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Old 13th October 2018, 03:24 PM   #401
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
The final Sherman . Israeli M51, French 75mm gun derived from the German Panther, a huge steel counterweight welded to the turret rear and a diesel engine package.
Because of the rlimited recoil space available in the turret they were only fired with the gun pointing forwards and the transmission in neutral to allow the whole tank to move to absorb the shock.
Israel sold them to Lebanon and Chile where they served up in to the late 80s.
They were based on the cast M4a1 hull with the HVSS suspension.
There is a good preserved example at the Eden Camp museum in North Yorkshire near where I live.

http://i821.photobucket.com/albums/z...psmtnu4gfg.jpg
So was the Panther 75 much higher recoil than the 17pdr in the Firefly?

To me that looks a bit overbalanced - and if you can only fire the gun in such a situation, why not remove the turret and go for a Sherman jagdpanzer thype design?

Thanks for the previous answer, btw.

Why was the HE performance of the WWII 75mm Sherman gun superior to the 76mm or the 17pdr? I could understand if you needed a thicker shell casing to deal with a higher velocity, but couldn't you reduce the propellant charge?

Or am I misunderstanding the problem completely?
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Old 13th October 2018, 04:12 PM   #402
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
The 76mm turret with the 17pdr would have been awesome.
There was probably enough room in there for the 20pdr as well but by the time that was developed the Centurion was in service.
There was a report back in the '60s that Israel had trialed the 20pdr in the Sherman, to use guns removed from Centurions that had been upgraded with the 105mm. I've never seen a photo or independent confirmation. It might have been a misreport of the M-51 project. It would make an interesting "What If" model.
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Old 13th October 2018, 04:17 PM   #403
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
So was the Panther 75 much higher recoil than the 17pdr in the Firefly?

To me that looks a bit overbalanced - and if you can only fire the gun in such a situation, why not remove the turret and go for a Sherman jagdpanzer thype design?

Thanks for the previous answer, btw.

Why was the HE performance of the WWII 75mm Sherman gun superior to the 76mm or the 17pdr? I could understand if you needed a thicker shell casing to deal with a higher velocity, but couldn't you reduce the propellant charge?

Or am I misunderstanding the problem completely?
I made a mistake, that is the 105mm gun, it was the earlier M50 that had the 75.

Several reasons for getting rid of a turret.
A turret-less vehicle is less versatile, it is essentially a defensive vehicle.
it is good for fighting from a defensive, prepared position and then retreating to another defensive position. It can cover a limited arc of fire.
A turreted vehicle is better for advancing. You don't know where a target might present itself and a turret gun can be brought to bear quickly. A tank can fire and then be retrained on a different target on a different bearing without having to slew the whole vehicle.
Germany was fighting a defensive, retreating war. It had limited resources in both materials and manufacturing to build as many vehicles as it could. On a tank the turret ring is the most complicated and finely machined part. It takes precision bearings and finishing to produce.
Big guns in heavy turrets need a big and heavily engineered turret ring. Eliminate the turret ring and turret and you can mount a bigger gun for a given vehicle size.

Given the choice the commanders would have preferred turreted vehicles.
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Old 13th October 2018, 04:28 PM   #404
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
I made a mistake, that is the 105mm gun, it was the earlier M50 that had the 75.

Several reasons for getting rid of a turret.
A turret-less vehicle is less versatile, it is essentially a defensive vehicle.
it is good for fighting from a defensive, prepared position and then retreating to another defensive position. It can cover a limited arc of fire.
A turreted vehicle is better for advancing. You don't know where a target might present itself and a turret gun can be brought to bear quickly. A tank can fire and then be retrained on a different target on a different bearing without having to slew the whole vehicle.
Germany was fighting a defensive, retreating war. It had limited resources in both materials and manufacturing to build as many vehicles as it could. On a tank the turret ring is the most complicated and finely machined part. It takes precision bearings and finishing to produce.
Big guns in heavy turrets need a big and heavily engineered turret ring. Eliminate the turret ring and turret and you can mount a bigger gun for a given vehicle size.

