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31 juillet 2006 1 31 /07 /juillet /2006 06:16

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T-34 Medium Tank

"It was the most excellent example of the offensive weapon of Second World War." "It was the most excellent example of the offensive weapon of Second World War." - General Mellentin. -- General Mellentin.

"Their T-34 was the best in the world." "Their T-34 was the best in the world." - Field marshal Kleist. -- Field Marshal Kleist.

Just two of many quotes that have praised the T-34 tank. Just two of many quotes that have praised the T-34 tank. This is a vehicle, which has become a legend as the tank that won The Great Patriotic War for the Soviet Union. This is a vehicle, which has become a legend as the tank that won The Great Patriotic War for the Soviet Union.

The T-34 tank was designed and built in the Kharkiv Tractor Factory in the Ukraine and the first T-34 tank was tested by successfully driving it 1,000 miles from Kharkiv to Moscow and back. The T-34 tank was designed and built in the Kharkiv Tractor Factory in the Ukraine and the first T-34 tank was successfully tested by driving it 1000 miles from Kharkiv to Moscow and back. Mass production began in July 1940 and 1,225 tanks were made before the German invasion came on the 22nd of June 1941. Mass production began in July 1940 and 1,225 tanks were made before the German invasion came on the 22nd of June 1941. After the invasion production was transferred to East away from the threat of German bombing. After the invasion production was transferred to East away from the threat of German bombing.

The T-34 was far superior to the German Panzers when it was introduced due to a variety of advanced concepts for tank design of the time. The T-34 was far superior to the German Panzers when it was introduced due to a variety of advanced concepts for tank design of the time. It featured a high velocity gun placing more emphasis on tank killing ability and its armour was very well sloped making it difficult to knock out. It featured a high velocity gun placing more emphasis on tank killing ability and its armour was very well sloped making it difficult to knock out. Also it had extra wide tracks, which improved mobility cross-country, and its diesel engine both gave it longer range and reduced the risk of fire. Also it had extra wide tracks, which improved cross-country mobility, and its diesel engine both gave it longer range and reduced the risk of fire.

The T-34 design evolved throughout the war: the T-34/76B had a rolled-plate turret; the T-34/76C had twin roof hatches instead of the one large hatch; from the winter of 1942/3 the T-34/76D introduced a hexagonal turret, wider gun mantlet and jettisonable exterior fuel tanks; the T-34/76E added a cupola on the turret for the commander and was of all welded construction; the T-34/76F Had a cast rather than welded turret; during the winter of 1943/4 production of the T-34/85 began and used the turret of the KV-85 tank which included an 85-mm main gun plus space for an additional crew member so the commander did not also have to fire the gun. The T-34 design evolved throughout the war: the T-34/76B had a rolled-plate turret; T-34/76C had the twin roof hatches instead of the one large hatch; from the winter of 1942 / 3 the T - 34/76D introduced a hexagonal turret, wider gun mantlet and jettisonable exterior fuel tanks; the T-34/76E added a cupola on the turret for the order and was of all welded construction; the T-34/76F Had a cast rather than welded turret; during the winter of 1943 / 4 production of the T-34/85 began and used the turret of the KV-85 tank which included an 85-mm main gun more space for an additional crew member so the order did not also have to fire the gun.

In combat the T-34 served in almost every role and with hand bars welded to the hull 'tank descent' troops were able to ride westwards with the advancing armour towards Hitler's Reich. In combat the T-34 served in almost every role and with hand bars welded to the hull 'tank descent' troops were able to ride westwards with the armour advancing towards Hitler's Reich. Serving from the very beginning to the very end of the Great Patriotic War the T-34 changed not just the course of tank design but also the history of the planet through the actions of its crews. Serving from the very beginning to the very end of the Great Patriotic War the T-34 changed not just the course of tank design but also the history of the planet through the actions of its crews.

After the Second World War the T-34 was widely exported and was still fighting in Africa in the 1980s. After the Second World War the T-34 was widely exported and was still fighting in Africa in the 1980s. Then in the 1990s it saw action again in Europe (for hopefully the last time) during the Bosnian/Yugoslavian civil war - a true testament to a design that was half a century old. Then in the 1990s it saw action again in Europe (hopefully for the last time) during the Bosnian / Yugoslavian civil war - a true testament to a design that was half a century old.

