Video of the Day: Driving in Canada – Bundeswehr

This video appeared on youtube earlier this week and was brought to our attention by the Tank Videos thread over at Tank-net.com. It shows Leopard 1 tanks on maneuvers in Canada.  We can’t tell too much about the video since we do not speak Deutsche, but it’s interesting footage none the less.

Translated tank articles from Archive Awareness

Here is a round up of articles from World of Tanks History Section and Yuri Pasholok translated into English by the Archive Awareness blog.  Click on the article title to view the full article.

 

StuG in the USSR

stug-1At the start of the Great Patriotic War, Soviet military intelligence and the GAU had a very approximate idea about the types and characteristics of German tanks. This deficiency led to an overestimation of the possibilities of German armour and the launch of the KV-3, 4, and 5 programs in March of 1941. Even information on real German tanks was sparse. Intelligence missed the increase of the front armour of PzIII and PzIV tanks to 50 mm and use of 50 mm guns. This lack of information had to be made up for in the most reliable way during the war: studying trophies. Among the vehicles that were glossed over by Soviet intelligence was the StuG assault gun.

 

World of Tanks History Section: Antitank Exotics

During WWI, no participating country quite figured out tanks. However, in the two post-war decades, military thinkers managed to develop many theories and tactics, but some doubt remained. Germany’s success in Poland and France finally confirmed their usefulness beyond all doubt. As the popularity of tanks increased, so did the interest in anti-tank measures: guns, rifles, grenades, or more exotic methods.

 

World of Tanks History Section: Tiger Armageddon at Lisow

lisow-1By noon of the first day of the Sandomierz-Silesian Offensive Operation, Soviet infantry penetrated the first line of German defenses and hit the second. Quickly realizing the situation, Marshall Konev, the commander of the 1st Ukrainian Front, played the ace up his sleeve: several hundred tanks and SPGs. Thanks to them, Soviet forces were ready to assault the second line by the second half of January 12th, 1945.

 

Mythical Tanks

German secret tank projects are a common topic for internet arguments, reshuffling of facts, or outright falsifications. Some of this is done as a joke, some out of ignorance, and some intentionally. Today, let’s seriously try to discover which of these phantom German creations are real and which are not.

Waffentrager auf E-100

The most frequently discussed and unusual vehicle in the German World of Tanks tech tree. This vehicle is completely made up by Wargaming. Initially, it was supposed to have dual 128 mm guns, but due to a lack of multiple gun support, it received an AA gun with an autoloader. Soon it will be replaced with a much more realistic project found in the archives. The reason for this replacement is primarily that it’s too different from other vehicles in the tank destroyer branch.

 

Mauschen: Rat Race

mauschen-7The history of the Pz.Kpfw. Maus is still full of blank spots, despite the popularity of the subject. The beginning of the tank’s development from March of 1942 to 1943 is the least studied area. During this time, the project indexed Typ 205 radically changed. Essentially, the only constants were the index and the idea of using an electric transmission. Thanks to new publications and archive research, it is now possible to remove the veil of mystery from many parts of the project.
100 Ton Mouse

After the fall of France in 1940, German designers got access to French developments, including full scale models of superheavy tanks, the FCM F1 and ARL Tracteur C. Compared to these tanks, the German VK 65.01 (Pz.Kpfw. VII) that started development in January of 1939 seemed obsolete. It’s possible that this discovery led to the cancellation of the mild steel prototype.

The Chieftain’s Hatch: Turan III Prototype

Over at the World of Tanks forum, researcher Nicholas “The Chieftain” Moran has posted a new article on the history of the Hungarian Turan III prototype.

Excerpt:

t21testThe Turán started with an acknowledgement that the Toldi light tanks (which were basically Swedish Landsverk L-60s) weren’t really suited for a general tank role on the modern battlefield. After a bit of hunting, the Hungarians ended up talking with Škoda.

In 1938, Škoda took a crack at what was effectively a “heavy light tank,” the S-II-c. The family resemblance to the older S-II-a (later the LT Vz 35) should be obvious, though with 3cm of armor and the 47mm Vz 38 gun, the vehicle now came in at some 16.5 tons. A bit of tweaking later, and the 16.7-ton T21 was born. These ended up being developed for series production as the T2, with an order of 200 being placed for Romania before Germany put a hold on that sale.

Read full article here.

News from around the Web

Here is a roundup of tank related news from around the web.  These articles come from a variety of sources, some better quality than others.  Click on the headline to read the entire article.

Jane’s IHS – DSA 2016: Malaysian Army Chief states Condor APCs and Scorpion tanks are to be upgraded

1565591_-_mainMalaysian army chief, General Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor, stated that the army plans to initiate an upgrade programme for its fleet of Alvis Vehicles Scorpion 90 light armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs) and Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Condor 4×4 armoured personnel carriers (APCs) to enable them to continue operational service.