Given the choice the commanders would have preferred turreted vehicles.
Yes, but if you could only fire forward and with the tank gearbox in neutral to take the recoil, doesn't that negate the point of the turret? Or was I misunderstanding the M50? or M51?
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Old 13th October 2018, 05:37 PM   #405
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post

Why was the HE performance of the WWII 75mm Sherman gun superior to the 76mm or the 17pdr? I could understand if you needed a thicker shell casing to deal with a higher velocity, but couldn't you reduce the propellant charge?
From The Font of All Knowledge:
Quote:
The situation with the high-explosive shell was that the 3 inch M42 projectile for the 76 mm gun carried a filler of about 0.9 lb (0.41 kg) of explosives while the 75 mm gun M48 high explosive projectile carried 1.5 lb (0.68 kg).[22] Far more high explosive ammunition was used by tankers than armor penetrating types, the ratio being about 70% HE, 20% AP and 10% smoke overall,[23] The ratio could vary by unit: From August 3 to December 31, 1944 the 13th Tank Battalion fired 55 rounds of M62 APC-T armor piercing versus 19,634 rounds of M42 high explosive.[24]
My guess (with emphasis on GUESS) is that the US Army had plenty of HE capacity with 75mm Shermans and the 76 was focused on anti-tank needs so they didn't bother developing a higher capacity HE shell.
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Old 13th October 2018, 06:26 PM   #406
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
From The Font of All Knowledge:

My guess (with emphasis on GUESS) is that the US Army had plenty of HE capacity with 75mm Shermans and the 76 was focused on anti-tank needs so they didn't bother developing a higher capacity HE shell.
Remember that the ammunition fired by the 75mm M3 and M4 medium tanks was essentially the ammunition for the French M1897 75mm Field Gun, an application for which HE was the priority.

About 1942 it was anticipated the British would license produce American 75mm ammunition in the UK. Vickers were therefore tasked with creating a new high velocity tank gun that would use 3-inch AA gun cases with British made American 75mm projectiles fired from an L51 barrel. This gun was the 75mm Vickers HV (for high velocity). When the plan to license produce 75mm ammo fell apart the gun was re-thought to use projectiles from the 17-Pdr and became the 77mm gun used in the Comet tank. I do wonder how much the gun was actually different though. After all, a 3-finger gun is a 3-finger gun.
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Old 13th October 2018, 06:33 PM   #407
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
The final Sherman . Israeli M51, French 75mm gun derived from the German Panther, a huge steel counterweight welded to the turret rear and a diesel engine package.
Because of the rlimited recoil space available in the turret they were only fired with the gun pointing forwards and the transmission in neutral to allow the whole tank to move to absorb the shock.
Israel sold them to Lebanon and Chile where they served up in to the late 80s.
They were based on the cast M4a1 hull with the HVSS suspension.
There is a good preserved example at the Eden Camp museum in North Yorkshire near where I live.
The tanks sold to Chile lacked guns. They were fitted after sale with a high velocity smoothbore 60 mm gun the Isreali's had co-developed in the 1980's with OTO Melara in Italy and for which Chile was the only known customer. They also refitted a battalion of M24 light tanks with this gun.

Both types were replaced by surplus Leopard 1 tanks in the late 90's.
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Old 13th October 2018, 06:56 PM   #408
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Yes, chrysler, I don't know why I typed packard!

The US didn't use the M4A4, they were all shipped to allies, mainly the British.
They were pigs to do a routine service on but were surprisingly reliable in service. An engine could stop but the whole plant would keep running. Service crews found it was quicker to replace the whole pack rather than try a main service with the thing in situ and they got very speedy at engine swapping.

