Andreas wrote:Couple of points - I think the 600 yards is certainly not applicable to late 41/early 42. The penetration of the 2-pdr is over 50mm at 1,000m, IIRC, so unless there were problems with the sights, they should be well able to aerate German tanks at distances well over 600 yards. I agree with Jon that 800m is a long distance in desert conditions, and a lot of combat would have been at shorter ranges.
I've seen a lot of conflicting data on the performance of the 2-pdr. already. But if these tables
can be believed, the 2-pounder would have struggled to penetrate Pz III frontal armour beyond 500 yards.
Tony Williams' web site yields these tidbits
...The larger calibre, with its correspondingly larger case, gave armour-piercing performance well above that of most 37mm guns; penetration of 53mm or armour plate at 60 degrees at 450m was achieved, compared with 30mm for the contemporary German 37mm weapon...
And about the US 37 mm:
...Armour penetration in the M6 gun at 460m and 70 degrees impact was 53mm against face-hardened plate and 61mm against homogenous plate...
For AT gunners, the best way to distinguish between 'long' and 'short' range would probably be 'inside MG range' and 'outside MG range' respectively. And it does appear that the Axis (or at least the German) AT arm had a distinct advantage in that regard.
Andreas wrote:The Crusader did not have the derated Merlin, IIRC. That was the Cromwell, and a very good engine that was. Crusaders had an aero engine called Liberty, IIRC...
Right! Although the Meteor was tested in Crusader prototypes. The drawback of the Nuffield Liberty was that its cylinders were individually cast, then bolted together, instead of cast as a single engine block, which would cause the individual cylinders to work themselves apart under combat conditions.