pressure, etc.)



    Hull



    The main deficiency is the permeability to water of the lower hull during water crossings, as well as the upper hull during rain. In heavy rain lots of water flows through chinks/ cracks, which leads to the disabling of the electrical equipment and even the ammunition.

    The Americans liked how the ammunition is stowed.



    Turret



    Its main weakness is that it is very tight. The Americans could not understand how our tankers could fit inside during winter, when they wear sheepskin jackets. The electrical mechanism for turning the turret is very bad. The motor is weak, heavily overloaded and sparks horribly, as a result of which the device regulating the speed of the rotation burns out, and the teeth of the cogwheels break into pieces. They recommend redoing it as a hydraulic or simply manual system.







    Armament



    The gun of the T-34 is very good. It is simple, dependable and easy to service. Its weakness is that the initial speed of the shell is significantly less than that of the American "Z/ 3" (3200 feet versus 5700 feet per second).

    Aiming/Back-sight



    The general opinion: the best in the world. Incomparable with any existing (well-known here) tanks or any under development.



    Track



    The Americans very much like the idea of steel tracks. But they believe that until they receive the results of the comparative performance of steel vs. rubber tracks on American tanks in Tunis and other active fronts, there is no basis for changing from the American solution of rubber bushings and pads.

    The deficiencies in our tracks from their viewpoint results from the lightness of their construction. They can easily be damaged by small calibre shells and mortar bombs. The pins are extremely poorly tempered and made of poor steel. As a result they quickly wear and the track often breaks. The idea of having loose track pins that are held in place by a cam welded to the side of the hull, at first was greatly liked by the Americans. But when in use under certain operating conditions, the pins would become bent which often resulted in the track rupturing. The Americans consider that if the armour is reduced in thickness the resultant weight saving can be used to make the tracks heavier and more reliable.



    Suspension





    On the T-34, it is poor. Suspension of the Christie type was tested long ago by the Americans, and unconditionally rejected. On our tanks, as a result of the poor steel on the springs, it very quickly (unclear word) and as a result clearance is noticeably reduced. On the KV the suspension is very good.



    Motor



    The diesel is good and light. The idea of using diesel engines on tanks is shared in full by American specialists and military personnel. Unfortunately, diesel engines produced in U.S. factories are used by the navy and therefore the army is deprived of the possibility of installing diesels in its tanks.



    The deficiency of our diesels is the criminally poor air cleaners on the T-34. The Americans consider that only a saboteur could have constructed such a device. They also don't understand why in our manuals it is called oil-bath. Their tests in a laboratory showed that:

    - the air cleaner doesn't clean at all the air which is drawn into the motor;

    - its capacity does not allow for the flow of the necessary quantity of air, even when the motor is idling. As a result, the motor does not achieve its full capacity. Dirt getting into the cylinders leads them to quickly wear out, compression drops, and the engine loses even more power. In addition, the filter was manufactured, from a mechanical point of view, extremely primitively: in places the spot-welding of the electric welding has burned through the metal, leading to leakage of oil etc. On the KV the filter is better manufactured, but it does not secure the flow in sufficient quantity of normal cleaned air. On both motors the starters are poor, being weak and of unreliable construction.



    Transmission



    Without doubt, poor. An interesting thing happened. Those working on the transmission of the KV were struck that it was very much like those transmissions on which they had worked 12-15 years ago. The firm was questioned. The firm sent the blueprints of their transmission type A-23. To everyone's surprise, the blueprints of our transmission turned out to be a copy of those sent (?). The Americans were surprised, not that we were copying their design, but that we were copying a design that they had rejected 15-20 years ago. The Americans consider that, from the point of view of the designer, installing such a transmission in the tank would create an inhuman harshness for the driver (hard to work). On the T-34 the transmission is also very poor. When it was being operated, the cogs completely fell to pieces (on all the cogwheels). A chemical analysis of the cogs on the cogwheels showed that their thermal treatment is very poor and does not in any way meet American standards for such mechanisms.