Main identifying feature for the M4A4 is the top of the radiator with it's filler cap protruding above the deck plate just behind the turret. The increased length is hard to spot if there isn't a 'normal' tank alongside as it is just a slightly wider spacing of the suspension units.

http://the.shadock.free.fr/sherman_m...m4a4/m4a4.html
I bet they were a pig to service...

I worked on a early Lafrance firetruck, had a v12 which was basically two separate 6 cylinder engines sharing a common crank, with two distributors, 4 sets of points, 4 coils and 24 spark plugs (2 per cylinder). The 'ignition switch' (keyless, 4 positions) had off, bank 1 running, bank 2 running or both banks running (for extra HP)
As you may imagine, tuning it was a right pain... (especially as we didn't actually have any info on it, so it was tuned 'by ear', and adjusting any setting (points gap/advance) interfered with all the others)

Trying to tune 5 separate 'engines' to run smoothly together and extract as much power as possible- with 5 separate distributors????

uggggh- no thanks
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Old 14th October 2018, 01:26 AM   #409
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
From The Font of All Knowledge:

My guess (with emphasis on GUESS) is that the US Army had plenty of HE capacity with 75mm Shermans and the 76 was focused on anti-tank needs so they didn't bother developing a higher capacity HE shell.
Ah, that was what I had read, pretty much. And when you look at the filler for the 17pdr it was even lower.

I was asking why they didn't put more filler into it. I was guessing that the muzzle velocity might have been a problem, so thought that it could have been reduced.
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Old 14th October 2018, 02:32 AM   #410
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Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
Remember that the ammunition fired by the 75mm M3 and M4 medium tanks was essentially the ammunition for the French M1897 75mm Field Gun, an application for which HE was the priority.

About 1942 it was anticipated the British would license produce American 75mm ammunition in the UK. Vickers were therefore tasked with creating a new high velocity tank gun that would use 3-inch AA gun cases with British made American 75mm projectiles fired from an L51 barrel. This gun was the 75mm Vickers HV (for high velocity). When the plan to license produce 75mm ammo fell apart the gun was re-thought to use projectiles from the 17-Pdr and became the 77mm gun used in the Comet tank. I do wonder how much the gun was actually different though. After all, a 3-finger gun is a 3-finger gun.
The final armament of the Cromwell and the Churchill was a 75mm chambered to fire American 75mm ammo. It replaced the 6pdr used in earlier variants.
I will have a search around, somewhere I have crew manuals for both the Churchill and the Cromwell that details all the ammunition types
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Old 14th October 2018, 03:22 AM   #411
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
The final armament of the Cromwell and the Churchill was a 75mm chambered to fire American 75mm ammo. It replaced the 6pdr used in earlier variants.
I will have a search around, somewhere I have crew manuals for both the Churchill and the Cromwell that details all the ammunition types
Yes, that gun was one of the reasons the British wanted to produce their own 75mm ammo. That and in 1941-42 the Battle of the Atlantic was not going so swimmingly.

Can't help but think what a useful gun the 75mm HV would have been. Had it been built perhaps we would have seen mass conversions of Sherman's to this gun in 1944 rather than 17 pdr's.
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Old 14th October 2018, 07:12 AM   #412
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A bit off topic, but I'm rather amused by the way the US Army adopted metric measurements for its guns early on, but the Navy never did except for European developed weapons like the Oerlikon 20mm and Bofors 40mm. Even the latest destroyers have a 5-inch gun. The now-retired FFG-7 class did have a 75mm but it was developed in Italy and is actually a true 3-inch!
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Old 14th October 2018, 07:37 AM   #413
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
A bit off topic, but I'm rather amused by the way the US Army adopted metric measurements for its guns early on, but the Navy never did except for European developed weapons like the Oerlikon 20mm and Bofors 40mm. Even the latest destroyers have a 5-inch gun. The now-retired FFG-7 class did have a 75mm but it was developed in Italy and is actually a true 3-inch!
I think that's similar in the RN. Only it's a 4.5-inch gun.