 

GENERAL DATA GENERAL DATA
Formal Designation Formal Designation T-34-85 Model 1944 T-34-85 Model 1944
Manufacturer(s) Manufacturer (s) Factory No.183 UVZ, Factory No.112, Factory No.174 UVZ Factory No.183, No.112 Factory, Factory No.174
Production Quantity Quantity Production 17680 1 17680 1 Production Period Production Period Mar. 1944 - May 1945 Mar. 1944 - May 1945
Type Guy Medium Tank Medium Tank Crew Crew 5 5
Length overall Length overall 8.15 m (26' 9") 8.15 m (26 '9 ") Barrel Overhang Barrel Overhang 2.05 m (6' 9") 2.05 m (6 '9 ")
Width Width 3.00 m (9' 10") 3.00 m (9 '10 ") Height Height 2.72 m (8' 11") 2.72 m (8 '11 ")
Combat Weight Fighting Weight 32000 kg (70000 lbs) 32000 kg (70000 lbs) Radio Equipment Radio Equipment 9RM 9RM
FIREPOWER FIREPOWER
Primary Armament Primary Armament 85mm gun ZiS-S-53 85mm gun ZiS-S-53 Ammunition Carried Ammunition Carried 56-60 56-60
Traverse (degrees) Traverse (degrees) Electric (360?) Electric (360?) Elevation (degrees) Elevation (Degrees) -5? -5? to +22? to +22?
Traverse speed (360 ? ) Traverse speed (360?) 21 sec. 21 sec. Sight Sight TSh-16, MK-4 TSh-16, MK-4
Secondary Armament Secondary Armament 2 x 7.62mm DTM MG (coaxial, bow) 2 x 7.62mm MG DTM (coaxial, bow) Ammunition Carried Ammunition Carried 1890 1890

MOBILITY CHARACTERISTICS MOBILITY CHARACTERISTICS
Engine Make & Model Engine Make & Model V-2-34M V-2-34M No. of Links/Track No. of Links / Track 72/track 72/track
Type & Displacement Type & Displacement V12, 38.9 liters V12, 38.9 liters Track Width Track Width 55.0 cm (22") 55.0 cm (22 ")
Horsepower (max.) Horsepower (Max) 520hp@2000rpm 520hp @ 2000rpm Track Ground Contact Track Ground Contact 372 cm (146") 372 cm (146)
Power/Weight Ratio Power / Weight Ratio 16.3 hp/tonne 16.3 hp / tonne Ground Pressure Ground Pressure 0.78 kg/cm 2 (11.1 psi) 0.78 kg / cm 2 (11.1 psi)
Gearbox Gearbox 5 forward, 1 reverse 5 forward, 1 reverse Ground Clearance Ground Clearance 0.4 m (1' 4") 0.4 m (1 '4 ")
Fuel Fuel Diesel Diesel Turning Radius Turning Radius 7.6 m (24' 11") 7.6 m (24 '11 ")
Range on/off road Range on / off road 300+/180+ km 300 + / 180 + km Gradient Gradient 35? 35?
Mileage on road Mileage on Road 180 l/100km 180 l/100km Vertical Obstacle Vertical Obstacle 0.8 m (4' 1") 0.8 m (4 '1 ")
Fuel Capacity Fuel Capacity 540 (+ 180 external) 2 l 540 (+ 180 external) 2 l Fording Fording 1.3 m (4' 3") 1.3 m (4 '3 ")
Speed on/off road Speed on / off road 55/30 km/h 55/30 km / h Trench Crossing Trench Crossing 2.5 m (8' 2") 2.5 meters (8 '2 ")
ARMOR PROTECTION ARMOR PROTECTION
Armor Detail Armor Detail Front Front Side Side Rear Rear Top/Bottom Top / Bottom
Hull Hull 45mm@30? 45mm @ 30? 45mm@0? 45mm @ 0? 45mm@45? 45mm @ 45? 20mm@0? 20mm @ 0?
Superstructure Superstructure 45mm@30? 45mm @ 30? 45mm@50? 45mm @ 50? 45mm@42? 45mm @ 42? 20mm@0? 20mm @ 0?
Turret Turret 90mm@round @ 90mm round 75mm@70? 75mm @ 70? 52mm@80? 52mm @ 80? 20mm@0-14? 20mm @ 0-14?
Mantlet Mantlet 90mm@round @ 90mm round - -- - -- - --


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