    Rolling friction clutches



    Without doubt, poor. In America, they rejected the installation of friction clutches, even on tractors (never mind tanks), several years ago. In addition to the fallaciousness of the very principle, our friction clutches are extremely carelessly machined from low-quality steel, which quickly causes wear and tear, accelerates the penetration of dirt into the drum and in no way ensures reliable functioning.



    General comments



    From the American point of view, our tanks are slow. Both our tanks can climb an incline better than any American tank. The welding of the armour plating is extremely crude and careless. The radio sets in laboratory tests turned out to be not bad. However, because of poor shielding and poor protection, after installation in the tanks the sets did not manage to establish normal communications at distances greater than 10 miles. The compactness of the radio sets and their intelligent placement in the tanks was pleasing. The machining of equipment components and parts was, with few exceptions, very poor. In particular the Americans were troubled by the disgraceful design and extremely poor work on the drive/ gear/ transmission links/ blocks (?) on the T-34. After much torment they made new ones and replaced ours. All the tanks' mechanisms demand very frequent adjustments/ fine-tuning.

    Conclusions, suggestions



    1. On both tanks, quickly replace the air cleaners with models with greater capacity capable of actually cleaning the air.

    2. The technology for tempering the armour plating should be changed. This would increase the protectiveness of the armour, either by using an equivalent thickness or, by reducing the thickness, lowering the weight and, accordingly, the use of metal.

    3. Make the tracks thicker.

    4. Replace the existing transmission of outdated design with the American "Final Drive," which would significantly increase the tanks' manoeuvrability.

    5. Abandon the use of friction clutches.

    6. Simplify the construction of small components, increase their reliability and decrease to the maximum extent possible the need to constantly make adjustments.

    7. Comparing American and Russian tanks, it is clear that driving Russian tanks is much harder. A virtuosity is demanded of Russian drivers in changing gear on the move, special experience in using friction clutches, great experience as a mechanic, and the ability to keep tanks in working condition (adjustments and repairs of components, which are constantly becoming disabled). This greatly complicates the training of tankers and drivers.

    8. Judging by samples, Russians when producing tanks pay little attention to careful machining or the finishing and technology of small parts and components, which leads to the loss of the advantage what would otherwise accrue from what on the whole are well designed tanks.

    9. Despite the advantages of the use of diesel, the good contours of the tanks, thick armour, good and reliable armaments, the successful design of the tracks etc., Russian tanks are significantly inferior to American tanks in their simplicity of driving, manoeuvrability, the strength of firing [reference to speed of shell], speed, the reliability of mechanical construction and the ease of keeping them running.

    Signed -- The head of the 2nd Department of the Main Intelligence Department of the Red Army, General Major of Tank Armies, Khlopo... (end missing: Khlopov?)




    Edited by Ulatersk, 18 January 2015 - 08:45 PM.

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    7. Comparing American and Russian tanks, it is clear that driving Russian tanks is much harder. A virtuosity is demanded of Russian drivers in changing gear on the move, special experience in using friction clutches, great experience as a mechanic, and the ability to keep tanks in working condition (adjustments and repairs of components, which are constantly becoming disabled). This greatly complicates the training of tankers and drivers.


    To me this is very telling as the average lifespan of a Soviet tank crew in 1942-44 was 3 weeks; it means their crews never had a chance to keep their tanks in good running condition as they would likely become casualties. The Soviets simply compensated through attrition; they went through men and machines without any regards for losses counting on superior numbers to prevail which effectively from mid 1943on worked.





     

      #14    Edytha_Paula
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    Re: The Soviet T34 Best Tank of WW2 Myth or Fact?

    Post by woofiedog on Sat Nov 07, 2015 4:29 pm

    Frinik... interesting article about the KV-1 and the T-34 testing and especially the date of the testing, which was 1942.

    Out of the Soviet heavy tanks, I like the KV-1 more so than the T-34 or the IS models. In the game it has decent protection, along with speed and it carries a good ammo load.

    But as far as the other Soviet line up, I find the BT-7 a blast to ride into battle with. It's only down fall is it's light armor protection.

    But back again to the best tank of World War 2...




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