ETA: which means that the RN's biggest gun is a smaller calibre than the 120-mm used on British tanks since the Chieftain.
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Old 14th October 2018, 08:03 AM   #414
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
A bit off topic, but I'm rather amused by the way the US Army adopted metric measurements for its guns early on, but the Navy never did except for European developed weapons like the Oerlikon 20mm and Bofors 40mm. Even the latest destroyers have a 5-inch gun. The now-retired FFG-7 class did have a 75mm but it was developed in Italy and is actually a true 3-inch!
Same with the RN. the standard gun is a 4.5 inch.
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Old 14th October 2018, 08:14 AM   #415
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I think that's similar in the RN. Only it's a 4.5-inch gun.

ETA: which means that the RN's biggest gun is a smaller calibre than the 120-mm used on British tanks since the Chieftain.
Yes but the naval gun is heavier and has a higher muzzle velocity capable of throwing a heavier shell further. Weight and size of the mounting aren't such limiting factors when it is fixed to a ship rather than a tank.

Range of the current RN gun with a 46 lbs HE Shell is 24,000 yards (22,000 m) the Challenger gun has an effective range with AT rounds of 3,300 yards (3,000 m) and 8,700 yards (8,000 m) with HE rounds.

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Old 14th October 2018, 11:35 AM   #416
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Direct vs indirect fire. And sorry for the derail.
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Old 14th October 2018, 11:52 AM   #417
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Direct vs indirect fire. And sorry for the derail.
and muzzle velocity, charge size etc. You can't compare a naval gun to a tank gun.
The nearest would be an AA gun, in fact the 4.5 was used as a land based AA gun

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QF_4.5...n#Land_service
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Old 14th October 2018, 12:18 PM   #418
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Yes but the naval gun is heavier and has a higher muzzle velocity capable of throwing a heavier shell further. Weight and size of the mounting aren't such limiting factors when it is fixed to a ship rather than a tank.

Range of the current RN gun with a 46 lbs HE Shell is 24,000 yards (22,000 m) the Challenger gun has an effective range with AT rounds of 3,300 yards (3,000 m) and 8,700 yards (8,000 m) with HE rounds.
Agreed, but it still tickled me compared to 1940, when you have tanks with 40mm 2pdr guns and ships with 15" and 16" guns.
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Old 14th October 2018, 04:36 PM   #419
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
A bit off topic, but I'm rather amused by the way the US Army adopted metric measurements for its guns early on, but the Navy never did except for European developed weapons like the Oerlikon 20mm and Bofors 40mm. Even the latest destroyers have a 5-inch gun. The now-retired FFG-7 class did have a 75mm but it was developed in Italy and is actually a true 3-inch!
I have never heard the 76 mm Mk 75 referred to as a 75 mm.
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Old 14th October 2018, 06:14 PM   #420
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Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
I have never heard the 76 mm Mk 75 referred to as a 75 mm.
I thought I had, but am apparently mistaken.
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Old 15th October 2018, 05:55 AM   #421
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
That's more or less it, the 17pdr was 76.2 mm as well.
Don't forget the "77mm" and "3 inch" guns too. Though not on the Sherman IIRR.
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Old 15th October 2018, 07:30 AM   #422
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
Don't forget the "77mm" and "3 inch" guns too. Though not on the Sherman IIRR.
The M-10 Wolverine Tank Destroyer, built on the Sherman Chassis, used the 3" gun. It had lighter armor on the upper hull and turret to improve mobility. Doctrine at that time was that tanks would not engage tanks. 75mm gun tanks were to take care of enemy infantry and emplacements, while enemy tanks would be engaged by tank destroyers and anti-tank guns.

