Tiger tank for Japan?

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Simon Gunson
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Post by Simon Gunson » 18 Apr 2005 21:49

The Italian sub Comandante Alfredo Cappellini sailed for Japan on May 1943 with tank blueprints and unspecified steel in her cargo which may have been tank components. It seems odd to carry steel to japan in a submarine intended for high value cargo. She reached Singapore on 13 July 1943.

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John W
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Post by John W » 07 May 2005 02:01

From Achtung Panzer website::

Image
Left: Japanese Military Attache Colonel Ioshida inspecting purchased Panther at Henschel plant.
Photo provided by Dmitry Pyatakhin.

In 1943, single early Panther Ausf D along with PzKpfw VI Tiger was sold to Japan, but both were never delivered due to the war situation and were loaned by Japan to the German Army.

http://www.achtungpanzer.com/pz4.htm

regards,
John

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SinfulSaint
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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by SinfulSaint » 25 Nov 2005 22:08

Musashi wrote: I heard it was delivered and the U-boot's commander was rewarded with a samurai sword for his mission. He was one of three Germans rewarded with samurai swords during WW II.
wrong.

that's a different story. the story of capt. bernhard rogge and his raider "kms atlantis". he was awarded the samurai sword (one of threee - other two went to rommel and göring) for delivering top-secret documents found onboard british freighter "automedon" who fell victim to kms atlantis and it's crew. later on, realizing the importance of the documents, rogge forwarded them to japan thus giving japanese forces the edge for taking singapore. after the fall of singapore rogge was awarded for his deeds a highest japanese war merit medal - the samurai sword.

saw a documentary on that.

sorry for going slightly off-topic.

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David C. Clarke
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Post by David C. Clarke » 26 Nov 2005 01:13

It seems odd to carry steel to japan in a submarine intended for high value cargo. She reached Singapore on 13 July 1943.
Depends on the type of steel, as the steel made for tank armor differed from that used for ship armor. The Japanese, of course, had much experience fabricating armor for ships, but tank armor was not a Japanese specialty.

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David

TRose
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Post by TRose » 26 Nov 2005 20:32

After 1942 Japan had a severe shortage of steel with the naval vessel and planes haveing priority over tanks, so 60 tons of high grade steel for a tank would have put a burden on Japanes industry, A second point of even in the plains of northern China I doubt that there where many bridges that could support the weight of a tiger tank,( Tiger tank trying to cross bridge over the yellow river might end up haveing to be transferd to the Sub fleet) and I dont think Japan had a tank transporter either that could handle the weight, given that tiger where short range( wont even talk about how well a tiger could handle the rice paddies of southern China)
As for European troops under Japanese control, the nearest thing was a battleion of Italian marines (Along with a few gunboats) that was station in China prewar, they where used as garrison troops until 43 when they where inprisoned by the Japanese after Italy surrender

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Davide Pastore
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Post by Davide Pastore » 03 Dec 2005 15:14

Simon Gunson wrote: The Italian sub Comandante Alfredo Cappellini sailed for Japan on May 1943 with tank blueprints and unspecified steel in her cargo which may have been tank components. It seems odd to carry steel to japan in a submarine intended for high value cargo. She reached Singapore on 13 July 1943.
According to Erminio Bagnasco & Achille Rastelli, Sommergibili in Guerra, Parma 1989, "Comandante Cappellini" [#1] arrived at Sabang (Sumatra) on 9 July 1943 with on board 95t of "...various materials, including aluminium ingots, spare parts, radar electronic parts, special ammo, etc."

Of course, it seems odd as well to transport aluminium to bauxite-rich Malaysia. Maybe the correct meaning was "special aircraft light alloys". However, if an entire tank had been on board, the Italian sources would have stressed it as a great technical feat (we have precious military thing to boast about, so we usually have to make the most of them... :D ). Additionally, the boat was not specifically designed as a cargo carrier, and I'm nearly sure that there was not on board a big enough single cargo space. Of course, if you are patient enough, you can disassemble anything... :)

[#1] "Alfredo Cappellini" was the Italian name of the ex-USN SS 336 Capitaine (in Italian service from 1966 to 1977). Although both boats were named after the same person, Capitano di Fregata Alfredo Cappellini (the commanding officer of the coastal ironclad "Palestro", sunk at Lissa in 1866):
http://www.marina.difesa.it/storia/MOVM ... OVM301.htm
their names were slightly different.

Davide

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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by nebelwerferXXX » 12 Sep 2010 09:00

PPoS wrote:The truth was that the Tiger cost 300,000 RM but the German charged the Japanese with 645,000 RM.
Tiger tank: An export price of 645,000 RM: Price breakdown were given as follows...