USNI News – Walsh: Marines May Protect Tanks With Active and EW Protection Systems, Much Like Ship Self-Defense

Tanks roll up on Dogu BeachAs anti-tank threats are growing increasingly sophisticated, the Marine Corps is looking at protecting its ground vehicles with active protection and electronic warfare systems to fend off incoming rounds the same way ships and planes do today.  Lt. Gen. Robert Walsh, deputy commandant for combat development and integration, said at a Senate Armed Services seapower subcommittee hearing on Wednesday that as technology proliferates, the anti-tank threat is rapidly evolving. The Navy is investing in protecting its ships and aircraft from similar threats, and Walsh said it’s time for the Marine Corps to take the same approach for its ground vehicles.

Sputnik International – Russia Produces 70% of World Tanks, Ready to Churn out Armata in 2016

1025737494MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russia produces 70 percent of all tanks produced worldwide, producing one tank per day, Uralvagonzavod General Director Oleg Sienko said.

“Today we hold 70 percent of the world market on tank construction. I mean tanks both produced in Russia and under our licensing in the world. We’ve held first place for several years already and aren’t willing to give that up,” Sienko told RIA Novosti in an interview.

Daily Mail – On the prowl… through a river: South Korea tests out its fleet of £6million Black Panther tanks that can drive through 14ft of water thanks to a special ‘snorkel’ system

3353621B00000578-0-image-a-109_1461069697477Prowling through a river, these are South Korea’s Black Panther tanks that can move effortlessly through 14ft of water thanks to a special ‘snorkel’.  The £6million armoured vehicles were put though their paces in an underwater exercise across the South Han River in Yeoju, east of Seoul, today.

With its snorkel system, the turret becomes watertight but the chassis can take in some 500 gallons of water to counteract the buoyancy caused by the air pocket inside the tank.
The snorkel on top of the vehicle then serves as a look-out tower for the tank commander, keeping him above the surface.

Mirror – ‘PlayStation controls’ installed in British tanks in bid to attract ‘video game geeks’ to the Army

British-TankTanks are being designed with controls that look like a PlayStation gamepad in a bid to encourage video game obsessive to join the army . The new British Challenger II’s firing mechanism is based on the Sony handset in order to make it instantly recognisable to new recruits.

Army chiefs believe hours playing Call of Duty make gamers the best gunners and hope the new-look controls will encourage them to sign up. Lance Corporal Shannon Wood, who teaches recruits how to use tank weapons systems, told the Daily Star that the Army is keen to harness people with technological abilities in the war against terrorism.

 

Video of the Day: IS-10 Heavy Tank

This video showed up on youtube yesterday.  Nice black and white footage of Soviet IS-10 heavy tanks going through their paces.

Tank Chats #18 Mark I

David Fletcher has returned to host the latest Tank Chat, on the Mark I tank.

The Museum’s Mark I is the only surviving example of this, the first tank produced to go into battle.

Book Alert: The First Tank Crews by Stephen Pope

Amazon is listing an April 30 release date for this new book examining the story of first tank crews at the Somme battlefield in 1916.  Written by Stephen Pope, The First Tank Crews: The lives of the Tankmen who fought at the Battle of Flers Courcelette 15 September 1916 is a rather substantial 400 pages and is published by Helion and Company.

Publishers Description:


This remarkable new book reveals the hitherto unknown story of the soldiers who took the first tanks into action on the Somme battlefield in September 1916. Drawing on official records, contemporary newspaper reports and family memories, Stephen Pope provides a fascinating insight into the lives of the First Tank Crewmen, covering their recruitment, scant training, rapid deployment and their premature use in battle. He then traces their inter-connected lives over the next two years as tanks played a key role in the defeat of the Germany Army in 1918. He reveals the story of their return to civilian life and their often difficult struggle to build a family life. Sadly many of the First Tank Crews died young, some due to injuries or illnesses developed as a result of their wartime service.

Amongst the stories revealed are those of the grandson of the social reformer Joseph Rowntree, the champion rose grower Bill Harkness, the Scottish chemist Stuart Hastie who introduced science into the whisky distilling process and the Liverpool school teacher Graham Nixon who tried to teach John Lennon mathematics. None of those who fought in the tanks achieved great fame for their actions and few revealed their wartime secrets to their families. However, many became pillars of their local communities, giving a life of service to those around them.

This book tells the previously untold stories of bravery, determination and dedication by a group of unsung heroes. The author has used his contacts with more than fifty relatives of those who fought at the First Tank Action and used their input to provide a detailed description of their lives after the war. He has also gathered together many previously unpublished pictures including many of the tankmen in France, and has revealed the backstory to several well known photographs. Above all, he has linked individual lives together to create a fascinating story of ordinary men who took part in extraordinary events. The story of the First Tank Crews is one well worth reading.