That didn't work out in practice. 75mm Shermans engaged enemy tanks, and M-10s were tasked with infantry support.
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Old 15th October 2018, 07:38 AM   #423
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The probkem with the Tank Destroyers is to commanders on the ground they looked like tanks and that's how some tried touse them.
Problem with that was they were only armoured against small arms and had an open topped fighting compartment.
In British service they were part of artillery regiments and were divisional assets.
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Old 15th October 2018, 08:28 AM   #424
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Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
The M-10 Wolverine Tank Destroyer, built on the Sherman Chassis, used the 3" gun. It had lighter armor on the upper hull and turret to improve mobility. Doctrine at that time was that tanks would not engage tanks. 75mm gun tanks were to take care of enemy infantry and emplacements, while enemy tanks would be engaged by tank destroyers and anti-tank guns.

That didn't work out in practice. 75mm Shermans engaged enemy tanks, and M-10s were tasked with infantry support.
That is simply not true.

In American doctrine, tanks were tasked with engaging any and all targets they would meet during their actions. This included tanks, but also targets for supporting infantry.

Tank destroyers (tracked or guns pulled by wheeled trucks) were tasked to engage and stop/destroy enemy tank forces that had broken through the front line.
Anti tank guns were organized with the infantry units, but were doctrinally different from the same guns that were used as tank destroyers.

Tank destroyers were primarily defensive weapons, while the tanks were offensive weapons.

In practice tank destroyers were in the end also used during the attack, because the Germans were very unsporting and didn't attack in the 'may 1940' way anymore and it was a waste to not use these weapons (did take a fair amount of discussion though, to approve this use).
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Old 15th October 2018, 08:30 AM   #425
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This all eventually lead to the "Universal Tank" concept. One size fits all, now commonly the MBT, Main Battle Tank, which is intended to be one design to fill all the tank roles. On the modern battlefield their most important job is defeating enemy tanks, with Infantry Combat Vehicles filling the role performed by Infantry Tanks in WW-II.

One of the biggest advantages has been the simplification of logistics. In WW-II, supplying US and Commonwealth forces, the logistic train had tank ammo in 2pdr, 6pdr, 17pdr, 20pdr, 37mm, 75mm, 76.2mm, 90mm and 3", all incompatible (and I've probably missed a few). Most of those had multiple ammo types within each caliber. Adding in the artillery makes things even worse.

It's much simpler now, with almost all NATO and allied countries using the same 120mm smooth bore ammo. The notable exception is the British Army, which uses a 120mm Rifled Cannon with different ammo (although one must acknowledge that they've achieved the longest range tank kill using it).
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Old 15th October 2018, 10:30 AM   #426
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
The probkem with the Tank Destroyers is to commanders on the ground they looked like tanks and that's how some tried touse them.
Problem with that was they were only armoured against small arms and had an open topped fighting compartment.
In British service they were part of artillery regiments and were divisional assets.
Very much like Battle Cruisers, which looked like battleships so got used as such. With dismal results on at least four occasions.
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Old 15th October 2018, 12:53 PM   #427
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Originally Posted by erwinl View Post
In practice tank destroyers were in the end also used during the attack, because the Germans were very unsporting and didn't attack in the 'may 1940' way anymore and it was a waste to not use these weapons (did take a fair amount of discussion though, to approve this use).
Yeah, when it comes down to it you were asking the Generals to go "keep all these heavy fast guns behind the line in case of an attempted enemy breakthrough instead of bringing them up where they might be of use." That just wasn't going to happen.

I think German armored breakthroughs were attempted twice against the US. Once in Africa and the Bulge. The TD doctrine semi-sorta-kinda worked in Africa, but not really. In the Bulge it wasn't employed and probably wouldn't have worked.
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Old 15th October 2018, 06:04 PM   #428
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Originally Posted by kookbreaker View Post
Yeah, when it comes down to it you were asking the Generals to go "keep all these heavy fast guns behind the line in case of an attempted enemy breakthrough instead of bringing them up where they might be of use." That just wasn't going to happen.