Engine...13,000 RM
Gear change Mechanism...8,300 RM
Engine...13,000 RM
Hull...54,000 RM
Turret...26,000 RM
Turret assembly...20,000 RM
Chassis assembly...12,400 RM
Tracks...7,000 RM
Gun...22,000 RM
Ammunition...9,000 RM
Optical System...2,900 RM
Radio equipment...3,000 RM
2xMG 34s...1,100 RM
Machine pistol...75 RM

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Ironmachine
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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by Ironmachine » 12 Sep 2010 17:30

Tiger tank: An export price of 645,000 RM: Price breakdown were given as follows...

Engine...13,000 RM
Gear change Mechanism...8,300 RM
Engine...13,000 RM
Hull...54,000 RM
Turret...26,000 RM
Turret assembly...20,000 RM
Chassis assembly...12,400 RM
Tracks...7,000 RM
Gun...22,000 RM
Ammunition...9,000 RM
Optical System...2,900 RM
Radio equipment...3,000 RM
2xMG 34s...1,100 RM
Machine pistol...75 RM
Does this have a source or it is just your estimation?

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Sewer King
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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by Sewer King » 12 Sep 2010 17:56

Another, earlier thread about the report of a Tiger I for Japan, that perhaps should have been joined to this one.

I still wonder how much practical interest Japan would have had in acquiring a Tiger I, compared to her interest and needs for other military technologies.

-- Alan

nebelwerferXXX
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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by nebelwerferXXX » 13 Sep 2010 02:06

Ironmachine wrote:
Tiger tank: An export price of 645,000 RM: Price breakdown were given as follows...

Engine...13,000 RM
Gear change Mechanism...8,300 RM
Engine...13,000 RM
Hull...54,000 RM
Turret...26,000 RM
Turret assembly...20,000 RM
Chassis assembly...12,400 RM
Tracks...7,000 RM
Gun...22,000 RM
Ammunition...9,000 RM
Optical System...2,900 RM
Radio equipment...3,000 RM
2xMG 34s...1,100 RM
Machine pistol...75 RM
Does this have a source or it is just your estimation?
The parts were real, while the costing, I've seen it at Feldgrau...I don't know if it's accurate? Anyway, this information is only a basis for additional knowledge for future discussions here...thanks!

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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by OpanaPointer » 13 Sep 2010 02:25

Does anybody ever wonder how they would have gotten the parts down the hatch of a submarine?
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Zebedee
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Re:

Post by Zebedee » 13 Sep 2010 03:12

Simon Gunson wrote:It seems odd to carry steel to japan in a submarine intended for high value cargo. She reached Singapore on 13 July 1943.
Very possibly to be used for testing and analysis by the Japanese. Post-war US testing of armour plate made in Japan revealed that there was some movement in trying to emulate the quality and standard of German steel which produced some amazing results. (eg http://www.navweaps.com/index_tech/tech-040.htm ).

Mil-tech Bard
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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by Mil-tech Bard » 18 Sep 2010 16:30

The Japanese would have been better served buying copies and a production license for the German 75-mm Pak 40 Antitank Gun than a Tiger or Panther.

The German 75-mm Pak 40 Antitank Gun would have been transportable by submarine.

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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by Mil-tech Bard » 18 Sep 2010 16:35

Better yet, they should have gone for a Jagdpanzer 38(t) Hetzer than a Tiger or Panther.

At 16 tons the design was much more within the industrial and logistical capabilities of the Imperial Japanese.

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Re: Tiger tank for Japan?

Post by john whitman » 18 Sep 2010 17:01

To all:

Just remember when talking about German tanks, that the Japanese would have had to manufacture the ammunition, spare parts, tractors and trailers (low boys), and recovery vehicles/wreckers. Gun barrels are expensive and hard to machine, and Japan was already short field artillery. Were sub-caliber devices for training available, were cheaper training rounds available, were tank ranges available? In a military hurting for fuel, they would have to fuel these vehicles at a per mile basis less efficient than a light tank.

Were Home Island rail cars and rail cars in Manchuria, the Philippines, Malaya, and Burma strong enough to carry a large tank? Would vehicle bridges be strong enough to carry a large tank? Radios were in short supply everywhere. Could radios have been installed? In a society short on mechanics, the training base would have had to train men on a European-designed engine, motors, optics etc. New maintenance tools would be needed. Were existing batteries adequate for a large tank? Cranes at ports would have to be able to lift the load of the tank, roads and piers would have to carry the load, and ship tie downs and blocking would have to be big enough.

It is fun to talk about a piece of equipment like a tank, but there is a hidden world of logistics behind it that would need to be addressed.

Remember the old saying, "amateurs talk tactics, professionals talk logistics."

John

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