I think German armored breakthroughs were attempted twice against the US. Once in Africa and the Bulge. The TD doctrine semi-sorta-kinda worked in Africa, but not really. In the Bulge it wasn't employed and probably wouldn't have worked.
They were hurting for actual tank destroyers in Africa. Ever seen those pictures of Jeeps with 37 mm guns mounted in the bed?
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Old 15th October 2018, 07:20 PM   #429
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Originally Posted by Doubt View Post
They were hurting for actual tank destroyers in Africa. Ever seen those pictures of Jeeps with 37 mm guns mounted in the bed?
Yeah, that why they semi-sorta-kinda worked, but not really.
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Old 16th October 2018, 12:22 AM   #430
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I could understand if you needed a thicker shell casing to deal with a higher velocity, but couldn't you reduce the propellant charge?
A change in propellant (and muzzle velocity) changes the ballistics and so would require different gunsights.
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Old 16th October 2018, 02:04 AM   #431
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Quote:
I could understand if you needed a thicker shell casing to deal with a higher velocity, but couldn't you reduce the propellant charge?
British Challengers (and the Chieftain before) use an artillery style two part ammunition with a 'bagged' charge.
That is the shell and propellant are separate and instead of a metal cartridge case it is in a 'bag' that is consumed when the gun is fired.
this allows different charge sizes to be used for different ammunition.
It's also easier to handle in the confines of a turret and reduces the risk of an explosion if a charge is pierced (for various reasons that I can go in to if anyone is really interested).

Artillery uses different charges depending on the type of ammunition and the ranges being fired to, it makes a gun more versatile.
There is no reason it couldn't have been done with the 76mm recalibrating a sight wouldn't have been that difficult.
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Old 17th October 2018, 05:48 AM   #432
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Old 17th October 2018, 12:23 PM   #433
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Very much like Battle Cruisers, which looked like battleships so got used as such. With dismal results on at least four occasions.
Did they get used as intended in battle? I suppose shelling the Vichy fleet might have counted.
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Old 17th October 2018, 12:28 PM   #434
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Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
Did they get used as intended in battle? I suppose shelling the Vichy fleet might have counted.
Check out the battle of Jutland, 1916. Battlecruisers fighting battlecruisers!
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Old 17th October 2018, 02:42 PM   #435
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Ah in my ignorance, I thought that was the British battlecruiser squadron trying to engage the German battleships but without any British battleships within range
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Old 17th October 2018, 02:47 PM   #436
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Didn't we have like a similar thread about BBs ? I want to react, but ..
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Old 17th October 2018, 03:02 PM   #437
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Originally Posted by Rincewind View Post
Check out the battle of Jutland, 1916. Battlecruisers fighting battlecruisers!
Which is not what they were supposed to do. They were to be used as 'Super Cruisers' Capable of overwhelming enemy cruisers and smaller ships and fast enough to run away from anything capable of sinking them.

On paper this is good but by the time they were in service battleships were appearing nearly as fast as they were and everyone had battlecruisers.


They were white elephants from the start.
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Old 17th October 2018, 03:11 PM   #438
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
Didn't we have like a similar thread about BBs ? I want to react, but ..
Yes, I started one. Should see if i can find it, i guess.
The BC's WERE used as intended at the battle of the Falkland Islands. But the concept was fatally flawed by assuming the other guys couldn't build them too.
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Old 17th October 2018, 03:37 PM   #439
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Well .. in Hood vs. Bismark, I can see Hood captain wanting to at least take a shot at Bismark, hoping he can disengage if he receives too much damage. It's not like BCs blew up in few shots with basically no survivors before, is it .. oh wait ..
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Old 17th October 2018, 04:02 PM   #440
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Originally Posted by Dr.Sid View Post
Well .. in Hood vs. Bismark, I can see Hood captain wanting to at least take a shot at Bismark, hoping he can disengage if he receives too much damage. It's not like BCs blew up in few shots with basically no survivors before, is it .. oh wait ..
Unfortunatley Hood was never modernised. Other BCs were given big rebuilds before the war, they lost boilers and gained armour. Unfortunately Hood was never rebuilt.
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